In The God Delusion, you said that you’d like to see believers who start your book be unbelievers when they finish it. But what about those for whom life is already, in Robert Frost’s phrase, “a diminished thing”? Is atheism really good for all the “Eleanor Rigby” individuals out there who might pick up your book? In other words, what do you say to those people for whom a conversion to atheism might well spell the end of all vital social ties to their communities and families—and for whom those ties are, realistically, the only things between them and real isolation, neurosis, and loneliness? Isn’t an invitation to atheism, for so many people who are already living alone and with tenuous ties to others—and who may be unattractive, uncreative, in ill health, and without high intelligence or good job prospects—an invitation to even greater pain, however unillusioned? Is disillusionment worth the social cost to such individuals? Do you, in short, really want Eleanor Rigby, who ‘lives in a dream,’ to lose her illusory sources of solace? To what purpose? Atheist’s afterall, have cognitive dissonances and illusory sources of solace as well—in particular, from nihilism and death. To deny our nothingness seems to be a universal human trait. But you don’t seem urgent, as Nietzsche was, to take that form of denial from atheists.