Being Friendly Doesn’t Hurt

Another one for the library and Amazon wishlist: I Sold My Soul on eBay, by Hemant Mehta.

When Hemant Mehta was a teenager he stopped believing in God, but he never lost his interest in religion. Mehta is “the eBay atheist,” the nonbeliever who auctioned off the opportunity for the winning bidder to send him to church. The auction winner was Jim Henderson, a former pastor and author of Evangelism Without Additives. Since then, Mehta has visited a variety of church services — posting his insightful critiques on the Internet and spawning a positive, ongoing dialogue between atheists and believers.

I Sold My Soul on eBay tells how and why Mehta became an atheist and features his latest church critiques, including descriptions of his visits to some of the best-known churches in the country. His observations will surprise and challenge you, revealing how the church comes across to those outside the faith. Who better than a nonbeliever to offer an eye-opening assessment of how the gospel is being presented — and the elements that enhance or detract from the presentation.

Mehta announced prior to his churchgoing odyssey that he would watch for any signs of God’s existence. After spending Sunday mornings in some of the nation’s leading churches, what happened to the man who sold his soul on eBay? Did attending church change his lack of belief? The answers can be found inside.

–Amazon.com Book Description

I was led to this book from a contemplative post at Dale McGowan’s Meming of Life blog. Dale basically takes the adage “you can catch more flies with honey than vinegar” and considers how atheists and agnostics might apply that wisdom to their interactions with people who are religious. The post also contains an interview with Mehta, an atheist who also holds to the above adage. I plan to check out Mehta’s blog too, called The Friendly Atheist.

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2 Comments on “Being Friendly Doesn’t Hurt”

  1. Liora Says:

    Sounds very interesting. I wonder, if he wasn’t a believer in God to begin with, why it sounds like he only investigated church. I can’t imagine the other religions entering a bid-war on eBay, but after his eBay experience, I hope he expanded his explorations beyond one religion. Darn, guess I’ll have to add this one to my reading list as well to be sure… 🙂

  2. Kathryn Says:

    I suppose it’s a reflection of the fact that the majority religion in this country is Christian. I did read that he was raised in Jainism. I do want to get my hands on the book to find out more. Also, his blog probably has more background information about his journey.