Dear Mr Dawkins,
I have read several of your books and are still reading, and I would really like to tell you how much you (your books, interviews, movies etc) have meant for me to be able to leave my christianity behind, clean up my mind and start living for real. I am 38 now, born and raised in Norway, in a very conservative evangelical family and community. I have been terrified for Hell my whole life, since I in the back of my head questioned a lot of the things I was told as a child. I went to a christian high school, teaching us that the dinosaur fossils might be created by God to confuse us and make us even stronger believers. Then the Earth could be 6000 years old, as the Bible tells…
At 19 I went to University and started geology studies, which “saved” me and made me start thinking rationally, and made me fall in love with science, the universe, and most of all, realizing that evolution is real, not a dangerous idea inspired by Satan, given to us by his servant Darwin. However, the path towards leaving religion took me more than 10 years. It’s just recently that I have become able to say out load that I do not think any of it is real, that is all made up, bullshit and dangerous, without feeling this little fear far back in my brain.
Now I feel great having left all that crap behind, but I pity my little nieces and nephews (and every other child) that are raised to believe in the same shit, being terrified for the “snake” (aka satan in the garden of eden) and not given the education, stimulation, confidence and consciousness that they deserve. Their parents are grown ups and can think for themselves, if they want to, but the kids are helpless and believe what the are told.
Your books have given me a lot of things, but most of all an endless amount of inspiration. Thank you so much!