Purveyor of Truth
Stephen Fry putting things in rational perspective, certainly in my opinion anyway. Be sure to read the article on atheism for an interesting historical perspective.
The Telegraph - To its adherents it is the ultimate modern belief system, the antidote to centuries of ignorance and superstition, while to its detractors it is the product of latter-day decadence and materialism.Continue Reading Below the Fold.
But a new Cambridge University study argues that atheism is in fact one of the world’s oldest religions – long predating Christianity and Islam.
Far from being the result of scientific breakthroughs or modern mass education, the belief that there were no gods was relatively common in the ancient world, research by Prof Tim Whitmarsh, a leading Cambridge classicist, concludes.
But the “ancient atheism” was effectively written out of history after Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire after the reign of Constantine in the early 4th Century, heralding a new era of state-imposed belief, Prof Whitmarsh, Professor of Greek Culture at Cambridge, argues
The study is potentially bad news for believers and non-believers alike.
On one hand it breaks the widely assumed link between atheism and progress or modernity but it also rejects the idea that faith is a natural, instinctive impulse.