Growing up without religion
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21-05-2014, 06:10 AM
RE: Growing up without religion
I understand your frustration over not being very familiar with the mythos and the culture, but it is a kindness that you never had to experience it first hand. I've been free of religion for going on a decade and I still feel the lingering effects of it and still have a large amount of anger over the lies told to me by people I trusted.

If you really want to get into the foray and debate these idiots, read. Seth's book is a great place to start. His words, our story. Like Seth, many of us lead extremely religious lives and had a slow, hard crawl out of superstition. This will help you get a sense of what it was like to be immersed in the culture and what it can do to a person's psyche.

From there, there's the Four Horsemen. Read everything they wrote. Dawkins, Hitchens, Dennett, and Harris. Between the four of them, they cover pretty much every aspect of religion: indoctrination, guilt, logical fallacies, evils committed, and the science that demonstrates just how wrong they are.

Good luck in your journey for knowledge. If you ever have a question for a former devout theist, feel free to PM me. I have Skype and talk to a few people from here on there about things like this.

Excuse me, I'm making perfect sense. You're just not keeping up.

"Let me give you some advice, bastard: never forget what you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can never be used to hurt you." - Tyrion Lannister
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21-05-2014, 06:42 AM
RE: Growing up without religion
(21-05-2014 05:52 AM)Bows and Arrows Wrote:  
(21-05-2014 05:44 AM)JDog554 Wrote:  Never plan to but I liked to be prepared but I may in the future now that i'm actively an atheist.

You will be surprised what you can learn here reading the threads. I actually learn more here than I ever would reading the book itself. Bucky Ball, Mark Fulton and many others know the history of the regions, the people of the time, styles of writing, and the various opinions of the scholars who study this in depth. They share all of that here- you won't get the 'behind the scenes' context just by reading the bible itself.

Have fun reading it, but be sure to check out those threads because that is where the useful info is.

I will look up on threads here but I never plan to actually read the bible, my hands would probably burn from touching it lol. Not just Christianity either but Religion in general.

(21-05-2014 06:08 AM)Free Thought Wrote:  
(21-05-2014 01:57 AM)JDog554 Wrote:  I grew up without religion. There was never any talk about God in our household. In fact I never even had to consider myself an atheist until recently because I was never faced with religion. That also meant I never had to learn about religion or learn about what it's about. I never went to church and I never really read the bible, think i've only opened it once and read like the first 5 words. I feel kind of left out. Not left out of religion but having a basic understanding of it. Even most atheist today have a basic understanding of some religion but not me. Living in a very religious country (US) I feel foreign. Like living in France and not knowing French. Am I better off lacking basic knowledge of religion or would it have been better for me to have been exposed to some religion in my early years to have a better understanding today?

The answer depends on how you want to frame the question.

In my view (a view of potential weapons), we who have had little to no experience in religion as youngsters are at a little disadvantage to those who were at the least attempted indoctrination victims: after all, on a tactical level, they have more weapons that we do which can be brought to bear on their former theist compatriots due to their experiences.
On the plus side, we never had anything even remotely close to hell-fire stuck to our grey matter and we generally lack nostalgia or good-will to former sects so I (in my infinite bias) like to think we would be a tad more objective and 'bigger picture' about the entirety of religion.

Additionally, we can easily make up for our lack of experience with simple, raw knowledge gained through study and observation.

There is no real better or worse in this instance, mind; what you do with your circumstance is what matters.

You always have some insightful posts and that's true, we have open minds and can learn and adhere to many more truths and understandings than those with stained minds.

(21-05-2014 06:10 AM)itsnotmeitsyou Wrote:  I understand your frustration over not being very familiar with the mythos and the culture, but it is a kindness that you never had to experience it first hand. I've been free of religion for going on a decade and I still feel the lingering effects of it and still have a large amount of anger over the lies told to me by people I trusted.

If you really want to get into the foray and debate these idiots, read. Seth's book is a great place to start. His words, our story. Like Seth, many of us lead extremely religious lives and had a slow, hard crawl out of superstition. This will help you get a sense of what it was like to be immersed in the culture and what it can do to a person's psyche.

From there, there's the Four Horsemen. Read everything they wrote. Dawkins, Hitchens, Dennett, and Harris. Between the four of them, they cover pretty much every aspect of religion: indoctrination, guilt, logical fallacies, evils committed, and the science that demonstrates just how wrong they are.

Good luck in your journey for knowledge. If you ever have a question for a former devout theist, feel free to PM me. I have Skype and talk to a few people from here on there about things like this.

I'm already familiar with the four horsemen if you notice my signature lol. I will give Seth's book a look and buy it when I ever get the money. Thank you for offering your time and help.

"If you keep trying to better yourself that's enough for me. We don't decide which hand we are dealt in life, but we make the decision to play it or fold it" - Nishi Karano Kaze
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21-05-2014, 06:48 AM
RE: Growing up without religion
Honestly, and luckily, I wasn't forced into religion by my parents. Sure, it was around me, but even as a kid I didn't feel obligated to stick my nose in it because I didn't care. It didn't appeal to me. When I was little, I would talk like there was a god sometimes, but I was simply mimicking what I was hearing around me. I was too little to understand.

I only went to church sometimes. My mom didn't make me, I chose to go with friends around the neighborhood. I went to a New Testment Baptist and the only thing exciting about it was the free cookies. I didn't even like grape juice, and I couldn't give two shits about coloring pictures of Noah's Ark.

When I found TTA, I was dawdling about the lines of agnosticism, but I actually knew little to shit about the bible; even though it's been around me my entire life, I never bothered to get into it like all of the other cool kids.

You may not have knowledge about religion, but you have the basic understanding to make decisions for yourself. Lacking knowledge is fine, but if you ever did want to educate yourself just to feel a bit witty if you ever find yourself in a discussion or debate irl, hang out in the Atheism and Theism section for a day or so. You'll learn some scary shit.

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21-05-2014, 08:09 AM
RE: Growing up without religion
(21-05-2014 06:48 AM)Ferdinand Wrote:  Honestly, and luckily, I wasn't forced into religion by my parents. Sure, it was around me, but even as a kid I didn't feel obligated to stick my nose in it because I didn't care. It didn't appeal to me. When I was little, I would talk like there was a god sometimes, but I was simply mimicking what I was hearing around me. I was too little to understand.

I only went to church sometimes. My mom didn't make me, I chose to go with friends around the neighborhood. I went to a New Testment Baptist and the only thing exciting about it was the free cookies. I didn't even like grape juice, and I couldn't give two shits about coloring pictures of Noah's Ark.

When I found TTA, I was dawdling about the lines of agnosticism, but I actually knew little to shit about the bible; even though it's been around me my entire life, I never bothered to get into it like all of the other cool kids.

You may not have knowledge about religion, but you have the basic understanding to make decisions for yourself. Lacking knowledge is fine, but if you ever did want to educate yourself just to feel a bit witty if you ever find yourself in a discussion or debate irl, hang out in the Atheism and Theism section for a day or so. You'll learn some scary shit.

Unsure

For a real scare I only go into that section at night will the lights turned off lol

"If you keep trying to better yourself that's enough for me. We don't decide which hand we are dealt in life, but we make the decision to play it or fold it" - Nishi Karano Kaze
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21-05-2014, 09:43 AM
RE: Growing up without religion
I was raised with no religion. And I'm glad of it.

But it was all around me, and over my life I've asked questions, heard stories, read things, and accumulated a lot of knowledge about many different religions. All from an outsiders POV, to be sure, but nevertheless, it's possible to learn a lot of this stuff, even without making any real effort to study it (for me it was just casual conversations and occasional questions to friends and family, with maybe a little bit of googling on the side).

If you want to be an "activist atheist", you will need some basic info. As others have said, there's lots of it right here.

But all you really need is to have your own head on straight. Understand yourself. Define your viewpoint. Challenge your own viewpoint. Have clarity into what you believe and what you don't believe, and know why that is.

If you can achieve that, then you can discuss religion on a level playing field with just about anyone - because that's all they have, their own clarity as to what they believe (and sometimes not even that).

"Whores perform the same function as priests, but far more thoroughly." - Robert A. Heinlein
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21-05-2014, 10:06 AM
RE: Growing up without religion
(21-05-2014 01:57 AM)JDog554 Wrote:  I grew up without religion. There was never any talk about God in our household. In fact I never even had to consider myself an atheist until recently because I was never faced with religion. That also meant I never had to learn about religion or learn about what it's about. I never went to church and I never really read the bible, think i've only opened it once and read like the first 5 words. I feel kind of left out. Not left out of religion but having a basic understanding of it. Even most atheist today have a basic understanding of some religion but not me. Living in a very religious country (US) I feel foreign. Like living in France and not knowing French. Am I better off lacking basic knowledge of religion or would it have been better for me to have been exposed to some religion in my early years to have a better understanding today?

I also grew up without religion. Hell, I grew up without tv and most modern conveniences deep in the woods in a cabin kinda near Tahoe. I lived in total contentment without religion. It was great! Anyway, over the years I've picked up books about Christianity and religion to get a basic understanding of this stuff. Several years ago I read the bible. It's horrible reading. Boring as hell and my mind kept wandering off in different directions, anyplace other than the words on the page..... like~~~~ oops, the cat just coughed up a furball~~~~ I wonder what happened to my mismatched socks~~~need to go pick up a loaf of bread~~~oh look, I found a penny in the couch cushion!

Reading books that critique the bible are more interesting.

Just a heads up. The main character is rather unseemly with dreadful morals.

Shakespeare's Comedy of Errors.... on Donald J. Trump:

He is deformed, crooked, old, and sere,
Ill-fac’d, worse bodied, shapeless every where;
Vicious, ungentle, foolish, blunt, unkind,
Stigmatical in making, worse in mind.
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21-05-2014, 10:19 AM
RE: Growing up without religion
(21-05-2014 01:57 AM)JDog554 Wrote:  I grew up without religion. There was never any talk about God in our household. In fact I never even had to consider myself an atheist until recently because I was never faced with religion. That also meant I never had to learn about religion or learn about what it's about. I never went to church and I never really read the bible, think i've only opened it once and read like the first 5 words. I feel kind of left out. Not left out of religion but having a basic understanding of it. Even most atheist today have a basic understanding of some religion but not me. Living in a very religious country (US) I feel foreign. Like living in France and not knowing French. Am I better off lacking basic knowledge of religion or would it have been better for me to have been exposed to some religion in my early years to have a better understanding today?
You're better off. Even without a basic understanding, you have the ability to think. That means that when a religious person starts feeding you nonsense, you aren't predisposed to nod your head in agreement from years of indoctrination. Instead, you are more likely to recognize the fallacies right from the beginning.

You can learn a lot about various religions here and also by perusing the internet. Most theists only learn the basics so it really wouldn't take you very long to catch up to what they know about their own religions. You can even quickly pass them and know more than they do without ever having been a part of it.

I am not accountable to any God. I am accountable to myself - and not because I think I am God as some theists would try to assert - but because, no matter what actions I take, thoughts I think, or words I utter, I have to be able to live with myself.
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21-05-2014, 05:00 PM
RE: Growing up without religion
(21-05-2014 09:43 AM)Aseptic Skeptic Wrote:  I was raised with no religion. And I'm glad of it.

But it was all around me, and over my life I've asked questions, heard stories, read things, and accumulated a lot of knowledge about many different religions. All from an outsiders POV, to be sure, but nevertheless, it's possible to learn a lot of this stuff, even without making any real effort to study it (for me it was just casual conversations and occasional questions to friends and family, with maybe a little bit of googling on the side).

If you want to be an "activist atheist", you will need some basic info. As others have said, there's lots of it right here.

But all you really need is to have your own head on straight. Understand yourself. Define your viewpoint. Challenge your own viewpoint. Have clarity into what you believe and what you don't believe, and know why that is.

If you can achieve that, then you can discuss religion on a level playing field with just about anyone - because that's all they have, their own clarity as to what they believe (and sometimes not even that).

My head is on pretty straight, I know I have clarity with what I believe in and I know why I believe in it. Yea I'll just do some research and don't get me wrong, i'm glad too I was born without religion, it just would have been nice to at least hear or read about it too.

(21-05-2014 10:06 AM)dancefortwo Wrote:  
(21-05-2014 01:57 AM)JDog554 Wrote:  I grew up without religion. There was never any talk about God in our household. In fact I never even had to consider myself an atheist until recently because I was never faced with religion. That also meant I never had to learn about religion or learn about what it's about. I never went to church and I never really read the bible, think i've only opened it once and read like the first 5 words. I feel kind of left out. Not left out of religion but having a basic understanding of it. Even most atheist today have a basic understanding of some religion but not me. Living in a very religious country (US) I feel foreign. Like living in France and not knowing French. Am I better off lacking basic knowledge of religion or would it have been better for me to have been exposed to some religion in my early years to have a better understanding today?

I also grew up without religion. Hell, I grew up without tv and most modern conveniences deep in the woods in a cabin kinda near Tahoe. I lived in total contentment without religion. It was great! Anyway, over the years I've picked up books about Christianity and religion to get a basic understanding of this stuff. Several years ago I read the bible. It's horrible reading. Boring as hell and my mind kept wandering off in different directions, anyplace other than the words on the page..... like~~~~ oops, the cat just coughed up a furball~~~~ I wonder what happened to my mismatched socks~~~need to go pick up a loaf of bread~~~oh look, I found a penny in the couch cushion!

Reading books that critique the bible are more interesting.

Just a heads up. The main character is rather unseemly with dreadful morals.

No TV Gasp that sounds very scary lol and boring to me at least. I tried to read the bible once, got to the 5th word and gave up. I just listened to an audio book of Letter to a Christian Nation by Sam Harris. If you haven't read that I'd recommend it.

(21-05-2014 10:19 AM)Impulse Wrote:  
(21-05-2014 01:57 AM)JDog554 Wrote:  I grew up without religion. There was never any talk about God in our household. In fact I never even had to consider myself an atheist until recently because I was never faced with religion. That also meant I never had to learn about religion or learn about what it's about. I never went to church and I never really read the bible, think i've only opened it once and read like the first 5 words. I feel kind of left out. Not left out of religion but having a basic understanding of it. Even most atheist today have a basic understanding of some religion but not me. Living in a very religious country (US) I feel foreign. Like living in France and not knowing French. Am I better off lacking basic knowledge of religion or would it have been better for me to have been exposed to some religion in my early years to have a better understanding today?
You're better off. Even without a basic understanding, you have the ability to think. That means that when a religious person starts feeding you nonsense, you aren't predisposed to nod your head in agreement from years of indoctrination. Instead, you are more likely to recognize the fallacies right from the beginning.

You can learn a lot about various religions here and also by perusing the internet. Most theists only learn the basics so it really wouldn't take you very long to catch up to what they know about their own religions. You can even quickly pass them and know more than they do without ever having been a part of it.

That's true, i'm not limited to what I can believe and say. I can take any information and learn the facts, they can only believe in what they were taught to believe. Going to do some research, maybe do a search and read up on some Bucky Ball posts lol. He always has some great information on things.

"If you keep trying to better yourself that's enough for me. We don't decide which hand we are dealt in life, but we make the decision to play it or fold it" - Nishi Karano Kaze
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21-05-2014, 09:25 PM
RE: Growing up without religion
If you know the garden of eden story, the flood story, the job story, and the basic out line for jesus you probably know about as much about christianity as most christians do.
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21-05-2014, 09:48 PM
RE: Growing up without religion
(21-05-2014 09:25 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  If you know the garden of eden story, the flood story, the job story, and the basic out line for jesus you probably know about as much about christianity as most christians do.

You mean talking snake, flaming swords, forbidden fruit, 500 year old man building giant ship to hold 2 of every animal ect. lol

"If you keep trying to better yourself that's enough for me. We don't decide which hand we are dealt in life, but we make the decision to play it or fold it" - Nishi Karano Kaze
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