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I woke up this morning to children playing in the streets, the hum of cars passing by, the sound of a jet above, and the over all workings of a modern society going through its every day routines. Once again, another viral end of the world prediction didn’t come to light.

Boy, my hole-in-the-wall blog definitely got a lot of attention during this week, though. I topped out at 89 hits in one day, and even 81 hits two days before. Absolutely crazy! I would like to thank everyone that visited, and even subscribed to this blog. Even a bigger thank you to those that posted my blog onto Digg, Reddit, and even Facebook.

So what does this mean, and what will happen next? My next prediction says that Harold Camping will apologize not to those people he had mistaken, but for his own personal misfortune of being wrong. I’m not sure if he will make another prediction or not, but if he gets the chance, I’m fairly sure he will squeeze one in before his death. As for Christians around the world who have mocked Camping and his followers, I want you to look a bit more introspectively. If you believe that the rapture will happen, then you’re not much farther than Camping and his followers. To mock and ridicule those people is to mock and ridicule a part of your beliefs, too. For those that are agnostic or atheistic and ridiculed Camping, then you’re doing nothing but kicking a dead horse. Best to leave the “I told you so” to yourself and use this as evidence that Christianity, and religion, can be false.

Now with 5/21/11 out of the way, expect to hear from end of the world believers again in 12/21/12; the Mayan end of the world believers.


May 21st Rapture

We are just ten days away from the supposed rapture that is suspected to take part according to Harold Camping of Family Talk radio. Through analyzing the bible, he selected May 21st, 2011 as the day of the Christian rapture, and October 21st as the day the world ends.

Do I believe any of this? Obviously not. Not only because I’m an atheist, but also that Camping has predicted the end of the world before (September 1994), and look at how accurate that came out. Not to mention the long list of other failed end of the world prophesies that have come to pass. A thorough list can be found on the Tacoma Atheists End of the World section.

What is going on? Well, Family Radio has been spending hundreds of thousands in advertising for their prediction. Rather than attempting to make the end more comfortable for others, they would rather instill fear in order to get their message out, and for people to follow like sheep.

What will happen? Probability, like always, states that his prediction will go completely unaccomplished and everyone will continue to live in their day to day lives without any disruptions; aside from Camping’s followers asking questions.

What will Camping do if his prediction fails? Do just like every other “prophet” and recreate yet another date, most likely another date that is well after his death.

What this little stunt only proves to me is that religion remains nothing more than emotional manipulation over the act of reasoning. Rather than doing something of real good for everyone who doesn’t know, or doesn’t want to believe, Camping and his followers use fear propaganda to twist the minds of others in order to give the illusion that they are doing good. I  have always seen this as being nothing more than an abusive parent thinking that the abuse will raise their child up straight, but in reality, is causing more problems with the child like rebellion, hate, and even emotional trauma (I grew up in an abusive household).

If Camping is right, what would I do? Well, since the rapture states that non-believers will be tossed into Hell, I accept this wholly. I have no fear of Hell and will put my humanly principals well before my physical well-being. I would refuse to explain myself to any God, but would be asking that God to explain Himself. If He can not come up with a reasonable answer for me, or refuses, and punishes me, then He is nothing more than a demon in my eyes and I do not wish to be in its company.

Understanding “Militant Atheists” and “militant Christians”, and why they’re a bad thing.

Many Christians like to use the term “militant atheist” to describe an atheist that uses aggressive tactics and belittling comments to attack their religion and get them to see reason. Now, Christians aren’t out of this hot water, either. Atheists use the term “militant Christian” for any Christian that is literally hell bent to stop their fellow man from going to hell, and will use just as nasty threats and aggressive comments as well. As scary as it sounds, both of these groups have nearly identical intentions.

The “militant atheist” stems from a sense of revenge. Many are past members of cults, or even past preachers of the gospel, and feel that they have wasted their money, time, and all around lifetime tending to mindless dogma. They do partially want to destroy belief, but this is not the main drive for their actions. Though they use aggressive tactics like pointing out the strong fallacies and immoralities of the bible, the hypocrisies of the church, and then follow through with  personal character attacks, amazingly enough, they want the same outcome that many “militant Christians” want.

The “militant Christian” is deep into their faith to the point where they become hypocritical and then begin to hate. Generally, this hate is more driven upon what their pastor says, than what their holy book says, and therefor is seen as hypocritical. To them, atheism is viewed as either the inner workings of  the devil or their lack of presence of the “holy ghost”. The promise of hell and eternal tormenting pain is always in their arsenal of attacks and then is followed by either a belittling remark based on their pride in Jesus, or a personal attack. Scary that “militant atheists” pair so well with this group, right?

I can prove that both parties want the same exact outcome. They both want to “save” the other party from either their religious zealotry, or “save” their fellow man from hell. Ultimately, both of these actions are directly geared towards the bettering of human kind. It is interesting to think that two nearly radical groups could have the same exact basis for their actions, but it is there. In the end, though, both of them are completely wrong with how they handle themselves, and how they assert their beliefs.

Back in the days of my elementary school, I was forced to take an anger management course. Now, in all reality, I didn’t need this course at all since my “anger” was rooted in the fact that I had childhood depression, but the idea that children could be depressed, too, was not formed until long after those school days. Either way, I came out with a bit of wisdom from that course. I learned that it’s “OK to be mad, but not OK to be angry”. In other words, it’s OK to feel mad, but it’s not OK to act aggressive because you’re mad. I have a personal theory that when people act aggressive towards one another, they are not actually being aggressive towards that other person, per-say, but rather being aggressive towards themselves.

A “militant atheist’s” aggression lies in the fact that they both want to “save” humanity from dogmatic practices, but this aggression stems from their past dealing with how they were treated in church, or how they personally view their experiences in the church. This then creates a feeling of desperation within themselves since they want to both “save” that person from their dogma, and better humanity. For a “militant Christian”, they want to save humanity from the eternal torment of hell, but this aggression lies in the fact that they have a misplace form of self-righteousness; they literally want to do God’s work for either brownie points, or self gratification.

How do we get past this? Well, we need to stop with the direct attacks and start actually using words, reason, and facts; instead of turning a simple argument into nothing more than a sizing up of genitalia. The key to removing aggression is to practice patience. The moment you can calm down and actually think, is the moment that you have taken one step closer to winning that argument. If you can take some time to step out of the room room or away from the computer to cool down, you are then the “bigger man” in the battle. You can also then go back into battle with a newly refreshed and clear mind.

Welcome To the Ball and Cup Game

Imagine for one moment an entire floor of a hall filled to the edges with cups of all different sorts and colors. Now imagine if someone had told you that there is one ball in one of those thousands of cups, and if you find that ball, you then win an eternity of happiness. But, if you choose the wrong cup, there could be foul consequences. Also, you are unable to lift a cup up until your time has come.

This exact same game is played by the religious and non-religious all the time. Each person picking their own unique cup, but not knowing if that cup really contains the ball underneath it. One giant guessing game, with one giant question. Where is the ball?

Each cup, of course, represents a different religion. Each cup can even represent a whole different denomination, or even a whole church, too. Each player screams that their cup has the ball underneath it, but not a single player is wholly certain if it is or not. The worse part of the game, is that you must believe that your cup contains the ball for many, many years. No, you can’t pick up the cup and look underneath, all you can do is stare at the cup and learn about the story of the cup. You also have to judge whether or not that the stories of the cup are true or false, or just jump in blindly and follow the words passed down of the cup’s legacy.

Then there are the players that have at least one of those two burning questions. Is the ball even in a cup that is visible to everyone? Is there even a ball in a cup at all? In other words, do we even know the correct religion and God(s) at all, or does a God even exist?

Christianity has thousands of denominations all screaming they have the ball. Judaism and Islam scream they have the ball. Hindus, Buddhists, and Scientologists all scream they have the ball. Even ancient religions like Greek or Roman screamed that they have the ball. Each one of these groups claims a cup, yet can not directly prove that the ball is in their cup, because they themselves are also unable to lift the cup until their day has come.

Now you have all this information at your hands. Now you must stand and ask yourself, “am I really going to be choosing the right cup?” Now you must ask yourself, “should I switch cups?” Finally, the biggest question of them all, “does the ball even exist?”

Welcome to God’s game.

“In God We Trust” – A National Punchline

Many American atheists will grit their teeth and scowl at this one saying that is so proudly displayed onto our national currency. I do not blame them, but I do find their hate completely misplaced. You see, this one saying on every bit of currency is in reality, a great matter of ridicule once put to it’s artistic view.

“In God We Trust” is something that this nation’s Christians feel is directly implied to them in some metaphorical sense. The only problem is, “we” is never defined except by that implied metaphor. Rather than putting, “In God America Trusts”, or “In God The People Trust”, it leaves a vague sense of wonder with what the word “we” really means.

The term “we” can mean a multitude of things. Not only can this be applied a group of people, it can also be applied to a personified group of things. So, is it really, “In God We, the American People, Trust”, or is it “In God We, the American Currency, Trust”? Since this statement is printed and stamped into every bit of American currency, I can easily proclaim that it is the latter of the two.

Rather than tossing out this term from our currency simply because it vaguely states in a unanimous metaphorical sense that America puts it’s trust in God, I say leave it with it’s vague sense that we do not know what “we” implies. In all reality, the statement did not show up until 1864, and therefor can not be used to state that America is a Christian nation. Even then, we still don’t even know which “God” the statement is referring to, either. This one statement that is seen daily is nothing more than what it truly is, a giant national punchline filled with laughter.

Seperating Church From Senate

While in a debate against her opponent, Christine O’Donnell of Delaware, a Republican and tea party member who is running for senate, shows her undeniable ignorance of the United States Constitution. The first amendment to the Bill of Rights in the Constitution clearly states that the government can not create a law respecting any religion. In other words, the government can not create a law that is directly in favor of any religious ideologies, nor can it set up an establishment in favor of any religion. This is generally known as the “separation of church and state”.  The first amendment also gives rights to freedom of speech, freedom of press, and the right to gather and protest peaceably. O’Donnell was clearly shocked to learn this new information, even though she is a self professed guru of the United States Constitution.

Upon reading this news and watching various sources on it, I can only begin to confirm what the tea party main motives have been these last few years; turning America in a true “Christian” nation. The tea party’s original movement was to protest in favor of lowering taxes, but in the last few years, the majority of tea party organizations have grown to become a driving religious force. Any atheist, agnostic, deist, Muslim, Hindu, and even Christian that is no of  “their” denomination should be very leery of these groups as they seek to change who you are, and what you must believe.

When O’Donnell began to laugh after showing her ignorance, she clearly thought she was laughing with the group, and not at the fact that the group was laughing at her. As Americans, we can not allow people like this to penetrate our system. It’s bad enough the majority of politicians are selling us out in general, but to have them also be so blatantly blissful to our own Constitution, the one document that is supplying their job and freedoms, is absolutely abhorring. To be a politician is no different than serving your country. The minute you turn your back against your country, you are no different than a traitor on the battlefield. Failing to learn even the basics of how your country works, yet being a governing force behind it, is no different.

Bonus video on American religious history (added 10/21/10)

Would the World be Better?

A big question that I run across constantly is if the world would truly be better off without religion. Not only do atheists ask this, but so do theists (generally as a form of challenge). It is definitely a valid question, and contains a very complicated answer.

The first big thing to come to mind, as it was probably yours too, is if ending religion would end hate? Truthfully, getting rid of religion would not end hate or even correct the world’s politics. Yes, it would make an impact in lessening hate, but people generally flock into like-minded groups, and many of these groups do instill hatred. It doesn’t take long to find many groups that do not use religion as a form of hatred. Political, gender, and conspiracy theorist type groups are well known to drive hate without the use of religion. Hate will continue to exist as long as there are options out there to drive hatred.

The one big thing that religion does hinder, though, is science and social growth. Ideas like the world flooding with water that’s dropped in enormous amounts through the sky while some 600 year old guy is filling a small boat with the world’s animals, or entire rivers splitting at the will of a man only to swallow their enemy in the end, or even a man coming back to life after death are ideas that go greatly against the rules we know of the natural world, and what science knows. Religion has, and still is, a huge hinder to the progressive growth of science and human thinking. Each religion jumps up and screams that their ideas of the supernatural are “real” and “the truth”, but show absolutely no evidence that it has happened, or is true. The problem is, some of these people become so fervent in their beliefs, they not only shut out reality, they seek to destroy anything that says otherwise, including human beings.

Religious idea is only a small possibility out of billions on how this world came to be. For all we know, we could have been created from the intestinal expulsion of gas from some fat guy eating popcorn at the movie theater. To fervently pursue religious thought as ultimate truth can not only be foolish and self-destructive, but it can even hinder and damage the growth of humanity if you force your way of thinking onto others. Allow others to think differently than your own self, and let them live their own lives as they have let you live your own. Well, unless you truly do not want yourself and others to live in a world of technological advancements like entertainment, or even better growth in their health and well being. Then again, would you even have the right to strip another human being of this life if they had truly wanted it?