Thursday, May 31, 2007

Trip down memory lane...

As I read through this article I could identify with it, hell there was a point in my younger years where i would be supportive of this.. But now when i read it so many things run through my head. but more interesting was some of the comments made in the post itself.

Like some of the following:

Today Pentecostalism and related charismatic offshoots have spread across the globe and account for at least a quarter of the 2 billion Christians worldwide, according to the World Christian Database. A large part of this growth is happening in Africa, Latin America and parts of Asia. Although the movement was marginalized in the early 1900s, by the end of the century, it had made inroads in such mainstream denominations as Catholicism and Presbyterianism.
Why the rapid growth?

"It's a very emotional form of worship that enables people in groups to experience ecstasy, emotional release and communal support," said Amanda Porterfield, the Robert A. Spivey Professor of Religion at Florida State University.

It also allows people to share suffering and grief, whether because of poverty and illness or social alienation, she said. And it creates community.

"To belong to a group that is the custodian of a supernatural experience," she said, "is powerful."

aaahhhh, ok that makes sense... So they are taking advantage of those suffering, in grief, poor, sick , and alienated... Yup, that's what made christianity strong in the first place.

The other thing that gets to me about this whole story is how strong the use of peer pressure is being pushed on these people. In practically every story mentioned the individuals are constantly berated and pushed.. Being told that if they don't speak in tongues something is wrong with them or they don't "Truly" believe.

In each case they end with something like this

But she doesn't need to be convinced. Her spirit has already been released to God.
So in the end they finally submitted. It seems as if this a legal way to torture someone until they finally cave to the churches will. Terrible!

You know in your heart....

During my latest encounter with a couple of door to door "soul" winners from the local church... This was the statement they decided to leave me with when our conversation was over:

You know in your heart that god is real. You know in your heart that you should follow god.
As if saying everyone is "Born" knowing that god is real. I happen to disagree with this claim. If you can be born knowing a particular god is real, then why does "christianity" have a specific beginning in a specific area of the world? What about the native Indians... you know those people that lived in harmony with the land before we arrived and practically wiped them out... Also, if you can be born with the knowledge of the existence of a god...... Why are we not born able to speak? or Why are we not born knowing fire is hot? Why does it have to be learned through experience?

I've also noticed that every time I encounter people on their "Soul Winning" salesman pitch, they continue to try to find what your "problem" is. These 2 constantly kept saying things like:
So your problem is with religion?
Is your problem with churches?
Oh your problem is with Preachers?
Oh you don't believe in hell, so you believe in reincarnation?
Well, I don't know what happen to you... but in my experience I found that people who don't believe in god had something happen to them or disappoint them during church.
It continues to get irritating. I don't mind people wanting to understand you and asking probing questions. My problem is when they try to answer themselves instead of listening to what I say. I don't see my lack of belief in a divine being a problem.

Friday, May 25, 2007

How creative...

and of course i say this with a hint of sarcasm.... checked my email this morning to find that I had a new comment on one of my older blogs titled "Do you believe" from Victoria. I thought it was kinda funny, and figured I would respond to it here. From her writing and spelling I figure she's probably still in high school.

Listen dude, God is real and if u wanna have a convo about it, i'll straighten all the insucurities u have about the bible.
First let me say, I have no problems having a "convo" about it, but in all fairness I doubt you will "straighten all my "insucurities" about the bible. I have no insecurities about the bible. Calling the bible fiction and worth reading does not seem to me to be an insecurity, it's simply my honest opinion.
It is ashame that u r so stubborn and unsure about the bible as well as urself.
I'm not unsure about myself.. I did not think i was being "stubborn". I'm quite willing to change my views... Given enough proof :)
No matter what u believe, I promise, u will know the truth one day, and God WILL give u a second chance.
Ok? I've noticed this seems to be a common "physiological" game with those of faith. It's an interesting trick... but really does not mean much... It would be like me saying "I promise you... one day you will doubt".
U have alot of knowledge, now use it in a useful and beneficial way.
Thank you for the kind compliment, but everyone has the capability to learn unfortunately many do not want to.
u probly won't listen, but at least u now know SOME truth.
I have listened, but you have not provided me with any truth unless you consider your promise to be a truth. Thanks for your comment, but I won't be contacting you to enlighten me of my "insucurities".....

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

And an angel appeared....

To the three women being held captive, and spoke to them God's word that one of them would give birth to a daughter that would save the Sea....

Hey, you never know... maybe god speaks to the fishes too. Too bad the young saviour was killed by a stingray, or maybe that was the sacrifice needed.. lol

Ok seriously, I came across this in "The New Scientist" about a "Virgin Birth" and I could not resist. It makes one wonder... Is it possible for humans to reproduce asexually? Sure, it probably is very rare.. but could this possibly explain many of the stories about virgin births? I mean heck... is it possible that Mary was actually a hermaphrodite? Yes, highly unlikely... but quite interesting to ponder :)

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Disappointing poll results...

I must admit, at first I thought this poll was pretty interesting. It was also nice to see atheists taking part and voting. However, I think it is safe to say this is no longer the case. It appears that someone is simply running a script to continuously vote Atheism "is the only rational outlook", probably with the intention of hitting 100% or at least 99% at the most. That's quite unfortunate in my opinion. I think simply by us participating in the poll whether we won or not would have said more than faking the data.

I was going to post a pic of the poll, but decided it was not worth it, since it's very obvious it has been turned into a joke. My reason for this?

1) There were at my last check 46,292 people that had voted.
2) "is the only rational outlook" was at 96%
3) Approximately 6 votes were cast every second (approximately 354 votes each min). I determined this by simply taking 2 snapshots 60 seconds apart. At 5:20pm there were 45,938 then at 5:21 there were 46,292.
4) It is simply not logical for this website to get that much participation. And if it did for real, the poll results would be much different.

Based on the above evidence, and the fact that the other poll barely hit 2,000 votes... My hypothesis is someone has turned this into some contest to brag about. Again, kinda sad. I think it would have been a more powerful message to them if we had simply participated. Oh well.....

Friday, May 18, 2007

Interesting Poll Results?

After reading the "Christianity Today Poll" by Friendly Atheist, I figured I would participate and vote as well.... You can imagine my delight when I noticed the results as of 11:10pm May 18, 2007. I wonder if they will spin this? or simply disregard it as a bogus poll? lol you can vote/view the results here.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007


I was laying in bed last night after listening to some of Julie Sweeney's clips earlier that day, recalling to myself some of the questions I had in my younger years involved in the church. I suppose it started with questions like these:

If God created Adam, did he have a belly button? (later i would here jokes saying sure he did, when God was finished he said "Pop" your done!)

When God created Adam from clay, was he standing up or lying down?

If he was lying on the ground how did God sculpt his backside? Did he breath life into Adam, then when he stood up he sculpted his backside? or did he flip him like a hamburger before bringing him to life?

If he was standing up, how was the clay strong enough to hold the weight of the clay for the upper body?

How did God create Eve from a Adam's Rib? Did he just form more clay around the rib? Or did he just grow eve from the rib bone like you would grow algae?

Why did God not want Adam and Eve to eat from the tree of knowledge? Does that mean God wants us to remain stupid or ignorant?

Why did he want us to be naked? Is God some sort of pervert?

These were questions I would ask and never get replies from. Instead, I was typically told, "Well God is all powerful, what we can't understand we are not meant to." or they would get angry at the questions I would ask.

I started thinking about the physiology in the christian faith as well. This faith developed employing some rather successful techniques. Besides the obvious believe or go to hell. One of my mothers favorites was "Be sure your sins will find you out" a paraphrase of Numbers 32:23 "But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the LORD: and be sure your sin will find you out." At first this was a powerful motivator as a child until my first "test" of it :) I did many such tests as a kid. After not getting good answers to my questions above.. There were nights I would lay and bed asking God or even Satan to reveal themselves to me. I tried to make deals with them. I'd say stuff like ok God, if your real, if you exist, prove it to me! Show me with something tangible or personal. Honestly, I made the same offer to the Devil. Obviously neither took the challenge.

My wife tells me sometimes I'm obsessed. She will ask me if you don't believe in god why is it something you talk about or mention so often. Well, because it's everywhere!

Sorta like when you buy a new car. You love this car, and you don't recall seeing that many of the on the road. However, once you are in the car and driving around you start to notice they are all over the place. The same seems to be true with respects the christianity, once you move away from it you start to notice how intrusive into main stream life it is.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Thoughts on "I Sold My Soul on eBay"

Just finished up reading Hemant Mehta's (aka The Friendly Atheist) book "I Sold My Soul on eBay" and figured I would make a few comments about it.

First, I was not very impressed with the forward. I thought it seemed to directed towards the "Christian" majority especially when ending with "Because prophets can come from the most unexpected places, can't they?". Of course at the same time I suppose that was the point of the book, but still after reading the whole book; this seems to be in conflict with Hemant's own recommendations later on in regards to not ostracising others :). I understand it is just a forward and heck it's not even a full 2 pages, but for me it did seem to set the wrong kind of mood to start off the book.

The next thing I was slightly disappointed about was the fact there was absolutely no description about the alter calls? Hemmant, you mean out of all those churches you had nothing to say about the those very awkward situations? Have churches stopped this practice at the end of the preaching? In my experience with church service this is a very common practice, one that in my opinion would at least deserved a bit more information on how different churches handled it. There was only one reference I found, but it was more informal than what I've seen in other churches. The alter calls I'm talking about involve the preacher asking everyone to close their eyes with soft music playing and typically share some type of intimate thought to set the mood asking people to raise their hand if their not saved then offering them a chance to be saved or come forward to be led to salvation.

I know that's probably a bit nit picky, but other than that it was a very enjoyable read. Hemant has a great story to tell, and I enjoyed every page. After finishing the book my first thought was I wonder how many churches in my area would be open to the idea of an open dialog similar to what Hemant had with Pastor Tim. My next thought was should I send copies of "I Sold My Soul on eBay" to the local churches? :) . Then I started searching for atheist groups near me. There does appear to be 2 in the Tallahassee area (CFI Community of Tallahassee, and The Union of Freethinking Students). I might try to attend one of them, but that's still a day trip for me. It's about an hour 1/2 drive one way. Doesn't sound like much but 3 hours just in drive time adds up. If anyone knows of atheist groups or atheists/agnostics/freethinkers around Apalachicola, Eastpoint, Carrabelle, or Port Saint George Florida please post me a comment! or drop me an email to

Seriously, I think Hemant did a great job. With each evaluation of the various churches he attended I was taken back to my younger years and could identify with everything he said. Many of the same questions he raised where thoughts I had when I was involved with Christianity. It was funny to listen to some of the sermons overviews... It was like hearing voices from the past. Since the Bible never changes, neither do many of the sermons.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

My thought on Divinity

Any Questions?

Islam is bad....

Typically I pick on christianity simply because it is the most prevalent religion here in the US, but I have to say.. I came across this site and was truly amazed at what i saw and read. I suppose it's one thing to hear and read about the muslim faith and another to have pictures of those that are actively participating in it to the extream. Something that continues to nag at me is - How the hell is this the fastest growing religion? Who the hell is converting to it and why!! To be perfectly frank, this is a truly Fucked up religion even more so than christianity in my opinion. I've done some reading that states it's a peaceful religion, but it sure seems like this beginning of the spanish inquisition but in islam form.. Again I can't understand people converting to this faith. You can't even call it a step backwards its more of a step straight into antiquity. This isn't a religion it's a Glorified Gang with a holy book. I'd be willing to bet Gang Leaders have more ethical standards compared to this religion. Ok So maybe I'm generalizing a bit too much based on just the information on this web page. And I fully admit I do not yet own a koran and have never attended a muslim service. I've read information on the muslim faith and just as christianity it "claims" to push peace even the term Islam means peace, but just as christians cherry pick from the bible... Muslims do the same with the Koran. However, In recent times you have to admit that we have not seen very many christians cutting off heads or hands of non believers. This yells barbaric, arcane, and the commitment needed to inflict that type of gruesome acts onto another human being is beyond my willingness to comprehend at the moment. Yes I understand there are somewhere in the realm of 10 million muslims in America alone and by those standards obviously not all muslims are practicing their faith as those represented in the following link. However, why are they not speaking out more openly against these extremists? Why do we not hear of some countermeasure from those "Good" muslims? Or have I just not noticed them in the news? I wonder how different America would be if the majority changed from christian to islam? Given how our government seems to lean toward the christian right would they follow suit if islam was the dominate religion? Would laws get passed supporting the islamic faith as has happened with the christian faith? Just some thoughts... I think I'm done ranting now.....

WARNING: This site contains graphic photos of actions taken by followers of Islam!!!
Seriously, this page contains a picture of a body with removed head beside it.
Middle East Info

Just to be fair, here is a link I found later providing more insite into the islamic faith.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Took the plunge

Well I finally decided to make a move that would expose my lack of belief to those around me. I decided on a hat, since I typically favor baseball style caps. I retired my old hat for this one that I got from cafe press.

I chose this because to be quite honest I do not think those around will actually get it. In a way I suppose I'm testing the waters. My first guess is that people will only notice the cross and the start of david and figure that it is a religious hat and I'd be willing to bet that no one will even notice that is says Detox or what it is implying. Because I live well into bible belt territory, I tried to pick something subtle... Something that forced you to think a bit.. What do you think?

Today also marks the day I got my copy of "I Sold My Soul on eBay" by The Friendly Atheist and "Letter to a Christian Nation" by Sam Harris.... I'm about half way through "I Sold My Soul on eBay". I'll post a review when I'm done, but be warned I was never very good at book reports :)

A little humor today

God loses bank Account from Dave's Daily

"An author who changed his name to God for a book was dumped by his bank. Sheridan Simove, 35, had his HSBC account closed after changing his name by deed poll, reports The Sun. The bachelor, of Wandsworth, South London, said: "At first they told me I needed two names to have an account - so I replied that I'd become Almighty God. HSBC said he must use his original name."