There are many beliefs around if a person feels like choosing one on their own instead of adopting the one preponderant in their native place – and we know celebrities who are exponents of Qabbalah or Scientology. But while the field is wide enough, some haven’t got round to choosing. Does it make them atheists? Let’s have a look.
Arian Foster used to be running back with Houston Texans and now is a rap artist who is an open atheist. Talking with ESPN last August, he let himself be drawn into a discussion of his disbelief. Said Foster: “Faith isn’t enough for me. For people who are struggling with that, they’re nervous about telling their families or afraid of the backlash… don’t be afraid to be you. I was, for years.”
“I would love to believe, it’s very comforting to believe,” is the opinion of Sir Richard Branson, the famous entrepreneur who established Virgin Group. He spoke about it to Piers Morgan of CNN in 2011. Still, Branson doesn’t believe in evolution and humanitarian attempts to improve life, but not in God.
The actor and director grew up in a Catholic family and used to confess, but when he became an adult, he decided he doesn’t believe in the Almighty.
According to Willis, the actor was reared in a Lutheran family but grew to disdain any official religions and confessions and the recognized faith is fading away.
In 2002, when actress-cum-writer Julianne Moore was interviewed on “Inside the Actor’s Studio,” one of the questions was about meeting God at Heaven’s gates. Asked what God might say, Moore came up with an unexpected answer: “Well, I guess you were wrong. I do exist.”
Talking with Larry King about faith, Depp remarked that he had far more faith in his kids than in any religious stuff.
Star of musical and comic movies Zachary Efron, discussing his beliefs with the Rolling Stone, said he was brought up as an agnostic.
Spanish actor Javier Bardem revealed himself to Gentlemen’s Quarterly as an atheist in 2012. The magazine quoted his dictum: “I’ve always said I don’t believe in God; I believe in Al Pacino.”
As is with Clooney, Brad Pitt’s childhood passed under the aegis of a strictly observed religious family atmosphere. Still, the actor was heard to comment that he “oscillates between agnosticism and atheism.”
Among those positioning themselves as atheists is also Angelina Jolie, who said “there’ doesn’t need to be a God for me.”
However much concerned with mystic beliefs Harry Potter is, his real-life alter ego, Daniel Radcliffe, belongs with atheists – as was evident from his interview given in 2009. “I’m an atheist, but I’m very relaxed about it,” he revealed. “I don’t preach my atheism, but I have a huge amount of respect for people like Richard Dawkins who do.”
Actors’ performance and lives can differ a lot: despite playing Jesus in Mary Magdalene, Joaquin Phoenix is an atheist, whose views on religion were laid out in an interview given to the Nylon Guys magazine in 2008.
Keira Knightley is sometimes entirely facetious about accepted religions and was known to express the wish to be Catholic. “If only I wasn’t an atheist; I could get away with anything,” was her jocular comment of 2012. “You’d just ask for forgiveness, and then you’d be forgiven.”
Amber Heard’s background includes a Catholic school; despite that or due to that, she isn’t religious. Yet, she understands people who embrace Catholicism.
Our Dr. Gregory House, Hugh Laurie, owned up to being an atheist in 2007 in discussion with The Sunday Telegraph interviewer. He put it as follows: “I don’t believe in God… but I have this idea that if there were a God, or destiny of some kind looking down on us, that if he saw you taking anything for granted, he’d take it away.”
The Royal Shakespeare Company alumna says her world contains no God, while she abides by the Golden Rule and admits the existence of fairies. She regards her life as a spiritual one with her being open with herself and empathic towards others; she doesn’t hold with prayers and performing rituals.
The Piano Man Billy Joel is a point-blank atheist of long-standing – which he re-stated to radio host Howard Stern 10 years ago. He listened to a straight question about belief in God and answered with a firm “No.”
At about the same time, Ricky Gervais of “The Office” series fame at the Wall Street Journal request penned an honest essay about the evolution of his religious beliefs. “Wow. No God. If mum had lied to me about God, had she also lied to me about Santa? Yes, of course, but who cares? The gifts kept coming. And so did the gifts of my new found atheism. The gifts of truth, science, nature. The real beauty of this world.”
The award-winning actress and director were open with Entertainment Weekly about her attitude to God and religion. Although she doesn’t believe in the Maker, she considers religion an essential part of people’s lives.
Morgan Freeman played God in Bruce Almighty. Can it be that the experience brought him closer to the truth? Yet Freeman is not a believer. He holds that God is entirely Man’s creation, not the other way round.
The Imposters star admitted that certain parts of religion appeal to her, although she cannot digest religion in its entirety.
Stephen Hawking, the renowned theoretical physicist, renounces God’s act of Creation in his book “The Grand Design.” His reasoning runs along scientific lines: “Spontaneous creation is the reason why there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist. It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going.”