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Hang With Friends

Location: Earth
Members: 867
Latest Activity: 6 hours ago

Come on in, pull up a chair!

Picture yourself spending some time with congenial friends, sharing your lives and pictures from your cell phones." They're curious about that cool game, song, movie, camping trip, art show, or other event that fascinated you. You talk about all kinds of stuff, poetry, styles, personal achievements, relationships, and bad days. You can share your inner child, and laugh together. They sympathetically listen to your feelings about serious topics like politics or climate change, even when they don't agree.

Personal validation comes from paying attention to one another, giving more than you get. Everyone respects you and themselves, despite our amazing range of personal tastes and interests. They'll tell you they don't agree with an idea or behavior without implying you're a bad person or somehow deficient. It's an "I'm OK, You're OK" kind of fellowship, where nobody tries to make himself look better by picking on somebody else.

Nobody here is into mind games. A discussion started with a loaded guilt-throwing question will be deleted.

This group is not intended to compete with other groups on topics they cover but to "fill in the cracks." Whenever a discussion dwells at length on a topic for which there's an existing group, we urge you to provide members a link to that group to continue along their tangent.

A comment is a shout-out, which will get lost in a few days, because the comment wall is just a random stack.

Please start a discussion to share stories, photos, and videos. Replies will pop up in your "latest activity" and a conversation can develop from the feelings and thoughts you contributed. Groups are built on discussions.

Discussion Forum

Are You a Patriot? (Betty Bowers)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Compelledunbeliever 6 hours ago. 12 Replies

You might think that Betty Bowers, America's Best Christian, would be stepping outside of her comfort zone in tackling the concept of patriotism.  As it turns out, not only does she have a proper handle on the term and its implications, she also…Continue

Tags: patriot, America's Best Christian, Betty Bowers

We Don't Want Your (Atheist) Money! (The Thinking Atheist)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Grinning Cat 17 hours ago. 11 Replies

I suppose I've heard stories like this before:Conscientious atheist donates money to worthy cause.Worthy cause initially accepts money.Worthy cause discovers source of donation.Worthy cause rejects donation.Swell, eh?  Well Matt Willbourne of…Continue

Tags: American Baptist Churches Association, Murrow Indian Children's Home, The Thinking Atheist, Seth Andrews

The Ark Encounter: A Less than Grand Opening (The Thinking Atheist)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Grinning Cat on Monday. 24 Replies

The day finally arrived.  Ken Ham's Ark Encounter opened on 7 July, 2016 ... to something a bit less than Disney-sized crowds, and more than a couple dissenting voices!  Seth Andrews has gathered a quartet of significant participants in the protest…Continue

Tags: Tracey Moody, Dan Broadbent, Seth Andrews, David Silverman, AronRa

Surreal, I haz it

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Idaho Spud Aug 14. 91 Replies

Surreal, not just found in art.Continue

Tags: surreal

Wedding Haka - Subtitled & translated

Started by Joan Denoo Aug 13. 0 Replies

I ran across a video of a wedding in which a group of wedding guests celebrated with a performance of a traditional Māori ancestral war dance, called a Haka. It was intended for sons, however, the women have joined in a participation of…Continue

Tags: new, traditions., women, men, Haka

Onward (Unpaid) Christian Soldiers (Betty Bowers)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Chris G Aug 13. 1 Reply

Proselytizing in the military is a dirty little secret most radical christians would rather didn't get out.  Well, never let it be said that America's Best Christian, Betty Bowers, was ever a wallflower where a pit bull was needed!  In the following…Continue

Tags: Military Religious Freedom Foundation, MRFF, America's Best Christian, Betty Bowers

Comment Wall

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Comment by Idaho Spud on July 16, 2012 at 2:48pm

I don't shop at Wal-Mart either sk8eycat, but the new sign made me laugh. :)

Comment by Idaho Spud on July 16, 2012 at 2:45pm

I agree Ruth.

Comment by sk8eycat on July 16, 2012 at 2:39pm

 Why I refuse to shop at a certain big box store:

I suppose I should give them points for having a sense of humor, but I can't.  Lowest common denominator, and all that.

Comment by Ruth Anthony-Gardner on July 16, 2012 at 2:36pm

Sorry, Joan. My life is too interesting to waste thinking about the historical figure behind Xian memeplexes. Any historical figure can "ascend" to the role of divine. Elvis Presley could have spawned a religion, Joseph Smith did. That doesn't motivate me to waste my afternoons delving into their histories.

There's NO FASCINATION for me.

Comment by sk8eycat on July 16, 2012 at 2:35pm

Note to all my friends: I am having frustrating problems linking to AN via the e-mail notifications of new posts in "my" groups.  ALL other links included in e-mails work fine, EXCEPT the ones to AN groups.  Is there a version of hackiing that blocks atheists?  I'm serious, for a change.

PS: @ Flyiing Atheist - Don't throw out the baby with the bath water!  I think that "Nooooo!" is funny, cute, and absolutely true.  We are all born atheists; andas the song from "South Pacific" said, "We Have To Be Carefully Taught" to be anything else.

@Joan - I am so fortunate that my parents were somewhat "casual christians." I think Dad was actually a closeted atheist, at least he quietly taught me to think for myself. I was the one who plonked myself down in a Baptwit church when I was a teen (because all the "popular" kids went there), and then tormented myself for years because I couldn't manage to force myself to believe what they were teaching, and that the "popular" kids actually got answers to their prayers directly from God/Jesus.  I thought there was something wrong with me

Finally, when I was about 25 I read the entire KJV because I was looking for answers/help.  When I finished, I thought, "Huh?" And read it again, and realized it was 99.99999% fiction.  I couldn't possibly suspend my disbelief long enough to even say the words, "Our Father."  I knew who my father was, and it wasn't some imaginary tyrant made up by ignorant Bronze Age goat-herders, and who behaved the way their tribal chiefs did.  He was the brilliant, honest accountant sitting in the living room, smoking his pipe and watching the news on TV.

As I said, I was bloody fortunate, and I'm sorry your whole family was so completely locked into the bullying kind of fundaMENTALism.  It's all about control, and it's a sickness.  The fact that you were able and smart enough to pull yourself out of it is a major victory.

 

I'll be back when I figure out what's wrong with my computer. And get it fixed.  (I got here today by going to my "Favorites" list...)

Felaine

Comment by Joan Denoo on July 16, 2012 at 12:48pm

Now, all that said, I recognize I am fully human, responsible for my choices, if I want to be safe I have to do things that make me safe. Happiness follows from doing the things I like to do ... be with family, be a good neighbor, participate in my community and refuse to remain silent in the face of violence in the home, and create processes for freeing oneself and standing as a full citizen of the world.
Beauty surrounds me, as my photos testify, and loving, caring, compassionate family and friends join in making life interesting, meaningful and fun.
So, today, the first day of the rest of my life, I am safe, content, looking forward to eating the left-over roast chicken I made yesterday that I stuffed with herbs from the garden. I shall make Asian chicken salad for dinner tonight and use bones to create a splendid broth in anticipation of a cold soup. Yes, life is good.

Comment by Joan Denoo on July 16, 2012 at 9:26am
Comment by Joan Denoo on July 16, 2012 at 8:52am

The Faces of Jesus - Bart Ehrman

"Every Christian sooner or later has to ask the question, "Who was Jesus really?" And we ask this in our age in a special way because we are very historically oriented. We are modern, or perhaps post-modern, people, but all of us have a sense that we want to know what things were really like. We know that the past is different from the present. We have experienced rapid change, all of us in our generation. And so we want to know what was Jesus really like. And that quest to understand what he was really like has turned out to be very disappointing. So how do we really get at that? We must, first of all, understand that in history facts always lie under interpretations and we never get to the facts. They're only interpretations. There is only an interpreted Jesus, there are many interpreted Jesuses. So where do we begin? We begin not with Jesus, we have no access to him. We begin with the responses to Jesus, by his followers, by outsiders who heard about him.... We begin with those reactions as they're enshrined in the text we have.


"All we have from this period about Jesus is text, finally. And we try to work backwards and say, "How did we get these texts? Who wrote these texts? Where did they get the ideas?" Surely behind the written text there were oral traditions, we know that. There were oral traditions that went on after the written text, and we have evidence of those being written down later. So we try to dissect those. We say, "What kind of traditions? How were they shaped? What kinds of stories did people tell about Jesus?" Those stories have a shape to them. Do we find other stories in the culture of the Mediterranean world around Jesus? Other stories about other people that are shaped the same way? We have reports of what Jesus said. He told parables, he told stories, he told little epigrams. Those have a shape to them. Are they like any sayings that are attributed to other people at the same time? We're trying to put this whole story into a context of its own history, of its own time. And our ideal here is to be able to hear those stories, hear those sayings, as someone in the first century would have heard them, recognizing that there were conventions that if people heard a certain way of talking they would say, "Hmm, this person claims to be a prophet." Or this person about whom this story is told is a magician, someone with magical power, a healer, or this is a wise person, a person who delivers certain kinds of maxims or epigrams or tells proverbs or parables and the like. So there are socially conditioned ways of identifying people that one can see almost built into the shape of the tradition about Jesus. If we're smart enough, by comparing other sources from a similar time and place, we can retrace that history, working backwards from the text in the earliest time that we can get to."

Comment by Steph S. on July 16, 2012 at 8:34am
I agree Joan. Once you renounce religion you are no longer a sheep. No more brutes and thugs for me. I see through their lies now. I'm glad you are free Joan. Free from a life of submission.
Comment by Joan Denoo on July 16, 2012 at 8:27am

I began to doubt the words preached from the pulpit and taught from the lectern because of what I saw, heard and felt as a result of their lies. I watched my grandmothers struggle with their roles as women trying to follow liars of their generation and being utterly abandoned by men who told them deliberate lies in order to appease them, to oppress them, to dominate them. I listened to the lying fool who told my mother to submit and obey. I believed the idiot who told me to crucify myself daily in imitation of the crucified christ, to yield, submit, turn the other cheek, obey, rejoice in my crucifixion and that of all women I was most blessed.
Were these men ignorant, stupid, lazy, foolish, insane, or were they betrayed by others who exploited them?
Were these women sheep, ready for the slaughter, willing participants in the comedy of false beliefs?
In my opinion, religion failed me, my mother, both of my grandmothers, and made brutes and thugs out of my husband, father, and grandfathers.
My splendid heresy occurred when I renounced submission to religion and claimed my ability to think and reason and question and examine and experiment and refuse to be a sheep preparing myself for the slaughter.

 

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