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Our species should be renamed Homo sickiens, and religion is the sickest human sickness of all. For example, Mahatma Gandhi liked to sleep with naked young women, without touching them, in order to “become ‘God’s Eunuch’” (The Straight Dope, 8/13). Never mind if the women felt unclean for the rest of their lives.

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The early Christians were more literal-minded. Many actually “made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake” (Matthew 19:12). As if this was not heavenly enough, the King James Bible also says: “Wherefore if the hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into everlasting fire. And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire” (Matthew 18:8–9).

Alexandria, Va.