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Old 10-31-2013, 10:58 AM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
40,976 posts, read 18,573,926 times
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mordant
Quote:
For the atheist who has never considered the claims of theism seriously, it's possible there are a few converts to theism that could be peeled off, but past one's youth if you have not felt discontent with an irreligious existence, it's not very likely that you will later on, except in a few special cases.
The above is the sort of thing that I had in mind when writing about pathology of personality being the primary driving force. Confronted with the idea of changing the religious beliefs is akin to being confronted with the idea of changing one's personality.

I didn't have a conversion so much as a transition, the passage from childhood to adult being congruent with my passage from believer to atheist. I recall being motivated by anger upon the discovery that the people I was supposed to be viewing as wise authority figures, has been lying to me about a wide array of matters...and that is still very much me, someone who gets extra pissed off when other lie to him. I hate lies, I view them as a theft of my time, the most reviled public figures in my mind are the Richard Nixons and Pete Roses and Lance Armstrongs of the world.

The other thing that marked my passage was embattlement. As the only openly atheist pupil at my Catholic high school, I was at war with my instructors, at war with my parents, at war with the most zealous of my fellow students. I heavily identified with "Emperor's New Clothes" boy who is the only one pointing out that the emperor isn't actually wearing anything. When I read about the Greek goddess Cassandra, the one condemned to know the future but never be believed until too late, I started identifying with Cassandra. I was right, all of those fools were wrong, and it was my prevailing personality which saw me through.

If instead my personality was more akin to my brother's, I would have found getting along, being wired into the social network and avoiding controversy, far more valuable than the sense of Cassandra validation I was extracting.

I remain convinced that my current stance is the proper one, that there is no logical reason to subscribe to mythological explanations for the cosmos, but there is that nagging wonder about how much of this may be related to vindicating my personality.

So, I leave it at this....my personality may have greatly shaped my choices, but happily they were the right ones.
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Old 10-31-2013, 11:04 AM
 
1,765 posts, read 2,445,385 times
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I certainly try to post in there since it's where i came from. But I am taken back many times by the ideas proposed. Granted, I do have friends who think in that way but we aren't very close for the simple fact that energetically, we're in two different places. I don't believe everything is either all one thing or the other. Too ostracizing.
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Old 10-31-2013, 11:15 AM
 
Location: Missouri, USA
4,355 posts, read 2,977,723 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Royalite View Post
I certainly try to post in there since it's where i came from. But I am taken back many times by the ideas proposed. Granted, I do have friends who think in that way but we aren't very close for the simple fact that energetically, we're in two different places. I don't believe everything is either all one thing or the other. Too ostracizing.
For some reason, most loony-sounding atheists seem to avoid Citi-Data.
I just got done trying to convince three atheists that religion should not be illegal (not on Citi-Data), and that there should not be an age minimum to learn about religion. The only way I could see either working would be to remove children from parents, or have extreme censorship.
Aside from the children likely viewing religion as something cool and rebellious to learn about and therefore becoming more interested in it, (and the generic immorality) and aside from roving hordes of angry parents searching for atheists to tar and feather...I don't it think would be worth the damage to families/society, even without the theistic revolutionaries going atheist hunting.
After talking to them for awhile...those three are giving the impression that they are not actually crazy, so much as that they merely want to sound crazy...probably. They don't actually think religion should be illegal. I'm not saying there aren't numerous threads in the other forums that make me nervous...but we're frightening too at times.

Last edited by Clintone; 10-31-2013 at 11:32 AM..
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Old 10-31-2013, 11:18 AM
 
Location: between three Great Lakes.
1,759 posts, read 1,947,042 times
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I peek my head in there occasionally, but I don't post. That would be churlish and troll-esque. It's fun to watch the convos happen, though....like a horrible sit-com you just can't change the channel from.
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Old 10-31-2013, 11:34 AM
 
1,765 posts, read 2,445,385 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clintone View Post
For some reason, most loony-sounding atheists seem to avoid Citi-Data.
I just got done trying to convince three atheists that religion should not be illegal (not on Citi-Data), and that there should not be an age minimum to learn about religion. The only way I could see either working would be to remove children from parents, or have extreme censorship.
Aside from the children likely viewing religion as something cool and rebellious to learn about and therefore becoming more interested in it, and aside from roving hordes of angry parents searching for atheists to tar and feather...I don't it think would be worth the damage to families/society, even without the theistic revolutionaries going atheist hunting.
After talking to them for awhile...those three are giving the impression that they are not actually crazy, so much as that they merely want to sound crazy...probably. They don't actually think religion should be illegal. I'm not saying there aren't numerous threads in the other forums that make me nervous...but we're frightening too at times.
That's true. Both extremes make me uncomfortable to be honest. Unfortunately, I feel like I run into the most extreme people online, maybe because this is the only outlet for the intensity of their feelings. But I don't get how anyone can be so extreme that they miss the exceptions enough to stay open to the possibility that others might've had a different experience from them and have that be "okay" without actively and overbearingly trying to convert or deconvert. Or worse, shame, condemn, and belittle.
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Old 10-31-2013, 12:00 PM
 
35 posts, read 29,050 times
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There's no point in attempting to have a rational, logical discussion in religious forums.

Usually, it's akin to watching some kindergardners fight over which story book is better. Waste of time. You can't talk logically with the brainwashed.
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Old 10-31-2013, 12:32 PM
 
Location: VA
1,197 posts, read 1,603,076 times
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I quite enjoy reading the main religion forum on this site, it's especially amusing when one of those literal interpreters of their respective holy book comes in and proclaims how we're going to hell/salvation through *insert deity here*/something about the creationist view of the human origins/etc etc. Those are always hilarious in the "this movie is so bad it's good" kind of way.
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Old 11-05-2013, 04:18 PM
 
12,886 posts, read 15,435,478 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kab0906 View Post
... but find myself shaking my head at it all.

And how many times have I started to post, but just backed out of it? Lots.


How about you?
Yeh, lots...course I was always taught if you got nothing nice to say, say nothing at all...sometimes that's for the best. Maybe not always so wise to stir the pot.
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Old 11-05-2013, 05:14 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
40,976 posts, read 18,573,926 times
Reputation: 18675
Quote:
Originally Posted by Royalite View Post
. Unfortunately, I feel like I run into the most extreme people online, maybe because this is the only outlet for the intensity of their feelings.
I suspect that we see aspects of people's personalities online which are kept masked in other social situations. Online there is the buffer and protection of anonymity which allows one to venture further than one might be inclined when the audience is actually in the room. The absence of anyone's ability to react physically makes it easier to indulge in provocative stances and opinions. The WEB has been an extremist facilitator.
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