Erwin Fischer Award 2001: Dr. Karlheinz Deschner honored
The laudatory was held by Professor Dr. Ludger Lütkehaus.
This year the probably best known critic of the churches, Dr. Karlheinz Deschner, got the Erwin-Fischer-Award. He got the award during a festivity that took place within a gathering of the members of IBKA on September 22, 2001 in the Bildungszentrum at Bielefeld.
After a short musical intermezzo the chairman of the executive board of IBKA, René Hartmann, greeted Mr. Deschner, the laudator Professor Dr. Ludger Lütkehaus and a great number of guests - between them Dr. Dr. Joachim Kahl, Professor Dr. Dieter Birnbacher, Professor Dr. Franz Buggle, Professor Dr. Herrmann-Josef Schmidt, Ursula Schmidt-Losch, Klaus Hartmann (Deutscher Freidenker-Verband) und Jürgen Springfeld (Landesverband NRW im Humanistischen Verband). Last year's award winners Professor Dr. Johannes Neumann and his wife, Frau, Dipl.-Psych. Ursula Neumann, could not take part because of illness.
This evening's top subject was the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001 in the USA as especially critics of religion are concerned if people hallucinate that they were martyrs or redeemers, begin a "holy war" and in reaction to this are threatened with a "crusade". The leaders of the various religions deny strictly any connection between the terror and their doctrine. Even the pope suddenly speaks of the "true islam" (by the way: how can the pope accept a religion as true if it contradicts the "real true" christianity?) which had nothing in common with these attacks and even the German Federal Chancellor, Gerhard Schroeder, thinks it necessary to say that this assassination - even as it was done in the name of Allah - had nothing to do with religion.
In spite of that church services (Christian services only) are held in the schools and, as René Hartmann said, nearly no pupil could afford to stay away.
Thanks to the "Nestor of the critics of the churches" as the chairman of the executive board of IBKA called Karlheinz Deschner in his arguments for the prize, we know very well, that religions, here shown in the christian religion, can indeed cause very much harm. This is exactly the reason why the IBKA honours Deschner's "pioneering work" and we do also not forget to thank the private sponsors - above all Herbert Steffen - who enabled Deschner to do this untiring work.
Especially the assassinations born out of irrationalism - and the irrationalism of some reactions - which alarmed the world showed how important it is to strengthen the international cooperation of secularists. In Germany it was Erwin Fischer who acted as a lawyer for the separation of church and state. It is also meant as an honour for him that the IBKA give away this prize.
The laudatory was held by Professor Dr. Ludger Lütkehaus. He, too, mentioned the terrorist attack and showed the logic behind the motto "Similar deeds may revenge similar actions but from this the same is born again: the eternal comeback of the bad similars." From René Hartmann's arguments for giving away the prize the laudator picked up the aspect of enlightenment and called Deschner the most outstanding critic of christianity. In his laudatory Lütkehaus compared Deschner with Voltaire and emphasized that a single person had put an institution in its place. Lütkehaus's example for Deschner's enlightening work was the persecution of Christians. For this he quoted the best known encyclopedias. In his works Karlheinz Deschner had shown the perversion of history that the exchange of the culprits with the victims, that these were persecuted by the Christians. At the end Professor Dr. Lütkehaus remarked, that some good Christians had messes read in favour of Karlheinz Deschner to ensure that he could bring his work to an end. Lütkehaus agreed "Deschner is worth a service!"
After Deschner had got his prize - the document was made by the artist Ms. Etthöfer from Margetshöchsheim - he began to read. But first he commentated the terrorist attacks in the USA. Deschner mourned the victims, too, as each victim was one too much - as well as every "witch" that was burned. But he also asked if there were people who might be glad about this reason for a counter-attack with a lot more dead people and he missed the minute of silence for the 36,000 children that die every day.
From the seventh volume of his "Criminal History" Deschner read out about the slaves' mission in the 13th century. The mission by sword and the mission by word were combined as it is also stated in the "Handbuch der Kirchengeschichte" ("Textbook of church history"). Deschner is very well known for his way to describe the bloody history from the victims' point of view and this was what he did now. He proved this with numerous quotations, most of them from Christian sources. After this Deschner read some aphorisms on politics, history and religion. One example: history written from the rulers point of view: "Theologists teach that even God could not alter the history. The historian can." At the end Deschner remarked that he thought very gratefully of Erwin Fischer, who was a close friend to him.
After the official festivity had ended the award winner, the guests and the members of IBKA still talked until late in the night.
The literary works of Karlheinz Deschner
|1956||Die Nacht steht um mein Haus|
|1957||Was halten Sie vom Christentum?|
|1957||Kitsch, Konvention und Kunst|
|1958||Florenz ohne Sonne|
|1962||Abermals krähte der Hahn|
|1964||Talente, Dichter, Dilettanten|
|1965||Mit Gott und den Faschisten|
|1966||Jesusbilder in theologischer Sicht|
|1966||Das Jahrhundert der Barbarei|
|1968||Wer lehrt an deutschen Universitäten?|
|1968||Kirche und Faschismus|
|1969||Das Christentum im Urteil seiner Gegner, Band l|
|1970||Warum ich aus der Kirche ausgetreten bin|
|1970||Kirche und Krieg|
|1971||Der manipulierte Glaube|
|1971||Das Christentum im Urteil seiner Gegner, Band 2|
|1974||Das Kreuz mit der Kirche|
|1974||Kirche des Un-Heils|
|1977||Warum ich Christ / Atheist / Agnostiker bin|
|1981||Ein Papst reist zum Tatort|
|1982||Ein Jahrhundert Heilsgeschichte, Bd. l|
|1983||Ein Jahrhundert Heilsgeschichte, Bd. 2|
|1985||Nur Lebendiges schwimmt gegen den Strom|
|1986||Die beleidigte Kirche|
|1986||Kriminalgeschichte des Christentums, Band l, Die Frühzeit|
|1988||Kriminalgeschichte des Christentums, Band 2, Die Spätantike|
|1989||Dornröschenträume und Stallgeruch|
|1990||Woran ich glaube|
|1990||Kriminalgeschichte des Christentums, Band 3, Die alte Kirche|
|1991||Die Politik der Päpste im 20. Jh.|
|1991||Der Anti-Katechismus (mit Horst Herrmann)|
|1994||Die Vertreter Gottes|
|1994||Kriminalgeschichte des Christentums, Band 4, Frühmittelalter|
|1994||Was ich denke|
|1995||Weltkrieg der Religionen: Der ewige Kreuzzug auf dem Balkan (mit Milan Petrovic)|
|1997||Kriminalgeschichte des Christentums, Band 5, 9. und 10. Jh.|
|1998||Für einen Bissen Fleisch|
|1999||Kriminalgeschichte des Christentums, Band 6, 11. und 12. Jh.|
|2001||Alles für die Miezekatz (mit G. Amanshauser, H. Boetius)|