One of the biggest questions asked of us who have publicly announced that we are non-believers is "What if your wrong?" Here's my theory: The story goes that god forgives those that ask for it right? Or if we are truly sorry then we will be forgiven and won't go to hell. If that's the case and we're wrong, will we be forgiven by christian and catholic logic? It makes no sense to me because I can ask a "believer" the exact same question and they will dance around it or just plainly say "I'm not wrong, GOD is real and your going to hell" (Kinda rude but ok lol)... Just trying to pick a few brains here.
P.S. I was asked this question 2 days ago and thought i'd get a few opinions.
I would tell them the story of Mithra. Mithraism was the primary religion of the Roman army at the time when Jesus was walking through Israel.
Mithra is the only begotten son of God, when the sun was God. He was born on 12/25 in a virgin birth. He traveled about teaching, performing miracles, healing the sick, raising the dead, and walking on water. A great feast was held in his honor. He was martyred on the day Christians call Black Friday. Three days later, at sunrise, (on EASTer SUNday) he arose from the dead and ascended into heaven where he intercedes on behalf of his followers to this day. Those who believe in him are guided to heaven and those who do not are grabbed by demons and dragged into hell at death.
So I would ask the person if s/he is ABSOLUTELY certain that the correct God is being worshiped. If Mithra, who predated Jesus, is the only begotten son of God, then what if YOU are wrong?
Fear is an awful tyrant and the church knows how to use it.
Joan, I like that statement. I've saved it and will try to remember to use it at the appropriate time.
Yes, we face some formidable challenges. Fear immobilizes, stops critical thinking, while it fails to provide any usable solutions. Face fear straight on; use it as normal and healthy gift telling one to stop, think, act.
The converse is just as true, though. Don't acknowledge the church's teachings, don't accept their dogma and most of all, DON'T accept the fear they want to project into you, and the church becomes utterly impotent. It loses control, influence, and any form of power over you.
Refuse fear and the church can do NOTHING.
'What if we are wrong?" is a question that can be relevant only if there is any chance of our being wrong. We would not even be here if there was any chance of our being wrong. Everyone has been intimidated since our childhood with so much fear of god that we would not have dared to be atheists if we were not fully convinced about our thoughts. Even the agnostics believe that there no god but we need more proof for this.
There are believers believing in several different gods, each group stupidly saying that my god is true god because he himself says so but your god is a false god even if he says that he is true. Atheist do not believe in any god and therefore they are not susceptible to such stupidity.
Madhukar, I agree. Knowing there is not enough evidence anywhere to reveal a superhuman power exists, or that a personal god exists, I am fully confident I return to atoms and exist as energy. It doesn't end because of death, it changes form. Becoming nutrients for soil is a splendid ending.
My third time in this forum, Shavante. Please pardon that.
The question of "what if we are wrong?" has to be looked at in the context of the Christian Bible, or some other earthly "holy book." Without that knowledge, God (if God exists) is not instructing anyone or wanting to send them anywhere. Without that knowledge God never talks to you and doesn't care about you. This is why we say God does not exist. He exists in the pages of these many books. (God healed an amputee yesterday. Yep, his hand just grew back!)
Now the question of Hell comes up. The original comparison was to "gehenna," the ever burning garbage dump outside of Jerusalem. The fire never goes out and the trash is simply burned up. The trash doesn't burn forever, but the fire does. Before long the Christians had this allegory turned into a whopper, and also made comparisons to "sheol" which is the grave. If the writings say "God will not leave my soul in Hell" it is assumed that everybody goes there, but you won't stay there. This gave special favors to the Catholics for "pergatory" and sparked "rapture" and "second coming"for the fundamentalists. Jesus was coming again for the faithful in their lifetime, but it never happened. Enter the Christian gullible to extend the time frame for the event.
Now we add the "soul" into this picture. Everybody is worried about their own personal soul and where it goes when you die, etc. What about your soul? Aren't you worried about you soul? Religionists have a field day with this, but YOU are the soul. You are a living soul and someday you will be a dead soul.
It's all as simple as that, but nobody wants to die so they made this all up! The "God" of the Bible is not very credible. I'm not worried about being wrong.
Wonderful reply Joan. Every believer has to say "My god is the true god and your god is false god" to justify his faith. Atheists are the wise people who do not fall in this trap.