Monday, 12 December 2011

Religion and the lack of introspection.

I'm sitting in an office this morning with two colleagues, one of whom is - by UK standards - a relatively devout Christian. In conversation the subject of Pakistan's recent shock announcement that it doesn't trust the USA came up, which led to a discussion about religious extremism.

The Christian colleague amused me with her comments about "fundamentalists" and people who take religion too far, mainly because  her definitions seemed to be so strange.  It's been established in the past that she thinks I'm a "fundamentalist" atheist (a strange title in itself; do I take disbelief in deities right back to first principles?!), which is odd to start with.  To earn the accolade "fundamentalist" a religious person must blow up a train, or shoot a doctor, or burn a clinic, or burn witches, or cut bits off other people... but a non-believer can apparently be branded "fundamentalist" just for being willing to talk about the problems with religion.

To make it clear, this is a woman who refused to attend the wedding of a mutual friend last year because he was marrying another man. People who hold religious beliefs are so strange.


  1. I've been called a God-hater. How can I hate an imaginary being? My brain is still trying to make sense of that. ---Doug

  2. The only tactic I've found - for christians, anyway - is to ask them about 9/11 or the 7/7 bombings. Do they hate Allah or do they hate the men who killed in his name?

    You could also ask them if they consider their disbelief in Odin or Ba'al to be the same as hating them.