Posts under Tag: atheist
Video for “Faith is a Slippery Pig” f/Peter Boghossian

Here is the new video for my song, “Faith is a Slippery Pig” featuring the spoken word of Peter Boghossian – philosophy professor at Portland State University –  from his book, A Manual for Creating Atheists.

CherryTeresa – “Faith is a Slippery Pig” f/Peter Boghossian

Download the song for free on SoundCloud.

Purchase the book:
– Paperback
– Kindle
– Audiobook

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New song: “Faith is a Slippery Pig” f/Peter Boghossian

Here is my new song, “Faith is a Slippery Pig,” featuring the spoken word of Peter Boghossian from his audiobook, “A Manual for Creating Atheists”.

You can download the song on SoundCloud or here.

You can purchase Peter Boghossian’s book in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook.

 

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Blog entry reposted on RichardDawkins.net

My blog post on coming out as an atheist is on the News section of the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science website.

Teen atheist asks Dawkins advice on how to come out

A big thank you to the RDFRS. I hope that with it reaching a bigger audience it can help someone in some way.

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Teen atheist asks Dawkins advice on how to come out

Friday night, at the talk given by Richard Dawkins and D.J. Grothe at University of Southern California, there was a portion for audience member questions. One person, whom I believe said he was 14 years old and from the SoCal area, asked how he could come out as an atheist. Dr. Dawkins paused and appeared to be in thought on how to respond to this in the short time and limited information he knew about him. He asked the young man if his parents knew about his atheism and were okay with it, to which he said yes. Dawkins said that it was a good start for him and that he was in a much better position to live life out as a nonbeliever compared to many others.

I agree with Dawkins’ assessment, as the advice for one person would be much different from someone in a different situation, whether it be living in a religious part of the country or being part of a family where this sort of thing could result in a nonbeliever being shunned.

I have some additional thoughts on this as well. You can make a big announcement if you want, but since not everyone feels comfortable doing this, here are some things that worked for me, which I would mention to a young person in a similar situation to his.

Mention it in the classroom. You are at a time when discussions are likely a regular part of certain classes. If a teacher mentions something about how we are a nation of many religions, you might raise your hand and add that we’re also a nation of the nonreligious, including yourself. In Philosophy class, if you are learning about many of the great thinkers but the syllabus doesn’t include any free thinkers, you might find a way to mention those like Bertrand Russell or Daniel Dennett. These are just examples. Feel free to do it in a way that best suits you.

Disclose it to your peers. This doesn’t have to be a special phone call or announcement, it can just be mentioned when it comes up naturally in conversation. When a classmate asks in December which holiday you celebrate, you could reply with something like, “I celebrate Christmas, but it’s for cultural reasons, as I don’t believe in a god,” “My family celebrates Hanukah, but I am a secular Jew,” “I celebrate the Winter Solstice, since that’s the reason for the season,” “I don’t celebrate any religious holidays since I do not believe in any of them,” or whatever answer fits your customs and beliefs. Your answer may end up leading to a bigger conversation and get more in-depth. If they’re curious about what you do or don’t celebrate and brought it up to you in the first place, they may be interested to learn more about you.

Share your atheism on social networking sites. If you are allowed to be online and have profiles, you can mention your views on your bios. On facebook, you can choose atheism, secular humanism, and the like as your religious view.

Display symbols related to atheism. There’s the option of incorporating atheist symbols or the logos of organizations related to that. Not everyone wants to do this, but if you find it appealing, you could wear a necklace, put badges on your backpack, wear a shirt related to free thought, put stickers on your binders, or display magnets on your locker. Something as simple as wearing the Scarlet A symbol on a shirt or necklace can start a discussion. Those who know what it means will know you’re an atheist. Those who don’t may end up asking what the A stands for. There’s also the Flying Spaghetti Monster, the atomic whirl, Invisible Pink Unicorn, and other symbols, as well as shirts that have messages and images. Wearing any of these can not only help you express yourself, but can also encourage others to come out as well.

You don’t have to do all of these or any of these. There’s no order of which to do first, it’s what you are comfortable with. The important thing to mention is that we all are in different situations, so only do what you feel is right. Do these when and if you feel ready. Don’t feel forced to come out and don’t force anyone else out. But know that when you do come out there is a community who will be there for you. There are organizations in SoCal like Center for Inquiry and Atheists United and there is an even greater online community of atheists around the world. The young man on Friday night took a big step by mentioning his atheism and I hope that the positive response he got from Dawkins and fellow audience members can be the beginning of him being able to live openly.

The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science has the Out Campaign website, which is a good resource for additional information.

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Do atheists believe in life after death?

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Some atheists believe in life after death. Some believe there’s some sort of “energy” that we turn into, that we are reincarnated, or that we become ghosts or spirits, in addition to many other beliefs. There are varying opinions among atheists.

Some atheists do not believe in an afterlife and I am one of them. People are nonbelievers for different reasons. I am an atheist because there’s not enough solid evidence for me to believe in a god. The same thing goes for an afterlife or multiple lives. I think the closest thing there is to still living after death is to live on, in a sense, through what we’ve done. If our work and our words inspire others, then we are kind of still carrying on. If we continue to ‘live’ in the memories of people still alive, then what we’ve done still affects others. There are musicians who only lived until age 27, but their work and personas helped shaped the lives of countless others for years to come. So, while they are dead, part of them ‘lives on’.

So, when people ask, “What’s the inspiration to do good in this life if it’s there’s no heaven or hell?”, that’s part of it. There’s also making sure you meet your goals because this is probably the only shot we get. Also, just being and doing good for goodness’ sake and because you enjoy it in the moment.

The above was a question someone submitted on my tumblr blog. I will start cross-posting certain Q&As to my cherryteresa.com blog.

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Discussion on American Humanist Association about Asian-American groups

Sometimes, when you respond to someone asking an earnest question, it can be a chance to inform, rather than fight. If you give them a chance, you can let them see where you’re coming from.

 photo American Humanist Assocation Asian-American discussion
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My first skeptical heroes were musicians

I’m a skeptic. When I meet other skeptics, we usually end up talking about how we became one, and those stories usually involve some mention of our first freethinking heroes: The ones who made us realize we weren’t alone in our thinking and taught us more. For many of my skeptic friends, their first heroes were scientists, writers, activists, or magicians. They’ll often explain how they experienced the works of intellects such as Richard Dawkins, Carl Sagan, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Eugenie Scott, Penn & Teller, James Randi, Madalyn Murray O’Hair, and more. Those public figures are my heroes as well, but my very first skeptical heroes were rock stars.
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OKCupid Email to Atheists

I received this email from OKCupid today. Perhaps I'm just a big dork with no life, but I found this amusing and awesome. (Click on the photo to view it better). 

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