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Showing posts from September, 2011

One Hell of a Summer

By Eveningmeadows ~ (I haven’t been on the site for a while, this is kind of an explanation, and just a few of my thoughts.) I t’s been one hell of a summer. It all started with “The Tornado” in June. Image by aeFusion via Flickr We don’t get tornados here in the Northeast, and yet we did. The last one was back in ’53. That was 60 years ago. That was a generation ago. Another generation, and another tornado. I didn’t take the warnings or watches seriously. Now I do. These things seem to hide in severe thunderstorms, so now I dread hearing about upcoming storms. The storm went through a part of our town, and missed our neighborhood by only a couple of miles, if even that. Back in the day, I would have praised the blessings of the lord for sparing us from the path of the tornado. But what about all those who were in the path of it? Did they not deserve sparing also? Four people lost their lives that day. They woke up and thought this day would be like any other, only to have it

Jesus Interrupts an Enjoyable Review of Harry Potter

By Yak ~ I was enjoying reading some reviews on the final installment of the Harry Potter series of movies when I came across a "rebuttal" to an article on the final Harry Potter movies that was written in World Magazine Review by Rebecca Cusey on July 30, 2011. This "rebuttal" or, as I now refer to it, an attack by a Arrogant Religious Addict ("Dr." Paul Jehle) who was (even further) out of his mind after smokin his Jesus Fatty is below. I'll be back under the text in quotations below. by Dr. Paul Jehle Rebecca Cusey, in her “It all ends here” review of the eighth and last Harry Potter movie states that in spite of controversy within the Christian community the story of Harry Potter is “that of a boy growing to manhood and accepting the responsibility to resist evil, even at great cost.” She states that “wands and spells” simply replace “guns a

Not Alone

By John Shores ~ S omething Jason said ( ) sparked my curiosity. Why do we here feel the need to explain our present atheism? I think I have the answer. Image by ルーク.チャン.チャン via Flickr It is the same reason that we read or love. It is the reason we gather together for sports events or church or concerts. It is why we start charitable organizations or offer a helping hand to someone in need. I think we post here to know that we are not alone. It is the most fundamental human need. I find it hard to be hard on Christians or really any religious person. The main purpose of their gatherings is to form a community because people need to know they are not alone. Who cares whether the ideology they adopt really makes any sense? So long as they confine their activities to their group and aren't assaulting other people (either vebally or physically), why should I care? (I admit that many religious people could learn

14 Problems with Christianity (Part II)

By unoder ~ W elcome to the second part of my examination of some of Christianity's most problematic doctrines and tenets. In the first part, I covered Original Sin, the existence of Satan , suffering for god and spreading the word to name a few areas of concern, but it doesn't end there. Read on to find out more. Problem 8 : Demons! Demons! Demons! I know I already discussed Satan in Part 1, but felt this deserved to be addressed separately. Ex- Pentecostal Christians in particular will attest that this strain of the religious virus sees demons E-V-E-R-Y-W-H-E-R-E. Secular music? Demons! Secular movies? More demons! Video games? Demons! Pokemon? Harry Potter ? Anything that people generally enjoy, that makes them happy? Well, you get the idea. Along with the threat of hell and the devil, many Christians see the world we live in as a playground for demons that are lurking everywhere, possessing and deceiving humans. They use fear of possession to try and

Faith, not 'sense'

By WizenedSage (Galen Rose) ~ The following is my most recent contribution to the letters-to-the-editor page of a local weekly newspaper . I offer it here for a chuckle, and an illustration of how an anti-religious message can get printed if one uses a bit of restraint and humor. Faith, not ‘sense’ To the Editor: I am responding to Bryan Benner’s letter which was printed on these pages last week. Image by the|G|™ via Flickr His closing sentence caught my eye and just demanded a response. He wrote, “Lastly if anyone has any sense, he or she should seek Christ, as that is the only safety.” I would like to think that Mr. Benner wasn’t really calling us non-believers “senseless,” he merely chose the wrong word. Perhaps he meant to write “faith” instead of “sense,” because, after all, religion is all about having faith, not about making sense. According to my favorite online dictionary, “faith,” in a religious context, means: “firm belief in something for which there is n

The Mechanics of Spiritual Experiences for Freethinkers

By Dr. OpenPortal ~ I started out as an evangelical, fundamentalist Christian minister. I evangelized, conducted exorcisms, preached and prayed for healings. I went to two pentecostal Bible colleges and then to a liberal, protestant seminary which helped me to slowly shed all the crazy, irrational, bull-shit I had allowed myself to believe. I went from being a fundamentalist, to a liberal Christian, to a Deist/Theist and now I would label myself an Agnostic/Freethinker/Humanist. I can't quite bring myself to dogmatically say there is no God, but I can say that if there is a God, He/She/It is most certainly not the one presented in the pages of The Bible, the Koran or any other "holy" scriptures. I can say "I don't know and there does not appear to be any way to know." In my days as a pentecostal preacher, I learned from my preacher mentors, and by sitting in thousands of hours of services, how to move the congregation towards having an experience wit

Pastor Potter and the Demons of Predestination Palace

By Carl S. ~ (With thanks to Philip Appleman ) P astor Potter was exercising his enchantment again. Thousands stood, rapt by his magic words of praise and imprecation, his spells precisely enunciated from his Magic Book. In his mega-church, Predestination Palace, he held them tightly on a roller coaster ride of emotions ranging from ecstasy to awe, to fury and tears, with his interpretations and depictions of the spirit world, revealed to him personally. Again, he would not disappoint them, enrapturing in a foretaste of heaven, comforted, assured of moral victory even against each individual's dark forces. They would never be privy to the mind's voices speaking even now, to him. Let us listen in. As he shouts of the Only Begotten, the voices say, "Begat, begat, begat, as one follows the other, and all in Time. Thou fool, how is the Son begotten yet not in time? This is impossible since this means the Son was once not." Pastor Potter swatted away the evil thoug

Mental illness in the making

By Anonymous ex-Christian ~ C hristians believe that God is deeply offended and cares when we as humans “sin.” Sin is anything that is against the will of God. It can range from not obeying your husband to murder. The poor sons of bitches in the Old Testament had even more sins to worry about, like the length of their hair and period blood. The most philosophically bizarre idea is that sin can also include “sinful thoughts.” Something that exists, even temporarily, merely in the mind can be a damnable offense to God. Christians can be, and usually are, obsessed with sin. I just had a Facebook friend post, “O Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.” It’s my opinion that Christians become sin-obsessed because it confuses normal, neutral, or healthy human experience with something bad, and this criss-cross of normal-to-bad creates self-loathing. Allow me to explain how utterly retarded the whole idea of thought sins are. First of all, Christian believe that

The Christian Banana!

By Dave8 ~ I remember in my undergraduate years, sitting dreary eyed in psychology classes thinking… another theory class, how can this possibly have any meaning towards practical application. And, over the years, I’ve come to learn that some theories seem to be quite accurate in describing how social functions emerge, like… the function of religion for instance. Many have inquired, “I wonder how organized religions can “possibly” stay in vogue?” Well, there are many reasons but, of the many theories floating around, I find the “Wet Monkey Theory” to be pretty much in line with how people are conditioned to operate, hence the associated psychological theory, “operant conditioning”. “ Operant conditioning is a form of psychological learning where an individual modifies the occurrence and form of its own behavior due to the association of the behavior with a stimulus.” What this means, is that people tend to form behaviors b

Our Narcissistic Nation

By Jennifer Click ~ I have been slowly "de-converting" over the past couple of years...probably most of my life, but actively the 2 years....still a journey. I created a monster today on facebook when I submitted the following note: Most of you will thoroughly disagree with what I have to say. Some of you have served our country or your sons and daughters are serving our country. I am grateful for that service, humbled by the sacrifices and distraught over the deaths of our military personnel. But who do we think we are? We are God's people? How did you get that conclusion? We are God's country? Where is that mentioned in the Bible? Other countries are not God's favored land? Other cultures are not God's people?? God loves some people and cultures less than others? Come on people! We sit and watch our country attacked and are incredulous that 3000 innocent people died on 9/11. How many innocent lives of men, women and children have been lost

Dirty Words

By True Anathema ~ A theist . It used to be a dirty word. It's still a secret word in my vocabulary, but not secret to me. At least I can be honest with myself. I am the only God in control of my life now. No hell and no rules other than these laws we live by and my own conscience. Mine. That's a word that I haven't used with any freedom for years. Pride is supposed to be an origional sin , after all. But in the absence of sin, it really is a beautiful word. Mine. This life...mine. These thoughts...mine. This job, this money...mine. My time...mine. My future and my decisions...mine. I don't say this out of selfishness, but ownership. It is an ownership I have NEVER had, until recently. My successes and failures are also mine. This is pride. Now that's another dirty word for a Christian , isn't it? That's what made Lucifer fall from heaven and what made Adam and Eve sin isn't it? But there's nothing wrong with pride. Pride is good. Pride mean

Contemplating Christian Life

By Sayadiva ~ A complex of symbols, USCO 's painting of Hindu deities pulsates with colored lights. Photo: Yale Joel/Time & Life Pictures Oct 19, 2010 I was "born and raised" Christian. I attended Christian schools for almost my entire school career. I went to church and my mother was a hardcore believer. I "accepted Jesus" as my Savior when I was 6, and was baptized at 8. I started questioning when I was about 15. I was told it was ok to have doubt, it just meant it was strengthening your faith. I started to really think about everything. I started to wonder if I believed this because I truly believed it or because it was all I knew. Obviously I chose the latter of the two. In saying this I am still forced to go to church. Sucks, but I know what I believe. I think that religious texts are human constructs and that they are regarded as sacred amongst those who believe in them. For me however, I do not, I think they were created to give people hope