“A Better Life” the Movie – Austin Premier in June

Author and Film-maker Chris Johnson will be in Austin for a showing of his film version of his book “A Better Life: An Exploration of Joy & Meaning in a World Without God”. The event is free for ACA members, but there will be a $5 charge for nonmembers of ACA. It will be held June 28, 2015, from 1-3 PM, at the Trinity United Methodist Church (4001 Speedway, Austin). If you’d like to join the Facebook event page and receive updates, please feel free.

Chris’ journey began with a book. He reached out to us at The Atheist Experience while he was working on his project, and we have followed his progress ever since, with many of us supporting his efforts with participation and resources, because it’s a cause many of us felt comfortable getting behind.

As part of the effort to produce the book, Chris also videotaped the atheists who agreed to interviews. After the book’s publication, he began work on processing and editing the video footage to produce a companion film version. During the 2014 ACA Annual Bat Cruise, Chris came to Austin to be a joint “pre-cruise” speaker along with Richard Carrier. Chris presented a short trailer for the upcoming film and talked about the inspiration behind his project—to dispel the negative misconception of atheists as people without joy and meaning.

That same weekend, you may recall seeing Chris and Richard both on The Atheist Experience talking about their respective projects.

Since then we’ve been expectantly following the progress of the movie at this blog. And if you have as well, then you are aware it opened with a world premier to a sold out crowd in London earlier this year. He’s been showing it all around the globe, and we are extremely excited to have him coming back to Austin to showcase the culmination of all his hard work.

Hope you can make it!

ReasonCon One, in Hickory, NC

This weekend I was a guest speaker at ReasonCon One. This was the first ReasonCon, held in Hickory, NC.

I was invited to come and talk about “Analogies.” The main Keynote was Dr. Richard Carrier, who spoke on the historicity of Jesus and the origins of Christianity. The speaker sessions were free and open to the public. Only the social events had fees. The lecture room held 250, and was packed, with overflow guests standing in the doorway of the adjoining room. The turnout was stunning.

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Board election / open house this Sunday!

We’ve been announcing this for a few weeks, so don’t miss out. The grand opening of the Atheist Community of Austin’s library will take place Sunday, May 5. The election of the new board starts at 12:15, and an open house will follow at 1:00. The address of the new building is 1507 West Koenig Lane, located a bit north of downtown Austin. There will be pizza and cake.

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See you there. CAAAAAAKE!


American Atheists Convention 2013 recap: Sunday evening

Wrapping this up at last….

After lunch on Sunday, Lynnea and I returned to hear David Tamayo speak about promoting atheism among the Hispanic community. Hispanics are natural atheist allies, says David, but it’s tough to promote minority communities leaving religious infrastructures. Tamayo suggested that confronting women’s issues more is a key to unlocking this demographic, since Hispanic families tend to be somewhat matriarchal.

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American Atheists Convention 2013 recap: Saturday

I know everybody’s expecting to be fooled today, but no kidding, we’re all pretty tired. So instead of doing that, here’s more American Atheists convention goodness.

Saturday morning I arrived in time to catch most of a panel discussion by Kelly Mochel, Dale McGowan, and Sarah Morehead about parenting. I know Dale as the author of Parenting Beyond Belief, a book which I haven’t read but recommend to parents in our audience based on its reputation. I went and chatted with Dale about my thoughts on parenting, Santa Claus, and the appropriate context to introduce Bible stories, which I’ve discussed in previous blog posts. Dale is promoting a new book, and we’re hoping to get him on some shows in the near future.

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American Atheists Convention 2013 recap: Friday

Russell here. Lucky me, the 2013 American Atheists convention was held in Austin this year, which meant that all I had to do was shell out money for a ticket and no travel or lodging fees. I’d be crazy to pass up such an opportunity! I’m a couple of days behind on blogging the experience, but trying to catch up now before Jerry DeWitt begins his “Easter Service.”

I took a day off of work on Friday so I could arrive at the Hyatt early in the morning and help my friend / our product guy Mark Vandebrake to set up the Atheist Community of Austin’s table with t-shirts, keychains, and bumper stickers. Lots of credit to Mark for creating and ordering our new polo and t-shirts.

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