Which God?

Need a god? There are plenty to choose from. IN the film Contact, near the end, there is scene in which astronomer Dr Eleanor Arroway (played by Jodie Foster) is being interviewed by a US Senate committee; it is assessing her suitability as the first human to be sent to contact an alien civilisation. Ultimately, […]

Will ‘True Christians’ please stand up

Along with many freethinkers, I am quite unable to distinguish genuine Christianity from extremes, superstitions and cults. But my failure in this respect is not for want of application to the problem. I have listened to people seemingly well-qualified to speak on the subject at Roman Catholic and Evangelical churches, non-comformist chapels, Quaker meeting-houses, Kingdom […]

A Pagan Poet

Originally published in the August 1987 issue of the Freethinker to mark the centenary of Rupert Brooke’s birth on 3 August 1887. Since 1915, the year he died, his poems, particularly The Soldier, have been read at innumerable remembrance day services and recruiting rallies. His short life is widely regarded as the epitome of conservatism […]

Stephen Green zeros in on the zombies

CONSIDERING that Christianity rests on the notion that Jesus rose from the dead after three days and can  legitimately be regarded as a zombie, there is something deliciously ironic about Stephen “Birdshit” Green’s latest wail on Christian Voice. Britain’s funniest fundie (above, right)  is frothing over the fact that a group calling itself “Rise of […]

Naughty noshery riles rabbis in New York

TRAIF restaurant, which has just opened in the ultra-Orthodox Williamsburg enclave of New York, is nothing if not provocative – and Hasidic Jewish leaders are advising their flock to give it a wide berth. In Yiddish traif means non-kosher – the equivalent of Islam’s haram – but its owner, Jason Marcus, 30, believes that there […]

An end to ageing?

Aubrey de Grey thinks we can end the ageing process –  and it looks like he might just be right. (Illustration and photography by Many Artists Who Do One Thing). Awarded a PhD from Cambridge University for his 1999 book The Mitochondrial Free Radical Theory of Aging, de Grey, Chief Science Officer at the California-based Sens […]

Freethinking about Jesus the Nazarene

The ‘Messiah’ was nothing more than a deluded religious fanatic who arranged his own arrest, trial, crucifixion and resurrection. The May 2000 issue of the Freethinker carried a critical review of my 1996 book about Jesus and the origin of Christianity (The Rise and Fall of Jesus). Unfortunately, the reviewer, Jack Hastie, misunderstood the main […]

God for the retarded

I RECENTLY discovered Ben C O Grimm’s Atheism News Magazine – and have been regularly checking into it to see what’s going on in the mad, bad world of religion. The reports on Grimm’s site are, by and large, pretty grim, the most horrifying today being the Christmas day attacks by mad Muslims in Nigeria […]

‘O, thou great abortionist’

BARBARA Smoker concluded her presidential address at the annual general meeting of the National Secular Society, in London on Sunday 30 June, 1974, by reciting a prayer for use by campaigners against the 1967 Abortion Act. Ms Smoker, a former Roman Catholic and ex-member of the Legion of Mary, said: Nobody, of course, likes abortion. […]

Sunday morning reflection: Paul

IS it right, or fair, dear reader, to lampoon a sizeable chunk of the population – in the United States in particular – who hold fast to the belief that the Earth is just 4,000 years old and that evolution is just plain wrong, and evil with it? I pose the question because, last night, […]