Some of my readers might think that “he insisteth too much”, not only by constantly repeating the mantra, but by apparently inciting to violence !  I have already explained that the phrase is not only wishful thinking (in Latin, “desiderium privatum”, a “private desire”) because there is little hope that religion will ever entirely disappear, but that though an iconoclast I do not suggest that anyone should outlaw religion, let alone destroy its artifacts and artistic treasures, including churches, or, God forbid (!), do harm to believers.  Cato the Elder really wanted Carthage to be destroyed, and in the third Punic War Rome did just that, literally with a vengeance.  I want religious belief and practice to disappear, but by peaceful means, by persuasion, by patient explanation, by getting believers (at least those on the brink) to question their faith and, if possible, to recognize “the lunacy of it all”.  (I love that phrase, originally applied to World War 1 by the Cardinal-Archbishop who ordained me.)

There are indications that my bucket-list’s first priority is becoming, in some places, a reality.  But world-wide religion is not disappearing, just shifting continents.  One religion, Islam, is in fact flourishing, with no signs of diminishing anywhere.  Christianity is dying, or at least shrinking, here and there, especially in Europe and some other “Western” countries, but growing elsewhere.  I will continue to do my bit and my best to get people to replace their irrational illusions with the light of reason.  A losing battle perhaps, but a freedom worth fighting for.  And so, without illusions, joyfully, hopefully but realistically, I continue to repeat :