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Showing posts from November, 2007

Pope blames atheism for world's woes

Pope Benedict XVI strongly criticized modern-day atheism in a major document released today, saying it had led to some of the "greatest forms of cruelty and violations of justice" ever known to mankind. But in his second encyclical, Benedict also critically questioned modern Christianity, saying its focus on individual salvation had ignored Jesus' message that true Christian hope involves salvation for all. "Saved by Hope" is a deeply theological exploration of Christian hope in the...

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Gratitude - Only for Theists?

Reposted from the Freethought Café by J.C. Samuelson

Scanning the Internet for news and views on a variety of topics, and for how they relate to secularism, I frequently find myself shaking my head at the smörgåsbord of absurdity issuing from the keyboards of religionists. Both the ignorant and the educated get in on the act, the latter merely couching their vituperation in more sophisticated language...

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HAPPY WINTER LIGHTS FESTIVAL!!!

By Steven

What a drag. The "Hell o'days" are here and the baby Jesus (cast in authentic Chinese designer resin!) is on sale NOW at Rite Aid! Even before the post Halloween 50% off candy sale (IMPORTANT!!) was over...last years left over Xmas crap was dusted off and dragged out of the back room by miserable employees and diligently scattered around the drug store.

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Evolution's evolution

A little blast from the Daily Show's past.
The Daily Show (currently The Daily Show with Jon Stewart) is a Peabody and Emmy Award-winning Americansatiricaltelevision program produced by and airing on Comedy Central. The half-hour long show premiered on Monday, July 22, 1996, and was hosted by Craig Kilborn, who acted as its anchorman. In 1998, Kilborn left the show and was replaced by Jon Stewart in early 1999. -- Wikipedia

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I left god for good

Sent in by Laurie

In 2000 I became a born again Christian, I read the bible, I went to church, I listened to Christian music, I guess you could say I "lived" the Christian life. And I thought that all my Christian friends were such great people, so loving and caring and understanding. But then I really found out how wonderful those so called "Christian" friends were.

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ORU President Richard Roberts resigns in dishonor

The president of Oral Roberts University who is facing accusations he misspent university funds to support a lavish lifestyle resigned from his position, officials said Friday.

Richard Roberts' resignation is effective immediately, according to a statement e-mailed from George Pearsons, chairman of the school's Board of Regents.

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Which century are we in?

By Billy Braun

Is it my imagination, or are we seeing a rise of ignorance in our culture? In spite of all the recent successful books supporting the rationalist viewpoint, there seems to be a fresh revival of superstition and gullibility among the general public. The mass media is saturated with programs promoting the notion that accepting the claims of psychics, mediums, ufologists, evangelists etc, is scientifically supported and reasonable...

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Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial -- now online

In 2004, the war over evolution came to Dover, Pennsylvania. NOVA captures the emotional conflict in interviews with the townspeople, scientists, and lawyers who participated in the historic six-week trial, Kitzmiller, et. al. v. Dover School District, et. al.

With recreations based on court transcripts, NOVA presents the arguments by lawyers and expert witnesses in riveting detail and provides an eye-opening crash course on questions such as "What is evolution?" and "Does intelligent design qualify as science?"

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Pastor charged with sexual abuse. Bond set at $400,000

A 49-year-old Chicago pastor is free on bond after being charged with sexually assaulting a young male church member over several years.

Jose Rolando Morales of Mount Prospect has posted ten percent of his $400,000 bond and has been released. He's charged with one count of predatory criminal sexual assault of a child and one count of criminal sexual assault.

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Don't think about it

By Stronger Now

It is often stated by Christians that something must have created the universe and that something is God. It seems they mean that because the universe is sooo vast and soo complex that it needed to be created by an even more complex thing. Never seems to occur to them to think that if complexity and largess require a creator then their god would also be subject to the same type of creating force that they claim the universe needs.

So, why do they do this?

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My newfound freedom this Thanksgiving

By Sharon

Now that I’ve escaped the cult of Christianity and am becoming more aware of my freedom and my choices in life, I have to make a decision about Thanksgiving and what it means to me. I want to picture this Thanksgiving 2007 as separate from all the others. I want to ask myself, “What does Thanksgiving mean to me?” Maybe if I put all the other Thanksgiving’s in a big pile and set them aside in my mind, I’ll be able to focus on this one as an Ex-Christian.

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You need a Holy Ghost Enema!

Televangelist Benny Hinn is threatening to sue the religious satire magazine The Door for the video clip it is distributing that shows Hinn's wife, Suzanne, preaching at their former church in Orlando, Florida. She says if you're a lifeless, blackslidden Christian, you need a "Holy Ghost enema... right up your rear end."

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LIFE?

By Scott

Calling all atheists, agnostics, religious people, Christians, Hindus, Islam, Buddhists, Jewish, secular or religious, Wiccans, spiritualists, near death experiencers, philosophers, artists or poets -- what is the meaning of life? I know, I know, the most important and colossal issue of are time and throughout history. But wait before you answer, I need to throw a wrench into the works. My ten year old son Connor died from a heart attack related to leukemia.

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Growing up in the Universe

Growing Up in the Universe is a series of lectures given by Richard Dawkins as part of the Royal Institution Christmas Lectures, where he discusses the evolution of life in the universe.The lectures were first broadcast in 1991, in the form of five one-hour episodes, on the BBC in the UK. The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science was granted the rights to the televised lectures, and a DVD version was released by the foundation on April 20, 2007.

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If you were “God”, would “Religion” be Simple?

By John Fraysse

There is an important adage in engineering circles that goes something like this… “the more important a concept or process is, the simpler it should be to understand.”This is particularly true of instruction manuals.Many of us, (especially guys J) read the instructions as a last resort!I, admittedly, skip the instructions most of the time.Why?Well, it’s because I expect the (properly engineered) process to be self-evident or intuitive.When it is not, or I’m too dumb to figure it out, I read the manual.


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I'm Free!

Sent in by Andre

For years I was in bondage by Christianity — a slave to the church. For years I was pimped financially and otherwise. I was brainwashed into thinking that it is wrong to find women beautiful, that it is wrong to listen to music that didn't have the words "god" "Jesus" "lord" or "worship" in every other sentence.

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Two Liars for Jesus and an Aging Philosopher?

By Valerie Tarico

In the name of God all manner of moral boundary crossings become conceivable. In the service of a biblical god or the Bible-as-God, they all too often become real.

For Evangelical Christians, the greatest good in the world is winning converts. A Christian who wins a convert saves a soul that would otherwise be condemned to eternal torture. According to traditional Roman Catholic theologies in which modern Evangelicalism has its roots, only true believers are exempt from this fate.

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What church do you attend? Or are you Atheist or Agnostic?

Sent in by Eris Discordia

What I find interesting and a little disturbing is the fact that so many people feel it is necessary to pry into my personal belief system! When I finally broke free of the bonds of my prison religion I was made to feel uncomfortable by old friends and relatives, and even people I meet in the coffee shop who insisted on quizzing me as to how I spend my Sunday mornings! "What church are you going to now?" "What happened?" "Why don't you attend church any longer?" "How can you survive without a church family to give you strength in the Lard?" Blah blah blah blah..............

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Richard Dawkins and Lee Strobel: Antony Flew

Professor Antony Garrard Newton Flew (born February 11, 1923) is a British philosopher. Known for several decades as a prominent atheist, Flew first publicly expressed deist views in 2004.

Richard Dawkins recently made a public statement regarding Antony Flew's recent "conversion." Christian writer/apologist Lee Strobel interviewed Flew regarding his views.

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Fragmented Apologetic

Reposted from the Freethought Cafe by J.C. Samuelson

Christians often make much of the manuscript attestation for the Bible. Popularized by Josh McDowell in his book, "Evidence that Demands a Verdict," this particular apologetic is frequently offered to support the assertion that the Bible is not only historically reliable, but divinely preserved. Basically, it's reasoned that if archaeologists have recovered many more manuscripts for the Bible than any other ancient text, and those texts don't differ substantially from one another, it means the Bible must be a unique and special document.

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More distortions in the culture war

Reposted from the Freethought Cafe by J.C. Samuelson

As has been previously documented, the war on the "War on Christmas" continues to be one of the major seasonal pillars of religious activism in this country. In prosecuting this so-called war, however, religious groups frequently resort to distortions or outright lies in order to further promote a persecution complex among their religious constituency. As before, the American Family Association (AFA) is among those leading the propaganda campaign.

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Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial

By J.C. Samuelson

On November 13th at 8:00 PM, the Public Broadcasting Service program NOVA will be airing a two-hour special that "captures the turmoil that tore apart the community of Dover, Pennsylvania in one of the latest battles over teaching evolution in public schools." The program is titled, Judgement Day: Intelligent Design on Trial, and features trial reenactments as well as interviews with those involved in the trial.

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Christian morality not good enough?

Sent in by Ricky W.

This is a somewhat concise testimonial about logic and morality, and my journey to atheism from Christianity. Firstly, I should mention that I love animals. I'm a vegetarian, in fact. Now actually - much like with atheists, there is usually a backlash against a person who even mentions that he or she is a vegetarian. As soon as that admission is made, defensive questions like, "So you think I'm immoral?" or "Why do you hate humans so much?" pop up. But I'm sure that people here will be less reactive and merely listen to how my thinking process has unfolded. So let's begin.

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Post-Christianity me

Sent in by Sharon

Christianity cut me off from the world. It still cuts me off from the world. Though I have escaped Christianity's control, it is not so easy to escape Christianity's influence. It’s so hard to write about the ways in which it affected me and affects me still. I talk and write in a kind of code, because of the influence of Christianity.

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Is Flew's Book Bogus?

By DagoodS

We often see the “Who’s Who?” game in this debate. We want some intellect to be on “our side” while pushing the moral miscreant on to “their” side. Everybody wants Einstein. Everybody wants Hitler…to be on the opposing team.

So we enter (in my opinion-- ridiculous) debates over what teams certain individuals played for. As if the theistic belief of Abraham Lincoln, or Ghandi, or Stalin makes a wit of difference to the viability of anyone else’s belief. (And I should note we ALL play this game. No particular group is any better or worse than another.)

Recently, the hot, hot person of the hour is Antony Flew.

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Prosperity gospel called to judgement

The gospel message that links God with dollars has been called to judgment before a powerful U.S. senator.

Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) sent letters requesting detailed financial documents to two metro Atlanta preachers and four other ministries nationwide whose leaders are known for opulent, or as the ministers would say, blessed, lifestyles.

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Dan Barker Debates in D/FW

Dan Barker, co-president of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, will be coming to the Dallas/Fort Worth area next Monday to speak to the Freethinkers of UTA (a member of the Secular Student Alliance), and will also be debating a local Christian apologist, Kevin Harris. Kevin is a regular participant in the Apologia discussion, and is the co-host of the Reasonable Faith podcast with Dr. William Lane Craig.

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Q: What do you call a pastor who impregnates his brother's wife? A: Earl!

Sent in by Jan from deep within the buckle of the Bible Belt

I'm a member of your ex-christians group and this is a newslink to my old church that is in the news here in Atlanta again. I was a member of Earl Paulk'sCathedral of the Holy Spirit for over 13 years. I left there in 1992 after Earl's Brother Don had an affair with one of my roommates and dear friends. The whole time I had been there I had heard rumors about the Paulks being sexually depraved, but I never believed the rumors... I mean, after all, they were my pastors, right? Good people... They'd never hurt me. Uh-huh.

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Make mine a DOUBLE...

Sent in by Billybee

I was born (I'm 54) into a family where both my mom and dad were alcoholics. My parents' generation was highly tolerant of heavy drinking and dysfunction. Because they were so poorly equipped to raise well adjusted children, they sent their kids to parochial school in the hope that the fear tactics of Catholic nuns would offset their lack of control over our behavior. The result was the same as throwing a wool blanket over a burning tire. The flames of my bad behavior appeared to be in check, but in reality, something dark and stinky was smoldering under the cover.

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Ken Miller on Intelligent Design

Kenneth R. Miller (born 1948) is a biologyprofessor at Brown University. Miller, who is Roman Catholic, is particularly known for his opposition to creationism, including the intelligent design movement. He has written a book on the subject entitled Finding Darwin's God: A Scientist's Search for Common Ground Between God and Evolution, in which he furthers the argument that a belief in God and evolution are not mutually exclusive.

A video of Ken Miller's 2-hour talk on Intelligent Design at Case Western University was posted to YouTube nearly two years ago. In the video, Miller basically rips Intelligent Design apart and the exposes tactics that creationists employ to get creationism shoehorned into the American school system.

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If you logically look at Christianity, it just doesn’t add up

Sent in by Anya

When I contemplate my journey through Christianity, I’m reminded of that old Rod Steward song that goes, “If I listened long enough to you, I’d find a way to believe that it’s all true.” More than anything in the world, I wish I could sincerely believe in Jesus or God, but at this point in time, intellectually and logically, there is no reason to believe.

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What's with all the Whining about Truth?

By Valerie Tarico

My book, The Dark Side, has an in-your-face subtitle: “How Evangelical Teachings Corrupt Love and Truth.” It’s in your face and so, not surprisingly it triggers push-back. One of the questions I get is a wearisome post-modern “What is truth, anyways? What is all this whining about Christian dogmas violating truth like you have some higher standard? (Implied: As if any perspective could lay any more valid claim to truth than any other.)”

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Christianity: the ultimate free-card

Sent in by Stephanie

One of the prevalent themes in Christianity is forgiveness; forgiveness of sins against one another, forgiveness of yourself and God’s forgiveness of us all. In my brief stint and attempt at being a Christian I have learned one thing about this theme: it is the ultimate free card and not only allows you to do anything you want but it even removes all personal responsibility from your actions.

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Westboro Baptists ordered to pay $11 million to family of Marine

Also see Hate on Trial.

A Baltimore federal jury awarded nearly $11 million Wednesday to the father of a Marine killed in Iraq, deciding that the family's privacy had been invaded by a Kansas church whose members waved anti-gay signs at the funeral.

It was the first-ever verdict against Westboro Baptist Church, a fundamentalist Christian group based in Topeka that has protested military funerals across the country with placards bearing shock-value messages such as "Thank God for dead soldiers."

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