In a world dominated by magical thinking, superstition and misinformation, give yourself the benefit of doubt. This is one skeptic's view of the Universe.

"Tell people there’s an invisible man in the sky who created the universe, and the vast majority believe you. Tell them the paint is wet, and they have to touch it to be sure."

-George Carlin

“If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed”.

-Albert Einstein

“Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep thoughts can be winnowed from deep nonsense.”

-Carl Sagan

The person who is certain, and who claims divine warrant for his certainty, belongs now to the infancy of our species. It may be a long farewell, but it has begun and, like all farewells, should not be protracted.

-Christopher Hitchens

 

thechapterfourblog:

Holy shit.
If that doesn’t put the finest point on it you’ve ever seen/heard, I don’t know what does.

thechapterfourblog:

Holy shit.

If that doesn’t put the finest point on it you’ve ever seen/heard, I don’t know what does.

(Source: thedragoninmygarage)

In fact men will fight for a superstition quite as quickly as for a living truth – often more so, since a superstition is so intangible you cannot get at it to refute it, but truth is a point of view, and so is changeable

Hypatia of Alexandria

confrontingbabble-on:

Other than religion’s own produced stories, there is no evidence for a resurrection…
"Examine the evidence presented in the New Testament. It shows that the Christian belief in the resurrection of Jesus is not based on historic evidence. The New Testament evidence is contradictory in fundamental issues and events. Its most salient promise — that of a return by Jesus within the lifetime of his contemporaries never occurred. Christian apologists have spent the last 2000 years devising many different and often contradictory explanations of what they allege the New Testament really means when it promises a quick return by Jesus. They cannot all be right, but they can all be wrong. When all the Christian theological myths are seen for the fantasies they are it comes down to this — Jesus was never God’s son, did not shed his blood on the cross, was not a substitute who took upon himself the punishment for the sins of others, did not die to save sinners and was not resurrected. And he is never coming back."
http://bookstore.xlibris.com/Products/SKU-0036023049/The-Resurrection-Fantasy.aspx
*****
“Besides the Bible where is Jesus’ resurrection reported?
Answer: The resurrection of Jesus would have been a momentous event that would have shaken the ancient world. Yet there is no contemporary record of the resurrection outside the Bible. Philo of Alexandria was a contemporary who sought to document everything of interest to the Jewish world, yet never mentioned this amazing event. Pontius Pilate could be expected to have reported such an event to the emperor, who would have been anxious to discover more about an event with possible consequences for the empire, but no Roman records exist to show that either man knew anything.  It was only long after the event that other Christians began to write about the resurrection of Jesus.”
http://www.answers.com/Q/Besides_the_Bible_where_is_Jesus%27_resurrection_reported
Why the Resurrection is Unbelievable… http://commonsenseatheism.com/?p=11338

confrontingbabble-on:

Other than religion’s own produced stories, there is no evidence for a resurrection…

"Examine the evidence presented in the New Testament. It shows that the Christian belief in the resurrection of Jesus is not based on historic evidence. The New Testament evidence is contradictory in fundamental issues and events. Its most salient promise — that of a return by Jesus within the lifetime of his contemporaries never occurred. Christian apologists have spent the last 2000 years devising many different and often contradictory explanations of what they allege the New Testament really means when it promises a quick return by Jesus. They cannot all be right, but they can all be wrong. When all the Christian theological myths are seen for the fantasies they are it comes down to this — Jesus was never God’s son, did not shed his blood on the cross, was not a substitute who took upon himself the punishment for the sins of others, did not die to save sinners and was not resurrected. And he is never coming back."

http://bookstore.xlibris.com/Products/SKU-0036023049/The-Resurrection-Fantasy.aspx

*****

Besides the Bible where is Jesus’ resurrection reported?

Answer: The resurrection of Jesus would have been a momentous event that would have shaken the ancient world. Yet there is no contemporary record of the resurrection outside the Bible. Philo of Alexandria was a contemporary who sought to document everything of interest to the Jewish world, yet never mentioned this amazing event. Pontius Pilate could be expected to have reported such an event to the emperor, who would have been anxious to discover more about an event with possible consequences for the empire, but no Roman records exist to show that either man knew anything.

It was only long after the event that other Christians began to write about the resurrection of Jesus.”

http://www.answers.com/Q/Besides_the_Bible_where_is_Jesus%27_resurrection_reported

Why the Resurrection is Unbelievable… http://commonsenseatheism.com/?p=11338

Why do only Christians do this?

atheistatheism:

I am a computer technician and in my day to day work, I have to communicate with people on a regular basis via phone or chat.

I was just speaking with a woman who near the end of our call asked me if I was a Christian. I told her that due to work place policies, I was not able to discuss that and would need to end the conversation. She cut me off and started telling me that Jesus loves me and that he died for my sins and what not. It upset me. Not because she told me that Jesus loves me, which as any Atheist can attest, is something we’ve all heard countless times, but because I stepped back and thought about this scenario.

I realized that Christians are the only people who push their beliefs on people in the manner. I’ve never once heard someone who practices Judaism say, “Hey, are you Jewish? No? Well just so you know, Jesus wasn’t the son of God and as such should not be worshiped or adored. If you continue to do so, you will never experience salvation since you are worshiping a false God.”. Better yet, you NEVER hear an Atheist say “Are you religious? Oh you are? Well just so you know, there is no God. Nothing happens when you die. Everything you believe is a lie and nobody in the sky loves and watches over you.”.

It just really blew my mind because I’ve never thought of this scenario in that way. And that is what upset me. That Christians can spew their beliefs on to anyone and everyone they come across and make them fell uncomfortable, but nobody else does or would. I feel like Christianity is the USA of religions. They can say whatever they want because they feel like they are right and everyone else is wrong. And since I have dated a Christian, whose favorite movie was Jurassic Park but only for the action because dinosaurs never existed(yes, she said this to me), they believe that they are right and everyone else is wrong and will be proven wrong when they die. This is also the same group of people who, in a very un-christ-like manner, condemn and chastise people who do not believe that Jesus Christ died for our since and rose from the dead and all that stuff and who do not follow the writing of a 5000 year old book written in a dead language.

The whole thing boggled my mind and I had to vent a bit and share my thoughts. Thanks for taking a few minutes to read this and thanks for any feedback or comments.

submitted by
gorg235 

What kind of person thinks that a loving deity would work this way?

bluejewofzsouchmuhn:

atheistatheism:

A Facebook friend of mine posted this story this morning:

"I have learned the God often uses things that annoy me to teach me to give thanks. Today I got cut off by a woman coming out of a gas station driving a Honda Civic. While I was stewing about rude drivers, she went through the next green light and was slammed into (tboned) by a teenager in a huge pick-up truck running a red light. I stopped to make sure she was ok and she had a badly broken arm and was bleeding but otherwise would be ok. I am sad she was hurt, but I couldn’t help but be thankful to God that she cut me off or that would have been me."

Really? God punished her for cutting you off? Or god protects you and is pretty much okay with fucking over other people? WTF??

What was even more appalling was the comments she got — mostly of the “praise god” and “amen” sort. One said, “I guess she ran over her own guardian angel when she cut you off, lol!”

What kind of people think this way? I’m not even referring to their theism — that’s obvious — but that they think the deity that they call “loving and all-forgiving” on the one hand is simultaneously petty, vicious, vengeful, and full of malice.

submitted by
grendels-dad

Also, this god instantly punishes rude drivers, but lets rapists, child molesters, etc. etc. go on their merry way until human justice catches up with them (if it ever does). smh

“In the Old Canaanite religion, Baal had married the soil and the people had celebrated this with ritual orgies, but Hosea insisted that since the covenant, Yahweh had taken the place of Baal and had wedded the people of Israel.

They had to understand that it was Yahweh, not Baal, who would bring fertility to the soil.

He was still wooing Israel like a lover, determined to lure her back from the Baals who had seduced her:”

“I will take the names of the Baals off her lips”


-Excerpt From: Armstrong, Karen. “History of God.” Ballantine Books, 2011-06-08. iBooks.
This material may be protected by copyright.

Check out this book on the iBooks Store: https://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewBook?id=450595283

The War Prayer | by Mark Twain

"The War Prayer," a (very) short story or prose poem by Mark Twain, is a scathing indictment of war, and particularly of blind patriotic and religious fervor as motivations for war.
(Wikipedia)

carpediamn asked
I saw the video you posted with ISIS, and I just wanted to tell you that that is not Islam. Islam does not allow for killing people based on religion, and strictly tells us that it is our obligation to protect people of other religions and to not damage any places of prayer, even non-Muslim. ISIS is not muslim, it's an extremist religion. Don't let them make you look at the rest if Islam badly. What they are doing is disgusting and is in no way justified in Islam.

Well, they have their Islam and you have yours. As for the “true” Islam, that doesn’t exist. Every religious believer thinks they have the right view or they would have a different one. And maybe these actions are not justified in your Islam (and your fellow humans thank you for that), but their Quran contains verses such as these below which, meh- could go either way I suppose.

If only there was a way for god to deliver a message of love and tolerance that wasn’t steeped in violent hyperbole. But since Yahweh got his start in the role of war god in a polytheistic pantheon, it’s not all that surprising that he would slip into homicidal metaphors now and then…


Quran (2:191-193) - And kill them wherever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out. And Al-Fitnah [disbelief] is worse than killing

Quran (4:104) - And be not weak hearted in pursuit of the enemy; if you suffer pain, then surely they (too) suffer pain as you suffer pain…

Quran (8:12) - I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them

Quran (8:15) - O ye who believe! When ye meet those who disbelieve in battle, turn not your backs to them. (16)Whoso on that day turneth his back to them, unless maneuvering for battle or intent to join a company, he truly hath incurred wrath from Allah, and his habitation will be hell, a hapless journey’s end.

Quran (9:5) - So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captive and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them.

There seem to be at least 104 more of these.

ISIL/ISIS Propaganda Video

Every sentence that falls out of this imbecile’s face is preceded with the qualification “insh’allah…” (God willing) and is punctuated with “…humdallah” (Praise God). Every sentence.

It gets just a little bit repetitive. I picture this Allah character going, “ALRIGHT! For fuck’s sake, I get it!”

I’d blow my fucking brains out if I had to listen to this shit all day. Or more likely, they would do it for me, once I tried to tell them how idiotic it is.

Fox News’ No. 1 fear: Atheists

In a recent online video for Crossfire, CNN political pundit and self-proclaimed atheist S.E. Cupp claimed conservative atheists are “better” than liberal atheists, and said she does not believe the “myth” that conservatism is “hostile” to atheism. “In fact, I’d go so far as to say conservatism is far more intellectually honest and respectful of atheism than liberalism has been,” she said.

Wait, what?

Cupp says she believes it is atheists who are disseminating “the idea that they are somehow disenfranchised or left out of the political process,” but that has not been her experience as a conservative.

Now, CNN is not Fox News, but she acts like she has never heard of the Republican Party’s media arm: Fox News.

For the past few years, Fox News and its right-wing talking heads have waged a relentless war on atheism. Their annual war on Christmas spoof-ganza is their reverse victimhood effort to convince viewers that America’s godless community is coming to take away your toys and your right to say, “Merry Christmas.” In other words, bah humbug.

Comparing atheists to Dr. Seuss’ Grinch is one thing, but on Wednesday Fox News host Elisabeth Hasselbeck asserted that Christianity should be kept in schools because Islamic militants in Iraq were persecuting Christians. Ipso facto, atheists are as dangerous as al-Qaeda, which is exactly what they want their conservative audience to believe without Fox News having to actually say it.

After reading a select few comments from viewers who accused atheists of demanding to have more rights than Christians, Hasselbeck connected the situation to violence in Iraq. “You know, in light of what’s going on in the world and the persecution of Christians right now, how close do we want to get to eliminating religious freedom in the globe?” she asked.

It’s so accidently Orwellian it’s almost adorable. Or more likely she was reading from a script handed down to her from the string-pullers high above. The only way she could’ve been less subtle was if she said, “Some people say atheists are terrorists.”….

..On Fox News, Obama is coming for your guns; Madonna is coming for your straight kids; immigrants are coming for your jobs; liberals are coming for your way of life; and atheists are coming for your Bibles..

…Since atheists represent such a small percentage of the population, and an even smaller percentage of both the conservative base and the network’s audience, it’s a no-brainer to blame the decline of American civilization on atheists who wish to take away school prayer, rather than talk about problems whose solutions require a pro-government response i.e. safety nets, regulation, workers’ rights, and environmental protection.

Cleverly, Fox News conflates atheism with big government i.e. secular government officials want to take away your religious freedom. The narrative becomes: atheists are bad, the government is atheists, and therefore the government is not part of the solution, the government is the problem….

America’s Christian conservatives ponder a ‘Babylonian exile’

…the culture war descendants of those Puritans are feeling increasingly alienated and even persecuted in the society they once claimed as their own. They’re shifting to another favorite image from Scripture — that of the Babylonian exile, preparing, as the ancient Judeans did, to preserve their faith in a hostile world….

….Rampant secularism and widespread acceptance of sexual mores once deemed taboo, Trueman said, mean that “the Western public square is no longer a place where Christians feel they belong with any degree of comfort.”

Trueman was so convinced of that reality that he didn’t argue whether internal exile was an option. Instead, he wondered which form of Christianity was best equipped to survive this inevitable relocation.

His answer, perhaps not surprisingly, was that his own Reformed Protestantism was superior. That prompted a number of well-known Christian commentators to weigh in and champion their particular denomination…

…Yet others see all this talk as indulging in what Alan Noble called the “Evangelical Persecution Complex.” Writing this month in The Atlantic, Noble, an assistant professor of English at Oklahoma Baptist University, defined that complex as the temptation “to interpret personal experiences and news events as signs of oppression, which are ostensibly validations of our commitment to Christ.”

In The Christian Century, the flagship magazine of liberal mainline Protestantism, Lutheran pastor Benjamin Dueholm also weighed in, echoing Noble’s criticism and calling the exile idea “a dubious and highly troubling premise” because it “trivializes” the experience of real exile, such as Christians and religious minorities who are suffering today in actual Babylon, or what we call Iraq.

“Nothing in the experience of white American Christianity bears the slightest resemblance (to that), and it is unlikely that anything will any time soon,” said Dueholm, associate pastor of Messiah Lutheran Church in Wauconda, Ill. “We still enjoy a kind of wealth, prestige, institutional heft, political clout, and legal protection that would stupefy Jesus of Nazareth.”…