Preaching at atheists

Here is a blog by an atheist about whether there is a value for atheists in having a moralizing sermon preached at them now and then. She thinks there is. Is there any way to do this in an atheist context, for those who want it?

One of the commenters on that blog kept saying to her, “How could you, as an ethics professor, need something like that?” I think he’s missing the point. We don’t benefit from most sermons because they give us new information we didn’t have before;we benefit from them because they remind us of things we already knew but had forgotten.

I wonder if movies sometimes fill this role for the non-religious. Or if they do, whether they should. Or whether art in general should. Are there others who do or should fulfill the sermonizing role in our society? Oprah & Dr. Phil? Politicians? Other public speakers?

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On a side note, I mentioned in class that when Anselm calls atheists fools, he does so because it says in a couple of places in the Psalms “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.'” I also said I didn’t think that’s the correct interpretation of those verses. Here‘s my case for interpreting them differently, for anyone who’s interested.

 

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