The BBC news site have posted today and article about how the British Humanist Society (BHA), have with the support of Professor Richard Dawkins, paid for adverts to be placed on buses that say 'There's probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life.'
Two inevitable quotes from Dawkins and the BHA:
Professor Dawkins said: "Religion is accustomed to getting a free ride - automatic tax breaks, unearned respect and the right not to be offended, the right to brainwash children. This campaign to put alternative slogans on London buses will make people think - and thinking is anathema to religion"
Hanne Stinson, Chief Executive of the BHA, said: "We see so many posters advertising salvation through Jesus or threatening us with eternal damnation, that I feel sure that a bus advert like this will be welcomed as a breath of fresh air. If it raises a smile as well as making people think, so much the better."
It bugs the heck out of me, and I usually just sigh an move on, but today offer some thoughts:
1. Ignorant: It's so utterly ignorant of Christianity, let alone other religions, with ongoing crude stereotypes, that seek the worst of religion and put that against what they see is their best, which seems so pathetic and anaemic.
2. Thinking:And therein it betrays it's own lack of thinking with the claims that it levels at religion. How more non-thinking can you get than inane statements like this. Is this the best atheism and humanism can offer?
3. Religion: And yet again atheism and humanism claims thinking that is independent from religion, seemingly without the 'testicles' to acknowledge it's own traditioned heritage and functioning as a 'religious system', freely brainwashing us into it's belief about the nature of life, and the universe. The arrogance of claiming neutral space, or correct thinking methodology is staggeringly arrogant as usual. Not to mention the constant consumer religion that is already peddled on bus adverts, about meaning, nature and the purpose of life as consumers.
4. Polarising: Perhaps this will just make the BHA and Dawkins atheists feel smug, they sound it, and makes those of religious conviction feel ostracised, and alienated.
We deserve something better than this, we all do, whether agnostics, atheists, theists, polytheists and consumer apatheists. Some genuine open dialogue and interaction with all religions, including the religious fundamentalism of Dawkins atheism would be most welcome, at least by me.