There are several instances in which Voltaire criticizes religion. For example, in Chapter 14, the character Cacambo, Candide's footman in Paraguay, is described as having been a "singing boy, sexton, sailor, monk, peddler, soldier, and lackey" (page 35). The fact that Cacambo has tried and given up being a monk implies that religion is just like a pair of clothes that one tries on and takes off without much thought. In addition, in El Dorado, Cacambo is very surprised that there are no monks. He says, "What...have you no monks among you to dispute, to govern, to intrigue, and to burn people who are not of the same opinion with themselves?” (page 49). Cacambo suggests that monks mainly practice cruelty and intolerance rather than kindness, and the man who answers him says that they would be foolish to have monks in El Dorado, since they all get along. Again, the idea is that monks are only necessary to create discord.
There are also several instances of Voltaire satirizing government. For example, in Chapter 3, the troops representing the King of the Bulgarians fights the troops of the King of the Abares. The battle that the kings assemble is greeted with great fanfare, including "trumpets, fifes, hautboys, drums, and cannon [that] made such harmony as never was heard in Hell itself" (page 6). Then, as cannons are discharged, 6,000 soldiers immediately perish on both sides. Then, bayonets causes the death of about 30,000 more men, as the kings have people recite hymns in their camps. The kings appear to be merciless and unconcerned about the bloodshed that they are causing among their own people and among the other side.