Former Christians

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Former Christians

For former Christians. Moving beyond the Christian belief to no belief in God.

Members: 223
Latest Activity: Sep 20, 2013

Discussion Forum

What denomination were you?

Started by Daley. Last reply by diane sholly Jan 9, 2013. 38 Replies

How long did it take?

Started by Bloomer. Last reply by diane sholly Jan 9, 2013. 20 Replies

Easing out of the flock

Started by Derek Bly. Last reply by John Harber Sep 20, 2012. 3 Replies

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Comment by Ida on September 20, 2009 at 11:15pm
Every time I get a drink from a vending machine, I mark the dollar bills. I cross out the god and replace with "reason", "no god", etc...

Something to think about, if you don't want to get yelled for defacing LOL. :P
Comment by Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM on September 20, 2009 at 10:46pm
Another thought for hotel rooms: take a collection of those stick on Warning: Content is Fictional stickers to put on Bibles and other religious texts found in the room.
Comment by Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM on September 20, 2009 at 10:44pm
"What do you think is the best way to rationalize America?"

This assumes that there is a good and rational reason for getting people to agree with our way of thinking and not just a desire to have one's point of view validated.

As for me, I would like to see a change in the power which irrational ideas have on how people live and die and on the conservation of our planet. I think religion does more harm than good these days, and what good there is in religion can be equally or better achieved by other means.

The key is education in critical thinking and the scientific method of discovery from an early age, but especially during adolescence and early adulthood.

Exposure on the Net and in the media is important.

There may even be a role for the atheist version of "Jack Chick Tracts". Perhaps we could distribute Atheist Eve cartoons. There are some "counter Christian" leaflets I have on hand to give away to religious door-knockers.

What about a challenge to the Gideon Society? Could we place a copy of The God Delusion in every hotel room in the USA? It is much more readable than the Gideon King James version of the Bible. {The only readable part is the "How To Become A Christian" introduction placed at the beginning. The real aim of the exercise is probably to have this tract exposed to the public, rather than a boring and hard to read ancient text. It "explains" how the boring book is to be interpreted. }

Join Christian forums (in the open) and dispute what is said. Ask thought-provoking questions.

In the USA (because it rarely happens elsewhere, especially in countries with national educational curricula), keep an eye on what the local and state school board is doing. Dispute any moves to introduce religious doctrine or socially coerced religious observance into the curriculum.


That's enough for starters.
Comment by MaleficVTwin on September 20, 2009 at 10:09pm
My deconversion took as long as well, and it's something you have to decide to do. Many religious folks have no desire to pull the wool from their eyes.
Comment by Ida on September 20, 2009 at 10:05pm
If there's some way to get them to read their bibles and think critically. Until then, I don't think rationalizing America is an achievable goal-at least for the next 50 years.

My de-conversion was a slow process. 5+ years.
Comment by Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM on September 20, 2009 at 7:59pm
@Wayne.

BTW, please use your paragraph making key. [Hint: It's the key labelled ENTER]. One loooooooong paragraph slows down the reader and makes it difficult to follow the points being made.
Comment by Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM on September 20, 2009 at 7:53pm
I have no problem with lying for the greater good. That stance is part of the upper stages of normal moral development.

I am equally at home with various shades of gray and multiple categories. These are part of the upper stages of intellectual and academic development.

My objections still stand.

Plato's Cave was a hypothetical situation, not a controlled psychological experiment. There is a big difference between conjecture and sophisticated forms of guessing and the scientific method of determining what it likely to work and what is not. You have no support for your contention from the science of psychology. Sorry.

"You may have left because of "intellectual integrity", but I left because it just no longer seemed consistent with observable reality."


You are telling me that we left for much the same reason. "Intellectual integrity" is the dislike of pretending that something is true when the evidence says otherwise. Perhaps I took it further than you: I actively and ruthlessly investigated my faith and went where the evidence led me.

"I implore such a person to consider this idea partly because such a renowned and respected philosopher as Plato seems to have believed the end to justify the means in some instances."

Argument by Authority is a basic form of logical fallacy. [This authoritative, famous, respected figure said this. Therefore he is right or should be emulated.] The fallacy is that even experts are wrong, most especially if they are pronouncing on matters outside their field of expertise and/or in the absence of modern knowledge in the area.
Comment by Susie O on September 20, 2009 at 5:51pm
Well said Rosemary.
While I admire your conviction, Wayne, I have to totally support Rosemary's point of view.
Comment by Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM on September 20, 2009 at 5:37pm
@Wayne.

This is a very bad idea for a number of very good reasons (which I am surprised you have not already considered. )

I, like a lot of "rational atheists", have an aversion to being untruthful. Intellectual integrity is what ultimately led me to atheism. Pretending to be one of the faithful is very uncomfortable position to be in. I would not do so again by choice.

I am against dishonesty of this kind in principle. It is a tactic used by the ultra religious on the grounds that the ends justify the means. I do not wish to be associated with the inferior moral stance of the delusional.

Besides, it is unlikely that your idea would work as you expect.

This decade has seen an unprecedented number of hyper-religious people end up in prison, the legal system or in public disgrace as the result of fraud, deception, criminal activity, exploitative sexual practices, manipulation, mental and physical cruelty, irresponsible child neglect and so on. It has done nothing to disenchant the faithful who simply dismiss these cases as "unusual", "not a real Christian", "refusing to follow Jesus", "nothing like me", etc.

Ex-religious people who openly abandon their faith after a long struggle (for most of us it is a long process) do not usually start a spate of other defections or cause others to question the faith of others who they know. The human brain has a lot of defense mechanisms against this.

Mass defections would simply affirm and strengthen the faith of others. Look at the effect of the Reformation on the Catholic Church or, in fact, any other splinter group.

If you were caught deliberately deceiving others, especially children Believers would be very angry with you. You would run the risk of serious retaliatory behavior. Since you would have taken the moral "low ground" they would feel perfectly justified (even if they were not). At worst, you would be branded as an Antichrist and killed.
Comment by Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM on June 5, 2009 at 2:28pm
Hi Angie. Nice to meet you again in this context.
 

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