7th July 2008

“I may not believe in life after death, but what a gift it is to be alive now.”

Natalie Angier

9 Responses to “7th July 2008”

  1. Terence Meaden Says:

    Yes, so lucky that we are to have had the seed of life, and to give it to others through our children.

    Natalie Angier also said: “I don’t believe in life after death, but I’d like to believe in life before death.”

    As for Woody Allen:
    “I don’t want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve immortality by not dying.”

  2. John Sutton Says:

    Unfortunately, Woody Allen is unlikely to get his wish, no matter how long he lives. Eventually some variant of an organism, perhaps a microbe, will appear with the ability to parasitise his body and kill him. We cannot win this one.

  3. eric f Says:

    “what a gift it is to be alive now.”

    She is right about it being a gift. It is a wonderful unearned gift.

    Who does Natalie think we got this gift from?

  4. Hypatia Says:

    Who does Natalie think we got this gift from?

    If she’s an agnostic I guess she thinks that’s unknown and unknownable.

    If she’s an atheist she doesn’t believe it came from anyone – there is no “who”.

    If you believe it comes from God where do you suppose God got the gift of existence from?

  5. Bornagain A. Theist Says:

    The use of the word “gift” in Ms. Angier’s statement, Eric, is, to put it quite simply, a figure of speech. She very likely was not trying to provide a playground toy for someone who believes in imaginary beings to toss about.

    Have you ever thought about actually trying to discover what this crazy old atheism is really all about, or do you just assume that since it is contrary to what you have been taught, that it must be wrong.

    Never forget that at one time, all the people on the earth who knew “the truth” KNEW that the earth was flat…


  6. Chris Says:

    BAT – isn’t a well timed analogy a great gift? The quote illustrates a key philosophical difference between the atheist and the theist. If you’re going to live forever (and presumably play the harp and sing god’s praises – how infinitely boring – please see Mark Twain’s Captain Stormfield’s Visit to Heaven) then what importance is your paltry and miserable existence of 80 years here? If you’re an atheist that’s all you get -you’d better do your best.

    Pasquale’s wager works in reverse just as well. What if it all weren’t true? Then you’d have wasted so much of your very limited time being alive to a non-existent sky-god. The time! The money! The opportunities to do good in the world, not to placate an inscrutable and invisible mass-murderer but because mutual cooperation for survival was bequeathed to us by our evolutionary past!

  7. Terence Meaden Says:

    Do some theists really think that they will have a billion of years of a good time in an afterlife with their fanciful vision of a god—after which they will embark on the next billion years, ad infinitum?

    Life on Earth is all you will ever get. Chris is right. Use your precious time on this planet to best effect, and certainly waste none of your time in hopeless preposterous degrading worship and prayer to non-entities.

  8. eric f Says:

    What do you propose we do with our limited time? To what purpose are we driving? All we do is consume resources and try to build for the next generation of resource consumers.

    That sounds a little darker than I meant it to be.

  9. Hypatia Says:

    eric – you can’t really expect people to answer questions if you don’t answer theirs.

    where do you suppose God got the gift of existence from?