From an atheist preacher

I am my own God and I can prove it. I have complete control of my mind and body and no "cattle herder" or priest is going to influence my decisions.

Do you have any proof as good as mine? Ask your favorite "holy-man" where god came from... They may answer "He is the divine being and has always existed." Well, I guess you can't argue with that. Yeah, right! Give me a break. If god has always been then what is so hard to believe about the whole universe always existing? You're telling me that the fact that anything exists at all proves god's existence when you can't even answer the question of where god came from? If the whole universe has always existed then why would there be any need for a god? This isn't meant to persuade you necessarily. It's just something you should consider before you decide to follow the herd.

Think about it... Do you remember sitting in your English/history class in school and reading about the ancient Greek civilization and their religion? (Today we call it mythology. The root of the word means fictitious story.) Do you remember thinking how silly the idea was that every emotion and object had a god? Helios was their sun god. The Greeks believed he drove the sun across the sky from east to west in his golden chariot every day. After sunset the sun sailed back across the ocean. It almost makes you want to laugh just to think about it. An entire society actually believed this to be the truth. This wasn't just a story to these people. It was a way of life. 

They invented gods to explain the unexplainable instead of trying to find an answer. Every time they encountered a new problem that they didn't understand they just invented a new god. The progression must have gone something like this: Q: "Why does the sun cross the sky?" A: "It must be the gods... Since the sun is so heavy there must be a god that rides a chariot across the sky with the sun in tow." Today it is a fairly easily explained phenomena involving gravity and the fact that the earth spins on an access and the earth is a celestial body that rotates around the sun. In their time this would be incomprehensible since they had no clue that the earth was any larger than the land they could see before they reached the ocean, much less the fact that the earth was round!

I only mention Greek "mythology" because it is very applicable to the religions of today. Anything that cannot be easily explained must be the work of god right? The religious people will not admit this but that is exactly the case. Most people of our world cannot understand most happenings, much less every facet of the whole universe. Religion is an easy answer for the lazy and uneducated mind to find a reason for anything. Why try to explain it when it's easier to just say "It is god's will!" or "It is a miracle!" Why not try to investigate? Why not question your faith? Is your faith so fragile that it can't withstand a few simple questions? Does it make you evil to question your faith? Any person that tells you that you should not question something is trying to control your mind, by stopping your thoughts before you have developed a partial understanding. If the answer sounds like the question (i.e. Q: Why? A: Because) or is answered with another question (Q: Why? A: Why? Do you question your faith?) then there is probably nothing to substantiate those claims to begin with.

Religions play circular mind games with its followers. Questions are answered with more questions which eventually revolve back to the original question. But somehow this is satisfactory for most people because they have never been allowed to have a free thought of their own. If they do not follow the faith, they are evil. If they question the faith, they are evil. The ignorant and the young are the churches main targets.

It is easy to brainwash children. How many children do you know that believe or at one time believed there was a Santa Clause? In the United States I would say somewhere in the high 90% of children under the age of 10 believe there is a Santa Clause. A fun childhood fantasy for most. But eventually we all learn the truth. Some are more skeptical than others but for the most part children are surprised when they find the truth and sometimes there are a few tears as their fantasies fade.

But we're talking about Santa Clause. "Of course there is no Santa Clause!" you say. And what of it? That's exactly my point! Religion is a silly childhood fantasy gone rampant! It's not hard to get a child to believe something that everyone else around the child agrees with. "There's a Santa Clause" you say to your child as you wink to the other adults. "There's a guy that lives in the clouds high above us and watches everything we do" Sounds like Santa so far... "He knows when you are sleeping. He knows when you're awake. He knows if you've been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake!" Why do we tell our children this? Really, why? Well, for one I suppose it gets them to behave. "You'd better be good or Santa won't bring you any toys." That usually has some effect. But what if, instead of toys, you were rewarded with eternal life in a wonderful land where everything is perfect and you can have anything you want and everyone is nice and good (puke). If you're bad then you will go to a bad place and burn and be tortured for eternity. (How long can a body burn anyway? I mean don't you think your nerves would stop responding eventually and go numb?) But still it doesn't sound like a very nice being that would do this sort of thing.

If you get enough people to believe something they will eventually start to reinforce each others choices and opinions. Religion seems to be the default belief system because it's something any idiot can believe in. You don't have to know anything. You don't have to be smart, or athletic or have any special qualities at all. The only requirement to belonging to certain religion is to have faith. Gee, that sounds simple and good. They give you all the answers to life and all these other people believe it. They couldn't all be wrong. Its not like anyone still believes in Helios any more. But in the days of the ancient Greeks EVERYONE believed and supported each others beliefs just like all religious people do today. 


Real-life Miracles! (or so they say...)

I have a few real-life examples of mysterious occurrences that have a much simpler explanation than the influence of god of angles or spirits. Take my wife for example. Some time before I met her and a few friends were sitting around a table drinking coffee and chatting as they often did. The subject of her friend's great grandmother came up and as they were talking about her all of the sudden, as if their eyes were drawn to focus on the coffee cup it began to move. They were all astonished and jumped back. "Did you see that?" her friend said? "It must be a sign that she is listening..."

Well, that sure is the easiest thing to say. Anything that is unexplainable is easily explained by gods or spirits. When my wife told me this story she was trying to convince me that spirits existed. What's the easiest way to prove this? Very simple. Recreate the circumstances. Any person of faith would never think of this because they have been taught to not ask questions.

I asked her a few questions and the experiment began. Hot coffee on a flat Formica table. You know the standard cheap table made of particle board and a plastic coating on top? Of course you know sometimes you spill a little coffee when pouring a cup and you're so engrossed in conversation (she admitted to there being some spilled). And of course you don't need coasters on a Formica table (they weren't using any). She just happened to have the same type of cups that they were using at the time. Pretty much any cup with an indentation in the bottom will work.

So, I made some coffee and poured a cup about a quarter full. Remember they were drinking it so it wasn't full. Then a poured a little coffee on the table and let it sit for a few seconds. I put that coffee cup in the middle of the small puddle. You wouldn't even notice the puddle if you weren't paying attention. I wait no more than a few seconds and mysteriously the cup begins to move. Now keep in mind that I've had my wife at my side the entire time. She didn't know what to say. I had just proved to her in a re-creatable experiment that there were no spirits. Don't take my word for it. I'm not a priest! I don't mind if you ask me questions or question the experiment. Try it yourself. It is simple physics.

Here's the basics on how it works: The spilled coffee was hot when spilled but the table was cold which cools the coffee to near room temperature within a few second. When you put a hot cup of coffee on top of the puddle there is some cold air stuck in the bottom indentation of the cup. The coffee cup is very hot so it begins to heat the cold air. What happens to air as it heats up? It expands! As it expands it creates an effect a bit like a hover craft. The air raise the cup and then the only thing between the cup and the table is air and water (coffee). This isn't a very stable surface and the cup begins to move in the direction that the table may be slightly tilted. After all no table is perfectly flat. There are small unnoticeable bumps and tilts on all tables. You don't believe that? Just place a marble on any table. Most likely, unless you set the table up in a physics lab and had it laser sighted and used a perfectly spherical marble with a perfect and constant density, it WILL roll in some direction.

(more wonderful writings to come soon!)