How it Works
Hey, I said that!
Sometimes, in a fit of disgust, I will write something that later turns out to be particularly meaningful. That I prize something I wrote means only that I, an ordinary guy, recognize a truly rare event. I’m sure you’ve voiced your own original gems at times; why not share them? Besides, there are so many to regret. Those are for learning, not sharing.
I try to avoid the word ‘religion’, nowadays, mostly because it’s not well defined, so that people understand it according to their own definition when they read about it. Then, they get angry. So, I learned to understand two kinds of religion (There are likely three, but I know nothing about that). The two kinds of religion are called ‘ecclesiastical’ and ‘temporal’. There are many areas of overlap between them. As an example, the sign refers to both.
- Ecclesiastical: what represents ‘real’ religion to most minds. Beliefs and doctrines associated with an organized religion or cult, the truth for which verifiable objective evidence remains unavailable. Evidence provided to support ecclesiastical beliefs generally looks to unreliable, unsourced textual matter for verification and authority (what you’re reading, or who you’re hearing, is the source).
- Temporal: personal beliefs, not associated with, and often contrary to, doctrines associated with an organized religion or cult for which objective evidence remains unavailable. Temporal beliefs are generally about natural phenomena and states, and secular interests. As with ecclesiastical beliefs, temporal doctrines depend on written (including printed and vocal) matter for verification and origin. Source materials for temporal beliefs may come from philosophies, reasoning, experience, or need. (An example of need can be found in my own Evolution, written to provide a simple answer to the claim that something cannot originate in nothing. Because it expresses my belief in something that cannot be verified (although sensible), I readily concede it is a product of my own personal temporal religion as I reasoned it into an expressible form. I feel no shame for that.
So, yes, even though atheism cannot be a religion, atheists do have religions, just like everybody else, reasoned into existence to answer to their own needs according to their individual educations, rationale and experiences. Rather than denial, we should display overt pride that we can think for ourselves and live accordingly, moral lives that deserve as much recognition and honor as anyone’s. Our unnamed temporal conclusions deserve as much respect and recognition as any our US government now illegally honors. Rather than denial, we must instead demand. One roadblock to that recognition is the tax-free status granted to the ecclesiastics, that honors them with preferential recognition that validates them with financial reward. Get that corrected and the rest will be easy.
Speaking for the Religion of Lloyd, thank you for your time.