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Belief and non-belief. July 1, 2016

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.

Nick Cohen’s piece here refuting silly and unfair stuff about Christopher Hitchens having a ‘deathbed conversion’ to religion is perfectly on the nose. That said Cohen appears to believe that all who are ‘believers’ believe the same. A bit too much broad brush strokes, I’d have said.

It reminds me of my own father who was strongly atheistic across his life but who when in the last bout of the illness that killed him seemed to waver and dip towards anam cara style ‘Celtic’ spirituality. With my father, who was an Irish speaker and strongly republican (and an active member of SF in the 50s when as he said it was neither popular nor profitable), I felt that made a certain sense. With my own agnostic theism I would never have had the temerity or simple bad manners to demand, expect, or want him to do other than he wanted to do himself. And he did. And if he had taken another route either to full blown religion or remained staunchly atheist that would have been for him and him alone to do. But I can’t pretend it didn’t come as a bit of a surprise.


1. Ed - July 1, 2016

Is a certain Jeremy Corbyn held responsible for starting these unfounded rumours?

Liked by 1 person

2. Dermot O Connor - July 1, 2016

Atheists have a similar bad habit of projecting atheist onto dead theists. So in this practice, Faraday, Maxwell, Newton, Galileo & Copernicus weren’t ‘really’ Christians, they were just pretending because they had no choice. Presentism (a whig fallacy).

Atheist writer Tim O Neill on the phenomenon:


Liked by 2 people

WorldbyStorm - July 1, 2016

I get how people want to project themselves onto stuff. But it’s not good is it?


gendjinn - July 1, 2016

Yet, it’s not all projection. When society empowers an organisation with the powers of social coercion you are guaranteed to find a degree of “going along to get along”. Whether your heresy was sexual, atheist or abolitionist many kept it hidden and found a way to masquerade.

It is likely true of some of those historical figures, if not them then others. Just by the numbers.

Sure Ireland herself is not that far removed from the priest showing up at your house to ask why you weren’t at mass on Sunday.


gendjinn - July 1, 2016

Emperors new clothes behaviour is a sign of the Versailles bubble inflating.


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