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James Randi


"I am frequently approached following lectures and loudly asked if I am a Christian and/or whether I believe in God -- the assumption being that I understand what the questioner means by both terms. My answer has always been that I have found no compelling reason to adopt such beliefs. Infuriated by such a response . . . [they] usually turn away and leave ringing in the air a declaration that there is just no point in trying to reason with me and that I will be 'prayed for.'

"I have no need of this patronization, nor of such a condescending attitude, and I resent it. I consider such an action to be a feeble defense for a baseless superstition and a retreat from reality." - From Randi's book The Faith Healers, page 303.

Another quote: "I hereby state my opinion that the notion of a god is a basic superstition and that there is no evidence for the existence of any god(s). Further, devils, demons, angels and saints are myths; there is no life after death, no heaven or hell; the Pope is a dangerous, bigoted, medieval dinosaur, and the Holy Ghost is a comic-book character worthy of laughter and derision. I accuse the Christian god of murder by allowing the Holocaust to take place--not to mention the 'ethnic cleansing' presently being performed by Christians in our world -- and I condemn and vilify this mythical deity for encouraging racial prejudice and commanding the degradation of women." -- from Skeptic magazine (1995 Vol.3 No.4 p.11)

Randi and his educational foundation have an extensive home on the web at http://www.randi.org.


A reader adds valuable context to the above quote of Randi's from Skeptic:

The quote you attribute to Randi taken from Skeptic magazines pages is indeed his. However you fail to qualify in what circumstances it was made. He made up that statement in an attempt to qualify for blasphemy in all the states that still have blasphemy laws in the attempt to get arrested. He writes about the statement, "This comprehensive statement was arrived at by examining the statutes of those seven states that have remained in the Dark Ages, so that I might satisfy their definitions of blasphemy."

In his August 5th, 2005 commentary in Swift, under "Our Stance on Atheism":

"... I will not change nor soften my statement that I am a concerned, forthright, declared, atheist. I'll never waffle in this respect, and I trust that those who read and/or hear my words will accept and believe that my personal convictions do not alter my dedication to reason, fairness, tolerance, and logic."

Interview with Randi about atheism (needs RealPlayer): [1]

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