From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
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04-05-2013, 08:32 PM
RE: From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
I knew after reading the bible at age 10 that I didn't believe all that stuff. I never labeled myself or even knew anyone who labeled themselves atheist. My husband didn't believe either. Neither one of us sought out other atheists. My parents turned out to be closet atheists, but kept that secret until they were on their death beds.

We all end up here walking different paths.... it's always interesting to see how many paths lead to Rome.

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Science is the process we've designed to be responsible for generating our best guess as to what the fuck is going on. Girly Man
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15-05-2013, 09:05 PM
RE: From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
You know, I used to wonder how I'd fare as a Chaplain Assistant in a time of war. I'd have to be responsible for being the Chaplain's personal bodyguard. That's a heavy burden to bear.
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15-05-2013, 09:09 PM
RE: From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
We all end up here walking different paths.... it's always interesting to see how many paths lead to Rome.
[/quote]


I think it's interesting to see how many paths lead to Babylon.
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15-05-2013, 09:16 PM
RE: From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
(04-05-2013 08:23 PM)BrianD Wrote:  Welcome, CaliforniaSurf!

I came to nonbelief through a different route: the absence of God, and the kindler, gentler atheist.

The New Atheists with their, ah, direct methodology scared me off. It took more gentle souls (like Dan Barker, and Seth Andrews) to get me to the point where I could put 2 and 2 together. Once everything came together in my mind, it was easy for me to walk away from Christianity. Now there are tenets of evangelical Christian philosophy I still hold to (do unto others, be honest, etc.) that are shared humanist values, so it's not like I think the Bible is completely worthless with zero value. I just see things differently now, like you do.

What's amusing about my life as an atheist: I spend more time reading the Bible now than when I was an agnostic. Sometimes it seems like I'm reading a different book than the book I read as a Christian.
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15-05-2013, 11:06 PM
RE: From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
(15-05-2013 09:16 PM)CaliforniaSurf Wrote:  
(04-05-2013 08:23 PM)BrianD Wrote:  Welcome, CaliforniaSurf!

I came to nonbelief through a different route: the absence of God, and the kindler, gentler atheist.

The New Atheists with their, ah, direct methodology scared me off. It took more gentle souls (like Dan Barker, and Seth Andrews) to get me to the point where I could put 2 and 2 together. Once everything came together in my mind, it was easy for me to walk away from Christianity. Now there are tenets of evangelical Christian philosophy I still hold to (do unto others, be honest, etc.) that are shared humanist values, so it's not like I think the Bible is completely worthless with zero value. I just see things differently now, like you do.

What's amusing about my life as an atheist: I spend more time reading the Bible now than when I was an agnostic. Sometimes it seems like I'm reading a different book than the book I read as a Christian.

Reading it like you would any other book really brings out the absurd, the horrific, and the mash up cobbled together nature of the bible.

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The atheist is a man who destroys the imaginary things which afflict the human race, and so leads men back to nature, to experience and to reason.
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27-04-2015, 06:44 PM
RE: From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
I am a new atheist too. I left the Catholic Church to explore a religious vocation. As you know, being former Catholic yourself, that is a big no for women to seek a religious vocation, such as priesthood. Well, I enrolled in college so that I would have the bachelors that I needed to enroll in an Episcopal seminary. Through having common sense and a noodle I soon realized what truth was. My mind opened in those college classrooms. Now for that I am grateful! I am glad to see newbies like myself. I wish you the best. I am still learning. Smile
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27-04-2015, 07:58 PM
RE: From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
(03-05-2013 08:19 PM)CaliforniaSurf Wrote:  I recently became an atheist, as you may know. I've been an atheist for about a month so far. I don't remember the day I "converted." It was a long process. It took a lot of DEEP THINKING before I got to the stage of unbelief because I grew up believing in the Judeo-Christian god---like most of my fellow Americans.

I grew up in a Catholic family and I've always strived to be a good person. I've felt guilty from time to time when I have failed to live up to the standards set by the church. When I was a teenager, I became a Seventh-day Adventist and I regularly studied the Holy Bible. I was also very active in church activities. However, during this time, I did stuff that good Christian church officials didn't approve of: listening to heavy metal music and looking at porn. Somehow, my fear of Judgement Day wasn't strong enough to rid me of my secular lifestyle. During my first few years of college, I'd often read books in the library instead of doing my homework. When I was 19 years old, I stopped going to church for a while because I didn't feel like it. When I was 20 years old, I read a lot of books about different religions and started questioning my own beliefs. It was a time when I was confused about life in general. A lot of my philosophical questions about the world I lived in couldn't be answered by the religions or by praying to a god, or anything else. A few years later, I started going back to church. I guess it felt like the right thing to do. After a while, I was just pretending to be a Christian. I never told anyone I was an agnostic. When I joined the Army, I went to a Christian church and went to Bible studies w/ Christian groups. I was still an agnostic all the time. I was living in The South and many people were eager to make me a member of their church. I just wasn't interested. My lifestyle was very secular. At the time, I would ask a lot of questions about the Bible and about the nature of the Judeo-Christian god (J-C god). The answers people would give me were varied and creative. There's a part of me that's a skeptic and I found it hard to believe that the reason people are committing acts of evil around the world is because a man and a woman ate a forbidden fruit----which they had easy access too! And I'm being punished for their disobedience. Hmm...is that fair? After my first enlistment, I decided to become a chaplain assistant---not for religious reasons, but because it seemed like an easy way to earn a living, and I didn't mind going to church services. I was right: it was an easy job! Basically, what I had to do was assist the pastor in church services, answer the phone, make counseling appointments, and type up correspondence. I wasn't out in the heat and getting my boots dirty like the other poor, unfortunate souls in the Army. I liked my job very much. I sat in an air-conditioned office. I watched cable-tv in the guest room during my lunch breaks. It was heavenly. And the irony was: I lived a secular life. I had no religious affiliation and I often disagreed with the Christian literature and the sermons. During that time, I was able to read the Jewish Torah and the Quran. Chaplain assistants get a lot of religious literature about various religions. They learn how to serve people of different faiths---even Wiccans. I read stuff out of curiosity. It's interesting how the Holy Bible had some meaning to me because my parents believed in it and the Quran was just another book. Would I feel the same way if I grew up in a Middle-Eastern Muslim family? Probably not.

I was an agnostic for about 24 years---longer than I was a Christian. In the past few years, I've enjoyed watching Christopher Hitchens on YouTube debating the existence of God with various pastors, priests, rabbis, clerics, and other men of religious authority. Hitchens was entertaining because of his jokes and occasional rudeness. Then I watched other debates with Sam Harris and Richard Dawkins. I admired them because they did their homework before the debate. They had a lot of factual information to back up their arguments. They also encouraged skepticism---if you disagreed with them, you had better have a valid reason for doing so. Even after watching many debates, I never came to the conclusion that there is no J-C god. But the seeds of atheism were planted in my mind. Also: I had no counter-argument whenever Hitchens talked about the ability to make a moral statement w/o the belief in a god:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XqFwree7Kak

After watching these debates, I became curious about atheism. I watched a lot of YouTube videos created by atheists. The two accounts that really had an affect on me were: NonStampCollector and DarkMatter2525. I watched their videos, looked up Bible verses, and pondered their arguments for many days. One day it all made sense. I mean, it made perfect sense to me. All these years I've been lied to! I can't describe what I'm feeling right now. I look at the world the way a scientist would---I demand proof! I want evidence! I see the world in a different way. I suppose that I'm re-discovering reality. If you don't filter reality through a deity or a religion, it makes sense. Well, actually, Buddhism is one of the few religions that I have no criticism for.

In a nutshell, the reason I'm an atheist is because of YouTube! No wonder governments want to censor the internet.

I grew up in a Catholic family too. When I became an atheist, I felt angry that I had been lied to and angry that I believed something that wasn't true. Yet, at the same time, I was so happy to be free of all of that. I just feel so bad for people still caught up in the whole religion thing--especially if it is impacting their lives (or others lives) in a negative way. After I became an atheist, I really felt like I had to re-learn who I was as a person since I was no longer doing things based on the idea of a magical sky god.

"Without action, you aren't going anywhere." -Gandhi

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28-04-2015, 11:41 AM
RE: From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
Welcome CaliforniaSurf. Yes, you are totally correct. They lied to you and to us. They are lying now and they will lie tomorrow and forever after. I remember in my catholic school the nun going off about what an evil person Martin Luther was and how god punished him by having a pack of dogs maul him to death. Yeah, lying for the lord is just peachy.
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28-04-2015, 11:48 AM
RE: From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
I have one question. What's the difference between yer regular "thinking" and DEEP THINKING ?

Angel

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein Certified Ancient Astronaut Theorist & Levitating Yogi
Sent by Jebus to put the stud back in Bible Study.
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28-04-2015, 11:51 AM
RE: From Christian To Agnostic To Atheist
I will likely be the first only one to reprimand you, but you can't go from agnostic to atheist. You're either still an agnostic, or gnostic atheist. I don't make the rules, I just reiterate them.

Cheers
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