Saturday, December 27, 2008

No Avant-garde-repost

Thanks to my friend Andrew of Hackman's Musings I am able to repost the content I lost.

Okay, here it is! I am a 43 year-old male living in South Jordan, Utah. I am happily married with 5 children.

I started this blog to explore my experience of being a huge liberal in an ultra conservative town. I have many friends, Mormon, non denominational Christian, Catholics, agnostics and atheist. I am the later. Many folks find this odd or a challenge...most find it threatening. So on my facebook page I note that I am an is a little white lie but it keeps people from feeling threatened by me and from trying to convince me that I need to find god. There is something about saying that you are an agnostic that is comforting. They make excuses for me like \'he will find god when he is older\' or \'don\'t say your an atheist you are not trying to recruit anyone so you must be an agnostic\'. I was raised a Mormon and the folks who are close to me know why I am not anymore. I started my path to atheism when I was about 14. As a middle age guy it is fully realized and I am happy with my world view.

So it is now out in the open. I AM AN ATHEIST!!! End of discussion. I am many other things as well. I am a father who loves his children. I am a husband who is still passionately in love with his wife. I am active in my community and volunteer thousands of hours a year for the betterment of those folks I come into contact with. I appreciate many beautiful things: sunsets, mountains, the ocean, a warm summer breeze, and the fact that I am insignificant to the world as a whole. I also know that I make a difference to many people in my little circle and so I try to be significant to them. I am not trying to change the world just to contribute something positive. I do not pray but I do stop to appreciate the beauty of the world around me and I am sometimes overwhelmed by it and it makes me cry.

So the last thing I want is to recruit more atheist and conversely I don\'t want to be converted to any other cause, religion or philosophy. That being said, I have some very strong opinions and will voice them here.

Turn Offs-quoting me and using my words to make your point in an attempt to make me look stupid or out of touch with you opinion. I am interested in what you have to say as long as you give my thoughts the same respect.

Turn Offs- Making your point, rebutting my point, making your point again, quoting me out of context, making your point again...I don\'t enjoy combat blogging and refuse to do that here.

Turn Offs-asking me to allow you to take my kids to church (any church) but not letting me tell your kids what I think. Get the point. I don\'t think your kids are missing something and you shouldn\'t think that mine are either.

Turn Offs-Exclaiming that atheism is a religion. It is not. Being an atheist is different for each person. There is not one atheist that will refer you to the manual and tell you are a heretic for your views. The fact is once an atheist figures you are an atheist that is the end of the discussion. No secret handshake, no service, no atheist leader. I am accused of being a religious atheist because I think that you should be able to practice your religion as a personal belief system but you don\'t have a right to include that in our government or to influence what I do based upon your religious belief system. If you call atheism a religion you have the argument...SO THERE when it comes to justifying having your religious views infused in my daily life against my will.

Turn Ons-Listening, asking questions, and accepting me for who I am. It is funny, atheists and agnostics have to accept religious people for who they are but religious people are incredulous at the idea that I do not accept their god or religion. When I was 21 my best childhood friend who had just returned from an LDS Mission asked me what my view of religion was and I told him. He listened asked a couple of questions and then we caught a movie. That was the end of the discussion. We are still friends (it helps that he married my wife\'s sister.) I appreciate the discussion but I hate to be pitied or resented because my views are different from yours.

Turn Ons- a High capacity for love and acceptance. I don\'t mean tolerance. I mean acceptance. It doesn\'t matter who you are, if you are appropriate and reasonably healthy in the head you will be accepted by me. I expect the same thing. I believe that we all have the ability to contribute to other people lives. I also believe there is a certain richness that is brought about by diversity.

So there it is...we have the basics out in the open. I am new to this medium but not to the internets and I can say with some confidence that I am no avant-garde.

Friday, December 26, 2008


Well I was working on my second post to this blog and didn't like where it was going. So I decided I would delete it. In the process I deleted my first post as well. I am not going to recreate it but I thought it was pretty good. I have been reading a few other blogs today, mostly friends. I am hoping to contribute a little something in the space that is equal to theirs.