Atheist to Theist: Faith vs. Logic

(Somewhat continued from last week)

Both during my days of questioning my religion and during my time as an atheist, I needed to find The Truth. I wanted to know, with absolute certainty, whether God existed and in what way He influenced things.

Last week, I wrote about the similarities between religious faith and scientific faith (theist vs. atheist). I realized they were the same and that my issue had more to do with approval from others -AKA social anxiety.

In discussing and clarifying with friends since, I understand that I need to outline another realization I had:

Faith does not need to mean the absence of logic.

Although Mirriam-Webster defines faith as:

It also allows for:

And, even, fidelity of one’s promises and sincerity of intentions.


In my youth and pre-atheist days, I often felt I had optimism of God’s existence and acted by fear. Like the hasty driver who is late to work, I worried more about whether a policeman would pull me over than about whether my reckless driving might endanger another driver.

Furthermore, what I knew of faith disturbed me. I assumed my accepting God would, by necessity, fit M-W’s “firm belief in something for which there is no proof.” How could believing in God be correct? There is no proof; only over-zealous people’s claims and fantastical scriptural stories. Right?

Wrong. As I said, I came to understand another option: faith AND logic.

Believing in God and what He says can make logical sense -yes, as much logical sense as Darwin’s natural selection, the Big Bang, Dawkin’s Ultimate Boeing 747 Gambit, or Russell’s Teapot. The farmer and the cowman can be friends, existing in a universe where both work together to be mutually beneficial.

I have come to understand God not as a magician with mythical powers but as an advanced being following the same universal laws we humans discover, prove mathematically, and name after ourselves. This perspective is not original nor is it unique; it does seem to surprise those I’ve discussed it with. Why choose a bipolar perspective when everything in life exists on a spectrum of options? Why not consider the possibilities?

Photo by Frank Cone on

And again, why not take these musings and ask God if they be true? Such was my thinking, and such was what I did.

©2023 Chel Owens

“Anyone who imagines that bliss is normal is going to waste a lot of time running around shouting that he’s been robbed. Most putts don’t drop. Most beef is tough. Most children grow up to be just people. Most successful marriages require a high degree of mutual toleration. Most jobs are more often dull than otherwise. Most beaches are patrolled by Portuguese men-o’-war.
Life is like an old time rail journey–delays, sidetracks, smoke, dust, cinders, and jolts, interspersed only occasionally by beautiful vistas and thrilling bursts of speed. The trick is to thank the Lord for letting you have the ride.

-Jenkins Lloyd Jones, “Big Rock Candy Mountains,” The Deseret News, June 12, 1973
Then quoted, later, by President Gordon B. Hinckley

Big Rock Candy Mountains quote edited

WINNER of the Terrible Poetry Contest 5/25/2023

What’s cheesier than a Vermont Cheddar? This month’s terrible poetry contest, of course! Matt, last time’s winner, suggested we write a limerick about the dairy product in question, and here are the winners:

Terror at the table

by DA Whittam

Vermont Cheddar Cheese was such a sleaze
Wheezed, seized, breezed, he’s enough to make one weak at the knees
Eyeing him disdainfully did nothing to ease
The fears his presence could not appease
Here, grab the skis and the keys, I’ll disappear into the trees.


The Gambler

by seahorsecoffeeelektra79018

He was a good old egg who liked to gamble,
He never stopped talking, oh how he rambled.
One nasty night he lost his shirt. He got drunk.
He fell in the dirt. Now he’s a good old egg
Who’s somewhat broken and completely scrambled.


Congratulations, DA and seahorsecoffeeelektra79018! You are the most terrible poets this month! We’re taking a summer sabbatical until September; but you’re both welcome to tell me a theme and form for next time, in the comments.

For the record, I’m going to sound like a broken record: all contestants did TERRIBLY. (I mean, that is the point of the contest, right?) I read over all the poems, snickered, read them again, snickered again, then could NOT decide who to crown as victor. DA and shce#’s contributions won by a hair -and, I realized, the same level of hair. I loved DA’s incessant rhyming and broken form; I loved sea’s broken form and mostly-rhyme. Plus, as was with all the submissions, they were terrible.

What a way to end (for now) on a high note! Enjoy reading:


by TanGental

If I can no longer enjoy my cheese
Then would you put me at my ease:
Stop me crying,
Assist my dying:
Take my throat and give it a squeeze…


Shredding The Cheddar

by Obbverse

I pondered on this tasteless topic blankly…
Because Vermont Cheddar stinks, and rankly,
There is the ripe question
Of long lingering indigestion,
I’d rather Brie or Philadelphia, frankly.



by Frank Hubeny

There once was a cheesy old cheddar
who never got under the weather. (pronounce this “wedder”)
Vermont Cheddar’s the name
of long-standing good fame
since tomorrow it tastes even better. (pronounce this “bedder”)



by Dumbestblogger

There once was a brave little cheddar
Who thought it was oh so much better
Than gouda or brie
Then it started to sneeze
For tickled it was with a feather


Dairy in the air

by Michael B. Fishman

Her breath smelled like Vermont cheddar cheese,
so when she said, “Boy, won’t you come kiss me please.”
I just squeezed shut my sniffer
and dreamed of Aniston, you know, Jennifer,
and gave her lips a soft gentle squeeze.



by Ordinary Person

I’ve decided to give up cheese
especially Vermont Cheddar cheese
Why? What do you know about life?
Isn’t it full of strife?
I hate you Vermont Cheddar Cheese.


A Stupid and Completely Fictious Story About Cheese, Jews, and Halachic Process

by Jewish Young Professional “JYP”

There once was a new kind of cheese
Where the protein was made out of peas.
The rabbis said, “No way!? (whey?)
Is this really okay?!?
To decide, we must use our rabbinic degrees.”

But the rabbis disliked intellectual work,
So they banned it, like they did Impossible Pork.
“We think banning is better –
Besides, this tastes like Vermont Cheddar,
And we prefer cheeses made in New York.”

Then came Shavuot holiday
Chief rabbi ate dairy all night and all day.
He produced so much gas
And hot air from his ass,
The chief rabbi up and floated away!

The rabbis said, “As much as we do not want,
To admit our Head Rabbi was intolerant
Of milk, lactose, and whey,
Guess we’ll say it’s ok
To eat that weird vegan cheese from Vermont!”


Green Mountain Gold

by Greg

From Vermont came a cheddar, behold
Legend has it, one heck of a mold
Big cheese curd not forstall
The coming Woodchuck brawl.
For a chance to taste Green Mountain gold.


Thank you, terrible poets. Maybe come back in September to see what the next prompt is!

Deb and seahorse: Here’s your slightly-inaccurate badge you can post as proof of your poetic mastery:


©2023 The poets, and their respective poems.

Friday Photo

We saw a lot of strange things when we visited Florida.

I felt disappointed we never saw an alligator. Good thing, or we may have been tempted to let it eat out of our hands like a cute, little squirrel in a forest…

©2023 Chel Owens

The Edge of Obsolete

Most of my life, I’ve been told, “Oh; you’re so young!”

This hasn’t been said in a good way, ironically. The tone and implication has been, “Oh; you couldn’t know what you’re talking about because of your physical age.” This is invariably accompanied by my being treated differently.

I, too, sit in an excessive amount of makeup and look sexy. (Photo by Pixabay on

As irritating as those comments have been, I’m facing a new challenge in recent years.

At stores, the clerk is saying, “Ma’am.” To my children’s peers, I’m “So-and-so’s MOM.” When one employee refers to another, I hear, “That lady…”

Part of this is my interaction’s being in a younger crowd these days. I still hear plenty of the, “but you’re so young” from the generation just above mine. Yet, this shift in titles has outlined an important, inevitable life milestone: ageing.

Sure, I knew I would get older. I’ve been waiting for it my entire life! What I didn’t know was that I would literally lose the interest and attention of others when it happened.

I’ve tried very hard to be accepted for my intellect, talents, opinions, and friendship. But as more eyes slip over my face without glance and fewer strangers smile, I’m realizing that was all a load of fermented Botox. I think of my experiences as The Edge of Obsolete, when youth is slipping away and so is my accompanying social power.

I’m getting there. Photo by Pixabay on

I’m miffed, frankly.

On an attractiveness scale, I consistently pull an average number. Maybe if I dolled myself up, I’d hit higher scores -but, since I do not value beauty (supposedly), I’ve tried to live in a modest way and treat everyone by my mythical standards. I speak kindly to most and encourage thinking. I preach against starving yourself and caking on makeup. My nose wrinkles at a picture filter so heavy you’re not sure if the original subject was human.

Yet, I’d have to be blind to not notice the disinterest. I’d be ignorant to cling to my ideals, like that last bit of muscle tone clinging to my backside…

We’re giving too much power to beauty. And to those young’uns. -You know, the ones tramping all over my lawn. Kids these days.

A candid photo if I ever saw one…. Photo by Nothing Ahead on

I’m sure we’ll return to this subject another day. In the meantime: How about you? Have you experienced The Edge of Obsolete? What are your thoughts on it?


Here’s what I wrote since last noting what I wrote:
Wednesday, May 10: “Movies and Cultural Literacy

Friday, May 12: Friday Photo. Peace out, man.

Saturday, May 13: “Mommy, dear.” Ah, motherhood.

Sunday, May 14: A quote by Joseph Campbell that’s often attributed to Carl Jung.

Friday, May 19: Friday Photo of what happens when trampolines fly.

Sunday, May 21: Hilarious quote by Joe E. Lewis.

Monday, May 22: A continuation, somewhat on my series on atheism.

Tuesday, May 23: Shared DA Whittam’s poem.

Wednesday, May 24: This post.

If you haven’t, enter the Terrible Poetry Contest for this month!!! The deadline is this week.

©2023 Chel Owens

Frosting, by DA Whittam

Lengthen, cyclic persuasion
Gorging on random thoughts
Crystalizing perspective, before
Spin, spin, spinning
Sun dappled leaves
A wilderness of
Technicolour wings
Softly unfurl, reveal
A homage to vividness
In metamorphosis


Eyelids flutter
Flash of colour
The mirror reflects
The abyss of her reality
Painted red lips
Brash with uncertainty
Lacking vibrancy of butterfly wings
She watches, waiting
For the other to take flight
Envy insidiously creeping into her mind
She is bound in the rich tapestry
Of a creation which does not absolve

©DA Whittam
Visual Verse, Vol. 9, Chapter 4

Atheist to Theist: Seeking The Truth

(Somewhat continued from two weeks ago)

Both during my days of questioning my religion and during my time as an atheist, a great point of anxiety for me was finding The Truth. I wanted to know, with absolute certainty, whether God existed and in what way He influenced things.

Whilst on the faithful side (aka, amongst believers), I squirmed at odd expressions that often seemed optimistically ignorant. The experience reminded me of when I sought a good school for my oldest child to attend. I toured several charter schools and a handful of private ones; without fail, the phrase, “the best school” dropped from the lips of those attending. No, the one I ultimately chose was not #1. Yet, parents and staff loved claiming superiority.

Insisting that God exists or proposing that I live as if He does isn’t real. That isn’t faith and belief. It’s fake it till you make it behavior.

Image by Robert Prax from Pixabay

I thought, therefore, that my admitting there is no God was a refreshing reset to my thinking and my life; a blank slate upon which to write my own opinions and testimony. From there, I could learn answers without bias or influence.

Instead, the opinions I heard and scornful pride I felt from atheists were similar to theists’ claims of accepting Christ and being saved. The experience reminded me of a section in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy where Man discovers the highly-improbable Babel Fish, a naturally-occurring creature that can translate languages for the user and live off the user’s thought waves in symbiotic repayment for that service:

The argument goes something like this: ‘I refuse to prove that I exist,’ says God, ‘for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing.’
‘But,’ says Man, ‘the Babel fish is a dead giveaway, isn’t it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves you exist, and so therefore, by your own arguments, you don’t. QED.’
‘Oh dear,’ says God, ‘I hadn’t thought of that,’ and promptly vanishes in a puff of logic.
‘Oh, that was easy,’ says Man, and for an encore goes on to prove that black is white and gets himself killed on the next zebra crossing.

Douglas Adams

I am aware that Adams did not believe in God. It’s clearly a poke at pursuing logic as religiously as zealots pursue faith.


You see:

Both sides, religious and atheist, are the same. When one removes personal bias toward one or the other, s/he/it sees that accepting God as creator is accepting Stephen Hawking as expert. Believing in The Creation is believing in The Big Bang. Smugly claiming salvation is smugly claiming secular ethics. Assuming eternal life is assuming a return to dust.

I was not finding truth, because I was finding the same dandelions on the supposedly-greener side of the fence! So, what was I doing precisely? While I did (and do) receive answers to my probing questions about life, the most important realization in my journey of faith was that I was not seeking truth in an unbiased fashion. I was, in fact, seeking the approval of others. What made me uncomfortable and anxious was the embarrassment of being wrong.

This realization brings to mind a scripture story found in the Book of Mormon, referred to as Lehi’s Dream. Lehi, a prophet around the time of the biblical prophets Huldah, Jeremiah, Obadiah, Nahum, Habakkuk, and Zephaniah (Footnote 3), has a vision in which he finds some amazing fruit and wants his wife and children to eat it with him.

So, Lehi looks around and sees his family. They look a bit lost, even though Lehi’s standing at a fantastic, glowing beacon of nature. This makes Lehi notice other things, like that there are mists obscuring the way. There’s water and a strait path. There’s a rod of iron that leads up the path, through the dark, and straight to the amazing fruit. There are more people who wander in, and some make it to the tree and eat the fruit.

Then, there is a “great and spacious building:”

And I also cast my eyes round about, and beheld, on the other side of the river of water, a great and spacious building; and it stood as it were in the air, high above the earth.
And it was filled with people, both old and young, both male and female; and their manner of dress was exceedingly fine; and they were in the attitude of mocking and pointing their fingers towards those who had come at and were partaking of the fruit.
And after they had tasted of the fruit they were ashamed, because of those that were scoffing at them; and they fell away into forbidden paths and were lost.

1 Nephi 8:26-28, The Book of Mormon

Whether I wanted to eat of God’s word or not, I was too concerned about the mocking, pointing, jeering crowd of humanity. I didn’t want to appear the fool. I wanted to appear the educated expert.

This same concept is found in my favorite psalm, Psalm 146:

Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.
His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.

Psalm 146: 3-4, The Bible, KJV

I wasn’t ready to accept God as my savior and be eternally saved, nor was I ready to trust Him enough to blindly walk across any chasms. I was, however, ready to stop worrying so much about everyone else and instead worry about what God, Himself, told me was true.

Or, to accept His non-existence if no one answered me.

©2023 Chel Owens

LIMERICK! -for the Terrible Poetry Contest

There once was a poem, started thus;
Without thought, snacks, or fuss.
The poet, with ease
Never even mentioned Vermont cheese,
Yet wrote it for the Terrible Poetry contest. (Oh. Um -forgot to rhyme-) “Us!”

©2023 Chel Owens

Photo by Pixabay on

Seriously. Terrible-poeming isn’t as difficult as you think. Write something up and enter this month’s contest. You have till Thursday of this week (loosely). Then, we won’t be holding the contest again till September.

Friday Photo

Heading back from dropping my sons off at 5 a.m. one blustery morning…

This is one of those perspective aphorisms; like, “If you’re an upside-down trampoline impaled on a stop sign, nothing worse can happen to either of you for the rest of the day.”

©2023 Chel Owens