Isn't it the only thing religious people understand is that my "god" is more real then your "god"? Even if you conquer them, they will not give up their belief. So, how do you "educate" these people that their belief is false and not worthy of continuing to believe it? People have tried reason. It doesn't work. People have tried intimidation. It has not worked. People have tried understanding. That has not worked.

 

What actually works?

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I have a friend who e-mails me things OFTEN about if I pass this e-mail on to however many people within a certain amount of time 'god' WILL reward me with taking care of all my financial problems (We don't have any financial problems, but her family sure does).  I really like her, she's an old friend, we don't see each other that often, she REALLY would NOT understand that just because she believes there is a 'god' doesn't mean there might not be one.  I just let it go... Oh.  And I delete those e-mails. :)
Most of the time, debating with religious people is superfluous. They're not going to give up their religion. However, and Science knows more and more, and with better education, reason HAS been on the winning streak for some time now. 
It'll just take time. Religion is on its last leg. I wouldn't be surprised at all if the majority of people are atheist/agnostic in the next two or three hundred years. 
But if you are in a debate with a religious person, being hard hitting and uncompromising (giving them literally no breathing room) I think is probably best if you're dealing with a fundamentalist. Those people I have trouble giving even a single ounce of respect. A more moderate religious person, just be intelligent and respectful. You won't convince either of them 9 times out of 10, but that's how I personally deal with them.

Zachary said: "Religion is on its last leg. I wouldn't be surprised at all if the majority of people are atheist/agnostic in the next two or three hundred years."

I disagree. We atheists are a minority in the US. In the rest of the world, I do not know how we are doing. But, at least in the middle east, religion is as dominant there as it is here in the USA. Different religions, but religion in general.

 

If the religious get their way, science will be no more. I fear that the public will be dumbed down so much so that they will accept religion's rule over them. Astrology, pseudo-science, pseudo-religion all are selling like they are going out of style, but that only strengthens the dumbing down trend. Unless we get the bulk of the next few generations interested in science, we have no chance at all.

I think most atheists do not believe religions have the power I think religions have. I fear religion. It's a healthy fear. Atheists will regret that they did not do more than they are currently doing to get rid of religion. Do I sound pseudo-religious in my unscientific warnings? Maybe I do, but you have to prove that my fear is not warranted before I give up that fear.

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