I have a wonderful friend named Nancy, whom I have known for only a little over a year now. She and I have a lot of fun together. I'm glad that our religious differences don't play a part in our relationship. She is a very strong Christian, and also one of the most intelligent people I have met. I enjoy talking with her about the Bible and she even let me borrow her student guide to reading it. I laughed at how the book says that there is a certain way one should read the Bible, and that you can actually read it wrong. However, I am appreciative that she shares her life with me. She realizes that I will not change my position on the God argument until evidence is brought forth, and she understands. We each have a different definition of proof. I don't mind that faith is all she says she needs. Although I personally believe that faith is only wishful thinking, it is fine as long as it doesn't affect your life or another's life in a bad way. I am so happy to have a friend like her.

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Comment by J-Lyn on January 24, 2011 at 9:09am
Wow, I appreciate all of your feedback.
Comment by MCT on January 23, 2011 at 10:25pm

I agree with all the comments on this page. My two cents follows.

Proof is the reduction of a concept to perceptual evidence by means of logic. There is no other definition.

I believe your friend is doing a couple bad things by having faith. She is denying her true moral compass, reason, and therefore orienting her attention away from reality, doing only slightly better than interpreting the pattern of tossed chicken bones, when it comes to questions of morality. That may be an exaggeration, I'm sure she has plenty of command of logic and reason to live a happy life, but condoning, teaching your children and celebrating sacrifice, death, the after-life, God and faith over reason makes those who fall for it less morally focussed and therefore less happy than they would be if they used their brain all the time. Not to mention the effect it has on society and culture when millions believe.

Intelligence often is not used well in regards to a person as a whole. One might be a great mathematician, but read poorly. One might be a physicist and because she learned her first few thousand concepts dependent heavily on the idea that God created everything, she is intensely predisposed to have a negative emotional response to updating her world view and rearranging a large number of her conceptual definitions. This results in her denial of reality and subsequent irrationality. It makes it even more frustrating when theist friends are otherwise intelligent.

I can't even deal with these people anymore, but isolating yourself from believers will leave you pretty lonely. I do it constantly! We all need friends, right? But people should know and not be able to get away with idiocy in public affairs like government. So, I guess we just tolerate the willfully ignorant and pick our battles and try to stand up for reason when and how it will have the most positive effect and least detriment. 

Comment by Steve on January 23, 2011 at 6:57pm

If I cut out all the people of faith whose company I enjoy my life would get pretty empty quick.

You don't spread the good news of Atheism by segregating yourself. I enjoy having the opportunity to plant seeds that may someday take hold.  There are arguments and points of view that most of these folks never hear. If they never hear them they don't get a chance to give them consideration.  We all compartmentalize to a degree. Sometimes you have to in order to deal with situations as they arise.

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