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  1. Leon Beachy says:

    Hi Valerie,

    I enjoy your site and can well relate to it. I was raised in an Amish-Mennonite family, left while I was young but ended in quite a few addictions. I spent a year in Teen Challenge, later beoming a missionary with Wycliffe Bible Translators. all the while not quite believing all the religious “believe ten impossible things before breakfast” things but didn’t know I had an option. Later my alcoholism came back full-blown and nothing Christianity had to offer could do anything about it. In desperation I joined AA and have now been sober for five years. I have also left all religious affiliations and am beginning to discover who I really am rather than who others think I should be.

    Not until I saw your and Marlene Winell’s site did I realise how strong a hold my fundamentalist background still had on me. I don’t believe the things anymore but have been able to identify with what you are saying.

    A completely different question I have is, what theme do you use for your site and how do you design it? I have just started a blog and wish to make mine look much like yours. Your advice would be appreciated.

    My blog is at –

    I look for your reply.

    Kind regards,

    Leon Beachy

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Leon –
      Thank you for sharing your experience. There are many many of us on similar journeys. The theme for this site appears to be “Twenty Ten.” I use the “gallery” setting for each blogpost and insert a picture at the beginning of each one so that people can easily scan through the blog to see what’s available. On my other pages the content is static except when i need to update it. I hope that helps.


      • Thomas Hill says:

        Dear Ms. Tarico,
        The first step toward “converting” Evangelicals is to direct them away from the Old Testament, rather than attacking their entire belief system, as you seem to do. It is a long journey for most Christians, and is best accomplished with genuine friendship and mutual respect. I do not mean to imply that we should acquiesce to the sanctimoniousness and hypocrisy of jerks like Moore, but we should continually ask Evangelicals “What would Jesus do?”, rather than “what does Franklin Graham think?” (when he is not contemplating his $650,000 salary as CEO of Samaritan’s Purse). I am older than you, and I have observed that reformed religious types are like most reformed drunks, i.e., totally intolerant of those in the same state they once occupied. Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” says it thus, “Tis a common proof that lowliness is young ambition’s ladder, whereby the climber-upward turns, and with scorn, looks upon the path by which he did ascend.” BTW, your comparison of the virgin birth (as held dear by Evangelicals) to rape is a bit much. Mary was at least of majority age in the Jewish society at the time, and there is no indication that she ever considered an abortion.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you, Thomas. I rarely see myself writing for an audience of Evangelicals, if at all. Rather, I write for former Evangelicals and others in recovery from various forms of religion that have been detrimental for them. An article like that about the Virgin Birth, a mythic story, is intended to call attention to ways in which traditional gender roles, power differentials, and exploitation are normalized to the point that we don’t see them.


      • Thomas Hill says:

        Dear Ms, Tarico,
        Thank you for your response. I live in the South, and the confusion of religion with politics is epidemic here and in the mid-west, and is adversely affecting the operation of our governments. In order to break the stranglehold, we must encourage Evangelicals to think for themselves and to break with their controllers. It is my belief that many will do so when they are able to apply the WWJD test to their choices and actions. I am seeing that happen with a number of fellow church-goers who initially treated me as a heretic. I realize that some will never give up the sense of security of having an infallible guide book and a self-appointed leader make decisions for them, but I find that most are reasonable and good-hearted, and I regard it as a Christian duty to share with them. I wish you well in your efforts to counsel persons who are attempting to think for themselves. I would only add that the total rejection of one’s religion is somewhat dangerous in that it leaves a vacuum which will ultimately be filled by another value system, which might be worse.


    • jan2 says:

      i am recovering from a form of evangelicalism we were taught straight from the bible . I, like you sang “trust and obey”. I have lots of questions around god. I have come to realise he may not exist. I realised that “god” means different things throughout the bible, in Gen 1 v1 he’s elohim but Jehovah is the iron age god of the jewish people (what on earth were the british people doing?), Easter is “nicked” from the pagon anglo saxon who had Eostre for the spring godess and Hel (one l) was the pagan god of death, jesus never used the word hell, ever, he used sheol, hades etc. It seems to me when the bible was translated into english the translator used words that the locals would know but we don’t use anymore.
      Why don’t christians celebrate the feasts and fasts and celebrate communion on the passover as the bible commands? Modern christians are not doing what the bible says anyway.
      I don’t “beleive” anymore without question, I also question authority.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Hello Ms. Tarico,
      I just read your November 17, 2014 piece titled, “6 Reasons Religion May Do More Harm Than Good”.
      Brilliant orchestration of idea architecture ma’am, six bulls-eyes, to include associated follow-up explanations.
      Thank you for your perspective. And yes, for those of us immune to the Kool-Aid, it’s hard to argue with some of these but I’ll go as far as saying…They’re inarguable.
      Joseph J. Guccione

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Allen Espy says:

    Valerie, watched most of your YouTube videos. I went to the Wheaton equivalent of the Deep South, Samford University. I did mission stints in Canada and Central Asia, living what I had been taught and what I believed was the source of my happiness. Ultimately, and ironically, traveling opened my eyes. After working a few years a bank in Alabama, I gave it up for a 6 month backpacking trip around Asia, where I ultimately met my wife ( a Buddhist) and taught ESL in Bangkok. I have been free from the shackles of fundamentalism for over ten years, and it took a gradual process, which is probably for folks lucky to escape. Certainly being in a completely new environment and being curious and seeking the truth was what gave me my freedom!!!!!! Btw, when did you finish Wheaton? I have some friends who went there. Thanks for your videos and your work. Allen

    Liked by 1 person

  3. slowvehicle says:

    Dr. Tarico:

    Are the transcripts to the video series, “Christianity Through the Lens of Cognitive Science” available anywhere? I find it much easier to read than to watch videos…


    Liked by 1 person

  4. Heidi Morales says:

    Hi Valery,
    I too am recovering from RTS as an evangelical pastor’s daughter. My other 2 siblings have also recovered and we are now happy and healthy adults with no interest in any religion. Thank you for putting a name to all the night tremors, the strange dreams, the constant fear of doing something wrong; thank you even more for helping people get over it. I have a request to have your site and book translated into Spanish. I am from Puerto Rico, where a growing number of extreme evangelicals are threatening traditional family values that are based on compassion, love and interdependence in the name of material prosperity facilitated by God. The number of evangelical churches per inhabitant in the island is staggering, and troubling for someone who came from that environment. It would be great if you could use your skills to help people in Puerto Rico by translating your book and perhaps later by announcing your studies in Spanish sites. Id love to see that happen.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Gerald Steen says:

    Hi Valerie,
    New second edition Ebook of Musings of a Modern Augustine just out on amazon, Smash, B&n, and Kobo. Here is a potent poem in the first chapter. In spite of the fact I am a former fundamentalist Christian and ex-pastor, my minister son and all his family think I am headed for Hell.
    This is my response to him.
    I have used the pen name of August Stine to protect my son.

    *My Son Thinks I Am Going To Hell
    (Different Family Beliefs)

    Dear Son,
    Your faith is important to you.
    My beliefs are important to me.
    We pray to the same God every day
    For me, He is the Caring Creator
    Who cares about my well-being
    To you, He is the fearful God
    Who demands obedience.

    I believe Jesus was a spiritual man but not God.
    I believe Jesus said some great words of wisdom
    And I am sorry he had to die on the cross.
    You believe Jesus died for the sins of man
    And his salvation is a gift from God.
    I do not believe this, but let’s suppose I did.
    Didn’t you say salvation was a gift?
    If it is a gift, why do I need to do anything?
    You say I am going to hell unless . . .
    You even give me the words I should say —
    “Jesus, forgive my sins.”

    Do people go to hell for not saying these words?
    What if I wait until just before dying and then ask?
    What if I meant to ask Him for years but didn’t?
    You say, “Too late — you missed your chance!”
    This is God we are talking about isn’t it?
    Is God limited by time or death?
    On the other hand, if salvation is a “gift,”
    Do I really need to ask Him for forgiveness?
    The Bible says God freely gives this gift.
    Where did all these attached strings come from?
    Why conditions on God’s unconditional love?
    New converts are told their Christian duties.
    Tithing is one — not too bad — it is do-able
    Unless you are unemployed or on minimum wage.
    But the heaviest of all these burdens is . . .
    People go to hell unless we show them Jesus.
    So their salvation is in our hands . . .

    I thought salvation was a gift.
    Why is this huge ugly rope attached to this gift?
    Am I responsible for my neighbor’s salvation?
    Why am I involved with another man’s salvation?
    Why does God need me?
    Suppose I want to play golf on a nice day,
    But my neighbor dies and goes to hell . . .
    And it is my fault . . .
    Because I did not tell him about Jesus.
    Please don’t tell me
    God is so awful and demanding.
    Why am I involved in someone’s eternal choice?

    I thought God loved me and my neighbor.
    Because of His heavy guilt trip,
    I can’t even play golf without God on my back
    I cannot believe God dearly loves me . . .
    But loads me down with guilt trips
    About darn near everything I do.
    If I truly am a child of God,
    Why do I have to be afraid of Him?
    Why can’t I enjoy God
    And let Him fix the world?
    Scripture says God is with us always . . .
    If so, “Come on God, let’s go play some golf.”

    What is a “free” gift?
    Aren’t all gifts free?

    I enjoyed your book copy you sent me a few years back and your encouraging me to continue writing when we exchanged books. My name is Gerald Steen (pen name August Stine) I would be glad to send you a free copy. I think I sstill have your address. Hope things are going well.
    Sincerely, Jerry

    Liked by 1 person

  6. tracey says:

    As I was reading through your site today I noticed all the articles are in relation to Christianity. Nothing in regards to Islam, Judaism, Scientology. etc. Is Christianity really the only religion that undermined what you were trying to accomplish as a mental health provider, or are the others as guilty as well?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Tracey –
      I very occasionally do include those other religions in an article in one way or another, but mostly I write about what I know best, which is Christianity, and write checks to support people who are challenging the religions they know best–like Maryam Namazie at who is fighting against sharia in Britain.


  7. Pro-family Christian says:

    I am a 20-something Ultra-Pro-Family Bible believer in a sea of morally depraved liberals and radicals. I and those like me are the remnant, we will NOT “move with the times” nor will we accept your filthy godless so-called morality. Liberal Elitists are a cancer on the world who are bringing in the End Times, I include my own mom and dad and most of their associates sadly in that category. I have overcome the “modern liberal” ideology you push and reached the Promised Land of old-time salvation through the Blood of Jesus Christ, Our sinless sacrificial Lamb, fully man and fully God. Stop profaning Christ’s name with your preaching of foolish worldly wisdom and tickling the ear of the carnal man, and get back to the Holy Truth out of Satan’s trap of relativism.

    Also I will be sending my child to private Christian academy where they will avoid people like you corrupting them. If you far-left “child protection professionals” keep your demonic affective education and deluded “sides-of-history” worldview to yourselves it would be better for everyone.

    Liked by 1 person

      • Ed McGaa says:

        Pro Family Xtian- You are so warped that I doubt if any words from me will penetrate your attitude. But as an American Indian whose ancestor’s track record of extremely High Morals and Ethics I have no problem challenging your attitude. Your people have not a clue compared to us when it comes down to basic Honesty (Truth Respecting). 378 Treaties you broke with Indian Tribes and all captioned with “In God We Trust!”. McMurtry, Crazy Horse, 2006, pg 77. Doesn’t say much for you does it. Yet you have to agree – God is All Truth! All Knowledge as well. You people need to substitute Proselytizing for the word – Introspection. Also: Where do you find this Devil. Satan. Lucifer imagined thing? Thank Creator I am a Sioux. We do not have such a horrid fantasy. Our Creator will no doubt chastise wrathfully such for falsely attempting to associate/allow such upon us. The benevolence of Creator’s nature is quite contrary to such negative, cruel conception. Our Nature based Spirituality (Made, governed by Ultimate Creator) has no such Superstitions. We observe and learn from God’s nature. You do not. Do you know what Climate Change is? I doubt it. Nothing from prophecy in your Bible warns us. Your Jesus is moot about it. Overpopulation, the cause is never discussed from your pulpits while the planet plunges on exponentially to its doom. Your child will ask you in the Spirit World, some day; why you neglected to become aware.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Wouldn’t it be more biblically accurate to say that the “liberal elite” are bringing in the ‘end time’ by God’s direction? I thought God was the one who is in control of the ‘End Time’ and of All time?

      As to the Bible’s morals and tickling of the ear, I wonder since God is indeed in control of everything, He must have “tickled the ear” (as you put it) of a man named Jephthah in JUDGES 11:29-40, and apparently TOLD him to make a vow (and as you know you cannot go back once you make a vow unto the Lord, especially one said to be made by the holy Spirit see Deut. 23:23). So IF the bible is really the word of God without possible error, then it means God through the Spirit told this man to sacrifice his only daughter up to Himself in a bloody sacrifice in the manner of a burnt sacrifice (which means he cut her up into a few pieces and then set her ablaze). And this was done to show his gratitude for making him victorious in battle. Talk about your liberal morals…whew. Or is this God just a monster? Or maybe someone messed with the ancient texts–like it was just the words of a power hungry control group who liked to mess with ‘holy” texts because they know if most people are lead to believe it is “God’s will” they will do the most un-godly things in the name of God while feeling a kind of justified smug indifference to the suffering that they cause others. I would think EMPATHY would be a main feature of the Holy Spirit and would cause us to see TRUTH of what is happening to our human race.We are being ‘divided and conquered’ using religion as it has been for so long. Find love and when you do you will find what you are calling “God”. I mean you no judgment. Just thoughts to consider. Thanks. :) PS- And please, I am familiar with all the Bible Commentaries which try to ‘explain away’ or ‘re-interpret what plain reading of texts such as the one mentioned, says. I have seen this done many times, in many churches and cults, and even in bible college. So don’t try to explain how ‘it doesn’t mean what it says…” or something.

      And perhaps that IS the point. IF we harbor hostility towards someone we don’t know (such as your anger at the author of this blog–or anyone), SIMPLY because she is examining the “fruit” of the religion known as fundamentalist Christianity. It’s got some bad baskets of fruit and she was just trying to help others find their psychological sanity amid the emotional abuse that many of us went through at the hands of unloving, judgmental, hypocritical “bible-believers”, teachers, pastors and so on. I didn’t see how abusive it all was until I began to heal my mind from PTS-type emotional effects.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Your words are so true. I am half irish and half german my parents immigration to usa. I was raised strictly irish Catholic and just couldn’t believe in a God .Now I consider myself an agnostic but lean towards atheists. I was pleased to read your words as I don’t feel alone. Iam 47 now and still struggling. Everyone is a God fantic and I am having health problems who do I turn to?Please write me back as I think you can help me . Jacqueline

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Missy –
      If you read the most recent article at my site, you will find links to some people who are creating services for former Christians and also forming communities for former Christians to find each other. You might check “Meet Up” in your area and look for meet ups for former Christians or other nonbelievers.


  9. Teresa Dexter says:

    I live near Manchester in UK.
    I feel so alone after having serious doubts about my Christian faith triggered by the atrocities of 9/11 and then the Tsunamis.
    Since then I have been lonely,isolated and avoiding my christian friends and constantly depressed. Are there any groups in the North West of England or perhaps a person who can support and help me thru this nightmare?
    Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Terri –
      I would try this email address If that doesn’t work try the London Sunday Assembly and see if they can refer you to anyone. You also might find an online community at


      • jan says:

        I’d like to be kept in this loop. I was brought up in evangelical church, we sang trust and obey. Parts of it I liked, parts I did not e.g. the authoritarianism. I’m recovering, trying to figure out what I believe and just trying to do good for the community. I felt very depressed there constantly singing 18th century hymns. I don’t know, but I think churches (especially the independent ones) should have a mixture of hymns and they ought to be visited by a higher person in authority to make sure they aren’t forming a cult or being overly oppressive/authoritarian.
        If I go to church it will because I actually want to. I understand that there are healthy churches. But I’m not totally convinced that this is something I want to be part of, after all, women are treated as inferior, or we’re someone who causes others to “stumble” because we lure men into temptation, in most evangelical churches. Possibly all churches.
        Looking at my secular counterparts I can see that some women indeed try to tempt men, but not all of them do, not all of them are whores (are we allowed to use that word?) either.
        There are lots of other communities to be part of, some people are heavily into sport, ballet for example (a few christians do this too).

        Liked by 1 person

  10. heidi says:

    Hi Teresa Try the First Church of Atheism, its not as sinister as it sounds. They are non religious and apparently simply gather, talk and sing songs. People say they love it because they can connect with others in the community, you don’t have to be an atheist. I hope you feel better soon. Be well.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Lisa Potter says:

    I really enjoy your POV on the bible and Christianity.

    I consider myself a progressive secular humanist with a love for halloween. As such, I was wondering if you have particular stories from the bible and other religious texts that I could use for a community haunt next year. I think it only reasonable to point towards the autrosites of organized religion(s); especially considering current events. The proceeds will go to a local foster care organization.

    Any thoughts or suggestions would be appreciated.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Lisa –
      Good question. I would look at to see if there is anything you want to use. Another source to consider might be the inquisition as there are horrific woodcuts and such illustrating the tortures perfected by the church. Evangelicals like to scare kids with “hell houses” that supposedly display the tortures of hell, but as we all know the Church has done quite a job of creating hell on earth for many people.


  12. Bobby Thym says:


    I saw your article on biblical quotations conservatives don’t want to acknowledge, and I loved it. I am a Christian who lives in maybe the most conservative county in the United States, and I teach a World Literature at a community college. I try to “tread lightly” on the topic of religion, and I remind my students of the injunctions of both Jesus and Paul that tell us not to judge. I do tell the kids that I can relate to Joseph Campbell when he said that we are like computers in that we can use different software. Some people like one particular code, and others, like himself, and me, like to use a variety of software.
    Looking at your blog, I wondered if you have read Jennifer Michael Hecht’s Doubt: The Great Doubters and Their Legacy of Innovation from Socrates and Jesus to Thomas Jefferson and Emily Dickinson? If you haven’t, I think you would love it. For that matter, you would also like Constantine’s Sword.
    I am glad I stumbled upon your blog. Keep writing!


    Liked by 1 person

  13. don wilkey says:

    Valerie: I believe the child evangelism issue is like the abortion clinic ruling by the Supreme Court. Free speech gets the trump. I would be interested in what turned you away from your beliefs at Wheaton? Best wishes.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. john andrade says:

    I have witnessed the CEF 5 day clubs in our area and have never witnessed the draconian spin that you have placed on the mission of CEF. The children are not “recruited”, but attend with the full knowledge and permission of the parents. They can participate at any level they want and are not brow-beaten in any way. Some don’t return, but many do and with enthusiasm.
    Some young people from our church, who have attended the clubs go on to become trained leaders and give freely of their time and spirit.
    In this secular world where there is little to no moral values being imparted, CEF is often, for many young people, the only exposure to a loving God. Yes, it is an evangelical endeavor, prompted by the Biblical Christian duty to go out into the world and teach, through love, the salvation of Christ’s sacrifice. So what? This is our belief and it is accomplished with total love and concern for every soul on God’s earth. Is it perfect? No. Nothing but God is perfect. But, it is seed planting. People don’t make others accept salvation. God does that Himself. We are merely the workers in His field.
    If you don’t like the work of CEF, then by all means keep your children away, but don’t tread on the Constitutionally guaranteed right of religious freedom. I won’t ever force you, either by law or at the point of a gun to force you to attend church or read a Bible. Sounds like a plan.
    I won’t even address the silly argument of psychological harm.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I understand that you perceive a divine mandate to save children from hell, and this trumps other moral priorities. But if you want to avoid doing harm, it’s not enough to be well intentioned. You also have to be right about the contingencies that govern our lives.

      Bible-based blood-sacrifice hell-threatening theology is sloppy and irresponsible thinking. It means you haven’t done your homework about the nature of antiquities scholarship, ancient cultures, process theology, or the neurological and psychological factors that shape human belief. (Google Andy Thompson, Why We Believe in Gods for starters, or Pascal Boyer’s book religion explained). You may think that the rest of us should defer to your moral priorities, even if they drive you to do harm, simply because they have a religious basis. The U.S. Constitution says no such thing and even if it did, some of us might still feel a moral obligation to obstruct biblically motivated maltreatment of children. If someone sincerely believed that monsters live in closets and come out at night if the door is open, and If someone was telling this to grade school children and threatening them with horrible tortures if they messed up, I wouldn’t think he was a bad person, but I sure would try to stop him. Please do your homework.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. John Smith says:

    It should be great if we could translate the article in Spanish as the ones in AARP.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. tiljoy says:

    Hi Valerie, I just read your article on religion and have to say that I agree with much of what you discuss. However I think it’s disingenuous (and stereotypical) to use an image of Jesus for the subject matter you described. Being that the topic revolves around religious dogma, perhaps a picture of the Vatican or some *building* would be more appropriate instead of using a man who very likely shared many of your beliefs concerning religious institutionalism, regardless of whether or not you think he really existed. I’m referring to his archetypal persona that is not responsible for the corruption of organized religion. Understand my point?

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Arhata says:

    Have you included the research findings in religion from D.H. Murdock? I think she’s the leading female researcher/writer on religions

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Valerie, I have recently discovered your videos in my research for compiling a list of objections to the Christian faith. I am very impressed, they are unique in the field of anti-theism. If you want to see what I have amassed, it is in the website that is listed.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Arhata says:
    there is no credible, objective evidence of a Jesus or any of the main biblical characters in the bible. Robert Price or D.M. Murdock are two examples of the top researchers of Religion’s myths

    Liked by 1 person

  20. shatara46 says:

    So divinely well put. As an also “Binder Dundat” ex-Christian with the scars to prove it… I salute you for your pointed remarks and the “meekness” and gentleness through which you expresssed them. Thanks for that lesson!

    Liked by 1 person

  21. KaZ says:

    Thrilled to have found your site! I am in a transition of “faith”…profoundly so. I believe in nautre, science, quantum physics, compassion, love and no need to try to explain away the miracle of things that occur in life through an anthropomorphic “God” or any god for that matter. My roots were as a child being brought up in the Church of Christ and the Methodist Church. Searching in my 20’s, 30’s etc, Religious Science and now it seems if I have to “label” it – Pantheism. My work as a meditation instructor has taken a decidedly interesting turn to not include any religious dogma. Just relaxation, peace and calm. Whew! I feel better

    Liked by 1 person

  22. mess1955 says:

    Hi Valerie

    Really enjoyed your article “The Risky Mix of Aging, Public Visibility and Social Media” at IEET site. I write there regularly too and live in Seattle, what a coincidence.

    John Messerly

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Steve Auerbach, MD, MPH says:

    Dear Ms. Tarico: I wanted to follow-up in greater detail to your recent essay on Dawkins as it appeared in Alternet. Note that I grant Dawkins making some legitimate contributions. Note I am a card carrying atheist. That said: As Bio geek an undergraduate evolutionary biology major in the late 1970s-early 1980, and like you with a geek introvert daughter (mine’s a HS senior; they sound a lot alike) who sided with what turned out to be the correct side in gradualism vs. punctuated equilibrium battles and mourns the premature death of Stephen J Gould, I think you underestimate how wrong for how long Dawkins has been. Dawkins and Dennett were giving aid and comfort so the truly racist sociobiology folks back then (including the recently sainted, former EO Wilson). As they lost the factual debate about the nature, mode and tempo of evolution they moved the goal posts and denied the level of gradualism they had previously been assuming and continued to lie about what “PuncEq” actually said (straw man arguments) and the overwhelming evidence for that structure of evolutionary theory and acutuality to be correct (see:; alas under-edited and no follow-up edition due to his passing) . As early sociobiology claims turned out to be false, the rebranded as Evolutionary Psychology. Not that Gould was 100% right (too long on wrong interpretation of some parts of Burgess Shale, too strong on Tabla Rosa), but on most stuff he was and that wing of the evolutionary biology was mostly correct (say 90% right ) and Dawkins and Dennett mostly wrong (say 30% wrong; genes as an occasional level of reproductive selection has validity; memes as a social construct with utility).

    Liked by 1 person

  24. shehadeh k issa says:

    hi val i have been investigating god foe over fifty years i was born in jerusalem from assyrian parents they were orphans of the turkish jenoside i have learned about all religeons and cults yet i have not found god i have read most of your writings my interest is in the idea of one partner one life a famous scientist md phd inventer told me that a woman is like a beautiful flower pure until the pedels are picked then it looks sick one partner one life is the clean and healthy way to live a woman is not a bathroom to be used by many a used bathroom is not what a woman meant to be men lust and lies makes a woman surrender her soul please write about one partner one life and thank you

    Liked by 1 person

  25. palumboliu says:

    As an educator and blogger (for Salon and other venues), I wanted to thank you for your Dawkins/aging and social media blog. It was tremendously useful and important for me to know. I will try to build in that awareness. And modesty.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. palumboliu says:

    As a scholar and blogger (for places like Salon), I thank you for your piece on Dawkins, aging, social media. A very useful caution to us all, especially older types. I’ll try to keep your advice always in mind.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Stan Wolfe says:

    Hello, Ms. Tarico. Thanks for your very good Salon article about the 12 Worst Ideas Religion Has Unleashed on the World. You left out a big one: “Original Sin,” which may deserve an article of its own.

    Liked by 2 people

  28. Mzrubyred says:

    Dear Valerie, I found your web site ‘Journey free. Org’ and would like to thank you. It has been a great help at times. I stepped out of the church but still held onto to my belief in god for awhile. Then I started seeing so much more clearly, it hasn’t been easy and still to this day I struggle at times. The learning to deal with emotions, decisions and thoughts are hard work. I have grown quite quickly but now see how much my life was wrapped in christainity even down to my job. I love learning and swallow up all I can, my mind is just about coping to use it’s frontal lobe for new things. You can de programme but you still have to face life and the challenges. At times I’m like a kid in a sweet shop! Other times I can be depressed. Finding my inner woman was the most difficult but I’m getting there. I am not only finding myself, I’m re-inventing myself. I just want to encourage you to carry on helping people, there will be so many out there, that you will never know how much of a lifeline you gave. I have a blog about my de-conversion you are welcome to read. It was part of my speaking out to help others.
    Thank you again for helping me to see I wasn’t going crazy! :)

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Do you ever get to Portland, Oregon? I’m on the Advisory Board of CFI Portland (nearly 1,000 Meetup members and founded Secular Humanists of East Portland (over 500 Meetup members) and we’d like to bring you down here for a presentation.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Rachel says:

    Hi Valerie,

    I have found this website incredibly interesting. I was raised in the church and have been made to believe all my life that intimate relationships outside marriage are wrong and disgusting. Because of this all my relationships have suffered, I can never truly shake feelings of guilt or uncleanness. My younger sibling who chose to obey my parents wishes and lead a “clean and godly” life constantly reminds me that I am not pure and less than her. I regularly get angry at her because she degrades me on a daily basis, involving herself in my relationships and saying they are unclean. Because of my anger towards her, my parents and her have agreed that I am “satanically inspired” and need religious help. She constantly tells me that God wants me to be alone as punishment for my ungodly ways and anger. My parents have regularly agreed with her. Whilst I don’t denounce my belief in God, I can’t help but wonder if this type of religious condemning is abusive or whether it’s the truth. I have high feelings of inadequacy and low self worth because I feel like I am a disgrace to God. I have come to accept these constant personal attacks by my family as I figured they must be right. Subsequently, I have come to accept abuse of all forms in other areas of my life and in other relationships, after all isn’t it just a consequence of my sin and disgraceful lifestyle?

    I’d really appreciate some advise on this.


    Liked by 1 person

  31. ellakfaire says:

    Your work has been extremely eye-opening and life changing for me and I’m so grateful for the knowledge and understanding I’ve gained from it. I recently came across the website It is beyond appalling on every level and I would love to see what you have to say about it.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Appalling indeed! Wow. Thank you for calling it to my attention.

      Liked by 1 person

    • metalnun says:

      It is indeed appalling, however, I found it useful in response to Ben Carson and Sarah Palin’s position that abortion is the same as slavery because the woman carrying the fetus inside of her body is the “slaveholder” who treats the fetus as “property” which she can dispose of as she will. The site you referenced says that according to the Bible which Carson and Palin claim to believe, children are in fact the “property” of their father (as is their mother).

      Liked by 1 person

  32. bruno says:

    Dear Mrs. Tarico,
    I have enjoyed reading your texts, books and watching the video’s on YouTube.
    I left christianity (catholicism) in 1981, and consider myself since that time a humanist-atheist-freethinker (but that is not so important).
    My question is about Forgiveness…to me the great magic word of Christianity. I have felt in my life always that forgiveness is not used, but abused by Christianity. They use it as a magical word with which they can solve any problems.
    The study’s by James K. McNulty: The Dark side of Forgiveness and The Doormat Effect: When Forgivening erodes self-respect are very important to me.
    I still see in the catholic church that they use:” How to Forgive: A Step-By-Step Guide (John Monbourquette)”. A catholic priest from Canada who created this. In 13 meetings people learn to “forgive”. Victims of domestic violence, child abuse etc. But: i have seen so many people who came out of this broken. Women who have forgiven their violent husbands, but can’t leave them out of feeling guilty because of their christian/catholic religion. This “forgiveness” creates guilt in the minds of the victims. They are being manipulated.
    Forgiveness? A great virtue. But when it is being abused… What should I tell people who always feel the need “to forgive”, because of their christian religion, but do not have the courage to say no! And first take care of their problems before forgiving. And secondly: what is – if I may ask – your personal experience with this christian “forgiveness” obsession in relation to people you work with.
    Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree. The Bill Gothard organization that the Duggars are affiliated with is particularly known for turning forgiveness into an abusive doctrine that protects people who keep doing harm.


  33. Rick Hart says:

    About your “Uncoupling” article – Thank you for another open and fearless article.
    About item 11 – Did you mean “prosecution” in the sentence “Idaho implements a bill, signed in April by Governor Butch Otter, protecting parents from persecution in cases of religiously motivated child abuse and medical neglect.”?

    Liked by 1 person

  34. Bill Straub says:

    Hello Valerie —

    I’m eagerly awaiting your response to the tragic AME Church shooting in South Carolina. Is the black community’s faith in a non-existent or non-caring God its only refuge from this never-ending racist persecution?

    Liked by 1 person

  35. Alton C. Thompson, P:h. D. says:

    Just saw your article on marriage in the Bible (AlterNet). Great! I have just completed an eBook in which one of my conclusions is that the Bible gives one a basis for abandoning the Bible! If interested in a copy, send me an email and request it.

    Liked by 2 people

  36. Al says:

    Read your latest Raw Story article about the Bible/rape/women/property. Having been raised in a Fundamentalist Protestant Church (now rational 37 years) I can see your understanding of the Bible is spot on, though most christians will flee to the more milquetoast interpretations that will allow them to keep going to church without having to think critically about what their Pastor is saying. Unfortunately, the ability to understand the Bible doesn’t appear to happen until one no longer believes in the Bible.

    Liked by 1 person

  37. Jim Slark says:

    I have tried on several occasions to comment about your post on alternet, but disqus censors me, which they have done since I exposed for lying and manipulating comments to ‘propagandize’ (‘ ‘ necessary because spell check doesn’t allow the word ‘propagandize’). These people have corrupted our media, somebody needs to address the issue of why they censor for telling the truth about non-existent gods. If you want to make a name expose this corruption. All discus sites seem infected, as well as facebook. Potentially big story here especially now that Kim Davis has thrown down the glove as a religionist.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jim Slark says:

      Awaiting moderation, usually means censoring, because they can’t allow exposure that they can’t tolerate truth. Our media is corrupt by these liars and haters. Please talk to me about it, it’s as important as what Mikey Weinstein is doing at the MRFF.

      Liked by 1 person

  38. 100pinkapples says:

    Doug Wilson is in the top five most abusive Christian men in America, he also likes slavery.

    Liked by 1 person

  39. Joseph oliveri says:

    I love love love love love your book Trusting Doubt.

    I shouted, i screamed, I literally kissed the book.

    Whilst your illusion shatering work helped me escape 25 years of deep involment in Christian fundamentalism, I still take great delight in reading near death experiences.

    The messages that come from these near death experiences seem to be more in sync with what seems to be the heart messages of Christ rather than religious dogma.

    Thank you again, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, I’m so grateful for this marvellous book.

    Liked by 1 person

  40. melenns0000 says:

    Dear Valerie Tarico,
    This is about Kim Davis, the county clerk who recently spent five days in jail for not obeying a US Judge’s order to issue marriage licenses to gay couples. I’m sure you are aware of the sitation.

    Her dilemma is that on one hand, she can’t bring herself to issue a marriage license to a gay couple because homosexuality is an abomination to her Lord.

    On the other hand, she can’t bring herself to resign an $80,000.00 a year job.

    What to do?

    Well, Jesus has the solution to her dilemma, and here it is right from the Bible.

    “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You can’t serve both God and Mammon.” Matthew 6:24

    “No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” Luke 16:13

    Someone should tell Kim that if she doesn’t resign, she’s not going to get to make heaven her home because she isn’t doing what her Lord and Saviour said to do in her Bible.

    Maybe YOU could tell her.


    Liked by 1 person

  41. wostraub says:

    Hello Valerie —

    Progressives got hammered in yesterday’s (November 4, 2015) elections, and I have a theory (actually just an opinion) that as the world gets scarier, America’s Christians get more frightened and thus turn to the Republican Party, regardless of whether they benefit from GOP policies. Kentucky just elected an extreme right-wing governor who’s threatened to eliminate 400,000 Kentuckians from Obamacare-based health benefits, yet impacted residents don’t seem to care.

    I’m also thinking of course of Thomas Frank’s 2005 book “What’s the Matter with Kansas?” and Charles Pierce’s 2010 book “Idiot America,” both of which basically talk about the same thing but in a more political/cultural, rather than religious, tone. Perhaps as a psychologist and religion writer you could shed some light on this issue (a new book or article, perhaps?)

    Thanks for all your enlightening write-ups to date!


    Liked by 1 person

  42. Morgan says:

    Hi Valerie,

    The cognitive dissonance hurts.

    When my father came back into my life a few years ago, he became increasingly concerned about the fate of my soul. We would have 3+ hour phone calls where I would feel “locked in” to the conversation, and he would basically affirm his beliefs to me repeatedly. That was the only thing he could ever talk about, and if we talked about something else, he would bring the conversation back to his Savior.

    He would literally say, “I know that I know that I know that I know that Christianity is true.” The way he talked so calmly and with such confidence (and the fact that he’s my father) broke me down and made me more receptive to his affirmations. After awhile, I let him into my life again. He took me out to dinner one night, and in the car afterwards he talked at me for about an hour, telling me with just-precise-enough detail what I was experiencing in my life, and then diagnosing it as spiritual warfare. I felt my consciousness expand and become more receptive to his words (the Mexican dinner we ate didn’t help me think clearly either), but I was there willingly and I just had to listen.

    (Note: this used to happen all the time when I was with him as a child. We’d frequently sit in the car until late into the night while he exploited my tiredness and conditioned me.)

    Finally, he drove me back home and I went to bed. I woke up early with an unquenchable thirst, due to the fact that we had eaten a big Mexican dinner the night before and I was dehydrated and probably hypoglycemic. I thought the unquenchable thirst was a sign that it was time to accept Jesus into my heart, but I wasn’t quite sure I believed yet. I did some Bible roulette and that convinced me that Jesus was real. I invited him into my heart and it was as if an indescribable evil descended upon me. I felt that every single person in the world was evil. I demonised my friends and became a clone of my father, who was very excited and instructed me to share the good news with everyone in the family, in order to hold me accountable…which I did. All were excited.

    I gradually began to come down from the “high” and felt worse than ever before. 3-5 days later I was an agnostic theist, and about a week after that I called myself an atheist again.

    When my father learned, he wasn’t very happy and would hardly talk to me except to beg me to “pursue God.” I felt like a complete failure. So I pursued God, and began bouncing back and forth between every belief system I looked up, until I just gave up and felt the search was hopeless.

    Now, about 8 months later, I’m still afraid of steering people away from Christ. Bible verses from my childhood appear in my mind frequently every day. Anything that could possibly empower people to be themselves I still fear is wrong. Every conversation I have is riddled with thoughts that what I’m doing or saying is somehow wrong, even when I know the biblical alternative is evil. Anytime I listen to a song that references God (or even a love song that vaguely sounds like CCM), I have a flashback, and sometimes even a full-on panic attack.

    I’ve begun to recover, though. Meditation and real science help a ton, but the fear is still there. I don’t even fear hell or desire heaven. All I fear is being wrong and leading people “astray,” which would be healthy if the worldview actually made sense!

    Thank you if you read this. I know it’s long. I just had to share my story with you in the hopes that it will motivate you to continue doing what you’re doing. Oh, and there’s my father’s voice telling me that I’m leading you further from God. And there’s a Bible verse and a line of lyrics to throw into the mix. Wow, I’m so evil!


    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, Morgan, oh wow. I am so sorry you are having to go through this. Christianity has been evolved over two millennia to mess with your mind and emotions in the most powerful way possible, and you have just experienced that power. It draws on the power of relationship, our tendency to see patterns in random events, our capacity to experience strong emotions like awe, our innate moral instincts that include a sense of good and evil, our desire to find self-relevance in ambiguities, our respect for and fear of authority, our deep caring for other people .. . .. You’re dad managed to trigger the tripwire on an impressive array of these powerful hooks!

      Have you seen Andy Thomson’s talk for American Atheists, “Why we believe in Gods.” ? If not, I recommend googling. It’s maybe half an hour or 45 minutes and will give you a sense of what your up against and why it got inside you so hard. Also, let me know by email if it you just need to find a time to talk. Warmly, Valerie


  43. Darlene says:

    I found your article, “Mother Theresa’s Masochism: Does Religion Demand Suffering to Keep People Passive?” enlightening. I also found another site that talks about the difference in perceptions about her purpose and mission, that, since comments were no longer being taken on the Alternet site, I thought I would pass along, as possibly of interest, from another scholarly source (also its commenter comment). Regarding the pain factor, I think transcendence of suffering plays a part. There seems to be a perception that sharing in the pain of crucifixion is beneficial. I think about other philosophies and religions, fasting, walking on coals, etc. While I am not a subscriber to those practices, I do see the value of transcendence, while striving for improved conditions, which apparently was not her prime purpose, though the church itself is known for its many charitable and healthcare organizations, and I am curious how culture versus ignorance plays a role in this seeming disparity in quality of care.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sha'Tara says:

      Butting in here, as an ex-Catholic well versed with the doctrine of “renunciation of the self to please Christ” – this dichotomy of the Church is no different than that of the drug and medical cartels. They have an agenda, and the “patients” are the means to an end. The Church needs converts, and in the case of Mother Teresa’s set-up the indigent are easy pickings; the medical/drug cartels need profits, and the sick are easy pickings. The problem is one of perception on the part of people who take sides. When all’s said and done, Capitalistic “health care” is no better than the Mother Teresa type; it’s all about belief and little of it is about really caring – all expensive ad claims to the contrary. The Church is a massive mind control apparatus and forcing its “inmates” to suffer “for Christ” is very much a part of that control. Personally, I have chosen a path of self-renunciation, but it has nothing to do with pleasing deities – it’s about personal will power and a personal stand against a self-destructive, deluded technological society that seems to believe that throwing away all “old” values of morality and decency it can come up on top, ushering in its brave new world. Good luck with that.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Darlene says:

        I am an “ex-Catholic” as well, more for disagreements with various issues involving women, birth control, divorce, etc. I was not indoctrinated into turning pain into sacrifice, though I heard Mother T did, and others within the church. I saw it in my dad, who has gone back to the “original” Catholic Church, and I think it took some priestly permission for him to eventually consider using pain meds, etc. Anyway, I doubt that Mother T. had a malicious mission, more likely the conviction of her beliefs to care for and to bring others to Christ with the belief system she had, offering a coping mechanism she believed right. The indigent are not exactly wealth bearers to the church. Her mission in India was essentially a soup kitchen and provision of barest form of education to children, not healthcare or social work to better their lives. I hear about church control, and maybe so to a certain extent to follow church rules, and grow the church, but not cult-like as some claim. People are free to choose the church and go if they please. There were positives in my church experience. The concept of putting others ahead of yourself and service to others and community, can be healthy and sometimes I think is needed more today (over the extreme of the me-and-greed generation). They are fabulous at the art of forgiveness, something else others could learn from. So, while religion can create harm in the world and I understand that concern (particularly with separatism and extremism right now), there is also much that is helpful in doing good and keeping harmful and destructive behaviors at bay, dependent on how that is done. I think there may be more positive missing from the world without it than many people may think.

        Liked by 1 person

  44. metalnun says:

    LOVE your blog! I write about many of the same issues and sometimes feel like a lone voice crying in the wilderness. Nice to know I’m in good company. Thank you for your very articulate discussions and I look forward to reading more. Keep up the good work!
    Here is my blog:

    Liked by 1 person

  45. Sha'Tara says:

    100 years ago or so, Nicola Tesla made many predictions that have proved correct. He predicted the smart phone in detail, just as it is used today. This is what he had to say about woman:
    “It is clear to any trained observer,” he says, “and even to the sociologically untrained, that a new attitude toward sex discrimination has come over the world through the centuries, receiving an abrupt stimulus just before and after the World War.

    “This struggle of the human female toward sex equality will end in a new sex order, with the female as superior. The modern woman, who anticipates in merely superficial phenomena the advancement of her sex, is but a surface symptom of something deeper and more potent fermenting in the bosom of the race. (source)

    “It is not in the shallow physical imitation of men that women will assert first their equality and later their superiority, but in the awakening of the intellect of women.

    “Through countless generations, from the very beginning, the social subservience of women resulted naturally in the partial atrophy or at least the hereditary suspension of mental qualities which we now know the female sex to be endowed with no less than men. (source)

    Liked by 1 person

  46. Sha'Tara says:

    And another quote: “Lebanon was at one time known as a nation that rose above sectarian hatred; Beirut was known as the Paris of the Middle East. All of that was blown apart by senseless religious wars, financed and exploited in part by those who sought power and wealth. If women had been in charge, would they have been more sensible? It’s a theory.”

    Roger Ebert

    Liked by 1 person

  47. Robert says:

    Re your Alternet article “30 of the Most Violent Exhortations from the Bible, Torah and Quran”

    I looked through those 30 quotes, and discovered that if you remove religious law (put adulterers to death etc), specific actions taken by God (or directed by God) at specific people, for specific reasons (and the punishment to be exacted by nominated people in a stated time-frame) then you have not many “violent” examples left.

    Religious law examples should be ignored, unless they were demonstrably crueler than the norm of the time – or they are vigorously in force today among current believers. In any case, they are almost invariably aimed at the adherents of that religion (except for egregious examples of un-believer blasphemy, such as a Jew going to Mecca.

    Actions taken by God against specific people (ie, the people of Edom) for the specific sin of “delivering the Israelites over to the sword” can hardly be used as a guide to any other violent action, ancient or modern. I mean, it can’t really be mistaken as an exhortation to destroy the Phoenicians and enslave their women can it? The “Edom” bit is really very specific.

    There are some 12 examples that you listed that are really God exhorting his followers to deliver violence upon the un-believer – and that exhortation applies to believer and un-believer right now, in a literal reading of the text. Obviously the votaries may choose to “interpret”, but I think we are talking here the literal meaning of the text.

    All of those twelve examples occur in the Quran and Hadiths.

    Ergo, your central claim that the Bible and the Quran are both pretty violent just doesn’t hold up.

    Unless, like guns, “violence” is an abstract evil, and historical accounts of violence are quite as culpable as actual exhortations to violence in the here and and now.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree that a timeless command to kill is worse than accounts of killing more clearly imbedded in a cultural context. That said, Christians through history have found no difficulty in extrapolating from the former to the latter. Do i think that the Quran is more problematic? Yes. But both to my mind are horrifying. Both sanctify violence and consequently offer little barrier against humanity’s worst impulses. Saying that the Quran is worse doesn’t exonerate the Bible.


      • Robert says:

        Your article said “the Bible contains commandments and stories that are as horrific as those being used to justify butchery in Iraq and Syria”.

        That is a clear implication that those “horrific” Bible commandments and stories could be used to “justify butchery”, or perhaps have been used in the past to “justify butchery”.

        Could any of the Bible texts quoted by you be used “to justify butchery”?

        Have any of the Bible texts quoted by you been used to “justify butchery”?

        Perhaps I am mistaken, and you can give me examples of, say, Ezekiel 35:7-9 being used to justify some “horrific” violence, or “butchery” by Christians?

        Or, in relation to those texts you quoted, perhaps you can give me an example of “Christians through history [finding] no difficulty in extrapolating from the former to the latter”?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Seriously? You have so little knowledge of Christian history that you can ask me this?


      • Sal says:

        As an Australian, I am amazed by how seriously the US takes religion (and guns). It seems (given their clinging to trump) that they will believe ANYTHING. The power of this American Kool-Aid boggles the rest of the western world. But I had to laugh at Robert’s one-eyed rationalization here. (The violent thought springs to mind, “If thy one-eyed eye offends thee, pluck it out”.)

        Even so, I have to commend Robert for raising his points in a civilized fashion. That is how arguments should be made — in a civilized fashion, even if lacking in persuasive power.

        Shouting abuse because you have no power of persuasion is the same as ad hominem attacks on the person in place of the idea. The level of violence expressed in the nasty emails you receive from rabid evangelicals is astonishing. What on earth would those people say to Gentle Jesus as he wept, more in sorrow than in anger? And what on earth do they make of the alien notion of God’s grace?

        Liked by 1 person

  48. metalnun says:

    I’m so glad I discovered your blog! Really enjoying it. But, I have a little technical problem w/ WordPress. I need to change my email address for notifications from your blog, and it won’t let me change it. Says “pending” for over a month. I Googled this and learned, “only an administrator can change it.” Are you the admin? and if not, who is? Sorry to bother you with this trivial question but I want to be sure to continue to receive notifications. thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  49. allanmerry says:

    Whiling away the dusk hour, (the last light horizon of our incomprehensibly beautiful earth- peeking through the human Rooftops) of December 25th. The day on which our struggling Metro Daily newspapers must be especially careful with CHRISTmas; so’s not to offend any of their remaining, paying readers. They with a singular “franchise” among our few synthesizing communitarian institutions. Of note on the Cartoon Page of one; (“Bizzaro”). A sticker on the rear bumper of an auto: MY GRANDCHILDREN ARE STILL IN MY SELFISH DAUGHTER-IN-LAW’S OVARIES.
    Ohhh, the selfishness. Can there be meaning in life without personal offspring?

    Liked by 2 people

  50. marc says:

    Dear Mrs Tarico,
    A question: i have watched your excellent series on your YouTube channel. Are the full transcripts available in pdf, or will they be published in a book?
    Thank you for your reply,

    Liked by 1 person

  51. nadine ojeda says:

    Hi. Would like to tell my abortion story. Where do I do that?

    Liked by 1 person

  52. Md.Hasan Rashid says:

    Dear Madam ,
    I believe human child come on the world as like a program less/window less computer and after coming he or she installs all programs from his or her family, school. Society and around environment and also copy from nature and build up a mindset in he or she and in future he or she behave according there mindset.
    God create all people and people of every religion tell “our God create us and God is our and our behave is God gifted”. I mean it is only their mind set only. That I have no real evidence which religion is right.So I love all people and respect peace.
    e.g: why Muslims eyes,nose,tongue, all body welcome curry of beef and why their all body(eyes,nose,face) ignore curry of pork. And one the other hand a Hindus eyes,nose,tongue ignore curry of beef and welcome curry of tortoise but Muslim ignore curry of tortoise. What is the cause and why different mindset? I want find out it. And this type of mindset we can see in various culture and nation. Thanks.
    If you have any advise about human mindset kindly advise me.
    my e-mail

    Liked by 1 person

  53. allanmerry says:

    Good analogy for how we decide over time how there’s no evidence of the existence of a God-like higher power. And to the same bottom line: Plugging On; and finding yet new ways to bring people to accept the real world.

    Liked by 1 person

  54. Bill Tatter says:

    Val, An old friend from Wheaton and Iowa writing. Have you ever read, “Jaded. Hope for Believers who have given up on Church but not on God.” by A.J. Keisling, or “A Grief Observed,” by C.S. Lewis – not your typical Lewis book. Reading your posts on Facebook (for some reason they come up on my page) it seems they might interest you. Let me know. Can reach me at below email or Facebook.

    Liked by 1 person

  55. Elizabeth courtney says:

    It was the belief in pentecostal and other church denominations the God wants forgiveness for child abusers and sex offenders even when they keep reoffending that caused my mental illness and is making me homeless due to the fact that I keep screaming at Jesus’s and the church to go away.

    Liked by 1 person

  56. W. Spackman says:

    Hi Valerie,
    Thanks for your Religious Right and the Underprivileged article. You should offer a response to President Carter’s opinion piece in today’s Washington Post

    Liked by 1 person

  57. Lucy Brown says:

    Hi Valerie,

    I am seeking professional councelling after involvement with a Christian cult. Thank you so much

    Liked by 1 person

  58. allanmerry says:

    Wow- 95 responses after I somehow missed the Original Post. I got only as far as the unfortunate rant of “Pro Family Christian,” and the EXCELLENT rejoinder to that by Sioux Native American Ed McGaa. In whose “Thank You, Creator” I would only substitute (or supplement with) “Thank You Nature; Natural Cosmic Reality.” He also triggers the Question…..Ok, how to put this in some kind of “accurately constructive global sense…..` “How might the Natural Sciences, and their consequent engineering into a compelling and overpowering “Industrial World View,” have evolved differently?? So’s to avoid the spectrum of Destruction that it’s onslaught did employ? Was what did occur inevitable in the evolution of the big human brain? Looking back, we naturally regret and abhor of that destruction. (And the magnitude of it now greater, as the population grows.) But, we’re now HERE. What do we make of what’s left? How to we think, study, learn, research, and act (experiment); so as to reorder ourselves into an equitable, nonviolent, and unfathomably diverse Local and World Community? Seems the Most Fundamental Prerequisite for ANY progress with that quest is Acceptance That The Natural World Is The Creator. I.e. REALITY.

    Liked by 1 person

  59. James Graham says:

    I suspect that the framers of the Constitution intended to prevent Government from shoving religious beliefs down citizens throats. That in no way I see suggests that citizens do have the right to shove their beliefs down fellow citizens throats.

    Liked by 1 person

  60. Jim Groser says:

    Dear Valarie
    I just read your article

    These are the 12 worst ideas religion has unleashed on the world

    In a Danish atheist group on Facebook.

    And then I read another and another for 2 hours. You write fantastic articles. I was sucked in.

    Sometimes I post something about religion and life too on my own Facebook or blog or in debating groups.

    My question is: can i translate some of your stories and post them? Of course i will credit you. It’s absolutely for private use and I’m not getting paid by anyone for posting articles or blogs.

    Best regards
    Jim Groser

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Jim –
      Thank you for reaching out and for your kind words. You are welcome to cross-post or translate anything you choose, either in full or in part. We’re all in this together. :)


  61. Bill Tatter says:

    I’ve had a few near death experiences in the last few years and knowing that you’re my age (56) I wondered – as a former Christian and now an atheist, how do you deal with the inevitability of death? I’ve heard / read the responses of other athiests, but never of one who was a former Christian. How do you deal with the lack of hope, or do you just ignore its inevitability? What do you think happens?

    Liked by 1 person

  62. Ken Komisarek says:

    Proposition: “The act of marriage exercised for pleasure only is entirely free of all fault and venial defect.” Condemned, Pope Innocent XI, Various Errors on Moral Matters Condemned in Decree, March 4, 1679.

    Our Lady of Fatima, 1917: “More souls go to hell for sins of the flesh than for any other reason.”

    Our Lady of Fatima to Jacinta Marto, 1920: “Many marriages are not of God and do not please Our Lord.”

    Liked by 1 person

  63. Thank you for this site. I can’t wait to read your book. I’ve been dealing with religious trauma syndrome for a few years now…left christianity after becoming a mother. I was so immersed in it, i was a missionary as a young adult and recruited other missionaries too. i don’t know where to start processing it all – it’s so overwhelming! but thank you for your work!

    Liked by 1 person

  64. Bert says:

    I stumbled upon your article regarding this archaic paradigm that married women should change their last names. Simply brilliant! Even though I’m a guy I’ve been defending this point forever, to the chagrin of almost everyone else. Finally I find someone who not only agrees but expresses my point of view more eloquently than I ever could. Keep up the good work!

    Liked by 1 person

  65. Dave Patel says:

    Hello Valarie Tarico.
    I recently came a cross your article titled “Religion’s Dirty Dozen”, I found your perspective to be very entertaining, thought provoking and stimulating. I am a member of Milton Keynes Humanist group based in Buckingham, England. We hold monthly meeting and discuss various humanist related topics. Your article has inspired me to give a talk on similar lines but extending it to silly ideas from all aspects of history. I hope you do not mind my stealing your idea, but I felt it would be courteous to at least inform you and perhaps ask for your approval.

    Kindest regards
    Dave Patel.

    Liked by 1 person

  66. says:

    Valerie, I began this as a comment on your Jesus Real post. Then realized too little of my Comment relates closely to that Post. Anyway, in it, Does it Matter whether a real Jesus Existed caught my eye. Because, in the eighteen months since I decided “I’m going to do a Blog), during which I’ve been composing just the intro pages to it, and am (maybe) no close, I’ve found a spot for “Does it Matter? Nope! (Digression: Using Baseball hierarchy as a metaphor, (Major League, Triple A, Double A, down to Short Season Single A), my Blog compared to yours will be “Junior High School Junior Varsity.” You remain the all time Standard.) Mine will mostly be cites, credits and quotes (with permission), and occasional short bursts after I learn how to more than three cogent sentences in a row.) Having a hard time pinning down a “Theme.” I guess it’s something like “How do we go about creating- envisioning, planning, designing, structuring, and effectuating a sustaining, humanitarian, equitable, and peaceful World Community. With our “raw material” comprised o,f individually and collectively, completely diverse homo sapiens. As opposed to the self destruction clearly in store. My predisposition is to start with science- “The Standard Model of Cosmic Physics.” Acknowledging that It is in continuous “up date” and will only ever be complete on it’s own if there is an “end.” And from THERE to: We are completely on our own. (Had a God-like entity started us off, She, He or It would’ve got it right. Just as it all has in fact evolved to where we are now.) So, we each must decide how to help. Act to instigate a “World Committee” to compose Universally Acknowledged and Accepted Values and corresponding Measures? A “Project” we’ve not attempted over history by Writing Books? :-)

    Liked by 1 person

  67. says:

    Typo last line: ….we’ve not attempted over history EXCEPT by writing books. Allan


  68. arhataworldfreespeech says:

    Enjoyed reading. Arhata~

    Liked by 1 person

  69. Jackie sammartino says:

    I love your articles. I was raised in an evangelical
    Fundamentalist church. It took many years to
    Undo the mental damage. My entire extended family
    Is still fundamentalist and has not seen or spoken
    To me in many years. They have never seen my
    Twins who are now 10.
    I am 62 yrs old and a registered nurse.
    My husband is an eye surgeon.
    If you can get out alive you will have to start a completely new life.

    Liked by 1 person

  70. John Gregg says:

    Hi Valerie, This is the Book I spoke with you about some years ago Finally out Hope you like and have time to review it…John

    Liked by 1 person

  71. Hi Valerie,

    I would like permission to reprint some of your articles, largely off your website in the New Zealand Association of Rationalists and Humanists quarterly journal, with acknowledgement, of course. Circulation ~500 but we are planning on doing free drops to two local universities which will be of the order of 3000 copies. Please email me on address below. Website:

    Liked by 2 people

  72. Wholly Truth Mirror says:

    hi Valerie. do not know what to say, except that i am hurting deep within myself.
    i am 48 and it has been an awful process for me to get to where i am at now. iwas immersed in pentecostal, charismatic evangelical fundamentalist christian/satanic upbringing. it took until my mid forties to permit myself to consider the abuse, brainwashing, cult settings i was immersed in. beforehand i blamed myself for everything. i felt dirty, felt like a loser, felt i was really messed up… has been extremely painful to piece the truth together for my experiences. i do not trust, yet i have trusted way too much to the wrong people. i do not believe in taking mental medicines, so i have been doing lots of walks thru my whole life, meditating, writing, drawing, yoga, praying to my own unique connection to the Divine….anyways thanks for putting out there for the public your personal experiences……
    i wanted to privately send to your email, but i guess i have to send it via this.


    Liked by 2 people

  73. Brad Swancoat says:

    Please meet me in the After-Life so we can discuss your lack of Belief beyond 3-dimensions. … OR study survivors of near-death-experiences to learn how they now see beyond the 3-dimensional partitions and walls that currently bind you. I too was once lost like you…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, that is how most converts feel, whether they convert toward or away from supernaturalism. The feeling of knowing is simply that, a feeling–one that can get triggered by information, misinformation, a seizure, anoxia, or a targeted prod to the brain. That is why humanity’s ability to accrue knowledge–the ability to shape and predict events–has depended on carefully controlled test that rule out alternative explanations. The scientific method has been described as “what we know about how not to fool ourselves” because when we drift away from the rigors of falsification we end up believing things that are either patently untrue or else simply unknowable.


  74. says:

    Valerie, I thank my Luck Stars that the “brain mechanics” is a robust arena of scientific investigation. BRAVO the Scientific Method in it’s strictest sense, And the growing attention to replication and validation. Allan

    Liked by 1 person

  75. deepstorypress says:

    Hi Valerie, I just finished reading your article on Alternet re the crisis in evangelical Christianity. I would agree with your analysis. My own journey has been from Catholic missionary to psychotherapist. I’ve written a book looking at how we can begin to craft a more viable spirituality after leaving Christianity behind. Spirituality: A User’s Guide is available on Amazon or any good bookstore via Ingram Spark. You may find it interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

  76. Daniel Winne says:

    Hey, as two ex-Evangelicals, we are making this new series, telling the stories of the wave of Millennials leaving their faiths. This is story 7

    Liked by 1 person

  77. Diane Coughlin says:

    First, thank you so very much for your well-written and insightful posts here. I’ve found them provocative and comforting for the last couple of years– and that’s a great mix in these times. I just finished reading the two Narrative posts, and found them both helpful in considering how to contribute to the flowering that follows after devastation. I’m hoping we’re going to be opening new space for dialogue as we move toward 2020, and these articles contribute to that.

    As a person who’s engaged in feminist criticism for the last 30 years or so, one of the things that I think is useful to bring to the table from that perspective is how much the challenges to these narratives that you’re pointing to, particularly on the progressive side, are the ones that faced feminists from the beginning of the modern movement. Which way to walk the talk– as insertionist or radical reformer? I’d argue that many of our problems stem from the assumption that the insertionist approach is the most efficient, most power-shifting means to creating social justice.

    But as HRC’s campaign makes clear, many people who’ve thought about the problem of re-balancing power-over with power-to in order to create the greatest field of possibility for the greatest number no longer accept the insertionist model. Intersectionality and other conceptual nuances are riding in on feminism’s fourth wave, which is starting to wash ashore looking a lot like Virginia Woolf’s last sense of feminist critique– that it’s a more expansive, more strictly attending-to-systemic-injustice-arising-from-old-narratives-of-power Radical Humanism. Reading The Three Guineas and Between the Acts are useful exercises in finding a different narrative that extends some of the best ideals of the past into a future that rejects the past’s assumptions about gender, race, power, and the progress of material life (toward what end, by what means)– which inevitably requires dismantling the hierarchies of the Ancestral Story and debunking its notion of power (might as right) as profoundly and inescapably unjust. It also requires letting go of the insertionist model.
    And there’s the rub, especially if historically oppressed and disenfranchised groups cling to the vision of making the system work for them, rather than rejecting the system’s implicit biases about power, justice, and the inevitability of hierarchies (rather than, say, heterarchical webs).

    Still, I think that a thoughtful integration of Enlightenment standards for evidence and argument with the powerful insistence on the authority of experience as a factor in moral judgment is possible, particularly if we dismantle the narrative of power exercised over/for others and instead begin to live through a narrative of power created among people and used in that context for the good of the largest imaginable whole (ie, using systems theory based analysis and decision making– and Woolf’s The Waves can give readers an experiential sense of what navigating identity in a systems framework of emerging properties, where even the self as experienced is an expression of interdependent, dynamic relationships, means). It’s a better fit for acknowledging the underlying reality of the planet as a living system in which we participate and for problem-solving in the world we’ve distorted by acting upon it and each other as if the narratives of power we’ve used thus far are accurate, real, or exclusively true. That world and its problems arise from a human construct we have the power to dismantle.

    If we focus on empathy as a cognitive goal, as well as a spiritual one, we might find common ground to set out from: all of the participants in the argument (you can’t really call it a dialogue without common ground) believe that they are trying to do the best, ultimately, for the most of those they recognize as worthy. Developing cognitive empathy is a goal each narrative could claim: the old noblesse oblige model could be opened up and expanded this way, the charge to love the least among us could too; the call to dismantle systemic racism, misogyny, and institutional Other-making would be more likely to include accommodations that recognize the loss of identity were developing cognitive empathy an explicit part of the process– and the insertionist model would look like the dead end it is. The bonus is that cognitive empathy is a skill that people can learn and develop in any relational context, and as they develop it among their tribe, it can become a relational habit of mind, a new implicit bias that assumes a universal capacity for feeling generally and for suffering particularly– a common humanity under any tribal definition– that extends until there is no Other.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I love this! Would you mind copying and pasting it to the narrative article as well? I want readers there to see it.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thomas Hill says:

        I would like to add with no intent of malice that “brevity is the soul of wit”. Hamlet, Act 2, Scene 2. As a physicist, I must frequently contend with verbose technical articles that smack of elitism, and it is a turnoff. By way of contrast, the great appeal of the Cosmos series has been that it explains some very complex phenomena in terms that an intelligent person can understand without being an expert in the specialized subject areas.

        Liked by 2 people

  78. says:

    (Maybe a repeat of what I just “disappeared.”) Hmmm. “Just the facts” versus, maybe, “Relevant breadth and depth?” I like the first when facts about the subject are positive, which is good with the (“harder”) Sciences. But, but, but- when we get beyond Facts?

    Liked by 1 person

  79. Alan Kehoe says:

    Hello Valerie,

    I so enjoy all that you write. Especially today, the ‘worst ideas’ piece I read in Alternet. I think more folks can really get the practical examples (as opposed to weighty philosophy – as much as I like that too) of how religion, exclude harms and makes little sense in a modern rational compassionate inclusive world.
    One small craw however…In the Eternal Life segment you end with the sentence “Devout believers put their spiritual energy into preparing for a world to come rather than cherishing and stewarding the one wild and precious world we have been given”. Given by whom? I still do things like this all the time myself (“Thank God, God forbid…We’re so blessed….etc.). Of course I think it essential and fantastic to be full of gratitude and awe for the often unfathomable richness and wonder of life and how it has come to be as it is for us with all our remarkably evolved perceptual and otherwise facilities to appreciate and comprehend and explore and question it all. I just see the smallest red flag in describing life as something given in that that it might reinforce (at least for me – I’d not presume for you) the construct that it was given by an identifiable anthropomorphized supernatural entity. I have found that words, language and meaning can count for a lot in how we unintentionally if subtly reinforce notions that we may be trying to detox from. It’s a long process, surely.

    Anyway since you are not an anthropomorphized supernatural entity, but rather an amazingly insightful, accomplished, generous, compassionate, rational and courageous truth teller and modern sage…I feel quite comfortable expressing my thanks for all that YOU HAVE GIVEN to all of us fellow truth seekers and rational *pilgrims.

    Be well and all good things…Alan

    *pilgrim (n.) (not to be confused with the usual, strictly religious connotation:

    c. 1200, pilegrim, from Old French pelerin, peregrin “pilgrim, crusader; foreigner, stranger” (11c., Modern French pèlerin), from Late Latin pelegrinus, dissimilated from Latin peregrinus “foreigner” (source of Italian pellegrino, Spanish peregrino), from peregre (adv.) “from abroad,” from per- “beyond” + agri, locative case of ager “country, land” (from PIE root *agro- “field”).

    pilgrim (from the Latin peregrinus) is a traveler (literally one who has come from afar).

    Latin peregrinus ‘foreign,’ from peregre ‘abroad,’ from per- ‘through’ + ager ‘field.’adjectivearchaic
    adjective: peregrine, coming from another country; foreign or outlandish.

    Liked by 1 person

  80. David Saluk says:

    I’m very glad to have discovered your articles. Your writing is insightful and comprehensive and so thought provoking. I sure appreciate you providing me with some worthwhile reading. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  81. john gregg says:


    Sex, The Illustrated History, Through Time, Religion, and Culture. Volume one includes, The Ancient World, Early Europe to the Renaissance and Islam. It is a daring exploration of human sexuality from the ancient to the modern world. Revealed are sexual practices and beliefs previously omitted or obscured from all historical telling. In a scathing condemnation of religion and its control of sex, the book explores complex relationships between spirituality and sexuality. The supremacy of the mother goddess throughout most of human existence, and her relatively recent fall, is detailed in both word and image. These pages share graphic erotic artworks and explicit literary excerpts from throughout the world, painstakingly culled from the hidden treasure trove of cultures throughout history. Sex, The Illustrated History, traces sexual attitudes from the transcendent to the bizarre throughout the worlds’ cultures. The usually explicit illustrations are linked by historical and anthropological content, inviting the reader to experience sexuality through varied and often shocking cultural lenses. Each volume contains over 250 erotically themed images that have been gathered by the author, in his travels and studies of world cultures. An encyclopedic tour of the sexuality of humankind! The book explores in depth human bisexuality. Illustrations explore every level of human sexuality.
    Book website with and pages : Sex, the Illustrated History: Through Time, Religion and Culture
    Book website with and pages : Sex, the Illustrated History: Through Time, Religion and Culture
    Sex, the Illustrated History: Through Time, Religion and Culture

    Sex, The Illustrated History, Volume II, begins a bold probe of human sexuality from Asia, Australia, Melanesia, Micronesia, Polynesia, ancient North and South America and Africa,moving into the modern world. The analysis of religion and its control of sex continues as the book pursues intricate relationships between spirituality and sexuality. The book is leagues beyond the classic History of Sex, by Michael Foucault, written in the 1950’s.

    Sex, The Illustrated History, Volume III, begins a courageous exploration of human sexuality from the Enlightenment to the current modern world. Europe form the 17th century to the modern world, Colonial North and South America to the current day Americas,Roman Catholic molestation’s, love-counterculture,child brides and forced marriages, slavery and homosexuality through time. In a caustic censure of religion and its domination of sex, the book explores complicated relationships between modern spirituality and sexuality

    Liked by 1 person

  82. Joyanne Kline says:

    I was wondering if you could refer me to a counselor in the western San Fernando Valley. I have been a religious and a Christian for over 50 years and I just left my church and religion. I feel I need support. and can pay some for help.

    Liked by 1 person

  83. Hi Valerie,
    I was raised in a Bible-thumping church and have full sympathy for your anger over that brand of Evangelical Christianity, which took me quite some years to break free from. I appreciate the honesty of your blog also. I’m grateful, though, that I’ve discovered a completely different kind of Evangelical Christianity–one that is gracious and kind, as well as well-balanced and scrupulously honest. The church I’m part of now has been involved in Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation process, seeking to right the wrongs we’ve done to our First Nations people, as well as working to break down prejudice against them. It runs a shelter for the homeless and has below-market rental properties for the marginalized. I could list many other things we’re involved in. I know you wrote your book and feel the need to continue this blog in order to counter the foolish approach President Bush and others like him have taken, making policy decisions based on their misguided personal faith. And if anything, things are way worse now with Trump dancing to the tune of small-minded Evangelicals for his own narcissistic reasons. I strongly lament with you that these things have happened and are continuing to happen. But with all due respect, I think you’re mistaken to blame the God of the Bible for this. I expect you’d really bristle at the suggestion that you may have thrown the baby out with the bathwater–yes, there’s bathwater in the Bible too–but I can’t help but think that’s the case. Honest doubts can be really good for us. We need them and need to pay attention to them. I just don’t think making ourselves the center of our universe is a good way to live. And I believe that’s what it boils down to if we reject God. We become our own gods. Again, I appreciate your honesty immensely. And I wish you all the success in the world as you continue on in your pursuit of truth.
    Best wishes,

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Mark –
      Thank you for reaching out. You are right that the reason I bother to write about Christianity is because of the harm I see being done around me in the name of the Christian God. And I absolutely believe there are congregations that are centered in healing, compassion and generosity; i am glad you have found such a community. That said, for myself, I did not leave the church because of hypocrisy or harmful behavior of Christians, I left because I found the foundational beliefs themselves to be not credible or spiritually uplifting. I think there are human handprints all over the Bible, and that the texts it contains are best explained by human history and psychology rather than divine intervention. So, it wouldn’t really fit for me to join a Christian community, even one that i found wholly centered in values I share. I too, wish you success in your quest for goodness and truth. Warmly,



    • Alan Kehoe says:

      I actually quite bristle at two very common ideas (usually in the form of accusations or inferred attributions) that in not “believing” in the Christian God, one has “rejected” God and that in doing so we have made ourselves gods. This really speaks more of their need to have the construct of an egoistic personage as deity…one whose umbrage might be piqued should we not believe. I think this actually projects the writers need to defend this construct (and this egotistical and quite human penchant to ascribe human qualities to whatever the divine might be). Me thinks the self satisfied altruist doth protest to much. And it falsely infers that we are coming from the construct of having something or someone to reject. In the early gay rights movement we used to wear buttons that said “How Dare you Presume I’m Heterosexual.” I might apply that here by saying, ” How dare you presume that for me there’s a god to reject !” and “How dare you presume I make myself or humans gods!” Nothing could be further from the truth for me..

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thomas Hill says:

      Mark, Your reply is that of a reasonable person who has worked his way through his religious beliefs, rather than being a beligerent rebel. I salute you.

      Liked by 1 person

  84. says:

    Bravo Valerie! And there are Cosmic, Natural handprints all over the pursuit of Reality.

    Liked by 1 person

  85. Really liked your article about the “Righteous and the Woke!” I’m very interested in the ways that certain aspects of Christian culture can be a basis for mental illness and unhealthy thinking. There seems to be a lot of material and scholarly work that exposes the unhealthiness of cults, but not a lot on the unhealthy thinking that gets entwined with Christian thought and theology. Would you have any sources for this?
    Anthony from Syracuse, NY

    Liked by 1 person

  86. stevefreeman2019 says:

    Just a note to say thanks for your work. Why? In part because I’m sure you get far too much hate mail and I offer my appreciation instead. ….. As the son of a Baptist minister, who was also groomed to go into ministry, I find it challenging to come to terms with my doubts and disagreements with Christianity. I have served on 2 church staffs, but am currently not involved with any church. … It’s only darkness when I fail to search for light. Your work represents light for me. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Arhata says:

      Appreciate your kind words. I do enjoy writing and doing free speech displays.
      How did you find me? Send your email if you’d like a couple spiritual essays per week

      Liked by 1 person

      • stevefreeman2019 says:

        I saw info about you on the Exvangelical Facebook page. Yes, I’ve already submitted my email address. I plan to read “Trusting Doubt” next. My history includes a little about Wheaton College. I was a religion reporter in nearby town of Aurora from 1985 to ’93. I could always find something to write about from Wheaton. I considered Wheaton to be “progressive” in many respects. But today even that would not appeal to me. I most definitely left organized religion over Trump’s election primarily by an unwavering Evangelical church. >>> Have you ever considered what is it about Evangelical epistemology that fits so squarely with Trumpian politics? — Steve

        Liked by 1 person

      • I haven’t thought about it from an epistemological standpoint. I did write this about Evangelicals and Trump. But I think the answer more than anything may have to do with tribalism and information flow that.


      • That’s interesting. It seemed like Wheaton got more conservative after I left—essentially closing ranks against liberation theology. So I’m intrigued if it has become more progressive. Someone told me recently that several of their profs were into Rachel Held Evans, which was a pleasant surprise.


  87. Michael Godwin says:

    It would be great to see you in a debate with Allistair Begg, or Ravi Zacharias…….

    Liked by 1 person

  88. Ken Russell says:

    May I recommend an article? This one fits well in your focus I think.
    Thanks for your website. Ken.

    Liked by 1 person

  89. Hey Valerie, I loved your biblical response to anti-abortion forces! I simply don’t get how ‘anti-abortion’ foes claim to be Christians. Doesn’t make sense to me.
    I guess the one argument you might have overlooked – abortions were performed during the time of Christ’s time earth. It was not a secret. It seems odd to me that Christ never condemned the practice when he must have been aware of it.
    Christ was not one to mince words nor did he fail to take action when people went against his teachings.

    Liked by 1 person

  90. David Papazian-Boyce says:

    Just read your piece Evangelical Christianity’s Ten Biggest Mindfucks on I found it a concise review of the worst of Evangelical Christianity and a helpful rubric for thinking about its impacts on me and in our current society. (Think: how can Evangelicals support the Current Occupant?) While I left Christianity long ago the affects linger-graduated from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (1981) so l was in pretty deep. Thank you and carry on.

    Liked by 1 person

  91. Joe Minella says:

    Valerie, Thank you for your work. I went to catholic schools in the 50’s and 60’s and finally “rejected” it all after college. I’m 78 years old now and I can see how those 16 years ( plus some familial contributions) have negatively affected my life. Remember, those nuns had you under their control for 6 hours a day, 5 days a week. Plus confession on Saturday and mass on Sunday. It was absolutely cultish. The damage was such that I would have to have been in therapy for the rest of my life to overcome it. Too soon old, too late smart! Thanks again for your attention to this under-discussed issue.

    Liked by 1 person

  92. Hello Doctor: Thank you for writing about “white fragility” I had an unbelievable experience with this. Your writings show how an engagement can be COMPLEX but unimportant to an overall life at the same time.

    Liked by 1 person

  93. Rick L. says:

    I just read your interview with David Fitzgerald About lee Strobel, Very good.
    Keep up the good work.
    Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  94. Brent Thompson says:

    Hello Dr. Tarico:
    I’ve read every (I think) blog post on your site and your book has meant so much to me. I come and check this site regularly and gobble up every new post. But you haven’t posted much over the past year. I imagine blogging must be time consuming, and the muse isn’t always singing (so to speak). But, I miss you! Are you “out there” somewhere else on the Interwebs? I trust you are keeping healthy. Whatever the reason for your absence from my life (LOL!!), I want you to know that I respect you and relate quite closely to your life’s journey. All the best!!
    A big fan.

    Liked by 1 person

  95. Allan Avery says:

    MY THOUGHTS TOOO! ALL! (Allan Avery) Tho in my case it’s
    on me. Preoccupied with Aging and depreciating bodies, At 84 and 80 yo (Merry and I respectively), this Spring, we made the well-overdue “call” and moved into a “full support” group living facility for we elders. When we stabilize a bit here I will be back out watching for your powerfully curated viewpoints.

    Liked by 1 person

  96. Tim Miller says:

    Your “Your Intersectionality is too Small” articles are just brilliant. They have expressed my inchoate misgivings so beautifully and explicitly. Thanks you, Valerie!

    Liked by 1 person

  97. Brent Thompson says:

    I was trying to find you on Twitter today and couldn’t. Then I come across a Twitter handle named “@valerietarico” that has been suspended by Twitter for violating their rules?!?!? Respectfully: WTF? (If I’ve just missed a blog post about this, excuse me and just refer me to it. :))

    Liked by 1 person

  98. Angela says:

    What about birth control? This isn’t the sixties. Most Women who have abortions are
    NOT 13 year olds who were raped. I know it happens but should that be the example to use? The exception?
    What about using birth control in 2021 – the POWER (and responsibility) starts there. In Canada it’s free for ALL women under 25. Abortion rates have gone down!! But many girls who have abortions, have multiple. And Many never get over it. I have friends who still wonder about the child(ren) 30 years later.
    I love women too and am pro-choice but feel frustrated when women are not responsible for their own bodies in 2021!!!!! Birth control is REAL POWER!!!!!
    Best to you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Angela – I hear your frustration. Long acting contraceptives make most of the need for abortion simply go away, and I think that is where most of our energy should be. Both abortion rights activists and anti-abortion activists make me crazy by not focusing on this obvious way to make most abortion obsolete.


  99. john gregg says:

    Attn: Valerie…I Have been trying to contact you on my new book we discussed…john
    Hi , Here it is as promised.
    Audio Just out: 2021:
    Sex, The World History; Through Time, Religion and Culture (3 volumes) On Audible Amazon. This Work has been hailed by European LGBTQ organizations as the FIRST ever, Gender Honest History of Sex

    For Review and Information …Radical Gender Honest Humanist history of sex.


    SEX, THE ILLUSTRATED HISTORY, THROUGH TIME, RELIGION AND CULTURE, Volumes, I,II,III…… 900+ ILLUSTRATIONS. 😊 (Cultural Bisexuality and illustrations Mainly in the second section of each chapter)😊


    A cross-cultural examination of sexual beliefs, the book traces sexual practices with gender honesty, the unusual and the transcendent, throughout the worlds’ cultures. A deep look at world religions and their control of sex, the book explores and exposes complex relationships between spirituality, sexuality, and the treatment of women and boys throughout history. The book revamps previous historical interpretations of gender fluidity in worldwide cultures.

    While women were exalted as leaders and priestesses in many cultures, they suffered a drastic loss of power and prestige over time. The supremacy of the Mother Goddess throughout most of human existence, and her relatively recent fall, is detailed.

    Other themes are; the undeniable existence of bisexuality in the majority of human cultures, the influence and abuses of the Church, the history of sexual slavery including World War II, child brides and forced marriages, historical perspectives on homosexuality, the origins of the LGBTQ and Feminist movements..

    Included are works of mythology, erotic artwork, and literary excerpts. These weave together a multicultural and historical tapestry which we can now see reflected in our contemporary world. It offers in very readable form an encyclopedic tour of the sexuality of humankind!

    Author disputes the Publisher Pricing and make volumes 1 and 3 available at his cost:: Volumes $79 each (

    Liked by 1 person

  100. hertzlerus says:

    My transition in life has been similar to yours. I tell the story at


  101. Hi Valerie,
    Today’s column on borrowing victim hood is not loading. Not sure if it is a coding issue or what, but you may want to check into it. Thanks!

    Jason Knowles


  102. Tim Miller says:

    Valerie, I read your essay this morning on victimhood and hierarchy and absolutely loved it. I thought it was brilliant and really navigated beautifully between right and left viewpoints. Then I decided to share it with a political email group I am in with a mixture or left, right, and libertarian members. That’s when I found that the essay had been removed. Why did you remove it? I think a lot of your essays are wonderful and brilliant, but this one was perhaps the more brilliant essay of yours I have ever read, and definitely the best essay by anyone related to the whole Woke thing.


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