Religion Lately: Disappointingly Tame Atheist Billboards, Christmas and Politics, Atheists In Church, and the Gingrinch Who Stole Christmas

By Kenny Smith, Emory University

Whereas last year’s atheist billboard at the Lincoln Tunnel, NJ was said to be overly direct (it told you that Christian stories were myths), this year’s is said to be so tame (they ask you whether they seem like myths to you), that Catholic leaders are not responding with a counter billboard of their own.  Don’t worry, a new and much more offensive billboard is in the works!  One Christmas display that did  provoke controversy was a crucified Santa skeleton.

Alec Guinness, the actor who played the Jedi Knight Obi wan Kenobi in the first three Star Wars films, apparently preferred other mystical imaginaries as well, that of 16th century Christian mystics.

Atheists serving in the US military are starting to ask for, and may soon demand, atheist and humanist chaplains for their foxholes!

Rick Perry’s “I’m not ashamed” TV ad apparently did shame at least one Perry supporter,  and has inspired a number of parodies of Atheist  and Jewish varieties.

Ironically, Perry’s own holiday address to American soldiers in 2010 contained no references to Christmas or Jesus whatsoever.

BTW, Father Gabrielle Amorth, the Vatican’s chief exorcist, has ruled that the practice of yoga, like the Harry Potter films, is Satanic.

Speaking of religion and politics, folks at the Dudespaper somewhat incoherently slammed presidential hopeful, the Newt “Gingrinch Who Stole Christmas.”

40% of Americans have unfavorable views of Southern Baptists (and hence a change in the denomination’s name is likely).  Surprisingly, the denominations disapproval ratings are similar in the Bible Belt, that is, the South!

Are you considering joining, or rejoining, the Catholic family? Check out the new TV commercial “calling Catholics home.” The Bible, humanitarianism, saints and the scientific method. They’re pretty darn cool.

Looking for Atheism as well as Intelligent Design? Try the Raelians.  Eric Weiner did, along with a number of other religious communities in “Man Seeks God.”  An Iranian Raelian leader, after making her faith choices public, received asylum in the U.S.

The Apple office complex, which Steve Jobs described as “like a spaceship landed”, will feature, “a 45,000-square-foot fitness center, on-campus dining… an abundance of solar panels which will generate up to five megawatts of electricity for the campus… a grove of Cherry trees, Redwoods, Ash, Maples, and Gums — along with gardens and orchards [that] will inspire productive brainstorms, meditative breaks, rejection of the world outside the campus, an unflinching devotion to the cult…” that is, the company.

1 in 5 Atheists with children attend church, and Pagans are singing Christmas carols.  What’s the world coming to?

 

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