While I am unsure if Professor Dawkins reads these letters it is still addressed to him with other readers in mind.
While this letter may seem like it is crafted at first to bring Dr. Dawkins down, it is not. I have purchased and finished reading his book “The God Delusion” Several times; I have also had the distasteful experience of reading some of his critics’ similar return fire fiction pieces like “The Dawkins Delusion”. The following is simply constructive criticism.
I was raised a roman catholic from the time of my birth. The area which I grew up in was severely integrated in government and religion. Often in my school system, classes were pushed aside to attend church, which was conveniently across the parking lot from my kindergarten to Grade nine school, and actually attached in my high school. Luckily I had parents that had a parenting style that allowed me to have my own thoughts and opinions on what was going on around me. Being a fan of literature, and imaginative writing even at a small age I found the bible, and the ceremonies quite entertaining. Though even at the young age of ten, I understood that the people attending these gatherings were not eatting the flesh or blood of a two thousand year old man. One could simply look at why children were not allowed to receive the “sacrament” of wine to understand, I mean its supposed to be blood right, god made the universe and wants me to obtain these offerings, yet there is an age limit on who can drink wine in the church. I think this is as obvious as why so many atheist books have been released in a cluster over the past few years. I hope this is because there are free thinking eyes to read them, which has caused interest. One can only hope.
Dr. Dawkins being the poster-boy for this phenomenon is entertaining, though I think one thing he lacks is the ability to sympathize with the very root of the problem that believing and having faith presents in the twenty-first century. These problems are parenting, intelligence and ignorance. His book, while the message overall is what I think most of the world needs to hear, seems to strike me as a hallow attack on what most of the readers already know are simply unintelligent, poorly raised madmen. I think the most important part of the book, which should be examined and written about far more is the 1-7 atheist scale presented by Dr. Dawkins. We are almost certain that there is not a god, but the fact is we don’t know. I myself do not believe in god, catholic or otherwise, unless the word god is the term to describe the unending beauty, size and mystery of the universe. Personally I believe in the universe, I believe in science, I believe in evidence. This is why I understand myself to be a 6 on this scale, this is also what I suspect of Dr. Dawkins. The problem does not lay with the madman fanatics, but the system of politics, and education (or lack thereof) that allow them. People need to think for themselves, and to do this they need to be taught, this skill is not something that we as the human race are born with.
When growing up in the contaminated Roman Catholic school system, I thought of these church goings as no more than times to escape from the confines of the classroom. I didn’t think of it as going to hear the word of god the creator. Of course, when confirmation rolled around, I steered clear from it, not that it would mean anything if I didn’t. People didn’t understand why I didn’t attend this ceremony of confirmation, as it was more of a school issue than an issue of religion or personal views. They also didn’t understand why my parents would allow me to make that decision.
Soon after going to the eleventh grade, our school system was revamped and religion was removed following the discovery of SUPRISE child abuse in the system from decades earlier which most likely persisted until the time it was removed.
While Dr. Dawkins view is stirring and forceful, to listen to him and only him would be missing the point entirely. With the internet at hand go out and look for other points of view and decide through rational thought what you want to believe, look at the evidence and the past and weigh these things in your mind and come to you own conclusions. With no fear and judgment many people who understand themselves to be religious before making their own unbiased thoughts will understand that the true message behind being an atheist or whatever you would like to call it is that the decision is not made for you. Step outside yourself, your life and you current belief and understand that if you do you will be doing justice to not only yourselves but the people around you.
If you are religious and so choose to be, please give others the choice to make their own minds up, your children, and your family. Understand that because you choose to believe something does not mean it should be law and taught in schools, or be law.
Thank you for reading this.
I am a fan of your work.