While clicking around the web this weekend, I ran across The Washington Post’s “On Faith” column and found something unexpected: the spirited atheist.
I bristled at the moniker—the person doesn’t know me from Adam but we share a moniker in very staunch, and very different, ways. I don’t lay claim to name exclusively (I even stylize it differently) but it really got under my skin: can one be spirited and a nonbeliever?
The Spirited Atheist, better known as Susan Jacoby, is a prolific writer and recipient of many grants and awards. The photos of her on her site give me the impression that she’s witty (a word that I have a love-hate relationship with) and a great conversationalist. Alas, can one be spirited and a nonbeliever?
By definition, yes. Being “spirited” has nothing to do with religiousity. And, maybe, atheism deserves its spirited champions just as much as God deserves His. This much I know for certain:
- I don’t have enough faith for atheism
- I don’t have the energy to constantly explain myself, and
- I have a charge on my life, regardless of the beliefs of those around me. It is NOT my job to save souls.
I’m considering contacting her and having a chat with her. It’s not to push an agenda or start a fight…I simply just don’t know anyone who has no belief in God. I wonder if there’s a spirited agnostic out there in the world? Eh, probably not. After all, they’re know-nothings.