My First YouTube Gaming Video in Six Months

Like the title says, I just posted my first YouTube gaming video in 6 months. I’m slowly learning how to use my new video editing software, and in this video I used Audacity to record the voice.

I think it turned out nicely and I’m pleased with the video. It was also a lot of fun messing around with the game, Overwatch.

So here it is if you would like to view it. Thanks for any and all support given in advance. A ‘like’ or subscribe is always appreciated.

Are We Living in a Bizarre World and Will Trump Be Elected?

alien-544193_960_720So I’ve been corresponding with fellow blogger, James, over at Isaiah 53:5 trying to figure out a way to collaborate. Before I went on hiatus from blogging, I was working on a Friday column there where his readers (primarily Christians) ask me questions that I answer from my atheist perspective.

Anyhow, I always had a lot of fun doing it. It’s nice to reach an audience I might not reach otherwise. So if there’s anyone else who would like to collaborate in some way, shoot me a message or post it in the comments below. I’m always up for some fun.

Yes…I’m weird and think lively debate is fun. Sue me.

I do have an article going up over there soon. I think James said tomorrow (Friday) morning. It’s basically a rebuttal piece to one of his articles. I’ll also reblog it here for people who can’t or don’t want to comment there. I truly hope you enjoy it when it goes live.

But enough about that. In one of our emails, James asked me this:

I conservative blogger I have read for years posted yesterday that we live in a massively stupid world. He further said he can’t wait for aliens to invade and kill us all and if that does happen, he would volunteer to help.

Of course this wasn’t biblical (he is self admitted agnostic) and it was intended to be humorous hyperbole but, I think, there is a bit of truth in his frustration.

Was wondering, maybe, if you’d like to do something along those lines coming from your worldview. Really, do you think we are living in bizaro world?

Just a thought.

Have a great weekend brother,

Now I’m never in favor of genocide – whether by aliens, humans or any other species.

It sounds like that fellow is very cynical; perhaps unhappy or maybe just thinks that’s a funny sentiment.

I  think we live in a sorta bizarre world. Here’s one example.

I think Trump has a legitimate shot at winning the election. Not because he’s politically savvy or smart or more qualified than Hilary Clinton, but because people are tired of a broken political system and they think it would be funny to elect a moron like Trump.

If he does get elected, he will likely destabilize the world and cause untold amounts of harm, but who’s counting right?

Now don’t get me wrong – I think Hilary is a bad choice as well. I think she goes with whatever stance she deems will get her the most votes. That whole email debacle is super ass fishy and so on.

But she’s imminently more qualified than Trump. Trump gets away with saying the most outrageous and stupid things, such as calling for Russia to hack Hilary. I mean, in what universe is that a good idea?

And that’s just one of hundreds of examples.

I think people have a weird sense of humor, and if there’s something bizarre about this whole thing it’s that in a country of 300+ MILLION people, Hilary and Trump are the best the American electoral system can come up with.

There has got to be two people who are more intelligent, who have more political sense and who have better ethical values than either of these two candidates but somehow we’re stuck with them.

So yes, I think we live in a Bizarre world, but it’s bizarre because we make it so. If we are on a roller coaster, this puppy is going down a mountain right now. I hope it rights itself before we go off the tracks.

Getting Back To The Things That Bring Me Joy

 

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My daughter trying to snap pictures of me while I resist. It was nice to see her smile.

It very much seems like I took a year long sabbatical from life. I just went through the motions and left behind many of the things that had previously brought me joy.

I stopped anything I was doing on social media. I stopped blogging. I stopped working on my YouTube channel.

Yesterday I received an email from a follower of my YouTube channel that asked me to come back. It filled me with a kind of wonder that someone (a stranger) would take the time to write me and tell me that my channel brought them happiness.

While I still read periodically, for that year I didn’t devour books at a ferocious pace like I usually do.

I worked. I slept. I read a little. I looked after Dex and tried to find my place in the world.

After receiving that email, I decided to get back to YT. I’ve already begun working on this blog again.Now it’s time to get back to working on my channel as well, so I went and got a video editing software that will help me do that. I’m currently watching tutorials that will help me navigate the software.

My partner thinks I’m crazy watching boring tutorials and ‘arguing with people online’ but those are things that make me happy.

Slowly but surely I seem to be coming awake again and doing the things that brought me joy.

Thank you to those who have stuck with this blog. It’s nice to see your comments once again.

Rebuttal: The Nature of Atheistic Doubt

In my interweb travels, I ran across The Muslim Skeptic who takes a shot at explaining why atheists doubt, and why their God doesn’t just show itself and remove all of our pesky doubts as to its existence.

Why did Allah create humans in such a way as to be liable to doubt? This is something that atheists ask in an aggressive way: If God is real, why did He make Himself hidden? If there is a God, why doesn’t He reveal Himself and remove all doubt?

Okay. Fair question. Let’s hear your answer.

And Allah addresses this charge directly in the Quran in multiple places. He says, If we sent down angels, if the dead spoke to them, if all kinds of miracles were shown to them, if literally every single sign was shown to them, they would still disbelieve.

There are a number of reasons why I don’t think this statement flies.

  1. It implies that your God does not know what will or will not convince me of its existence.
  2. It implies your God is incapable of proving its existence.
  3. These implications mean your God has limited power and resources.

Also, I believe in things such as gravity because the evidence supports it. The evidence was surely less spectacular than a miracle or angels or dead people talking to me. Yet I believe gravity exists.

So is your God incapable of providing even the same level of evidence for existence that most people would need to believe in things such as gravity?

I don’t buy it.

Also, are you saying that all atheists wouldn’t believe no matter what Allah did? Not even one would rethink his or her position?

That doesn’t sound reasonable. I’m fairly certain that if this Allah got dead people to talk to them, at least a few would definitely rethink their position.

We have drilled miles into the earth and we have gone miles up into the heavens and using telescopes we can see all these amazing, awe inspiring things in this universe, things that past people had never seen: galaxies, nebulae, pulsars, quasars, superclusters of galaxies. These are all ayat of Allah and they are so grand that they are literally beyond human conceptualization. We literally cannot fathom how large a galaxy is, how old the universe is, how powerful a black hole is and so forth. But we now see all these sublime things with our very own eyes, and none of that serves as evidence for the disbelievers.

We have done these things and found no more evidence for Allah than we have for Jesus or Odin.

Why would the existence of a black hole mean there is a supernatural deity around?

However, a black hole or star or supercluster is evidence for the existence of those things.

Why do believers point at everything around them and just pronounce it evidence of their God?

Even if it were (and it’s not) you’re literally making the same argument I’ve heard time and again from other God believers, such as Christians. Why is your God more credible than theirs?

Memo to The Muslim Skeptic: These things aren’t ‘literally beyond human conceptualization’ either since I can form a picture or idea in my mind of what those things are when you mention them.

Point being that even if disbelievers were suddenly presented with a whole other aspect of existence, no matter how unearthly, no matter how spectacular, they would always have a way to dismiss it or subsume it into their definition of “normal” and “unremarkable.”

That just isn’t true.

Not even the part about thinking of the universe as ‘unremarkable’ is true. I think the universe is incredibly remarkable and I don’t need a God to make that so.

It seems to me that a lot of theists need something to be magical or have magical origins to be remarkable. I find nature remarkable. I find life remarkable. I find history, planets, solar systems and so many other things remarkable.

Hell, I find the fact that I can type these words on my keyboard and someone half a planet away can read them instantly damn remarkable.

These things are far more remarkable than magic. The fact that you don’t need magic to explain takes nothing away from how amazing they are.

 

Is Atheism a Fad?

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Is atheism a fad?

I remember growing up and listening to heavy metal music.

Of course, my parents despised it and they would dismissively say that I was going through a fad. They told me and anyone else who would listen that my love affair with hard-rock wouldn’t last.

When they told their friends, they would smirk and tell them that me wearing black and listening to noisy music was just a thing I was going though and I’d grow out of it.

My favorite singer was Ozzy Osbourne.

I am nearly 40 and Ozzy is still my favorite artist, I still like to wear black, and I still listen to noisy music and love every second of it.

Today I read a post that called atheism a ‘phase’ and promised to prove that we would all believe in his deity eventually.

I will try to condense this into “2 quick facts to prove that if you’re not currently religious, that you will in fact become religious.”

Sure. Hit me with these two facts.

First, researchers have found that people get more religious as they age in most parts of the world. Researcher Tom Smith said: ‘Looking at differences among age groups, the largest increases in belief in God most often occur among those 58 years of age and older. ‘This suggests that belief in God is especially likely to increase among the oldest groups, perhaps in response to the increasing anticipation of mortality.

First off, you need to link to this quote.

But I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt since I read that study way back. While it may be true, you seem gleeful that people will say they believe in your God because they fear death. You should ask yourself if that’s a good motivation and what kind of person that makes you?

Also, it’s not surprising that the older you get, the more susceptible you are to the messages of religion. Most of us fear death and the thought that there is a way for us to literally live forever if we only believe in ancient nonsense can overwhelm our reason.

Couple that with the built in fear mechanisms that religion often utilizes (like hell or eternal punishment) and you have people scared into (or at least professing to) believing supernatural claims.

God isn’t the problem, the problem is the feeling of exclusion that’s been driving millennials away.A study by the Public Religion Research Institute showed that millennials stand out in their belief that religious groups are alienating young people. Seven in-ten (70%) Millennials believe that religious groups are alienating young adults by being too judgemental about gay and lesbian issues.

Again, you need to cite your sources.

Of course, the problem isn’t God. There likely isn’t any such thing. The problem is the dogma that clings to god beliefs – the holy books that tell believers how they should treat homosexuals, women etc.

So now as we see some churches begin to move away or at least tone down their anti LGBT rhetoric, coupled with the inevitable ageing of millennials, we’re bound to see many of these hardcore atheists find God.

It seems to be lost on you that your religion is changing, despite supposedly being commanded by a divine being. The religion is changing to suit the society it rests in. If this dogma were true, and if it were truly handed down by a perfect divine being, it would not change.

As for your last thought about atheists finding god more, that same study had something to say about that, and I’ll cite my source.

Although by most measures, belief in God is gradually declining worldwide, it is increasing in Russia, Slovenia and Israel. In Russia, comparing the difference between those who believe in God but hadn’t previously, and those who don’t believe in God but used to, researchers found a 16 percent change in favor of belief.

That kind of points towards atheism not being a fad at all.

Just like my parents were, you are wrong. Atheism has existed since the first person doubted and failed to believe the religious claims of the first shaman or some other charlatan, and they will continue to exist as long as skepticism exists.

Atheism isn’t going away. Religions have tried to (and continue to try) silence us with blasphemy laws meant to prevent them from losing arguments. They have tried to kill us and demonize us. They have tried to dismiss us as unruly children like you’re attempting to do here with this post.

But we are still here. And our numbers are growing.

 

Loving Your Readers – Even The Ones That Disagree With You

In my last post, ‘When Do You Call It Quits in a Relationship‘, I took quite a bit of flak from a few readers.

One reader (you can view all the comments by following the link above) said, “Actually, I didn’t know if I could be quite this blunt with GC, since I haven’t commented that much over here.”

This made me feel good. It’s what I strive for with this blog. I want this to be a safe haven for people to voice their views. I’m all about free-speech and do not censor people for voicing opinions different from my own.

If you disagree with my post, feel free to say so.

Does my post anger you?

Tell me why.

I want people to feel comfortable enough to blast me when they think I’m wrong.

I can take it.

And I feel the same way about the comment section. I don’t delete people who say things I disagree with or disallow their comment because it might hurt my feelings. I want people to debate and share ideas. Some people even say things that I find utterly ridiculous, but their comment will still show up in my comment section because I feel they have a right to be heard.

Another reader said, “Sorry for the semi harsh”.

No need to be sorry! Lots of people say that they have thick skin and don’t get offended easily, but then get offended at the first sign of disagreement. I assure you, I am not one of those people. I’m fully capable of being wrong or of being a schmuck and in an attempt to be fully honest on this blog, I throw it out there for people to read.

A place to share uncensored ideas is what I have always envisioned for this blog. I don’t want people to be sorry for taking the time to read my stuff and sharing their own honest opinion.

You are the readers I value most.

So thank you all for reading and having the courage to write what you think and feel. I applaud each and every one of you.

This blog exists and brings me joy because of you.