Ex-Athiest writing a book on how to save you godless heathens

hi there friends. i am an ex athiest and im a putting togethter a book/blog for christians about understanding and then saving athiests. I PROMISE, I AM NOT TRYING TO SAVE YOU! but i would greatly appreciate your input.

like i said i used to be an athiest. actually i was more of an anti-christian. i was very thorough wile compiling my arsenal of anti-christian material, and was very articulate when fighting christians. i had a long list of great arguments against christianity, but i could use more.

lets face it. alot of christians are annoying, i agree, but the big idea here is that most christians have absolutely no concept of life without god. so they dont understand athiesim at all. one of the purposes of my book is to illustrate that athiests are not all terrible satanists. that alot of them are actually really good hearted people.

if you are willing to help me out i would appreciate it. if not, feel free to tell me to go to hell lol... please respond to the following 2 statements/questions

what is your best argument against jesus. not god, but jesus specifically????

what is the most annoying thing about christians? or what do you dislike about christians???? 

 

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  • Cara Coleen

    judging by some of your responses i can tell that many of you know absolutely nothing about christianity or the bible or the history of it.

    I find it odd that you, only having been a Christian for two years, seem to think you have a better grasp of the Bible than I do, or many of the other atheists here that have spent the majority of their lives as Christians. I was a Christian for 24 years of my life, and both of my grandfathers were preachers. Most of my life was spent in a church learning theology. I would say that it is your understanding of the Bible that's lacking.

    By the way, which denomination do you now consider yourself a part of? If you say "none", I will assume you're "non-denominational", aka Evangelical.

  • Jimmy Russell

    I can feel my brain cringing.  Your OP comes of sounding like something Kirk Cameron would say as if he were presenting it to children on PBS.  Fucks sake man.  I would LOVE to hear your position on why you now believe in your religion and what miracles you say you have witnessed.  Please, preach to me.  Please. 

  • Unseen

    I was a Christian through my late teens and even considered the Episcopal priesthood. I lost my belief when I started studying logic and philosophy. However, I too have seen a miracle. David Copperfield made the Statue of Liberty disappear and David Blaine levitated.

  • Suzanne Olson-Hyde

    @Kris Fenstra - Self-publication is the only way for this charlatan - but the editing would cost him a very big bag full of money.

    @Blaine - I haven't recovered from the last charlatan yet :)
  • matt.clerke

    10/10, well done Troll. Had alot of us fooled. Bye.

  • Strega

    Spectacular, Nate!

  • Stutz

    with out a doubt, i have felt more judgement from atheists in my 2 years of being a christian than i ever have from christians out of my 30 years of atheism.

    I think you'll find atheists are going to be more personally confrontational and forthright, especially on the topic of religion, which can be interpreted as being judgmental. In personal interaction, most Christians are going to want to shy away from the topic, and will usually be more coy and defensive. However, I think the situation is reversed when you look at the broader culture. Christians organize and fight the culture wars with much more focus and enthusiasm, and enjoy the implicit support of their overwhelming majority. These are typically the issues atheists object to when they describe Christians as judgmental. 

  • Brenda Lee

    I've only been here two days, but it seems to me that you've come into this online community looking for an argument. I think your entire story is fabricated. And quite frankly, I don't need you to convince Christians that I'm not a Satanist. I don't think you could have said anything dumber. 

  • Brenda Lee

    Does this sort of thing happen a lot here?

  • Sagacious Hawk

    Well, thank you for your honesty and your openness. I apologize for what may have been baseless accusations (on the internet, one can never be sure). A piece of advice if you are dead set on making this book a reality: as a person passionate about literature and communication, I can tell from your writing style and blatant disregard for certain rules concerning writing that you will need to find an editor with superior qualities in editing and patience, because preparing any book that you have written for a wider audience will need a considerable amount of work to make sure that the audience does not think that you are an 11-year old posing as an adult, which is about what I'd mistaken you for.

    You'll have to come to terms with our skepticism here. Firstly, it's sort of a part of who we are, and secondly, there have been a few people of late who have seemed to come around to instigate fights. So do we make judgments of others? The truth is that all people are. As soon as we meet a person, we make a judgment. We do so based on body shape, body language, quality of voice, actions, words, and overall appearance just for starters. You make a judgment based on our responses as much as we have made one based on yours. You say that you disliked Christians because you "felt their judgment". Whether a person can be said to be judgmental in my opinion hinges on whether or not a person is willing to reassess those judgments as new evidence arises or whether a person refuses all new evidence to stick to the original assessment. Just because people express their opinion of you doesn't mean that they are being judgmental. It simply means that they are willing to speak their minds and treat with you honestly. I am certain your Christian friends have judged you in a similar manner; they just don't tell you what their judgments are.

    Most atheists happen to like evidence and are more than willing to assess their given position based on the evidence that they have. So when I say that from my experience that we are not judgmental, it is from my definition of judgmental that I make that statement as well as my experience dealing with atheists both as a Christian and as an atheist. It has also been my experience (and many others on this site) that Christians as a whole are more resistant to evidence and tend not to reconsider their positions in light of new knowledge. This is why we say that Christians are judgmental. It is unfortunately too typical that when discussing things with a Christian that they will take a position, fortify it, and then refuse to even acknowledge basic facts. How you haven't experienced this in your 30 years of atheism, I'm not certain.

    I can hopefully shed some light on why you have faced more criticism from atheists in the last two years since becoming a Christian. I think it might be similar to the same thought I first had as soon as you said "ex-atheist." My immediate reaction was, "how could he go back to believing what he had thought was false was suddenly true?" At this point, I think we all become instantly skeptical of any atheistic positions you might have had. Certainly if they were strong enough or if you had enough knowledge to know why Christianity was wrong about it's claims of the world, then you wouldn't have stopped being an atheist. For myself, I see anyone who claims to be an ex-atheist as someone who has given up learning about how the world is and has instead embraced learning about a fantasy version of the world. The more a person understands how we got here today through the history of the earth, the methods by which religion developed, and the history of any religion, then the more a person realizes how tenuous claims of any religion are. I see an ex-atheist as a person who has given into only one side of an argument without properly assessing whether those arguments are correct and in doing so has been conned into believing a fantasy version of the world where the laws of nature simply don't apply.

    As it stands to your questions, I'm with Kris on this one. I, too, am curious why you need our input and why not stick you your 30 years of experience as a atheist? If you are an expert on your subject, why solicit us for information that we can reasonably expect that you possessed at one point?

  • Sagacious Hawk

    Brenda, these things don't happen alot, but they do happen often enough to warrant skepticism and defensiveness on our part.

  • Brenda Lee

    And we are the ones considered hostile and immoral. 

  • Karl Mugele

    Hi Cameron

    Everyone was an atheist when they were born, so all the christians you know were atheists at one point.  Most were indoctrinated by their parents but some may have been indoctrinated later, by friends or other members of society that follow the christian cult.  I use the term indoctrination explicitly because you have to attend sermons, be told and accept unsubstantiated stories and receive "christian" advice from adherents.

    To specifically answer your questions:

    "what is your best argument against jesus. not god, but jesus specifically????"

    As someone wrote above, I was under the impression that "Jesus" was considered part of the god.  However, getting past that immediate response, there is no evidence that Jesus ever existed.  I presonally believe that Jesus (the man) probably did, but that's purely based on the "no smoke without fire" principle, which is indirect evidence so shakey.  The Roman empire at the time have no records of him and Judeo-christian writings about him only started 60 years after his death.

    "what is the most annoying thing about christians?"

    As long as they don't try to preach to me I don't find christians annoying.  Being woken up on a Sunday morning by a couple of fresh-faced teenagers asking me if I've heard about "the son of god" is infuriating, not annoying, but if they keep themselves to themselves, great.  I also do take exception to them preaching to my child...clearly I don't want him braqinwashed into this fantasy either.

    "what do you dislike about christians????"

    As above - preaching, conversion attempts, some weird idea that they are more right and other religions more wrong...

    ...and of course, the historical slaughter of people who opposed christianity.  The christian church has historically been responsible for more deaths than the Nazis, and yet they seem to think they represent good.

  • Tom Sarbeck

    "i had a long list of great arguments against christianity"

    Cameron, your line stirs a memory: "It's easier to change dogmas than to give up the need for a dogma."

  • Karl Mugele

    Good call Tom Sarbeck...

    If Cameron really had been an atheist, why would he have needed a long list of great arguments against christianity?

    This is yet another really weird idea perpurted by christians, that atheism is somehow another "religion" or cult.  I had a discussion with a christian from the US at a party in London one time, where her argument was that I could only be an agnostic.  The reasoning appeared to be that by oppsosing a religion I accept it's validity, perhaps in the same way that devil worshippers (if there really are any) are really just followers of one or other Abrahamic religion that are intrigued by evil.  The ones who came to devil worship from christianity could be described as christian fans of the devil.  The atheist / agnostic argument being that if I accepted the validity of christianity as a religion, then I was religious but had somehow become unsure.

    Of course, all this is nonsense.  If you don't believe, you don't believe.  That's not an acceptance of the validity of other's beliefs, only, if you are pragmatic and fair, you should accept others right to believe, in the same way you might let your kid believe in goblins and giants while young, for the titilation and the way the idea of these mythical creatures and fantasy worlds fire your kid's imahgination.

    You'd be a pretty unkind person to crush someone's fantsasies, no matter what their age is, so the "long list" was a little unfair of Cameron.

  • Casey Mc

    Everyone wrote my main arguments against Jesus so I'll just say that what I dislike most about Christians. It is exactly what you are attempting to do with your blog and book. Stop getting in everyone else's business, worry about your own "soul" and leave mine alone. Also I really hate the face of pity,hurt, anguish, and confusion when I tell a Christian I'm an atheist. Get over yourselves.
  • Hank Hell

    As for Jesus, all likelihood would suggest that he was just a man, and since the simplest answer is usaually the truest, I feel perfectly comfortable with that conclusion. I don't argue "against jesus" so much though, as I don't give a fuck about what other believe

    Now the second question is really simple for me. I feel that christians, in their desperation to assuage their fears of death, are willing to condem wave after wave of innocent people. I think that if you're willing to imagine an innumerable horde of people suffering for eternity, just because you don't have the strenght to face human mortality, then you are a weak, fear driven, sheep person.  

  • Grady Jean

    My biggest problem with Christians is, without a doubt, the way they see it as their personal right to impose their morality, their world view, their religion, on every one else through violence, coercion, and legislation. It's abhorrent and disgusting to think of the lives that have been ruined by religious intolerance. It makes my ears bleed when I hear "Christians" blaming the troubles of our country on the "Godless Heathens". Every time someone demands we bring God back, I'm forced to think: "Wait, aren't there already functioning theocracies in the world? Have these people never heard of the middle east?" Of course they haven't. Because, like the narrow minded idiots they are, they can't see past their own ludicrous beliefs. They can't accept logic and reason, and despite their moronic claims of knowing the "One True God", they don't seem to know much at all. Their answers and arguments are flimsy, their defenses are paper thin.

    Then there's YOU. You come in here with a mask on your face, this mealy mouthed apologist spew about how "You're not trying to convert anyone" and you "Just want our input". My fellow Thinkers here have already made the only point that needs made about YOU, good sir: If you truly had anywhere near as much experience with Atheism as you claimed, you wouldn't need  to ask for our input; You could just use your own. Even if you were trying for different view points on the subject, you could do a simple Google search for "Arguments against Jesus" or "What annoys you about Christians", and you'd have everything you needed. If you're a 30 - to 35 year old ex-Atheist who wants to write a book, then I'm a Nigerian Prince with a vault full of cash I'd like to share with you.

    If you were a spy, you'd be sort've like this guy: http://macromeme.com/dog/disguised-chris-hansen.html

  • Ed

    Cameron,

    You said:

    "there are a few very close people in my life that, yes, i have an interest in saving. the rest of the world? to each his own i say."

    I wonder why you would be content with saving just a few very close friends and leaving the rest of the world to fend for themselves. I believe the real christian message is to have an interest to save EVERYONE. You're going to need to adjust your scope of coverage to keep that big guy in the sky really happy with your efforts.

    Rely upon your own life's experiences as material for your writings. It is a much safer approach.

    The only annoyance I can relate to you as to dealing with followers of christianity is their unwillingness to consider alternative viewpoints and their disdain for critical thought. 

  • Unseen

    "there are a few very close people in my life that, yes, i have an interest in saving. the rest of the world? to each his own i say."

    You come here saying WE know nothing about Christianity and then you make an un-Christian statement like that? Remember, when Jesus was recruiting disciples, he wouldn't even let them go and say good-bye to their families!

    If you're going to be Christian, you might crack The Bible now and then.

  • Emperor Milos

    @ Cameron W

    many of you are extremely defensive tho.

    How would you act if we came to a place you enjoy and posted a thread called "Ex Christian writing a book to de-convert brainwashed Christians."

    I AM NOT TRYING TO CONVERT ANY OF YOU.

    The title of your post would disagree with that statement.

    i sincerely was, in fact an ATHEIST

    Looking at your responses in some of the other threads, I seriously doubt that.

    and like many of you, i spent my whole life surrounding myself with like minded people who supported my position.

    How did you come to this conclusion about any of us? Or is this another "not judging you tho lol" moment?

    Let me fill you in on my background at least. I do have atheist friends. But I have many more christian friends. I was roommates with a christian for 3 years, and I have been married to a christian for 2 years. Her family is basically like the Flanders from the Simpsons. In order to marry her, I was forced to participate in bible study, and I have accompanied my wife to church many, many times. I have been obsessed with history and mythology for as long as I can remember, so do not assume that I am not well versed in your religion. I have been atheist my entire life, and I take every opportunity to go to a church or whatever event when invited by my religious friends.

    Do not assume that we are close minded, simply because you were.

    there are a few very close people in my life that, yes, i have an interest in saving.

    Has it crossed your mind that maybe they don't need to be, or dare I say, want to be "saved?" Or do you know their lives and needs better than they do, and have a higher understanding of what is best for someone else? Because if you think you do, that is another judgement. Another pretty big no, no, according to the Jewish Lich.

    i am, in fact, writting a book. whether or not i spell correctly or use capital letters has nothing to do with that.

    It should. Also, if you are WRITING a book, you could at least spell WRITING correctly.

    i didnt go to school to be a writer but i do happen to be an expert on the position im writting about. which is. devout atheist converted to christian.

    If you are an expert on your position, why are you here? And if you use the term "devout atheist" you clearly don't have the tiniest clue about what you are talking about.

    its not going to be a book for athiests (yes i will continue to mispell words) it is a book for christians. and many of them are curious about my transformation.

    Then why are you here? If they are interested in your transformation, why are you here talking to... not you? Or do you plan to spice up your "transformation" with stories from other people. That would be pretty dishonest.

    i need to and want to interview and get many different perspectives. right now i can only write of my experiences as an atheist.

    If the book is about your transformation, again, why do you need other perspectives? I'm sure a quick Google search would have provided you with the information you need, and a lot less hassle from the heathens your book will attempt to save.

    i will say 2 things tho. number1 there is a glaring contrast to how i have been recieved since my conversion to christianity. most of you have commented about self righteous arrogant christians and their judging ways. with out a doubt, i have felt more judgement from atheists in my 2 years of being a christian than i ever have from christians out of my 30 years of atheism.

    Well, you said yourself that you were surrounded by like minded people. So, there is not a lot of room for judgement from people you went out of your way to avoid. I believe that you received a lot of judgement from atheists in your 2 short years of theism, but you should expect it. You come into our forums wanting information from us about our thoughts so you can write a book on how to SAVE us. What the fuck did you expect? Which part of WE DO NOT NEED OR WANT SAVING do you theists fail to understand? Do we need to put a verse number next to the sentence before it registers? Okay, I can do that.

    And the lord said, atheists do not need nor want to be saved by you lot. Now quit being annoying and enjoy your life. 2 Serb 3:16

    the only difference with me is now i am alot less combative. i no longer feel the need to prove or justify or defend my beliefs.

    Good for you! Believing in things without proof or reason. Faith is awesome!

    number 2. judging by some of your responses i can tell that many of you know absolutely nothing about christianity or the bible or the history of it.

    Tsk, tsk, tsk. Again with the judgements.
    You do realize that most of us here have read the bible many, many times. Most of the people here have been christian for over 20 years, some studying to be part of the clergy. Some raised by members of their churches. And some of us are history buffs, who have spent most of our time with our noses buried in random history books, including books about the "historical accuracy" of your holy book. You have studied the bible for 2 years, and you act as if you wrote the damn thing. I'm sure you are excited about your book idea, and eager to educate us heathens, but let me warn you now, you are in way over your head. If after 30 years of being atheist, you fall for theism, you are not prepared for this place.

    i was the same way though. i would study scripture that seemed to contradict other scripture.

    So, you read the bible then. Okay. The entire book contradicts itself. What is your point.

    i would use the christian words and terminology and quote their book in order bait them into theological pitfalls.

    There is a lot of theological pitfalls, again the entire book is a jumbled, ranting mess.

    i would catch them in a part of the bible they werent too familar with and then i would say "see you are preaching the bible and you dont know it" case closed and i was good at it.

    If you were good at it, the case wouldn't be closed if a theist was caught not knowing his book. Just like the case is not closed with you right now. You fail to explain yourself and support the things you are saying, so we will continue to question you until either you answer us honestly, and provide evidence, or you do what most other theists do when they visit, call us names and rage quit.

    i realized then that i was only studying words and wasnt too concearned what it all meant in context.

    And what did it all mean? What context did you have to put it into for it to matter, or make sense? Who told you how to study it, what passages to read? I bet it was a priest or another theist.

    i would ignore scripture that i actually agreed with. when it all came down to it.

    That is a fault in your logic then. There are scriptures that I agree with, but that doesn't mean that they are worth considering, or that they outweigh the rest of the atrocities and bigotry in the book.
    I'm sure that if I dug deep enough into Hitler's life, I would be bound to agree with something he said or did at one point in his life. Oh, wait! There is! He loved animals! I love animals! Holy shit! Hitler is awesome! I totally forgive him for all the war and genocide stuff.

    as i started learning more and witnessing a few miricles of my own. i started to realize that the only reason i hated christianity was because i didnt fully understand it.

    Please provide evidence for miracles. Scientific evidence. If you were atheist for 30 years as you claim, you would be well aware that personal experiences are not evidence. Thus another reason why we think you are lying to us.

    Again, hating christianity does not make you atheist. Atheism, is a lack of belief in gods. If you were atheist for 30 years, or just bothered to use Google, or a dictionary, you would know that.

    and the only reason i hated christians was because i had felt judgement from people who claimed to be christian.

    That's the only reason? You had no beef with them killing doctors, bombing abortion clinics, condemning use of condoms, praising AIDS. hating homosexuals, other religions, trying to undermine science and the progress of humanity? All that stuff was perfectly cool? And before you start saying how that is not biblical teachings, I posted some examples that cover this stuff in one of my other replies to you. If you are as versed in the scripture as you claim you are, you will know this.

    p.s. notice RobertPiano gave me a gigantic opening to burst in with my testemony and preach my beliefs. my motives are legitamately trying to get more atheists perspectives. thats it.

    Lies. Your motives are to "save" atheists. You are here spewing condescending nonsense in only one sentence. You assume that atheists need to be saved, that we need your intervention in our lives, to educate us. Your book idea is proof of this. You think, that with your 2 years of bible study, you are better versed in it than people who have spent decades in the religion, or studying it, and you take the arrogant stance of the knight in shining armor, saving the people you care about, without even bothering to understand why they hold the opinion they have, or without asking them if they need, or even want your so called help and salvation.

    you wont catch me preaching to you. (unless you personally write me an email and ask me to) or disrespecting you or what you believe in.

    You have disrespected us. You judge and make false assumptions about us, you claim you are better educated than us, yet you know nothing of us, and you make the ignorant, arrogant assumption that your way of life is best for everyone, and that you have the right to interfere in people's lives, and decide that the only way they will be "saved" and happy is if they believe what you tell them to.

    the only thing i do is call people out when they give an inaccurate representation of christianity. 

    Then provide us with evidence of our transgressions. If we are giving inaccurate representations of christianity, please provide us with actual, factual, tangible evidence of where we went wrong.

    i would expect an athiest to do the same if i made a broad untrue statement like "atheists believe there is a god, they just dont like him"

    And that is why we are having this discussion. You are making broad, untrue statements. You think that being atheist = hating christianity. You assume that atheists need to be saved. You assume that you are better versed in scripture and history than we are. And worst of all, you assume that your religion is true.

  • CAMERON W

    i want to thank you all for participating so far. i can feel the love lol. just want to clear a couple of things up. even though i posted a response somewhere on page 2 or 3, i think most of you skimmed it or didnt read it at all.

    1.i do realize that i will have to edit, capitalize and spell check before i finish the book. this is a discussion and i am writing conversationally. not trying to write a thesis here.  although if it makes you feel better to make fun and insult me for not capitalizing and misspelling things, then by all means. your words are not hurtful.

    2. i do not have to prove i was an atheist, and again, i know that atheism is not an affirmative belief, its a lack of belief. got it. already said that. if someone says that, for the first 30 years of their life, they did not believe that god existed, i dont know why you would accuse that person of lying. perhaps you are used to people trying to decieve you. i dont know.

    3 despit what many of you think, i did not come here to argue my religion. even though some of you have engaged and asked me for my opinions, i can tell that you dont really want to know where im coming from, you just want some more ammunition to insult me with.  im sorry if you felt insulted and felt the need to defend yourself in an aggressive manner, was not my intention.    

    last point. to those who ask why i came here and why i dont just rely on my own experinces. if i were a recovering alcoholic, writting a book for non alcoholics. and a large portion of my book was to try to get non-alcoholics to understand the thought process and experiences of alcoholics. would it not be more beneficial to interview and get insight from multiple alcoholics, or just rely on my own experiences of alcoholism and say "yup, that about sums up what its like to be an alcoholic." ?

     with that being said, i would like to thank all of you for your imput. you all have been very helpful so far. please continue, this is all great insight. i would especially like to thank Spacious Hawk, Diane, and Kris F.  i think your responses were the only ones that did not start with insults.

     

  • Brenda Lee

    Are you capable of posting a comment without being rude and insulting? It sounds to me that you're looking to us for an arsenal of excuses to explain away to your fellowship why you fell off the Christian wagon over the holidays.
  • Unseen

    im sorry if you felt insulted and felt the need to defend yourself in an aggressive manner, was not my intention.

    Look up "passive aggressive." It's one way to describe that comment. An insult wrapped in an insincere apology qualifies.

    Nobody here is insulted, buster. Annoyed is the accurate term. Annoyed about your presumptions and ignorance.

  • Sophie

    what is your best argument against jesus. not god, but jesus specifically????

    Jesus has never left any physical evidence of his existence on earth. None of Jesus' "miracles" left any physical evidence either. Jesus has never spoken to modern man, for example by taking over all the television stations and broadcasting a rational message to everyone. Let's agree that there is no empirical evidence showing that jesus existed.

    If you think about it as a rational person, this lack of evidence is startling. There is not one bit of empirical evidence indicating that today's "God", nor any other contemporary god, nor any god of the past, exists. 

    Here is a small list of just the African gods

    Abassi , Abuk , Adu Ogyinae , Ag, Agwe , Aida Wedo , Ajalamo, Aje, Ajok, Akonadi, Akongo, Akuj, Amma, Anansi, Asase Yaa, Ashiakle, Atai , Ayaba, Aziri, Baatsi, Bayanni, Bele Alua, Bomo rambi, Bosumabla, Buk, Buku, Bumba, Bunzi, Buruku, Cagn, Candit, Cghene, Coti, Damballah-Wedo, Dan, Deng, Domfe, Dongo, Edinkira, Ef, Egungun-oya, Eka Abassi, Elephant Girl Mbombe, Emayian, Enekpe, En-Kai, Eseasar, Eshu, Esu, Fa, Faran, Faro, Fatouma, Fidi Mukullu, Fon, Gleti, Gonzuole, G, Gua, Gulu, Gunab, Hammadi, Hbiesso, Iku, Ilankaka, Imana, Iruwa, Isaywa, Juok, Kazooba, Khakaba, Khonvum, Kibuka, Kintu, Leb, Leza, Libanza, Lituolone, Loko, Marwe, Massim Biambe, Mawu-Lisa (Leza), Mboze, Mebeli, Minepa, Moombi, Mukameiguru, Mukasa, Muluku, Mulungu, Mwambu, Nai, Nambi, Nana Buluku, Nanan-Bouclou, Nenaunir, Ng Ai, Nyaliep, Nyamb, Nyankopon, Nyasaye, Nzame, Oboto, Obumo, Odudua-Orishala, Ogun, Olokun, Olorun, Orisha Nla, Orunmila, Osanyin, Oshe, Osun, Oya, Phebele, Pokot-Suk, Ralubumbha, Rugaba, Ruhanga, Ryangombe, Sagbata, Shagpona, Shango, Sopona, Tano, Thixo, Tilo, Tokoloshi, Tsui, Tsui'goab, Umvelinqangi, Unkulunkulu, Utixo, Wak, Wamara, Wantu Su, Wele, Were, Woto, Xevioso, Yangombi, Yemonja, Ymoa, Ymoja, Yoruba, Zambi, Zanahary , Zinkibaru,

    But wait what about all the Caribbean gods???

    Agaman Nibo , Agwe, Agweta, Ah Uaynih, Aida Wedo , Atabei , Ayida , Ayizan, Azacca, Baron Samedi, Ulrich, Ellegua, Ogun, Ochosi, Chango, Itaba, Amelia, Christalline, Clairm, Clairmezin, Coatrischie, Damballah , Emanjah, Erzuli, Erzulie, Ezili, Ghede, Guabancex, Guabonito, Guamaonocon, Imanje, Karous, Laloue-diji, Legba, Loa, Loco, Maitresse Amelia , Mapiangueh, Marie-aime, Marinette, Mombu, Marassa, Nana Buruku, Oba, Obtala, Ochu, Ochumare, Oddudua, Ogoun, Olokum, Olosa, Oshun, Oya, Philomena, Sirne, The Diablesse, Itaba, Tsilah, Ursule, Vierge, Yemaya , Zaka,

    or the Chinese gods?

    Ba, Caishen, Chang Fei, Chang Hsien, Chang Pan, Ch'ang Tsai, Chao san-Niang, Chao T'eng-k'ang, Chen Kao, Ch'eng Huang, Cheng San-Kung, Cheng Yuan-ho, Chi Po, Chien-Ti, Chih Jih, Chih Nii, Chih Nu, Ch'ih Sung-tzu, Ching Ling Tzu, Ch'ing Lung, Chin-hua Niang-niang, Chio Yuan-Tzu, Chou Wang, Chu Niao, Chu Ying, Chuang-Mu, Chu-jung, Chun T'i, Ch'ung Ling-yu, Chung Liu, Chung-kuei, Chung-li Ch'an, Di Jun, Fan K'uei, Fei Lien, Feng Pho-Pho, Fengbo, Fu Hsing, Fu-Hsi, Fu-Pao, Gaomei, Guan Di, Hao Ch'iu, Heng-o, Ho Po (Ping-I), Hou Chi, Hou T'u, Hsi Ling-su, Hsi Shih, Hsi Wang Mu, Hsiao Wu, Hsieh T'ien-chun, Hsien Nung, Hsi-shen, Hsu Ch'ang, Hsuan Wen-hua, Huang Ti, Huang T'ing, Huo Pu, Hu-Shen, Jen An, Jizo Bosatsu, Keng Yen-cheng, King Wan, Ko Hsien-Weng, Kuan Ti, Kuan Ti, Kuei-ku Tzu, Kuo Tzu-i, Lai Cho, Lao Lang, Lei Kung, Lei Tsu, Li Lao-chun, Li Tien, Liu Meng, Liu Pei, Lo Shen, Lo Yu, Lo-Tsu Ta-Hsien, Lu Hsing, Lung Yen, Lu-pan, Ma-Ku, Mang Chin-i, Mang Shen, Mao Meng, Men Shen, Miao Hu, Mi-lo Fo, Ming Shang, Nan-chi Hsien-weng, Niu Wang, Nu Wa, Nu-kua, Pa, Pa Cha, Pai Chung, Pai Liu-Fang, Pai Yu, P'an Niang, P'an-Chin-Lien, Pao Yuan-ch'uan, Phan Ku, P'i Chia-Ma, Pien Ho, San Kuan, Sao-ch'ing Niang, Sarudahiko, Shang Chien, Shang Ti, She chi, Shen Hsui-Chih, Shen Nung, Sheng Mu, Shih Liang, Shiu Fang, Shou-lao, Shun I Fu-jen, Sien-Tsang, Ssu-ma Hsiang-ju, Sun Pin, Sun Ssu-miao, Sung-Chiang, Tan Chu, T'ang Ming Huang, Tao Kung, T'ien Fei, Tien Hou, Tien Mu, Ti-tsang, Tsai Shen, Ts'an Nu, Ts'ang Chien, Tsao Chun, Tsao-Wang, T'shai-Shen, Tung Chun, T'ung Chung-chung, T'ung Lai-yu, Tung Lu, T'ung Ming, Tzu-ku Shen, Wa, Wang Ta-hsien, Wang-Mu-Niang-Niang, Weiwobo, Wen-ch'ang, Wu-tai Yuan-shuai, Xi Hou, Xi Wangmu, Xiu Wenyin, Yanwang, Yaoji, Yen-lo, Yen-Lo-Wang, Yi, Yu, Yu Ch'iang, Yu Huang, Yun-T'ung, Yu-Tzu, Zaoshen, Zhang Xi, , Zhin, Zhongguei, , Zigu Shen, , Zisun, Ch'ang-O

    Keep in mind that millions upon millions of people believed in these gods. So now all of a sudden jesus is suppose to be the one true god? Laughable I say to you.

    what is the most annoying thing about christians? or what do you dislike about christians????

    The following quote from Stephen F. Roberts sums up the situation very nicely:

    "I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours."
  • kris feenstra

    "yup, that about sums up what its like to be an alcoholic."

    I suppose I didn't articulate it well enough, but my point is that you aren't going to be able to do that in all likelihood. I do not think you will be able to paint a complete picture with or without the input of this forum or similar sources, but you can give a very thorough and thoughtful depiction of one piece of the puzzle: your own.

    And to be clear, I don't even think I could pull it off that easily, even having been one my entire life. it would be difficult with any group, but even more so with atheists. Despite common trends amongst atheists and the fact that we may spout off similar rhetoric and clichés, without a unifying doctrine for the group, the differences between us as individuals are almost the same as the differences between our life experiences and psychologies.

  • kris feenstra

    "Nobody here is insulted, buster. Annoyed is the accurate term. Annoyed about your presumptions and ignorance."

    Theists who post here tend to be treated with a lot of prejudice right out of the gate, which is why many of them -- sincere or disingenuous -- seem to break quickly. Do I have a problem with that? No, I think it is pretty natural under these circumstances, and a number of theists have outright earned it in not being forthright even when afforded the opportunity. Also, if you walk into the lion's den, you shouldn't be alarmed at finding lions. All I'm saying is, the tension is pretty much never one-sided. It is what it is.

  • Adam

    No such thing as an Ex Atheist. You were just a confused , you never were an Atheist

  • Karl Mugele

    Cameron

    "capitalizing and misspelling things, then by all means. your words are not hurtful"

    Sure - why would you feel insulted by this.  The only attack by this is the ad hominem argument but that's incongruous.

    "i do not have to prove i was an atheist"

    No, you don't.  Everyone is born an atheist.  You certainly were.  You may not have been a considered atheist though.  It concerned me that you felt so "under attack" as an atheist that you had to fight back with your list or arguments.  There is a simple argument for atheism.  The is no evidence for any of the thousands of gods, and you get no palpable benefit from kidding yourself into believing in one.  I'm more interested in why you started to fantasize in an unevidenced supernatural alien being than whether you were ever atheist. 

    "I did not come here to argue my religion"

    No?  Attempts at conversion by religious fantasists are an attack on truth and a risk to freedom and mental stability.  Your term "godless heathen" is an insult amongst christians..in the same way as my term "religious fantasist" might be of the religious amongst atheists.  Are you happy to be called such?

    "I can tell that you dont really want to know where im coming from"

    You are a mind reader too....or maybe with some of us, you are right, and we don't really care because we've heard it all before.

    "you just want some more ammunition to insult me with"

    I don't see any insults but if you don't want to risk it, don't put your head above the parapet; don't proselytise.

    "you felt insulted and felt the need to defend yourself in an aggressive manner"

    This is a blog, not a boxing ring.  There has been no aggression.  Has anyone asked for a fight?  You are obsessing.

    "a recovering alcoholic"

    It was not your intention to confront atheists, yet you compare atheism to alcoholism!

  • Reg The Fronkey Farmer

    “i was very thorough while compiling my arsenal of anti-christian material, and was very articulate when fighting christians. I had a long list of great arguments against christianity, but I could use more”

    Would you mind sharing some of those great arguments? Just your top 3 if you could. Thanks.

  • Cara Coleen

    C'mon guys. I realize you've all dealt with theists before, but a little intellectual honesty would do us good here.

    We can't use the "no true Scotsman" fallacy. In order to be atheist, *all* you have to do is NOT believe there's a god... even if the reasons you don't believe there's a god are not scientific or based in research. Also, maybe he wasn't familiar with all the arguments we make on Think Atheist, or elsewhere on the internet. He could've been a passive atheist. You don't have to be an atheist activist to be atheist. You don't have to have thought about why you don't believe. You don't have to have thought about religion, or theology, or anything... It is possible for him to have been atheist and then converted to Christianity. I've seen it happen before, even though I was totally perplexed by it. The kid was in search of some "emotional healing" that atheism, in and of itself, cannot provide. There are things that *could* have provided him comfort/affirmation, but the quick-fix was Christianity. Say a prayer, have wrongs forgiven... blam! All better (for a while).

    And the criticism of his spelling/punctuation is a red herring. Someone already pointed it out; you don't have to be a Writing Major to write books anymore. You can get published on Amazon. We've had lots of atheists on Think Atheist who want to write about their experience even though they're not prolific writers, too. So, engage Cameron if you want to... but I feel going after his spelling is a cheap shot.

    But, Cameron... your approach *did* put people on the defensive. You insisted you weren't here to "save" us, but you admitted you *were* here to do research on a book meant to do just that, or help Christians do that. Whether you mean it to be or not, it *is* insulting and presumptuous. If you were atheist at one point, then you should know what coming in here like that would feel like to us. Your seeming forgetfulness about your own feelings as an atheist make people doubt your sincerity.

    Also, you asked what our arguments against Jesus' existence were. We gave you those arguments, but instead of saying "Oh I see, I'll include that in my book, " you claimed that many of us knew "absolutely nothing" about the Bible, etc. If you're researching for a book about the atheist experience/opinion, dismissing our experience or opinions implies you're being disingenuous; it implies you're here for something *other* than listening and discovering our thoughts. Just a hint: that's not how you do objective research.

    You accused us of being ignorant, yet refuse to engage in a debate. You don't see how that comes across? And I know *I* never insulted you.

  • Diane

    We are all at varying levels of education, age, experience, finesse, recovery, aggression, etc.  Many of us here have read the Bible, many have studied it, and some are bona fide Biblical scholars.  Some of us have been seriously harmed by Christians and/or Christian institutions, practices, and/or tenets. We have individual histories that most would likely happily share with a reasonably sincere-seeming inquirer.  

    I want Christians to understand us, but not to save us.  I want them to understand us and then let us be.  I cannot stress this enough.  You would be doing everybody a favor if you wrote a book that allows Christians insight into how to respect us, coexist with us, and, most achingly important, stop trying to save us.

  • Kairan Nierde

    Ok, Cameron W, I am in not convinced that you are being entirely honest but I can see how this exchange can benefit us both, despite what appears to me to be an unecessary lack of transparency.  We talk with curious life-long Christians as well as those who say they are recent converts. Whoever you are, I'll give you my view on these questions.

    what is your best argument against jesus. not god, but jesus specifically????

    I think this is odd to ask. When I was Catholic, we were told to believe that Jesus and God (and the Holy Ghost) are different manifestations of the same being.  I never really accepted that.  I always saw Jesus as a moral teacher and sacrificial lamb.  I almost always prayed to God, maybe to Jesus around 8% of the time.  Never to the Holy Spirit or Mary. If I have any beef with Jesus, it's probably that his teachings aren't that effective in getting his followers to behave well.  I would expect a higher rate of people behaving well after encountering Christianity, especially if one is to believe that Christianity is inspired by the actions and teaching of the son of a God/a demi-god.  I don't think Jesus set the bar too high for humans to follow his teachings accurately. 

     

    what is the most annoying thing about christians? or what do you dislike about christians???? 

    I dislike the same thing I disliked about Christians when I was a Christianity: immoral behavior by those who claim to be morally superior.  Hypocracy pisses me off.  A lot of Christians give lipservice to the Gospel and value material wealth, power, prestige, vanity, etc. above the teachings of Jesus.  The Christians who do follow Jesus' teachings more carefully tend to be fundmentalists, in my experience, who also subscribe to Old Testament values.  OT values are not always in line with the Gospel teachings and less often in line with enlightened, "modern" morality.  So, in these two groups you have people who live according to some of the worst concepts humanity has produced, from the ancient world and in contemporary times.  It's proably possible to say the same things about members of many different faith traditions, but you were just asking about Christians.

  • Val Wuthrich

    In your book just keep repeating if you dob't believe you are going to burn in hell for ever and ever and ever. Put the fear of God in us non-believers at every opportunity.
  • Doug Reardon

    "go to hell!"

  • Louis

    I have read many of the comments here and agree with most of the responses. I think Diane recently nailed it perfectly as far what I think about this. I too feel that Christians need to respect us for who we are and simply let us be. Many of them need to understand that we do not need/want to be saved or converted in any way. There needs to be a simple understanding that we're all human with many differences and have a right to be respected regardless of what religion (or lack of), sexual orientation, race, etc. 

  • Gallup's Mirror

    if someone says that, for the first 30 years of their life, they did not believe that god existed, i dont know why you would accuse that person of lying.

    Sure you do. It's because you insist so passionately of your truthful innocence that we suspect you're lying. As Hamlet's mother once put it: "The lady doth protest too much, methinks."

    That and because you've made numerous statements and comparisons which belie your self-professed "expertise" on atheism. You display not the slightest hint of expertise; not even enough to lie about it convincingly.

    I find you profoundly dishonest and untrustworthy. That's why I'm not buying it, Cam.

    • "i used to be an athiest. actually i was more of an anti-christian..."
    • "i do happen to be an expert on the position im writting about. which is. devout atheist converted to christian..."
    • "the only reason i hated christianity was..."
    • "the only reason i hated christians was..."
    • "christians have absolutely no concept of life without god. so they dont understand athiesim at all..."
    • "i sincerely was, in fact an ATHEIST..."
    • "like many of you, i spent my whole life surrounding myself with like minded people who supported my position..."
    • "i do not have to prove i was an atheist..."
    • "if i were a recovering alcoholic, writting a book for non alcoholics..."
  • Unseen

    "like many of you, i spent my whole life surrounding myself with like minded people who supported my position..."

    I love that statement. He's actually been a Christian his whole life, not an atheist, because if he had been an atheist he'd know that most of us are not now, nor have we ever been, surrounded by like-minded people.

  • Diane

    You, sir, are right!  Besides my family of origin, I had missed being around like-minded people most of my life.  When I realized there were other people like me, I was relieved, surprised, and elated.

  • SteveInCO

    Diane touched on it, but if I had to summarize my wants as regards to the fact that I happen to be an atheist:

    I want Christians to realize we do not believe there is a god.  We are not "mad" at him or doing this just to rebel or what have you (the people in it just to rebel tend to go pagan/wiccan).  Stop telling us we need to be saved as if we haven't heard that line a godzillion times before.  We don't believe there is a hell to be saved from, since we don't believe in the god who (didn't) make it.

    And by the way if that punishment awaits us, surely that is enough and you can stop making our lives hell on earth?  Instead an atheist with the guts to admit it is ostracized and in some parts of the country has no choice but to leave town.  And fired from jobs. And harassed.

    And another:  Stop trying to use the government to push your agenda.  It is NOT (and I regret the lack of a fourth way to emphasize that word) an infringement on your religious liberty to require that the government--that means courthouses, that means public schools, and that means libraries, to remain SILENT on the issue of whether there is a god, and if so what is he/she/it like and does that god want to be prayed to. 

    The sooner that you all can get it through your thick skulls that we do not want to stop your privately conducted religious observances but don't want you using the government to inflict them on everyone, the happier we will all be.

  • Meg Fields

    "Feel free to tell me go to hell"

    Well, 'Cameron W.', go to hell.

  • Colleen

    Well said Cara Coleen.

    Cameron,

    As to your first question, I see no point in distinguishing between God and Jesus.  To me, they are just characters in stories.  I also see no point in formulating arguments against something that does not exist.  I am not against god or jesus existing.  I simply find naturalistic explanations more compelling when thinking critically about the claims made by religions.

    As for your second question, I do not dislike christians.  They, among others, are my family, friends, coworkers, clients, and neighbors.  I do, however, worry that blind faith in anything sometimes leads us away from looking at very real consequences we must all face here and now regardless of what we believe.  I worry that hate is being wrapped up with a pretty bow and sold as moral and true.  I worry that privileges are being confused for rights, secularism for persecution, and our democracy for mob rule.

    While I am sure there is a market among christians for books on saving atheists and I appreciate you dispelling the idea that atheists are terrible people and satan worshipers, I would like to ask you to reconsider the purpose of the book.  If you set out to save us, you have already lost.  As you see here, it puts us on the defensive.  I'm always happy to meet new people, hear their stories, exchange ideas and information, and make new friends...and no we don't always have to agree.  However, if there's an ulterior motive or if the person is disingenuous, I'm rather quick to move on.

    In any case, take care and I hope you find what you're looking for in your endeavors.

  • Geoff

    Cameron, Why do people such as yourself (religious folks) feel the need to convert people into thinking the same way you do or adopting the same philosophy you have?   Is it due to insecurity?  Is that elaborate imaginary existence you have constructed in your head that threatened by the fact that some of us just don't need it or buy into it?  Can't you accept that there are some people that have listened to all the religious doctrines and have examined them and have found them to be illogical or at the very least unnecessary?   Do you understand that all civilizations have invented religions to either comfort the anxiety of the unknown or control and subjugate others for political purposes?   Would it baffle you to know that the basis of your faith, original sin, seems patently absurd and offends my sense of fairness?  Would you be surprised to learn that I take great pride in thinking for myself and not blindly accepting the opinions of others?  Are you capable of understanding that it means more to me to lead a good life because it is the right thing to do than because I am afraid of your imaginary despot.  How can you possibly not see that an all powerful and omniscient being  wouldn't care if I worshiped him or her or it?  Don't you realize that as we learn more and more about our existence we need fantasies like gods less and less?

    Come on dude, in the immortal words of S.L. Jackson, "Wake the Fuck Up".

    or not.  I really don't care what you think.

  • Unseen

    Cameron, Why do people such as yourself (religious folks) feel the need to convert people into thinking the same way you do or adopting the same philosophy you have?   Is it due to insecurity?

    Well, gee, I'm an atheist and I know the answer to that one. Christianity is an evangelical religion, which means it's a Christian's duty to spread the faith. Islam similarly so. Judaism and Hinduism, not so much.

  • Gregg R Thomas

    Cameron,

    Go to Heaven and quickly please.  I hear there's a couple of pedophile priests going on Monday maybe you can catch a ride.

  • Suzanne Olson-Hyde

    @Cam - Mistake No. 1 - Atheists don't believe in anything supernatural, and in that category comes your jesus, therefore don't need saving from figment of man's imagination.

    Mistake 2. Your terminology belies you, you have never been an Atheist, You can jump up and down all you like in protestation, doesn't work.

    Mistake No. 3 - No, god, no jesus, therefore no argument.

    Mistake No. 4 - You, as all christians do, cherry pick. Jesus is god, god is jesus, with a ghost thrown in -

    Matthew 5:17-18
    Do not think that I [Jesus] have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.  I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke or a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. 
    2 Peter 20-21 NAB -
    Know this first of all, that there is no prophecy of scripture that is a matter of personal interpretation, for no prophecy ever came through human will; but rather human beings moved by the holy Spirit spoke under the influence of God."
    So, if you follow jesus, you follow god, can't cherry pick on that one.
    I do feel sorry for christians who may actually be good people, being taken in, and leading their lives in fear.
    But the people I do detest are the ones who hide their crimes behind cloth and cross, and make laws up as they go, especially about women, and that is another story.
    I detest the people who cannot possibly believe in a god or jesus, and commit the most heinous of crimes, raping of children, taking the money of poor, superstitious, downtrodden people, while the perpetrators of these crimes live in luxury.
    And the most horrifying thing about all these crimes, is that christians aren't screaming about these heinous crimes against humanity.
  • James Cox

    Consequently, I do not believe you, has been seconded.

    This ploy seems little over done. An ex-atheist seeking material for a book to help theists argue againist atheists? Hum. Why do you bother, surely your own experience, assuming that you were paying attention, could have enlightened you. Did returning back to the fold, cause the death of brain cells? A similar 'return' for me, would have involved some lose of function.

    I do have to thank you for such an attempt, maybe atheists are still useful as a library of knowledge or insight, should they desire to play....    

  • MikeLong

    I agree - you were never an atheist. If you were, please give us details of your conversion. Here you are, an adult, rational, thinking atheist and, all of a sudden, you decide that, yes, there DOES exist a magical, invisible daddy in the sky after all? I don't think so. What happened? Did God appear to you in a dream? Did God intervene at a critical moment in your life - even though, at the time, you didn't believe he existed? Or did you examine your understanding of the universe, decide there was stuff you couldn't explain, and deduce that, therefore, GODDIDIT? Or did you do a thorough, rational analysis and determine that, on the basis of empirical evidence, a magic, invisible daddy in the sky was the only reasonable conclusion?

    What irritates me most? The Bible. The infantile circular argument that God HAD to be the author of the Bible. It says so in the Bible - and God wrote the Bible so it must be true. I've challenged many Christians to explain why some materials written dozens or hundreds of years after the death of this mythical Jesus, materials which clearly demonstrate NO coherent morality, materials clearly authored by Bronze-Age men (none of whom had nearly as accurate an idea of the nature of things than the average (secular) 9-year-old today) should form the basis of any religion. Their response to my challenge? - Silence. So PLEASE tell why YOU used this Bible as a central argument against your Christian opponents when it DESERVES no more credence in answering questions about life than a Superman comic.

  • Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM

    1. Jesus was illiterate, not omniscient.  He wrote nothing down.  He didn't even dictate his thoughts to someone who could write them down.  He failed to choose even one disciple who could write down his thoughts during his ministry.  Such a manuscript could have prevented the death and torture of millions.

    2. The "annoying" characteristics of Christians have nothing to do with whether any of their religious doctrines are correct, but I'll play.

    The most annoying characteristic of Christians is the historically well entrenched habit of killing, maiming, torturing, bullying, shunning, economically ruining, marginalizing or buttonholing people, including other Christians, who do not believe exactly the same things that they believe to be true.  And then smugly insist that this is the height of morality.

  • Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM

    The most annoying thing about books written by Christians who claim to have once been an atheist is that their books indicate that they know very little about the atheism they claim to have professed and very little about the flaws in the religion they have come to enthusiastically espouse.  Their type of former atheism has little in common with those who use the term to describe themselves.  It more closely resembles either apa-theism (not interested in religion) or igna-theism (general ignorance of religion). It has little resemblance to rational atheism - the thought out position on whether there is likely to be a god or not and whether the specific god of the person's upbringing and culture is likely to exist. 
    The ploy of claiming to be something that the self-labeled members of a group do not accept as similar to themselves is a good way to start off at a disadvantage.  It's like telling a group of practicing homosexuals that you used to be a homosexual like them, on the basis of having experienced the usual temporary adolescent crushes on same sex friends. 
    In other words, we real atheists do not identify with your form of "atheism" so we are unlikely to be moved by your argument that you used to be just like us and, by implication, we can therefore become just like you are now.  There is overwhelming evidence that rational atheism is pretty much a one-way street.  In order to regain the beliefs you lost through a prolonged process of thinking and examination of a wide variety of challenging material a person would have to forget all of what they learned during this extensive process.  Alzheimers dementia, seizure disorders or other kinds of brain impairment might do it but the maintenance of a health brain is sufficient inoculation against such a reversion.
    If you want actual atheists to take your book seriously, instead of being alienated by the cover blurb, you will need to drop the pretense of ever being someone like them.