Letters for Monday — January 30, 2006

• Atheist’s opinion

• Why just the Christian viewpoint?

• A second call for a moratorium on development

• I may be wrong but . . .

•Time to end the debates

Atheist’s opinion

I would like to thank Brian Christensen for clarifying atheism for the rest of us. His remarks are very revealing and, quite frankly, prove my points concerning ones choice to claim they are an “atheist.” In his earlier letter he claimed to be an atheist, as does Bettejo. In his response to my comments he says he’s really an agnostic atheist.

Huh? Christians believe they know God exists through a combination of logic and their “spirit” which has been touched. True atheism on the other hand has nothing to rely on but logic, the same logic that can’t prove one way or the other the concept claimed by those claiming to be atheists. So if you’re relying on logic alone, and claiming to be an “atheist,” you violate your own logic. Read the last two sentences again, Brian.

Mr. Christensen’s comments that soldiers have to go to church is puzzling since only a few went to church their first Sunday out (not mandatory) and virtually everyone, atheists included, showed up the day before their life or death engagement. In my army career I never saw anyone forced to go to church.

Since Brian’s father claimed to be an “atheist” it’s a little easier to understand the pride that comes through in his letters. No one knows what their parents, or anyone else, reaches for at the very instant of death. My guess is that everyone reaches for something, “atheist” or not. Brian, I’m sure your “atheist” father was a wonderful person and I hope he rests in peace. I also certainly hope he doesn’t get what he claimed he hoped for.

  • Gordon Oswald

Why just the Christian viewpoint?

The recent flurry of letters about ‘creation’ and ‘God’ from the extreme Christian viewpoints are setting us back in time. We live in an enlightened period. Knowledge of the East and knowledge of the West are coming together. Why do we have to look at everything from the Christian point of view? Isn’t it wise to question and analyze rather than accept just because religion says so?

The first people of America were not Christians. The Europeans had their pre-Christian Roman, Greek, Viking, Celtic religions and much more until they were converted.

I want to share the Indo-European religous hymn of ancient India from the Rig Veda which was composed over 3 thousand years ago, and which so wisely questions “creation” and “God,” and whether God was man’s creation, or whether man was God’s creation. The last 8 lines say it all:

Not even nothing existed then.

No air yet, nor a heaven.

Who encased and kept it where?

Was water in the darkness there?

Neither deathlessness nor decay

No, nor the rhythm of night and day:

The self-existent, with breath sans air:

That, and that alone was there.

Darkness was in darkness found

Like light-less water all around.

One emerged, with nothing on

It was from heat that this was born.

Into it, Desire, its way did find:

The primordial seed born of mind.

Sages know deep in the heart:

What exists is kin to what does not.

Across the void the cord was thrown,

The place of every thing was known.

Seed-sowers and powers now came by,

Impulse below and force on high.

Who really knows, and who can swear,

How creation came, when or where!

Even gods came after creation’s day,

Who really knows, who can truly say

When and how did creation start?

Did He do it? Or did He not?

Only He, up there, knows, maybe;

Or perhaps, not even He.

In ancient India, Buddhism and Hinduism fought with reasoning, logic and debates. They did not fight with swords and guns. Christianity and Islam have been responsible for so much violence, and yet sadly proclaim their righteous-ness all the time, and without respect for atheists and people of other beliefs.

  • Vi Herbert

A second call for a moratorium on development

In the most recent Planning Commision meeting, a discussion arose about the interplay between transportation planning and development permitting/planning. This topic was wisely raised by Councilwoman JoAnn Yukimura, who once again shows me that she truly understands the problems that are facing this island.

A couple of the planning commissioners correctly responded that for the purpose of the docket that was at hand — the Old Town Koloa development — there was no way to properly incorporate transportation planning into their deliberations, since there is no cogent transportation plan for Koloa (indeed, for any part of the island). This is EXACTLY the reason why there needs to be a moratorium on new development on the island — so the plans that SHOULD be driving the decisions about new developments can be put in place.

I am calling again for a short-term moratorium on new development permitting until the necessary long range plans — including transportation, population growth, housing requirements, etc. — are put in place.

This problem will NEVER get fixed if we continue operating in the way we do currently. A moratorium will allow us to do a critical “system reset.”

Keep up the excellent work, Council-woman Yukimura!

  • Michael Mann

I may be wrong but . . .

Is the change in political party affiliation, as Mr. Togioka did, to make a better man, or is it done only for pure political expediency or necessity?

  • R. Sina

Time to end the debates

Is anyone besides myself getting tired of the on going senseless diatribes between intellegent design and evolution or between atheists and religious view-points. Come on Garden Island don’t you have other letters coming in to the office. Why are you printing this nonsense. Letters should be reserved for meaningful dialogue regarding the issues affecting our island and State. As for the present group of ultra boring letter writing fanatics take your beef to chat rooms on the web or heed this advice: it’s better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.

  • Mike Austin

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