Some of the earliest pagan religions burned their human victims alive. A super heated bronze statue of the god Moloch (AKA Molech) was used by his adherents to burn alive selected first born infants each year to bring good crops and ensure fertility of the people. Mercifully, drums were beaten so the cries of the infants were drowned out and the parents of the sacrificed didn’t have to hear their screams of anguish.
Fire was the element of choice during the Spanish Inquisition to force confessions from heretics. It was used to slowly roast the Templars, Cathars, Jewish convert backsliders, Christian dissidents, and enemies of the faith real, perceived or invented.
The pogroms of Christian anti-Semites throughout Germany, Russia, and Eastern Europe found fire to be an effective cleansing agent, when applied liberally to Jewish villages and enclaves.
For five centuries the screams of men and women declared witches by the faithful reverberated across Europe and colonial America as flames charred their flesh. It continues to this day as Africans embrace Christian tradition, abide by God’s words in Exodus 22:18, and seek out their own witches to roast.
Whenever an insult to their imaginary god or pedophile prophet is perceived, Muslims the world over flick their Bics to burn American and Israeli flags and effigies of Western political figures.
Devout Christians in the South after the Civil War found that a wooden cross soaked in a flammable substance, and burned at night on the property of targeted blacks and Jews was, and still is an effective terrorist tactic. Plus, it casts a lovely light upon the lynched.
Christians discovered early on that at 451 degrees Fahrenheit the paper of books that challenged Christian doctrine, offered alternative answers to “biblical science,” entertained children with tales of make believe wizards, or was otherwise deemed evil or offensive to God and his devoted minions - burned rather nicely. Sometimes the volume was chained to the leg of its author before both were reduced to ashes. Fortunately, plastics melt at a slightly lower temperature making the burning of cassette tapes, vinyl records, CDs and DVDs much easier for today’s zealous faithful to exercise their flaming rituals.
Yes, religionists have always been drawn to fire like mindless moths. Christians say fire represents purity and light and is a symbol of the Holy Spirit. Funny how at the same time fire is also the torture method of choice in that mythical horrific place their god invented to punish non-believers for an eternity. What’s not funny or mythical, is the reality that religionists have been causing Hell on Earth for centuries, with no end in sight. For as long as relgions exist the inferno will rage on.