Conversations: God and a Little Girl


Lysandra
How can someone argue that atrocities do not bother fundamentalist Christians that much?

Sappho
Because they can find truth, peace and passivity in ancient Jewish texts like Isaiah 45:7, ‘I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

Helena
Consider this: somewhere in the world a man has abducted a little girl. Soon he will rape, torture, and kill her. If an atrocity of this kind is not occurring at precisely this moment, it will happen in a few hours, or days at most. Such is the confidence we can draw from the statistical laws that govern the lives of six billion human beings. The same statistics also suggest that this girl’s parents believe that an all-powerful and all-loving God is watching over them and their family. Are they right to believe this? Is it good that they believe this?

Sappho
No.

Helena
The entirety of atheism is contained in this response. Atheism is not a philosophy; it is not even a view of the world; it is simply an admission of the obvious. In fact, “atheism” is a term that should not even exist. No one ever needs to identify himself as a “non-astrologer” or a “non-alchemist.” We do not have words for people who doubt that Elvis is still alive or that aliens have traversed the galaxy only to molest ranchers and their cattle.

Sappho
Atheism is nothing more than the noises reasonable people make in the presence of unjustified religious beliefs. An atheist is simply a person who believes that the 260 million Americans (87 percent of the population) claiming to “never doubt the existence of God” should be obliged to present evidence for his existence—and, indeed, for his benevolence, given the relentless destruction of innocent human beings we witness in the world each day.

Helena
An atheist is a person who believes that the murder of a single little girl— even once in a million years—casts doubt upon the idea of a benevolent God.

(Based on: Harris. S. 2006. Letter To A Christian Nation p. 17-18

See other: Philosophical Conversations

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One thought on “Conversations: God and a Little Girl

  1. A blogger friend of mine wrote an excellent post (wish I had the URL to share) on the omnipresence of Yahweh – if he truly is omni-present, then he would have been standing there (invisible, of course – the invisible and the non-existent look very much alike) watching as the little girl is raped and murdered, doing absolutely nothing to prevent it. What kind of human could do that?

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