Introduce Yourself HERE!
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06-12-2012, 10:31 AM
RE: Introduce Yourself HERE!
Greetings all,
I am a lifelong Atheist (big surprise on this forum) born in the mid seventies and grew up in the terrorist hotspot of Northern Ireland. My parents were in the security forces and that made us all a target for sectarian violence committed in the name of differing political ideologies that became mixed up with religious doctrine. People killing each-other in the face and name of an all loving god in a war without end regarding who would rule one small part of a small island in the Atlantic Ocean.
I couldn't reconcile the cognitive dissonance that a loving being could permit death to occur on either side of the sectarian divide especially when one considers that the differentiation in the divide is over doctrine that in turn became infused with political hatred fuelled by bigotry. Living in my community with parents in the security services you have direct exposure to the results of the violence, people you once knew as whole beings are reduced to a collection of burnt parts in the name of Home Rule. Other people shot and butchered in the name of Unionist Rule and everyone else squeezed between the two.
When your reality is punctuated by death you are forced to grow up fast. I developed an extremely strong will founded in logic and reason because when I looked at the chaos around me I refused to bend to it. I am me, I will not be bound by doctrine, I will be freed by reason.
Thanks, if anyone is interested I am happy to share details and stories about what its like to grow under the shadow of domestic terrorism. I am also quite happy to talk about what its like to grow up as an LGBT Atheist in a country that is not exactly forgiving and where being different can earn a bullet in your head. I'd describe my experiences as unique but I'm under no illusions that in Northern Ireland there are many who had worse experiences at that time than I.

Cheers.
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06-12-2012, 02:37 PM
RE: Introduce Yourself HERE!
Hello, there.

I'm from Poland. I'm currently a student of English philology and an atheist for a few years now. I know the thinking atheist youtube channel for almost as long, but I've started to listen to Seth's podcasts only recently. I love them and this is why I'm here.
Like nearly everyone in this country I'm from a Catholic family - my parents are believers, but from what I can gather, Christianity in the US is nothing like what you have here, where the Catholic church has been dominating for almost 1000 years. They've grown so confident, decadent and stagnant that they are closer to some medieval barons than religious fanatics and they hardly even try to control their flock. You were, and still are expected to go to church once a week for a short mass (and many officially religious people don't do even that), baptise your children (even non-religious tend to do it), go through First Communion & Confirmation, attend religion class in school, have a church wedding and be buried in a Church-owned and administered cemetery. But unless you are brought up in some overly devout household, you live and behave pretty much as you please (Christian morality my ass).

My family is only mildly religious, and I don't feel that I was being indoctrinated. I did believe, though religion never played an important role in my life, and there were always elements of the religion that I simply didn't agree with. Then, bit by bit I started to question the dogma, look for answers on the Internet, and I discovered all these youtube atheists who provided me with the answers that were utterly convincing, logical, and backed by evidence. Considering myself a believer, I looked for Christian counterarguments that would resolve my doubts. And didn't find them. On all the issues and subjects it were always the atheists who seemed to be right. So, one day I just had no other choice but to admit that Christian dogma has been proven false. Then, digging deeper and deeper I realised that all religions are false as well, that there is no reason to believe in a deity of any kind, and finally that in fact there is most probably no creator at all.

I gradually withdrew from any religious activities, and while my parents are not too happy about it, it doesn't affect our relations.
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06-12-2012, 03:05 PM
RE: Introduce Yourself HERE!
(06-12-2012 10:31 AM)Kosmos Wrote:  Greetings all,
I am a lifelong Atheist (big surprise on this forum) born in the mid seventies and grew up in the terrorist hotspot of Northern Ireland. My parents were in the security forces and that made us all a target for sectarian violence committed in the name of differing political ideologies that became mixed up with religious doctrine. People killing each-other in the face and name of an all loving god in a war without end regarding who would rule one small part of a small island in the Atlantic Ocean.
I couldn't reconcile the cognitive dissonance that a loving being could permit death to occur on either side of the sectarian divide especially when one considers that the differentiation in the divide is over doctrine that in turn became infused with political hatred fuelled by bigotry. Living in my community with parents in the security services you have direct exposure to the results of the violence, people you once knew as whole beings are reduced to a collection of burnt parts in the name of Home Rule. Other people shot and butchered in the name of Unionist Rule and everyone else squeezed between the two.
When your reality is punctuated by death you are forced to grow up fast. I developed an extremely strong will founded in logic and reason because when I looked at the chaos around me I refused to bend to it. I am me, I will not be bound by doctrine, I will be freed by reason.
Thanks, if anyone is interested I am happy to share details and stories about what its like to grow under the shadow of domestic terrorism. I am also quite happy to talk about what its like to grow up as an LGBT Atheist in a country that is not exactly forgiving and where being different can earn a bullet in your head. I'd describe my experiences as unique but I'm under no illusions that in Northern Ireland there are many who had worse experiences at that time than I.

Cheers.
Hey Kosmos, suggest you make an intro thread, 'cos I'm sure some will have questions if you're willing to answer them. I know I've got at least one. Welcome to the forum Smile
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06-12-2012, 03:06 PM
RE: Introduce Yourself HERE!
Welcome aboard Smile

" Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous."
David Hume
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06-12-2012, 03:51 PM
RE: Introduce Yourself HERE!
25-year old American atheist. Open to friends and girlfriend, but not to family or work.

I listen to the podcast all the time, but I've never tried participating in the forum. I look forward to doing so.
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06-12-2012, 04:13 PM
RE: Introduce Yourself HERE!
(06-12-2012 03:51 PM)GenerationWhy Wrote:  25-year old American atheist. Open to friends and girlfriend, but not to family or work.

I listen to the podcast all the time, but I've never tried participating in the forum. I look forward to doing so.
Welcome and such.

Just an FYI: Seth and the Podcasts have very little relation to the forum. Seth will make an appearance here and there, but he rarely posts.

[Image: dog-shaking.gif]
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06-12-2012, 05:36 PM
RE: Introduce Yourself HERE!
Heya. I'm Eric.

*waves*

Recovering christian - believe me, indoctrination at a young age is very hard, at times, to root completely out. Haven't gone to church in years - decades, even - and yet, thanks to the pastor of the church where I *did* go, where Chick tracts were *light* reading... I could make this fairly long. Regardless, I know very well what it means to have the fear of Hell put into you. Mainlined it, even.

I've gone through what I think some people would see as a familiar path. Christian, though I don't think I was ever 100% "bible believing," Started questioning a few things in my teens, but still considered myself christian. Searched around a bit, decided "maybe agnostic fits." Was even wiccan for a bit (and I found it fairly amusing that they were more "christian" than many christians I knew, in attitude and deed.) Finally admitted to myself that none of it made sense and, in my late 30s, decided, yes, christianity made zero sense.

Only admitted to being atheist to one family member so far... given my oldest brother is heavily Christian, I can only be glad he lives a good thousand miles away so we don't have that awkward talk. I know what it's like to see everything through bible-colored glasses... and he's got them welded on.

So, what did I come out of?

THis place. http://www.firstbaptistchurchoc.org/ And that pastor (Brown) is still there... and a real piece of work. (And it's not just that church, there's a veritable network of them like this.) My childhood memories from there don't involve charity or the like. Baptism, Chick tracts (and the acocmpanying books and such - such as the ones on backward masking,) declaring not just non-Christians but Catholics, Mormons, etc. "decieved" and "instruments of Satan,") losing Halloween because (stop me if you've heard this) it was when witches worshipped "Samhain the celtic death god" (wrong on so many levels,) sacrificing babies and the like - which of course didn't make it into the paper because of a conspiracy. A sermon where he was practically screaming things like (and I remember this line verbatim, because it sickened me even as a child) "We called them faggots because they were fit to be burned." This was all said *very* seriously. And nobody questioned it. Even though the information - even without the Internet at the time - could be found and shown to be wrong.

I was so heavily indoctrinated that when I heard the news John Lennon was shot, I was *happy* because he'd be going to see "his god, Satan."

Yes. It makes me nearly physically ill to think about being like that. And yes, even ashamed I was... even realizing how young I was and how much I'd been hit over the head with this stuff.

The other thing, of course, was a healthy dose of fear. Sometimes I think people not raised in that see religious indoctrination called "child abuse" and blow it off, or think they're talking about things like priests molesting children. I can say, in all truth, that the constant "You're a sinner, you're not good enough, nobody is, you deserve hell, this is wrong, that's wrong, don't do this, God's watching" - this constant stream of fear and shame is horrendous mental abuse.

I'd say, at 40, I'm free of it - but even now, atheist, lover of science and reason, not part of any church for years... every once in a while, that indoctrination tries to tug at me again. It's not something I'd wish on anyone.
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06-12-2012, 06:43 PM
Introduce Yourself HERE!
(05-12-2012 12:01 PM)STEFAN V8 Wrote:  I'm looking for a ROMANIAN ATHEIST
seems to be very few.

If a believer of some kind yet, just imagine how colossal the universe is...

You're gonna want to chat with Malleus and Leela. They're in your part of the world.

It was just a fucking apple man, we're sorry okay? Please stop the madness Laugh out load
~Izel
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06-12-2012, 06:44 PM
Introduce Yourself HERE!
(06-12-2012 05:36 PM)Ricochet180 Wrote:  Heya. I'm Eric.

*waves*

Recovering christian - believe me, indoctrination at a young age is very hard, at times, to root completely out. Haven't gone to church in years - decades, even - and yet, thanks to the pastor of the church where I *did* go, where Chick tracts were *light* reading... I could make this fairly long. Regardless, I know very well what it means to have the fear of Hell put into you. Mainlined it, even.

I've gone through what I think some people would see as a familiar path. Christian, though I don't think I was ever 100% "bible believing," Started questioning a few things in my teens, but still considered myself christian. Searched around a bit, decided "maybe agnostic fits." Was even wiccan for a bit (and I found it fairly amusing that they were more "christian" than many christians I knew, in attitude and deed.) Finally admitted to myself that none of it made sense and, in my late 30s, decided, yes, christianity made zero sense.

Only admitted to being atheist to one family member so far... given my oldest brother is heavily Christian, I can only be glad he lives a good thousand miles away so we don't have that awkward talk. I know what it's like to see everything through bible-colored glasses... and he's got them welded on.

So, what did I come out of?

THis place. http://www.firstbaptistchurchoc.org/ And that pastor (Brown) is still there... and a real piece of work. (And it's not just that church, there's a veritable network of them like this.) My childhood memories from there don't involve charity or the like. Baptism, Chick tracts (and the acocmpanying books and such - such as the ones on backward masking,) declaring not just non-Christians but Catholics, Mormons, etc. "decieved" and "instruments of Satan,") losing Halloween because (stop me if you've heard this) it was when witches worshipped "Samhain the celtic death god" (wrong on so many levels,) sacrificing babies and the like - which of course didn't make it into the paper because of a conspiracy. A sermon where he was practically screaming things like (and I remember this line verbatim, because it sickened me even as a child) "We called them faggots because they were fit to be burned." This was all said *very* seriously. And nobody questioned it. Even though the information - even without the Internet at the time - could be found and shown to be wrong.

I was so heavily indoctrinated that when I heard the news John Lennon was shot, I was *happy* because he'd be going to see "his god, Satan."

Yes. It makes me nearly physically ill to think about being like that. And yes, even ashamed I was... even realizing how young I was and how much I'd been hit over the head with this stuff.

The other thing, of course, was a healthy dose of fear. Sometimes I think people not raised in that see religious indoctrination called "child abuse" and blow it off, or think they're talking about things like priests molesting children. I can say, in all truth, that the constant "You're a sinner, you're not good enough, nobody is, you deserve hell, this is wrong, that's wrong, don't do this, God's watching" - this constant stream of fear and shame is horrendous mental abuse.

I'd say, at 40, I'm free of it - but even now, atheist, lover of science and reason, not part of any church for years... every once in a while, that indoctrination tries to tug at me again. It's not something I'd wish on anyone.

Hey, I'm a recovering Baptist Eric as well. Come on in, the water is fine!

It was just a fucking apple man, we're sorry okay? Please stop the madness Laugh out load
~Izel
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06-12-2012, 07:01 PM
RE: Introduce Yourself HERE!
(06-12-2012 06:44 PM)Erxomai Wrote:  Hey, I'm a recovering Baptist Eric as well. Come on in, the water is fine!
*chuckle* That works far too well...
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