Atheist Sunday School

Secularists are realizing more and more the importance of organization. Religious folk propagate and reinforce their beliefs with weekly gatherings at formal institutions called “churches,” where they develop an extended social network of other human beings sharing the same beliefs. It’s a fantastic tool for community building and providing a support group that helps to ensure the health and well being of its members.

That’s why I support the idea of Atheist Sunday Schools, recently covered in Time Magazine.

There are all ready many communities online and off, like Atheist Parenting Groups and the American Humanist Association.

The American Founding Fathers can provide guidance on how to conduct such a weekly community-building exercise. Many of them were Deists, who believed that god’s word was found in the natural world, not in books written by men. Secularists don’t need to find god in nature, but there’s nothing wrong in finding meaning and purpose in the appreciation of the natural world.

I could imagine Atheist Sunday Sermons beginning like this:

Let us now read from the Jurassic period, where the fossil record describes a time when…

Let us now read from the field of Quantum Theory, where experiments reveal to us a world where…

Let us now read from the Hubble Telescope, and appreciate the unfathomable enormity of the cosmos and quintillions of possibilities available within its scope…

Where religious Sunday schools are an exercise in imaginative fantasy, atheist Sunday schools should be an exercise in appreciating measurable, quantifiable, and reproducible reality, fostering the virtues of free inquiry and healthy skepticism.






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