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Dean Kirkland

Church of the Churchless

http://hinessight.blogs.com/church_of_the_churchless/

Located in Salem

Last update: April 3rd, 2016 at 09:45 pm

ping: http://ignoregon.com/ping/271

153 post clicks in the past 90 days

Preaching the gospel of spiritual independence

Amazingly, and not a little scarily for me, I've written 2,194 Church of the Churchless posts since I started this blog in 2004. I've covered lots of subjects. But an important topic hasn't gotten much attention from me. It's difficult...

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I'd expect better from a professor of philosophy than William Irwin's poorly reasoned essay in the New York Times, "God is a Question, Not an Answer." I really have no idea how he can defend statements such as this: Dwelling...

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We've all heard lofty sounding spiritual phrases that initially seem like they mean something, but on further reflection are recognized as empty words. In one of his Scientific American Skeptic pieces, "The True Meaning of BS," Michael Shermer uses Deepak...

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My churchless "sermon" this Sunday is based on an article in TIME magazine's March 28 issue, "In a turbulent stock market, the best investment move is the least obvious." This non-sacred secular scripture ends with a paragraph that has deep...

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Back in 2011 I discovered David Chapman's "Meaningness" writings. In a blog post I praised Chapman's dizzying thoughts about what life is, and isn't, all about. And shared what I said to the person who turned me on to the...

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Great timing, Steve. Your comment today on my "Why 'man of faith' is an insult" post came soon after I'd come across a perfect reply. But first, the comment: Brian, thank you for taking a moment to respond to my...

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Here's some news items from 2013 and 2014 I've learned about for those who like to keep up on what's happening with an Indian guru-led spiritual organization, Radha Soami Satsang Beas (RSSB). RSSB has been appropriating land from a wildlife...

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After reading Steven Pinker's book, "The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined," my thoroughly atheist wife recently was moved to write a letter to the editor of our local newspaper, the Salem Statesman Journal. The claim that...

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Wow. That was my thumbs-up one-word reaction to a well-written, cogent, intelligent, moving comment on a 2006 blog post, "Top ten signs you're a fundamentalist Satsangi." The writer put so much time and thought into the comment, right away I...

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Do you believe in God? This isn't an either-or question where the only possible answers are "yes" and "no." There are many shades of unbelieving and believing when it comes to God. Many outwardly religious people aren't inwardly sure whether...

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I'm still making my way through a thick, serious, thoughtful, well-written science/philosophy book, "The Singular Universe and the Reality of Time." (Previous posts about the book are here and here.) The authors, Roberto Mangabeira Unger and Lee Smolin, wrote different...

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Oh, man. As if I needed another reason to hate religious bigotry. But there it was, couldn't be ignored... a New York Times story that got my moral blood boiling: "Anticipating Nationwide Right to Same-Sex Marriage, States Weigh Religious Exemption...

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I guess this shows how I've really dived into the churchless, irreligious, naturalistic deep end. Reading the current New Scientist issue last night, I came across an article, "Meet your other brain." Online version has a different title and subtitle....

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Talking is good. Face to face, or otherwise. One of those other ways is through what I like to call "comment conversations." These frequently happen on this blog -- where people exchange a series of comments on some blog post...

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After more than ten years of blogging on this here Church of the Churchless -- 2,410,012 page views; 2,036 posts; 29,750 comments -- I'm still asking this question. Why should the claims of "modern mystics," who claim to have personally...

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As irritating as it can be to hear it is what it is uttered so often by athletes after a loss, I find this phrase appealing. I described why in a blog post a few years back, "The profundity --...

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A few weeks ago I said that I agreed with Obama's statement at a prayer breakfast regarding wrongs being committed by adherents of all religious faiths. But a Salon article argues for a broader conclusion: no President should be attending...

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Oh, man. I'm so glad I got pulled in by the Book Magnet. That's how I explained my purchase of two thick, serious books to the cashier at the Book Bin in downtown Salem, Oregon. I'd parked my car in...

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People who irrationally fear vaccines shouldn't be allowed to opt out of vaccination laws for either philosophical or religious reasons. After all, a lot of scientific research shows that vaccines are safe and effective. Sure, there are some risks. But...

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A few months ago I wrote about Lex Bayer's and John Figdor's atheist manifesto in "Halfway through 'Atheist Mind, Humanist Heart,' I love this book." Having finished it, here's their full list of ten non-commandments (I'd only gotten to six...

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I came across a poem, "Probability," by Lisa Purpura in the January 19, 2015 issue of The New Yorker while reading in bed before I went to sleep. I read it four times that night. More, since. I like it...

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A few days ago I rediscovered a book that I'd starting reading a few years ago, David Loy's "Nonduality: A Study in Comparative Philosophy." It's one of the few writings on the subject of nonduality that doesn't make me want...

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For something completely different... and really well written... and either marvelously meaningful or completely meaningless... yet fun to read, nonetheless... Check out Rivka Weinberg's New York Times piece, "Why life is absurd." I liked it a lot. While understanding it...

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Over on my other blog today I put up a post, "Statesman Journal should put Mohammed cartoon on opinion page." It irritated me that the editorial page editor of our local newspaper, which is part of the Gannett chain, said...

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Time for an experiment with comments on my blog posts. I'm scientifically minded. I enjoy trying something different and seeing how it works out. Starting today, I'm going to be less accepting of publishing comments that include a lot of...

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Like I've said before (quite a few times), and almost certainly will say again (after this time), religious beliefs shouldn't allow people to ignore laws. Where does this end, if we allow it to begin? Some Christian religious bigots believe...

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So many people have been saying so much that is right about the atrocious killings by Islamic extremists of staffers at a French satirical magazine, I don't feel that I can add much to the 100% justified outrage. This is...

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In Christianity, the Ten Commandments are permanent. But in Eastern guru-centered religions, God's emissary on earth (often termed a "perfect living master") substitutes for holy scripture. So what is supposedly moral and what isn't can shift with the times as...

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Here's a terrific Newsweek piece, "BIble: So Misunderstood It's a Sin." Lengthy, and well worth reading. But be warned, Christians. You'll never be able to believe in the divine inerrancy, or even historical accuracy, of the Bible after being exposed...

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I'm on a five-year nothing roll when it comes to New Year's resolutions. Of course, there's always something more to say about nothing, so I'll do just that after sharing links to my previous paeans to irresolution. 2010: "New Year's...

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