Hey there, Heathens! Hope your weekend is going well!
Tonight, I'm steeped in atheistic contemplation, aided (and depending on how you look at it, perhaps abetted) by Christopher Hitchens' memoir Hitch-22 and Julia Sweeney's Letting Go of God. Julia's description of her anxiety concerning -- as the title implies -- letting go of the ultimate imaginary friend, reminded me of this statement by Vonnegut. I've always found it to be a particularly astute observation; indeed, it takes a certain level of courage to feel comfortable alone in one's own mind.
"How on earth can religious people believe in so much arbitrary, clearly invented balderdash?....The acceptance of a creed, any creed, entitles the acceptor to membership in the sort of artificial extended family we call a congregation. It is a way to fight loneliness. Any time I see a person fleeing from reason and into religion, I think to myself: There goes a person who simply cannot stand being so goddamned lonely anymore."
-Kurt Vonnegut Jr., quoted in 2000 Years of Disbelief: Famous People with the Courage to Doubt (1996)