The Atheist Invocation

It’s a simple invocation
And delivered from the heart;
Just a message to the public
As the meeting’s set to start
For the welfare of all people,
Seeing dignity and worth
He invoked, not God in Heaven,
But the council, here on Earth

But the people didn’t get it—
Or they thought that it was odd—
“Why’s he praying to the council?
When you pray, you pray to God!”
It’s an unfamiliar concept
And it only goes to show
That their “normal” invocations
Are religious, and should go

Story after the jump:

Over at The Blaze (I know, I know…), the title is Odd: Atheist To Give Opening ‘Prayer’ At Tulsa City Council Meeting

On numerous occasions, atheist activists from across America have made known their disdain for prayer at government meetings. But now, at least one non-believer is prepared to join in on public invocations.

Ok, a reasonable start, but then…

This Thursday, Dan Nerren, the non-believing founder of the Humanist Association of Tulsa, will offer up an opening prayer at the Tulsa City Council Meeting.

Well, no. It’s a secular invocation, but the very idea is foreign to the writer, and to the majority of the commenters at The Blaze. They cannot wrap their heads around the notion of an invocation that is not a prayer, and so what Nerren is doing, in their eyes, is praying to the town council.

There are a few atheist commenters there, and they offer some good explanations, but it’s like trying to explain the plot of Hamlet to a gerbil. The atheist commenters are called arrogant and misguided, and this prayer is proof that atheism is just another religion.

It does show how entrenched religion is in the views of so many, that they think the notion of talking to someone who can actually hear you, and who is actually in charge of doing stuff, is a strange idea.


  1. hotshoe says

    From the inked article:

    Nerren, who became an atheist after reading a book that purportedly exposed Biblical contradictions …

    That’s such a weird phrase – “puportedly exposed” – the article’s writer cannot admit even the possibility of a book which actually exposed biblical contradictions. Because merely admitting to the fact that any contradictions exist is sufficient to destroy faith in an inerrant bible, and loss of faith in the bible itself would lead to loss of faith in the god of christianity,and that would be a horrible thing — so, cut off that possibility before it even begins, by claiming that the book only “purportedly exposed” the contradictions.

    But why not go all the way, christian apologist? Why not erase the very existence of that book? Why even mention a book in Nerren’s case? Christians before you have disappeared whole human beings, why can’t you just disappear one little book?

    Well, at least that writer is not blaming Dawkins. That’s something to be thankful for,I guess.

  2. Don F says

    I’m pretty sure I read that book! What was it called? It had a funny two-word name . . . .

    Oh yeah; Holy Bible, I think it was.

  3. Christoph Burschka says

    Nerren, who became an atheist after reading a book that purportedly exposed Biblical contradictions …

    Sure they didn’t mean The man allegedly named Nerren, who purportedly became an atheist after allegedly reading an alleged book that purportedly exposed alleged Biblical contradictions….?

  4. says

    I agree with Don, they must be talking about the bible.

    It’s things like this that have pushed me away from debating for the most part, there is just no pleasing some people.

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