After viewing some of Sam Harris's videos/articles, I realized that he makes the same observations about religious beliefs -- while I am not too impressed by his oratory, his writing is very lucid, and he is able to state his arguments very clearly. Particularly, I liked his "10 Myths & 10 Truths about atheism" that was published in the LA Times (Link here). This article was also quoted on RichardDawkins.net, eliciting the same old responses from some Christians -- which basically rehash stuff about design vs. "chance", the basis for morality, the relationship between science and atheism, and ultimately the "meaning of life" itself.
This is a reprint of an essay I wrote for another blog.
Today, I will attempt to piss off Moderate Christians. This is going to be a difficult task, because one of the primary reasons I'm calling them out is their obstinate refusal to be offended. I had a long conversation tonight with one of my friends, who is some variety of theist, although he's very difficult to categorize. He was relating to me a dilemma he's going to face this weekend when his Moderate Christian family is going to ask him to go to church. The question of whether he should go, even though he disagrees strongly with many of the Christian church's teachings, is very close to me.
Or at least most of their beliefs. I find it confusing how theists attack a proven observation, always starting with the creation of life. None of them seem to realise that evolution is not the description of the formation of life. It merely explains how life can change from one form to another, ending up with a diversity of life such as that found on Earth, starting from a very few simple organisms or a single simple organism. Evolution has nothing to do with the appearence of life itself, just what happened after the fact.
Well we’ve just about come to the end of another full rotation around the sun, and still God blesses us with life. This ball of dirt and rock we call earth is still here, it hasn’t just vanished (not surprising is it).We’ve got air to breath and water to drink, or better beer and or wine. I’d say we’ve got a lot to be thankful for.
Yep life is good. Just look around and think, “How could this happen by chance?” If you’re into math and probability try figuring that out. You know our planet is just the right amount of distance away from our sun. Any further away we’d freeze any closer we’d burn up. Try getting that right on accident. Yep life is good.
When you are speaking to someone, it is not wrong to use any manner of terminology to express concepts and ideas, just so long as there is an agreed upon definition of what those terms represent. Frequently, however, people use terms without having any idea of what they are actually saying.
A fascinating experiment that proves this fact can be accomplished anytime with virtually anyone. Take a simple term that is used fairly widely, and when you hear someone express themselves by using that term, ask them to explain it.
Take, for instance, the term "stupid". I hear people all the time talking about someone who was so stupid, or actions that they deemed to be stupid. Yet, when asked to define what "stupid" means, they are completely dumbfounded.
Having lived in the US for over five years now, I am struck by the number of people who beleive in the inerrancy of the Bible. True, this is a predominantly Christian country, but one of the aspects that I have always admired is the secular nature of this nation (which, of late has seemed to be pretty shaky). When faced with a crisis, do people always need to turn to religion to get past it? (This brings to mind the "there are no atheists in foxholes" reasoning). Of late, religious commentators seem to have a stronger grip on the minds of people. So when someone beleives in whatever your religion states, take a step back, and look at the various faiths around the world.
I am Vastet, and I am god. Or at least, as much a god as anything is. I chose the field of gaming to watch over as my passion, though slapping around religious nuts and showing them the error of their ways has become a past time of mine over the years. Since this is an athiest site, I probably won't spend a tonne of time here. It's not as fun slapping people when they believe the same thing you do. > >
Why is it that those who have issues with it cannot actually state in an intelligent manner, a rational manner, what their problem is? Why do they resort to schoolyard insults, such as giving disparaging comments on someones hairstyle, someones perceived beauty, stating "I wouldn't fuck you!", or simply ranting in a butchered raped English that *I* am stupid???
So many things that were said in the video, so many things that could have been picked for a rational discussion of our disagreements, and they totally invalidate their own opinions by picking something as shallow as my appearance, or something as obsolete as the "fuck it" comment. WHY NOT PICK FROM THE COMMENTS DEALING WITH THE SCIENTIFIC METHOD??? Why not pick from so many of the other comments, such as why they feel they NEED the fear of divine retribution to be a moral person!? Instead, there is one idiot who goes on and on that we're only atheist because we don't want to have to be moral... Did he miss the Newsflash? ATHEISTS DO HAVE MORALS AND ETHICS! Oh wow, and these morals and ethics differ from atheist to atheist! We think for ourselves, we don't have some jackass telling us what morals and ethics we MUST have to be "true atheists".
There must be something bigger
An undeniable truth
The essence of existence flowing through us all
Some have called it God
A fiction of embodyment
They worship rather than respect
And decay in servitude
If one day we could learn
To tolerate our brothers
Accepting amongst others
The need for variation
We may allow ourselves
To embrace evolution
To salute new solutions
With no threat of retribution
We might tolerate ourselves
All I ask is just the chance
To make myself a better man
There are people now who want to ban the HPV vaccine. I am not embarrassed to say that I have only had sex with two people. One was not consensual and the other is my husband. I was diagnosed with cervical cancer, which is why the incident below happened to me. My mother also had cervical cancer that spread throughout her reproductive organs and almost killed her. She had chemotherapy, radiation, and eventually a full hysterectomy. I remember her getting upset when I took one of her wigs to school for Halloween. I didn't know until I got older just how sick she was. Did either of us deserve to die?
I resent this being turned into just another Christian moralizing issue. So that my daughters, and yours, never have to go through what I did, I will fight with my last breath to have this vaccine made available in the United States. Don't let the religious fundamentalists push you around any more. They have no right to fool around with our lives and the lives of our children. I'll take that one step further, they don't have the right to put their own children's lives at risk either. The following is my horror story because of cervical cancer. It is why I feel as strongly as I do. If you are easily sickened by graphic depictions of medical proceedures, then go no further.
I'll tell you a horror story. I had cancer and had to have a portion of my cervix removed because the cancer was localized. The next night I started bleeding so heavily that I had to stand in the shower so my floor wouldn't be soaked. My husband took me to the ER and they said I was probably having a miscarriage. They dismissed me and sent me home.