Very superstitious

I’ve noticed recently a lot of hostility toward religion and spirituality. Things like this:

And things like this video on Cracked, which, while hilarious, seems to encapsulate this kind of Western-rationalism-fueled dread and disdain for anything approaching the supernatural or the divine.

Atheism is cool, and Cracked is one of my favorite websites. In no way am I disparaging people for holding these kinds of opinions, or attempting to persuade you that you should believe in anything at all. But I’m a little surprised and disheartened by the fact that these examples of contemporary media represent blatant and flippant attacks on the entire idea of belief. Science is positioned here as diametrically opposed to belief, which I think is a terribly narrow-minded view–every bit as unhealthy as its opposite, the faith-trumps-science angle. There’s no reason why the way of knowing we call science can’t exist alongside complex belief systems, however ludicrous they might seem from an ethnocentric “scientific” perspective.

It’s ironic to think that atheists should be interested in proselytizing. At least other religions have the advantage of trying to prove something. Atheists have to prove a negative, which I think is a great premise for a new sitcom, NBC executives who may or may not be reading this.

4 thoughts on “Very superstitious

  1. I’ve been thinking a lot about this passage from Terry Pratchett’s 19th Discworld Novel – Feet of Clay. It’s a conversation between Constable Dorfl, an atheist golem, and Constable Visit, the City Watch’s resident religious fanatic:

    ” ‘Atheism Is Also A Religious Position,’ Dorfl rumbled.

    ‘No it’s not!’ said Constable Visit. ‘Atheism is a denial of a god.’

    ‘Therefore It Is A Religious Position,’ said Dorfl. ‘Indeed, A True Atheist Thinks Of The Gods Constantly, Albeit In Terms of Denial. Therefore, Atheism Is A Form Of Belief. If The Atheist Truly Did Not Believe, He Or She Would Not Bother To Deny.’ “

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