I use to be a full on christian(see my blog ect for more background) I just wanted to type down the reasons in my head that made me deconvert and see what made others do it too!?
For me it was not the whole Creation Vs Evolution as I was one of those Christians who believed in evolution ect.
So what did open my eyes to the truth?
The main thing for me was the logic of god and how its just doesn't stack up. And if there was a god it certainly wasn't one i would want to follow... So my following points are all on the assumption that as the bible says god is all knowing, loving and powerful. so why this all powerful, knowing and loving god:
Those are just two quick examples out of many more.
Secondly was the bible. Even when i did not take the bible literally e.g adam and eve ect.. there are certain contradictions and points that simply dont work. Remembering that gods word was the same 'then, today and forever more'
again just a few quick ones from long list! I wish not to bore you! So what made you guys stop believing?
Don't know if I really ever did 'believe', but I did 'fake it' for a long time.
Points of divergence:
a) Classical 'proofs' for the existence of 'god'. All logical 'false'.
b) Theists as examples of 'good people'. On balance they are just people, with nuttiness about like anyone else.
c) 'Nature'. Much more wonderful, mysterious, and interesting than any 'book' of theology.
d) I only hear 'people' talking about 'god', I have never seen/heard 'god' say anything. 'God' is a human cultural concept, not an actual being in the world with us.
e) While I think the concept of the 'sacred' is worth adding to our list of concerns, 'god' does not need to part of it. The 'sacred' could be part of our 'relationship' with the world and each other, so we do not lose sight of what is important.
i defo did believe 100%! some really good points there! amazing how different everyone is! hope more people comment so i can the range of points and views from around the globe!
Take care James.
Hi Thanks for your reply. I don't no if you read my testimony but I use to be a hard core christian and give the very responses you have given me.
For your first point... Where this argument falls to me... Why would god need to have people he made out of love suffer ect so that we could 'understand bad/good'. Surely an all powerful god could have created a world with out this... because god is all powerful and has no boundaries. Because yes i wouldnt no what hot was if i didnt have cold to compare it to. But thats only because god created the world and our understanding of it like that. An all powerful god could create a world where it would not work like that but we would simply know. I just dont think an all loving god and all the suffering in this world can co exist. Your essentially saying God created some people to go to Hell so others could go to heaven... thats Crazy.
Secondly... Well in the old testament god would have you stoned for being a disobedient child yes in the new testament jesus stops a woman getting stoned for being adulterous. That is two entirely different responses. Now even if your two covenants theory were true... I dont see why god would wait so long to deliver the second... All those people that were killed because god decided he didnt want to for thousands of years. Again this doesnt sound like a loving or all powerful god!?
Thirdly... your point of the blind man would be great if everyone christian who had something like that was healed through the glory of god. This is another thing that i couldnt understand. People think god answers there prays for things like job promotion (like my dad recently) but then still allows all the starving and children born with horrendous things to keep on suffering.
And I guess lastly to your point about my rejection of god ect... As i deconverted i dont see it as fully relevant as i use to believe in the 'truth' so its not the fact i dont have the capacity or god is hiding. I just know that there is no god hiding.
So why, then, has God not granted us wisdom to understand whatever it is we need to understand in order to believe in Him without evidence? That makes no sense. It is because we need to ask for the wisdom specifically, in addition to willingness to believe? Good grief! What a game your God plays! Being a God, I guess He can play whatever game He wants. It's good to be a God, I imagine.
I agree with you that we are our own Gods, but I think we are interpreting that differently. I am one small being in an infinitely huge cosmos - I am actually in control of very little of my tiny part of existence. In my sphere of influence, though, my thoughts and actions matter. I have to do my part to determine my path through life, and my response to it. If I want to foster my own belief in a god, I can. I think this is totally separate from whether or not a god exists. "God" is a psychological construct.
I have met Christians who have tried to get me to build on these thoughts to learn more about Christianity, so that, in their way of thinking about it, I will see the Light. However, that is as far as I am willing to go towards that line of mind-screwing myself, or letting others do it.
I will, however, remain open to whatever actual evidence I see about existence. I read your Bible, and I saw no evidence. Zip, Nada. Granted, my mind was not primed to see the evidence, but I was as open-minded as I would allow myself to be. As far as I'm concerned, the Bible is Christianity's second most unconvincing aspect of the religion: Christians are the first.
I was a devout Catholic as a child. The church paid for me to attend a private Catholic school, and then I went to a Catholic University. I stopped believing because my education included a heavy dose of Bible study. The more I studied, the more questions I had. When I would ask these questions in school, they would be brushed off by my teachers or I would be punished for asking them.
For example, I heard someone ask once if God could create a rock so heavy heavy that even he couldn't lift it. I don't remember where I first heard it. All I remember is that thinking about that question kept me up all night. The next day, I asked the question to my first period teacher. His reply was "God can do anything". We went round and round with this question for about ten minutes until he got frustrated with me and sent me to the administrative office for disrupting class. The headmaster gave me a week of detention for being "unruly" This was the beginning of my doubtfulness.
One of my biggest interests as a child was cosmology. It still is a huge interest. I am by no means an expert, but I am fairly well read on the subject. Beginning when I was a young child I devoured any book about cosmology I could get my hands on. The more I learned about how the universe works, the less I saw room for any gods.
During my late teens I considered myself a deist. My idea was that if there was some being powerful enough to create this vast and wonderful universe I had been reading about, He wouldn't fit in any book. I wouldn't say I became a full blown atheist until my early 20's (late 90's early 00's). It was then that I started reading books on atheism by people like Christopher Hitchens.
It was extremely hard for me to admit to myself that I was an atheist. I live in a small town in southwestern PA, which is about as close as one can come to the bible belt north of The Mason-Dixon Line. I resisted my atheism for about 3 or 4 years. It eventually came to a point where I just couldn't twist logic any further. I had no choice but to stop believing.
" The next day, I asked the question to my first period teacher. His reply was "God can do anything". We went round and round with this question for about ten minutes until he got frustrated with me and sent me to the administrative office for disrupting class. The headmaster gave me a week of detention for being "unruly" This was the beginning of my doubtfulness."
LOL. I don't know why but I thought this story was funny as hell. I could just imagine a little kid asking questions over and over to their teacher and then their teacher, without being able to give a satisfying answer, uses the "You're disrupting my class" card.
I'll never forget that day. I was in seventh grade so I was about twelve. I asked my teacher, "Can God create a rock so heavy that even he can't lift it?" his reply was "God can do anything."
Then I said, "So he can create a rock so big that he can't lift it." Father Maxwell replied again, God can do anything."
My reply was, "So he should be able to lift any rock he creates." Again his reply was "God can do anything.
After going round and round for about ten minutes, I said, "Either you don't know the answer, or you're refusing to answer. That was when I was sent to the administrative office.
The funny thin was that my parents thought the story was funny too. They weren't even upset about the detention. If anything, they were kind of proud.
That is awsome! what a great simple question!
For me it seemed, early on, that they did not really like people that read 'outside' the mandated reading list, or feeling put upon needing to do the 'fill in the blanks' take home 'study'.
I think the last straw might have been being sent home for saying 'bull-shit', loud enough for someone to hear, or getting up to receive communion when I was 5, and being lifted up by my arm pits, by two nuns, then taken to the back of the room to sit between four of them! That same day another 'student' found a very big and wonderful bull snake in the yard and all the guys got to look at it. I thought it was the best part of that day!
I started to wonder about the logic of the teachings rather early on. I remember asking, 'so can god make four equal five?' I think I was meet with dump stares, I think. for that one.
At my sister's funeral(she died at 6 years old), I remember asking why we were celebrating her death, and why I was asked to be a 'good little soldier'. I guess 'stuffing it' is a major part of the ideology. Over time this has become a major issue with me, it appears that 'the self lie' or 'cognitive denial', can be an ugly way to live and die.
"Can God make four equal five?" I like that even more than my question about the rock. I can't wait to try that one out!