Spent the weekend in Melbourne attending the Global Atheist Convention. It was an amazing experience! At one point I shared the elevator with Richard Dawkins! :B I learnt so much and I have a lot of new reading to do!
Do you have/plan on having a career in the sciences? Alternatively: which branch of science intrigues you most?
I don’t think so. Ultimately I’d love to get into Animation. I do have an interest in Psychology and I’ll be doing 1A next year at uni but that’s about it.
I find astronomy and physics to be very intriguing, though.
What happens when we die? Do you fear death?
Nothing. We die and that’s it. :P And no, I do not fear death.
Would you ever date/marry somebody who follows a religion? Be honest.
No, I wouldn’t. And I don’t… so yay! :D
On a scale of 1-10, how happy are you with life at this moment, and why?
Erm, as someone trying to deal with anxiety and depression I can’t control I can’t say I’d be very high on the scale. But overall I suppose my relationship is good and education is looking up. Also, I’m going overseas soon. That part is all 10. The rest.. ehh. :\
Recommend a book. :) (Doesn’t have to be relevant to atheism, just any good book.)
The Time Machine by H.G. Wells!
What’s your political alignment? Does your atheism influence how you vote and how you feel on issues?
I’m far-left. I see myself as a democratic socialist. Obviously I won’t vote for anyone or anything trying to incorporate Christian/religious dogma into politics. I believe in strict separation of state and church.
Even though you’re an atheist, have you ever experienced a moment that could be called “religious?” Like an epiphany about the world or complete peace?
No. Any epiphany about the world or complete peace I’ve felt has always been grounded in science and reality.
Are you spiritual, or are your feet always on the ground?
I enjoy the ideas of magic and fun things like that but, other than fiction, my feet are on the ground.
Did you lose any friends because you decided to be an atheist? Did your family flip out?
Nope! Not that I’m aware of, anyway. My family are pretty secular and I don’t have many friends. Most of them are secular, too.
How do you feel about so-called “militant atheists” such as Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, and Sam Harris?
I think they’re awesome! I recently bought The Moral Landscape and The Magic of Reality which I really need to get down to reading. Also, I’m seeing all three at the global Atheist Convention next year! So excited!
Except for God, do you believe in anything supernatural or pseudoscientific? (Ghosts, alien abductions, spirits, souls, demons, psychics, magic, Harry Potter, etc.)
I don’t believe believe but my imagination gets carried away in the night and I can’t help but be scared by ghosts.
Are you a more outspoken or more apathetic atheist? Why?
I’ll be outspoken when I need to be. I’m starting to learn, with feminism and atheism, that some people will never listen and so there’s no point. I have no friends at this point so I’d rather not piss people off.
Do you think religion is obsolete and should be wiped completely off the face of the Earth, or does some good come out of it?
I suppose for some people it makes them feel better but, in my opinion, they shouldn’t hide behind religion. I just find that most religious people tend to have some sort of emotional weakness and that religion is used as a crutch. It’s okay for awhile but praying to an imaginary person will not make your problems go away. Religion should become obsolete in the end. You don’t need it for “Good” to happen.
What religion did you grow up with? Did you have positive or negative experiences with religion?
I was christened under the Uniting Church. Besides 2 church goings at Christmas after my Grandfather died and one year at a religious school, I never really experienced much religion actively in my early life. My parents didn’t really shove it down my throat or anything. Nor do I think they’re really that religious themselves. Christmas and Easter with both sides of my family were never religious.
Then I went to a Lutheran high school and went to chapel 4 days of the week, every week. We also had compulsory “Christian Knowledge” class and the 5th day we didn’t go to chapel we had home-room worship. I went through the motions to pass the class and enjoyed watching The Lion King and laugh at their attempt to equate it to Jesus. Until it was time I had to write a worship for my class, compulsory to pass CK, and it chewed me up inside. I had to write about the holy ghost and after reading the bible passages they gave me I still didn’t know what it was. I felt like shit because there were real Christians in my class and it didn’t seem fair to say all this bullshit, you know? I had to write a worship and a prayer and read them out to the class. That didn’t seem right to me. That event was actually a part of many reasons that I had a total mental breakdown at 15. I left the school and joined an alternative hippy school which kicked ass!
In the end, I’ve had some fun experiences (mainly Christmas plays as a kid because I loved dressing up :P) and some not so great ones.
At what point did you know you were an atheist? Why did you become one, what were the factors leading up to the decision, if you weren’t always one?
This year I really decided that I was an Atheist. I was always apathetic about religion my whole childhood. I played around with Paganism and Satanism (LaVeyan) when I was older. But ultimately I have embraced Atheism. I never could comprehend how people who believed in a deity even functioned. How do they feel it’s there, or whatever? I don’t know. I find science to be amazing. The complexity of evolution, the galaxy and human beings. It’s fascinating and the idea of “intelligent design” is insulting to me. No, the earth did this.. we did this! :) We’re made of stardust and that’s so much cooler. :P
|—||Shelley, “The Necessity of Atheism” (1813 version)|