Quotations – Momentous, Memorable, Meaningful

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Quotations – Momentous, Memorable, Meaningful

A place to share the words of others (or your own!) which have been impactful in your life, whether they're serious, poignant, humorous, or just something worth noting.

Members: 24
Latest Activity: 16 hours ago

I have been a quote collector and quote monger for at least as long as I've been an atheist and probably a good deal longer.  My admiration for those who enjoy reputations as wordsmiths extends even further back, whether we're talking about John F. Kennedy's assertion: "We choose to go to the moon," George Santayana's warning: "Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it," or James T. Kirk's deft observation when faced with the dauntingly huge First Federation ship: "Not chess, Mr. Spock ... poker!"

The realm of atheist activism has had its own share of verbal craftsmen and women, from Madalyn Murray O'Hair's: "An atheist believes that a hospital should be built instead of a church." to Aron Ra's succinct: "If you can't show it, you don't know it."

Regardless of the topic, these are words which are capable of fomenting inspiration, reflection, and sometimes even action.  They can educate and illuminate the human condition and allow us to better know ourselves.  That said, here is an open invitation to share those words which have been particularly meaningful or impactful or timely or just special to you for one reason or another.

Let's share those words and have fun!

One bit of clerical business: please hold your quotes in the comment area below to 20 lines or 200 words.  One comment should not so dominate the Home page of this group that no other comment is visible.  That way, the briefer comments and quotes of all participants are more likely to be seen, read, and appreciated.  If you have a long quote or commentary, create a post, please.

Discussion Forum

"Mr. President ... I Don't Work For You"

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Loren Miller Aug 31. 13 Replies

There has been a major shot across President Donald Trump's bow and it came, believe it or not, from Fox News.  Specifically, it came from Fox reporter and commentator Neil Cavuto, in response to a…Continue

Tags: Neil Cavuto, Fox News, Donald Trump

On authority, obedience, and "liberal" vs. "conservative" values

Started by Grinning Cat. Last reply by Ruth Anthony-Gardner Jul 1. 1 Reply

Last week Loren shared this quotation in the group comments:But here steps in Satan, the eternal rebel, the first freethinker and the emancipator of worlds. He makes man ashamed of his bestial…Continue

Tags: politics, purity, loyalty, liberal, conservative

On Emotion, Vulnerability, and a Flawed God

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Craigart14 Jun 1. 6 Replies

On 31 May, 2018, Joan Denoo posted a most excellent quote from David Hume: That quote was well deserving of a response, which is the following:The most preposterous notion that H. sapiens has ever…Continue

Tags: flawed, vulnerable, emotion, god

"We need a much broader conversation on what morality of pro-life is"

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Plinius Apr 28. 3 Replies

"I do not believe that just because you're opposed to abortion, that that makes you pro-life. In fact, I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking if all you want is a child born but not a…Continue

Tags: Planned, Parenthood, contraception, Pro-life,, O.S.B.

Comment Wall

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Comment by Loren Miller on September 1, 2019 at 6:09am

Any god who would allow children by the millions to suffer and die in this way and their parents to grieve in this way either can do nothing to help them or doesn't care to. He is therefore impotent or evil.
-- Sam Harris

I can't believe I haven't entered the above into this group to date, yet if I'm to believe Google, this is the first time. This quote should be tattooed onto the foreheads of every fatuous dip who wants to insist that "god never gives us more than we can handle," or other similar, specious horseshit. People by the millions have been sacrificed to god's plan, overloaded well past the breaking point long before we showed up, yet Yahweh is still painted as this benevolent, avuncular source of comfort.

"Impotent or evil?" More than likely BOTH.

Comment by Loren Miller on September 1, 2019 at 6:02am

Pardon my bluntness, but I think Kushner is full of shit.  When human beings are confronted with the screaming unfairness that life is entirely too often, at least SOME of us are moved to alleviate the injury and hurt and anguish caused by that unfairness.  Meantime, Harold says that Yahweh is just as outraged by it as we are, YET DOES NOTHING?!?

Anyone who worships an impotent jackass like that deserves what he gets – again – NOTHING!

Comment by Grinning Cat on August 31, 2019 at 11:13am

The ideas of an all-powerful, all-knowing, etc. god, with their attendant contradictions and moral problems, may have originated not with Abrahamic religions but with Greek philosophy:

Ultimately Kushner, like many of us, was wrestling not with Judaic theological but with Greek philosophical ideas about God. The concepts of divine perfection - omniscience, omnipotence, etc. - are derived largely from the 3rd century BCE Stoics. These ideas were imported into Christianity in the Platonic interpretations of early Christians like Augustine and the latter Aristotelian ‘synthesis’ of medieval theologians like Thomas Aquinas. Similar roles were played in the Hellenisation of Judaism by Philo of Alexandria and Maimonides. The Arabic scholars al-Farabi and Avicenna introduced Greek thought into Islam as early as the late 10th century.

Nowhere in Jewish. Islamic or Christian scriptures do these Greek ideas of divine perfection appear. [...] There is overwhelming biblical witness in the Old Testament to God’s lack of perfection in the Greek sense: he has regrets from time to time; he clearly does not know the minds of his people; he craves reassurance; he rages and performs rash acts; he breaks promises. He is, in other words, deficient in every Greek virtue. And his power, although beyond the human, is not infinite.

-- from BlackOxford's review of Rabbi Harold Kushner's When Bad Things Happen to Good People

Comment by Grinning Cat on August 31, 2019 at 11:01am

One theist's view, choosing to see God as good and moral and therefore necessarily not so powerful: 

“God does not cause our misfortunes. Some are caused by bad luck, some are caused by bad people, and some are simply an inevitable consequence of our being human and being mortal, living in a world of inflexible natural laws. The painful things that happen to us are not punishments for our misbehavior, nor are they in any way part of some grand design on God's part. Because the tragedy is not God's will, we need not feel hurt or betrayed by God when tragedy strikes. We can turn to Him for help in overcoming it, precisely because we can tell ourselves that God is as outraged by it as we are.” 
― Harold S. Kushner, When Bad Things Happen to Good People

Comment by Loren Miller on August 31, 2019 at 6:51am

I don't know what I believe anymore. If God does exist, then He's just an asshole, creating this world full of human suffering and letting all these terrible things happen to good people, and sitting there and doing nothing about it. At June's memorial service, a few people came up to me and said some really stupid things, like how everything happens for a reason, and God never gives us more than we can handle. All I could think was, does that mean if I was a weaker person, this never would've happened? Am I seriously supposed to buy that June's death was part of some stupid divine plan? I don't believe that. I can't. It just doesn't make sense.
-- Hannah Harrington, Saving June

I love that line: "... if I were a weaker person, this never would've happened?" It's so blatantly ludicrous, the whole idea of some detached deity, testing us like he supposedly tested Job. Indeed, the very idea is obscene, especially considering that, in some cases, other people have to DIE to implement those tests.  Did god decide those people could handle DEATH???

Comment by Loren Miller on August 31, 2019 at 6:46am

Wow, Chris.  Paine didn't pull any punches, did he?  A good thing, too!

Comment by Plinius on August 30, 2019 at 11:43pm
"Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and torturous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness, with which more than half the Bible is filled, it would be more consistent that we called it the word of a demon than the word of God. It is a history of wickedness, that has served to corrupt and brutalize mankind; and, for my part, I sincerely detest it, as I detest everything that is cruel."
Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason, author of "Common Sense"
Comment by Loren Miller on August 30, 2019 at 5:03am

It's time to be who I am, rather than who I'm supposed to be.
-- Thor, Avengers: Endgame

All of us, I suspect, at one time or another, have expectations superimposed on us – by family, friends, even strangers – all of whom think for whatever reason that they have such a right. If they have such a right (and that's a monumental "IF"), it is only to the extent that We Allow It. Ultimately, every individual deserves to be WHO THEY ARE.

Comment by Joan Denoo on August 30, 2019 at 3:15am

Plinius, excellent point, each stage has its challenges. 

Comment by Plinius on August 30, 2019 at 2:11am

Stages of life... what would be the easiest, Joan?

 

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