In appreciation of my religious/spiritual readers

There aren’t a great many arguments to support the existence of a god, and studious atheists have rejected them all. This makes any attempt to convert such people a waste of time. Few of my religious/spiritual readers who have stayed with me through my attacks on religion have tried to convert me. Their tolerance and kindness has made it increasingly difficult for me to write posts in which I criticize religion, not because my opinions have changed but because I don’t want to wound my friends. Yet, I must continue to write such posts because they are important—to me if to no one else.

I never mean to make it personal. I can’t even imagine attacking one of my readers personally, much less one of my readers whom I value as much as I do Marion in Louisiana; Fodder in the Ukraine; Julie, Corgi, and Robin in California; Marion in British Columbia; Rhymes in Georgia; or Kylie, Nolly, and Natalie in Australia (just to name the first ten who come to mind).

It is certainly possible to find some touching stories and some impressive wisdom in religion, so if you find solace there, then who am I to begrudge you? It is only when religion hurts people that I object to it. As the Wiccans say, “An it harm none, do as ye will.”

27 comments:

The Elephant's Child said...

This post neatly sums up why you are loved. Thanks Snow.

Sarah said...

This is EXACTLY how I've been feeling and exactly why I haven't been writing much about religion--who am I to judge? And yes, there are great things that religion can offer, even if it's just peace of mind, a meditation of sorts. It's just too bad that quite a few religious people do terrible things in the name of their religion. So I always say, it's people that are at the core of the problem, not really religion....in a way.

Elisabeth said...

I'm with you here, Snow. it's all fine, no matter how seemingly bizarre, as long as it does not hurt anyone, including those who espouse it.

Marion said...

Awwww, Snow, you're so fucking brilliant & wise. LMAO! I love you, too, and have learned much from you by not judging you even though you've pissed me off at times. But that's life, isn't it? xoxo

"This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness." ~Dalai Lama

ellen abbott said...

I couldn't agree more.

CreekHiker / HollysFolly said...

My favorite line from the prayer of Jabez - a prayer that I utter often - is - "protect me from evil that I would bring pain to no one."

That corgi :) said...

Its your blog, I think obviously you should write what you want, when you want, etc. We have the choice of reading it or not reading it, commenting on it or not commenting on it. What some of us have to learn is to make sure we respect your opinions (any bloggers opinions on what they write) and not to change their mind or convert them, etc. It took me awhile to get that, (and kicked off of someone's blog to leave comments), so really whatever you choose to write wouldn't offend me nor would I try to convert you. I truly do enjoy reading other's opinions on what they believe or not believe and their thoughts on religion. Write away!

(thanks for your kind words on my last post; here in California, yep, the police have to be called first with a death at home. Interestingly,in Montana, they had to come in and clear the area to make sure it was safe after a suicide attempt, found that out the hard way, thankfully she lived. Little disconcerting to see the fire truck/paramedics out there waiting to offer help, but they couldn't come in until the scene was cleared by the police who arrived second a good five minutes later). Oh well!

thanks again!

betty

Punk Chopsticks said...

Lol this explains exactly how I feel when i'm talking to my Christian (or other religious in terms of creationist theorists)

Charles Gramlich said...

Well, being that religion is a long way from a science, I tend not to worry much what anyone else thinks about the issue. It's mostly what I think, although I do enjoy a good religious argument at times.

Putz said...

i am waiting for you to be a mormon

Mad Mind said...

You have to stay true to yourself. Otherwise you aren't the person we love to follow.

PhilipH said...

Live and let live where religion is concerned. Why bother to argue with a nutter (my term for bible punching zealots) as you cannot win. And why should you want to win over a nutter?
Leave the Catholics, Protestants, Shintoist, Muslims and the rest of the nutters to believe in Paradise or some great Heaven in the sky, or wherever. If it makes them happy good luck to them. As long as they reciprocate and leave ME to my godless life and world.

OneOldGoat said...

Snowbrush - although I am a believer, I thoroughly appreciate that you express your thoughts and opinions on everything. I really enjoy your blog as well as your friends comment. I love Marion's post. Not everyone I care for and respect carries the same religion as I.
I would far prefer a friendship with someone who is comfortable to express his/her own thoughts rather than someone who pretends to agree with everything I say.
Keep on blogging, Snowbrush!

Beth OneOldGoat

Robin said...

*Elephant's Child* said it perfectly... I find that the people I love don't always agree with me on so many things.... but, what we do agree on is to love and support each other - however we can...friendship is so inexplicable at times... one just *clicks* with another...and cares for that person... that, in itself, is a sort of *religion*...you have a great group of blogging friends, Snow....we are a diverse bunch...but we all love you!

Hugs from the *Catholic Girl*!

Love to you, Peggy, and the Furry Ones!

♥ Robin ♥

p.s. Read Vicki's latest post when you have a minute.

rhymeswithplague said...

Thank you for this very kind post. I have been away from the computer for a couple of days so that explains my late arrival at the love-fest.

You just know I'm going to quote you two verses from the Bible -- one from the Old Testament (because I'm half Jewish) and one from the New Testament (because I'm half not). They serve as watchwords to me:

"As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another." (Proverbs 27:17, New International Version)

I like the New Living Translation even better: "As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend."

And, from Romans 12: "If it is possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men."

That's us.

Just_because_today said...

Religion - God, totally different in my book. You can attack religion all that you want and I'll probably agree with you. No one will ever be able to touch my faith in God, the two are separate. I like it that way.

VioletMind said...

I would consider myself a spiritual being rather than a religious person. Religion as in conventional institutions have nothing to do with me. I am concerned with understanding the world around me by analyzing myself, the closest thing to me. I have found that the sensation I get from meditating makes me feel closer to home than any other experience I've encountered; it relaxes me, refreshes me and enlightens me at once. It is extremely difficult to discipline myself enough to take the time out of my day to have this time for myself, yet it is the most rewarding time I have with myself. I feel like Jesus has nothing to do with God. From my experience, we are all Gods and together, with nature and the universe at large, we make up a larger consciousness or what is known as "God". I think we as a human race are a lot more capable than we think we are.. Who knows?

Myrna R. said...

I'm grateful for your post. I've always known you certainly mean no harm, and are expressing your thoughts. I've always enjoyed reading your perspectives.

ladyfi said...

Surely we can all agree to disagree? Having an opinion is not quite the same thing as judging - is it?

Phoenix said...

Jonathan Swift nailed it when he said, "We have just enough religion to hate each other, but not enough to love."

I am deeply spiritual, yet I love your blog, and adore you. And I would never disrespect you or your ideas enough to try and convert you to a line of thinking that just doesn't suit you.

(Which is why I am also for separation of church and state.)

Keep being true to you. Your followers and friends will understand. :)

JanelDudleyBeads said...

Everyone should be able to voice their opinions and beliefs without fear.

kylie said...

snow, i dont know how i missed this but i did.

love ya, mate and the religion thing is neither here nor there so long as you agree with me at all times.

xox

The Blog Fodder said...

Figured I best catch up on my reading. No quarrels with you, Snowbrush. I can certainly see where folks experience with religion would drive them to disbelieve in a God. I just try not to confuse the two. You can blast religion all you want.

Snowbrush said...

"I can certainly see where folks experience with religion would drive them to disbelieve in a God."

Nearly all of the atheists I've known came to atheism simply by asking questions regarding the tenets of their childhood faith. In my case, the original question that I asked at age 11 (how could a just and loving deity order genocide) wasn't answered, and additional unanswered questions got added to it over a period of many years. I eventually came to see that the ONLY way I would ever recapture the faith of my childhood was either through extraordinary evidence or through what the Bible calls "the gift of faith." I henceforth prayed for faith over a period of many years, but it was for nothing.

I can but confess ignorance as to how anyone can believe in any supernatural entity or entities based upon the evidence as opposed to an emotional need to believe. This makes it impossible for me to respect the faith of religious people, yet I recognize that no one respects everything about anyone, so I try to look for whatever virtues I can respect in religious people. I am determined inasmuch as I am able to have a diversity of friends rather than to surround myself with people who agree with me.

Snowbrush said...

"Having an opinion is not quite the same thing as judging - is it?"

I guess it depends upon how the word judging is defined, but I like to think that we can each believe that the other is wrong about various things and still get along.

OneOldGoat said...

In response to: I can but confess ignorance...so I try to look for whatever virtues I can respect in religious people.

Snowbrush - many years ago, I may have agreed with you because I didn't have any faith. I didn't understand 'faith'. I wish I could explain to you or to anyone, but I can't put it into words. Maybe someday. And although I am a Christian, I do like the Wiccan rede 'An it harm none, do what ye will'

Snowbrush said...

"'An it harm none, do what ye will'"

I'm a little surprised--given that you're a Christian--because the Wiccan Rede doesn't go as far as Jesus' admonition to, "Do unto others and you would have them do unto you." A Wiccan could literally watch someone bleed to death without rendering aid and still be in compliance with the Wiccan Rede. However, compliance with the Wiccan Rede would certainly result in a more tolerant society, something which the mass of Christians have ever opposed.