POST SCRIPT to a CHRISTIAN NATION Excerpt: ebook coming out in 2012

September 24, 2011 at 5:12 pm 3 comments

 

POST SCRIPT to a CHRISTIAN NATION 

foreword

 

We are all just people, you and I.  Not so very different—believers and nonbelievers.  For the most part we all have hopes, fears, and dreams.  Most of the time, we just hope for life to be better for everyone. 

We nonbelievers are afraid you don’t know us for who we are.  We’ve been reticent to speak out.  You might be glad of that.  But that isn’t what’s best for both or either of us.

Our relationship with society has been one-sided.   We’ve been more than kind.  We’ve not been critical of all the events and meetings you start with an observance of your religion.  We don’t complain too much about your slogans on our money or your 1954 insertion of “under God” in a pledge of allegiance that should have been for all of us. 

We think it is worth it for both of us to seek some parity in our relationship especially when you look at the hell that’s been arrived at recently in the hand basket of politics—the overblown vitriol in the reporting of real and imagined offenses has escalated the Left versus the Right to the brink of violence.  Let me assure you, we will neither consider nor suggest Second Amendment solutions, but rather only First Amendment solutions.  We hope that goes for you, too.

 We’re genuinely worried about the nonbelievers of this generation and the next.  We don’t want them to suffer in silence the way we had to.   We can develop a sense of kinship, a commonality with religion. You can help with that.  We can find that union where religion intersects humanism or other faiths or philosophies, where a common path leads to the ennobling of the human spirit.  Where self and society can call upon each other to grow, to ascend further for the greater common good and the benefit and improvement of both.

If something on that high road beckons to you, call out to us.  We may sometimes be weak in that area.  We must help each other if we don’t want to be seduced to the low road of negative action and reaction.  It’s not impossible in this increasingly charged atmosphere that a few crazed radicals could spark violence that could spin out of control.  That would more likely be from your side given human history.

Ultimately, we should dwell not on the beliefs that divide us, we’ll find that everywhere, rather, we should focus on the humanity that unites us.

                                                                                                                         ***

 

Entry filed under: freethought.

Christian Atheist Piety by any other name wouldn’t sound as sweet

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Pinky  |  September 28, 2011 at 10:08 pm

    Great sentiment. I was unable to google up a reference to the book this is from; is Sam Harris the author?

    Reply
    • 2. douglasfalknor  |  September 30, 2011 at 10:15 pm

      Not Sam Harris–You are my First Test on this title. I’m the author. It’s not released yet. Early in the foreward I pay homage to Sam–and acknowledge my indebtedness. For the title, it’s not only to ride Sam’s coat tails to greater glory, but to be another voice in the widlerness, one more witness and hopefully a slightly different voice.

      I am more of a fan than a critic of Sam Harris’ or the other 3 of the “Four Horsemen of the Apocalypes’ (Dawkins, Dennett, Hitchens). Like them, I’m not fully willing to forget the history of religion. They also are seen as the leaders of what’s called the new atheism. They lean toward stridency, but in a world where we stay hidden, we help perpetuate a world that continues to misunderstand us and through that misunderstanding, hate us.

      In one of the early posts, I mentioned the Christmastime billboard near the Lincoln Tunnel. It said, “You know it’s a Myth. This season, celebrate reason.” Maybe it’s not the worst that could have been said, but it surely must have created ill will.

      There seems to be a slow, ongoing billboard war–just search “atheist billboard” on the web and you’ll see continual vollies lobbed in all directions. There are bizzare statements floating in the air on both the pro-god and no-god sides.

      OK. We may have to be childish first before we can grow up. Let’s hope when we do that the religious side grows too. We do have to grow with or without them and in many ways we have always been growing. But we’ve also known, observing from our closets, that without our input, the culture wasn’t growing with respect to us.

      Sure ideas have progressed, the zeitgeist has progressed. There’s an awareness that all kinds of discrimination are no longer politically–or more importantly–socially correct. The god-free have connected and formed communities to a greater degree than we would have thought possible just a few years ago. That has given each of us life, free air to breathe. Support for each other. Emboldened us.

      We’ve come out. We’re not afraid. We have a voice, many voices. We are trying to speak–we’re talking to our culture; we’ve been misunderstood. There’s been shouting. We need to refine our statements. Find common ground. Stay visible. KEEP TALKING.

      SEE YOU at Houston. Freethought convention October 7, 8 & 9.

      Reply
    • 3. douglasfalknor  |  September 30, 2011 at 11:10 pm

      …But I not only digressed, I pontificated…

      I’ll be posting a cover for Post Script to a Christian Nation in a few days. I hope to add this offer: To all who buy the ebook on its First Day of Release at the $2.99 price, $1.00 dollar will go to the Godless org. of their choice. I’m hoping that’s a Win-Win that takes a bite out of my shameless commercialism. (A group of sales on the release date would do a lot to get the book recognized. (I just hope I’m not as bad a prognosticator as Harold Camping was [doomsday preacher who predicted May 21st Rapture]). And recognition of those books of the FHA, hmmm… Not a good acronym for the 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse maybe FHotA?

      At any rate, I think we (godless) tend to negate anything and everything that would nourish our totally secular, temporal human spirit (I couldn’t very well say ‘soul,’ could I?) I think that desire grew up with our species, though most of the FHotA don’t think so.

      Imagine, if you will, the impressive array of things accomplished under the inspiration of God, gods, what have you. Every spiritually inspired artform–those folks drew that out of themselves–God didn’t. God didn’t inspire them. They inspired themselves. That’s what people do.

      And that hints at part of the purpose of the book Post Script–The rise of human aspiration. Of humankind’s future becoming. I think somewhere in that idea is where we secular folk can find our shining moments. Our version of semi-sacred, quasi-spiritual Truth. I don’t say it flippantly to negate it, rather to be wary of the seduction that our very proclivity (genetically inherited propensity) toward religiosity and belief can generate.

      Might sound like woo-woo (Twilight Zone?) here, but I’m a materialist. I’m talking the ~spirituality on this side of reality. Yeah, it’s touchy-feely, but only what’s real. Even if evolution teased it out of our ancestors, even if it’s a tweak of our glands by the perky neurochemicals, it’s real–and it feels like spirituality. It can come from a number of directions–our semi-spiritual experiences. I had one once as I played with four kittens on a boulder in the sun. And once when I saw four tails hanging out of the hole in a tree that belonged to four baby squirrels nursing their mother.

      Were they blinding flash mystical experiences? No. But recognizably on the scale. So can intellectual pursuits give us that sense of fulfillment. We need that. We inherit a need for that. That’s the only possible explanation for ubiquitous religion… and the grip thereof on mankind.

      That’s a little bit of the scope–the breadth–of the book.
      Is the play on Sam Harris’ book forgivable?
      Does it seem just too derivative?

      April

      Reply

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Hello

I write for agnostics, freethinkers, atheists and humanists. In my nonfiction, the purpose is the celebration of our noble human spirit. The general pursuit may be Evolutionary Theology, though believers seem to populate that field (so maybe it's evolutionary Humanism). By looking at who we are and where we came from, we can derive much meaning, and perhaps more importantly, understanding, as well as some sense of where we could go.

Religion is God’s Way of Showing Us it’s Earlier in Human Evolution than We Thought

This title is an upcoming book at the publisher's now. I'd like feedback on this title. It's meant to make people think and feel something. And to hint at things for both believers and non- on multiple levels. The book is of a wider scope, though, one which is ultimately a way to grasp more meaning for ourselves. Believers are always telling us our lives don't have meaning without a god. We often counter that it's more meaningful to be looking for our own meaning than to be arbitrarily ascribed it by an imaginary supernatural being. Ultimately, and this is what I think is unique about this book, you'll see how we can be just as spiritual in our own way. Since we've inhertited a capacity for religion (some more than others) as an evolutionary adaptation, believers and non- are both potentially spritual in the same way--but it is an earthly, secular spirituality in which we all can share.

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