Atheists obviously don't think religions do anything right, but one atheist author thinks non-believers should follow religions in one way -- they should have grand churches as well.
"Why should religious people have the most beautiful buildings in the land?" asked Alain de Botton. "It’s time atheists had their own versions of the great churches and cathedrals."
The website Dezeen reports that in his book "Religion for Atheists," de Botton lays out a plan for a series of "architectural masterpieces" in the United Kingdom to serve as churches for atheists.
"As religions have always known, a beautiful building is an indispensable part of getting your message across," he said. "Books alone won’t do it."
De Botton said plans are in the works for the first building. Dezeen writes:
This will be a huge black tower nestled among the office buildings in the City of London. Measuring 46 meters in all, the tower represents the age of the earth, with each centimeter equating to 1 million years and with, at the tower’s base, a tiny band of gold a mere millimeter thick standing for mankind’s time on earth. The Temple is dedicated to the idea of perspective, which is something we’re prone to lose in the midst of our busy modern lives.
"Even the most convinced atheists tend to speak nicely about religious buildings," de Botton said. "They may even feel sad that nothing like them gets built nowadays. But there’s no need to feel nostalgic. Why not just learn from religions and build similarly beautiful and interesting things right now?"