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Atheist News

A place to post and find links to news and other media that pertain to atheists, rationals, skeptics and humanists world-wide.

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Hey guys.

I probably shouldn't put this off anymore, so I'm just going to jump on it and improvise. I'm pretty sure the show is over. It was a ton of fun doing it, but with work and my son and my wife in school I simply don't have time to do it anymore.

Other folks have offered to take over but I don't really feel comfortable with that. Quit while you're ahead, sez I.

Anyhow, I payed for another year of hosting, so the archive of podcasts will be available for at least that long.

I really enjoyed podcasting, so I might do something again in the future. I'll keep you posted.

Thanks guys and gals! It was AMAZING.

Love,

--Joe

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Discussion Forum

GOP candidate claims fossil record proves humans lived with dinosaurs

Started by Joe. Last reply by Pat 18 hours ago. 5 Replies

Frey, a Michele Bachmann ally, testified before the Minnesota Senate Education Committee, speaking against the inclusion of the theory of evolution in proposed state science education standards.…Continue

N. TX Atheist group makes appeal to Hispanic non-believers

Started by Joe. Last reply by Joe Tomberlin 18 hours ago. 1 Reply

The group behind the billboard, the DFW Coalition of Reason, has targeted Christians and African Americans in the past, but it’s especially making an appeal to Hispanic non-believers now.…Continue

Atheist TV Channel Will Launch by the End of the Month

Started by Joe. Last reply by Loren Miller 19 hours ago. 6 Replies

After first mentioning the idea this past spring, American Atheists has announced that a TV channel dedicated to Atheist programming will launch on July 29th.…Continue

Warren city Atheist sues to set up alternative to prayer station at city hall

Started by Joe. Last reply by Future 20 hours ago. 4 Replies

A Warren atheist filed a federal lawsuit today saying his free speech rights were violated when Warren Mayor Jim Fouts turned down his request to place what he called a “reason station” inside city…Continue

Atheists End Teacher-Led Prayer in Indiana School District

Started by Joe. Last reply by Joseph P yesterday. 1 Reply

A prominent Atheist organization has convinced an Indiana school district to end teacher-led prayer at area public schools following a complaint from an anonymous parent.…Continue

Children Exposed To Religion Have Difficulty Distinguishing Fact From Fiction, Study Finds

Started by Joe. Last reply by Joseph P on Wednesday. 2 Replies

Young children who are exposed to religion have a hard time differentiating between fact and fiction, according to a new study published in the July issue of Cognitive Science.…Continue

Calvary Chapel Creation Conference Starts Today But Draws Atheist Protesters Thursday

Started by Joe on Wednesday. 0 Replies

Stirring things up, according to "Orange County's most famous atheist" Bruce Gleason, will be members of his group Backyard Skeptics, Riverside Atheists and Free Thinkers (RAFT) and the Freethought…Continue

The IRS Says It Will Finally Enforce the Rules Barring Pastors from Endorsing Candidates from the Pulpit

Started by Joe. Last reply by Joseph P on Wednesday. 6 Replies

Back in November of 2012, the Freedom From Religion Foundation sued the IRS because of the government agency’s “failure to enforce electioneering restrictions against churches and religious…Continue

Hobby Lobby critics target Green family’s Bible-based projects

Started by Joe Jul 18. 0 Replies

In the wake of the Supreme Court’s ruling in favor of Hobby Lobby in its fight with the government over the contraceptive mandate, critics in the media and Atheist groups have zeroed in on the Green…Continue

Secular Coalition of America spearheads Hobby Lobby protesters to ‘Knit a Brick’

Started by Joe Jul 18. 0 Replies

A new protest spearheaded by the Secular Coalition of America an umbrella advocacy organization of more than a dozen atheist and humanist groups.…Continue

A Judge Dismissed FFRF’s Lawsuit to Distribute Atheist Books in a Florida School District, but It’s Still a Victory

Started by Joe. Last reply by Grinning Cat Jul 17. 1 Reply

Orange County Public Schools insisted on vetting the freethought literature from FFRF and other secular groups…Continue

‘Pastafarian’ man wins right to wear pasta strainer in driving licence photo

Started by Joe. Last reply by James M. Martin Jul 17. 5 Replies

In today’s day and age, we all need to celebrate the small victories, no matter how weird they may be. That’s why we should all congratulate the Austrian man who has won the right to wear a pasta…Continue

Atheist gives invocation, first since high court decision

Started by Joe. Last reply by Loren Miller Jul 16. 1 Reply

Quoting philosopher Immanuel Kant and drawing on the words of the Declaration of Independence, Dan Courtney made history before the Greece Town Board.…Continue

Indiana marriage law is discriminatory, US court says in ruling for humanists

Started by Joe. Last reply by Loren Miller Jul 15. 1 Reply

In a significant victory for nonreligious Americans, the appeals court ordered Indiana to allow secular humanists to officiate at weddings despite a state law barring them from performing nuptials.…Continue

New Rule: Students Who Have a Same-Sex Wedding Can’t Be Mad When Their Christian Schools Expel Them For It

Started by Joe. Last reply by Grinning Cat Jul 12. 6 Replies

Southwestern Christian University in Oklahoma, makes its students sign a “lifestyle covenant” upon acceptance. It’s one of those lists that says you can’t smoke or drink or be in the dorm of the…Continue

Colorado House Candidate: If Atheists Undergo Exorcisms, They’ll Be Fine with Graduation Ceremonies in Church

Started by Joe. Last reply by The Flying Atheist Jul 12. 9 Replies

A news story that is comical and scary at the same time. He could get elected.…Continue

Rep. (R) Louie Gohmert Proves God's Existence With One Simple Equation and Explains Why Atheists are Intellectually Inferior

Started by Joe. Last reply by Loren Miller Jul 11. 12 Replies

Mocking non-believers for failing to grasp the logic behind the existence of God, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) cited an exchange with the late Texas entertainer Bob Murphey to disprove atheism during…Continue

In the Middle East, Some Atheists Fake-Fast During Ramadan To Avoid Detection

Started by Joe. Last reply by Sentient Biped Jul 10. 3 Replies

According to a report at Vocativ by Inna Lazareva and Noam Binshtok, some Atheists are even fasting during Ramadan just so no one will catch on.…Continue

Public Official: I Would Go to Jail over Jesus' Name

Started by Joe. Last reply by Joseph P Jul 9. 5 Replies

Frazier made waves when she defied U.S. District Judge William D. Quarles' order that banned the Board of Carrol County Commissioners from opening meetings with prayers to Jesus, which they had done…Continue

There are states where you technically can’t hold public office if you’re an Atheist

Started by Joe. Last reply by James M. Martin Jul 9. 7 Replies

Eight state constitutions include restrictions on people who don’t believe in a supreme being. In Arkansas, denying the existence of God means you can’t hold civil office or testify in court, while…Continue

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Comment by Joan Denoo on May 18, 2010 at 1:44pm
Amy, your story is very much my story. Abusive, controlling husband that I could not change, a culture that encouraged me to endure and in fact, praised me for enduring. "Live your life as a sacrifice, even as Jesus gave his life." The promises of "fruits of the spirit" just were not to be for me and when I asked for help from my family and community, I was soundly admonished to submit ... god would provide the strength, I just had to submit.

Joyfully, those days are over.
Comment by Amy on May 18, 2010 at 1:17pm
I think it's futile to argue with someone in an attempt to change their thinking. When someone's beliefs are threatened, they usually respond defensively. They don't even "hear" what the opposition is telling them, they're too busy mentally defending themselves to listen.

If someone wants to engage in thoughtful discussion, however, it's a different matter. I have an uncle who made an effort to build a relationship with me, and over a period of several years we grew close. Religion was never brought up, until I asked him to be a witness for my annulment. It was only then that I learned he was agnostic. By that time, there was a level of trust between us, and I felt safe to open up to him. He gently challenged me, but never passed judgment. I knew he would love me whether I was religious, or not. This was a rarity for me....I was used to judgment (conditional love) from my christian friends and family. He validated me as a person, and by doing so, enabled me to communicate honestly. I finally had a safe place to process my thoughts.

This story has an ironic ending...fast forward to last month, and I'm now a strong atheist. My uncle and I had a discussion in which I challenged him regarding his outdated definition of "atheist". Historically, he's rejected identifying himself by the title, believing it meant one claimed absolute authority to know with certainty that there is no god. Therefore, he always identified himself as agnostic. We went round and round about it, and I respectfully stood my ground in disagreement with his understanding of the term. Well, he called me a couple of days later and told me he thought about our conversation, looked it up in the dictionary, and now calls himself an atheist. I felt a personal victory for promoting the 'cause'... and it just goes to show what's possible when people engage in respectful dialog. Arguing with him wouldn't have gotten either one of us anywhere.
Comment by Nikki Chaffin on May 18, 2010 at 11:51am
I was 36 before I had my epiphany, only 5 years ago. I came from a Roman Catholic background, Catholic school and the whole 9 yards. Wanted to be a nun even when I was a small girl. Then at 17/18 I went the complete other route - Jehovah's Witness! to my parents dismay. I'd felt that I'd been lied to by the Catholic Church and that they had it all wrong and the JW's had it all right. But that was going on the premise that god exists. I never questioned that part, at all, ever. For me it was all about who knew best how god wanted us to live and all that.....Fast forward to October 2004 and a catastrophic car wreck that left me mamed and disfigured, that I shouldn't have survived. In the immediate months afterwards, having to endure pain and suffering on a level that no human being should have to live through, is when it all began for me. I used to pray, constantly, begging and praying for god to please don't let me wake up in the morning, the suffering was so - there's no words that can describe it - it was extreme enough that I prayed, begged, pleaded with anyone who'd listen to help me to go. I first arrived at a hate for god, that anyone who could let someone who's suffering continue to suffer in that manner after all the begging and pleading, any god that could allow that is no god I want anything to do with. screw him. I was full of hate. Keep your god I want nothing more to ever do with him for allowing me to continue to suffer, is where I now was. And then it didn't take too long after that for my to suddenly have the epiphany, that it just didn't make sense. I'm sure there are many who have begged for death to escape pain, people with crushing injuries and such. I began to see Earthquakes and catastrophes around the world and my first thought is how these people will be in the same place I was, no amount of morphine to fix it. And while others are praying for their survival and saying how lucky they were to have survived...that person is not feeling any of that. None of it made any sense any more. I was hating something that clearly did not exist. Like a lightbulb moment. I'd never questioned god's existence before that and really never got to a point where I ever did. I went from believer to non believer in an instant, as quickly as you could remove a veil or turn on a light switch. And now, 5 years later, I just feel so liberated, like I'd spent so many years in the dark. A lot of wasted years. But here I am, looking for new paradigms. Just found this site yesterday and couldn't be happier to know there are likeminded people in the world. I'm very sad for people I've loved who will never disavow their god or religion. They think I'm crazy but I KNOW it's them, and to the original question, how do you change that in someone? No one could've changed my mind years ago I don't think. Certainly not with the training JW's get. They're very indoctrinated. It's very hard to undo. I dont know, I'm just glad to be living true to myself now and that's all I can really control.
Comment by Amy on May 18, 2010 at 11:21am
Rob, While I can share with you the experience that prompted my most serious questioning of Christianity, leading to my rejection of the "faith", it would be a mistake to credit that single experience for my resulting epiphany. It took years and years of my life experiences, observations, ponderings, and (eventually) personal growth, to provide the fertile ground for my awakening.

Five or so years ago, I escaped an emotionally and psychologically abusive marriage...one that looked sooo good on the outside, yet was killing me slowly. Through a LOT of soul searching and personal growth, I arrived at a point where I recognized that God was treating me exactly the same as my narcissistic ex-husband did. His love was conditional, I was never going to be good enough, everything was always my fault, and it was basically....His way or the highway! It was when I was seeking a marriage annulment from the Catholic church that I realized I was relinquishing all control of my life....willingly handing it over to the Church/God. I was giving someone else the power to approve or disapprove of me and my choices, as well as the power to tell me what and what not to do. I don't do well with people controlling me, and when I left my marriage, I promised myself I'd only be in relationship with people who respected me. Well, during the annulment procedure, I realized that God (and the Church) were disqualified from my relationship options, merely by their controlling nature. I used to say "I didn't like the way God was treating me or my children, so I broke up with Him". It became just another abusive, dysfunctional relationship, and in order for me to be healthy, I had to break it off.

This was a process....one that started a long time ago. However, when my eyes first peered open to the possibility of my relationship with God being abusive, I opened them WIDE open and began an arduous search for answers. I do have a characteristic that separates me from a lot of other people..... I WANT to see things as they REALLY are, not as I want them to be. I want the ugly, hard truth of things. Don't sugar-coat the truth, don't dress it up and pass it off as something it isn't. Just lay it on me.....I can take it. I want it. This is a direct result of living with a narcissist and being lied to for 23 years (and not even knowing it). A result of taking lies as TRUTH, and experiencing the horrible devastation that occurs when you realize that your whole world has been based on.....LIES. After my initial questioning, it was only a matter of months till I was "all done" with Christianity.

The Christian God is The Supreme Narcissist. Very charismatic, very convincing, very sly. He lures people into His evil web (courts them) with an illusion of eternal love, acceptance and forgiveness. Once they commit to Him, however, He turns on them. He invalidates everything about them, and takes the credit for any and all "good" that might be in them. Through invalidation, He kills their very soul*, which is what every true narcissist does to his victims. If you can invalidate an individual at the very core of their being, you have enslaved them. If you convince them there is NO GOOD in them, that they are BAD TO THE CORE..... you have successfully extinguished their flame. I believe Christianity (or any fundamental religion) to be nothing less than soul-rape. It's a cruel, insidious evil...luring and trapping unsuspecting victims, often holding them hostage for a lifetime. And just like a slimy narcissist, its even more perfidious because it LOOKS so damn virtuous and meritorious!!!
Comment by Aiden on May 18, 2010 at 8:10am
Rick, WTF is that all about? You posted that pic in several groups with no explanation...
Comment by Rick on May 17, 2010 at 11:49pm
Photobucket
Comment by Joan Denoo on May 17, 2010 at 2:08pm
I participate with a group of women who first came together more than 20 years ago because we were struggling living within the boundaries of our various religious dogmas. We set certain limits: each person expressed herself as honestly and for as long as she needed, no one could interrupt, all had the right and obligation to respond honestly and understood we were safe, and what we said staid in our little group. One woman declared she was an atheist and I could not understand her meaning. We discussed our differences over several years. I read a book by Spong and understood Penny's reasoning. I have no idea what Spong wrote that made Penny understandable. I just know that a clergyman from England, with the name Spong, clicked.

Have you ever driven down a highway certain you were going in one direction, when in fact, you were going in the opposite direction? At some point, the direction becomes clear. That is how my experience with Penny and Spong felt. I just know that I tried everything I could to live as a Christian wife and mother and felt guilty, ashamed, blamed, accused, and responsible for all that was going wrong in my marriage and family.

Long-story-made-short: I left my faith in Christianity, my husband and my pain behind and life is better for me.

Other participants in our little group continue in their faith and the sense of community seems to be a very important part of their choices. I find community elsewhere, even as I continue to participate with the group. We get lots of practice in dealing with differences because we are lefts wing/right wing, progressive/conservative, pro choice/anti choice ... and on and on.
For me, learning how to live and thrive with differences is the highest value.
Comment by Tommy on May 17, 2010 at 10:32am
Amy, I agree with Rob. would love to know. I personally want to commend you. You seem to be an exceptional person. It is very hard to break the chains at our age. I am not sure I could have done it myself. It took me a period of 10 years to fully clear the cobwebs. I don't think anyone understands how powerful this kind of indoctrination really is or as far as that goes, how dangerous it is to our future.
Comment by Rob N on May 17, 2010 at 9:20am
@Amy, I'm curious what it was that started off your doubts? What things you had to 'see for yourself'?

How would you recommend we approach a fully indoctrinated christian, in order to get them thinking the way you started to think; without arguing?
Comment by Amy on May 17, 2010 at 9:07am
please don't give up on the older 'brainwashed' christian! i was 48 before the veil was lifted from my own eyes. however, arguing would NOT have been an effective approach with me. i had to see things for myself...and i needed safe, non-judgmental people to process my thoughts with.

arguing usually does more harm than good, imo. it incites emotions, and invites misunderstanding. also...it's futile with a population who has rejected reasoning as part of their thought process.
 

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