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Old 01-24-2014, 03:39 AM   #2721
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Like any large organization that is tolerant of a variety of beliefs, you will enjoy it more if you try attending a meeting of a group of humanists or Atheist/Agnostics. I have been a member of two Unitarian Fellowships and both were lay led and mainly Humanists or Atheists/Agnostics. I feel at home in this group. The group you are describing probably would not. Consider shopping around.
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Old 01-24-2014, 05:40 AM   #2722
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I had to google what "Reiki" was!! And then I had to google "Iridology". I guess if nothing else, they've got the placebo effect (a very powerful effect) going for them, just like prayer.
Yes, the placebo effect is the major factor.
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Old 01-24-2014, 05:52 AM   #2723
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Like any large organization that is tolerant of a variety of beliefs, you will enjoy it more if you try attending a meeting of a group of humanists or Atheist/Agnostics. I have been a member of two Unitarian Fellowships and both were lay led and mainly Humanists or Atheists/Agnostics. I feel at home in this group. The group you are describing probably would not. Consider shopping around.
Last time I went UU I was a member of the free thinkers group. They too did the thing with taking turns talking. Some, male members(of course), would talk for way more than the allotted 2min even though the moderator was timing them. That meant that you only got around the group one time most of the time. There was little time to go around again so you could respond to what someone else said. I suppose I could try them out again, though.And you're right I would prefer having a lay lead fellowship.
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Old 01-24-2014, 09:35 AM   #2724
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Last time I went UU I was a member of the free thinkers group. They too did the thing with taking turns talking. Some, male members(of course), would talk for way more than the allotted 2min even though the moderator was timing them. That meant that you only got around the group one time most of the time. There was little time to go around again so you could respond to what someone else said. I suppose I could try them out again, though.And you're right I would prefer having a lay lead fellowship.
Life is too short to spend with people when you don't share their beliefs, so I agree with lilactime, shop around. I suggest you don't go back to the male-dominated free thinkers group as nothing is likely to have changed there.
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Old 01-25-2014, 06:48 AM   #2725
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It seems fashionable in larger gatherings to use that "talking stick" method. He/she who holds the stick talks, the rest listen. It is supposedly a very good thing to be really listened to and not to have people try to "fix" you - especially where feelings are involved. That being said, I prefer to have a conversation or discussion where there is an exchange of ideas and views. I benefit from the observations & thoughts of other atheists, and don't have the opportunity to gather with like minded individuals as much as I would like. Hence, my presence here. It really depends on the purpose of the group. Try a different group - that one doesn't sound like it is your cup of tea. I have a small group of like minded friends that I met at a Unitarian Fellowship 20 years ago and they are such an enrichment to my life! Here's to a great outcome for you!
By the way, I gain from all the input from this group. Thanks.
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Old 01-25-2014, 09:57 AM   #2726
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Hi lilactime, thanks for your nice comments on this group. I am glad we are here for you.
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Old 01-26-2014, 02:46 AM   #2727
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I appreciate your words Stephanie.
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Old 02-05-2014, 07:28 AM   #2728
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Hey! Did any of you watch the Bill Nye vs Ken Ham debate yesterday? (Ken Ham is the guy who heads up the organization that believes that the Earth is only 6000 years old)
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Old 02-05-2014, 02:19 PM   #2729
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Hey! Did any of you watch the Bill Nye vs Ken Ham debate yesterday? (Ken Ham is the guy who heads up the organization that believes that the Earth is only 6000 years old)
Yes, I did. Did you? Nye didn't get sucked into trying to refute everything he said. He avoided most of the bible stuff, except for Noah's ark. Ham looked at Nye less and less as the debate went on. Nye made incredulous faces when Ham was talking. It was great to see someone talking about the actual science even though Ham was trying desperately to hang onto morality, the bible is true, and laws of nature only apply to the present day and they can't be used to learn about the past.

I also loved that Nye never referred to to the "museum" he always called it "this facility."
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Old 02-05-2014, 04:01 PM   #2730
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I wasn't quite curious enough to watch, I guess I feel like, what's the point. People like that just dismiss everything you say.
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Old 02-05-2014, 06:52 PM   #2731
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Hey! Did any of you watch the Bill Nye vs Ken Ham debate yesterday? (Ken Ham is the guy who heads up the organization that believes that the Earth is only 6000 years old)
I think it's more than an organization. It's what my private school/church taught.
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Old 02-05-2014, 07:58 PM   #2732
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Ham has that "creation museum" that isn't. lol My opinion.

Yeah that guy.

Yeah the idiot.
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Old 02-05-2014, 10:27 PM   #2733
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I only watched the opening statements, muting the speakers when Ham read scripture. When it was Ham's turn for a 30-minute presentation, I turned it off and went to sleep.
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Old 02-06-2014, 05:48 AM   #2734
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Ham has that "creation museum" that isn't. lol My opinion.

Yeah that guy.

Yeah the idiot.
That's why I liked Nye calling it a facility and never saying the word museum.
I guess I watched because I decided that this one might be different. It wasn't William Lane Craig who does circular reasoning and rhetoric to beat his opponent. Fortunately it was different.

I wish Nye had said evolution has nothing to do with atheism or the supposed attack on Christianity instead of just saying billions of people who are religious accept the fact of evolution. Maybe a minor distinction but I wish he'd made his point my way instead.
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Old 02-06-2014, 05:53 AM   #2735
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Default Further proof

Archeologists uncover oldest human skull outside of Africa and they're Israeli



Archeologists uncover oldest human skull outside of Africa | JPost | Israel News
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Old 02-06-2014, 05:55 AM   #2736
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I was surprised when Ham said that secularists had hijacked the word "science". I had never thought of "my side" hijacking anything; only "their side" hijacking the words "family" and for a while, "marriage" (I'm appeased now by gay-rights groups taking the word back to use it in their own "marriage equality" phrase).
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Old 02-06-2014, 05:58 AM   #2737
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Archeologists uncover oldest human skull outside of Africa and they're Israeli



Archeologists uncover oldest human skull outside of Africa | JPost | Israel News

Coolness!!! (at first I misread and thought the skull was Israeli)
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Old 02-06-2014, 05:59 AM   #2738
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The entire debate can be summarized as, science always questions, faith has no need to.

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Old 02-06-2014, 10:20 AM   #2739
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The entire debate can be summarized as, science always questions, faith has no need to.

Rainsong
That is exactly right, and 'never the twain shall meet'.
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Old 02-18-2014, 09:15 PM   #2740
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Ran across this interesting article about atheist characters on TV.

As atheist TV characters increase, here are 5 of the best | Faitheist
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Old 02-18-2014, 11:28 PM   #2741
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Ran across this interesting article about atheist characters on TV.

As atheist TV characters increase, here are 5 of the best | Faitheist
It is interesting that atheist characters on TV are such a big deal in America today, the way gay characters were a big deal 15 years ago with Will and Grace, and Ellen coming out. The way I read this is that it is worse to be atheist than gay in America, and we all know how hard it is to be gay.
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Old 02-19-2014, 12:51 AM   #2742
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Oh it's definitely worse to be atheist than gay. A lot more people now understand that being gay is not a choice, but you can't tell them the same thing about atheism. But now we have social networks making it easier for people to realize they aren't alone....

No wonder some countries severely restrict the internet.
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Old 02-19-2014, 05:56 AM   #2743
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I don't think it's worse to be an atheist. Yes, atheists can be shunned by their families and society in general. However, there are still wide swaths of the country that think being gay makes you morally bankrupt. Generally people are more accepting of gays but institutions such as the Catholic Church, more specifically the hierarchy of the Church, still hold a great deal of power in this country and have as their doctrine that being gay is "intrinsically disordered." Of course if you add trans people, their position in society is even worse.
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Old 02-19-2014, 09:40 AM   #2744
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Greta Christina's blog post about coming out atheist and her new book not so surprisingly titled, Coming Out Atheist: How to Do It, How to Help Each Other, and Why

The relevant part ...In preparation for writing this book, I read and listened to hundreds of “coming out atheist” stories, and there was an immense variety among them; I read stories that were hilarious, poignant, tragic, ironic, sweet, dramatic, joyful, anticlimactic. (And yes, many of these stories appear in the book, told in people’s own words.) But as I started to read through the hundreds of coming out stories I’d collected, one consistent theme emerged: Most of the time, coming out atheist turns out okay ... Just as an aside, Greta is gay.
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Old 02-19-2014, 10:02 AM   #2745
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I guess I was thinking in the more generic attitude of people who are fundamentalists and believe gays and atheists are all going to hell anyway. They can be taught that being gay is not a choice, sometimes, but then of course the gay person is supposed to choose to be celibate if they want to get to heaven. Atheists are simply dismissed, no way you're getting in. And a lot of people still don't know what an atheist really is. Which is comical.

I read a book about ten years ago, just a skiinny book about atheists in Canada and the US who had come out and some were written out of wills, disowned by families, etc. There were a lot of statistics in that one, but it was interesting.

But, if it is getting better on an individual basis, that is good to know.

I haven't experienced any ill effects that I know of. But I don't just go around telling everyone I meet. lol And I don't put signs on my car. I wouldn't worry about it so much where I live, but if I travel, I don't want to get keyed because I have a Darwin fish or something on my car. I'll stick to "Borg Institute of Technology" for my bumper sticker.
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Old 02-19-2014, 10:08 AM   #2746
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Did anyone see the backlash against a new show on the CW network, Star Crossed? There's a scene in a high school where they say the Pledge - and leave out the "under God" part.

I can't seem to find out if the show is set in the present or before 1954, but some of the comments on the FB page indicate the ignorance of people, asking "when the pledge was rewritten" - obviously unaware that "Under God" was added in 1954 in the McCarthy years.

And amazing to see some posting they won't watch the show any more because of that.

Comments are really ignorant - "why insult so many people, when you can just not say the words if you don't agree," or "you can say them and not believe them, what does it matter." Um, so you're saying you make the pledge without meaning it?? My answer would be, "because being inclusive is better than being exclusive in this country and including the phrase is excluding a lot of Americans. Why can't you just pray in church and leave it out of the pledge?"
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Old 02-19-2014, 02:38 PM   #2747
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For me personally, being an atheist has been extremely easy. And I DO tell people about it, if they give me even the slightest HINT that they think I am a Christian. However, I DO live in a more liberal area.

But if I had to choose for myself personally, I would choose the hardships I feel as an atheist over the hardships I imagine that I would feel as a gay person.

Edited to add: I haven't HAD any atheist-related hardships.
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Old 02-22-2014, 06:54 AM   #2748
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Yesterday I visited a fellow card-maker friend who is a real Bible thumper. As I was leaving, she asked if I would check her mailbox. I brought her mail and as she leafed through it, she said absentmindedly "oh, this is my prayer booklet. I haven't prayed lately..." whereupon I said "I haven't prayed lately either." LOL
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Old 02-22-2014, 10:05 AM   #2749
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Yesterday I visited a fellow card-maker friend who is a real Bible thumper. As I was leaving, she asked if I would check her mailbox. I brought her mail and as she leafed through it, she said absentmindedly "oh, this is my prayer booklet. I haven't prayed lately..." whereupon I said "I haven't prayed lately either." LOL
Good answer!
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Old 02-22-2014, 02:14 PM   #2750
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Hah, good answer, Sophie. I wonder what "lately" meant to her? Couple days, or hours, or ...?

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Old 02-26-2014, 08:07 PM   #2751
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Thumbs up Ingersoll Link

FYI.. I found this website if anyone is interested in reading some of his stuff.
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Old 02-27-2014, 10:39 AM   #2752
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Loving this thread! Coming from "down home" town with those who follow their faith blindly is hard, especially when my bestie is an avid church-goer. I know how to keep things to myself and still love everyone. I'm so thankful there are others out there like my husband and I.
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Old 02-27-2014, 10:55 AM   #2753
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Welcome to the thread!!! We are some wild and crazy gals! Okay well, maybe. ha ha

Always nice to see new people here.
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Old 02-27-2014, 11:34 AM   #2754
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Loving this thread! Coming from "down home" town with those who follow their faith blindly is hard, especially when my bestie is an avid church-goer. I know how to keep things to myself and still love everyone. I'm so thankful there are others out there like my husband and I.
A warm welcome from New Zealand. Glad you have found us!
Stephanie
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Old 02-28-2014, 04:25 AM   #2755
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A warm welcome from Canada. I find inspiration, intelligence and some delicious humour here.
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Old 02-28-2014, 04:33 AM   #2756
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Glad to meet you! All of us have the same reaction to finding this thread. Thank heavens (pun intended) there is a corner for Free Thinkers. Hope you'll join the conversation and also tell your story. Were you always an atheist or did you "deconvert?"
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Old 02-28-2014, 11:32 AM   #2757
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I'll start! Ha ha

I was lovingly indoctrinated into the Catholic faith from birth on, and never questioned. I grew up in Catholic schools, learning evolution in science - I remember the nuns saying how the bible said "one day" for God but we don't know what "one day" was for God, and could have been millions of years - was never taught that young earth stuff - never even heard of it until the last ten or fifteen years.

Nothing bad happened to make me hate religion. There were a few things that happened that got me thinking. And that was it.

One day I said to my daughter that I thought I was an atheist. She said, "That's a strange thing to hear from your 55 year old mother." lol That was seven years ago - and I didn't say it to her until I knew it for myself.

Turns out, I did a terrible job at indoctrinating my kids. I had no idea! My parents had it easy, everybody they knew was Catholic, everybody I knew until I was 16, was white and Catholic - except for a handful of Protestants.

My kids say they never really believed any of it. I realized that giving your early reading child a book called "bible stories" along with all the other "stories" they were reading, made it just another set of tales!! Yep, I failed.

So there's my story. In a nutshell.

Oh, one of the things that got me thinking was running into people (here on SCS) who believed in the young earth and the literal bible. I was gobsmacked. Dumbfounded. Shocked!!!
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Old 03-24-2014, 09:20 PM   #2758
This reminds me of a Star Trek episode....
 
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Wow I'm a thread killer!

So who's watching Cosmos? I'm getting a kick out of the reactions of the Ken Ham crowd every week.
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Old 03-25-2014, 12:33 AM   #2759
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stampin Wrose View Post
So who's watching Cosmos? I'm getting a kick out of the reactions of the Ken Ham crowd every week.
We don't get Cosmos in New Zealand so I Googled it and was amazed that creationalists even care about equal air time. Don't they "know" that they are right? In any case why don't they do their own thing instead of wanting to ride on the coattails of an established science programme? To answer my own question they are clearly wanting credibility within the scientific world. 150 years ago creationalists would be denoucing science as evil, they would not be wanting to share science's limelight. Personally I think all scientists should refuse to debate with, or even interview, a creationalist. Like petty criminals who see their exploits on the news, it only encourages them.
Stephanie
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Old 03-25-2014, 01:15 AM   #2760
This reminds me of a Star Trek episode....
 
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Very true; there was a recent "debate" that Bill Nye, the Science Guy, bothered to have with Ken Ham, the Creationist Museum guy.

Ham used the publicity generated to get enough donations to finish his museum. Or theme park. Or whatever Christian thing it is.

I agree with Tyson on this. He recently said, "I think the media has to sort of come out of this ethos that I think was in principle a good one, but doesn't really apply in science. The ethos was, whatever story you give, you have to give the opposing view, and then you can be viewed as balanced," Tyson said, adding, "you don't talk about the spherical earth with NASA and then say let's give equal time to the flat-earthers."
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