Atheist Bus Hits The Streets

Rachel Holdsworth
By Rachel Holdsworth Last edited 111 months ago
Atheist Bus Hits The Streets

Richard Dawkins and the atheist bus
© Jon Worth / British Humanist Association
The atheist bus is here... and the atheist tube and the atheist TV screens. The campaign responding to a series of religious bus ads has now received a staggering £140,000 in donations from the public and the results are on show now. Nicely timed for Epiphany.

With that kind of cash sloshing around we're not just talking about one or two bendies either. 200 buses carrying the slightly hedge-betting (and actually agnostic rather than atheist) slogan "There's probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life" are rolling around the streets of London (plus another 600 across the country). From next Monday, 1,000 cards will arrive in tube carriages featuring the slogan and atheist quotations from people like Katharine Hepburn, Albert Einstein and the late lamented Douglas Adams. And if you manage to miss all that, head to Oxford Street: opposite Bond Street tube station you will see an animated version on two LCD screens.

The atheist / agnostic fervour is spreading internationally, too. Washington DC beat us to the punch with bus adverts in November, Barcelona buses have gone godless and Italy has plans up its sleeve too. Oh, for a photo of an atheist bus heading to the Vatican...

And what do the religious think of it all? Well, they're being very understanding. Turning the other cheek, almost. Think tank Theos say the campaign is "great discussion starter". We doubt there's going to be a return to theological debate, but there's certainly enough to spark the odd row down the pub.

If you see one of the ads don't forget to snap it and add it to our Flickr pool and tag it with 'londonist'...

Last Updated 06 January 2009


'There's probably no god' is a bit of soft get out isn't it and really with 140K to spend, it could have been used a lot more wisely.

Besides should the slogan be more like -
'There is definatly no god'

What is Douglas Adams quote?


Douglas Adams: "Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?"

I miss him.


"the slightly hedge-betting (and actually agnostic rather than atheist) slogan"

But it's not agnostic at all! Agnosticism is not weak atheism (which I think is where you're coming from) it's something else entirely. The proper meaning of agnosticism is a position that we *cannot* know whether there is a deity or not. People have chosen to call themselves agnostics because they, personally, are not sure or don't care, but that's not quite the same thing.

Saying that there is 'probably no God' suggests that God's existence is something one can assign a probability to - i.e. we *can* make a judgment about it. Therefore, given it does come down on the 'probably not' side it's a weak atheist position rather than an agnostic one.

Anyway. Apparently the probably's only there to satisfy the advertising authorities - same as the Carlsberg slogan.