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)
Your too kind. I am a writer of Satiric Comic Philosophical novels. I live in London and teach English and Philosophy. My influences include Richard Brautigan, Kurt Vonnegut and Fredrick Nietzsche. You will be pleased to know that I cannot draw. Nice to meet you.
Suzanne - I was thinking you couldn't be American with your vocab, and assumed a Brit (bloke, tad, thick...) - but actual NSW: great!
Isn't it cool that there is a community of people from around the world, largely civilised and free thinking, that can include some dad in Jersey and a woman in Australia, both interested in rationality, debate etc?
So I saw you are an ex-Catholic: me too. It's amazing how a solid Catholic indoctrination produces the most determined of atheists! I had it from birth, and while it took me over 30 years to escape, when I did, it was not to a fence sitting place. I am part of the fight against them now - but it's a verbal fight and I'm pretty proud of that.
The "civilised" thing is a bit of a front I find: I think lots of Christian visitors here will try to maintain that front, in order to have some ridiculous moral high ground subsequently: ie they can then start throwing tone arguments around when the substance gets too hot for them. Mostly I try not to give them that space either (so I stay reasonably polite), but periodically when they really have stepped far over the line I give in and just say exactly what I think...
Hi Suzanne, thanks for your comment. I'm new to Think Atheist too. Yes, in terms of influencing public policy, non-religious interest groups have a lot of catching up to do. The cost to Australian tax payers of religion is estimated at $29.4B per annum (The Purple Economy). I believe that significantly drowns out the non-religious voice. In Australia, religious leaders (like Pell) and lobby groups (like the ACL) continue to enjoy a previledged position in our democracy. They claim to speak on behalf of the christian majority, but a democracy requires politicians legislate in the best interests of all members of society, especially minority groups. 30% of Aussies are non-christians (last census). In VIC in the '50s, the state government's education department took 1hr out of the middle of the teaching week in public schools. ACCESS Ministries (also the local beneficiary of Howard's NSCP) fills that hour. Families are enrolled in their "Christian Religious Education" by default, and parents need to formally opt-out. During that timeslot the Education Act makes it illegal for children to be taught by a teacher employed by the state. Consequently these kids are segregated, picked-on, etc (http://bit.ly/h684te). I doubt that Victorian parents even know who ACCESS Ministries is. Let alone want them in their local public school playing teacher for an hour. "ACCESS ministries leads the Church in its mission to reach students and school communities in Victoria and beyond with the transforming love of God and His Son Jesus Christ" "Our vision is to reach every student in Victoria with the Gospel. Join the vision and help us transform this nation for God." In QLD, the wealthy evangelical parachurch is Scripture Union (see highcourtchallenge.com). Expect more lobbying from local evangelicals. Church attendence has fallen to around 5%.