Founder, editor and publisher of Playboy magazine (born April 9, 1926)
Mr. Hefner was interviewed in the January 2000 issue of Playboy magazine.
PLAYBOY: Do you fear death?
HEFNER: No. I'm very comfortable with the nature of life and death, and that we come to an end. What's most difficult to imagine is that those dreams and early yearnings and desires of childhood and adolescence will also disappear. But who knows? Maybe you become part of the eternal whatever.
PLAYBOY: What do you believe happens after death?
HEFNER: I haven't a clue. I'm always struck by the people who think they do have a clue. It's perfectly clear to me that religion is a myth. It's something we have invented to explain the inexplicable. My religion and the spiritual side of my life come from a sense of connection to the humankind and nature on this planet and in the universe. I am in overwhelming awe of it all: It is so fantastic, so complex, so beyond comprehension. What does it all mean -- if it has any meaning at all? But how can it all exist if it doesn't have some kind of meaning? I think anyone who suggests that they have the answer is motivated by the need to invent answers, because we have no such answers.
In an January of 2009 interview with John Roberts of CNN in response to a question about religion and politics being intermixed during the Obama era he said, "One got a remarkable revolutionary change in pop culture and in moral values in the '60s and '70s, and then there was a backlash. And that backlash, I think, has influenced government. And, um, the Christian right has played a major role in all of that. And I think that the complicated problems with religion being involved with politics hopefully will come to an end for a while at least."
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