If you enjoy what you read here you will also enjoy my novel
21 days in May
Please be aware this blog may be considered Illegal almost anywhere!

Atheism Double Plus Not Good

This is an extension of Atheism Plus Or Minus. An update or clarification, if you like, after a conversation with a fellow atheist about this topic.

Whilst I am for, as any of my posts will attest, equal rights, I feel that goal is best achieved by ending theism. As I see it, end theism & misogyny loses a huge platform; for me, other issues are subordinate to atheism.
My feeling is that it is misguided to call it "atheism+" as it implies there is a superior, "more atheist" faction and simultaneously diminishes "atheist" by automatically, conversely implying there exists a faction that is "less atheist". If they'd called themselves (eg)"atheist organisation for social justice" then that would not be extending the basic paradigm of atheism; it merely signifies a group of atheists who campaign for an additional cause, so no extra explanations. I feel Atheism+ will add many, needless, extra sentences to every/many atheist/theist discussion, explaining why/why not we each do/do not subscribe to the atheism+ label. I see it as an over complication and waste of precious debate time, a dilution of the discussion; much like we have had since someone claimed to have seen a mysterious man in an elevator, the business of arguing purely for atheism has been sidetracked in favour of another agenda.

If Atheism plus was put forward as a consultation document then I've given my opinion; A+ is a divisive distraction from and obfuscation of the 'cause' and, as I see it, will remain so. You, I and all of us have wasted too much time on it already.
As far as implications go, I tried to see A+ from the religioner's position; they love to infer, and the implication is there to be seen, they will see it.
I stand by my observations, whether they are right or wrong only time will tell.
Links to actual conversation

Atheism plus has already caused division.
And it is the ill-considered, paradigm changing name that has caused that division.

This is one of the Too Many Questions
Please leave a comment - Anything will do
The best communications are often,

Atheism Plus or Minus

The strength of atheism is in that it is, generally, arrived at individually.
I've been on-line on and off for a decade or so, seriously since 2006, but have been arguing pro-atheism since my teens.
And the one thing I've loved is the independence.
The lack of a centralised authority, the lack of others, not necessarily betters, setting standards for me.
Later since the advent of social networking I have been thrilled by the support of those atheists with specific expertise stepping in to assist with pertinent bible verses, scientific points etc when they thought it necessary to support my/our argument.
I've also been thrilled by how ready atheists are to police ourselves; it gives me great confidence to think that if I make logic boob or deliver an unintentional implication or so some other incorrect statement, there'll usually be half a dozen atheists ready to point out the fault.
(Thanks to all who, over the years, have propped up my fallibility)
The fact for me that atheism was and currently is not centrally dictated by those who "know" has been its greatest strength.
I feel that the different routes out of oppression that atheists have taken have always been paved by critical thinking; atheism is not the destination of the route to freedom, it is merely a symptom, a consequence, a pit stop on the road.
Atheism is a lack of belief in gods only and the stated list of principles detailed in Atheism+ should not be diminished to a mere "+"; it's derogatory to summarise them as such. They are each separate, valuable, important issues, which have absolutely nothing to do with atheism.
The strength of the atheist "movement" is in that is not under control, it is a prime example of how "not under control" does not mean "out of control". It is a "movement" by virtue of numbers but it is a colonisation of thought and I feel it would weaken that to "corporatise" it.
Atheism is open source, nobody owns it.

We are all already telling the same facts, speaking critically in a reasonable, rational fashion because of what we each individually discovered to be, and because of the honesty inherent in concluding atheism.
It's our honesty and lack of a uniformed cohesive message that makes our point, we have not been told what to think, we each read the religious stuff and concluded "Well, that's bollox" independently of any authority or structured, rote learning.
I feel if a 'message' is laid down, it will become a focus for opposition and a stick with which they will beat us; the moment a code of conduct for atheists exists, "You are only saying what your book tells you to say" can be directed at us. It is folly.
"I know!" said Florence
"What? What do you know?" asked Dougal, excitedly.
"We'll make a book of principles and rules fo..." she started but Dougal rudely interrupted.
"Rules? I'm not keen on rules! Rules for what?"
"Rules by which all the atheists can henceforth be known." she said, looking proudly up at the sky.
That's ironic thought Dougal, as Florence walked off to start making the list.
"And thus the cult of atheism was forged into the very antithesis of the struggle's purpose," said Mr Rusty, as he peddled by.
"Crikey, I wonder if Florence knows?" said Dougal as he scuttled off to tell her.

Atheism plus embraces all the things to which I already subscribe, merely by being an honourable human. I am atheist, I follow generally humanist principles and abide by the ideals of the declaration of human rights.
Atheism plus is a definition and authoritarian interference, I need not.
I do not, would not, object to the principles but I will not be taking the label; it's another unnecessary complication, a watering down.
For shit-sake people, stop naval gazing; take your self-obsessed heads out of you equally inclined rears and recognise. The vast majority of the public still don't understand the basics; agnostic, apostate, atheist...

Let's explain these conditions first, eh?

I posted this blog in 2012 - I can't believe it's still going on...

Jaclyn you have my sympathy.


This is one of the Too Many Questions
Please leave a comment - Anything will do
The best communications are often,

My Own Special Creation

For a while now I've been tweeting...
"Almost ANY notion, including ‘nothing’, is more plausible than ‘the first being EVER was omnipresent, omnipotent omniscient, immortal and benign’!"
...which I still hold as a reasonable position to take but here's a notional kick around that I've been trying to verify. I haven't yet; if you've any thoughts, I'd be thrilled.

As we all know, from the merry dance we've led in pursuit of the knowledge, the question "where did the universe come from?" is truly puzzling; the idea that something can come from nothing is troubling to say the least. It appears to us that the universal beginnings are paradoxical; the questions scream at us... How could a Big Bang happen in nothing? What happened before nothing? What made it start to NOT be nothing?
As we all also know, our primitive ancestor's answer of "a god did it" is far too complex - Occam's Razor shreds the “god creator” myth because of the necessity for the innate complexity of such a god.
For anyone wishing to argue "god is simple" - please!
Even thinking "I am" takes comprehension, of grammar, of personal pronouns and, for that matter, a perception of self, as distinct from something else. That's a huge amount of complexity before even getting into anything else a god would have had to think in order to think up a universe.
For a fuller explanation of why a god cannot be thought of as "the simplest answer" to the question "how did the all this get here?" have a read of Shaving God with Occam
Anyway, I've hit on a thought, which may have some merit, even though it's just a postulation based on a few weeks of trying to get my head around various aspects of Quantum theory. It isn't yet, my head, around it I mean but I've had this notion, so I thought I'd share. First things first; if any of the following seems too obvious, I apologise, I could say it's so "we don't leave anyone behind" but it's really that I've only got a loose grasp on this stuff myself....
A sub-atomic particle (photon, electron etc) = A Wave = A vibrating String (string theory)
As far as I can tell these are interchangeable labels for the same notion in physics and their usage seems entirely dependent on other factors, who is talking, what aspect of physics are being explored or discussed etc but to all intents and purposes they are the same.

We know that non-locality(1), the theory that a sub-atomic particle can exist in two places at the same time, is most likely a fact of our reality.
We know that in classical physics, time is a contingent of space. (No matter what moves between two points in space, regardless of the length of the gap between those points, it will always take time to do it)
I think we may state... where there exists no space, there exists no time. Or, to reword that statement, where Quantum super-position occurs it may not, exclusively, be occurring in "our" space-time. I think we may also state that if something exists as a "String" at a known coordinate, it cannot exist in "no time" because it is existing. And, perhaps, further infer that the string may exist at "any" point in time or, to put it another way, in "all times".
If we imagine the view of time we would have if we were a waveform, isn't "all times" just the "same" time?
I mean, when the particle is in two places at once it has not travelled, so its instantaneous transmission has happened without time.
Does that not imply that "time" is not of relevance to this "spooky" effect?
And, if time is not a barrier then trans-location to a time, in our view of time, "before or after" is permitted.
Indeed, imagining the view of time as if we were the particle, wouldn’t the whole of eternity exist as a single moment of potential? So couldn't the particle trans-locate, not just to anywhere but also to anywhen?
Especially as, without a time parameter, anywhen is always "now".
If quantum non-locality is true and "Stings" are not subject to time until they have been trapped into the causality arrow, as seems to be the case, then it seems plausible to me that they could, from our linear perspective, "travel in time".
Okay, so if "anywhen" is "true" then what?

Maybe the reason why the notion of "A universe from nothing" seems paradoxical to us is because it’s an actual paradox.
What if when the scientists at CERN next fire off their big-ring-thing, one of the particles "appears" in the very ultimate distant "when", pre-Big-Bang, thereby causing the Big Bang of the universe in which we now live?
I know what you are thinking...
"There IS a beginning but it only began because we got smart enough to begin it? But, without a beginning we shouldn't be here!" Sounds loopy, eh?
Well, if you think of it in terms of the well-known example, "the Grandfather Paradox"...
Go back in time and shoot your grandfather before he spawned your father and you would never have existed to go back in time to shoot him.
This shows us that almost any interaction by a time traveller in his own past could un-spin all of the multiverse from the point of intervention onward.
I see no reason to avoid inferring the converse of that so, by the same token, we may assume that the actions of the present/future could spin the past into existence?

Hey, don't blame me, it's just one of those thought things. I should've listened to another Janeway quote; "My advice on making sense of temporal paradoxes is simple: don't even try." but I didn't so here we are...
By Building CERN and firing it off, did we start our universe ourselves? I can't even figure out if there could be a way to discover the answer to that but the notion has solid scientific theories in support of it or, at least, more than there is for any god, which has none. And, as the notion is more than "from nothing", this "Temporal Paradox Universe" model must be seen as more probable than "nothing".
Are we then, perhaps, the "god" of our fictions? Whether it’s probable or not is likely the stuff of complex equations but is it plausible? The only reasonable answer, from this speculation, is yes.

However, maybe, just maybe, if you follow my next line of thought and if any of this actually makes sense, then maybe...
A cleaner in CERN reads this post. Next day, on a tea break, the cleaner is talking about it in the canteen. One of the Physics techs, sitting nearby, overhears and ponders on it while walking back to help firing off another tiny bullet. The original reader of this post, the cleaning staff, the canteen staff, the physics tech and anyone else to whom it has been mentioned are all thinking of it, are conscious of this posts preposterous notion; maybe they're even chuckling about it as the particle is fired.
Their collective conscious thoughts affect the particle's reaction and it trans-locates, not in space, but in time.
It "materialises" at Universal Cartesian coordinates 0,0,0,-1 : Same point in space, 13.7 Billion years and 1 second ago, our time.
The sudden injection of the "particle/wavelength/string" collapses what I think must be a super-positioned "nothing" and begins the creation of the universe in which we now exist.

Now, as the instigator of the conscious act that created the universe, wouldn't that sequence of events make me the much fawned over and hailed god of the scriptures?

And as both we and the universe are in existence, doesn't that suggest, that's exactly what did happen?
If so...
You're welcome. :D

For a more scripturally inspired, poetic rendering of this hypothesis have a read of
In The Before Is The Void

This is one of the Too Many Questions

1 A Lazy Layman's Guide to Quantum Physics

P.S. I have just learned that my 'Temproal Pardadox Universe' model is similar to the Participatory Anthropic Principle postulated by theoretical physicist John Archibald Wheeler in a radio show in 2006.
I don't know how similar they are but it's always a buzz to discover that some great thinker or other was thinking the same sorts of things, eh?
Kind of verifies I'm making some sort of sense. :)
Look it up if you wanna, I've had enough of the quantum for now - it's far too "headachey"!

Please leave a comment - Anything will do
The best communications are often,

Ancient Utopian Nightmare

While clearing out the attic of our antiquated local library the other day I found a box marked with a date in the future. Inside was some stuff I couldn't identify and a bunch of scratched blue-ray discs that looked as old as the hills.
This is a transcript of the only intelligible audio recording I could retrieve...

"How did the war start, Gran?"

"A stinking book of wishes and promises, Son."

"A book?"

"Yeah, see, the followers of this book believe that every word is perfect, that everything it says should be followed by all people all over the world."

"Wow! It must be some book!"

"It's not really, Son; they're brainwashed into thinking so but it delivers nothing new or good. It's a very old document written in the times when soldiers still wore shining armour and rescued maidens from dragons."

"Wow, that's old! That's older than you, isn't it Gran?"

"Ha, it' is, Son; much."

"Did they invade in longboats, like the Vikings?"

"No, although looking at the place now, they may as well have done. No, they had it all worked out; they used their women as baby factories, to grow soldiers and voters. Vile misogynists! This wasn't the first place they came to but everywhere it was the same story; the countries into which they were migrating were peaceful, unaware of the threat. They allowed the believers to settle in their lands, shared their harvest and broke bread with them. And the believers, they quietly grew their armies and drew their plans against them."

"Where did they come from?"

"Their religion was nothing, a long dead story almost consigned to the fiction section of the library and held as 'truth' by only a few primitive tribes of a baron land, a backwoods mythology of an ancient time with little or no power, until they found they had something to sell. You might say that we paid for our own downfall. You see, they used the revenue from selling to us, to fund many reprints of the book and the resurgent peoples spread out. Over the years the population of the lands they moved to were transformed, slowly their breeding policy tipped the balance in each land in turn and the voters voted their religious and political leaders into places of power. And each country in turn changed to the dark flag of the hoard. And still the peaceful natives of the lands didn't see what was happening.
You see, Son, their own birthrate, decimated by a century of wars, needed the influx of people to replace the slaughtered; they didn't see the problem because of their bankers greed and their own economic need, they required new people and the Muddlems breeding policy meant they had many to do the work.
In May of 2082, the Muddlems took control of this land, and this was such a beautiful land, Son; rolling green hills, flower filled meadows, all the people friendly with each other. Such a shame for all that to be trampled by ignorance!
The first Muddlem president introduced a new constitution and the many Muddlem religious leaders and politicians who were by then empowered and in parliament, voted for it. Two Weeks later, on the instructions of the President, with a majority mandate from the parliament, the Muddlems installed their own religious law and the first action taken under Pariah was that all non spiritual music and dance was banned; all the once packed theatres came under the authority of the new sacrilege laws. Only Muddlem approved spiritual plays allowed. They banned music, Son! And poetry, and literature, and innovation!"

"Why Gran? Those are all nice things that make people happy, except I don't know what inovo-nation means."

"Because that's what they're taught, Son; that stupid book holds human life in a vice grip, it deems all normal human expression to be the way of evil. Their culture never produced even a single artistic work. And that word, inn-ov-ation, that sort of means cleverness; like taking something that was working okay and making it work better."

"But that's a good thing too! How can anyone be against that? I thought everyone would want things to work better."

"Me too, Son, but they think that if it isn't in their storybook, it's of no value. If only their idol, Muddlehead the Stupid, had blown on a Tuba or embalmed a shark or something, maybe they'd not have been so hatefully opposed to freedom of expression.
It puzzled me at first, I used to wonder, 'If these Muddlems believe art, literature, dance, music and innovation are 'wrong', why settle in a country whose entire history is of highly valuing those very things?' The 'Why' became clear to me on the day of the first fire; destruction, Son, destruction of all the things we value, that's why a people migrate to a country whose values they hate.
Some say the fire, in what was surely the greatest of all libraries, was government instigated, some say it was fanatical hotheads but by that point I don't think you could have put a razor blade between those two groups. And then it spread like a virus, not just in the main archive library but in dozens, on the same day. Then, over the space of the weekend, almost every library in the country was destroyed the same way. Shortly after, academics known to oppose the teachings of the Muddlem book, those on record as calling it 'baseless nonsense' for holding as fact, as it still does, that which our great scientific endeavours have long since proved false, were 'collected' and detained in the 're-learning' camps that had constructed around the country to 'help the confused'.
It was appalling to watch, the dreadful backslide of humanity into a savage primitive belief system is, as I see it, by far the worst travesty in the history of humanity. All the great effort to comprehend the universe, all the skills deployed by workers, artisans and artists, all destroyed. All of our hopes and dreams trampled under the newly jackbooted product of an ancient totalitarian warlord. All progress halted in favour of sycophantic mumbling! I wept on the day the libraries burned, Son, I don't mind admitting it."

"Why did they do that, Gran? That's not just nasty, that's stupid!"

"That's what they're like, Son. They're so addicted to the idea of the promises in the book, they think its information alone is all humanity needs, that it's the only book needed. Mad fucking savages!
We, who could see it coming, had warned of the likely outcome of allowing those 'born' of ancient thinking to integrate, unprepared, into an established 21st century society but this land's peaceful people wouldn't listen, couldn't hear, just couldn't believe that such a plan even existed. They couldn't accept that a people promoting what they called a peaceful religion could not have noticed that their book's plan of global domination, is exactly the plan of a tyrant, oppressor or super-villain."

"Stupid people; they should have listened."

"They should've, Son, but they weren't stupid, they were just peaceful; they knew that any aim of global domination is the opposite of the way to peace and they naturally assumed that all normal, peaceful people would know that too. They were not prepared for the barbarism of the neo-ancient mind. No, Son; it was the politicians who were stupid. Their all-inclusive policies took no account of the fact that the Muddlems had not moved on from ancient times; they were fair minded liberal politicians of a fair minded liberal people, they thought 'people are people'. Now, that's understandable in a person who is not in power but for a person of authority, of responsibility and supposed leadership, to be unaware of the conflict that's likely to be the product of combining two periods of history in one land, is inexcusable. Yes, the leaders inaction, cowardice and inexcusable incompetence let this war happen. Now, whether the arms dealer shook hands with politician or not, only future historians will be able to tell but one things for sure the arms dealers rubbed their hands with glee at the prospect of another civil war in a previously peaceful nation. So the people weren't stupid, the leaders were stupid for not informing them properly of the threat of this ancient book's followers.
The general population finally started to take notice when, in the following month, all the museums were closed. All works and exhibits that offended the ideals of the book were hauled out and hurled into the sea, the Muddlems began dismantling monuments and sculptures, usually to a baying Muddlem crowd, screaming praises to their god, Allan the Bowelless. When the ancient great stone circle was dragged unceremoniously away to be made into one of the Muddlem mindrot towers, groups formed, a beginning of a resistance but the Muddlem government was in total control of the army. There were defections and after a few months of bloody street to street fighting, the country split into two warring factions, the original natives and the new Muddlem power.
Your Granddad was killed in the first day of actual fighting; the beginning of the civil war. Someone left a baby on our doorstep. Your Granddad heard it crying, got out of bed and went down to see. I don't remember anything after that until I woke up a few minutes later in the branches of the tree in the front garden. I had cuts and bruises but the entire front of the house was gone. Lovely little house it was, our first and, as it turned out, last marital home. My ears were ringing. I knew there had been an explosion but it wasn't really registering. I remember knowing your Granddad must be dead in the rubble and at the same time thinking "He's just cleaned the windows, yesterday; he'll flip when he sees this!" Then I remembered your dad, just a baby in his cot. I knew immediately he was alright, I could see right through the house into the largely untouched nursery.
It's why he's deaf in one ear, though, I'm sure!
The same thing happened to another family a few days later; the Muddlems were strapping explosives to babies and rigging them to go off when lifted from the doorstep. Sick! That fucking, humanity hating book to which they cleave excuses all actions against those who do not follow it! Barbarians!"

"What had Granddad done to deserve that, Gran?"

"I don't think he actually did anything to anyone ever son, he was a truly peaceful chap, your Granddad. I just think someone found out he didn't believe in gods. Or it could have been me, I'm atheist too and was a member of a humanist group. Or it could have been your great uncle who rented a room from us; he believed in a different god."

"Wow, that's all? Just because of that?"


"That's Nuts!"

"Ha! It is, Son; that's exactly what it is."

"When will the war end, Gran?"

"Who knows? They think it will end when all the World bows to the Muddlem god, Allan the Bowelless, but it won't. You see, the problem is he's pretend so his messenger, Muddlehead the Stupid, the one they say wrote the book for Allan, can't 'come back' like they want. And the psycho 'enforcers' of his doctrine will take his non-appearance to mean that followers are not showing enough piety, in some country or another, and they'll enforce stricter adherence, to the letter of the book. But their idol still won't appear because he'll still be pretend. So then there'll be an inquisition and the world will be sucked back into the same dark void it visited once before.
So, when? I think it'll be a while yet, Son, but I'll tell you what, WE'll end it.
10,000 years ago our ancestors cleared this land of the wild and vicious beasts. Then they cleared the thick thorny forests to form a nation so green and pleasant. Then they fought off endless invaders to protect what they'd achieved. And all of it, Son, all of it was accomplished while encouraging civilisation, peace and innovation.
We've done it before and we, your mum and dad, and you, your sisters and your sons and daughters and the thousands of others like us still left, will clear it again but it's a much tougher fight than we needed to have. If only the politicians had listened, if only they had not been in cahoots with the arms dealers, if only they had taken note of the psychology of the Muddlem hoard as they destroyed historic monuments in other countries then we, you, would not have to live in war, or this cave, come to that. But like I said, we'll clear 'em out and this time we'll destroy every copy of that heinous ancient supremacist document. We'll win, Son, right is on our side and right always wins against wrong, eventually."

"I hope so Gran."

"Me too, Son, me too. Now, come on, it's late, off to sleep with you and tomorrow I'll show you how to make a pipe bomb."

I'm really glad it's only fiction.
Just to be on the safe side though, to make sure it doesn't ever happen...

Anyone fancy a bit of a pray?
Or, maybe I can tempt you to a little wish?

Fair enough. :)

This is one of the Too Many Questions
Please leave a comment - Anything will do
The best communications are often,


If you enjoy what you read here
you will also enjoy my novel
21 days in May

Please be aware this blog may be considered Illegal almost anywhere!

Too Many Questions - Headlines