I would love to have a talk to the guy in this video here about a couple of his contradictory mannerisms but aside from the delivery style he raises some excellent points. Particularly in the area of open discussion about faith, reason and being patronising: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vNjEbPfc2d0
As a Christian I have explored many different points of view and actually read my own 'religious text' which is something very few of us seem to do and I believe this is what results in this type of video. I'm not someone who asks those questions to atheists because I understand that they are the ones also asking questions (the same questions to ones which I have explored albeit in coming from a Christian family and trying to break out of the mould of what my parents believe and into what I believe). When I talk to my friends about their views and values I merely believe that the most open way to discuss anything is to ask honest questions - questions which aren't patronising (for the most part) or assume that I know everything because I know and ever will know less that one hundredth of any knowledge the world has ever known. In that small percentage of knowledge I can only make reasoned choices about so much and therefore one such choice is to accept that all people have insight on particular areas, regardless of what, at heart, we believe.
One of the authors to become a favourite in recent times, G.K. Chesterton, wrote in his book Orthodoxy that: “reason is itself a matter of faith. It is an act of faith to assert that our thoughts have any relation to reality at all.” In the video above I find it particularly interesting that the guy speaking uses at one point, the word 'silly' in reference to the supernatural. G.K. Chesterton has also made the point in one of his other works, a point which I strongly believe in, that the concept of the supernatural has been to many cultures as real as the physical. The idea of something being silly is therefore a matter of perspective. To this end reason becomes a matter of faith in that we must choose to believe that our reason, derived from our perspective, is truly logical and not merely a product of who we are.
It is because reason and in my view belief are linked to perspectives on life, that the best way forward for all people is open discourse. Of course I believe that morality and other similar ideas lie outside of religion and that my 'religion' is linked to something more supernatural and eternal than merely life itself, but that is an issue that others would have to see from my perspective to view it as anything less. In this way religion, or rather belief, has itself become a series of palimpsests with each person writing their own views onto the overall truth we espy lying underneath it all. By talking openly and aiming not to condescend (across all parties) we have a chance to share our part. I still believe that in the end we have to each choose which truth is the eternal truth and believe that honestly, not arrogantly, I have found what it is through experience, that arguing pointlessly and patronisingly does nothing.