Born This Way
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03-02-2014, 03:40 PM
Born This Way
In real life I own and operate a computer technician shop that specializes in custom designed gaming computers as well as other custom designed towers and laptops, and we also do computer repairs. Suffice to say I am rather well-known in my neck of the woods.

Often in real life here in my shop I am approached by many theists who know that I am an atheist. I have already gotten their respect because I have worked on their machines and either built them or repaired them. So they don't have an easy time trying to convince me that I am going to hell, since I am a very rational and logical person.

They almost always begin with, "Why do you not believe in God?"

My reply is almost always the same, "I was born this way."

This often leaves them puzzled, and they will then ask me what I mean. I then explain to them that, "On the day each and every one of us is born, we are all atheists. It is the default position that we all had in the first place. It requires the teaching and instruction of others to believe in such things as God, but in the beginning none of us had any religious beliefs at all."

"I was born this way, and so were you. Therefore, I ask you to be honest with yourself and ask yourself one question; Were you born a religious person, or were you taught to be one?"

Normally, that ends the conversation, but sometimes I will end it by saying one more thing;

"I find it to be more honest and truthful to say that I do not believe in God because that is the way I was born, and the natural state of being for all people."

So how do some of you deal with theists in real life? In MY life, I need to be tactful because I own a business and don't want to lose customers over it.

How do you people handle it?

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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03-02-2014, 03:55 PM
RE: Born This Way
I dont think you want to know how I handle it..... you wouldnt have a customer left in about 2 weeks time. Drinking Beverage
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03-02-2014, 03:59 PM (This post was last modified: 03-02-2014 07:57 PM by meremortal.)
RE: Born This Way
[Image: IM-ON-THE-RIGHT-TRACK-BABY-I-WAS-BJORN-THIS-WAY.jpg]


eta: Ok, the picture was a little snarky (and cheesy). My answer is that I mostly avoid the subject. I work in the oil business in Texas, and am completely surrounded by theists. I find it best for working relationships if we just avoid the topic. Fortunately, they don't feel free to really flaunt their religion at work, so no problems.
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03-02-2014, 05:00 PM
RE: Born This Way
Free, I really like how you handle the situation. You can logically point out where you are coming from without being insulting (unintentionally or otherwise). Thumbsup
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03-02-2014, 05:13 PM
RE: Born This Way
"I haven't seen any compelling argument or evidence for a god. I'm open to new arguments and evidence if it were to come in. Why do you believe?"

Keep it simple. Put the ball in their court. Let them do the talking. Ask questions about the arguments they make.

Give me your argument in the form of a published paper, and then we can start to talk.
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03-02-2014, 05:54 PM
RE: Born This Way
(03-02-2014 05:00 PM)Smercury44 Wrote:  Free, I really like how you handle the situation. You can logically point out where you are coming from without being insulting (unintentionally or otherwise). Thumbsup

Thanks.

I think it's the right way to go considering my position. I have many theists friends and acquaintances with whom I have had many religious discussions with, and whom do not lose any respect for me due to me being an atheist.

I know that many atheists take a more "militant" stand against theists, and put them on the defensive, but it is difficult to win the respect of a theist when you viciously attack something that is so entwined with their lives.

I think my position works very well in my circumstances.

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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03-02-2014, 07:15 PM
RE: Born This Way
(03-02-2014 05:54 PM)Free Wrote:  I think it's the right way to go considering my position. I have many theists friends and acquaintances with whom I have had many religious discussions with, and whom do not lose any respect for me due to me being an atheist.

Your phrasing came across to me as an apology for not believeing in woo. I could easily turn that around and ask if you lose respect for them for being theists. Just pointing out an observation.

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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03-02-2014, 07:37 PM
RE: Born This Way
(03-02-2014 07:15 PM)Full Circle Wrote:  
(03-02-2014 05:54 PM)Free Wrote:  I think it's the right way to go considering my position. I have many theists friends and acquaintances with whom I have had many religious discussions with, and whom do not lose any respect for me due to me being an atheist.

Your phrasing came across to me as an apology for not believeing in woo. I could easily turn that around and ask if you lose respect for them for being theists. Just pointing out an observation.

Ok.

Drinking Beverage

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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03-02-2014, 08:07 PM (This post was last modified: 03-02-2014 08:13 PM by Freethought.)
RE: Born This Way
I feel quite a bit of resentment to my family for raising me as a ''muslim'' child. As if a child could really think about Islamic theology, or philosophical contentious topics such as the existence of a deity which will chuck you into an eternal pit of shit simply for not believing in him.

This ties into my next point which is how it's startling that they try to scare you into obedience by saying that if you do not follow their teachings, you're going to burn in hell with all of the people who rejected the (claimed with no substance) one true faith. I feel like my parents child abused me mentally by raising me with their opinions. How dare they refer to me as a muslim child, when I am a child of muslim parents? I feel like telling parents like that of my own not to infect their children with their delusions, because we need their kids for the future.

/rant!

With how I deal with it is an issue I myself still need to resolve. I'm still wrestling with this tragedy and need to work on forgiving my parents for their ignorance in their failure to raise a child that could be given the opportunity to think for themselves.


As for your question, "Were you born a religious person, or were you taught to be one?"
I guess you could say I was thought of as a religiously born person as my parents did some weird shit with me when I was born, a lot of traditional stuff like whispering sayings of their holy book into my ears, talk about indoctrination! I agree with you on the note that all children are born atheists/agnostics. They don't even have the mental capacity to think of this kind of philosophy, rationality, and reasoning. I guess ultimately I was born an atheist, but my parents hindered that truth by not only deceiving themselves, but deceiving me into thinking I was a practicing member by being born into a religion.

How do I deal with theists in real life when they come up to me and approach my atheism? Well, I've been an atheist since March of 2013, so I'm thankful not to have any memorable experiences yet, but it's mostly family issues with me. I'm thought of as the black sheep, the plague for the new generation of losing the culture and all that my family holds dear! I haven't quite yet used your defense of saying that it's the natural state of being, but it's very true what you've said. Although, with approaching a theist, I might not use this argument because they won't be able to see the other side of the coin so to speak. They on the contrary, claim that all children are born muslims, at least in my case. It's hard to debate ignorance, what I try to do is avoid it so their stupidity does not rub off on me!

Everyday is judgement day. Use your judgement, use reason.
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03-02-2014, 08:21 PM
RE: Born This Way
We are all born this way. Some seek redemption others do not. You simply say you do not seek redemption. You want to be eternally separated from God.
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