New Life
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24-07-2014, 08:20 PM
New Life
My story is probably not too different from anyone else who has left religion and became an athiest, but it's always good to be amongst and speak with like minded people or those who may be further on the same path that I am walking.

short version:

31, black man born in mississippi, whole family is christian, moved to memphis when I was around 15 or 16. I didn't begin to question religion until I went to college and realized that so many different ppl wouldn't go to hell because they were not a christian.

for many years I was just in flux that I didn't believe in religion but always kept christianity as a baseline of beliefs. I only recently admitted to myself this year that I did not believe that there was a god in the sky or devil in hell. it was tough to do but I realized that so many ppl die or starvation every day, most of them black like me in africa. which ironically is the most religious place on earth. so that did it for me, because they pray their hearts out and follow religious doctrines and get rewarded with disease, war, backwards civilization, money grubbing, exploitative religious leaders, and famine. that's not love or mercy. it's indifference.

my biggest question to deconverts is: how did you learn to cope with the emotional roller coaster that you tend to go on? Somedays I feel excited and free that I can build my life and do whatever I want to without worrying about what will happen in the next lifetime. Somedays I wonder is it foolish to be an athiest since some religious ppl seem so convinced. Somedays I feel embarrassed that I still have lingering thoughts about crazy superstitions and religious fear tactics that I was taught. What did you do to finally equalize your emotions?
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24-07-2014, 08:38 PM
RE: New Life
Welcome to the forum!

The problem of suffering was one of the biggest problems I saw that came between my faith and my brain. This problem translates easily from worldly suffering to eternal suffering and why a god of any kind would choose for it to happen.

As far as your conflicting emotions go, don't worry. Just keep thinking and your emotions will regulate themselves.

But now I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.

~ Umberto Eco
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24-07-2014, 08:53 PM
RE: New Life
I'm not a deconvert as such so my take is slightly different to some but...

My main response to your post is that remember it is not foolish to be an atheist - because in your case you reached that conclusion through honest pursuit of the evidence and knowledge. And if you've been honest in your reasoning then to for others to try and guilt-trip you back to religion is intellectually dishonest.

I wish you the best on your journey.


"Name me a moral statement made or moral action performed that could not have been made or done, by a non-believer..." - Christopher Hitchens



My youtube musings: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfFoxbz...UVi1pf4B5g
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25-07-2014, 12:36 AM
RE: New Life
(24-07-2014 08:20 PM)3is Wrote:  my biggest question to deconverts is: how did you learn to cope with the emotional roller coaster that you tend to go on? Somedays I feel excited and free that I can build my life and do whatever I want to without worrying about what will happen in the next lifetime. Somedays I wonder is it foolish to be an athiest since some religious ppl seem so convinced. Somedays I feel embarrassed that I still have lingering thoughts about crazy superstitions and religious fear tactics that I was taught. What did you do to finally equalize your emotions?

I've dealt with everything you mentioned, and I know it can be rough. All those lingering thoughts, feelings and anxieties, comes from years of religious indoctrination.

What your going through now is a lot like detox or deconversion. There is no set time on this, and I'm sure everyone deals with it differently. Part of my deconversion was restudying the bible in my new frame of mind.

http://www.evilbible.com/ is a great place to start. The long time atheist have done all the work for us. They have list after list of the bible errors and contradictions. Reading over them will really help erase the doubts that tend to pop up every now and then.

Joining here will help you a lot as well. Read all you can, and just give it time. Welcome to board and to freedom!

It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled. ~Mark Twain
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25-07-2014, 05:53 AM
RE: New Life
As with most things in life, education is the key. As a previous poster suggested, read more about the contradictions, more about how the fables like Noah's Ark was a copy of other stories, read what the scientists say about our origins and other topics.

You might be experiencing some anxiety because a religious person raises a topic and you don't have the answer to it, so you have doubt. Learn what you can about those areas, then there is no room for anxiety.

You have been indoctrinated since a very young age, it takes awhile to undo all of it, especially since they use the tactic of eternal bodily harm on a child (which is immoral and sick)


"Life is a daring adventure or it is nothing"--Helen Keller
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25-07-2014, 06:22 AM
RE: New Life
Since others have pretty well covered all the bases, I'll just roll out the welcome mat. Pull up a chair, make yourself comfortable, coffee's on but you have to bring your own mug. As a newbie, you get to bring cookies or donuts on Fridays.

And you can send your dues directly to me. Big Grin

Welcome aboard!

We have enough youth. How about looking for the Fountain of Smart?
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25-07-2014, 06:24 AM
RE: New Life
Welcome!

Youtube also has a lot of good atheist stuff, if you just have 5 or 10 minutes and need something to clear your mind again.

Losing religion is much like losing a loved one - you are going through a grieving process. Grieving isn't necessarily connected to death at all - it occurs whenever something leaves a void in your life. Over time that void fills itself. But while the void exists, you experience an emotional roller coaster.

I hope our community will help too....

[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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25-07-2014, 08:31 AM
RE: New Life
Hi!,

I don't know if my reply will line up exactly with your questions but I wanted to provide my two cents as I am on here seeking help as well. I grew up in a religious family but never really bought into it. I have been a self-identified atheist for probably over 10 years now.

You will quickly learn that being an atheist is often like living in a world where everyone else has gone insane, but that doesn't make you wrong. You (and all atheist) simply choose to ask questions, (ie "thinking atheist"). We don't want to just apply the god label to everything we see.

religious or not, this universe is too big to choose definitive answers, it's important to remain an explorer and that is what atheism is about (at least for me).

I don't know if this will help you but I guess I'm just saying don't sweat it and at the same time; it can be rough for us sometimes (feel free to read my post about my fiance right now Smile

Good luck Friend.
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25-07-2014, 02:12 PM
RE: New Life
I appreciate all of you for your advice and kind words. Everybody had something helpful to say, I almost feel like this is not the internet I've grown to know lol. I think I'm gonna like this place. Because I'm finding out fast, there are not many places atheists are welcomed or feel that we belong.
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25-07-2014, 06:20 PM
New Life
(24-07-2014 08:20 PM)3is Wrote:  My story is probably not too different from anyone else who has left religion and became an athiest, but it's always good to be amongst and speak with like minded people or those who may be further on the same path that I am walking.

short version:

31, black man born in mississippi, whole family is christian, moved to memphis when I was around 15 or 16. I didn't begin to question religion until I went to college and realized that so many different ppl wouldn't go to hell because they were not a christian.

for many years I was just in flux that I didn't believe in religion but always kept christianity as a baseline of beliefs. I only recently admitted to myself this year that I did not believe that there was a god in the sky or devil in hell. it was tough to do but I realized that so many ppl die or starvation every day, most of them black like me in africa. which ironically is the most religious place on earth. so that did it for me, because they pray their hearts out and follow religious doctrines and get rewarded with disease, war, backwards civilization, money grubbing, exploitative religious leaders, and famine. that's not love or mercy. it's indifference.

my biggest question to deconverts is: how did you learn to cope with the emotional roller coaster that you tend to go on? Somedays I feel excited and free that I can build my life and do whatever I want to without worrying about what will happen in the next lifetime. Somedays I wonder is it foolish to be an athiest since some religious ppl seem so convinced. Somedays I feel embarrassed that I still have lingering thoughts about crazy superstitions and religious fear tactics that I was taught. What did you do to finally equalize your emotions?

Ok. So you're a black atheist. Welcome to earth my friend. There needs to be more of you.

In my research I've found that I know not one black man or woman who hasn't got the disease. And it compelled me to do a bit of looking in on the topic. I found a short documentary on YouTube (of course) called "non believers of color: atheists and skeptics in the black community" you should give it a view.

As a white man I see black people portrayed on television and in film as very religious people. But I've always found it strange that blacks would put their stamp of approval on a book that unapologetically supports slavery.

The film makes a point that has been bothering me since I viewed it; if there had been no trans-Atlantic slave trade, would black People still be Christians? I'd have to say no. Do starving people in dire need of agricultural reform need Jesus as well?

Does your family know? Do they support your views? Even when I thought I was the only person in the world who didn't believe, I never felt alone. I felt enlightened. And that grew as I became aware that I was far from alone.

I wish you well on your journey and hope to hear back from you.
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