Comments from Readers:

“Beautifully written and inspiring!”

“Thank you so much for your eloquent essay.”

“Wonderful pieces. . . .  Your articles must come as a relief to many of the readers in [the] community.”

“Thank you for posting this great article! I plan on picking up a few of your books and I’m enjoying your website.  Please keep posting!”

“Just read [your] article. . .wonderful and very well-written, expressed. YES!”


Published Articles and Essays

(note:  some of these use my original titles)

Proverbs from the Sea-Island Gullah (Citizen-Times)

A Secular Crusade? (Citizen-Times)

Is Your Family Divided By Faith? (Citizen-Times)

Rivers Across the Religious Landscape (Citizen-Times)

Does Nature Care? (Citizen-Times) -corrections:  fourth paragraph should begin with “Pleased that I am now known. . .” and in the last column the line should read “beauty, God or much good”

No Clergy Guilt for a Naturalist/Secular Chaplain (The Clergy Project blog)

Kitty Hawk, Curiosity and an Ethic of Care (Citizen-Times)

Thoreau, Darwin and the Book of Nature (Citizen-Times)

Ingersoll’s Middle Name was Green (Citizen-Times)

What Does it Mean to Be a Religious Progressive? (Citizen-Times)

Here We Sit:  The 500th Year of Luther’s Reformation (Citizen-Times)

The Wisdom of Doubt (Citizen-Times)

Francis of Assisi: Secular Saint? (Citizen-Times)

In Whom Do We Trust? (Citizen-Times and Coloradoan)

Naturally Curious, Children Ask Good Questions (Citizen-Times)

The Heaven I Look For Now (Citizen-Times)

The Nature of Humanism and Faith (Citizen-Times)

Fostering Contemplation (Citizen-Times)

Peeves, Goats and the Faith of Children (Citizen-Times)

A Secular Reflection on Passover and Easter (Citizen-Times)

Fear–Meditations of Robert Ingersoll, Part 4 (North American Review)

Bridging the God-Gap (Citizen-Times)

Welcoming People Not Like You (Citizen-Times and USA Today)

Non-Fiction Book Review:  Manifold Nature (Rain Taxi)

Bridges to and from Belief (Citizen-Times)

A Secular Jesus (Citizen-Times)

Climbing Beyond Scripture (Citizen-Times and USA Today)

An Equal Right to Be Wrong (North American Review)

Faith and Frederick Law Olmsted (Citizen-Times)

Freethinker’s Trek Through Spirituality, Mysticism and Nature (Rational Doubt)

Climbing Out of Hell (Citizen-Times)

Shoes On, Shoes Off (Citizen-Times and USA Today)

Nature Calls Us to Step Back, Consider (Citizen-Times)

A New, Secular Scripture (North American Review)

One Nature Indivisible (Citizen-Times)

A Religion of Freedom: Ingersoll’s Cane and Thomas Paine (North American Review)

Secular Prayer (Citizen-Times)

When a Minister No Longer Believes–The Clergy Project (Citizen-Times)

A Church of the Future. . .Without God (North American Review)

Do Holy Books Speak? (Citizen-Times)

Ever Mindful of the Needs of Others (Citizen-Times)

Give Fire to Your Dreams (Citizen-Times)

Nailed to the Manger: A Christmas Baby Reflection (Patheos)

The Good Beyond Us and Them (Citizen-Times)

Adopting the Bethlehem Baby (first printed in the Citizen-Times)

Welcoming to a New State? (Rational Doubt)

Something is Broken in Religious Education (Citizen-Times)

Giving Thanks–Without Religion (Citizen-Times)

Can Secular People Also Have Devotion? (Citizen-Times)

“I hope the column. . .by Chris Highland. . .is a harbinger of things to come.”

~Letter to the Editor of the Citizen-Times

Beyond the Trumpery (Rational Doubt)

A Freethinker Returns to Seminary (State of Formation-Journal of Interreligious Dialogue)

“Secular Testimony” (The Clergy Project)

The New American Religion (Patheos)

Divorcing Spirituality (Patheos)

Why Isn’t Wonder Wonderful Enough? (Rational Doubt)

Why Progressive Faith Needs Progressive Secularism (Patheos)

Taking the Sacrament with John Muir (Patheos)

Climbing (not cutting) a Christmas Tree (Rational Doubt)

An Atheist at the Cross (Rational Doubt)

A Post-Supernatural View of Death (Patheos)

The Bible of Nature: A Scripture for Seculars (Realization)

Clergy Doubt (interview with Rational Doubt)

Seminary or Cemetery (Rational Doubt)

Leopard in a Minefield (Patheos)

Practicing Secular Chaplaincy (Rational Doubt)

Holy Babies (Faith Forward, Patheos)

Higher Trails (Ex-Christian Net)

John Muir Was a Pagan (Patheos)

Bless You!  The Last Blessing (State of Formation)

Proof of Heaven (State of Formation)

Why I Am a Freethinker (Faith Forward, Patheos)

The End of Spirituality (State of Formation)

Beyond Sectarianism (Patheos)

Praying Down the Tornado (State of Formation)

God in 100 Words (Patheos)

“Waterfall Spirituality” (Whidbey Island Record, interview)

Free to Be a Freespeaking Freethinker (Marin Interfaith Council blog)

Interfaith Marriage (Patheos, interview)

There’s Always that Beginning (SFTS Chimes, interview)

“Local Author Writes Two More Nature Books” (Whidbey Record, interview)

“Thoreau’s Teachings Still Inspire Many Lives” (USA Today, interview)

Rain and Need for Shelter Return (Marin Independent Journal)

End of Shelter. . .Closer to Home? (Marin Independent Journal)

Tam House Keeps the Light Burning (Marin Independent Journal)

Homelessness (Marin Independent Journal)


For More Essays by Chris Highland:

Selected Essays from the e-Book, Nature is Enough

7 thoughts on “Articles & Essays

    1. Thanks for the comment. You are correct that freethinking is not necessarily anti-faith, but Freethought tradition challenges orthodoxy and questions faith and theology, so I wouldn’t say it is “pro” faith or god. There is a primary agnostic position, which is the most reasonable, in my opinion. Glad you’re reading.

  1. Your column today on peeved goats and faith of children was spot on. When I had children and started to teach them the practice of kneeling by the bed for prayer each evening, I started to teach them the prayer I had recited as a child: “Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray thee Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake,, I pray thee Lord my soul to take.” and it hit me: what a terrifying thought with which to end each day! No wonder I suffered from insomnia all my life!

    1. Thanks, Karolyn. Yes, it seems we need those “hit me” moments to wake up sometimes!
      Same prayer I recited as a child. Others tell me they were horrified too when the real message hit them.

  2. Re: “What if nature doesn’t care about us?”

    A very refreshing read. Nice to disconnect the frivolity of anthropomorphism from Earth’s activities and forces. Faith, in and of itself, is fine. It only becomes clouded and controversial when contaminated by organized religion and its dogmas. I am reminded of a cartoon by Wiley, the creator of Non Sequitur, showing the supreme deity gazing down on a turbulent Earth and saying, “That’s it. Lesson learned. Next time, no religion.”

    To say that the solar system and the vast, intricate, and expanding universe are stunning, is an obvious understatement — to say the least. We, intellectually lilliputian, short-term residents, of the planet, lack the depth of intelligence and mental power, in our present state of evolution, to grasp how this all came about. Given the current course of human events, it is unlikely that we will reach that understanding before we achieve our own extinction. That is a shame, because the odds against our having come into existence at all are truly astronomical. Homo sapiens really need to re-evaluate priorities.

    Thank you for your courage in publishing such clear, well thought out (albeit controversial) common sense articles. Nice to experience “thought freedom” so well articulated.

    1. Good to hear, and well said, Peter.
      Yes, it would be a shame if we didn’t learn our lessons and show human evolving.
      I figure that publishing more common sense, in the radical tradition of the writer of “Common Sense,” shall we say, makes sense!
      I appreciate your comment.

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