Open Thread: Conference Decompression
I'm home again, safe and sound. As I mentioned, this weekend I was in Columbus, Ohio at the 2012 Secular Student Alliance Leadership Conference, having a blast with some of my favorite bloggers, some amazing freethinking students, and many of the other people in the vanguard of the unstoppable juggernaut of secular awesome that is the atheist movement. Many informative and inspiring talks were given, many good times were had, many new friendships were made, many drinks were consumed, and much sweat was sweated (Columbus, in my informal estimation, having had an average air temperature throughout the weekend that was just barely hot enough to melt lead).
As always, I come away from these events feeling like a charged battery, brimming with hope, optimism and positive energy. If you follow me on Twitter, you've already seen me mention some of the highlights from this weekend. If you don't, I'll have some wrap-up posts on this blog soon. But in the meantime, some teasers: I was an answer in a round of SSA Jeopardy!; heard Jessica Ahlquist tell us all why she doesn't want to be labeled with the "C-word" (not the one you're thinking!); learned the Camp Quest Corn Dance; sat through a Pentecostal sermon; and watched an impromptu Christian therapy circle try to pray the gay out of Hemant Mehta (which would be quite a feat, since he isn't gay as far as I know). And apparently, I also gave a talk to an audience of 300 or so people, which I'm told went pretty well.
I see Daylight Atheism has been busy in my absence, with several comment threads bubbling throughout the weekend. I haven't been keeping up on e-mail, but I'll look those over soon (once I've had some sleep, since I'm currently operating on about five hours' worth) and respond as appropriate. In the meantime, consider this an open thread and talk amongst yourselves!
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Is it "perverseness," the "death drive," or something else?
She met mere mortals with and without the Vatican's approval.
- For centuries, the Virgin Mary has appeared to the faithful, requesting devotion and promising comfort.
- These maps show the geography of Marian apparitions – the handful approved by the Vatican, and many others.
- Historically, Europe is where most apparitions have been reported, but the U.S. is pretty fertile ground too.
It's up to us humans to re-humanize our world. An economy that prioritizes growth and profits over humanity has led to digital platforms that "strip the topsoil" of human behavior, whole industries, and the planet, giving less and less back. And only we can save us.
- It's an all-hands-on-deck moment in the arc of civilization.
- Everyone has a choice: Do you want to try to earn enough money to insulate yourself from the world you're creating— or do you want to make the world a place you don't have to insulate yourself from?
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