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An Atheist’s Guide to Christmas

Atheists GuideAn Atheist’s Guide to Christmas is in the shops now (and if it isn’t, it jolly well should be). Edited by the lovely Ariane Sherine, of Atheist Bus fame, a whole bunch of atheists, including some very funny ones, have contributed their thoughts about the festive season, including how to avoid it.

The royalties will go to the UK charity, the Terrence Higgins Trust, which seems particularly appropriate now that Pope Benedict, that homophobic old goat*, is about to visit the UK with his message that condoms shouldn’t be used in countries where AIDS is rife.

You can buy the book now at Amazon, or take a trip down to your local bookshop and demand that they put it in a window display.

*Actually, I take the goat insult back – I like goats.

More Islamic bigotry at the UN

The Islamic states and their allies at the UN, including China, want to censor and condemn free expression, usually on religious grounds. Read more on the IHEU website:

In a brave attempt at the Human Rights Council to re-establish their credentials as a team player on the world stage, the United States is co-sponsoring a resolution with Egypt on Freedom of Expression. The intent of the resolution is, in the words of the Egyptian delegate, to bring the Human Rights Council “to a point of convergence” on what has become the most divisive and contentious issue in the short history of the Council.

Meanwhile, gay Humanists have issued a press release about the “homophobic public pronouncements of Mr Ali Abdussalam Trekki, the new Libyan President of the UN General Assembly”. Ali Abdussalam Treki opened the Assembly session stating that homosexuality “was not acceptable for most of the world”.

Brainstorming session

Regular group meeting in Ipswich. Bring your brains! We’ll be planning what to do over the next few months, including choosing a slogan for our car stickers and any other ways we can promote ourselves and Humanism in general.

Even if you haven’t got any bright ideas yourself, come and see what you think of other people’s.

We’ll be in the lounge in Pinewood Community Hall, as usual. If the door is locked, buzz the buzzer.

Cloud-spotting

SkyHow often do you look up at the sky and think, “It looks like rain”? Apart from that, and noticing when the sky is a boring blue with no clouds in sight, do you pay it much attention?

Norfolk Secular & Humanist Group Concert

Rachel GoodchildCome and hear Soprano Singer Rachel Goodchild perform. Enjoy an evening’s entertainment, including raffle, light refreshments, a programme of singing with commentary, and a FREE glass of wine or hot drink! The Norfolk Secular and Humanist Group would greatly appreciate your company. Please feel free to tell a friend! Tickets are £2 per person on the door to cover costs.

Re:Design – Charles Darwin & Asa Gray on stage

Terry Molloy as Darwin150 years after Charles Darwin first presented his theory to fellow scientists and amidst year-long Darwin celebrations in 2009, Re:Design is a fascinating and timely dramatisation of 30 years correspondence between Charles Darwin, Kent, England and Asa Gray in Boston, USA.

Mercury Theatre, Colchester

Getting here is really easy, we are only 1 hour from the centre of London. There are trains every hour to and from London.

Our address is: Mercury Theatre, Balkerne Gate, Colchester, CO1 1PT.

Pay to stop them praying?

Today I received through my letterbox a card from a church in Woodbridge offering to pray for me. That might seem a reasonable offer but as an atheist, I find the whole concept of prayer and worship distasteful and, frankly, ludicrous.

I am very happy for others to believe in what they want to believe in but I am not at all happy for them to force their views or irrational practices and rituals on others without invitation. I consider their card an unwarranted and certainly unwanted intrusion.

However, the extreme irritation it caused pales when compared with the announcement on the card that church members were going to visit my house and interrupt either my working day or our private time at home in the evening on some unspecified date next week.

The card added insult to irritation by asking that if I did not wish anybody to call, I should telephone the church to stop the visit.

In the words of the Catherine Tate character Derek Fay, “How very dare you?” They ask me to telephone them to stop them doing something that they will otherwise do, without my invitation or permission.