Hi. Tentatively approaching the waters.
Auf Sich Der Roeklakunfesvrezahchodelshuk
I'd appreciate it if we reached an understanding early on in our relationship; I will admit head first that I am not without my flaws, but I will also say right now that I expect nothing less from yourself in our dealings with each other. As an ex-atheist, I have been subject to certain sins of pride in my fantasies of religious holocaust, an oxymoron, that.
Anyway, I am coming here not to preach; I hardly expect anyone to listen to what I have to say. I am no religious teacher. It's nice to have some community, though. You could say this is an experiment in wondering just what goes on in the world that I left behind. I am--keeping up with the atheistic "joneses", so to speak. It stems from a desire not to be left in the dust.
Having said that, I shall point out that I am not very fond of the road the New Atheism is leaning. The enlightenment was a revelation, by all means. But to say that it will lead humankind to some new utopia of betterment far greater than Religion ever did, some "Kingdom atop a hill", so to speak, is simply absurd and bound to failure.
I much preferred the secularism of old, which decided to improve society peacemeal and with it's own consent and means, rather than trying to improve the societal norms of other without those same other's consent themselves. I find that that goes against the grain of everything that the original John Locke wanted to protect, and I think that Christopher hitchens and his ilk are becoming dangerously extremist.
Why, just now I saw somebody on this forum with an avatar, of a man in a ski mask. The avatar held the title-As if it were something to be proud of--Atheist Extremist. I won't comment on the morality of the young man who put up such an avatar, but I hope it would make anyone think twice before assuming that atheists are automatically more moral than Theists by virtue of their irreligiosity.
Such a stance is tempting to be sure, but gravely inconcruent with reality. What's more, I had heard about the "smut for smut" campaign, which deeply dissapointed myself. I am not a religious man, but it saddened me to see such a mean spirited act perpetrated against people of faith by atheists who claim to have the higher moral ground. The smut for smut campaign is simply mean. It is a controversial attempt to garner public attention, but that is not the kind of attention that I as an atheist had wanted.
As for myself, I am an hispanic male linguist. Perhaps you might ask some questions, so that I may answer them about myself, if you are interested? You know, the usual: One lump or two, cream or sugar, spot of tea, dear?