First Lines: God No!

There’s two reasons picked up a copy of Penn Jillette’s God No!: 1) I really liked his This I Believe piece from a couple of years ago, and 2) I read the introduction. Both are awesome pieces about atheism / being an atheist.

Unfortunately, the book didn’t live up to the introduction. Jillette, a self proclaimed loud, aggressive, strident, outspoken atheist, and […] an asshole took the ten commandments, replaced them with ten godless suggestions and used those as structure to tell some stories. These stories somehow deal (be it ever so slightly) with the suggestion. And so God No! sometimes is more like a memoir than a book on atheism.

Which isn’t a bad thing per se. Jillette knows how to tell a story. It’s just that these stories sometimes fail to be, well, relevant to my interests. So a straight man had an awkward evening in a gay bathhouse. Big deal. On the other hand, when he’s on, he’s on. There’s a couple of really good pieces in the book, and you can pull some nice quotes from it.

If every trace of any single religion were wiped out and nothing were passed on, it would never be created exactly that way again. There might be some other nonsense in its place, but not that exact nonsense. If all of science were wiped out, it would still be true and someone would find a way to figure it all out again.

Book read
Penn Jillette — God, No! Signs You May Already Be an Atheist and Other Magical Tales
First line
If god (however you perceive him/her/it) told you to kill your child—would you do it?