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Published Friday, December 16, 2011 @ 8:26 AM EST
Dec 16 2011

“I always thought, in the death matter, an exception would be made in my case.”-Christopher Hitchens

Christopher Hitchens (April 13, 1949 – December 15, 2011) could simultaneously enrage and enlighten, irritate and inform. You have to admire someone who would take on Nietzsche while awaiting the arrival of the final darkness.

Some of Hitchens' contributions and observations...

A melancholy lesson of advancing years is the realization that you can't make old friends.

A theory that seems to explain everything is just as good at explaining nothing.

Beware the irrational, however seductive.

Ernest Hemingway used to read his obituaries with a bloody Mary every day to start the day, to ward off depression. It worked for ten years... until he put the shotgun in his face.

Everybody does have a book in them, but in most cases that's where it should stay.

Handed a small baby for the first time, is it your first reaction to think: “Beautiful. Almost perfect. Now please hand me the sharp stone for its genitalia, that I may do the work of the Lord.”

Human decency is not derived from religion. It precedes it.

I think [the Bible] reads as if it were written by men and women, and men and women, as we know, are one-half chromosome away from chimpanzees.

I've been nearly scratched by Mother Teresa. I've been nearly spanked by Margaret Thatcher. I could tell you stories...

It is not enough to “have” free speech. People must learn to speak freely.

One of the beginnings of human emancipation is the ability to laugh at authority.

Our prefrontal lobes are too small while our adrenal glands are too big.

Religion ends and philosophy begins, just as alchemy ends and chemistry begins and astrology ends, and astronomy begins.

Terrorism is the tactic of demanding the impossible, and demanding it at gunpoint.

The four most over-rated things in life are champagne, lobster, anal sex and picnics.

The place for religion is in the mind, within the individual.

What can be asserted without evidence, can also be dismissed without evidence.

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