Tag Archives: atheism


Caught in useless thought
On a sunny day,
I entered that place
Of light and shade.
That unknown space
Where we
Are made
To face
Our own mortality.

The Tape

I can not escape
This constant tape
Running in my head.

When I am dead
The words said
Will go
I know
Not where,
Other than those
That from paper stare
At my readers from the printed page.

I shall be beyond rage
Or any other emotion,
Lost in a great ocean
Of what?
Shall I know it not?
The tape will, finally, stop

Can I Pray for You?

“Excuse me, can I pray for you?”

“Yeah, do what you like”!

There I was, on my way home earlier this evening, when a random stranger accosted me (and I responded), in the manner set-out above.

Some may interpret my reply as brusque, perhaps even rude. However I am blind and a guide dog user and my gut instinct screamed “this man is a religious zealot who believes that by praying for me he will, with god’s assistance, help me in regaining my eyesight”.

I don’t have a problem with religion. If religious belief gives a person a sense of wellbeing and (hopefully) makes them live a good life, then I am all in favour of religion.

I also believe that if religion helps believers to cope with the death of a loved one (due to their belief that the person who has passed away has gone to a better place), then I have no right to disabuse them of that conception, as to do so would be cruel.

Furthermore, as a child/teenager, I derived tremendous pleasure from the traditions associated with religion, including the singing of hymns and the sense of peace I gained from being in the school chapel.

I would describe myself as an agnostic (rather than an atheist), so have no anti-religion axe to grind.

No, what I object to is people (religious or otherwise) ramming their ideas down the throats of others.

Indeed I have experienced equal annoyance when being brow beaten by atheists who insist in disparaging people of religious belief.

If you don’t like religion you are, of course perfectly entitled to your point of view, but please don’t corner me in the pub and ram your dogma (which is equally as unpleasant as that of the religious zealot) down my throat as, quite frankly I wish to enjoy a quiet pint without being lectured by a saloon bar bore.

The above should not be taken as indicating an unwillingness on my part to engage in friendly debate on religion or, indeed any other subject. I enjoy discussion with open minded individuals.

What I object to is having a particular view rammed down my throat by those who are not prepared to listen to counter arguments.

I defend the right of people to hold inflexible views on religion or any other topic. However I also stand up for my absolute right not to be asailed by zealots, religious or otherwise.

There Was A Young Materialist Named Ted

There was a young materialist named Ted
Who remarked “when we are dead, we are dead”.
He went to Hell
Where the Devil does dwell,
That unfortunate young materialist named Ted!

A Brain Surgeon Visits Heaven



The vision of heaven related by the brain surgeon in the above article reminds me of Hardy’s poem, “The Oxen”. In it the poet hints that he is sceptical about the existence of god however, where he to be asked to visit the barn, on a christmas eve to see the oxen kneel he would go, “hoping it might be so”.


“Christmas Eve, and twelve of the clock.

“Now they are all on their knees,”

An elder said as we sat in a flock

By the embers in hearthside ease.

We pictured the meek mild creatures where

They dwelt in their strawy pen,

Nor did it occur to one of us there

To doubt they were kneeling then.

So fair a fancy few would weave

In these years! Yet, I feel,

If someone said on Christmas Eve,

“Come; see the oxen kneel,

“In the lonely barton by yonder coomb

Our childhood used to know,”

I should go with him in the gloom,

Hoping it might be so.”

Richard Dawkins Believes Fairytales May Be Harmful

Richard Dawkins is a very clever man but his militant atheism is just as bigoted as the religiosity of fundamentalist believers, http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/professor-richard-dawkins-claims-fairy-tales-are-harmful-to-children-9489287.html

Darwin Day Lecture 2014 – How To Make A Human

On Tuesday evening I received a call from my friend John. It was good news as he had managed to obtain 2 tickets for the Darwin Day Lecture, How To Make A Human which takes place on 12 February 2014, https://humanism.org.uk/civi/?page=CiviCRM&q=civicrm/event/info&page=CiviCRM&id=41&snippet=2. I have some issues with Humanism (the lecture is hosted by The British Humanist Association) but, none the less the event promises to be an interesting one.

As an aside, for anyone who is interested, my issue with Humanism is that many Humanists are, in my experience just as dogmatic in their assertions regarding the non-existence of God as religious people are in their’s that he exists. I am, in contrast an agnostic, one who sits on the fence. The only problem with sitting on the fence is, of course that I risk getting splinters in a rather delicate place!