Archive for December, 2011
The following was passed on to me by my good friend Chuck. The author is unknown.
10 - You vigorously deny the existence of thousands of gods claimed by other religions, but feel outraged when someone denies the existence of yours.
9 - You feel insulted and “dehumanized” when scientists say that people evolved from other life forms, but you have no problem with the Biblical claim that we were created from dirt.
8 - You laugh at polytheists, but you have no problem believing in a Triune God.
7 - Your face turns purple when you hear of the “atrocities” attributed to Allah, but you don’t even flinch when hearing about how God/Jehovah slaughtered all the babies of Egypt in “Exodus” and ordered the elimination of entire ethnic groups in “Joshua” including women, children, and trees!
6 - You laugh at Hindu beliefs that deify humans, and Greek claims about gods sleeping with women, but you have no problem believing that the Holy Spirit impregnated Mary, who then gave birth to a man-god who got killed, came back to life and then ascended into the sky.
5 - You are willing to spend your life looking for little loopholes in the scientifically established age of Earth (few billion years), but you find nothing wrong with believing dates recorded by Bronze Age tribesmen sitting in their tents and guessing that Earth is a few generations old.
4 - You believe that the entire population of this planet with the exception of those who share your beliefs — though excluding those in all rival sects – will spend Eternity in an infinite Hell of Suffering. And yet consider your religion the most “tolerant” and “loving.”
3 - While modern science, history, geology, biology, and physics have failed to convince you otherwise, some idiot rolling around on the floor speaking in “tongues” may be all the evidence you need to “prove” Christianity.
2 - You define 0.01% as a “high success rate” when it comes to answered prayers. You consider that to be evidence that prayer works. And you think that the remaining 99.99% FAILURE was simply the will of God.
1 - You actually know a lot less than many atheists and agnostics do about the Bible, Christianity, and church history – but still call yourself a Christian.
Lost but never forgotten.
The following guest commentary is authored by Chuck Doswell.
When I bring up examples of religious believers who say and do horrible things, including violence (like the mass murderer in Norway, Anders Behring Breivik), I’m told by my mainstream believer friends that this person can’t be a “true” christian believer. The same can be said for muslim extremists: islamic terrorists can’t possibly be true muslims, I hear. Be they christian, jewish, or muslim, believers all base their beliefs on their “sacred” scriptures of choice: the bible, the torah, and the quran.
What mainstream (or moderate) believers do, as opposed to fundamentalists who accept every word in their scriptures literally, is to pick and choose their beliefs within their sacred texts. They choose to ignore, for example, the calls for violence to be perpetrated on unbelievers, all the misogyny, the damning of homosexuals, and so on. In effect, each person can design their own unique set of religious beliefs, which may or may not coincide with one of the numerous different versions (sects, denominations) of their chosen religion. If religious beliefs are purely personal, then you can believe whatever you want out of the package contained in your sacred scriptures. You can choose one of pre-packaged versions (i.e., a particular denomination/sect), or you can create your own. The scriptures are kind of like a set of Legos!
Many moderate christian and muslim believers see their religions as favoring peace and love, despite the indisputable fact that their scriptures are awash with hatred and violence. How can a believer see him/herself as a “true” believer, when they’ve cherry-picked the scriptures that form the foundation for their professed beliefs? The hatred and violence within those documents remain, like little poison pellets of evil. All believers in those religious texts have consumed their contents; the only difference to be found among believers is the amount of such poison they’ve chosen to swallow. Fundamentalists swallow the entire document, so it seems to me that they must be the only “true” believers! Curiously, even self-proclaimed fundamentalists disagree about what poison they’ve accepted. Believers show a remarkable willingness to embrace contradictions, however, so I suppose this is at least consistently illogical!
Moderates may not believe in the same things that extremist believers do, but if the extremists ever get their way (as in, for example, Iran), the moderates will be forced to choose: us or the unbelievers? And don’t tell me it can’t happen here! In such a black-and-white world, unbelievers are fit only to be cast aside and even killed. Many moderate believers refuse to take a strong stand against the extremists, some even to the point of saying and doing precisely nothing against the evils of the extremists.
The “true” face of religious belief was revealed recently when Saudi Arabia executed (by beheading) a woman convicted of witchcraft. That a nation in this modern world would sanction such a murder on the basis of a medieval, mythical belief in the existence of witches and sorcerers is symptomatic of the evil of religion. When you believe you have all the answers in the words of an infallible text, then anything you do in the name of your deity is justified. Religion-based absolute certainty is a danger to the whole world. Lest any moderate christians feel smug about their having rejected witchcraft, they need to remember that many people were murdered in the not-too-distant path by christian zealots (even in America!) based on accusations of witchcraft. Believers live in a demon-haunted world, to use a phrase coined by Carl Sagan. In such a world, torture and murder are needed to scourge the world of demons and sorcerers. If you’re not with us, we’re against you – that’s the “true” face of all religions.
In my view of things, all major religions are myths. In all forms, they’re nothing more than popular cults that glorify belief without evidence. Their sacred texts are nothing more than plagiarized mythology (from earlier cults). In other words, religions are nothing more than a dangerous collection of lies and myths, almost all of them demonstrably false. How can one be true to something that contains so very little truth? All religions contain poison. The good done in their deity’s name is offset by the evils committed and hatred perpetuated every day in the name of that same deity. Their evil is defined within the vile documents they believe contain the very essence of their religion. Read them for yourself! Discover all the myriad poison pellets embedded within!
A very pointed perspective from freethinker Sam Harris on what brought him to the Atheist conclusion.
I came across yet another fantastic video that clearly explains that atheists are NOT “too aggressive”. As always, the cries of persecution grow louder despite the fact that one can barely travel the highways and bi-ways of America without at least one or more visual encounters with a christian torture device and/or a bleeding, dying fictional character hanging from it. And that’s just the least of it!
This is a great video! Indeed, what would the U.S. be like if all us Atheists left the country? Watch.
I’m asked quite often why this blog and my Internet radio show exist. I try to explain the dangers of theocratic fascism that the right wingnuts/GOP/CNP(Christian Nationalist Party) present to the principles of freedom and liberty for ALL and Separation of Church and State. Most don’t fucking listen. Time and again I have to defend these ideals, ideals that emanate implicitly and explicitly from the words of the U.S. Constitution. The question of “Why?” I have to defend these vitally important principles is best answered by using the words of christian fundamentalists. Words that clearly show that their desire for theocratic government is not some fantastical claim made by “America’s Angriest Atheist”. And, to those who claim that I’m out to destroy religious freedom in America, I offer you this promise. I will defend the purity of the First Amendment. That means freedom to practice your religion or not to practice any at all. The only caveat to this promise is that I will not defend religious practices that endanger freedom and liberty for ALL citizens. But I digress…
Here are some words from fundamentalists that underscore the danger their ideologies present to all of us:
From Eagle Forum’s Court Watch: Here’s a Sample Resolution for members which the group says can be used as a “weapon”. Used in “an election and at other times when petition-type expressions of our views and values are appropriate…
“WHEREAS, the Constitution of the United States is, and must be, the Supreme Law of the Land, superior to all court decisions;
WHEREAS, the Constitution must be interpreted in the light of its text, constitutional tradition, and its Judeo-Christian foundation;
WHEREAS, the Constitution contains nothing that requires a “wall of separation between church and state”;
WHEREAS, a total separation of religion and law/government is impossible;
WHEREAS, the Framers of the Constitution did not intend that a total separation be attempted;
WHEREAS, the English Common Law in which American law is rooted was Christianized;
WHEREAS, the U.S. Supreme Court does not require a total separation between “church and state”;
WHEREAS, Reconstructionist (activist/liberal) federal judges have blatantly assaulted these fundamental Constitutional principles and have re-written them under the guise of interpreting them;
AND WHEREAS, We, the people, still possess the ultimate human political power in this nation and have delegated to the President and Congress in the Constitution very broad powers to establish and empower national courts;
BE IT RESOLVED THAT ________ actively supports
1. the Congressional denial of jurisdiction to courts to hear challenges to either the verbal or non-verbal acknowledgement of God — i.e., “God” meaning the Deity central to the Ten Commandments – on public property and in official utterances such as (but not limited to) the Pledge of Allegiance and national motto.
2. Congressional refusal to recognize, fund, or otherwise enforce court decisions that prohibit either the verbal or non-verbal acknowledgement of God — i.e., “God” meaning the Deity central to the Ten Commandments — on public property and in official utterances such as (but not limited to) the Pledge of Allegiance and national motto.”
Or, how about Michelle Bachmann, Sarah Palin, and Rick Perry, all three christian dominionists. An endorsement of Bachmann by Dr. George Grant the chancellor and founder of New College Franklin in Tennessee was met with open arms. Then, in a quick about-face, Bachmann’s campaign website dropped the endorsement. The reason? Media focus on the extreme theology of dominonism. But, what exactly did Dr. George Grant do or say to be rejected? Well, here’s a little sample transcript from a video courtesy of RightWingWatch:
“Christians have an obligation, a mandate, a commission, a holy responsibility to reclaim the land for Jesus Christ-to have dominion in the civil structures, just as in every other aspect of life and godliness.
But it is dominion that we are after. Not just a voice.
It is dominion we are after. Not just influence.
It is dominion we are after. Not just equal time.
It is dominion we are after.
World conquest. That’s what Christ has commissioned us to accomplish. We must win the world with the power of the Gospel. And we must never settle for anything less.
If Jesus Christ is indeed Lord, as the Bible says, and if our commission is to bring the land into subjection to His Lordship, as the Bible says, then all our activities, all our witnessing, all our preaching, all our craftsmanship, all our stewardship, and all our political action will aim at nothing short of that sacred purpose.
Thus, Christian politics has as its primary intent the conquest of the land – of men, families, institutions, bureaucracies, courts, and governments for the Kingdom of Christ. It is to reinstitute the authority of God’s Word as supreme over all judgments, over all legislation, over all declarations, constitutions, and confederations.“
These are just a miniscule sampling of the words of christo-fascist fanatics who have a great deal of illegitimate influence on our political system and the politicians of the GOP. Still think I’m just a crazy, uncaring, immoral, untrustworthy atheist? I don’t make this shit up. I’ll go away when this bullshit goes away. So, why does American Heathen® exist? If you can’t find a legitimate reason in anything above, then you’re part of the problem and the reason it does. If you’re surprised by the words above, then you need to pull your head out of your ass, stand and be counted!