Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
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15-01-2014, 12:11 AM
Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
2. If God created me with free will, why does he insist on controlling my life after all?

From my earliest years I was absolutely certain that I was not free in any sense. Being a child is not free. Your parents dictate everything. I couldn't understand why my teachers at church kept telling me that God had given me my "Freedom". God seemed to represent the captivity of childhood without the possibility of growing up one day.

God also had supposedly given me a long and difficult list of responsibilities, rules, and absolute commandments. He then made clear a profoundly horrific series of punishments to be liberally inflicted upon me should I stray from his laws. He offered freedom with one hand, and took it away completely with the other. If I were to follow this plan with exactness, I would never be without the strictest parent of all. He would never grow old, and would never allow me to be my own man.

I knew instinctively that having freedom to do only a select group of things, is not freedom at all. It is an existence at the mercy of he who creates the conditions. To call it freedom is a ridiculous masquerade.

I didn't like the implications of God being necessary to grant me my freedom to begin with. This automatically placed God in a dominant position over me, free to impose his will upon my life regardless of my own desires. Were this situation to be true, and instead of God a man ruled over me, it would be considered justice to escape or resist him by any means necessary. Slavery is decried as a crime of intense seriousness and lack of human empathy, except for when the taskmaster is divine.

God has a say in absolutely everything when it comes to the devout. You must surrender your diet, sex life, wallet, and free time unconditionally. You may not think for yourself, rather you must accept the decided doctrine of the church. You must even surrender the last sacred sanctuary of your mind, in the form of torturing yourself with supposedly "dirty thoughts". You are judged not only for your actions, but for the very thoughts, most of which are involuntary and natural, that enter your mind. What greater expression of slavery can exist?

As a teenager I observed the outside world with great jealousy. I had such envy for all the people I saw living their lives according to their own desires and values. I often wondered why they did not show signs of guilt when they so blatantly broke God's laws. Instead, they seemed basically happy. I was deeply jealous of them. I wished deeply and sincerely that I had been born in another family, that I might partake in their happiness. I felt very little hope that I would ever join them and it had not even occurred to me then that I could leave my religion.

Imagine my celebration when I discovered the con, and learned how the church organization had so effectively manipulated me. My money, time, and effort was a resource for the church, rather than it providing me with the spiritual nourishment that it claimed to offer. I was not purchasing a product of happiness with my membership, rather the church was robbing me of my resources without providing any product at all. Worse still they had me convinced that I was undeserving of the good results I signed up for in the first place due to my unworthiness, selfishness, and guilt.

God, as it turned out, had nothing to do with it all. He was merely a smokescreen, granting false authority by association to the swindlers and abuses who took advantage of me.

Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness.

-Karl Marx
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15-01-2014, 03:21 AM
RE: Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
Beautiful post!

Well written!

Great conclusions.

Here's my version....

I think Christianity was originally created for crowd control, yet nowadays the emphasis is also very much on making money.

Promoting the bible is like running a modern advertising campaign. The goal is to appeal to the consumer’s emotions and dreams to sell a second rate product. The unattractive features of the bible are ignored or glossed over. The salesmen - priests, preachers and assorted hangers on - don’t like losing customers, because all churches, big or small, are businesses. Their primary priorities are pulling people in and preventing them parting. A profit must be made. They want the people wondering about the after-life, a topic they pretend to know all about. The end-users, the target audience, the consumers, are people easily impressed by empty promises and frightened by baseless threats; children and the naïve. Stories of gods, miracles, promises of heaven and threats of hell call for only confidence and an active imagination to advertise. If the consumers figured out Jesus isn’t a god, church leaders would be exposed as fools and the gravy train derailed. They are aware of the danger. The mythical god man Jesus is a mascot, and his image mustn’t be questioned. Power favors faith over truth.

Businesses need funds. If there was no money to be made, the clergy would soon lose interest, and churches all around the world would shut down. Selling faith to children and milking the adults has a proven, financially effective track record, which is why pushing the bible has survived the passage of time. Christianity is a complex scam that uses multi level marketing. It hasn’t died a natural death because it’s big business.

All talk about spirituality, morals and ethics is just floss designed to disguise the above.
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15-01-2014, 09:47 AM
RE: Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
A celestial North Korea indeed...

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16-01-2014, 03:43 AM
RE: Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
(15-01-2014 03:21 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  Beautiful post!

Well written!

Great conclusions.

Thank you for the compliments. I enjoyed your summary as well.

Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness.

-Karl Marx
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16-01-2014, 03:43 AM
RE: Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
(15-01-2014 09:47 AM)Paranoidsam Wrote:  A celestial North Korea indeed...

"At least you can fucking die and leave North Korea."

I miss you Hitch.

Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness.

-Karl Marx
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16-01-2014, 03:54 AM
RE: Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
(16-01-2014 03:43 AM)Dark Phoenix Wrote:  
(15-01-2014 09:47 AM)Paranoidsam Wrote:  A celestial North Korea indeed...

"At least you can fucking die and leave North Korea."

I miss you Hitch.




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23-01-2014, 12:34 PM
RE: Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
(15-01-2014 12:11 AM)Dark Phoenix Wrote:  2. If God created me with free will, why does he insist on controlling my life after all?

From my earliest years I was absolutely certain that I was not free in any sense. Being a child is not free. Your parents dictate everything. I couldn't understand why my teachers at church kept telling me that God had given me my "Freedom". God seemed to represent the captivity of childhood without the possibility of growing up one day.

God also had supposedly given me a long and difficult list of responsibilities, rules, and absolute commandments. He then made clear a profoundly horrific series of punishments to be liberally inflicted upon me should I stray from his laws. He offered freedom with one hand, and took it away completely with the other. If I were to follow this plan with exactness, I would never be without the strictest parent of all. He would never grow old, and would never allow me to be my own man.

I knew instinctively that having freedom to do only a select group of things, is not freedom at all. It is an existence at the mercy of he who creates the conditions. To call it freedom is a ridiculous masquerade.

I didn't like the implications of God being necessary to grant me my freedom to begin with. This automatically placed God in a dominant position over me, free to impose his will upon my life regardless of my own desires. Were this situation to be true, and instead of God a man ruled over me, it would be considered justice to escape or resist him by any means necessary. Slavery is decried as a crime of intense seriousness and lack of human empathy, except for when the taskmaster is divine.

God has a say in absolutely everything when it comes to the devout. You must surrender your diet, sex life, wallet, and free time unconditionally. You may not think for yourself, rather you must accept the decided doctrine of the church. You must even surrender the last sacred sanctuary of your mind, in the form of torturing yourself with supposedly "dirty thoughts". You are judged not only for your actions, but for the very thoughts, most of which are involuntary and natural, that enter your mind. What greater expression of slavery can exist?

As a teenager I observed the outside world with great jealousy. I had such envy for all the people I saw living their lives according to their own desires and values. I often wondered why they did not show signs of guilt when they so blatantly broke God's laws. Instead, they seemed basically happy. I was deeply jealous of them. I wished deeply and sincerely that I had been born in another family, that I might partake in their happiness. I felt very little hope that I would ever join them and it had not even occurred to me then that I could leave my religion.

Imagine my celebration when I discovered the con, and learned how the church organization had so effectively manipulated me. My money, time, and effort was a resource for the church, rather than it providing me with the spiritual nourishment that it claimed to offer. I was not purchasing a product of happiness with my membership, rather the church was robbing me of my resources without providing any product at all. Worse still they had me convinced that I was undeserving of the good results I signed up for in the first place due to my unworthiness, selfishness, and guilt.

God, as it turned out, had nothing to do with it all. He was merely a smokescreen, granting false authority by association to the swindlers and abuses who took advantage of me.

I have no idea where you get any of this. There are far more laws in the US government governing your behavior than what's in the bible and you could go to Jail for violating any number of them.

Being a Christian is one step up from being an atheist. Its the easiest thing on earth. literally all the rules help you avoid doing stupid stuff in your life or do you think Murder, theft, lying, sex before marriage, envy and all those things works positive wonders for a society?

Name me something an atheist would want to do that I can't do as a Christian?

Get High? Only a matter how.
Sex? Only a matter of circumstance
Walk Naked down the street? Only a matter if its legal in your neighborhood.

Not go to church on Sunday? There is nothing that says you have to go to church on Sunday. It just says to not forsake the gathering of the brethren which could be any Christian social gathering any day of the week..

Dance. Are you serious?

As far as I can tell, there is only two things Christians do that an atheist generally wouldn't do and that's Talk to God and partake in the communion meal. Other than that I don't know. Perhaps I'm missing something.

You may say that Christians have to tithe money. No we don't. We do because we want to because we want to financially grow the kingdom. Some Christians may believe they have to tithe but that requirement was for the Jews. I give to God for the same reason Abel and Abraham gave, neither of whom was under the law.
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23-01-2014, 01:18 PM
RE: Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
Anidominus,
For a theist you sure picked an odd name. It appears to be a compound of two Latin words (the first is a plural). I'll let you figure out which two.

Don't be offended and welcome to the forum!

Doc
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23-01-2014, 01:42 PM
RE: Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
(23-01-2014 12:34 PM)anidominus Wrote:  Name me something an atheist would want to do that I can't do as a Christian?
Blasphemy. Drinking Beverage

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23-01-2014, 02:07 PM
RE: Questions That Led Me to Atheism #2
Nice to meet you. Welcome to the forum.

(23-01-2014 12:34 PM)anidominus Wrote:  I have no idea where you get any of this.

Are you interested in understand my perspective or my story?

Quote:There are far more laws in the US government governing your behavior than what's in the bible and you could go to Jail for violating any number of them.

Personally, I see a profound difference between human governments, and supposed celestial ones. Although my government will restrict my behavior through punishment, there is no threat of punishment which will last for all of eternity beyond the grave. Under my current government I am protected against "cruel and unusual punishment". Not so with god. Torture by fire, or at the very least by an eternity of regret, is made available to me as a direct consequence of resisting his will. As often occurs, individuals or groups of citizens decide to resist certain governments and their laws on the basis that their laws are unjust. Mere humans as they are, governments can be resisted, and although not overly likely, even defeated and destroyed. Christianity offers no such option, since god is omnipotent and will remain regardless of our opinions about his laws.

God's government is by definition, slavery for all, and personal freedom for none. We are presented with the non-choice between endless punishment and compliance. Thus the celestial is totalitarian, far beyond that of any government ever to exist upon the earth, save perhaps North Korea.

Quote: Being a Christian is one step up from being an atheist.

That is not my experience, although I believe you when you say it is yours. I am far happier as an Atheist than I ever was as a Christian. It certainly feels like a step up. If you are genuinely happy as a Christian, all power to you.

Quote: Its the easiest thing on earth.

In my opinion, the ease of an activity does not always make it right for me.


Quote: literally all the rules help you avoid doing stupid stuff in your life or do you think Murder, theft, lying, sex before marriage, envy and all those things works positive wonders for a society?

I think murder and theft are universally considered immoral all around the world, and always have been. I don't even think you need Christianity to make that the case, since these things are obviously harmful to any society, regardless of their religion. I think these prohibitions likely pre-date Christianity. We can safely include perjury among these crimes.

As far as deception, I learned early on that it is not always immoral. I lied to my father many times, in order to protect my mother from him. I was then engaged in the obviously moral act of protecting my innocent mother from unjust abuse. There are countless other situations or circumstances in which lying is not only moral, but also necessary.

In my own experience, sexual laws within most religions are not based on actual morality. They are based on a basic revulsion and distrust of one's innate sexuality. To discover any form of a pleasurable and loving sex act, is to find a fearsome ban upon it. Christianity seems unclear as to whether or not it believes sex is dirty and base, or wonderful and sacred. The emphasis is placed upon obedience and long suffering, rather than participating in safe sexual activity by avoiding diseases as well as undesirable or dangerous pregnancies. In fact, many churches often take a stand against medical advances which would eliminate or severely curtail the progress of venereal disease. They do this with the supposed moral complaint that those advances would rid us of "god's natural punishment" for our disobedience. They betray their lack of real morality by being unconcerned with actual suffering, while being ultra-concerned with the harmless and private sexual lives of others.

I think envy is unwise to prohibit, since it directly affects the open market. Why bother improving your life if you have no desire for the items available to you that would improve it? Why buy a good car or house if you are forbidden to desire them? This has nothing to do with morality, and is bad for growth and prosperity to boot.

I do not think that all of the rules within Christianity help people to avoid stupid mistakes. Some of them are stupid to begin with. The prohibition of eating seafood or pork, or the mandate for women to be silent and submissive are obvious examples.

Quote:Name me something an atheist would want to do that I can't do as a Christian?

An Atheist might wish to question the validity of the holy ghost. They may wish to doubt it, and search for evidence of it. Can you do that?

Quote: You may say that Christians have to tithe money. No we don't. We do because we want to because we want to financially grow the kingdom. Some Christians may believe they have to tithe but that requirement was for the Jews. I give to God for the same reason Abel and Abraham gave, neither of whom was under the law.

Please understand, when I talk about tithing, I am speaking from my own private experience. In my denomination of Christianity growing up, we payed tithing. We were taught that not doing so would bar us from heaven. I know this is not true of every Christian.

Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness.

-Karl Marx
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