Farewell, My Friends

With only fifteen posts in the previous two years combined and zero posts this year, I believe that I've said everything substantial I have to say about religion and supernaturalism. For this reason, I'm indefinitely discontinuing this blog in order to focus on other pursuits. Although I have decided not to renew the custom domain, all the previous entries and other content will remain here on Blogspot for the foreseeable future. As part of this process, I've disassociated my Twitter account from this blog, deleted my tweets, and posted most of those relating to religion here to preserve for posterity:

  • Atheism means never getting to say, “I told you so.”
  • Only atheists can experience true privacy. It's impossible to live in freedom when a divine judge monitors your every thought and action.
  • Atheists interpret the Bible more literally because we don't need to explain away difficult passages as metaphorical like believers do.
  • I didn't “lose my faith.” I acquired a purely naturalistic worldview.
  • It's fine to pray for my conversion, but it's rude to tell me about it. A believer wouldn't want me to say, “I hope you become an atheist.”
  • Instead of abandoning the Bible Belt to religious conservatives, I prefer to stay and make it just a little more secular and progressive.
  • Sometimes I try to imagine how I would react to current events if I were still a devout Catholic. It's increasingly difficult to do.
  • I hide every FB status about God or prayer. It really annoys me that there's no good way to counter them without seeming like a total jerk.
  • I love that a rapture prediction by a fringe group has generated mainstream lampooning of religious belief. It gets people thinking!
  • What believers can learn from 5/21/2011: Don't make falsifiable claims. Saying Jesus will return "sometime" means you're never proven wrong.
  • Half of all Evangelical Christian leaders polled say one can be good without God! http://bit.ly/lKtCQg
  • The Gospels' fantastic claims are mostly just unverifiable. The Book of Mormon's claims, on the other hand, are often demonstrably false.
  • Whom did God deceive? The people at Fatima who saw the sun dance, or the billions everywhere else who didn't? http://bit.ly/15c0p9  
  • For me, belief in God was only important because it made it possible to hope to live in an eternal paradise with my loved ones after death. I always found it hard to love an infinite, eternal, and perfect being. Imperfections give us character and personality. God is unrelatable.
  • The pope is the leader of an undemocratic, anti-feminist, anti-LGBT organization that demeans reason, praises credulity, and preaches hellfire.
  • We must actively oppose any religion or group which teaches that anyone deserves to suffer in hell, especially for merely disbelieving.
  • No one deserves to burn in hell forever. No one's crimes are infinite. No one should receive infinite punishment. Not even Osama bin Laden.
  • Believers think atheists should take their religion's threats about hell seriously. But how many take other religions' threats seriously?
  • Many believers have "spiritual" reasons for belief. That's fine, but how can they think I'm damned to hell for not having the same feelings?
  • People who believe in hell are like zombies. Their brains are infected with an evil idea, one which hijacks their compassion to spread fear. We hate the virus itself and fear the infected, especially in large groups, but we shouldn’t hate them because it’s not really their fault. They honestly believe it’s good to warn others about the danger, and they were infected without their consent by another of the infected. Belief in hell is rarely fatal, is curable with large doses of reason, and children can be inoculated with carefully controlled exposure.
  • I’m not afraid of burning in hell any more than believers are afraid of burning in the hells of other religions. 
Humanism / Community
  • Humanism means thinking with your brain and loving with your heart. It really is that simple.
  • I don't feel comfortable with local social groups. Atheists seem too anti-religious; UUs seem too pro-religious. Perhaps I'm just too picky.
  • I'm too scientific, too critical, and too literal to ever participate in even the most liberal, most open religious movement, such as UUism.
  • I don't identify as “cultural Christian” for the simple reason that I dislike the culture. It causes problems rather than solving them.
  • If only religions promote ethics and community, people will continue to associate these with faith. We need more secular voices to speak up.
  • The nonreligious could use a new umbrella term. "The Brights" had a good idea but absolutely terrible execution. Any suggestions?
  • “Real men love Jesus”? No, real men and women doubt Jesus.
  • People who reject the divinity of Jesus but still consider him a great moral teacher frustrate me. There are thousands of better teachers.
  • Jesus was not a philosopher. Philosophers make arguments and present reasons for their conclusions. Jesus only commanded from authority. 
  • Jesus was not a hippie. Sure, he was anti-establishment, but he was also an apocalyptic hellfire preacher.
  • The idea of no longer existing can be depressing, but it's consoling when you've had enough of life and are ready to retire from living.
  • Atheist provides viable definition of "supernatural": mental phenomena which don't arise from non-mental phenomena. http://bit.ly/fT5Fi
  • Religion isn't the belief that God exists; it's the belief that he tells you what to do. (Paraphrase of Christopher Hitchens.) 
  • Religion is part of human nature? Maybe, but so are optical illusions. http://bit.ly/iGYOZi
  • Religion is for those who want answers so badly that they don't care whether the answers are right or wrong. 
  • I understand the desire to believe in heaven, even if it's not real, but I'm concerned about the problems it causes to believers and others.
  • I'm not sure anyone truly believes in an omnimax deity. All theists act like their gods are imperfect. It is an imperfect world after all.
  • Everyone would do well to distinguish “God's word” from “what someone else says is God's word.” To doubt is only to question the latter. 
  • Believers who truly value humility should refrain from claiming to know anything about the divine. There's nothing humble about certainty.
  • To "learn about one's faith" is very odd phrase. It suggests that one is taught what to think rather than how to think. Maybe that's correct.
  • Why exactly is "sky daddy" considered offensive whereas "heavenly father" is respectful? Why do certain synonyms bother believers so much?
  • And why do some churches refer to themselves as "family worship centers"? Is it supposed to make them seem more modern or relevant?
  • The supposed infallibility of scripture or the papacy is worthless because one's belief that they are infallible is not itself infallible.
  • Specialty license plates are an unnecessary source of church-state conflict. Just buy a bumper sticker and donate money directly to charity.
  • “In Zeus We Trust.” This is how the US national motto sounds to us atheists. Meaningless at best. Exclusionary at worst. Simply a bad idea.
  • Removing “under God” from the US pledge of allegiance is a good idea, but it would be much better to simply scrap it entirely.
  • US society disdains both taking religion seriously and rejecting it entirely. One is expected to believe but not let it affect one's life.
  • Happy Bunny Day! Here's to secularizing rather than fighting or ignoring the western spring festival. Enjoy your candy and colored eggs!
I'd like to thank all the readers and commenters for their interest over the past six years. If anyone wants to contact me for any reason, the e-mail address in the sidebar will continue to be forwarded to my primary e-mail account. Farewell, my friends!

Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net