If you click on the link in my blogroll that has this picture……you may be surprised to see that it isn’t the blog of a godless heathen like me, but of a Christian. You may also be surprised to see a link back here, especially given my sometimes less than charitable opinion of religion.
That link on CJ’s blog is what has prompted me to write today. (He has an annoying habit of making me think!) If you go to that site and let the mouse pointer hover over the link to here, you’ll see the words “Dave gives Bad Religion what it deserves – hard!”
Apart from the undeserved intensity of such praise, I do have a slight quibble with the phrasing of this, mostly because I’m so pedantic! My first thought was “All religions are bad!”
I should say to begin with that I view religion as separate from religious people. I can respect religious people even if I cannot respect the religion or its scriptures. Of course, as I’ve said often before, there are some religious people I can’t respect at all, and a sliding scale of respect for others. CJ is at the top of that scale, in part because he has such a well developed sense of humour that he can link to such a blasphemous site as this!
In fact he is representative of most of the theists I know in real life. It’s only on the internet that he appears to be an oddity, though he’ll deny that last with typical self deprecating humour, and claim to be odd all the time!
In the news media too we see mostly scary theists and the quiet ones who mind their own business and don’t harshly judge those who disagree with them hardly get a look-in.
One who did was Richard Harries who, when he was Bishop of Oxford, appeared on Richard Dawkins‘ programme “Root of All Evil”. It was not so much an interview as a conversation between two old friends, and I still enjoy watching it, especially after encountering some rabidly dishonest fundamentalist on one forum or another. It reminds me that not all theists are nutters, and quite a few are nice, decent, thoughtful and intelligent people. I know I’ve said that before, but with the sheer overkill of the not-so-brights overshadowing them, the decent sorts get tarred with the same brush. Despite broadly agreeing with the idea that “moderates give cover to extremists” espoused by Sam Harris, among others, I think it is manifestly unfair to accuse those who espouse the kindness they see in their scriptures of the barbaric activities that are indulged in by attention seeking brutes.
P.S. Click here to see a provocativey titled, but excellently written post by CJ, which should show why he is one of the most respected theists on atheist forums.