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Smell the sea and feel the sky
Let your soul and spirit fly
Into the mystic.
[. . .]
I wanna rock your gypsy soul
Just like way back in the days of old
Then magnificently we will float
Into the mystic . . . Van Morrison

I lived on the north coast of California for 40 years. In those four decades, I rarely lived out of hearing range of the ocean. I could not see it, but I could hear it. On calm days, it was subtle undertone; if you have ever held a seashell to your ear, you know what I mean. On days of extreme wind, it was loud roar, assertive and powerful. Sometimes, the wind was not even local, but it still pushed waves from far out at sea, huge waves, big enough to lift tree trunks and throw them to the beach.

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Comments

It's a matter of principal.
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 4, 2018:
Ahem, do you mean "principle" or is the local principal going to save you?
President trump says he is above the law and can't be bothered by any kind of investigation on him, ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 4, 2018:
Arrogance and narcissism is what's up with that. If presidents are above the law, what was the deal with Nixon????
Smells Ring Bells What are some smells that will trigger a strong memory for you and what is the ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 4, 2018:
Hedge nettles. When I was a girl in California, there was a marsh behind our house where someone had junked an old pick-up. The area around the marsh was covered in hedge nettles. When we walked on them, the broken stalks emitted a strong, musky odor that is a bit unpleasant. Decades later, I was getting a teaching credential and one of the profs took us on a nature walk. He broke a stalk from a hedge nettle (which was the first time I knew the name of the plant) and immediately, the smell took me back to the wretched little house we lived in, the rusted, abandoned truck, and being six years old.
I used to think that religion was one of the biggest problems in the world. The problems of religion...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 3, 2018:
People are the problem. As I age, I dislike people more and more.
Trumpy Bear. Just found out about this. Who thinks this would be worth a lot in the future?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 3, 2018:
To whom do the profits go?
I think if all humans could understand and really have the following beliefs take hold, then the ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 3, 2018:
On authoring our own thoughts and the protests that I have read against this statement . . . When I was getting my MA, a prof posed the question of "Do we write or are we written?" We are written. To NOT author our own thoughts is in no way a reference to a deity, predestination, etc.: it means that we are so imprinted by our culture and our biology that our thoughts are "authored" by both. Yes, we decide to buy the blue car or the red car, but religion, atheism, any "ism," stems from culture or biology. Even rebellion is guided by culture/biology. We are also written by family environment, just as our parents were written by theirs; even when we consciously change to not be our parents, the change is authored by our experiences, most of which were beyond our control as children. It is amusing to hear people who think that they are creative say, "I think outside the box"; if they do, why are they using a cliche to express their individuality? NO ONE is outside of boxes; we can move from one to the other or paint ours pink, but we are still in boxes. I am described as eccentric, different, weird, out there, a free spirit . . . But I know that I am written. I've just painted my box a different color.
Firebrand atheists
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 3, 2018:
Why do you have to label yourself?
I am an atheist ,but I do worship this guy-Willis Carrier. He is the inventer of the air ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 3, 2018:
I will add that in addition to Carrier, I worship the person who visualized snow plows and the people who drive them.
I have only 20 points to go till Level 7. I hear they give you a free puppy. Any truth to this? ?...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 2, 2018:
NO truth in that rumor, but it is true that you will get one of my cats.
Why don't atheists like showing respect and kindness toward God believers? Why don't God Believers ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 2, 2018:
The questions are gross generalizations. As an atheist, I consistently show respect and kindness toward deists. Likewise, I know many deists who treat me with respect and kindness.
Why Are Atheists Generally Smarter Than Religious People? | HuffPost
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 1, 2018:
I have two cousins who are dumb as posts--not being unkind, but they are semi-literate and have the logic of sheep, maybe. They are both on Facebook and it hurts my brain and my eyes to read their posts. They are both deeply devout Christians who believe in the flood and all of the miracles. They are extremely childlike in their faith and if as children they had been told that faeries exist, they would still believe that faeries exist. Their reasoning skills do not allow them to move beyond their simple faith. My older sister is also a deist and used to be fairly fundamentalist. A few years ago, she shocked me when she said that evolution was a fact, adding how could it not be? Now she thinks that Adam and Eve, the flood, etc., are myths. Although she still believes that a god exists, she now says that no one understands the nature of that god. She's a LOT smarter than my cousins. I have known smart people who believe in a god, but they take The Bible with a boulder of salt. And though I have encountered some fairly dense atheists (most of whom I have "met" on this site), most I have met are fairly intelligent. It is about reason and examination of the facts and they myths.
Oath ... Does anyone in this forum swear on the/a bible?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 1, 2018:
Do courts still "require" this?
“Scientists do not join hands every Sunday and sing "Yes gravity is real! I know gravity is real! ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 1, 2018:
And how do you know for sure that they don't?
Metacognition is good for you
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 1, 2018:
Interesting! Going to share at a school where I teach.
SAY THE WORDS: WORDS MATTER [scontent.ffcm1-2.fna.fbcdn.net]
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 1, 2018:
The old rhyme "sticks and stones can break my bones but words can never hurt me" is one of the worst lies that we were told as children. As an English teacher, I know the importance of words and that words do matter.
How can someone halfway believe in a god or gods
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 1, 2018:
Can you make the question more specific?
"White privilege doesn't mean your life hasn’t been hard; it means that your skin color isn’t ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 1, 2018:
Yup.
DEBUNK? Did some quick searching but couldn't find anything on Snopes regarding this. Anyone fact ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 1, 2018:
I don't need a fact check to know that this is BS.
Where are your manners? I came to this app for dating people that think alike. I saw that the app ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on Jun 1, 2018:
Are you new to dating sites?
I never understood, even when I was an Evangelical, how christians loved warmongers and ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 31, 2018:
Jesus also preached tolerance for tax collectors (who were unfair and hated), adulterers, and not to judge: Many Christians lack tolerance and liberally judge others. The reason is because The Christian Scriptures preach against what are inherent traits of human nature. We evolved by fighting and putting self as number one: recorded history is packed with tales of battles and wars. Humans also have an innate need to elevate themselves over other humans; thus, they judge. Christians are people, and like people everywhere, they validate their basic human wants by using a god to explain why "it" is fine to do so.
The Bible - I find the lack of respect people in this room give to the Bible disturbing. Its early ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 30, 2018:
I look at The Hebrew and Christian Scriptures as I do any set of myths. J. Campbell postulated that myth has four functions and other mythologists add to that list, and The HCS serve all of the functions. However, how does one give "respect" to a book? That is a fallacy: a book is a recording of the thoughts of humans and in and of itself, is not something to be respected. One can respect the people who wrote it, but their motives must be examined. The authors of The Hebrew Scriptures had several: to record history, to validate the actions of the individuals and the tribe as a whole, to explain the existence of the universe, and to codify laws. The Christians Scriptures have some of the same purposes, but they differ from the older book. (And I am not going to elaborate because I do not have time to write a book here.) Put together, it is hard to reconcile the god of TCS with the god of THS. For every verse such as the one you quote, there is a verse at the opposite end of the spectrum: For Matthew 18:6, "But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea." There is Psalm 137:9: "Happy is the one who seizes your infants and dashes them against the rocks." For John 8:7, "And as they continued to ask him, he stood up and said to them, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.” There is Leviticus 20:10: "'If a man commits adultery with another man's wife--with the wife of his neighbor--both the adulterer and the adulteress are to be put to death." This is not to mention the babies drowned in the flood or the genocide committed against the dwellers of Canaan when the Jews came to reclaim "their" land after the Exodus. Words are words: the recording of horrific acts committed in THS cannot cancel out the reconciliation found in TCS. Maybe the Christians would have been better off to have abandoned those earlier texts. But it is not the book that can be respected: it is the author and the intent of the author.
Religious indoctrination is child abuse. Yes or no?I know this topic has been brought up before ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 30, 2018:
Yes and no. My indoctrination was not abuse, but I saw a documentary on Westboro Baptist Church and yes, that was child abuse.
The Most Outrageous Belief
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 30, 2018:
It was easier for me to believe that a man died and rose from the dead than it was for me to believe that Noah got all of those animals on that ark.
Fellow agnostics, how do you feel about believers joining?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 30, 2018:
Ya know, I have not seen one avowed theist. In fact, I don't think I have seen even one veiled theist.
To our bible belt friends.
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 30, 2018:
I live in Springfield, Missouri, and I have no problem with anyone. If someone has a problem with me, he/she is not voicing it. People are McD's are more apt to be shocked by an old women wearing a short dress than they are/would be because I am an atheist. But then, I am personable and not crabby (usually).
Do you consider religion to be a contagious mental illness?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 30, 2018:
"Religion" cannot be a mental illness. Perhaps a "belief" in a deity could be, but this statement is a misnomer.
My religion teacher doesn't seem to appreciate my contributions to class discussion
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 30, 2018:
If I could rotate those pages without downloading them or read them without twisting my neck, I am sure that I would have something to say.
I know that Wikipedia is a controversial source of information. There are people who screw with ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 30, 2018:
As an educator, I never allow Wikipedia as a source in a paper; I have taught for various schools and this it the policy of all of them. However, I tell my students that they can sometimes find leads to sources in the bibs for the articles. If I Google something and Wikipedia turns up, it is the first site that I will look at because for general information, it is usually fine. One problem with Wikipedia is knowing which articles are accurate and which are not--or, rather, the problem is with the reader. A reader needs to be able to discern what is fact, opinion, or just way out in space. I even donated money to Wikipedia when it was soliciting funds. It has its place.
Happy Show the World Your Toes Week Come on, whip em out
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 29, 2018:
Um, put them back in, please. Now.
Has anyone else noticed how some men don't want to be short, and some ladies don't want small ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 29, 2018:
Really? Ever noticed how the short guys don't want to date the women with the small breasts and the small breasted women want to date a tall man?
'Roseanne' canceled after star's racist Twitter rant
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 29, 2018:
I watched the show decades ago, but I have no TV now. I would have not gotten past the episode where she lauded Trumpass, though. This is what I wrote on FB: I just read where Roseanne’s TV series was cancelled due to a racist slur that she posted on Twitter. I do not have a TV or a Twitter account, but news travels fast; that is how I know that on her show, she avidly supported Trumpass. This alone would have kept me from watching her show if I did have a TV, but the episode(s) (were there more than one?) is what lead to her downfall. Trumpass has made it acceptable to be racist and sexist. We have seen this in his comments about “good people on both sides,” and through the people he has chosen to surround himself with, including the dismissed Steve Bannon. As a sexist bastard who has suffered no repercussions (yet) for his actions, his opinion and treatment of women is disgusting. Which lead back to Roseanne . . . Roseanne was emboldened by the lack of repercussions about supporting Trumpass in her show. Yeah, those of us who do not approve (a weak word for how we feel) might have stopped watching, but the network seemingly did nothing. After all, it is a free country, and people are free to express their political opinions. When the reigning administration also approves of racism, why not take it a step further? And so, she did—not on her show, but on a medium that is read by millions of people. This time, the backlash was immediate and drastic, and poof! Roseanne is cancelled. Roseanne is emblematic of thousands and thousands of people in the US today who think that their hate of blacks, immigrants, and women is acceptable. They are not content to merely express their hate, though, but to act on it. Trumpass has opened the floodgates and made the issues so many have worked so hard to eradicate come into the open, and so far, there have been few repercussions. But now, there is one: a very visible repercussion. Roseanne apologized for her post, saying, “"I am truly sorry for making a bad joke about her politics and her looks," Barr tweeted. "I should have known better. Forgive me -- my joke was in bad taste.” Politics? Looks? Bad taste? Rosey, honey, your post went beyond politics, beyond looks, and beyond bad taste: It was RACIST. It was on the same level as the morons who called Michelle Obama a “baboon.” Is she sorry? Oh, I have no doubt about that: sorry that she misjudged the climate for the approval for the statement, sorry that she posted it in such a public venue, and sorry that she thought that she could say anything and her “in” with Trumpass would protect her. Most of all, she is sorry that her show got cancelled. Honestly, I am not sorry she said it: we need to know who “they” ...
Missouri’s morally reprehensible governor resigned today in an effort to avoid becoming Lazy Left ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 29, 2018:
Yes! As I posted on Facebook, it couldn't have happened to a scuzzier guy--no, wait: there is still Trumpass. I didn't vote for Greitens and I am happy (relieved?) he is gone.
Trans and non-believers
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 29, 2018:
No.
What's the one most negative/detrimental effect religious teachings had on your life?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 29, 2018:
At this point, I have left the negative and detrimental "stuff" behind, but in the past, it was what others listed: guilt, especially over sex. Someone mentioned Catholic guilt, but I don't think the Catholics have anything over Southern Baptists in the guilt department.
Are haircuts too expensive?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 28, 2018:
I am the wrong person to answer this question!
Gentlemen, could you please give me some insight concerning unsolicited pictures of male genitalia? ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 28, 2018:
I have pondered this issue ever since my first computer--over 20 years ago. I have asked men whom I know about this and in addition to some of the explanations given below, a said "Because it has worked at least once and a woman responded positively." It's the same with first contact emails in which a man says in appropriate things: it worked before--at least once. If a guy has to send out 100 to get one positive response so be it. I have also been told by men that women do the same.
Recently a friend told me a joke about a couple arriving in Heaven and receiving a tour. Their ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 28, 2018:
Long ago, my ex husband had a friend who said he was READY TO DIE at any minute to go to heaven and be with Jesus. One evening, he came to our house, visibly shaken, saying that he had nearly run off the bluff into the ocean (don't remember why). I said to him, "Why didn't you go? You always say that you are ready to meet Jesus." He never said that again in my presence. I was in the church then, too, but in no hurry to meet Jesus. Consider the first people who were Christian; there were some rich folk, but the majority were poor; women and slaves embraced Christianity because they could have the same reward in heaven as free men. They, as were/are many people, were already suffering, so the thought of heaven was, well, heaven. Over the years and centuries, as the Catholic Church rose to power, people were offered heaven for suffering because 1. They were still already suffering but 2. The Church controlled who got into heaven (as the Pope was god's emissary on earth) and suffering people are easier to control. The panacea was the promise of relief from suffering. If I thought for a moment that heaven was real and it took suffering to get in, hell, yeah, I would suffer.
The meaning of life????
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 28, 2018:
The most basic meaning/purpose of life is biological and it is to procreate. Then, it is to stay alive long enough to take care of the offspring so that they can procreate. Not wanting children is a modern concept. Our fascination with sex is based on procreation; our marriage conventions are based on rearing children and keeping them safe. The thought of whether life has "meaning" and why we exist did not arise until humans had some basic reassurance that they could continue living, both individually and collectively. When everyone is scrambling for food and shelter, they are not concerned about more esoteric thoughts. In the modern world, those who scramble only wonder about this because they see others living the good life. Those in the good life wonder because they have leisure time--or, they work too much and want leisure time. The purpose is what one decides is the purpose; it is all futile as we all die anyway. My purpose at this stage is to live as well as I can yet be politically aware and not forget that not everyone has it as good as I do.
I have been meaning ask a question to all of you, but I am really busy reading and responding as ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 28, 2018:
It was a '56 Plymouth, two-toned, white and blue. Three speed manual transmission, stick on the steering wheel shaft. The blue parts were rusted and my dad and I painted them a new blue with a brush. I was also born in 1952 and I got the car when I was 18. Drove it round trip from California to Oklahoma and the brakes went out around Barstow. Got them fixed and no more problems arose on the trip.
Is contentment a mini-death?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 28, 2018:
Yes. I want to be as happy as I can be, but I never want to be content. To me, contentment means being satisfied with the status quo, and even the status quo is pleasant, therein lies the road to stagnation.
What about life motivates you? What keeps you moving forward every day? What do you feel your ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 27, 2018:
Life motivates me. The purpose of life is living. In V. Woolf's novel Mrs. Dalloway, the protagonist, Clarissa, worries that when she is dead, no one will know how much she loved life. Today, I worked in my yard. The sun was hot on my bare shoulders. The earth was slightly damp from rain, yielding to my fingers. The grass was green. The ginger cat lay beside. The sky was blue. For the moment, that was all that mattered.
First it was God with devil having a meeting over Job Secondly is Jesus with devil having meeting ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 27, 2018:
Because angels cannot be killed and Lucifer was a fallen angel. Jesus had to be incarnated as a human in order to be killed.
Just got my first 24 hour Facebook ban, for commenting on a post about religion. It was the usual ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 26, 2018:
Know your audience as someone very likely reported you.
Ever notice how Christians are always crying persecution, but are the main ones damning people to ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 26, 2018:
Not all Christians are doing this. I have no love of Christianity, but to blanketly label all people in any group as doing one thing or another is a fallacy.
Like @nvrnuff I’m getting a bit disenchanted with this site, and for many of the same reasons. Too...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 26, 2018:
Not sure why you felt compelled to share this.
I've read some pretty harsh anti-Muslim posts here. I'm not sure that Islam is any worse than other ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 26, 2018:
Agreed. There are radicals in any group of people, including atheists. Ideology varies and personalities vary. As for the Zionists, it has ceased to amaze me that specific religious groups do not seem to remember the lessons of their past. For centuries, Christians have fed non-Christians to the lions. Some Jews have, apparently, not internalized any of the lessons about prejudice and the persecution of WW II and other European pogroms. Of course, the Jews were not kind to the people who had settled in "their" land while they were supposedly in Egypt and had their subsequent supposed exodus. Go figure.
Where did God come from? A Dream, a Lie, and an Explanation
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
I have long maintained that the thought of life after death originated in dreams. The appearance of loved ones--or hated ones--appearing in dreams was "proof" that they still lived. Dreams are barely understood now, even less so in the past, and many, many cultures saw dreams as portals, windows to the future, and having meaning on a plethora of "things."
Happy Friday friends. It's been a brutal week and happy that it is over with a long weekend ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
No, it would be boring. Aware people grow and evolve through the bad times. Contentment breeds stagnation.
when someone ask "what if i'm wrong about god ?"i say i still don't want to be brainwashed ,i still ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
The Christian concept of heaven is boring as hell. I cannot imagine being fulfilled in an eternity of sitting at god's feet, looking up adoringly. Not only that, it is not based on the concepts evident in The Christian Scriptures. And humans will not be angels--angels are a different breed.
Judging from the posts I've read, I must be the meanest agnostic on the planet. I really take ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
I shrug off most "blessed day" wishes, tell those who want to pray for me that I will invoke the goodwill of the goddess for them--or tell them that they can pray all they would like, but it is a useless endeavor. At this stage, I am more amused than anything else. Empathy for Nazis and the true nuts? How can I empathize for people whose choice to hate is beyond my ken? Tomi Lahren, Trumpass, Sean Hannity, Mike Pence . . . You know the names . . . When they can empathize with others, I might be able to empathize with them.
What women want on a first date.. Is it true?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
This is as much about sex as it is first dates. According to this, I am, once again, not the "average" woman. (It is all silliness.)
Christian author: Trump is under attack from ‘multidimensional Luciferian advanced beings’ – ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
Ohhhhh . . . I am an "advanced being." Good for me.
Are you a friendly or unfriendly, atheist or theist?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
Friendly atheist. I judge people by who they are, not what they are. Unfriendly theists tend to be unhappy people--quite a few unfriendly atheists are, too.
Wondering which people are secretly working for the government. Maybe it's the group that started ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
Busted.
Ask Your Baby's Permission Before Changing Diaper, Says Sexual Consent Expert
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
That's just stupid. There, I said it. No regrets.
Two day old baby chickens are just about as cute as cute can get.
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
My ex and I once raised a banty rooster since he was just out of the egg. We doted on him. When he matured, he was the meanest, most aggressive little son-of-a-hen on earth. I was standing barefoot on the porch one day and he began attacking my feet. Yeah, funny--or funny if you have never had twelve inches of red fury pecking your feet like crazy. I couldn't escape him; my ex stepped on the porch, lobbed the rooster with his foot for a distance of about 20 feet, and the demon hit the ground running back to get me again. Next day, we gave him to a neighbor who had chickens kept in a wire enclosure.
For 4 years I went to two different schools that did an individual pacing system. It was called the...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 25, 2018:
As an educator (both elementary and college level), I am abhorred. I have never heard of this system, not even in Christian schools. In fact, I am beyond abhorred.
"I am a rational human being, free of silly supernatural beliefs!"I assert as I smudge my house and ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 24, 2018:
Think of the smudging and the crystals as symbols. Ritual can help us focus. I still wear a pentacle because of the symbolism.
Can humans think without language? Try it.
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 24, 2018:
I cannot remember whether it was when I was getting a BA or an MA, but one of my profs lectured on this. I cannot remember the person who proposed the theory, but it said that without speech, there are no "thoughts" and no reasoning. I asked if infants think, and he said that they do not, nor do animals. If so, why do chimpanzees look behind mirrors to see whose images they behold? But back to infants and toddlers--my 14 month old granddaughter is learning to talk. Today, she saw toys at my house and asked, "Whatsit?" She understands what is said to her in simple terms even though she cannot speak the words. She also dropped something from her highchair yesterday and asked, "Wheresit?" looking down for the object. This shows reason, which supports thoughts, but what goes on in her head when she "reasons"? We cannot think without words because as adults, we have been verbal too long--even children who have learned to speak have been verbal for too long. Do whales speak? Do they reason? Do porpoises? Ravens? Parrots?
I remember somebody once equating religious devotion to anyone devoted to an identity. That being ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 23, 2018:
Most humans are herd animals and tend to seek out people who are like them OR they seek to conform to a group in order to belong. Belonging gives them an identity and fulfills their social needs. Even being on this site accomplishes those purposes.
So, about dating... This is probably the most difficult and most frustrating. As an awake and ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 23, 2018:
I let men know that I am atheist right off the bat. Since I broke it off with my last boyfriend, I have no one whom I would even consider dating--not because of their religious affiliations but because I am extremely shallow and have qualities upon which I insist. Religion is not one.
What is your response when people threaten you with religious punishments? (i.e. Hell/Jahannam)
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 23, 2018:
No one has done that for a long, long time. I can't even remember my responses because it has been so long.
I have to admit that there are times I wish I had some belief system to comfort me when awful things...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 23, 2018:
But there is rhyme and reason in the universe: we are born and we die. All of us. We cannot predict the hours or the manners of our deaths, but if we could, would anyone truly want to know? Life is a series of circumstances caused by planning and by accidents--and the latter can cancel out the former in a second. We mourn: we should wallow in our grief for a time, then we should get up, wash our faces, and celebrate the lives of those whom we love. Easier said than done--been there too many times.
Do you think the Pope really believes there are gods, heavens, and lives after death?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 23, 2018:
The present Pope or all popes? How can anyone know the mind of another person (especially one whom most people have not met or spoken with) well enough to make such a judgement?
Buckminster Fuller, I heard, once proposed the weighing of a body immediately before and after the ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 23, 2018:
Just sayin': https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/weight-of-the-soul/
Insidious nature of the closet
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 23, 2018:
I have a colleague (online teaching) who told me that he is less prone to telling people that he is atheist than he does telling them he is gay.
Not this shit again. You know this is going to be another dig for those religious fucks to see ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 23, 2018:
I have seen this over and over and over. My answer is that god did not protect the Amish children in their school: https://lancasterpa.com/amish/amish-school-shooting/ So much for god being in school.
So, are ethics an extension of our empathetic nature?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
Yes. In addition, ethics are based on the need to protect the tribe/clan. In order to survive, humans needed to cooperate and to maintain harmony. The best way to do that was to minimize strife within in the community. However, this did not necessarily apply to other clans; clans grew into countries and the result is what we have now. Within the US, the clans are fighting each other. As Lincoln said, a house divided cannot stand.
Bible verses that still bother you.
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
Psalm 137:9: Happy is the one who seizes your infants and dashes them against the rocks. When I was in church, I asked my pastor about this one and he said that the babies were going to grow up to be enemies of the Jews and would be heathens; it was better for them to die. Yeah, right. And not a verse, but the idea that the flood is somehow a story for children with happy animals marching on the ark is despicable. Somehow, that babies and children died in the flood is not supposed to detract from the cuteness of the animals.
You know what's odd to me is that none of the other gospels write about this. But Christians are ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
I wondered about these issues when I was a practicing Xtian for ten years; I was told that some obvious contradictions were perspective, i.e. the varying accounts of the life of Jesus, and others, such as the Temple being rent asunder and many dead being resurrected was suppressed by the Romans. Other times, the answer was there are things we just won't understand until we get to heaven. Believers are able to suspend their disbelief in order to avoid conflict.
I’m writing a guideline to “Whacked Out History Stories” And I was hoping that maybe one of ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
This goes to show how much you know about history: the penguins SWAM to the ark. Get with the program. In fact, they might have even flown, then were cursed by god and lost the ability to fly. Yeah, that's it.
Does No Kids = Bad Person?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
Why would you even consider this idea? Do not be concerned with what other people think of you--it is none of their business.
Parenting advice. And so I ask you this one question. Have you ever tried simply turning off the ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
Is this supposed to be silly, random, or fun? It might be random, but there is nothing silly or fun about hitting children.
Religion is the cause of all wars
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
No, it isn't: humans are the cause of all wars (unless one includes ant colonies that fight each other).
I had a date today. I have a clear impression that he wants nothing to do with me and finds me odd....
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
I have had dozens and dozens of online dates. What men find acceptable in a woman is proportionate to how attractive he finds her. I have had Christians tell me that my atheism (at first, my paganism) is no issue. At least you got something out of the experience!
SHOULD WE BE SCARED BY TRUMP AND THE REPUBLICANS NOW? First they came for the communists, and I ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
I have been scared for well over a year. I am 65, and I have never felt this type of fear before.
Does anyone have any experience attending Southern New Hampshire University through their online ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
I will add, though, that if it has been 25 years since you last went to school, online courses take a huge amount of discipline. Students also have to learn to navigate the online program. If you choose an online school, do not hesitate to ask questions and start out slow--one or two courses at first. Go for it.
A plan without action goes no where.
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
I will add that hope is useless: it is actions that bring results. One can sit and hope all he/she would like, but it will change nothing.
We were poor when i was young.
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
Oh, yeah? We were so poor, we only had boxes to play with.
So my theory on the origin of religion is simple. It starts with a scroll maker. He would make ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
Well, no. Religion began before writing was invented. The first writing was used to keep records, and religion was in full swing in both Egypt and Sumeria at that point. The oldest extant literature in the world is The Epic of Gilgamesh; in the poem, it is easy to see that traditions of Sumerian religion was already established, i.e. the condition of the the underworld, Kur. The gods were also already established and had distinct personalities and duties. Those cultures had strong priestly castes, and they ruled the religion and controlled the money. However, many scholars are fairly unanimous in claiming that there were four authors of The Hebrew Scriptures/Torah: https://www.haaretz.com/jewish/.premium-who-wrote-the-torah-1.5318582 The, the redactor put them all together: the differences between the Yahwist and the Elohist account for the different versions of creation and the flood. So, yes, scribes did have some influence, but not in creating religion. And Judaism is a rather johnny come lately compared to Egypt and Sumeria.
Does anyone have any experience attending Southern New Hampshire University through their online ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
I have taught for SNHU for four years. I also teach for two other schools online--one local and a for profit school. I have also taught for other schools in seated courses. I am also a team lead for SNHU (I evaluate other instructors) and designed a mythology course for them. As an instructor, all of my experiences with the school have been positive. They care about the quality of the instructors (hence, the need for team leads) and although the courses are "canned" (the instructor does not choose or design the curriculum) the time and effort put into creating a course is intensive. The reason for the canned courses is so that every student is getting the same experience and is taught/graded on the same criteria. There will always be unhappy students--I know as I have taught for various schools for the last 18 years--but SNHU takes care in being fair to students and instructors. I would recommend the school and if I did not, I would just have not said anything.
Why are the school shooters almost always young boys?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
It starts with the parents and yet, I have seen truly "good" parents turn out rotten kids and truly bad parents turn out good kids. My oldest son is homeless in California and I have not heard from him in over two years. Nope, he is not going to shoot anyone, but what makes one child turn out to be homeless at 38 while the other is in a stable job, marriage, and is doing well? Depression and bipolarism are rampant on my maternal side, but why does one child dodge it and the other does not? Why does one child decide to shoot up a school and others in the family do not? Genes? Environment?
One of the annoying things about the current US regime is it's approval of people acting like ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
Truer words have seldom been written--or spoken. Trumpass has given his followers carte blanche to act like the idiots they are.
Sense of humor is the KEY to survival. And screw you if you disagree.
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
Well, yeah. (And I am not saying that just because I don't want to get screwed.)
I was very excited this morning to learn that I'd received the 80th visitor to my humble profile. ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 22, 2018:
I just visited your profile. I do what I can to spread joy in this cruel world of ours.
Is it true that most intelligent women are single? Are people that workout mostly single as well?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 20, 2018:
No. Both of these statements are gross generalizations. The idea that people are not getting married because you do not see them around town is a logical fallacy: personal observation is merely personal observation. Fewer people might be getting married, but citing a study is the way to prove it.
I know I might take some shit for this, but I'm watching the Billboard Music Awards and something a ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 20, 2018:
As Crimson67 said, when the opportunities for women are equal to those of men, it will be an issue. Get back to us then.
I have a question for the women on this site. I'm planning on going into the sciences ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 20, 2018:
As an English major and now, an English teacher, I cannot give advice on your question. However, I can say that when I looked for grants and scholarships for an MA program in literature in 1998, there were none. However, there were quite a few for women entering the sciences. Follow your bliss--do what you want to do.
I am distressed by the American media's obsession with the "royal wedding." There are so many ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 19, 2018:
Why does this "distress" you? I had/have no interest in the wedding, but for those who do, it allows them to step out of their ordinary lives for a minute or two. Those ordinary lives are not going away and they will come back to them. You might as well criticize watching a movie as it serves the same purpose. Oh, and do away with faerie tales as everyone wants to live happily ever after.
Do you have several different versions of "you", in different settings? None of them quite right?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 19, 2018:
I have several "mes" and they are all quite right. They are facets of my personality. In linguistics, there is the term "code switching," which refers to how we switch vocabulary and tone when we speak to individuals. We tend not to speak to a judge as we would speak to a small child. Our personas serve much the same purpose. Some called me a "chameleon" once, and I agree, but the chameleon always knows her/she "true" colors.
STUNNING: Physical or otherwise. Are there some folks that have amazing qualities you just find ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 19, 2018:
No. And though my looks are average, people consistently remark about my hair. This week, an old man in the doctor's office asked if he could touch it. Usually, I balk at this request, but in this case, hey, why not?
Why do intelligent people suddenly turn to a god in there darkest hours
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 19, 2018:
Why do some intelligent people have a lifelong belief in a deity? Nonreligious people who turn to the thought of a deity are just worn down by their problems. They have exhausted other avenues of hope and it seems that god is the answer. Their continued reliance on deity is most often a logical fallacy based on causation that does not exist: they pray, things get better, so it had to be god, right?
Do you ever miss the religious life?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 19, 2018:
I missed the church "family" at first, but that passed. No, I miss nothing about the religious life.
Does anyone else talk aloud to themselves? I do and when my wife asks who I'm talking to I tell her ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 19, 2018:
I talk to myself all the time. https://www.elitedaily.com/life/culture/people-talk-to-themselves/1105688
Escaping broken love
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 18, 2018:
Then leave. Now. Problem solved.
Social.media and relationships this is a topic that keeps coming up.. What i find interesting is ...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 18, 2018:
Don't blame social media for the shortcomings of people. People have been doing the same "things" for centuries: they just did not have the tools then that they do now. And some relationships need to be "lost"--if a relationship is so weak (even if the weakness is one sided) that social media tears it apart, it was already in trouble. I know whereof I speak--been there.
What is the bible to you?
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 18, 2018:
Actually, I have Catholic friends who do not believe that The Bible is in inerrant word of god. Traditionally speaking, Catholics also have other books that Protestants do not buy into, including Maccabees and Judith in the Hebrew Scriptures. The Bible is a book of myth, history, and quasi history. It is a manual (albeit contradictory) on how Jews and Christians should live.
Jewish or Muslim Agnostics or Atheists
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 18, 2018:
I am a pagan atheist--does that count?
A very Christian friend of mine recently were discussing a Book I am working on for publication, and...
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 18, 2018:
I hate to tell you, but all of these issues have already been covered in other books.
Lack of open minded religious people
Gwendolyn2018 comments on May 18, 2018:
It is interesting that you ask this question. This morning, I was talking to my Southern Baptist sister who used to be ultra conservative in her beliefs. If you were not baptized by full immersion, you were going to hell. She has softened in her old age (she is 71) and I think two bouts of cancer brought about some of the softening. She now says that if there is a god (and she believes there is), that everyone has it wrong and no one knows what "god" is or is really like. She realizes that the practices of her faith and The Bible are reflections of what men (and I mean "men"), not what a deity has to say. Not all religious people are the same, and they do have the ability to change. Some might get more self-righteous when faced with death and others realize that beliefs are not so important: it is how people treat other people.

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In addition to all my other wonderful attributes, I also quilt. Here is one of my latest projects.
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Seasons #1
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Atheist
Open to meeting men and women
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