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.
Chrisn, I read your post; it proved you NOT a fool.
From Tom Sarbeck, Crisn, that is high praise indeed, something you can pass down to your grandchildren.
In a writing class about 30 years ago, the instructor told me I was a minimalist writer.
"One would think (at least if you are indoctrinated like I was) that this would be an earth shattering idea and that I would be another one of the hopeless. But In reality, after the unearthing of these truths inside my mind, I felt more free than I ever had. No longer was the burden of the invisible sky man always watching every thing I do on my chest. No longer was good and evil caused by God at Satan, but just men, and you can do something about men. I became responsible for me and my life. If I wanted something, instead of preying for it, I worked for it. I was a good person because its the right thing to do, not because I feared punishment in hell or rewards in heaven.
I started to live my life, instead of waiting to die for something better because this is all we have. I realized you have to make the most of it for one day you will nothing, much like before you were born. To some this maybe a fearful thought, to me Its quite liberating...
My only regret is that I took so long to come to this realization. I missed out of so much fun and excitement during high school for fear of punishment from god, such as sex, drinking, experimenting with drugs and all the other dumb things normal teens do."
Goddam it. It's like you are reading me back my own life story. Except the drugs part. I've never had a desire to do those.
I understand that one in particular seems completely real to you - Probably the Christian one? Gods don't seem real to us and many of us have spent a lot of time trying to find out if there is any evidence for them. There really isn't any and there are even records of how the Abrahamic god was invented. Did you realise that Abraham and Moses did not have the same god? Abraham's god was simply known as El and he looked like a man - one of many gods - remember he appeared under a tree to Abraham? Moses' god was later named Yahweh and he could not be looked on by human eyes. Lots of people had problems with this when the bible was pulled together, because they knew full well that they weren't the same gods. This is why the bible has God constantly saying 'I am the god of Abraham.' Does that not strike you as somewhat odd if there is only one god and no-one is questioning that Abraham worshipped Yahweh? Equally, Yahweh's wife Asherah disappeared when they decided Yahweh was to be the only god.
So anyway, there have been thousands of gods claimed to exist and I realise that your one seems really real to you but there is no more evidence for him than any of the others and we know how he got invented. I would love to believe in a good god and eternal life but that won't make it true. If I could believe things because I wanted them to be true, I would believe in a god a bit like Dumbledore.
Abraham came from Assyria, as will be noted in Genesis, in both the stories of Issac and or Jacob, which both mention Abe's nephew, still in Haran, in which he is called, "Laban, the Syrian." As I've explained on my website, the god of the Assyrians was "Amurru," and those who followed him, as Amurrites, or Amorites. Amurru was also known as "El Shaddai," "God of the Mountain," and at the beginning of Exodus, in the scene with the burning bush, Yahweh introduces himself to Moses, saying, "I was known to Abraham, Issac and Jacob as 'El Shaddai.'"
The thing is, that after leaving Egypt, Moses was taken in by a Semitic tribe known as the Kennites, or the Midianites (depending on who you talk to), who worshiped a desert god named, Yahweh. The writers of Exodus took the old stories of Amurru, blended them with the new belief in Yahweh, and a god was born.
That's interesting. Thanks. I was reading Karen Armstrong's History of God in which she says Abraham's god was El Shaddai but does not mention him as Amurru. I had a quick look on your profile page but did not see a link to your website which I would be interested to go to because i am arguing with a baptist youth pastor about just this at the moment. :)
Here you go, Helen. Arch's site. (I'm on PR duty)
Helen, you needed to scroll down to "PROFILE INFORMATION" - it's there.
@Strega, you do good work, raise next week, for sure, right after I fix my table --
No, sweet girl. As a non-believer in ALL gods, I have routinely asked my overly religious friends for proof that their god does indeed exist. To date, no one has been able to provide me with any evidence whatsoever. We'll often go around and around, but it almost always ends with me being told something like this...."You're stubborn and it makes me sad that you'll burn in hell for eternity while I'm living with Jesus in heaven." Nice, huh? My advice to you is to step outside the box. Forget everything you've been taught about your god and your prophet. Open your mind and think for yourself. You'll be a much more happier and content person if you can find the strength within yourself to do that, I promise. Peace to you.
"My advice to you is to step outside the box."
Tina, I like your metaphor. After a family member "knocked the sides down" I really did see myself as being outside a box. Adapting wasn't easy but in time I realized that that family member had done me a huge good turn.
In Mercedes' stated beliefs I saw the same hard-as-concrete "box walls". I will be surprised if she is able to imagine herself in a box. Her leaving suddenly told me she felt a need to protect the box.