Dear Mr Dawkins,
Just a quick note to say thank you so much for ‘the god delusion’, for your courage in telling the truth under the aggressive blanket of religion that covers the world, and for enlightening me to the light side of life.
I was raised Christian in the UK. Up until I was 25 i always had doubts about my faith and about religion in general. Religion in the UK is weakening by observation. Nobody i know ever attends church, and no-one talks about religion apart from their present wish list for Christmas. It was these doubts that gave me the push to look into another religion. Friends from work are muslims and I happened to read a book that they gave me on the basics of Islam and the history behind the religion. It pulled me in straight away as I believed they had more answers to life, and was a relief from the Christian general answer to every question ‘you must have faith son.’ Every question I asked got the same answer! I started attending mosque and was accepted in the islamic community. I was happy for a year but then the same niggling questions of the origin of religion and inconsistencies kept coming up. My biggest concern was that islam was founded 800 years after Jesus, but Mohammed had the same experiences (Angel Gabriel giving the message, and the rules of islam) it just seemed like a copy cat religion to Christianity. Mohammed apparantly didnt know of the story of Jesus and was given the news by Angel Gabriel. Muslims deny when asked that ‘surely it was possible of the news of the story of jesus spreading the reletively short distance of the middle east, in 800 long years?’ Also there is the similar story of the people worshiping false deities before islam, the exact same story as of Moses. All this and the ongoing doubts of God in mind led to me stopping going to mosque and praying.
I was studying Zoology at the time of my converting to islam and the scientific evidence kept contradicting everything in religion. By the time i reached Darwin and his theories on natural selection, I had got a thirst for knowledge outside religion. I bought Darwins books, on the origin of species, and voyage of the beagle. Doubts increasing and worry growing of my lack of enthusiasm for religion, I chanced upon Mr Dawkins book a month ago while internet shopping for more zoology study books. ‘The God Delusion’, stood out to me and from the very first page i was hooked. Mr Dawkins covered every argument I had and gripes I had about religious practices and scandels. Every page opened my eyes and my mind, and I was constantly quoting paragraphs to my wife, who is a Catholic, though Iv put the doubts in her mind too thanks to the book. One of the best comments from Mr Dawkins was, If religious people believe what they say they believe, then why are they so upset and meloncholy at funerals? They should be happy and congratulating each other. Also his chapters on the old testament and the bibles degrading thoughts on women and humanity in general.
After finishing the book I understood the comments from other readers at the start of the book, one saying ‘its like coming up for air’. That is exactly how i feel now. Life seems so sweet and knowing that you having to make every day count, i feel amazing! Like a huge weight from my chest has been lifted off!
Thank you Prof. Dawkins, i hope many many more people will go in with an open mind to read your books, and come out with a thirst for knowledge and understanding. Because of you and those like you, humanity will move on to better times.