Wondered whether you were familiarizing yourself with atheist arguments and how to counter those to prepare for a career in religion.
oh, that makes sense, but no :)
Nathaniel, Strega just pointed out that you're a teenager. I had no idea you were that young. I had just assumed you were older. Nevertheless, i feel horrible for saying some of the nasty things I said. I want to apologize. I do sense that you are questioning things. It might take you a while to figure things out more. Our paths are never the same.
If you want to talk about something specific, please do not hesitate to contact me. But I sense this conversation has gone a lil too south for my taste now and going to avoid commenting in this string. I regret some of the nasty things i've said. Stay blessed and please do not hesitate to contact me if you sense I can help you in any way.
it dosent matter XD
im 18, Just see me as one of you, ill say nasty things just as fast as anyone else.
honestly, im leaving too, because my studies are becoming stressful, when i come back id love to talk more.
I'm sorry, what was the topic again? Oh yes, :Nathaniel claims to not be a bi-pedal mammal like the rest of us. Ok, proceed.
Nate - Lets cover evolution.
Tell me what you THINK it means and what the science says.
I’ve been watching the posts here for the past week with a lot of interest, as well as contributing my own. Some things I’ve noticed:
You claim that you were a skeptic. You claim that you actually tried to disprove God. But then you say you are not much of a reader…you have not studied philosophy, or evolution, or cosmology; you have not read critical examinations of the Bible like you would find at any Christian college, and you have not studied what the “opposition” has to say by reading any atheist books. So how hard did you really try to disprove God?
You claim you were a skeptic. Yet you also say you are a missionary kid. Your profile says you’re under 18. I’m guessing 15 or less based on your writing. When were you a skeptic—while living with you mom and dad in a foreign country while they spent their entire working day on convincing others of the truth of Christianity?
You claim you came here to “debate,” but you don’t debate at all. You make wild, unverified claims, then assert that you proved those points and accuse the rest of us of not listening to you.
The truth is if you were really trying to “disprove” a god, if such a thing is possible, you would make yourself well educated on philosophy and science and the alternative worldviews to this god. It sounds from your conversation like you weren’t truly a skeptic. It sounds like you got tired of the religion your parents raised you in, or went through a rebellious phase, but then went back to religion because you didn’t really have anything else.
The truth is we are affected by where we live and who we live with. I was somewhat of a fundamentalist back when I was a kid living in my parents’ house. I thought evolution had been disproven, because I read books that said evolution had been disproven, and of course I could trust my parents when they said those things too right? I had no understanding of gay people, or of liberal politics; I heard Focus on the Family presentations as if they were declarations of absolute truth.
I was a missionary for eight months in Africa, where I was constantly surrounded by other missionaries and church people who had me reading the Bible and praying constantly and –this one is important—talking about what I was reading and thinking and praying. Together we reinforced our own worldview, making ourselves sure of what we thought we knew.
You don’t really have space to become an atheist until you can get some philosophical distance from the people you grew up with, or the people who would shape your mind in their own image. Usually that means moving out. If I had stayed with my parents all my life I might still be a fundamentalist. If I had stayed with the missionary group I may still believe that a supernatural being was giving me messages and occasionally answering my prayers. But getting out of that bubble, seeing what is going on in the world gives you space to grow.
You want to debate? No you don’t. You simply want to argue. If you do want to have a back and forth debate with atheists, learn more about what they believe and why—or at least be more willing to listen when they tell you what they believe and why
The young man is ignorant and opinionated and it is a challenge to find anything of value in what he writes. He writes and thinks like a child, a child who has been brainwashed.
I don't find any integrity in his assertions of wanting to debate/learn. And knowing virtually nothing about science, history and philosophy he is not ready even if willing to learn. You are correct, too, that he is in all likelihood surrounded by deluded people and needs to break away if he is to grow.
And how destructive that environment is when a kid like this who may be well-intended has anti-gay propaganda as part of his world view. Even if Christianity is guilty of nothing else, its role in making the lives of gays a living hell is more than enough to condemn it.
We're all ganging up on a kid, who inspite of his context/teachings/surroundings made the effort to come here and talk. Inspite of him coming from an uninformed space and him having terrible things to say about gay people, disabled people, women etc...he did make the effort to come here.
And we should also remember that we are attacking a fundamental aspect of his personality right now, so if he gets mean or defensive...can you really blame him? And honestly, are we really that surprised from his reactions? Have we not dealt with them already like a gazillion times?
I often think that what would religious people be left with if they didn't have faith, especially for people in my context (think 3rd world country) where the state has failed them, the health care system has failed them, the education system has failed them, they are living in rolling blackouts, with no access to clean water. Can you imagine living in 45+ degrees temperatures and no electicity in the summers...and all that they have is faith. And what happens if you take even that away from them.
He's a kid who made the decision to come here and talk. We shouldn't gang up on him like this. If we don't have anything nice to say or add to the dialogue, we shouldn't say anything. What he is saying is representative of pretty much every religious person that I know. This is their version of being informed, as terrible as it may be, we should set better examples about how we engage with them. I am sure there are a hundred other young kids who probably think the same way...and are just beginning to question. But maybe they will look at how we treated this kid...and just decide otherwise.
We shouldn't gang up on him, even though this is our space, he is ill informed and childish.
I often think that what would religious people be left with if they didn't have faith.
They'd be left with themselves and everything else--w/o the faith.
This website isn't a "be nice to christians who pass by with their tired cliche ignorance and friendly sounding but actually offensive bullshit and tollerate their games and identity-hatred in the hopes of converting him" website.
Some of the atheists here in their lives are surrounded by religious douche bags and endless religious rhetoric and they can come here to be in an enviroment that is extremely atheist friendly. When some religious fool comes here and blabs the same stupid shit that every other theists moron has and come and say and ignores our responses and sea-lions us...he is not worth the slightest of patience or understanding. If after 25 pages of "debate" and the person doesn't show the slightest sign of intellectual development or even an inch of compromise, he's a waste of time and can kindly shove it up their ass and find another website to troll.
We have had some theists come here and bring up interesting arguments and properly counter our own arguments with mostly reasonable ones, read the sources we provide and provide sources that we could read and it can be a pleasant experience...even delightful.
In other cases, it's full out cheesy tiring dreadful dis-intelectual tap dancing. Ever since I saw the "sea-lioning" cartoon...I've realised how much of a pro some visitors here are at that game....and how much critical thinkers entertain them and waste time on them. So yeah...screw these trolls. They can piss off and waste other people's time.
Believable things don't require believing.