Most definitely. I was far more concerned with offending my religious friends when I first became an atheist. These days, I won't bring up religion, but instead favour more neutral topics. That said, if it gets brought up at all, I won't hesitate to engage. This way if someone gets offended, I can simply say: "if you don't want anyone disagreeing with you, then shut the fuck up about your God". Simple as that.
Not sure whether or not it paints me intolerant, but I've started deleting facebook friends if I see one too many Jesus statuses as well.
I have been thinking about deleting facebook friends who show their religion too many times as well.
Oh! Dustin, if you do delete Facebook friends I do hope you inform them of deleting them and why. At the very best, they will start thinking; at the very worst, they will argue with you ... which can easily be blocked by you.
Oh I will Joan.
Years ago, I did "Satanic" rituals to banish Jesus from my life. These rites actually involved spending considerable monies on a crucifix, then spitting on it during the recitation of some Crowley or LaVey or [take your pick it's all mumbo-jumbo]. Then I woke up. I said, daemon est deus inversus. The only thing one accomplishes through worship of Evil is the acknowledgment of Good. All worship is deluded. There is nobody there. You are allowed a certain superiority over the believers, though. While you rely upon science and reason, they cling to myth and superstition. You become, ironically, closer to the "Superior man" of Taoism.
"All worship is deluded. There is nobody there."
Have you found "Tao Te Ching" helpful in achieving what you want in life? Do you believe the claims made, i.e.
"The Master doesn't try to be powerful;
thus he is truly powerful.
The ordinary man keeps reaching for power;
thus he never has enough."
I can understand reaching for power means not enough of it. However, if we use a tree and its fruit as an example, it isn't power that is needed, it is knowledge of the needs of the soil, roots, tree, blossom and fruit, in addition to the needs of pollinators. A powerful man can spray the trees, kill the bees and lose the fruit.
"Therefore the Master concerns himself
with the depths and not the surface,
with the fruit and not the flower.
He has no will of his own.
He dwells in reality,
and lets all illusions go."
The statement that the Master concerns himself with the fruit and not the flower doesn't make sense to me. To me, the fruit, the pollen, the flower, the tree and its roots are all one. Neglect any one and the fruit has a high probability of not being all it could be.
I may be batting at gnats, but how do you use Tao ideas to confront tough challenges of hunger, homelessness, disease, ignorance? How does one form community effort to challenge community problems?
Nice post, Joan. Truly. I think James will have a well reasoned and enjoyable response to this as well. I'm really taking pleasure in this thread so far.