I believe an introduction is in order.
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13-08-2017, 03:36 AM (This post was last modified: 13-08-2017 01:59 PM by Anonymous Skeptic.)
I believe an introduction is in order.
Hi,

I'm new here and thought I'd introduce myself.

I grew up in a very religious environment in Sweden where I attended a fundamentalist Christian church and the church's Christian school. I was taught that the Bible is the word of God, that all the stories in there are real, that there is a literal hell (and heaven), that homosexuality is wrong, etc. My parents and siblings are still very religious but I don't know if I can call myself a theist anymore. Highly doubt it.

I'm still trying to figure things out but, if I'm honest, I think the main reason I hesitate to call myself an atheist is the fact that I'm terrified of hell (only the Christian hell). Currently devouring everything I can find on atheism - books, podcasts, debates, etc. - which is how I found this place. Trying to balance it by reading/listening/watching things by Christians as well but I find it unconvincing and the more I think about Christianity, the more absurd it seems. I can't unsee the things I've now seen.

It's quite likely that I'll end up deconverting but I won't be able to tell my family about it. Well, I'm able to but I'd like to spare them the pain. It's probably enough for them that I'm gay and autistic ("high-functioning"), I don't know if they could handle me being an atheist too.

I'll probably have a lot of questions and things I just need to discuss when it comes to Christianity and my deconversion process and I hope this is the right place for that.

Thanks for reading!
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13-08-2017, 03:54 AM
RE: I believe introductions are in order.
Welcome Smile

Hell is a made up thing Smile Once you get that, you won't need to be afraid of it. It's specifically made up to be a scary thing so that people will be afraid to question their faith or that of others.

Consider this: if God really loves us and wants what's best for us, why does he make "salvation" dependent on whether we believe that He, invisible, undetectable God, exists and has forgiven us for our "sins"? Why doesn't he make salvation dependent on whether or not we are good people who don't rape others, enslave them, kill them etc? Wouldn't a real God care less about belief and more about actions?

In my mind it's obvious that God is mainly preoccupied with people believing that he exists purely because since the dawn of religion there have been people saying "WTF is this shit?", and those people are a major problem for the scam artists who profit from religion - namely, church and (historically) state.

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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13-08-2017, 05:02 AM
RE: I believe introductions are in order.
Hey there, welcome Smile

I'm sorry religion has left you with such scars. Regarding hell, think for a moment how much time you've spent worrying about Muslim hell. Or any of the hundreds of other hells from hundreds of other religions. Are they scary? Are they real? I imagine you can dismiss them without a second's though. Christian hell is just the same. It's another fiction created to scare people into obediance.

All the evidence points towards absolutely nothing happening to our consciousness after death, it merely ceases, because it requires a functioning brain. It's a property of functioning brains. Just like you can't have waves if you take away the sea, you can't have consciousness without the brain working.

I know it's easy for me to say all this stuff, and I hope that your time here can help you a little bit in your battle. Fight it with logic, and don't let your emotions dictate truth to you! They are unreliable. I know this only too well in my own personal battles with my emotions in different ways.

I have a website here which discusses the issues and terminology surrounding religion and atheism. It's hopefully user friendly to all.
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13-08-2017, 05:40 AM
RE: I believe introductions are in order.
(13-08-2017 03:36 AM)Anonymous Skeptic Wrote:  I'm still trying to figure things out but, if I'm honest, I think the main reason I hesitate to call myself an atheist is the fact that I'm terrified of hell (only the Christian hell).

Several other posters have mentioned similar problems, so you are in good company.

Welcome.
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13-08-2017, 08:10 AM
RE: I believe introductions are in order.
Thank you, all!

I know it's probably stupid to be afraid of hell (not that I can help it) since it probably isn't real but it's difficult not to be since I haven't made up my mind on whether or not I believe in God. I do lean towards atheism but I'm not sure yet. Hoping that spending some time here will help me out a bit because my head's a mess and it's lonely going through the deconversion process.

(13-08-2017 03:54 AM)morondog Wrote:  Consider this: if God really loves us and wants what's best for us, why does he make "salvation" dependent on whether we believe that He, invisible, undetectable God, exists and has forgiven us for our "sins"? Why doesn't he make salvation dependent on whether or not we are good people who don't rape others, enslave them, kill them etc? Wouldn't a real God care less about belief and more about actions?

It doesn't make sense at all. Christianity doesn't make sense. At least not if God is omnipotent, omnibenevolent, omniscient etc.

(13-08-2017 05:02 AM)Robvalue Wrote:  Regarding hell, think for a moment how much time you've spent worrying about Muslim hell. Or any of the hundreds of other hells from hundreds of other religions. Are they scary? Are they real? I imagine you can dismiss them without a second's though. Christian hell is just the same. It's another fiction created to scare people into obediance.

You're right and I'm completely aware I'm only afraid of the Christian hell since that's the religion I've been indoctrinated into. I bet I would've thought the same about the Muslim hell if I had grown up in a Muslim family. That's one of the reasons I'm suspecting Christianity (and other religions) is man-made, but I'm scared and I keep thinking "what if you're wrong?" over and over.
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13-08-2017, 08:21 AM
RE: I believe introductions are in order.
Even if this god (or any other out there) were real, I wouldn't want to worship something that evil.

The way he is said to play with humans or other animals is just disgusting.

[Image: dobie.png]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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13-08-2017, 08:23 AM
RE: I believe introductions are in order.
G'day mate, and welcome to TTA. Smile

I'm a creationist... I believe that man created God.
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13-08-2017, 09:06 AM
RE: I believe introductions are in order.
Welcome! I think this is a common fear if you were brainwashed to believe this way. I know it was for me during my transition from Xtian to atheist.

I highly recommend watching Richard Carrier's Disproving Gods with History and Science lecture available on YouTube. The Xtian version of good and evil (god and satan) comes from the Zoroastrians, a neighboring group of people with their own set of beliefs, their own gods.

Why did the xtians adopt these principles of good god entity v. bad entity (i.e. Satan)? The Zoroastrians were skilled conquerors so the thought was they must have it right- the right beliefs and as such, this was adopted into Christianity.
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13-08-2017, 09:18 AM
RE: I believe introductions are in order.
Welcome to the forum.

(13-08-2017 03:36 AM)Anonymous Skeptic Wrote:  Highly doubt it...
...trying to figure things out...
...watching things by Christians as well but I find it unconvincing...
...the more I think about Christianity, the more absurd it seems...
...I can't unsee the things I've now seen...
...It's quite likely that I'll end up deconverting...
...I'll probably have a lot of questions...

It can be hard to see ourselves from the inside but what you have written gives some clues. These are not the thoughts of a believer.

(13-08-2017 08:10 AM)Anonymous Skeptic Wrote:  I know it's probably stupid to be afraid of hell

Not at all. It'd be pretty sad brainwashing if you could simply ignore it. We see this all the time in people who are deconverting.

---
Flesh and blood of a dead star, slain in the apocalypse of supernova, resurrected by four billion years of continuous autocatalytic reaction and crowned with the emergent property of sentience in the dream that the universe might one day understand itself.
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13-08-2017, 09:19 AM
RE: I believe introductions are in order.
Welcome aboard. Smile

" Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous."
David Hume
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