Spiritual/Religious Articles
Time as a Construct of Consciousness (13 Jul 2014 06:08pm)
I've kind of given up on calling myself an atheist. This is mostly just because atheists seem to hate it so much. Normally, I'd do it just for the fun of angering them. But I really do qualify. I don't believe in "God" as some being or thing or process that has any interest in me at all. In fact, I ...
I Am the Swampman (20 Jun 2014 07:44pm)
I have said it many times before and I stand by it, "It is more important to be interesting than to be right." It just so happens that usually, the most uninteresting people are wrong most of the time. This is because uninteresting people just think the same things over and over. Take Dick Cheney. D...
Seven Tenets Beat Ten Commandments (04 May 2014 01:09pm)
We all know that Mississippi is the worst state in the union by most metrics, but it would seem that Oklahoma is now the most hateful state. It's kind of like Texas but more backward. So this last week I wasn't at all surprised to learn that Oklahoma Republicans allowed a privately financed Ten Comm...
King James Bible as Cultural Signifier (26 Apr 2014 10:43pm)
Steve Benen brought my attention to a story from Louisiana. It seems that some people in the Republican controlled House thought they ought to have an official state book. And that book was, of course, the Bible. At first it was going to be the King James translation, but in committee it got changed...
Is My Existence a Coincidence? (26 Apr 2014 01:25pm)
This American Life is doing a show, No Coincidence, No Story. Actually, it was last week's show, but for some reason, KQED is always a week behind. I only heard a bit of it but I wasn't terribly impressed because I'm never terribly impressed with coincidences. Our lives are filled with random events...
Easter Sucked! (20 Apr 2014 11:15pm)
It occurred to me that I haven't written anything to spoil Easter. The truth is that I don't hate Easter so much. It's on a Sunday, and things are always crummy on Sunday anyway. And it is mostly just a morning holiday, so it doesn't get in the way of the little life there is normally on Sunday. And...
Why Conservative Christians Hate Noah (08 Apr 2014 02:03pm)
Dan Mathewson wrote a really interesting article over at Religion Dispatches, Noah, Cosmos Controversies Not About Biblical Literalism. In it, he traces the rise of the conservative Christian movement to the early 20th century. At that time, Christianity had to deal with new scientific discoveries&m...
Why You Can't Argue With Christian Apologists (24 Mar 2014 03:39pm)
On the 14 March 2014 Real Time, Bill Maher had a few choice words about the biblical flood story. He said, "It's about a psychotic mass murderer who gets away with it, and his name is God. Genesis says God was so angry with himself for screwing up when he made mankind so flawed that he sent the floo...
I Believe in God but He Doesn't Care (19 Mar 2014 12:11pm)
A couple of days ago, I had an epiphany. We are talking about God all wrong. I still find fascinating the question, "Why does the universe exist?" And a nice short answer to that question is: God. We could have different words for it. But any words or phrases are going to be disappointing. I even ha...
Dancing Jesus and 666 Followers (05 Mar 2014 04:07pm)
Andrea's alter-ego, Nice Atheist Girl, hasn't been around much recently. I guess she's been suffering from existential angst—a common problem for atheists, nice or not. And she recently watched Die Wand. As I wrote yesterday, that's enough to depress anyone. But she came back with gusto today,...
Spiritualism vs Religion (09 Feb 2014 04:35pm)
Since I just used an Atheist Eve cartoon, I was reminded of another of her cartoons where she takes people to task for being "spiritual" but not "religious." With all due respect to my fellow atheists, this kind of determined ignorance is the main reason that I feel queasy about self-identifying as ...
Why American Christians Feel Persecuted (09 Feb 2014 10:57am)
Amanda Marcotte wrote an excellent article over at AlterNet last week, The Christian Right's Bizarre Delusions of Persecution. She points out the way that Christians create scandals by breaking social norms and then, when they are corrected, claiming that they are being persecuted. The focus of the...
Why Would Anyone Think Jesus Makes You Non-Violent? (18 Jan 2014 09:20pm)
I'm about to quote Phil Robertson, but this is not about Duck Dynasty. This is about religious intolerance in a general (but American) sense. I just heard that in Robertson's GQ interview, he also said something about Shintos. Of course, that in itself is kind of funny because not that many people i...
Where Exactly in Hell I'm Going (14 Jan 2014 08:35pm)
You all know how much I love tests. Well, Andrea—as Nice Atheist Girl—sent me to the Dante's Inferno Test. Now, being one of the few people I know who has actually read The Divine Comedy, I feel I should point out that it is not what we in the Jesus biz call canonical. Dante was just hav...
What Theists and Atheists Should Be Talking About (08 Jan 2014 09:10pm)
In the following interview with Denys Turner, he gets to the very basis of my thinking regarding spiritual matters, and I think he has a lesson for how atheists should talk to theists. Basically, he says that if you are going to be an atheist, you have to disregard one question, "Why does anything e...
The Beauty of Abandonment and Decay (30 Dec 2013 07:22pm)
Source: Barry Mangham/Pixog Speaking of The Third Man... There's that one most famous scene where Joseph Cotten and Orson Welles go up in the Wiener Riesenrad and Welles, as Harry Lime, talks about how insignificant humans are. "Look down there. Tell me. Would you really feel any pity if one of thos...
I'm Mysterious, Folks—Live With It (25 Dec 2013 04:22pm)
Christmas would not be complete without a little thought about God. And this gives me the perfect opportunity to demonstrate that I am an atheist and why few other atheists believe that I am. In the following amusing scene from Keeping Mum, Reverend Goodfellow quotes from Isaiah 55:8, about the mys...
The Myth of Modern Christian Persecution (04 Dec 2013 03:14pm)
I haven't read Sarah Palin's new book, Good Tidings and Great Joy. But I've skimmed it. It's hard to take. Yet another book from a Christer claiming to be oppressed because the clerk at Target says, "Happy holidays!" Oh, if Saint Sebastian were alive today, how could he endure? Arrows are one thing,...
My Life as an Atheist Outcast (09 Nov 2013 07:52pm)
I don't know if you've noticed, but Andrea has become quite the atheist. She is now going by Nice Atheist Girl. It all started with a conversation we had. I mention it mostly because it is so rare that Andrea finds any idea I have compelling. This is in stark contrast to the way I feel about her, wh...
Christian Suffers for Her Ignorance (06 Nov 2013 07:12pm)
Will sent me a bit of sporting news today, Kentucky Cross Country Runner Pulls Out of Regional Championships Rather Than Run With Bib Number 666. It is already getting a bunch of attention and you can expect the Christian conservatives to make a big deal about it. Codie Thacker will be seen as a her...
Libertarianism Incompatible With Atheism (29 Oct 2013 12:23pm)
CJ Werleman has written an absolutely fabulous column over at Slate, Atheists Can't Be Republicans. It is primarily an attack on what I call The Atheist Libertarian Connection. He notes, "I am acutely aware that a great number of atheists identify with the libertarian wing of the Republican Party, b...
Pat Robertson's Shamanic Mission (24 Oct 2013 08:37pm)
I don't think people appreciate just want an amazing man Pat Robertson is. Because he is cloistered away at the Christian Broadcasting Network, he has been allowed to simultaneously become a national figure while having the same old crazy beliefs of a regional phenom. There is his Bible approved wei...
No Contradiction in Genesis Eve Creation (11 Oct 2013 08:40am)
I was thinking about Genesis today. It's part of my normal thing to think about different parts of the Bible. I think about it because, it's silly to take it seriously. But it is even more silly when atheists think they've found little "gotchas" in places where the Bible contradicts itself. I hate t...
Bill O'Reilly Kills Jesus (28 Sep 2013 12:42pm)
If there is one man alive who I associate with the Prince of Peace, it is Bill O'Reilly. But I associate him as more the anti-Christ. I don't say that because he is such a bad guy, even though he is. It is just that he is the most prominent rageaholic in America. At the same time, I know he consider...
Is God Speaking Through Pope Francis? (19 Sep 2013 11:31am)
I have long had a desire to be a member of a church. Being an atheist, I know that the kingdom of God must be here on earth if it is to be anywhere. It is only through our connections with others and our work for a better world that we can be whole. And I really would like to be part of an organized...
The God Argument (11 Sep 2013 03:30pm)
Recently, I picked up a copy of A. C. Grayling's The God Argument. Normally, I wouldn't have. But for one thing, I think he is a good writer and thinker. And for another thing, I read a review that just savaged the book, so I thought it would be worth reading. It was okay, but nothing especially wor...
Using a Teleporter Is Suicide! (09 Aug 2013 09:36pm)
Last week, Matt Yglesias brought my attention to some work by a group of scientists on the potential for human teleportation. The article (That I had to look up myself because Yglesias didn't provide it!) is, Travelling by Teleportation (pdf) by D. Roberts, J. Nelms, D. Starkey, and S. Thomas. The q...
Clueless Atheists (07 Aug 2013 02:33pm)
On one of the commentary tracks of The God Who Wasn't There, the films producer Brian Flemming interviewed The Raving Atheist. Within about a year of that interview, he had turned himself into The Raving Theist, having not only found God but an Abrahamic one at that. The change was interesting but h...
Jesus and Troy (03 Aug 2013 10:57am)
The other day, I discovered that a BBC documentary series that I really liked was available online. It is Michael Wood's In Search of the Trojan War. What I didn't know before watching the series was that people thought that The Iliad told the story of a real war. And indeed, 150 years ago, it was c...
Fox Zealot Vs. Mainstream Aslan (30 Jul 2013 07:28pm)
The Fox News interview is Reza Aslan was interesting and fun. (For those that haven't seen it, it is embedded below.) He was on to hock his book, Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth. And basically, the entire interview was about why a Muslim would write a book about Christianity. I under...
Christianity Stifles the Search for God (21 Jul 2013 09:05pm)
In the following 12 minute conversation (really more of a monologue), Richard Carrier explains why he is not a Christian. One of the reasons that I really like Carrier is that he isn't an idiot. Unlike most atheists, I feel that he would understand where I come from. I'm an atheist but I understand ...
Turtles and Clueless Atheists (05 Jul 2013 02:51pm)
Damon Linker has written something over at The Week, Where Are the Honest Atheists? It starts off as a review of A. C. Grayling's latest book, The God Argument. And that's why I read the article, because I think Grayling is an insightful thinker, and I've ordered the book. So I was interested to hea...
The Door Opens Outward (02 Jul 2013 09:59pm)
I just read a short essay by David Foster Wallace, "Some Remarks on Kafka's Funniness From Which Probably Not Enough Has Been Removed." It really made me think how much we are prisoners of our brain chemistry. Because Wallace gets it. He really understands what life is all about. And yet he chose to...
Morality Without God? (19 May 2013 09:23pm)
I just read a nice little book, Morality Without God? by Walter Sinnott-Armstrong. Ostensibly, he argues that we don't need God to have an absolute moral code. But more important, he argues against divine command morality. This is the idea that morality comes from something like the Ten Commandments...
Cherry Picking God's Gifts (02 May 2013 10:33pm)
Who knew Stephen Fry was so smart? Well, I guess we all did......
Selling God (01 May 2013 10:24am)
I just watched Selling God, ironically by Carl Christman. It is an amusing look at religion (primarily Christianity) as a product. What I think is particularly interesting about the film is that it really isn't anti-religious. Over half of the interviews are with Christians of one form or another. I...
Ontological Blindness of Stephen Hawking (19 Apr 2013 10:33am)
Many years ago, I picked up a copy of an astronomy magazine at a dental office. The cover story was about the big bang. It wondered why people didn't accept that big bang in large numbers, even though it was one of the most confirmed scientific theories ever. I know why people don't "accept" the the...
Would Jesus Be a Republican? (18 Apr 2013 01:31pm)
I found an amusing little article over at the vile website Rapture Ready, Would Jesus Vote Republican? The answer: Jesus would not have been a Democrat or a Republican, but clearly the Republican Party is far more godly so you better vote Republican. Fun times! The section that discusses why Jesus ...
True Friends of the Bible (14 Apr 2013 04:33pm)
When we find we must spend time disabusing students of Christian origins of the red herrings strewn about with gleeful abandon by apologists, we critics of traditional supernaturalism find ourselves in a strange and seemingly ironic position. We view ourselves, contrary to the perspective our own cr...
Paint-By-Numbers Religion (04 Mar 2013 08:33am)
You know I have a love-hate relationship with Sam Harris. Well, in the following short video, he makes an excellent argument. While debating innumerate William Lane Craig, he asks the audience to imagine that Islam is true. He is speaking primarily to Christians. If Islam is true, and the Koran is t...
Catholic Church's Procreation Problems (24 Feb 2013 09:22am)
I read this morning over at the Bilerico Project, Top Papal Candidate Blames Child Sex Abuse Scandal on Gays. In it, John Becker quotes Ghanaian Cardinal Peter Turkson as claiming that there are unlikely to be many pedophilia cases in Africa because the culture there just doesn't countenance homosex...
A Tree Fell and Other Wisdom (19 Feb 2013 07:17pm)
Quick philosophical note. If a tree fell in the woods and no one heard it, did it make a sound? No. When the tree falls, it creates compression waves, not sounds. It is only when something with an ear that can interpret those compression waves that a sound is created. Thus: no listener, no sound. O...
Paradox of Existence (16 Feb 2013 12:17pm)
I was doing a job at a church and I had to be reminded by my partner not to discuss, you know, theology. This is because the Baptists we were working for might mistake the question I raised with some children as anti-religious. The question: if God created the universe, what created God? This is, of...
Pope Stops Theological Innovation (13 Feb 2013 06:00pm)
On Monday, The Onion reported, Resigning Pope No Longer Has Strength To Lead Church Backward. The article says, "According to the 85-year-old pontiff, after considerable prayer and reflection on his physical stamina and mental acuity, he concluded that his declining faculties left him unable to helm...
Silly Pope, Evil Pope (12 Feb 2013 10:32am)
I was raised Catholic, so I have a certain fondness for the church. But it more than this. The truth is that I like the idea of religions being old. So the Catholic and Orthodox churches strike me as more valid. The idea that one would reform these churches but only do it around the edges as happene...
DMV and Nothingness (28 Jan 2013 07:47pm)
I had to spend the afternoon at the DMV today. And I spent much of it reading (or trying to read) Why Does the World Exist? There is perhaps no more bizarre place to contemplate the nature of existence. At least for me. Because I have a natural tendency to get captured by solipsism. When you get rig...
Why Existence? (24 Jan 2013 04:16pm)
While preparing my earlier article about Ayn Rand, I came upon the following quote about a talk by uber-Randian Leonard Peikoff. (Actually Peikoff is far more reasonable than Rand.) The article noted that he said Obama was not a socialist but rather an egalitarian nihilist. It then describes this as...
Intolerant Theists (16 Jan 2013 11:40am)
Over at CNN iReport, the evil blogger TXBlue08 explains, Why I Raise My Children Without God. She does not have to make the case to me. I firmly believe that it is wrong to subject your children to your religious doctrine before they have developed "formal thought" (the ability to think abstractly),...
Mingle With This?! (11 Jan 2013 10:28am)
[Update: see my article Creepy Christian Mingle Girl Not So Creepy. It turns out that this model is actually a reasonably attractive young woman. I still don't understand why the company went with that image. The best looking people in the world look creepy if you photograph them wrong. I thought th...
Spreading the Quixotic Word (05 Jan 2013 11:40am)
If you read this blog even causally, you know what a fan I am of Don Quixote. It is a delightful book that everyone should read. In a way, my writing about the book is an effort to share my joy about Cervantes' crowning achievement. But there are other ways to do that. Here's one. I could go door t...
Finding My Religion (26 Dec 2012 07:22pm)
Don Cupitt is my kind of theologian. Of course, I generally like theologians. What I don't like are apologist. In other words: I'm keen on the search for God, I'm not on the process of trying to shoehorn God into some existing dogma. To Cupitt, God is an invention: first there was Man and He created...
What Christmas is All About (25 Dec 2012 09:30am)
My friend Will really loves this bit from A Charlie Brown Christmas. Or at least he did. I used to like it too. Now, I see it for what it is: Charles Schulz cramming his religion down my throat. He even repeats the damned speech in voice over! If you look back at his comic strip, he threw a lot of C...
The Comedy of Theodicy (28 Nov 2012 10:18am)
That Mitchell and Webb Look is a favorite of mine. I don't think there has ever been better sketch comedy. What's more, their social satire is very incisive. I noticed this last night when I happened upon their version of the Abraham and Isaac story from Genesis. What I think I missed the first tim...
God Ain't On Kentucky's Side (27 Nov 2012 12:02pm)
Longtime reader and author James McCollough sent me to an amazing article at AlterNet by Laura Gottesdiener, A Year in Jail for Not Believing in God? How Kentucky Is Persecuting Atheists. I don't think of myself as an atheist especially; although I do self-identify as one, I think it gives an entire...
Back in the Box (21 Nov 2012 07:33pm)
I recently wrote about a documentary Park Avenue that used the game of Monopoly to illustrate some facts about capitalism. Mack, the same guy who called my attention to that video, sent me to the very short video embedded below, Back in the Box. It is just some graphics put together to go along wit...
The Chris Myth Theory (21 Nov 2012 09:56am)
I just read The Christ-Myth Theory and Its Problems by Robert M. Price. I was disappointed that the book was not an integrated overview, but a large number of papers that Price had previously written. In terms of covering the whole subject, the best chapter is the second: "Jesus at the Vanishing Poi...
Exekiel 4:9 (20 Nov 2012 09:43am)
Do you remember Jules in Pulp Fiction, when he's talk to Big Brain Brett? "You read the Bible, Brett? Well there's this passage I got memorized—sort of fits this occasion. Ezekiel four nine: take wheat and barley, beans and lentils, millet and spelt; put them in a storage jar and use them to m...
Santa Claus, Jesus, and the Great Pumpkin (18 Nov 2012 10:29am)
With the holiday season upon us, I want to discuss Jesus and Santa Claus. And The Great Pumpkin. Jesus is much more like The Great Pumpkin than he is like Santa Claus. The reason is that Santa Claus delivers. Each Christmas, there is physical evidence of Santa Claus. The cookies and milk disappear....
Religious Quiz (05 Nov 2012 02:26pm)
A few years ago, Pew did a poll of Americans to find out how much they knew about religion. This is discussed in the CNN video below. But I can tell you the results: they don't know much. In addition, atheists and agnostics do better than most religious groups on the test. The reason for both of the...
Selective Christians (29 Oct 2012 03:24pm)
I've learned a great deal from reading Robert M. Price. But probably the most important thing I've learned is that people don't read the Bible and then decide what it means. They may read the Bible, but they do so in the context of what their pastors think it means. And where did the pastors get the...
God is Not All-Good (26 Oct 2012 11:18pm)
The Onion has published a very funny article, God Distances Self From Christian Right. As with all The Onion articles, it starts with one jokes and repeats it paragraph after paragraph. In this case, it is quote after quote from God saying basically, "I'm not a bigot like my followers!" God comes ...
Spiritual vs. Religious (24 Oct 2012 08:16pm)
Here is a very good cartoon by Atheist Experience contributor Tracie Harris: But I don't accept the point of this. Yes, I find foo-foo spiritualists as annoying as the next guy. But I do understand the difference between "spiritual" and "religious." And I dare say so does Tracie Harris. What they...
In Search of... God (24 Oct 2012 03:07pm)
For a while I was discussing the nature of God with an old friend who had since become a Christian. This is always a dangerous thing to do. I am very interested in spiritual matters, but I am actively hostile to religious dogma. Nonetheless, I tried to find common ground by introducing the idea of n...
Newsweek Article or Drug Trip? (15 Oct 2012 06:40pm)
Erowid is an organization that provides information about drugs and the experiences that drug users report. From the earliest days of its website (that predates the organization by about a decade), it has more focused on psychedelic drugs (but it covers all of them). On the site are lots of "trip re...
Religious Morality (15 Oct 2012 02:21pm)
This is actually a pretty good discussion of religious morality even though the caller is not presenting the best of arguments. It is from The Atheist Experience: ...
Children of Christian Nationalists (14 Oct 2012 09:34am)
I just read Kingdom Coming by Michelle Goldberg. It is about Christian Nationalism. I've been interested in subject for a long time. In particular, Chris Rodda's work has made me very aware of this evil movement. And there is much to fear of such a movement in a country where 80% of the people belie...
Proxy War with Two Coptic Children (03 Oct 2012 12:04pm)
I get religious intolerance. It's like someone saying your mom's a whore: it's upsetting if it's not true; it's devastating if it is. This is really all about civility. I don't like rudeness. Just the same, a lot of people are nothing so much as outrage springs ready to be triggered. And that is it...
Jesus' Wife (20 Sep 2012 12:23pm)
You've probably heard that Jesus had a wife. Okay, he didn't really have a wife. There is a text fragment about the size of a business card that reads, "Jesus said to them, 'My wife is so fat, when she sits around the house, she sits around the house. Good night Jerusalem!'" I'm kidding, of course...
Prodigal Son (27 Aug 2012 12:14am)
I was thinking about the Parable of the Prodigal Son recently. Ever since I was a kid I hated this story. It was just terrible. How could a father treat a loyal son in this way?! It's interesting, really. As the story moves on, it seems like it is coming to a big ending. The son says, "Why are you ...
Deepity (16 Aug 2012 06:54pm)
Daniel Dennett has popularized this new word deepity. Here's another common dodge—not a dodge, a common response: "What God is, is a concept; it's a concept in people's minds; it's a concept that enriches their spirits and inspires them." If you believe this, you're definitely an atheist. G...
Sam Harris on the Word Atheism (15 Aug 2012 03:42pm)
I recently implied something about Sam Harris that I don't actually believe. In The Atheist Libertarian Connection, I indicated that Sam Harris was a libertarian. I don't think this is quite right. It is okay to categorize him as conservative, in the sense that he has been for a number of neoconserv...
The One Commandment (12 Aug 2012 06:23pm)
There are perhaps as many as 20 million Jains in the world. This is roughly twice as many adherents to Jainism as to Judaism—especially when you consider that a lot of "Jews" follow Judaism as much as I follow Catholicism. And Jainism is a hard road to brush. (Note: Jain joke!) But a beautiful...
David Barton Breaks Out and Down (11 Aug 2012 04:13pm)
I have a theory: religion is so big in the United States because it is the only place where people can find any meaning in their lives. From the founding of this country up to recently, America has not been that religious a country. People gave lip service to religion, but the prevailing view was, "...
The Atheist Libertarian Connection (08 Aug 2012 06:35pm)
Ian Murphy has written a fun little article called Five Atheists Who Ruin it For Everyone Else. In it, he notes that there is a growing population of people without faith, but that this movement is being hindered by a few high profile atheists, who, for lack of a better word, are assholes. I take is...
Jerusalem Chalk Circle (07 Aug 2012 04:32pm)
Just to give you an idea of the greatness of Slavoj Žižek, his approach to the Israel-Palestine conflict is remarkably innovative and compassionate. He suggests that both parties should renounce political control of Jerusalem and turn it into an extra-state locale of religious freedom. Doing this wo...
Is Mormonism More Ridiculous Than Christianity? (01 Aug 2012 04:38am)
I have many problems with Sam Harris, even as I largely agree with him. He is also pretty funny in a low key way. Here is is discussing why Mormonism is necessarily even more ridiculous than Christianity. However, his argument, while funny, is wrong. Not that it matters. Maybe I'll discuss it late...
Jehovah's Witness Bible Good?! (27 Jul 2012 11:19am)
Biblical scholar Robert Price has recently started an excellent podcast called The Human Bible. It is a non-religious look at the Bible. I really like it because it explains the bible the same way one would any historically important book. It doesn't require God to understand what the Bible is and h...
Misquoting Jesus (07 Jun 2012 01:39pm)
I just read a remarkable book, Misquoting Jesus by Bart Ehrman. It tells the story of the centuries long effort to reconstruct the New Testament. Along the way, he provides a lot of information about the early Christians. I find this stuff fascinating, because when I was growing up, the Bible was su...
God Hates Figs (24 May 2012 03:48pm)
I've written before about Fred Phelps' Westboro Baptist Church and their campaign (and website) "God Hates Fags!" Well, some clever person has noticed that they have it all wrong. It isn't fags; it's figs. Click on the image to buy the shirt. Or don't. I have no stake in it. Mark 11 (New American S...
The Case Against Q (10 Apr 2012 01:01pm)
I was listening to a Robert Price and Frank Zindler on Point of Inquiry recently. Price mentioned that the existence of Q had come into doubt and he referenced Mark Goodacre's The Case Against Q. That was surprising to me, because I thought that Q was an established fact. But I suspect that you are ...
Happy Easter (08 Apr 2012 11:14am)
This is the first video from a long video series called Excavating The Empty Tomb (beyond a reasonable doubt). It was either this or a two and a half hour debate between Richard Carrier and William Lane Craig. ...
Tim Tebow Hypocrisy (23 Mar 2012 11:36am)
Will Leitch writes in New York Magazine about The Jets Have Made Pat Robertson Part of Our Lives Again. The piece is ostensibly about Robertson's comment that because of the Tim Tebow trade, it would serve the Denver Broncos right if Peyton Manning got injured. Why would Robertson say such a thing?...
The Best of People, the Worst of People (14 Feb 2012 10:48pm)
I have long thought that every generation believes theirs to be the worst, and every generation is right. But that does not mean that things only get worse. My experience of life indicates that things are ever getting different. And for conservatives souls, which all humans are, this is bad. I've lo...
The Blood of St. Valentine's Day (14 Feb 2012 12:38pm)
In my ongoing efforts to destroy any joy you might have during holidays or other gift-buying opportunities, I thought I'd say a few words about Valentine's Day. When I was confirmed in the Catholic Church, my mother bought me a book of saints. It amazes me to this day that I managed to get this far...
Catholics Lose Bad on Intelligence2 (12 Feb 2012 12:16am)
I just watched the Intelligence Squared debate on the question of whether or not "The Catholic Church is a Force for Good in the World." It was recorded back in 19 October 2009 and featured Archbishop John Onaiyekan and Ann Widdecombe arguing in favor; Christopher Hitchens and Stephen Fry arguing ag...
The Good Christian (08 Jan 2012 10:08am)
I don't hate Christians. I have little tolerance for stupid Christians. In fact, my spiritual beliefs[1] fit in rather well with New Testament dogma. Unfortunately, David Byrne[2] was far more profound than almost any Christian I've met when he wrote, "Heaven is a place where nothing happens." One C...
The Evil Philosophy of William Lane Craig (07 Jan 2012 09:48pm)
Andrea's been writing a bit about religion recently. Just yesterday, she wrote Speaking of Jesus... about the vile practice of Christians trolling for converts at hospitals. And before that, she created a hilarious cartoon (for want of a better term) Jesus is getting pissed. Even before that, howeve...
Ostentatious Religiosity Should Be Laughed At (02 Jan 2012 01:38pm)
If it weren't for his ostentatious religiosity, I doubt that anyone would know who Tim Tebow was. So it is ironic that there is such an uproar when there is a little push back against his annoying public displays of religious faith. Bill Maher's tweet was right on target: "Wow, Jesus just fucked Tim...
Merry Secular Christmas II (25 Dec 2011 10:33am)
For those who dread this day, but have nothing like cooking to distract you, I provide a few diversions. Some Talks First, there is Robert M. Price interviewing Tom Flynn on Point of Inquiry: The Trouble with Christmas You may be alone, but you are not alone! And last, to lift your spirits even...
Lonely Shoes (13 Nov 2011 03:20pm)
I hate artificial uselessness. Yesterday, I was walking down the street and I passed by this shoe: I would not normally take a picture of a shoe. Smaller objects, I will often pick up and hold onto for a while. I have no idea why. But shoes are too big, too personal. So normally, I note them and ...
Jesus: God or Nut? (27 Jul 2011 12:53pm)
I have heard from many sources that Jewish scholars think that Jesus was a great man and profit, but not the messiah—not a god. This is very strange to me, because if Jesus was not the savior of the Jews—the son of God—he was at best highly deluded. The issue is very clear, becaus...
The Sound of One Hand Clapping (29 Aug 2010 10:18pm)
According to my favorite online dictionary, a koan is "a paradox to be meditated upon that is used to train Zen Buddhist monks to abandon ultimate dependence on reason and to force them into gaining sudden intuitive enlightenment." And the most famous koan is, "What is the sound of one hand clappin...
Reason, Faith, and Revolution (21 May 2010 02:32pm)
I just read Terry Eagleton's Reason, Faith, and Revolution. It is largely an attack on the atheism books by Richard Dawkins (The God Delusion) and Christopher Hitchens (God is Not Great). In his typically sardonic manner, Eagleton refers to the two authors as a single entity he calls Ditchkins. The ...

Total Articles: 93