today is the 2 year anniversary of Hitchens passing. it was a day i'll never forget. i spent the day reading eulogies, watching videos, drinking scotch, and crying. today being a football Sunday i'll have to forgo the scotch but i still want to remember the man.
many credit Hitchens for their deconversion. i'm not one of those, but my lack of faith was reinforced by reading his works. and his debating victories still stand out as a perfect example of how the right messenger can advance the cause of those seeking reason and enlightenment.
his significance has outlived his physical life. even today (literally, there's an article on salon.com discussing his current critics) people write articles criticizing or championing his message. an agnostic friend of mine recently listened to God is not Great on an CD and has come out as a full bore atheist. he's still changing minds long after his death.
i thought i'd create this thread to remember Hitchens on this anniversary for A/N members to post their thoughts on the man and how his works effected them. feel free to post quotes or videos of your favorite Hitchslap moments.
Christopher Hitchens was a man known for his words, for his skill at assembling words into significant thoughts and concepts. He had damned few peers and no betters that I know of in that venue, and that he espoused and supported the modern atheist movement is one of the best things that ever happened to us.
And every time I think of him, I come back to the following piece. It's not a hitch-slap so much as it is a statement of his own personal philosophy and an expression of his drive for more knowledge and understanding in his own life. Of all the words he produced in his life, I still feel that this piece and especially the last 2-1/2 minutes or so may be the most powerful and impact-full words he ever spoke. I've cited these words at least twice here on A|N; I don't see that one more time is going to hurt anything:
Thank you, Christopher. Thank you a lot.
love that speech. thanks for posting.
Loren, this is a powerful statement that gives me goose bumps. Thanks for sharing, and I am sharing it with family and friends.
i did the same Joan. got a little heat from my Mom, who found it offensive at first. she didn't feel like she should have to listen to an atheist (yet she calls me everyday, lol) no matter how eloquent. in the end we found some common ground so all's well.
I am glad to learn you and your mom found a way to communicate, even as you have different points of view.
Like matthew, I recently gave a copy of god Is NOT GREAT to a friend of mine. While a believer, she was not all that religious to begin with. Nevertheless, she listened to it with intense interest. Upon completion, she looked at me and said something to the effect that she never knew, until listening to Hitchens, how evil the promulgation of religion was. Her co-workers were hoping she would get me to come to Jesus. The other day, I gave her a audio copy of The God Delusion. She had it prominently displayed on her desk, and I've now had a few of her friends (in secret,of course), starting to ask me questions about atheism.
The effects of his arguments, logic, insight, and promotion of rational thought continue to influence people to this day. His legacy continues.
love it Pat! changing minds one at a time. Hitchens' brilliance is hard to look away from, his arguments too logical to deny, and his mastery of language is music to the ear.
Sometimes revolutions come in roars, and sometimes in whispers. Damned well done, Pat.
Hitchens was a columnist for the leftist magazine The Nation for a long time, before he became famous. I used to subscribe to it, and what I remember is mostly long, verbose battles between Hitchens and other leftists there. I guess he found his niche as a public atheist and anti-theist.
Strangely enough I had never heard of Hitchens until well after I'd became atheist. Chariots Of The Gods set me on my journey many years ago. Daniel C. Dennett was the first atheist I read and remains one of my favorites. Along with Thomas Payne. That's why the moral majority struke me as being so wrong on so many levels. Just another political tool for the right who use religion to control our government. And some really dumb ass people.
That's awesome. I hadn't heard it in a long time.