With all the magical and religious thinking going on this time of year, I can’t help but miss the calming, rational voice of the world’s greatest iconoclast. For those of you who feel the same way I do, enjoy some of Hitchens’ most famous quotes, after the jump. But for those of you who enjoy the holidays, don’t read on; instead, watch this fun holiday rap video.
Hitchens on the origins of religion: “Seek for an explanation for volcanic eruptions when you’re living in a primitive society and you will probably think they’re a visitation from an angry deity. And if you’re told you can postpone the next eruption by throwing a few live babies into the lava, that’s what you’ll do. Religion has just started.”
Hitchens on miracles: “Which is the more probable: that the laws of nature have just been suspended; or that I am under a misapprehension? And that is if you are an eyewitness yourself. But if you are hearing about it second, third, or fourth, or fifth hand . . .”
Hitchens on life in the real world: “You are expelled from your mother's uterus as if shot from a cannon towards a barn door studded with old nail files and rusty hooks. It's a matter of how you use up the intervening time in an intelligent and ironic way. And try not to do anything too ghastly to your fellow creatures.”
Hitchens on life after death: “No evidence or argument has yet been presented that would change my mind. But I like surprises.”