Friday, 29 November 2013


One of the big problems churches in the west suffer from is the defection of teenagers from the faith. This is understandable to anybody who takes the time to think through the decisions which their children make. It all boils down to owning one's own beliefs.

Since churches tend to teach doctrines without apologetics, the "why" questions of teens go unanswered. "Because" isn't a sufficient reason, especially when students head to college or university. These unprepared young men and women are thrust into a hostile environment without the defenses to withstand the onslaught of atheism.

I believe I was fortunate to have come from a nominally Christian family and being taught the gospel at a vacation Bible School when I was twelve. Because of these circumstances, I owned my own beliefs rather than just accepting what my parents said. Because I witnessed about my faith to my fellow high school students, I often received taunts from them.

While I ate lunch at the cafeteria, a group of boys at my table began poking fun at me and my beliefs. As they mocked, I kept eating. Even when one boy tossed bits of his Styrofoam cup onto my chocolate pudding, I meekly picked them off.

Another "Jesus freak" came over to my table and sat down next to me. He encouraged me to keep the faith while the mocking boys ate in silence. As my Christian brother and I talked, I felt reassured that I did the right thing. Though this sort of persecution seems light compared to what believers in third world countries suffer, it still was hard for a teenager like myself to bear. Once the other Christian and I sat together, the mockers realized our bond of solidarity.

This is why Christian parents must help their kids to know why Christianity is true. Teenagers need logical answers, not trite sayings. Matters like why there is evil in this world need good answers. Otherwise high school and college students will adopt the pseudo-logic of the naturalists who believe energy and matter are all that exists.

My passion for Christianity is manifestly obvious in How I Was Razed. Read more about my journey from cultism to true Christianity on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Virtual Bookworm Publishers.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013


Which musical group had the most profound effect on you? For me, it was the German electronic music group Kraftwerk. Their early works inspired me to make my own electronic music.

A local radio announcer named Len Thuesen played the side-long version of "Autobahn<" in the spring of 1975. I immediately fell in love with the band's analogue synthesizer masterpiece. Sadly, the music store I visited had sold all their copies of Autobahn.

Two years later, I happened upon Kraftwerk's albums at the music store. I purchased Radio Activity as well as Ralf and Florian. A couple of months later, I purchased Trans-Europe Express and instantly fell in love with the new musical direction the band presented. I continued buying Kraftwerk albums until I had them all.

Listening to the first two Kraftwerk albums, I felt amazed by the simplicity of their sound. Since there were no drum machines in the early seventies, Ralf and Florian made their own. You can see it in action on a video clip from the BBC's Tomorrow's World TV program. I believed that if they could make their own music without tons of synthesizer keyboards, so could I.

My early experimental sounds were very crude. All I had was an old guitar, a 10-In-One Electronic Project kit, and an old chord organ. I also used radio interference from my TV and a fluorescent flashlight in some pieces.

In December of 1984, I happened upon an electronic program broadcast from CJSR, Edmonton's university radio station. This was the music I'd been yearning for. When Marcel Dion, the host, asked for home recordings of electronic and experimental music, I gathered my tunes on a cassette and hand-delivered it to the station. Marcel was particularly impressed by a tune called "That Feeling You Get When You Stand in a Forest and Feel Time".

Thanks to Marcel's encouragement, I purchased a second-hand synthesizer and a few Casio electronic keyboards. He also loaned me his four-track cassette recorder so I could create more tunes. One piece from that period was "Echoes of Childhood".

I bought my own four-track open reel deck a year later and eventually recorded fifteen albums of music.

Recently, I made videos for many of my pieces. You can hear and see them on my YouTube channel.

As for my mentors, view Kraftwerk's page at

I mentioned my electronic music compositions in my When a Man Loves a Rabbit debut memoir. It and my Deliverance from Jericho paperback are on the Bruce Atchison's books link.

How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity is distributed through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Virtual Bookworm Publishers.

Friday, 22 November 2013


I'm sure that many seniors remember where they were and what they were doing when President John F. Kennedy was assassinated. For younger people such as myself, I didn't realize the seriousness of the tragedy at the time.

I don't remember the actual news bulletin of Kennedy's death but I do remember being upset that the cartoons were canceled. Both CTV and CBC aired the telecast of his funeral. Having just turned seven, cartoons seemed much more important than some man's funeral.

Another funeral that annoyed me was that of Winston Churchill. I was at Jericho Hill School for the Deaf and Blind at the time of his death. Our supervisor made us sit and watch the entire ceremony, something I found extremely boring. How glad I was when we were allowed to go and play.

Being preoccupied with surviving at Jericho, I didn't notice the Vietnam war intensify or the Detroit riots. Not until Gordon Lightfoot's "Black Day in July" song came on the radio the next year did I finally pay attention to the news. By then war footage from Vietnam and peace demonstrations became a daily feature of the news.

When Martin Luther King Junior and Robert Kennedy were murdered in April of 1968, I felt worried about all the global turmoil. It felt like the end of the world. By God's grace, we're still here but the memories of those days remain.

I wrote about how I became aware of world events in Deliverance from Jericho: Six Years in a Blind School. It, and my debut paperback are available through the Bruce Atchison's books link.

I have a new book out called How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity. Read more about this wonderful testimony of God's love at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Virtual Bookworm Publishers.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013


Periodically, unethical people send out e-mail messages to us in an attempt to gather our information and to misuse it. This is called phishing. Most companies ignore this misconduct but one has taken the pro-active step of tracking down these miscreants.

If you receive a message from somebody claiming to be PayPal, be very careful. Here is part of a PayPal team response to a spoof e-mail which I forwarded to them:

     Paypal Will Never:

     • Send an email to: “Undisclosed Recipients”  or more than one email
     • Ask you to download a form or file to resolve an issue
     • Ask in an email to verify an account using Personal Information such
        as Name, Date of Birth, Driver's License, or Address
     • Ask in an email to verify an account using Bank Account Information
        such as Bank Name, Routing Number, or Bank Account PIN Number
     • Ask in an email to verify an account using Credit Card Information
        such as Credit Card Number or Type, Expiration Date, ATM PIN Number, or
        CVV2 Security Code
     • Ask for your full credit card number without displaying the type of
        card and the last two digits
     • Ask you for your full bank account number without displaying your bank
        name, type of account (Checking/Savings) and the last two digits
     • Ask you for your security question answers without displaying each
        security question you created
     • Ask you to ship an item, pay a shipping fee, send a Western Union
        Money Transfer, or provide a tracking number before the payment received
        is available in your transaction history

Whenever you receive a message claiming that there's some sort of problem with your account, always visit PayPal's site and type in your details there. Otherwise you could have your credit card maxed out and your bank account drained.

If you've already fallen for one of these scammers and their bogus e-mail warnings or you feel somebody has hacked into your account, log into PayPal's site in a new browser window  and click on the "Security and Protection" link. Then click "Identify a Problem" link. Then click on "I think someone may be using my account without permission." Next, click "Unauthorized Account Activity."

Additionally, you can help PayPal track down these cyber thieves by forwarding suspicious e-mails to Don't delete any attached files since those help the PayPal team to track down the originator of the phishing attempt. By doing this, you reduce the number of phoney e-mails going out and save naive computer users the heartbreak of being ripped off.

I wrote about scams which i fell for in How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity.  Read more about God's providential guidance in my life at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Virtual Bookworm Publishers. My previous paperbacks are on the Bruce Atchison's books link.

Friday, 15 November 2013


Have you ever had something go wrong but it worked out well in the end? I certainly have. One of the best  of these providential occurrences happened in November of 1984.

After attending a shortwave listeners club meeting at a friend's home, I waited at the bus stop. The last one passed that point at eleven so when it hadn't arrived after a half hour, I grew concerned.

I walked back to my friend's place and when he answered the door, I sheepishly admitted that I missed the bus. He and his wife let me sleep on the couch and gave me breakfast the next morning.

Because I hadn't packed a lunch, I ate at the cafeteria. Across from me sat an older woman who I had met on occasions at work. When I mentioned that I was looking for a new place to live since my apartment neighbours were too noisy, she said she had a suite in her house for rent. I wrote down the address and asked if I could see the place on Sunday afternoon. She agreed

To my surprise, she wanted to rent the main floor of her home to me. The price was reasonable and so was the location. I could catch a bus in front of my house and be at work in ten minutes. The suite also had two bedrooms. I pictured my radio equipment in the smaller one as I wrote the cheque for the first month's rent and the damage deposit.

I lived happily at that suite for three years before the landlady sold the house. Had I waited on the other side of the street that night, I would have brought my lunch and eaten it at my desk. Only the Lord knows where I would have lived had it not been for that providential mistake that I made.

I wrote many more examples of God's providence in How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity. Learn more about this amazing testimony of the Lord's wondrous leading at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Virtual Bookworm Publishers.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013


Have you ever done a good deed without realizing it at the time? I've had the blessing of being a blessing to somebody else quite a few times. One of those "divine appointments" happened on a Greyhound bus traveling from North Battleford, Saskatchewan to Edmonton, Alberta.

I had been visiting my sister whose husband worked in North Battleford. As I settled in my seat on that gloomy November day, a young man sat down next to me. Though I would have rather listened to my radio, we made small talk as the bus headed west.

"If you were to die tonight, where would you go?" he asked. Being a Christian myself, I recognized his question and what he had in mind in asking it.

He smiled when I told him that I was a believer. Throughout the rest of that five-hour trip, we spoke of how we came to Christ and where we attended church. We became so wrapped up in our conversation that the hours flew by.

As the bus entered the outskirts of Edmonton, my new friend said, "I feel so much better now that we talked. I was in a car accident so I had to take the Greyhound back home. Talking with you really cheered me up."

I felt astonished that I helped this dear brother in Christ. People throughout my life gave me the distinct impression that I wasn't much good at doing anything. I'm sure the Lord led me and this man to sit beside each other for the very purpose of building us up spiritually.

I wrote about the many times when church people discouraged me in How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity/i>. Read how God led me out of that toxic church at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Virtual Bookworm Publishers.

Friday, 8 November 2013


Has this ever happened to you? Somebody starts talking about their pets and you tell them about your rabbit, guinea pig, or other type of creature other than a dog or cat. Instead of accepting the fact that you like this or that animal as a pet, the person you're speaking to starts talking about recipes. Even when you let that person know that your pig, hen, or goat is a pet, the fool tries to justify her or his tactlessness.

Because I have a rabbit living in my kitchen, boorish individuals feel it necessary to talk about how delicious they are. I try to be as polite as possible when I tell them that my Deborah is a beloved pet but some folks just don't get it. When I mention that dogs and cats are delicacies in some Asian countries, my point still doesn't get across.

I believe I was fortunate to grow up in an age before tactfulness went out of style. My mother, teachers, and supervisors at Jericho Hill School for the Deaf and Blind taught me that if I couldn't say something nice, I shouldn't say anything at all. They also showed me how The Golden Rule works both ways. Perhaps I'm wrong but it seems that people have forgotten this important lesson.

Because of this, I mourn with people whose dog died, even though I'm not a "dog person." I'm not a "bird person" either but I sympathize when somebody's budgie passes on. Some people have rats for pets while others have snakes, yet I don't make stupid remarks. It's their choice, just as it's my choice to have a house rabbit.

I also tire of the dead rabbit stories people feel they must tell me. Did I ask them for a run-down on how their dog killed the bunny? Why can't they say, "That's nice," or something similar? Instead, they tactlessly blurt what they ought to know would hurt the feelings of a rabbit-loving person such as myself.

I've also had some tactless comments made about my poor vision. One local senior citizen even had the nerve to suggest that my life wasn't worth living. Though that belief once was accepted as normal, it still hurt. Sight-impaired people lead productive and happy lives in spite of their lack of sight. My hope is that as people get to know me, they'll realize that blindness or poor vision isn't a living death.

I wrote about my love of Rabbits in When a Man Loves a Rabbit: Learning and Living With Bunnies. It chronicles the amazing discoveries I made while living with house rabbits and the wonderful times we had.

I also wrote about my struggles of being institutionalized, beginning at seven years of age, in Deliverance from Jericho: Six Years in a Blind School. In a matter-of-fact way, I describe what life was like there and how I felt about being five-hundred miles from home for months at a stretch.

My first two books are on the Bruce Atchison's books page. How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity is available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Barnes & Noble,    and Virtual Bookworm Publishers in e-book and paperback form

Tuesday, 5 November 2013


Are you old enough to remember when children could buy firecrackers at any store which sold them? It isn't like that in many counties and countries today. Some bylaws forbid the lighting of firecrackers or even the sale of them.

I fondly remember how one of the good supervisors at Jericho Hill School for the deaf and Blind showed us how a firecracker could make a tin can jump off the ground. One evening, he led a group of us boys down to the breezeway of our dorm and placed a lit firecracker on the cement, then he quickly placed a can over it. We all gasped and then cheered when the tin leapt a few feet before clattering on the concrete.

The next Friday evening, we each bought  ourselves strings of tiny firecrackers. A five-inch string of them only cost a dime back then. Some boys lit the fuse and let the entire string of firecrackers go off behind the classrooms during recess the next Monday morning. I felt disappointed when my string of tiny explosives finished after such a short time. I only received fifty cents per week allowance so lighting the whole string at once seemed such a waste.

Then I got the idea of untying the little red crackers and lighting them one by one. That made my supply of them last much longer. Lighting the fuse which connected them and seeing it fizzle was fun to watch as well.

Remembering our supervisor's can demonstration, I decided to put firecrackers in bullet shells that a friend had given me. The distance those projectiles flew after I lit the fuse astonished and delighted me. Naturally I was careful not to point them at anybody.

As with all laws and bylaws, the prohibition of lighting firecrackers came about because of people being stupid with them. I was careful not to aim my bullet shells at others and to light them outdoors. I had learned through hard experiences about how toys could be confiscated by supervisors for whatever reasons they deemed necessary. The fun of all us boys had been ruined many times by one thoughtless act.

I wrote about my years at the blind school in Deliverance from Jericho. It, and my debut paperback are available through the Bruce Atchison's books page.

I have a new book out called How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity. Check it out at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Virtual Bookworm Publishers.

Friday, 1 November 2013


Last month, I heard the wonderful news that Judith Barnette's bunny had reached the venerable age of thirteen. Whenever I hear of a rabbit crossing the ten-year-old line, I rejoice. It proves that bunnies aren't short-lived creatures as many uninformed folks think.

The reason that the majority of people believe rabbits only live for a few years is that they don't know how to take care of them properly. The first mistake novice bunny owners make is to put their pets in backyard cages. Exposed to the elements and insects, these poor creatures often have next to no shelter as a wild rabbit would. The confined space allows their muscles to atrophy. Diets of alfalfa pellets also make them obese. Worst of all, rabbits can die from fright, even if a predator can't get at them. Since people aren't around those poor bunnies, they don't notice the subtle signs of illness or distress. No wonder the public believes rabbits live short lives.

When rabbits are allowed to live indoors and are given space to run, an amazing transformation takes place. Once shy and timid creatures become playful and affectionate companions. Rabbit lives are also extended by giving them good grass hay and greens such as romaine lettuce.

Additionally, bunnies love to chew and shred paper. A box with openings cut into it, along with an old phone book without the covers, becomes a fun playground for these long-eared companions. Bunnies love playing with toys too. My Deborah loves to slam down an iced tea lid and move it about. She also does that when she thinks she should be fed. Watching a rabbit playing is one adorable sight which the backyard cage crowd misses out on.

Rabbits require veterinary care just as cats and dogs. Exotic vets are the best ones to take bunnies to since they're more likely to know about rabbit diseases. Wellness checks are also a good idea since these prey animals hide their symptoms so as not to attract predators.

I've had many rabbits live long lives. Neutrino lived for ten years. Gideon lived for seven and a half until I had to have him put down. Deborah is seven and a half but is still healthy. Had I left these bunnies in the backyard in a smelly old hutch, they would have lived short and miserable existences. Because I let them live with me and I treated them like beloved companions, they lived long, happy lives.

Some of my friends have had their bunnies live longer than mine. For example, Sheila Frappier's Tango is eleven. Other folks on the rabbit lists I subscribe to also have senior rabbits above ten years old. In fact, I've rarely heard of rabbits passing away before they entered their second year unless they weren't taken care of properly during their formative months.

I wrote all about my long-eared friends in When a Man Loves a Rabbit: Learning and Living with Bunnies. It and Deliverance from Jericho are on the Bruce Atchison's books link

I have a new book out called How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity. Read more about how God brought me out of bondage at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Virtual Bookworm Publishers.