New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
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17-04-2015, 12:04 PM
New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
Hi Everyone, Never thought I would be joining or posting to a forum like this.

Where do I begin?

I'm a 27 years old and was brought up in a very Christian background and home, I went to Sunday school, private Christian school for the first few years of my life. My parents made sure I attended church every Sunday and suppressed any outside influences from my life. Restricting what TV I could watch, what books I could read and who I could associate with. This lasted for the first 11 years of my life before I entered the public school system.

From that point I had time associating with others which kept me in the "faith" pretty strongly because I couldn't relate to anyone. It took over a decade for me to relearn how to interact with the real world due to influence and shielding of my life. I think I understand now why it was done though.

When I went to college/university I initially went to a Christian based university because both myself and my parents though it would be best, as I would learn about higher level concepts from a Christian perspective. It was at this point that the questions really started to arise in my mind.

The reason for this is I started to see how other Christians acted and behaved around others and how they treated others, while some seemed genuine and loving. A large number seemed cruel, judging, and hateful, this started me along the path of questioning as I didn't like what I was seeing.

After this I ended up attending a secular university starting a degree in computer science but didn't finish due to mounting debt and could no longer continue to attend. Nothing really changed for me at this point.

A few years later down the line my Dad ended up passing away which then began me questioning why did this happened? How could an all loving, all knowing and all seeing God allow for my Dad to die? This made me deeply question who God was and my relationship with him.

Now more recently I started doing my own research and looking up actual evidence on existence of God or non Existence and what I began to find rocked me to my very core. What I found is that the Bible which is supposed to be the inspired word of God was full of contradictions, and condoned some truly deplorable acts, I.E. Slavery, killing of Children. I also saw how modern "Christians" act and began to feel that I really don't want to associate myself with people like that.

This is where I'm at today, the more and more I find the more and more I move towards atheism as I can no longer ignore what my logical mind is trying to tell me.

Sorry if I'm being a bit cluttered in my writing as this is the first time I took the chance in actually looking into what I thought I believed in more detail.

“We can judge our progress by the courage of our questions and the depth of our answers, our willingness to embrace what is true rather than what feels good.”
― Carl Sagan
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17-04-2015, 01:17 PM
RE: New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
Welcome!

Fellow CS major here who deconverted around 28 - 30 years old. I'm sorry about your dad. If you have any questions or just want to talk, we're willing. There are some good threads stickied in the Atheism & Theism section that you might find useful, too.
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17-04-2015, 01:21 PM
RE: New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
Hello Worom, welcome Smile

Thank you for sharing your story. I'm very sorry for the loss of your dad.

You're entirely right, Christianity is filled with vile ideas and the bible is one of the most sickening books ever. Congratulations on coming through to the logical side!

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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17-04-2015, 01:40 PM
RE: New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
Welcome to TTA. Don't worry, your intro was clearly written.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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17-04-2015, 01:46 PM
RE: New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
Thank you all for your kind words and welcomes, I have been watching a video series on you tube and checking out the Atheism and Theism sections, I've been finding some good books that I'm thinking of picking up based on the videos. Such as A History of God: The 4,000-Year Quest of Judaism, Christianity and Islam and The Bible with Sources Revealed.

Would these be good books to pick up? Any recommendations on others?

“We can judge our progress by the courage of our questions and the depth of our answers, our willingness to embrace what is true rather than what feels good.”
― Carl Sagan
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17-04-2015, 02:18 PM
RE: New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
It's a process, not an event, Worom. Once the bullshit becomes obvious you never stop seeing it.

You might try reading Bart Ehrman's "Jesus Interrupted."

Atheism is NOT a Religion. It's A Personal Relationship With Reality!
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17-04-2015, 02:30 PM
RE: New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
Hi Worom,

Thanks for sharing your story. While I can't relate I at least want to say I hope you get through what you are going through. Don't let anybody tell you what to believe. Not your parents, not the people on this site. Seek to understand the life you experience around you and come to your own conclusion on what makes sense.

Some interesting things to watch/listen to for me have been (I apologize, I can't post links at the moment, but a google search should find you these):
BBC Intelligence squared Debate does science refute god. (Also, other intelligence squared debates were really good).
Jesus Camp "documentary" (very disturbing supposedly real documentary on a Christian camp for kids).
Religulous (funny movie poking at different religions.)
Many TTA podcasts, I really like Seth's tone and style.

Overall though, I'd say just living your life happily and how it makes sense to you is what is important. You might feel like you need to obsess over this right now, but really the topic is only as important as you make it.

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
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17-04-2015, 02:45 PM
RE: New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
Religion is like heavy metals.

That is - if you're exposed to them they can accumulate in your body and poison you.

Getting rid of them can be as time consuming as accumulating them.

But once you're rid of them all - you're bound to feel much better....

Big Grin

.......................................

The difference between prayer and masturbation - is when a guy is through masturbating - he has something to show for his efforts.
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17-04-2015, 03:00 PM
RE: New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
(17-04-2015 02:30 PM)Adrianime Wrote:  Hi Worom,

Thanks for sharing your story. While I can't relate I at least want to say I hope you get through what you are going through. Don't let anybody tell you what to believe. Not your parents, not the people on this site. Seek to understand the life you experience around you and come to your own conclusion on what makes sense.

Some interesting things to watch/listen to for me have been (I apologize, I can't post links at the moment, but a google search should find you these):
BBC Intelligence squared Debate does science refute god. (Also, other intelligence squared debates were really good).
Jesus Camp "documentary" (very disturbing supposedly real documentary on a Christian camp for kids).
Religulous (funny movie poking at different religions.)
Many TTA podcasts, I really like Seth's tone and style.

Overall though, I'd say just living your life happily and how it makes sense to you is what is important. You might feel like you need to obsess over this right now, but really the topic is only as important as you make it.

Thank you, it was a few years ago when my Dad passed away most of the grief that I felt from that event is I guess resolved would be the word? But it was part of that Catalyst that has eventually lead me to the now.

Thank you for the recommendations as well, the Jesus Camp Documentary came up in my research I watched some small sections of it before I had to shut it off for now, I count myself among the fortunate that I didn't end up at one of those camps. Ill have to take a look at the other suggestions you had as well.

“We can judge our progress by the courage of our questions and the depth of our answers, our willingness to embrace what is true rather than what feels good.”
― Carl Sagan
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17-04-2015, 06:03 PM
RE: New to the Forum, Going through struggles of Deconversion
(17-04-2015 01:46 PM)Worom Wrote:  Thank you all for your kind words and welcomes, I have been watching a video series on you tube and checking out the Atheism and Theism sections, I've been finding some good books that I'm thinking of picking up based on the videos. Such as A History of God: The 4,000-Year Quest of Judaism, Christianity and Islam and The Bible with Sources Revealed.

Would these be good books to pick up? Any recommendations on others?

Atheist (all of these are fantastic books):

Ehrman, Bart. Misquoting Jesus: The story behind who changed the bible and why. New York, Harper Collins. 2005. Print.

Carrier, Richard, On the historicity of jesus: why we might have reason for doubt. Sheffield, England: Sheffield Phoenix press, 2014. Print.

Wells, S. (2013) The skeptics annotated Bible. New York. SAB Books, LLC.

Hitchens, Christopher. God is not great: How religion poisons everything. New York, Hatchette Book Group inc. 2009. Print.

Hitchens, Christopher. Hitch 22: A memoir. New York, Hatchette Book Group inc. 2010. Print.

Hitchens, Christopher. The portable atheist: essential readings for the nonbeliever. Philadelphia, PA., Da Capo Press. 2007. Print.

Boghossian, Peter. A manual for creating atheists. Durham, NC. Pitchstone Publishing. 2013. Print.

Barker, Dan. Godless: how an evangelical preacher became one of america's leading atheists. Berkeley, CA. Bang Printing. 2008. Print.

Crossman, J. D. The power of parable: How fiction by jesus became fiction about jesus. New York. Harper Collins Publishers. 2012. Print.

Mills, David. Atheist Universe: The thinking person's answer to christian fundamentalism, makes the case against intelligent design. Berkeley, CA. Bang Printing. 2006. Print.

Pessin, Andrew. The god question: What famous thinkers from plato to dawkins have said about the divine. Oxford, England. Oneworld Publications. 2009. Print.

Bierlein, J.F. Parallel Myths: A fascinating look at the common threads woven through the world's greatest myths-and the central role they have played through time. New York. Ballantine Publishing Group. 1994. Print.

Helms, Randel. Gospel fictions. New York. Prometheus Books. 1988. Print.


Neutral (sociologist)
Zuckerman, Phil. Society without god. New York. New York University press. 2008. Print.

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
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