To defend my atheistic view I would say: Xtians are about 1/3 of the world's population. What makes them believe they have the only answer to what happened here. It is very presumptive for them to imagine that
everyone on earth should follow their lead. Especially when they act on pure faith for all of their decisions
about life. As time goes by most clear thinking people will ease away from the antiquated thinking of 2000 years ago. And to finish I would say: Can you really trust someone (Sarah Palin comes to mind) to make life depending decisions when they still believe in fairies,talking snakes, witches, being able to walk on water and virgin births? But, I doubt my idea would work.
I can believe that someone could make good decisions about life and still believe in the bible. Religion seems to be the only subject in the world that theists don't consider facts and logic. Otherwise you make a good point. And it is about time people got away from this antiquated mindset. I hope to help some of them.
This is the one that seems to 'ambush' them the best. What I mean is that they really aren't looking for that particular angle. I like the way you put it. Very poetic. However, I find it more effective to ease into it - if I really want to make an impression. I stick to questions and lead them to the 'logical' conclusion. Humor can help too.
Start with the Krishnas. They are easy targets. Then point out that they have one of the oldest scriptures still in use. This erodes the 'test of time' argument. Then go after Islam. (Also, an easy target - even if you don't exhibit real bigotry yourself.) This erodes the 'hundreds of millions of people can't be wrong' argument. Then go after the Mormons, etc. and circle in until they are, pretty much, painted into the corner they've painted themselves into long ago. Then offer them the salvation of atheism!
It won't work, of course. But it might become a splinter in the thumb of their soul - so to speak.
They do have a simple escape clause from this argument. They can just say that the reason they don't believe any religion but their own is that the others are all wrong. Of course, that misses the point entirely, but religionists excel at missing the point.
"when you understand why you reject everyone else's religion then you will understand why i reject yours."
I've used variations of this.
"Tell me why you think Quezacotl, Zeus, or Krishna are just myths, and I'll tell you why your god is as well."
(Why not believe in Jesus?) "For the same reasons I don't believe in Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny. There's zero empirical evidence they are real and mountains of empirical evidence to suggest they are made-up fairy tales designed to feed a child's desire to believe they are getting special treatment from a magical being."
I prefer to let the theist defend their beliefs. Whenever I try to explain why I don't believe in gods it always turns into some long debate. Much as I enjoy debating, I don't want to start one every time I say I'm an atheist.
If I wanted to defend my atheism I'd probably say that religion just doesn't make any sense to me. My point is much more complicated than that, but I'd have to go on a rant.
Personally for me it was similar to an epiphany. It was when my son died after begging God not to let him die. It separated me from the beliefs and I really started to question my beliefs. I realized that from a logical standpoint, nothing about religion made any sense. Nothing short of my son dying could have brought me to that point and this is why I dont expect to win any arguments. I do share my personal experience with them and they say, "oh, you will see him in heaven". Beautiful thought but I guess I let my optimism get in the way. I sometimes think I can slowly convert Christians over to the truth. Why not try?