There have been a number of recent articles and reviews that suggest the reason people cling to religious faith is their fear of death, and that the primary role of religion is to promote belief in an afterlife, in immortality. The implication is that it is a braver, more realistic thing to accept, as Epicurus and Lucretius did, our mortality and the fact that we will not be around to mourn our nonbeing.
More honest observers, like the atheist poet Philip Larkin in his fine, chilling...
The remainder of this article is only available to paid subscribers.
Print subscribers to Commonweal are entitled to free access to all premium online content. Click here to purchase a print subscription, or if you’re already a print subscriber, register now for premium access.
Online-only subscriptions provide access to all premium online articles for just $34/year or $2.95/month. Click here to subscribe.