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Coming Out As a Heretic

Coming Out As a Heretic

By Kate Blanchard, Religion Dispatches…..
I could very much relate to the recent NPRstory about a Christian minister losing her faith. Like her, I once counted myself among the über-faithful but then “fell away” in my twenties. Despite marrying a clergyman and spending lots of time in theological school, I never made it back to the one true way. But there is a major difference in my story and this minister’s story, which is that she has embraced the name “atheist,” while I cannot bring myself to do so.

Freethinking in the Words of Matthew Alper

Freethinking in the Words of Matthew Alper

By Michel-Camille Bordeau….
If, like yours truly, you’ve been closely following the new wave of freethinkers, if you’ve helped Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, Bart Ehrman, Daniel Dennett, Christopher Hitchens and many others become bestselling authors, you might remember Matthew Alper, author of The ‘God’ Part of the Brain: A Scientific Interpretation of Human Spirituality and God. You might even recall the original cover of the 1996 self-published edition of his seminal work. Although The “God” Part of the Brain continues to pad Sourcebooks’ pocketbook; although it has been adopted by about 50 college professors; and, although, fifteen years after the initial release, Matthew Alper still receives hundreds of e-mails from students and professors worldwide, I still think it should get more attention. It should get Religion Nerd’s reader’s attention. Here’s why.

In response to Deepak Chopra’s Atheists’ Mistake: Liberal Spirituality

In response to Deepak Chopra’s Atheists’ Mistake: Liberal Spirituality

By Michel-Camille Bordeau……
In his most recent article famed spiritual author Deepak Chopra expressed his concern that “By making belief in God their enemy… atheists deprive themselves of what spirituality is really about: a process of inner growth.” The short article is a blog-jab in Christopher Hitchens direction, a response to a recent letter he wrote for the annual convention of atheists, and, by ‘atheists’, Mr Chopra implies those who think-believe in the manner of outspoken Christopher Hitchens. Though, like any self-respecting minority, Atheists have plenty of reasons and sufficient rights to question majority opinions like those expressed by Mr. Chopra, assuming that every Atheist sees Humanity with Hitchens’ eyes is somewhat reductive, although very flattering, considering the man’s achievements.

The Night of the Farting Dog: An Atheist in Freefall

The Night of the Farting Dog: An Atheist in Freefall

By Beatrice Marovich, Religion Dispatches…..
The small school of so-called “new atheists,” whose pop commentaries on religion, science, and political life have proven incendiary in recent years, have lately come up against the charge that they’re conspicuously homogenous: white, male, and squarely professional class [there areexceptions, however —ed.]. Personalities like the natty Richard Dawkins cut a profile that’s not much of a departure from the iconic white Protestant pulpit master. If you’ve been following the rise of this movement, noted Monica Shores on the Ms. Magazine blog last November, “you may have noticed that it sure looks a lot like old religion.” Surely atheism, to the extent that it is indeed a “movement,” isn’t comprised merely of stiff, aging white guys? The moment seems ripe for diversification on all kinds of fronts.

Grilling Glee: A Divided Duet

Grilling Glee: A Divided Duet

Glee club member Finn makes a grilled cheese sandwich and sees the face of Jesus in it. Not sure if praying to Jesus works like a Genie, he prays that three wishes be granted — for the his high school football team to win a game, for his girlfriend and Glee club colleague Rachel to allow him to touch her breasts, and to be restored to the position of quarterback on the team. After the first of these prayers is realized, he requests that the Glee club sing songs praising Jesus, which concerns Rachel, who is Jewish. Kurt, another member of the Glee club, faces a personal crisis as his father suffers a heart attack…..