I like to think of myself as an easygoing person for the most part. I like to live and let live. Although I do not ascribe to any religion, nor do I believe in any god, I do understand why some people need spirituality in their lives.
However, I have to say that I am so very tired of having other people’s religious beliefs shoved in my face. I do not behave in that manner about my agnostic view and think it arrogant for Christians to think I care about their belief system.
For example, I wonder what Christians would think if Richard Dawkins or Sam Harris got on television on a continual basis to make emotional pleas for money to finance the spread of their atheism?
As for those Christians who gather outside concerts to pass out tracts to get me saved, I wonder what they would think if I stood outside their churches and pass out literature on atheism to those leaving the building?
The other day I was driving in my car past a very crowded intersection when I noticed a group of young people with signs. Since it caught my attention, I looked closer and noticed the signs had pictures of mutilated foetuses – and me on the way to lunch…
I never cease to be amazed at the lengths to which humans will go to make one set of people somehow appear superior to another group. This is obvious as the debate about the homosexual lifestyle continue to be a hot topic in religious, social, and political circles.
This debate carries the weight of validation for an entire segment of people. It is not as if they require the validation of society to exist, for they will exist regardless. However, if and when society finally accepts them, those who are homosexuals will finally be able to life their lives to the fullest without fear of reprisal for being who they are.
Let’s face it, society has at various points in recent history sought to restrain or rid itself of varying segments of the population that it feared would change the status quo. These offensive segments typically reflected factors such as race, gender, intellectual capability, financial status, physical health, mental health and political ideologies. This list could go on forever.
Sexual preference continues to be at the forefront of the “get rid of them because they are different” battle…
Did you know many people in Iceland believe in elves? It is true. Polls consistently show the people of Iceland believe in these humanlike creatures that live in rocks. This innocuous urban legend is simply an assumed part of their Celtic culture in which some Icelanders believe and some do not.
In South Korea there are many people who believe if an electric fan is left running in a closed room it will suck away all of the oxygen in the air and suffocate those in the room or that the fan slows the person’s metabolism so much that she or he dies from hypothermia. This urban legend is so strong that every electric fan in South Korea is sold with timer switch to shut it off after the person has fallen asleep.
Urban legends are funny things because this phenomenon shows how the human mind is often willing to believe something completely outrageous even in the face of fact and logic.
When the people of South Korea were told that no one outside of their country believed in death by fan, there were excuses given as to why this trend affects only the South Korean physiology. Sometimes people will believe what they want to believe regardless the validity of the facts staring them in the face…
Where should the finger point when blame is being distributed for the subjection of women? Surely there is someone to hold culpable for such an archaic view against half of the world’s population.
Do we blame the men who hold to these views? Yes, of course. However, the truth is that they are only acting on what they have been socialised to consider acceptable since there are aspects of society which continues to promote the second-class position of women.
Should we blame hip-hop music, which objectifies women? Last week I heard a radio interview with a Georgetown University Professor and author, Michael Eric Dyson, who spoke on this subject…
There is a new phenomenon often associated with evangelical Christian churches that is very disturbing. I am talking about the latest trend called Purity Balls.
A Purity Ball has all the ingredients of any nicely prepared formal ball. There are flowing gowns and black tuxes, practiced dancing to lively music and white candles sparkling throughout the ballroom. This is all very lovely.
Those attending a Purity Ball are young women with their fathers as their dates, and as they swirl about on the dance floor, it is no doubt a sight that would warm even the coldest of hearts. At first glance, it would appear that this event is simply an opportunity for dads to have some quality time with their little girls and perhaps get to know them a little better.
However, it is what happens toward the end of the event that causes me to lose that warm fuzzy feeling.
Can I be a good person without religion? Many religious people do not seem to think so. I once connected my morality with religion too, believing that apart from religion there was no way to define morality. However, the longer I live the more I realize there are bad people who claim to be religious and there good people who do not believe in the existence of a god.
To go one step further, some of the meanest and most depraved of mind that I have known in my life were religious. Moreover, I know a man who is one of the most honorable humans I have ever met – and he is an agnostic atheist. This fact alone breaks down the argument that humans need religion to be moral.
In fact, although we very seldom have this choice, I would rather choose leaders without any religious affiliation. Just look at what George Bush has done to the world with his brand of Christianity. Look at what Osama bin Laden has done with his version of Islam.