To go from atheist to theist
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
05-04-2015, 08:15 AM
RE: To go from atheist to theist
(05-04-2015 06:15 AM)kristenkjordan Wrote:  I really think it's mostly a matter of how well read and researched you are as an atheist that determines how well rooted you are in your stance.

There's a lot of us that are lost and in search of answers that make sense to us, which is only natural.

For those that haven't read the bible for what it is or even paid attention to science are going to be more easily swayed by what the apologists have to say.

Before I really started to become more rooted in atheism, one of my best friends and her boyfriend (who I've mentioned before in other forums) took an extreme turn to the Messianic belief and when I started really questioning, they wouldn't hesitate to spew out "science" (from Answers in Genesis, no less) and how everything else that we've been taught is a lie.

I couldn't really come back with anything because I really didn't have the answers and I was still on that fence and finally decided to start researching for myself rather than listen to what others tell me is suppose to be true.

Needless to say, the more I read, the more things finally made sense and I became convinced that the concept of God is nothing more than a man-made entity designed to control the masses.

If only others would be bothered to read more than one book. Rolleyes

I read the bible when I was 10 and have been atheist ever since. I looked at a couple other religions then, and related to none of them. So I just scrapped religion.

I didn't revisit the issue until 50 years later. Hubby was atheist too, and he didn't think about it twice, either. The religious crap people said after he died caused me to show up here to vent. I also have another friend who is the same.

In my generation, books were at book stores and the library and I read about stuff that interested me - religion wasn't among them.

There are many ways to become an atheist. My parents were atheist also, closeted until their death bed. I never found out until they were dying. I assumed they were catholic and just not going to church all the time.

Atheists in their generation and mine were mostly closeted, it wasn't a topic. There were no atheist books the way there are today. There have always been atheists, and lots of them. They were just invisible. They were rooted in their stance, and not educated on the topic.

What's different today is that we don't think we are alone anymore. The books and web have made atheism a common topic, same way as being gay and women's rights were a common topic for the first time in the 70s. It's all good, we will have a different society in a couple generations because of it. The more people come out and speak up, the faster the transformation.

But no, books are not needed to become a firm atheist. They do, however, pave the way for atheism to become socially accepted and show how prevalent it really is.

[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
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 2 users Like Dom's post
05-04-2015, 08:29 AM
RE: To go from atheist to theist
The article posted from Patheos gives a good explanation. These people simply lived as if there was no God. They hadn't come to the conclusion that there was no god. They had not sat down and considered the evidence and decided they didn't believe. Hell, I'm gonna bet some did believe in some passive sort of version of god, but even of they didn't the point is unimportant.

But of course Christians don't like to admit that we are what we say we are. They simply want to believe that we are choosing to live as if there was no god and that we haven't given it much thought. They want to lump those in with us because they believe that no one could reject their god and mythology due to rational consideration and thought. They just want it to be a hedonistic default.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes natachan's post
05-04-2015, 08:57 AM
RE: To go from atheist to theist
(05-04-2015 08:15 AM)Dom Wrote:  
(05-04-2015 06:15 AM)kristenkjordan Wrote:  I really think it's mostly a matter of how well read and researched you are as an atheist that determines how well rooted you are in your stance.

There's a lot of us that are lost and in search of answers that make sense to us, which is only natural.

For those that haven't read the bible for what it is or even paid attention to science are going to be more easily swayed by what the apologists have to say.

Before I really started to become more rooted in atheism, one of my best friends and her boyfriend (who I've mentioned before in other forums) took an extreme turn to the Messianic belief and when I started really questioning, they wouldn't hesitate to spew out "science" (from Answers in Genesis, no less) and how everything else that we've been taught is a lie.

I couldn't really come back with anything because I really didn't have the answers and I was still on that fence and finally decided to start researching for myself rather than listen to what others tell me is suppose to be true.

Needless to say, the more I read, the more things finally made sense and I became convinced that the concept of God is nothing more than a man-made entity designed to control the masses.

If only others would be bothered to read more than one book. Rolleyes

I read the bible when I was 10 and have been atheist ever since. I looked at a couple other religions then, and related to none of them. So I just scrapped religion.

I didn't revisit the issue until 50 years later. Hubby was atheist too, and he didn't think about it twice, either. The religious crap people said after he died caused me to show up here to vent. I also have another friend who is the same.

In my generation, books were at book stores and the library and I read about stuff that interested me - religion wasn't among them.

There are many ways to become an atheist. My parents were atheist also, closeted until their death bed. I never found out until they were dying. I assumed they were catholic and just not going to church all the time.

Atheists in their generation and mine were mostly closeted, it wasn't a topic. There were no atheist books the way there are today. There have always been atheists, and lots of them. They were just invisible. They were rooted in their stance, and not educated on the topic.

What's different today is that we don't think we are alone anymore. The books and web have made atheism a common topic, same way as being gay and women's rights were a common topic for the first time in the 70s. It's all good, we will have a different society in a couple generations because of it. The more people come out and speak up, the faster the transformation.

But no, books are not needed to become a firm atheist. They do, however, pave the way for atheism to become socially accepted and show how prevalent it really is.

I suppose really all it comes down to is if you agree with where religion is coming from or if you can even connect with it.

Theists get so flustered when children ask simple and innocent questions because they refuse to see it from a black and white standpoint and judge it for what it really is.

I definitely agree where you're coming from. I've always said I don't need to be fluent in science to recognize what's wrong with the bible and what it teaches and I never understood how theists could excuse that, but as usual there is always some technicality with them. Frusty

I just still let myself get intimidated by theists with all of the debates they seem to pull out of their asses (as I'm still in that phase of discovery), especially involving anything "science" oriented and I'm just sitting there like, "I'll come back to you on that..." Dodgy

We are eternal beings. Endings are not in our destiny.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
05-04-2015, 09:12 AM
RE: To go from atheist to theist
(05-04-2015 08:15 AM)Dom Wrote:  Atheists in their generation and mine were mostly closeted, it wasn't a topic. There were no atheist books the way there are today. There have always been atheists, and lots of them. They were just invisible. They were rooted in their stance, and not educated on the topic.

There was a thread a few months ago called (something like) "Being an atheist in the US versus UK". USian atheists seem to have it much harder than people in Europe/Australia/some other places. I'm an Aussie and I live in The Netherlands. My status as an atheist is of interest to no-one in either Oz or NL. I can't imagine what it's like to have to be closeted.

Hopefully, things are improving.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
05-04-2015, 09:30 AM
RE: To go from atheist to theist
Never heard of Strobel but one of the most famous theist to atheist and back to theist stories is that of the Christian Apologist C.S. Lewis sometimes called the "The Apostle to the Skeptics." He described his return to Christianity as "kicking, struggling, resentful, and darting his eyes in every direction for a chance to escape."

(05-04-2015 09:12 AM)jockmcdock Wrote:  There was a thread a few months ago called (something like) "Being an atheist in the US versus UK". USian atheists seem to have it much harder than people in Europe/Australia/some other places. I'm an Aussie and I live in The Netherlands. My status as an atheist is of interest to no-one in either Oz or NL. I can't imagine what it's like to have to be closeted.

Hopefully, things are improving.

It depends on the area in the US. In my neighborhood I can walk to a Buddhist temple, a Hindu temple, 2 Baptist churches, 2 Unitarian Universalist congregations and a Jewish synagogue. There is so much religious diversity that no one bats an eye at atheists.

#sigh
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
05-04-2015, 01:59 PM
RE: To go from atheist to theist
Where do you live Girly? I might have to move there?

Here in Oklahoma there is little diversity. Basically its Baptist or non-denominational. When I tell people I'm an atheist, the common replies I get are, "No you're not!" or "I'll pray for you."

I think the funniest reply I ever got was "nobody as smart as you doesn't believe in God".
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
05-04-2015, 02:21 PM
RE: To go from atheist to theist
(04-04-2015 10:32 PM)smitthom624 Wrote:  While I was trying to figure out if Christianity was true, I stumbled upon the Case for Christ, by Lee Strobel. He claimed to be an atheist who discovered Christ and became a born-again. I can understand someone becoming an atheist by discovering that God is non-existent, but how could someone go honestly begin to believe in the crap that religion spews after not believing in it for so long. I have come across some stories like this, a life-long atheist finally finding Jesus and believing the truth. I would think that becoming a non-believer would be a more truthful reality.

Strobel's book (a journalist) is one of THE worst books I have ever read. He interviews (only) a bunch of theists about why they are theists, and somehow thinks that makes a case for his argument. He interviews NO non-believers. His book has been debunked many many times n YouTube. Stroebel is a fraud. It's not even good journalism. I think now he goes around and charges for his talks about how "DNA encodes the information" we are intelligently designed, or that it's a message from (his) god. So he writes books about subjects he has no expertise.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
05-04-2015, 02:45 PM
RE: To go from atheist to theist
My mil and wants me to read this book. I've done some research but not much. I'd like as much as I can get my hands on so I can intelligently talk to her if she asks. Smile
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
05-04-2015, 03:11 PM
RE: To go from atheist to theist
(04-04-2015 10:32 PM)smitthom624 Wrote:  While I was trying to figure out if Christianity was true, I stumbled upon the Case for Christ, by Lee Strobel. He claimed to be an atheist who discovered Christ and became a born-again. I can understand someone becoming an atheist by discovering that God is non-existent, but how could someone go honestly begin to believe in the crap that religion spews after not believing in it for so long. I have come across some stories like this, a life-long atheist finally finding Jesus and believing the truth. I would think that becoming a non-believer would be a more truthful reality.

I have a hard time believing someone who knows the evidence that discredits christianity, suddenly decides that evidence is BS, and jesus is the way. I can see if someone calls themselves an atheist because they just simply dont believe in a god, then some life altering personal "experience" causes them to turn to delusion...that I get.....what I dont get is someone like...say me for example, who knows systematically book by book, story by story, it is all fabricated BS, discredited by superior evidence to the contrary, and suddenly go, meh, dismiss all of that knowledge of religion's basis in fiction, forgery and fantasy and go YES! I BELIEVE! HE IS LORD!...no dont buy it.

I do buy though the theory of mine that it is a GREAT sales pitch...."there I was, a solid atheist, fighting the lord, denying his presence in my life, then the lord god reached out to me and whispered in my ear, and suddenly I saw the light, thank you jesus I saw the light, all those years of sin became clear to me, and suddenly I was right with the lord, can I get an amen, let me testify brother...."

yeah....no...great story, dont buy it. All designed to make money, and draw in an audience of gullible believers, I would have made a great minister, I can talk the BS hype pretty good, or course I was an ordained southern baptist youth minister and assistant pastor for years, so I did have some practice Rolleyes

"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)
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes goodwithoutgod's post
05-04-2015, 04:07 PM
RE: To go from atheist to theist
Generically, people who truly go from atheism to theism are fairly rare.

CS Lewis, the famous Christian author, apologist, and pseudo-philosopher (and on the side an author of some well regarded Sci-Fi in the form of his "space trilogy") is a fairly typical example of this, and like most such examples, on close examination he is not really a lifelong unbeliever, but rather a "re-conversion". He was in fact raised in the Church of Ireland and tellingly describes his departure from the faith in his teens as "being angry at god for not existing". Of course to be angry with god you have to believe that he exists, so he's misdiagnosing his own issue. He was angry at god for being indifferent. And through the hectoring of his close friend JRR Tolkien, he eventually returned to the fold, despite his god's continued "indifference" in the suffering and death of the great love of his life. By that time he had so much ego invested in his apologist writings that he would probably have endured any amount of cognitive dissonance to stay true to his faith. Much of his professional and public success was based on his identity as a converted atheist, after all.

I don't take such people at their word that they are former atheists. They are usually either as described above or they are just incurious and unaware people who had no particular opinion one way or the other and were simply taken with their religion of choice at a vulnerable moment or even a random moment. If the religion of choice is fundamentalist-leaning then you tend to be lauded as a great catch and are subtly encouraged to overstate your past as "atheist" -- and given that most fundamentalists don't understand what atheism actually is or consists of, that never turns out well. They will talk about how they were angry, bitter, rebellious, dishonest, depressed, addicted, and unbelieving as if all of that somehow goes together. And then suddenly they have an ideology that brings structure and focus to this mindless existence and look how wonderful it is.

Anthony Flew is probably an example of an unbeliever who was duped into a weak form of theism -- actually, he became at best, a deist -- but you have evangelicals crowing about how he "converted" to Christianity or "renounced atheism" when he did nothing of the sort. He simply was seduced by the Irreducible Complexity argument into thinking "there must be something there" in terms of a creative force or being, or at least was originally.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes mordant's post
Post Reply
Forum Jump: