Happy birthday dear atheists
All in all I do not mind the religious. Not really. I was visiting the cathedral next the bank I’m working at the other day. Turned out that the guide was a former banking-man himself and a surprisingly candid and proselytizing Christian. He used the same false reasoning we’ve heard before: “there’s 50% off ‘something being there’”, “if we are not judged then our lives are morally void”. I was surprised by this, though not annoyed. For one: I was in a cathedral which is still a house of worship apart from its esthetical and historical significance. Secondly the man had such passion for the historical-religious aspects of the building, and he did teach me a few things, that I could easily forgive him violating my sense of ‘reasonable expectations’.
I don’t mind the religious but I do mind the assumption of religion that is all around. Like a stench can feel physical at times. I could a lot less forgive the business man, who was linked to me via two layers of recruiters on LinkedIn, who felt it necessary to tell us that (paraphrasing) ‘Children laugh six times more a day then adults and Jesus told us to be more like children’. Seriously? Children are happier than adults and that is a problem? Does this ‘study’ only include children that live on or does it also include the soon-to-be-death children of the places where infant mortality is medieval at best? And are you seriously going to throw quasi Jesus-quotes in my face for such a skin-deep new-age concept of adults emulating baby’s while ignoring the more profound and messed-up shit he is quoted to have said in the Bible as well? It feels like if some vegetarian would say: ‘Hitler said it was best to avoid eating meat and that you should wash before dinner’ because being picky about food and being a neat-freak is what Hitler is most famous for.
I turned 33 yesterday (mind you I’m not posting this today so don’t bother sending cards or so…). So I did the whole “hi it’s my birthday, care for a chocolat”-thing at work. Well guess what I learned? “Oh, you’re as old as Jesus.” -Like more than two dozen times. WTF? I did some looking into Jesus, the best I could do was: ‘tradition holds that he was x age when he died’. With ‘x’ being various numbers above thirty and below thirthy-six. But apparently the tradition that Christ became 33 is very strong in Belgium. And you know what? It is freaking messed up. For starters, Jesus, whom I hold to be a total mythical conflagration of both people and ancient demi-gods BTW, also was ‘3’ at some point. Did your aunty tell you how you were the age of Christ when you were 3? No, off course not because the part they add subliminally is: “Oh, you’re the age of Christ… WHEN HE KICKED THE FUDGING BUCKET!!” Because that is what you want on your birthday: to be reminded of your mortality and how it may be closer then you’d expect. But really I don’t mind being reminded. I could die tomorrow and hope to be fine with it. I just think it is impoliteness wrapped in a scripted and unsolicited demonstration of devotion to which you are expected to adhere. If for any reason, that is why we must keep pushing the atheist message: to remove the assumption of religion from society. Apart from that I think you’ll enjoy my non-disclosing but critical answer: “I’m quite sure that is nowhere in the Bible”.
Statistically there is a good chance one of them will now go and read the Bible … and become an atheist. Happy birthday dear atheists.