For the most part I was brought up in a religious background. My father was and still is a religious man. Although his concept of religion has evolved over the years into something more spiritual, I still remember the years of my (relative) youth when Fridays would mean temple visits. I always looked forward to Fridays, less because of the temple visits, more because of the post-prayer dinner at my favourite restaurant. Hinduism is not a restrictive/organized religion like Catholicism/Certain Protestant Sects/Islam. Thus there was never any compulsion to believe or anything of that order in my upbringing but I always felt that there is a Higher Power, something none of us can understand but could believe in. It is a manifestation of this vague idea called Faith.
As I grew older, I believed less in a Supreme Being of any sort and was quite an agnostic. For a stage I flirted with spirituality but recently I discovered it's not for me (yet). Recently, I came across this article Letter to a Christian Nation (2006). ISBN 0-307-26577-3 written by Sam Harris who is a researcher in neuro-sciences at Stanford. It struck me as very critical of organised-dogmatic religion but notwithstanding the thinly-veiled criticisms there are certain particularly salient points in the article which challenged by perception of religion and are sure to challenge yours as well.
This is not a hate article. I ask all the readers to read it with an open, liberal mind and try to understand the points Sam Harris tries to convey.