One Hundred and Five Thousand, Nine Hundred Eighty Nine. Dollars.

You know the story: Helping A Tornado Survivor, Atheist Style — Oklahoma tornado survivor Rebecca Vitsmun admits she's an atheist during a TV interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, and atheists worldwide pitch in to help her and her family rebuild.The donation effort at Indiegogo is still roaring along.The total as I write this is, yes, $105,989. … [Read more...]

Time for Serious Outreach into Islam?

Here's a story from the United Kingdom's online news site Mail Online, the heated subtext of which is "OMG MUSLIMS!!!"One country, two religions and three very telling pictures: The empty pews at churches just yards from an overcrowded mosqueIt's a story in pictures, with a small amount of text: What they show are three acts of worship performed in the East End of London within a few hundred yards of each other at the end of last month.Two of the photos show Sunday morning … [Read more...]

Helping A Tornado Survivor, Atheist-Style

There's a rather amazing story coming out of the Oklahoma tornado-aftermath.Moore, Oklahoma, resident and mother Rebecca Vitsmun, being interviewed by  CNN's Wolf Blitzer, responded to a spray of goddy rhetoric:Blitzer: "Well, you're blessed, Brian your husband is blessed, Anders is blessed. [...] I guess you gotta thank the Lord, huh? Do you thank the Lord, for that split-second decision (to leave her home and get to safety)?"Vitsmun: "I uh, I am actually an atheist."Amid … [Read more...]

Beta Culture: Earthman’s Journey – Part 8 of 8

[ Part 1 — 2 — 3— 4 — 5 — 6 – 7 — 8 ] The Final Doorway The payoff of going through the transition from the House of the Tribe to the House of Humanity is very large. If we can make it across the painful threshold from our small but formerly comfortable dwelling space into this new and grander place, we gain an entire fascinating WORLD of people.People to learn from, to visit, to photograph, to love, to sing to, to listen to, to argue with, to trade with, even to combine talents and efforts … [Read more...]

Beta Culture: Earthman’s Journey – Part 7 of 8

[ Part 1 — 2 — 3— 4 — 5 — 6 – 7 — 8 ] The Houses of Man (cont.) As you’ve probably already figured out, there are other steps in this bigger-house progression. At some point we discover the door to yet another Outside, and find that our original family home is only a small part of a bigger place – our neighborhood or culture. For want of a better name, call this dwelling place the House of the Tribe.Again, there’s an uncomfortable period of adaptation in settling-in to this larger space. To … [Read more...]

Shoving Orphans Away From the Table

How many times have you seen it? Someone convenes a panel of talking heads to discuss morals, justice, or any of the other “goodness” issues, and the speaker’s table is filled with a priest, a minister and a rabbi (and here lately, to prove our generous and inclusionary nature, an imam).As far as the organizer is concerned, and large swaths of the audience, atheists don’t exist. Because we don’t know anything about morals, you see, or deep human convictions, or even feelings. We can’t speak w … [Read more...]


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