Is the world, I mean all the galaxies that there are, the totality of everything, is the world fact or is it a creature? Is it just there or is it created? Now somebody who knows that that question makes all the difference in the world to everything is somebody who either genuinely believes in God or who genuinely doesn't because most people are either very lazy theists or very lazy atheists who don't see what's at issue.
[John Henry] Newman, like Nietzsche, knew that it makes all the difference in the world whether or not we are creatures, and therefore what Martin Buber used to call the eclipse of God going on, like the dark shadow coming over the moon, going on in the 19th century, greatly disturbed the great believers like Newman and the great unbelievers like Nietzsche. They had in common that they know that this matters. The disturbing thing for some of us about the present condition of our culture is that so many people, even so many religious believers, think that it really doesn't matter at all.
Nicholas Lash, Professor of Divinity at Cambridge
ABC Radio National, Australia Encounter program with Margaret Coffey Sunday 4th February/02/01