This week's magazine is a special issue on secularism, atheism and belief. To complement it, today's Words in Pictures clip is of Philip Pullman, whose acclaimed trilogy His Dark Materials is, among other things, a challenge to organised religion.
In this 2003 interview with Melvyn Bragg, Pullman talks about his views on original sin and religious authority:
The famous story of . . . temptation in the Garden of Eden and the Fall of Man . . . [has] been presented as being a very bad thing . . . Eve was very wicked and we all got covered in sorrow and sin and misery from then on as a result of this . . . Well, I just reversed that. I thought, wasn't it a good thing that Eve did, isn't curiosity a valuable quality? . . . It wasn't, after all, that she was after money or gold or anything, she was after knowledge. What could possibly be wrong with that?
You can also read Jonathan Derbyshire's interview with Pullman here.