Why Do I Blog Here

Countless times, people here on the discussion page have demanded to know why I take time to write this blog when I could be enjoying myself doing other things.

To begin with, I have to wonder why someone is reading this blog who dislikes what I write. I’m happy they are reading this, but perhaps they might want to reconsider why they spend their time here. Another atheist blogger gave a much longer explanation and I’ll use a bit of what he wrote.

People who are religious wear their religions on their sleeves. Christians wear crosses, Seik men wrap their hair and some Muslim women wear hair covering. This is so common we think nothing of it. Atheists, however, for good reason often do not reveal what they are thinking. I know of several who are in business and are certain it would be harmful. I, myself, do not mention by atheism in many circles when people discuss their churches. It’s just easier to let the topic slide on by.

Because atheism is mostly an underground phenomenon, writing about here with my real name attached is unusual and takes some people aback. They might think it’s OK to not believe but they do not like seeing it in print or on a screen. Some may see it as a threat. And, if growing percentage of nonbelievers is accurate they may be correct.

One reason I write the blog is so that others may find the confidence to express in public their own lack of belief.

41 Responses

  1. Dennis

    You are certainly a brave person in light of the “attack and don’t take any prisoners” mentality of many people today. Thanks for being open and taking all the abuse. Too many people are too close minded to think there may be other opinions that are just as valid as theirs and do not questions that main stream thinking.

  2. Jon hurls abuse and bile at Christians and then has the gall to play the victim. Christians are mocked and oppressed in many workplaces. They are threatened constantly. Atheists try to inflict pain, embarrassment, ridicule and worse in schools, the workplace and in entertainment. Don’t dare play as if atheists are victims.

    1. Jinx II

      fakechristianjuice, your a disgrace to the catholic church and all christians. You are the one who rolls yourself in victimhood along with sanctimonious preaching about your hollow spirituality.

      Henry correctly labeled you a bull in a china shop as you throw a tantrum while tearing apart others.

      You have been booted from National soccer organizations for your behavior, publicly criticized in local newspapers for the same, post soft porn on this blog with my name Jinx attached and viciously attacked others who disagree with you. We see daily examples of your Pride, Arrogance, Wrath and yes Envy…..3 of the 7 Deadly Sins.

      You might gain a little insight into your behavior studying the 7 Virtues, especially Kindness, Charity, Humility and Patience. You might discuss this with your priest when you confess your sins.. Maybe you will act more like a human being instead of a raging maniac. If not, check out Dante’ to see which circle of hell is your own.

      The seven virtues were originally defined in the poem, Psychomachia, by Aurelius Clemens Prudentius, a Christian governor who died around 410 A.D. Because of the poem’s prevalence the concept and idea of the seven virtues spread throughout Europe. The following is a listing of the seven virtues and how they cure each of the seven deadly sins:

      Kindness = cures envy by placing the desire to help others above the need to supersede them

      Temperance = cures gluttony by implanting the desire to be healthy, therefore making one fit to serve others

      Charity or love = cures greed by putting the desire to help others above storing up treasure for one’s self

      Chastity or Self-control = cures lust by controlling passion and leveraging that energy for the good of others

      Humility = cures pride by removing one’s ego and boastfulness, therefore allowing the attitude of service

      Diligence or Zeal = cures slothfulness by placing the best interest of others above the life of ease and relaxation.

      Patience = cures wrath by taking time to understand the needs and desires of others before acting or speaking.

  3. Dennis

    Matt: everyone plays the victim simply because they can only see one side of a discussion. Not only do they only look at one side, they are afraid to look at any other because they may find something that contradicts their beliefs. That is scary to anyone.

    1. Dennis: Not even close to being convinced of your argument. I, for one, am capable of seeing both sides of an argument. It truly is not that difficult. One weighs the pros and cons of the subject matter and draws a conclusion. Critical thinking requires this ability and many people have it. Even a 3-year-old child is capable of discerning the arguments of pilfering too much Halloween candy from their bucket when mom has said “no”. Speech and debate students do it all the time as a matter of persuasive discourse. Kathi Griiffin mocks Trump and threatens to show the bloody head (fake) of Donal Trump to his 12-year-old son. Then she cries when people are appalled at her and claims she is a victim of targeted harassment. She is falsely playing the victim when, in fact, she is the perpetrator. This is what Jon is attempting to do.

    2. Jinx II

      Dennis, fakechristianjuice is catholic in name only, he’s not interested in your opinions and beliefs. HE IS ALWAYS RIGHT ABOUT EVERYTHING AND VENGENCE WILL BE HIS! See my above post at 8:03 for more explanation.

      1. Dennis

        I have met people who are always right in their opinion and anything contrary is simply wrong; conservativejuice is certainly not interested in hearing anything contrary to his opinion. He certainly does not live by the bible he so fervently preaches.

        1. Jinx II

          I suspected you were aware of this, how sad those people exist. Reminds me of Henrik Ibsen’s play “The Pillar of the Community” and how their actions and deeds affect every corner of society with its pathology. I enjoy your post’s, they are a breath of fresh air.

  4. MJB

    Some build an audience to create reactions others build to grow, affirm and collaborate. Not sure what your intent is Jon but whatever it is, it’s your right.

    Do you belong to a group of people that share your same beliefs that encourage and foster a greater purpose outside this vehicle? If so would like to join.

    I am not being condensending so please educate me what is the Athiest mission and where do they spend their time to service others? (Ie Athiest of America helping X)

    MJB

    1. MJB 10:23 Do you belong to a group of people that share your same beliefs that encourage and foster a greater purpose outside this vehicle? If so would like to join

      I don’t know exactly what you mean by joining, but, yes, I belong to the Red River Freethinkers and Iowa Atheists and Freethinkers. Such groups exist in nearly all larger towns and cities. Often you can find them on MeetUp.com. I don’t live in Fargo Moorhead anymore but I understand there are gatherings there. There are three large national groups also, American Atheists, Freedom From Religion Foundation and the Humanists Society of America.

      As to service to the greater good, there is plenty of that. The group where I live has drives for low income children. We have purchased expensive telescopes for some schools in low income areas, had backpack drives for schools and such things. There is a national organization that takes donations from atheists groups across the country and gives money when disasters strike.

  5. “Because atheism is mostly an underground phenomenon,”

    Seriously? School children pledge allegiance to the federal government. They cannot pray, hear Bible reading, or study science from creationist viewpoint.

    Some are scorned for not standing for the anthem while we worship out military and its veterans. During the 7th inning stretch at MLB games we have dropped “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” and must sing another “patriotic” ditty.

    Public affirmation of God and Jesus Christ are systematically abolished. Tearing down manger scenes and 10 Commandment monuments, even crosses in national cemeteries.

    In the place of Christianity your religion (statism) is being pompously exalted:

    .https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A-90tOR8yNE

    1. Juan Ruiz

      ” They cannot pray, hear Bible reading, or study science from creationist viewpoint. ”

      Because the purpose of public education is not to indoctrinate a pluralistic student body into one religion. You’d be going nuclear if the Koran, the Book of Mormon, or Dianetics were proposed for classroom use.

      1. Juan Ruiz: Here I thought you were a student of history. The first public school textbook, the New England Primer – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_New_England_Primer – is replete with Christianity.

        If I may lift from the Wikipedia site:

        The New England Primer was first published between 1687 and 1690 by printer Benjamin Harris, who had come to Boston in 1686 to escape the brief Catholic ascendancy under James II. It was based largely upon The Protestant Tutor, which he had published in England,[1] and was the first reading primer designed for the American Colonies.

        The selections in the New England Primer varied somewhat over time, although there was standard content for beginning reading instruction. Included were the alphabet, vowels, consonants, double letters, and syllabariums of two letters to six letter syllables. The 90-page work contained religious maxims, woodcuts, alphabetical assistants, acronyms, catechism answers, and moral lessons. It was made with a thin sheet of horn or paper shellacked to a wooden board.

        The primer remained in print well into the 19th century and was even used until the 20th century. A reported 2 million copies were sold in the 18th century. No copies of editions before 1727 are known to survive; earlier editions are known only from publishers’ and booksellers’ advertisements.

        1. Juan Ruiz

          Are you suggesting the school curricula be limited to what was known up through the 19th century and to those who believed in a certain religion?

          1. If you made comments that weren’t obtuse or uninteresting like what you made I would respond with something worthy of a response. I know of no Christian or any non-Christian that would go along with your obtuse and uninteresting suggestion that we throw away the last 2 centuries of knowledge from the classroom. Your comment about religion is akin to race-baiting.

  6. Jinx II

    MJB, I am an agnostic and don’t really belong to any organized group. My golden rule is to question everything I have ever been told, study all the different perspectives with fairness and objectivity and decide what the truth is……sometimes it takes years. Keep an open mind.

    My personal philosophy is to treat every living thing with dignity and respect, do not judge, walk in the shoes of others to understand, stand up for the ill, sick, elderly, children, the poor and downtrodden, listen and do no harm to the fragile psyche of others for they have much to teach you.

    Volunteer with empathy, kindness, patience. Smile and greet others, they are your equals and deserve your respect no matter how they appear, you have no idea what they have been through in their life.

    Advocate for the above, give them the benefit of the doubt and treat them with kindness. Do not criticize, make demands or ridicule others because they do not listen to you or your advice. All people deserve social justice for wrongs against them.

    Accept other for who they are and be a source of encouragement to others. Your acceptance and kindness could be enough to prevent a suicide and give hope for those in despair.

    I hold deep contempt for those who fail to do the above and attack them when they renounce others………..my Irish blood boils at unfairness and injustice.

  7. Mike

    I am in complete agreement with both of you, Matt Noah and Michael Ross! It is disingenious for Jon to play the victim, given all of the world’s history of atheist advocacy in the last 25 years. The message from Jon today seems to be that Christians are “messing things up” by sharing their faith, because he intended this blog for atheists and agnostics to feel comfortable sharing their “lack” of faith to each other.

    As Matt pointed out earlier, atheists have no problem trashing Christians for every little thing so it is hard to buy Jon’s ploy of “sympathy”. Taking just a recent example, Jon recently posted a blog about Christians, who believe is “exclusivism”. He insinuated that Christians have a closed mind, because we are not open to other ideas.

    This is a classic “bait and switch” tactic of liberalism. Tolerance becomes a one way street that is the exclusive right of all liberals. Anyone who doesn’t agree with their liberal dogma on any subject is intolerant and insensitive. See how that works?

    1. Hi Mike. Thanks for your supportive words.

      I’m quite sure Jon does not intend his blog to be for atheists. His daily headlines are meant to shock and insult the common person. The latest example is “What if Grandpa and Grandma are in Hell?” Without people like you and me, his daily traffic slows to a trickle.

      Jon truly hopes for some inarticulate Christian to blow up on his blog, thereby making himself (Jon) seem rational and believable. When he gets frustrated he starts to censor posts; making up some excuse to take them down, if they ever see the light of day.

      I haven’t checked but he might operate the same blog in Iowa, just repeating his daily blogs on a forum down there.

      In my view, there is the physical world and the spiritual world. The laws of physics apply to the physical world but not the spiritual world. Jon wants to apply a physics-based, science-based standard on the spiritual world. Without that proof, he is at a loss. I can only imagine that he had some bad experiences long ago with Christianity. Most such occurrencnes are tangential to Christianity but the person involved ends up divorcing himself from faith. Jon is just an example of one who wants to eradicate Christianity.

      1. Matt 6:42 Without people like you and me, his daily traffic slows to a trickle.

        I’ve always surmised you had an inflated sense of self importance, but that one takes the cake. Your posts have no affect on daily blog traffic. Several times you have quit in a huff and the daily visitors went right on as before.

        But, if coming here daily and posting Catholic propaganda gives you a good feeling of self worth, I’m glad I can help.

        1. I don’t need this blog for self worth or self importance. I don’t need it at all. The daily traffic I refer to is those who post, not those who read. No one but the Forum and you know the daily visitor number. The Forum doesn’t care to publish the visitor counts for AreaVoices. And no one would trust the number you would publish. People visit discussion sites to see the food fights and honest discussion. They cheer internally for one side or the other. Some stop by to learn. I’m only here to evangelize. My sense of accomplishment is only measured by effort, not results.

    2. Mike 1:05 …atheists have no problem trashing Christians for every little thing..

      A “little thing” is billions of dollars of taxes not paid by churches to local governments for the services other taxpayers provide?? A “little thing” is to push Christianity on little children in public schools whose parents are not Christians and want their children to believe something else?

      These are not “little things”.

      1. Jon: I’m so happy you brought these little issues up. If I may, in reverse order.

        With your friends at the Freedom from Religion Foundation you know full well that Christianity has effectively been eliminated from public, i.e. government schools. It has been replaced with kindergarten sex ed, first grade transgender studies and second grade S&M studies. The works of Havelock Ellis, Margaret Sanger and Madelyn Murray O’Haire have replaced the Bible and Lives of the Saints in the library. You humor me with your pollution of the discussion with a ridiculous claim about the public school indoctrination with Christianity. Were it only so we might have lower STD rates, lower abortion rates, lower teen and pre-teen pregnancy rates lower divorce rates.

        As or your claim that “billions of dollars of taxes” not being paid by churches. Let’s do some Economics 101. Follow along if you still have the academic chops. Churches and other religious (even atheist and wiccan) institutions are made up of people in the community. Those people pay taxes. Taxes are used to pay for streets, sewers, police, parks, etc. Therefore, the people in the pews, in whatever seating atheists and wiccans use, are paying property taxes on their individual dwelling units which cover the expenses of government. If not, government would collapse. The money that taxing churches, wiccans and atheists would generate would just be enough to give individual taxpayers enough relief while giving government not a penny more.

        Your argument about churches could just as easily and wrongfully be made bout why governments aren’t taxed by governments. The schools, parks, auditoriums, courthouses, jails and police stations could just as easily be taxed.

        1. Matt 12:20 Those people pay taxes
          Yes, church members pay taxes on their homes. Customers at McDonalds pay taxes on their homes, too. Then McDonalds pays property taxes for the services local governments provide the business itself. Churches do not pay for the services provided churches. They get a free ride, form of welfare or a subsidy of religion from government.

          1. I KNEW you didn’t have the academic chops.

            Atheists and wiccans – whoever claims the correct tax-exempt status – are entitled to the same consideration.

            Again, so you do well on the Econ 101 test this Friday, the taxes are already being paid by the taxpayers. Shifting the tax burden to the churches will only give a tax break to the taxpayers.

            However, I know your game. Because wiccans and atheists are too damn lazy to have houses of worship, they are jealous of the Christians, Jews and Muslims who have churches, synagogues and mosques – all getting property tax consideration.

          2. Matt 3:09 I think there are 10 year olds that understand economics better than you.

            When churches don’t pay taxes, those who belong/own those churches are subsidized. It’s as simple as that. People who don’t belong to those churches are charged taxes for something they get no benefit from. Equal treatment under the law is as old as democracy. Please don’t display more of you inability to understand this.

  8. dean

    Have you ever noticed that whenever a right wing, religious nut has a blog, that they never allow you to respond on the site? Jon is kind enough to have a forum available for people to interact on, even wackos like Matt and Michael. Keep up the good work, Jon

    1. dean: No, I have never noticed what you say. It is probably because it isn’t true. Breitbart is about as far right as one can get and they censor nothing. They also have discussions that in a day can reach over 20,000 comments. They probably start a dozen discussions daily. Jon is not kind, he is provocative and pejorative. His intent is to create foment. I’m happy to be a wacko in your world because it means I am sane in my world, the real world.

      1. Dave Vacha

        I have bitten my tongue long enough. Your ability/willingness to dodge questions and ideas that make you uncomfortable astound me.

        You say the “real world”? That’s funny, because here I thought you were the one putting all faith into a book that was written by over 60 people a few thousand years ago that’s not supported by any scientific evidence whatsoever. Is it perhaps that you’re the product of the most successful business model in the history of all mankind?

        I’m sorry if that statement makes you uncomfortable.

        I disagree with some of the things Jon says, but I respect him more than any other person writing opinions in the area because he’s open for discussion and doesn’t get offended by disagreement.

        I have no proof that Jesus died for my sins, but I do have proof in the form of a few amazing events in my life that give me faith that something/someone is up there running the scene. I do not get offended when someone goes to church to practice their faith whatever it may be.

        I however do get offended when someone puts down another because of their beliefs. I do get offended when we think it’s ok to force one religion upon children in public schools in a “melting pot” nation. I do get offended when a spiritual discussion turns into a politicized discussion. What really offends me most is when people on forums get off topic to save their pride put down another.

        Keep on offending me “conservativejuice” because it only makes me learn more about patience and understanding. Understanding takes patience and that’s what life’s all about… IN MY OPINION.

        I love you all because we’re in this together.

        1. Dave Vacha

          Furthermore, before my poor grammar and differing opinion gets attacked, I wanted to clarify that I do not mean to insult anyone on this forum, I just needed to speak my mind.

          I also wanted to applaud your ability to study the bible and live by it’s teachings (though I don’t agree with all of it) if that’s what you do.

          I have not found that solid direction that you have found which leads me to believe you are further along the journey of life than me, which I mentioned earlier is all about understanding. I hope to one day be in your shoes however I decide to wear them.

          Please keep on your path of understanding as I will continue on mine. Most importantly along the way is for all of us to find common ground in which we can build our happiness upon. We won’t find any common ground by arguing about religion because that has caused only harm and history has proved that over and over.

          Again, peace and love to you all.

          1. Jinx II

            Excellent posts David and Dean and I agree with both of you.

            Dean, I have observed your comment about right wing religious nut jobs and not allowing others to post comments…..heck fakechristianjuice does that exact same thing on his own blog!!

            David, you have earned my respect with your 2 posts and I commend you for speaking up to our resident Bully. I prefer to accept people and their beliefs as they are but I draw the line at pushy, overbearing bullies that believe they know what is best for anyone and everyone.

            I do believe the reasonable posters on this blog need to stand up to the aggressive bullies. Most people try to politely ignore these particular posters but it seems like silence only encourages their aggressiveness.

            Thank you again for your insightful posts and no, you did not insult the reasonable people who follow this blog. We welcome you input.

  9. Juan Ruiz

    ” Another atheist blogger gave a much longer explanation and I’ll use a bit of what he wrote.”

    I’ve always been struck by the paradox that God gave man a miraculous brain, which has conquered disease, deciphered physical laws, explored the planet and outer space, and has expanded knowledge and understanding. Yet, when it comes to religion, the same God demands that that brain be shut down, placed in cold storage. That faith, belief because one wants to believe, sans evidence of any kind, takes precedence. Animals talk, fruit provides knowledge, horns destroy city walls, floods wipe out all of mankind, bears eat children, the dead are raised. No one today has ever seen any of that, but because it is found in a book, it’s true. What if believers conducted the rest of their life in the same way? Faith in used car salesmen, insurance agents, the government, weather forecasters…?

    1. Juan Ruiz: I have no doubt you quoted the atheist correctly. Yet, his explanation of religion and God is antithetical to Christianity. God wants His creation to use its brain in religious as well as scientific and artistic endeavors.

      You make the same mistake as Jon in that you don’t distinguish between the physical world and the spiritual world. Applying rules of physical evidence to the spiritual world is anolagous to applying rules of the spiritual world to the physical world. For example, the grace of God imparts spiritual strength and holiness. It draws one closer to God. The concept of grace in the physical world does not provide strength to a failing building or bridge.

      And faith is not what is contained in a book, the Bible. Faith is carried in the heart and passed down through generations via books, grace, sacraments, the spoken word and whatever means God wishes. The recent apparitions at Lourdes and Fatima apply. The recent declarations of sainthood for Mother Theresa and Pope John Paul II apply.

      Jesus cured people in the streets and still witnesses to those cures did no believe in His divinity.

      1. Juan Ruiz

        “you don’t distinguish between the physical world and the spiritual world. ”

        Actually I do. The latter exists in man’s imagination, and is the product of whatever religious belief system he adheres to. The physical world exists outside man’s mind. One is subjective, the other objective.

  10. Mike

    Good stuff, Matt. I applaud your goal to evangelize and I enjoy you taking on the atheists who post here. It’s an uphill struggle, because as you said in your earlier post, the reason people become atheists is that they had a bad experience in life. We could make guesses as to what happened.

    One of the more obvious reasons that comes to mind is the classic phrase: “Why does God allow bad things that happen to “good” people. The knowledgeable Christian views this premise as a softball question that can be hit easily out of the ball park: there are NO good people. We are all sinners and in need of a Savior. That was the point of Jesus Christ walking on this earth.

    Once the atheist has decided to reject God, he looks around for more “evidence” to corroborate his position. Of course, that is another position that can be easily debunked by simply waking up in the morning of each day, open your eyes, and surveying the majesty of our world and this life we live.
    The evidence of God the Creator is everywhere.

    God also placed a conscience inside everyone, so that even atheists know the difference between right and wrong. No, it comes back to my first point. Deniers think there is no God because they have in their mind a certain way that God should manifest himself.

    Of course, knowledge of God is not really the issue. They know God exists and they are also VERY knowledgeable of the Bible’s teachings as well. They just choose to reject it. As Christians know very well, the Bible tells us of a battle that took place in heaven a long time ago. The entitiy we now refer to as Lucifer, or the Devil, had excellent knowledge of God’s existence, but did not want to pay homage to the Creator of all things. As a result, God gave him what the Devil wanted. He is now forever separated from God’s presence.

    Like all humans, God never intended these “fallen angels” to leave but will allow people to reject him. That’s another characteristic of God that confuses the unbeliever. God did not create human beings as robots, but gave them a certain level of free will. It is God’s nature to have all men come to the knowledge of the truth, so that is why Christians are encouraged to evangelize.

    1. Well stated. A man like yourself has truly pondered God’s existence and the reasons the world is as it is. Just maybe someone is reading this and is converting to Christianity. That’s only one step as we all know there is no single ‘Christianity’.

    2. Jinx II

      Mike, he would not be able to evangelize on this blog if Jon WOULD NOT ALLOW him to. Since his own blog is not exactly popular, he must select a well read blog in order to spread his views. Most moderators would have banned him long ago.

      Jon is quite fair and allows everyone to comment ON TOPIC, even to the point he tolerates ridicule, accusations and condemnations. Remember that the next time you post.

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