Guys, let's keep this thread as it was intended– a thread about what Hitch meant to people. That doesn't mean that we can't say that some of the things that he said and wrote were wrong in our personal view. But let's keep it free of discussions about where Hitch is, in heaven or in hell, or why indeed an atheist would feel sorrow at the loss of another human being (As well as free of replies to those kinds of posts because they will be removed). Those questions can obviously be hashed out elsewhere in the forum of course!
What Christopher Hitchens meant to me cannot really be described in words. He was such an amazing human being and I cannot believe he is really gone. Over the past few months he had even exchanged emails me with me on a couple of occasions. He was truly a hero.
Christopher Hitchens was a man of courage and honor. Hitch always spoke his mind and took the fight to religious bigotry and was unapologetic about it. In addition, he was not a cultural relativist or an Islamic apologist like is the case with many atheists. He called Islamic ideology for what it truly was: totalitarianism and oppression. In addition, he was a great friend for freedom and democracy and although he was a leftist all his life, he stood and supported the Iraqi people for their quest for freedom - particularly the great Kurdish people. And as an Iranian, he was a great friend of the Iranian people and it is a shame that he was not able to see a free Iran in his lifetime. Most importantly: he was genuine and one of the most insightful and intelligent human beings I have ever heard whom possessed great insight and a realistic foresight of world problems.
I will write more on him later but he was truly a hero of mine and I don't have any other heroes. He was someone that inspired me in ways that cannot be expressed. For the rest of my life, I will try to live with his ideals and inspiration as much as I can. To be honest, right now has become one of the gloomiest and darkest days, and my heart feels empty.
To me, Hitchens was more of a beacon of hope for all atheists around the world. He passed away while I was in the middle of reading "God is not great" and I was quite saddened by the news. I am grateful to all of his contributions to the society of the anti-religious.
There is nothing but good words that I can say about him, one of the most brilliant minds of our time.
Absolutely, he was one of the most brilliant minds of our time. His turn of phrase, his succinctness, always calm, his mellifluous voice.
But the thing I think he taught me, was to get a backbone, be more vocal about one's Atheism, which is easy to do in Australia, to try and be as articulate as one can, know your 'stuff'. and don't get angry and start frothing at the mouth when confronted by stupid people.
I don't think anybody can fill his shoes, but we were lucky to have had him in our lives at all.
god is not great helped me to accept myself as an atheist. It was a very freeing moment for me. I am forever grateful for him speaking out against religion and helping people like myself find reason. :)
Funny! Me, too!
This is late... I apologize. When I first read Hitchens' book, "God is Not Great," I was an atheist who had not yet assigned myself the title of "atheist." I picked that book at the library because I loved the bright yellow cover and the ballsiness of the title. As I read, I realized I was in agreement with so many things he was writing about, and I realized, "I am an atheist." Reading his book was my "Ah-ha!" moment. I'd never felt such relief and such a sense of empowerment. I know his book was not "the best" book ever written on atheism, but it was the one that set me free in my own mind. He was an amazing voice for us, and he will be missed greatly.
I wanted to respond to Maurice's ignorant but typical remarks but I see they been removed, and I was all fired up.
I still tear up when I think about Hitch and probably always will.
me too :(. He died so young...
Well crap now I want to know what this Maurice said about Hitch! I would Enthusiastically come to the defense of the man who inspired me to be open about my atheism.
The mourning is kind of over for me but for a while I would get a little choked up at the thought of Hitchens.
Just to be clear, I am not suggesting 'nut-job' and 'christian love' are mutually exclusive, shit! we *ALL* know that story LOL I'm just saying an obvious troll, is just that, an obvious troll
It must've been around 2005 when I picked up God Is Not Great (GING). I'd already read Dawkins' book and enjoyed it, though the final chapter - which focused on the science - saw my attention wane. I did not experience this at any point within GING. I thoroughly enjoyed his 'rapier-like' criticism of people like Mother Theresa and Gandhi. I'd never heard anybody utter anything but praise and admiration for these characters.
Over the following years I'd spend a lot of time looking over his debates and TV appearances on YouTube, and I loved how aggressive he was in both attacking religion, and in defending atheism.
We have lost a brave and very visible champion.