In his column, Why Are Atheist Books Best Sellers?, Dennis Prager gets a lot of it right, but I think there is something else going on.
In our Technological Enervation and secular arrogance, I believe people without faith are jealous of ones who do have it. We with faith have an anchor in life outside of ourselves. I believe that the reason that atheist books (including, “The Secret”) are successful is that they provide (dead) comfort to people who feel the emptiness in their souls for which they have no answer, and are afraid (or angry) that those with faith have an answer.
I am not saying that Muslim extremists (or Islamacists) necessarily have a deep faith either. I would almost suspect that it is an attempt to quell that very emptiness that the atheists have. I don’t know, and I won’t know until I can talk to God in Heaven. I know that my human conditioning often puts too many barriers to my understanding of God’s creation. Mercifully, He gave us his Word. Read it daily in love.
Actually, we have a lot of faith to go with–because we live in a world surrounded by people with faith who give up too easily on hard problems. Our faith comes from within in the sense that we believe that we can make our own world better. There is no afterlife, there is nothing except what you make of it, today. We see the faithful referring to the Bible for answers, when the Bible is not a document up for revision or questioning, subject to many different interpretations, and wildly inconsistent between translations. It is far too easy to quote scripture than it is to analyze and debate. Extremists are bred in places that indoctrinate children to memorize old, unchanging documents to the neglect of anything else. They have faith–mounds and mounds of it–and its ticking like a fuse to be exploited by someone who twists their own faith into doing “evil.”
I see these books being “bestsellers” as being a sign that there are many more of us connecting and beginning to see a better world is possible.
“The Secret” though, is utter hogwash. 🙂
I thought this bit was interesting:
The above might be statistically correct (he uses the word “average,” so I’ll assume he’s already crunched the numbers and simply forgot to footnote the study). My admittedly anecdotal experience is that many of the atheists and agnostics I know (including myself) came from backgrounds with “strong religious grounding.” Later in life we found that to be lacking.
Perhaps those are the exception to the rule? I honestly don’t know.
Oh, and the Dennett book rocked. I won’t bother with Dawkins’ and Hitchens’ rants since telling your opponents that they’re idiots is neither enlightening nor constructive.
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