Ponder Words Of A Good Christian


This question appeared in my Quora feed – “Why do many atheists attack and offend Christians?” Gone are the days when I might have taken issue, trolls will fish, but I won’t bite. Can’t say why I hesitated, all I know is Connor Cuevo’s answer filled the screen – https://www.quora.com/profile/Connor-Cuevo

Connor Cuevo describes himself as a good Christian, this atheist defines him as a decent human being. Ponder the words of a good Christian –

I’m a Christian here. I also know many atheists.

Have atheists ever scoffed at us when we helped the poor and downtrodden in their affliction?

Did they mock us when we cried, asked the Lord for forgiveness, and resolved to be better people?

Were they spiteful when we were generous with friends and strangers?

Do they attack us when we forgive someone who has wronged us?

Are they offensive when we act with humility, giving glory to God?

When we sought to bring peace, or tend to the sick, or feed the hungry, or visit the imprisoned, or bury the dead, were they hostile?

I have never known an atheist to do any of these things.

I have known atheists to be critical of us, typically when we:

Hoard wealth in our churches.

Justify our sinful behavior.

Shut out and oppress other groups of people.

Lust for blood with impunity.

Boast and act ostentatiously.

Do little or nothing to combat structural violence , systemic poverty or rampant illness.

Be guilty of all these things and still try to impose our “wisdom” on others.

If you are a good Christian, you will probably never get any trouble from atheists. You may even get praise.

In all honesty, I have found that atheists are the most effective force to guide, counsel and affirm Christian values ever devised!

Image result for good person

Crazy Button


I need my head examined. Quora obsession – call it my dark side,finds me lurking in places I’m not proud of. What began as a “phase”, has become an embarrassing testament to powers of indignant outrage, astonishment, and mind blowing realization. Polite reminders to behave myself deliver tepid results, best intentions fall victim to uncontrollable curiosity. Convincing myself of “curious” intentions, eases excruciating reality – I need my head examined.

On a good day, I’ll post questions like “What is the greatest archeological treasure lost to war or conflict?” or “Will cursive writing become obsolete?”. Genuine queries resulting in thoughtful exchanges.

Bad days (the crux of my bat shit addiction to Quora) go something like this – following are two questions asked this evening under the topic “Religion”.

“If you’re an Atheist, is it better to raise your children as Theist so he/she can find strength in difficult times?”

“Is it true that Atheists don’t really believe in God, but that they really just want to be God?”

This is when it gets tricky. Reasonable Notes would guffaw and move on, possessed Notes shakes hands with futility. Something about preposterous questions void of frivolous explanation or reason pushes my crazy button. Every sinew of my being, taut and helpless as propriety skips out the door.

“Crazy button” deserves clarification, crazy suggests ranting tirades – the reality of my “crazy” doesn’t even come close. Crazy resides in the fact I respond. Crazy shame lurks in not logging out or moving on once “are you serious”, holy freaking crap and WTF? settle down. Crazy is my fascination with absurdly brief ridiculous questions – particularly those intended for morally corrupt heathens. As I’m writing another question surfaced…

“Do some people just pretend to be Atheists, and try to convince others God doesn’t exist because they believe God doesn’t want mankind to know of or believe in his existence?”

I’m having second thoughts about my plea for help – that question was too good. Perhaps I could temper obsessively poor judgement with strict resolve to look, keeping snide remarks and opinions to myself.

 

Scientific Proof of God?


I don’t know why I do this to myself; in all likelihood because I find it so fascinating. While researching crater size from various asteroid impacts, a site claiming scientific proof of God muddied the waters. Do tell, my pondering mind clicked before common sense caught its breath.

Y-Jesus, The Facts About Jesus Presented By Scholars went on to give scientific “proof” of God. http://y-jesus.com/more/science-christianity-compatible/6

Not able to stop myself; knowing full well that reading would make me grumpy – caution took a hike as I forged ahead. Y-Jesus’s scientific proof consisted of arguing probability based primarily on quotes. Using prefaces agnostic, atheist, and formerly atheist before scientist’s names, while quoting them and Stephen Hawking out of context. Seven pages later; scientific “proof” of God came to this – the “speculative” nature of physicists can lead to only one conclusion – science can’t offer a definitive explanation, therefore God is science “fact”. Yikes.

Ponder this statement…

Scientists who used to scoff at the Bible as a book of fairy tales, are now admitting that the biblical concept of creation from nothing has been right all along”

Keep pondering….

“Physicists calculated that for life to exist, gravity and the other forces of nature needed to be just right or our universe couldn’t exist. Had the expansion rate been slightly weaker, gravity would have pulled all matter back into a “big crunch.”

We’re not talking about merely a one or two percent reduction in the universe’s expansion rate. Stephen Hawking writes, “If the rate of expansion one second after the big bang had been smaller by even one part in a hundred thousand million million, the universe would have re-collapsed before it ever reached its present size.”

On the flip side, if the expansion rate had been a mere fraction greater than it was, galaxies, stars and planets could never have formed, and we wouldn’t be here”.

Stay with me, I’m getting to the point….

For human life to be possible from a big bang defies the laws of probability. One astronomer calculates the odds at less than 1 chance in a trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion.  It would be far easier for a blind-folded person—in one try— to discover one specially marked grain of sand out of all the beaches of the world.

Another example of how unlikely it would be for a random big bang to produce life is one person winning over a thousand consecutive mega-million dollar lotteries after purchasing only a single ticket for each.

What would be your reaction to such news? Impossible—unless it was fixed by someone behind the scenes, which is what everyone would think. And that is what many scientists are concluding—Someone behind the scenes designed and created the universe.

This new understanding of how miraculous human life is in our universe led the agnostic astronomer George Greenstein to ask, “Is it possible that suddenly, without intending to, we have stumbled upon the scientific proof of the existence of a Supreme Being?”

However, as an agnostic, Greenstein maintains his faith in science, rather than a Creator, to ultimately explain our origins.

Jastrow explains why some scientists are reluctant to accept a transcendent Creator,

There is a kind of religion in science; it is the religion of a person who believes there is order and harmony in the Universe…This religious faith of the scientist is violated by the discovery that the world had a beginning under conditions in which the known laws of physics are not valid, and as a product of forces or circumstances we cannot discover. When that happens, the scientist has lost control. If he really examined the implications, he would be traumatized.

It is understandable why scientists like Greenstein and Hawking seek other explanations rather than attribute our finely-tuned universe to a Creator. Hawking speculates that other unseen (and unprovable) universes may exist, increasing the odds that one of them (ours) is perfectly fine-tuned for life. However, since his proposal is speculative, and outside of verification, it can hardly be called “scientific.” Although he is also an agnostic, British astrophysicist Paul Davies dismisses Hawking’s idea as too speculative. He writes, “Such a belief must rest on faith rather than observation.”

Although Hawking continues leading the charge to explore purely scientific explanations for our origins, other scientists, including many agnostics, have acknowledged what appears to be overwhelming evidence for a Creator. Hoyle wrote,

“A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as chemistry and biology, and that there are no blind forces worth speaking about in nature.”

Although Einstein wasn’t religious, and didn’t believe in a personal God, he called the genius behind the universe “an intelligence of such superiority that, compared with it, all the systematic thinking and acting of human beings is an utterly insignificant reflection.”

Atheist Christopher Hitchens, who spent much of his life writing and debating against God, was most perplexed by the fact that life couldn’t exist if things were different by just “one degree or one hair.”

Davies acknowledges,

There is for me powerful evidence that there is something going on behind it all. It seems as though somebody has fine-tuned nature’s numbers to make the Universe…. The impression of design is overwhelming.

And for life to exist, the conditions in our solar system and planet also need to be just right. For example, we all realize that without an atmosphere of oxygen, none of us would be able to breathe. And without oxygen, water couldn’t exist. Without water there would be no rainfall for our crops. Other elements such as hydrogen, nitrogen, sodium, carbon, calcium, and phosphorus are also essential for life.

But that alone is not all that is needed for life to exist. The size, temperature, relative proximity, and chemical makeup of our planet, sun, and moon also need to be just right. And there are dozens of other conditions that needed to be exquisitely fine-tuned or we wouldn’t be here to think about it.

Scientists who believe in God may have expected such fine-tuning, but atheists and agnostics were unable to explain the remarkable “coincidences.” Theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking, an agnostic, writes, “The remarkable fact is that the values of these numbers seem to have been very finely adjusted to make possible the development of life.”

And finally….

As noted previously, leading atheist Antony Flew’s atheism came to an abrupt end when he studied the intelligence behind DNA. Flew explains what changed his opinion.

What I think the DNA material has done is to show that intelligence must have been involved in getting these extraordinarily diverse elements together. The enormous complexity by which the results were achieved look to me like the work of intelligence…. It now seems to me that the finding of more than fifty years of DNA research have provided materials for a new and enormously powerful argument to design.

Although Flew was not a Christian, he admitted that the “software” behind DNA is far too complex to have originated without a “designer.” The discovery of the incredible intelligence behind DNA has, in this former leading atheist’s words, “provided materials for a new and enormously powerful argument to design.”

All above paragraphs in italics – from Y-Jesus.

Image -startswithabang.com

 

Bill O’Reilly Says Christianity Is Not a Religion


Wowza – please watch this video clip. Bill O’Reilly says Christianity is a philosophy not a religion. O’Reilly actually argues that Christianity, being a philosophy is exempt from rules governing freedom of religion. O’Reilly’s point of view sat me on my ass; those of Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist – name any faith – follow a religion, while Christians believe in a philosophy.

Pondering this Fox News bombshell leads to several questions.  I would love to ask O’Reilly if  and when this “philosophy” will start paying taxes. If indeed a philosophy, why did he call David Silverman of American Atheists “insane” for then responding that Atheism was a philosophy. If a philosophy, how can it be the only true philosophy, and not be a religion. When did it become a philosophy – certainly not when the church burned philosophers at the stake.

Bill O’Reilly tends to blurt out ridiculous justification for his points of view; I know that and avoid his venomous propaganda. The problem is – millions of Fox viewers take his word as the gospel. For every person who scoffs at O’Reilly, there are two more taking it hook, line and sinker.

How Dare You Label Me


While speaking to my mother this evening, I learned she told her friend about my blog. She said her conversation came with a warning about my Atheist views. They got into a discussion of fanatic atheism, her friend recommending books I should read to temper my point of view.I`ve never met this person in my life, nor had he read a word I`ve written – he heard the term Atheist, which apparently sent him into salvation mode.

My initial reaction was disbelief – not only for my mother choosing to share my blog with a disclaimer, but for the reaction of this man. Not often do I feel the need to set the record straight; in hope that this phantom stranger actually takes a peek – a definitive ponder on my religious views…..

The idea that God didn`t create man, man created God has been discussed for ages – I agree completely with this statement. My agreement isn`t dismissive or judgemental; it comes with the understanding that what sets mankind apart from other species on the evolutionary ladder is our ability to not only question, but reason. Since the dawn of time `faith` has comforted, guided, and shaped our destiny. Without it, man would never have become mankind. There isn`t a civilization in history without a creation myth. One of the first questions children ask is `where did I come from`, answers given by parents serve as comfort or reassurance – that is how I see faith. Some parents answer `the stork brought you`, some say `I found you in a cabbage patch`, others `from mommy`s tummy` – I see these as different religions. Not a question of right or wrong, merely a personal decision based on family values. Not one of us would take issue with this, or force parents to respond `you came from God`. My respect goes out the window when religion becomes a matter of public scrutiny.

I believe `faith` and `church` are two very different things. Millions upon millions of people quietly draw strength from belief in their God. When I write about religion my words aren`t meant for these people – it doesn`t make the slightest difference to me if people worship God. The fact that I don`t should be a non issue; what matters is how we spend our brief lives. What matters is that we respect others right to answer `I found you under a lily pad` if that`s how they want to.

I strongly believe anything less than complete separation of church and state infringes on basic human rights.

The term `fanatic atheist` makes me gag. Fanatic anything alludes to a one way ticket on crazy train; that said, what`s the worst thing a fanatic atheist could do – stalk forums and bait religious fanatics for amusement. I can`t imagine how the average Godless persons actions hold a candle to Pastor Michael Stahl of Florida wanting to create an Atheist data base or George H.W. Bush saying `I don`t know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered patriots. This is one nation under God`.

I don`t believe the `church` is above the law, the same rule of law should be applied to Catholic priests as your average paedophile or rapist.  I see no reason for churches not to be audited more closely – in particular ministries preaching on television or in travelling tent shows – extracting a lavish lifestyle in the name of God is criminal. Religious groups who speak out against homosexuality or abortion should be prosecuted for hate crimes. Scientology should never have been given official non profit status in America. God should be banned from reference in political speeches or campaigns. No person should ever be asked to disclose their religious affiliation.

So there it is; my abbreviated views on religion. If this makes me a fanatic Atheist – I give up. If respecting another’s right to faith, while speaking out against despicable injustice or crime in the name of God makes me worthy of data base registration – there is no hope for mankind. As long as I have to wear the label ` Atheist`, closed minds will dictate the future.