“Faith is the surrender of the mind; it’s the surrender of reason, it’s the surrender of the only thing that makes us different from other mammals. It’s our need to believe, and to surrender our skepticism and our reason, our yearning to discard that and put all our trust or faith in someone or something, that is the sinister thing to me. Of all the supposed virtues, faith must be the most overrated.” - Christopher Hitchens
Reason is the only thing that separates us from animals? I should think faith does, too. Kind of hard to tell, but my cats have yet to reveal any great revelations about their beliefs in God.
“Put our trust or faith in someone or something”… is sinister? Has anyone who accepts this nonsense ever been in love? Love is terrifying- having to trust another human being with something as personal as your feelings, accepting all the annoying little quirks about them, sharing every tedious day with them. Friendship is bad enough, but loving someone requires a deep, constant sacrifice of freedom and emotionless, rational detachment.
And as awful as it is, it’s worth it. It may not be as simplistic as the sort of faith Hitchens thinks he’s condemning with this quote, but it’s very similar to the sort of faith people have in God.
Of course, I’ve lost faith in anything Hitchens has to say about religion since I heard him compare Christianity to totalitarianism. Too bad ‘reason’ doesn’t also involve ‘the ability to accurately define words and ideas’- at least for some atheists.