It almost seems like atheists don't want to believe in God. Do you just simply not want to believe in God because you don't want to give up your own free will?

ADMIN EDIT: Mercedes has left ThinkAtheist.com on her own accord. This discussion will remain, however do not expect a response from the author. 

~Dan.

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Notice how the troll has never came back to answer any of the responses 

I don't think she is a troll, Adam. Poe, possibly, but I don't think she is here to troll. If she is, she is terrible at it.

I'm willing to give her the benefit of a doubt and indulge her questions just in case she may be a genuine person wanting to learn something outside of their bubble.

She did come back a few times to answer some of our posts, and has friended some of us as well.

Why are you calling me names?

Because he's insensitive, a bit short on empathy, and doesn't know any other way to express himself.

Well, the terms "troll" and "Poe" aren't really insults in the traditional sense.  They are the names that have been given to individuals on the internet who intentionally stir up trouble.

A "troll" is someone who makes comments that are aimed at getting others all worked up, for the simple pleasure of laughing at how worked up you can make everyone.  I'm sure you can see how a "troll" could be very successful by coming onto an atheist community and pretending to be someone of blind faith that simply doesn't understand the responses they get.

A "Poe" (named for the man who defined the term) is someone who enters into a fundamentalist community or its opposing camp (usually religious or political), and makes posts that are intended as a parody of the group's beliefs.  The problem is that in general, such parody so closely matches the genuine article that no one can tell that it is actually parody.  Again, perhaps you can see how your posts might be suspected of that.

In either case, the term really only applies to you if you are actually guilty of it.  And even in that case, most people would not be offended, because that's sort of their goal.

If you are not guilty of either, and you truly are genuine in your posts so far, then neither really applies to you, and you can ignore the accusations.

I have done no such thing. "Troll" isn't an insult or bad word. It's a description of someone's behavior in the internet.

I didn't call you names. I was defending your presence here. Some people were under the impression that you were here to mess with us, or that you weren't who you claim you are. I was simply defending your reasons for being here.

She's certainly capable of answering for herself, but I think, Milos, that she was referring to Adam, not you.

sorry I didn't understand what troll or poe meant. I am simply here to ask questions. If I am not welcome here then I will happily leave. It might be better.

One thing to remember about people on boards with differing opinions: most of those people don't acknowledge that other people have lives and don't sit at their computers 24/7 waiting to respond to anything thrown at them.  If someone posts something toward you and you don't answer within just a few hours, oft times they will call you a troll or a coward.  Please ignore these people.  It is just their impatience.  I would suggest that you take one of the few valuable things out of your religion and practice patience and forgiveness with rude and irrational people.  (No offense intended, Adam, I'm not trying to point you out specifically).  Most of us understand that you are here to try to understand why you should open your mind to the slightest possibility that your belief system might be invalid. 

Not to use it as an excuse for rude behavior, but some of us have kind of short fuses sometimes because we are used to true trolls that come in to chat areas like this just to pick a fight rather than question anything, and often they come in pretending, at least at first, to be asking "honest" questions, only to try to twist the answers to use against the people who actually are trying to be honest and open in trying to get them to understand.

So, please just ignore anyone who attacks you personally.  Which is NOT the same as someone who might appear to be "attacking" your ideas.  All ideas are (or should be) open to debate.  If your idea or belief can't stand up to scrutiny, you should seriously consider WHY you believe such a thing before putting it out to the public to be shredded.

Maybe she has to check with her 'source' or pastor first...

Hopefully, she's off studying and realizing she put her money on the wrong horse, er, god.

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