So I was looking for stats on how many atheists were once theists of some type or another (still haven;t found it-- so could use some help) and I found this page.
I thought it was interesting in the fact they try to keep Christians aware of logical fallacies..
I know how we feel about religion already, what I'm wondering are your views on this primer for converting atheists...
Doritos makes a lot of sense. Much like American Jesus, these chips sound like something which could be Mexican based on the name, but is really just a bastardization made to appease white folks. Not saying I don't eat them though. Er... Doritos, not Jesus crackers.
First of all, the “wikiHow” article proceeds with the unstated assumption that we atheists are just misguided folk who need to see the truth. There seems to be no awareness that faith and truth are not synonymous.
Secondly, most of what is prescribed could just as well be a guide for atheists to convert theists; but of course, the authors don’t realize that, because, since they “know” the truth already, they believe that the process they prescribe will lead logically to theism. In other words, they make the fallacious assumption that what they consider rational discourse will naturally convert an atheist. Yeah, right!
Thirdly, the article lacks consistency. On the one hand, it suggests that a close examination of logic and science will lead to the “truth;” on the other hand, it quotes the Bible to make an argument. If the Bible held the "truth," there would be no necessity to bring science or logic into it. And vice versa. The fact that they use both tactics, which are 100% incompatible, hints at desperation. The author says, “Realize that human theories are not evidence whether God exists or not.” In point of fact, human scientific theories are powerful evidence that God does NOT exist. There is no scientific theory that points to even the possibility of God - NONE!
The author uses the word “ideal” to describe what he accepts as the perfection of the Earth. The Earth - PERFECT? Far from it. If it were perfect, 99.99% of all the species of life that ever existed would not be extinct. Species, as we speak would not be daily becoming extinct. And the few surviving species that exist today would not be struggling so pathetically to survive. The evidence strongly suggests, they won’t. WE won’t! Not my idea of “perfect.”
At one point, the author says, “human brains work with faith, opinion and many other things than just intellectual/theoretical logic.” What he is saying, of course, is that faith and opinion are of equal validity with science when judging what is true. Actually, science is a method of searching for truth. Faith and opinion are lazy ways of avoiding that search.
I have been confronted by just about every imaginable strategy to get me to accept the concept of God or gods, and none of them has made a dent. At the same time, although I’ve never consciously attempted to convert anyone to atheism, I still caused, through intellectual osmosis, I guess, three friends to seriously question the validity of their theism, simply though the process that this article lays out.
Bottom line: this approach is pretty much what I confront when J.W.’s come ‘a callin’. And it is an utter failure as a strategy with me, as I’m sure it is with all true atheists.
I love it when christians try to convert me. I especially like it when they use the method prescribed in the article as they are at least intelligent enough to realise that frontal assaults will not work.
I, however, go on the offensive, without offence of course, and question their faith and beliefs a lot harder than they question my knowledge and understanding of the universe, using similar methods. The question I usually start with is 'Do you really believe the story of Adam and Eve? About talking snakes and a piece of fruit that we buy in the grocery store making us self aware? God makes Adam from clay then makes Eve from one of his ribs, what's that all about?' The answer is usually no, thankfully, and that's when I really go to town on why they believe any of it, pulling apart religious commands, miracles and inconsistencies until they either give up or begin to see the truth for what their bible really is.
A couple of years back a man was calling door to door after school time but before parents got home from work, talking to teenagers about religion. I had a few days off work to finish some decorating and answered the door. The man asked if my children were in, asking for them by name. He was in his forties and I immediately became suspicious. My daughter was 17, my son 16 at the time.
He explained he was spreading the word of god and so I invited him in to talk with all of us as I wanted to hear what he had been saying to my children. I will not go into the whole charade but my children were almost busting a gut trying not to laugh by the time the very flustered and red faced missionary almost ran from my house. I was very polite and discussed everything in a very calm and collected manner. I did raise an eyebrow at a few of the things he said and asked "You really believe that? Are you sure?" a few times.
He had called before and my son knew him, he sometimes gave sermons at his school. My son was 5' 10" and a brown belt at ju jitsu at the time so I was not overly worried they had let him talk to them previously, but they had not been able to get him off the doorstep the last time he had called. He obviously thought he had a chance and called to talk to them again...he never called back after that though. Still, it cheered up my afternoon and I went back to painting with a lighter heart.
Actually, I miss Betty and John, my two Jehovah's Witlesses, who stopped coming by, Betty was kinda cute, in a religious sort of way --
well if the Christians all start learning how to do brain surgery so they can safely remove the part of the human brain responsible for logic, rational thinking, curiosity and free/individual thinking, then they might have something going for them.
Brain surgery seems hardly needed, all the 'higher functions' can be compromised by just simple 'under use'.
In regards to 'tricking' Atheists into going to church, I once was a member of a church where the senior pastor privately told me that it's easy to keep someone coming back to a church. All one needed to do was to give them a job, or give them a friend. In hindsight, I realized I was given a lot of jobs in that church!
Exploiting a weakness works for both Christian churges and Scientology.
Sure you can keep them coming back... but that doesn't mean they believe.
I take it that you had no friends?
I have found that independent thought does not always yield deep friendships. This might be a blind spot .....
An example of how one's deep religious belief of social superiority to that of, "unbelievers" distorts the ability to recognize the whole truth. C'mon now, really think about that one. No true and deep friendship if you're not a believer? Lol. Not a believer in your religion, you mean. Lol.
Not sure but of late atheist numbers are growing and the religions are falling. Moreover recent stats show that atheists are more knowledgeable on the scriptures, not being brainwashed every Sunday by the preacher trying to omit or spin scripture to suit their Church's agenda. Be aware Christians do the same in pointing out their own logic and their own ideas about perceived fallacies regarding atheist thinking.
My dad knew the Bible inside-out, upside-down and backwards and in the early 70's when it was common for the local preacher to stop by your house on Sat to sell their Church, etc. My dad would sit 'em at the kitchen table with a cup of coffee and dismantle 'em, every one. Ruthless, the preacher never faced an atheist who knew the Bible better than they.
Or merely consider the outcome from all the clashing beliefs/religions. None of them can really sit together and agree, though they put on a façade of agreement in front of public view as all Christian, etc. But most all atheists can certainly agree and sit together worldwide.
Science, the whole truth is functional for all people. This is why an atheist is an atheist, because it works everywhere and for all. But the religious believer is stuck in a very limited box of thinking, unable to look beyond the trap of their Satanic fear based beliefs.