About the Founder

chris

Photo by Alex Dakoulas.

“Christopher Stedman is paving a powerful path for Humanism. A path that is unapologetic about its own principles yet signals respect and seeks partnership with people from a range of different beliefs and traditions.” Eboo Patel

“[It] may be heresy to say, but it’s hard to find a smart balanced atheist writer with something new to bring to the table.” Jeff Sharlet, on Chris.

Chris Stedman is the author of Faitheist: How an Atheist Found Common Ground with the Religious. He is the Assistant Chaplain and Values in Action Coordinator for the Humanist Community at Harvard University, the Emeritus Managing Director of State of Formation at the Journal of Inter-Religious Dialogue, and the founder of the first blog dedicated to exploring atheist-interfaith engagement, NonProphet Status. Chris received an MA in Religion from Meadville Lombard Theological School at the University of Chicago, for which he was awarded the Billings Prize for Most Outstanding Scholastic Achievement. Click here for a longer bio on the Faitheist website.

About the Panelists

Vlad Chituc

Vlad Chituc is a lab manager and research assistant in a social neuroscience lab at Duke University. As an undergraduate at Yale, he was the president of the campus branch of the Secular Student Alliance, where he tried to be smarter about religion and drink PBR, only occasionally at the same time. He cares about morality and thinks philosophy is important. He is also someone that you can follow on twitter.

 

Walker Bristol

walker1Walker Bristol is a student intern at the Humanist Chaplaincy at Harvard University. Originally from North Carolina, Walker was raised in a largely Quaker community before exploring several Christian traditions throughout high school and ultimately becoming a secular humanist at age 15. Walker is a student at Tufts University, and in 2011, Walker became the Community Organizer and Interfaith Representative for the Tufts Freethought Society, and chair of the Committee to Establish a Humanist Chaplaincy at Tufts. In addition to being involved in secular student activism, Walker is a hobbyist musician and avid science-fiction fan.

Chelsea Link

chelsea linkChelsea Link is a senior at Harvard University, studying History and Science with a focus in the history of medicine. She recently founded and currently writes for two other blogs, The Unelectables (following religious minority candidates in the 2012 election) and Blogging Biblically (documenting her attempt to read the Bible in a year). She is the Vice President of Outreach of the Harvard Secular Society, the former President of the Harvard College Interfaith Council, and a Volunteer Ambassador for the Be the Match bone marrow donor registry. She likes to cook while pretending she’s on Top Chef (hasty breakfast? more like Quickfire Challenge!), adores word games of all kinds (and was once the President of the illustrious Harvard College Crossword Society), and tends to kill the mood at parties by unnecessarily reciting Shakespeare. Last summer, she interned at the Humanist Chaplaincy at Harvard. You can ask her what she’s doing after graduation, but she’ll give you a different answer every time.

Serah Blain

serah blainSerah Blain serves on the boards of the Secular Coalition for Arizona, the Arizona Coalition of Reason, and the Prescott Pride Center. The Executive Director of QsquaredYouth, a nonprofit organization that supports LGBTQ youth in Prescott, AZ and surrounding areas, Serah is also the organizer of the Prescott Freethinkers, a thriving community of nontheists in Northern Arizona that meets regularly for discussion, fellowship and fun. She also co-chairs the Secular Student Alliance at Prescott College where she is working on a B.A. in Engaged Humanism. Her current interfaith volunteer projects include hospice care, and faith outreach for the Prescott Pride Center. Serah has two children who are being raised to be conscientious, compassionate human beings.

 

 

Guest Posts

NonProphet Status has been honored to feature some incredible guest submissions from the likes of Lucy GubbinsTim BrauhnJessica Kelley, Valarie KaurNick Mattos, Heidi AndersonJoshua StantonLyz Liddell, Sayira Khokar, Frank FredericksCameron Nations and Greg DamhorstRory Fenton, Amber Hacker, Andrew LovleyNate MaugerKate Fridkis, Bryan ParysAndrew Fogle, Stephen Goeman and Bruce WangMiranda HovemeyerNat DeLuca, Kelsey Sheridan, Josh OxleyMary Ellen Giess, Bruce Johansen, Vladimir ChitucLewis Marshall, Lee PaczullaJeff Pollet, Christopher Michael Luna, Serah Blain, Bryan BrownJoseph VariscoCorinne Tobias, Ryan Linstrom, Robert ChlalaVandana Goel LaClair, James Croft, Jonathan S. Myerov, Jorge CinoBe Scofield,  Karla McLaren, Joey BlahaTimothy BaranoskiMilitary Atheists, Religious Freedom USA, and even Chris’ Mom Toni Stedman and sister Casi Stedman Nelson! NPS has also hosted original writing by Eboo PatelAugust BrunsmanHemant MehtaErik Roldan, and Emanuel Aguilar.

NPS has featured so many guest posters because it was never intended to be “Chris Stedman’s platform.” Rather, Chris wanted to create a forum for an alternative secular narrative. It’s why he initiated, organized and ran NPS’ first Share Your Secular Story contest. Featuring an amazing panel of judges that included the former head of Amnesty International USA and 2002 “Humanist of the Year” William Schulz, the contest inspired an influx of submissions from all across the United States and even across the globe, with entries from Ireland and Kenya and a story from one entrant’s childhood growing up in India.

In hosting the story contest and featuring so many guest bloggers, Chris has hoped to make NPS a place where a multitude of voices help define a new narrative for the secular community: one that respects the religious identities of others while remaining authentic to our own identities (be they secular, religious, or somewhere in-between).

Interested in contributing to NonProphet Status? Send Chris an email at nonprophetstatus@gmail.com!

About the Blog

NonProphet Status (NPS) is a forum for stories promoting atheist-interfaith cooperation that hopes to catalyze a movement in which religious and secular folks not only co-exist peacefully but collaborate around shared values.

24 Responses to “About”

  1. girl normal Says:

    Chris,

    I just stumbled across your blog today and was so heartened to find someone who has articulated so well the feelings I’ve always struggled to convey, about who I am, and how I feel about religion. I’m glad to know there are other people out there who are more concerned with good dialoge than with proving a point. I’d like to link to your blog on my blogroll if you don’t mind, so that my friends might also have the chance to stumble across your wonderful writing the way I did. (Just to be clear, I’m not requesting you return the favor, I just want to make your blog available to my 13 readers).

    Thanks again for the deep thoughts and keep up the good work.

  2. What Can Interfaith Mean to an Atheist? « NonProphet Status Says:

    [...] off, let me say that I’m really flattered to have been asked to do a guest post for NonProphet Status. As a way of introduction: I’m an atheist who lives in a campus ministry building and am a [...]

  3. A Committed Christian’s Atheist Heroes « NonProphet Status Says:

    [...] of course, Chris Stedman, who is a dear friend and founder of NonProphet Status, one of the most talented interfaith leaders [...]

  4. Redefining America’s Religious Tradition | The Neighbors Says:

    [...] Tufts Freethought Society has been featured on atheist- interfaith blog Nonprophet Status headed by Chris Stedman, the Managing Director of State of Formation, a new initiative of the Journal of Inter-Religious [...]

  5. Michelle Rae Says:

    Wow-If you ever see a guy named Seth weiner he is Chris’s identical twin!

  6. Chris Stedman…The Prince of Secular Humanism Discusses His Evolving Worldview, Eboo Patel, Teen Suicide and His Love of Britney Spears | raannt Says:

    [...] an educator and a highly requested national speaker, what exactly does he do? Stolen from his blog About the Author section, “Chris is an atheist / secular humanist working to foster positive and productive [...]

  7. Chris Stedman…Just A Little Above Average | raannt Says:

    [...] and a highly requested national speaker, what exactly does he do? Stolen from his blog’s About the Author section, “Chris is an atheist / secular humanist working to foster positive and productive [...]

  8. NonProphet Status » Blog Archive » Meet the New NonProphet Panelists! Says:

    [...] About [...]

  9. Mary Says:

    love you blog! love your work! you are an inspiration to me and many others. i just started a blog – check it out if you have time. keep doin what you do man.

  10. Me Says:

    Unsubscribe me from your spam.

  11. Ron Says:

    “Christopher Stedman is paving a powerful path for Humanism. A path that is unapologetic about its own principals yet signals respect and seeks partnership with people from a range of different beliefs and traditions.”

    What does this even mean?

    Christopher do you suffer from Narcissist Personality Disorder? Or do you just hate your inner-self sooo much that you have to pimp yourself like this?

    Jewish lies… JEWISH LIES!

  12. The Best Friend of Religion… is an Atheist? Chris Stedman | ZacParsons.com Says:

    [...] Enter Chris Stedman. [...]

  13. A spiritual calling to interfaith work Says:

    [...] on Interfaith Cooperation. We have some special guests including Eboo Patel, Jim Wallis, Chris Stedman and Valarie [...]

  14. Jonathan Puckridge Says:

    You’re a good man Chris.

    Personally, I have gone from being a rabid, card carrying atheist to what I now call a ‘spiritual atheist’. To me, theists are way too quick to explain away the mystery of life. As too are the ‘greedy reductionists’. Let’s all just enjoy and give thanks for the unsolvable. The utter improbability of our existence is what binds us all together.

    Love

    J

  15. SAM Guest Post on NonProphet Status « Social Action Massachusetts Says:

    [...] a guest post from Social Action Massachusetts on his blog NonProphet Status.  Chris Stedman writes that “NonProphet Status (NPS) is a forum for stories promoting atheist-interfaith cooperation [...]

  16. Sameem Says:

    Dear chris stedman,

    I need to visit one of your events, to discus with you manythings, pls contact me, if you are willing.

    regards,

    Sameem

  17. The Many Gifts of Faitheist Says:

    [...] Becomes Political The Many Gifts of FaitheistOctober 17, 2012 By Caryn Riswold Leave a CommentChris Stedman has written the book I didn’t know I needed to read after finishing Richard Dawkins’ The God [...]

  18. JSS Says:

    We often hear about atheists and/or religious as if there is only black and white, good and bad, right and wrong. Yet, as often is the case, there are many shades of grey that, because they are not extreme (and therefore do not generate commensurately extreme counters), receive little if any consideration.

    There are many (including myself) who believe in God but not the man-made institutions (religions) who would have us believe they are required to find God, talk to God and/or achieve salvation.

    We are neither atheist or religious.

    When we find people who do good, who are kind hearted, who help their fellow man with no expectation of reward, (as Chris mentions with his Muslim friend Sayira) we often incorrectly associate their kind hearts with a religion. If this were the case all who follow that brand of religion would follow suit). I would contend that we ALL have a soul (atheists would call it a moral compass) that guides us. We ALL inherently know right from wrong. We need not be a member of some religion to tell us this.

    Some of us follow the path of righteousness others choose a darker path. Whether it be from our upbringing, a lessons an experiences we have had in life or just a simple choice to choose good over evil, others over ourselves (or vice versa), who we are is more often than not, who we choose to be.

    I believe this group of people to be far larger than perceived, yet who have no voice in the discussion.

  19. ChristopherBlackwell Says:

    Christopher, I find you position interesting and far too rare. When I was a Buddhist we used to describe the middle way. Religion and atheism do not have to be at war, as a Pagan I can have friends on all sides. Fundamentalism exists in all groups and that includes some atheists.

    One of my atheist friends sends me some of the sillier sides on religion and I laugh as much as he, because here are sill sides t religion. Plus I always believe that when any group cant’ joke about themselves then they are dangerous to themselves and everyone else. My Wiccan friends have lightbulb jokes about the various traditions of Wicca.

  20. Riley Powell Says:

    Thanks for your thoughtful and compassionate, articulate and even funny, bridge-building work! I appreciate what you’re doing, and that we’re seeking to make headway in the same peace-making direction.

    Quick question – I wasn’t sure where else to post it:

    Do you know of any atheist indigenous cultures?

    Was there ever a guy who, upon seeing the child-sacrifices (or whatever) of his deist clansmen, said to himself “this is crazy” and left the clan to strike out and create an atheistic tribe? I’ve heard that “all” indigenous people groups are theistic. True?

    Thanks!
    Riley

  21. ChristopherBlackwell Says:

    Wiccan myself and believe in a lot of things that would seem illogical. But I am not threatened by the fact that others don’t believe. Being in a minority religion, I recognize that if atheists and humanists are under attack then I am not safe either.

    Christopher Stedman’s work is valuable because he tried to bridge a gap and end an unnecessary war. In doing, so he takes a risk because there are people on both sides that want to keep the gap in place. They are people who gain power by manipulating people with fear and hatred. If someone controls whom you hate and fear, then they control you. It is the same method politicians use. Emotions can be used to overpower logic and intelligence.

    But there are far greater problems for both survival of the human race and for the greater happiness of all, if we can just stop the us and them thinking that separates us. We need to come together if we are to solve those problems and get human kind’s act together. To do so we may have to agree to disagree on matters of religious belief. This is part of what Christopher is doing. Nice to see a young man willing to take on a difficult task.

  22. Book Review: Faitheist | The Discarded Image Says:

    [...] Dialogue, and the founder of the first blog dedicated to exploring atheist-interfaith engagement, NonProphet Status.” He can be found on twitter @ChrisDStedman. /* [...]

  23. TC Davis Says:

    Looking forward to your blog, Chris. I liked Faithiest, and reviewed it: http://bit.ly/13fLpRz

  24. Nick Says:

    Just discovered Chris Stedman yesterday via a youtube clip and already bought and read his entire book cover-to-cover. Love what he has to say and his articulate, compassionate approach. I do not consider myself to be an atheist, but found a lot of common ground in Chris’ experience and views.

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