Monday, December 19, 2011

One Less Wolf In A World Of Sheep

“We keep on being told that religion, whatever its imperfections, at least instills morality. On every side, there is conclusive evidence that the contrary is the case and that faith causes people to be more mean, more selfish, and perhaps above all, more stupid.” 

- Christopher Hitchens, 1949 -2011

Bitterly divisive, cleverly outspoken, caustically opinionated and infuriatingly brilliant. Writer, author, and "polymorphous polemicist." Contributor, columnist, and essayist at Vanity Fair, Slate, and The Atlantic Monthly, among others.

Famous atheist, author of God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything and The Portable Atheist: Essential Readings for the Unbeliever. Rebuker of organized religion, scourge of Henry Kissinger, and not-a-big-fan of Mother Teresa (in his infamous article in Slate, he called her "a fanatic, a fundamentalist, and a fraud." 
He also called her a "thieving, fanatical Albanian dwarf" at one point - and this was shortly after she died.) 

As the Washington Post put it, he was "the world's most articulate unbeliever."

Christopher Hitchens was egotistical, maddening, and for all his intelligence, not always right (he was, curiously, a staunch supporter of the Iraq War which, coincidentally, officially ended on the day he died). He could be mean, stubborn, petty and callous - but his intellect was always sharp as a knife, and he was never afraid to swipe, stab, and slash at stupidity in all its infinite forms.

He was supremely, uncompromisingly confident in whatever position he took, but would always welcome debate and dissent - often at the opponent's risk. He was the living, ruthless, and often vicious embodiment of "Let's agree to disagree, even though you're an addlepated twit." Indeed, as he said in the video below (after excoriating, in short order, Mother Teresa, Hitler, the RCC, and meeting Shakespeare in the afterlife) :

“I'd urge you to look at those who tell you, those people who tell you - at your age - that you're dead till you believe as they do. What a terrible thing to be telling to children. And that you can only live by accepting an absolute authority. Don't think of that as a gift; think of it as a poisoned chalice. Push it aside, however tempting it is. 

Take the risk of thinking for yourself. Much more happiness, 
truth, beauty, and wisdom will come to you that way.” 

Goodnight and goodbye, you great godless heathen.

Christopher Hitchens, 1949-2011


  1. Thank you for sharing. I get to know the people you look up to.

    And learn to appreciate you more. :)

  2. I've read about him when he passed away. I thought we're going to make a piece on him but the editor rejected it.
    Interesting guy. Thanks Ruddie for sharing ;D

  3. @ DB : Hitchens was many things, but he was never boring.

    I wonder if your editor scuttled the piece because few Filipinos have even heard of Hitch, or because one could not write about him without including his well-known stance against organized religion.

    @ Mugen : Your comment took me by surprise and made me smile. Thank you.

  4. Rudeboy:

    You're welcome

    It actually started sometime ago. When you shared a video clip Antoinette and I had to use a torrent software to watch it on my laptop.

    What I'm saying is that in the world of mediocre things, Your thoughts stand out, and for that, I I am learning. :)

    Have a great Monday!

  5. Christopher Hutchens made me smile today and wonder how many more out there are like him - constantly doubting, valiantly speaking, unafraidly contesting.

    And such words need not be broken down into something layman. it is layman.

    (and he would have slapped me one time i dreamt to be mother teresa or princess diana - prefering dole-outs over empowerment.)

  6. @ Kiks : "(and he would have slapped me one time i dreamt to be mother teresa or princess diana - prefering dole-outs over empowerment.)"

    That, my friend, is what would've been called a Hitchslap .

    Also, one of the wonderful things about the late trotskyite was that although he was a master of words, he was never one to engage in obfuscation. His communication was precise, all the better to punch his point across a boneheaded opponent.

    @ Mugen : Awwwwww.

    Now my Monday's great. And I hate Mondays with a passion normally reserved for lying, thieving Kapampangan dwarfs.

  7. Will look forward of searching some info about him. Thanks for this.