Richard Dawkins has written books and appeared often on TV to argue against religion and even against the existence of God. He has reminded me often of an experience I had when a freshman at the university.
One of our assignments in Psych 101 was to write a report on any book by any psychologist or psychiatrist. Being highly motivated to do as much hard work as possible, I chose the shortest book I could find: Freud’s Future of an Illusion, in which he argues against the reality of God. I didn’t care much about the subject, since I didn’t believe in God and wasn’t interested in exploring religion. But the book was so short I couldn’t pass it up.
To my surprise, I became engrossed in Freud’s argument. I don’t remember the details of the book but I do remember almost word for word the closing line of my paper. “My conclusion is that Freud is not what he claims to be, an atheist. Rather, he is very sure there is a God and he resents that fact very deeply. Such a book could not have been written by anyone who was not fighting a real enemy.”
Reading that book was actually for me one of several steps toward becoming a devoted believer in and follower of Jesus Christ, though I couldn’t have guessed it at the time.
These days I listen to Dawkins and have the same feeling. He wouldn’t invest all this time fighting God if he were not in fact fighting a very real enemy. In fact, in all the decades since reading Freud, I have talked with a great many who claim to be atheists but who very obviously are just mad at God.
There is quite a difference between the two. A true atheist will find the subject of God boring, while a resentful believer posing as an atheist can’t drop the subject. A true atheist is indifferent to ideas about God, while a resentful believer is angry about them.
In our day, America has been going through some substantial turmoil as we have tried to rid ourselves of God. So far, I’d have to say the results are pretty awful. Atheists have no foundation for ethics and morality and each generation, being another step farther removed from Judeo-Christian ethics, is morally impoverished just a bit more than the previous generation.