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Hugh Laurie

An English actor, comedian, and writer, best known as star of the television show House, a popular series on Fox. House plays an atheist doctor who excels at diagnosing rare illnesses. House is not without flaw, which is to put it mildly. His character is extremely flawed. House struggles with pain killers and alcoholism and as a result he is always getting into trouble. He has spent time in the "Institution" twice that we know of, driven a car into his bosses (and ex-girlfriends) house "Cutty" and then been to jail on a different issue. He criticizes religion on his show often, typically in a poignant and rational manner.

Quotes from Hugh Laurie, the real life version

I don't believe in God, but I have this idea that if there were a God, or destiny of some kind looking down on us, that if he saw you taking anything for granted he’d take it away. So he'll be like: 'You think this is going pretty well?' Then he'll go and send down some big disaster. Stargazing: Heather's Angry, Jane is Ill, Hugh is Anxious Kansas City Star, Wed, Oct. 31, 2007

Episode of “God Almighty” that aired in England The premise of the show is that the guest gets to describe how he\she would change the world if he\she were god. A member asks, “Who would you create first, woman or man?”

“Oh, um. I see pitfalls either way. But see, the other problem I have, is that, being an atheist [audience laughs], is regards to this whole exercise is, it holds me back a bit. Unless I start to appear in people’s visions and tell them that ‘I don’t exist’ . . . think about that!”

From a 2006 appearance on Inside the Actors Studio (original air date: 7/31/06) he had the following exchange with James Lipton:

Lipton: Do you share Houses's skepticism? Laurie: [laughing] I do. Big chunks of it, yes. I'm not a religious man. Again, I think this is connected to my father. My father was religious oddly enough, but I nonetheless I suppose was impressed by [and] enamored of his devotion to medical science. I find I am a fan of science. I believe in science. A humility before the facts. I find that a moving and beautiful thing. And belief in the unknown I find less interesting. I find the known and the knowable interesting enough.

The Daily Telegraph - Man about the House
"I don't believe in God, but I have this idea that if there were a God, or destiny of some kind looking down on us, that if he saw you taking anything for granted he'd take it away." [1]

"He admits he can’t shake the idea “that there is virtue in suffering, that there is a sort of psychic economy, whereby if you embrace success, happiness and comfort, these things have to be paid for”. One newspaper has taken to printing pictures of a glum-looking Laurie and asking why he doesn’t look happier, but his upbringing was Scottish Presbyterian, and Scottish Presbyterians are not supposed to look happy." - The Times - Hugh Laurie on House, fame and LA

“The religious aspects didn’t mean a great deal,” he says. “I admire the music, buildings and ethics of religion, but I come unstuck on the God thing.” Some of the cultural aspects of Presbyterianism, however – “the denial of pleasure, the virtues of thrift and hard work” – have stayed with him. “I had a wonderful if uneventful upbringing. My parents were very loving, but there’s no question they were suspicious of ease and comfort. My mother was the first person I can think of who was into the idea of recycling. In about 1970, she was collecting newspapers from the whole village, baling them up and taking them to a paper mill. She’d get a shilling a half ton or something.” [2]

Quotes from Gregory House MD, the TV character

Since the quotes of Hugh Laurie's character (House) have become extremely popular on the internet they are being listed here. Please feel free to add more!

"Rational arguments don't usually work on religious people. Otherwise there would be no religious people." - Gregory House, Season 4 Episode 2

"If a person talks to God, he's religious. If God talks to him, he's psychotic." House Season 2 Episode 19

"Isn’t it interesting that religious behavior is so close to being crazy we can’t tell it apart." - Gregory House

"Religion is a symptom of irrational belief and groundless hope. Altered mental status, on the other hand, is a symptom of porphyria." - Gregory House

House: God talks to him.

Robert Chase: It’s not psychosis, he’s just religious. The only medical issue that showed up on the blood work is low sodium.

House: No — you talk to God, you’re religious. God talks to you — you’re psychotic.

Chase: A lot of people experience their religion as something more than symbolic. That doesn’t mean that—

House: God ever talk to you when you were in the seminary?

Chase: [laughs]

House: [gives him a smug look]

Chase: No.

House: God’s loss, our gain. He’s either psychotic, or a scam artist.

Eric Foreman: He was actually , uh, really impressive.

House: Well yeah, with the burning bush and all it’s quite the show.

House: Rational arguments don’t usually work on religious people. Otherwise there would be no religious people.

18: You’re an atheist.

House: Only on Christmas and Easter. The rest of the time, it doesn’t really matter.

18: [Laughs.] Where’s the fun in that? A finite, un-mysterious universe…

House: It’s not about fun! It’s about the truth.

Is House an atheist?
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