College and Faith – Important Things to Consider

For many students, faith doesn’t play a huge part in deciding which college to attend. For them, the only real consideration is which college offers the right course, or whether they can afford to go to an Ivy League college. For students of faith, however, there is another issue: that is, whether to apply to a secular college or attend a mainstream college.… [Read more]

God’s Vengeance

I’ve been thinking about evangelicals. They are a strong political force within the conservative movement and while I have no problem with the expression of deep faith, I am always a little confused by the contradiction between their pageantry and Matthew 6:1: “Take heed that ye give not your alms before men, to be seen of them.”

Where religion is concerned I seek humility and my world view is non-exclusionary, allowing for all religious and non-religious people, to “follow their bliss.”

That phrase was coined by the late mythologist, Joseph Campbell, who believed that all world religions contain the same fundamental, transcendent truths.… [Read more]

Eastern Carolina University Ban on God Isn’t What You Think

A professor at Eastern Carolina University (ECU) recently made national news by asking his students not to thank God in personal statements to be read at graduation. Eli Hvastkovs, an assistant professor of chemistry at ECU, instructed his students to prepare a 35-word personal statement to be read at the departmental graduation ceremony. He said the statement should detail future plans or thank someone who was influential in the student’s education.… [Read more]

Holy Smokes! – Marijuana Use Now Widely Accepted Among Christians

A recent poll found that the majority of Christians think smoking pot is morally acceptable, and a group of pastors recently had a conference focusing on the decriminalization of drugs.

Not only is marijuana becoming more acceptable legally, it’s becoming more acceptable dogmatically, as well. A recent poll by the Public Religion Research Institute found that only 23% of Christians think that smoking pot is a sin, a dramatic change in thinking from just a few years ago.… [Read more]

Is Religion Sneaking into our Schools?

Californians in the Encinitas Union School District recently attempted to ban yoga from physical education (PE) in public schools because of its religious origin. It sounds silly, but keeping religion out of the classroom has become an increasingly valued part of upholding religious freedom in Americans schools.

Here in America

Often when religion makes an appearance in the public sphere and becomes embroiled in legal difficulties we expect to find the ACLU and people who are considered to be ‘angry, politically correct atheists‘ behind it.… [Read more]

The Family

Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to easily contact and talk to ranking U.S. government officials, ambassadors, high-ranking foreign politicians, corporate executives, and leaders of religious and humanitarian organizations? Wouldn’t it also be nice to work closely with senators and congressional representatives to pass or influence legislation?

I know, you think I’m talking about lobbyists, but I’m not.… [Read more]

God gets a bum rap!

God gets a bum rap on just about everything and it’s not fair. Human beings blame God for the many, many deaths, famines, wars, murders, accidents, disease, etc., etc, and this has been the case throughout recorded history. So, let’s look at God from a different perspective.

I’ve had religious experiences where I truly felt the presence of God in my life and I’ve included a link to the most wondrous of those experiences at the end of this post.… [Read more]

Yes, Mr. Broussard, there are Gay Christians

Even the Jesus Fish is getting in on the action!

It seems that the blogosphere has been abuzz all week with the news of gay NBA player Jason Collins’ coming out story in Sport Illustrated this Monday. The news has largely been met with positive statements from public figures, from the NBA Commissioner, fellow NBA players, and even former and current Presidents.… [Read more]

Keep Religion in Schools

I’m a HUGE supporter of the separation of church and state. Huge.

But as a public school teacher, that doesn’t mean I can’t teach about religion. It just means I can’t tell my students that one or any religion is the RIGHT religion.

As a high school American literature teacher, it is absolutely impossible for me to teach any of the books in my curriculum without my students having some working knowledge of the Bible.… [Read more]

The Reality of ‘Honor Killings’ and Anti-Islamic Bias

Due in no small part to the attacks in New York on 9/11, the 2004 Madrid Train Bombings and London’s ‘7/7’ subway bombings in 2005, Muslims, particularly Arab Muslims, have come to personify the threat of backwards, violent, foreign “otherness” for much of the western world. Islamic fundamentalism, both state sponsored and otherwise, is a legitimate concern as there’s no question that the treatment of women, non-Muslims and members of rival sects or ethnic groups in countries governed by Shari’ah law is often problematic.… [Read more]

More God?

“This is what happens when you take God out of the classroom.”

I saw this posted on Facebook, Twitter, opinion pages, and online articles all week – and I still don’t understand it. Most people who stated it really didn’t explain what they meant by it.

I inferred that they meant we (The United States) would not see violence in schools if we taught “God” there.… [Read more]

Be Kind

Over the past four days, I have gone through a lot of emotions about the tragedy in Newtown, CT.

My initial reaction was shock, followed by passionate anger and defensiveness at almost every post I saw on social media.  I felt that I was suddenly surrounded by callous idiots.

I saw posts about how the mentally ill should put a bullet in their own heads before they hurt someone else.… [Read more]

War on Christmas? Try a War on Understanding One Another.

While Fox Nation is bolstering up its defenses for the War on Christmas, many of us find ourselves wondering whether or not they have anything over which to be so upset. Fox continually reminds us that religion in America is under attack, at constant risk of being extinguished. We are also implored to be mindful of the “reason for the season”, and take in to account the religious underpinnings of the holiday season.… [Read more]

Terry Jones: The Good Reverend

The noble crusader roared north from Florida last Thursday, a stalwart soul anointed by God himself to fight Islam, its 1.5 billion  member army the global Devil incarnate – on Canadian soil, in a prime time, public debate with the enemy leadership. Terry Jones, visceral Christian zealot, boss of the hilariously named ‘Dove Ministries’, and conclusive Qur’an burning evidence of why free speech must be treasured above all other personal liberties, headed to Toronto with his noble posse of true believers to slay the Muslim horde, one monosyllable at a time.… [Read more]

A Problem With Religion

There are a lot of reasons to not adhere to a religion: more free time on the weekends, fewer dietary restrictions, less guilt associated with your own existence. As a non-religious person, I am an outsider, and as an outsider I can look at a situation like the attack that occurred in Benghazi, Libya, last Tuesday and see it objectively and without spiritual preconceptions.… [Read more]

Hot Enough For You, Congressman Akin?

For his entire political career, Republican Congressman Todd Akin, US Representative for the suburbs of St. Louis, Missouri, has injected his religion into his job, working tirelessly to ban all abortions, including when unwanted pregnancy results from forcible rape.

Now, the Congressman is in hot water for referring to rape, an act of extreme violence and domination, as “legitimate rape” in his television interview on KTVI-TV (a Fox affiliate, naturally) a few days ago, as if any rape can be thought of as legitimate.… [Read more]

The Cargo Cults of America

People do some funny things when they don’t understand what’s going on. In the 1940s, the U.S. built a lot of air strips on tropical islands where the most advanced technology was the fishing net. The inhabitants of these islands thought that the airplanes were almost as miraculous as the cargo they brought. They had no concept of industrial manufacturing, so when they decided that they wanted some of that cargo, the only way they could think to go about it was to imitate the strange behaviors of the people who received the cargo.… [Read more]

Why the Bible ≠ Outlaw Gay Marriage

Let me start by saying that I think it’s okay if you don’t like gay relationships.

It would bother me to know that you have a problem with them, but there’s nothing I can do about your opinion in that case. Some people are uncomfortable with the concept, and that’s okay. I don’t know what kind of upbringing you had or what kind of culture you’re part of,  but if gays just aren’t your thing, that’s perfectly fine with me.… [Read more]

The “Christian Right” is Neither

Frank Bruni of the NY Times wrote a piece entitled, “The Divine Miss M,” a scathing dissection of Michele Bachmann’s life, a life which is the antithesis of the “Christianity” she espouses. Wrote Bruni, “. . . [S]he presents herself as a godly woman, humbly devoted to her Christian faith. I’d like to meet that god, and I’d like to understand that Christianity.”  Bruni noted Bachmann’s vendetta against Hillary Clinton’s aide, Muslim-born Huma Abedin, and Bachmann’s vengeful mission to spread dissension, lies and hatred toward Muslim Americans.  … [Read more]

Sermon from an Atheist

For those of you who don’t know, I’m an atheist. Yep.  I’m one of those godless heathens those hellfire-and-brimstone preachers warned you about. I don’t believe in Jesus – in fact, I don’t believe that Jesus really existed at all. I think Jesus is pretty much a compilation of all the various god myths from all over the planet – they all are pretty much the same: born of a virgin at the winter solstice and all that.… [Read more]