Archive for the 'Atheism' Category

Sometimes We Don’t Need To Try So Hard

June 3, 2010

I was doing what they call ^people watching^ the other day when I saw something that for some reason made me think about the arguments atheists tend to make when trying to convince people that religion is bullshit. In particular this has to do with creationism.

These kids had just gotten out of the local high school and were in the convenience store when I heard them talking about biology and evolution of all things. Though there was probably five or six kids only two or three were talking. It seemed like they were talking about somebody in their class who objected to evolution. I say this because in reference to a lady in the store with a really pronounced jaw, one of them said something to the effect of,

“I mean how could you be so stupid! Look at that lady right there and tell me you don’t see monkeys!”

Yeah it was your typical teenage wisecrack at someone else’s expense which really isn’t cool, and yeah I’ve thought the same damn thing looking at some mongoloid jaws on the bus, but that’s not the point. The point was that science teachers seemed to be working just fine. The person objecting was obviously¬† in the minority. The straight-forwardness of evolution was readily accepted by these other kids. As atheists, it’s easy to get used to thinking that we’re on the brink of the next dark age, especially when we over-saturate ourselves with atheist reading and atheist blogging and atheist this and atheist that.

So speak the truth and if it makes sense then you won’t need to try so hard.

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Obligatory Post of the Month

April 27, 2010

I recently read a blog post from a guy who’s been blogging about atheism for three years. This blog ain’t nothin’ compared to his, or to other atheist writers who actually spend a lot of time on their stuff case in point Greta Christina

But what this has all got me wondering is, is there really a point to blogging besides self-interest? I’ve figured out that my attitude towards blogging comes and goes. Some days it’s cool and even refreshing. Other days you want to choke people. I don’t really care about the audience aspect or ^commenting^ meaning I don’t care to be the ^host^ of threads that much. If people comment, cool, if not, cool. But at the end of the day this translates in less overhead: I’m not spending any time sucked into good or bad threads. Let’s face it half the shit that goes on in comment threads in atheist blogs is just a thankless timesuck. Not to say there isn’t genuine knowledge or humor, but everything has a cost. I look at this like, “Huh. I could go write a post that only a few people will read” vs. “Well I could go hang with my babe or check out the City” or something besides whine about the same old same old from either side

As far as¬† new stuff here, not much. School’s going good and fortunately for me I don’t get all my info from blogs. But in all fairness I’ve been spending some time here where the discussions actually have a range and the commenters are made up of a larger student-teacher ratio. There’s something to be said for sites favored by scholars, as opposed to your typical atheist blogger.

I guess the one thing I’d like to get off my chest is I think ^atheism is not a worldview^ arguments are weak. Atheism is most certainly a worldview it’s a view of the world without gods as Fante declared and I affirm in my tagline we ^accept the universe godless^ I mean come on. The more we deny basic truths the more stupid we look to believers or anyone that’s even rational. We should have the balls to stand up and say, ^Fuck yeah atheism is a world view it’s a kick ass one that boatloads of people with brains have had^

How Come So Many of us are Total Dicks?

March 28, 2010

Alright I said I had some rants brewing so here goes a short one. By ^us^ I mean ^atheists^ and that’s the question for today. This time I don’t wanna link to any examples or let comments because I don’t want more bullshit from other atheists crampin up my style. All the time (ok not all the time but often) I see atheists acting like total dicks and it makes me want to reach through the net and slap ’em. Not all of us, but enough of us. The difference between how we talk in class and how some of these mofuckers talk on the internet is night and day. I think if an atheist or anyone else can’t make their case intelligently without a bunch of fucking shit-talk, that’s fucked. FUCKED, I say!

I think this phenom is like road rage, pussies who take out their problems when they otherwise wouldn’t. The road rager says and does shit they wouldn’t do standing in the line at the goddamned 7-11. Same with us. Lots of atheists are computer nerds hands down (not me I get out). Maybe they raise up once and again in response to frustration, like the road rager, living vicariously through a persona shielded by the distance between them and their victim.

I don’t know, but fuck if that’s the case then go start a fight with someone at the bar and get it out that way. At least that way you keep your philosophy clean and don’t look like a pussy making insults through protective glass.

So…

March 19, 2010

I’ve been layin’ low because the joint was startin’ to attract some riff-raff, if ya know what I mean. Not to mention, I got me a babe

Seems the coast is clear. I’ve got some rants brewing inside I can feel them. I’ll probably post some more Fante just to soak up his style.

One quick rant to get off my chest are those shitheads in any group who are always accusing everyone else of bigotry whenever they disagree. Church people do it, atheists do it, politicians and everyone else down the line. The news tends to over react to everything. It’s not bigotry that they focus on an atheist book in the Texas arsons, it’s just how the media is – fanatical, not necessarily bigoted against people who don’t believe in God.

Let’s not be so self-centered.

Still Thinking This Shit Through

January 10, 2010

Talk about mixed emotions. I started this blog when I discovered atheist blogs in general, while researching the problem of evil for something related to philosophy class. I saw it as a way to have a sort of ^anonymous persona^ where I could say whatever I want without fear of retaliation or drama. It’s has been and still is that, and I like that part. I can randomly write ^fuck^ if I want, and not have to worry that my teacher will flip out and pray for me. If people don’t want to read ^fuck^ then they don’t have to read it, but if you’ve lived part or all of your life bound by religion then you know where the ^fuck^ I’m coming from when I say it feels good to be free.

Another thing here is that the name “Godless Randall” reflected how I felt at that time, happy to be free from the religious culture I grew up inside, but “Godless” only really means that I’m an atheist of some sort. What is an atheist? It’s a question I saw being argued just today. If an atheist is defined as “absence of belief in gods,” yeah, I’m an atheist in the sense that I don’t ^believe in^ any gods meaning I don’t ^follow^ any religion, but that doesn’t mean I believe in only matter or only this universe. There are all sorts of varieties of atheist, from what I hear, and it seems people should be more open-minded than that. Some atheists are religious, some religious folk are pretty much atheists when it comes down to it too. But by “Godless” I don’t mean to say materialism. By “Godless” I mean without religion and God and gods, but diehard materialism atheists seem to me to be much like the people at church back home and I want to also stand apart from them.

Sometimes when I read atheist blogs, I find myself nodding “yes” to everything. Other times, the atheist needs a slap upside the head or a swift kick to the nuts. I feel like I fall somewhere between the extreme believer and the extreme atheist, and I feel under represented. People on both sides get crazy and need to be brought back down to Earth. So don’t be surprised if I end up criticizing things in atheist blogs if they’re as ignorant as the things atheist blogs criticize believers for. I notice lots if not most atheist talk centers around criticizing theism and rightly so, but I’m not looking to share uniforms with another movement . That’s one thing currently non negotiable.

So, I don’t know. Maybe I’ll end up writing about the crazy bar exploits I’ve had in the last short year. After all, I do like Bukowski.

The Thing That Actually Started Me Towards Atheism

September 25, 2009

It wasn’t some long, drawn out series of events, but rather something simple: I got knocked out, and I had no recollection of anything whatsoever. I know that sounds strange or maybe like a cop-out, but that’s the deal in a nutshell. I remember thinking, “Wow, I really can be ‘just dead'” and it was quite a new but perplexing thought.

So, it wasn’t that getting knocked out made me an atheist, not at all what I’m saying. What it did was get me thinking about a whole range of possibilities I refused to explore previously to this incident. I never really thought about much of what they were teaching in church; just kind of went through the motions, tried to make sure my mom and dad were happy, and that everything was cool. When dad or uncle “Elmo” (not his real name) would start going on too much about religion, well, I’d get deeper into video games. So what that means is, I didn’t get no real time thinking about death and stuff. I just swept it under the rug and tried to not shake the boat. Now, as I get older, I feel like yelling a big “Fuck you” to that.

I was raised religious, I just don’t feel like a spiritual person at all. Every day seems kinda mundane to me, but I don’t mean that as in, “I think life sucks and I have no hope.” I also don’t think less of my parents or brothers and sisters because they keep on being religious. They’re the same to me; I love ’em the same anyways. Their socks still stink.

The Way I’m Doing This

August 17, 2009

I’m still trying to full develop my personal “blogging style” if you will; as of right now, the only real “non-negotiables” would be that I’m going to rant mostly about atheism and religion, that I’ll definitely be cussing when I do it. I’ve contained myself for so many hours in church that I feel like I’d be encouraging cancer by not getting those negative emotions out of my body.

As I cruise the blogs around the internet that are devoted to atheism and religion, even there I find quite the variety. Some are more philosophical and long, drawn-0ut “heady pieces” which for some reason I enjoy reading in print, but not so much online. I tend to like and get the most from shorter, punchier posts. I’m also lazy and don’t like to type that much, so I think shorter posts will likely be the norm here.

One thing though, is that when I started the blog, it was to release the steam that had built up with my midwest religious culture. Now that that’s starting to dissolve some, what to do? What direction to focus? I’m not one of those atheist blog writers that’s going to change the world; at least, that’s not what I’m going for at all, right now. I guess what I’m really interested in is having a place to 1) express what I’ve not expressed for years, and 2) have a place to bounce ideas off others. The few commenters that have stopped by have proven helpful, so I leave you with a “thank you” and hope to get more feedback.

Did You Know So-&-So Was An Atheist?

May 29, 2009

Well, it’s not too often I post more than once a month, but I’ve been “getting the itch” as they call it, and I want to start writing more, eventually stepping up to once per week.

This week, I was cruising around the ‘net when I stumbled across this list of what you would call famous or celebrity atheists, and/or materialists. The site also groups agnostics and what it calls “the ambiguous,” and it’s worth a look.

Here’s their opening list, with a few of my favorites in bold:

Douglas Adams, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Woody Allen, Lance Armstrong, Darren Aronofsky, Isaac Asimov, Dave Barry, Ingmar Bergman, Lewis Black, Richard Branson, Berkeley Breathed, Warren Buffett, George Carlin, John Carmack, Adam Carolla, John Carpenter, Asia Carrera, Fidel Castro, Dick Cavett, Noam Chomsky, Billy Connolly, Francis Crick, David Cronenberg, David Cross, Alan Cumming, Rodney Dangerfield, Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, David Deutsch, Ani DiFranco, Micky Dolenz, Harlan Ellison, Brian Eno, Richard Feynman, Harvey Fierstein, Larry Flynt, Dave Foley, Jodie Foster, Janeane Garofalo, Bill Gates, Bob Geldof, Ricky Gervais, Ira Glass, James Gleick, Robert Heinlein, Nat Hentoff, Katharine Hepburn, Christopher Hitchens, Jamie Hyneman, Eddie Izzard, Penn Jillette, Billy Joel, Angelina Jolie, Wendy Kaminer, Diane Keaton, Ken Keeler, Neil Kinnock, Michael Kinsley, Richard Leakey, Bruce Lee, Tom Lehrer, Tom Leykis, James Lipton, H.P. Lovecraft, John Malkovich, Barry Manilow, Todd McFarlane, Sir Ian McKellen, Arthur Miller, Frank Miller, Marvin Minsky, Julianne Moore, Desmond Morris, Randy Newman, Mike Nichols, Jack Nicholson, Gary Numan, Bob Odenkirk, Patton Oswalt, Camille Paglia, Steven Pinker, Paula Poundstone, Terry Pratchett, James Randi, Ron Reagan Jr., Keanu Reeves, Rick Reynolds, Gene Roddenberry, Joe Rogan, Henry Rollins, Andy Rooney, Salman Rushdie, Bob Simon, Steven Soderbergh, Annika Sorenstam, George Soros, Richard Stallman, Bruce Sterling, Howard Stern, J. Michael Straczynski, Julia Sweeney, Matthew Sweet, Teller, Studs Terkel, Tom Tomorrow, Linus Torvalds, Eddie Vedder, Paul Verhoeven, Gore Vidal, Kurt Vonnegut Jr., Sarah Vowell, James Watson, Steven Weinberg, Joss Whedon, Ted Williams, Steve Wozniak… (more)

If You Dish It Out, Take It

May 9, 2009

So, I know it’s last year’s news and all, but I’m sure this year we’ll have an equivalent fiasco.

What I’m talking about is… (drumroll, please) religious signs! If you’re from the midwest like me, then you know exactly what I’m talking about: big, in-your-face, sometimes clever sometimes revolting signs that advertise for God.

Well, I heard about the FFRF and how none of the religious folk really cared much for their sign, now isn’t that sort of strange? For 200 years, Christians get to bombard everybody else with all their “Jesus is the Reason for the Season” crap when in full reality December 25th is the solstice, but Mr. Barker – who coincidentally used to be a Christian – isn’t allowed to place the FFRF’s, which advocates celebration of the solstice?

Am I the only one who sees that something that isn’t really right here?

Why The Cosmological Argument Doesn't Work

April 20, 2009

At my church back home they used to be really into whoever the current apologetic champion of the moment was. I remember at one point this included such fabulous thinkers as Rush Limbaugh and Ted Haggard, but let’s not shoot fish in a barrel.

William Lane Craig has been on or near the top of that pile for a long time now. As Common Sense Atheism points out (they have a huge archive of WLC debates and articles, BTW, the host is quite thorough), he’s been doing this since high school and is really a masterbater- er, uh… master debater.

Anyways, all the various versions of the cosmological argument seem fatally flawed to me. Either way, we must start with something we can’t really justify other than to posit, and that’s something that existed for eternity. Since nobody I know wants to argue that something can come from nothing, it seems there’s no way around this. Either God always existed, or non-conscious matter/energy always existed.

WLC would have us believe we should believe it was God, but if we’re going to grant WLC the premise that God can exist forever, doesn’t he also have to grant us the premise that matter/energy can exist forever? After all, it’s a fundamental law of thermodynamics that matter cannot be created or destroyed, so we even have a rational foundation for the claim that matter/energy always existed. Of course, it’s also true that modern understandings of physics literally disintegrate by Planck Time, so it’s probably not nearly as easy as I posit, but I think the bottom line is that cosmological arguments just don’t work.

If God can exist forever, so can matter/energy.