Friday, December 30, 2011

Why Evolution isTrue

I'm posting for you. You know who you are and you know I know that you come here often and never comment. I hope you will watch all of this video and give it some thought.
And for everyone else...well 'nuff said.




Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas is not Christian

I got a call from a friend last night and she was laughing hysterically. She had received my Christmas card. You, sent a Christmas card? I can't believe it, she said. What, I said, I am not allowed to wish you a Merry Christmas because I am an atheist? Of course, she said, it is a Christian Holiday. No, it isn't.

The truth is that Christmas is no more owned by the Christians than the American government. Sure, there's some genuine Christian content to the holiday. Originally celebrated as early as 354 AD by the Christian church, it most definitely is a Christian holiday -- to Christians. Even so, modern Christians may not want to spend too much time pushing their own holiday's historical context. Through most of the Middle Ages, Christmas might have been a celebration of Jesus' birth in name, but it was a celebration of booze and debauchery in practice. It wasn't until the 19Th century that it became a child-focused family holiday


In a broader perspective, there has always been the needling realization by Christians in various times and places that very, very few of the traditional celebratory practices or images are about Jesus. They are much older, much more Pagan, and ultimately, at odds with the prevailing message of the Christian Christmas story.


To the Christians who claim there's a War on Christmas, here's the bitter reality: The only war is the one being waged by Christians trying to rewrite history -- again -- to make it seem like Christmas has always been some kind of love-fest for Jesus. American Christmas in particular has been almost the polar opposite. It was largely ignored until it became remade into a good story line for a children's movie -- not a movie about Christ's sacrifice, but a movie about a magical gingerbread house in the North Pole, and Jolly Old Santa, and Rudolph, and Frosty, and the Grinch.
.

Read more here.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Pervasive in our Society

Religion is so pervasive in our society that I am unable to go to the doctor without encountering some nut that starts “testifying” in the waiting room. I was quietly waiting for my turn when this woman began to tell us all about how her “god” had provided so well for her. She said we must refuse to be sick and then we would be well. She said that she had not had the flu in 7 years because she had “faith”. A gentleman to my right said that all the faith in the world wouldn’t stop the flu; if you got it, you got it.

She then proceeded to tell us how her mother had been very ill and she had “prayed” her well. I asked her why she was at the doctor’s office. Oh, just for a checkup after surgery, she said. Really? So the doctor must have had something to do with her recovery, I said. Oh you know, she said, my god works through the doctor. The gentleman to my right said, well; seems strange that an all powerful being would need the help of a mortal man. The lady on my left, laughed out loud.

I ran across an article today that I think deserves attention. I find it refreshing that more and more people are coming to reason against all odds. The pressure is great in the US; not so much in Europe or Asia but here: We are drowning in religion.

I’ll speak to this quote from the article:

“Until the beginning of 2003, I was a believer. The belief was not taught, but came naturally to me as a consequence of the environment I grew up in.”
What are we doing to our children when we “protect” them from reality in favor of tradition and superstition? It is time we grow up in this country. We do not need the myths of old; we need reason and rationality.

Our educational system is laughable when we are 25th in Math and 17th in Science. Look here if you doubt my word. I understand why we are behind Finland but South Korea? Come on, we haven’t had near the problems that country has had. In my mind it is only one reason: religion and its grip on our population.

From the above article:

“The nature of religious belief is so insidious, that it needs to pervade, to spread like a cancer away from its source. An astonishing majority of the population of believers is deeply busy in trying to disseminate their odious doctrine to others, and none-too-gently, too! It is more often ‘My religion is better than yours, so convert or die’ kind of treatment, or it is done on the sly – ‘Want medical care? Come to Jesus’ kind of way. Religious indoctrination has progressed to such ludicrous levels that the ‘faithful’ often pull out the ‘religious belief’ card at every possible instance to explain their intransigence and imperviousness to common sense. They are trying – very actively – to spread their brand of stupidity to education, healthcare, politics, and other walks of life. If this is not actively countered, it will end up destroying our basic humanity.”

Christopher Hitchens

Salman Rushdie wrote, "Goodbye, my beloved friend. A great voice falls silent. A great heart stops."

A great man died. I feel personally touched by his life and he will be sorely missed by many, the least of which am I. His words led me out of darkness and made me think; gave me reason to live by. For many of us he was the first we read on our journey out of religion. I will always think of him as having been the star of the new atheist movement. He was one of the four horsemen; and the best in my mind. I will miss him.


From PZ
Hitch is dead. We are a diminished people for the loss. There can be and should be no consolation, no soft words that encourage an illusion of heavenly rescue, no balm of lies. We should feel as we do with every death, that a part of us has been ripped from our hearts, and suffer pain and grief — and we are reminded that this is the fate we all face, that someday we too will die, and that we are all “living dyingly”, as Hitch put it so well.

As atheists, I think none of us can find solace in the cliches or numbness in the delusion of an afterlife. Instead, embrace the fierce strong emotions of anger and sorrow, feel the pain, rage against the darkness, fight back against our mortal enemy Death, and live exuberantly while we can. Confront mortality clear-eyed and pugnacious, uncompromising and aggressive.

It’s what Hitch would have wanted of us.

It’s how Hitch lived.

Monday, October 17, 2011

9-9-9

So Herman Cain is the man of the hour right now. Seems that he has all the answers or at least comes across as having a plan. I like the idea that we should and must simplify the tax code. But, will his plan work?

Here is part of an ongoing email conversation I am having with a friend:


But lets take a look at this scenario: Lets say a small family company earns 100,000, at 9% pays 9000.00. The company actually has cost of goods expenses of 50000 (this does not include fringe benefits) so the real tax is 18% on the net income. But what about improvements? If they have a cost of improvement at 25000 then cost of goods 50000 the tax would equals 36% on the 25000 net income. And then the owner has take home income of 25000 which is taxed 9%= 2250 so now we are at 45%. Then this small family spends the 25000 @ 9%=2250. So now the the tax is 54%


I understand also that he wants to do away with the property tax exemption for churches and charities.

So...input anyone?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Steve Jobs is gone

I use a PC with Windows. I don't own a Mac, and IPad or an IPhone but I like the philosophy of the man who made them famous.


"No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary."

"Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything -- all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart. ... Stay hungry. Stay foolish."

----Steve Jobs



He wisdom will live forever.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Disbelief is not a choice.

Here is an article that expresses very well what I have tried many times to convey to those who think that I have chosen to be an atheist.

If more individuals today are religious skeptics than in centuries past, that is mainly because accumulated knowledge has inclined more people toward such doubt.
This is definitely true for me. As long as I was a little country gal living in the shadow of my ignorant parents I was a believer. I didn't know the difference. I mean no disrespect to my parents as they didn't know any different either; they followed their parents.

Interestingly, we can see that in many ways believers don't really choose either, but when we consider theistic beliefs we see different causal environmental factors at work. Early childhood indoctrination by family, for example, is a key environmental factor that promotes such beliefs in many, as is the pro-religion conditioning that one receives from the community and broader society. Even if the overt promotion of religiosity by society is mild (which usually isn't the case in much of America), prevailing social views that disapprove of open disbelief will often discourage serious exploration of secularity.


Since I have become active in the atheist community I am surprised at my fellow citizens who will deny in public their disbelief. I have a friend, a member of a social group I belong to who still goes to church on Sunday because she doesn't want her children to know that she doesn't believe. There so much pressure to conform in scociety.

I was thrilled when Mayor Blumberg refused to allow the 9/11 observence to become a religious service. There are so many of us who are patriotic citizens of this country but who do not believe in prayer to an unseeable god. To exclude us from society is unfair and unAmerican.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Perception

I read recently, or maybe a while ago, that perception is everything. So if what I say is perceived in some way other than what I intended, my meaning is changed for that person. This bugs me a little, maybe a lot.

Am I responsible for how you take what I say? Even if I am just being honest about my feelings or experiences? I'm not talking about saying you are fat, or you're too skinny or you drink too much but if I just say something about what I had for breakfast is it my fault you think I am telling you to go on a diet? Come on, life is too short to get all uptight because your perception doesn't match my meaning.

And your reaction to what I say is in your control not mine. You cannot control what I say any more than I can control what you say but what I can do is control how I react to what you say. I am angry when I voice my opinion about something and then the entire world is turnd upside down because I am "insensitive". Well grow up! If you can't play with the big boys find a new playground.

So now, lest ye all think I am directing this at you, fear not. The person who really needs to see and take heed will not do so. Probably a good thing since I am so insensitive.

Thanks for reading my rant!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

What would the world be without religion?

The following is borrowed for the author and not my work. He has done an excellent job of putting it all together. I will only add a few comments.

Chris 'Nugget'
Casualties
- 1.5 million people during Crusades
- 7,000,000 during the Saracen slaughters in Spain.
- 2,000,000 Saxons and Scandinavians lost their lives opposing the introduction of Christianity.
- 1,000,000 in the Holy Wars
- 2,000,000 to 4,000,000 Deaths during the French religious wars
- 8,000,000 during the thirty years war
These figures are from between around 1090 to 1650 and I have only included the major religious conflicts, there are millions more in smaller but still significant occurrences. So within around 600 years 23 million people died between 6 conflicts and mass murders.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Have you ever stopped to think about what our world would be like without religion? Well, I have. And it would be incredibly different. Religion has disadvantaged the human race in more ways than one and it is time to change and rid the human race of its many unrealistic superstitions. True that there are many disadvantages because of religion however, I do not deny that there are many advantages because of religion. My problem with this is that there is much good without religion and I will not give credit to religion for all the good in the world any more that I blame religion for all the ills of the world. The optimum word here is ALL, but definitley some on both sides.

What would the world be like without religion? "Religion without science is blind." This quote is from one of the most intelligent men that has ever lived, Albert Einstein. People like Einstein were prevented by the churches from spreading their knowledge throughout the world. For example Galileo, through his studies, discovered that the earth revolved around the sun. But the churches of the time opposed his solid evidence, saying that - because of what they had read in books written around 1100 years before-hand by a few old men; who had not even come in contact with ‘Jesus’ – the earth was the centre of the whole universe. It is estimated that if religion never existed, the human race would be three times more advanced than we are now, this is equivalent to man having a colony on Mars. Religious principles have been proved wrong by science over and over again. I have a bit of a problem with saying religious principles are proven wrong...which principles? and wrong how?


What would the world be like without religion? “Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined and imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity“. This is a quote from another historical figure, Thomas Jefferson. If it were not for religion, and in this case, Christianity, millions upon millions of people of different religions would not have been murdered throughout the crusades, witch-hunts and other cases where religion was the cause or excuse for the murder and execution of people, mainly in the dark ages. It is also possible that the dark ages themselves would have not existed if religion didn’t. During these times many people were brainwashed and believed that witches and other supernatural beings were everywhere, causing them to hunt down so called witches and werewolves. Enough said here. No amount of denial by the religious community can refute this.

There have always been tensions between different religions and in many instances, conflict. There have been many injuries and deaths as a result of these conflicts and many of these casualties are not even from the fighting in the conflicts, they are the elderly, or women and children brutally murdered, raped or bludgeoned because they believed in a different ‘outlandish’ religion and ‘bogus’ god. More often than not, the conflicts were a result of a play for power by a dominant leader, wanting more, using religion to justify their acts of inhumanity.

Even in today’s world there is great tension between different religions, for example the terrorist attacks where; once again, innocent people were needlessly killed. Muslim extremists who believed that Christians are evil and must be destroyed, decided to ram two planes into a couple of buildings killing thousands of mothers, fathers, daughters and brothers, affecting a whole nation, and even the whole world, and They justify the slaughter by saying its an act of God. For example, the mass murders and the ‘holocausts’ that have happened in recent centuries, over 200,000,000 people of different faiths have been murdered because they do not fit in, or they clash with the beliefs of a more powerful religion. This is a comparatively small amount however when compared to the amount of people who have died as martyrs which come to a total of over 290,000,000.

There have been many people who have died because of this blind stupidity. When people believe that there is somehow a better, more peaceful life beyond this life, it undervalues this life. Consider the following for example, Heavens Gate cult or more commonly known, religious establishment at ‘Jonestown’ in 1978 was led by Jim Jones who was a great leader. However, he believed that the world was coming to an end and believed that the Bible said that the only way to get to the ‘kingdom of heaven’ was to have a ceremony and commit suicide. He did this, along with 909 other weak minded people that he tricked using his religion. Without the power of religion this would have been unlikely to happen.
Even more recent, is the ‘Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments of God’ in 2000. The leaders of this group claimed that they had seen visions of the Virgin Mary and also believed that the world was going to come to an end. They told their many followers these outlandish claims, and conned 778 people into killing themselves and others in a series of fires, poisonings and murders. This is yet another example of the power of religion and its destructive properties.

What would the world be like without religion? Many people die every year from diseases and sickness, some of which could be treated and saved from a certain death but who reject transplants and transfusions due to their religious beliefs one such religion is Jehovah’s Witness. These people do not accept or give blood because they believe that blood is sacred to God. They also do not allow organ transplants. There are a number of other religions that do not accept organ transplants and blood transfusions; these people die long and painful deaths which can be prevented.

It’s not just the physical impacts that religion has on humans, but the mental. People who are deeply involved and taken up by religion believe in religion itself and nothing else. Christians for example, believe that the earth and everything in it was created 6000 years ago. They also believe other similarly unrealistic fables written down by senile men, who were probably experimenting with mind expanding substances, around 2000 years ago. These indulged people do not allow anything scientific to interrupt their religious beliefs and therefore leads to them being ignorant and intolerant about what’s really happening around them.

If you, the person reading this are totally indulged in your religion, this whole essay would have gone over your head, and you have just wasted 5 minutes of your life. But these 5 minutes can’t compare to a whole life time that you have already wasted, following some thing that isn’t real, chasing something that doesn’t exist.

So in conclusion I would like to say what I see in a world without religion is peace, love and good will for the sake of being good not for some reward in a non existent afterlife. And further, even if there was an afterlife why waste this one looking for the next one.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Stephen Hawking

I watched a new program on the science channel last night and I heard Stephen Hawking say that he was convinced that there is no god. Surprised? So was I. I think it has been politically correct to just say there is no evidence of a god but to suddenly say unequivocally there is no god...well I was surprised. Then just after there was a panel of scientist and theologians who discussed the previous show. I was glad to see the staunch way in which they each held their views. Then I found this video on PZ's site. Love it!

Ancient Aliens

I recently started watching Ancient Aliens on the History Channel. So how do I feel about what I have seen? I’m not sure. I think a lot of it makes sense just because I do understand the human tendency to “supernaturalize” anything we don’t understand however….to imagine that beings from another planet? sun? moon? Came to earth and helped us get started then just left…Why?

I must admit that some of the most intriguing parts of the series talk about the underwater cities that have been found. Wow! Just imagine that fully functioning cities could be sunken under water for all these years and we just now know about it. Maybe it was the flood; that would make sense but there are so many flood stories at different times and in different places that we would have to question the validity of any of them. Now, I am certain that a flood happened but not certain of the circumstances or the time in which it happened.

Some of the ruins found date more than 10,000 years BCE so that would seem to dispute the Noah story. The Epic of Gilgamesh is a lot older than the bible story but still not old enough. Lots of questions, not too many answers.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Why Atheism?

I like this summary of the problems with Pascal's Wager from Godless Geeks.


From "Why Atheism?" by Mark Thomas

http://www.godlessgeeks.com/WhyAtheism.htm

"Pascal’s Wager

There is an argument for belief in God that is called Pascal’s Wager, named for Blaise Pascal who conceived it. The argument goes like this: Either there is a god or there isn’t. If you believe in God, and God exists, then you win big time and go to Heaven. If you don’t believe in God, and God exists, you lose big time and go to Hell. If there is no god, then you haven’t lost much by believing. So the obvious choice is to believe in God, because it’s simply the best bet.

Pascal’s Wager has several faults. The biggest problem is that it’s not a proof of any god’s existence; it’s just an argument for believing, a method of extorting the gullible thru fear. Like many other such arguments we have discussed, it also fails to denote exactly which god it refers to. Pascal’s Wager could be applied to any god that offers rewards and punishments. Taken to the extreme, following the wager would necessitate betting on the god with the worst hell, so it could be avoided. It's impossible to know which god to worship, and which (perhaps jealous) gods to spurn. I doubt if many Christians would convert to Islam if the wager were presented by a Muslim who told them that Muslim Hell is worse than Christian Hell and Muslim Heaven is better than Christian Heaven.

Pascal’s Wager assumes that the chosen god's mind is knowable, and that he doesn't mind people believing in him for explicitly selfish reasons. Perhaps he actually prefers independent thinkers such as atheists, not obsequious followers. Since the Christian god Yahweh is on record as having lied, there's no way to know his intentions. It would be quite possible for a true believer to discover on Judgment Day that the destination was not Heaven. Yahweh, in his infinitely mysterious ways, had other plans; and there would be no appeal or debate with an omnipotent being.

Another problem with Pascal’s Wager is that it implicitly assumes that the odds of the two possibilities are similar. Since the odds of the Christian, Jewish, or Muslim god existing are zero, the wager creates a false dilemma. The wager even goes against the doctrine that many religions have where gambling is sinful. Note also that the existence of the wager and the fact that so many people think that it's relevant illuminate the lack of actual evidence for God.

Pascal’s Wager also depends on the idea that you don’t lose much by believing. This has been false for many who have trusted in their god for help or guidance, instead of seeking reality-based solutions. People have fought, killed and died for their belief in their god. Far too many have died because they (or their parents) chose prayer instead of medicine. Swords, bullets, poison, and poisonous snakes have killed many who thought that they were protected by their god. Even without these more dramatic effects, believers often devote significant time, energy and money to worshipping their god.

Beliefs in a god (and the often concomitant ideas of divine punishment and reward) too often make people more willing to accept inequalities in this life. Low-paid factory workers and slaves were taught that their rewards were in the afterlife, so they should be meek and obedient in this life to ensure their (imaginary) rewards. Even the factory and slave owners could think that they were part of their god's divine plan, and thus deserved their earthly rewards.

God-belief has real expenses that can be large or destructive.

The last problem with Pascal’s Wager is that it completely ignores and even denigrates intellectual integrity and honesty; the wager assumes that people can believe something just because they want to. As an example, let’s talk about belief in Santa Claus. Don’t we have more respect for a child who figures out that Santa doesn’t exist, and says so, rather than continuing to lie so he can get more presents? It’s a sign of growing integrity and maturity for children to stop believing in Santa. Similarly, adults can give up belief in a god when they realize that there’s no real evidence for their god. Christians can quit being “sheep” or “children of god” and become intellectually honest.

The loss of intellectual integrity and honesty engendered by Pascal’s Wager gives some insight into how apparently rational people can behave so irrationally. By accepting the wager, they have (perhaps implicitly) given up these important traits."

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Christian Faith Requires Accepting Evolution

It is interesting how many churches have finally come to terms with the scientific discoveries of the age. I know it must hurt many Christians to think that what they have believed so whole-heartedly is now being debunked at every corner but there is really no choice.

This from Jonathan Dudley:

But beyond a certain point, this reasoning breaks down. Because no amount of talk about "worldviews" and "presuppositions" can change a simple fact: creationism has failed to provide an alternative explanation for the vast majority of evidence explained by evolution.

It has failed to explain why birds still carry genes to make teeth, whales to make legs, and humans to make tails.


Full article here:Article

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Ayn Rand

A friend called me a few nights ago and asked me if I had read Ayn Rand. It is really funny because I had just gotten the documentary about her. The following is email exchanges between my friend and me.


ME: I watched the documentary and tonight I watched The Fountainhead. I haven't read the Anthem yet but it will move up on my list. I think she is simply marvelous dalin'

Friend: Maybe I need to see the documentary you saw.....because I was turned off from the one I saw... maybe my thinking has changed since the 1980's....will look into Fountainhead.Signed on with Netflix.....took a look at a few Ayn Rand documentaries and then cancelled netflix. She had an open 15 year affair with total disregard for the other women...if someone can be that cruel to another, then respect went down hill, for me anyways.

ME: That's too bad. She really has a lot to say. Have you read the Anthem? What did you take away from that?

Friend: Anthem was very short read. Enjoyed it. The ending was predicable (darn it). The guy found freedom and his next goal was to convert the others. And that is what I found predictable...we all are always trying to convert, convince, others to our way of thinking and living. But in truth fact of life...everyone is different and needs to follow their path and that path is right for them, save causing anyone harm, as then they are fringing on another's right to lead their life.

ME: I am reading Anthem right now but I don't think I see it the same way you do. She wrote it as a slam against collectivism. He philosophy is objectivism and Individualism.

Friend: I understand that...but still predictable ending, can't be denied This is in no ways disputing Ayn Rand, as I am looking forward to reading more of her works...but.....the ending is a form of collectivism.


ME: Haven't gotten to the end yet but knowing her philosophy, one would expect the outcome. As to converting people to her way of thinking, I don't think that is what she intends. In fact her entire focus is on the individual and not the collective. In the Fountainhead she demonstrates that through architecture, in that the one guy that tries to be different is ostracized. In the closing argument he puts forth his premise that all the great things that have been accomplished in this world were accomplished by those who chose to be different. Ayn Rand is the champion of "being different". She was born into Communism, thus the reason for the Anthem. She writes the way she saw the collectivism of communism and the inability of her character (herself i.e. mankind) to be different.
I find her reasoning interesting in that she sees altruism as slavery. She believed that the work is it's own reward and that doing for others and self-sacrifice are an abomination to humanity.
She saw the United States as the greatest invention in the world. Capitalism is the cornerstone of her philosophy and the US is the king of Capitalism.
I am interested in studying her more fully and have moved it to the top of my list. Her books are rather expensive so I will need to get to the library but I plan to read them all; then decide where my philosophy lies in reference to her's.

Friend Yes, I would like to read more also. And discuss with you. I was interested in her works in the 80's. But lost interest after viewing the documentary. I do greatly lean towards individualism, as I am sure you can agree I do. But Ayn Rand fell into this catch phrase " it is hard to walk the talk". So I am not disputing the philosophy just the life performance of the writer. I agree with you she did not intend...but the ending is the ending and this just illustrates that humans subconsciously are trying to get others onto their own page "King" is another example of collectivism.
ME: I think to a large extent she did walk the talk. She lived as she saw fit without regard to others which is the crux of individualism. I may not agree with the actions she took but I will always agree that she had the right to take action as she saw fit. In the documentary I saw it seemed that she was living the epitome of individualism. She absolutely refused to have her work altered. It was hers and no one had the right to make changes even if the majority judged her wrong. I love the idea just think it is hard for me to "walk the talk" even though I would like to do so.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Serious Question

Mark 16:17-18 (King James Version)

17And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

18They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.


Okay so I am rereading the new testament and here's a puzzle. What exactly does this tell us?

I know that some who call themselves Christians do play with snakes and some have died. So if they misunderstood this verse then, what does it mean?

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Osama is dead

I know this is old news now but I have needed a few days to process this whole mess. I've listened to the news and read the newsfeeds, scanned the blogs and thought hard about it. I didn't know how I felt.

People in my own family were celebrating and asking for proof at the same time. I remained quiet. I didn't know how I felt.

I'm still not sure. Should I be glad that a person is dead, even as bad a person as the leader of America's number one enemy in the War on Terror? I don't know, it doesn't feel right. I don't believe the death penalty is real punishment for the offender. I think the family and those left behind suffer much more than the offender.

So now, we are rid of Osama but are we any safer? Is it logical that his followers will fold up their tents and go home? Does anyone think we have won the war? Are our troops coming home now? My son-in-law just left for Iraq...doesn't sound like they are coming home to me.

What bothers me most about this whole affair is the celebration of someone's death. I know he was responsible for some terrible things but are we any better that those who celebrated the destruction of the Twin Towers when we stoop to their level? I don't think so.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Nothing more to talk about

I post this as perhaps the final post about god on this blog because like this video...there isn't anything else to say. Then, who know what mood will strike.


Thursday, March 17, 2011

No Atheist in Foxholes????

I pledge...


I grew up watching Porky Pig and this is one I'm sure I saw. Notice that it does not put under god in the pledge. That was added in 1954 as an affront to the Soviet Union and their Communism. I think it is sad when the greatest country in the world excludes so many of their own.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Something from Nothing

I think the argument against evolution has been something like "Something doesn't come from nothing". Well, I am here to tell you it does.

I took down my shower curtain and washed, bleached and dried it. No mold, anywhere. I put it back in the bathroom and 1 week later; mold all along the bottom of the curtian.

Now I know, without a doubt that I cleaned that thing. When I got through there was NOTHING on it. Now there is MOLD on it!

So a bit tongue in cheek but I am really mad.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Of This I Am Tired

This is too good to miss.


Of This I Am Tired Posted by: SLDrone ( )
Date: January 28, 2011 10:04AM
http://exmormon.org/phorum/read.php?2,97679

Of This I Am Tired

We live in a world rife with superstition and mysticism. True thought and reason is so often replaced with the magic and folklore which makes up our world religions. Irrational dogma and doctrine is unexamined, unrefuted, and uncorrected. The thinking has been done by those with undisputed direct conduits to a higher power. God's thoughts are not our thoughts, how could we hope to understand or challenge? Compartmentalization becomes the byword as intelligence, research and honest thinking is set on it's head. Then public policy and the very social laws which govern our lives are forged by those who would rather decide the truth first and refute all evidence to the contrary as heresy. Who needs a president, a prime minister or a monarch when all we really need is for Granny Clampet to go back in the possum patch and whip us up a potion to solve our social ailments. As Sagan has so eloquently taught us, we live in a world haunted by demons, the Gods that fill the gaps of our understanding. Of that I am tired.

So we find otherwise intelligent thinking people defending and supporting superstitions. Often holding up as evidence the profound works of FARMS. If ever there was the antithesis of intellectual discovery it is this organization follows carefully the edicts of Boyd Packer in knowing the truth first, and then promoting only the evidence to support that inerrant truth. All the while these FARMS "intellects", most of whom are on the payroll of a great self serving purveyor of superstition and metaphysical doctrine, ignore the obvious evidence to the contrary, or spin it into un unrecognizable conflagration of nonsense. Of that I am tired.

But when all the sophistry and dogmatic reasoning is stripped away, the truth will emerge in the minds of those willing to think critically and challenge the pompous authority of those that claim to know all truth. Let the honest evidence rise and the chips fall where truth places them, unhindered by irrational thought the gems of truth prevail. The most likely hypothesis when supported by the evidence is the most likely answer to the questions that trouble our thoughts. Did God place a perfect man and woman in a garden he'd prepared for them some mere 6,000 years ago with a convoluted plan that they should error and in that error condemn all mankind if not for the savior He would provide or did mankind evolve to it's current and vaunted state? Honest inquiry will lead to honest and unhindered evidence, a rational mind can devise a most likely theory or the evidence can be compartmentalized and rationalized to fit an irrational presumption. Of that I am tired.


Did a small band of Hebrew travelers some 2,600 years ago grow into a population of millions on the American Continent. Did they evolve quickly into to separate and distinct races, contending with one another in wars and armed with steel swords, chariots and horses whilst refreshing themselves with wheat and grapes? Did these factions fight a massive battle in a place called Cumorah where millions died leaving their battle instruments behind as a testament that they gave their lives defending their God, their families and their religion? Or perhaps this too is a fable spun in the mind of a charismatic opportunist. Certainly the archaeological evidence will lead and honest researcher to the truth. Irrational belief passed of as unyielding faith seems the antithesis of truth.

Did a prophet called Abraham pen the truth as revealed to him by God, and though a Hebrew prophet writing in Egyptian hieroglyphics, then somehow conspire to hide his truths in the sarcophagus of a minor functionary of the Egyptian kingdom who lived some millennium later, to be discovered by a prophet some millennia later? Or did a religious charlatan just make that up? Again, honest review of the evidence will lead to the most likely truth of the matter.

Did a prophet called Joseph Smith really see the one true God and his Son and then restore the one true Church, or did he see angels, or a multitude of angels, or just hear a voice or see just God or just His son? Or did he just make that up and evolve his story over years into it's final and unquestionable version which we must accept as absolute truth in order to obtain spiritual salvation? Unbiased and thinking examination is again called for. Did this same prophet reveal the meaning of plates found in Kinderhook, or did his faithful and well meaning personal secretary just make that up and lie? What is the most likely answer? We can never know the truth of these things, but we can devise the most likely hypothesis and then act according to the most likely.

We live in a world of scientific illiteracy. Superstition and pseudo science reign supreme, the anecdotal mythology the engine of our demise. Religion is the antithesis of progress and is as preposterous today as it was millennia ago. The pope of today opposes the scientific research of the fetal stem cells, just as his predecessor opposed any fact refuting man and earth as the center of the universe. Scientific and honest progress is thwarted in that it dares to challenge to doctrine of the dishonest and uninterested. The clouds of an unseen and oft unfathomable god fill the minds of men, darkness gathers, ignorance roars with a deafening thunder, the demons awake. Of this I am tired.


Although this article refers, for the most part, to the mormon beliefs it applies to all religion. I so understand the author's stance as I too am frustrated with the way in which reason is cast aside for supernatural explanations of our existence.

Is there any hope for our society? for the voice of reason? I hope so.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

To Marry or Not to Marry

I decided to create a new post because there is so much to say about this that it would require several comment sections.

My friend and fellow blogger, Rick, brought up the fact that Catholic priest are forbidden to marry. I am reading the apocryphal gospels right now and in one of the epistles attributed to Paul he talks about marriage and the "curse" it brings upon the holy man. I do know that most Christians, including Rick, do not accept these particular writings, however the canonized gospels have a little to say about it also.

I found this article about marriage. I am not Catholic, nor do I defend the doctrine but I do see where they may find it bibilical.

1. PAUL DEFENDS A SINGLE LIFE!

Orthodox Jewish belief made marriage an obligation. If a man did not marry and have children, he was said to have "slain his posterity," and "to have lessened the image of God in the world." (William Barclay, "The Letters to the Corinthians") Orthodox Jewish belief also taught that there were seven who were excommunicated from heaven and the list began, "A Jew who has no wife, or who has a wife but no children." ("Ibid.") In the Jewish way of thinking, God had instituted marriage and had told man to be fruitful and replenish the earth. Therefore, not to marry and have children was to be guilty of breaking a command of God. Yet, we see Paul's idea of being single was quite different.

He states that:

A) Being Single Was Allowable

Paul says in verse 7, "For I would that all men were even as myself." Paul was speaking as a single man and declares that he wished that everyone were single like himself. It is obvious that Paul does not look upon being single as something wrong or sinful, but allowable.

Paul's desire that others be single like himself was a new concept. He was elevating being single. He was indicating that it was not an act of disobedience to God's command as was held in those days, but was perfectly allowable.

Secondly, he states that:

B) Being Single Was Acceptable

He adds in verse 8, "I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, It is good for them if they abide even as I." The word "good" speaks of that which is acceptable and honorable. He was saying that being single was neither sinful or shameful, but allowable and acceptable.

Paul's words help the single to realize that they are not some second-class believer in the family of God. Being single is perfectly honorable and acceptable.

First, Paul defends the single life and then secondly:

2. PAUL DEFINES THE SINGLE LIFE!

Even though Paul wished that all men were as himself, he realized that his desire were not the desires of everyone. For the most part, people wanted to marry, would marry, and should marry. Paul was well aware that remaining single was the exception, not the standard or norm. But at the same time, Paul was aware that marriage was not for everyone. For some, living a single life was preferred and proper. Paul not only defended the single life but also defined a single life from the perspective of those who remain single throughout life.

First, notice:

A) The Determination for Remaining Single

We hear much about spiritual gifts. Paul had much to say about spiritual gifts in chapters 12-14. But there is one gift that you rarely hear about and that is the gift of celibacy. Paul declares in verse 7 that remaining single is sometimes the will of God for a person's life. We read, "For I would that all men were even as myself. But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that."

Paul is declaring that in either marriage or remaining single, the will of God is the ultimate determining factor. He speaks of one's gift. The word "gift" is the same word that he uses to speak of the spiritual gifts in chapters 12-14. In the case of being single, there are times that is a gift from God. We will later look at chapter 12-14 and will learn that spiritual gifts are the basis of God's will for the life of the believer. If a person wants to know God's will for their life, understanding their spiritual gift or gifts can help a person understand how God wants to use them.

In some cases, remaining single is the will of God. I think for the majority, marriage is God's plan. Yet, remaining single is the will of God for some. If that be the case, the gift of celibacy enables a person to remain single. It is gift that removes the desire for marriage and gives the dynamic for remaining single.

Secondly, we see:

B) The Decision to Remain Single

Again notice verse 8, "I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, It is good for them if they abide even as I." The word "abide" speaks of a decision that is made. The tense of the words speaks of a voluntary decision to remain single, a decision made once and for all.

Again, for most people it would be God's plan and purpose that they marry. But there are those, such as Paul, that it is God's will they remain single and thus the decision is made not to marry. When it comes to marriage, one must find what is God's will for their life.

Thirdly, we see that:

3. PAUL DISCOURAGES THE SINGLE LIFE!

Even though it is Paul's desire that most remain single as him, he was aware that being single for most people would not be best. Therefore, he discourages the single life for most people. We read in verse 9, "But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it better to marry than to burn."

In these words we see:

1 Corinthians 7:6-9

A) The Desire to Marriage

The word "contain" refers to having power or control over certain desires. The desires that Paul specifically speaks of is sexual desires. What Paul is saying is directly connected to what he said about one's proper gift of God. Those who have the gift to remain single are given a special control by God over their sexual desires. It is not that sexual desires do not exist, but they are gifted to discipline and control those desires and not let those desires govern them.

If a single person makes the choice to remain single because they feel it is best for them, God enables them to exercise the necessary control over their physical desires. In those who do not possess such a gift, there is a desire for marriage and for a mate in life.
http://www.thelivingwordtbc.com/1cor23.htm

Friday, January 14, 2011

Is Jesus against families?

“I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. … He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me.”

When I was a believing Christian this verse always bothered me. It seems like an instigation to create problems in the family. How am I to understand this? How can a god who created us expect us to deny our family in order to follow him?

What kind of god would pit families againist each other?