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Sunday, February 05, 2006

Who won? Where are you going?...

Thanks to you, if you're still reading this blog post-auction :) Jim Henderson of www.Off-the-map.org won the auction with his $504.00 bid. He is a Christian, and he would like me to go to a variety of different churches in and around Chicago. This is for a number of different reasons, the main one being that he would like me to fill out surveys for him about my observations on the different churches for his website. That information can be used to help Christians get a better understanding of what non-Christians think about their church and the way they show their faith.

More information can be found on his website as well. I will also be blogging on his site (Links will always be provided on this one as well.

If you still have questions you'd like to ask an Atheist, go for it. I'll do my best to answer everyone. If you'd rather not ask on this blog, you may reach me at Hemant@secularstudents.org.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

To clear up some confusion...

Some things I've read that I'd like to comment on (I'll add on as more questions come in):

-- Is this a fundraiser for the Secular Student Alliance?

No. This is not a fundraiser for the SSA. The original plan was to get $10 and go to church and maybe see a movie at some point. But if people want to bid this much to get me to go to church, I can't in all good conscience keep it for myself. I'd like it to go to an organization that does good work and doesn't have an infinite supply of funding. The SSA fits that.

-- Can Atheists bid for you NOT to go to church?

If someone wins and says to not go to church, I won't go. But if someone wins and asks me to go to church, an Atheist cannot counter the offer and tell me not to go. One interesting idea I read about was how I should have both "sides" bid and when the all the bids were in, we'll see who comes out on top, and by how much, and that's how much I should go to (or not go to) church. Which I admit would've been interesting. But I didn't think of that a week ago. Atheists (and anyone) are still welcome to donate to the SSA, though. Use the PayPal link on the right side.

-- Can a wealthy, religious person send you to church for long periods of time?

Umm.. I don't know about this... But the auction is still up. So anyone can bid as much as they want and I will honor what I said.

-- Are you pulling a scam on us?

No. I will do what I say. I really didn't think anyone would bid at all, though. I really need to think my ideas through next time...

-- Are you seeking your 15 minutes of fame?

No. If I were, I would've auctioned a grilled cheese sandwich. This has all happened pretty unexpectedly.

-- Do you get a cut of the profits?

No. (But my birthday is this month... and I don't have an iPod...)

-- Are you going to be writing about how gullible people who bid on you can be?

No. I'm sincere about what I'm doing. I'll write about my experiences and questions I have and what changed and what didn't, etc. I think it's great that any of the bidders are willing to take a chance on me.

-- Why not just go to a church on your own if you're so curious?

Because I already have considered other religions and they don't work for me-- that's why I'm an Atheist. I've never been to a real church service, but I don't think I need to. If bidders think otherwise, that'd be motivation for me to give it a shot, take the opportunity, and see what happens.

-- Before you were an Atheist, were you a Christian?

No, I was raised a Jain. I still follow many Jain practices (I'm a vegetarian, for example) but not the religious part of it.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Media update

I will be on the Way of the Master radio show (with Kirk Cameron! Woo!) on Friday, 3:00 central time. Their website: https://www.wayofthemaster.com/radio/home.shtml. Go listen.

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Welcome

To those reading this, the proceeds from the auction will be going to the Secular Student Alliance, a non-profit group that supports high school/college secular groups across the nation.

Their website is here: http://www.secularstudents.org. Go check them out. And please donate by going to http://www.secularstudents.org/support/ or using the PayPal link on the bottom right side of this page-- any amount is well appreciated!

Auction still running