XXploring the humanist shore

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Atheism as a Raft for Crossing

Good afternoon, gentle readers. I'm an atheist. I've been an atheist off and on (more about that later) for most of my life. For 45 years at least. And yet lately I find myself asking, what does it mean to be an atheist? That is what the XXploring blog sets out to consider.

This blog got its start last Sunday, though it took me a few days to figure out that a blog was the thing I needed to do. Sundays, you see, I sit in on a Philosophy for Atheists class run by Dan Fincke. I highly recommend his philosophy classes by the way, and you don't need to be an atheist to attend one!

The topic of last Sunday's class was "the problem of evil". I'm not sure what I was expecting -- maybe something rather like Terry Eagleton's book On Evil.

A Poem For The Athiests

On Imported Blog

I found this on "The Sun Magazine"

It is called "Ode to The God of the Atheists" by Ellen Bass.It is lovely, and reads like a Hafiz poem. It is devotional and heartfelt, and beautifully whispers a kind of faith that I, personally find hard to argue with. I particularly like the continued naming of The God of Atheists as "This God", as if to say, there may be others, other Gods for the religeous or the spiritual, but we are not talking about those here. We are talking about 'This God', and this is how 'This God' behaves. I can get behind it, when it's put like that.

The god of atheists won’t burn you at the stakeor pry off your fingernails. Nor will it make youbow or beg, rake your skin with thorns,or buy gold leaf and stained-glass windows.It won’t insist you fast or twistthe shape of your sexual hunger.There are no wars fought for it, no women stoned for it.You don’t have to veil your face for itor bloody your knees.You don’t have to sing.

The plums that bloom extravagantly,the dolphins that stitch sky to sea,each pebble and fern, pond and fishare yours whether or not you believe.

When fog is ripped awayjust as a rust red thumb slides across the moon,the god of atheists isn’t rewarding youfor waking up in the middle of the nightand shivering barefoot in the field.

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