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I'm a 61 year old lifelong engineer happily married for 35 years to another techno-geek. My wife is more spiritual than I am but as the years have gone by we both have found less and less use for the Christian church. Living in AZ we don't get much direct exposure to other religions -- just what we read.

I've never been a fan of the supernatural. If something exists, it's natural.
But that said... The world is a huge, complicated place.

As George Polya wrote many years ago:
"Do not believe anything, but question only what is worth questioning".

Nobody has enough time to challenge every bit of information they come across. The game is to decide which bits are worth the time and effort to pursue.

Comments

A gift by way of "The adventures of Tom Bombadil" by J.
RichCC comments on Dec 25, 2019:
I didn't vote in the poll because I didn't understand the question. Are you thinking about giving someone a copy of the poem as a gift? What sort of someone? I will say that Tom Bombadil is one of my favorite Tolkien characters. I was disappointed that they left him out of the last round of big movies. ๐Ÿค”
Afterlife thoughts... Do you believe in an afterlife?
RichCC comments on Dec 22, 2019:
Ghosts would have to literally be perpetual motion machines. They don't eat. So where do they get the energy to do anything? -- even to be seen? If they are solar powered, why do they they tend to hang out in dark places?๐Ÿ˜Ž Sorry but I don't believe in ghosts the same way I don't believe in the supernatural in general. If something is real, it's natural. The further you have to stretch to support something's natural reality, the less likely it is to exist. Ghosts -- and afterlife in general -- have so little objective evidence that they are quite a stretch.
Christmas dinners may be affected: Brussels sprouts block road.
RichCC comments on Dec 16, 2019:
Did you see Friday's '*xkcd*'? On the one hand, they're working on Brussels sprouts, but on the other hand -- it's a trap!! ๐Ÿ˜Ž BTW... I like the newer less bitter taste.๐Ÿ˜Š https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2019/10/30/773457637/from-culinary-dud-to-stud-how-dutch-plant-breeders-built-our-brussels-sprouts-bo
The Man Who Slapped a Female Reporter’s Butt on TV is a Christian Youth Leader | Hemant Mehta | ...
RichCC comments on Dec 11, 2019:
Arrogant, insensitive to others and stupid -- sounds like a Christian to me. I hope they find some way to 'correct the situation' that he'll remember longer than the brag session he'll have during the next race since he's been banned. ๐Ÿ™
Why We Need to Lose Religion to Save America
RichCC comments on Dec 11, 2019:
Faith based 'reasoning' has been creeping into America since before it was founded. Theists are relentless -- it's part of their nature. So we atheists have to keep fighting back just as determinedly. The more decisions get made because of beliefs rather than evidence, the worse it gets. An image from a comment at the link: Additional: I point out that the changes from the image relate back to the 1950s red scare. Fear is a big theist motivation.
Lesson learned: If your pup or cat will be having surgery, be proactive in getting an inflatable ...
RichCC comments on Dec 10, 2019:
I love it. We've used cones of shame three or four times over the years and this looks like a much better, and comfortable for the dog, alternative.
For all the hyper coffee addicts. Ever hear of Kopi Kuwat coffee?
RichCC comments on Dec 9, 2019:
Wow. So at some point someone decided to gather up civet poo and brew it in hot water to see what it tasted like. That's pretty weird. Here's a picture from the link. Eww.๐Ÿค”
Jesus is a contrived alternate reality just like the obstructionist republican who make up ...
RichCC comments on Dec 8, 2019:
Add my vote to the Valerie Tarico fan club -- good stuff.
Here are 5 historical truths that suggest Jesus never existed
RichCC comments on Dec 8, 2019:
Valerie Tarico is one of my favorite writers and she often contributes to a relatively main stream (if left leaning) news site -- https://www.rawstory.com. I saw this there today. I love to see it.
When a man wants to show a woman how to do something. [facebook.com]
RichCC comments on Dec 7, 2019:
At least she was sensitive enough to not laugh at him. Ha, ha. Guys' egos bruise so easily. ๐Ÿ˜Ž
Why do people fall for stupid fads?
RichCC comments on Dec 4, 2019:
From the link: "*One practitioner, who calls herself Metaphysical Meagan, claims that perineum sunning can regulate hormones as well as sleep patterns.* *The man who plays Thanos in the Marvel Cinematic Universe saw the Post story and decided to try it out.* " *** How dumb do you have to be to go for that idiocy? Did he really think he'd feel and sleep better with a tan asshole? Wow. Years ago one of my cousins convinced some eastern tourists on a northern AZ bus that they were lucky enough to watch the migration of the rare, white-faced buffalo. At least he thought he did. Even he wasn't sure they were ignorant enough to believe him. It's amazing what people will buy into. But then you see stories like this so often (assuming of course that the story is entirely legit, ha, ha).
This was put on Facebook by a very religious American friend. Who said Americans don't do irony ?
RichCC comments on Dec 2, 2019:
And read in the '** *Goat Herder's Guide To The Universe* **'.
So do not fear death for it is inevitable...
RichCC comments on Dec 2, 2019:
I'm trying to find out who *Sukanta Sarkar* is. So far I've discovered that they(he?) seem(s) to be from India (not too surprising given the name and the 'YourQuote. in' and your screen id). I did find a link to a collection of 'YourQuote. in' quotes including the one you posted. A lot of them look interesting. Thank you. https://www.yourquote.in/sukanta-sarkar-bcsh6/quotes
So do not fear death for it is inevitable...
RichCC comments on Dec 2, 2019:
There are lots of inevitable things I fear -- debt, pain, taxes, personal failure -- to name a few. Death is also on the list -- largely because it * **IS** * inevitable and I don't know much about what it's like to experience it. But that doesn't mean I won't live my life anyway. That part can't be avoided either and there's very little you can do to stop me.
Please keep your fingers crossed for me.
RichCC comments on Dec 1, 2019:
Most adoption mechanisms I'm familiar with are pretty much first-come-first-serve so I'd guess you have the advantage. Good luck.๐Ÿค—
We are returning to Upton Sinclairs “The Jungle” times.
RichCC comments on Nov 26, 2019:
I've read about a lot of temporary vegans -- motivated by *The Jungle* but unable to stay with it so they went back to meat. It struck an emotional chord with them but they weren't able to keep their positions focused. There are a lot of potentially great ideas in our world (John Stuart Mill's *Utilitarianism* comes to mind) that I doubt we'll ever be mature enough to treat seriously. There are too many short-sighted selfish folks in this world who don't know enough to hold their immediate gratification needs in check -- they see no problem with overall destruction as long as they get the shiny objects in front of them now. I'm afraid the time won't be far away when they'll be forced to relearn their position. I just hope it won't be too late for all of us (as it already is for some).
One that I have yet to try. Has anyone else tried eating succulents?
RichCC comments on Nov 26, 2019:
I've eaten fried Prickly Pear cactus but I wasn't impressed. It was more trouble than it was worth to prepare and the texture wasn't firm. It gave the impression of being greasy without actual grease. And the flavor wasn't remarkable -- it was just eating a plant. For me it rated as a marginal novelty item. Afterwards I could say I tried it but I have no reason to bother again.
How many people are familiar with Plato's Republic?
RichCC comments on Nov 25, 2019:
Wikipedia -- Allegory Of The Cave https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegory_of_the_Cave I have to admit. I've seen it but never paid much attention to it. Here is the wiki take.
What do you agnostics think about "co-parenting", two people interested in parenthood but not ...
RichCC comments on Nov 25, 2019:
I wonder about @Jolanta 's suggestion. We've never had kids. The closest I've come was a Big Sisters / Big Brothers match for the last 15 years. But I have a close friend who was a career foster mother. I couldn't tell you how many fosters they had over the years. When they decided to retire, they adopted their last two and broke away. As far as I know it was extremely satisfying for them and her. BTW... They also have two daughters of their own. Additional: Fosters have a lot in common with adoptees or natural children. There is a lot of responsibility involved. Care including raising and medical support is of course a full-time commitment. The foster agency may give some help -- I don't know how much.
First day and I see many commonalities with Australian atheists but there are social, legal ...
RichCC comments on Nov 25, 2019:
Welcome. The closest I've been to Australia has been meeting people who were/are from there but I haven't been disappointed so far. I'll bet you meet my expectations. And I hope we live up to yours.
I had a friend whose life was in a state of chaos.
RichCC comments on Nov 24, 2019:
Thanks for the advice and the recommend. I've been a fan of the classic Greek Stoics for years -- Epictetus and Seneca and that lot. And that is one of their tenets -- if it's outside your control, it's not something you should worry about. A while ago i happened across a collection ostensibly of all Poe's tales but I hadn't downloaded it yet to my Kindle -- just now I did and *A Descent Into The Maelstrom* is included. It just got bumped to the top of the list and I'll read it next. Thank you.
Tom Hanks discovers he's related to Mister Rogers days before "A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood" ...
RichCC comments on Nov 24, 2019:
Free McFeely Rogers(not joking -- that's his name) graduated from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and was ordained a minister of the United Presbyterian Church in 1963. On the one hand, I appreciate the way he avoided overt religious messages on his show but he really was an unapologetic back-door promoter of the sky fairy fantasy. He said, "I went into television because I hated it so, and I thought there's some way of using this fabulous instrument to nurture those who would watch and listen".
A disorganized kitchen makes me cray.
RichCC comments on Nov 24, 2019:
I notice you properly alphabetize 'CDO' rather than the out of order 'OCD'. Good to see a fellow adherent. Lol.๐Ÿ˜Ž Dried spices last a long time and accumulate and it can become a challenge to find the one you want. Ha, ha. We have one corner cupboard of our kitchen devoted floor-to-ceiling to mostly spices Lazy-Susans too. We can't take credit for it -- the property was a small assisted living place in a previous life. But we enjoy a lot of the convenience design features. The bedrooms are huge and have big windows because they were originally intended as semi-apartments. Good luck with the seizures. I have MS and fight the challenges too. I figure we all go through something eventually.
Such a cutie
RichCC comments on Nov 23, 2019:
I had an uncle whose dog answered to 'Dammit'. I never did learn the dog's previous name (if it had one). But it wasn't in that class for cute.๐Ÿ˜Ž
Why go to a pet-shop if it is free on the car wash? [youtube.com] [youtube.com]
RichCC comments on Nov 20, 2019:
That's amazing. I've never heard of a dog doing that before. ๐Ÿ˜Ž
Does religion do more harm than good?
RichCC comments on Nov 20, 2019:
Nobody sees themselves as evil. Theists try to do good and seem to usually think they are. And sometimes they're right. Two phrases come to mind -- '*It's an ill wind that doesn't blow good somewhere*' and '*even a broken clock is right twice a day*'. It's just a massive shame that there is so much ignorance and so many misguided goals wrapped up in the religion package. Their selfishness and mistakes undo so much of the intended and potential good they could do. It's terrible that the 'do more harm than good?' question even needs to be asked. (And of course theists think the same thing back at us. Mike Huckabee said Chick-fil-A shouldn't have surrendered to anti-Christian hate groups. Life is seldom simple.)
What does "Farm Style" mean to you?
RichCC comments on Nov 16, 2019:
We stopped at a Tillamook cheese plant SW of Portland once in the 90s. The thing that we both loved was the fresh curd. Ah, the days. ๐Ÿ˜
I'm seriously considering fostering a senior dog.
RichCC comments on Nov 15, 2019:
Additional edit: What I wrote below is too negative. It ignored the two great years we had with Max. We still miss him. *** Remember to be patient (as if you didn't know). Our last older take-in dog was 13 and had arthritis and probably related incontinence problems. We spent some time cleaning up after him. It wasn't like it was his fault -- we're getting older too. All you can do is make allowances and remember that they're probably uncomfortable too. When it gets really bad is when they're so far off you have to take them in and let them go. When it becomes clear that they'll never be able to have fun again... Unfortunately that's our last memory of him -- he was in a lot of pain from his back. BTW... Good Job. Dogs to through it too and also need support. They don't know what is happening.
I watched the movie "The Game Changers" on Netflix today.
RichCC comments on Nov 15, 2019:
How big a change are we talking about? It was easy for us since we'd gradually drifted off meat for a long time previously. If they and you eat a lot of processed food, the first step is home cooking -- especially if you can get them to participate. ๐Ÿ˜Ž Additional Edit: Also... One thing I've always been nervous about is nutrition -- especially for growing kids. Make sure to look around and make sure all your nutritional bases are covered. I've heard that with all the vitamins we take, Americans have the most expensive urine in the world. And I won't deny it. I take 7 pills a day because I don't trust myself to be able to avoid all unexpected deficiencies. Lol.๐Ÿ˜Ž
Largest U.S. Christian Charity Reportedly Donated $56.1 Million to Hate Groups
RichCC comments on Nov 15, 2019:
I agree with @Athena. Christianity is a hate group. Why else would you use your charitable money to promote divisiveness and discrimination? They're incapable of just doing good. They have to push their tribal agenda.
I serve people and during the holidays I always say happy holidays but yet some people get very ...
RichCC comments on Nov 15, 2019:
I wonder if they're intentionally putting their chips on their shoulders and going around looking for someone to hassle. The professionalism and inclusiveness of less specific phrases should be a better choice. But I'm not sure how or even whether it's worth explaining that to them.
What is the secret to preparing lentils to soften them for soups or for use in vegi burgers.
RichCC comments on Nov 15, 2019:
We got a small *Instant Pot* (the one we have is *IP-LUX60 V3* 6 quart). It's dirt simple to use, very versatile, and the stainless inner pot is dishwasher safe. I very much recommend it. The only function the little one seems to lack vs the bigger one is yogurt making. The small one fits better in our kitchen. I've pressure cooked split peas, lentils, chickpeas and red beans all in around a half hour without soaking. I've also made brown rice and sauteed tofu. It steams anything that will fit in it. And it also is a slow cooker. I know there's a lot of hype (it makes me cringe) but this is the most useful gadget we've got in the kitchen after the oven, microwave and fridge. Plus there are loads of free recipes on the web to explain how to fix just about anything you can think of.
Ohio Law Would Allow Students To Give Wrong Answers Because Of Religious Belief | Michael Stone
RichCC comments on Nov 14, 2019:
From the report: *Bottom line: The Ohio House has passed legislation that would allow students to give wrong answers and not be penalized if those wrong answers are based on the student’s “sincerely held religious belief.”* *** The kids will have a field day with this. They'll make a game of it trying to see how ridiculous their answers can be while still getting credit. I wonder what they'll have to do to prove 'sincerely held religious belief'. What a farce. Somebody has decided that education is useless and meaningless. ๐Ÿ˜ฅ Wow. What are their plans for their kids' futures? Are they waiting for the second coming of Jebus to end the world so nothing will matter? I've got news for them. Just like with all the other predictions over the last however many thousand years -- nobody's coming.
YUM !!! I really like this Alaskan Brewing pilot series Berry Sour Ale made with Cranberries! Very...
RichCC comments on Nov 13, 2019:
Many years ago my wife and I went exploring in SW British Columbia, CA. We came across a tiny local place in Sechelt called Gilligan's Pub that had a local ale from an even tinier local brewery. The ale was 'Orca' ('It was a Whale of a Beer' ) and they made it with a big dose of local blackberrys. It was delicious but it had so much edge that after one or two pints you'd start to get queasy. I still remember how much I loved their berry beer and I envy you yours -- enjoy one for me.
I was reading a post by a member about how hard it is to find love with another atheist because not ...
RichCC comments on Nov 13, 2019:
Not only with regards to atheism per se but with any semi-personal joke or comment. For years I would tell coworkers to never worry about hurting my feelings. I've always been more comfortable with forthright relationships. The time they should start to worry is when I stop joking with them because that means that I don't trust them. With people I've just met of course (as customers), I wouldn't have time to learn trust or gain theirs so I would tend to avoid personal comments. With customers if they asked that sort of question I'd play the professionalism card and not answer. If they wanted to make (likely correct) assumptions they could. For the love interest... I've been out of the game for a very long time. But all my life honesty has been one of my driving principals. If my positions were a problem for her, oh well. For both questions, I've never (that I know of) been forced to end a relationship that I was serious about. I always try not to hurt people, but I've never been driven to lie. (knock on wood.๐Ÿ˜Ž)
I’m curious about what you guys and gals to become vegetarian or vegan.
RichCC comments on Nov 13, 2019:
Our reasons are pretty much the same as yours. The meat economy involves a huge burden on our environment. We are threatening our own existence with our overpopulation and pollution problems and there is no reason to needlessly shorten our time by adding more than we have to. We don't have any children and we have been vegetarian for almost 20 years now. We've never regretted it.
Went to a humanist funeral yesterday and I was blown away.
RichCC comments on Nov 12, 2019:
Even my very Mormon mother used to say 'Funerals are for the living'. I'm very pleased that they honored her living friends apparently according to her desires. And let them honor her.
HOW CAN WE PUT A MORE POSITIVE SPIN ON OUR BRANDING??
RichCC comments on Nov 12, 2019:
That's not an easy question to answer. People have tried before (the word 'Bright' comes to mind if I remember one correctly). But of course people are wrapped up in their religions so they get defensive quickly. It involves fine judgement to be positive without looking smug and arrogant. I guess I'm glad I agree with so many comments below -- I don't care much what people think. I'll work against them if they try to impose their opinions on me and mine but that's as far as I'll take it.
Scary eye surgery yesterday.
RichCC comments on Nov 12, 2019:
Good Luck! ๐Ÿ˜
Medical study proves validity of speaking in tongues - The Christian Post
RichCC comments on Nov 10, 2019:
So people's brains shut off while they speak in tongues? No wonder that churches like it. Lol.๐Ÿ˜Ž From the article: *** Newberg shares the heart of his study: ...“[The test subject’s] scan showed that the frontal lobe, the part of the brain that controls language, was active when he prayed in English. But for the most part, it fell quiet when he prayed in tongues.” *** . For an anecdotal take, here is a funny video I saw recently of a preacher interrupted by his phone while practicing his patter.๐Ÿ˜Ž https://www.dailymail.co.uk/video/news/video-2018470/Video-Hilarious-moment-preacher-checks-phone-speaking-tongues.html
Just found this cool website ๐Ÿ˜Ž and it explains about atheist/ agnostic/ theist/ nostic.
RichCC comments on Nov 10, 2019:
That looks pretty good. I'm too tired to go through it in detail tonight but so far I like it. BTW... I hadn't noticed your picture-quote before. I like that too. Thank you.
On culture - fascinating, too brief since it's often counter-intuitive, but hopefully there will be ...
RichCC comments on Nov 8, 2019:
I hope there will be more in this vein too. For years I've wondered about the cultural ages and maturities of different religions. I've wondered about comparing the development of Christianity's social attitudes with older eastern religions as well as younger groups like Islam and much younger groups like Scientology and Mormonism. Thanks for the link.
Is secularism the same as atheism or is it part of atheism? [secularism.org.uk]
RichCC comments on Nov 7, 2019:
IMO... Secularism is orthogonal to atheism and religion -- the concepts should operate in different directions. For example the Constitution of the United States apparently intends to be a secular document. It prohibits governmental (its sphere) actions regarding religion -- both for religion and/or against. Issues come up of course when people disagree with that attitude -- as with the clergy answering for abuse allegations and with church privileges as with tax exemptions. Nobody says life is simple. Lol.๐Ÿ˜Ž, Additional: I looked at the article without noticing the organization. I agree. Thanks for the link -- it looks interesting.
SPIRITUAL.
RichCC comments on Nov 7, 2019:
And of course the word lends itself to a range interpretation. Lol. "I'm not very spiritual." . - or - "I'm so spiritual that my feet don't touch the ground when I walk." Sorry but I doubt you're going to find a useful definition let alone connotation. The word just has too many interpretations -- you'd end up repeating '*your*' choice in every conversation you have.
There's a big Sports Bar near me that has really good Bar Food.
RichCC comments on Nov 6, 2019:
I'm a big fan of honey food. My favorite bread to make is Honey/OliveOil/Whole Wheat. And I got a coleslaw recipe that I absolutely love from a honey cookbook. *** Honey Coleslaw 1/2 Cup Veganaise 1/3 Cup Honey 2 Tbsp. White Vinegar 1/2 Tsp. Salt 1/2 Tsp. Mustard Powder 1/2 Tsp. Celery Seeds 1/4 Tsp. Ground Pepper 1 Head of Cabbage, chopped Mix all ingredients except cabbage in a bowl. Put chopped cabbage in salad bowl and add sauce mixture to taste. Mix thoroughly and chill before serving
Anyone have a good veggy burger recipe?
RichCC comments on Nov 5, 2019:
Out of curiosity I looked up that seitan burger in the e-mag I mentioned below -- it looks pretty good. Sorry for the long post. It's from the article. And I only have the seitan burger here. There was also a black bean and ground oat recipe in the article. *** Making the Perfect Patty By Chef Jason Wyrick Are you on a quest for the perfect veggie burger, too?  Sometimes I feel like a grail knight, armed with my chef’s knife riding through fields of seitan, beans, oats, breadcrumbs, and a host of other ingredients, a juicy veggie burger emblazoned upon my shield.  Ok, now that’s a weird image, but if you love food, you probably identify with the sentiment. A good veggie burger not only has to taste great, it has to have the right texture.  Usually, veggie burgers fall short on the texture category.  Some of them are so mushy, they can’t even hold up in a sauté pan let alone on the grill.  Some are made of slabs of seitan and seem more like a thick piece of chewy stuff between two buns.  I’d rather have thick chewy stuff than mushy stuff for a burger, but neither are truly satisfying.  The Perfect Seitan Patty Seitan already has a meatโ€like texture and when you grind it, it comes out very similar to ground round, perfect for making a burger.  It holds together well on the grill as well as in the pan and has the most classic burger feel to it.  Let’s start with the basic recipe. 2 cups of ground seitan 2 cups of cubed whole wheat bread, about 1” pieces ¼ cup of dark ale or water Place the seitan in your food processor.  If it comes in a large chunk, chop it a few times first.  Pulse the food processor a few times until you have ground seitan that’s about the texture of ground round.  If you pulse it too much and your seitan grind becomes very small, the burger patty will have a homogenous texture.  It will still be good, but not perfect and we are on a quest for the perfect veggie burger, after all!  Note that you can use several mock meat products instead of seitan, they just tend to me more expensive.  Most of the Gardein products work quite well and Trader Joe’s has Beefโ€less Strips that have a great texture.  In fact, when looking at the mock meat ingredient, if you see some sort of pea or bean protein or mixed into the wheat gluten, chances are it will have the right texture.  That type of protein is what gives it that dense texture without becoming overly heavy.  The disadvantage is that you can’t modify the flavor too much, but you can if you make your own!  More on that later. Next, cube the bread, but don’t press to hard on the bread when you cut it.  The fluffier you can keep it, the more absorbent it is.  Pour the ale or water over the bread and ...
This is Beo ( let's see if anyone gets his name.
RichCC comments on Nov 5, 2019:
Beo-wolf? Your screen id and his appearance make that an obvious guess. He looks great. ๐Ÿ‘
The question of the so-called "fine-tuning" of the universe and its basic constants is one of the ...
RichCC comments on Nov 5, 2019:
And how does adding a creator make things more likely? All that does is add a level(s?) of complexity. Now you have to explain where the creator came from then explain why they chose the tuning details that they did. Add it up and that addition makes it look even more unlikely to me.
Anyone have a good veggy burger recipe?
RichCC comments on Nov 5, 2019:
I can't remember ever being a fan of burgers so take my input with a grain of salt. But *Yummly.com* has different veggy burger recipes. Unfortunately I've never tried any of them. Also there used to be a really good semi-monthly online veggy cooking magazine that I think did a burger issue. I'm not sure their issues are findable any more but I'll look. If I can't find it online I could email you a pdf -- that's how they published. I'll look for it and get back to you. ๐Ÿ˜Ž
Fall mornings are getting chilly! I found Chelsea on the couch after her breakfast and asked "go ...
RichCC comments on Nov 4, 2019:
We have a rescue stray whose fur is similar. And she's always been compulsive about not being restrained. It took about two years for her to accept that this is now her home and we still have to watch carefully so she doesn't bolt out the gate for a run (it can take hours to get her back). She won't go under a blanket even when it's cold -- but recently she's become a cuddler. It seems to be warmer on the couch next to us than it is alone in her (even if she curls up) bed. Lol.๐Ÿ˜Ž BTW... Beautiful dog.
I have been a big user of chickpeas and also like this talk on its growing use: [theatlantic.
RichCC comments on Nov 2, 2019:
I don't know what to tell you. I -- apparently like you -- love chickpeas. We've been vegetarian for almost 20 years now and chickpeas are a very versatile staple. ๐Ÿ˜Ž
Giordano Bruno -1548 -1600 was an Italian Dominican friar, philosopher, mathematician, poet, ...
RichCC comments on Nov 1, 2019:
It's been a long time since I visited Rome. Unfortunately I don't have a picture at Bruno's statue but only at the Campo de' Fiori market. I personally strongly avoid the word '*hate*' but this case meets my criteria. The Catholic treatment of Bruno in the Roman Inquisition was a horrifically cruel act and is a big example of why I *hate* their church. If Christians want to waste their lives worshipping a fantasy, I'll let them. But when they do things like nail somebody's mouth shut so they can't speak out while they're being tortured and burned to death, they've marked their group as deserving destruction. I have yet to see anything approaching the level of remorse it would take to redeem that sort of history and as far as I am concerned Catholicism is evil.
Here's my dog.
RichCC comments on Oct 31, 2019:
Sounds like a good guy to me. With him watching over you, you might turn out ok. ๐Ÿ˜Ž
Winter hiking survival. Your ideas?
RichCC comments on Oct 29, 2019:
Some times there isn't much you can do. A friend I worked with did Search & Rescue at the South Rim of the Canyon. One winter his ex-wife was riding alone in the hills W of Prescott, AZ, slipped off her horse and broke her leg before a very cold night. We never did figure out why she called him rather than emergency services -- under some circumstances it's hard to think clearly. They didn't find her until the next day but somehow the horse stayed with her and kept her through the night -- everybody's quite sure it saved her life. Even if you're experienced, all you can do is try to cover as many bases as you can and expect to be surprised anyway. It happens to everyone and '*nobody ever plans to have an accident*'. Just try to stay safe and have fun.
I had an interesting conversation today.
RichCC comments on Oct 29, 2019:
Life in our screwed up society I guess.
This has been one of my favorite (not taken by me) photos of dogs
RichCC comments on Oct 29, 2019:
Great picture. There's a lot to unpack -- the small customs dogs, the particular country flags, the intrusive (by human standards) check, and so on. From the size of the paws, I'm guessing young dogs. You could go on speculating for hours. Lol. ๐Ÿ˜Š
This one is great!
RichCC comments on Oct 29, 2019:
Truly a(? ) party animal(s?). Love it. ๐Ÿ˜Ž My question is whether they(? ) will get any of the beer -- ours don't get any at all.๐Ÿ™
That is a happy dog
RichCC comments on Oct 26, 2019:
We have a brown-colored rescue that could be its twin right down to the ears and size except for the color. Lol. Love it. ๐Ÿ˜
Anyone ever notice that the crucified Jesus is shown in pictures as being both nailed and also tied ...
RichCC comments on Oct 25, 2019:
I've read speculation that it may have been both because crucifixion is of course an extreme prejudice punishment so one of the executioners' goals would have been to make him live and suffer for as long a time as possible. Since the whole thing is just a fiction anyway, they could say anything they wanted. Maybe he was nailed to the cross with unicorn horns. Lol.๐Ÿค”
I just started going to meetings (12 step recovery) and the higher power thing is kinda jamming me ...
RichCC comments on Oct 24, 2019:
Good luck! My father and grandfather each fought most of their lives. It sounds like you're serious and working forward and I wish I could help. ๐Ÿค—
[yahoo.com] A woman learns she has cancer from a photo from a tourist attraction.
RichCC comments on Oct 23, 2019:
Pretty interesting. Here is a link to a news article of the same thing I think. I'm glad she caught it early. https://www.rawstory.com/2019/10/heat-cam-exhibit-alerts-tourist-to-breast-cancer/ It's amazing what can be seen with tools other than just our eyes. Here's an oldish music video of people being shocked by what they look like in UV. ๐Ÿ˜Ž https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=o9BqrSAHbTc
OK, this has been bugging me for months now.
RichCC comments on Oct 23, 2019:
I don't know either but just out of curiosity I looked around and at the YouTube video there is a comment -- "*I'm trying to find it as well. I know it was also used in an episode of Toddlers & Tiaras.*" . You may already have seen it. I've never watched Toddlers & Tiaras and I don't know if my input is helpful or a distraction but I know they put out several compilation CDs of their show songs. If you wanted to put in the effort scanning the show or the CDs, maybe you'd get lucky. Edit: I linked to the YouTube video but it expanded it and took up too much room so I've taken it out.๐Ÿ˜Ž
Major luck for this guy wow happen during the last of the civil war
RichCC comments on Oct 21, 2019:
I'm not sure how I'd check the truth of the story but it's fascinating. https://www.wearethemighty.com/articles/this-civil-war-vet-walked-around-with-a-bullet-in-his-face-for-31-years Woke up after the battle? Wow.๐Ÿ˜ฎ From the link: *Notice how he's wearing a Medal of Honor? It has nothing to do with the hole in his head. Miller was awarded the medal in recognition of his gallantry in the charge of a "volunteer storming party" on 22 May 1863. Pretty inspiring stuff.*
Believers' estimates of God's beliefs are more egocentric than estimates of other people's beliefs |...
RichCC comments on Oct 19, 2019:
It makes sense. People would like to assume universal knowledge -- but in the end what they really have is only themselves. From the abstract at the link: *The inherent ambiguity of God's beliefs on major issues and the extent to which religious texts may be open to interpretation and subjective evaluation, suggests not only strong egocentric biases when reasoning about God, but also that people may be consistently more egocentric when reasoning about God's beliefs than when reasoning about other people's beliefs.* ... *Indeed, it may seem particularly logical to use egocentric information when reasoning about God, because religious agents are generally presumed to hold true beliefs, and people generally presume that their own beliefs are true as well.*
Humanist T-shirt
RichCC comments on Oct 19, 2019:
I only saw 'Agnostic.com' shirts rather than 'Humanist.com' shirts under the 'Learn/Get a t-shirt' path. And I couldn't find shirts or a store under 'Learn' at the Humanist.com website. But of course as others have noted here, 'Humanist' and 'Humanism' shirts are available on the web.
Flood of hikers from Seattle on Eastern WA trails. I did something evil.
RichCC comments on Oct 17, 2019:
That was one thing that was frustrating for us about WA. I grew up on the edge of the Navajo reservation in northern AZ and was used to being able to drive 30 miles and be confident that there weren't any people around for 10 or 15 miles or so. In WA there were always people. One time in the 80s a bunch of us climbed to the Necklace Valley -- 2500 ft gain in the last 3 miles. And we met 22 hikers over the weekend including one group of 4 in a canvas tent drinking wine from bottles -- we didn't ask if they hired a helicopter to get up there, ha,ha, wow๐Ÿ˜ฏ. WA is/was a great place but the outdoors gets/got far too much use for me. ๐Ÿ˜Ž
Today's hike: Teanaway Ridge and nearly Golden Week
RichCC comments on Oct 15, 2019:
Teanaway was one of our favorite areas. We often stopped there on our way back to the Seattle area from exploration trips to eastern WA. It's a beautiful place. Thanks for the pictures. ๐Ÿ˜
9-26-19 juvenile curve-billed thrasher, hatched this spring in sagebrush just below my backyard.
RichCC comments on Oct 15, 2019:
Thrashers spent a lot of time on my Dad's back porch in Mesa. I miss them. That's a good picture -- good job.
Sorry guys, but.... yanno ....... :)
RichCC comments on Oct 14, 2019:
I had a doctor friend in Seattle. For his wife's baby he recused himself because they were afraid that he wouldn't be able to stay objective. Ha, ha. I guess during her labor she ended up with her hands around his throat screaming at him -- 'give me something for the pain'. I never did hear how they worked it out except they had a healthy daughter and managed to stay together. Some things I'd just as soon stayed outside my experience.
I have a friend who shows up every now and then at my house to chat and pray over me.
RichCC comments on Oct 14, 2019:
That's a tough one. I suppose it becomes a judgement call on your part as to how independent and self confident she is and how much she trusts you. You're right to be supportive but of course there's a lot of chance for hard feelings -- which from your statement you obviously know. Good luck. ๐Ÿค—
Why are you a humanist?
RichCC comments on Oct 13, 2019:
I'm not much for labels but my attitudes lean some that way, so ok, knock yourself out. Everyone has to choose how they live -- choosing to not choose is still a choice. I try to be pragmatic without being selfish. By history's standards we live an excellent life so I won't complain about my lot. And at the same time I don't see any reason to deny others anything. I prefer that everyone's way is clear although I do get disappointed when people abuse the privilege and take at others' expense.
GOOD NEWS!!!!!! My 6 year Leukemia Checkup was Excellent! Healthy as a Horse!!!!!! Just wanted to...
RichCC comments on Oct 10, 2019:
Outstanding!!! Congratulations!๐Ÿ˜€
'Jesus Shoes' with holy water in soles sell for up to $3,000
RichCC comments on Oct 10, 2019:
I don't know what to say -- I'm appalled. They aren't even seriously developing a product. From a different link: https://www.foxnews.com/lifestyle/3g-jesus-shoes-holy-water-sell-out. *head of commerce Daniel Greenberg tells the New York Post. “So we wanted to make a statement about how absurd collab culture has gotten.”.* Do people really have money to throw away like this? I wonder what they will come out with next. Even by American culture standards, I'm shocked.
Trump Boasted That His Border Wall Was 'Virtually Impenetrable.
RichCC comments on Oct 10, 2019:
People just don't understand. These aren't walls but rather filters.๐Ÿ˜Ž tRump is only trying to separate the athletic, active workers from the bad hombres. He probably tests wall ideas by climbing them himself. We should all thank him. /snark
USELESS BUT INTERESTING INFORMATION World Tallest Leaders 1.
RichCC comments on Oct 9, 2019:
That's always intrigued me. Did you know that fully half of world leaders are over world-leader average height -- and half are under world-leader average intelligence?
Do people just know know about this site?
RichCC comments on Oct 9, 2019:
I've wondered that myself a little. The posts that get the most attention seem to be man/woman or social/political. In spite of the anti(? ) religion name, I've noticed that an awful lot of people treat this as a social site. Frankly I'm ok with that -- I enjoy living vicariously through their posts. Ha, ha. I am a 'strong' atheist but I've never been much for proselytizing. I'll tell people my views if it comes up but I most often lurk and use the 'react' buttons rather than commenting (obviously I do speak up sometimes. Lol). I admit that I don't tell a lot of people about the site -- mostly I just don't have many people too be in a position to tell about any site. Lol.
GA School District Settles Lawsuit With Employee Punished for Teaching Yoga | Hemant Mehta | ...
RichCC comments on Oct 8, 2019:
So let me get this straight... They didn't fire her for teaching yoga but they moved her to another school 16 miles further away. She got $150k in the settlement but had to resign (I hope by that time she had other arrangements). For the school -- from the article: *It costs them a lot of money, but they get to pretend they did nothing wrong. The dissenting board members wanted to keep fighting to prove that in court.* So the ignorant complaining parents ousted her to protect their children from learning at school and school got to flex their pretend principles seriously inconveniencing the teacher, themselves and the people who use and pay for the school (including the children). Sounds pretty dumb all the way around to me. I served as a volunteer on an elementary school board and in two years we only had two serious parent complaints for teacher improprieties. We looked into each case and supported our teachers -- it shouldn't be that hard.
I am always annoyed when people describe "Atheism" as a belief when it's anything but.
RichCC comments on Oct 5, 2019:
Supposedly the 'atheist' word roots are: *** *late 16th century: from French athéisme, from Greek atheos, from a- ‘without’ + theos ‘god’.* *** Now. Assuming that statement is legitimate, how do you want to interpret it? 1. Are you lacking a belief in God? --or-- 2. Do you actively(maybe even militantly) believe there is no God. Personally, I am solidly in the first category but sometimes lean towards the second. But more than anything else I reject the semantic games that labels being on. Leave me out of the names.
Answering the biggest question of all: why is there something rather than nothing?
RichCC comments on Oct 5, 2019:
I like the *Rush* lyric: '*Why are we here? -- Because we're here. -- Roll the bones.*' My why-question is '*Why do people ask why?*' Does it make them feel smart to ask questions that they know won't be answered? It's like that irritating child's game: Child -- 'Why is the sky blue?' Parent -- '...' Child -- Why?' Parent -- ...' Child -- 'Why?' And so on until the parent ends it out of frustration. Curiosity can be a virtue -- so also can be maturity. Seek meaningful answers but avoid meaningless questions. As George Polya wrote many years ago: "Do not believe anything, but question only what is worth questioning".
‘A Reckoning for Our Species’: The Philosopher Prophet of the Anthropocene
RichCC comments on Oct 4, 2019:
I guess I'm not sure how 'out there' I'd call him. Most of his ideas from the link ring pretty true to me. Thanks for the name -- Timothy Morton. I'll look up his stuff.๐Ÿ˜Š His 'hyperobjects' concept -- things that strongly influence us and that are too big for us to easily comprehend -- strikes me as a very useful tool for studying trends in the shrinking world we're seeing. Things like Climate Change and the Internet affect each of us but are far too complex to understand quickly. And I agree with ideas alluded to in the article -- each small thing each of us does contributes to the trend. It doesn't seem like much when you start your car in the morning but when we all do it each day... Thanks again for his name as a resource.
Just a second.
RichCC comments on Oct 3, 2019:
I wonder if he was just practicing his act from the beginning. The cafe casually bussed his table near the start. But why did he not dump his act when the message came? He kept up a little bit of pretense even if it was just distracted groaning. And either way of course it makes it plain that the whole thing is a scam -- and one that he is poor at.๐Ÿ˜‹
I often find it extremely mind-boggling just how many "Christians" have never read the Bible.
RichCC comments on Oct 3, 2019:
I think partly it's that the Wholly Babble doesn't bear scrutiny very well. They know they don't like what it looks like -- so they don't look. What's that old saying? -- '*No one can sincerely go to seminary school and come out believing in God*.' Apparently once you learn the details and the origins of those 'divine' stories, it's very difficult to take them seriously any more -- at least honestly. And for a lot of the lay folks I think it's mostly laziness. They've always lived their lives that way so they just go along without thinking about things. How did Carlin describe it? -- A church is a building where people gather once a week to compare clothing. There is so much ignorance and lazy inertia in our society that the churches are still thriving after millennia of exaggerated claims and false promises (Carlin again). And I'm afraid they'll be with us for a while -- we're stuck.๐Ÿ˜ฅ
Soft rattling of millions of Aspen leaves filled my heart.
RichCC comments on Oct 1, 2019:
Aspen trees retain bark scars for a long time. Years ago (I haven't been able to look in a while) a lot of the Quaking Aspens north of the park near the Grand Canyon North Rim were unofficially serialized. A shepherd amused themself by carving numbers into the Quakers. Lol.๐Ÿ˜Ž I always especially liked the Aspens because they grow faster than a lot of other trees and they can 'repair' forests after trees are lost to a fire or windstorm or such. Aspens always strike me as peaceful and positive. ๐Ÿ˜Š
First snow of the season and it's still September!
RichCC comments on Sep 29, 2019:
That's a lot of the reason we don't live in WA anymore. I'm not sure it 'rained' by AZ standards the who!e 10 years we were up there -- but it was gray and drizzled almost every day.๐Ÿค— The people and lifestyle were great but we got very tired of it being fall all year round. It's nice to have four seasons again. Ha, ha.๐Ÿ˜Ž
Do You Hate God? | The Life and Times of Bruce Gerencser
RichCC comments on Sep 29, 2019:
Thanks for the link. While I don't 'hate' 'God' (there are very few things I 'hate' ), I do dislike it intensely. Think of all the waste that would be eliminated If the imaginary entity were to vanish from people's minds. Maybe folks would devote themselves to doing genuine-good works rather than posturing to sort-of-good works. Maybe some people would anyway.
“Disney’s U.
RichCC comments on Sep 24, 2019:
I saw that. ๐Ÿค— Disney has no draw for me these days but it's a step in the right direction.
I took myself to lunch ! When I was still dating an over-the-top god person, we discovered this...
RichCC comments on Sep 24, 2019:
A couple of times I went on months-long job assignments in distant parts of the US. My wife came to visit each time about halfway through -- once company-paid, once we paid. Both I stranded in Houston and Ft Lauderdale, and my wife stuck back home in Phoenix, took ourselves out to eat sometimes to discourage tedium. We're both independent adults and didn't have too much trouble getting through. The biggest problem was probably my wife's reaction when I got back -- emotionally for her it was 'What the hell are you doing in my house?'. Ha, ha.๐Ÿ˜Š The biggest pleasant surprise was that a dog we'd gotten a couple of days before I left one time remembered me -- I was sure she'd forget but she got so excited when I returned that I was briefly afraid she might hurt herself. Ha, ha.๐Ÿ˜Š
Kidnapper Ants Steal Other Ants' Babies - And Brainwash Them
RichCC comments on Sep 24, 2019:
If those kidnapper ants just found Jebus I'm sure they'd repent. /snark It's an interesting situation and I wish there were more(especially historical) information. I have to commend the researchers on what they've found out so far and I have questions. Are they technically parasites to the slave species? Is there any benefit to the slave ant species? Is it somehow symbiotic? Is there more than one slave species? How did the situation evolve into existence? As far as I know, there are queen ants that are the biological mothers of all the colony ants -- how did they arrive at a sustainable species dependent on slaves for food? It's starting to sound like a Star Trek episode and I think it's fascinating.
DO YOU THINK YOU WOULD TURN TO THE COMFORT OF THE CONCEPT OF GOD WHEN YOU'RE DYING?
RichCC comments on Sep 24, 2019:
I certainly hope not. That would mean that I'd slipped so far that I'd given up a whole lifetime of thought (rational or not). At this point I don't expect to be plausibly convinced of any god unless they show up personally and bring overwhelming evidence. If I slip so far mentally that I accept less than that I'll be very displeased with my future self.
My job involves sitting outside on a beautiful fall day with a papillon on my lap.
RichCC comments on Sep 22, 2019:
Beauty -- very nice pictures. And I love the expressive tongue. Lol.๐Ÿ˜Š
Federal Judge Says Christian Hate Group Can Legally Be Called a “Hate Group” ...
RichCC comments on Sep 21, 2019:
On the one hand I totally agree that the Southern Poverty Law Center can call D. James Kennedy Ministries an 'Active Anti-LGBT Hate Group'. Without specifically looking into this case, I tend to trust the SPLC's judgement based on their record. I wouldn't be surprised at all if the Ministry acts with hate and malice. But I don't understand why the First Amendment would have to protect the SPLC in this case. Sure, the First Amendment prohibits the government from interfering with the freedom of speech or religion. But neither D. James Kennedy Ministries nor the Southern Poverty Law Center are part of the government. Either the SPLC improperly defamed (libelled) the ministry or they didn't. I'd rather have seen the judge validate the SPLC listing -- say 'You are a hate group. Go away'. Lol. Update: added 'speech or' above.
[alternet.
RichCC comments on Sep 19, 2019:
Ask me again after the 2020 elections. I'm always leery of constitutional amendment solutions because they take so long and they need to maintain a semi-consensus for long periods while they proceed. I have hopes for a liberal backlash in 2020 especially given the number of Republicans defending Senate seats vs the number of Democrats. But maybe I'm just getting old -- my confidence is weak.
Go Christian Right!!!! [fivethirtyeight.com]
RichCC comments on Sep 19, 2019:
Wow. That's quite a jump. Just eyeball-summing the shares (no promises), it goes from about 25% in 1992 to about 65% in 2016. That's solidly more than doubling in 24 years. And the trend is pretty steady. I guess I can only hope it keeps on. ๐Ÿ˜Š
Alaska may seem crazy to some.
RichCC comments on Sep 18, 2019:
On the one hand I love it. But on the other I hope there is purpose to their FSM church --beyond just antagonizing religious folks. What does the pastor do day-to-day? Does he provide/assist charitable works? Does he counsel people in need? I hope his church is a good organization. Ramen.
The religious always seem to think our lives are so "empty" without their imaginary friend.
RichCC comments on Sep 18, 2019:
I don't see a lot of difference between an atheist viewpoint and a religious one. Except a lot of useless(presumed?) celestial promises. Satisfaction comes from within -- whether you're insecure enough to need pretend validation or not. It is discouraging to me how many people use group validation in the name of their church(es)/god(s) to claim celestial authority -- irrespective of the merits of their actions.
DO YOU THINK DISORGANIZED (NEW AGE) RELIGION IS AS BAD AS ORGANIZED RELIGION?
RichCC comments on Sep 18, 2019:
I agree with @jlynn37 they promote the same supernatural nonsense but they aren't as entrenched (haven't accumulated as much power) (yet?) in our society. Additional: There are always splinter groups. Some grow big enough and last long enough to call themselves mainstream religions. Lol.๐Ÿ˜Ž
Interesting map of religious adherents in the US.
RichCC comments on Sep 18, 2019:
Thanks. I wonder how much effort went into researching the cutsy-pie names on the map areas. I live in the 'Yavapai Trench'. Yavapai is the name of a local native American tribe and is the name of our county so the map label isn't inappropriate. Looking for that level of detail everywhere across the country seems like an awful lot of work. I guess I appreciate it vividmaps -- whoever did it. Update: Patheos calls the source 'Egoshin'. I'll have to see who that is.
Awesome love it
RichCC comments on Sep 18, 2019:
Thanks. I hadn't seen that. These are the first three links I saw: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-46111525 https://www.travelandleisure.com/attractions/festivals/tihar-dog-day-hindu-festival-nepal https://www.adventurewomen.com/blog/article/kukur-tihar-nepalese-day-dog/
[alternet.
RichCC comments on Sep 17, 2019:
Agreed
How do we leave a group now?
RichCC comments on Sep 17, 2019:
On my Kindle at the upper right of the page (but only in landscape mode?) there's a green 'You 're a member! ' panel with a 'Leave' subbutton.

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Agnostic, Atheist, Humanist, Secularist, Skeptic, Freethinker
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