Friday, April 29, 2011

Atheist Chaplains, Really?

I just started reading all the buzz about atheist chaplains. At first, I didn't know exactly what was being proposed. After a little research I got to the bottom of this weird sounding phrase.

It looks like atheist soldiers are pushing to get an atheist in as a member of the military chaplain program. You can read more about it in this article in The New York Times.

Apparently, while 70% of US soldiers identify as Christian, 90% of military chaplains are Christian. There are a few Jewish and Muslim chaplains, a single Buddhist chaplain and a few chaplains of other religions but the largest single minority in the military, those unaffiliated with any religion, is not represented at all. Having a non-religious chaplain to talk to, especially in the evangelism ridden setting of the US military, would probably be of great benefit to those unaffiliated soldiers.

To be clear, chaplains are not called "Christian chaplains" or "Jewish chaplains" or "Muslim chaplains" so the appellation "Atheist chaplain" is a bit odd. However, I think I understand why it is being used in this case.

I think that use of the term atheist chaplain is intended to get people talking. It's working.

Atheist billboards and bus ads have started dialogues about acceptance and tolerance of atheists in the general population; use of the term atheist chaplain is starting a dialogue about doing the same in the military.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Illness Update

So I went to the med center yesterday. Apparently I've got pneumonia as well as torn muscles (on the outside of my chest cavity) and injured pleura. No wonder I've felt like crap! I've got antibiotics in my system so I should be better in almost no time. I was glad to learn that I hadn't cracked a rib coughing after all.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Back After an Illness

Hello, folks, I just wanted to post a line to let you know I'm back at the blog after a bit of being sick. Other things were going on, too, but mostly I've been too sick to expend effort on any writing that doesn't pay.

Having autoimmune diseases sucks. Any little cold bug sets them off. The good news is that I have a doctor's appointment on April 27th. The bad news is that I think the latest cold invited in a bacterial infection who brought along a case of bronchitis as a date. I get testy when I can't breathe.

Anyway, enough of my complaining. It looks like I'll live. I'll be back here writing blogs full of atheisty goodness in no time.