Can We Build
a Secular Future?
Charles Darso

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Editor's Note:

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We initially intended to let this letter go without a reply. And thus it remains -- at least officially. However, we would like to include an Editor's Note in order to compare some of the ideas expressed above with some of the foundational principles that underlie the brand of "Positive Atheism" that Gora advocated.

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Gora coined the phrase "Positive Atheism," from which we borrowed our name; there are other identially spelled phrases which mean different things.

When Gora spoke of "Atheism" and "Positive Atheism," he was speaking of the same thing: the two were synonymous; thus it became possible for Gora to accuse someone of "not being a real atheist." To Gora, Atheism was an all-inclusive outlook similar, in this one sense, to Islam, Hinduism, most forms of Judaism, and certain brands of Christianity such as the one described in the book In His Steps.

He took for granted the fact of Atheism "being of great benefit to society and humanity," as you say. In fact, he carried it much further than the concepts around which you appear to gingerly step: Atheism -- Positive Atheism -- "must form the backbone" not only "of all science," as you state, but must also form the backbone of all morality and politics! In Gora's mind, his rehab programs (for example) for prostitutes and drug addicts are effective because atheism -- Positive Atheism -- if the philosophy that replaces whatever outlook the victim (patient? client?) carried with him or her into his or her destructive lifestyle.

The "Positive Atheism" we teach, modernized and Westernized, is not nearly as far-reaching as Gora's, and deliberately so: we wish to take some of the core elements of what Gora thought and introduce those as a catylist, the spark of which might inspire one or another individual atheist to "run with the ball," as they say in the American sport of "Pigskin" Football.

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