4 votes

Smudge Pot's take on religion in the movement and shoving it up your nose.

Howdy folks, Smudge Pot once again with some longer range memory on the issue of religion. Why does it keep creeping in here? Why do some of us carry it in here and why do some of us just hate it when it happens?

Whom are the evangelicals and what are they doing here? A nefarious plot to religionify the place? And what of the atheists who refuse to be redeemed and the ones who just can't abide us religionists stinking up the place? Who is right and who is wrong and who knows the real truth?

TONIGHT WITH SMUDGE POT we won't even try to answer all these questions, heck, I'll just do what I do. Give you my take and hope it helps.

Most of you know I'm firmly in the religionist camp. Meaning I'm pretty freaking religious. I once told somebody please don't try to cut my faith out of me with a knife because there ain't gonna be nothing left but a puddle of blood. But my faith isn't exactly mainstream so it does afford me a certain perspective.

What are known to us as evangelicals and known to us as Christians have a very deep connection to our general ideology and their identification with freedom and liberty resonated perfectly for them with their faith of freedom and liberation through forgiveness and it embues everything they do in fact it's an ethic for them not to "hide one's light under a bushel".

OK. I was raised pretty tolerant so as far as like...I dunno 9 or 10 years ago, as the result of conference calls inspired by Aaron Russo's movement, and natch that Aaron considered himself to be an orthodox Jew, when I got word....well actually I was asked for help.

Some people got together and got my attention and said Smudge you gotta help us, we got a problem on the conference calls.

Ok what's the problem?

Smudge can you imagine that for some of us this whole begin and end the conference calls with prayer thing is really a major turn off to some of us and some of us are getting ready to walk?

No dude, I can't, what's wrong with prayer?

Smudge can you just come on some of these calls and listen?

Sure I can do that.

I wasn't thinking this was gonna be a big deal and you guys mostly know how demonstrative I am with my faith. I'm pretty much like that in real life too. I sing, I pray out loud, I hug people. I was thinking maybe some bible bashers were offended but I was prepared to listen.

Well. OK. I heard enough in about the first 60 seconds. The conference calls, un-noticed by Aaron who was sick and myself and a couple others had turned into a full on christian patriot thing. Agenda? Let's just say that some of us were handling things by a format and it was down to this:

Welcome to the call I'm Sam, Brother Allen would you please like to open with a word of prayer from the book of Hosea? Thank you brother Allen and father may I add that you add your wisdom to this meeting as you did touch the heart of Daniel when he faced the lions now before we get started did everybody reflect on last week's scriptural reading?

Ok not quite that far but those who got my attention were right. I'm a religionist and I felt alienated. This was so not quite where we were going and ho man if Aaron had heard that all holy hell and fury would have broken out. If Aaron Russo had wanted to be a Christian missionary he would have been one and he would have been one of the best the world has ever known. As it was he wanted to defend and protect our constitutional freedoms and acknowledge that they are here for all people in all places starting with America, the USA.

But since I did not often come onto calls at that point and I had the cachet of being Aaron's technologist I had a certain entre and a bit of a secret weapon because at that point very few people knew of my beliefs. Now almost all of you do. So I saw an opportunity to do something sneaky.

Back then very few of you knew how sneaky I could be either. Now lots of people know I can be sneaky. So I affirmed some things and played along and what do you know, I was actually invited as a kinda visiting dignitary to offer closing prayers.

Thank you, I am honored. And I was. Truly. So I offered closing prayers from my heart. But I kinda layed it on a bit more ceremonially than I usually do....

To the East and the the South and to the North and to the West, to the Ones Above that see everything, to the Ones Below who always listen, to the relations, the Oyasin and to the One Above, Tunkashila, father of us all......

And I prayed. I thanked our ancestors for watching over us and protecting us, I thanked our Holy Ones that I stand among such great people and I asked for wisdom and understanding and concluded with the traditional words I AM SMUDGE POT AND I HAVE SPOKEN.

(well i didn't take the name Smudge Pot back then but you get the idea)

Well a great silence followed. And a very diminished form of what we usually do, promise to follow through, get in touch, stay in touch. But there was a silence.

Never again were official AFTF calls begun and ended with prayers the same way or not just by one religion or perspective. And some room opened up. And some vibrant voices that were driven away came back in and some new ones did too and we got a big step further to being the movement we are today. In that small way. But "we" were small then so small things like that had resonance.

Made a big noticeable diff when Aaron passed because we all got to pray and also some of us had the qualifications to sing the kadesh for Aaron on our behalf and ALL OF US OF EVERY TRADITION PRAYED INCLUDING THE ATHEISTS because their words and devotion were not only equal to or better than ours and not only did they resonate, Aaron would have appreciated some of their words better than ours.

BECAUSE BROTHERS AND SISTERS OF FAITH, WE ARE EXPECTED TO BE TOLERANT AND UNDERSTANDING.

And Christan brothers and sisters to whom I claim relationship with by virtue of blood and upbringing (part white, part Christian) we do not exist in a universe of justice. We exist in a universe of mercy. For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. If there were justice you know exactly where we would be. But for forgiveness we would have absolutely nothing to look forward to after this world.

I rather take example from our "principled atheists" who conduct themselves in a righteous manner even without the constant reinforcement and love that we have that helps us keep our selfish natures from practicing even worse than we often do.

And recall the example of the kindly Samaritan and look for them in daily life, look for them going forward. And don't expect the bible to tell you who your friends are going forward if the tough times we expect come to pass. Many are called and few are chosen. And we are not the ones doing the calling aho?

We have alienated some of whom our God has created. This is not the message and this is not The Way prescribed by my belief.

I would ask you, brothers and sisters to minister to hearts before minds. Their minds are not the problem, they are rational, they are intelligent and they are observant. And they are injured and often need help. Minister first to their bodies and simple needs. And remember there but for the grace of the One. Who to reach your heart put his son right among these and to suffer their fate.

And learn that there is spiritual blowback as well as military and if you do not understand this then do indeed study up on the crusades. This Onward Christian Soldiers Marching As To War thing hasn't really worked too well in the past 500 years. And it's destroyed almost all that remains of certain ancient Christian cultures that got along for centuries like the Coptics and Safardim and others which I am reticent to tell you about now because it's almost better you don't know. These cultures will now have to go into deep hiding. This is the reality.

Otherwise just get another rifle and sit in your chair and rub linseed oil up and down the stock with a rag and just think about how what you want to do. If the rifle is too tall and you are too short just prop the butt up on a stack of bibles so you can inspect the muzzle.

Brothers and sisters I'm not exactly happy to bring you this news. Not only do I know you are commanded to share the light but like freedom, when you have God in your life you really do want to shout it from the roof tops. It's hard to contain.

it's also hard to contain when we are attacked. It's hard when they trample on our Holy God. This is why men charged with no crime are now attempting to starve themselves and die in Guantanamo. Their major complaint? People wearing the flag of the United States Of America keep disrespecting their bible, their Koran and since they can do nothing to stop it they want to die.

I know. So do you. It's called devotion. "take up your cross daily and follow me". In other words, you are supposed to know how that feels and you above all people are ordered not only to turn the other cheek but to expect to have to.

Will I be a Christian example to you?

Only incidentally if at all. My belief is informed by Christianity. The closest road I follow is the Red Road. Before that it was just called The Way.

These days I am now called a Shaman or an Elder but I kinda like Priest. I like Priest for various reason but it reminds me to be one. Or to try. But I also respond to "jerk" or "hey moron". Regardless of what you call me, I know what you are called to. And I do believe I have just convicted you. And you know exactly what that means.

(tough love)

Mitakuye Oyasin (including you)

-Smudge



Trending on the Web

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Oh, I didn't think you were picking a fight with me :)

I was just asking you questions. I am sorry I butted in. I knew you were talking to Smudge. I should have left it at that.

I am sorry you are in a bad mood. I am sorry people got fired for somethings that you revealed. That would make me feel bad too.

Maybe "they" were waiting to fire them? And your findings were any easy reason for "them" to do what they were wanting to do?

I did not like that song. It made me feel sick inside. The guy is talking to his mother? Telling her to hate him? I'm a mom. I hope my kids will always tell me to love them. I hope they will always want my love. It makes me feel bad that someone does not want their mom to love them. It is too sad.

I like this song:

http://youtu.be/Tp9dRoeVp8A

smudge pot is a biker dude from cali.

he likes to pull the "native American" card.
I am an orphan myself who never knew his mother.

I like songs that have meaning.... I wonder what you might think about this one?

HVACTech...so,

Smudge is a biker dude you say? So is not really an Indian? He just likes to pretend he is an Indian? And he is a Deist trying not to be framed as a Pagan? It was after midnight and I had to get some sleep.

Anyways, I have to say, I feel badly after linking you with a "family" video and you tell me you are an Orphan who never knew his mother. One never knows who they are talking to and how different their lives are from their own. Did you know your father?

I listened/watched the next video. Same group. More of a ballad? I still felt sick when the screaming started and the clawing at the throad to go along with it. It just seems dark.

I like songs with stories too! I thought of this one:

http://youtu.be/eKyY8zfjBMQ

Smudge pot is a good guy.

I bear him no ill will. I was just yanking his chain.
people like to bicker over religion. I don't. I do like to talk about it though.
as far as I know he is a native American biker dude. that is one of my favorite types btw.
the native Americans like many others, looked for evidence of god in nature. this makes a lot of sense if you think about it. the sun and the earth really do give life.
it is the Abrahamic faiths that are the most troublesome and violent.
I think that what is most important to remember is, that it is not those who oppose you who are your enemy, it is those sitting on the fence.
thanks for talking with me.
peace.

Thank you for talking to me :)

"people like to bicker over religion. I don't. I do like to talk about it though."

Me too. I cannot see any reason to bicker. I do have strong beliefs, and I don't mind sharing them, but never to belittle or to bicker.

Janking chains...I like to do that too :) Looks like I bit the line that was meant for Smudge Pot, he probably has his hair blowing in the breeze as he rides laughing at the post he started...thinking of all the chains he yanked.

Yanking chains is different than bickering, imo. It is good natured and fun. Bickering can be ugly. I see no reason to be ugly.

Peace to you my Liberty Friend.

:)

when people talk, understanding developes.

have you read what the atheists have to say about me?
how fun is that?

people like you are why I still hang around this place.
forbear the insults and power on sis!

That my friend, IMO, would be a good title to a new post!

"when people talk, understanding develops."

To me understanding is what talking is about. That does not mean people have to change their beliefs, opinions, or thoughts about something. But it does mean that more than one opinion, thought, and belief is on the market place for people to consider, think about and decide upon. It also allows us to know one another in a way that is not possible without communication.

I think that is why Ron Paul draws so many to hear him speak. He just talks, plain and simple. There is a guy, Ravi Zacharias. He is a Christian apologist. He talks to all kinds of people, with respect, and they share opinions and thoughts. People have critized him for going certain places to talk. Well, if you don't go, you won't understand, and neither will they.

If there is truth to be shared how can it be shared unless an equitable exchange is made between parties??

No, I haven't read what Atheists have said about you. I know I feel bad when I feel that I am being attacked. It makes me feel lousy. But, I find this:

“A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.” A verse from Proverbs 15, to be true in most every occasion. Sometimes, it is hard to come up with something soft :) though. But that is a guiding principle for me. I think you were practicing that in a way with me when you said you weren’t “picking a fight with me.” Those words put us into open communication about our intentions with one another.

Why injure Fellow Friends of Liberty? Why injure anyone? Mal intent seeks to injure. Why have mal intentions? We are human, so we have to constantly check our intentions, IMO, and cast out those that are mal and replace them with kindness. The Golden Rule that Ron Paul speaks about.

Here is a short link with Ravi. I can’t listen to it first because our home site is down and I am on my hot spot and the band width in our area is nil. I live in the sticks lol :)

http://youtu.be/59_m1UtjEhU

Whatever you serve, that is your religion.

What is your core drive, what makes you tick, what do you LOVE above all else: this is what you serve.
ALL men worship something, even if that something is lowly self, therefore all men acknowledged or not have a religion , for a religion is nothing more than a faith, or belief in SOMETHING or someone either internal or external to the one holding that faith/ belief.

I am Steadfast, or Stēkō in Koine Greek, I am a servant of Gods because that's what my actions say and not just my rethoric, but my actions are first through FAITH in Jesus which is the same Faith that accounts for His being my Creator, my Lord, my Savior and my sanctifier.
This nation was founded by Christian men who FLED a nation where a solitary faith was forced upon them by civil authority. They found that the Jesus they discovered in Tyndale's Translation of Gods word was not the same as the Jesus of the religion forced upon them under penalty ( often imprisonment or death ) by civil authority. They fled to worship ( serve ) God as they understood him without living under this constant threat to their lives, property and family's.
I have a responsibility to tell you the truth, if I truly love you as I am supposed too. Irrespective of how you receive it, my heart is not to harm but to succor an advantage for you. I'm not one to repeat myself, nor become a Pulex; rather it is enough to clearly state the truth and let others choose as they will. Your choosing, or even your moral condition is not a cause to dislike or offend, I hope you choose wisely but I hold no man up to perfection for none comes close.
If you were to say speak not of this Jesus, I would simply reply, you decide, is it better for me to obey you or to obey God? As for me and my house we shall serve the Lord.
In other words my dear smudge, the RedRoad I know ( 1/72 Cree ), but it is not my way , nor do I say " I am of the first people ".... Like certain Democrats do. 1/72 doesn't qualify, service does, we belong to that which we serve.

God Bless
Stēkō

Drew, by the very grace of GOD through the blood of Christ Jesus.
"there shall come after us men whom shall garner great wealth using our system, and having done so shall seek to slam the door of prosperity behind them." George Washington

Monotheistic

Acts 4:10 Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. 11 This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. 12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

yup...leave religion out of it...(based on comments)

...while citing the principles of the theologically trained founders and framers...

Couch everything in "revolution" language, then pull the moral relativism point of view....

Who was being persecuted in the Spanish Inquisition? On yeah, Christians by the Christian church...

Foxe's Book of Martyrs anyone? All fairy tales, right?

Declaration of Independence, anyone? Right out of John Locke's Two Treatises on Civil Government? He quoted the scriptures over 1600 times in that piece.

George Washington's Farewell Address, anyone? No patriot labors to hewn down the indispensable supports of religion and morality? A significant percentage of THIS movement LOVES to!

Leave it to those archaic kindergarten Christians to point out the hypocrisy, lies, and false doctrines of the professing Christians in government who are DESTROYING this nation.

"we love to have you in the movement, but SHUT UP if you're going to preach that Gospel of Jesus Christ changes wicked and deceitful human hearts crap", right?

Dumb, unenlightened founders knew what I knew...the ink wasn't dry on their generational recollections of the Reformation that occurred only a couple of hundred years prior to them coming here...but it's all irrelevant...even though there's ZERO evidence of a dog producing a non-dog in evolutionary history, even though it's quite obvious the Grand Canyon is a washed out spillway(a lot of water in a little bit of time), even though fossils are only proof that something died and there is ZERO evidence they had kids that were biologically different than them, even though we have never seen a star form, nor have we seen anything but variations occur within the same "kind" of animals...there is no God, there is no God, there is no God; there is only MAN, and his intellect, wisdom, humor, and observations....no higher authority than him...man!!!

Founders didn't protest a violation of their God-given, unalienable rights(rights NO MAN can put a lien against); they were just ticked off about cronyism, same as we have today, right?

To muzzle the Christians in this movement, is to align with the communists...no, I don't want a theocracy; I'm just looking for some HUMILITY and honesty...

The fool, the insane, has said in his heart there is NO God!

Thought You Left PUG

I guess not. Just another empty threat. Typical

skippy

thank a moderator...

...for UNDERSTANDING my frustration and "addiction"...he talked me out of it...

God told him to come back =D

God told him to come back =D

deacon's picture

you are endowed by the creator

does not say GOD
no you can say all you want about wanting Christians
in this movement,and call atheists aligning with communists
but you self professing Christians are more of a hindrance
to every movement
what you talk about and preach about is incomplete,with an
incomplete bible. you stand on your soap box and scream from.
America wasn't founded on godly principles,but many of them
each professing their own form of what they believed
and whom or what they believed in
WE ARE ENDOWED BY OUR CREATOR...does it say god anywhere?
what you preach from is a bible that went through many hands of man
and changed by man
the Nicene creed should be a point where you start from,and learn what was done to the bible we use today,but i bet you won't look into that
bet you won't even look into the fact the bible has pagan beliefs
mixed in
ever read any of them so-called missing books of the bible?
ever read up on what Ezekiel mentioned about the wheel in the wheel?
does the name Lilith mean anything to you?
how about the fact that Moses in the basket has been recorded years before Moses was put in one
deacon

Leave an indelible mark on all of those that you meet.
OH... have fun day :)
d

deacon, you made me go look at the Declaration of Independence

http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/declaration_transc...
"When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."

I was pretty sure I remembered something about God. I thought I remembered the words "Heaven's God," but I find the words are "Nature's God."

Then they say the words "Creator."

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--"

Anyways, you made me looks so I am sharing. So it seems to me that "their Creator" is equal to "Nature's God," as in The God who is Creator of you and me and all of nature we see around us as well as the unalienable Rights which are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

Love you my friend. I enjoyed getting to know you a little this week.

How are you?

:)

Jesus is the Creator...

...He rose from the dead....

Deal with it!

Not quite.

GOD is the Creator. GOD (the Father) raised Jesus (the Son) up from the dead.

I know I'm missing something here, since I have no idea what your reply has to do with the comment you replied to. Deal with it? Your remark seems very out of place. Maybe you have some issues that you should be dealing with?

“It is the food which you furnish to your mind that determines the whole character of your life.”
―Emmet Fox

Nonna, have you read John 1? Jesus is God; Jesus is Creator!

Jesus is the Word! God became flesh and dwelt among us! The Creator came and died for us!

How cool is that!

http://www.biblestudytools.com/kjv/john/1.html
In the beginning was the word. The word was with God and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made...And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth...

As I've told you before, bear, I know Scripture at least as

as well as you do. St. John was a mystic and described the mystical aspect of Christianity. St. John, in the fist verses of that Gospel, is describing the Christ.

You and I speak very different languages, come from very different cultural (and, apparently, educational) backgrounds, and have very different ways of living our Christian faith. I don't want to get into more arguements with you about it. If your faith as a literalist works best for you, then that's good for YOU. My Catholic faith, together with teachers from the Episcopal Church and teachers of other faiths, taught me to see well beyond the literal meanings of the sacred writings, and that's what works best for me.

The basic tenents of almost all Christian denominations are found here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicene_Creed

BTW, I read the King James version of the Bible for beauty of language, not for accurate translations. And I don't want to argue about that either. Enough. Peace.

“It is the food which you furnish to your mind that determines the whole character of your life.”
―Emmet Fox

Nonna, I don't want to argue either. I do not mean to come

across that way, and I am sorry. I ask alot of questions. I say what I think. Then I usually ask some more question. And say more of what I think. That is how I talk and that is how I learn.

I cannot understand why I appear to be an enemy to you. You have said "enough." That makes me think you would rather me not ever speak to you again. If that is the case, I will try my best to honor your request. It was not my intention to have worn out my welcome. I'm sorry Nonna.

...

No, bear, bless your heart, you are not my enemy. LOL

The problems between us are not personal. They are theological and never the twains shall meet. Carrying on some long drawn out feud on this site is not appropriate and I simply refuse to engage in it. That's what I meant by "enough". I've always known that you meant well. But, if anybody's soul needs saving, Jesus has taken care of that, without the chapter and verses.

Here's a gift for you, bear. It's one of my favorite movies (in fact, I think hubby and I will watch it now, since we have the DVD)and I have been thinking about it a lot recently(LOL).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=izKHaDzn5q8 Enjoy!

“It is the food which you furnish to your mind that determines the whole character of your life.”
―Emmet Fox

Thanks Nonna, I'll have to watch later because I have to take my

50 year old body roller skating with our children's club.

I am such a literalist that when you reject me theologically I see you rejecting me. It is so entwinded with who I am.

If you ever think I can ask you any questions, please let me know. I have some. You see, I hear Christian and I autmomatically think what I think. I have spent quite an amount of time talking with Josf. When he says "God." He means "Truth." He does not mean the same God (Jesus) that I mean. So it took me a while to understand his words. He lets me say my words, and then we just move on. Oh, we have had our "words" trying to figure each other out. lol :) But as far as I am concerned, it is usually me that doesn't understand until I can understand. And then I don't have to change my belief either. It is just talking.

So when you say "enough," I wonder, are you Italian? I don't know why I ask that. It just seem Italians are able to put their foot down one way or another. That is probably hollywood perception from me.

Thank you for the movie. I was looking at the description and was wondering if those were your thoughts as well.

Nonna, I am sensitive, so when I think you are rejecting me, it is hurtful to me. But if I know you are rejecting me, well, I can deal with those feelings because they are known fully with a line not to be crossed.

I dont like to be cross-wise with people. And I don't like to make people feel bad either. I do like to be honest and upfront though. And I don't understand why you let other people be "religious" but you don't like it when I am.

OK propbably more than you wanted to know.

:)

Smudge Pot's smoke clouds the issue

The fact is, morals and ethics are not a religious issue. Morality is based on thousands of years of empirical observation. In other words, based on experience, we know that moral conduct improves the quality of life for individuals, families and societies. For example, the Declaration, Constitution and Bill of Rights are based on moral principles gleaned from 2500 years of Western history. Based on this history, we KNOW that limited government and capitalism, when practiced within a moral framework, produce stable, equitable societies. For more info, check out my post "Morals, Ethics, And The Role Of Gov't In A Capitalist Economy". Click on the "Resist Gun Control" link and you'll find it in the list of recent posts on the homepage.

http://www.dailypaul.com/277342 (Rand Paul: One person can make a difference)
http://www.StandUpForYourRights.me/?p=1264 (Fast and Furious hearing)

fail

"We are endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights".............hmmmm seems they understood a little something about where right and wrong was derived from.

True. It was not as if it was

True. It was not as if it was okay to kill or steal or covet your neighbor's wife before the 10 commandments. Pretty stupid to assume societies flourished where it was perfectly legal to kill and steal.

I don't know of a single religion no matter what the age or what remote tribe follows it that doesn't condemn these things. As for the stupid things like Sabbath, even christians don't believe that crap.

?

You wrote, "I rather take example from our "principled atheists" who conduct themselves in a righteous manner even without the constant reinforcement and love that we have that helps us keep our selfish natures from practicing even worse than we often do."

Is "principled atheists" in quotes as a way of qualifying that "atheist" alone would somehow be naturally more unprincipled? If that wasn't the implication, sorry -- but it had that effect as I read it. But maybe worse, to say they would conduct themselves in a righteous manner "even without the constant reinforcement and love that we have..." Huh? What was meant with this? Is the thinking that atheists don't have a community of reinforcement and love the way theists do?

This whole paragraph just seemed odd. Or were you trying to say something like "even the gentiles, when they do good" (Rom. 2:14) ?? But dude, the way this part was written sounded pretty judgmental or at least patronizing. I don't mean to offend you, but since you espouse hearing all variations, that's my variant take on that part of it.

That said, I commend your effort to broaden the idea of what it means to be religious. Good for you.

Liberty ...

... is a political movement, not a religious one. I find it interesting that it is almost always the theists who push their views, not atheists, and then theists complain of atheists doing something wrong.

On internet forums, there are trolls on both sides. But when it comes to the real world, it is the theists who are insisting that their prayers be said in Congress, that their god be recognized in government schools, their words be inscribed on government buildings, their symbols be erected on government property, their holidays observed by government decree, their ideas inscribed on government-approved money, their houses of worship be given special government tax privileges, and their "law" being implemented in government's law.

The atheists are not demanding any of these things, but are simply reacting to the theists demands.

You rarely hear atheists standing in the public square shouting their ideas. You don't see them going door-to-door trying to spread their ideas.

It is only theists who push their ideas upon others, using force, if necessary, which is a clear violation of the non-aggression principle.

The American founders struck a reasonable balance: they recognized that many people are religious, have many different views of religion, that not all people are religious, and that history teaches us that theocracies are a bad idea; therefore, government should be neutral.

I find it appalling that theists constantly want to inject their irrational religious views upon others in topics of conversation that have nothing to do with religion, and support the idea that government should promote their brand of religion. Then, they have the gall to whine when other theists (Muslims) want to do the very same thing.

How would Christians feel if Muslims were to get Islamic prayer in the schools and Congress (5 times each day), and Allah on the government money, and mosques getting tax exemptions while churches pay income tax, and Mohammad on government lawns, and Sharia law implemented, and see Muslims act offended anytime a Walmart greeter did not say, "Allah Akbar" when customers enter? Christians b**ch and moan on a regular basis when atheists, Muslims, Hindus and others object to the Christian version of these things that are mandated by government decree or pushed by Christian do-gooders.

If the pursuit is liberty, leave religion out of it because it is counter-productive. I have supported Ron Paul for years, even though I disagree with him about religion, because he NEVER wears his religion on his sleeve. When asked, he gives his honest answer. But he is not the one who brings it up or mentions it in speeches.

If Rick Santorum agreed with every political idea that Ron Paul does, but were to couch it in religious overtones the way he does about his conservative ideas, I would probably not support him.

So, which does a theistic libertarian want more: converts to liberty so that he can live his own life as he chooses, or converts to his brand of theism even though it means he will probably never achieve liberty because other types of theists (Muslims) and atheists will fight against his attempts?

"therefore, government should be neutral.."

With all due respect, the nature of government is not to be neutral, whether it be on issues of religion, science, morality, sexuality, etc. The list goes on and on.

NOT having prayer in public schools is as much of a religious imposition as having prayer in public schools. The mere existence of government sponsored education is itself a violation of the Establishment clause of the First Amendment.

But it's not only education that's a problem here. Just take your example of the Ten Commandments posted on courthouse walls. Again, there is simply no way to be neutral as long as government exists.

As a Christian and a supporter of absolute religious liberty, I must oppose the very existence of government, as government can NEVER remain neutral toward any moral or ethical belief system, including belief systems (which I would call "religions") which have no stated beliefs in a supreme being.

As far as the "atheists don't try to 'cram it down others throats'," what web site (planet) have you been living on? There are "principled atheists" as well as "principled Christians" on the DP, but there are also those in both the atheist camp and the "Christian" camp who are extremely intolerant of differing viewpoints. To deny this is either evasion or distortion of reality.

Thank you! Someone else had posted

10 things Christians and Atheists Must agree on, and it was well worth the read....

"Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for Hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the office of a thoroughly nasty business concern." ~~C.S. Lewis
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15

Also unfounded naked assertion

"I find it appalling that theists constantly want to inject their irrational religious views upon others in topics of conversation"

The greatest thinkers in western civilization from Socrates to St. Thomas and Rene Descartes all specifically used rational arguments and reason to explain the existence of God or Gods.

Troll Harder.