Tag Archives: church

you can’t find all the answers in google

So says church180 in their new television adverts (they had one on during the NBN news). church180’s slogan is “turn it around“, their new advertising campaign suggests that you can’t find all the answers in google and if you need to turn your life around you need to join their church.

church180 seems to be inferring (see their websites) that by finding God you can fix relationships, your job, health and finances. Do you think the church can do this? Is this perhaps false advertising?

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Filed under atheism, church, god

what I found today

Bad Ass Popes – the six most awful Popes, via Five Public Opinions

Soft toys for boys – teach your child how to conduct Mass, via Nullifidian

Proposition 8 the Musical – satirical look at Prop 8, via Matt’s Notepad, via Pharyngula

Tim Minchin is funny – and doesn’t mind saying what he thinks about religion, via Sean the Blogonaut

20 Unusual Churches – say what you like about the religious, they build some amazing churches, via Stumbleupon

From the same site as above comes the following road sign:

M Yass

M Yass

Yass is a town in rural New South Wales, Australia.

No Clean Feed video – Priceless, via efa_oz on Twitter

Infallibility – The Catholic church explains how it infallible (yeah right!), found when researching for the comment I made at Five Public Opinions (see above). The two main proofs of the churches infallibility:

  • Proof from Scripture
  • Proof from Tradition

Such great proofs </sarcasm>

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Filed under atheism, atheist, Catholic, religion

Who said churches were safe?

In rather sad news comes these two reports:

Gunman shoots three in church

A gunman opened fire during a church service in New Jersey on Sunday, wounding three people, one of them critically, authorities said.

A law enforcement official said the shooting may be the result of domestic violence.

Swordsman shot dead at Scientology building

A security guard has shot and killed a man wielding a sword on the grounds of a Scientology building in Hollywood.

Well that’s three posts today, that should catch me up for the weekend I spent offline entertaining guests instead of the internets.

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Filed under church, Church of Scientology (CoS)

All is forgiven John

The Vatican has semi-officially forgiven John Lennon for his remark that “the Beatles were bigger than Jesus”. As Tony Eastley on ABC’s AM show said today:

John Lennon’s old comment that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus caused such a stir at the time that some religious leaders called for the group’s albums to be burned and concerts boycotted. And in some places people were silly enough to do it. Forty years later though, it appears all is forgiven.

An editorial in a semi-official Vatican newspaper says Lennon’s remarks about Jesus were nothing more than the youthful joke of a working class man.

The church does take itself rather too seriusly sometimes.

report from abc.net.au/am

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Filed under atheism, Beatles, Catholic, jesus, John Lennon, religion

More Wedding Blues

Getting married and being an atheist seems to be causing a lot of grief to some people. Walking down the aisle in the white-gown does have its attractions, but Church and atheism don’t really go together.

Marriage ceremonies around the world, and the beautiful buildings some of them are held in, can be quite breathtaking, why wouldn’t you want to do what lots of other people do? Because as an atheist you aren’t comfortable having ‘God’ involved in your vows. Like myself, who got married in a church out of ‘tradition’ and to not offend the parents (mine, hers wouldn’t have cared), you will regret it later, because you will realise what a hypocrite you had been.

A wedding is a big day, it is a public demonstration that you love your partner so much, you want to spend the rest of your life together. This doesn’t have to occur in a church, or with any religious overtones, to still be a beautiful thing and to mean something to you, your partner, family and friends.

There are non-religious celebrants in most places these days and you can hold the ceremony anywhere you want. The wedding should be about you and your partner, the vows should express what you both want out of life together.

Why am I saying all this? Well I just received a new comment on a previous post called wedding blues (written after receiving a cry for help from another reader – I hope things turned out alright for her). This new commenter, Sarah, has a similar quandary. I’ve re-posted her comment below:

I’m having a similar quandary here. My boyfriend of four years and I are deeply committed to each other. We will both be graduating from college soon and moving in together. Several of our friends are getting married and we are starting to get the “so when are you going to get married” questions. I had always thought that even though I am not religious, I would have a semi-traditional wedding, just because I hadn’t thought of anything else. The older I get, the less ok I am with taking part in a tradition that it bound up with so many things I disagree with, whether or not they are taken as such today.

I know that I love this man and I want to be with him for the rest of our lives. I would like to have some sort of ceremony/party to show this to others (I don’t know why, maybe I’m just incapable of being strong enough to forgo the cultural pressures of “proving it” to everyone else)

I’m totally lost however as to what such a ceremony would entail and why I would even bother. As far as I see it, the term “marriage” means one of two possible things

1) A spiritual union blessed by a religious organization
2) A legal contract

I have problems with both of these, the first is easy. However the second is more problematic. I believe marriage as a legal entity should be abolished and then people can create their own individual contracts with whomever they see fit. That is why the whole are argument over gay marriage is missing the point. Marriage as a legal contract, and the rights that go along with it, devalue non-traditional relationships, gays and lesbians and singles.

Ergo, if I have a ceremony, I will not be married in the eyes of a deity or the government, So, what the hell is the point? If I have a ceremony of some sort, just because I want one, is that shallow and cheap? Are people going to ask what is the point? How can I explain myself without seeming to criticise their decision to get married? AHHHH….I am a strong woman but damnit, sometimes I cant get over visions of the two of us on a cliff, and a pretty dress and flowers.

I’m not even sure if there is a question there, sorry for the rant. I’m just a bit lost right now.

Firstly, I think you can still have a semi-traditional wedding without any of the religious overtones, you’ll just have to put in a bit more effort (unless you have a good non-religious celebrant handy).

I don’t think it’s ‘weak’ to “prove it” to everyone else. Think of it more like a celebration, you have parties with all your family and friends for birthdays, especially big ones like 21st, why not when you get ‘married’ (in whatever form you choose)?

Yes marriage is a legal contract, whether you do it in a church or down at the registry, and in lots of countries you don’t need to get married to still enjoy all the legal benefits.

You could just live together, have a ‘living together’ party, and still enjoy most of the legal recognition and benefits. The difference with gays and lesbians is that they get no legal recognition. (at least that’s the case in Australia, de facto relationships – heterosexual ones at least – are provided with nearly all the same legal rights as married couples).

I think you may be missing the point of the whole legal aspect of marriage. The legal rights are, in the most part, there to protect you both. Being married confers various rights and benefits, such as: Filing joint income tax returns with the IRS and state taxing authorities; Inheriting a share of your spouse’s estate; Receiving Social Security, Medicare, and disability benefits for spouses; You have the right to visit your spouse in a hospital and make medical decisions for them. It can also entitle you to buy a house together without having to sign an extra legal agreement.  Check this site (where I got most of the above rights from) for a long list of benefits for being legally married and a brief discussion on the lack of benefits to same sex couples. As the link says:

… many of the benefits of marriage won’t apply to you, because the federal government does not recognize these same-sex relationships.

Having a ceremony, of what ever type you both choose, does not make you shallow and cheap. Hopefully, as I’ve previously said, you have it to celebrate with family and friends. One would hope that your family and friends would be happy you are getting married and would want to show their joy and commitment to your relationship.

Being married can, at times, be very difficult, having family and friends who witnessed your nuptials who can then help you through the difficult times can be quite beneficial.

There’s nothing wrong with a pretty dress and flowers, even the toughest woman is allowed to be feminine now and again.

I’m not sure if I’ve helped at all, I’m not even sure if this makes any sense.  Anyway what the heck would I know, I’m no marriage expert, especially at the moment.

Whatever you do, don’t do it because others want you to. Do some research; find out what options there are in your State for non-religious marriages. Discuss with your partner if marriage is really right for you both, it’s not compulsory after all.

cheers for now,
Oz

Help from others with Sarah’s plight would be appreciated, I’m sure, so please leave a comment.

7 Comments

Filed under atheism, atheist, church, marriage, religion, wedding

Some light reading

I’m all out of original thoughts today, so here’s a few trackbacks to some blogs I read today:

Daylight AtheismOn the Limits of Knowledge

Not A BlogBad Atheist Responses to Christianity

No More Hornets‘ rather silly Presidential campaign

I also got around to reading the rest of comments on Sean the Blogonaut‘s – Doesn’t Atheism require as much faith as belief in god?

and, the excellent comments by Richard explaining evolution (quite well IMHO) at Fiery‘s Chicken or the Egg post.

One last one, a funny church sign at The Frame Problem.

Which brought me to a thought, that there are so many good blogs out there it’s hard to keep up with reading them all.

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3 Comments

Filed under atheism, atheist, blog, creationism, evolution, god, ID, politics, religion

Wedding Blues

I received the following comment, from JP, into my about page, but decided to post it as a new topic here so others can help:

Hi

i found this blog through a google – like you i am not religious but that hasnt stopped a big problem – i am due to be married and both families are pushing for a full trad church wedding (and trad dress etc) and i dont like it – i feel cornered and trapped and not sure what to do. Do you have any advice you can give me?

Please post constructive comments for JP:

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