I am an Atheist and I live in Australia.
Like many rational thinking people, I have been concerned with the apparent rise of religion’s influence on politics and policies, not only here in Australia, but also in many other countries. America in particular.
Like a lot of others, I have jumped on the recent bandwagon of speaking out about atheism. Whilst I have been an atheist for many years (see “Where I Come From” below) it is only recently that various TV shows (“The Root of All Evil?”) and books (“The God Delusion” “God is NOT Great”) have sparked my interest in being vocal about it.
As many other people have said ‘organising atheists is like herding cats’. This may be true, but if more atheists are outspoken then, whilst we might be disorganised, at least there will be a lot of us.
Has anyone ever been in a room with a lot of cats in it? They may appear chaotic or disinterested but you certainly can’t avoid knowing they are there!
There are a few campaigns trying to get people to be more open about their atheism such as Richard Dawkin’s ‘Out Campaign’ and ‘The Bright’s’ movement. Hopefully this will add to those.
Where I come from
I was born in England into a Church of England family. As a young child our family emigrated to Australia and we joined the local Baptist church. I remember going to church on Sundays and going to the Sunday School. During my early teens I rebelled against everything (as most teenagers do) including going to church. However I eventually went back to the church and even got baptised! As an older teen I got quite into it, attending bible classes, going to Billy Graham concerts, bible bashing on the street corner, door knocking (way before I’d ever heard of the Mormons) etc.
Then I left home to start work (had to move interstate) and all that religious stuff went out the window. Though I had already started to have doubts, mostly because of the bible study. The more I studied the bible the more questions I had that couldn’t be answered. After several years I counted myself as not-religious, but I was still putting Baptist on forms. I even got married in a Baptist church.
For many years I had no interest in religion of any sort but didn’t actually identify as an atheist. Thankfully the ABC showed “The Root of all Evil?” and shortly after I bought, and read the book (“The God Delusion” by Richard Dawkins). I have since read several other books, and hope to purchase a few more soon.
update – it seems I can’t post links to Amazon etc, so I’ll just list them in the sidebar .
I now fully identify as an atheist and wonder why I never did years ago (it is hard to break free from years of indoctrination). I have read / still read many of the atheist sites on the net to get useful information, and some of these are in my blogroll.
I like the Bright’s description:
a naturalistic worldview free of supernatural and mystical elements
I’ll keep updating this ‘About’ page as I remember details and get the time to do the editing. Meanwhile feel free to read my blogs and make comments.
Update 18 September 2007
OK, it seems like there’s two of us.
Over on YouTube there is another ozatheist, he also has a MySpace account, please note that this is NOT me. I Don’t have either a youtube or myspace account, and until I get broadband (about as likely as hell freezing over – thanks for nothing Telstra) I probably won’t bother getting one.
Update 20 September 2007
Make that three of us.
I went to post a comment on a blogger.com site and found I needed a Google and/or Blogger account, so I went to set one up. However, when I tried to use the URL ozatheist I found that name was already in use. So I used this one instead ozatheitsweblog.
Note on Copyright
Occasionally I will copy small sections of other peoples writings and post them on my blog. I will always try and place a link back to the original document and note the author. I will also attempt to make sure nothing is taken out of context or make the author appear to be stating something they didn’t.
I hope all authors will take my copying to be within ‘fair use’, however if you see something on my blog for which you are the original author and would like me to remove, please let me know.
Note on Comments
To post comments you have to enter a name and email address, this is done in order to reduce the number of spammers I might receive. However, feel free to use a fake name and email address. The first post from a particular email address has to be moderated by me, which may sometimes take a day or two (hey, I have to work sometimes, and I do have a life). However, if you use the same name and email address, subsequent comments will be automatically posted.