George Herbert: the man who converted me from atheism

theguardian: by Miranda Threlfall-Holmes —

I blame George Herbert for me becoming a Christian.

I first encountered Herbert’s poems at the very beginning of the lower sixth, when they were a set text for my A-level English class. Being the rather keen and serious teenager that I was, I read them that first weekend. And by the end of the weekend, I realised that this poetry was the most dangerous challenge to my atheism that I had yet come across.

My teenage self was rather proud of being a “cultured despiser of religion“. I had dismissed religion as being for the weak of mind, a crutch, something that intelligence and reason made unnecessary and undesirable. But here was some of the most fiercely intelligent poetry I had ever read, grappling with Christian doctrines and with a relationship with God. If this brilliant mind believed all this, and devoted a life to it, then clearly I needed to look at it again.

I didn’t become a Christian there and then. But I can date the story of my conversion back to that classroom, where I first grasped something of the beauty, the mystery, the attraction and the struggle of faith.

More:  http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/belief/2014/feb/17/george-herbert-dangerous-challenge-atheism

Categories: Atheism, CHRISTIANITY, Europe, Faith, God, UK

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