I am exceedingly lucky – I am surrounded by love on all sides.  I am practically saturated with the stuff.

My reputation is that of an angry atheist, and I am.  I’m angry at what is wrong with a world full of people I’d never stop hugging if I had the choice.  As my name has gotten more attention I have received love in abundance from other atheists who have supported me and cared for me.  I have tried my damndest to give love back.

The ones who ask the atheists why they don’t kill themselves now, since we presumably have nothing to live for, not only confuse me but they make me sad.  What are all the people in their lives?  Their families?  Their lovers?  Their churchmates?  If heaven is all there is to live for, what can everything else be but tolerated kitsch?

The obvious truth, the practically slapping you in the face and screaming “Look over here” obvious truth, is that we live for others.  To love and be loved in return, as the saying goes.  The people I care for, I share their suffering, so I am invested in making their ills better.  I share their happiness, so I am invested in making them smile – as they are to me.  Love makes life a treat; it makes living a real adventure rather than something to endure.

Friendsmas makes me think of that.  So today is all about what I live for: the world I love, and the people in it who mean the most to me.

On the way home, I stopped off in St. Louis for a few days to see Christina and Christopher.  Michaelyn came over for a few days and a couple of readers, Ellise and “Juby” swung in as well.  Christina took pictures of all the adorable couples.

PERSONAL: The corrupting power of fame and my love for my commenters.
PERSONAL: Sorry to disappoint you, Julian.
PERSONAL: Happy birthday, Hitch.
PERSONAL: Mid day lab pics from the wife.
About JT Eberhard

When not defending the planet from inevitable apocalypse at the rotting hands of the undead, JT is a writer and public speaker about atheism, gay rights, and more. He spent two and a half years with the Secular Student Alliance as their first high school organizer. During that time he built the SSA’s high school program and oversaw the development of groups nationwide. JT is also the co-founder of the popular Skepticon conference and served as the events lead organizer during its first three years.

  • Ben Crockett

    Merry Friendsmas sir!

  • kaorunegisa

    Those pictures are lovely. I needed a reminder like this this Friendmas season. Been a tough one. Thank you for sharing and making things a little better.

  • StevoR

    Awwww! Cute. Thanks. :-)

    Merry Friendsmas, Christmas, Hannukkah, Sol Invictus or whatever festival you choose to celebrate or not celebrate to all here. Wishing y’all a great day – & remember the day is what we choose to make of it and has the significance we choose to give it.

    Oh & that goes for every other day on the calendar too.

  • NotAProphet

    Surely the ones who ask why we don’t kill ourselves have got it 180 degrees out!?

    Why would atheists kill themselves when this life IS ALL we have to ‘live’ for, it’s all there is!

    Surely if heaven is so much better then all the theists should be killing themselves to get there. Oh wait, many of them are, with planes and bombs in vests, cars, trucks and donkeys (poor donkey).

    Presumably the reason not every religion turns into a death-cult is that some make it a sin to kill oneself, for fear of losing any congregation to control and milk for money and prestige. That and the fact that I suspect those that actually believe ENOUGH to kill themselves for their religion are few and far between. Why is that?