Today's Spokesman-Review contains an opinion piece by Leonard Pitts Jr. in which he uses an imaginary conversation with God (The link takes you to a free read elsewhere) to express his disbelief about disbelievers, namely atheists. I've always found that curious. The religious are generally tolerant of other religions--even with the Islamofascist hate-baiting of the last several years--but when it comes to people who don't believe in a god they are agog with disbelief. A Jew or a Muslim or a Christian alone in a room with several members of the other faiths has no worries about being challenged or pressured to convert. Upon learning of their singular faith the others remain generally civil. But an atheist is regarded differently. All manner of questions fill the air. "How can you not believe in God?" "Well, then what do you believe?" "Then how did we get here?"
It seems to me that if they (by 'they' I mean members of any religion) are that worried about people's souls, shouldn't they be asking those questions of everyone who has different beliefs? Do we consider some religions to be partially wrong and atheists as all wrong? Are other religions tolerable because they at least have a belief system? Are atheists intolerable because they don't have a belief system? Do atheists not have a belief system?
Interesting and puzzling questions. One thing is evident. They do provide an easy target.
Sunset at Fort Phoenix. Fairhaven, MA
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