The Antitheist’s Dictionary – Extract 4

A scurrilous, humourous indictment of religion.

Antitheist’s Dictionary: Goodwin, Opher: 9781500821142: Books


Allah is the Islamic name for the made-up supernatural being they call god. The name Allah predates Islam. It goes back to the pagan supernatural deities that the Arabs had before the dawn of Islam. Back then Allah was one of many. Allah was the most important creator deity but he had many co-deities and he had sons and daughters. All these were later conveniently deleted by the powers that created islam.

Funny how all these gods have family structures similar to us, isn’t it? These gods have physical bodies, families, partners and presumably have sex. Now there’s a concept to juggle with on a dreary day.

Seemingly there are 99 names of god but Allah was the favourite.

Although coming out of the Abrahamic tradition Allah is not the same as the god represented in either the old or New Testament. He has many similarities and many differences. This is basically because he had quite a journey out of the pagan Arab tradition and has a number of attributes picked up on the way. Myths always become embellished on the way.

Don’t go telling muslims that Allah is pagan though; they get upset.


The concept of alms is present in many religions including christianity and islam. It is an act of virtue to give to those who are in need.

I would much rather give alms than give arms but many fanatical religious people do not agree. They prefer arms to alms.

There are some good things that come out of the religions we manufacture for ourselves. This is one of them. I wish tolerance was another.


It is quite sobering to think that all those altars that you see in all those churches stem from the altars that were used for sacrifices. Humans and animals of all types were dragged on to these altars to have their throats ritually cut or hearts ripped out of their chests. Sometimes their blood was drunk, sometimes the beating heart was held up, and sometimes the sacrifices were burnt so that the smoke wafted up to the heavens – to where the gods supposedly lived.

Now that we’ve sent space ships up there and exposed that myth it is rather a forlorn hope but it doesn’t stop the gullible looking to the heavens.

Those barbaric times lived on into biblical times. Goats and sheep were regularly slaughtered. Abraham was close to sacrificing his own son Isaac.

Human nature is extremely cruel. The religions we create reflect this.


This is alchemy in action. Ambrosia is the food and drink of the gods in Olympus. Seemingly it was brought to them by doves and it gave them immortality.

I wonder how the doves knew where to go to get it?

Quite quaint isn’t it? There were all these people worshipping gods that they imagined living in houses (Olympus is a sort of house), eating and drinking merrily, having adventures and making liaisons for the most exciting sex lives possible – sounds all a bit too human to me; doesn’t really demonstrate much in the way of imagination. The things our ancient forefathers believed in – I ask you?

Where are all those gods now? Abandoned? Forgotten? No – they’ve been banished to mythology. I bet the ambrosia is piling up somewhere. In fact, I was in the supermarket the other day and saw heaps of tins of ambrosia. I bought a bunch. Mine turned out to be full of cream rice. Quite nice but I can’t imagine Thor, Zeus and Odin sitting around in Valhalla or Olympus eating cream rice, can you?

There are a lot of doves in my back garden – I’ll have a word. You never know. They might arrange a batch of the real stuff.


So be it.

Let us rid ourselves of this god nonsense. It’s the product of indoctrination. We don’t need it. Besides, it should be Awomen too!



The Amish typify the claustrophobic stultification that religion brings. We all get fed up with 20th century culture. There is a lot of it that is not too pleasant. We could all make a long list. That does not mean that we have to freeze our culture in a time-warp in the way religion tries to do. It has had a disastrous effect on islam (they’re still stuck in a time warp pretending it’s still the 7th Century – apart from Kalashnikovs and TNT) and the Amish are only able to live the way they do because of the resources they have.

The Amish culture is a strict branch of christian thought. For some reason they think the pixie wants them to reject all modern technology and dress as they did a few hundred years ago. They can still use horses and carts but not anything from later technology.

There is something very attractive about living simply off the land. There is something extremely worrying about people creating a set of rules that keep people locked up in a prison of dogma. One wonders where the Amish fit.

Overpopulation is the greatest danger to the world. If everyone tried to live like the Amish nature would be utterly destroyed and we would still not be able to feed a fraction of the present 7 billion. We rely on modern day farming and transport to feed the world.

There again perhaps it would be a lot better if there were a few billion less of us.


An amulet is an object that protects the wearer from harm because of its magic protective powers. It’s a bit like the things a lot of Marvel comic heroes have – the opposite of Kryptonite! I’ve got my Mojo working but it just don’t work on you.

My fireguards are all made of chocolate and they work brilliantly.

Ancestor worship

The worship of ancestors is found throughout the world. Many cultures believe that their ancestors live after death and require things, like food, for their continuing life.

Many Iron Age communities buried their warriors with weapons, food and a variety of implements.

In Egypt they mummified important people and provided them with all sorts of wealth and utensils that might help them in their after-life.

Some cultures believed that their ancestors could intercede with god on their behalf.

All round the world ancestors are venerated and even worshipped. Many believe that if they are not worshipped and placated they will come back as ghosts and haunt you. This is very prevalent in China and Vietnam. In the Buddhist countries they burn paper money and paper utensils and possessions in special incinerators in temples. Supposedly the smoke goes up to heaven to the ancestors and provides them with the things that will make them comfortable in the after-life. There are shops stocked with paper merchandise you can buy to burn for your dead relatives. You can even get paper cars, motorbikes and TV sets.

I know – but they believe it!

I would like a paper Halle Berry – you never know.

The Terracotta Army was an attempt by the Chinese Emperor to invade heaven and take it by force! Just imagine! We die and find ourselves in heaven only to discover it’s being run by the Ming Dynasty.

Despite all this, and much as I would like to be venerated and worshipped after my death, there is no basis to any of this. We die. There are extremely sad losses. Once you die you cease to exist. All that remains is a lifeless corpse and the memories and impact of your actions that resound through the world like the ripples in a pond. We live on in the memories.

It’s quite a weird macabre idea to think of your ancestors as some parasitic zombies who are roaming about in the gloom and in need of placating.

The human imagination is both wondrous and extremely dark and bizarre.

Hopefully you’re beginning to notice that there’s a lot of strange stuff that we humans believe is real. The only stuff that isn’t strange is the stuff we personally happen to believe!


There are a number of things nearly all religions like doing: dressing up; waving stuff around; creating smells, chanting; sermonising; writing books; and generally laying down the dogma (then there’s the jihads, crusades and pillaging). One of their favourites is pouring liquids over people’s heads. They love it.

They use oil, water, perfume, even butter!

It’s all part of the rich pageantry and ritual of religion. The more elaborate the performance, buildings and anointing, the more people believe it must be true.

I suppose anointing, an all the elaborate ceremonies, make life interesting as long as they don’t heat up the butter too much!


An antitheist is a supremely intelligent person; someone who not only has realised that the whole mythology of god is nothing but a fairy-tale but also that the story of religion is really nothing but the story of power.

They have realised that controlling sociopaths have either used politics or religion as a means of controlling people and usually both. The result is often tyranny. The outcome of this tyranny is invariably a whole set of intricate dress codes, religious paraphernalia, rituals and laws that needlessly restrict people’s freedoms and pleasures. At worst it promotes sectarian hatred, torture, genocide and war. People often end up persecuted, tortured or killed for their own personal beliefs, religious paraphernalia or mode of worship. The religious do not like the idea of personal freedom or the right to speak out. That’s why I have to do it.

An antitheist is consequently opposed to all organised religion and sees religion as a form of insanity.

To be an antitheist you have to be a very strong character. You have to take responsibility for your own morality and make your own purpose for life. That’s quite an undertaking. It’s not all fun and games. But it does mean that you can enjoy poking fun at all the absurd dress codes, rituals and diets people have imposed on themselves.


At least she’s female for a change.

It used to be that most of our gods were female (like Mother Nature) but misogynist Abrahamic Arab culture put a stop to that nonsense. Men rule – right?

Now this Aphrodite myth sounds quite possible – really. Not made up at all. I particularly like the sound of her birth. It seems quite plausible to me. It appears that Zeus, her father (though I can’t see why he’s called her father – you can’t have two fathers can you? Well I suppose with Gods and religion you can do what the hell you want) is involved. Cronos cut off Uranus’s genitals and threw them in the sea. Aphrodite then rose from the foam. (I gather Uranus was not too enamoured at the idea of becoming a father. He wasn’t cut out for it). So Aphrodite was created out of the fertilisation of Uranus’s sperm from his severed testicles and the sea, or was it the goddess of the sea’s egg? So why is Zeus her father? All a bit confusing really. But then it is religion. Mere mortals are not meant to understand. That’s why we invent priests.

You know millions of people actually believed all this garbage. They believed the gods really did live just like human beings in a big palace in the sky and when you died you went to Elysium on the edge of the world – the Greeks thought that the world was flat!

Aphrodite basically evolved out of previous mother figure goddesses that are lost in the mists of past belief before her and hence she was the goddess of beauty, love and fecundity.

It was a good thing to be. She seemed to spend a lot of her time fucking around and getting involved with guys like Adonis. If you’re going to be a Goddess Aphrodite is a good one to pick. She has a good time!


I’m no angel. I’ve been told that by a number of people. Angels live in heaven which as everyone knows is up in the sky. They play lutes, sit on clouds and join together in big angelic choirs to sing to the fictitious fairy every Thursday, forever and a day!

Because heaven is in the sky, just out of reach of the main airline routes, they have to have wings. Even though it is very cold and airless up there they are naked and apparently have no trouble breathing. They are really well behaved – quite angelic. They carry messages around for this supernatural pixie as he hasn’t yet got round to figuring out his internet.

They are humanoid celestial beings who are benevolent. They can be invisible and sit on your shoulder whispering advice in your ear and saving you from danger. Quite handy really. I wish they spoken a bit louder at times, though.

They originate from Zoroastrian times and probably before that.

Angels take many forms in various cultures. Some of them are fish but I think that’s a different type of thing. Don’t know as I’d want a fish sitting on my shoulder whispering in my ear. I wonder if that’s where Douglas Adams got the idea from? Anyway, the concept of little naked babies sitting on peoples’ shoulders looking out for us seems perfectly reasonable to me! You couldn’t make it up, could you?


This doesn’t sound too good and probably isn’t. It’s the end of days, the end of the world, the final battle when good triumphs over evil.

It’s a bit of a let-down really. Not something to look forward to – like Christmas or a holiday. An apocalypse has a slightly negative connotation.

I always think that if you know the outcome it kind of spoils the match or film. If you know life’s going to end in an apocalypse it puts a bit of a downer on things.

Despite that, the apocalypse is another favourite of film makers. They get off on the visuals – explosions, tsunamis, falling rocks, screaming people. The end of the world.

I’m not quite sure what is meant to happen to the rest of the universe. Perhaps that gets destroyed as well?

Unfortunately, back in those days, when they thought up the apocalypse, they didn’t know about the rest of the universe. They thought this planet was it. Not even that really. They didn’t know most of the world existed. What they did know was flat with a big dome over it. The sun and moon travelled across the dome and the stars were little chinks in the dome through which the light of heaven shone through. Religious bodies had to modify the story as more and more was found out. I mean, they couldn’t simply burn everyone who possessed a telescope, could they? When they burnt Giordano Bruno for saying the earth wasn’t the centre and that the stars were really suns it caused a bit of a stir – and Galileo only just escaped the same fate. Not knowing about the zillions of stars and galaxies making up the cosmos kind of limited their scope. They could have gone for whole galaxies colliding with each other. Very cinematic.

Nowadays four horsemen of the apocalypse riding off spreading war, pestilence, famine and death might have a bit of a job. It’d take a bit of time riding around the whole world. But horses were the most advanced form of transport back then. As this came from the revelations of the great pixie one would imagine he might have given everyone a premonition of a variety of futuristic technological developments, some great starship unfathomable to primeval minds – but no – four ragged horsemen was the extent of what those people could conceive. Four ragged horsemen it is.

The world, as we now know, is a bit bigger than the confines of the Holy Land. Space might require a star-cruiser or two.

Once again the imaginations of our distant forebears were severely hampered by a lack of understanding. Technology has changed the world beyond recognition.

Just think how impressive it would have been if the four horsemen were roaring around on strange mechanical beasts called Harleys. I’d be much more impressed.

Surely any super-being worth his salt would have an idea of what he was organising for the future. He could have equipped them with laser blades and genetically modified viruses. Horses don’t cut it with me.

So there will be no apocalypse as described by our unimaginative forebears. We’ll have to wait for the sun to explode and melt us – that’s much more likely.


 Apollo was the Bastard son of Zeus, father of all gods (at least that’s most people believed back then – but then things come in and out of fashion, don’t they?).

Apollo was worshipped because he presided over the flocks and herds and the muses. So he was connected with feasting and music and poetry. Sounds good!

You don’t suppose this somehow represents the sort of culture that resided in Greece at that time do you?

You don’t suppose all these pixies we have created have come out of human imagination do you?

Don’t you find it a bit strange that they always have the accoutrements of their particular age? You never see a Greek God flitting about on a Harley Davison or living in a palace made of plastic? Even their clothes are always in keeping with the current trend. – Yahweh in gowns, Apollo in tunics. Why not a jumpsuit? No, this guy lived up a mountain, herded sheep and played the flute. I’d have been more impressed if it had been the saxophone.

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