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Machines Like Us

What do India’s atheists think?

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Delhi’s Freethinkers are discussing whether to allow religious believers into their group.

The Freethinkers, atheists who regard scientific reason and rationalism as paramount, have been meeting in Delhi as a support network for almost a year-and-a-half, but they have yet to solve the question of who to allow into their fold.

Aastha Manocha, whose first name paradoxically means faith, thinks the forum should be open to anyone who wants to find out about Atheism, not just dyed in the wool non-believers. Opening up the group would be a way to spread the message, she believes.

“We are just sitting in a nice comfortable group and we should push the ideas [of rationalism] a lot more,” says Ms. Manocha a 25-year-old content writer and researcher.

However, fellow Atheist Siddharth Singh, 25, offers a note of caution to those gathered in a Delhi coffee shop to discuss the issue.

“This platform is sort of for people who already can’t come out very openly and they would like to discuss with people who value reason over tradition or culture,” says Mr. Singh, an international relations researcher.

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