Author Archive

Five Harmful Religious Ideas I Had to Unlearn about Sex

This post originally appeared two years ago on Removing the Fig Leaf. I was born a Pentecostal. My background was not as extreme as Kim Davis’s Pentecostalism, but I did grow up on Jimmy Swaggart and “That Thing” and homophobia and overt misogyny and stories of demon sex spirits imprinting pornographic images on my mind […]

The Turn That Saved My Life

“But I come here today to look across this world of threats to a world of peace. In that search we cannot expect any final triumph—for new problems will always arise. We cannot expect that all nations will adopt like systems—for conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth. Nor can we […]

3 Romantic Bible Stories

Around Valentine’s Day, Facebook thought I might enjoy this HuffPost article, entitled “Romance in the Bible?”. (Question mark in original.) I once knew its author, back when I myself also worshipped the One True God. This is why Facebook thought I wanted to read it. As it turns out, I was interested, but not in […]

Living as Genuine Me

Two years ago, on August 1, 2014, I wrote a page-long statement in my private journal, “Who Am I Today?” It contained paragraphs on religion, politics, personal values, sexuality, and personality. I was trying to sort through what I believed, how I identified, what I valued, what I felt and thought, to put this all […]

The “Good” about Friday

I grew up in a shame-and-blame religion. The so-called Good News, as taught to me, is that we humans are fundamentally evil, unholy, sinners, distant from God. And so to save us, God needed to execute the perfect blood sacrifice. And there was only one person perfect enough to serve as that sacrifice, God himself. […]

Mourning My Faith

Last night began the Jewish holiday of Purim. This is a celebration of the book of Esther. The last time I celebrated it was when I was still a member of a Messianic Jewish congregation two years ago, before I came out as an atheist, long before I came out as polyamorous. It was even […]

On the Anniversary of Losing My Religion

I was born into a Pentecostal family. My dad was the pastor. All versions of my story start the same way, with that line. For decades, I was stepping further and further away from the faith I was taught as a kid. But the emotional core of my faith was still fundamentalist, and I still […]

Self Rules

I’m not sure exactly where I’m going with this blog site. I haven’t posted much over the last year, but that’s because I am a different person—in a sense—than I was in January 2014. I know I entitled this blog “Hope, Love, and Peace,” and I still believe in those qualities. But I also believe […]

I (Used to, Want to) Really Like Christmas

Earlier this year, I shared this funny nativity scene photo on my own Facebook wall (one of 150,000 or so who did), and was soundly thrashed (by someone who is no longer my Facebook friend). And what was supposed to be a cute, fun photo turned into a theological discussion. I’m noticing that I could […]

Atheist Problems

Ever since coming out atheist, I’ve noticed that people interact with me differently than they did before. And I interact with them differently. As a result, I’ve found these extremely funny. There’s one kind of atheist problem, like that posed by the most Reverend E.F. Briggs. (Because when E.F. Briggs talks, people tune out.) E.F. […]