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Church without God - by design
Members of an atheist congregation at Harvard listen to music during a recent gathering.
June 22nd, 2013
11:25 AM ET

Church without God - by design

By Dan Merica, CNN

Boston (CNN)-– It’s Sunday in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and a rapt congregation listens to a chaplain preach about the importance of building a community.

A few dozen people sit quietly for the hourlong service. Music is played, announcements are made and scholars wax poetic about the importance of compassion and community.

Outsiders could be forgiven for believing this service, with its homilies, its passing of the plate, its uplifting songs, belongs in a church.

If so, it’s a church without one big player: God.

Sunday’s congregation in Cambridge is a meeting of the Humanist Community at Harvard University and the brainchild of Greg Epstein, the school’s Humanist chaplain.

A longtime advocate for community building, Epstein and his group of atheists have begun to build their Cambridge community and solemnize its Sunday meetings to resemble a traditional religious service.

To Epstein, religion is not all bad, and there is no reason to reject its helpful aspects.

“My point to my fellow atheists is, why do we need to paint things with such a broad brush? We can learn from the positive while learning how to get rid of the negative," he said.

Godless congregations

For Epstein, who started community-building at Harvard nearly 10 years ago, the idea of a godless congregation is not an oxymoron.

“We decided recently that we want to use the word congregation more and more often because that is a word that strongly evokes a certain kind of community - a really close knit, strong community that can make strong change happen in the world,” he said.

“It doesn’t require and it doesn't even imply a specific set of beliefs about anything.”

Epstein is not alone in his endeavor. Jerry DeWitt, who became an atheist and left his job as an evangelical minister, is using his pastoral experience to building an atheist church in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

This Sunday, DeWitt's congregation will hold its first meeting as a "Community Mission Chapel."

"When you become a part of this congregation, this community, you are going to become part of a family," DeWitt told CNN. "There is an infrastructure there for you to land in. There is going to be someone there to do weddings and to do, unfortunately, the funerals."

READ MORE: Unbelieving preachers get help to 'come out' as open atheists

Sunday school for atheists

As members of the Cambridge congregation file into a wood-paneled classroom at Harvard, singer Shelley Segal greets them with a few songs from her latest recording, called simply, “An Atheist Album.”

Taking a hint from the theme of the event, Segal strums on her guitar and belts her song, “Gratitude.”

“I don't believe in a great power to say thank you to,” Segal sings. “But that won’t take away from my gratitude.”

Harvard's humanist chaplain Greg Epstein leads an atheist gathering.

After the music, Epstein offers a few words of greeting before the meeting gets to its heart: a discussion about compassion.

A four academics and a journalist discuss the effects of religion on raising children and their ideas about compassion. Congregants listen intently, some even taking notes.

Each service has a message – compassion, evolution or acceptance - after which congregants engage in a lengthy discussion.

Before the main event, kids are invited to what some parents refer to as “Sunday school,” where Tony Debono, a biologist Massachusetts Institute of Technology, teaches the youngsters about evolution, DNA and cells.

There's little talk about organized religion, positive or negative.

Likewise, down in Louisiana, said his atheist services will not be anti-religion.

"What we are looking at doing is different," DeWitt said. "If you are a religionist and you come and sit in our pew, the only way you can leave offended is because of what you don’t hear and what you don’t see. We won’t be there to make a stance against religion or against God."

Coming out of the closet

In the last few years, the number of “nones” – those who don’t associate with any organized religion – has grown at a rate faster than any other group. Nones now represent one in five Americans, according to a 2012 Pew Research Center poll.

Although the number of atheists has grown, too, there are still a large number of “nones” that choose not to associate with the label “atheist.”

Some at Harvard’s Humanist congregation fall into this category.

“I don’t particularly have a religion,” said Anil Nyer, a neurologist who brought his daughter to Humanist Sunday school. But Nyer also said he didn’t want to label himself as an atheist.

One reason to shy away from the atheist label: Many Americans hold a negative impression of nonbelievers.

According to a recent Public Religion Research Institute poll, nearly 40 percent of Americans believe that atheists are changing American culture for the worse.

“Whenever we put atheists on a list like this and we compare them to other groups, atheists tend to come in towards the bottom of that list,” said Robert P. Jones is the CEO of Public Religion Research Institute.

“Americans tend to hold a lot of reservations about atheists.”

Epstein hopes his congregation can change that.

By formalizing meetings and building a strong community, the Harvard group hopes it can be a model for other atheist congregations forming around the country.

A group meets during an atheist gathering in Boston.

More atheists may come of the closet if they know a congregation will be there to support them, Epstein said,

“Being an atheist is something we want people to come out and be,” said the Humanist chaplain. “There are so many people, probably millions, who are humanists or atheists or nonreligious in private and nobody knows."

Epstein said he gets e-mails daily from people founding atheist meet-up groups.

“Tulsa, Oklahoma; North Carolina; London; Vancouver, Canada; Houston, Texas,” Epstein said, listing the sources of the most recent e-mails.

“One part of what we are saying is come on out and let your neighbors know” about your disbelief, he said. “It is not going to make you worse of a person, it is going to make you a better person to be more open about who you are.”

Rituals for the irreligious

For the last few years, the Humanist Community at Harvard has operated out of a small three-floor walk-up off the bustling streets of Harvard Square. The walls are littered with posters about atheism – tributes to famed atheists Eddie Izzard, Seth MacFarlane and Stephen Fry.

Because of the scattered furniture and the Harvard dorm feel, Epstein jokingly describes the space as “college broke chic.” That’s being generous – but it's also about to change.

Starting in the fall, the Humanist Community at Harvard will begin meeting in a nearly 3,000-square-foot community center with an event space for nearly 100 people.

Although the plan is to use the space at the group’s headquarters, it will also serve as a broader community center for the group that Epstein and others are trying to build in the Boston area.

“What we really would like to see is a community center where people can come by at anytime and to use it as a space to study or have a meeting for various committee,” said Chris Stedman, the assistant humanist chaplain at Harvard.

Stedman said he sees the new building as a place for people to gather, not only to become part of a humanist community, but to also become more engaged with the world.

When he talks about his plans for the future, Epstein appears to long for a time when the new community center could mimic aspects of church - a place for baby-naming ceremonies, weddings and funerals.

The success of an atheist church will depend on walking the thin line between too much and too little ritual, Epstein said.

Humanists boast a proud freethinking streak, and some at the Harvard event said they don’t want to be associated with any sort of dogma or belief system - or even a system based on disbelief.

Anyway, Esptein said his congregation will be less a group of people united by beliefs - or disbelief - and more like an opera, or a painting.

“Our community is like a work of art," he said. "Hopefully people will respond to that work of art and it will garner controversy and discussion like a work of art."

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Church • Houses of worship • United States

soundoff (6,897 Responses)
  1. Ron

    I think the article fits the times perfectly. This is the type of "church" I would expect as we enter the age of the antichrist. Remember the number given in revelation is 666. 6 is the number of man. Man was created on the 6th day. A man made world is what the antichrist will gladly step into, and take advantage of his willing pawns. They probably think they have something new here. lol It was foretold over 2000 years ago. Repent, and receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. For God is very real, and His fogiveness through Christ is still offered to rebellious man. But for how much longer?

    June 22, 2013 at 8:25 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Men have been predicting the end of days since roughly 40 A.D. They were all wrong. So are you.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:35 pm |
    • jazzguitarman

      Ron, why it is so important for you to 'sell' your concept of some so call 'god' to others? AND I see you do so using fear. i.e. better get on the train now,,, or you will miss out and reget it. If you wonder why people mock you, go back and read what you posted.

      Can't you just accept that others have a differnet POV? I accept the many people I know that believe in the Christians myths.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:37 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      Jabberwocky.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:40 pm |
    • RestonJeff

      "But for how much longer"? You forgot one thing, sparky. The 1000 reign of peace. Which hasn't even started yet. So by your Bible's time line, at LEAST 1000 years, and that's if the reign of peace starts right *now*. Unless you're willing to admit the Bible is WRONG.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:46 pm |
    • Saraswati

      My understanding is that 666 was just a transcription error from 616. How does that number work for you?

      June 22, 2013 at 11:15 pm |
  2. Robert Brown

    Humanism = worshiping the creature more than the creator.

    Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
    (Rom. 1:25)

    June 22, 2013 at 8:15 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      When scripture is cited, the case is closed. No point in reasoning now.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:19 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Cased closed, no arguing with The Word of God.

      Hebrews 4:12
      King James Version (KJV)
      12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:30 pm |
    • David

      16 I will delight myself in Your statutes; I will not forget Your word.
      Psalm 119:16

      June 22, 2013 at 8:34 pm |
    • Jim

      So get rid of all uncleanness and the rampant outgrowth of wickedness, and in a humble (gentle, modest) spirit receive and welcome the Word which implanted and rooted [in your hearts] contains the power to save your souls. James 1: 21

      June 22, 2013 at 8:36 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Gen 6:3 And the LORD said, "My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also [is] flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years."

      The LORD has long ago died and is no more.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:37 pm |
    • Nathan

      Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. Psalm 119: 105

      June 22, 2013 at 8:39 pm |
    • jazzguitarman

      Wow Robert is very arrogant. Yes, there isn't any reason to have a discussion with someone that arrogant. Case closed = closed minded. Oh, that that book you say is the word of some so called 'god'; it was written by men for men.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:40 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      There's no arguing with a man with an ill conceived conviction.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:43 pm |
    • Lee Jones

      There is no arguing against the word of God.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:45 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      @ Lee

      And which god are you talking about? There's so many.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:46 pm |
    • Observer

      Robert Brown

      "Cased closed, no arguing with The Word of God.'

      Yep, but you are one of the rare people who apparently support slavery and discrimination against women and the handicapped.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:47 pm |
    • jazzguitarman

      Lee Jones; What you said is exactly what the Taliban say all the time. Do you also chant god is great?

      June 22, 2013 at 8:47 pm |
    • Lee Jones

      jgtrman

      You're in the wrong thread –go find yourself a Taliban to argue with.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:51 pm |
    • Lee Jones

      Secular

      Which God? There is only one God.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:53 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      Not according to the Judaism , or Islam, or the Greeks who worship ancient gods. So please be precise.

      June 22, 2013 at 9:00 pm |
      • JimAgain

        Where did you hear that? Of course, in any religious system (or popitical or social science) system you will have some outliers, but the core of Islam is Allah, the One God, and every Jew I know recietes the Shema– "Hear, O Israel, the Lord your God is One God." Both have strong proscriptions against worshipping other gods. That, by the way, is sometimes a cause of criticism by their adherents against Christianity and its Trinity– One God in three "persons" strikes many as polytheism.
        It is striking hoow many posts here speak out vile and derogatory language against religion but understand it very little if at all.

        July 16, 2013 at 10:43 am |
    • jazzguitarman

      Lee Jones: I see that you cannot be honest. It is clear based on your post that you believe you have the answers and that you have a very fixed set of believes. That makes you like the Taliban. Now I'm agnostic and I admit I have NO answers. I just choose to NOT believe in myths just because my parents did.

      June 22, 2013 at 9:00 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Jazzguitarman,
      The written word of God or the bible was written by men as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. The biblical definition of The Word of God is Jesus.

      June 22, 2013 at 9:01 pm |
  3. Apple Bush

    The "Holy Shitteret" drum rudiment came from the musical halls of the Vatican in the 1400's. The Principal snare drummer had "soiled" himself, much to the delight of the trombone players seated in front of him. The brass players overwhelmed the Percussion Section and beat upon the Principal Snare Drummer's drum head with their Trombone slides and angry fists.

    Soon after it became common place to hear "Ta Dut, Dut" played by a drummer after a funny joke unlike this one.

    June 22, 2013 at 8:03 pm |
  4. jazzguitarman

    This is a great concept. Churches do some good work helping those in the local community. Now this group can help as well.

    I'll have to look into if my area has one of these groups.

    June 22, 2013 at 7:04 pm |
    • jazzdrummerman

      You got that right my man! Zut zut zow zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz cracked tata ta ta. You pickin' up what I'm putting down? Flip flam dudda tut tut.....ta ta da. Yeah man.

      June 22, 2013 at 7:50 pm |
    • jazzguitarman

      Jazzdrummerman; all we need is jazzbassman and we would have a trio! From the looks of your beats I suspect you're a fan of Dennis Chambers.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:09 pm |
    • jazzdrummerman

      Buddy man. but you gotta love the breckers with chambers man. Now find my a young lion that can thump and solo and lets get jazzbassperson in this little get together.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:21 pm |
  5. children of Israel

    Honesty can be updated into lies. The truth sets you free.

    June 22, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      children of Israel,

      Genesis 6:3 And the LORD said, "My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also [is] flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years."

      June 22, 2013 at 6:37 pm |
    • jazzguitarman

      Telling oneself myths are truths doesn't set one free.

      It is folly to believe mankind can determine the so called 'big truths' in this lifetime.

      June 22, 2013 at 6:44 pm |
    • ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION

      And truth is, one claiming to be child of Israel is none other than a hindu secular, crook self centered of hindu pagan Egypt and Persia.

      June 22, 2013 at 6:47 pm |
  6. lionlylamb

    Candiano wrote, "Stop capitalizing your "word" as though is has any more sigifigance than any other's. It diesn't. You are putting on airs and you look silly. Your word is not holiness, you aren't God or Jesus, and you are an egomaniac."

    Candiano, So, your Word vs. my Word. Whose Word is condescending? Whose Word dare fathoms the 3 cosmologies of cosmic relevancies?

    1. The Atomic Cosmos
    2. The Celestial Cosmos
    3. The Cellular Cosmos

    Candiano wrote to Lionlylamb stating, "My words are not condescending; if you cannot take critique for your writing, then you shouldn't publish. I am not so full of pride in my words that I think they need to emphasized in any way as if they were Scripture, or be such an egotist to think they will have any influence upon another. I am not a prophet of the Lord, and I do assure you, neither are you. Continuing to capitalize "word" as if your words were the be all to end all, as if you were some self-proclaimed god or prophet makes you appear vain and foolish. Take it from an editor in the publishing field. Your words are not the Word."

    My Word is all that I write and will continue being my Word and no one else's. Likewise your Word is of sameness in worded deeds. What says you in your Word as to the 3 cosmologies of cosmic relevancies then? Or are you at a loss to contemplate such an undertaking?

    June 22, 2013 at 6:10 pm |
    • Austin

      sometimes the cosmos looks like something more. What is that?

      Hey, the cellular cosmos is effected by God and spirit in a perception that we cant see or hear. You cant measure it. but you may (or may not) enjoy it.

      June 23, 2013 at 12:01 am |
  7. krm10007©

    Report Abuse for "ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION"

    June 22, 2013 at 5:41 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      It's called freedom of speech.

      June 22, 2013 at 6:25 pm |
  8. Vic

    To answer the question of How Christianity Is Superior:

    Christianity is believing in God Almighty, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, in Jesus Christ our Lord and personal Savior, the Creator of the heavens and earth and everything in them, where morality and all ethics come from!

    God created everything among which are all humanism and built-in functions, i.e. Basic Instincts, Intuition and Common Sense, through which we perceive His Natural Revelation!

    That's How Christianity Is Superior!

    June 22, 2013 at 5:12 pm |
    • JMEF

      Vic
      It's so obvious that you need to be superior to all the rest of humanity, sorry it is not going to work out. Like the Dodo bid your lot are on the way to extinction.

      June 22, 2013 at 5:32 pm |
    • Random Emphasis Man

      Morality and ethics do NOT come => from <= _Christianity_. Try *again*.

      June 22, 2013 at 5:34 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Genesis 6:3 And the LORD said, "My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also [is] flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years."

      June 22, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
    • Vic

      It is God Almighty, the father, Son (Lord Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit Who Is Superior to everything, and Christianity that is Superior to any other perspective.

      June 22, 2013 at 5:38 pm |
    • Random Emphasis Man

      Do NOT. The stupid html tag fucked it up. And it's tedious doing it.

      June 22, 2013 at 5:39 pm |
    • Vic

      It is God Almighty, the Father, Son (Lord Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit Who Is Superior to everything, and Christianity that is Superior to any other perspective!

      June 22, 2013 at 5:39 pm |
    • RestonJeff

      Bullshit, Vic. It is just your perspective. Speak for yourself, it's just your opinion, and one that doesn't carry more weight because you use html tagging in your posts.

      June 22, 2013 at 5:43 pm |
    • Vic

      Morality and Ethics come from God Almighty, the Father, Son (Lord Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit, like evrything else!

      June 22, 2013 at 5:43 pm |
    • Vic

      Morality and Ethics come from God Almighty, the Father, Son (Lord Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit, like everything else!

      June 22, 2013 at 5:43 pm |
    • JMEF

      Vic
      You would have made a great Crusader or Grand Inquisitor, born too late for the good old days. Did your ancestors burn a few witches in Salem, perhaps?

      June 22, 2013 at 5:48 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      "Morality and Ethics come from God Almighty, the Father, Son (Lord Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit, like everything else!"

      You still have not provided the evidence for your god's existence. Morality and ethics have been around a lot longer than man has worshiped your god. In fact there is little that is moral about a god that would allow for his own child to suffer for the mistakes of people who didn't even exist; there is little that is moral about a god that would impregnate 14 year old against her will; there is little that is moral about a god who kills off all but 8 people.

      June 22, 2013 at 5:53 pm |
    • Vic

      Glory be to God Almighty, the Father, Son (Lord Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit alone, and not to man.

      June 22, 2013 at 5:53 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      There is no morality in scapegoating another human being. What an awful idea!

      June 22, 2013 at 5:53 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      Vic: You can have your crazed belief all you wish but reality has it that man can be proven to exist and therefore deserves credit, your imaginary friend can't be proven to exist and thus gets no credit.

      June 22, 2013 at 5:57 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      Would you kill someone if your book didn't say it was wrong?

      June 22, 2013 at 6:00 pm |
    • Vic

      1 Corinthians 1:18

      "18 For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God."

      New American Standard Bible (NASB)
      Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

      http://www.biblegateway.com/

      June 22, 2013 at 6:02 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      Case closed.

      June 22, 2013 at 6:02 pm |
    • Science

      Boy Vic did you fall out of a tree and hit your head when you where maybe 5 years old ?

      June 22, 2013 at 6:04 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      Vic: What are you attempting to prove by scripture?? There is no evidence that your god exists...not the scripture, nothing.

      June 22, 2013 at 6:05 pm |
    • Austin

      I experienced revelation of the Holy Spirit. Including the revealing of God's world. He is risen!

      June 22, 2013 at 6:07 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      @ Science, gravity is only a theory! (you do see this as sarcasm, correct?)

      June 22, 2013 at 6:08 pm |
    • Vic

      I would NOT touch a soul (including mine) for anything or anyone!

      Life is given, taken and sanctified by God Almighty, the Father, Son (lord Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit.

      S a n c t i t y of Life

      June 22, 2013 at 6:09 pm |
    • Austin

      Revelation of God's "word." Personality and supernatural ability. The work and person of the Holy Spirit.

      The one who bears the truth supernaturally.

      June 22, 2013 at 6:09 pm |
    • Vic

      I would NOT touch a soul (including mine) for anything or anyone!

      Life is given, taken and sanctified by God Almighty, the Father, Son (Lord Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit.

      S a n c t i t y of Life

      June 22, 2013 at 6:10 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      @Vic

      Your god killed 25,000,000 in the bible so sanct ity of life is BS

      June 22, 2013 at 6:11 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      Austin: We already know you're bat shiy crazy. The brain damage from smashing your car in to the church during a drunken rampage is rather obvious.

      Vic: You still have not provided evidence for your god!!! Just your biased opinion and the writing of man.

      June 22, 2013 at 6:13 pm |
    • Science

      Secular Humanist from Ohio.....................sort of like what goes up comes down !

      Vic came down hard !

      June 22, 2013 at 6:13 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      oops, shiy should have read shit

      June 22, 2013 at 6:14 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      @ Science, I read that religion appeals to our meanness, solipsism, and masochism, looks like Vic is proof of that.

      June 22, 2013 at 6:19 pm |
    • Vic

      We are all living proof that we need a Savior!!! ♰♰♰ Our Lord Jesus Christ ♰♰♰

      June 22, 2013 at 6:29 pm |
    • Science

      Secular Humanist from Ohio

      agree..............there is a few more like Vic on this blog !

      Hey Vic

      Science works no god(s) needed

      New implant helps boy hear for first time

      By Caitlin Hagan and Jacque Wilson, CNN

      updated 11:41 AM EDT, Fri June 21, 2013

      http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/20/health/boy-hears-first-time/index.html?hpt=hp_t1

      June 22, 2013 at 6:30 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      @Vic, we are living proof of evolution. Simple organisms becoming complex organisms. And evolution is not perfect. Who would design an amusement park in the middle of a sewage system anyway? What an ill thought out design that was.

      June 22, 2013 at 6:38 pm |
    • rick

      vic: you are delusional

      June 22, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
    • evolvedDNA

      Austin..yeast also rises it it the Lord or Lionly lambs cellular godlets?

      June 22, 2013 at 8:10 pm |
  9. Alias

    Looks like all the benefits of religion, without all the lies.
    I hope this catches on.

    June 22, 2013 at 4:33 pm |
  10. Apple Bush

    If I had a shoe string I would make it a yo yo
    If I had a yo yo I would tie a string to it
    If I was me, I would make me into a yo yo with a string attached to it and practice

    June 22, 2013 at 4:11 pm |
    • JMEF

      Apple
      Hope you keep all this stuff, it could get published. Ever try writing lyrics for music/songs, think you would be a natural.
      Baby in the bubble with a babbling heart, I steal Paul's poetry a lot, my attempts are crap.

      June 22, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
    • ab

      JMEF, gratzi

      June 22, 2013 at 7:18 pm |
  11. Apple Bush

    This shaggy dog was prowling the bar and spattin’ pussy hair like sunflower seeds

    I‘ve taken that walk with him before too.

    He never said much…that you could remember anyway. Not much difference in the pour either.

    June 22, 2013 at 4:04 pm |
  12. Apple Bush

    Half in the Shit
    You are who you are so
    shove it, you love it.
    Stuff it in and rough it.
    Don’t die in your car;
    we might need the back seat.
    Don’t shit in the can.
    Just miss it, they’ll fix it.
    Don’t spray on the fans;
    they spray back, they pay back.
    .

    June 22, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
    • Akira

      Hi, Apple. Still writing you uplifting poetry, I see. How are you otherwise?

      June 22, 2013 at 3:50 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Hey Akira! Just thinking about lunch and doing some free forming! 🙂

      June 22, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
  13. Science

    Hey creationists and the supreme court is going to rule when ?

    That se-x deal and love ?

    Face it: Monogamy is unnatural

    By Meghan Laslocky, Special to CNN

    updated 11:02 AM EDT, Fri June 21, 2013

    http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/21/opinion/laslocky-monogamy-marriage/index.html?eref=rss_opinion&cid=sf_twitter

    June 22, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
  14. lionlylamb

    Life is a product of Godly endorsed evolution. Since the Gods are all living upon the atomic cosmos, it is they who tweak the evolutionary trails of variable celestial life augmentations. All mannerisms of celestially confined life augments were created from the inside cosmologies of the atomized realms. We are all living byproducts of atomically made celestial amalgams of Godly productivities.

    June 22, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      ^^ gibberish ^^

      June 22, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
    • Sam Yaza

      "The Gods", hay as long as you can admit the existence of other gods not just your own I'm cool with it.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
    • tallulah13

      The dude is creepy and and his words are unreadable, but that's the beauty of the First Amendment - even his gibberish is protected. We just don't have to read it.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Bootyfunk,

      Procrastination is a commoner's mainline tragedy towards one compiling intellectual awareness.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      tallulah13 wrote, "The dude is creepy and and his words are unreadable."

      All you know about me is my Word. Your ineptness toward finding reasonability in my Word is understandable. The average layman is imbibed and drunken around other's worded vernaculars of simpleton treasuries. My Word is of Holiness for the most parts and seldom do or will I charge another with glossy altruisms toward myopic distrainment. What I believe upon, you need not fully understand. Time itself will play the part and in the dues thereof the memories will no doubt someday reveal to you a sensibility to one day fathom my reasoning way.

      June 22, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
    • Candiano

      Stop capitalizing your "word" as though is has any more sigifigance than any other's. It diesn't. You are putting on airs and you look silly. Your word is not holiness, you aren't God or Jesus, and you are an egomaniac.

      June 22, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Mr. Lamb you crazy old fuck, how the hell are you?

      June 22, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
    • Sutherland Croft

      We hear you Lionly,

      Of the celestial external ism the Godless are unaware

      June 22, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
    • Margaret

      Baloney, Sutherland. I BELIEVE in God and it's undecipherable. Related to ll by any chance? Are you the drunkard brother he so lovingly slams all the time?

      June 22, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Candiano,

      So, your Word vs. my Word. Whose Word is condescending? Whose Word dare fathoms the 3 cosmologies of cosmic relevancies?

      1. The Atomic Cosmos
      2. The Celestial Cosmos
      3. The Cellular Cosmos

      June 22, 2013 at 3:58 pm |
    • Athy

      What about the Kramer Cosmos?

      June 22, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
    • Candiano

      Lionlylamb:
      My words are not condescending; if you cannot take critique for your writing, then you shouldn't publish.
      I am not so full of pride in my words that I think they need to emphasized in any way as if they were Scripture, or be such an egotist to think they will have any influence upon another. I am not a prophet of the Lord, and I do assure you, neither are you.
      Continuing to capitalize "word" as if your words were the be all to end all, as if you were some self-proclaimed god or prophet makes you appear vain and foolish.
      Take it from an editor in the publishing field. Your words are not the Word.

      June 22, 2013 at 4:52 pm |
    • evolvedDNA

      LL sorry you still have no proof of your little godlets or even a giant one. Your writings are abstruse at best....not sure where you get the feeling they are of some intellectual hierarchy. If you hear a god talk to you I hope it has more clarity than your attempts to distill its ideas.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:28 pm |
  15. Bootyfunk

    christianity commands it's followers to kill all g.ays, disobedient children, non-virgin brides and anyone working the weekend.

    humanism has zero commands to murder people.

    humanism > christianity

    June 22, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      Neither do humanists penalize people for not believing.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
    • Dippy

      Its, not it's

      June 22, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      true dat, dippy.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
    • Colin

      National socialism in germany 1930's- 1945 humanism at it's finest 250 million killed with over 20 million murdered by the humanist state. Not quite the paradise on earth as presented by the blogs resident idiot. Humanism = eugenics.

      June 22, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
    • Dippy

      Its, not it's. Man, some of you people are slow.

      June 22, 2013 at 3:43 pm |
    • Akira

      Nazis were overwhelmingly Christian, Colin. Nice try, however.

      June 22, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
  16. Bootyfunk

    humanism > religion

    humanism is based on reason and compassion, and offers a much more ethical guide for good living than christianity. no commands to kill anyone, for starters.

    i challenge any christian to show how christian morals are superior to humanist ethics.

    June 22, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
    • Colin

      Hard to debate you when your entire premise is founded on bull sh it. Are you a Republican?

      June 22, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      er.... colin?

      am i a republican? haha. what part of my premise is bulls.hit?

      June 22, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
    • Colin

      All of it.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
    • ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION

      word human is combination of HU, HE, Mann, desire, meaning desire, love of truth absolute GOD, one in following of hindu atheism, criminal self center ism are none other than follower of hindu Lucifer, crook secular, self centered of all, and in hinduism, denial of truth absolute GOD, foundation of America and universe.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      haha, looks like a fundie has stolen colin's name. bravo.

      and you failed my challenge. you avoid answering questions and instead give va.gue, unsubstantiated assertions - the usual religious strategy when facing logic and reasoning.

      again, christians, in what way is christianity superior ethically to humanism?

      June 22, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Fake-Colin has been at it awhile. He really isn't a terribly interesting troll, but at least he's persistent.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • Colin

      sorry tallulah colin is not fake its a real person just not one that will kiss your ass.

      June 22, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
    • Vic

      Christianity is believing in God Almighty, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, in Jesus Christ our Lord and personal Savior, the Creator of the heavens and earth and everything in them where morality and all ethics come from!

      God created everything among which are all humanism and built-in functions through which we perceive His Natural Revelation, i.e. Basic Instincts, Intuition and Common Sense!

      That's how Christianity is Superior!

      June 22, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
    • RestonJeff

      So because you believe in it, it's superior, Vic? Oh, okay. You've convinced me.

      June 22, 2013 at 5:28 pm |
  17. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things,

    June 22, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      actions cause change; prayer wastes valuable time.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
    • Colin

      You've been told many times that planning is essential to a successful action. Prayer is planning and proper instruction. It appears the concept of planning and proper instruction is lost on you. as such it is a waste of time to respond to you.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      oic, someone snaked Colin's handle and forgot to change it before posting again. lol!

      yes, you've tried to equate planning with prayer before. stop being stupid. planning and prayer are two different things. i highly recommend planning - just not prayer. you go ahead and prayer a house will be built correctly - i'll actually sit down and plan the construction out so it's built right. prayer is talking to yourself, not making a plan. sitting down at a table with co-workers and drawing up blue prints - that's a plan. i'm sure it's hard to tell the difference for you.

      protip: skip talking to yourself and start making a real plan - you will be much more successful

      June 22, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
    • HeavenSense

      Hi prayerbot.

      June 22, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
  18. Robert

    So the atheists who love to condemn religion for preaching are preaching. Yeah, atheists never were very consistent.

    June 22, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
    • Robert

      Of course there is no rational basis on which to base morality if you don't believer in a deity. Everything is just an opinion then and killing someone is no more or less moral than risking your life to save someone.

      June 22, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      If you need a book to tell you killing is wrong, please stick with your book.

      June 22, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      I did not know that atheists were against preaching, and morality derives from human perceptions. There is no "absolute" morality because god is invisible and undetectable and, therefore, irrelevant. Besides, your god's own morality is horrible and shifts whenever he wants to throw a temper tantrum and drown 99.999999% of the world's life and cause earthquakes to swallow up most of the Israelites and that jazz.

      June 22, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Actually, Bob, this is one specific group of atheists. And the thing about atheists is that the single common thread we have is that we do not believe that any god exists. Some atheists, like these people may have common interests. Some may seek a sense of community, much like religious people do. A belief in god is not necessary for wanting human interaction.

      Also, I'm sorry that you lack the basic humanity to develop a sense of morality. If the fear of a supernatural being is the only thing keeping you from killing or stealing or otherwise behaving in a manner that is destructive to the world around you, then by all means, keep that fear. And thank you for the warning. I don't think anyone is entirely safe around a person who is only good because they are afraid of a bigger dog.

      June 22, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
    • rick

      "Yeah, atheists never were very consistent."

      And theists are?

      June 22, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      the difference is, religion preaches ignorance...
      humanism "preaches" logic and compassion.

      June 22, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
  19. ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION

    Why call it church, not a zoo, inhabited by claimed evolutionist children of hindu Monkey, ignorant secular by nature man kind, acting in following and practicing art of their daddy, hindu atheism, ignorant self center ism, denial of truth absolute GOD.

    June 22, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
    • you worship...

      the wrong god you stupid foreign pos...fvck off muslim ass

      June 22, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
    • evolvedDNA

      Islam god does not have clue to don't look for advise and answers from mythology.. I smile when I think that in some way, despite your uninformed rantings, you feel superior to your nemesis the humble pig, when in fact you share a large part of the same DNA . It is humbling and puts into perspective that you are an evolved form of, as we are, some form of primordial slime. Good luck however with your assimilation into the human race.

      June 22, 2013 at 8:49 pm |
  20. children of Israel

    Who are the black caucas, are they from the caucas mountains? (Romans 9:6)

    June 22, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
    • jazzguitarman

      Secular of Ohio; At a privately owned website the concept of freedom of speech does NOT apply. The owners of the website have a right to monitor their website as they feel. Thus the concept here isn't freedom of speech but instead freedom associated with ownership. While I don't agree with reporting abuse (expect for spammers), one shouldn't fault others for doing so. It is up to the monitor if action is taken or not.

      June 22, 2013 at 6:53 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      @jazzguitarman

      Many Islamists see the representation of Mohammed as blasphemy and is difficult for them to understand our idea of freedom of speech. To report abuse for such a representation does not fit with United States ideas of freedom of speech and that was the idea I was trying to get across. Thank goodness we can ridicule and satirize ideas without the fear of imprisonment, although I worry that Islam may take this right away.

      June 22, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.