Advertisements

Category Archives: Site News

Comment Backlog – And Some News

So, I have a HUGE comment backlog.  It appears as though my post on naturalism got a bunch of atheists’ panties in a bunch, and they crawled out of the woodwork to reply on my ignorance of science.  I expected to be called ignorant of science; whenever a Christian criticizes science he’s called ignorant (even Christians with relevant PhDs in the fields of evolutionary biology, organic chemistry, and philosophy of science).  Obviously, I have no relevant science degrees; I just used to get good grades in science-related classes in high school and I read a bunch of extra books back in those days when I actually had “free time.”  So I knew if those other Christians are “ignorant,” then I was going to get it 10 times worse.

What I didn’t expect was the sheer amount of commenting that was done.  While I expect most of it will be typical comment-and-run tactics since Twitter was what generated all the traffic (give atheists on Twitter more than 140 characers in reply and they usually run scared), I’m still going to address the comments.  Either I will learn something about science, or school my commenters on philosophy.

Ideally, since I like dialogue on this site, both will happen.  However, I would like to point out that, per the title of the post, the primary focus of that post was philosophy.  The comments I’ve scanned are talking all about science.  Which indicates that, likely, at least some of the commenters noticed that I was Christian and my writing touched briefly on science, so they automatically decided to comment that I was ignorant.  Because Christians are always ignorant of science, don’t you know?

Now, where would atheists get the impression that Christians are ignorant?  I have no idea.  All of the Christians in the media limelight are always top-notch, with an encyclopedic knowledge of American history.  None of us ever say anything stupid.  So, c’mon, atheists!  Give us our due, here!

Anyway, I will get to the comment backlog starting tomorrow.  I will reply on here, but not Twitter.  Sorry, Twitterheads.

Additionally, I’ve noticed that no one ever visits my Articles page.  So, as a result, I’ve pulled it down and will redistribute revised versions to other websites that offer free articles for e-zines.  At least maybe then they will get read.

All right, on to bed with me.

Advertisements

Out of the “Office” this Week: Vacation to Gatlinburg, TN

My family and I are going on a vacation to beautiful Gatlinburg, TN this week.  We have three graduations in the family to celebrate–Aimee graduating with her master of fine arts, Rob with his bachelor’s degree, and Emily with a high school diploma.  I’m happy for all three!

Also, today is my sixth anniversary of being married to the best woman in the entire world, my wife–Jody Lynn Tucholski!  God has supplied the perfect mate for me to love, honor, and cherish for the rest of my life.  I’m very happy to share this crazy little life with her!

I don’t know if I’ll have Internet access while I’m down there.  So, it may be a while before I respond to comments or e-mail.  But I’ll get there, I promise.

Happy trails all, and congratulations to all members of the class of 2011, especially my amazing in-laws, Aimee, Rob, and Emily!

POLL: Does this Make Me a Snob?

Recently, I was directed by a Facebook ad to a local church.  I visited the church’s website because the ad said they had a “Gaming Ministry,” meaning that its members had a regular fellowship time to play table-top role-playing games of the Dungeons & Dragons variety.  That intrigued me, both because I used to be an avid player (before two kids sucked all of my free time away) and because most churches think that playing RPGs is a sin.

However, the more I read the site, the more disgusted I became with this church.  As an organization, they look good.  The pastor encourages the same sorts of things that I would if I were a pastor, and the same sorts of things that my own church encourages: membership in small groups, active volunteering and ministering to those in need.  The theology is a bit off from what I would say, given that the pastor is a student at Liberty University and I’m a Calvinist (LU is extremely anti-Calvinist).

Outside of minor theological quibbles, the main reason that I’m appalled by this church is the grammar and spelling on their website.  As an example, this is the description of the Christian Games Team:

[Redacted] heads up this team in its efforts to enrich the lives of the body through games. These things were given to us to enjoy… This team is responsible for the table top Games ministry. Star Wars events are held monthly and other events are common. role Playing and Board game events are scheduled almsote very week with three or more ongoing roled playing campaigns. This group visits Bash Con every year to show the love of God ot gamers with free snacks, drinks, games, and prizes. Fellowships often include boardgames and stategic war games as well as volleyball etc.

The pastor’s blog is no better.

Now, I know that I should probably just let it go.  But whenever I see a website or other form of communication from an organization that is so blatantly littered with bad spelling, grammar, and punctuation, I automatically think the organization is unprofessional and I won’t have any dealings with it.

Am I a snob for this?  I mean, my spelling, grammar, and punctuation aren’t perfect.  I’ve gone back over some previous posts and found errors of all sorts.  But, at least I proofread my copy a couple of times before I post!  My errors tend to be minor and confined to one or two per post.  That sample I provided had an error in nearly every sentence, and two sentences that toe the “run-on sentence” line.

You can add any additional comments below.

Happy National Atheists’ Day!

The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds, there is none who does good.

The LORD looks down from heaven on the children of man, to see if there are any who understand, who seek after God.

They have all turned aside; together they have become corrupt; there is none who does good, not even one.

Have they no knowledge, all the evildoers who eat up my people as they eat bread and do not call upon the LORD?

There they are in great terror, for God is with the generation of the righteous.
You would shame the plans of the poor, but the LORD is his refuge.

Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion! When the LORD restores the fortunes of his people, let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad.

–Psalm 14

Consistent Atheist: Meet Tom

Guest Post by Tom Scanlon

All right, I’m new to blogging so you’re going to have to give me some room.  My name is Tom Scanlon, and I’m an atheist.  But I feel like I’m different than most atheists in a very important way.  I consistently apply the attitudes and methodologies that led me to atheism to all areas of my life.

My life is pretty messed up because of that, but I don’t care.  I’m actually happy because I’m 100% consistent in all of my conclusions about life–no matter how weird they are.  In the coming weeks, I’m going to post about that, so you’ll see just how messed up things are.

Cory and I used to go to school together and we reconnected through Facebook.  I saw Cory had a blog and I talked to him about how to start one, since I was thinking about doing one about how consistent my atheism has become.  When I heard that you have to update blogs fairly regularly to get traffic and build loyal readers, I balked because I don’t think I have that much to say, or that I’ll even post that often.  So, being a gracious friend, Cory agreed to let me post every now and again to his blog.

So, hi, everyone!  I thought I’d start out with a brief introductory post and then maybe later this week or something I can put up a post about applying the methodology for rejecting Christianity to my personal life, and why it messed stuff up so badly.

All my posts will be under the Consistent Atheist category of the blog, so click on that to check me out.  Also, I got my own page.  All right, that’s it.  Hopefully I’ll be back around Friday or so with my first post.

So, I Haven’t Posted in a While…

So, I haven’t posted in a while.  I actually have several posts in the works, but for some reason I was never quite happy with any of them.

Then, I got bit by the Creative Bug and turned to writing some fiction.  I don’t write nearly enough fiction, actually.  I have an “idea folder” filled with books and screenplays that I might write “someday.”  I even have a proposal for a TV show that I’ve been kicking around for about two months that I’m not sure what to do with just yet.

As I wrote a blog article defending a Christian participating in fantasy role-playing games, I kept getting ideas for adventures.  So, I thought, why not actually write one?

Dungeons & Dragons adventures are tough to write; maintaining game balance is difficult, especially when you lack the ability to playtest.  Which led me to think backwards to my first brush with the world of role-playing games, the simplified board game of Hero Quest.  Back in 1998, I wrote a trio of Quest Packs for a HQ fan site called Agin’s Inn (defunct now, the Ye Olde Inn has taken its place).  I only ended up writing two of the three planned packs, both of which planted a seed for a fourth Quest Pack to tie up the storyline.

Typical me.  I start projects which I never finish.

Anyway, with the fresh bite from the Creative Bug, I set to work revamping the two original Quest Packs that I wrote, and finally started writing the third and fourth.

This was all supposed to be a quick diversion from apologetics, which I confess I’m getting a tad burned out on.  I had planned on maintaining a proper posting schedule here, but working on the Quest Packs wound up being all I did for the last two weeks.  That was not planned, I assure you.  But it was nice, and I needed it.

Then, I started getting tons of ideas for other HQ Quest Packs and D&D adventures.  I opened a gate or something.  It would be a shame to do nothing with them.  I guess I could always sell the ideas on eBay for exorbitant amounts of money.

That’s when I thought: everyone has to have a creative outlet.  Look at J.P. Holding’s Annals of Hearthstone. Why not me?  So I thought I might create a blog that offers free D&D adventures (as well as adventures for other role-playing systems, and maybe some of my other fiction) from time to time.

I’m still working out the details of that.  How often would I post?  What would I offer?  Strictly adventures, or some fiction as well?  And what would that do the posting over here, especially with me starting training for Pharmacy Tech?

This is what I have so far.

What’s in store on this blog?  I’m glad you asked.

  • The final two installments answering DaGoodS’s questions for Christians (I didn’t forget!).
  • God “tells” people to do horrific things, and every devout Christian can justify obvious sins by saying that they “know” God approves.  How, then, can we know what’s going on, then, if God places a “stamp of approval” on actions that contradict his word?
  • Brief introduction to law and grace, and why that’s so important.
  • The Parable of the Seeds (Mt 13:1-9) and how it applies to Christianity today.
  • More questions theists allegedly “can’t” answer.
  • Regular updates to my revamp of God is NOT Imaginary.  Co-author Joshua Rasmussen has been sending me some replies of his own to add to the my material.  I’m still trying to figure out exactly how I’m going to do this; the co-author thing is new to me.  I’ve always been a one-man show.

In conclusion, I’m still here and I’m hoping you are, too.  Stay with us; it should get very interesting from here on out!

Retraction

In a previous post, I chastised people for jumping ship to a different church for silly reasons.  It lends credence to the oft-repeated atheist argument that if a Christian doesn’t like what Christian doctrines his church is cherry-picking, just go down the street.  Repeat until you find a church cherry-picking the right doctrines from your personal perspective.

The point I’m trying to make is that church hopping seldom is from a theological conviction that your church is teaching heresy.  It is usually a matter of personal taste.  What people fail to consider is that God revealing himself to you isn’t always going to agree with your personal conviction of right/wrong, morality/immorality, etc.  A revealed God is going to challenge your preconceived notions of everything.  So if someone doesn’t like what the church is teaching, maybe it’s because he’s found sin within himself that needs dealing with.

So I came down on two egregious examples, Father Addison Hart, who I thought was leaving the Catholic Church and re-joining the Anglican Communion; and Father Alberto Cutie, who is leaving for the Episcopal Church in order to marry his illicit lover.  However, it appears I’m mistaken about Fr. Hart–he’s staying put.

I received an e-mail this evening from a friend of Fr. Hart’s.  He assures me that Fr. Hart is still in communion with the Catholic Church, however the good priest has resigned his pastorate.  In part, the letter reads:

The simple truth of the matter (which, again, I am in a strong position to know) is that Mr. Hart, whatever the appearance of the much-quoted blog response may be – and it must be admitted that it appears to have been written with a degree of tactlessness I myself was surprised at – has neither re-entered the Anglican Communion or indeed left the Roman Catholic Church. He has, it is true, resigned his position as a priest in the Diocese of Rockford, but, contrary perhaps to his words in an unguarded moment, remains in communion as a Catholic.

So I apologize for the error.  It was not intentional.

Help for Family

From left: Destiny, Denise, Joe (Destiny's husband, Denise's son)

As I stated in a previous post, my cousin (Destiny) and aunt (Denise) were injured in a propane blast on the evening of February 13.  It was powerful enough to blow the back door clean off the house.  Both received 3rd degree burns and are currently in the burn unit at St. Vincent’s Mercy Medical Center in Toledo, OH.

Logan James Nicholson

The real problem was that Destiny was pregnant, and the baby had to be delivered by emergency C-section on Valentine’s Day.  Not the way you want a little one to enter this world.  But he is doing well.  He’s in NICU for a few more days, and on antibiotics as a precaution.  Logan weighed five pounds, four ounces and was 18 1/4 inches long.  He was born three weeks early.

Continued prayers would be most appreciated.

Unfortunately, Joe and Destiny lost most of their possessions. Their house (which was a fixer-upper before) is in serious disarray.  If you can offer any financial help, please visit their support website to donate.

If you’re on Facebook, you can join the Support Destiny Nicholson Group to receive updates and offer moral support.

E-mail isadj1@gmail.com with any additional ideas, comments, or questions.

Returning to the God is Imaginary Rewrite

It’s been a while, but I’m now returning to the rewrite of my refutation of God is Imaginary. After reading some of my original disproofs, I’m happy to be doing the rewrite because some of my original apologetics were terrible. I’ve grown as an apologist, I’m proud to say.

Like anything, it’s a learning curve.

I have no set schedule for completing the proofs. I hope to also tackle Why Won’t God Heal Amputees in the near future as well.

What I’ve done so far:

And, co-author Dr. Joshua Rasmussen has put up his first article:

I’m probably going to edit that article a bit this week, since Dr. Rasmussen makes some points that I would like to expand on.

Prayer Request

I don’t normally put prayer requests out on the blog since the audience tends to be mostly atheist or agnostic, but the accident is serious enough that I wanted to do so anyway.

My Aunt Denise and her daughter-in-law Destiny were in Destiny’s new house when the hot water tank exploded.  The were life-flighted to the hospital with 3rd-degree burns.  Destiny is 8 1/2 months pregnant, which is the worst part of this.

I’ll post updates when I have them.  For now, any prayers would be appreciated.  Thank you.