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Astreja last won the day on December 8 2020

Astreja had the most liked content!

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About Astreja

  • Rank
    Springy Goddess
  • Birthday 08/07/1957

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Winnipeg, Canada
  • Interests
    Music, writing, gardening, meadmaking, astronomy, sleight-of-hand
  • More About Me
    I'm a cranky and eccentric polymath who, for most of her life, has had a morbid fascination with religion and society.

    If you talk to the left hemisphere of my brain you'll get a skeptical, science-friendly humanist who periodically engages in activism -- I have broken a metatarsal bone in a five-mile protest march; yelled at a prime minister; waved gay-rights signage; and videotaped Laura Secord's cow at Portage and Main.

    If you talk to the right hemisphere, I'll cheerfully tell you that I hang out with the Æsir and Vanir; that my older sister is the Bodhisattva Guan Shi Yin; and that my guardian dragon would like another coffee and donut, please.

Previous Fields

  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?
    Humanist and agnostic polyatheist

Recent Profile Visitors

7,033 profile views
  1. Trust your gut on this one, ZenPaladin. If the idea of going to see your father fills you with negative emotions - feeling of dread, anger, queasiness - respect that and don't go. This person threatened to kill you, and you owe him nothing.
  2. I have four general categories of giving that stay relatively constant from year to year: Medical charities, animal protection, food and shelter for the homeless, and arts groups. About half is set up through payroll deductions and the rest tends to happen in the spring and late fall. Not many opportunities come up for interpersonal giving, although I have gone that route on a couple of occasions.
  3. I say "no" to absolute free will. Our decisions are informed not only by our conscious minds but by our unconscious ones as well, and tend to be reactions to external circumstances and events. There are a lot of constraints in play. (And as I see it, the only thing that makes the universe non-deterministic is randomness. Only when the universe itself doesn't know what it's going to do next is there a possibility of more than one path forward.)
  4. Hopefully she stuck the landing on the turtle and didn't get trampled by one of the elephants.
  5. Did anyone examine the bills? They could've been counterfeits. It's not a matter of needing money. Quite frankly, I think money is an excellent idea - it enables us to store up our work and get compensated for it whenever and however we want. Much better than raising a flock of chickens and trying to exchange a hen for a pair of shoes. You must also live in a rather warm climate. If I had tried to live in a tent in Winnipeg in mid-February, when the wind chill was approaching -50C, I would have almost certainly died. And there is no fucking way
  6. And I'll be playing jazz in the house band in Valhalla, eating roast pork and drinking mead. (For a while, anyway. Lots to explore in the universe -- maybe I'll "borrow" a spaceship with Infinite Improbability Drive and swing through the Orion Nebula for a closer look.)
  7. No, James. When you die, you'll simply be gone. When your heart stops, the brain will die from lack of oxygen and everything you ever knew and believed will simply dissolve into organic mush. Heaven is a myth.
  8. Nope. I'm going to stay here in my fully-paid-off and modernized three-story Edwardian house, play my collection of clarinets, and occasionally go for a drive and bring home a tasty bottle of 18-year-old Scotch. Why don't you sell everything you have, James? (You can start by getting rid of your computer and any other devices that you use to connect to the Internet.)
  9. Greetings and salutations! (passes ToW a complimentary bottle of mead)
  10. Regarding that "empty feeling," I had a mini-epiphany this afternoon: What if it's actually anxiety that underlies that particular feeling? I can't remember my exact thoughts at the time, but was feeling a dull, empty sensation in my gut. It was sufficiently unpleasant to dig down a bit into my thoughts, and I had a "Waaaait a second..." moment when I saw what was driving it: Concerns about things in the near future. (Just my two cents' worth - this may or may not be applicable to post-deconversion emotions.)
  11. "Atheopagan" (or possibly "atheohei­ðin" for that Norse touch) is a very good description of my own relationship to paganism. Bookmarked the site.
  12. I always celebrate Easter the same way: Mass quantities of chocolate.
  13. Telling a group of ex-Christians that the mythology they dumped was real is not a good idea. Of course you're going to get pushback! It's analogous to walking into an AA meeting and telling them that booze is good for them and that they were wrong to give it up. We've worked very hard to put Christianity behind us, and in fact many of us are still working on it. Judging from how deeply this affected you, I don't think we can help you at this time and that leaving (at least for a while) will be more helpful than arguing with us.
  14. He may have been real 2000 years ago. If he's real now, it's only as a cluster of dry, disjointed bones in a Roman mass grave.
  15. I consider Christianity to be a very, very childish collection of mythology that preys upon people's fear of death. It is not necessary for a good life, and some of its primary "features" actually get in the way of a good life. If you tell yourself that you were born evil and deserve to be burned forever for something that isn't even in your control, unless you acquiesce to letting Jesus die in your place, you do severe chronic psychological damage that can take decades to undo. Don't go there. It's a long, long trip back.
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