Nov 28, 2012

Daniel Loxton on 'Faitheist' at SkepticBlog

Skeptical activist and award-winning author Daniel Loxton has written a moving, thoughtful response to Faitheist for SkepticBlog. Check out an excerpt below, and read it in full here.

I’m an atheist. I’m even a fairly “hard” atheist—I feel morally certain that god does not exist. But that does not mean I’m remotely interested in convincing anyone else to agree (nor of course that I think as a skeptic that my untestable religious conviction is a demonstrable scientific fact). For me, atheism is a bit like being fair-skinned. It’s a true fact about me, but in most contexts it’s not a very important fact.

Movement atheism—atheist activism—has long been dominated by folks who think religion is a problem to be combatted and perhaps one day solved. That apparent unity of purpose is a social and historical artifact, an illusion. Antitheists are not representative of atheists as a whole. Now, when I say that, I’m not arguing that antitheism is bad. (I have reservations about confrontational antitheism, some serious, but that’s not my point at the moment.) Certainly an argument can be made that religion is a net negative for humanity; people who happen to believe that have the right to unify around that idea.

It’s just that there’s no place for me in an antitheist movement. It’s not who I am. Such a movement does not represent my values or beliefs.

Which is what makes Stedman’s Faitheist such a pleasure for me. [continue reading]