Precious Cargo

Refreshingly Bitter And Twisted Observations On Life's Passing Parade.

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Location: Valley Village, California, United States

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Before Dawkins and Hitchens, There Was Philip Wylie

But I could not express such thoughts as these on the American radio or by motion pictures or printed in the newspapers or get them published in the magazines. No business has sponsored an atheist on the air--its gross would drop too suddenly and too much. Theoretically, the atheist has as much “right” to argue as the Baptist. Actually, he has no opportunity. The “good” people in our society choke him. For justice, they have absolute contempt. They already “know” that they are “right” and will not hear anything further or permit the public to listen to a syllable of dissent!

We haven't progressed that far with the public discourse on religion since Philip Wylie's critique of organized religion was published in his book An Essay On Morals in 1947.

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Blogger Mike Stewart said...

I'm 72 as of a few days ago and look back at Wylie's book, Essay on Morals as one of the most formative books of my youth. I was sixteen or seventeen when I read it. Wylie's book confirmed what my young mind suspected - that religion was everything Hitchens and others have gone on to so eloquently describe. I feel fortunate to have come across the book at such an early age since divesting oneslef of religion's contimination can consume many years and much energy. Its influence can cause one to make some very foolish choices that continue to ruin many lives - the Islamists being the most current example. I suspected organized religions of being toxic very early on and am grateful to have found Wylie's very readable, trenchant exposition on the subject. Looking him up just now, I'm surprised to learn what a productive life he had before dying of a heart attack at 69.

6:50 PM  

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