Recently this idea about building an Atheist Temple in London has been circulating on the internet.
It originated from this article in the Guardian 26 January 2012, where philosopher and writer Alain de Botton said the temple would be a counter-weight to the more aggressive and destructive form of the new atheist movement, formed by Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens attacks on religion.
When I first read the story my initial reaction was, “WTF are you on about Mr. de Botton?”
What would we be doing at these temples? Yes, I am aware that this is almost the same as when people ask me, “What do you do in the Danish Atheist Society when you meet?”
I would say there is a clear difference. First of all most atheist groups, that define themselves as atheist, are primarily nonpartisan secular activist groups.
Which means we work to get a more secular society, and equal rights for religious and non-religious. We do not meet and talk about how little we believe in gods.
Secondly, why do people assume that ATHEISM is one thing, that it holds certain values, thoughts, and ideals. It does not the definition that the new atheist movement goes by, is that it is a non-belief in any deities (also singular form for those Christians that like to play word games). Most of these atheists also define themselves as agnostic-atheists.
I cannot recall who first said that organizing atheists is like herding cats, but I think this is very true, besides the fact you can find secularists amongst atheists, and humanists, when it comes to values, political and philosophical opinions, it is as diverse as any random group in society.
Thirdly to be fair it seems Alain de Botton was also misrepresented in the media, and he actually had no plans for building a temple of Atheism.
Which I found on the r/atheism subreddit on Reddit.
I have heard from some that they like this idea of an Atheist Temple, I would very much appreciate if you are one of those people, or know someone, please I would know WHY they think it would be a great idea.
I do not know whethere to laugh or to cry. Romania has proposed a law that will make it illegal for witches to make false predictions. In other hands they will be held accountable for their predictions of the future.
It is both fun and sad that a government has to make a law about woo-woo as if it was real, or at least some of it. If the law passes and it makes them accountable for the failed predictions and fortune tellings, I wonder if it will have an impact on the superstition that flourishes in Romania.
As a sidenote, all the donations has to be registered as a tax income. So being a witch is a legit job. Hehe.
In latest funny and slightly crazy news, is that here in Denmark, a bishop has forbidden the local priest at the church of Sthen in Snekkersten.
Since 2009, priest Kirsten Knutzen has baptised 80 dolls and teddy bears at sermons for children at the ages one to six.
She told the press that she is aware that she is not making a blasphemic ritual, but she puts the ritual as close as possible to the actual ritual she uses her own words.
The Bishop Lise-Lotte Rebel of the Helsingør Congregations put an end to it. With the message that the People’s Lutheran Church of Denmark does not baptise objects.
In my honest opinion, I think it is an effective way of pulling children into the religion, but on the other hand, it also undermines the religion, by making fun of it. How can you tell a fake baptism apart from a real one?
May 2011 they had planned baptism and wedding for the teddy bear couple at Church of Sthen.
In Indonesia, a man was sentenced 5 years for blasphemy, a Christian man who insulted Islam.
I am not sure what he did, if I would consider it insulting, but hey I also think it would be as bad as insulting someone who though they were herding invisible unicorns.
But it wasn’t the sentence that I thought was the most absurd part, no no no..
The absurd part is that the local muslims wanted him killed, and they processed to burn local christian churches.
Horray for the religion of peace, both of them.