Death and Religion

Yesterday was the annual Nunhead Cemetery open-day, which sounds a lot more weird than it actually is. In reality it’s a chance for the middle classes throughout South-East London to spend a day in a beautiful Victorian cemetery, swap leaflets and entertain their kids. Michele is always keen to attend because there are frequently exhibits with birds of prey and owls, so we went along with Dave and took some pictures. As we started to walk along the verdant paths, flanked with the intricate, ornate monuments Michele commented that it was surprising the place wasn’t choc-full with goths. Goth with an owlWe turned the corner and bugger-me there were millions of them, all dressed up in OTT pastiches of Victorian mourning costumes, taking pictures of each other by the monuments.

In all it was a lovely couple of hours but marred at the end, for me anyway, by the presence of a smug stall of neo-Christians who were there trying to indoctrinate children. Apart from referring to non-believers as “fools” in their posters, the thing that really pissed me off was this smug, simple-looking guy’s t-shirt that said “The secret of life is the Bible. Believe it.”
This angered me so much; it encompasses everything I hate about religion and everything I hate about the world. In one snappy phrase they not only push their point of view without explanation, but also try and encourage you not to question it or anything else for that matter; don’t question what we say, just believe it! It’s got about as much validity as saying “The moon is made of cheese. Believe it.”

So last night I joined the National Secular Society and ordered an “Atheist and proud” t-shirt. I encourage everyone to question the wisdom of that decision.

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