Sunday, June 23, 2019

Intermission Summer of 2019

Summer is always a slow time for blogging for me. It's rainy and cold today, so maybe our one day of summer has past. I do have article #10 ideas, but it's getting to where I need to write a PhD thesis, or just keep rambling. Or, something in between. For now, here's an article that expresses some of the things I'm working on or towards or around. 

Six things I wish people understood about Atheism

1. There are lots of different types of atheists, and we don't all feel the same way about religion.

For me, I've felt differently at different times. Many people have some anger immediately upon leaving their church. As they find more people who have already worked through that, that might subside and give way to more reasoned thoughts about why people think the ways they do.

2. Atheist organizations are starting to do better at helping people and promoting social justice.

Really, secular groups have been around for a long time. Religion might inform your values, but different worldviews can and do lead to the same values. There have always been people who believed in the good works of religion but had private doubts about the theology.

3. Seemingly little things that religious people might not even notice can really drive us atheists bananas, and for good reason.

What Jay is saying here is that religion is everywhere. It's our calendar, many of our holidays, in political speeches, on our money, everywhere. It would be nice if they at least noticed this and acknowledged it.

4. There's a big difference between private individuals promoting their religious beliefs and the government doing the same. But this doesn't mean the government cannot promote facts and ideas that are inconsistent with some religious beliefs.

This one is a little more complicated. There are subtle differences between "freedom of religion" and "freedom from religion". This goes way back to before the Constitution was written.

5. Atheists and other secularists are getting pretty good at participating in public.

This relates to #2, plus, more people have grown up without religion in their homes now. More than that, they have found other ways to develop their world view and value systems and to articulate why they feel the way they do. It's help that they are able to do with less threat of being ostracized from their community. There are now strong secular groups on campuses and those people will go on to fund those groups and they will likely continue to grow.

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