Mikey Weinstein Responds to Pat Robertson Calling Him “One Little Jewish Radical” who is “Terrorizing” the Air Force

I know Pat Robertson saying something crazy isn’t news to anybody, but now that the Air Force is allowing atheists to omit the words “So Help Me God” from the oath, he is flipping out over how quickly they changed this policy.

He’s especially angry with Mikey Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation for writing a letter to the Secretary of Defense defending atheists. (For what it’s worth, there’s no evidence that Weinstein’s letter was the one that caused the Air Force to change its policy, but it undoubtedly helped.)

[Read more...]

Exploring Awe as the Source of the Sacred

The conversation about how human beings derive meaning from life, and how it ties into atheism and religion, continues on NPR’s 13.7 Cosmos & Culture blog.

On Monday, I covered Alva Noë‘s take on what he sees as “Spockian Atheism,” a godless view of life that leaves no room for value or meaning (and somehow I missed the opportunity to note, “Dammit Jim, I’m an atheist, not a robot!” The shame of it…).

Now, Adam Frank has added his own take to the dialogue, with a piece called, “Is Atheist Awe A Religious Experience?

[Read more...]

What’s the Use of Praying?

My friend Benjamin Corey, a fellow Patheos blogger and Christian author, recently wrote that

[P]rayer is often the most effective tool a Christian has.

Effective? He’ll be visiting in a couple of weeks, and I intend to ask him, over beers, what that means. I don’t doubt that prayer can be a means of quieting or soothing your mind, like meditation. In that sense, it’s perfectly benign, even positive. (Evidently, prayer can mean many things to many people, as this fairly insipid advice from Andrew W.K. shows. Hemant wrote a very good response to it here.)

[Read more...]

So Adorable, Yet So Wrong…

What happens when you ask questions about religion to a bunch of children? Besides making Richard Dawkins cringe as they announce their religious labels, how much about their family’s faith do they understand?

The Washington Post‘s PostTV wanted to find out so they brought together 14 kids from various cultures. Click on the image below to view the video (and see if you can spot the kids from the Ethical Society).

[Read more...]

Will the Real Satanists Please Stand Up?

Here’s the thing about the Satanic Temple: You think Christians don’t like them? Well, other Satanists really don’t like them because they’re misappropriating Satan in order to fight First Amendment cases… which is all well and good for atheists, but where’s the Satan worship, huh?!

That’s the gist of a complaint by other Satanists now that the Satanic Temple has formed a chapter in Detroit and is getting a lot of media attention for other reasons:

[Read more...]