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Comments by HappyPrimate

Go to: How the Web is killing faith

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 28 by HappyPrimate

Posting comments on articles relating to religious matters is more effective than one might think. Even if the replies are caustic and they seem not to be phased by the challenge to their beliefs, it does plant a seed of doubt. That seed will sprout with additional challenging encounters and, over time, the believer will seek validation of his beliefs and may find it lacking thus setting him on his own personal path out of religion. I had the experience of chatting with someone on Huff-Post who had no idea that there were other galaxies than our own. After posting a link to a YT video of Carl Sagan explaining the billions of other galaxies, that person was so astounded and asked for other links. I recently had a converation, face to face, with a man who works in my building that also had no idea that there were galaxies beyond the Milky Way. The assumption that what we here know as basic information is also known by believers is so wrong. The internet, particularly YT, is a wonderful tool, and I'm thrilled I can use it to turn others on to science and reality far easier than handing someone a book and asking them to read it.

Sun, 27 May 2012 12:21:09 UTC | #943811

Go to: Come Ye Out From Among Them, 3 former preachers talk about Coming Out.

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 22 by HappyPrimate

I've watched this twice in its entirety. There seems to be little appreciation in these comments for what these people are having to deal with in rejecting their former belief in religion and having to completely start their lives over. They are to be admired and they are and will be valuable allies. We should embrace them and support them in their efforts to help others out of religion. We all can learn from them as well as they have an insight into how people get roped into religious delusion. If you didn't watch the whole thing, you missed some really interesting information, including that there are now over 200 in The Clergy Project. That is really, really awesome.

Thu, 03 May 2012 03:04:00 UTC | #939243

Go to: Living After Faith Podcast - Jerry DeWitt

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 12 by HappyPrimate

Jerry is from my neck of the woods. Almost just down the street literally. Churches like he used to preach in are on almost every corner. I'm so thrilled for Jerry to have found support in our community and the fact that there are those who care enough to establish organizations such as Recovering from Religion and The Clergy Project. His style is not for everyone but it is perfect for reaching others around here. People around here eat that style up and they will more likely listen just because he speaks in that style. Personally I like that he is excited about preaching reason and truth. I really enjoyed listening to a sermon where I could accept what the preacher said was true. I jumped a bit when he mentioned Joseph Campbell's book because it was Joseph Campbell's series interview with Bill Moyers on PBS talking about his book The Power of Myth that was, for me too, THE critical information I needed to know that there were no real gods, never had been and how we humans have used mythology throughout the ages as a way to make sense of our world and explain the unexplainable. At the end of watching that series of interviews, I was able to let go of religion and know I was an atheist for good and valid reasons. I have always loved science and it played a part, but that wasn't what turned the lights on for me either. It was more than 20 years later that Richard wrote the God Delusion and I first read his work. That was a long 20 year period of feeling and being quite alone with my thoughts.

Fri, 06 Apr 2012 00:01:40 UTC | #932648

Go to: Adopted or abducted?

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 11 by HappyPrimate

Heartbreaking, absolutely. More than that it is disgusting and pathetic. As a woman who grew up in the 50s and 60s, I knew about these places where my contemporaries were sent to have babies that were then put up for adoption. I also remember after Roe v Wade, my mother saying that people were going to fight it because they want those babies for adoption. It didn't hit me until then that there could be a market for babies. Ironically, religion tauts itself as a family oriented organization while tearing children away from birth mothers instead of supporting them. But of course they use the excuse of sin to do it.

Wed, 28 Mar 2012 11:11:05 UTC | #930912

Go to: Higgs’ View: The Real Reason People Doubt Richard Dawkins is an Ape

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 13 by HappyPrimate

When I was a child of 7 yrs old (I'm 60 now), I visited the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans with my family one summer. We had a great time. However, when we visited what was called the chimp island exhibit, I observed them for a few minutes and the most amazing thing I saw was just how much they resembled humans. It took me aback and I knew at that moment we had to be related. Of course when I told my parents what I had concluded, that the chimps looked and acted so much like us, I was admonished, told I was absolutely wrong. I never forgot that feeling of kinship with those chimps that I had felt so deeply. It wasn't until I was an adult that I learned just how right I was about it. It made me very happy. While chimps and others in the great ape family are not precisely the same, one can see, especially with unprejudiced eyes of a child, the obvious connections.

Sat, 24 Mar 2012 13:35:16 UTC | #930158

Go to: Study reveals why our ancestors switched to bipedal power

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 18 by HappyPrimate

I suppose we may never know for sure why our ancestors stood up on 2 legs permanently, but I always thought it was because of environmental pressure. As the climate changed and forests they previously inhabited became more sparse and ultimately giving way to treeless savannahs, our ancestors who adapted survived. Why should our ancestors maintain tree climbing physical attributes in a nearly treeless environment? They would have had to walk over vast distances in the hot sun seaching for food and it is far more physically economical to do it upright on 2 legs.

Thu, 22 Mar 2012 01:46:43 UTC | #929486

Go to: Church Puts Legal Pressure on Abuse Victims’ Group

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 18 by HappyPrimate

News for Mr. Donahue, more and more people are figuring out that they don't need the catholic church. I think it would be good to abolish the use of alter boys. As an ex-baptist, I always thought alter boys were a bit creepy anyway. Keeping all children away from clergymen would be best.

Mon, 19 Mar 2012 03:31:08 UTC | #928538

Go to: Secularism-A Short Film

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 18 by HappyPrimate

I was introduced to Robert Ingersoll in a book by historian Susan Jacoby entitled Freethinkers. It is a terrific history of early American history for anyone interested in becoming more familar with how secular thinking prevailed among those responsible for setting up our government and how the struggle to keep religion out of government began with the churches from day one. Her accounts of Col. Ingersoll are many and she does not shy away from accounts not altogether flattering. For his time, Col. Ingersoll was considered very strident. Like Christopher Hitchens, you either loved him or hated him.

Mon, 12 Mar 2012 01:55:59 UTC | #926306

Go to: 75 Nobel laureate scientists call for repeal of Louisiana Science Education Act

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 18 by HappyPrimate

This is great news. Even our local "Business Report" here in Baton Rouge carried this article.

http://businessreport.com/apps/pbcs.dll/section?category=daily-reportAM&date=20120306

Tue, 06 Mar 2012 22:31:14 UTC | #924989

Go to: Why do the religious insist on presenting a united front?

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 33 by HappyPrimate

My thoughts on the coalition of religous groups is that they feel comforted by the fact that the collection of their adherents are constrained in their minds and actions by believing in an overlord that stands ready to punish the merest infraction of established dogma, thus the phrase heard frequently that, oh yes, he/she is god fearing means something to be admired. Each believer feels a bit of power over another believer in invoking the fear of that punishment and effectively being able to control the behavior of said fellow believer. It can be a powerful psycological tool and the admonisher actually feels very powerful using it. Clergy get a tremendous feeling of power realizing that their mere words can affect millions of their adherents behavior and thinking. Consequently, someone who rejects the existence of this overlord and thus lives without fear of punishment from an unseen overlord jepordizes those feelings of power and authority making the believer extremely uncomfortable. The believer still strikes out with their familiar threats of damnation and is unnerved that it is powerless and has no effect. It is literally frightening to those who believe in the overlord that they've become powerless - you, as an unbeliever, can potentially act and think as you determine without fear and their constraint and thus are unpredictable, your behavior, to them, becomes unreliable and thus considered threatening. They can only see chaos resulting and thus they flock together in an effort to create muscle to enforce their delusional contraint upon those who have thrown off those bonds. How many times I've heard it said by believers that they care not what god one believes in as long as they believe in a god - for without a belief in an overlord, the believers are without influence and presumed power and every believer cannot abide feeling powerless. It is their greatest fear.

Sat, 03 Mar 2012 13:42:43 UTC | #924040

Go to: Catholicism, Contraception and Secular Morality at Notre Dame by Sean Faircloth

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 18 by HappyPrimate

I become more and more impressed by Sean with each talk I hear. I certainly hope his audience keeps growing larger and larger. Fantastic choice by RDF for us in the U.S.

Fri, 02 Mar 2012 01:17:25 UTC | #923646

Go to: Sean Faircloth on the Alan Colmes Show - Fox News Radio interview, February 2012

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 8 by HappyPrimate

I was sort of squeamish about listening to this interview as I was not expecting Coloms to be so rational but then again he was counter to Hannity on Faux Noise so I probably shouldn't have felt that way. It was an excellent interview and I hope there was a substantial audience for it. Sean's book is really good.

Tue, 21 Feb 2012 01:20:59 UTC | #920187

Go to: Religious freedom and religious privilege

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 3 by HappyPrimate

And now Rick Santorum is accusing President Obama of pushing a false theology. I almost choked on my orange juice this morning hearing that jerk say something so stupid. I, of course, yelled at the TV that "All theologies are false you moron." He even stated that President Obama is taking away a "creator given right" from citizens. Clearly this man is not mentally qualified to be the leader of a secular nation with weapons of mass destruction at his command. I agree with aquilacane comment and I also think if the 1st Amendment had inserted the word "private" before "free exercise thereof" therein we would not have the religious folk thinking they can insert their beliefs in the public square so much. One word could have made an huge difference.

Sun, 19 Feb 2012 17:47:16 UTC | #919694

Go to: Freedom of and From Religion

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 12 by HappyPrimate

Some really fine comments above. I would just add that I think one of the reasons the bishops are being rather brazen on this issue is that the Supreme Court currently has a catholic majority which is an astounding first in U.S. history. If such an issue is challenged up to the SC, I think they feel they have an advantage. I hope they are wrong, but it wouldn't surprise me if they were right.

Sat, 18 Feb 2012 01:02:27 UTC | #919083

Go to: Pope 'exorcised two men in the Vatican', claims new book

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 55 by HappyPrimate

I would put a thought caption to the picture above saying "I can't believe how much it costs these days to hire stupid stunt men and they didn't even spew pea soup or swivel their heads around."

Fri, 10 Feb 2012 00:39:05 UTC | #916072

Go to: ‘How do atheists find meaning in life?’

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 168 by HappyPrimate

Very well done Paula. Maybe you or someone could compose a book with answers to all those tired questions theists repeatedly ask us. This piece you wrote is an excellent start.

Sat, 21 Jan 2012 02:17:10 UTC | #910388

Go to: Symphony of Science - The Greatest Show on Earth! A music video about Evolution

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 30 by HappyPrimate

@ Comments 12, 17 et al I love these videos too! I have a CD of several of them that I play in my car going to and from work. Makes a nice break from the political news. I too have enjoyed learning the quotes by heart and I do enjoy the way they make it sound like music. To those who hate the sound, just don't listen then. Many more people do enjoy them very much.

Fri, 20 Jan 2012 00:27:14 UTC | #910022

Go to: Darwin censored by the Turkish government's porn filter

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 8 by HappyPrimate

The only hope I have with this development is that it backfires. It is well known that when something is forbidden, it becomes alluring and desirable, particularly to the young. Taboos are far too enticing to avoid. In this modern day of technology and e-information, no government will ever be able to completely wall off its population from access.

Sat, 31 Dec 2011 01:44:11 UTC | #903920

Go to: Afterword from Lawrence Krauss' New Book - A Universe From Nothing

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 12 by HappyPrimate

Exciting to know I can now get this wonderful lecture, expanded no less, in book form. The Afterword by Richard is a huge bonus. Like another poster above, I too have passed the link to the YouTube video to many many people and have watched it several times myself. I would love to have a DVD of the lecture and any more that Lawerence Krauss might have available. He could include the fascinating discussion he had with Richard too. As much as I will enjoy reading this book, I really love listening to him talk.

Fri, 30 Dec 2011 23:47:19 UTC | #903898

Go to: Why We Lie

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 40 by HappyPrimate

Isn't Mother Teresa a perfect example of someone who for a lifetime practiced the rituals and did all the prescribed religious stuff and still, at the end, she never felt it was real?

Mon, 26 Dec 2011 18:10:28 UTC | #902789

Go to: Forced Merriment: The True Spirit of Christmas

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 24 by HappyPrimate

What a wonderful surprise to receive additional words from the Hitch today. I was unaware of Tom Leher's song, but enjoyed it very much.

Mon, 26 Dec 2011 17:58:20 UTC | #902787

Go to: Lawrence Krauss on Cosmic Connections

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 47 by HappyPrimate

I really enjoy these talks and I wish I could purchase DVDs of such. Could RD.net market them?

Sun, 04 Dec 2011 21:59:51 UTC | #895671

Go to: Pristine Big Bang gas found

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 11 by HappyPrimate

And this astounding discovery (which it absolutely is) will be on primetime TV news when? Why isn't it front page news in the printed papers? Oh, I expect there may be a mention somewhere, but not in proportion of importance for the knowledge it imparts for our understanding of the universe we live in.

Sat, 12 Nov 2011 14:05:30 UTC | #889657

Go to: Gingrich says atheists can’t be trusted, disregards 50 million secular Americans

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 4 by HappyPrimate

Gingrich said that Americans should value religion first, above morality and knowledge.

Well, that says it all doesn't it? Religion first and foremost over any sort of morality (cause it has none) and stay stupid. That's the American way. LOL

Tue, 01 Nov 2011 23:22:12 UTC | #886189

Go to: Recovering from Religion announces the hiring of a new Executive Director Jerry DeWitt

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 12 by HappyPrimate

This is wonderful. I wasn't aware of this organization but I can see that it will be very useful to many. Jerry is from my neck of the woods and he is scheduled to talk to our local atheist group in December. It will be exciting to meet him.

Fri, 28 Oct 2011 00:50:48 UTC | #884752

Go to: The Language Fossils Buried in Every Cell of Your Body

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 5 by HappyPrimate

I once heard it suggested that females were the first to use expressive language in order to teach their children lessons in surviving within the tribe and also found it useful for gossip. Males simply picked it up from their mothers. Obviously there is not a shread of evidence for this but I found it mildly reasonable and amusing.

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 00:36:19 UTC | #882713

Go to: NASA's Spitzer Detects Comet Storm In Nearby Solar System

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 15 by HappyPrimate

Awesome news and quite exciting. Noticed the article did not mention any detection of an intelligent designer present during this process. LOL

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 00:11:30 UTC | #882707

Go to: Faircloth discusses his new book "Attack of the Theocrats: How the Religious Right Harms Us All & What We Can Do About It."

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 21 by HappyPrimate

Just got my book in today. Looking forward to reading it. I've been concerned about the far right religious nuts for decades now. He is correct that the churches have been promoting chosen candidates for their purposes. At first it was not very obvious, but now it is blatant, in your face. I don't even know if we can pull this country back from the edge of theocracy anymore but I have hope. We have a dire need for qualified secular candidates.

Tue, 18 Oct 2011 23:11:08 UTC | #881985

Go to: Ultra-Orthodox Jews picket girls' school

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 75 by HappyPrimate

I've been following this story on the BBC website. I haven't seen it on any US news sites yet or maybe I've missed it. My first thought was how much it reminded me of the taliban throwing acid at girls going to school. These guys would have probably been far more forceful had there not been a fear of retaliation by other adults and security forces. They do not have autonomy there luckily. This is what happens when myths are taken too seriously. I actually wish their government would come down hard on them for these extreme views and resulting actions. I remember a few years ago reading about a woman riding a bus that was beaten because she was on one of "their" buses. Israel may have elections but it calls itself a "Jewish State" and in my book that is a theocracy. The nasty business going on in that region between the muslims and jews won't stop until one side or the other completely destroys the other.

Wed, 12 Oct 2011 00:02:55 UTC | #880036

Go to: Hitchens: "I'm not going to quit until I absolutely have to"

HappyPrimate's Avatar Jump to comment 5 by HappyPrimate

In response to what Richard and Christopher said, words fail me. Awesome minds, the both of them.

Tue, 11 Oct 2011 00:53:19 UTC | #879595