Total Drek

Or, the thoughts of several frustrated intellectuals on Sociology, Gaming, Science, Politics, Science Fiction, Religion, and whatever the hell else strikes their fancy. There is absolutely no reason why you should read this blog. None. Seriously. Go hit your back button. It's up in the upper left-hand corner of your browser... it says "Back." Don't say we didn't warn you.

Monday, November 21, 2005


For those of you who don't regularly listen to National Public Radio, this morning we had another installment of their regular series, This I Believe. This is a series where different individuals give a monologue on what they believe about life, and the world. Think of it as witnessing without all the hellfire. Of note, however, is that this morning Penn Jillette of Penn & Teller was up to bat, and he gave a stirring, heart-felt account of his views. Why do I care? Well, for a simple reason: Penn is a skeptic, and an Atheist. So how well did he do really? To find out go listen to it yourself but, to be honest, I think I have never heard such a remarkable explanation of how Atheists view the world. For example:

But, this "This I Believe" thing seems to demand something more personal, some leap of faith that helps one see life's big picture, some rules to live by. So, I'm saying, "This I believe: I believe there is no God."

Having taken that step, it informs every moment of my life. I'm not greedy. I have love, blue skies, rainbows and Hallmark cards, and that has to be enough. It has to be enough, but it's everything in the world and everything in the world is plenty for me. It seems just rude to beg the invisible for more. Just the love of my family that raised me and the family I'm raising now is enough that I don't need heaven. I won the huge genetic lottery and I get joy every day.

Believing there's no God means I can't really be forgiven except by kindness and faulty memories. That's good; it makes me want to be more thoughtful. I have to try to treat people right the first time around.

Believing there's no God stops me from being solipsistic. I can read ideas from all different people from all different cultures. Without God, we can agree on reality, and I can keep learning where I'm wrong. We can all keep adjusting, so we can really communicate. I don't travel in circles where people say, "I have faith, I believe this in my heart and nothing you can say or do can shake my faith." That's just a long-winded religious way to say, "shut up," or another two words that the FCC likes less. But all obscenity is less insulting than, "How I was brought up and my imaginary friend means more to me than anything you can ever say or do." So, believing there is no God lets me be proven wrong and that's always fun. It means I'm learning something.

Honestly, I'd like to reproduce the entire thing but... well... I guess I'd rather you click the link and let NPR know how much impact they have. Go check it out.

As for Penn Jillette- I salute you, sir. Your talent with words humbles us all.


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