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Sep 22 2012

Why I am an atheist – S . Gowri Thampi

This is a submission for the Why I am an atheist series. however it is not about me. I really don’t have a fancy story, I just read a lot of science books and got serious doubts and later read the work of Dawkins, your blog etc.

This is the story of one of India’s greatest revolutionaries during the pre-independence era. A 23 year old atheist who took a stand for freedom and liberty and willingly gave up his life for those causes. I would really love it, if you could be instrumental in sharing his story with the world.

http://www.marxists.org/archive/bhagat-singh/1930/10/05.htm

Though the link says marxist, Bhagat wasn’t a Stalin-like dictator wannabe, you can read his views for yourself.

S . Gowri Thampi
United States

3 comments

  1. 1
    julietdefarge

    Thank you so very much for introducing us to this realm of discourse, these people and terms that would otherwise never have entered my awareness.

  2. 2
    pramod

    I’ve seen Bhagat Singh’s essay before but reading it always evokes strong emotions in me. I’m utterly amazed at how a 23 year college kid living in a land of “beastly people with a beastly religion” (Churchill) wrote such a wise essay.

    This quote was particularly poignant.

    A God-believing Hindu may expect to be reborn a king; a Muslim or a Christian might dream of the luxuries he hopes to enjoy in paradise as a reward for his sufferings and sacrifices. What hope should I entertain? I know that will be the end when the rope is tightened round my neck and the rafters move from under my feet. To use more precise religious terminology, that will be the moment of utter annihilation. My soul will come to nothing. If I take the courage to take the matter in the light of ‘Reward’, I see that a short life of struggle with no such magnificent end shall itself be my ‘Reward.’ That is all. Without any selfish motive of getting any reward here or in the hereafter, quite disinterestedly have I devoted my life to the cause of freedom.

    And Bhagat could have beeen writing about today’s rightwingers over here:

    I do not differ on the essential point that all religions, faiths, theological philosophies, and religious creeds and all other such institutions in the long run become supporters of the tyrannical and exploiting institutions, men and classes. Rebellion against any king has always been a sin in every religion.

  3. 3
    strange gods before me ॐ

    That was fun.

    Here’s the opening line, which made me lol:

    It is a matter of debate whether my lack of belief in the existence of an Omnipresent, Omniscient God is due to my arrogant pride and vanity.

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