Atheists’ Thanksgiving

Chesterton said one of the saddest things about being an atheist had to be not having anyone to thank when you feel truly grateful. So do atheists celebrate Thanksgiving? Yes, they do. This guide for non-believers encourages atheists to celebrate the day by thanking farmers and modern scientists for the abundance they make possible. What is missing (besides the doctrine of vocation, in which God gives us our daily bread and our Thanksgiving feast through people like these an others) is the even deeper gratitude for being, for just the joys of simple existence. I still feel sorry for the atheists.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • http://www.brandywinebooks.net Lars Walker

    How exactly does one “thank” farmers and scientists? Do you drive to the country, locate a farm house, knock on the door and thank the farmer? Call up a seed corporation and ask to speak to a genetic researcher in order to convey your thanks? And how many such personal thank-yous are sufficient?

    Thanking God in your home, in the bosom of your family, makes sense because God is also present to hear. Thanking the farmers and scientists in the same setting is meaningless, except as an act of ethical theater.

  • http://www.brandywinebooks.net Lars Walker

    How exactly does one “thank” farmers and scientists? Do you drive to the country, locate a farm house, knock on the door and thank the farmer? Call up a seed corporation and ask to speak to a genetic researcher in order to convey your thanks? And how many such personal thank-yous are sufficient?

    Thanking God in your home, in the bosom of your family, makes sense because God is also present to hear. Thanking the farmers and scientists in the same setting is meaningless, except as an act of ethical theater.

  • fwsonnek

    I am an ardent Moderate, because I see that Christ my Lord commands me to give thanks even for those politicians that I see as awful.

    God has placed those men and women over me. It is for me therefore, to find a way to come to a place of peace with these authorities and learn to pray for them sincerely.

    The liberals I know give thanks by being greatful for the excess bounties they have recieved and have a burning compulsion to care for the welfare of those less fortunate.

    It would be interesting to hear from you Dr Vieth, how being conservative for you is a form of giving thanks.

  • fwsonnek

    I am an ardent Moderate, because I see that Christ my Lord commands me to give thanks even for those politicians that I see as awful.

    God has placed those men and women over me. It is for me therefore, to find a way to come to a place of peace with these authorities and learn to pray for them sincerely.

    The liberals I know give thanks by being greatful for the excess bounties they have recieved and have a burning compulsion to care for the welfare of those less fortunate.

    It would be interesting to hear from you Dr Vieth, how being conservative for you is a form of giving thanks.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Veith

    It isn’t that, Frank. His sense of gratitude makes my friend (I said nothing of me) into a conservative. Not vice versa. In his essay, he explained that he was grateful for the blessings of the past, which made him want to conserve them.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Veith

    It isn’t that, Frank. His sense of gratitude makes my friend (I said nothing of me) into a conservative. Not vice versa. In his essay, he explained that he was grateful for the blessings of the past, which made him want to conserve them.

  • http://www.hempelstudios.com Sarah in Maryland

    Actually, last year we had a local thanksgiving and when I went to the farmers market, I actually did thank the farmers!!

  • http://www.hempelstudios.com Sarah in Maryland

    Actually, last year we had a local thanksgiving and when I went to the farmers market, I actually did thank the farmers!!


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