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Old 08-09-2019, 03:13 PM
 
Location: Loudon, TN
5,924 posts, read 4,926,517 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ReachTheBeach View Post
One reason i have been less reluctant to talk about my disbelief is that it does seem to be more accepted and less people try to push theirs on others. When people press, it's hard to defend atheism without ridiculing belief.
I don't bring up my non-belief. If others are discussing religion and I'm asked, I reply that "I'm not religious", and try to leave it at that. If pressed, I will say that I don't choose to discuss religion as my beliefs are mine, and I'm not interested in changing them. If FURTHER pressed, by some really rude individual, I will say that I don't believe in superstition, or any supernatural being. I hope at that point that they understand that includes angels, devils, demons, gods, witches, vampires, etc. My goal is to not offend them, and also not to be proselytized, or get into a point by point discussion of the rights and wrongs of belief vs. non-belief.
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Old 08-09-2019, 03:16 PM
 
1,807 posts, read 636,299 times
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I normally don't bring it up either, but I now will say something if someone makes a statement that I don't want anyone to think that I agree with.

For example, not too long ago someone who learned that I'm a cancer survivor said to me that my positive outcome was "because god was looking after" me. Now as an atheist I couldn't even appear to agree with that by failing to refute it, so I replied, "With all due respect, it was entirely due to medical science plus me insisting on certain tests beyond what the doctor originally did."

"But your guardian angel must have made you insist on those extra tests."

"No, it was from me and Dr. Google spending a lot of time together plus a healthy dose of common sense."
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Old 08-09-2019, 03:58 PM
 
8,059 posts, read 5,122,413 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ReachTheBeach View Post
...The matter that makes up the universe has always been here and always will be. There was not a point where something came from nothing. That doesn't necessarily negate big bang - but what blew up and where did it come from? Why do we feel like there has to have been a beginning?
Our personal experience sees beginnings and ends. Even ancient things, thousands of years old, have a beginning, even if we're unable to infer the exact dates. It is natural to extrapolate from the small to the large, from the personal to the universal.

The question is, how does that tendency to extrapolate, evolve with age? As we gain personal experience, are we led to think, that having more experience, the extrapolation is more valid? Or on the contrary, do we acquire humility, that cautions us to rely less on intuition, less on the narrowly personal?

It is commonly noted - and I happen to agree - that older age brings an intuitive reexamination of the questions first posed in childhood. As young adults, as parents or career-driven people or whatnot, we tend to focus on investments, or our jobs, on junior's soccer-practice. The "big questions" become a luxury too pricey for demands on our time. We set them aside. Later, as time becomes more available, we revisit these questions, hopefully now with greater experience, and more logical sophistication, than in our first forays as wide-eyed children.

I wonder, though, if many decades' worth of experience, results in more certainty, or less.
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Old 08-09-2019, 04:18 PM
 
Location: Noth Caccalacca
5,674 posts, read 6,738,940 times
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I gave up Catholicism for Lent in 1968, when I was 16. I'm firmly entrenched in the Agnostic/Atheist Camp at this point. Heaven or Hell for eternity sounds sooooo boring. When I die, it's all over. Don't bother me with afterlife fantasies. Once I'm dead, I'm staying that way!
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Old 08-09-2019, 04:46 PM
 
Location: NC Piedmont
4,018 posts, read 2,935,018 times
Reputation: 6508
Quote:
Originally Posted by ohio_peasant View Post
Our personal experience sees beginnings and ends. Even ancient things, thousands of years old, have a beginning, even if we're unable to infer the exact dates. It is natural to extrapolate from the small to the large, from the personal to the universal.

The question is, how does that tendency to extrapolate, evolve with age? As we gain personal experience, are we led to think, that having more experience, the extrapolation is more valid? Or on the contrary, do we acquire humility, that cautions us to rely less on intuition, less on the narrowly personal?

It is commonly noted - and I happen to agree - that older age brings an intuitive reexamination of the questions first posed in childhood. As young adults, as parents or career-driven people or whatnot, we tend to focus on investments, or our jobs, on junior's soccer-practice. The "big questions" become a luxury too pricey for demands on our time. We set them aside. Later, as time becomes more available, we revisit these questions, hopefully now with greater experience, and more logical sophistication, than in our first forays as wide-eyed children.

I wonder, though, if many decades' worth of experience, results in more certainty, or less.
I think a lot of people harbor uncertainties for most of their lives that they refuse to explicitly resolve while people they don't want to disappoint are still alive. In many cases I don't think it's the time to explore the questions are much as the perceived freedom to do so. A lot of the answers were implicitly/unconsciously reached a long time ago.
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Old 08-09-2019, 04:49 PM
 
Location: Columbia SC
9,129 posts, read 7,878,855 times
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When younger, I claimed I was Agnostic. Was a polite reply. Now that I am older, I have no problem saying I am an Atheist but I do not say so unless pushed.
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Old 08-09-2019, 04:58 PM
 
Location: Sylmar, a part of Los Angeles
4,065 posts, read 2,595,175 times
Reputation: 8753
We had a similar thread not long ago. It is popular to be non religious. There is strength and affernment and helps with underlying fears by jumping on the bandwagon.
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Old 08-09-2019, 05:37 PM
 
Location: northern New England
2,540 posts, read 1,118,749 times
Reputation: 9886
I gave up on Catholicism at age 20 or so. Been an agnostic ever since. I believe in a higher power but not one that interferes in our lives.
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Old 08-09-2019, 05:48 PM
 
Location: Florida
5,387 posts, read 3,097,369 times
Reputation: 9767
Always been non-religious, not changed.
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Old 08-09-2019, 05:56 PM
 
1,230 posts, read 287,724 times
Reputation: 2453
I rejected the religious brainwashing about when I realized there was no Santa Claus.
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