Archive for March, 2012

Reason Rally

On the National Mall, Washington, D.C.  Saturday, March 24th.

It was a spirited time even in the rain.  A lot of people delivered their A-game.  Tim Minchin was most often cited as a favorite.  His was certainly the most energetic performance.  (Anybody know how I can get his song out of my head?  …But a lovely ballad, that.) 

Speakers, entertainers and the whole bill of faire moved along with about 15 minutes each to do their thing.   Dawkins was sharp and none of the speakers seemed dampened by the weather. 

It was also interesting to see the promotions for various up coming secular meets.  Everyone I spoke to thought there are a lot more than there used to be.  We all concurred that that’s a good thing.  I hope there’s never a burn out factor with more meets than there’s interest in.  For now, these things do seem to give us a sense of community, energize us, and help to raise our profile.   That was the theme and urging of the Reason Rally–Come OUT.  Be visible.  Run for office.  Get involved.  We can stop hiding.  Do it not only for those who will come after, but for us, here and now.

Thanks to Dayton Freethought for organizing the jaunt for us.  I got to know a few more of their friendly faces and hope to know more and more as time goes by.(I sent my 20 bucks in.)  The Rally bus we were on broke down about 2:30 am Sunday morning–which ended the sleep period because it stimulated a lot of punchy wit from the bus-lagged crowd.   Fortunately, nobody thought to sing Tim Minchin’s song while we waited.  (I think I heard that on Youtube a while back. Maybe that’s why it’s sticking with me so much.)  A short five hours later, we were on the road again.

Anyway, it was all fun and for a good cause–OURS.

Our larger community is perking.  It’s exciting.  We have a future.  Let’s make it happen.

 

 

 

March 26, 2012 at 7:55 pm 2 comments

Are we Angry Atheists or Effusive Enlightenees?

  • The following is my response to a discussion on the wesite: Evolution: The View of Life, but I thought it was of broad enough interest to be posted here.  It is also someting of a synopsis of my book Post Script to a Christian Nation.  My focus group didn’t like that title (C’mon, focus, Group!), so I trying this out: Religion is Gods Way of Showing Us it’s Earlier in Human Evolution than We Thought. 
  • The thread of that blog starts under the Religion heading on “Evolution The view of Life” blog. 
  • Fool into the fray, I can sympathize with both points of view.  (Background: my wife reads my stuff and says I’m an angry atheist)  I also railed against the US congress’ reaffirming In God We Trust  as the national motto titling my comments: that it was  “…the religious equivalent of marking territory.” (couple of blogs ago).

    Where I zag spiritual is based on the fact that many/most people do have that Faith Instinct that Nicholas Wade explains in his book.   

    Look, we know there is no spiritual realm or supernatural beings.  BUT something we inherited has us looking for those things nevertheless.   Further, our psychology/anatomy rewards us with neurochemicals (seratonin, dopamine, etc.) for “spiritual” thoughts and behavior.

    People have attributed much historically to things done “under the influence” of spiritual epiphanies.  Since there are no spiritual beings or spiritual realm, those folks don’t have much on us.

    I think we express our “human spirit” through similar avenues.  Writing, art, academics and many more.
    As an aspiring humanist, I like the life-affirming accomplishments, especially those of a secular nature, not so much of those of a religious nature (also, an angry atheist, remember?).

    Our need for fulfillment may come from that same neural complex, same neurochemical rewards. 

    Inspite of Rick Warren’s warning that humanism isn’t about to take over religion’s turf, I think, eventually, that it will still come to pass–as a cooperative effort.

    Like your favorite ball team, we’ll all have our different teams–we’ll wear our decal–Born-agains, Catholics, Buddhism, Jewish traditions, Humanist,  Freethought, Atheists, and others, but we’ll value the game, the family of man, that’s what will pull us together.

    It’s a big table.  Let’s set it for the guests we want and establish the etiquette that should be observed.

March 3, 2012 at 1:09 pm Leave a comment


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.