We've lived here 10 years without a visit, and 2 days ago, they finally came. Well, one of them visited, the other was visiting the Reformed LDS guys across the street. My clean-cut visitor sweetly enquired as to why I was an atheist: was I mad at God? Did something happen? One event? I told him that it was a process of educating myself and actually READING the Bible - it is so full of contradictions and downright lies. He agreed, "Yes, it IS full of contradictions, isn't it?" I thought to myself, Here's a sneaky one! He thinks that if he agrees with me on this, then the door will open to him being able to explain why there SEEM to be contradictions, but it's just an illusion, because the Bible is infallible. I didn't allow it. I said that with God's past as a mass murderer (I mentioned all the innocent babies that were killed by him), and his stance on family values (Lot's daughters getting Daddy drunk so they can boink him), and just his unstable personality, I wouldn't want him as a neighbor, let alone a friend! He seemed puzzled by how I could think these things, and I told him that if he ever decided to actually LOOK at what he was basing his life on in a critical manner, it would open his eyes. I told him to Google the skeptics annotated Bible.

I did mention how I had a lot of contact with the Mormon church as a teen, and how I appreciated the way they took care of me and the sick woman I was living with, by cutting wood for us (that was our only heat source) and by allowing us to shop in their grocery store right before Thanksgiving, where they provided us with a TON of food for free. But while I commended them for taking care of others, I could not abide by the actions taken by their church on Prop 8 in California (the gay marriage issue). He wanted me to consider that none of the money that went towards defeating it came from tithes, instead, they just encouraged their members to provide financial support. With all of my family members and friends who are gay, I take real issue with that, and I told him so. He made a comment about it being in the Bible, and I said, "Are you wearing mixed fibers? That really ticks God off, but you don't see anyone preventing anyone else from happiness just because they are wearing a wool suit with a linen lining." I think that's what finally got him, because he politely excused himself, saying it was nice to meet me. I'll bet it was.

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Comment by Chrys Stevenson on July 8, 2009 at 1:20am
We rely on a squeaky gate and a long entry path. When they're about half way down the path I call out from the front door, "Don't even think about it!"
Comment by Jim C. on July 7, 2009 at 10:50pm
Cliff, I don't think that a gated community is the answer. I've discovered that by dealing with them in a frank, logical and no-nonsense manner has kept my door religion free. We moved into our current house in May of last year and haven't had anyone trying to preach to us since last June. So in less than a month, word got around not to bother unless they wanted an earful.

You see, I find that spending a little time to build a reputation that keeps them away means I don't have to pay extra to live in a gated community. Besides, what's to keep the other people within that community from proselytizing?

Actually, I kind of miss them. It's a little like sitting on the bank of a river when the fish aren't biting. Yeah, it's peaceful but not nearly as much fun.
Comment by Celtix1234 on July 7, 2009 at 10:49pm
Thanks for the positive feedback! Cliff made me think of something I should blog about - my idea for my gated community that I've had for years.
Comment by Karla on July 7, 2009 at 3:16pm
yep, gated here too - it's the only way. Recently went window shopping with two friends, we met up with one of these wack-jobs in a mall to end up chatting him out of his socks. He did not stay with us long because he could not contradict me. I did what jesus did, answered every question with a question, challenging him to find an intelligent answer - NOT. Sounds like you worked your visitor the same way, your results are very refreshing to read about; I enjoyed your blog - thanks.
Comment by Greg Lammers on July 7, 2009 at 11:30am
Sounds like you handled your visitor and yourself very well!

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