Joining TCP’s Private Online Community
Becoming a TCP Participant
The Clergy Project’s mission is to maintain a safe and secure online gathering place for religious professionals (either currently and formerly employed) who no longer believe in the supernatural. We call this safe space our Online Community of Forums. Those who have gained access to this Online Community are referred to as Project Participants.
If you would like to join The Project and think you might qualify, we invite you to read further and begin the application and screening process. It’s great to have you here!
The Screening Process
The goal of screening potential Project Participants is to protect the anonymity of current participants while also providing an opportunity for others to be welcomed into our Community of Forums. Our screening process involves several stages, including disclosure of information regarding your history and a phone interview. We are committed to protecting your privacy. Our screeners will not disclose any information that you share.
Qualifications for Participation
Qualification One: Religious Professionals
Community Forum Participants are current or former religious professionals of any religious tradition, including all levels and varieties of vocational pastors, priests, monks, rabbis, imams, theologians, nuns, missionaries, etcetera. Lay leaders are not considered to be in a professional leadership capacity and therefore do not qualify for The Clergy Project.
We do realize that for some groups, however, even the most high-ranking positions of religious service are more informal compared to those of other traditions, and in such cases we look to the particular practices and structures of each for the definition of corresponding leadership roles.
Qualification Two: Rejection of Belief in the Supernatural
Community Forum Participants are those who have actively rejected belief in a supernatural worldview and have accepted a naturalistic one in its place. We define a supernatural worldview as one accepting an order of existence that is beyond the visible observable universe, appearing to transcend the laws of nature or what can be explained by nature, accepted scientific understanding, or the application of the scientific method.
This is usually attributed to an invisible agent, especially of or relating to a god, demigod, spirit, ghosts, or devils. But it can refer to anything that is above or beyond what is part of the natural world and attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding.
A naturalistic worldview is explained well by Robert T. Carroll in the Skeptics Dictionary as “…one that has no supernatural or mystical element to it. The universe is all we can ever hope to know and there is no compelling reason to posit a supernatural world beyond and in addition to the natural world. The infusion of supernatural elements into human societies is itself a natural phenomenon that has a naturalistic origin and history. There may be elements or forces in nature that are not understood, but there is nothing that requires magical thinking or superstitious positing of transcendent beings to account for them.” [http://www.skepdic.com/naturalism.html]
Rejection of the supernatural has several implications. We do not believe in gods, angels, demons, ghosts, a sentient universe, psychic power, divination, mystical forces, or practices that emanate from belief in mystical forces such as chi, astrology, or feng shui, or using prayer, crystals, or magnets as a method of disease prevention. This is not intended to be comprehensive list. A TCP Community Forum Participant necessarily holds a naturalistic worldview as explained above.
All information shared with The Clergy Project is confidential. Privacy is a crucial component of participation in the Online Community of Forums. Even within the Community itself, all information such as one’s real name, photographic image, or geographical location are only made available to other Participants according to each individual’s preference as reflected in their own personal profile composition. As such, pseudonyms and avatars are encouraged and often used. As a Project Participant, you are in full control of how you present yourself to the remainder of the Online Community.
If you are a current or former religious professionals who no longer believes in the supernatural and is interested in joining this Online Community of Forums otherwise known as The Clergy Project, please submit an application here.
Not a Current or Former Religious Professional? Or Not Fully Rejecting Belief in the Supernatural?
No problem! And thank you for checking us out! Due to the sensitive nature of The Project, we must limit participation as outlined above. But thankfully, there are lots of other groups you might feel comfortable joining. You can see a list of some of them here in our Secular Resources Center. We also invite you to visit and interact with The Clergy Project’s public Facebook page.