Friday, February 10, 2006

There is no God

There are lots of reasons to like Penn Jillette, but today I point only to his entry (from November) in NPR's "This I Believe" series. The vocal half of Penn and Teller tells us forthrightly of his positive belief in the lack of a deity, and the positive things that remain to honor and cherish. He manages to pack an enormous amount of value into a short statement. Without God, there are still reasons (reasons we create for ourselves) to enjoy life and treat people right. Believing there is no god means we have to take responsibility for ourselves, and leaves us out of the shadow of an omnipotent who could prevent our suffering but doesn't and doesn't explain why in any plausible way. Isn't that a liberating thought?

I, too, believe there is no god.

1 comment:

Robert Ayers said...

PBS Los Angles ran a show decades ago where they interviewed science fiction writers. I think it was called "The Special Dreamers". One one show, they asked each of the guests "What is in your room 101?" (The reference is to 1984; room 101 contains the one thing you are most afraid of; in the novel it was rats.)
Harlan Ellison answered "In my room 101 there is a god." He was obviously asked to explain. He replied "Because if there is a god he is a malevolent thug."