Deconversion is the term atheists use to describe the self-discovery of natural or scientific thinking about the nature of the universe. For most people, the process is a drawn out mental struggle against the childhood indoctrination of religion. While an atheist may be content or happy in their deconversion, they must evaluate the risk of revealing their "loss of faith" to family and friends, or worse, their society or government.
In some countries, being "deconverted" away from the state mandated faith is considered a crime. Apostates have been jailed or executed in many Islamic countries even though there is no well defined rule in the Koran regarding apostasy. Christians often shun apostates as a protective and punitive measure.
Last updated by Nelson Feb 13, 2009.