Tuesday, December 9, 2008


The Order of St. Nick, an online greeting card company, recently unveiled a new line of seasonal prefabricated parcels just in time for the holidays. However, rather than dealing with the sundry traditions of Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanza, the Order of St. Nick has instead decided to embrace the season’s most neglected group of yuletide practitioners; atheists.

By “atheists” the Order of St. Nick appears to be specifically referring to people from the Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris vein of atheism, people whom I shall refer to as Darwinian Atheists for lack of a better term. Darwinian Atheists are individuals who argue that the Theory of Evolution as proposed by 19th-Century naturalist Sir Charles Darwin disproves the existence of God, by providing a completely natural explanation for the origins of life on Earth. In fact, seven out of the eight cards in the Order of St. Nick’s “Atheist Christmas Cards” collection either reference Sir Charles Darwin or the Theory of Evolution directly.

Though atheism in and of itself is actually a form of religious belief – many eastern religions like Buddhism and Taoism are atheistic in that the belief/worship of a deity is not a mandatory requirement of a devotee – Darwinian Evolutionists deny/refuse to allow their “beliefs” be categorized as such. In fact, Sam Harris in his book Letters to a Christian Nation (2006) even goes so far as to arrogantly declare that "atheism is not a philosophy, not a worldview…it is simply the way things are."

Nevertheless, while the jury may still be out on whether or not atheists of the Dawkins and Harris variety constitute a “religion” the introduction of atheist Christmas cards – such as the one above which depicts Darwin as Santa – in addition to such things as Darwin Fish magnets and the formation of an official Darwin Day holiday (2/12) only help to further the case for some scholars that, at the very least, Sir Charles Darwin is on the way to becoming a mythical, quasi-religious figure.

On a related note it is worth mentioning that the copy of A Dictionary of Creation Myths (1994) by acclaimed Prof. David Leeming of the University of Connecticut which sits upon my book self includes both “Darwin’s Theory of Evolution” and “The Big Bang Theory” amongst its extensive catalog of myth with the simple justification that "myths are considered truth by the cultures from which they first emerge - at least until they are 'exposed' as 'mere myth.'


St. Andrew said...

Thanks for checking my cards out.

You're correct, in that Darwin has become a quasi-religious figure. I submitted the Darwin-as-Santa image to an online postage stamp printer, and they wouldn't print it--on grounds that it featured a "religious figure." So there you have it!

Order of St Nick

Anonymous said...

Silly Justin. There's no such thing as a merry atheist. They're all emo.

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