Archive for September, 2011

Richard Dawkins On The Big Picture

Posted in atheists on September 30th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – Comments Off

Religion’s Insidious Marketing

Posted in Science on September 30th, 2011 by Sam Shore – Comments Off

Post by Sam
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When discussing the absurdity of organized religion, it’s important to recognize that while the tenets themselves may be silly, the mechanisms utilized to instill brand loyalty are so skillfully designed that Madison Avenue can only look on in jealousy. It starts with some form of affirmation from birth – be it baptism or circumcision – and continues to cement its hold with layer upon layer of ritual until near-impervious shell forms to protect the fully matured believer from reason and evidence. As the child in this video is shown repeating unnecessary steps to receive their candy reward, children steeped in a religious upbringing are taught that muttering to an invisible man in the sky is part of the process of becoming a good person. And instead of a clear box, religion presents them with smoke and mirrors to obscure the truth.

I am not familiar with any research which studies child development as it relates to a religious upbringing, but the strong positive correlation between the faith of parent and child suggests just how hard it is to shake this early developmental programming. It is not socially acceptable to teach your child any number of wrongheaded, antiquated notions… Why does religion get a free pass?

My Dad Passed Away At 7:15AM

Posted in Uncategorized on September 30th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – 9 Comments

Thank you for all of the support.

Gowing Numbers Of Britons Are Rejecting Religious Belief

Posted in Uncategorized on September 29th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – Comments Off

Via the telegraph.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/8794336/ONS-A-quarter-of-Britons-have-no-religion-at-all.html

A survey of more than 400,000 people by the Office for National Statistics found the proportion who said they were not religious rose from 20.5% in 2010 to 23.2% this year.

In particular, the study found that there had been a significant fall in the numbers describing themselves as Christian, from 71.3% last year to 68.5% by March 2011, when asked the question, “What is your religion, even if you are not currently practising?”

Across the country, the figures would suggest that an estimated 14 million people in Great Britain, out of a population of more than 60 million, have no religious beliefs at all.

The survey found that adults aged between 25 and 34 were the group most likely to have turned away from faith, with one third stating that they had “no religion at all”, while those aged over 65 were the most devout section of society.

Keith Porteous Wood, executive director of the National Secular Society, said the ONS findings reflected “the long term decline in church attendance”.

This is projected to continue “as the young practically desert the churches and congregations rapidly age”, he said.

Mr Porteous Wood urged ministers to reflect on the decline of religious belief as they sanctioned an “ever-increasing” number of state funded faith schools, a move which was “marginalising the non religious”.

Dr Dave Landrum, director of advocacy at the Evangelical Alliance, argued that the true figure for active Christians would be even lower than the numbers reported by the ONS.

“Ticking a box does not make you a Christian and given the state of our society it is doubtful all of those who self-identify as Christians actually are,” he said.

The study showed that the proportion of the population of Britain who were Muslims increased, from 4.2% in 2010 to 4.4% this year.

There was also a small rise in the proportion of people describing themselves as Sikh while the percentages of Jews and Hindus fell slightly.

The ONS Integrated Household Survey was based on responses from more than 420,000 individuals, making it the largest sample of British life after the census.

The results found that 1.5% of adults aged 16 and over identified themselves as “gay, lesbian or bisexual”, a small rise from 2010. However, more than 4% refused to answer the question or answered “don’t know”, while 0.4% described their sexuality as “other”.

London had the highest percentage of people who said they were gay, lesbian or bisexual – 3% – while the east of England and east Midlands had the lowest, at 1%.

The under-25s were the most likely, and those aged over 50 least likely, to describe themselves as anything other than heterosexual.

10 Better Commandments – Christopher Hitchens

Posted in atheists on September 29th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – Comments Off

A Day Of Up And Down

Posted in Uncategorized on September 28th, 2011 by Phil Ferguson – 2 Comments

My dad is still fighting to stay alive. At 8am he was awake for about an hour, had some water via a little sponge on the end of a stick and tried to get out of bed. He also had a fever of 101.5. He then mostly slept for the next 8 hours. We had many visitors and he slept through them all.
Around 6pm he was kinda awake and we gave him more water and put cream on his cracking lips. I’m not sure how much of him is in there. I told him some funny jokes but he did not laugh. Every once in a while his eyes get bright and focus on you. His face lights up and you can tell that he is there and he sees you. Then he loses focus and tries to say something that seems so important but, only he will ever know what it was and those memories will soon be lost forever.
Today he ate no food and only has about 6 oz of water. Now at 9 pm we sit and hold his hand and watch him struggle for each breath. I would swear that he stopped for about 20 seconds. His breath now seems to have a little gurgle in it. I’m guessing he is starting to get some fluid in his lungs. Gotta go. I will try to give an update tomorrow.
Go call someone and tell them how much you love them.