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Harvard appoints ‘athiest’ as president of college chaplains – not everyone seems to be blissful

Harvard College has appointed a brand new chaplain who brings a contemporary perspective to the position – as an atheist. 

Greg Epstein, 44, took over as president of the college chaplains this week after the group unanimously elected him. 

The chaplains argue that as a person with no clear non secular affinity, Epstein is the right candidate to arrange the varied non secular group actions throughout the campus. Because the president of the group, Epstein will set up the greater than 40 college chaplains from Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist and different non secular communities. 

(Harvard College/Youtube)

“There’s a rising group of people that now not establish with any non secular custom however nonetheless expertise an actual want for dialog and help round what it means to be human and dwell an moral life,” Epstein informed The New York Instances. 

“We don’t look to a god for solutions,” he added. “We’re one another’s solutions.”

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The appointment is bound to strike a nerve, with some already taking to Twitter to precise confusion or outright dissatisfaction with the appointment. 

“Utterly lacking the purpose of the position of a chaplain,” one person posted, saying that the choice made the Harvard label “much less prestigious.” 

Greg Epstein attends the NY MAG + AE Host Married At First Sight Mixer at Troy Bar on March 12, 2015 in New York City.  

Greg Epstein attends the NY MAG + AE Host Married At First Sight Mixer at Troy Bar on March 12, 2015 in New York Metropolis.   (Brad Barket/Getty Pictures for New York Journal)

One other person requested why Epstein serves as a chaplain if he would not consider in God, with one other person calling his appointment “a grift.” 

Epstein was raised Jewish however identifies as a substitute as a humanist – a way of life “primarily based on cause and … widespread humanity,” in response to the American Humanist web site. 

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Epstein doesn’t oppose non secular expression by way of textual content, concepts or practices, however he argues that individuals who doubt the existence of a better energy nonetheless want their method of growing values, exploring life and sustaining communities. 

“Possibly in a extra conservative college local weather there could be a query like ‘What the heck are they doing at Harvard, having a humanist be the president of the chaplains?’ ” Margit Hammerstrom, Harvard’s Christian Science chaplain, informed the Instances. “However on this atmosphere it really works. Greg is understood for wanting to maintain traces of communication open between completely different faiths.”

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A survey carried out by the Harvard Crimson in 2019 discovered that the category comprised of 21% agnostic and 17% atheist college students, in comparison with 17% Catholics, 10% Jewish and three% Hindus and Muslims, The Each day Mail reported. 

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