Recently Pope Francis said that even atheists receive redemption through Christ as long as they do good. The Pope stressed the importance of doing good over all else as the criterion for redemption. This is a historical new direction for the Catholic Church and the Papacy. This also comes following a slew of traditions that the Pope has already broken. The new Pope has also abandoned the gaudiness and excessive showiness that the Vatican normally portrays (see Pope Francis featured on the right compared to Ratzinger on the left and note the clothing and throne). Continue reading…
A few months back news came out that over 51 percent of Americans support gay marriage. Recently, Rhode Island became the tenth state to legalize same sex marriage. There is a growing trend towards marriage equality in the country, but where is it coming from? Young people seem to share a large part of the blame. Pew Research Center recently released a poll showing that as much as seventy percent of young adults favor same-sex marriage. The young adults in this poll were “Millennials,” or those born after 1980. The report credits the Millennial generation for the overall shift in supporting same-sex marriage. When polled the major factor that led people to change their minds to favor same-sex marriage was knowing someone who is homosexual. The least influential change cited morality or religion for the shift in acceptance.
Age seems to be a strong factor in determining whether or not someone favors same-sex marriage. Noticeably, each generation’s average view on same sex marriage follows a trend, with the older generations disfavoring same-sex marriage with the highest frequency. This is strong motivation to think that same-sex marriage is now inevitable country wide and the question is no longer if, but when. In another poll (LifeWay), 64 percent of those polled agreed that same-sex marriage will become legal across the entire United States. It appears that many times society, unfortunately, progresses one funeral at a time.
An American Atheist is currently seeking contributors for blog submissions and on air personalities. A number of our previous contributors have moved on because of demands of workload, family and other reasons. We are accepting article submissions on any topic generally relating to religion and skepticism. The articles may be of any length so long as it properly addresses the topic. If you are interested in being an on air talent, please indicate so in your message and we can go from there. We often have people start out writing articles and then bring them on to discuss the article they have written and explore it further. Typical appearances on the show will also include conducting interviews with people in the atheist community and beyond. An American Atheist currently airs off and on on KDVS 90.3 FM in Davis/Sacramento and has aired for the past 3 years more consistently. We plan to expand to more stations in the future. There are no formal requirements other than solid writing ability, ability to communicate effectively and interest in the topics.
The positions are unpaid but allow for very fulfilling work and can be excellent experience for many other fields. Our contributors have valued the experiences here and some have gotten to meet and interview some of their favorite members of the atheist community, scientists, comedians and authors. Time commitments are all up to the contributor but we prefer at least weekly some sort of contact or ideas. The positions may be fulfilled from any location with internet access and we do much of our recordings on Skype and similar programs. Please poke around a bit to get a general feel for our presentation style and personalities.
If you would like to submit an article, either use the ‘contact’ button and paste it into the document or email them to email@example.com and cc: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to submit periodic articles on an article by article basis then that is sufficient and please indicate so or include article in your email. If you would like to be a regular contributor with blog access and possibly an on air personality please include your name, contact information, a brief background, what level of involvement you expect to give, and any questions you have.
On the social media site Reddit, a mother asked users who were atheists how to deal with her son “coming out” as an atheist. She asked how to deal with such an immoral proposition that she had no idea how he could have reached. The user iopha put a touching reply that, especially as a classicist, I could not help but share:
First, off, though I am an atheist myself, I want to empathize a little: this must be difficult for you and your family. Your faith commitment is an important part of your life and it is bewildering to have your own child turn away from this. I don’t know exactly what you believe, but you might be worried about his soul in the next life, or his behaviour in this one. If you don’t believe in God, how do you know right from wrong? If you reject God, how will you be reunited with Him in the next Kingdom? Continue reading…
A Saudi man has been beheaded on charges of sorcery and witchcraft, the state news agency SPA says.
Saudi Arabia is some time behind the western world, participating in events that could only be understood through reading something like The Crucible. Unfortunately, unsurprising to most, a man was beheaded this month for practicing witchcraft and sorcery in Saudi Arabia. You can read more about this story here.
The Huffington Post reports via the AP that relics, including those signifying the name of John the Baptist actually date to the 1st century.
It’s a tantalizing find in a Biblical mystery – Oxford University researchers have concluded that a set of skeletal remains which many Bulgarians attribute to John the Baptist probably belonged to a first century male from the Middle East.
The article continues in saying that there are actually more than 25 purported relics of John the Baptist, often claiming to be from his head (which contains more symbolic significance given the story). It is also quite a common phenomenon for people and churches to claim to have fragments of the cross that Jesus died upon. Other notable frauds include the Shroud of Turin, which initially everyone believed to be death shroud of Jesus, and was later proven to be a hoax. However, the difference with these John the Baptist fragments is that science does not contradict their authenticity. Some religious people will discard science if it does not fit their narrative, but the problem is that even if science and other archeology could positively confirm that these are the remains of John the Baptist, it lends no credibility to the miracle claims of the holy texts. For example, many historical sites exist that the Bible describes, but likewise archeologists have discovered a location of what was likely the city of Troy — that does not mean that the Odyssey is real. Regardless, collection of information and new historical finds are exciting and add to the depository of collective human knowledge. It is only a shame when we misuse knowledge or draw silly conclusions from it.