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I've gone atheist - how about you?


Guest A.C.

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It's taken a while and quite a bit of "soul" searching (there's a phrase which holds a different meaning for me now!) but I've finally turned 100% atheist. It's been in the works for quite a while now - no god for me any more.

 

Some might know that I've been on a bit of a critical thinking/skepticism kick over the past few months but I've concluded that the only logical result of taking critical thinking to its ultimate end is the lack of any type of god and the realisation that all religion, religious thought and belief in the supernatural are 100% complete and utter bunk.

 

I've always been a staunch defender (on TWO and in real life) of religion. More specifically, I've always taken it personally when people launched what I thought were vulgar attacks on belief. Nowadays not so much. There are very few things in the world that, in my not particularly humble opinion, deserve less respect and more opprobrium than belief in the supernatural.

 

We've done religion/belief several times in the past but then wrestling's been discussed a lot too and no consensus will ever be reached on that either. A general discussion on the subject of religion would be interesting but I'm looking more to find out what peoples' reasons for their beliefs or lack thereof. Being that it's the festive season it seems the opportune time to do so.

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I don't conform to any one belief, and alot of my beliefs are based on wish fulfilment i.e. i hope theres a heaven in the afterlife because I don't want to face the reality that life just stops.

 

I think religion is good for giving people outlines on life, but then you can form these without any belief in God.

 

I'm agnostic, just incase :)

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I don't conform to any one belief, and alot of my beliefs are based on wish fulfilment i.e. i hope theres a heaven in the afterlife because I don't want to face the reality that life just stops.

 

I think religion is good for giving people outlines on life, but then you can form these without any belief in God.

 

I'm agnostic, just incase :)

 

The "just in case" argument seemed a good one until it dawned on me that god (any god will do for the purposes of this thread - they all amount to the same thing) is supposedly all-seeing and all-knowing. I'd assume that if this is the case then he'd be aware that someone hopes to believe but won't believe until shown and would therefore deal with them accordingly after death.

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Guest Jimmy Redman

I'm quite annoyed that you want a reason for my beliefs, as I was about to say "Not bothered to explain right now" :lol

 

Which I'm not really. But all the same, I was educated Catholic, became a teenager and 'grew out of' religion like most kids I know did at that age, then eventually matured some more and came back to believing in God, which I do. I've never thought too deeply about a 'reason', as in one that I can write down that sounds as inteligent as yours. Its just that I do believe that something is there that is bigger than we can comprehend, and that that is God. He is 'behind it all' and he listens to my prayers. I pray to God, and I have no qualms about saying so.

 

Thats all I can think of this late at night.

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I'm quite annoyed that you want a reason for my beliefs, as I was about to say "Not bothered to explain right now" :lol

 

Which I'm not really. But all the same, I was educated Catholic, became a teenager and 'grew out of' religion like most kids I know did at that age, then eventually matured some more and came back to believing in God, which I do. I've never thought too deeply about a 'reason', as in one that I can write down that sounds as inteligent as yours. Its just that I do believe that something is there that is bigger than we can comprehend, and that that is God. He is 'behind it all' and he listens to my prayers. I pray to God, and I have no qualms about saying so.

 

Thats all I can think of this late at night.

 

Catholicism's an intriguing religion. Wasn't until recently that the Catholic church stopped blaming the Jews for the death of Christ. Why would any blame need to be apportioned if Jesus had been sent by God to die for our sins anyway?

 

Does god answer prayers, d'you think?

 

if you want to be an Atheist then hats off to you man, you've listened, thought about both sides and made your own choice.

 

Exactly how I got to this point.

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Guest Jimmy Redman
Catholicism's an intriguing religion. Wasn't until recently that the Catholic church stopped blaming the Jews for the death of Christ. Why would any blame need to be apportioned if Jesus had been sent by God to die for our sins anyway?

 

Does god answer prayers, d'you think?

 

I'm technically a Catholic, it doesnt mean I agree with everything the Catholic Church says, I mean I'm gay for God sakes. My interest isnt so much in the church as it is with God. I dont even attend church.

 

And yes, I believe he does.

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I'm technically a Catholic, it doesnt mean I agree with everything the Catholic Church says, I mean I'm gay for God sakes. My interest isnt so much in the church as it is with God. I dont even attend church.

 

And yes, I believe he does.

 

How does the prayer-answering manifest itself? I'd suggest, in the main, by your own confirmation bias. Like a gambler who wants to be a winner, you want to be a believer. You want to prove that god is taking a special interest in you. A gambler will remember the few big wins and forget the losses; a person who prays often will not notice (or use the post-hoc reasoning that they didn't pray hard enough or in the proper fashion) when the prayer is unanswered and will trumpet the few times when reality conforms to hope as "proof" that it works.

 

I hope I don't burn bridges in this topic. It seems likely I will but I'll do my best not to be rude. :)

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Guest Jimmy Redman
How does the prayer-answering manifest itself? I'd suggest, in the main, by your own confirmation bias. Like a gambler who wants to be a winner, you want to be a believer. You want to prove that god is taking a special interest in you. A gambler will remember the few big wins and forget the losses; a person who prays often will not notice (or use the post-hoc reasoning that they didn't pray hard enough or in the proper fashion) when the prayer is unanswered and will trumpet the few times when reality conforms to hope as "proof" that it works.

 

I hope I don't burn bridges in this topic. It seems likely I will but I'll do my best not to be rude. :)

 

Just because the answer doesnt manifest itself before one's eyes, or if there isnt an immediate response apparent, doesnt mean that God isnt answering it. The answer isnt always what we want/expect it to be and it isnt always blatantly obvious. Its so easy to say "I prayed for the lottery this morning and I didnt get it" as "proof" that it doesnt work. God isnt a genie granting wishes to everyone indiscriminately. I see it as less about the win-loss ratio, and more about the faith that God is looking out for me and knows whats best for me.

 

Its OK mate, I understand completely and I'm not taking anything you say personally.

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Guest Anime Otaku
I think I'd be best described as Agnostic. I was brought up Catholic but bad experiences with Bigotry in secondary school and my own developing conflicting opinions on certain social and political matters have made me reconsider it. Right now I'm interested in Religion in a more academic way and want to learn more. To me Wicca and Buddhism (TWO rolls it's collective eyes) seem most appealing to me.
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Guest Da Showstoppa

I've always looked at things scientifically - I cannot comprehend that there is an "all seeing - all knowing" presence watching over us. I can't be 100% sure and in times of trouble I have prayed before. As I say though, from a scientific point of view I can't believe 100% either way until it's proven. I also admit that I hope there is "life after death"

 

I was Christened as a baby and taught at a Church of England school for 11 years - I married in Church (respect for tradition I suppose) yet I have never been really religious to any great degree.

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Just because the answer doesnt manifest itself before one's eyes, or if there isnt an immediate response apparent, doesnt mean that God isnt answering it. The answer isnt always what we want/expect it to be and it isnt always blatantly obvious. Its so easy to say "I prayed for the lottery this morning and I didnt get it" as "proof" that it doesnt work. God isnt a genie granting wishes to everyone indiscriminately. I see it as less about the win-loss ratio, and more about the faith that God is looking out for me and knows whats best for me.

 

Its OK mate, I understand completely and I'm not taking anything you say personally.

 

So if there's no proof and no way of quantifying how god is looking after you, where does the faith come from?

 

I think I'd be best described as Agnostic. I was brought up Catholic but bad experiences with Bigotry in secondary school and my own developing conflicting opinions on certain social and political matters have made me reconsider it. Right now I'm interested in Religion in a more academic way and want to learn more. To me Wicca and Buddhism (TWO rolls it's collective eyes) seem most appealing to me.

 

Similar question - where does the appeal in Wicca and Buddhism come from?

 

I've always looked at things scientifically - I cannot comprehend that there is an "all seeing - all knowing" presence watching over us. I can't be 100% sure and in times of trouble I have prayed before. As I say though, from a scientific point of view I can't believe 100% either way until it's proven. I also admit that I hope there is "life after death"

 

I was Christened as a baby and taught at a Church of England school for 11 years - I married in Church (respect for tradition I suppose) yet I have never been really religious to any great degree.

 

Interesting response. You argue from incredulity (I.e.: "I don't understand so therefore how can it be true") but you still pray. Is that prayer in the sense that you're attempting to talk to the divine creator or prayer in that you're hoping really hard for something?

 

You're right that from a scientific point of view there's no way of knowing until we're dead. We can study what really exists and why religious belief exists in this life, though.

Edited by A.C.
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I have a belief system of my own, not quite Christian, not quite Buddist, not quite Tao. It works for me, and the way I see it is that there cannot not be a God of some form. I dont know if its mine, but I fully belive that it doesnt matter because God doesnt care bout belief, just about what we do and what kind of person we are.

 

So dont worry AC, I wont need to pray hard for your soul to get into heaven....just hard for it to be found. ;)

 

 

 

 

 

 

The above comment was a joke for anyone who decides to get offended that I said I would pray for the soul of an atheist.

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I think you should be careful that this thread doesn't turn into you asking people what they believe in and the trying to prove them wrong. Just because you've decided to be fully agnostic shouldn't mean you think you can disprove other peoples beliefs.

 

just my thoughts on the thread. Personally I've been an atheist for a while now but there were times when I simply was agnostic and sometimes where I went to church regularly so I feel I've "experienced" most sides of the multi-sided coin...

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I have a belief system of my own, not quite Christian, not quite Buddist, not quite Tao. It works for me, and the way I see it is that there cannot not be a God of some form. I dont know if its mine, but I fully belive that it doesnt matter because God doesnt care bout belief, just about what we do and what kind of person we are.

 

So dont worry AC, I wont need to pray hard for your soul to get into heaven....just hard for it to be found. ;)

 

The above comment was a joke for anyone who decides to get offended that I said I would pray for the soul of an atheist.

 

In return, I will fervently hope that you come to your senses:lol

 

"God doesn't care about belief" and it depends on "what kind of person we are" were my feelings on the afterlife question for a looooooong old time. Can't reconcile that with the real world anymore though.

 

You say "there cannot not be a God of some form" - how would that be?

 

I think you should be careful that this thread doesn't turn into you asking people what they believe in and the trying to prove them wrong. Just because you've decided to be fully agnostic shouldn't mean you think you can disprove other peoples beliefs.

 

just my thoughts on the thread. Personally I've been an atheist for a while now but there were times when I simply was agnostic and sometimes where I went to church regularly so I feel I've "experienced" most sides of the multi-sided coin...

 

It's a fine line between debate and soapboxing for me isn't it? :lol

 

However, an individual who believes in the afterlife is allowed to say so and has that ability protected in statute and in society. The atheist/agnostic side doesn't seem to be afforded that respect. I ask for reasons for belief I suppose, if I'm honest, because this lack-of-belief-system is still a work-in-progress for me - if there are any loopholes that god can wriggle into then it will deserve a re-think. A strong believer is never going to have their mind changed by a fallible mortal like me anyway. ;)

Edited by A.C.
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You say "there cannot not be a God of some form" - how would that be?

 

I look around, I think about what I know about the universe, I read any theories (scientific or otherwise) and listen to anyones views. But in the end I just cant see even the possibility of a lack of a God. I cant really explain more or better than that.

 

Besides, if someone can find Pete Dougherty attractive then anything could be true.

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I personally like too believe things exist. I've convinced myself there are angels, and they guard and protect us. I get a head rush, looking up into the sky on a beautiful day, as I imagine seeing all these faces smiling down. Everyone becomes an angel, as when you die, everyone is at peace.

I believe there is a God, although, he's not the nice person most people think of. Our creator was nasty and evil, made disease and guns and mushrooms. I think that when you die it's kind of like an escape too something much more peaceful, but you can only leave the nastiness when this God has decided you can go.

 

God does have a fluffy beard and sit on cloud, sending thunder strikes every now and again, when he's bored. He's very vain, and likes too be comfy.

 

Obviously this is my crazy version of God, but it is pretty much what I have in my head.

 

The reason for my belief's-Just beacuse, it's the only thing that makes sense too me.

Edited by Gemsi
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Well i'm a Muslim as many of you know and some of you have just found out, not a strict one, but I have my beliefs and I don't feel the need to justify them to anyone.

 

I also don't feel the need to question other peoples, mainly because they've chosen their own path. The only thing that annoys me is when religion is force fed to people. If you only ever listen to one side of the the argument before making you're mind up, you are a fool. That goes for all things.

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