Welcome to Where We Ask You to Question Before You Believe

Where Are The Scientists In Congress?

by Justin Clark

A few years ago on Real Time with Bill Maher, astrophysicist and science communicator Neil deGrasse Tyson brought up a very interesting point about the United States Congress. “I wonder what profession all these Senators and Congressmen are? Law, law, law, law, business man, law, law. . . . There are no scientists? Where are the engineers? Where is the rest of life?,” quipped Tyson. The rest of life, indeed. According to a report released last year by the Congressional Research Service, there were only 11 members of Congress (out of 535) that were scientists or engineers; all of them were in the House of Representatives, with the exception of one engineer in the Senate. This is the very definition of disproportionate, seeing as by 2010, one in every 18 jobs in the United States was in Science, Technology, Engineering, or Math (STEM). By 2018, it is projected to be nearly one in five. If our congressional representation kept a parity with the private sector, there should be 30 scientists, rather than merely 11. By 2018, it should be closer to 91.

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Why Atheism Nowadays

Why Atheism Nowadays?

by Daniel Reynoso

 

Scrolling through my Facebook feed is always a two-edged sword. On the one hand, I’ve got access to some of the most creative, insightful, and all-around amusing content to be found on the internet. On the other hand, I’m taken aback by some of the most ignorant, childish, and counterproductive approaches to important ideas that I’ve ever seen!

 

Our “deep” discussions often devolve into a chaotic back-and-forth of anecdote, alleged evidence, and rejections of various sources of so-called authority. Just try to salvage a coherent, level-headed argument in the minefield of the comments section of any given post! It can make you swear off social media—at least temporarily.

 

Of course, some topics tend to evoke this kind of erratic behavior more so than others. Few of us ever become emotionally embroiled in a charged debate about our favorite Netflix series, but controversial claims about the nature and meaning of our existence will always find stalwart soldiers on all sides of a debate.

Without the Net: Depression and Anxiety as an Atheist

by Justin Clark

Content Note: This article is about my experiences with depression and anxiety. I’m not a medical professional or psychologist, so if you’re worried about your own condition, I strongly advise you to visit your doctor. This article is not intended to be medical advice.

*

I often wonder what it feels like to die, to give up on everything; to finally feel the release of this tortured frame of my body and be free. It’s a thought I’ve had many times in my life. Despite my successes, my family and friends, and the passions that animate my curiosity, the creeping darkness of my own mind still haunts me.

To know these feelings is to know depression, at least how it manifests in me. I’ve lived with clinical depression for over ten years, and clinical anxiety for three. Alongside the darkness and thoughts of death, I also experience episodes of intense worry, regret, and self-destruction. These moments paralyze me, make me feel the urgency of my body. The constant wrenching in the stomach, the deep and stentorian beats of my heart. This combination makes it very hard for me to relate to people, especially ones whose easy-going nature and calm demeanor often aggravate my own intensity.

Heavens and Earth or Earth and Heavens

by Azad

افلا يتدبرون القران ولو كان من عند غير الله لوجدوا فيه اختلافا كثيرا. ٤:٨٢

“Do they not ponder the Quran? Had it been from any other than God, they would have found in it much discrepancy.” 4:82

It is clearly stated in the above verse that the Quran is the word of God and the argument is that if it had been from other than God (or written by a human being), then you would have found many contradictions within it. Now, we need to explore whether the Quran has contradictions in it or not. It is not our topic whether it is actually the word of God, only if it does not have any contradictions. The Quran claims that it is flawless and perfect, so we need to examine this further to find out.

We think that anyone should be able to find many internal and external contradictious in the Quran if he or she analyzes it critically and logically. For the moment we will present some internal contradictions of the Quran for you.

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Through the Struggle

Through the Struggle

By Nate Gaunder

As a young Christian, I had a very poor, limited view of the world. I’ve been told that,

“This world is broken, it’s wicked, it’s lost, it’s sinful, it’s evil throughout. That is why it is ‘our job’ as Christians to bring the light of the lord to shine for all to see, for all to receive the fathers gift. To bring people to the kingdom of heaven.”

The more I spend time alone reminiscing on my young christian life, the more I realized just how much this ‘religion’ (theism) kept forcing me to surrender to it; emotionally.

You see, the quote stated above is meant to be empowering, its goal is to give you motivation and encouragement to fight the good fight. Any Christian would agree that it is “our job” to save mankind, to save people from their sins, save them from demons, the devil and all that is wicked. But what about us? What about our emotional growth? Until I stepped into ’emotional therapy’ about a couple months ago, I had no idea what emotions truly were. I thought it was just the way that you think of things, that it is a guide to help us with our ‘process of examining ones own thoughts’. I was wrong. Turns out, it’s ‘energy in motion’! It is something that is completely ‘unconscious’ to our state of consciousness. It can happen out of nowhere and it’s usually something that starts in your gut. It has nothing to do with the human mind at all. Once I learned this, I started to have a new outlook on my life, and not necessarily in the most positive light.

The Scientist and Communicator: Reflections on Carl Sagan

by Justin Clark

carl-sagan-20th-anniversaryIt has been twenty years today since we lost Carl Sagan, the beloved astronomer and science communicator at the age of 62. His untimely death still feels prescient, especially in light of our seemingly chaotic and irrational world. However, I know that if he was still alive, Sagan would have found a way to be optimistic, looking ever forward to new horizons of knowledge and exploration.

I Scared The Hell Out of Myself!

 

By Nate Gaunder

 

i-scared-the-hell-out-of-myselfI remember being young, obviously. I remember being told a lot of things, especially in Sunday school. I learned a lot about this guy named God. I was taught that God was the creator of all existence by literally everyone in the church! They would tell me he is the beginning and the end, the alpha and the omega, he was king. I was taught that he is the one who made me, as well as everyone and everything else. Turns out, that God was also my father? This was news to me since I already had a dad, yet everyone knew. A matter of fact, God was everyone’s father. “Who’s your daddy, and what does he do?” My daddy made the universe! I also learned a lot about God’s son Jesus. He was a Jew, something everyone made clear. I was taught that Jesus was the reason why I get to live with him and God forever! Oh, and he too was also my father.

 

[Side note: So God is our father, as well as Jesus’s father? Yet Jesus himself is also our father? But Jesus is not God’s father? Jesus is his son? But they are not related, yet they are the same? Hmm… think of Jesus as God’s adopted son, and we are his less fortunate spoiled kids. Damn, child support must be a bitch! ]

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ALL DRESSED UP

ALL DRESSED UP

By  Nate Gaunder

 

:::This poem is an explanation of Nate’s experience with anxiety while attending church as a teenager:::

all-dressed-up

 

Greeted words. “Wake up… it’s time”.

*Eyes open, Lungs fill*

Hears them calling.

“Get up, its time”.

(Stares at door)

*sigh*

Aron Ra announces run for Texas State Senate

by
Justin Clark

aron_raAron Ra, the charismatic science educator and atheist activist, has announced his intention to run for Texas State Senate in 2018. On a recent episode of Dogma Debate, Aron Ra explained why he felt the time was right to announce his intention to run. Inspired by Bernie Sanders and California State Senate candidate Steve Hill, Ra remarked that “in 2018, when I run for Texas State Senate, I’m going to do an advertising campaign along those lines, and I think people are going to be completely outraged at what they’ve had to put up with for the two years leading up to that point before I do.”

Debate Between a Jew and an Ex-Jew

by
Steve Miller
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Here’s a three hour debate that I had today with an orthodox Jew:
Jew: How can you not believe in God? Do you think that your father, grandfather, great grandfather, etc. were all liars?
Me: No. I think that they sincerely believed that Judaism is true but somewhere along the lineage, one of my grandparents were duped, just like cult leaders do to people today.
Jew: What are you talking about? Cults are nothing. They don’t last.
Me: What about Mormonism? It started less than 200 years ago and it grew into a religion of over 14 million followers. Judaism could have started the same way. It could have started 2,000 years ago, with just a few people and then grew bigger over time. After all, it was much easier to deceive people 2,000 years ago, than it is today.
Jew: When do you think that it started? If someone would claim that they have a sacred script that was given to their parents at Mount Sinai, nobody would believe it. Everyone would ask, “why didn’t I hear about this from my parents?” Nobody would accept it.