| Quote #4
Many of the religious symbols appealed to my sensibilities and I responded to the dramatic vision of life held by the church, feeling that to live day by day with death as one’s sole thought was to be so compassionately sensitive toward all life as to view all men as slowly dying, and the trembling sense of fate that welled up, sweet and melancholy, from the hymns blended with the sense of fate that I had already caught from life. (1.4.106)
Even though Richard doesn’t believe in God, he sure gets a kick out of all the things related to worshipping Him. Maybe he would agree (or not) with Gandhi: "I love your Christ, but I dislike your Christianity."
| Quote #5
It was possible that the sweetly sonorous hymns stimulated me sexually, and it might have been that my fleshy fantasies, in turn, having as their foundation my already inflated sensibility, made me love the masochistic prayers. (1.4.107)
It was bound to come to this, wasn’t it? What’s next, a nun fetish?
| Quote #6
It would have been impossible for me to have told him how I felt about religion. I had not settled in my mind whether I believed in God or not; His existence or nonexistence never worried me. (1.4.157)
The word for this is "agnostic." Maybe God exists, maybe he doesn’t. Either way, Richard would rather be eating or writing than worrying about it.