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Paine in the Ingersoll! 
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Post Paine in the Ingersoll!
Just something I have been thinking about...

Mssrs. Paine and Ingersoll, Where have you gone?

The success or failure of an ideal, a way of life, or a movement is partly the appeal of the paradigm in question, partly the intrinsic truth of the matter, but mostly the ability to instill in others the philosophical, emotion and rational substance that the matter instills in those who hold it dear. Without speakers of the utmost alacrity in seizing the opportunity to promulgate said passions and who cannot deliver passionate oration in defending those ideals, all we may witness is the death of something that otherwise may have thrived. We need prolific speakers capable of delivering the secular message with such alacrity that there can be no debate against the purity of our ideals.

Yes, there will be disagreement, I know this, but that is fine. It is healthy. But that does not change the fact that we, and I mean all atheists, agnostics, freethinkers...whatever silly and insignificant name we choose to call ourselves...we need to realize that our common goal is important enough to rally around and is not something that is safe to leave on the back-burner of our lives anymore. The gauntlet of the faithful has landed on our doorsteps once again and is growing strong. We need to stand up for ourselves and NOT let them make any one of is feel ashamed for finding a more substantial truth to the whys and hows of existence. We may not have the entire truth, but we are getting there.

Robert Green Ingersoll was a very public agnostic back when agnosticism was by far more un-tasty to the general public of the US. Today, while the stigma of being anti-religious is still poignant, atheists and agnostics are so much more free to explain our POV without fear of Comstock like laws. Yet there is no person of note that will stand out and espouse our ideals, for to do so would be to incur the supposed wrath of the American people. It has come to social stigma alone, which has grown more powerful than legal oppression, that decides the fate of those who dare to question dogma these days. It is a method that has been used with the utmost fecundity by the current US Administration. A method used to inspire a feeling of religious fealty among a nation of otherwise differing opinions and has created a situation where religion thrives well: through fear of enemies, mistrust of neighbors and a semblance of holy war.

Politicians bow to the religious mindless and insert god into speeches to placate the mindless need to revere an imaginary friend to those who may otherwise have none. Are we to believe that NONE of our politicians on the national scene are atheist? Or do they simply not admit it? Where are the great people of today that are not afraid to stand up and speak out for a world without god, as Ingersoll did so eloquently over 100 years ago! Where are the great minds like Paine and Jefferson and Ingersoll today!? We need to find them and find them quickly.

Kowtowing to religious groups and people minimizes the secular nature of the reforms of history and of the present that were not religious in nature. It insults the efforts of those who do not succumb to the absurdity of a weakness of the mind, yet promote values even more pure and honorable than any religion can, for it relies on MAN and our ability to love and understand the position of man in the universe.

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"Secularism teaches us to be good here and now...I know of nothing better than goodness. Secularism teaches us to be just here and now. It is impossible to be juster than just...Secularism has no 'castles in Spain'. It has no glorified fog. It depends on realities, upon demonstrations; and its end and aim is to make this world better every day



Mon Sep 05, 2005 9:57 am
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Post Re: Paine in the Ingersoll!
AMEN Brother! ::51

Seriously, your point is well taken. I think part of the reason the religious right has been so successful is that they have moved away from conversations about how many angels can dance on a pinhead and instead focus on belief's/actions they can all share.

The left, in matters of religion and politics, seems content on fighting among iself about semantics, dividing itself into smaller and smaller groups that have a much more difficult time in being heard as their size and scope become diminished by the infighting. The good news is that recent events (aka Bush) have the left regaining it's focus. Hopefully, it's not too late to change things around.




Fri Sep 16, 2005 11:50 pm
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Post Re: Paine in the Ingersoll!
I hope it is not too late. Rove has done a wonderful job in making the Democratic party seem irrelevant, what with causing such confusion by tugging at the emotions of 'the base' and elevating to apparent importance such issues that would not even make a good 'made for tv' movie.

A problem any oppostition to the extremeist takeover of the Republican party has had is that there is indeed a scamble to keep up with all the nonsense that is being bandied about by the likes of Rove, Rumsfeld, Cheney, Bush, Santorum, Ridge, Brownback and the like. It is a classic game of smoke and mirrors. I look at my children and hope they will be ok in the future. That they will not be outnumbered by the ignorance I see so clearly.

Mr. P.

The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.

The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"

I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper




Tue Sep 20, 2005 2:31 pm
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Post Re: Paine in the Ingersoll!
Quote:
"Our Bible reveals to us the character of our 'God', with minute and remorseless exactness.
The portrait is substantially that of a man, if one can imagine a man charged and overcharged with evil impulses far beyond the human limit. His acts expose his vindictive, unjust, ungenerous, pittiless and vengefull nature, constantly. He is always punishing, punishing innocent children for the misdeeds of their parents. Punishing unoffending populations for the misdeeds of their rulers.

It is perhaps the most damnatory biography that exists in print anywhere. It makes Nero an angel of light by contrast."

Mark Twain




I am watching a special on Twain as I type. Excellent. A man of unique construction among an otherwise imperfect species.

Mr. P.

The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.

The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"

I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper




Sun Sep 25, 2005 9:22 pm
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Post Re: Paine in the Ingersoll!
Quote:
"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts."

Bertrand Russell, philosopher, mathematician, author, Nobel laureate (1872-1970)

_____________________________________


"When the theologian governed the world, it was covered with huts and hovels for the man, palaces and cathedrals for the few...the poor were clad in rags and skins--they devoured crusts, and gnawed bones. The day of science dawned, and...there is more of value in the brain of an average man of today--of a master mechanic, of a chemist, of a naturalist, of an inventor, than there was in the brain of the world four hundred years ago.

These blessings did not fall from the skies. These benefits did not drop from the outstretched hands of priests. They were not found in cathedrals or behind altars--neither were they searched for with hold candles. They were not discovered by the closed eyes of prayer, nor did they come in answer to superstitious supplication. They are the children of freedom, the gifts of reason, observation and experience--and for them all, man is indebted to man."

Ingersoll's essay "God and the Constitution."

The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.

The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"

I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper

Edited by: misterpessimistic  at: 9/25/05 10:29 pm



Sun Sep 25, 2005 9:29 pm
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