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Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Faith -- what does it now mean?

There was a time not that long ago that people were described as "religious" or "not religious", but nowadays the fashionable phrase is "people of faith" or "not of faith".

Those phrases are not just inaccurate, but insulting. I have faith in all sorts of things -- not least that there are more good people than evil people in this world -- but I most certainly do not believe that there is an all-seeing god somewhere out there directing the lives or each and every one of us. Nor do I believe that there is a heaven or a hell awaiting all of us when we die.

A friend of mine prefers to call people who believe in God as "religionists". This seems a sensible description and tucks in nicely with other accepted "ists" such as "atheist" and more than 1000 other descriptions ending in "ist": http://www.morewords.com/ends-with/ist/

LATER: Minutes after publishing the above, this interesting article from the Washington Post was drawn to my attention: http://bit.ly/WashingtonPostAtheism

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