Various Lies

Friday, December 16, 2011

Without a Hitch

I came late to the atheist fold and as a confirmed and ardent believer I kept my head firmly in the sand for too long. I lived that foolish duality that accepted faith and nonsense and unreason while clinging to the rationality that made me an excellent scientist. Oh how I wish I had the blinkers removed much earlier. how much more i could have done and been.

It was late, recently, that i really discovered Christopher Hitchens.

This post is rushed to get some thoughts out before they fully cloud my brain for the day. Hitchens is dead - just yesterday. Too young. Hitch-22 and Arguably are on my list of books for 2012. I wanted to read them when he was alive - I didn't know his end was so close; I have been woefully distracted this year.

The New Yorker has a wonderful eulogy by Hitchens' friend Christopher Buckley. One paragraph leaps out at me and makes me regretful for a year of self-indulgent, self-pitying self-loathing,

"Lunch—dinner, drinks, any occasion—with Christopher always was [bracing]. One of our lunches, at Café Milano, the Rick’s Café of Washington, began at 1 P.M., and ended at 11:30 P.M. At about nine o’clock (though my memory is somewhat hazy), he said, “Should we order more food?” I somehow crawled home, where I remained under medical supervision for several weeks, packed in ice with a morphine drip. Christopher probably went home that night and wrote a biography of Orwell. His stamina was as epic as his erudition and wit."

I miss writing.

New Year's  Resolutions are often a feeble waste of effort and simply reflect a fear of mortality and wasted time. However, the Catholic guilt is deeply written into my soul and so I still make them. Faith and Works etc.

PZ Myers sums it up for me perfectly:

"As atheists, I think none of us can find solace in the cliches or numbness in the delusion of an afterlife. Instead, embrace the fierce strong emotions of anger and sorrow, feel the pain, rage against the darkness, fight back against our mortal enemy Death, and live exuberantly while we can. Confront mortality clear-eyed and pugnacious, uncompromising and aggressive."

This year's is simple: Write More, Write Well, Write for the sheer pugnacious joy of the words.

4 comments:

krissthesexyatheist said...

Yea buddy, fo sho he was the writers writer. Even if one didn't agree with him...could they say he could not debate or write an essay. No way. My fear (that I'm embracing with the anger) is that no champion will step in his place, that there will be a void. Where/who is the next Hitch....Awesome

Kriss

Four Dinners said...

Big fan of Hitchens albeit I'm agnostic rather than athiest...

...maybe it's getting older that makes you think again eh?

Me! 54 this week!!! I'm an old fart!!! I'm nearer dying than living!!!

I think I'll stay agnostic and hedge my bets a bit...;-)

Have a a good Chrissie old bean! (and Jax sends her love)

4D

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