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This Week: In Trouble

Category Archives: Opinion

Articulation, exultation, excoriation, and other opinionated writings of Ask an Atheist cast and crew.

Brendan Eich is Gone, Long Live The Fox

firefox_bangI never expected my comments about Firefox on the last episode to get me as much commentary as it has. I should expect that a lot of our online listeners are technically inclined as I am, given atheist demographics, but my commentary on the last episode has given me more personal feedback than I’ve received in some time. I’ll admit, to keep the discussion going I posted on my Facebook wall that I was removing Firefox, Thunderbird, and ceasing work on my Firefox OS projects– two pieces of software that I’m partial to, and a phone OS project that I’d been holding high hopes for. People love a controversy, I guess.

Which creates a problem, as I’m happy to report that I am posting this from Firefox once again. I’ve had to edit this post somewhat, because it appears that Brendan Eich has stepped down as CEO, and has also left the board of directors entirely. I think this is great news, and I’m glad to reinstall the Mozilla applications on my systems. I may continue using Evolution for mail for a little while, as it seems to have improved from when I last used it and I like the integration into GNOME 3.

First, for less nuanced opinions, some curse words:


Actually, this is the marketplace of ideas working. He’s allowed to be an idiot, and I’m allowed to call him one. I know people with more than four neurons keep having to say this over and over, but freedom of action is not the same thing as freedom of social consequence.

He’s in the market, with his good browser and his hateful speech. His shop is on the market. His shop, under another manager, sold a great product. I go over to the shop and talk to the new manager. I find out about the hate, confirm that is indeed what happened, and decide I’d rather take my trade elsewhere.

Thousands of other people do the same. Sales at the shop go down, and soon the shop is under new management.

As far as I’m aware, this is exactly what people who continually squack about freedom of speech and the marketplace of ideas actually want. But then again, I’m talking about people who know what the terms “freedom of speech” and “the marketplace of ideas” actually mean.



This is you.   You will not be fondly remembered by history, and your children will be negatively affected.   They will live you down, and curse your name.

This is you. You will not be fondly remembered by history, and your children will be negatively affected. They will live you down, and curse your name.

A Little Bit of Open Source Fighting

And hey, if you want me to say something really controversial in the FOSS world, I could tell you that the FUD over GNOME 3 is completely unwarranted and stupid. KDE 4 has been schizophrenic and impossible to really use well, and I’m speaking as a KDE user from Beta 1, to the point where I rented a room to a KDE developer in exchange for features I wanted. I look forward to your rage at our next post show or online stream. Straight outta Slackware, yo.

And now, for more nuanced opinions…

What I Was Protesting

Overall, there are two major trends in comments in opposition to what I said last Sunday, and I’ll address both. The first, better, and more nuanced objection is this example from Justin, a fellow open source person, in an email I recevied a few hours ago.

As a long time OSS user/advocate my ears perked up a bit when the topic of Mozilla’s new CEO came up. Thinking it over a bit, I felt compelled to comment. Disagreeing with your comments feels a bit like defending WBC’s right to free speech. I hate it, but I think it’s right.
How would we, as a community, react if the same outcry happened because an Atheist was made CEO ? We would likely all point out that ones Atheism should in no way inhibit their ability to be an effective CEO. Along the same vein I do not feel it is fair to suggest that Eich’s personal beliefs will inhibit his ability (see Francis Collins).
It’s one thing to say that you do not like his beliefs and/or do not like the idea of him representing the foundation. What I heard instead was the strong suggestion that his beliefs would inform his policies and effectiveness.
Do not get me wrong, I think he beliefs are abhorrent. I also do not like the idea of him representing Mozilla very much either. Still, I have to give him the benefit of the doubt when it comes to his ability to manage. Then again, I might just not care as much because I’m a Chromium user these days.
I think the main problem here is a misunderstanding about what I’m objecting to. If Mr. Eich were being rejected as CEO of Mozilla because of his identity, be it religious or not, at the very least I would not have been vocally rejecting Mozilla. If he had been a member of some religion that would make me concerned about the future of the organization (read: Scientology) I would have likely removed the software and moved on with my life. More likely, I would have continued using the software and defended my choice in doing so.

I’ll get to the point about where my disagreement is: It’s not that he doesn’t “believe in gay marriage” or whatever. It is that he believes that he has the right to restrict others to his view of it, and the fact that he is publically on the record in his belief, in spite of his self-characterizations and decision not to directly address his contributions to Prop 8.

Political contributions are speech, and in California contributuions after a point are public. Legal tomfoolery aside, he spent his money to help pass a bill that would prevent people who love each other from getting married. He believed his rights to deny exceeded the rights of others who believed differently. If he believed that LGBT equality was wrong, but correctly agreed that he shouldn’t express his views as superior to others, we could not be having this conversation.

So, to take your hypothetical case and make it look a little more like reality, we’d need an atheist that believed he could compel others to leave Christianity through the force of law. I would more strenuously object to such a person being named CEO to a project that I care so much about– this hypothetical CEO would be an incorrect representation of the people I identify with. The fact that Mozilla is centered on community is, again, key.

How He Should Have Kept His Job

uninstall_reinstallHe could have apologized. Even better for him, he could have apologized by saying his personal beliefs should not hinder another’s civil rights. An appropriate donation to something like the HRC here would have done wonders. If he really was interested in Mozilla as a community, it should have been simple to disavow his civil supremacy without disavowing his belief about LGBT lifestyles.

Would I have been happy with that? No, but I would accept that he has the Mozilla community at heart and seems to care about other human beings. Honestly, I would suggest that he have a few more conversations with the rarebit folks, who could not do what they do without the legal defeat of Prop 8. But I would have accepted Eich as someone I could work with professionally, and strongly disagree with in the social space. If given the opportunity to so disagree, I would have relished it.

But instead, he did what we’ve come to expect from religious people: he took his ball and went home. Whether he did this because of religious convictions or the standard geek aversion to admitting fallibility, I can’t say. But when it came down to brass tacks, he had his beliefs about marriage equality on one side, and his lofty description of his love of technology and support of Mozilla on the other. He chose the shitty path.

And for that, I’m glad he’s gone.

Update: For some reason beyond me, I started typing Icke instead of Eich. Can’t imagine why I would do that. Actually, I can.

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Hulk mad! Hulk BASH!!!!

Recently, a frequent listener of Ask an Atheist gave us some feedback regarding the show’s tendency towards “bashing religion”.  Atheists get that a lot; the old “If you make fun of the people who do awful things, you’re just as bad as them” rhetoric.

just as bad

The listener stated that if it were their show about their own faith, they’d prefer to  tackle philosophical conundrums and historical insights, rather than attack the  philosophies of others.  I don’t entirely disagree with the sentiment.  Knowing the  history of religion (specifically, of your own denomination) can be really cool.  It  gives you a sense of place and it’s interesting how and why the current  denominations have come about.

Atheists are also interested in the history of their people. Unfortunately, in western  society, most of that history was recorded by the people who persecuted them, and  it’s not a very pretty history at all. I don’t think we’ve talked about that very much  on the show, but I’m sure we could come up with an episode.

However, just by the very nature of our mutual histories with Christianity, Catholicism, Islam, and  Judaism, the facts of the history of atheism don’t paint believers in a  very kind light. That’s not really our fault, it’s just history. Much like how a  history of slavery doesn’t paint Europeans in a very kind light, or how the history of women’s rights doesn’t paint men in a very kind light.  You really can’t tell the story of atheism without mentioning that we’ve been beaten, exiled, tortured, and killed by believers for our lack of faith throughout most of our history.

We’re also trying to find our place in modern society, as atheists, and again, a big part of that identity is the people who wish we didn’t exist at all, or would prefer that we remained silent. Like other civil rights movements, the Atheism Visibility Movement is still in the “fight for your rights” part and we have not yet reached a place in society that is high or comfortable enough to JUST talk about ourselves, our movement’s history, and our philosophy (though we do that pretty regularly on the show anyway).

Part of what we are doing with this show is gaining visibility – not to “convert” other people to atheism, but rather, to let atheists out there know they are not alone; that they’re not the only ones going through what they are going through. Sharing our stories of the persecution and prejudice that we’ve faced, that we’ve overcome, and the battles that we are still in, helps us to find each other and unite. There’s nothing in the world like realizing that you are not alone, there really isn’t.

If we were a social majority with thousands of years of consistently recorded history, with political control, warfare, schisms, and all the interesting stuff that comes with them, our show might be a bit different. But I think where atheists are right now, we DO need to talk about the people and organizations that have declared us as their enemies. We DO need to talk about the people who extend their religious privileges to hinder or strip the rights of others.

It is unfortunate that some believers assume that all believers are under attack when we criticize things like the Bible’s endorsements of rape and slavery, or Sharia Law beatings and death penalties being enforced on non-Muslims. It puzzles me how people who morally oppose such cruelties will proudly defend the books and institutions that support them, rather than making an effort to change those ideas within their own religions.

What if rapture

Yet somehow, to these “good guy” believers, atheists are the “bad guys” for pointing out these crimes against humanity. It’s a classic “kill the messenger” scenario – for example:

1.) A religion is used to inflict suffering on others by denying their right to marry the person they love.

2.) Atheists point out that it is wrong to inflict said suffering, and that the scripture that is leveraged to inspire it is inconsistent and flawed in many ways, and perhaps should not be considered a source of ultimate morality.

3.) Believers (including members of the subjugated group!), call atheists jerks for pointing out this blatantly obvious fact.

4.) We talk about it on the radio.

5.) We get called jerks, again, for talking about it.

Wacky, isn’t it?

So anyway, that’s why the show may seem like we’re just bashing on religion at times. If religions weren’t being used to hurt people, we wouldn’t need to talk about it. In fact, we might not have a show at all. And yeah, sometimes you have to laugh about it, because it’s either laugh or cry, and no one wants to hear crying on the radio.

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An Open Letter to Jennifer Fulwiler

Ms. Fulwiler,

A few years ago, I wrote a pair of blog posts about you. I won’t bother to ask if you’ve heard of them, because you clearly have. Just as I’m sure that you’ll eventually hear about this one.

I know this because the Ask an Atheist analytics site tells me that the second of my posts criticizing you — the one with the more provocative title — has gotten approximately 659 hits from your website.

No kidding. 659 hits.  On average, our site gets at least two clicks a day from your “Conversion Diary” blog.


Normally, I’d just chalk this up as free promotion for the site, and for the show. I’ve also written articles critical of Billy Graham, Pat Robertson and Jim Wallis, but I’ve never really expected to have one of them notice my little rants, much less link to me. Constantly. Nearly three years later.

Ms. Fulwiler, you’ve linked to my article quite a bit over the past few years. Your linking has yielded our site so much new web traffic, that my post,  “Guess What? Jennifer Fulwiler is Still an Idiot”  is now on the first page of Google results for your name.

I am not joking.  Look it up. Your hilarious self-martyrdom has ironically made a page insulting you into something far more prominent than most of the articles that you’ve ever written. And you only have yourself to blame for it.

My favorite of your links to us was this one. I must say, wow. It’s amusing to watch you pat yourself on the back for being so cool and collected in the face of all those mean atheists calling you out for stereotyping them. I’ve never seen someone so transparently thrilled to be the center of attention.

You know what, that’s perfectly fine. I’d feel the same way. But please, don’t pretend that you’re silently shouldering some terrible burden with dignified poise.

Despite all the free promotion you’ve given my posts about you, it’s apparent that you and your readers have never actually read them.  Your readers’ occasional comments illustrate how badly you — and your readers — miss the point of my criticisms of you.

Here is a sampling of the sort of comments your readers have written on my posts:

If you think you have to be an idiot to be catholic (or even religious)… Surely you read about these people, Rene Descartes, Galileo Galilei, Fibonacci, etc… You say there are lay catholics? Then, How about these clergy catholics? Nicolaus Copernicus, Gregor Mendel, Georges Lemaître, Albertus Magnus, Roger Bacon, etc… If you really think you’re so smart and you can’t stomach the idea of a life after death, then check out “Pascal’s Wager”… only an idiot will stay an atheist.


Funny that “idiots” are only the religious people. Everyone against atheism is an idiot and everyone who is atheist is smart. Talking about being rational….

My point wasn’t that being Catholic made somebody stupid, or that being an atheist made you smart. I’ve spent a lot of time amongst a community of non-believers at organizational meetings, Ask an Atheist post-shows, and conventions. Our show has gotten literally thousands of emails, comments and phone calls during the nearly four years we’ve been on the air. I can speak with some authority on this.

Atheists are no more immune to being stupid than anyone else.

Among our number are some of the most brilliant people of all time,  but also a few of the dumbest people I’ve ever met. But it isn’t the company we keep that makes me secure in my non-belief, it’s the lack of evidence for the contrary position.

When your reader lists off brilliant religious believers — all of whom lived hundreds of years ago — it doesn’t make your position stronger. Just as, my atheism isn’t built on a foundation of knowing that Albert Einstein, Stephen Hawking and Bill Nye happen to agree with me.

So do the Raelian UFO cultists, but that doesn’t matter.

That’s just an appeal to authority figures — good or bad — and not a solid argument.  Your readers have it all backwards.

It isn’t the stature of the people you agree with that make you right or wrong. What makes you right or wrong is the value of what you agree with them about. Their work isn’t great because they did it, but because of its individual merit.

Getting to the point, I called you an idiot.

I didn’t insult you because you’re religious. You’re not an idiot because you’re Catholic, nor are you an idiot because you stopped being an atheist.

I called you an idiot because you’re pretending to be an expert about things you clearly don’t know anything about.

In articles like this or this, for the National Catholic Register, it’s clear that you’re trying to position yourself as an expert on atheists. You’re carving out a niche as a former non-believer, a go-to authority on understanding, talking to, and converting people like me.

But as I said in both of my articles on you, you’re absolutely wretched at it. Every word you type on the subject only makes it more obvious that you have no idea what you’re talking about.

Even a brief conversation with a random non-believer would expose your arguments as laughably inept. Rather than offer your readers any new understanding about atheists, you’re simply parroting the same stereotypes that the Catholic Church has spread about us for centuries.

You’re not teaching your readers anything, just reaffirming their prejudices.

Sadly, like your fan referencing Galileo, Copernicus and Descartes, you’re relying on the audience being dazzled by appeals to your self-applied authority.  It’s an authority built on the credulity, willful ignorance and incuriosity of your readers.

I don’t know what’s more depressing — you completely missing the point of why I’m criticizing you, or your readers’ unwillingness to actually read the things they comment on.

Therefore, you remain an idiot, Ms. Fulwiler. Not because you’re a Catholic, though. As I mentioned, there are dumb atheists as well. I suspect you used to be one of them.

Thanks for the free web traffic!

Mike Gillis

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Submitted for Later Discussion, a Recent Comment to Our Website:


1959 Photo

I think this is what he’s talking about (image public domain, 1959, UK)

Meanwhile, here’s a teaser:  If we’re not allowed to reprint this without approval, why did he post it on our website?



Electro-magnetic imprint of DNA goes with you in the death transition !! Multi-life history/experience/form holding patterns in Junk DNA !   Unseen IMPERISHABLE “bodies” in human aura!     Brain is not the mind!     Mind based upon mental (or reasoning) body of aura!  Mind goes with you in death !!
Above Concepts based on my “knowledge” research were confirmed in Australian Michel Desmarquet’s abduction to a highly advanced planetary culture (see Other Reinforcing Books below)
Note: I lost both of my parents at their early age of 57.  This caused me to launch a part-time fifty year study of “what comes next after death?”  Topics I researched were such as the Mother Mary apparition messages, a variety of religion beliefs other than my former Catholic (though still Christian), atheists rationale, the paranormal, quantum physics, biology, genomics, messages from the afterlife, instrumental transcommunication (ITC) via phone, tapes and TV,  UFOs’ objectives, and extraterrestrial messages, trying to find out answers, primarily thru books, science magazines, and numerous websites, obviously with a very open mind.

I was particularly interested in answering this question:  How can it be that it is possible to contact afterdeath personalities as if they were still of full mental capability — via paranormal MEDIUMS, or even by special ITC electronic communications, as has been demonstrated repeatedly?  As a retired engineer/executive, I needed to understand exactly HOW “mechanically”or structurally this could be possible.  I FOUND THE ANSWER:  Electromagnetic/energetic version of DNA — and unseen IMPERISHABLE body aura containing the mind —- go with you in your death transition!!

Two books in particular provided key answers, and both were most believable due to being very comprehensive and “scientific” though not related to much of Christian/Judeo training.  Below I have compiled short summaries and excerpts for your possible interest. Also, a short list of books that reinforced these two.  I hope you will keep an open mind in reading them.  An old Chinese proverb states: “A mind is like a parachute. It only functions when it is OPEN.”

To summarize the first book, a lengthy dictation by a benevolent extraterrestrial group Guardian Alliance, it teaches SCIENTIFIC EVOLVEMENT: 1) Your electro-magnetic or energetic version of DNA goes with you in the death transition. 2) you will reincarnate repeatedly and the JUNK DNA holds your personal multi-life history and experience. 3) Your consciousness will next progress eventually through fifteen dimensions toward “nirvana”perfection, currently being in the third.  All other dimensions are unseen and have different vibrational frequencies and atomic configurations.  4) After incarnation as Buddha, Christ as a highly advanced entity came to us as a teacher from the twelfth or higher dimension.  5) God is the Universe Prime Creator/Force/Source, and not the god Yahweh of the Old Testament who was an Ancient Astronaut to Earth.

As dictated by Ascended Masters, key messages in the second book were: 1) There are other unseen IMPERISHABLE “bodies” around the physical one in an aura (Note: As seen by Kirlian/GDV photography, see Wikipedia re: the paranormal aura).  Key bodies are the astral, the mental (or reasoning), the etheric, among several others. 2) THE BRAIN IS NOT THE MIND. The mental body is the basis/source of the mind. 3) All these “bodies” go with you in the death transition, especially including the mind.  4) In the next step, all these bodies and DNA will proceed with you into the astral plane or dimension. 5) do not fear death as it is merely a transition to another “form”.

See the more detailed excerpts below.  Also, a short list of other reinforcing books. To me, these were “startling” concepts, but comforting in their believability as they “fit” based on other related research.

There does need to be more scientific research especially on 1) electromagnetic/energetic & biophotonic properties of DNA, and 2) functions of the aura(or bio-energy field)!  Russian and German scientific researchers are “on track” to one day scientifically prove life continues after death.  Dr. Fritz-Albert Popp and son Jurgen at University of Marburg, Germany continue early work on electromagnetic aspects/versions of DNA and cell biophotonics as members of the Int’l Institute of Biophysics, and among others, Dr. Peter Geriaev  in Russia with a breakthrough in biophotonic electromagnetic DNA termed Wave Genetics or bioholography.  And, Dr. Konstantin Korotkov, Director at the St. Petersburg State Tech University, who concentrates on aura (or bio-energy field) research as Founder/President of the Int’l Union of Medical and Applied Bioelectrography,  has actually produced early Kirlian/GDV photographs which may be of the “soul” or aura leaving dying human bodies.  Unfortunately, American research on these two “niches” is relatively modest.  Materialist brain researchers continue to believe that the source of the mind must be someplace in the brain or physical body.  And, narrowly educated atheists do not believe in any perceived afterlife.

Book  #1. Source: “Voyagers” Volumes I & II  — by Ashayana Deane(Anna Hayes)   For details see Chapters on Ascension Mechanics & DNA.  Available from, Volume I and 2nd Edition Vol. II  583 pages.  Also includes information on Earth history and quantum physics.  Purchase strongly recommended.

“At the death of the physical body, you will discover that your consciousness lives on and your evolution continues.
“Ascension is not some lofty spiritual concept designed by the minds of man, it is the literal, tangible scientific process of the evolution of consciousness and biology with the laws of energy mechanics that apply to a multidimensional reality system.  All souls will eventually evolve and ascend through a 15 dimensional scale to re-emerge as sentient identity within realms of pure consciousness beyond the dimensional systems.  Whether or not you view ascension and multidimensional evolution as a reality while you are alive on Earth, you will be directly faced with that reality once your consciousness has passed out of physical life and into the multidimensional framework.   How well you prepare for that discovery now will determine the ease with which you are able to take your next evolutionary step once you “wake up on the other side”
“The term “Ascension” represents much more than some lofty spiritual concept invented by the finite human psyche in order to give purpose to its finite existence.  Many in the earthly scientific communities believe that life is limited to the physical expression and that consciousness is the result of the body’s biochemical/neuro-electrical functions.  Following these erroneous beliefs they draw an equally erroneous conclusion that consciousness ends at the death of the physical body. Consequently, human science will be confronted with a whole new order of multidimensional reality and a whole new science.
“The process of ascension is not some quasi-religious concept based upon the meandering of the human mind.  Ascension is instead a highly SCIENTIFIC process that represents the universal order through which consciousness experiences itself as being.  Ascension also involves the understanding of morphogenetic fields or the form holding energy constructions that allow matter to build into individuated forms.  Ascension therefore is a science with specific mechanics that allow for the evolution of consciousness from simple to more complex forms.  Every being in existence is involved in this evolutionary process and applies to each and every one of you.  The choices one makes in thought and deed will determine the quality of experience, or lack thereof, that will be personally encountered.
“DNA is built upon minute electro-tonal (i.e., multi octave) patterns of multidimensional frequency and the energetic imprint of the DNA goes with you in the death transition. The content of that pattern will determine how high your consciousness will be able to travel (progress) in the system once it is released from the body. Whatever frequencies are contained within that imprint will determine the specific dimensional placement after death.
“This “system” blueprint has called your races forward toward an unseen destiny which is the return of immortality and the (eventual) reunion of the consciousness of man with its Prime Creative Source.  In terms of the soul’s perspective, the challenges and hardships faced along the way in Earth life are understood to be lessons in growth as human consciousness evolves to remember the truth of its eternal existence and embrace the beauty of its multidimensional identity. From the perspective of a human consciousness focused within a physical body on Earth, those challenges can seem, at times, overwhelming.  Without consciousness recognition of the purposes, processes and objectives of the evolutionary plan, the hardships can appear to be unbearable and without meaning.
“All human souls are involved with the exact same process of evolving the genetic “package” and the consciousness to higher dimensional levels; some souls are just further along in this journey.  This is a process by which the life forms evolve through matter particles and anti-particles upward through the 15 dimensional scale, from dense matter solidity to pure, non-mattered-based conscious energy substance.
“All dimensions exist in the same space, but seem to operate separately due to the particle pulsation rates of which they are composed.  The degree of angular rotation of particle spin shifts 90 degrees from one dimension to the next while remaining invisible to each other.  In the universe there are 15 primary dimensional bands.  Dimensional frequency bands group in sets of 3 and each set of three dimensions represents a Harmonic Universe.  Thus there are five Harmonic Universes within one (overall) dimensional Universe.  The degree of angular rotation of particle spin shifts 90 degrees from one dimension to the next within one Harmonic Universe.  In each Harmonic Universe containing three dimensions, there are two 90 degree shifts of the angular rotation of spin between particles.  Between one Harmonic Universe and the next there is a 45 degree reverse angular rotation of particle spin.  This 45 degree reverse angular rotation of particle spin creates a Magnetic Repulsion Zone, or void between Harmonic Universes, which keeps the reality fields contained there within separated from each other.   Through this structure of relative angular rotations of particle spin, the holographic illusions of multidimensional reality, matter, time, space, movement and individuation of form are perpetually created and sustained.  Entities existing below the 7th dimension possess physical biological forms.  Dimensions 7 through 9 possess the etheric matter form.
“These multidimensional electromagnetic fields are collectively referred to as the bio-energetic system or the aura field of a manifest form.  The aura field has seven primary inner layers (i.e., bodies) which  correspond to dimensional frequency bands 1 through 7.  The aura field also has seven outer layers which represent the form-holding MORPHOGENETIC imprints for the seven inner layers of the aura field.  The morphogenetic imprint holds the instructions and design for form-building in a type of digital or electronic encoding.  The seven outer layers correspond to dimensional frequency bands 9 through 15.
“The perceptions of your present races are focused within the middle range of the third dimension.  In order for humanity to evolve into higher dimensional fields, the frequency patterns of dimensions four, five and six must be brought into manifest expression with the energetic grid of Earth.  The frequencies or sound-tones must also become operational within the active DNA strands.  The energetic imprint of the DNA is carried with the personal morphogenetic field and consciousness after physical death of the body.  (Note: Morphogenetic fields are the form holding patterns through which matter forms.  Rupert Sheldrake postulated on their existence, but proposed no physical mechanism.)  Whatever frequencies are contained with that imprint will determine the dimensional placement of the consciousness after death.   The ultimate success of DNA* building lies in the hands of the embodied consciousness who personally directs the process by the way in which personal energy is used and applied.

*Note 1:  Our current scientific community is thoroughly confused about the multiple strands of DNA, declaring only a few as having a known usage – and calling the remainder “junk DNA.”  Over 98% of DNA has an unknown function!  However, if it were junk, the sequence of the “syllables” i.e., the nucleotides in DNA, should be completely random.  In fact, they are not random at all, and current scientists now believe that this DNA contains some kind of code with function completely unknown or undetermined.
“(At death), you will move your consciousness through a dark tunnel, with a bright light at its end, the same effect as in a Near-Death-Experience (Note: the subject of much book investigative reporting).
“Multiple reincarnational** identities represent portions of a person’s soul awareness evolving.   To the soul-self identity, the immediate incarnates in its incarnational family are recognized as living sub-personality fragments of its own identity whose reality simultaneously takes place with the dimensional bands contained within the soul-self’s DNA.  The DNA represents electro-magnetically encoded digital imprints of the other living portions of your identity.
**Note 2: Reincarnation occurs only in the first Harmonic Universe.  “You reincarnate into multiple forms and situations because one lifetime is in no way sufficient time, nor does it offer sufficient exposures to enough diverse situations to give the fragment-spirit the understanding necessary.  The best way to learn about poverty, or being rich, or being helpless, or being powerful, or being female, or being male is by experiencing lifetimes in such circumstances.”  Book source: Andareon Theory communication.
“Consciousness and matter are both composed of these units of electro-tonal energy and so both spiritual and scientific mastery are brought together through the applied knowledge of electro-tonal energy dynamics.   For the smallest units of energy in the cosmos you could find 800 billion billion units in an average 3 dimensional photon.  They represent the “divine substance” out of which the cosmos is composed.
“There is an organizational intelligence and sentient creative force of vast proportion that is responsible for the design and creation of the cosmos, i.e., the Central Creative Force you call God***.   Members of the benevolent Guardian Alliance (Note: who communicated this book) are beings from higher reality fields, dimensions ten through fifteen, who have evolved beyond the manifestation of biology, physical and etheric matter substance into states of conscious pre-matter form who appear as forms of light when they enter your system**** or, occasionally take on the appearance of biological forms in order to interact with Earth life, for example: Jesus from the 12th dimension.
***Note 3: The GOD of the Old Testament Yahweh was an Ancient Astronaut as demonstrated by the Jewish-American scholar Zecharia Sitchin who authored multiple books based on historical Middle Eastern archeological hieroglyphic interpretations.
****Note 4: The above afterlife “system” description is supported in the website which contains details on souls, reincarnation, DNA and dimensions (density), particularly Dimension Four.
Book #2. “The Treasure of El Dorado” Chapter 7.  The Bodies of Man.        EXCERPTS from dictated communications by Ascended Masters.             Joseph Whitfield  213 pages.   Available through

“The value of the TREASURE is literally priceless since it could not be purchased with all the material wealth of all worlds.  The asset is the SECRET OF OVERCOMING DEATH.

“Few indeed are aware of the totality of their being. Existing within and around the physical bodies are IMPERISHABLE bodies.  These other bodies interpenetrate the physical body as well as extend beyond it. The various bodies which constitute the total potential of all developing human beings are: the physical matter body, the astral (antimatter) body, the etheric (Christ) body, the mental body and the emotional body.  It is these other bodies that constitute the phenomenon referred to as an aura (NOTE: Which has been proven to exist by special photographic techniques, see Wikipedia aura paranormal). The reason that the aura is not readily seen by most people is that its range of vibration renders it invisible to the physical eye. One’s CONSCIOUSNESS and other higher faculties reside in this “spiritual” (frequency existing) body and are INDESTRUCTIBLE.
“WHEN PHYSICAL DEATH OCCURS, THESE OTHER BODIES LEAVE THE PHYSICAL BODY AS A UNIT AND BECOME THE OPERABLE VEHICLE THROUGH WHICH THE CONSCIOUSNESS CONTINUES TO FUNCTION IN OTHER DIMENSIONS!  While one is no longer physically incarnated, the astral body houses the other bodies after the transition called death.  Unlike the physical body, however, the astral body is inviolable, (i.e.,incorruptible).
“Let us examine some of the functions which the various aspects of the astral body serve while one is physically incarnated.  The subconscious is the mechanism which performs those vital functions that produce automatic actions and reactions on the physical level. Examples of this would be breathing, beating of the heart, blinking of the eyelids, digesting, etc. It is the subconscious which permits the formation of habits and which must be reprogrammed in order to break habits and existing beliefs.  The subconscious however does not have the capacity for rational thought.  Everything that is recorded in the brain is also recorded in the subconscious.  The subconscious contains total memory information FROM ALL PREVIOUS LIVES AND EXPERIENCES (as recorded in the energetic DNA).
“The brain is the memory bank while physically incarnated.  The subconscious mind is the memory bank for your total experiences. Whatever is recorded in the brain is recorded automatically in the subconscious as well.
“Consider that quality of the astral body that is called soul.  Think of a cassette tape (i.e., the energetic DNA).  When the tape is blank, it can be said to contain no soul.  Now fill it with recordings.  What we have done is to impart attributes to a previously empty cassette.  We have thus CREATED SOUL.  When the life ends, the tape (i.e., the surviving energetic DNA) is filled with that essence called SOUL.  Within the total soul are many completed “tapes” containing the records of all incarnational experiences.  The completed “tapes” form the memory bank, or the akashic record of each individual being.  Whatever information is contained (from past lives), whether it be good or evil, true or false, right or wrong, correct or incorrect, can and does influence your well-being in your present life.  This is why many people go through lifetime after lifetime making the same mistakes over and over again.  In summary, the subconscious and the soul lack discernment. They cannot reason.
“The conscious part of your mental body provides you with the powers of thinking.  Thinking is the capacity to discern, reason, rationalize, to exercise self-discipline, to deduce, to employ logic, to analyze, inquire, synthesize, judge, investigate, observe, etc.  THE BRAIN IS NOT THE MIND.  It is one of the instruments that the mind uses while you are manifested in the physical planes (dimensions) of expression.  The mental body has three distinct parts or levels: the conscious, the subconscious, and the superconscious.  A primary function of the mind or mental body is to produce awareness, an incredible tool in the development of potential.  As a component of the mental body, the subconscious has the ability and the capacity to record all sensual, mental, and emotional, and spiritual experiences and to “play back” this information, functioning like a tape recorder (i.e. the DNA).

“The etheric (or Christ) body has been described by enlightened writers.  Often referred to as the light body due to the effect produced in the atomic structure of this body by the speed of the electron movement within the atoms which equals or exceeds the speed of light.  Achieving the status of etheric (or Christhood) confers upon the recipient many powers not found in the lesser bodies. Jesus represents the best example in history.  Among the powers he was known to have demonstrated were: bilocation, levitation, materialization, healing, etc.  Jesus constantly reminded his followers that they could do all of these and even greater things.
“When one achieves the full etheric (or Christ) vibration, then death will no longer have dominion over him.  It gives him the power to alter his vibrations at will, and thus he can freely travel through the physical, astral and etheric vibrations.
“It is the emotional body that gives you a feeling nature, i.e., that produces the capacity for experiencing all levels of emotion such as joy and sorrow, love and hate, compassion and malevolence, ecstacy and depression, pleasure and pain, excitement and indifference. The emotional capacity is experienced on all levels of expression.
“The superconscious is the functioning mind of the etheric or Christ self.  What is required is that man of earth become aware of the existence of the incredible power of the superconscious mind and desire its attainment. To give you some idea of the scope of the superconscious mind, think of a rating scale numbered from 1 to 10 as representing the range of man’s conscious mind in Earth.  Then classify the most outstanding geniuses of Earth history using 10 as the ultimate that is attainable.  You will find that such men as Einstein, Swedenborg, Whitman, etc., would be rated from perhaps 7 through 9.  By comparison, a pure state of superconsciousness would range into the hundreds or thousands.  It is quite easy to conclude from this, is it not, that the means exist to literally transform Earth into a paradise by educating mankind as to its potential.
“These bodies constitute man’s potential as he continues to evolve within the “system.”  Each aspect of our total self is indispensable to the function and purpose of our total being.

OTHER REINFORCING BOOKS:             *** most favored among hundreds researched
***Abduction to the 9th Planet, republished under title “Thiaoouba Prophecy” by Michel Desmarquet, Arafura Publishing, Australia      He was abducted physically in 1987 for nine days by the spiritually most highly evolved and most technically developed planet in our galaxy.   He confirmed and detailed the existence of IMPERISHABLE aura, reincarnation, and astral/etheric
afterlife on progressively more advance planets !!  Excerpts below.
“Your Astral body, which inhabits every normal human being, transfers to its higher-self all the sensations that are experienced during a lifetime in a physical body. A normal  human Astral body contains approximately four billion, trillion electrons, exactly marrying your physical shape.
“The more you cultivate your mind, the less you will be burdened by your physical body and the quicker you will proceed through your cycle of lives.  Regarding the problems of your planet, Michel, the solution depends on love, not money. People need to rise above hate, resentment, jealousy and envy, and put their neighbor before themselves.
“There are nine categories of planets. You are on the planet Thiaooabu which is the top of the scale. Earth is a planet of the first category which could be likened to a kindergarten. We are one of three planets which are the most highly evolved.

Zetatalk by Nancy Lieder, Granet Publishing, dictated by benevolent extraterrestrials
also see website, Section Density, i.e. Dimensions
***An Ascension Handbook by Tony Stubbs, Oughten Hse Pub’g, channeled from Serapis Bey
The Science of the Soul by Robert Siblerud, Sacred Science Publishers
The Infinite MIND by Valerie V. Hunt: The Science of Human Vibrations of Consciousness,  Malibu Publishing
The Holographic Universe by Michael Talbot, Harper Perennial
***Andareon Theory by Robert Gidel, Andareon Foundation Press, dictated by Andar Group
After We Die, What Then by George Meek, electronics engineer, Ariel Press
A Lawyer Presents the Case for Afterlife, by Victor Zammit, Gammell Pty, Ltd.,Australia
also see website
Extraterrestrials in Biblical Prophecy by G. Cope Schellhorn, Horus House Press
***The Yahweh Encounters – Controversial Bible Interpretation, by Ann Madden Jones
Extraterrestrial Contact – the Evidence and Implications by Steven Greer, Cross Point Publishers
Gods, Genes & Consciousness – Nonhuman Interventiion in Human History
by Paul Von Ward, Hampton Roads
A Seth Reader, by Richard Roberts, Vernal Equinox Press
The Only Planet of Choice, by Phyllis Schlemmer, Gateway Books, Bath, UK
Vibrational Medicine, by Richard Gerber, Chapters 1 & 4, Bear & Co.
Light After Life by Dr. Konstantin Korotkov,  Backbone Publishing                       Miracles of the Storm – Instrumental TransCommunication (ITC), by Mark Macy                            See website: World
PS: Pass this along if you are so inclined.   Promotion encouraged, but this is NOT for total re-publication in books, magazines, professional journals, etc. without source approval.  Short quotes or references  OK.    DJS
A Pot with a Crack In It

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Feminism and the Value of Speaking Up

Fourteen months ago I called out some of my fellow feminist atheists for the way in which a conversation about sexism was unfolding online.   I tackled the subject with a provocative blog post, a radio episode and a few podcast extras. Since then, I’ve seen the conversation evolve.  It’s a conversation where a wide array of community members can participate in remedying a pattern of behavior that underlies some fairly disgusting revelations.   It’s a conversation where our fellow freethinkers of grand fame or relative obscurity are speaking out, standing up, and taking action.

In my critique, I never doubted that harassment, assaults, and expressions of sexism occurred within our community.  I have witnessed  it, and the statics alone make incidence probable.  At the time however, I feared that broad, nonspecific accusations of sweeping sexism in our community would alienate allies and activists of feminist causes.  In fact, I saw these accusations alienating men who vigorously support humanistic and feminist ideals and activism.  I worried that vigorous insistence was tending toward the dogmatic, and that shame was being wielded overly broadly at collective groups and not at the offending individuals.

Any number of these things can be stomach-churning for atheists, many of whom associate dogmatism and shame with religious manipulation.  Shame for actions not your own is a tool heavily used by religion, and it should hardly be surprising that those who’ve worked hard to escape that particular vicegrip would reject such things out of hand.

I am glad to say that a notable culture shift is occurring (note: not has occurred) that appropriately holds individuals accountable for harassing behavior with clear consequences, and puts positive social pressure on organizations who harbor or endorse harassers, minimizers, and assailants. The courage and frankness of a few are giving voice to many.  Many of their stories are still developing, and we must keep close watch on making sure the individuals or organizations culpable take responsibility, and face social consequences for their behavior.

Karen Stollznow, linguist and skeptic author, recently divulgued in the Scientific American Mind blog the years of sexual harassment, retribution, and minimization she suffered at the hands of a colleague and her place of employment.  Her harasser was subsequently identified as Center for Inquiry employee Ben Radford.

Following Dr. Stollznow’s piece, Carrie Poppy documented poor treatment during her time as an employee of the James Randi Educational Foundation.  She requested that JREF ban Radford from future appearances at their TAM conference due to his treatment of Stollznow, only to have her request dismissed by President D.J. Grothe and summarily denied by the JREF Board.  Poppy documented additional unethical behavior by Grothe to the JREF Board, and stated that she was assured by James Randi himself that DJ Grothe would be fired.  That never came true.  In a move that sickens me, Grothe approached CFI President Ron Lindsay (who himself has been the focus of controversy) to ask that Poppy be removed from speaking and attending the Women in Secularism conference because it might reflect poorly on JREF, especially if Poppy were to cry if the subject of rape arose.

YouTuber and former development director for the Secular Student Alliance Ashley Paramore bravely detailed her experience being harassed and sexually assaulted at TAM 2012.  Although she refers to the perpetrator (a casual friend) using a pseudonym, her story powerfully explains supportive moves by fellow conference goers, and the importance of a responsive staff. Unfortunately, Ashley reveals that she may be speaking out now because she no longer works for “Big Atheism.”  This speaks to a fear that many have about self-advocacy leading to compromised job opportunities within the movement, as was described by Dr. Stollznow.

Despite the courage of these women and the support they receive from our community, others remain anonymous for fear of retribution or followup harassment from the same community.  Clearly we have much to do as activists, humanists, skeptics, and feminists in ensuring that all members of our movement are treated with the dignity and respect that is our right. Names and details, even in preliminary form, are an important step in uncovering and rooting out unacceptable behaviors that hurt us. Fourteen months ago, a dogmatic discussion didn’t sit right with me.  What I’ve seen develop since then is a critical mass working with determination to make our movement and communities places of respect and integrity for all members, especially those whose voices have been marginalized.


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