– Just give me that old-time atheism! – Just give me that old-time atheism! Salman Rushdie replies in the Toronto Star to Dylan Evans
The 21st Century Atheistin the Guardian.

Evans identifies religion as “a kind of art, which only a child could mistake for reality and which only a child would reject for being false” and faults authors such as Dawkins who he sees as directly challenging the myths.

As Guardian letter writer Robert Foster puts it:
“Equating Religion with art is an interesting proposition, but Dylan Evans misses the crux of yhe matter (advice for 21st-century atheist, May 6). Admirers of a certain school of art can be passionate in their beliefs, but lovers of Picasso do not take issue with those who prefer Van Gogh.
If it were only a matter of aesthetec sensibility, I would have nothing against evangelical born-again Christians or Catholics in the mould of Pope Benedict. I would let them live in peace if they would afford me the same courtesy. But we all know that is not the case. As a Buddhist without the need for a deity, I am regarded by some as an atheist. Perhaps. But to paraphrase the Buddha: he would not discuss the subject of gods because it only excited the minds of his listeners.
It is this excitement that distinguishes the religious from the atheist. If you don’t share in their excitement there is something wrong with you. And overly excited people are capable of any manner of excess. Is this excitement art or is it something else entirely?”

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