One of the most recognizable athletes in the world today is Lance Armstrong. Winner of an unprecedented (and unlikely to be matched) seven Tour de France races and survivor of cancer, Lance Armstrong is a powerful example of what a human being can do when they dedicate themselves to a cause. Moreover, he is an example that it can all be done without religion and without gods.

 

In his book It’s Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life, Armstrong wrote about the night before undergoing brain surgery: “I asked myself what I believed. I had never prayed a lot. I hoped hard, I wished hard, but I didn’t pray. I had developed a certain distrust of organized religion growing up, but I felt I had the capacity to be a spiritual person, and to hold some fervent beliefs. Quite simply, I believed I had a responsibility to be a good person, and that meant fair, honest, hardworking, and honorable.”

 

In an interview with TIME, Armstrong said: “I don’t have anything against organized religion per se. We all need something in our lives. I personally just have not accepted that belief. But I’m one of the few.” [Humanist Network News]

So, Lance Armstrong doesn’t think very much about organized religion, but what about gods? Many theists are as dissatisfied with traditional religions as are atheists so the above quotes don't make him an atheist...

According to an article in the UK Times Online, he believes it is possible to be a good person while not believing in God. “I think we all have obligations to be good, honest, hard-working, caring and compassionate,” he said.

ET Magazine quoted Armstrong saying “If there was a god, I’d still have both nuts.”

It’s common for religious theists to insist that adherence to a religious ideology and/or faith in some god is helpful in achieving more in life. I’m sure that this make sense from their perspective, but it’s undeniable that neither religious belief nor theism are necessary to achieving more in life.

 

People are capable of doing far more than they usually end up doing and it’s at least as likely that religion is holding them back as it is that it helps propel them forward. That people fail to recognize this may be due to their failure to even consider a life without religion and theism.

http://atheism.about.com/b/2005/08/08/lance-armstrong-and-god.htm

 

Lance Armstrong is well known where he lives in Austin, TX -- where I am from.   He is considered a celebrity and role model here and owns many 24 Hour Fitness gyms.  

 

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Replies to This Discussion

In his book It’s Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life, Armstrong wrote about the night before undergoing brain surgery: “I asked myself what I believed. I had never prayed a lot. I hoped hard, I wished hard, but I didn’t pray. I had developed a certain distrust of organized religion growing up, but I felt I had the capacity to be a spiritual person, and to hold some fervent beliefs. Quite simply, I believed I had a responsibility to be a good person, and that meant fair, honest, hardworking, and honorable.”
I will be getting his book soon! 

According to an article in the UK Times Online, he believes it is possible to be a good person while not believing in God. “I think we all have obligations to be good, honest, hard-working, caring and compassionate,” he said.
A great quote from him!

Thanks for telling your story -- I enjoyed reading it. Lance has influenced many.

According to an article in the UK Times Online, he believes it is possible to be a good person while not believing in God. “I think we all have obligations to be good, honest, hard-working, caring and compassionate,” he said.

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