Hello everyone! I'm very new to a lot of things in the atheist world and came across this website via twitter and slowly been doing research and thought putting out a forum for you guys may help me more so here's my situation:
I never grew up in a church family so christianity was never forced upon me, although most of my family believe in an all-knowing god. I never really put much thought into religion and there being a god. A couple years ago (i'm 20 years old now) I went to this 'come as you are' church service for a few weeks and didn't really like it because I didn't care about all that. Furthermore, these past several months I have been wondering more into it and asking questions and talking to some of the smartest people I personally know. As of right now, I more-so consider myself agnostic, maybe borderline atheist only because I'm still new to atheism. Being in the situation I am in, what would be some good suggestions to further my education on atheism? I definitely know thats the direction I'm going into. I was maybe thinking of reading Hitchens 'God is not Great' but I would also like reasons of doubt for christianity so I can get a full grasp of both and really "know my enemy".
Some feedback would be very helpful and greatly appreciated!
Are you in school? Take some science classes, particularly anything that will give you a grounding in scientific methodology. The practice in logic, reason, and avoiding unconscious bias will be useful. Also, anything on comparative religion will help as well. It will quickly become evident that most miraculous claims in the bible are suspiciously similar to previous claims in older mythologies. You might even begin to suspect that it's a shoddy example of plagiarism...which it is.
Krishna - India 1000 years before Jesus - Carpenter, Born of a Virgin, Baptized in a river.
Mithra - Persian 600 years before Jesus - Born Dec. 25, performed miracles, resurrected on the 3rd day, know as the lamb, the way, the truth, the light, messiah, and the savior.
Horus - Egypt 1280BC - born to a virgin mother, baptized in a river by Anup the Baptizer, Anup was later beheaded (sounds familiar...), Horus was tempted while alone in the desert, healed the sick and the blind, casted out demons, walked on water, he raised his buddy Asar from the dead (Asar translates into Lazarus), he also had 12 disciples, he was crucified, and after 3 days 2 women announced "Horus the savoir has been resurrected".
There's a nice sample.
Another thing that will be evident from studying comparative religions—as well as explaining the dominance of Christianity and Judaism in the US and Europe—is that most people believe the religion in their geographical area. That's why Christianity is "true" in Iowa, while Islam is "true" in Saudi Arabia.
I'd recommend Bertrand Russell's Why I Am Not A Christian. He's easy and fun to read. It's the book that first opened my own eyes.