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Old 02-13-2013, 02:20 PM   #2121
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Yep, very familiar with it and am sitting on the cusp of being a pantheist though I more formerly call myself (self-defined) Pagan.

Rainsong
Hi Rainsong! There's much about Paganism that speaks to me. (I love to celebrate the seasons.) Nice to hear from someone else who's familiar with Pantheism.
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Old 02-13-2013, 02:25 PM   #2122
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hi Kitty and welcome! hooray for veganism!
Hi Makalah! Are you a vegan, too? (I know I'm not the only one out there... but we're still pretty rare, LOL.)
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Old 02-13-2013, 02:36 PM   #2123
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That sums it up! I have been dealing with "comfort" lately having had 2 deaths in the family in the last few months. I was only recently able to draw that conclusion that you mention. I am so glad you said that...it really put into words how I have been feeling lately.
I just wanted to say that I'm sorry for your loss.

(I'm honestly not sure, from one agnostic/atheistic to another, what a proper sympathy sentiment is, but I wanted to say something. Whatever your beliefs, losing someone can be difficult.)
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Old 02-13-2013, 02:39 PM   #2124
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I. Did you know he gave his notice on Sarah Palin's birthday? The patron saint of quitters. lol
I did not know that. Patron Saint of Quitters. That is very funny.
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Old 02-13-2013, 02:45 PM   #2125
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I know this group doesn't believe in prayer--but my sister just sent me this link to the best prayer ever. It has far more to do with kindness and aging than anything else (Listen up, Wrose!). It's about seven minutes, but well worth watching.

Getting Old = Mary Maxwell

Enjoy!

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Old 02-13-2013, 02:46 PM   #2126
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Hi Rainsong! There's much about Paganism that speaks to me. (I love to celebrate the seasons.) Nice to hear from someone else who's familiar with Pantheism.
Hello, Kitty. Welcome to SCS.

I've been known to drum in the seasons or new year.

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Old 02-13-2013, 02:54 PM   #2127
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A bashful but happy little welcome to Kathy's DS! I hope he finds much happiness here. I live in an itty-bitty village in the dead center of the state (Centerburg), but I work in Columbus. (I'm originally from California, so Ohio was a pretty big adjustment. I have a really good life here... but I do miss the sunshine.)

(And gosh, you sure all have been chatty today! Please excuse me while I type with my mouth full... I'll never catch up otherwise.)
Oh wow. We are in California, that's where DS moved from. South Bay, about 40 miles from San Francisco.


I didn't grow up out here - northeast PA then went to Atlanta on my own, then married DH and spend some years in south Florida; that's where the kids were born. We've been out here just over 15 years.
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Old 02-13-2013, 03:11 PM   #2128
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Oh wow. We are in California, that's where DS moved from. South Bay, about 40 miles from San Francisco.


I didn't grow up out here - northeast PA then went to Atlanta on my own, then married DH and spend some years in south Florida; that's where the kids were born. We've been out here just over 15 years.
LOL - small world, huh? I actually grew up in San Mateo (just south of San Francisco)... then moved south to Orange County before junior high... back to the bay area for a year after high school... back to So. Cal. where I met my ex.. who somehow convinced me that all our problems would be solved if we moved to Ohio, LOL. They weren't... hence the "ex" part. However, I met my current wonderful hubby here, so it all worked out.

Most of my family is from California, but my mother's family moved to Atlanta when I was a baby - still have family there. My mother now lives in Colorado. DH and I do spend most vacations in Florida... well, Walt Disney World, to be exact. (No connections in PA, though.)

(I'd love to hear someday what your DS thinks of Ohio.)
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Old 02-13-2013, 03:29 PM   #2129
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I wouldn't necessarily recommend just sharing your beliefs with others. There can be retaliation.

I read a book a few years ago that was basically a look at the numbers of atheists and how they'd "come out" and what happened. Some were disinherited. Some no longer have family that will talk to them.

I admire the public figures who can stand up as atheists and argue with the best of them. But that's not for me.

I don't bring it up much but if it does come up and I know the person, I will mention it. Gently and quietly, but firmly.
I don't mind telling people. I figure it weeds out the people who might see my value only in what book I read or where I place my butt on SUnday mornings.
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Old 02-13-2013, 03:38 PM   #2130
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Can I ask a question?

Are any of you familiar with Pantheism?

According to Wikipedia: "Pantheism is the belief that everything composes an all-encompassing, immanent God, or that the universe (or nature) is identical with divinity. Pantheists thus do not believe in a personal or anthropomorphic god."

My own interpretation is that everyone and everything is sacred, special, and connected. Everything we do has an effect on everything else. Everything we do makes a difference, in some small way, whether we ever see the effects or not. And no one is better or more important than anyone else - we are all equally special, important, sacred.

Or, to quote a Disney song, "every rock and tree and creature, has a life, has a spirit, has a name".

Perhaps it's wishful thinking on my part, but I like the idea that there is some meaning to life... which is the real reason I call myself an agnostic and not an atheist. I can't quite believe in a supreme being looking down on us and making decisions, but I do feel like maybe there's more to life than we can see.

(or maybe I just think too much.)
So can't there be meaning without spirituality or God?
A good cup of coffee gives me joy. That good coffee was grown with care by someone on a beautiful misty mountain. That joy I got is evident in the smile I give to those I pass in the morning. They smile and do their job a little bit more light hearted during the day.
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Old 02-13-2013, 03:53 PM   #2131
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A bashful but happy little welcome to Kathy's DS! I hope he finds much happiness here. I live in an itty-bitty village in the dead center of the state (Centerburg), but I work in Columbus. (I'm originally from California, so Ohio was a pretty big adjustment. I have a really good life here... but I do miss the sunshine.)

(And gosh, you sure all have been chatty today! Please excuse me while I type with my mouth full... I'll never catch up otherwise.)
I'm in CA! ANd have been to Ohio. Uhhh Hamilton then we were driven to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame so I got to see a lot of it. SOOO different than here. My brother in law once apologized for the traffic. There were like 12 cars on the road LOL
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Old 02-13-2013, 03:56 PM   #2132
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LOL - small world, huh? I actually grew up in San Mateo (just south of San Francisco)... then moved south to Orange County before junior high... back to the bay area for a year after high school... back to So. Cal. where I met my ex.. who somehow convinced me that all our problems would be solved if we moved to Ohio, LOL. They weren't... hence the "ex" part. However, I met my current wonderful hubby here, so it all worked out.

Most of my family is from California, but my mother's family moved to Atlanta when I was a baby - still have family there. My mother now lives in Colorado. DH and I do spend most vacations in Florida... well, Walt Disney World, to be exact. (No connections in PA, though.)

(I'd love to hear someday what your DS thinks of Ohio.)
I'm in the trivalley! And I've met Wrose And her DS How funny!
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Old 02-13-2013, 04:36 PM   #2133
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I don't mind telling people. I figure it weeds out the people who might see my value only in what book I read or where I place my butt on SUnday mornings.
Yeah not in this area.
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Old 02-13-2013, 04:39 PM   #2134
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LOL - small world, huh? I actually grew up in San Mateo (just south of San Francisco)... then moved south to Orange County before junior high... back to the bay area for a year after high school... back to So. Cal. where I met my ex.. who somehow convinced me that all our problems would be solved if we moved to Ohio, LOL. They weren't... hence the "ex" part. However, I met my current wonderful hubby here, so it all worked out.

Most of my family is from California, but my mother's family moved to Atlanta when I was a baby - still have family there. My mother now lives in Colorado. DH and I do spend most vacations in Florida... well, Walt Disney World, to be exact. (No connections in PA, though.)

(I'd love to hear someday what your DS thinks of Ohio.)
That is pretty amazing. My DD is currently in Orlando til August for Disney College Program.


So far, DS likes it, doesn't mind the snow.


I loved Atlanta when I was there, it was pre-Olympics and I was single.
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Old 02-13-2013, 05:04 PM   #2135
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then moved south to Orange County before junior high... .)
<-----from Orange County Irvine to be exact

And, thanks for the good wishes BashfulStamper, hardly got over the first and it was off to the next funeral. Not fun but inevitable I suppose. Thanks also for your kind comments in my gallery
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Old 02-13-2013, 05:24 PM   #2136
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Between our posts and the gallery, I think we're keeping Kitty busy!
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:43 PM   #2137
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So can't there be meaning without spirituality or God?
A good cup of coffee gives me joy. That good coffee was grown with care by someone on a beautiful misty mountain. That joy I got is evident in the smile I give to those I pass in the morning. They smile and do their job a little bit more light hearted during the day.
I think joy is different from meaning, spirituality, and God! I never ever ever ever think about meaning or spirituality, and I only think about God when I'm debating and arguing with a Christian (in real life and in my head). I get joy from a ton of different things, but don't associate any of it with meaning or spirituality or God.
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Old 02-14-2013, 03:26 AM   #2138
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Between our posts and the gallery, I think we're keeping Kitty busy!
Acckkk!!! No kidding, LOL! (No time now... must resist temptation... must get back to work.)

I'll be back this evening.
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Old 02-14-2013, 04:52 AM   #2139
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For those of you who watch "The Good Wife", there was a very interesting episode 2 weeks ago. I am anxious for the follow up episode to see how they handle it. Hasn't been on the past 2 Sundays due to Super Bowl and Grammys.

Chris Noth's character is running in a political race against a woman that his campaign manager believes is an Atheist as she did not bow her head during a prayer ceremony. The campaign manager asks "Alicia" to do an interview and stating she is a Christian as that will help her husband. He also puts in a plant to ask the the opposing candidate why she didn't bow her head. She looks him square in the eye and states "I am an Atheist". The reporter is a bit stunned at her outright admission as he expectedf denial and/or apology. He got the opposite. He then asks Alicia does she believe in a god. She says no. He asks if she is an Atheist. She smiles and says "I believe I am".


I was glad to see this issue addressed even on a fictional TV show. I am really interested to see how the network handles it. As most of my friends are practicing (and believing) Catholics I haven't outright stated to them that I am a Atheist, but I'm getting there. I have told a few. Some of them like to have a prayer together if we eat at someone's home and some have even done it my home without asking us. I have decided to bow my head although I do not say the prayer. I am not sure if anyone has actually noticed I don't pray. I don't want to create problems with friends that are dear to me so I don't say anything. I'm thinking it makes me a bit of a coward.
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Old 02-14-2013, 07:45 AM   #2140
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[QUOTE=MadgeRPh;20005108]


I was glad to see this issue addressed even on a fictional TV show. I am really interested to see how the network handles it. QUOTE]

That reminds me of all the pre-1960s movies where you knew that one or both of the adulterers was going to die, or at least live a miserable, pathetic life full of sorrow and regret. I dont watch the show, but I would be interested in an update. Adulterers have won a reprive. We will see if atheists fare as well.
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Old 02-14-2013, 08:59 AM   #2141
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I don't think "most" would either. But the fact that enough are willing to do it repeatedly to these billboards says a lot to me. And a lot of others just shrug. They aren't out there trying to round up the offenders. Would there be a similar reaction if there were billboards advertising a church and they got defaced? A shrug? I don't think so. It would lead the local news.

Of course, the Christian community has a habit of not including people like that in their count. "They are not real Christians." And thus they can continue to claim that good Christians don't do anything bad. Even murderers who self-identify as Christians are not included. It's a win-win stance for them.

A lot of Christians don't approve of sex outside marriage either. But look at the rates of infidelity in this country, remembering that most people in this country identify as Christians.
I agree. While I said I don't think mowt would approve, they aren't quick to condem the behavior either.
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Old 02-14-2013, 09:04 AM   #2142
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Can I ask a question?

Are any of you familiar with Pantheism?

According to Wikipedia: "Pantheism is the belief that everything composes an all-encompassing, immanent God, or that the universe (or nature) is identical with divinity. Pantheists thus do not believe in a personal or anthropomorphic god."

My own interpretation is that everyone and everything is sacred, special, and connected. Everything we do has an effect on everything else. Everything we do makes a difference, in some small way, whether we ever see the effects or not. And no one is better or more important than anyone else - we are all equally special, important, sacred.

Or, to quote a Disney song, "every rock and tree and creature, has a life, has a spirit, has a name".

Perhaps it's wishful thinking on my part, but I like the idea that there is some meaning to life... which is the real reason I call myself an agnostic and not an atheist. I can't quite believe in a supreme being looking down on us and making decisions, but I do feel like maybe there's more to life than we can see.

(or maybe I just think too much.)
Great post!
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Old 02-14-2013, 09:11 AM   #2143
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I think joy is different from meaning, spirituality, and God! I never ever ever ever think about meaning or spirituality, and I only think about God when I'm debating and arguing with a Christian (in real life and in my head). I get joy from a ton of different things, but don't associate any of it with meaning or spirituality or God.
For me joy is A LOT of meaning. Sharing, volunteering, laughter, support, food, tears, sunshine, rain, family...they all give meaning to a day or a moment which add up to a lifetime.

I never give thought to God. I have very wonderful close friends who are very religious and believing and faithful. We hardly act differently on a day to day basis. I have friends who are atheists. We hardly act differently. I have friends who would probably consider themselves Christian and we hardly act differently. I even have, le gasp, republican frineds...ok we act a little differently lol

But for me meaning is the human and natural interaction of life. Giving something of myself to someone or something and having it move on past that. KWIM?
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Old 02-14-2013, 09:54 AM   #2144
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As most of my friends are practicing (and believing) Catholics I haven't outright stated to them that I am a Atheist, but I'm getting there. I have told a few. Some of them like to have a prayer together if we eat at someone's home and some have even done it my home without asking us. I have decided to bow my head although I do not say the prayer. I am not sure if anyone has actually noticed I don't pray. I don't want to create problems with friends that are dear to me so I don't say anything. I'm thinking it makes me a bit of a coward.
I think it would be more honest to at least tell the friends that pray at your own dinner table, that you don't beleive in god. Hopefully there is more depth to your friendship with these people than an (apparent) shared belief in Christianity. If they are horrified or upset then they are not appreciating your own self, and they don't deserve your time and attention. If they have sufficient depth to be worthy of your friendship then they will understand or at least be happy to accept you for you.
It is tempting to keep the statis quo, I know, and not rock the boat. It is natural to not want to offend or upset anyone but being an athiest is not offensive so we shouldn't act like it is.
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Old 02-14-2013, 12:10 PM   #2145
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For me joy is A LOT of meaning. Sharing, volunteering, laughter, support, food, tears, sunshine, rain, family...they all give meaning to a day or a moment which add up to a lifetime.

I never give thought to God. I have very wonderful close friends who are very religious and believing and faithful. We hardly act differently on a day to day basis. I have friends who are atheists. We hardly act differently. I have friends who would probably consider themselves Christian and we hardly act differently. I even have, le gasp, republican frineds...ok we act a little differently lol

But for me meaning is the human and natural interaction of life. Giving something of myself to someone or something and having it move on past that. KWIM?
Huh. I do have as hard a time grasping the concept of "meaning" as I do the concept of "spirituality". All the things you listed, they add joy to my life, and would give me a lifetime of joyful moments. And I can distinguish when something is "important" - like a hug, or moments of kindness.

But I still struggle to comprehend the concept of these sometimes important, always joyous moments adding "meaning" to life. I have always chalked it up to me having only a very shallow (like non-existant?) gutteral (?) instinctual relationship with concepts like "meaning", "spirituality", and "soul". I mean, I can look at these words and intellectually know what they are supposed to stand for, but I can't FEEL it. I know this absence of gutteral understanding has contributed to me NOT being a Christian (it does NOT feel REAL to me), but it has also contributed to me not ever having the urge to try yoga, meditation, or anything else that is spiritual. I guess what I am trying to convey, is that spirituality and meaning also don't feel real to me (or they are beyond my realm of comprehension), and I still don't quite know what a soul is, but that also doesn't feel real to me.

In high school, freshman year English class, the teacher always led us through and gave us a moment to meditate. This was not religious, though the religious students were welcome to pray silently during this moment. It was a stressful college-prep high school, and the teacher thought it would help us handle things better if we took a moment to slow down, and relax. This is where I found that I was different from most other people. The other students grasped what he was trying to have them do, and got it. I struggled, and during this meditation time, the first several times I was very confused wondering what I was supposed to be doing or thinking during this time. After the novelty wore off, I used this time to shut my eyes and send my thoughts into overdrive, to counter the boring real-life silent inaction, imagining myself on a super-fast roller coaster, and seeing how many planets I could race by before this moment would be over. I definitely know this was not the intent - this did not relax or de-stress me; the intent confused me and the only time it helped was if I was supremely sleepy and used this time to catch a bunch of micro-sleeps.

Also scattered throughout my life, there have been moments where a leader (a teacher? Coach? Different various people) have said to imagine that the air we breathe in, that it's entering through the top of the head and exiting through the bottoms of our feet, and to breathe slowly. This has always confused me too, since it has never relaxed me or taken away any stress, despite my successful imaginings. < shrug >

Actually the people I love hanging around with the most on a daily or weekly basis are ALL extreme right-wing, Christian Republicans. I assume we are the same, except that they all probably read the Bible and pray everyday. They are all great fun to hang out with, and they all add joy to my life.

Now I do acknowledge that most people easily grasp these concepts instinctively and automatically, so I do take people seriously when they say things like they like to meditate in the solitude of nature because it calms their souls, or that their relationship with Jesus is the only thing that got them through this or that trauma.
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Old 02-14-2013, 12:18 PM   #2146
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As most of my friends are practicing (and believing) Catholics I haven't outright stated to them that I am a Atheist, but I'm getting there. I have told a few. Some of them like to have a prayer together if we eat at someone's home and some have even done it my home without asking us. I have decided to bow my head although I do not say the prayer. I am not sure if anyone has actually noticed I don't pray. I don't want to create problems with friends that are dear to me so I don't say anything. I'm thinking it makes me a bit of a coward.
I would be sure to tell them, since I think it would certainly add to your enjoyment of their presence if you didn't have to hide that part of yourself from them. Also I would make certain to tell my friends that even though I'm atheist, they are more than welcome to pray in my home. I have no objections to me bowing my head in respect for them while they pray. But for my own sake, I need to know that they know that I am bowing my head out of respect for THEM, and not for their God, and that is why I would tell them. I would not want them (or anyone) to mistake me for a Christian.
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Old 02-14-2013, 12:46 PM   #2147
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For me Sophie "meaning" just equates with having something going that counts for something.
The weekend I do the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer is more meaningful for me than the GNO (girls night out for the uninitiated) I get to enjoy once every three months. Seeing the kids run out of classrooms smiling has more meaning than making dinner. But a nice dinner enjoyed with no kids whining sure is a joy lol

I think for me just doing what my body was intended to do (breathe, laugh, cry, eat, hug, rest, work, garden, whatever) gives meaning to the day. But I don't feel that anything beyond me is in play there. It's MY muscles, MY humor, MY sadness.
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Old 02-14-2013, 01:57 PM   #2148
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I'm in CA! ANd have been to Ohio. Uhhh Hamilton then we were driven to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame so I got to see a lot of it. SOOO different than here. My brother in law once apologized for the traffic. There were like 12 cars on the road LOL
LOL - yes, even after more than 20 years in Ohio, I still laugh when hubby complains about the traffic. He just has no clue.
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Old 02-14-2013, 02:02 PM   #2149
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That is pretty amazing. My DD is currently in Orlando til August for Disney College Program.


So far, DS likes it, doesn't mind the snow.


I loved Atlanta when I was there, it was pre-Olympics and I was single.
Yay for Disney College Program! (I'm definitely a BIG Disney fan.)

Glad DS is enjoying the snow... so far. I like it, too... for the first day or so... as long as I don't have to leave the house, LOL. I do try to enjoy the seasons - it's definitely different than what I grew up with.

I love Atlanta, too. We spent some long vacations there when I was a kid - thought my grandparents house was pretty magical. So many trees!
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Old 02-14-2013, 02:12 PM   #2150
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<-----from Orange County Irvine to be exact
Okay, it's official... all this talk of California is making me homesick! (No, seriously, I love it.)

My family moved around a bit when I was a kid, and then I bounced around a lot as a young adult. I've actually been at this address now for about 16 years - pretty settled at the moment. But before that:

California: San Carlos, San Mateo, Encino (for 3 months), back to San Mateo, Pleasanton... down south to Huntington Beach (where I graduated high school), another Huntington Beach... back up to Belmont, then San Mateo, then Belmont again... then back down to Irvine (yup - but just 3 or 4 months), Westminster, Huntington Beach, another HB, Santa Ana..

And then the big move to Ohio: Norwood, Cincinnati, another Cinci... then up to Westerville, another Westerville... until finally settling here in Centerburg... (although we tore down the old house and put up a new one, so there were also a few months in Gahanna).

I think that's it... might've missed one or two.
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Old 02-14-2013, 02:19 PM   #2151
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Great post!
Awww... thanks!
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Old 02-14-2013, 02:35 PM   #2152
This reminds me of a Star Trek episode....
 
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For those of you who watch "The Good Wife", there was a very interesting episode 2 weeks ago. I am anxious for the follow up episode to see how they handle it. Hasn't been on the past 2 Sundays due to Super Bowl and Grammys.

Chris Noth's character is running in a political race against a woman that his campaign manager believes is an Atheist as she did not bow her head during a prayer ceremony. The campaign manager asks "Alicia" to do an interview and stating she is a Christian as that will help her husband. He also puts in a plant to ask the the opposing candidate why she didn't bow her head. She looks him square in the eye and states "I am an Atheist". The reporter is a bit stunned at her outright admission as he expectedf denial and/or apology. He got the opposite. He then asks Alicia does she believe in a god. She says no. He asks if she is an Atheist. She smiles and says "I believe I am".

I was glad to see this issue addressed even on a fictional TV show. I am really interested to see how the network handles it. As most of my friends are practicing (and believing) Catholics I haven't outright stated to them that I am a Atheist, but I'm getting there. I have told a few. Some of them like to have a prayer together if we eat at someone's home and some have even done it my home without asking us. I have decided to bow my head although I do not say the prayer. I am not sure if anyone has actually noticed I don't pray. I don't want to create problems with friends that are dear to me so I don't say anything. I'm thinking it makes me a bit of a coward.
Interesting about the TV show; I haven't seen that show, just ads for it.
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Old 02-14-2013, 02:39 PM   #2153
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Spirituality - I sort of think of it as a somewhat emotional feeling. One of my sisters is still a practicing Catholic and pretty religious, and on one of my visits, something came up - some scene or maybe a sunset or flowers or something. Her "feelings" - the emotions that come up when something beautiful affects you - led her to say God things. She works at a Catholic college with nuns, so that's no surprise. But me? I get the feelings too but no longer feel "god" things - I can't say I think about the science either, but I just enjoy the beauty and the emotion that comes with it. I think it's just a life long habit after early indoctrination that causes believers to see their god everywhere. They think we can't have those feelings without it.

Um, yes we can.
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Old 02-14-2013, 02:48 PM   #2154
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Okay, it's official... all this talk of California is making me homesick! (No, seriously, I love it.)

My family moved around a bit when I was a kid, and then I bounced around a lot as a young adult. I've actually been at this address now for about 16 years - pretty settled at the moment. But before that:

California: San Carlos, San Mateo, Encino (for 3 months), back to San Mateo, Pleasanton... down south to Huntington Beach (where I graduated high school), another Huntington Beach... back up to Belmont, then San Mateo, then Belmont again... then back down to Irvine (yup - but just 3 or 4 months), Westminster, Huntington Beach, another HB, Santa Ana..

And then the big move to Ohio: Norwood, Cincinnati, another Cinci... then up to Westerville, another Westerville... until finally settling here in Centerburg... (although we tore down the old house and put up a new one, so there were also a few months in Gahanna).

I think that's it... might've missed one or two.
Ptown? really? I'm in Livermore. Have been for most of my life lol
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Old 02-14-2013, 02:50 PM   #2155
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I was glad to see this issue addressed even on a fictional TV show. I am really interested to see how the network handles it. As most of my friends are practicing (and believing) Catholics I haven't outright stated to them that I am a Atheist, but I'm getting there. I have told a few. Some of them like to have a prayer together if we eat at someone's home and some have even done it my home without asking us. I have decided to bow my head although I do not say the prayer. I am not sure if anyone has actually noticed I don't pray. I don't want to create problems with friends that are dear to me so I don't say anything. I'm thinking it makes me a bit of a coward.
Madge, I feel essentially the same way you do, and here's another point of view.

I don't feel like a coward because I don't feel the need to tell people about my personal non-religious beliefs, whether they be friends or acquaintances.

If a friend wants to pray in my home, they are welcome to do so, just as I feel perfectly comfortable in their home to simply bow my head out of respect for their belief, and NOT pray.

I have close friendships of 30 - 40 years who possibly may wonder about the state of my spiritual health, who know that we do not say grace in our family, and know we do not attend church. They have never brought it up. Maybe I just hang out with non-confrontational people, as I am that way, too.

With my temperament, I would probably be the same way if I were a Christian, and doubt I would be out there knocking on doors and spreading the word.

I think each of us, agnostic, atheist, or believer, needs to behave in a way that we are personally comfortable with, and try not to judge ourselves, or others. For those who want to carry the atheist banner, I say, carry on. For those like me, who want to simply think our own thoughts, I say we carry on, too.
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Old 02-14-2013, 02:56 PM   #2156
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So can't there be meaning without spirituality or God?
A good cup of coffee gives me joy. That good coffee was grown with care by someone on a beautiful misty mountain. That joy I got is evident in the smile I give to those I pass in the morning. They smile and do their job a little bit more light hearted during the day.
Victoria, when I first read this, my first thought was sort of in line with Sophie's - that what you were describing wasn't the "meaning" I was referring to... but your post really stuck with me, and I thought about it some more... and then I read all the rest of the posts between you and Sophie. (I found both your comments interesting - thank you!)

Anyway, I now find myself questioning whether the meaning I've been searching for even matters all that much. Your question "So can't there be meaning without spirituality or God?"... I think that's going to haunt me (in a good way!) for a while.

And this is probably a crazy thing to say here, but I can't help thinking about an old TV show. Anyone here watch Joan of Arcadia? Yes, it was religious... but in a really different sort of way. I really liked the show, not because Joan was doing "what God wanted her to do", but because she had the opportunity to see how one small gesture can have such a ripple effect. (God would tell her to do something, and then she would get to see the effect it had, trickling down through several people over time.) I think that's kind of what I meant about Pantheism and everyone/everything being connected. (The coffee-growers, to the pickers, to your cuppa Joe, to the people you smile at...)

(For the record, though, I think a lot of Pantheists don't consider themselves to be spiritual - and most would say that Pantheists *are* Atheists.)

Anyway, I'm just finding it interesting that what I think of as spirituality isn't really that different from your "coffee joy" analogy. But what I can't figure out (and please don't take this the wrong way - I mean no offense) is if you're more spiritual than you think, or I'm less so, because it just sounds like maybe we aren't all that far apart.
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Old 02-14-2013, 03:04 PM   #2157
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Kitty, no offense at all. I don't consider myself spiritual in the slightest. I don't believe in a spirit so how could I be? I think every experience has value and an energy. That energy can't be changed but it can be transferred. I don't mean like lystical energy I mean emotional energy I guess. A nice drive to work can be passed on in holding the door open for someone. Or maybe you meet the UPS guy at the walk with a bottle of water. Or maybe you've had a miserable day and you cry and someone else feels they can open up about something sad because you've vented.

I sound all peach blossom and land of milk and honey lol. Trust me I've had rough times. I won't bother you with the list but some days life is a struggle and some days are perfection. They have equal value to me.
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Old 02-14-2013, 03:04 PM   #2158
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Ptown? really? I'm in Livermore. Have been for most of my life lol
Wow, it really *is* a small world, LOL. (Oddly, the first thing that comes to mind when I think of Livermore is a church my parents tried there, LOL.)

But the second thing that comes to mind... big earthquake centered there... let's see, I was in fourth grade, I think? 1978 maybe? Very scary... after-shock almost as big as the first, two days later. Were you there then?
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Old 02-14-2013, 03:09 PM   #2159
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Wow, it really *is* a small world, LOL. (Oddly, the first thing that comes to mind when I think of Livermore is a church my parents tried there, LOL.)

But the second thing that comes to mind... big earthquake centered there... let's see, I was in fourth grade, I think? 1978 maybe? Very scary... after-shock almost as big as the first, two days later. Were you there then?
That was the one when I was in kindergarten!! I spent days glued to the teacher I was so scared. I think that's why I studied geology in college.
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Old 02-14-2013, 03:28 PM   #2160
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That was the one when I was in kindergarten!! I spent days glued to the teacher I was so scared. I think that's why I studied geology in college.
I can *so* understand that! My brother was probably just a year or so younger than you - not in school yet. He was shopping with my mom, in a tiny, narrow little store. He was playing with a box of toys they had out. Behind him was a solid oak door, just leaning against the wall. The quake hit, things were falling off shelves left and right, and my mom was screaming for my brother. He got up, headed towards her, and the door came crashing down just right behind him. Poor kid was a wreck. Of course, mom and dad kept saying "don't worry, it won't happen again". Then, two days later...

I'm happy to say it didn't permanently scar him... but it was scary! Hmmm... he's an architect now. Wonder if some small part of him wants to make sure building are made a little more earthquake-safe, LOL.

(Late again... the rest will have to wait until tomorrow!)
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