Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Julie Birchill writing on being a Christian and no longer an atheist

A few paragraphs from an op-ed that appeared in the Guardian back in August this year:

Although it is often they who accuse us of being babyish, needing a big daddy in the sky to lean on, there is something profoundly immature about atheists. That surly, self-satisfied certainty that insists that one is the first person, ever, to see with a white-hot, burning clarity straight to the heart of society's attempts to manipulate and control us all for its own ends.

Today, atheism is big business with the success of books like The God Delusion. If you want to get ahead, be a heretic! Something, however, has been lost. Say the word "atheist" 100 years ago and it conjured up a vision of sexy, freewheeling rebels celebrating life, love and creativity in their rejection of a higher power. Say it now and a vision of fun-hating killjoys, desperately scared that somewhere a Christian is having a good time by singing lustily in church on a Sunday morning, comes to mind. And, sadly, the alleged "humanist morality" never happened – to this day, 80% of all unpaid and unself-interested voluntary and charity work is faith-driven.

The problem, which western atheists miss, is that to be a heretic here requires no bravery whatsoever.

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