Bible Belt Atheists
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17-01-2016, 09:20 AM
RE: Bible Belt Atheists
if theists realized that they didnt need a book of fairy tales to be a good person then there wouldnt be any theists left. thats why they cant accept that atheists can have morals
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17-01-2016, 10:21 AM
RE: Bible Belt Atheists
(17-01-2016 09:20 AM)Dark Wanderer Wrote:  if theists realized that they didn't need a book of fairy tales to be a good person then there wouldn't be any theists left. that's why they cant accept that atheists can have morals

Apparently the only thing that prevents theists from becoming rapists or murderers or child abusers is their good book? Which in effect means that if they're only being good because of the fear of retribution from an omnipresent god, then their moral values are built on pretty shaky grounds.

Atheists don't need the fear of a god to be morally responsible; we are so inclined because of our own innate sense of social values and goodwill towards our fellow men and women. No gods necessary.

I'm a creationist... I believe that man created God.
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17-01-2016, 10:35 AM
RE: Bible Belt Atheists
(17-01-2016 10:21 AM)SYZ Wrote:  
(17-01-2016 09:20 AM)Dark Wanderer Wrote:  if theists realized that they didn't need a book of fairy tales to be a good person then there wouldn't be any theists left. that's why they cant accept that atheists can have morals

Apparently the only thing that prevents theists from becoming rapists or murderers or child abusers is their good book? Which in effect means that if they're only being good because of the fear of retribution from an omnipresent god, then their moral values are built on pretty shaky grounds.

Atheists don't need the fear of a god to be morally responsible; we are so inclined because of our own innate sense of social values and goodwill towards our fellow men and women. No gods necessary.
But let's be careful so we don't talk them out of their fantasies if that is all that keeps them moral!
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20-01-2016, 06:24 AM
Bible Belt Atheists
Hi y'all!

I'm new to this forum, and new to atheism as well. Like @Octapulse I am still in the closet because my husband is the son of a baptist pastor and my mom who lives with me is a dedicated Mormon. I do not want to hurt them with my new found discovery. I still go to church on Sunday's with my mom and family, it makes her happy and I am fine with going.
I realized this weekend while talking with other atheist friends on another forum that I only was a believer for all my 35 years because I was told to. I now want to think for myself, I do not need the mental picture of an invisible scary man in the sky that is watching me, to make good moral decisions.
My Grandmother lived her whole life for Christ and in 2012 ended up with cancer and Alzheimer's disease, as if cancer wasn't enough she had to lose her mind too. The loving and all knowing God never showed up to protect her.
When my son was born a month and a half premature, his lungs collapsed after living 2 days. Another example of the nonexistent God we are told is loving and all knowing, and that he protects us!!
The basis of any religion is that you must believe something someone else tells you is true, even though your mind tells you it is false and it makes no sense to you. There is name for that: fideism. Without fideism "exclusive reliance in religious matters upon faith, with consequent rejection of appeals to science or philosophy." the concept of religion would not exist.
Many people believe that without religion, the planet would descend into immoral chaos. The reality is that the majority of crimes committed against people on this planet across all of recorded history had their roots on religious beliefs, but the ability to distinguish right from wrong does not require any religious beliefs.
These are only 2 of the many reasons I have made myself believe that there was a god, my family told me to and I didn't want to be thought of as a bad person.
I hope I can learn from many of yin about my new found free thinking with no stings attached !!

80s
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22-01-2016, 07:47 AM
RE: Bible Belt Atheists
(20-01-2016 06:24 AM)80sChild Wrote:  Many people believe that without religion, the planet would descend into immoral chaos.
I reckon that's what my girlfriend's mom thinks, and it's fucking annoying!

To expound on my previous post in here, she thinks anybody who doesn't believe in a god is immoral and can't possibly be good people. (She has no idea I'm an atheist, and she'll probably never find out if I have any say.)

Why, just why, does somebody need a book to tell them how to live?

I'd like to believe that the majority of human beings have a sense of what's right and what's wrong, an innate moral compass. Am I wrong about that? I don't gratuitously physically harm somebody, because it's wrong! I don't try to raid my neighbor's house when they are gone, because it's wrong and thieves are pieces of shit!

That tangent was necessary, because so often in my short life I've heard folks claiming to want to "be better people" and they'll throw in a, "and read the bible more". That's their prerogative, but come on, man, don't rely on a book as a guide for a way to live. Being a good person isn't rocket science.

She (the little lady's mom) also believes the recent rise in mass shootings is due to the 'rise' in atheists in America and that prayer should be brought back in school. Boo.

Welcome to TTA, by the way! I'm new, too. People here are good'ens!
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24-01-2016, 09:50 AM
RE: Bible Belt Atheists
I grew up in Virginia but I've lived in Colorado for most of my life. Where we live it is mostly Catholics. They pretty much keep to themselves. I can Imagine, from trips back to Virginia, what it must be like living in the Bible Belt.

Religion is a primitive belief system. It is a form of tribalism. It makes perfect sense that they would be suspicious of those not of the tribe. Not saying it's right just understandable. I guess it's a good thing they don't practice canibalism. We'd be from a different tribe and so fair game.

Do not lose your knowledge that man's proper estate is an upright posture, an intransigent mind and a step that travels unlimited roads. - Ayn Rand.

Don't sacrifice for me, live for yourself! - Me

The only alternative to Objectivism is some form of Subjectivism. - Dawson Bethrick
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24-01-2016, 10:12 AM
RE: Bible Belt Atheists
I grew up mostly in a small midwestern town that was full of Catholics. I moved there after living in two college towns were there was a lot of diversity and religious differences were even something I was aware of...of course I was also pretty young.

Moving to SC was eye-opening. I had no idea how much Catholics were feared - even reviled - until I was in small town, rural SC with mostly Baptists. I was taken aback when introduced to new people and found that one of the first questions asked was where do you go to church...often phrased as 'who is your church family?'.

Moving here to the outskirts of Dallas wasn't much of a change really. In fact, it's less religiously oppressive since there are so many people of different faiths and backgrounds here. That's not to say that the Christian religions aren't an obvious presence..they are. Maybe it's because I don't have as much interaction with the general population now that my kids are grown and I am not attending school events.

This year my oldest grandchild is in the fifth grade. Her circle of friends has changed drastically. According to my daughter, the super religious kids are no longer part of my granddaughter's inner circle. Luckily, there are plenty of people around who are not heavily into religion so my granddaughter has a new circle of friends from more open-minded families.

Rural bible belt areas seem to be much worse for those who aren't religious.

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF
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26-01-2016, 05:02 PM (This post was last modified: 26-01-2016 05:36 PM by rebel*ox.)
RE: Bible Belt Atheists
For years I was angry at a god that would make women second class and vunerable. I was angry that he never answered any of my prayers. I was angry that I could not find answers to all my questions. I studied the bible, Spurgeon, Schaeffer, R.C. Sproul, Piper...trying to find answers to all my questions. I was afraid to look outside of biblical scholars because it needed to fit into my christian narrative. Then, when my daughter came out as atheist, I decided to check into it. Enter, Hitchens' God Is Not Great. From that book I realized that I might as well go ahead and risk learning there is no god, because I hate him so much anyway, I'd be going to hell; and I learned that since I could NEVER condemn my child to eternal torture, I actually LOVE better than god. It was an epiphany for me. All that anger at a god who made so many people to suffer and who "made woman for man" (my first husband was a misogynistic a$$) and who made all those unfair rules.....all that anger just went away. I can deal with a world that is unfair because it has simply evolved that way. I became a much happier person almost immediately.

Gods don't like people not doing much work. People who aren't busy all the time might start to think.
Terry Pratchett, Small Gods
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26-01-2016, 05:06 PM
RE: Bible Belt Atheists
(15-10-2015 10:11 AM)Nurse Wrote:  I'm running on fumes, I worked last night and then drive back to Alavama for a dentist appointment, so I'm pretty sure this isn't going to flow very well, but here are some of my thoughts:

I'm out at work. It's been a positive experience for me. I found other atheists and don't have to listen to as much religious chatter at work. I've found a niche of really cool people. Life is good.

Almost all of my patients assume I'm a Christian. I do wish I could set them straight, but whatever it takes for my patients to trust me and be satisfied with their care - happy patients sue less and don't stress me the fuck out.

The closest I'll ever be to experiencing unconditional love is from my maternal grandparents. With everyone else there are strings attached. For right now, I can't come out of the closet because I need my parents' support with my son, otherwise I would see him even less than I already do. Other reason I can't come out is because it would break my grandparents' hearts. I can't do that to them.

Coming out to my husband was the final nail in the coffin for my marriage

To stay in my closet, I keep quiet on Facebook and can't get in any debates or make disparaging comments or "like" any quotes on positive atheism.

Nice to hear from another nurse. I live in middle Georgia. What area do you work? I've done ER mostly these last 6 yrs but have done everything from Ortho/post surgery to homehealth. I am known at work as the liberal one. A few of the more open minded nurses know I am atheist. Of course my patients have no idea. My hospital is very small town and I get invited to church almost every day I work. I was married to a very fundie guy....divorced him, got excommunicated from the presbyterian church and found a fun wonderful guy who has discovered the happy life of atheisim with me. Been together 9 years! Hang in. I live for these forums and podcasts and facebook (closed) groups. I cannot come out completely b/c my son is a youth pastor and though he knows I am quite the skeptic, it would put undue pain on him to know I am atheist. Maybe slowly over time, but I just can't hurt him right now. Nice to meet you.

Gods don't like people not doing much work. People who aren't busy all the time might start to think.
Terry Pratchett, Small Gods
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26-01-2016, 05:25 PM
RE: Bible Belt Atheists
(26-01-2016 05:06 PM)rebel*ox Wrote:  
(15-10-2015 10:11 AM)Nurse Wrote:  I'm running on fumes, I worked last night and then drive back to Alavama for a dentist appointment, so I'm pretty sure this isn't going to flow very well, but here are some of my thoughts:

I'm out at work. It's been a positive experience for me. I found other atheists and don't have to listen to as much religious chatter at work. I've found a niche of really cool people. Life is good.

Almost all of my patients assume I'm a Christian. I do wish I could set them straight, but whatever it takes for my patients to trust me and be satisfied with their care - happy patients sue less and don't stress me the fuck out.

The closest I'll ever be to experiencing unconditional love is from my maternal grandparents. With everyone else there are strings attached. For right now, I can't come out of the closet because I need my parents' support with my son, otherwise I would see him even less than I already do. Other reason I can't come out is because it would break my grandparents' hearts. I can't do that to them.

Coming out to my husband was the final nail in the coffin for my marriage

To stay in my closet, I keep quiet on Facebook and can't get in any debates or make disparaging comments or "like" any quotes on positive atheism.

Nice to hear from another nurse. I live in middle Georgia. What area do you work? I've done ER mostly these last 6 yrs but have done everything from Ortho/post surgery to homehealth. I am known at work as the liberal one. A few of the more open minded nurses know I am atheist. Of course my patients have no idea. My hospital is very small town and I get invited to church almost every day I work. I was married to a very fundie guy....divorced him, got excommunicated from the presbyterian church and found a fun wonderful guy who has discovered the happy life of atheisim with me. Been together 9 years! Hang in. I live for these forums and podcasts and facebook (closed) groups. I cannot come out completely b/c my son is a youth pastor and though he knows I am quite the skeptic, it would put undue pain on him to know I am atheist. Maybe slowly over time, but I just can't hurt him right now. Nice to meet you.

I started out in home health (needed a job), then ER, CVICU, and now back to ER. I've decided to move back home - when I do that, I'll return to an ICU environment. Party because if I return to my old emergency department then I would have to work with my ex's girlfriend, and partly so I don't have to rule out CRNA school as an option. With UAB's program I would spend 11 months in Birmingham and then the remainder back in Huntsville living rent free with my parents.

The living with my parents part is going to keep me in the closet a few more years. However, I'll have my son 50%, won't owe my ex child support, and can pay off my debts much sooner making grad school a possibility.

Ugh. Mom said I have to go to church as a condition for me living there. At least she's willing to change churches for me - we'll be going to a less conservative southern baptist church than my parents are currently attending, so I won't have to hear frequent sermons about how terrible of a person I am for my divorce.

"If there's a single thing that life teaches us, it's that wishing doesn't make it so." - Lev Grossman
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