Good Without God Essay Contest
On May 29, 2009, the United Coalition of Reason announced an essay contest as part of its then forthcoming good-without-God billboard and transit system ad campaign. The simple rules were as follows:
Please tell us your personal story in 500 words or less: what does it mean for you to be good without God? How do you live out your positive values as a humanist, atheist, agnostic, secularist, or freethinker? Please write in the first person. We highly encourage you to share specific examples about your god-free involvement in service to country or community; how your non-religious approach to life helped you to get through a difficult time; or how it transformed your relationships with your family and the people you care about.
The author of the first-place essay will receive a prize of $1,000, courtesy of United CoR. The first twenty-five submissions will receive a signed copy of the forthcoming book by Greg Epstein, Humanist Chaplain of Harvard University, entitled Good Without God: What a Billion Non-Religious People Do Believe, when the book is released in October courtesy of William Morrow/HarperCollins Publishers. The first-place essay, and perhaps others, will also be published by United CoR as part of its nationwide good-without-God campaign.
Along with your essay we require that you send a high-resolution photo of yourself that represents you. (Let us know who took the photo so we can credit them if we publish it.)
Please also include your:
Essays must be submitted by June 23, 2009, to be considered for the $1,000 prize. Essays submitted after June 23 will not be eligible for the prize but may still be eligible to be included in our national good-without-God campaign coming this fall.
Please send your essay, photo, and details by email to UnitedCoRGoodWithoutGod (at) gmail (dot) com.
Thank you in advance for joining us and for working to make your community a better place!
Once the deadline had passed the essays were judged and the following public announcement was made in the fall:
We Have A Winner!
United CoR and Greg Epstein are proud to announce the winner of the Good without God Essay Contest. Amanda Gulledge from Montgomery, Alabama, wrote an essay about the little everyday challenges and triumphs that her freethinking family faces in the Deep South.
Born and raised in Montgomery, Alabama, Amanda was raised by Jewish parents who encouraged her to think independently. She was a competitive cheerleader, competitive gymnast, member of the Alabama Dance Theatre, attended the University of Alabama on a musical theatre scholarship, and has since been in three independent films in Alabama. She serves as public relations director for the Springboard Education Foundation and volunteers for the Even Start Literacy Program. She has a passion for science and public speaking, and she wants to do what she can to help advance our movement into the future.
We would like to congratulate Amanda, and thank everyone who took the time to send in an essay!