A Shift of Direction for this Blog, and Plans for the Future


As I sit at my desk this morning, fueling myself with such unhealthy but tasty things as Halloween themed gummy candy, I wonder where I’m going to take this blog. I don’t know with certainty, except for one thing:

No more posts on organized atheism. Organized atheism is dead where I am concerned. I do not identify as an atheist, for it says nothing at all about me save my lack of belief in gods.

Historically, ‘atheist’ was a strawman invented and argued against by religious apologists since the ancient Greeks, and this was certainly the use to which those like Blaise Pascal have put it. ‘Atheist’ was also a convenient epithet used to accuse and point fingers at rival theists of other religions.

Everything good was ascribed to religion, or theistic belief, or a specific subset of theistic belief, and everything bad to the reviled unbeliever or heretic.

I do not identify as an atheist because it makes no sense and serves no purpose than to point me out as a choice target for conversion, pity, and discrimination by proselytizers and zealots.

I might as well specifically identify as an adraconicist, for my lack of belief in magical, fire-breathing dragons, or perhaps an asidheist, for my lack of belief in Celtic faerie folk, an aZentradist for my nonbelief in ten meter tall alien cloned warriors…

The list of useless labels could go on forever, but you see my point. ‘Atheist’ only serves as a label to point at and judge for theists, even liberal theists, and serves no real function. I find ‘agnostic’ also philosophically and descriptively useless.

I do identify as a skeptic and as a humanist, as at least those actually say something about me. ‘Skeptic’ says something about my approach to claims of fact and the examination of arguments, while ‘humanist’ speaks of my ethical views in a positive way, by what I do believe is right and wrong, not by what I don’t believe exists.

I am a proud skeptic and a proud humanist, but being proud of a lack of belief in gods is just as silly as that of not believing in three-headed Martians. I may as well be proud for not believing in Leprechauns or the Easter bunny! (Thanks, Maria. Your FB post earlier this evening went to good use.).

Pointless!

So, no more written posts by me on atheism or any discussion by me of religious faith on this blog. You saw it here first. I may not even post on logical fallacies that much if at all, as by themselves I don’t think they’re that interesting. Cognitive biases, yes. Posts on effective methods of rational thinking and practical tests for their reliability, yes. Those have some value, and fallacies will be discussed in brief, but really, no longer at length in their own posts on this site.

I’ll continue to do the fractal posts, writing on skeptical issues at times, thoughts that come to mind, reviews of books, movies and the courses I take, and such. But the rest is kind of up in the air. I’d really like to have the *Oomph* to post more on mental health topics, particularly schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders, since that’s something important and needed, and something I’ve just never been able to do very often to my satisfaction.

Over the next few days, while I’m sorting out this blog’s future, I’ll be doing fictional journal entries by a character played in my gaming group’s GURPS campaign, Sergei, the ninja who ninjas wish they were.

I’m planning, in about a year, to shift my blog posting over, bit by bit, to my blogger site, since I find the user interface more friendly and versatile than WordPress, but all in due time. I will, even after fully moving over, keep this site online, but inactive for posting purposes.

There’s a lot to do to get that going, and I’ll probably have to purchase extra storage and other options for image files I post on Blogger, but it’ll be worth it.

In the mean time, let’s see what I can do to make THIS blog better! Thanks for tolerating my silliness.

Talotaa frang.

Update:

I’ll have to clarify some of what was said above:

I’ll not post material dealing directly with organized atheism, its activism, and particularly the topic of Atheism+, as I know next to nothing about it and want no involvement in anyone’s conflicts.

I know people on both sides of the argument, and on neither side; good, smart, sensible people, and friendship is more important to me than ideology.

I’ll not post direct attacks on religion, on the matter of religious faith as an epistemology, nor attacks on the arguments of religious apologetics, as I’ve done plenty of those ad nauseam in earlier posts. Also, others do it and have done it far better than I. Seriously, it’s time to move on.

I’ll likely continue to post on some matters of specific secular importance, like issues of separation of church and state, science education, religious and ideological attacks on science, and on discrimination against the rights of religious nonbelievers.

A disclaimer: I do not think that my skepticism, my humanism or my theistic nonbelief say anything about me as a person compared with others, and I can only be better than myself as I was. Skepticism speaks only of the intellectual principles and methods I strive to employ in evaluating claims, humanism of ethical principles I strive to follow, and theistic nonbelief says nothing at all. I try to avoid dogmatic thinking and entanglements in ideology; economic, political and religious, but also other sorts when I can. I recognize that these can be and are toxic, tribalistic, and dangerous, even if and especially when they seem to agree with my prejudices a bit too much.

About Troy Loy

I seek to learn through this site and others how to better my ability as a person and my skill at using my reason and understanding to best effect. I do fractal artwork as a hobby, and I'm working to develop it to professional levels, though I've a bit to go till I reach that degree of skill! This is a crazy world we're in, but maybe I can do a little, if only that, to make it a bit more sane than it otherwise would be.

Posted on Sunday, 1:30, November 3, 2013, in General and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. We have been talking around similar circles at my place. I can see where you are coming from. The list would be pretty long to describe everything I don’t believe in. It’s better to describe what I am rather than what I am not.
    I’m totally impressed that you know what an adraconicist is.

    Like

    • I may have gotten the idea from talks with my gaming friends about DnD, something about Half-Dragons and Dragon mages. Add to that seeing the DnD stats for Richard Dawkins online (he’s immune to all magic, for one thing), and it was inevitable.

      Like

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