So in what has to be one of the most surreal moments of my godlessness I was asked by a close friend of mine to speak to her Sunday school class about atheism. The kids are between 15-17 and "non-denominational." My friend has sworn that this isn't some sort of malicious attempt to convert me, and I trust her on that.
I said I would give the lecture.
So people of ThinkAtheist here's my question for you:
If you could tell young Christians (in the south no less) about your atheism what would you tell them?
I'd touch on science and evidence and imperfect creatures in a supposedly perfectly created world. I'd also talk about the unbelieved gods of all the other religions.
My question is, Why would a Sunday school teacher want to teach her students about atheism?
Yes, its sounds fishy to me too.
I trust my friend, she loves me and has never once tried to convert me, she is a bit of a cafeterian in her Christianity.
The way she explained her request to me was that she doesn't approve of Christians who go out into the world dehumanizing anyone who disagrees with them, relationships with god are between one person and their faith and to act otherwise is to not love your neighbor as yourself.
Essentially we all have to share this earth, we may as well not be dicks to eachother about it.
Your friend sounds like a good person, a rare commodity.
Sounds like your friend has a good heart. I guess that might be a good question for them, WHY do they NEED a relation ship with God in the first place? Love yourself, love the parents that created you, love each other, why does a god even need to enter the picture?
If they are armed with baseball bats and pitch forks, try to convey to them that "Atheists", are not the monsters we are portrayed to be by some. We are as loving and caring and as moral as any person that might call themselves a "Christian". That there are good and bad people regardless of their belief or lack of.
you can describe what it means for you. You're not there to preach, I'm pretty sure, nor to convert. Lest you would probably not have been invited.
I would tell them that for me (regardless of formal definitions, though I think Becca is right-on), I don't believe god exists, then open the floor for questions.
I would tell those young minds to marginalize any preconceived ideas about god and religion....and the religious indoctrination that is being foisted on them. Learn to question anything and everything and to think for themselves.......M..
Nothing. Atheism is not something you go preach and spread. That job is taken by religious ones.
The majority of the foundation on which the Christian faith is based is the Bible.
I would have the children do the experiment where they start with a written phrase and whisper it one to another in a chain and the last person silently writes down what he/she thinks the phrase is.
Use that as an example of how the Bible has been passed down for over 4000 years like that (old testament) and how - with every person it was spoken to - it changed. Also, show how some phrases and words are taken out of context when translated between languages.
I would also recommend visual aids including the comparisons of Jesus to Mithra and Horus, who predated the alleged presence of Jesus by over 1000 years...