It is difficult not to notice. Being here with these Evangelical Christians keeps it alive and it must be stopped. They need to MIND THEIR OWN BUSINESS! Sorry to shout, but I've had enough. This should be covered by HIPPA laws and others.
Actually I'm intending to do just that. I'm taking steps to start a church of rational thought in Northern Michigan.
If it sounds like a good idea to you, I encourage you to do the same where you live. :-)
I think there are two definitions of the term religion and only one- the negative definition- wouldn't apply to atheism.
religion: a set of existentialist beliefs that require institutional dogmas to continue.
Atheism is not a religion under this definition, but for that matter, neither is theism alone. A person does not need to be taught atheism. People from all over the world at all periods of human history have come to the conclusion on their own that there is no god. People were even coming to the conclusion that there is no god during the time of Moses, since he mentions such people in the Torah.
Likewise theism alone is not a religious belief. A person who had never heard of God can take a walk through the woods and suddenly think "Hmm...I'll bet a grand being made all of this, just like I made my house." What that person cannot do is suddenly think "Hmm...I'll bet 2,000 years ago there was a guy named Jesus who died on a cross." or "hmm...I'll bet there's this book out there called the bible that I need to read." Those beliefs require institutional dogmas to continue and hence are religious by the negative definition.
Here's the other definition...
religion: the component of a person's philosophy that deals with certain existentialist subjects.
By this definition everyone has "religion."
As far as the subject of starting a church goes I think it would be willfully ignorant to decide that theistic churches have no benefit to individuals or communities. The question is- do these benefits come from theism or do they come from the simple fact that church as a social institution has certain benefits? I would argue the latter. We should have our own churches because we should gather together, fellowship, discuss our ideas, provide support for one another and promote moral principles to one another. Everyone can benefit from such things.
How fortunate you are Suzanne - the only thing I ever found under a cabbage was a toad.
Glad you're enjoying my site, but it's best read from beginning to end, rather than skipping about.
To briefly explain my approach, I began writing seriously but discovered I was putting myself to sleep, so I decided to add my own warped humor to liven it up a bit, hoping the humor would be the "spoonful of sugar" that would make it more fun to read, while at the same time, present facts most people who claim Christianity never, ever learn.
Clearly I have a long way to go, being only halfway through Genesis, but the research on it is exhausting. If it's ever read by a Christian or Jew who knows what they're talking about, I have to be as sure as possible that I have facts to back up what I'm saying, or I'll lose all credibility.
The deeper I dig, the more I'm uncovering. It's fascinating!
You're likely just getting up and I'm about to finally pass out, so have a good one!
Wow. Australia sounds like my kind of country!!! Visiting there is on my bucket list for sure. For the most part, I am not confronted with too many religious zealots as most of my friends are non Christan. Even in a conservative state like Montana, I rarely have to deal with situations that make me uncomfortable. Most, because I am very visibly tattooed, so, one look at me and I think people figure I am a lost cause. lol Well, they are right! I am sorry you suffered so under the hands of those wicked nuns! But we are out, and we survived just fine. I know a lot of very sweet, very kind people who are still stuck in the church. I hope that one day they will see the "light" so to speak, but if they don't well, I hope they just continue to be good people. And, never expect me to return. I just can't see how one could be a feminist, and a Christian at the same time. It's as silly as expecting a fish to ride a bicycle. Oh, I must say, I love the clouds and the pretty unicorn! Very nice! lol.
Thank you for the welcome Suzanne! Indeed I feel good about surviving Mormonism. hehe. I have been away from the church for almost 20 years now and it's not so bad here on the other side. In fact, I find it a lot more friendly and logical. ;-) I used to be married to a Catholic. The last time I went to (was forced to go to rather) Midnight Mass, I silently wept because I was so miserable. I left him and left religion behind for good. It seems like you have come through a lot as well. Again, thank you for the warm welcome. Take care!
Okay, I'm seriously PO'd because there is no way I can make any tile or gift boxes. I sent Zazzle an email to ask how I can design them since there is no option for me to do so. How it works is they have templates for all the products, I upload an image I've created, and put it on the product. I can resize, etc. so it's how I want it. Then I just publish it for sale. Zazzle makes the product as soon as it's sold and ships it. So I don't have to do all of that. They keep adding new products for us sellers to design, but for some reason I don't have the option yet to do the tiles and gift boxes. Maybe they've only let a select few make them, then will make them available for the rest of us to do. Anyway, I've emailed them and am waiting for a response to see if I can actually do it. I'm so peeved! I've tried and tried to find a way to make them, but having no luck. I'll let you know what I find out. In the meantime, I'll just work on some new designs for my other products =0)
Having read your comments to Trevor, I felt inspired to offer this request with the knowledge that you are quite deserving of being heard and hope I am deserving of your honest even opposing comments. Learning has always been of great importance to me. Very pleased to make your acquaintance.
I love the De-Baptism idea! What a great idea! I'll have to work on making some designs with that concept. How awesome! I'll have to do the tiles tomorrow night since I have a short night tonight (early work day tomorrow, but not the rest of the week) so I'll post some new designs, including the gorilla, on some tiles. I'll also put some atheist/humanist designs on them, too. All you do, if you want something, is to click on the item which will take you to the page with the item and description. There's a buy it button, and you just go through the steps to purchase it. It's pretty easy. If you have any trouble, just let me know. The tiles are a new product, so I haven't had the change to design any yet. I'm excited about it because I think they're such a cool idea.
My belief in something, what would be called supernatural (I'm sure there's an explanation waiting to be discovered, but that's the only way I know to describe it at this point) is really based on my own experiences. As you said, it's not something I'm going around and trying to get others to believe, or some lifestyle I want others to follow because of it. It's just something I believe due to my own experiences but doesn't affect anything I do or how I treat others. I think that's the big difference.
I realize that the United States is not the only developed country with religious issues, but it's comforting to know that the secular movement is growing around the world. We really are a backwards country in many respects, despite the fact that the world seems to be watching the US so closely on pretty much everything. We have so many people here who just can't accept the notion that all people deserve the same rights simply because of their skewed religious beliefs. They get so defensive when anyone challenges their views, no matter how it's addressed, and insist this is a Christian nation. I see so much ignorance and arrogance from the Christian right. Believe me, they don't act very Christian when they don't get their way. Hopefully through sites like this one, with so many people from around the world talking about it, we can make some real changes for the better. I just want to see everyone getting along and respecting one another's beliefs, that's all. Though you and I are atheists, I'm sure we have very different views on different subjects because being atheist is not the thing that defines us. For the most part, though, I think most atheists at least respect each other's differences because we just want everyone to be able to live a happy and fair life. We can still argue about what we don't agree on, lol, but I think we're more willing to respect a different point of view. Unfortunately, I don't see that much with the Christian right. They respect no one's view but their own. I could go on and on...as I'm sure you could too! It's a crazy world out there, but often throughout history, things have to get worse before they get better. So, I'm still hopeful! =0)
So, anyway, I'll get those tiles up for sure tomorrow night when I have more time and I'll let you know when they show up in my store (it sometimes takes hours after I post them.) I'll definitely work on more atheist designs for all my products....and the de-baptized idea is something I can expand on. I just love it! Have a great day! I'm going to grab something to eat, hit the shower, feed the critters..then off to bed!
I have proposed just recently that I think no one should be allowed to run for office if they're a millionaire. They do not care about the common people and are so corruptible. I want to see "regular" people with brains and no religious ideology run for President. Unfortunately, even Obama has been using the "God" word lately more often because he's basically forced to to have any chance at re-election. Personally, I believe he's agnostic or atheist but he can't let anyone KNOW that or he'd never be elected. That's the thing about our politics I hate the most.
And YES! I can put any design on the tile and gift boxes. I only found out this weekend that zazzle even had them! I should have gotten an email letting me know, but I didn't. I have to head to bed right now, but I will be happy to put the gorilla on a tile tomorrow night...I'll put some other of my designs on the tiles, too. Hopefully I can get a few done soon. I love the gift boxes, too, so I'm really looking forward to designing those, too. So, tomorrow night I'll get right to it! Have a fabulous night/day! =0)
Thank you so much for your kind comments on my store...the photos of the gorilla and the elk were taken by me at our local zoo. I so appreciate your input. I've only had my store open a few months and have been steadily making sales, so I am really excited about it. I work on it almost non-stop when I'm not at my "real job", lol. I've joined the artists group here on TA, too. I just wish I had more time in the day to interact there, write my blog, and do my design work. No rest for the wicked! LOL
Thank you for your comment back, Suzanne. I enjoy learning more of what goes on outside our little world called the US of A. I think you are right, that the stock market issues, the debt ceiling "crisis" and such are things most of us here really don't understand enough to realize the impact these issues have on the rest of the world. As you said, too, it is comforting that more atheists are coming out and speaking up, because if we sit idly by, we are in a world of trouble. It truly frightens me. I look forward to hearing more from and about you...and just want to add that I'm soooo jealous that you live in Australia! as I know it is such a beautiful country. =0)
Thank you for the friend request, Suzanne! I look forward to getting to know you better and I am so happy to have found TA. It has helped me to not only speak openly and freely here, but also on my facebook page. Because I do have some Christian fb friends, some actual friends and others just internet friends, I've really held back on posting anything that announces my feelings with regard to politics and religion. I am sooo much happier to be speaking my mind now! I have the link to my fb page on my TA page if you ever want to friend me there, too....otherwise, I hope you're having a fantabulous night! =0)