Tag Archives: agnosticism

Why I’ve Stopped Knocking Religion

For a number of years, after I finally reached the conclusion that there was no religion to which I could give allegiance, and no metaphysical theory that made sense to me, it was my conceit to make snide remarks about organized religion — especially Catholicism, the religion into which I was allegedly born.  I’m not sure why I did that, but I suspect it involved lingering guilt about having set aside the faith of my forebears, and that it was more about me and my issues than it was about the church.

There is absolutely no question, and there never has been, but what religion in general has been used unskillfully by many, and cynically by many more. Continue reading

Atheists Reach Out — Just Don’t Call It Proselytizing

Late next month, atheists, humanists, freethinkers, secularists — in short, nonbelievers of every description — will gather in dozens of cities to mark the holiday they call HumanLight.

Whether by singing from a Humanist Hymnal, decorating a winter wreath or lighting candles dedicated to personal heroes, they’ll celebrate what has been an exhilarating ride for the faithless — a surge in recognition that has many convinced they’re on the brink of making a mark on mainstream America.

During the past three years, membership has grown in local and national associations of nonbelievers. Books attacking faith as a delusion shot up best-seller lists. For the first time, the faithless even raised enough funds to hire a congressional lobbyist.

Building on that momentum, nonbelievers have begun a very public campaign to win broad acceptance. On billboards and bus ads, radio commercials and the Internet, atheists are coming forward to declare, quite simply: We’re here. And we’re just like you….

Atheists Reach Out — Just Don’t Call It Proselytizing – WSJ.com

A religion in every sense that matters: beliefs; obsession with God; obsession with getting their message across and making converts; ritual; community; dogma; us v. them; promise of reward (freedom from delusion) — the whole magilla.  And these people want to be thought of as non-religious.

A 180° turn, as I’ve said here many times, still leaves you in the same old ruts.  New paths, by their very nature, diverge.  This wouldn’t bother me if it didn’t involve a lot of committed, reasonably intelligent people using their efforts and talents for beating their heads against the wall.  It wouldn’t even bother me if it had a chance of accomplishing anything useful, but it doesn’t.  Religion is the defining factor for billions of people, and that’s not going to change, whether here or among the !Kung.  There’s important work to be done, folks!