Weekends on CSPAN2 is about books, mostly non-fiction, and author interviews.

The title Religion for Atheists did NOT persuade me to get the book, but did persuade me to watch the hour-long author interview.

The author said he's an atheist. I concluded that he is not yet able to accept atheism's seeming chaos, and he ought to have titled his book Religion for Me.

I say "seeming chaos" because for me, leaving Catholicism was like leaping into a void. The torment Catholicism had inflicted on me made retreat impossible and I leaped.

I soon began telling people that someday, though not soon, the tactics used in church schools (telling kids of a fall from grace, original sin, a lake of fire, etc) will be seen as child abuse.

For me, xianity was pessimistic and atheism is optimistic. I'm glad I leaped.

Did leaving a religion require you to leap into what seemed like a void?

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For me, not so much so.  Religion wasn't that much of a support for me as it was, and as liberal and relaxed as congregationalism is, having it or not having it didn't yield a whole lot of difference.

My expectation is that it would be the loud, control-freak, bible-thumping religions which would be the hardest to shake, because they would leave much more of a vacuum.  My $0.02 worth.

Loren, as usual, your word is worth a bar of gold. 

Joan, you are WAY too generous with you praise ... but thanks!

Definitely! I not only left my religion, but I left it because I had no choice as to whether I should leave my husband or not. A double loss, a double leap, and no community to support me. It was a real struggle to let go of the emotional and traditional parts of both institutions. That leap saved my life. I could have staid secure and the cost was too high. 

I was afraid of the void which is why I did not leave for so long and why my kids lived with a mild dose of it in their early years.  I agree about the optimistic part. I am much more determined to enjoy this one life now that I openly acknowledge that it is all I get. I always knew it but never fully embraced the idea until making the leap. 

My sister sent me the book. She is a Buddhist and convinced I'm sad and missing out on the "unseen."     I haven't read it yet but did watch a few minutes of his Ted talk. Your description "Religion for me"  sounds spot on. 

de Botten is an ass and an idiot.

That's all I have to say about this.

I've not heard of de Botten, except just now Googling. Can you be more specific as to why you call him an ass and idiot? There isn't enough on the Amazon blurb to reveal his assiness or idiocy. 

What a douche...

Richard, the dictionary I use (New Oxford American) defines the noun "douche" as a shower of water or a device for washing out the vagina for contraceptive purposes. What do you know about the author that I don't know?

From Wikipedia


Douche bag, or simply douche, is considered to be a pejorative term. The slang usage of the term originated in the 1960s.[5] The term usually refers to a person, usually male, with a variety of negative qualities, specifically arrogance and engaging in obnoxious and/or irritating actions, most often without malicious intent.

See also: 

douche bag
noun

  • a small syringe for douching the vagina, esp. as a contraceptive measure
  • informal a loathsome or contemptible person

~ New Oxford American Dictionary 3rd edition

Richard, you chose to intellectualize so I will be more direct.

There is racism in America, and there is misogyny. When I saw your use of the word "douche" in the sense of loathsome or contemptible, I wondered if you are revealing misogyny or a dislike of cleanliness.

As for your name calling, sticks and stones....

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