Thought you guys would enjoy this... I have a friend who lives close to me, lovely old guy, who used to be a minister at a local church. We get on well, share gardening tips, small talk, the odd cup of coffee. I have been fascinated for a long time with finding out his story - as the reasons why he left the church seem shrouded in mystery.
Well one day, I was feeling a little mischevious and steered the conversation subtley on to religious belief, we quickly began debating the usual parry and repostes we have come to expect i.e. evolution, lack of evidence, biblical floods, big bang etc etc. Getting tired of going nowhere fast I decided to go in for the kill...asking him how he justified his belief (as he did) in the old testament namely Duter. and Levit. (I quoted chapter and verse from my "ready to hand - in case a christian comes a-callin" worse aspects of these wretched books.
He answered me as plainly as I tell you now...
" I just ignore them"
Thats it, folks.... by far the most honest answer yet provided by a christian defending the bible!
I have to admit I fell about giggling for the subsequent ten minutes...after that there didnt seem to be any point to the debate. He had answered the question with an answer that admitted a rational mind rejecting ridiculous proposition and doctorine. Although it seems cowardice to not go one step further and reject the notion of the abrahamic god in its entirety.
To go from a man of the cloth, to not attending even a church service on a Sunday - would suggest that he has rejected the notion in its entirety... But there seems to be that niggling deep seated fear that he might be missing out on something when he dies... thats all I can think of.
I would wager if he picked up Dawkins, Hitchens or Harris that last candle would be extinguished too.
Perhaps I should encourage him to read my copies, to hear his views on them.
I've heard some pretty honest answers from an academic who also happens to be a Catholic. He's pretty rational, makes fun of creationism and supports evolution. I don't think I've ever been flat out caught off guard by his answers, though.
A twisted form of the question/challenge. The original was asking about a 'more honest Christian', setting a base level of honesty as represented by the sample given. A fairly honest sample, in fact, the answer of 'I ignore them' was a very honest reply.
Your version asks if there are any atheists that have been found to be honest at all, presenting the question in such a way that dishonesty is the default condition for an atheist and thus that honesty from one should be a surprise.
The original question implies just the opposite of what you have found, the question posed by me, to contain. A bias, against or for, a belief in this case the original question assumes that all others so called "christians" are indeed less honest, or dishonest. Just as my question implies.
Now as such, that, neither question is perfect, neither are the examples of purity or pure from can this debate or argument be condducted in such a form of honesty, as it is based off of the personal experience or opinion(bias) of the individual.
Now, the questions both imply that there is one,(perhaps more) that are more honest, than all the rest which are less-honest or lying. Whichever the case may be, it is not a properly posed question.
Had he, instead, placed the words, or implication that this argument is based off his opinion of honesty, this would be a different matter. However he did not, so he might as well be questioning everyone's honesty, not just those of one religion.