This article is notable because so many Christians agree with it
For any intelligent person, the most amazing part of the article is this section:
It seems as if the bullet traveled through Petra’s brain without hitting any significant brain areas. The doctor explains that Petra’s brain has had from birth a small “defect” in it. It is a tiny channel of fluid running through her skull, like a tiny vein through marble, or a small hole in an oak board, winding from front to rear. Only a CAT scan would catch it, and Petra would have never noticed it.
But in Petra’s case, the shotgun buck shot, maybe even the size used for deer hunting, enters her brain from the exact point of this defect. Like a marble through a small tube, the defect channels the bullet from Petra’s nose through her brain. It turns slightly several times, and comes to rest at the rear of her brain. And in the process, the bullet misses all the vital areas of the brain. In many ways, it almost misses the brain itself. Like a giant BB though a straw created in Petra’s brain before she was born, it follows the route of the defect. It is channeled in the least harmful way. A millimeter in any direction and the channel is missed. The brain is destroyed. Evil wins a round.
As he shares, the doctor seems taken aback. It is an odd thing to have a surgeon show a bit of wonder. Professionally, these guys own the universe, it seems, and take everything in stride. He is obviously gifted as a surgeon, and is kind in his manner. “It couldn’t have gone better. If it were my daughter,” he says quietly, glancing around to see if any of his colleagues might be watching him, “I’d be ecstatic. I’d be dancing a jig.” He smiles. I can’t keep my smile back, or the tears of joy. In Christianity we call it prevenient grace: God working ahead of time for a particular event in the future. It’s just like the God I follow to plan the route of a bullet through a brain long before Batman ever rises. Twenty-two years before.
“In Christianity we call it prevenient grace: God working ahead of time for a particular event in the future.” How does an intelligent person even begin to respond to such nonsense? If there were a God, an intelligent person would note the fact that this god’s “grace” left 12 people dead and dozens injured in this tragedy. To say that a god saved this one women while killing all the others wanders straight into the realm of insanity. Yet millions of Christians somehow agree with it. How is that possible?
This is a clear case of religious insanity:
In an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity, George Zimmerman discussed fatally shooting an unarmed 17-year-old in a controversial Florida confrontation earlier this year. Zimmerman said he didn’t regret what led to Trayvon Martin’s death.
“I feel like it was all God’s plan, and for me to second-guess it or to judge it,” he said.” However, at the end of the interview, he said he didn’t understand Hannity’s question. “I do wish that there was something, anything that I could have done that wouldn’t have put me in the position where I had to take his life.”
Zimmerman also had a message for Martin’s parents: “I’m sorry… I am sorry that they buried their child. I can’t imagine what it must feel like. And I pray for them daily.”
Millions of people talk about “God’s Plan” for any number of reasons. It is obvious that God is imaginary, but for millions of people there is a delusional belief that God is real. For these people: How would anyone know what God’s Plan is? It is when this question is asked that the insanity of religion is laid bare.
Imagine that science has discovered a common virus that is known to cause cancer. Now imagine that science has created a vaccine that prevents people from contracting the virus. If you have kids, would you give your children the vaccine? Of course you would. Children get vaccines for many viruses like mumps, measles, polio, etc. as an effective way of protecting them against disease.
But if you are religious, and if the disease is Cervical cancer, and the preventitive step is the HPV vaccination, then all bets are off, as demonstrated by this article:
in this case, Christian parents are intentionally denying their children protection against a common form of cancer because of their religious delusion. The delusion is so advanced that it has impaired the ability of parents to protect their own children. That is a powerful delusion.
In this thread we find a comment from CASTBOUND that he asked this week:
I see no point to the blog or the derision. Why are atheists so interested in converting theists to atheists? All the energy and time put in here must be to convert theists. But why would I want to convert to atheism? My life is very happy, I am well educated and I enjoy God’s creation. If I am wrong how would my belief hurt my future or my prosperity?
Alex seems quite despondent and I certainly want no part of that.
So to sum it up, if atheists just lack belief, why would I want to participate? How would that benefit me?
“Why are atheists so interested in converting theists to atheists?” he asks. By replacing a few words, we can begin to understand the answer. For example:
“Why are non-racists so interested in converting racists to non-racists?”
What’s in it for the non-racist, trying to convert all these racists? CASTBOUND further asks, “if atheists just lack belief, why would I want to participate? How would that benefit me?” It might not directly benefit a racist to convert to a non-racist. But the world becomes a much, much better place if we can eliminate all of the racists by converting them to non-racists. Once racists become non-racists, they understand that better. As racists go through the process of learning about and then eliminating their racism, they see the problems with racism and the advantages of a racism-free world.
The same might be said of sexists: “Why are non-sexists so interested in converting sexists to non-sexists?” The world becomes a much, much better place if we can eliminate all the sexist people by converting them to non-sexists. This post shows how ridiculously sexist Muslims can be. This chapter demonstrates the sexism in Christianity.
The same might be said of homophobes. The world becomes a much, much better place if we can eliminate all the homophobes.
So back to CASTBOUND’s question: “Why are atheists so interested in converting theists to atheists?” It’s because, as a general rule, members of the Christian faith, the Mormon faith and the Muslim faith have a strong tendency to be racist, sexist and homophobic. They are this way because their faith predisposes them to turn off their rational minds and trust what they read in their sacred books. These sacred books openly advocate things like racism, sexism and homophobia, along with many other obviously evil mindsets.
If we can educate Christians, Mormons and Muslims to the point where they abandon their faiths, the rationality they gain in the process of that abandonment is likely to cause them to abandon irrational, unethical, evil mindsets like racism, sexism and homophobia in the process. Our world becomes a much better place.
This is one line of reasoning as to why CASTBOUND and other theists should give up their “faith”. There are many other lines of reasoning as well. Perhaps some of these other lines will be presented in the comments.
If you are a Christian, a Mormon or a Muslim who would like to begin the process of abandoning your delusional faith, this video can help:
The congregation in the church, which has been identified as the Apostolic Truth Tabernacle Church in Greensburg, Ind., gives a standing ovation after the child sings, “I know the Bible’s right, somebody’s wrong…ain’t no homos gonna make it to heaven.”
Imagine the mind of a Christian. Whenever looking at a human being of the LGBT persuasion, the thought running through the mind is, “an all-powerful god is going to torture that LGBT person in hell forever!” How does such poisonous, violent nonsense affect the worldview, outlook and relationships of a Christian? How does it help society in any way?
For nearly three decades Christian Evangelicals have tended to be reliably Republican. (Today, 70 percent of white evangelical Protestants support the GOP.) But now Mormons, Jews, and Catholics are getting on board with the party in increasing numbers. If the GOP is able to consolidate the support of the major religions in the US, Romney and other Republican candidates stand to win big at the polling booth in 2012 and well beyond.
How do Christians stomach the strong disagreement between Republican ideals and Jesus’s teachings?
This graphic gives a nice pictorial illustration of how evidence turns into a scientific theory:
The more evidence scientists gather, the closer we get to the truth.
One thing the graphic does not discuss is predictions. A scientific theory frequently allows scientists to make predictions about the world and then confirm those predictions.
What evidence is there that God exists? What predictions can we make about God?
MacBain, 44, was raised a conservative Southern Baptist. Her dad was a pastor and she felt the call of God when she was 6. She had questions, of course, about conflicts in the Bible, for example, or the role of women. She says she sometimes felt she was serving a taskmaster of a God, whose standards she never quite met.
For years, MacBain set her concerns aside. But when she became a United Methodist pastor nine years ago, she started asking sharper questions. She thought they’d make her faith stronger.
“In reality,” she says, “as I worked through them, I found that religion had so many holes in it, that I just progressed through stages where I couldn’t believe it.”
The questions haunted her: Is Jesus the only way to God? Would a loving God torment people for eternity? Is there any evidence of God at all? And one day, she crossed a line.
Anyone – even a minister – who gives God and religion serious, rational thought can see that it is a sham. There really is nothing there. The equation is: “I can believe in a God who is silent, invisible and a real bastard if he exists. He stands by and lets millions of people starve to death, die in natural disasters and succumb to diseases every day. Or I can eliminate this ridiculous concept from my thinking. When I eliminate it, the world actually makes a lot more sense.”
A New Study Shows that Thinking Helps Eliminate Religion. Here is a description of the study:
Your answer to the following riddle can predict whether you are a believer in religion or a disbeliever:
Q: If a baseball and bat cost $110, and the bat costs $100 more than the ball, how much does the ball cost?
A: If you answered $10 you are inclined to believe in religion. If you answered $5 you are inclined to disbelieve.
Why? Because, according to new research reported in tomorrow’s issue of the journal Science, the $10 answer indicates that you are an intuitive thinker, and the $5 answer indicates that you solve problems analytically, rather than following your gut instinct.
Cognitive theory of decision making supports the hypothesis that there are two independent processes involved in decision making. The first process is based on gut instinct, and this process is shared by other animals. The second cognitive process is an evolutionarily recent development, exclusive to humans, which utilizes logical reasoning to make decisions. Their study of 179 Canadian undergraduate students showed that people who tend to solve problems more analytically also tended to be religious disbelievers. This was demonstrated by giving the students a series of questions like the one above and then scoring them on the basis of whether they used intuition or analytic logic to reach the answers. Afterward, the researchers surveyed the students on whether or not they held religious beliefs. The results showed that the intuitive thinkers were much more likely to believe in religion.
So how do we help to eliminate religion? We get more people to think more analytically. The last sentence in this paragraph is key:
Three other interventions to boost analytic thinking had the same effect on increasing religious disbelief. This included asking subjects to arrange a collection of words into a meaningful sequence. If the words used for the subconscious prime related to analytic thinking, such as “think, reason, analyze, ponder, rational,” rather than control words “hammer, shoes, jump, retrace, brown,” subjects scored higher on tests of analytic thinking given immediately afterward, and they were also much more likely to be disbelievers in religion. This demonstrates that increasing critical thinking also increases religious disbelief.
When a religious person increases his or her critical thinking skills, it would help in many other parts of life.
Reading this post, the level of delusion seems impossible:
I am a little shocked. She says she is a Christian, but the Bible doesn’t say anything about dinosaurs. Should I let him keep them, as long as he understands that dinosaurs aren’t real? Even the PBS shows that he watches talk about dinosaurs and evolution, and how the scientists found these “bones” but the Bible doesn’t say that God ever created them, and the earth is only 6,000 years old, not old enough to have “bones” that they say are MILLIONS of years old! I know that Satan tries to trick us in many ways, and this is one way that he tries to fool man into believing that there isn’t a God who created the universe. How can they be bones when they are made out of ROCKS? I told my son that dinosaurs are one of Satan’s many ways of tricking man, and he must talk to God before he plays with them. Am I handling this right? My first 3 were all girls, and I adopted boys, and lots of mothers tell me that boys are often attracted to these dinosaurs. So I don’t know what to do. Is this just harmless fantasy play for him, or should I be worried that he may go on to believe in things like evolution?
How can an adult living in a modern nation like the United States be this delusional? The post must be a prank. Then you learn about this:
The state-of-the-art 70,000 square foot museum brings the pages of the Bible to life, casting its characters and animals in dynamic form and placing them in familiar settings. Adam and Eve live in the Garden of Eden. Children play and dinosaurs roam near Eden’s Rivers. The serpent coils cunningly in the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Majestic murals, great masterpieces brimming with pulsating colors and details, provide a backdrop for many of the settings.
The museum is an attempt to disprove the theory of evolution:
What does the intolerance toward atheists in the United States look like? Two examples:
Pretty appalling, no?
The Truth about Evolution can be seen in this short, simple article:
Here is the best part:
There is not a single observation or experiment that invalidates evolution. No fossil rabbits in Precambrian strata. No human footprints next to dinosaur footprints. No genetic data showing the synchronized bottleneck of Noah’s ark in all of the animal species. No radioactive dating results or anything else disproving the Cambrian explosion.
There simply is nothing. Or, like Richard Dawkins put it, “Today the theory of evolution is about as much open to doubt as the theory that the earth goes round the sun”.
The only people who don’t accept evolution are Theists. They are willing to ignore all of the evidence in order to cling to their imaginary god.
Looking at the definition of delusion, it is easy to see that all theists are delusional:
We were learning about psychotic disorders and how they are diagnosed, and we were learning the different types of delusions. Two of the types were “delusions of reference”, which are delusions where you believe you are receiving special messages, and “delusions of grandeur”, meaning you believe that you are special, or above everyone else.
I asked my professor, “say someone believes they are special because they believe they are receiving special messages from a source that they think is God. Would they have a delusion of grandeur or reference?” (it was an honest question, I wasn’t trying to be insensitive to the more religious members of the class).
My professor turned red, stammered a bit, and said (after doing the whole “nobody get offended” thing) “questions regarding religion and delusions are very, very tricky to answer… Our culture has made it acceptable to believe in some things that, to outsiders, would seem very strange. The definition of a delusion is ‘a firmly held belief that someone believes despite lack of evidence, and despite contradicting evidence.’ Given that definition, it’s very hard to distinguish between the things religion tells us, and what makes someone delusional. So in diagnosing, it’s important to take the culture into perspective, so you’re not diagnosing devout religious belief as shizophrenia.”
My professor even went on to say “I believe in God. I’m Jewish, although I’m not a ‘good’ Jew. I have no evidence for God, yet I continue to hold onto my belief. Am I delusional? Maybe. But society has deemed that type of thinking to be rational, even though it could very easily be objectively classified as a delusion.”
I just found that interesting, that even though religion basically fits the criteria for “delusional thinking”, psychiatrists basically can’t use it in a diagnosis because it’s a type of “delusion” that’s been deemed socially acceptable. I also found it interesting that some people know that type of thinking is possibly delusional… yet they continue to hold onto it.
“The president of the United States has claimed, on more than one occasion, to be in dialogue with God. If he said that he was talking to God through his hairdryer, this would precipitate a national emergency. I fail to see how the addition of a hairdryer makes the claim more ridiculous or offensive.” – Sam Harris, Letter to a Christian Nation
How do we know that Christians are delusional?
A good response:
Academic debate on controversial topics is fine, but those topics need to have a basis in reality. I would not invite a creationist to a debate on campus for the same reason that I would not invite an alchemist, a flat-earther, an astrologer, a psychic, or a Holocaust revisionist. These ideas have no scientific support, and that is why they have all been discarded by credible scholars. Creationism is in the same category.
Instead of spending time on public debates, why aren’t members of your institute publishing their ideas in prominent peer-reviewed journals such as Science, Nature, or the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences? If you want to be taken seriously by scientists and scholars, this is where you need to publish. Academic publishing is an intellectual free market, where ideas that have credible empirical support are carefully and thoroughly explored. Nothing could possibly be more exciting and electrifying to biology than scientific disproof of evolutionary theory or scientific proof of the existence of a god. That would be Nobel Prize winning work, and it would be eagerly published by any of the prominent mainstream journals.
“Conspiracy” is the predictable response by Ben Stein and the frustrated creationists. But conspiracy theories are a joke, because science places a high premium on intellectual honesty and on new empirical studies that overturn previously established principles. Creationism doesn’t live up to these standards, so its proponents are relegated to the sidelines, publishing in books, blogs, websites, and obscure journals that don’t maintain scientific standards.
It is for these reasons that no intelligent person gives Creationism (aka Intelligent Design) any credence.
This video helps to understand where the universe comes from, via Carl Sagan: