Humanist Symposium – from the highway editionIan | 5 October, 2008 | 20:59
Sorry for the late edition posting of this symposium, I’m typing this on a bus from Calgary to Edmonton after a successful inaugural event for the Centre for Inquiry – Community of Calgary, the new home for freethought, humanism and scepticism in Alberta. We have some great posts this edition, so let’s get to them.
Greta Christina is one of my favourite atheist / humanist bloggers, so do yourself a favour and read her Atheism and Hope piece. It addresses the question of hope beyond belief and brings in some inspiring responses.
Evelyn submits a unique post at Homespun Honolulu about her discovery of “Phone Girl,” a blogger who’s putting herself through psychology courses by working part-time as a phone sex girl. Evelyn brings a humanist perspective and asks us not to jump to conclusions upon discovery of such situations. She submitted this article mainly because she believed she would find acceptance of a progressive view of senuality within the humanist community.
At Spanish Inquisitor we are asked to compare two familiar worldviews in modern terminologies. Naturalism becomes WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) and theism/supernaturalism becomes TMTMTE (there is more than meets the eyes).
Andrew at The Evolving Mind brings us a commentary on the fact that often the public is far too under-informed when being counted in polls. He cites the major problem as the belief that The Truth ™ can be found within, which denies rational and scientific perceptions of reality. These are definitely important topics to question when both Canada and the US are in the midst of elections and the corresponding media circuses.
Brian at the Primodial Blog asks atheists, Do you enjoy being persecuted? and outlines his thoughts on how he perceives that some religious folk may enjoy the attention around persecution of their beliefs. He extrapolates to question whether atheists can derive the same thrills. I know a few people criticized my group of staging the vandalism of our banner recently, assuming we’d do it just for the attention (hint: we didn’t do it).
I really enjoyed the post where Michael challenges atheists with Pro-Bible Atheism at a Nadder! He provides a table explaining which Old Testament Books can be considered as a possible inspiration for modern blockbuster films to remind us the inherent literary value of the bible. He also intends to show the number of stories and genres covered is often greater than people tend to assume.
At Diary of a Goldfish we tackle the issue of continually justifying the morality without religion issue. Here we see morality described as essentially the glue necessary for a society to remain cohesive and successful.
Following in this idea we have Cubik’s Rube presenting Why bother? at Cubik’s Rube, which challenges the notions of purpose in a naturalistic universe. The author goes as far as to question whether the infinite life offered by religions goes so far as reducing the ultimate value and purpose of life.
John presents A Personal History of Profanity posted at Mind on Fire. This post gives us a good insight into John’s use of dirty words and how he disagrees with his Mormon friends aversion to profanity.
Finally, I will throw in my own post on the UAAA repainting it’s large banner, as I think the video of a decent sized group of atheists coming together for a cause like this is rather inspirational.