Atheist coloring book seeks to break down barriers
Judy Saint, president of FFRF’s Sacramento chapter, wanted a way for nonbelievers to break through to the religious, to perhaps find some common ground, to open lines of communication.
Then she had her eureka moment.
“I shall make an adult coloring book!” she wrote to FFRF. “I’ll use illustrations that are entertaining. I’ll avoid divisions, labels and definitions.”
And, thus, was born The Pleasant Atheist Adult Coloring Book.
“I worked this last year to create a nonconfrontational and humorous set of drawings and captions that read like a bedtime storybook,” Saint writes. “It fills a void on bookstore shelves — a pleasant, positive view of nonbelief that seems to be lacking.”
Saint was shocked (OK, not really) when she first showed the book on social media.
“When I presented it on social media, people had a hard time understanding what it was,” Saint wrote. “Comments were quite negative, rude, and even threatening.”
But, Saint said, despite those negative comments, the book does seem to be making some inroads with the religious.
“My wife took some with her on a visit to her very conservative family in Ohio and West Virginia,” she wrote. “She said she was prepared to have the books thrown back at her, or for some to refuse to touch it. She was shocked to find the opposite. Each one accepted it and some read through it. No one gave it back. No one said anything negative. After all, it’s just a coloring book. It’s as nonconfrontational as a child offering flowers.”
Saint said that the book can act as a breakthrough mechanism.
“It’s disarming,” she wrote. “It says what we all want to say to our relatives about atheism and separation of church and state when we can’t find an open door for discussion. Even just leaving this book on a table speaks for us. We can try to get these books into the hands of our relatives who find it hard to talk with us anymore. Or, we can read it and color it ourselves to feel empowered to discuss nonbelief and separation of church and state without confrontation, following the examples in the book.”
To purchase a copy, go to Amazon.com and search for “Pleasant Atheist Adult Coloring Book.”