Author Topic: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?  (Read 3465 times)

0 Members and 2 Guests are viewing this topic.

Offline Kawaii

  • Freshman
  • *
  • Posts: 4
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Female
  • WWGHA Member
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #29 on: December 20, 2015, 12:15:19 PM »

Believe me, life would be much easier where I live and work had I remained ignorant in my Christianity. I'd probably still be doing something I love dearly: singing. Singing in the shower simply isn't the same as seeing people touched by the little talent I possess. Since I don't care for bars, karaoke simply won't do it for me. I've even flirted with the idea of pretending, just to sing again. But it is dishonest, and I simply find that I cannot live in such dishonesty. Plus, I remind myself of the day when someone came to my house to ask me to visit and join their church and said "we really could use someone who can sing like you". It reminds me that in many of my years in the church, particularly in my last 6 years as a divorced man, that no one cared to know a thing about me other than I could sing well.

I, also stuck with church longer than necessary because of my love for singing.  I still do the Hallelujah Chorus annually at my son's school.  I miss it a lot.  The only really secular singing group around here is a barbershop group and I don't think I would want to do that long term.

I can relate! It would be nice if there were more secular choirs in our communities.

Offline Kawaii

  • Freshman
  • *
  • Posts: 4
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Female
  • WWGHA Member
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #30 on: December 20, 2015, 12:46:04 PM »
Questioning Jeremiah 29:11: "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future"  led me to doubts I couldn't ignore.
You don't have to look very far to see that not all God's children prosper. Where was the hope and future for https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sylvia_Likens and all the other children who die from abuse and neglect? The only way I could rationalize it was, "well, He must have really made it up to them in Heaven."  My pain and problems are a walk in the park compared to theirs, but I still didn't want to wait around til I died to experience "God's wonderful plan for my life."


« Last Edit: December 20, 2015, 12:47:40 PM by Kawaii »

Offline velkyn

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 16208
  • Darwins +258/-9
  • Gender: Female
  • You're wearing the juice, aren't you?"
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #31 on: December 20, 2015, 02:52:15 PM »
hi Kawaii,  welcome to the forum.

I looked to see  how far away the church was from the convention center.  A bit more than I want to walk in August.   :)

when I started thinking about the excuses that theists give, especially about the afterlife and supposed "justice", it became pretty clear that it was just nonsense. 
"There is no use in arguing with a man who can multiply anything by the square root of minus 1" - Pirates of Venus, ERB

http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/

Offline median

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 2335
  • Darwins +299/-16
  • Gender: Male
  • Yahweh: Obviously not obvious.
    • Talk Origins
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #32 on: December 21, 2015, 04:24:53 PM »
The Genesis of Doubt & My Deconversion

Like many, I grew up in a Christian home. My parents were divorced but my dad was always allowed to take my siblings and I to church every Sunday (as my mother thought it was good for moral training, etc). We prayed before every meal and weren't allowed to watch "secular" violent or sexually charged TV or movies (for the most part). We got spankings and had our mouths washed out with soap if we cursed. At the age of 10 we were attending a Presbyterian church (though later my dad switched us to the non-denominational Calvary Chapel). One Sunday morning the pastor gave an alter-call (where new church attendees are encouraged to come to the front, receive prayer, and accept Jesus as your personal "Lord and Savior"). I believed I felt the "spirit leading me" to accept Jesus into my heart (yes, at age 10). From then on I was a "born-again" Christian. But it wasn't until age 17 that I got serious about evangelism or theology.

Through high school I was a musician (a drummer). I played in quite a few punk rock and metal bands. Toward the end of high school I joined a band with two Mormon guys (not knowing very much about them or what they believed - though I had been warned by my dad that Mormonism is a false religion and that they have "the wrong Jesus). It was around this time that I believed I had a vision of Jesus in my bedroom. One night, I woke up in a cold sweat and believed I saw a blinding light coming through my bedroom door. Two upward faced hands, a white rob, and the soft outline of a face came through. It was Jesus! He spoke to me in my head and told me to read the bible. The experience was so powerful that it marked a very significant turning point. I called my dad immediately (waking him up) and told him the good news. This was the moment I became a Christian apologist.

I studied the bible nearly every day and committed myself to reading it multiple times throughout the years. I memorized many bible passages, studied theology texts, bible commentaries, bible concordances with Greek/Hebrew definitions, theology websites, and studied Dr. Walter Marten's tapes, books, and lectures (He wrote the book "Kingdom of the Cults" and was the original "Bible Answer Man" on the radio). I filled an entire wall with books on Christianity and read books from Norman Geisler, RC Sproul, Josh Mcdowell, Wayne Grudem, Lee Strobel, Dr. Greg Bahnsen, and many many others. I also became friends with a very well known online Christian apologist (a slick guy of whom I won't name), went on mission trips to convert "cultists" to "the real Jesus", and taught bible classes on theology and Christian apologetics.

But that all began to change when I started debating with atheists at Yahoo forums, discovered books like Dan Barker's Losing Faith in Faith: From Preacher to Atheist, and found websites like ExChristian.net. Naturally, I doubled down on my efforts to be a better apologist and follower of Christ (seeking to fulfill my obligation to defend the faith against Christ's enemies). This was spiritual warfare and I had to arm myself. So I started taking night classes in systematic theology while consulting my other apologist peers/friends on how to deal with atheist arguments. I attended debates and lectures with William Lane Craig, J.P. Moreland, Greg Koukl, Kent Hovind, and many others. I was determined to know the truth, hold fast to it, and defend it to the death no matter what (b/c that was my duty; to abide until the end).

The big shift towards de-conversation began when I started having conversations with a friend Ted who was an ex-Christian. This was someone who never tried to challenge me about my religious beliefs. We hung out sometimes, went to dinner with friends, watched movies, played music, did some recordings, and practiced martial arts. And I was always curious why he left Christianity after so many years (I knew he was a former believer b/c my dad used to work for him and they would debate religion all the time during work hours). "How could he have known Christ and then walked away?" I thought "Doesn't he realize he's choosing hell?!"

As our conversations progressed, he began to spell out the direct contradictions, errors, and blatantly irrational and immoral things he found in the bible when he was a believer (i.e. - the things that were supposedly endorsed by god). To my surprise at the time, he actually encouraged me to read the entire bible (from cover to cover), but without the lense of a pastor or apologist (and I did). I took copious notes while reading the bible for myself and the more I read the more questions I began to have. We would talk about predestination, original sin, the doctrine of the trinity, the conflicting resurrection accounts, miracle stories in other religions, the dying/rising gods in other religions, and Paul's words about "the demonstration of power" in 1 Corinthians.

The real decline (and escalation of doubt) came when Ted and I had a conversation about creation and the book of Genesis. The book says that death did not enter the world until "sin" (the fall of Adam/Eve) did. And the book of Revelation says that after Christ returns (at some point) there will be a new heaven and a new earth and that there will be no more death (the lion will lay down with the lamb, etc).

PARAPHRASING TED:
Quote
But if God is the creator of all plants and animals on earth then let's take a look at them and see what we find. Take snakes for example. What are those sharp poison injecting fangs for if not designed specifically for killing? Were snakes vegetarians before the fall? How so? All throughout nature we find similar examples. Spiders, scorpions, wasps, sting-rays, and many others have features that are used specifically for killing. Do you mean to tell me these animals weren't there before the fall or that they didn't kill anything before the fall? What about the "serpent" in the garden? How does this make any sense?

Months after these conversations, and my subsequent investigations into the bible's many inconsistencies, contradictions, and errors my confidence in the notion that the bible was "the infallible word of God" began to fall apart. Little by little my entire world (and subsequently my social network) crumbled. Devastated (and begrudgingly), I had to walk away.  But it wasn't until years later that I became an atheist.

I continued to believe in a deistic god, a creator of the universe that perhaps didn't have anything to do with humanity anymore, and as I had done for so long before I continued to debate with atheists using presuppositional apologetics (arguing for "the impossibility of the contrary"). I even debated with atheists in my upper division classes while working on my philosophy degree at the University. But this debating only lasted until I discovered a debate between Matt Dillahunty and Matt Slick on the Atheist Experience show back in 2009 (show #593), which also caused me to begin critically analyzing the TAG argument (The Transcendental Argument for the Existence of God) as well as presuppositional arguments. I didn't discover that episode until well after it had been published online but it had a huge impact on my belief in a god as well as my belief in "absolute knowledge".

As with before, I began reading articles online that were critical of TAG and presuppositional apologetics (along with articles that responded to people like William Lane Craig, Kent Hovind, and many others). And as I continued, my confidence in that line of reasoning so too slowly crumbled away. Angry, hurt, depressed, and feeling defeated I had to admit that those arguments were no longer convincing, that I no longer believed in a god, and that I had to start down a different path. Feeling as if life had no meaning or purpose anymore (as religion had so driven into my head from youth), it was either rebuild or die.

Well, thankfully here I am, far happier than I've ever been and thankful to those of you who challenged me to think critically, keep an open mind, and stay intellectually honest.

Cheers,
median
« Last Edit: December 21, 2015, 04:43:11 PM by median »
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Carl Sagan

Offline Nick

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 12431
  • Darwins +322/-9
  • Gender: Male
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #33 on: December 21, 2015, 04:33:18 PM »
Great story.  Still would like to know what you eat the night you thought Jesus popped in on you.
Yo, put that in your pipe and smoke it.  Quit ragging on my Lord.

Tide goes in, tide goes out !!!

Offline nogodsforme

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 11187
  • Darwins +1864/-9
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #34 on: December 21, 2015, 08:07:10 PM »
Isn't it amazing how thin the religious arguments are when you just apply common sense reasoning to them? How could people just sit and accept such malarkey?

Like "there was no death" in some mythical past, because god made a garden paradise where people could just frolic and play with the animals...and in heaven or the new earth or whatever, there will again be no death. Frolic with the lions. Lay down with the lambs. No eat or be eaten.

But don't plants die when you eat them? How about microbes and cells that die all the time? Or does "death" only refer to the death of one special type of ambulatory, noisy, messy, destructive primate?

We have fossils of carnivores dating back as far as the age of reptiles. These creatures killed their food hundreds of millions of years before there were any humans around. And the invertebrates that ruled for even longer had to eat something, which meant they also killed to survive. The animals that didn't kill other animals ate plants, which perforce had to die.

And was the death-free original earth 1.0 meant to continually expand to hold all the animals (insects, birds, fish, mammals and reptiles) plus all the plant life that would just keep reproducing, forever, but never die? Did the people who wrote this stuff think about it at all?

(One of the many questions I asked as a mouthy JW kid was what we would eat during everlasting life after Armageddon. We would not be eating meat or even plants because that would require killing and "death would be no more." My father said that Jehovah would make special heavenly food for us.[1]

My follow up question was, why doesn't Jehovah just make us that food for us now so we can stop killing animals? No good answer came. Change of subject by irritated father.)

I suspect that the mythmakers never imagined that future people would think their "good enough for now" stories about how the world came to be were literally true. As people got more knowledge, they were supposed to let go of the myths that no longer explained anything. Once you realize the sun is just another star that will burn out someday, how can you keep on worshiping it as if it was a living being?

Similarly, it is hard to fathom people today--with all the information available that the ancients did not have-- who think impossible bible stories are literally true.  :-\

And, hot damn, I got to use the word "perforce".  ;D
 1. That made no sense to me, since all the pictures of everlasting life in the JW literature showed smiling, laughing people in their racially segregated groups gathering baskets of fruit. Was that the magic Jehovah food? Would it look and taste like regular earth fruit? :?
« Last Edit: December 21, 2015, 08:11:01 PM by nogodsforme »
When all of Cinderella's finery changed back at midnight, why didn't the shoes disappear? What's up with that?

Offline velkyn

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 16208
  • Darwins +258/-9
  • Gender: Female
  • You're wearing the juice, aren't you?"
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #35 on: December 22, 2015, 08:36:46 PM »
shucks, don't you know that god food is manna and quail,  billions of quail.  :)
"There is no use in arguing with a man who can multiply anything by the square root of minus 1" - Pirates of Venus, ERB

http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/

Online YouCantHandleTheTruth

  • Graduate
  • ****
  • Posts: 380
  • Darwins +81/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #36 on: December 23, 2015, 01:42:13 PM »
Isn't it amazing how thin the religious arguments are when you just apply common sense reasoning to them? How could people just sit and accept such malarkey?

Like "there was no death" in some mythical past, because god made a garden paradise where people could just frolic and play with the animals...and in heaven or the new earth or whatever, there will again be no death. Frolic with the lions. Lay down with the lambs. No eat or be eaten.

But don't plants die when you eat them? How about microbes and cells that die all the time? Or does "death" only refer to the death of one special type of ambulatory, noisy, messy, destructive primate?

We have fossils of carnivores dating back as far as the age of reptiles. These creatures killed their food hundreds of millions of years before there were any humans around. And the invertebrates that ruled for even longer had to eat something, which meant they also killed to survive. The animals that didn't kill other animals ate plants, which perforce had to die.

And was the death-free original earth 1.0 meant to continually expand to hold all the animals (insects, birds, fish, mammals and reptiles) plus all the plant life that would just keep reproducing, forever, but never die? Did the people who wrote this stuff think about it at all?

(One of the many questions I asked as a mouthy JW kid was what we would eat during everlasting life after Armageddon. We would not be eating meat or even plants because that would require killing and "death would be no more." My father said that Jehovah would make special heavenly food for us.[1]

My follow up question was, why doesn't Jehovah just make us that food for us now so we can stop killing animals? No good answer came. Change of subject by irritated father.)

I suspect that the mythmakers never imagined that future people would think their "good enough for now" stories about how the world came to be were literally true. As people got more knowledge, they were supposed to let go of the myths that no longer explained anything. Once you realize the sun is just another star that will burn out someday, how can you keep on worshiping it as if it was a living being?

Similarly, it is hard to fathom people today--with all the information available that the ancients did not have-- who think impossible bible stories are literally true.  :-\

And, hot damn, I got to use the word "perforce".  ;D
 1. That made no sense to me, since all the pictures of everlasting life in the JW literature showed smiling, laughing people in their racially segregated groups gathering baskets of fruit. Was that the magic Jehovah food? Would it look and taste like regular earth fruit? :?

Yeah great points.  It's telling that people long ago like Nietzche and Twain saw through the BS, even living in the 1800's.  And, obviously, there were plenty all the way back to Jesus's time that knew it was all a bunch of BS - even without any knowledge of cosmology.  If everyone during Jesus's time simply believed, they'd never have to keep emphasizing the importance of faith in the Bible, AND they'd never have to invoke hell.  But, obviously, there were tons of people who knew something was wrong and demanded proof - and, of course, that proof never came, so the only way to combat it was with threats.

It's those people, who refused to be gullible, that I have a great deal of respect for.  So many of them died simply because they refused to believe, like in the Inquisitions.  It makes me think of the German soldiers that refused to carry out orders during the Holocaust, and were shot dead on the spot because of it.  Those were the truly courageous people.  We have an open forum and religious freedom, so we can say what we want without consequence.  However, I know in places like Mississippi, Oklahoma, etc. it's still not that way, and those non-believers show great courage.  Then you have the Middle East.

Offline junebug72

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 4027
  • Darwins +285/-107
  • Gender: Female
  • Let's talk about Love
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #37 on: December 26, 2015, 08:45:59 AM »
Hypocrites and contradictions in the bible[1][2][3][4]deconverted me from religion.

Nature, it's many ways of death, deconverted me from gods.

To sum that up Love and intellectual honesty turned me around, upside down, round and round!  Wee
 1. the incest
 2. dinosaurs
 3. thou shalt put no other god(S) before me, plural
 4. last but not least Hell is not love
Belief in a cruel god makes a cruel man...Thomas Paine

Offline Mrjason

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 2204
  • Darwins +168/-2
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #38 on: January 10, 2016, 06:14:30 PM »
can you remember a seminal moment that caused you to start questioning your faith, and led to your deconversion?

Yes.

What's your story?

My brother-inlaw died a difficult death and I asked why.

Offline albeto

  • Postgraduate
  • *****
  • Posts: 936
  • Darwins +176/-1
  • Gender: Female
  • WWGHA Member
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #39 on: January 11, 2016, 12:11:32 PM »
Isn't it amazing how thin the religious arguments are when you just apply common sense reasoning to them? How could people just sit and accept such malarkey?

Like "there was no death" in some mythical past, because god made a garden paradise where people could just frolic and play with the animals...and in heaven or the new earth or whatever, there will again be no death. Frolic with the lions. Lay down with the lambs. No eat or be eaten.

But don't plants die when you eat them? How about microbes and cells that die all the time? Or does "death" only refer to the death of one special type of ambulatory, noisy, messy, destructive primate?

We have fossils of carnivores dating back as far as the age of reptiles. These creatures killed their food hundreds of millions of years before there were any humans around. And the invertebrates that ruled for even longer had to eat something, which meant they also killed to survive. The animals that didn't kill other animals ate plants, which perforce had to die.

And was the death-free original earth 1.0 meant to continually expand to hold all the animals (insects, birds, fish, mammals and reptiles) plus all the plant life that would just keep reproducing, forever, but never die? Did the people who wrote this stuff think about it at all?


I mentioned this problem in a conversation with xians just recently, reminding them that death leads to entomological, bacterial, and chemical activities that change an organic thing into nutrients for more organic things. I asked them to imagine if there were no death, there would be no eating (which means no pooping, which means either Adam and Eve didn't poop, or their bodies were suddenly and violently changed to incorporate an entire digestive system - which makes it odd that a piece of fruit would be tempting), the earth would be super saturated with biological life so quickly that vegetation and animals, birds, fish, insects would be some hundreds of feet deep by now, crawling over each other. Unless birth would also be suddenly inoperative once the creator god determined the earth was populous enough. So perhaps he would have been more inspired to pay attention and help out humanity if Eve never ate that first fruit, thus bringing upon us this "fall." Predictably, the reply concentrated on what a jerk I am for not considering a spiritual reality.

My tipping point was "sin." Behavior is explained so elegantly by natural explanations, making "sin" an awkward concept at best. That, and being accused of being a jerk when I asked questions for genuine reasons (I wanted desperately to keep my faith).
« Last Edit: January 11, 2016, 12:13:09 PM by albeto »

Offline The Gawd

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1535
  • Darwins +139/-6
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #40 on: February 08, 2016, 07:20:06 AM »
I think i had two moments. One when i was in Jr high I had a guinea pig who was clearly dying. One morning i could tell would be his last day before i went to school. Sadly i had a detention that day so not only would I be in school late but I wouldnt have a bus to get home so i would have to walk to long walk. So i prayed and prayed on the walk home that he would survive long enough for me to see him one last time.

He died during the day. I kept asking myself why wouldnt a simple prayer like that be answered.

Later while in college i had come across a muslim or muslim literature that said Jesus never claimed to be god. So i asked one of my muslim friends (we never talked religion and they NEVER proselytized) if i could borrow a Qur'an to see what it said. He explained that it was a english version which wouldnt be quite accurate due to translation but gave it to me none-the-less.

Some scripture had Isa saying in regards to being god, "why would i say that which i had no right to say?"

I went to my bible and looked up the verses christians claim is Jesus saying hes god, and it was all iffy. Seemed to me the most important thing he could say he should say clearly.

Then the pieces started coming together.

Offline nogodsforme

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 11187
  • Darwins +1864/-9
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #41 on: February 08, 2016, 08:29:03 PM »
^^^Yes, it does seem that if Jesus was god and wanted people to know that, he would not be coy about it! None of this vague, "I am sent by my father" stuff that could mean just about anything you want. Sent by his bio dad Joseph? Sent by Zeus? Satan? Marlon Brando? The pope? Big Daddy V?[1]

Not to mention, Jesus the all-powerful, all-knowing and all-caring god-being would be able to communicate far, far more clearly than any normal mortal human ever. He would also make sure his message--the most important information ever in the history of the world, right?-- got to everyone on the planet immediately and would never be corrupted or mistaken. Everyone from the people of the Pacific Islands to the Alaskan Inuit to the Mbuti pygmies to the Aztec of Mexico to the Norse Vikings would get the message, all at the same time and in their own languages. No need to wait centuries or millennia for humans to show up with whatever mistranslated version of Jesus' message they happened to bring with them.[2] What possible downside could there be in that?

Suffice to say, Jesus would probably not rely on fallible people accurately remembering what he said, and then telling other people, who then would tell other people, and so on, in the world's longest game of telephone line, until some time later somebody would think of writing it down. Relying on humans writing stuff down is the kind of thing that ordinary human beings do. That is exactly what Confucius, Muhammed and Joseph Smith did. Why would the one real god do the exact same things as every regular old human philosopher-- and the same as every fake prophet? And most other religions got their stuff written down while the person who came up with the ideas was still alive, ie much closer to the source than the words attributed to Jesus.

By waiting so long, what finally got written down would be the last version of the message, which would be nothing like the original words Jesus said. Even the most simple example of information transmission gets garbled as time passes. Why didn't Jesus write the message himself, in permanent letters of blazing fiery gold on the side of a huge mountain or other landmark on every continent, in every language that would ever be used by humans? Should be child's play for someone who created the entire universe with his voice.

I know what believers will say.

The very idea of Jesus doing something like that is ridiculous, you arrogant atheist. If he did that, you would still not believe, because you want to sin. And if he had done that, there would be decent evidence and thus no need for faith, which is, of course not at all blind although it depends on believing things without decent evidence. If Jesus had done that, everyone would have an equal chance to understand his message accurately, and you cannot have that. Finally, Jesus could not know what languages would be spoken in the future, or how to make the letters permanent, or what message would be the most important one to pass down through all time.

Because to do all that, he would have had to have been, like, a god or something. :angel:
 1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viscera_%28wrestler%29
 2. Or does it not matter that the Catholics conquered the Americas and got their version established in many countries before the Protestants even had their own bible?
When all of Cinderella's finery changed back at midnight, why didn't the shoes disappear? What's up with that?

Offline Star Stuff

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 5981
  • Darwins +189/-4
  • Gender: Male
  • Carbon-based life form.
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #42 on: February 08, 2016, 09:15:31 PM »
^^^Yes, it does seem that if Jesus was god and wanted people to know that, he would not be coy about it! None of this vague, "I am sent by my father" stuff that could mean just about anything you want. Sent by his bio dad Joseph? Sent by Zeus? Satan? Marlon Brando? The pope? Big Daddy V?[1]

Not to mention, Jesus the all-powerful, all-knowing and all-caring god-being would be able to communicate far, far more clearly than any normal mortal human ever. He would also make sure his message--the most important information ever in the history of the world, right?-- got to everyone on the planet immediately and would never be corrupted or mistaken. Everyone from the people of the Pacific Islands to the Alaskan Inuit to the Mbuti pygmies to the Aztec of Mexico to the Norse Vikings would get the message, all at the same time and in their own languages. No need to wait centuries or millennia for humans to show up with whatever mistranslated version of Jesus' message they happened to bring with them.[2] What possible downside could there be in that?

Suffice to say, Jesus would probably not rely on fallible people accurately remembering what he said, and then telling other people, who then would tell other people, and so on, in the world's longest game of telephone line, until some time later somebody would think of writing it down. Relying on humans writing stuff down is the kind of thing that ordinary human beings do. That is exactly what Confucius, Muhammed and Joseph Smith did. Why would the one real god do the exact same things as every regular old human philosopher-- and the same as every fake prophet? And most other religions got their stuff written down while the person who came up with the ideas was still alive, ie much closer to the source than the words attributed to Jesus.

By waiting so long, what finally got written down would be the last version of the message, which would be nothing like the original words Jesus said. Even the most simple example of information transmission gets garbled as time passes. Why didn't Jesus write the message himself, in permanent letters of blazing fiery gold on the side of a huge mountain or other landmark on every continent, in every language that would ever be used by humans? Should be child's play for someone who created the entire universe with his voice.

I know what believers will say.

The very idea of Jesus doing something like that is ridiculous, you arrogant atheist. If he did that, you would still not believe, because you want to sin. And if he had done that, there would be decent evidence and thus no need for faith, which is, of course not at all blind although it depends on believing things without decent evidence. If Jesus had done that, everyone would have an equal chance to understand his message accurately, and you cannot have that. Finally, Jesus could not know what languages would be spoken in the future, or how to make the letters permanent, or what message would be the most important one to pass down through all time.

Because to do all that, he would have had to have been, like, a god or something. :angel:
 1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viscera_%28wrestler%29
 2. Or does it not matter that the Catholics conquered the Americas and got their version established in many countries before the Protestants even had their own bible?

Indeed, and you have prompted me to make this new thread:

http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,29681.new.html#new
God is an Imaginary Friend for Grown-ups

Offline The Gawd

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1535
  • Darwins +139/-6
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #43 on: February 14, 2016, 04:35:09 PM »
^^^Yes, it does seem that if Jesus was god and wanted people to know that, he would not be coy about it! None of this vague, "I am sent by my father" stuff that could mean just about anything you want. Sent by his bio dad Joseph? Sent by Zeus? Satan? Marlon Brando? The pope? Big Daddy V?[1]

Not to mention, Jesus the all-powerful, all-knowing and all-caring god-being would be able to communicate far, far more clearly than any normal mortal human ever. He would also make sure his message--the most important information ever in the history of the world, right?-- got to everyone on the planet immediately and would never be corrupted or mistaken. Everyone from the people of the Pacific Islands to the Alaskan Inuit to the Mbuti pygmies to the Aztec of Mexico to the Norse Vikings would get the message, all at the same time and in their own languages. No need to wait centuries or millennia for humans to show up with whatever mistranslated version of Jesus' message they happened to bring with them.[2] What possible downside could there be in that?

Suffice to say, Jesus would probably not rely on fallible people accurately remembering what he said, and then telling other people, who then would tell other people, and so on, in the world's longest game of telephone line, until some time later somebody would think of writing it down. Relying on humans writing stuff down is the kind of thing that ordinary human beings do. That is exactly what Confucius, Muhammed and Joseph Smith did. Why would the one real god do the exact same things as every regular old human philosopher-- and the same as every fake prophet? And most other religions got their stuff written down while the person who came up with the ideas was still alive, ie much closer to the source than the words attributed to Jesus.

By waiting so long, what finally got written down would be the last version of the message, which would be nothing like the original words Jesus said. Even the most simple example of information transmission gets garbled as time passes. Why didn't Jesus write the message himself, in permanent letters of blazing fiery gold on the side of a huge mountain or other landmark on every continent, in every language that would ever be used by humans? Should be child's play for someone who created the entire universe with his voice.

I know what believers will say.

The very idea of Jesus doing something like that is ridiculous, you arrogant atheist. If he did that, you would still not believe, because you want to sin. And if he had done that, there would be decent evidence and thus no need for faith, which is, of course not at all blind although it depends on believing things without decent evidence. If Jesus had done that, everyone would have an equal chance to understand his message accurately, and you cannot have that. Finally, Jesus could not know what languages would be spoken in the future, or how to make the letters permanent, or what message would be the most important one to pass down through all time.

Because to do all that, he would have had to have been, like, a god or something. :angel:
 1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viscera_%28wrestler%29
 2. Or does it not matter that the Catholics conquered the Americas and got their version established in many countries before the Protestants even had their own bible?

Quite simply, "Exactly".

It always amazes me how Christians turn yahweh and jesus into powerless regular people unable to do anything, all the while maintaining that they are somehow all powerful. One of my things is telling theists what their god wont do. They start to get irritated at the lengthiness.

Offline nogodsforme

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 11187
  • Darwins +1864/-9
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #44 on: February 14, 2016, 06:24:09 PM »

It always amazes me how Christians turn yahweh and jesus into powerless regular people unable to do anything, all the while maintaining that they are somehow all powerful. One of my things is telling theists what their god wont do. They start to get irritated at the lengthiness.

Beginning with 1) show up in person and 2) tell every human being on earth what he wants in a way that they can understand completely. Then everyone can decide if he is for real and worth obeying. Simple enough and straightforward.

Anything less is just a con job, an email from a phony Nigerian prince asking me for my bank account information. Let me meet the prince and see his credentials. Let's go to the nearest courthouse to have an expert look over his documents. Then we can go to my bank and have him explain his problem to the officials there. If everything is on the up and up, we might have a deal. If the prince cannot meet those simple requirements, get the hell off my email.

Same thing with any gods who want my obedience. Don't send me some guy with an anonymous old book who claims to speak to you in his head. Come to my house in person, god, and let's chat. Let's see if you are real first.  I may not decide to obey or worship you, but we can at least ascertain that you are real. Then we can take it from there.
When all of Cinderella's finery changed back at midnight, why didn't the shoes disappear? What's up with that?

Offline RETheUgly

  • Novice
  • Posts: 1
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #45 on: September 09, 2016, 01:51:22 PM »
    My "tipping point" was when I realized something important, building on the belief I hold that an omnipotent and omniscient entity in an "existence" (reality, universe, multiverse, whatever would be the largest container of what is) would necessarily be that "existence", or so close to such that the entity would be inextricable from the very fabric of reality. The important realization was that such an entity couldn't be a human-like intelligence, because we are what we are because we are limited and unsure; it would be unrecognizable to us, because of the vastness and complexity of its ability. Its work would make its will and knowledge be reality itself!

    I now believe that some universally able entity exists, but I believe that entity is what it controls. I believe that all of the "rules" of physics, etc, are the results of this entity's reactions to what was before. I essentially make reality into an entity that is wholly alien to us, to the degree that it might as well not be.

    Truthfully, the only reason for my belief in this is to provide a reason for why the "rules" are what they are. If I were researching the formation of the universe, when the current "rules" came to be, that might be an issue, but in my life it really doesn't do any more than convince me that random, "rule-breaking" things can't happen, and that all events depend entirely on their predecessors and if one knew all of reality they could predict the future and past exactly. But we can't comprehend that degree of information.

    In essence, I have an "entity" in the stead of a "universe" that might or might not contain a "god".

Offline Foxy Freedom

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 2703
  • Darwins +304/-14
  • Why is it so difficult to say you don't know?
    • Foxy Freedom on Doctor Who
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #46 on: September 09, 2016, 02:54:44 PM »
   I now believe that some universally able entity exists, but I believe that entity is what it controls. I believe that all of the "rules" of physics, etc, are the results of this entity's reactions to what was before. I essentially make reality into an entity that is wholly alien to us, to the degree that it might as well not be.

    Truthfully, the only reason for my belief in this is to provide a reason for why the "rules" are what they are. If I were researching the formation of the universe, when the current "rules" came to be, that might be an issue, but in my life it really doesn't do any more than convince me that random, "rule-breaking" things can't happen, and that all events depend entirely on their predecessors and if one knew all of reality they could predict the future and past exactly. But we can't comprehend that degree of information.

    In essence, I have an "entity" in the stead of a "universe" that might or might not contain a "god".

The underlying nature of the universe which physicists study is all about random rule breaking things which don't depend on their predecessors. Order comes from chaos like the patterns you see when you make a whirlpool in water with your hands. The average whirlpool is what you call the laws. Heat is just the average of the energy of molecules moving around.
The Foxy Freedom antitheist website is http://the6antitheist6guide6.blogspot.co.uk

The 2nd edition of the free ebook Devil or Delusion ? The danger of Christianity to Democracy Freedom and Science.       http://t.co/2d1KcJ9V

Offline Boots

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1740
  • Darwins +163/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • Living the Dream
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #47 on: September 12, 2016, 01:53:48 PM »
       Truthfully, the only reason for my belief in this is to provide a reason for why the "rules" are what they are.

question for you RTU.  Sincere, not meant to be snarky or smarmy.

Dude, why not just "I don't know?"
...religion is simply tribalism with a side order of philosophical wankery, and occasionally a baseball bat to smash...anyone who doesn't show...deference to the tribe's chosen totem.

~Astreja

To not believe in god is to know that it falls to us to make the world a better place.

~Sam Harris

Offline EyesOpen

  • Freshman
  • *
  • Posts: 19
  • Darwins +1/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #48 on: October 27, 2016, 10:58:45 AM »
I was born and raised Roman Catholic.  I attended Catholic grade and high school in the late 60's and 70's.  My deconversion began early with lots of things about the "church" not making sense to me.  Things like special dispensations, poor explanations of conflicting "teachings", and the known history of the violence and coruption of the Catholic church.  The turning point for me occurred in high school, which was quite liberal at that time, in a class that taught about other religions (from a Catholic standpoint , of course).  However, the course taught me to apply the same skepticism that was used to denounce the other religions to Catholicism.  I'm sure that wasn't their intent, however, it was the result in my case.
Be careful what you wish for...you just might get it

Offline velkyn

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 16208
  • Darwins +258/-9
  • Gender: Female
  • You're wearing the juice, aren't you?"
Re: What was the tipping point in your deconversion?
« Reply #49 on: October 28, 2016, 06:48:12 PM »
I was born and raised Roman Catholic.  I attended Catholic grade and high school in the late 60's and 70's.  My deconversion began early with lots of things about the "church" not making sense to me.  Things like special dispensations, poor explanations of conflicting "teachings", and the known history of the violence and coruption of the Catholic church.  The turning point for me occurred in high school, which was quite liberal at that time, in a class that taught about other religions (from a Catholic standpoint , of course).  However, the course taught me to apply the same skepticism that was used to denounce the other religions to Catholicism.  I'm sure that wasn't their intent, however, it was the result in my case.

always a danger when someone actually takes the tool and uses it :)
"There is no use in arguing with a man who can multiply anything by the square root of minus 1" - Pirates of Venus, ERB

http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/