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Laura Corin
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Sorry, I just felt awkward posting to the thread once I realized it was an older thread.  I didn't mean to offend anyone.  I do enjoy these threads and see the value in keeping them going.  Again, didn't mean to offend anyone.  

You didn't offend anyone. 

 

I mean, speaking only for myself. Nothing offensive about posting in a thread taking questions. :D

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I've got a question. For those who identify as atheist, do you consider self to be any other kind of -ist, besides humanist, such as materialist, universalist, confucianist, etc.? If so, what would that be, and how/why did you come to that conclusion? Or do you just prefer to go label-less?

 

I prefer no label. If pressed I'd say I identify most with secular humanism, but it's not something I ever really think about.

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Sorry, I just felt awkward posting to the thread once I realized it was an older thread.  I didn't mean to offend anyone.  I do enjoy these threads and see the value in keeping them going.  Again, didn't mean to offend anyone.  

 

I didn't take offense. I just wanted to let people know that it's okay to revive the Ask a(n)... threads.

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I've got a question. For those who identify as atheist, do you consider self to be any other kind of -ist, besides humanist, such as materialist, universalist, confucianist, etc.? If so, what would that be, and how/why did you come to that conclusion? Or do you just prefer to go label-less?

 

I am a skeptic, and my atheism follows that.

 

However, I've also identified as atheist since the age of 8, when I told my parents I could not longer go to church (Anglican) because it would be hypocritical.

 

ETA: Other -ists ... feminist, socialist, beerist

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I am a skeptic, and my atheism follows that.

 

However, I've also identified as atheist since the age of 8, when I told my parents I could not longer go to church (Anglican) because it would be hypocritical.

 

ETA: Other -ists ... feminist, socialist, beerist

 

I'm also a skeptic, so I guess  I would say I'm agnostic, but strongly leaning toward atheism.

 

 If I had any -ist label at all, I'd probably say anti-theist.  I am personally opposed to organized religion much more than I am to an actual god.  

 

I like beerist.  I'm going to claim that from now on, too.  

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ETA: Other -ists ... feminist, socialist, beerist

Lol....beerist. I'm going to have to tell dh about that one.

 

I'm a skeptic, and yes my atheism comes from that. I've always struggled with religious belief and even flirted with born-again-ism for ten-ish years. Dh was even a pastor for four or so years.

 

But yes, I identify as atheist. I'd say I'm a 6 on the Dawkins scale, though even at my most religious I probably bounced around in the middle of the scale.

 

Otherwise...humanist, feminist, and democratic socialist all apply.

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I prefer no label. If pressed I'd say I identify most with secular humanism, but it's not something I ever really think about.

 

I go by "Atheist" if pressed. I haven't embraced "Humanist" because I just don't want to saddle myself with any particular "active" label, if that makes sense. I'm Atheist simply because I don't embrace a certain belief. If I'm Humanist, I feel I have to in fact take up some sort of belief--even if its just based on compassion and human decency. :)  (I probably fit "humanist" well, but I just don't call myself one. I'm a wuss and lazy, as someone else mentioned.  In some ways, it's also similar to the reason I don't call myself a feminist although I probably am one. I just feel I'd be defending myself too often from both feminists and anti-feminists alike. I don't fit any "we are likeminded thinkers" group very well, and it exhausts me to have to conform to a shifting label.) 

 

Love the Humanists, though. :)

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Now I'm second guessing saying humanist....Maybe there is more to it than I originally thought.

 

ETA: I'm sticking with it. (As if anyone cares!  :lol: )  I still like humanist--perhaps even more than atheist. Until a better term chases me down, it'll have to do. ;)

 

Good, be happy. :)  Embrace what sings to you in the term! 

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The 'Ask an Atheist' thread remains open.  I am happy to take any questions that people may have.

 

L

 

Oh, Laura. Not to derail, but I love your signature. That's my favorite Lord Peter book! (Although I love Murder Must Advertise, too.)

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Good, be happy. :)  Embrace what sings to you in the term! 

 

:lol: Nothing particularly sings to me in the term. It just seems to have less bite when I use it in face-to-face conversations. People don't recoil in horror or squirm in anguish to quite the same degree. Sometimes I'm just not in the mood to deal with needing to defend the whole atheist bit. Humanist seems to require less effort for me. ;)

 

Most often I just say I'm not religious. That usually works well for me.

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I'm just not religious. I don't call myself an atheist, humanist, etc, because I find that people think I believe in certain things or am associated with certain groups of people because of that.

 

Even 'not religious' has caused issues, though, people seem to think that means I just haven't found the right religion or that I'm not really that sure of my lack of belief and would be easily 'converted'. I'm a strong atheist (like, a 6.5 on the Dawkins's Scale). I just don't like the atheist label because the stigma that is (sadly) attached to that term.

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:lol: Nothing particularly sings to me in the term. It just seems to have less bite when I use it in face-to-face conversations. People don't recoil in horror or squirm in anguish to quite the same degree. Sometimes I'm just not in the mood to deal with needing to defend the whole atheist bit. Humanist seems to require less effort for me. ;)

 

Most often I just say I'm not religious. That usually works well for me.

 

I know the feeling. I generally say non-religious as well, unless I'm trying to stir up stuff. (I'm proud of my atheism, but it's not always the time or place.)  For instance, I just say "non-religious" to my Saudi students if they ask (and they rarely do). Once when I said I was an atheist, I literally watched a girl go white and nearly fall over trying to lean away from me.. :D

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I believe that death is the end, just like the death of a plant. Back to the soil, like my Dad in his green burial site under a meadow.

 

L

 

Soil. Eh.

 

Well, what sort of proof would you require in order to change your mind, and believe there is a God who created you, and cared enough about you individually to instill you with a capacity to reason, love, feel guilt over perceived 'bad' actions and satisfaction in perceived 'good' actions. Perhaps a God who cared enough to die for you.

 

What would be the minimum amount of proof that could persuade you of that?

 

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Soil. Eh.

 

Well, what sort of proof would you require in order to change your mind, and believe there is a God who created you, and cared enough about you individually to instill you with a capacity to reason, love, feel guilt over perceived 'bad' actions and satisfaction in perceived 'good' actions. Perhaps a God who cared enough to die for you.

 

What would be the minimum amount of proof that could persuade you of that?

 

 

You didn't ask me, but since I feel the same way as Laura I'll say.....

 

I don't know.  I've yet to see it. But then, I'm not looking for it.  My life is perfectly awesome and full without having to attribute it to a deity. 

 

I once believed in God.  I no longer do, and don't feel like I need to.  It's incredibly liberating.

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I guess God would have to come visit with me in person and provide an adequate explanation for being God and yet not making a divine intervention when, oh, a little Jewish baby got used as an Nazi football, say.

 

I'd have to be sure that if I experienced the above, it wasn't due to a confounding factor. Brain tumour, mental illness, being drugged.

 

I see zero chance of these three things happening.

 

It's OK, because I'm not hanging around waiting.

 

Thank you for answering! (I hope Laura has time to answer, also)

 

I don't think proof in terms of arguments or apologetics is sufficient, and I certainly don't intend to provide any.

 

Regarding what you've said...maybe you're being a little facetious (or maybe not), but the "personal visit" seems a little extravagant, since you already don't believe in a "personal God." But, maybe it's easier to go with the already-established Christian conception of a personal God, since that is what's out there for a lot of us.

 

So, suppose you get the visit -- you're hoping for an adequate explanation, or requiring one? Because if you got the supernatural visit, you may or may not get any explanation at all. Or, you may get something cryptic, like, "I am."

 

Regarding your personal confounding factors, I'm thinking you might be likely to explain away such a thing as a hallucination or whatever, unless others had the same experience at the same time. Such a supernatural event is not common but certainly possible.

 

I would put the odds at greater than zero to happen in you lifetime.

 

 

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I've got a question. For those who identify as atheist, do you consider self to be any other kind of -ist, besides humanist, such as materialist, universalist, confucianist, etc.? If so, what would that be, and how/why did you come to that conclusion? Or do you just prefer to go label-less?

 

I've spent too much of my life identifying with a specific group and trying to fit the label.  Agnostic leaning towards atheist.  Skeptic and questioner.  But I really prefer no labels at all.  They make me start to squirm.

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Oh, it's an honest answer. I personally would need a visit from a personal god under the conditions mentioned to change my mind. And I would require an explanation. Without the explanation, I'd reject God on principle.

 

I've had experiences that others might call 'spiritual'. For me, it's sufficient to see them as metaphors. For example, the night after dd1 was born, I was alone in the room - very sick, very tired, very responsible for the baby on my own - and I felt a sense of being wordlessly rocked and comforted by a Mother. It was lovely.

 

It was enough for me to interpret that as a metaphorical experience of being mothered as I mothered for the first time. I didn't feel that I needed an actual Mother Goddess in the room with me. The brain is an amazing organ and can produce very wonderful experiences and insights.

 

Nice! So you've already had some spiritual experiences, that you think (and perhaps were) produced by your brain. Or, perhaps not.

 

Regarding the explanation, I'm not confident you would get it. There is quite a bit that is left unexplained, even though Christians believe God has revealed things about himself. So if God appears to you in a supernatural visit...confirmed to you because at least one other person witnesses/experiences the same thing, you'd feel comfortable rejecting God's overture due to his failing to explain himself sufficiently?

 

I actually think it's possible for God to present himself in a way that is both universal and personal. Something that everyone experiences, and followed by something that affects the individual uniquely.

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The brain is an amazing organ and can produce very wonderful experiences and insights.

(emphasis mine)

 

This, except I would push back on someone labeling them as "spiritual."  I think they're probably more accurately emotional experiences from a highly suggestive brain in a species that seeks out community.

 

And yes, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, not apologetics.

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I don't label as anything besides atheist/non-religious. I am intermittently attracted to ecumenical performances or the Quakers or Unitarian Universalism, but never so interested as to actually go anywhere or do anything.

 

If I need an additional tag, I will take "religiously inert." I guess you could say lazy, but it just has a fraction of a fraction of a percent of significance in my daily life. I try to expose the kids to a lot of cultures and some cultural aspects of the Jewish side of their religious background.

 

All the religious culture stuff is interesting to me, but gods and faith and spirituality? That's all just a nullset.

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Soil. Eh.

 

Well, what sort of proof would you require in order to change your mind, and believe there is a God who created you, and cared enough about you individually to instill you with a capacity to reason, love, feel guilt over perceived 'bad' actions and satisfaction in perceived 'good' actions. Perhaps a God who cared enough to die for you.

 

What would be the minimum amount of proof that could persuade you of that?

 

 

I don't think there's anything that could convince me.   I mean, what is there CONCRETE that can prove any of it?  And I don't mean the Bible.  I'd say I'm probably a 6.5 on the Dawkins scale.

 

 

BTW, if you guys are going to be beerist, can I be a wineist?  Or maybe cupcakeist?  Oh, if we say we drink spirits, instead of alcohol, we can be spiritualists!

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I don't think there's anything that could convince me.   I mean, what is there CONCRETE that can prove any of it?  And I don't mean the Bible.  I'd say I'm probably a 6.5 on the Dawkins scale.

 

 

BTW, if you guys are going to be beerist, can I be a wineist?  Or maybe cupcakeist?  Oh, if we say we drink spirits, instead of alcohol, we can be spiritualists!

 

Agreed.  And, frankly even if there were concrete proof, the god Trish is speaking of has no worship-worthy value AFAIC, so it's a moot point either way.

 

I'll join your wineist club, though! :)

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Agreed.  And, frankly even if there were concrete proof, the god Trish is speaking of has no worship-worthy value AFAIC, so it's a moot point either way.

 

I'll join your wineist club, though! :)

 

Yeah, I've been thinking about this since I posted, and I agree, that even if there was some sort of proof (though what that could be, I have no idea), I would still have to say "No thanks.  I can't get behind your way of thinking."

 

Yay, I have my first co-wineist.  Man, we would have fun gatherings!

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Soil. Eh.

 

Well, what sort of proof would you require in order to change your mind, and believe there is a God who created you, and cared enough about you individually to instill you with a capacity to reason, love, feel guilt over perceived 'bad' actions and satisfaction in perceived 'good' actions. Perhaps a God who cared enough to die for you.

 

What would be the minimum amount of proof that could persuade you of that?

 

 

I really don't know.  It's hard to imagine what it would be.

 

ETA: I wouldn't like you to think that my putting my father into the earth was a moment of despair: it was a lovely day of appreciation and he was buried in a beautiful place.  I miss him, but I'm happy about the life he lived and the send-off he had.

 

L

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I really don't know.  It's hard to imagine what it would be.

 

ETA: I wouldn't like you to think that my putting my father into the soil was a moment of despair: it was a lovely day of appreciation and he was buried in a beautiful place.  I miss him, but I'm happy about the life he lived and the send-off he had.

 

L

 

Laura, I looked at the website, and it seems like a lovely thing to do.  

 

 

Also, everyone should remember that it isn't your beliefs that make you a better person, it's your actions.

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Soil. Eh.

 

Well, what sort of proof would you require in order to change your mind, and believe there is a God who created you, and cared enough about you individually to instill you with a capacity to reason, love, feel guilt over perceived 'bad' actions and satisfaction in perceived 'good' actions. Perhaps a God who cared enough to die for you.

 

What would be the minimum amount of proof that could persuade you of that?

 

 

This probably sounds very naive, but even while growing up Catholic, I never quite understood the part about the sacrifice of Jesus dying for us. Obviously, he suffered greatly during his death, but isn't he spending the rest of eternity in heaven with his father? Maybe I'm missing something major, but from a big picture perspective, it actually seems like a pretty good deal.

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This probably sounds very naive, but even while growing up Catholic, I never quite understood the part about the sacrifice of Jesus dying for us. Obviously, he suffered greatly during his death, but isn't he spending the rest of eternity in heaven with his father? Maybe I'm missing something major, but from a big picture perspective, it actually seems like a pretty good deal.

 

Would it be possible to take this into a spin off thread?  I'm not meaning to be overly organising, but if we can keep this thread to a discussion of what atheists think, rather than questions about religion, it will be a more useful resource.

 

Thanks

 

Laura

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Well, what sort of proof would you require in order to change your mind, and believe there is a God who created you, and cared enough about you individually to instill you with a capacity to reason, love, feel guilt over perceived 'bad' actions and satisfaction in perceived 'good' actions. Perhaps a God who cared enough to die for you.

 

What would be the minimum amount of proof that could persuade you of that?

 

 

The only deity I've met was in a dream and she didn't even care to identify herself, so I'm happily remaining an atheist. So, for me to believe in a god, it would need to do better than that. The god you mean would need to show up in person, before I'd believe. He'd also have to behave very, very badly and threaten myself and my children with a whole lot of very nasty things before I'd change what I'm doing at all, because I'm doing what I do for a reason. 

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I've wrestled with this question before, and I haven't come up a good answer. Belief in a god, in any religion or system on earth appears to be based on faith--a willingness to believe beyond that which we can identify by reason.

 

Sometimes it even flies in the face of reason.  

 

I can't believe in a god that is perfectly loving, perfectly powerful and perfectly knowing because there are so many horrible things that happen to innocents for instance. Baby is beaten to death over the course of a year by parent, for example. Little boy is caged in dog kennel until he dies, and police officers find notes he's scribbled reading, "why doesn't anyone love me?"  

 

Now, some there are lots of people who believe in said god who can make that make sense in various ways (we can't see the full scope of what god sees; those children dying was a mercy because if they grew up they would have gone to hell--they died in a state of innocence; our human understanding of love is limited and depraved and it is possible for god to love those children and let horrible things happen to them, etc.) I did for many years, but eventually I recognized that it rang hollow for me.

 

So, that pretty much cuts out the Christian god. I find this concept of this god illogical. And in spite of the Bible claims that this god is the embodiment of good, there are things it does that appear evil to me. The evil itself does not mean that this god doesn't exist, but the claims of its goodness/all-knowingness and omnipotence aren't logical. (Now, it could be that evil is good and good is evil, and that there is some sort of god that is playing these idea out on the sports field of human earth. . . but I don't see proof for that.)

 

I could potentially believe in an evil god, and that human beings are struggling against it. Or a god that is not all powerful, but is all good.  Or a watchmaker god. Or even a pantheon that exists, but that exist beyond our realm of knowledge, and part of their existence is based on us being unaware of them. . . Or that we're all in the Matrix. 

 

I don't know what WOULD make me believe in ANY of these things, but I think they're more likely than the previous god-belief I had--which is completely internally inconsistent).

 

I don't see any proof for god/gods or Matrices, so I don't see a reason to believe in them. The evidence people provide for a god/gods are not at all, at all, persuasive.

 

 

 

 

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I guess God would have to come visit with me in person and provide an adequate explanation for being God and yet not making a divine intervention when, oh, a little Jewish baby got used as an Nazi football, say.

 

I'd have to be sure that if I experienced the above, it wasn't due to a confounding factor. Brain tumour, mental illness, being drugged.

 

I see zero chance of these three things happening.

 

It's OK, because I'm not hanging around waiting.

 

You might enjoy this book by Julius Lester, then.  It's not your exact storyline, but... pretty close...

 

I'm enjoying this, er, resurrected thread!   :laugh:

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I don't know what would convince me a deity existed, but if it was a deity as described by Christianity, then that deity would know. The fact that it hasn't bothered to give me that evidence (whatever it would be) speaks volumes. When I was losing my Christian faith and trying so hard not to, some evidence that I could have recognized as such would have been helpful. I certainly asked for it. (Edited to say it would have taken a lot less evidence then compared to now considering how much I was trying.)

 

I think if there is a deity, it is much more likely to be a jerk, given its hiddenness, the state of the world, and the mixed messages religious scriptures give when describing it. I could be convinced there is "something" out there if confronted with evidence that is not more parsimoniously explained otherwise, but it would be an enormous task to convince me this deity is loving and worthy of my trust when so much evidence in front of our eyes says otherwise.

 

Still, all in all, I just don't think there is "something", so until such time as I am shown to be wrong (which I am still open to), I'm going with the "no gods" answer.

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Soil. Eh.

 

Well, what sort of proof would you require in order to change your mind, and believe there is a God who created you, and cared enough about you individually to instill you with a capacity to reason, love, feel guilt over perceived 'bad' actions and satisfaction in perceived 'good' actions. Perhaps a God who cared enough to die for you.

 

What would be the minimum amount of proof that could persuade you of that?

 

 

I would be interested in the verification of a single claim made in the bible regarding the nature and character of this god who cared enough to die (which is an awkward, illogical, and problematic concept in this day and age, but more a philosophical one). 

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Yeah, I'm pretty much a 7 on Dawkins scale. I guess because one can never say *anything* 100% certain...not even that the sun will rise in the east tomorrow so I guess that makes me a 6.9999999999999999999999999999999999999999999

 

I'm a 7 on this scale as well. I think we can be as sure there is no supernatural deity as well as we can be sure there is no pantheon of Greek gods stirring up the clouds in the sky and the waves in the oceans. We can be sure earthquakes are the result of plate tectonics, we can be sure weather patterns are the result of meteorological conditions, we can be sure ladybugs come from larvae. Because we can be sure of these things, we can rule out the intervention of a supernatural agent. This "god of the gaps" is now too small to be considered as a viable, possible explanation, and supernatural explanations have never been corroborated. Human behavior is still quite a mystery, but we are exploring the natural explanations behind this and I am confident the human race will one day have as good a grasp of human behavior as it does of earthquakes. Any supernatural intervention (such as "sin" or "grace") will be similarly discarded as not only not plausible, but not worth consideration. We're already making pretty great headway. Neurologists have a lot more understanding that the general population is even aware can be explained. It's a fascinating field, imo, but one more that rules out supernatural explanations, and supports naturalistic explanations. I'm a 7 on the theistic scale in the same way I'm a 7 on the gravity scale. Of course we cannot 100% prove it, but we can be 100% confident that "intelligent pulling" isn't the answer to why muffins return to the ground when thrown at siblings. 

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Well, what sort of proof would you require in order to change your mind, and believe there is a God who created you, and cared enough about you individually to instill you with a capacity to reason, love, feel guilt over perceived 'bad' actions and satisfaction in perceived 'good' actions. Perhaps a God who cared enough to die for you.

 

What would be the minimum amount of proof that could persuade you of that?

 

 

I wouldn't require personal knowledge of a god. There are many things I know to be true even though I haven't personally experienced them. To believe in any god or gods, I'd want to see scientific evidence. So far there is none.

 

As for the Christian god, I don't believe if he did exist that he would be worthy of worship. One doesn't have to look far to see suffering. Every one of us can find it in our own communities even if we ourselves don't experience horrible suffering.

 

It's not just current world suffering that makes me feel this way. If the things he said and did in the old testament are true then he is a nasty piece of work. And if they're not true, then those religions based on it fall apart.

 

Mostly though, I don't even think about it. It's not as though I spend time wondering if I'm wrong, if there really is a god, any god. It only comes up when others bring it up. And it only angers me when religious people (usually Christians) try to impose their beliefs of everyone. Unfortunately that happens often in the U.S.

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I might add that I don't mind how people choose to characterize their experiences, as long as that choice doesn't have an adverse impact on others.

 

If some new mom chooses to believe that the Mother Goddess came and rocked her in person, fine. No skin off my nose! Whatever gets you through and all that. It would be quite nice to feel you'd gotten a visit from a loving, concerned deity.

 

I don't begrudge people their spiritual experiences.

 

I agree. (Although I am not an atheist by definition, I tend to agree more with atheists than deists).

 

For me, I think the biology/science behind spiritual experience is "real" and impactful. Transformation is a chemically and structurally changed brain. That can be characterized as spiritual, but it is a function of science - with or without assigning spiritual meaning.

 

That is why and how I can work a 12 step life - the science behind transformation is profound.

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What would it take?  I really don't know, but I am open minded.  After all, I spent most of my life inside Christianity, really, really trying, burying my skepticism, trying to live by faith despite my doubt, praying for anything to help.  Instead of any life changing insights, I just became more and more depressed.  I don't know that I need some personal encounter with witnesses.  I think I might be persuaded by a personal encounter of some kind, but every personal encounter that I've ever had doesn't need a god to explain it.

 

It's not that I'm so much opposed to the idea of a god.  It's just that every understanding/representation of god I've ever heard of falls way short and are nothing more than anthropomorphic attempts to create god.  I realize none of that proves there isn't a god which is why I probably fall between 5 and 6 on Dawkins scale.  Sometimes I can get behind panentheism but it's really just my metaphor for god.

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That's where I am on the scale.

 

I'm curious.  Were you always there?  Or did you believe at one point and then quit believing slowly?  Or was it a clean, quick break?

 

I just wonder because when I look at the scale I think "Oh, just admit it, say you're a 7 (or 6.99999) and get over it."  Maybe it's not been long enough for me to shake off almost 20+ years of serious trying to believe, but I can't quite bring myself to go that far.  In a way, I think it would be a huge relief.

 

I'm as curious about what leads former religious people to atheism as I am about atheists who become believers.

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I'm curious.  Were you always there?  Or did you believe at one point and then quit believing slowly?  Or was it a clean, quick break?

 

I just wonder because when I look at the scale I think "Oh, just admit it, say you're a 7 (or 6.99999) and get over it."  Maybe it's not been long enough for me to shake off almost 20+ years of serious trying to believe, but I can't quite bring myself to go that far.  In a way, I think it would be a huge relief.

 

I'm as curious about what leads former religious people to atheism as I am about atheists who become believers.

 

1. No, I wasn't always there. I always believed in the Christian god (I was born into an Irish-Italian Catholic family) even though I wasn't always devout. In fact, I was never actually devout. Still, I thought god in general and God in particular was real. What led to my deconversion was coming in contact with fundamentalists (I never knew they existed until we started homeschooling). That started me questioning my own beliefs. The process was gradual but the end was quick, if that makes any sense. I read a lot from both believers and atheists. I explored other belief systems. I toyed with New Age beliefs. That's the gradual part. Then one day (not a day I can point to - it just happened) I decided none of it is real.

 

2. On the scale 7 says "I know there is no god." I concede that none of us really know that, so I don't call myself a full 7. I don't really believe that there are and I'd like to call myself a 7, but how can I say I know that for sure? I don't worry about it though. I simply no longer believe in anything supernatural.

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  What led to my deconversion was coming in contact with fundamentalists (I never knew they existed until we started homeschooling). That started me questioning my own beliefs. The process was gradual but the end was quick, if that makes any sense. I read a lot from both believers and atheists. I explored other belief systems. I toyed with New Age beliefs. That's the gradual part. Then one day (not a day I can point to - it just happened) I decided none of it is real.

 

 

 

This describes me, except that I started out with fundamentalists and did not realize exactly everything they (and presumably I) stood for til after I started homeschooling and the rhetoric and indoctrination became heavier. I remember being dismayed when I asked an elder in our church, "Are we fundamentalists?" and his answer was yes. Since our denomination makes a big deal out of "other people" not really studying their own religions objectively and being blinded to "the truth," I decided to study mine in that manner. The rest is history. However, I've still got issues to work through.

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Except in the South, where I swear the first question people ask you when you meet them is "where do you go to church?" I'm not making this up. That's why it comes up so often in my life.

 

The only stranger thing I've seen in my life is in St. Louis (where I'm from) where the first question people ask you is "What high school did you go to?" I'm not making that up either. But I digress.

 

No, it's not "Where do you go to church", but more like "What denomination are you?".  I've gotten that one. 

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