Challenging the Deepest Beliefs

Minnesota Atheists president encourages discussion between those with different views

Reposted from the MSU Reporter

August Berkshire, president of the Minnesota Atheists, will present "The Top 12 Excuses Religious People Give for the Horrible Behavior of their God" at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Centennial Student Union 284 at Minnesota State.

The event is hosted by Campus Atheists and Agnostics. According to organization member Trista Ayers, the presentation is designed for non-religious individuals and religious individuals to open discussion on important topics.

"People are more than welcome to bring their own ideas," Ayers said.

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Read more: Challenging the Deepest Beliefs

Isaiah's Virgin Conceived Like Every Other Young Maiden

Reposted from the Sillwater Gazette
by Lee Salisbury
 
As a former bible-believing evangelical pastor, I empathize with Pastor Mark Becker's feelings of offense with Andrew Carnegie comment - calling God a "fiend." Independent thinkers like Carnegie, especially when demonstrative of indispensable magnanimity to society, threaten commonly embraced views that atheists are evil.

Pastor Becker correctly observes that Carnegie was a responsible steward of his fortune. However, Carnegie's philanthropic motivation differed from the Christian motivation. Carnegie was motivated solely by what was the "right thing to do here and now" with no thought of pleasing an imaginary God who intimidates unbelievers with hell and rewards believers with heaven.
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Read more: Isaiah's Virgin Conceived Like Every Other Young Maiden

New Projects and New Leaders

august_head.jpgby August Berkshire

The big news this past month is that Minnesota Atheists was asked by Michael Newdow to join his lawsuit, "Newdow v. Roberts," to stop government-sponsored religious activities at Barack Obama's presidential inauguration on January 20. This came about because I had heard through national atheist sources that he was going to file a case and I contacted him to be on our radio show on January 4. He agreed, and asked if we would like to be added as plaintiffs to the lawsuit. After a quick consultation of our board of directors, we added our name. Newdow also asked me if I would like to join as an individual plaintiff, as president of Minnesota Atheists, and I was happy to do so.

Our January meeting 18 will feature Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) co-president Dan Barker talking about and selling and signing his new book Godless.  Both Dan Barker and Annie Laurie Gaylor, the other FFRF co-president, have been extremely generous with their time and talents towards Minnesota freethought groups.

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Read more: New Projects and New Leaders

January News and Notes

george_head.jpgby George Kane

Americans United for Separation of Church and State (AU) won an important skirmish against South Carolina promoting religion on license plates. Last month, the legislature authorized issuing "I Believe" auto license plates for a fee, embellished with a Christian cross and the image of a stained glass window. AU initiated the suit Summers v. Adams on behalf of three Protestant ministers and a Rabbi who are South Carolina residents, as well as the Hindu-American Foundation and the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. The state filed a motion to dismiss the suit, but U.S. District Court Judge Cameron Currie ruled that the suit should proceed to trial. The judge issued a temporary injunction restraining the state Department of Corrections from producing and the state Department of Motor Vehicles from distributing the plates until the suit is decided.

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Read more: January News and Notes

Atheist Dating and Relating: Staying Safe and How to Meet the Old-Fashioned Way

crystal_small.jpgby Crystal Dervetski

Last month, we talked about where atheists can meet people online, which is one of the easiest ways to meet people. That leads us into the safety concerns for meeting someone, and other places to meet people who share your beliefs.

When meeting someone online, first, assess their profile. Does it seem legitimate? If you can, have a trusted friend take a look at it. This is another advantage of meeting people online: it's quite easy to email that profile to a second party!

Email or text message the person for a period of time. Become comfortable with who they are in writing, and their personal style. You can learn a lot from how a person writes, both formally and informally. Ask some questions, and get to know them over the net.

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Read more: Atheist Dating and Relating: Staying Safe and How to Meet the Old-Fashioned Way

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