I am writing to thank you for all the work you do on behalf of clear thinking and reason. I was brought up a Christian and attended a C of E primary school where I was taught creationism in detail, the only mention of a scientific understanding of how the world worked was ‘Scientists believe in a theory called the big bang but we (i.e. you) believe in this’.
As my education progressed, I took a keen interest in science and religious studies and saw no obvious conflict as long as my religious beliefs gave way to scientific ones whenever the two were in disagreement. My opinion was that science answered the how but religion answered the why and how to be a good person.
The first stumbling block I encountered when I studied another religion, Islam. It was so obviously and blatantly a product of human imagination that I started questioning the logic of my own faith. I continued to be influenced by Christian holy men and established religion though until I came across ‘The God Delusion’ in a book shop whilst visiting the popular science section.
My biology teacher had mentioned your name a few times so I decided to buy the book not really knowing what it was about. I am embarrassed to admit this but upon reading the part of the book where you state that any reader with any sense of reason will be an atheist by the end of it, I did raise an eyebrow and think that was not likely as I had thought a lot on the subject and was very confident in my beliefs if anything it would be a test of my faith (I shudder when I think about how I could have been so deluded). By the end of it atheist I was though.
Your book changed my life. The change was entirely for the better and I am a much happier person because of it. Being certain that there is nothing after this life isn’t crippling as I thought it would be, it is liberating. You only have one chance and it has to count, there is nothing else. Thank you for everything you have done and continue to do to try and free people of the shackles of religious dogmatism.
Yours Respectfully and Gratefull, Danny