It's rare for there to be a "Oh! Okay!" moment. usually it is a slow, gradual process, with each little argument and point building up over time to a gradual realization.
So yeah, there is a point, but it's unlikely that you'll see instant or even quick results.
I've deconverted everyone i've ever dated, many close friends, and several family members. This didn't dawn on me until recently because in every case it was such a gradual process.
My current boyfriend went to church every weekend when I met him. His deconversion took a couple years of dropping frequent doubt grenades and an incredibly large dose of Sagan.
well, there's two possible explanations right? 1) it's you and 2) it's them. honestly, it's probably a bit of both. surely there are theists that are beyond being reached by anyone, so obstinate are they in their rejection of facts. but you should also wonder if maybe you just don't have the kind of grasp of the arguments that it takes to be able to defend your lack of belief. do you have the kind of deep and broad tool kit it often takes? have you read enough to be able to muster a fully fledged intellectual defense of your lack of faith? also, consider how you engage with people. are you treating your opponent the very way you want them to treat you or are you perhaps falling short of that? that's important because it's so easy for your opponent to focus on how you're saying something and in so doing ignore what you're saying.
but i would also ask you whether you really expect anyone, even when it's not a discussion of theism but still a discussion about which people hold their opinions strongly, to just up and go "you know what, you're right. i've changed my position as a result of what you just said!"
fact is, that doesn't really happen. so what you should perhaps consider is a change in your goals. rather than trying to get someone to right then and there renounce theism, understand yourself to be planting seeds of doubt that may grow later, and that you'll almost certainly never be around to know that the seed germinated and that that's ok. consider that what you say to someone may be visible to others who will also be made to think about their faith. consider that what you say may be read by another atheist who may not have thought of that tact themselves or read it anywhere else and so you've armed another person with a deeper tool kit with which to defend their atheism too.
but, yes, there IS a point.
It is very difficult to "crack a skull" that has been hardened by a combination of the fear of death and the near total abandonment of real science in American schools. Every school - elementary and secondary - should have a class devoted exclusively to critical thinking. But there are none. Science teachers spend their time showing how a flower is pollinated, but none explaining how to evaluate the ludicrous claims of homeopathy. And they would not DARE hold religion up to scientific scrutiny.
One of the biggest false controversies is whether the states are going to allow creationism (in the form of "intelligent design") to be taught in schools; or whether there should be disclaimers about the validity of evolution inserted into science textbooks. That obscures the real situation: evolution is NOT being taught in the schools competently, if at all, right now. Teachers refuse to teach it if it conflicts with what their mommies and daddies told them when they were young, and administrators are too cowardly to make them do it. Or if they do teach it, they do so very poorly because they were never taught properly themselves. There are colleges (like mine) who never even MENTION evolution (and I was a biology major). Textbooks gloss over the huge topic of evolution in a page or two. More than half of all Americans disbelieve the most robust theory in the history of scientific thought - the most profound insight ever gained into the nature of biology - Darwinian evolution. Virtually the entire civilized world understands and accepts evolution as the best and only viable explanation of what we observe in nature. Except ignorant Americans.
it seems to me that there's way too much of this kind of thing going on. you shouldn't be so quick to lay a theist's beliefs at the foot of psychology when they have reasons they genuinely believe justify their faith. i see this kind of thing too much from atheists. that someone won't be convinced because they hold their belief out of need or faith nicely absolves us of the responsibility of looking inward to see if we haven't convinced someone because we just don't have a good grasp of the arguments or if our delivery needs work but that's probably not a good way to grow intellectually.
anyway, remember that you would be pissed if a theist told you that you refuse to be convinced of the truth of their faith because you need or want to believe that god isn't real for whatever reason. you would rightly respond- angrily probably- that you have good reasons for rejecting their faith. and they would respond that they have good reasons for believing their religion is true. and of course they don't have good reasons for believing their faith is true. but that's just it. it's up to us to demonstrate that. and we don't do that by punting to psychology.
I have not read through all the responces of this tread- ( at 10 cents a minute ((crew rate)) can't stay on line too long)
Science is not "indisputable" it is alway open to further testing... but it is as we know it, at the current level of understanding--- but it is very hard to change the minds of a BELIEVER -- facts are not anything to them- they like to use technology thay doesn't work for any other reason (i.e. internet, medicine and more) but those "facts " do not mean anything to them and hey don't understand the irony in using the technology to spread their lies, bs, and agenda-
You are not doing anything wrong- as far as I know- some people are just unreachable- facts and science are stupid to them- and to some atheists as well- some people just don't get it- what ever it is--
Sorry I'd write more but my intternet card is about to die- later and sorry for any grammatical errors- in all my late night messages-
that is the empirical question of what is an atheist, thought about making a discussion on atheist code... so the question is what should an atheist do? a christian has this obligation to talk but we don't, and what then if someone holds a gun to you're head and asks are you a christian or an atheist will you die for your 'faith'?
there's an atheist book i read that stated belief is a survival technique stronger than fact so you fear the dark when there's nothing there. Yeah i dont think you'll convince anyone who doesnt doubt, if you will it will be a slow accumulative thing and as they begin to doubt they'll probably exile you and you'll never see them for some time. maybe the guy you tell today this and that will think about it for ten years and finally become an atheist.
atheism is not that fuzzy feeling in you're heart, you gradually not a testimonial all of a sudden posesed by the holy spirit thing. if you really want to change a person i'm afrain you'll have to become like an atheist jehovah witness bugging someone till you're sure you planted a seed of doubt (common sense) that could sprout, we dont tell people to become, they'll have to choose for themselves.
My cousin arrived yesterday to my house .... we are very close friends . I previously changed my religion status on facebook from muslm to atheist ... he thought I was just kidding and henever mentioned that to me because he was sure it wasn't true ... anyway , yesterday, when he got here and after having dinner together , I broached the topic and told him that I don't believe that there is any god upthere ...actulayy I felt as if i would lose him because he is both friend and relative ... I don' have any intentions to tell anyone about my story in my country here....he was an exception for he is very educated and seondly because we are good friends .
he is still sleeping now right there ,literally snoring,lol ! and when he wakes up Iam frankly not going to try to prove anything to him ... hope he won't try avoiding me or so ...
to sum up , it is hard to convince theists ...
thanks for sharing