Agnosticism > Atheism (and Theism)

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With as much as I generally don’t like to run, you’d think I was running some crazy ass marathon for the amount my intellectual landscape has shifted over the last 5 years.

From lifelong believer to outspoken atheist full of venom to an atheist that’s just live and let live to now just a plain old boring lacks the balls to take a firm stance agnostic.

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Can An Atheist Do Church?

church-cartoon1

For a good while now, I’ve immensely enjoyed having 2 day weekends. I work Monday through Friday and, generally, don’t work weekends unless my shop is busy during outage season, but even then, it’s not a common occurrence.

When I was a regular church attendee and worked this same schedule, I had a 2 day weekend, but largely felt cheated out of the 2nd day. Why? Well, you’ve got stuff to do! You’ve got to wake up and make yourself look presentable and get your ass to church!

From wake up to walk back in the door of your house, you’re looking at a minimum of a solid couple of hours removed from your “free” day. Since I did this 5 times a week already, a 6th time is a drag, especially when there’s so much other stuff I could be doing, but leaving the church has allowed me to fully enjoy the 2 day weekend! Continue reading

Kim Davis in the Book of Genesis?

Kim Davis in the Book of Genesis

Kim Davis made it out of prison barely alive and alongside such political titans as Mike Huckabee, who’s surely hoping to ride her coattails of persecution to the plains of another irrelevant run for President!

Keep the fear alive, Kim! We’re coming for your churches and your guns and your abstinence only sex education!

The theocracy is toppled at last!

Dr. James Dobson and the Big Fear

download_20150122_145356An old friend just sent me this as a “check this out” and I found it to be especially disturbing. I’m sorry if people have grown tired of my soapbox religion talk, but I feel that there’s important takeaways to be had for everyone, myself included. Continue reading

Two Years Later – 10 Things I’ve Learned

lessonIt’s been well over two years now since I first admitted to myself that I no longer believed in a god. Two years. Wow. That isn’t a massive amount of time by any stretch of the imagination, but when I look at all that has transpired in those two short years, I’m astounded at what I’ve learned, how I’ve grown and what I’ll carry with me for the rest of my life. Continue reading

Atheism, You’re Smothering Me

the-overly-attached-girlfriend-explains-what-its-like-being-a-wildly-popular-internet-meme

I’ve been feeling this way more and more and it’s my own fault really. I’ve not only surrounded myself with the online culture, but I’ve perpetuated it by blogging about it for the last year or so myself.

Given enough time and exposure, anything in life can get wearisome or old and I feel like that’s where I’m at with the culture right now. This does not mean I feel atheism is wrong, in fact, this is the most sure I’ve felt about a belief (or lack thereof) in my entire life. It’s just that I feel like the newness and excitement of it has finally wore off. I don’t recognize a belief in gods….yippee….what now? Keep talking about how I don’t believe in something? Being honest with myself, it feels like it would be bordering on nonsensical for me personally.

Originally, my blog was to help me flesh out my own thoughts and as a way to inform friends and family of the why and how I became an atheist. I feel like I’ve more than accomplished that goal.

When I first left religion, the internet was the greatest friend I had. It connected me to Facebook groups and blogs and people that all felt as I did. The solidarity it helped build in me was invaluable at that point in my life. I read every article I could on unbelief and watched endless debates. I comprehensively studied apologetics and worked hard to break them down so as to better understand my opposites. I wrote and talked to many people online that I now count as good friends and I couldn’t be more thankful, grateful or happy for all of you and for all of that.

My final push into frustration/annoyance/embarrassment was this morning when I read about a privately owned diner that gave 15% discounts to it’s patrons if they pray before their meal. The Freedom From Religion Foundation sent them a letter threatening a lawsuit if they didn’t stop. It was then that I realized that many atheists like to feel as persecuted as the believers that they mock for feeling constantly victimized. This move by the FFRF did nothing to help freethinkers except further “prove” stereotypes about us as true in the minds of believers.

One very pivotal person in my life, the son of a preacher that turned agnostic over a decade ago, once gave me some excellent advice. He told me to live excellently and to be a great man. That when people see that I can be a good person that lives a fulfilled, happy and morally upstanding life without a god, I’ll effect more lives that way than I ever could with words. It’s a form of reverse proselytizing that I’ve come to love immensely, but if we’re keeping track, I’ve led more people away from Jesus in 2 years than I led to Jesus in 29, so I count my efforts at blogging and openly challenging religion to not have been for nothing.

I will probably still write posts on unbelief if I ever feel compelled to, but I can finally say I’ve accomplished my goal and that I feel wonderfully at ease. I’m just going to enjoy being Nate again and not Nate the Strong Minded Atheist as it will, from this point on, not add anything to my life, but headache.

I’ll continue blogging about movies, music and anything else that feels appropriate. And maybe I’ll finally get down to writing some sets and give stand-up a go.

So thanks to any of you reading this or any of you that have posted on this blog as I count all of you as friends. Your support, love, challenges and friendships have made me a better person, a better man and a better freethinker.

I love you all.

The Narcissism of The God of My Wants

Blessed_Trinity_One_God_Wallpaper_1600x1200_wallpaperhereIf I see one more person give praise to the almighty over something they received, I may blow my lid.

To see one more individual living in a nation as privileged as the United States give praise to god for a new car, house, phone, clothes or job may just push me over the edge.

I had a friend very recently tell me about how god blessed them with a new house. That Jesus himself gifted it to them. In that moment, it took some inner Herculean strength to not say some things I’d later regret.

Please allow me to try and put what my friend was saying into perspective, while god/Jesus (Gesus) is spending so much time blessing you with riches and your wants, there are people all over the world suffering horrible deaths because god can’t be bothered to give them simple things like food and water. While Gesus blesses you further, he continues to neglect men, women and children the world over. Gesus can certainly be bothered to help you get a promotion or a new house, but can’t possibly be pestered with starving children. Wow.

How people fail to see how narcissitic this thinking is blows my mind. This thanking Gesus for material things while others suffer and die in nightmarish conditions needs to stop. It’s gross.

These things you’re thanking Gesus for are the result of work, friends, money, effort and coincidence. Your god has no hand in helping you buy a house, get a car or finding a high yield CD for your grandmother at the bank.

God, you see, is always on the side of the believer. He answers their prayers, blesses them, grants them entrance to heaven and loves them. Others not in this specific belief system, are not listened to and do not find favor with god and suffer an eternity in hell.

This is the epitome of arrogance and a good example of how detached believers living in a developed nation can be from reality.

So, if you’re a theist and reading this, please stop thanking your god for trivial things while the rest of the world suffers immensely. To think your god helps you with non life retaining things and neglects others’ more basic needs, not only paints you into a very unbecoming light of arrogance and narcissism, but it puts the concept of your god into a far more unflattering light than is necessary.

I’ll leave you with one of my favorite quotes by Sam Harris:

“Given all that this God of yours does not accomplish in the lives of others. Given the misery that’s being imposed on some helpless child at this instant. This kind of faith is obscene. To think in this way is to fail to reason honestly, or to care sufficiently about the suffering of other human beings.”