An Atheist Christmas

I'm back home and making up my traditional end-of-semester sleep deficit.  I'll have a few substantive philosophical posts this week (I'm finishing the Eight Questions series before Christmas), but I will be supplementing with lighter fare for the holidays: unusual Christmas practices.My boyfriend's mother was surprised to hear I had any family obligations for Christmas, given that my entire immediate family are atheists.  We do have some holiday traditions, however.  There's the traditional … [Read more...]

What I’m doing after exams:

I'm wearing some tight, tight jeans and tonight we're delving into some serious, serious shit. I'm Andrew Jackson, and I'm your president.  Those are the opening lines of Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, an irreverent, nerdy, emo-rock musical.  Come 8pm tonight, I'll be done with my final paper for the semester and I'll be sitting in the orchestra section with my boyfriend for the evening show.  That means I will continue to not exist today, but I'll probably resume existing  sometime to … [Read more...]

7 Quick Takes (12/17/10)

I have exams/papers and have been trying (and failing) to ignore the internet.  While I'm blocking it, you can check out some of my favorite webcomics below. --1-- Unsurprisingly, one of my absolute favorite webcomics is xkcd, which bills itself as "a webcomic of romance, sarcasm, math, and language."  I'm a proud owner of the "Stand Back, I'm Going to Try Science" t-shirt, but my proudest xkcd link is the one that got me and three friends into the xkcd in Real Life heading on the wikipedia pa … [Read more...]

In a paper morass, but here’s a quick announcement:

It's finals week at school, all my work/exams is due/takes place in the last two days, and I, of course, have done a less than masterful job of spacing out my work, so I won't have any really substantial posts until Sunday, in all probability.  I really appreciate all the apologist recommendations you've offered, and I'll be looking at them/responding to you after I finish up the term.  In the meantime, three brief announcements:I can't complain too much because one of the papers I get to w … [Read more...]

Anyone have apologist recommendations?

As I wrote yesterday, I was disappointed by the person I found on the online Mormon chat module, but I do still think its an excellent way to reach out to people who are curious about a particular religion.  I like reading blogs, but it would be nice to have dialogue with apologists, and, given that I am a student and can't drive, my options are somewhat limited.Does anyone know of other churches that offer chats with believers or apologists?  I may try the Mormon one again (some of the c … [Read more...]

Talking to a Mormon Missionary

The Mormon Church runs a 24-hour live chat with missionaries at  I found out about this service since screenshots of their chats frequently appear on The Art of Trolling, a blog that curates internet based pranks, some of which are not safe for work.I figured that the Mormon Church, which puts a heavy emphasis on conversions and is fairly successful in its efforts was worth talking to, so I logged on to ask my most basic question for theists: Do you think the evidence for your … [Read more...]

Covenant marriage isn’t suited to Christians

This post is part of a series on covenant marriage.For Catholics and theologically conservative Christians, there is no difference between a covenant marriage and the standard form.  In either case, the marriage is sealed as a promise between both spouses but also as a promise between the couple and God. Although the couple could release each other from the commitment they have made to each other, the marriage cannot be dissolved unless God, through his human agents, releases them from their … [Read more...]