Ricky Gervais speaks to us this holiday season in “A Holiday Message from Ricky Gervais: Why I’m An Atheist”, From Speakeasy of the Wall Street Journal.

Let’s be honest, if one person believed in God he would be considered pretty strange. But because it’s a very popular view it’s accepted. And why is it such a popular view? That’s obvious. It’s an attractive proposition. Believe in me and live forever. Again if it was just a case of spirituality this would be fine. “Do unto others…” is a good rule of thumb. I live by that. Forgiveness is probably the greatest virtue there is. Buts that’s exactly what it is - ‐ a virtue. Not just a Christian virtue. No one owns being good. I’m good. I just don’t believe I’ll be rewarded for it in heaven. My reward is here and now. It’s knowing that I try to do the right thing. That I lived a good life. And that’s where spirituality really lost its way. When it became a stick to beat people with. “Do this or you’ll burn in hell.” <p /> <p>You won’t burn in hell. But be nice anyway.

(Thanks to the Chairman.) This sounds like i came out of “Where Men Win Glory”, John Krakauer’s chronicle of Pat Tillman.

Good stuff. Worth thinking about.