Saturday, April 21, 2018

One Piece of Evidence

So I have this new friend.
We met a few weeks ago and simply enjoyed one another's energy and personalities. We became fast FB friends.

Now, if you are an atheist, you know exactly what is about to happen. Everything is fine and dandy; we're laughing at one another's jokes, liking each other's pics of kids, wishing one another well, etc. Until that very moment that I wrote the first thing that identified me as a possible nonbeliever. 
I posted the meme above that reads It would only take one piece of verifiable evidence to destroy atheist. This new friend immediately starts to sound panicky and writing about faith.

You know, what I hope again and again is that new friends who are believers can handle it. My ongoing hope is that they can get to know me, can like me for the person that I am, and then, when finding out I'm an atheist, can just deal with it and maintain our friendship. But again and again I find that some people simply can't do it.

Geesh, and people wonder why I dislike religion so much.

I'm hoping this new friend can find a way to work through her issues and retain interest in our friendship, 'cuz I like her, but I can admit here that I'm not very optimistic about it. Some believers can get very uncomfortable around people who don't think as they do. I've lost any number of friends with being an open atheist.
I guess we'll see. 

April 21, 2018 addendum:
She replied something like I don't really believe in any of that so I'm not one to worry about it.

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Thursday, April 12, 2018

Facebook and Other Social Media

For all of the people paying any attention to the Mark Zuckerburg testimonies, I feel like this is a bit of a watershed moment in history, a thing that we'll all remember in later years. It is the time when the freedom we've been experiencing on the internet is in jeopardy; it is when our freedoms will disappear into bullshit governmental regulations in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal and the revelations about FB’s role in the spread of Russian disinformation during the 2016 presidential campaign, as well as CA's misuse of private information of FB users; it is when Zuckerberg has to answer questions about Facebook’s past, current, and future actions.

I'm not a big fan of government.
Smaller government is my preference, and not  in the Current Day Republican form of smaller government, but in the traditional fewer rules and more freedoms form of smaller government.

But the problem with fewer regulations is this: human beings can be opportunistic, lying, scheming assholes. We can't trust some people. Our personal freedom and our personal information is all at risk because of these few baddies. But, just like in every other sphere of life, if a baddie is going to do bad stuff, regulations and rules won't stop them. 
So it's the little guys, US, who are inconvenienced by all of the new regulations that are going to be smacked down on FB and other social media.

And just like in other spheres of legislation 
(gun control and others) basic, essential, reasonable laws of operational control are fine with me, more than that is useless and overbearing. But that shit never happens.

I love the internet.
It is a vast place with access to so much information. I'm amazed by it almost every single day. I'm constantly wishing I would have access to information so easily as I was growing up. I'm not the type of person who knows much at all about the ugly places, the seamy underbelly of the internet, hate groups, so I can't speak about any of that. So, with the exception of all of that crap, even with all of the imperfections of the internet, I am in love with more access, more information, more knowledge, more connection.

How to keep that, that is the question.

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Wednesday, April 11, 2018


We have a very good friend who often says that he believes in all of the religions. That makes him an Omnist. Omni, meaning all, the belief in all. Omnists accept the truth of all religions. 
I'm thinking the Omnists would be likely to have one of those Coexist bumper stickers on their car. I'm sure most Omnists think of themselves as spiritual  rather than religious.

I'm sure there is a spectrum of Omnism, so any definition would, therefore, be incorrect. 
But let's look at it a bit anyway.

I can understand the willingness to be open to the wisdom of all belief systems; I'm sure there is at least some wisdom and knowledge available in many forms and under many guises. I get that. I can wholly appreciate the perceived equality of it all; there is no superior group or belief system. I can dig that. I'm assuming that an Omnist generally accepts the beliefs of all religions.

I can appreciate the Omnists' efforts to be equitable and accepting of all. 
I can appreciate the desire to be open to consider all things.
I can sincerely appreciate the soul searching.

HOWEVER, and maybe this is simply my own shortcoming, I see all the religions as very unworthy of devotion. Futhermore, 
I don't see how a person can accept that there are all-knowing gods, cultural gods, local gods, that we ourselves are gods, and that there are no gods...all at the same time. Not to mention the gods that are no longer worshiped. Or that these gods are knowable and the same time. That there are various afterlives and no the same time. Not to mention the many ways that some religions' beliefs obliterate the beliefs of other religions. I cannot accept the validity of any single religion, much less all of them.

In conclusion, I want to respect the Omnist.
Alas, I cannot unless that Omnist is young and searching,  as our friend is.
I don't see it as a place to stand.
It seems like a cop out to me. It is not choosing, not deciding, not 

accepting the falseness and bullshit inherent in the system. Religion is a the bathwater and Onmism seems to be unable to separate the bathwater from the baby.

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