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When and why did you become an atheist?

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Chris OConnor

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When and why did you become an atheist?

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What happened in you life to lead you to become an atheist? How old were you?
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Mr. P

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Re: When and why did you become an atheist?

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Must have been 18. I was in the school cafeteria in my senior year at a Catholic High School.It just clicked. You know...like when you finally understand how something works.Mr. P. The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.Once you perceive the irrevocable truth, you can no longer justify the irrational denial. - Mr. P.The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper
Wishwas

Re: When and why did you become an atheist?

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There was no particular incidence, nothing dramatic.I was in the 7th standard ( age 12 ). Me and my friend were on school play ground and we were dicussing the belief in ghosts. Then the thought struck both of us, why were we believing in god(s) when we did not believe in ghosts ?
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Dissident Heart

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Re: When and why did you become an atheist?

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Wishwas: There was no particular incidence, nothing dramatic. I was in the 7th standard ( age 12 ).I find it interesting that any notion would be "settled" at age 12. I mean, my ideas regarding friendship, marriage, politics, international affairs, economics, literature, natural sciences...if I was to consider the case closed at 12 years old in any of these areas I would probably suffer from arrested development. I should think we would want to get beyond our adolescent conclusions and explore the issues through adult lenses.I understand that something was rejected at age 12, but did you reject God at that time...or just your 12 year old understanding of divinity?
Wishwas

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The question is "When and why did you become an atheist?", So even if I become a theist now I suppose the answer would remain same. I have not talked about my case being closed. In fact one can remain open minded as long as one lives. It is a personal choice. As far as becoming a theist is concerned I feel I might become one and start believing in Flying Spaghetti Monster
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Chris OConnor

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Re: When and why did you become an atheist?

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WishwasDissident has his own definition of "theism." Theism has nothing to do with "friendship, marriage, politics, international affairs, economics, literature, or natural sciences." It only pertains to whether or not you believe in a God or gods. Yes, theists have more depth than simply their "yes" answer to the question about their belief in a deity, but those beliefs have nothing to do with the designation of "theist." Dissident is confusing "theism" with "religious beliefs."The same goes for "atheists." I'm an atheist because I lack the belief in a God or gods. I may lack the belief because I was never exposed to the concept (implicit atheism) or lack the belief because I don't see any evidence (agnostic atheist), but "atheism" ONLY means "one who lacks the belief in a God or gods" and says nothing about my beliefs in regards to "friendship, marriage, politics, international affairs, economics, literature," and "natural sciences." Dissident has a unique way of looking at things, which is fine, but I am posting here to say that you answered the question perfectly well. I know you didn't stop growing intellectually at 12 years of age. Edited by: Chris OConnor  at: 6/3/06 12:35 pm
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Re: When and why did you become an atheist?

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I was kinda settled on the non-existence of Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and many other things by the age of 12.Anyone here still exploring these possibilities? Mr. P. The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.Once you perceive the irrevocable truth, you can no longer justify the irrational denial. - Mr. P.The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper
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Chris OConnor

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Re: When and why did you become an atheist?

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Not me.
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Re: When and why did you become an atheist?

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Chris: Theism has nothing to do with "friendship, marriage, politics, international affairs, economics, literature, or natural sciences." It only pertains to whether or not you believe in a God or gods.My point was not to argue for the inter-relatedness of these issues (which I see as self-evident), but to point out that decisions made regarding these things require more than an adolescent understanding of the world. Or, more succinctly, do you still draw the same conclusions about any of these areas like you did as an adolescent, or at 18, 20-something, 30s, etc.. If you have evolved in these other areas, but not regarding God- why or why not? In any case, Chris, your initial question was "What happened in your life..." which it seems to me requires we consider the relationships, politics, economics, etc. that shaped the world we found ourselves in when deciding the "Yes" or "No" about God.
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Chris OConnor

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Re: When and why did you become an atheist?

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DissidentQuote:My point was not to argue for the inter-relatedness of these issues (which I see as self-evident), but to point out that decisions made regarding these things require more than an adolescent understanding of the world.I wasn't asking about any of the tangent issues you mentioned in your post. The title of this thread is, "When and why did you become an atheist?" Wishwas answered the question and remained on-topic. For whatever reason he understood what I was asking and you found it necessary, as always, to drag a bunch of other issues into the thread. Those issues are all VERY important, Dissident, but they have nothing to do with this thread. I'm not sure why you feel compelled to use every opportunity possible to confuse subjects and derail conversations. The thread was asking about the time and reason that atheist members decided they were indeed atheists. Did you see me ask anything about...1. friendship2. marriage3. politics4. international affairs5. economics6. literature7. natural sciences?I'm looking for stories in this thread. I'm asking for the background information about what led people to abandon their faith. This thread isn't about items 1 thru 7 above. How is that not clear?Quote:...but to point out that decisions made regarding these things require more than an adolescent understanding of the world.You won't find me arguing against this statement. Of course an adolescent isn't capable of forming educated and solid positions with regards to these subjective and complex issues. But nobody mentioned this subjective and complex issues except you. This thread is not about them. Please tell me this post is making sense to you. For whatever reason you and I struggle to see eye to eye. There always is some sort of dispute and disagreement. It is getting old. I am trying really hard to make my point clear here, but from our history we rarely find common ground. Can you see how those 7 issues aren't a part of what I was asking? Or am I simply too shallow and ignorant to see how those 7 items influence whether or not a God exists? I'm trying, Dissident. This I swear.Quote:Or, more succinctly, do you still draw the same conclusions about any of these areas like you did as an adolescent, or at 18, 20-something, 30s, etc.. If you have evolved in these other areas, but not regarding God- why or why not?You're derailing a conversation, Dissident. PLEASE PLEASE try not to do that to my community. I am asking you kindly to PLEASE stop derailing conversations. Create a thread to discuss any subject you want to discuss, and members can opt to participate and nor participate voluntarily. Forcing yourself into unrelated threads is not fair and I am asking you to please stop doing it.How is one to evolve with regards to the belief in the existence or non-existence of a God? Shit, maybe I shouldn't ask such an open-ended question. My point is that either a God exists or doesn't exist. Naturally, a human being can go back and forth and believe and not believe, but the issues that influence whether or not they believe should NOT be the 7 issues you mentioned above. Actually, the 7th issue, which was "natural science," is the only one with any relevance.1. friendship - irrelevent2. marriage - irrelevent3. politics - irrelevent4. international affairs - irrelevent5. economics - irrelevent6. literature - irrelevent7. natural sciences - very relevantQuote:In any case, Chris, your initial question was "What happened in your life..." which it seems to me requires we consider the relationships, politics, economics, etc. that shaped the world we found ourselves in when deciding the "Yes" or "No" about God.Maybe this is where you go wrong. If you are examining "relationships, politics, economics, etc.." when trying to decide on whether or not a God exists you're doomed to failure. You're studying completely unrelated fields.If you want to figure out whether or not a God is "probable" you might want to focus on...1. Critical thinking2. Comparative religion3. Astronomy4. Biology5. Geology6. Cultural antropology7. History of religion8. Skepticism - humans propensity to believe bunk
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