Facts and Faith … One More Time

I have two posts percolating and I planned to write at least one of them today, but when I read the recent conversation that “Ark” (ataleuntold.wordpress.com) is having with bottomlesscoffee007, I knew I had to write this one and my others would have to wait.

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In conversations between believers and non-believers, it is not uncommon for the non-believer to point out the fallacies of the Christian faith, often with hard evidence (e.g., information/facts from accredited scientists, publications by biblical scholars, testimonies of well-known deconverts, etc.)

Of course the Christian cries “foul” and immediately does one (or more) of the following three things: (1) attacks the non-believer, (2) references Christian apologists, and/or (3) quotes scripture (as if this has any meaning to the non-believer).

Case in point:

Ark: But don’t take my word for it – listen to any deconvert, and especially the numerous former professional pastors, priests and preachers, many of whom have considerable in-depth knowledge of the history of the Christian religion and its doctrine.

bottomless: The deconvert as you call them, the professional pastors, priests and preachers never believed to begin with. Early on they figured out that they could make a lot of money. So, the entire time they were just coning people.

You continue to cite other researchers, yet I get the feeling you basically just read something and the regurgitate it to sound intelligent.

All you do is basically talk shit, you are not even 100% about the research you cite, since you never actually did the work yourself.

Arkenaten, you are simply lazy and insecure. You leach off of others you have never even met in an attempt to come off as intelligent.

The very first sentence of bottomless‘s comment is a mind-blower! Notice how he responds by making the totally unsubstantiated comment: [they] “never believed to begin with.”

You’ve probably noticed this is a very common argument among believers. In other words, there are no deconverts. There are only people who “faked it.” Yeah, right.

Notice also how he continues his comment with the typical insults.

Undoubtedly, this battle will go on … and on … and on … Nonetheless, whether Christians want to accept it or not (and no matter how many insults they want to throw at atheists and other non-believers), the facts (statements and/or assertions of verified information) will never take the place of their personal beliefs.

38 thoughts on “Facts and Faith … One More Time

  1. Excellent post.

    Reminds of a feature in a Mad comic from years back along the lines of : ”You can never win with a bigot.”

    ”Black people can’t play football!”
    ”He’s actually regarded as one of the best players in the game!”
    ”Well, anyone could be that good if they were given as many free opportunities as he had.”

    If a deconverted pastor was never a Christian in the first place does this nullify every marriage and baptism he presided over?

    If the last rites were administered by a now deconverted vicar to a Muslim who had a death bed conversion, does this mean that the deceased remained a Muslim and went to Hell with the deconvert?

    My head hurts ….

    Liked by 5 people

    • That sounds like a Schrödinger’s cat type of problem. The couple is neither married nor unmarried, the ex-Muslim is neither in Heaven nor Hell, until the clergyman dies either faithful or lapsed, at which point the “box is opened” and we know whether he was a “true” Christian all along. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  2. this is a very common argument among believers. In other words, there are no deconverts. There are only people who “faked it.”

    That’s the only way they can cling to the “once saved, always saved” dogma that many of them have. If somebody leaves Christianity, they must be dismissed as never Christian in the first place, regardless of the evidence. This is even applied to people like Bruce Gerencser, who was a fundamentalist pastor for decades before becoming an atheist.

    A person like Bottomless is obviously unreachable by logic or anything else, and not worth arguing with from that viewpoint. The only reason for arguing with such a person is to expose their claims in the eyes of any other observers who may be reading the discussion. Such dogmas will appear obviously absurd to anyone who is open-minded and not fanatically committed to them.

    In fact, most of the time this is the only purpose such arguments serve. A person who is strongly committed to a position can almost never be swayed from it just by argument. The real target audience is uncommitted readers.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. It’s typical shoot the messenger tactics which reveal a great insecurity about their beliefs. They know they can’t win a substantive debate, so they fall back into a defensive posture barricaded by denial. I actually feel sorry for such people who insist on standing upon very shaky ground. Fortunately, not all religious people are so neurotic. Most of the Christians I know personally accept my non-belief and we rarely if ever get into heated arguments over religion.

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    • That’s an increasingly common assertion, and they need to be called out whenever they make it. It does not take faith to believe in science. Science is the basis of technology, a vast array of tools that actually work, such as airplanes, space probes, vaccines, computers, electricity, and thousands more. All of those things are designed in accordance with the principles discovered by science, and none of them would work if the discoveries of science were not objectively true. Thus, it does not take any faith to accept the validity of science and its discoveries. The hard evidence is all around us.

      Needless to say, religion and “spirituality” and other forms of gobbledygook have no such track record of generating working technology.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. iI’s like blowing in the wind……. a lot of wasted breath. They are fools who have been scammed or innocents ill informed by parents. Their delusion of being special is pretty much ironclad. Either pity them or kick them where it hurts, in the resurrection! GROG

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  5. Ah hah! They were not true Christians(tm)! Wait a minute … “Early on they figured out that they could make a lot of money. So, the entire time they were just coning people.” Who the fuck thinks they can make a lot of money as a church man? Like any con, the big bucks are siphoned off by the higher ups. (The Vatican is gilded, the church on the corner is falling apart.) I am reminded of the adage to never argue with a pig–onlookers will not understand and it only irritates the pig. Ark should find some better protagonists.

    Liked by 2 people

    • It’s like the political wingnuts who claim that climate scientists who assert the reality of global warming are somehow in it for the money. The claim doesn’t stand up to scrutiny and isn’t really meant to. It’s just intended to provide the ideologist/religionist with reassurance and a sense of superiority.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. And as I said over at Ark’s, they do like to run the tires back and forth over our lifeless bodies: if you are human, you are Christian. No matter what you say. No such thing as a deconverted Christian, once a believer, always a believer. And in the next mind boggling breath, they insist that if you ARE a Christian, you probably aren’t, because you’ve sinned, so you’ve lied about it.

    I love circular reasoning like that. They must get migraines on a steady basis.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. As a decon myself, I know with some christians, most on the blogs, no matter my experience or length of Christian belief and service/ministry, it will never be enough to get them to think outside the bubble. It’s useless to continue trying to convince those who will not be convinced or the genuineness of my former Faith and ministry.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. There are NO true Christians or true believers of ANY other faith but Islam. Everyone is Muslim–some people just don’t accept or know it yet. I’ve said that to a few Christians before who toss out the “they never believed to begin with” crap about people who’ve de-converted from the almighty friggin’ Christian religion. Of course, they deny it’s true because, well, all things are different when they involve them. I find this form of thinking to be insulting, demeaning, and indicative of how frail the beliefs are of those who espouse it and use it in arguments. Bottemlesscupofcoffee is a bottomless bag of blowing methane. Yawn! “And the wheels on the bus go round and round, round and round, round and round. Oh, the wheels on the bus go round and round, round and round, round and round, all the live long day!” UGH!!

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  9. Sadly, the three “logic” tactics you mentioned are quite a bit better than what I’ve heard from Christians at work and elsewhere. They often use the “look around” argument, which I think is supposed to mean “I believe everything was created; therefore when I look around, I see all kinds of evidence for a creator” — absurd. Another is “read the Bible” (I now have, and many of them haven’t). A more recent “argument” was “come to my church; you can feel the Lord there”. Um, no. If your “Lord” can only be felt at your church, then he’s not the same as the all-powerful YHWH you’ve been telling me about.

    Fingers crossed – I will soon be away from this nonsense. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • They’re awestruck by the beauty of trees and flowers and kittens and never bothered to learn enough evolutionary biology to understand why those organisms are the way they are (or why we humans react to them the way we do), so they glom onto it as something only “God” can explain.

      Of course that would mean God made gross design blunders like the appendix or the recurrent laryngeal nerve, to say nothing of things like mosquitoes and tapeworms and smallpox. But people who believe in a talking snake and a woman created from a man’s rib aren’t going to be big on logic.

      Liked by 2 people

    • I think he’s fairly young and filled with misplaced doubt, confusion, and anger. The insults came out pretty quickly with him. It’s the same tripe over and over again and they all think they’re the first to shout out the same apologetic nonsense we’ve heard for years.

      Liked by 4 people

    • Yes. It’s a ‘theory’ — and it’s one that’s a hell of a lot more explanatory than the theory proposing an uncaused, beginningless, changeless, immaterial, timeless, powerful, personal cosmic consciousness magically *poofed* everything into existence out of nothing by uttering the magic words “let there be . . .”

      Liked by 1 person

      • And don’t forget, said “being” is invisible, not falsifiable, unknowable, yet somehow, if you think about him, you’ll know he’s there even though he provides not a shred of empirical evidence of his existence at all. But we’re supposedly the idiots for saying, “Uh, no. I don’t believe this “being” exists.” Mind-numbing idiocy.

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  10. After reading CS take on life and many others like IB, Rebecca and Wally. It amazes me how they can write some of this stuff with a straight face and not feel really stupid or at the least dishonest. I honestly, until a few years ago would never have believed these people existed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • there are times when I seriously believe they are just havin’ us on, to watch that little pulse in the forehead throb, to watch the blood pressure rise. It’s a game with them, “Let’s Play Stupid.”

      I’m still trying figure out the flat earth thing. Maybe some day…

      Liked by 1 person

      • Let me know when you figure it out.
        Indoctrination is so powerful for some people. I just cannot find the words to tell them how phenomenally ridiculous and monumentally stupid they really are, and that is the best I can do at the moment.

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  11. As I have said over at Ark’s place this person is doing this to drum up traffic to their blog. I had a look to see what they are about, and they are quite open about it. They then ridicule the likes of Nan and allude to trolls. Just another lonely saddo.

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  12. Let’s see here, I score one No True Scotsman fallacy, one Courtier’s Reply, one Ad hominem, and one flat out insult of intelligence, as if one cannot read, understand, and use acquired knowlege in a debate. I was one short of a damn BINGO!

    Defense mechanisms are all one has to fall back on in the absence of facts.

    Like

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