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Atheist Lies

Okay, I lied. No lies here, just fiction from my talented neighbors here at FtB.

JT is making angels scary (not that they weren’t already):

December 2nd, 2011, about five years ago by most calendars…that was when the first one appeared – a woman, just floating in the sky above New York City.  You would have loved the place.  It was so full of people you couldn’t walk outside without bumping into ‘em, and the buildings were so high you’d swear they touched the sun.  Anyway, this woman, the news networks couldn’t get enough of her.  News networks?  You mean nobody has told you about television?  Well, we’ll save that for another time…

Some people thought it was a gag, but after a day people started calling it a sign from heaven.  Some people called her an angel, which kinda made sense.  Hell, she looked just like one in the dress she wore, minus the wings.  Her expression was always the same and she looked so peaceful.  Others thought she was here to protect us, and most people started calling her our guardian.  We’d known about her for less than a day and already people were flocking to our city.  It was a right mess.

Three days later, that was the day that we adults have spent the last five years trying to forget.

Jen is desperately trying to get people to take zombies seriously:

The kidnappers’ car had slammed into the nearest police car – the kids were apparently driving more recklessly than I was. I drove up slowly, and to my relief, Greta got out of the car unscathed.

I parked the car and hopped out. “Greta! Greta, over here!”

“Jen!” She waved excitedly, apparently unperturbed by the situation. “You got me good! For a second I thought that was a real kidnapping! What a thrill!”

I looked at her like she had declared her intention to become a nun. “…Just get in the car, we should go back to campus where it’s safe!”

“Oh, but how about your friends?”

My “friends” had also gotten out of the car. The stared at Greta coldly, almost hungrily. That’s when I looked past them. We weren’t alone. There were dozens of people slowly walking toward us, climbing over the police cars. The police cars which were devoid of police officers. I fixated on the mob. They were unkempt, scabby…some looked like they had been shot, though were unphased by their wounds. I focused in on a woman whose face was sloughing off.

Even for Eastern Washington, this was not normal.

For all the apocalyptic angels and invading zombies, however, it was Crommunist’s story about an atheist church service that freaked me out the most (it’s a personal thing):

So, it was with mixed feelings that I showed up at the library that morning, and headed into the back room where the service was happening. Unlike how we ran things in Vancouver, there was a greeter at the door offering me a nametag – I thought it was a nice touch. “You don’t have to take one,” he said “but it helps people know who’s new. If you’re not a fan of being hugged, I’d suggest writing your name in red pen – yeah it seems like a weird rule but we’ve had problems in the past. Curtis has boundary issues and some people were uncomfortable so we figured this system was easiest.”

I chuckled. My old parish had a “Curtis” too – an overbearing French woman named Amelie who reeked of cigarettes and decided that everyone was her best friend. I opted for the blue pen anyway – what are the odds, right?

Leslie saw me come into the room and choose a seat at the back. She briefly turned away from the conversation she was having to smile and wink at me. I smiled back and fiddled with my phone, waiting for the meeting to start. I caught eyes with a kid who was staring at me over the back of his seat. I pulled a funny face and he grinned before popping his head down behind the seat again.

You know, come to think of it, there was a strain of Puritan morality that considered anything that wasn’t absolutely true to be a lie. Of course, they never applied that to religion.

Comments

  1. says

    You know, come to think of it, there was a strain of Puritan morality that considered anything that wasn’t absolutely true to be a lie.

    Nietzsche characterizes Christianity as requiring this and sees it as the seeds of its own inevitable dialectical undoing. Demanding we be absolutely and unequivocally honest is in the long run bad news for a belief system and a morality which are themselves false to their cores.

  2. Pierce R. Butler says

    Demanding we be absolutely and unequivocally honest is in the long run bad news for a belief system and a morality which are themselves false to their cores.

    Hello? Hello? Where are all the Sam Harris fans rushing to rebut?

  3. says

    Haha. I actually thought of Sam Harris, too. I haven’t read his book, so I can’t comment much. I disagree with his premise, though. I think lies are amoral, and only immoral when used to immoral ends. Fiction would be a great example. Does Sam Harris really find Harry Potter to be as bad for society as the Evangelicals do?

  4. leftwingfox says

    Fiction would be a great example.

    Not really. Fiction, allegory and metaphor are not intended to be interpreted as literally true. Of course, even fiction can be based on reality, and when fiction uses lies to underpin the areas we should accept as true (such as religious or political dogma, racist assumptions, or distortions of the public record to fit a narrative thread) then fiction can become propaganda, or serve to reshape our cultural attitudes.