I never shifted. I always WAS a rational, thinking, intelligent person, even as a kid. I always knew that religion was a delusion clung to by fearful, ignorant grown-ups, including my parents. What I didn't understand was why they believed in Santa Claus, especially since he didn't promise to make them live forever. When it was finally revealed that they DIDN'T believe in Santa, after all, I wondered why they persisted in believing in something even MORE preposterous: a magic, old, white man who floated around in the sky without a sleigh or reindeer to carry him as he ominously waved his hand and orchestrated all things earthly. At first, I thought they were lying, as they had about Santa. But then it gradually dawned on me that the world was full of similarly benighted believers in gods and other supernatural nonsense. There are three reasons I don't believe in God: 1) It's nonsense; 2) there is no evidence; and 3) I don't need to, since I'm not afraid of death. To put it simply, I am an atheist because my brain functions in a logical way that won't permit me to be anything else.
I think I always was. I never believed the stories that were told in Sunday school. I kept them in the same category as the stories of Odin or Mars. The people of history believed in their religions as much as people believe in their religions today. They were wrong then, so what makes them think they are right now?
This was going thru my brain throughout my childhood. That plus all the inconsistencies. Nothing added up.
I was born/raised in a very devout (extended) family, in a Christian country (Philippines). The families' religion is a christian sect called "iglesia ni cristo (church of christ)". This sect always challenges the belief of roman catholics, especially with their interpretation of the bible. Since I was a child up to my teens, I was a devout, defending "our" belief against roman catholics, born again christians, and other christian sects/denomination. Then came a time when I questioned everything. And every answer goes against God, but still I remained on "his" side for a while but I guess it's inevitable. I was asking myself silly questions like, "why is God cruel?", "If there's a god, then it's not the god described in the bible", "why don't he just make us good so we can all go to heaven...", "why did he let judas betray jesus?, does this mean that there should be someone bad so somebody else can be good?", "Only members of this church can be saved? how about those cavemen who lived before religion existed?", "Is adam and eve dinosaurs?(nah kiddin' :D)", "if this is God, then why does he do this yada yada...". There was a lot of questions in my head and silly those questions were, those were questions they cannot answer. They would answer "free will", "fate", "bible should not be interpreted literally", "God's will" etc. That's the time I've gone "anti-god"(but christians still looked at me as anti-christian, they don't see the difference). I read what I can read about other theist religions, but didn't change my mind: God was created by man, a figment of imagination. Sometime after that, I decided NOT to waste any more of my time for something not that important :D
You do not suffer alone....... Stupid device.
What is a constract?