I say that I don’t try to put messages or morals into my writing, but that doesn’t mean they don’t appear there. It just means that I try to avoid sitting down and writing stories for the express purpose of getting across an agenda.
Every character in the book is a piece of me. Some of them voice my doubts; others voice my hopes. However, what Spook says here at the end of the chapter is my voice almost directly.
This is what religion means to me. It means that someone up there is watching. That someone is sorting everything out, and that someone cares about us and wants us to succeed. It means that if you try your best, you may not win—but winning won’t end up being important. The fact that you tried your best, however, will be important.
I have real trouble believing that God, assuming He exists, is the type of being who would condemn the greater portion of mankind to eternal punishment because of their ignorance, their mistakes, and their . . . well, humanity. Yes, we need to try to be good people. Yes, the things we do wrong will cause us sorrow eventually. But there is someone watching, and that someone will do His best to make it all work out for us in the eternities. Or, most of the time, that is what I hope. Hope’s enough for me right now.
Sorry to rant on you. To get back to the story, Spook is right. There are a lot of reasons to point fingers at religion and faith. We deserve it, and a pointed finger—the eyes of a critic—will hopefully make us into better people. Religion, as practiced by man, is far from perfect. The reason, then, to keep believing in the face of seeing the troubles religion can cause is directly related to the knowledge (or at least hope) that someone upstairs is going to make it all work out for us.