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Old 01-01-2011, 10:31 PM
 
Location: Lakeland
53 posts, read 133,722 times
Reputation: 69

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I grew up Christian, then became an atheist in my teenage years. Over the last 5 or so years now, I've come to a conclusion on my own that there is a god, intelligent design, etc. But I refuse to believe in ANY type of religion. Simply put I don't believe in anything people related, as people are too corrupt and self serving for me to have any type of faith in something they've said or written down recently or thousands of years ago for that matter. Bible, religion, etc. No thanks.

This conclusion I've come to was on my own, independent of my family and friends. I'm sure that most of, if not all, of you on this board have come to your belief decision independently as well. I realize that this is not the "norm". And this has always fascinated me.

Whenever I'm talking with a person about religion (almost always a Christian) they try to point out how they are right, how I'm wrong, and how I can get past my doubts to understand and believe in their views.

One thing that always discredits them in my mind instantly is that they were raised to believe in what they believe.

They were raised as a Christian, or Catholic, etc. And they are trying to explain to me that out of all the religions out there, all the gods, their's is right. The one true god. Pretty lucky for them huh? That they just so happened to be raised in THE ONE right religion, and they get to go to heaven, while everyone else goes to hell.

If they were raised Muslim, or if they were raised believing in Hindu, or insert god here, they would be having this same conversation with me on how that god is the "one true god". When I point this out, it seems to make them quiet for a second, and they continue on with their yada yada yada's.

This is something that has been on my mind for quite a while and thought I'd share.
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Old 01-01-2011, 11:08 PM
 
Location: Pflugerville
2,211 posts, read 4,125,326 times
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One of the awakenings for me, when I discovered that I was in fact an Atheist, was when I was being taught the apostles creed in catholic school.

It partly goes like this (I am quoting from memory, so bear with me) "I belive in one, holy, universal and apostolic church, I acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins..blah blah"

As a child, you repeat the long prayer, and you don't think about it. But as I got older, because I was always interested in language, I began to break that down. Why? Why do they say "one" "holy" "universal" "apostolic" church? Because Catholics are seperating themselves from other Christians! The word "catholic" means "universal". Universal in this sense means "the only one, all encompassing". By saying they are Holy, universal, and apostolic, they are seperating themselves from all other Christians. Because all other chrisitan denominations cannot claim all those beliefs.

I remember my religion teacher handing me a phamplet that said "How you know Catholocism is the ONE TRUE RELIGION". Inside the phamplet, it talked about the origin of most world religions. Islam was started by Mohammed at this time. Lutherans were started by Martin Luther at this time. But then they said "Catholics have an unbroken line to Jesus. The first Catholic pope was the apostle Peter, and he passed down the authority of the church from pope to pope all the way to modern times."

And in my mind, as a child, I said "well, my god, why wouldn't EVERYONE be Catholic?? It's so obvious!"

Then the 2nd line of the above prayer hit me "I acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.."

What does that mean? Many religions practice Baptism. Hell, a whole religion is named after Baptism. So what do Catholics mean when they say the above every Sunday in church.

They mean that only CATHOLIC baptism forgives sins. All other baptisms are spirtual masturbation. "But" I say, "you can't get into heaven if you aren't baptized!" Well, no, you can't. That is what Catholics teach.

And then it began to unravel for me.

Every Sunday, in church, millions of Catholics say their prayers. And what the prayer means is "If you arent Catholic, you go to hell. Or Purgatory. Ghandi. Martin Luther King. The pilgrims. The buddhists. Most of humanity. They burn in hell." And Catholics proudly proclamin this. How evil. How hateful.

And that was supposed to be a religion of love?

From that day on, I was not a Catholic. But I was raised Catholic. Raised to fear God. I thought God was sort of Moderator cut: deleted: inappropriate language . I considered him Like Santa. But you have to believe in something? Right? So I studied. Surely there would be a religion that wasn't as horrible as Catholics.

To this day, I have not found one.

And then I came across a word in my studies. Atheist. A simple defintion followed. In my mind, the definition was this "A person who finally realized that everyone wants to control you, and you are within your rights to tell them to go to hell."

It had honestly never occured to me before that you didn't HAVE to have dogma in your life. That you could control your destiny.

Just like when I first learned about gay people. I didn't know there was a word for people like me who liked boys, you know, other than "freak, fairy and Fagg-t".

Learning the word Atheist was like that for me. I finally realized there was a term to quantify what had been in my mind for pretty much my entire life, from early childhood on.

And that is something that has been on my mind for quite a while and thought I'd share.

Of course, that is the story of how I threw off the shackles of religion. The story of how I discovered there was no god is a little more detailed.

Last edited by june 7th; 01-05-2011 at 12:41 PM..
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Old 01-02-2011, 06:33 AM
 
39,037 posts, read 10,825,389 times
Reputation: 5082
Quote:
Originally Posted by Minus Florida View Post
I grew up Christian, then became an atheist in my teenage years. Over the last 5 or so years now, I've come to a conclusion on my own that there is a god, intelligent design, etc. But I refuse to believe in ANY type of religion. Simply put I don't believe in anything people related, as people are too corrupt and self serving for me to have any type of faith in something they've said or written down recently or thousands of years ago for that matter. Bible, religion, etc. No thanks.

This conclusion I've come to was on my own, independent of my family and friends. I'm sure that most of, if not all, of you on this board have come to your belief decision independently as well. I realize that this is not the "norm". And this has always fascinated me.

Whenever I'm talking with a person about religion (almost always a Christian) they try to point out how they are right, how I'm wrong, and how I can get past my doubts to understand and believe in their views.

One thing that always discredits them in my mind instantly is that they were raised to believe in what they believe.

They were raised as a Christian, or Catholic, etc. And they are trying to explain to me that out of all the religions out there, all the gods, their's is right. The one true god. Pretty lucky for them huh? That they just so happened to be raised in THE ONE right religion, and they get to go to heaven, while everyone else goes to hell.

If they were raised Muslim, or if they were raised believing in Hindu, or insert god here, they would be having this same conversation with me on how that god is the "one true god". When I point this out, it seems to make them quiet for a second, and they continue on with their yada yada yada's.

This is something that has been on my mind for quite a while and thought I'd share.
I'd agree with you on the various religions being man - made constructs.

On ID and 'god - concepts', stick around and maybe let's chew the pros and cons around. You may come to take a different view, but, if you don't I think we'd still be able to share a flat.
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Old 01-02-2011, 09:49 AM
 
Location: Sitting beside Walden Pond
4,609 posts, read 4,113,133 times
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Minus, if any members of your family are Christians, then they probably think you are going to burn in eternal hell because of your beliefs. I can see why that may upset them.

But heck, that's their problem, not yours. I don't know what you can do about it.

Congratulations on thinking about life and reaching your own conclusions. Buddah and Thoreau would be proud of you.
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Old 01-02-2011, 10:26 PM
 
6,039 posts, read 9,456,952 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minus Florida View Post
I grew up Christian, then became an atheist in my teenage years. Over the last 5 or so years now, I've come to a conclusion on my own that there is a god, intelligent design, etc.
It's exceedingly rare that someone who is an atheist actually changes their mind and goes back to believing in fairy tales. I'd hazard a guess that you were an on-the-fence agnostic rather than an atheist, Moderator cut: deleted

Last edited by june 7th; 01-05-2011 at 12:42 PM..
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Old 01-03-2011, 05:56 PM
 
Location: Lakeland
53 posts, read 133,722 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercury Cougar View Post
It's exceedingly rare that someone who is an atheist actually changes their mind and goes back to believing in fairy tales. I'd hazard a guess that you were an on-the-fence agnostic rather than an atheist, Moderator cut: Orphaned
While perhaps it is exceedingly rare, something I have learned in my travels is that when dealing with any type of group of people, there will be exceptions.

And no I was definitely not on the fence. I've just seen too many unbelievable coincidences in my life that just don't strike me as random anymore. It's more complicated than that, but not something I really care to get into.

However when I say I believe in god or in some sort of intelligent design, it is not a belief in a "christian" god, or some kind of religion's god. It's simply my belief that there is something more than random chance. I do agree with your thought on "fairy tales".

I come to this forum because even though I do believe in some sort of intelligent design, I am anti-religous and do not trust anything regarding people and faith. I feel much more comfortable here.

Last edited by june 7th; 01-05-2011 at 12:43 PM..
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:57 PM
 
Location: Metromess
11,798 posts, read 21,974,576 times
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I suppose that makes you a Deist. That doesn't bother me.
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Old 01-04-2011, 01:32 AM
 
7,802 posts, read 5,278,810 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minus Florida View Post
Over the last 5 or so years now, I've come to a conclusion on my own that there is a god, intelligent design, etc.

If they were raised Muslim, or if they were raised believing in Hindu, or insert god here, they would be having this same conversation with me on how that god is the "one true god".
Thankfully this is not an issue for me because I reject all of their positions AND yours because they all have one thing in common… the belief that a non-human intelligence is responsible for the creation and some level of subsequent maintenance of our universe.

I have not seen, in 18 years of asking for it, a shred of even an iota of argument, evidence, data OR reasons to lend even a modicum of credence to that core idea on which their positions, and yours, are based.
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Old 01-04-2011, 01:20 PM
 
Location: Lakeland
53 posts, read 133,722 times
Reputation: 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercury Cougar View Post
Moderator cut: Orphaned
No, I think I'll do just fine.

When dealing with most people of religion, something I always found annoying (yet somewhat amusing as well) was their complete and total faith and assurance that their view was 100% accurate, and many are also very close minded and arrogant when talking with anyone of a different belief.

I am somewhat taken aback that you, mercury cougar, possess those same traits. Completely arrogant & close minded to any view other than your own. Or at least that is how you have portrayed yourself in your 2 posts on this thread.

One thing about me is that I don't care what you or anyone else believes, nor would I ever attempt to down talk what you believe. I don't have all the answers, neither do you. This thread was about people who were raised into their belief with a closed mind, and you, ironically, have hi-jacked it with: a closed mind.

My life is based on logic, and for me, I've seen enough logic to continually evolve me as a person. Thus, I've had different views in my life. If something more tangible and logical presents itself, I will move on to that theory if and when that day happens.

Who knows for sure what is truly out there? You can't. It's not logical. It's only logical to make assessments and decisions based on your life experience and what knowledge is out there.

Last edited by june 7th; 01-10-2011 at 04:37 PM..
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Old 01-04-2011, 01:23 PM
 
Location: Lakeland
53 posts, read 133,722 times
Reputation: 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nozzferrahhtoo View Post
Thankfully this is not an issue for me because I reject all of their positions AND yours because they all have one thing in common… the belief that a non-human intelligence is responsible for the creation and some level of subsequent maintenance of our universe.

I have not seen, in 18 years of asking for it, a shred of even an iota of argument, evidence, data OR reasons to lend even a modicum of credence to that core idea on which their positions, and yours, are based.
I get that. This thread wasn't intended to talk about beliefs. However, I get where you are coming from. I have seen things that have happened in my life several times that defy logic as a random occurrence. A couple times, I'm sure it is. But after a while of seeing things like that, it has made me re-think my views.

Whether it's a god involved or not, I do believe there is something more than just random chance. What that is, I have no idea. I don't have the answers. Nor am I trying to get anyone else to agree with my views. I can only talk for myself.
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