Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Bad Atheist?

So am I a bad atheist? I only ask because I feel I may have let the side down a little. It's not that I have suddenly converted to Catholicism (although the protection it offers for sex crimes is tempting) but I did sing some hymns at a funeral. Whilst I didn't pray or anything silly but I did sing songs about Jesus.
I was standing near another atheist who didn't sing at all, he stood for the hymns but didn't sing. Is he a better non-believer than me?

Don't get me wrong, it was a funeral for family member so we were going to go along with what ever way they wanted in order say goodbye to their husband/father but I was taken aback by the religiosity of the service. They had fantastic walk in music for instance, Dueling Banjos anyone? Does it matter that I joined in? I think what I'm trying to ask is, would Dawkins sing?

I don't think it undermined my position. There is a time and a place for militancy and it's not at a family funeral. I wasn't going to walk out or heckle the vicar but I did feel a bit awkward. I know it arrogant and self centred but I was interested in other peoples opinions.

What was surprising was how anti-Semitic the hymn “Lord of the Dance” is. Verse 3 specifically. The words are as following

“I danced on the sabbath when I cured the lame,
The holy people said it was a shame;
They whipped and they stripped and they hung me high;
And they left me there on a cross to die. “

Well that will be "the Jews killed our Lord" then.

After keeping my head down at the funeral we moved on to the wake. It was held in a local Conservative club.
There are 2 pictures of the Queen and 1 of comedy racist Prince Phillip over the bar and a picture of Margaret Thatcher by the kitchens.
I joked that the sandwiches would only be served on white bread. It was a joke, that's all. Nothing to be taken seriously. All the sandwiches were served on white bread. Beyond parody really.

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