December 10, 2012

Gift Ideas For Atheists

gift ideas
This post was initially written in 2008 and was updated for the 2012 holiday season. You can find a new (2014) version here.

Looking for a Christmas gift for that atheist on your list? Yes, many atheists do in fact celebrate Christmas. If you have such an atheist on your Christmas list and want to get them something that has to do with atheism in order to show your support, I have some suggestions for you. Best of all, since none of my gift ideas are in any way Christmas-specific, they would be appropriate for birthdays or other occasions too.

Before offering some atheist-oriented recommendations, a quick disclaimer is needed. We atheists are just like everyone else except that we do not believe in any gods. If you are a religious person, you probably don't believe in most of the gods that have been worshiped over human history either, so you can relate. The only difference is that we atheists place your god(s) in the same category as all the others which you do not believe either.

I make this point to show that most atheists are going to have the same wide range of interests that you do minus the religious aspect. Thus, the most important recommendation I can offer when it comes to buying gifts is to remember that we atheists generally like all the same things you do except the religious stuff.

But if you are determined to find something atheist-oriented for that pesky atheist on your list, here are some suggestions:
  • Books. Many atheists value the pursuit of knowledge, and the gift of a book focused on atheism is a great way to give the person something they'd like while demonstrating your tolerance of their belief system. If the person on your list has not been an atheist for very long, any of these books would be good bets. For the more experienced atheist, any of these books would be a good choice. You may also want to check out Amazon.com's list of Bestsellers in Atheism.
  • DVDs. If the person on your list is not much of a reader, they might prefer a good atheist-oriented DVD. The Atheism Tapes is a good one for a wide variety of atheists. The God Who Wasn't There is another decent choice, particularly for younger atheists or those who have not been atheists for very long.
  • Clothing, Magnets, Stickers, etc. While I would not advise a religious person to try to select atheist-oriented clothing for the atheist on their list (too personal), gift certificates are available from EvolveFish.com, and they carry a wide selection of t-shirts, hats, car emblems, magnets, stickers, etc. I've ordered a few things from them over the years and always had good luck.
  • Gift Memberships. A gift membership to a national freethought organization like Americans United for Separation of Church and State or the Freedom From Religion Foundation is another great idea. For the atheist student on your list, also consider the Secular Student Alliance.
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