Live Debate with RagingRev

Saturday March, 20th 2010 at 11PM EST I will once again be a guest on ParaTrinity Radio. This episode will feature myself, an Atheist, as well as a Christian and a Wiccan and we will be discussing beliefs, god, religion, and all sorts of other things.

Last time I was on the program it was their most popularly downloaded program yet, and I’d like to break that record again with the new episode. We had lots of fun last time and since this is an unleashed debate it should be even better.

Here’s what hosts Mike and LE had to say about the upcoming show:

Saturday, March 20th, ParaTrinity Radio will have three guests, of three different religions, of three different beliefs on air to discuss god, ghosts, and more!

We will be talking to atheist – Matt Oxley (as heard on Feb. 20th), witch/wiccan – Marla Brooks (as heard in Jan. and March 13th), and lastly, Christian – Christopher Maggard (TriState Paranormal investigator) in a round table style discussion with some possible debates.

You will NOT want to miss this one! Saturday at 11pm in Studio B of!

Links of Interest:

At 11PM EST on March 20th click This Link to get to the live broadcast of the program, there will be a live chat room during the show.

ParaTrinity On Facebook

ParaTrinity Unleashed (Facebook Event for RSVP purposes, invite your friends please!) Fan Page

Regarding Hope: The Atheist’s View

It is often said by believers of all faiths that to be without God is to be without a thing called Hope.

Hope, defined as the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best, is far from foreign to me. I’d even go so far as to say that my life is more filled with hope now than it ever was when I believed in the god of Christianity.

When I was a believer my hope was in my salvation, something I believed to have been provided by Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. I had the hope that the things of this world would soon pass away and that there would be an eternity of God’s presence to endure. I had hope in the promise of a relationship with that god and in the idea that he wanted for me to experience his love and compassion despite my own depravity (and in the idea that he desired this same thing for all mankind.). I experienced the hope of an afterlife and hope in miracles while still living.

I know the hope that the Christian speaks of, I’ve experienced it, felt it, lived it…in fact I know from personal experience all of the elements that Christians or other religious folks may claim that the godless are not privy to, yet hope is by far one of the most prevalent elements of my life now – without god.

I have hope, I have lots of it. I feel that what I have now is far more tangible than what I had prior to my fall from grace.

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The Effects of Evangelism on Christians in India

I’m Pissed.

You see, the other day I found a video showing Christian’s in India being beaten and stoned to death. According to this video the reason they are being beaten and stoned is solely because they are Christians. The video featuring the pastor of Cornerstone Church, Francis Chan, is located here.

*Warning: This video contains very disturbing and graphic images, if you are offended by violence, blood, or evangelism you should not watch this (nor should you read the Bible).

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RagingRev featured on ParaTrinity Radio

Update, The podcast is now available for download here.

This Saturday, February 20th at 11PM EST, I am honored to be the special guest on a new e-radio show called ParaTrinity Radio.

ParaTrinity Radio is a podcast/live broadcast with hosts Mike and LE that focuses on the religious aspects of paranormal. It’s a show that really appeals to the ghosthead/paranormal research crowd as it greatly focuses on information and guests that have experience with haunting, “demonology”, and ghosts. My goal will be to bring a logical, reasonable, and scientifically sound view to the debate regarding god and the paranormal.

I intend to spend a portion of my air time talking about my past, as a young minister and exorcist (something you will rarely hear or see me discuss). I will also be giving my testimony (or extimony) of my transition from fervent Christian to atheist, something I think that can help those that are struggling with the reality of their own faith.

I really really hope that the skeptical crowd would be willing to show up for the live airing which has a chat room where you can interact with the hosts and I, ask questions, and interact with other listeners. Not only do I know that the show hosts are respectful of our point of view, I know that they are genuinely interested in hearing what I have to say and in seeing the listeners interact as well. I would love to see a large crowd show up, in fact I’d like to make this their biggest show yet – this show has only been airing since the beginning of the year and is still gaining it’s audience, I’d also like for that crowd to have intelligent and kind discussions with those in the live chat.

The Show will air live at ASPRN Studio B beginning at 11 PM EST on Saturday, February 20th, 2010! I hope that some of the Reddit atheists and other readers of my blog will show up!

If you would like to hear some of the previous shows they are available at the podcast site: Podomatic

PS: Leave a comment if you intend to be there…thanks.

Arguments and Fallacies: Moral Relativity

Recently one of my Facebook statuses prompted another debate wherein one of the Christian participants made the argument that the good of Christianity outweighs the bad in reference to the fact that I am so passionate about fighting religion in general. I want to explore that idea from a reasoned and historical perspective as this discussion always leads to a debate about the origin of morality and supposed objective morality standards. Of course I find that this argument is old and played out since I’ve only dealt with it six times now on this blog, but I figure why not try one more time…seeing as I haven’t updated in over 30 days now.

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Arguments and Fallacies: The Worldview Argument

In order to fight my ever present writers block, I have decided to start a series of blog posts on different arguments and fallacies that the atheist may run into in his/her dealings with religious folks, specifically creationists. The purpose of these posts will not only be to argue against these common points of contention, but to also to attempt to make sense of why these arguments seem conducive to the believer. I fully intend to use my experience as a former believer and apologist to explain what I now know to be illogical and unreasonable. In my experience with atheists there is a tendency to think, “how stupid are you?” when confronted with some of these arguments in favor of creationism, and the atheist is more prone to uncontrolled outbursts of anger and frustration, often leading to a worthless tirade against the opponent. Not only do these arguments give atheists a bad name, but they also ruin the environment of discourse. Though I, too, have been guilty of such dismissive tirades, these posts will attempt to give atheists a more involved and intelligent means of discourse when dealing with religious people and creationist worldviews.

I know that many current atheists are also former believers, and many were quite devoted to their faith. As true as this may be, I think that I represent a very rare breed of atheist in that I have, as I have explained many times before, experienced god in ways that seemed entirely logical at the time, yet I was able to comprehend my own psychological failings in order to reject my faith and the inane arguments of creationism. Creationists do not lack reasoning all together; they simply lack the desire or ability to accept a point of view that endangers their belief in god. I have been through such a dilemma myself, and as much as I regret the years I spent in service to god, I must pull from that experience in order to better defend a realistic understanding of the world.

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A visit from LDS Missionaries


A note to my LDS friends: Please understand that the purpose of this post is not to disprove or discredit your belief system or you personally. I have a deep respect for each one of you and only desire that the lines of communication that exists between myself and you continue to stay open. I only wish that the rest of Christendom were as open to discussion and as kind in doing so as you have always been to me. Even during the times when I made a fool of myself as a self-righteous Christian and if I have done so now as an atheist. Please allow this post to represent my care for mankind and not a hate for god or religious people. If something here is offensive it was not my intent, but I challenge anyone and everyone that does read this to consider the purpose behind it and the logic behind my own doubt.

About two months ago I was browsing through my normal routine of atheist sites and blogs when I happened upon an advertisement for’s chat service which allows anyone to log onto the website and chat with a missionary from the Church of Jesus-Christ of Latter Day Saints (also known as Mormons or LDS).  I decided to log on and chat with the kind folks there to see why they believed what they did and so on,  being an individual that is not entirely unfamiliar with LDS beliefs I came in with a foreknowledge of the basic LDS doctrine and simply wanted to challenge these kind people to think about the origin of their belief – something I had to do for myself once upon a time.

Missionary One: Initial encounter

The first missionary I talked to was a very kind young man, if I remember correctly he was 19 and in training to go to South America to present their version of the gospel to the people there, you see, the chat center is located in Provo, UT at the Missionary Training Academy where all the LDS missionaries go for a time prior to being sent out. (Most LDS members go on mission at some point in their life usually in their early 20’s, the mission generally lasts two years and is part of being a holder of the Melchizedek Priesthood). I explained to him that I was an atheist and that I was at one time a Christian, he spoke to me about  his “relationship with god” and how he knew god was real because he felt him so strongly in his life and because he had seen god’s many blessings on him and his family. I explained to him a little about my past and how I too had a relationship with my own deity and that at one point I came to realize that this deity was merely my own mental and emotional interpretation of the god of the Bible and the god that I most wanted to serve. (aka, an imaginary friend that I molded after my own view of god). Eventually I gave this missionary my phone number and he and I talked about this subject on two different nights, he would also give me some verses from the Book of Mormon to read. I read what he asked each time that he did. During our last conversation he let me know that he was leaving to go on his mission and would therefore be unable to call again and asked permission to give my number to another missionary named Stephen, I agreed and issued one final challenge to him: I simply asked that he ask himself if he would be comfortable with even the idea of there not being a god and that if he could find a way to cope with that if he would then begin to challenge the idea of god that he had. He agreed.

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The Faith of a Child

Some time last week I saw someone mention that they had “Just led __ to the Lord”. After noticing the comments of this post I gathered that this was the persons child that had been “led to the Lord” so I decided to inquire as to the age of this child…which got me thinking about faith and children. This man’s daughter was six.

I was “Saved” at the ripe old age of 6. That’s right, at 6 years old someone believed that I was at an appropriate time in my life to decide the fate of my own mortal soul and to ask forgiveness for the plethora of sins I was guilty of. This, of course, was not true…the “gospel” was something I could nary understand at the time and I didn’t really grasp the cardinal doctrines of Christianity until I was around 14, when I became more serious about my faith. Until then I didn’t understand that the God of the Bible required sacrificial scapegoats  to atone for the sin of man or that Jesus was supposed to be the end all be all of sacrificial lambs. I simply knew that the Bible was supposed to be true and that I felt an emotional “tug” at my heart when this whole Jesus thing was presented to me…so I said a prayer and I cried and I spoke in tongues etc.

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Visit from a Pastor

Last Thursday my wife and I were in the midst of an argument. Nothing major of course, she was stressed out and when she is stressed she screams at me for a while until she feels better and then usually everything is all good. During our argument we saw a little head bobbing around through the window on our door…there was the pastor that performed our wedding ceremony standing there.

I’m not sure who sent him or if he had even been sent at all, this was the first time I had seen him in the three years since we were wed so the visit was quite peculiar. When my wife and I were in the process of getting married we both still believed though we had our doubts about Christianity, nonetheless the pastor found himself easily impressed by us and our resolve to remain virgins until our wedding night, so as far as he knew all was well with our faith at that time. I can only assume that he had gotten some wind of my fall from grace, this is a small town and I am very much an Out atheist, but regardless this is how our conversation went:

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The Failings of My Father


Bad Parenting tips (click for more)

For Fathers Day this year my wife and I went down to Rhine to spend some time with her family….the close knit nature of my wife’s family is something foreign to me, I was raised by a single mother whos only family was a state away and for the most part avoided my paternal family once my grandmother died. My wife’s family, as many faults as I may find with them (and them me), sticks together for the most part, Monica’s great-grandmother died a few years ago at the age of 94 and her grandparents are still solid foundations for the family. Everyone lives within half a mile of one another….everyone but us.

Monica’s grandfather is down on his health right now though, he was in bed all day today and that is something very uncommon for this man, who still works 7 days a week with his logging company. His being sick is scary for the family, at one point today my mother-in-law went in to see him and fought back tears when she came back out. She said that I should call or go see my dad and I didn’t know what to say at the time.

Now that my wife and I are home though, I have thought about it a bit. I understand my mother-in-law’s position, she was raised in a loving home by loving parents and had grandparents that were there until just recently. Both of her parents are strong willed, kind hearted folks that put their family first. They have always been there to help when someone needs it, so I can understand celebrating the sacrifices of people like that.

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