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Species of Atheism

Dylan Evans discusses â?The 21st century atheistâ? in todayâ??s Guardian:

When I say that I value religion, I don't mean that I see any truth in the stories about gods, devils, souls and saviours. But I do think there is one respect in which religion is more truthful than science - in its depiction of the longing for transcendent meaning that lies in man's heart. No scientific theory has ever done justice to this longing, and in this respect religions paint more faithful pictures of the human mind. My kind of atheism sees religions as presenting potent metaphors and images to represent human aspirations for transcendence. It is only when these metaphors are understood as such, and not mistaken for literal statements, that the true value of religion is revealed.

I agree that literalism could be a stumbling block. I also recognize that transcendence can take on different levels of meaning, depending on how one views those â??potent metaphors.â?

Moreover, atheism is not the exclusive property of the nonreligious.

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