Preach It, Sista’!

On one of Ben‘s recent blog posts, he had a real, true-to-life Christian visitor. You knew this because every comment she made included references to God or Jesus/Christ.

Something I find difficult to understand is when a Christian visits an Atheist’s blog, why do they feel the need to preach? Especially when nearly all the posts are clearly laying out the reasons why the individual left Christianity!

Anyway, here for your reading enjoyment(?) is your religious experience for the week. No need to sit on a hard pew or take communion or get callouses on your knees.

It’s makes so sad that you’ve had such a hurtful experience with Christianity. I hope one day the whole body of Christ will actually be the body and walk as the body, talk as he talked and do as he did. Religion can be very damaging to many. I have not had this experience because I am in love with Jesus. I am absolutely amazed by him everyday. Following Jesus is hard, being different is hard, believing the impossible is hard and hearing your story is hard because it hurts my heart. I desire that you’d come to know the God I’ve come to know. Ben I think about you often and I do enjoy your posts you are talented and your thoughts are raw and real so thank you for sharing your self to all who read. I know your not trying to hurt faith you just don’t believe it and that’s your choice. You don’t offend me, who am I to be offended? it’s your story. I am listening and I care!

God sent his one and only son not religion so I’m not going to try to debate with you. I agree religion does harm but Jesus does not. That’s what I’ve experienced he’s amazing!!! ❤️

My answer is there is not one God that gave his own life for me and everyone else but Jesus the lamb of God. While everyone else can have there own beliefs and I respect that the God they believe in did not come in the flesh and die for me. Jesus did and I will proclaim his name till the end of my days!!

I am not trying to get it right I am right with God because I know and believe in his son and what he’s done for me. I am not trying to be good I am through Christ and his sacrifice. I don’t need anything else but Jesus. I don’t care if everyone else wants to follows the rules but I am going to keep my faith in what he’s done for me. He came in the flesh and died and if that’s not enough to believe then I’m not sure what is. My answer is my faith he is my love he’s changed me from the inside out. Now I will live my life for him.

Jesus is a gift and is available to all. I can’t explain faith to someone who doesn’t really care to know but only wants to prove a point. Pray and ask God for yourself he’s waiting to have a relationship with you.

There was more, but for now this is the …

End. Of. Sermon.

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Carpe Diem!

This morning as a result of a comment notification, I revisited a post that was written by a believer back in January 2018. Re-reading what he had written, the following phrase stood out to me:

… the atheist has to believe- that is, have faith in– the idea that there is no evidence proving God’s existence

Of course, I’ve seen this idea presented numerous times by Christians and even though it’s an extremely weak argument against atheism, it’s used again and again and again.

I started to write a response, but then decided to share what I would have written on my own blog.

In today’s vernacular, the word FAITH has come to be associated primarily with religion. However, there are other meanings, such as having confidence in something … or being loyal to a cause or person. So based on these meanings, of course an atheist can have faith — just not necessarily in the existence of any supernatural being.

And yes, atheists “believe.” We ALL believe. We believe we’re going to wake up each morning. We believe the earth will keep spinning. We believe Spring will bring flowers. The big difference is Christians take it a step further and say a “God” is behind everything that takes place — whereas an atheist accepts such activities as a natural part of LIFE.

My personal philosophy is that people can choose to “believe” anything they want. However, I do feel those who choose to believe in an invisible entity — created by humans “way-back-when” — are living a very restricted life in the hopes of “something better” when they die.

Atheists, on the other hand, tend to live by a much more realistic credo, which is often expressed as Carpe Diem!

 

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Image by Faby Green from Pixabay

Live and Let Live

One of the most valuable things about being an atheist is that I know my life’s purpose is decided by me alone.  My life is not cluttered up with some “plan” or “higher purpose” imposed by a “God”

This reflection was part of a post made by a blogger that identifies as Infidel753. And I loved it! While I don’t label myself as an “atheist,” I felt what he wrote was spot-on.

I think many of us will agree that (in most cases) believers are convinced they are living a “blessed” life. In truth, they are living a controlled life in which they allow an unseen force to direct and regulate all their thoughts and actions.

What’s interesting is this is actually a dichotomy since it’s an innate desire among humans to be their “own person.” We can see this very early in life when parents try to correct wrongdoing during the “terrible twos” … and it’s amplified during the teenage years. Yet for some strange reason, this inner longing becomes dormant when individuals turn their thoughts and lives over to the “Christian Savior.” From that point on, all that they are and all that they do is dictated by rules and regulations determined by individuals who lived many, many years ago and in a world much different than today.

(It’s actually rather sad that so many Christians feel they’re incapable of living “on their own” and instead must depend on some “higher force” to monitor and direct their lives.)

Some would say the reason atheists reject the Christian Way is because they harbor desires to do “sinful” things. Nothing could be further from the truth because to an atheist, there is no “sin.” Instead, they believe their actions are determined, not by adherence to the laws of a centuries old book, but by society’s mandates and personal responsibility. If they choose to ignore one or both, they will suffer the consequences … and they know it.

Live and let live is a practical, loose-and-easy life philosophy that allows each of us to determine our life’s path … without it being cluttered up with some “plan” or “higher purpose” imposed by a “God.” 

Just Curious

Readers are (obviously) under no obligation to answer any of the following questions, but I hope you’ll be willing to share. 🤞🙂

If you were once a believer but are now a non-believer/atheist/agnostic/deist — what denomination did you leave? Pentecostal? Catholic? Lutheran? Baptist? …… ??

What was the FIRST inclination you had that things were not as they seemed? I realize that once you leave religion, you discover many things that were “off,” but if you can remember, what was that one thing that triggered your move in the “other” direction?

Is there anything you miss about being a believer? Perhaps the regular get-togethers with people of like-mind? Singing in the choir? Getting up early on Sunday morning? 😖

Is there ANY event/circumstance/happening that might cause you to return (or consider returning) to your faith?

And finally, for those who are “closet atheists” (and are using a pseudonym!), do you have any suggestions or advice for others in your position? What would it take for you to reveal your true feelings?

Thanks for taking part in my just-for-fun survey. 🙂

Winning the Battle

I recently received notification of a post by an ex-Christian blogger who goes by the name of Logan. I’ve been following his blog for quite some time and although he writes only sporadically, I always enjoy his posts. (Some of you may recognize him when I tell you his de-conversion was directly related to his oldest son declaring he was an atheist, which he wrote about here).

In Logan’s most recent post, related to the power of persuasion, he suggests that “we as humans are primarily emotional and intuitive thinkers. We want to believe we are primarily logical and rational thinkers … and adds … but we aren’t!” He amplifies this thought by referencing an open letter written by Dennis Augustine (ex-minister who was helped by The Clergy Project).

In the letter, Augustine describes how he left the faith via emotion, not reason. Here are a couple of excerpts from the letter:

I’m sure that I don’t have to remind you that it’s pretty pointless trying to reason with a believer. It is futile to try to reason a man out of a belief that he wasn’t reasoned into.

[…]

I’m convinced that reason … is pretty ineffective against the armour-plated defenses that shield believers from reason: the shame of sin, the terror of isolation and a fear of death (the ultimate isolation).

[…]

I think that it’s easy for people who are so steeped in a scientific environment dominated by the intellect to think that evidence and reason will make the difference; they can but only after one breaks through the walls around someone’s heart.

As I read these statements, I thought about the many times I’ve read arguments against Christianity in which non-believers have done exactly this; that is, used reason and scientific evidence in their attempts to break through the armor of the believer. While there’s no doubt this approach works with some, I tend to agree with the ex-minister that emotion is the predominant factor behind many (most?) deconversions.

Fundamentalists seem to be especially resistant to reasoning. Any kind of cogent argument is immediately dismissed … and their counter-attack usually includes emotional accusations, such as the non-believer/atheist left the faith because they hated god or their feelings were hurt or they are angry at god, etc., etc.

At the close of his post, Logan included a link to a video validating the power of emotion over reason called “Mr. Rogers and and the Power of Persuasion.” Well worth watching.

P.S. If you’re so inclined, I suggest you follow the link in Logan’s post to the actual letter by the ex-minister — and then read Logan’s comments at the end of the letter. He shares a personal story that happens all too frequently behind closed Christian doors.