Tags: big bang theory, embryology, Evolution, religious wing nuts, Rep. Paul Broun
Georgia Rep. Paul Broun showing the world how enlightened he is:
Tags: animals, Creationism, Evolution, intelligent design
Tags: Easter Bunny, god, Santa Claus, Santa Clause, Traditions and customs regarding deciduous teeth
Growing up there was no religion in my home. As a young child I was aware other people attended church (temples, mosques, etc.), because their religion dictated they do so, but I didn’t understand why (in truth as an adult I still don’t). In our house we did celebrate christmas* and easter*, not as religions celebrations, but the commercialized versions of fun things to do, like Halloween or April Fools Day. As much as I detest these holidays now, I loved them as a child. I enjoyed coloring easter eggs and couldn’t get enough of the lights and decorations on christmas and loved our decorated trees and the presents under them on christmas morning.
From my parents I heard about the easter bunny who brought baskets full of treats, the tooth fairy who put money under my pillow in exchange for lost teeth, Santa Claus who brought presents on christmas and god who, as far as I could tell, did nothing .
Even as a very young child, I knew the tooth fairy was one of my parents, god and the easter bunny were imaginary, but for part of my childhood I did believe in Santa Claus. Why? For one, the same reason that most people believe in god; fear. If I didn’t believe in Santa I might not get presents. Another reason I believed in Santa is because every year before christmas he came down from the north pole and took up temporary residence in a department store where I could see him with my own two eyes, sit on his lap and tell him what I wanted for christmas.
Not that I am promoting a belief in god, but it occurs to me that if the believers (who seem hell-bent on converting non- believers) changed their marketing plan and copied the successful Santa strategy they may have more believers. If god really exists he/she/it shouldn’t be averse to spending time in a department store or at the mall where people, including those with doubts, could come and see god. I’m suggesting that for a week or two each year god could sit on a throne at the mall and people could line up to tell god their hopes and prayers for the year. It’s all about marketing..that’s all I’m saying.
Tags: Atheism, Christian, Opposing Views
Sometime early this year on a bus, I sat next to an English man who could have been in his early fifties of age. I offered to pay his bus fare but he strongly declined and advised me to help out a needier person than he and I could not insist anymore. The traffic flow was quiet slow and so instead of letting my mind wander about the nothings of this life, I decided to engage the white man in religious conversations. I asked the man whether he was a Christian and to my amazement, he thoughtlessly said no and told me he was an atheist.
I only read about it in books and heard people talk about it but there I was, face to face with a man that never believed in the existence of God.
From, My encounter with an atheist, by pastor Mvula.
There he was, face to face..and without a silver bullet. It was probably only by the grace of god he survived. Excuse me a moment while I dislodge my tongue that is firmly implanted in my cheek.
I have no idea how I ended up at that blog, but as long as I was there anyway… I posted a
somewhat snide comment stating the pastor must lead a very sheltered life, though I doubt that is the case. I think this is a good illustration of one of the differences between the reasonable and the christians. We don’t wear atheism like a badge, nor do we talk about it in a way that assumes the listener holds the same beliefs, and we don’t try to cure convert anyone.
How often have you found yourself in conversation with a christian, that had nothing to do with religion, god, or christianity, but within the first few minutes you had no doubt about the person’s belief system? And why is there no doubt? It is because they always manage to sneak in a “god willing”, a ‘”praise the lord”, or an “…it’s what god wants” or something along those lines that have me looking for one of those little bags found in the pocket of the airplane’s seat. If it is a casual conversation with someone at the gym, in a bank, grocery store, etc., like the pastor’s encounter on a bus, and I don’t expect any further interaction I just let my eyes glaze over and see no reason to mention I am an atheist. To do so might lead to a longer conversation with a closed mind, and we all know how those go. So my guess is; the pastor has met many atheists in much the same way and never knew he was in the presence of what he thought was a fabulous creature that exists only in books, because they didn’t want THE TALK.
Tags: Creationism, Criticism of Darwinism, Evolution, Mutation
While surfing the my favorite blogs this morning, via a post over at Dispatches from the Creation Wars, I discovered, Bryan Fischer: Defeating Darwin in four steps – so easy a caveman could do it.
After reading the post I am convinced it was, in fact, written by a cavemen. I’ve heard some ignorant drivel from the mouths of creationists in their misguided attempts to disprove evolution, but if there were a Nobel Prize for stupidity this guy would win, hands down. Not only is he ignorant and misguided, but his post is so pathetic in its own way it’s rather hilarious.
I would urge you to read the post, if just for shits and giggles. In addition to numerous quotes of scientific facts and theories that disprove evolution here are just a few highlights that made me laugh. Seriously, who needs drugs or booze to have a good time when there are troglodytes, like Fischer roaming the six thousand-year old earth, to offer boundless entertainment.
Here are a few of my favorite highlights.
When you see a turtle on a fence post, what’s the one thing you know? Somebody put him there. When you see a world hanging in space, what’s the one thing you know? Someone hung it there.
The turtle theory, that’s almost better than the peanut butter theory as proof of a creator.
it began when a ball of incredibly dense matter exploded and flung the universe into existence. Okay, fine. Now: where did that incredibly dense ball of matter come from?
This one was almost too tempting…incredibly dense ball of matter = brain of Bryan Fischer.
Fossils. Realize that the fossil record is the only tangible, physical evidence for the theory of evolution that exists. The fossil record is it. There is absolutely nothing else Darwinians have they can show you.
Sadly evolution lacks the same proof that creationist have…a turtle.
The problem: naturally occurring genetic mutations are invariably harmful if not fatal to the organism. Rather than improve an organism’s capacity to survive, they invariably weaken it. That’s why the phrase we most often use to refer to genetic mutations is “birth defects.”
Bryan has watched too many science fiction movies, he thinks all mutations are bad. I bet his turtle is a teenage mutant ninja.
- American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer Defeats Darwin in Four Easy Steps (littlegreenfootballs.com)
- Rats emboldened by Rick Perry (scienceblogs.com)
Tags: Atheism, Christianity, god, Religion
In recent discussions with an atheist who happens to be coupled with a non-atheist (read christian) some thought and concern was given to how the hypothetical children might be raised. This got me to thinking about the basic differences in the approaches to child rearing between religious folks and atheists.
Clearly I cannot speak for all atheists, but I can speak from my own experience and my observations of others with whom I am personally acquainted and share my non-beliefs. My ex-partner in marriage shared my views on religion and god so it was rarely, if ever, an issue of discussion in our home.
When we had a child we didn’t raise our child to be an atheist. In fact, since god seems to be everywhere…and not in the religious sense…it was inevitable that our child would be exposed, on some level, to god and religion. To us, this was not a problem; we both believed our child should be allowed exposure to any and all beliefs and be allowed to choose freely. There were occasions, when coming home from school, my child discussed god. I listened and was engaged in the discussion of what had been experienced or learned, but never once did I say to my kid, “There is no god.”
Once, upon seeing an old poster from the Nixon era, in which Nixon appeared as a large dominant figure clutching dog leashes restraining his cronies in the Watergate debacle; my child said, “Look mommy, that’s a picture of god.” I asked where god was and, sure enough, the index finger pointed to Nixon. Amused, I simply replied, “So that’s what god looks like.”
Like all non religious children, my child heard, from kids at school, talk about church and god. Wanting to fit in, my kid went to church, with friends, on several occasions (at various stages of childhood) and decided against pursuing it further.
In religious families, it seems important that the children be taken to
indoctrination stations church (synagogues, mosques, etc.) from the beginning, so that young impressionable minds can be molded before the capacity for independent thought develops. By the time a child reaches puberty these beliefs have become so ingrained that it would never occur to most of them to question their teachings. Put simply, religious parents raise their children to embrace their own beliefs.
This is part of the dilemma for the atheist and the non-atheist should they decide to go forth and procreate. I suppose one solution would be for the atheist to concede and allow any offspring to be taken to the indoctrination station, and upon reaching a certain point in their lives be told, in the same sitting, there is no Santa Clause, Easter Bunny, or god…it’s all just good childish fun. Though I think it is more likely deprogramming, much like that used in recovering a brainwashed child from a cult, would be required. Another approach, and to my mind a better one, would be to raise a free range child (like mine) who is allowed to ask questions and explore wherever curiosity takes him or her and when the child reaches an age where they can engage in critical thinking the religious parent can then expose the child to their ideology.
I wonder how many people would have taken a different path had they not experienced this early indoctrination. Had those with strong beliefs in the invisible magic man in the sky and various forms of religion been raised in a fashion more like my child I think the world might be, at least slightly, a more sane place.
- Grief Beyond Belief — How Atheists Are Dealing With Death (gretachristina.typepad.com)
- The Cutting Edge of Atheism (onistee.com)