What’s up, unfollowers? I asked you guys to send me some questions on Instagram, and you did not disappoint. Here are your questions and my answers!
Did historical Jesus exist? (curiousatheist)
I think there’s a great chance that he did. At the very least there was a guy named Yeshua who claimed to be the Messiah.
What do you think about Nihilism?
Nihilism is the belief that all values are baseless and that nothing can be known or communicated.
I think Nihilism is a little bit dark and gloomy. It’s not glass half full or empty; it’s glass shattered on the ground.
I don’t believe that life inherently has meaning, but I don’t think that we can say that it’s meaningless because of relationships that we form and how much we care for others.
What do you think about religious schools?
Not a fan. I didn’t go to one, but what good can come from living in a bubble? It’s not a vivid representation of the world.
If you could have dinner with the worst fictional villain of all time, what would you ask God?
Brilliant. I think I’d ask him if he knew that Eve would eat the apple. If he did, then he’s a sonofabitch for creating us, knowing that he’d kill everyone with a flood. If he didn’t know, I guess he’s not all-knowing after all.
Mention some prominent bad verses in the new testament
Romans 1:27: In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
1 Peter 2:18: Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh.
Was there a “straw that broke the camel’s back” that made you leave Christianity?
Yes. It wasn’t anything that the church did to me (I know a lot of people leave religion because of stuff like that). I was talking to a coworker who used to be a preacher, and he told me that his church discouraged him from going to college, but he eventually went anyway. When he took a religions class, he learned that there were some stories that were very similar to that of Jesus that happened before Jesus was ever born. And then, he made the point that where people are born largely dictates what they believe. I took a huge step back, and that’s what really led to my deconversion. Some of the things I had seen in church had caused some doubt, but that was really the main straw that broke the camel’s back.
Can you pinpoint and explain the very moment you began to doubt?
The very first moment was in 7th or 8th grade when an atheist friend said that there’s no way that Noah’s Ark could be true. First time I ever even thought about the possibility of there being no god.
Are you shunned/disowned by the majority of your family? If so, how do you deal with that? (Breanna)
Does your family still talk to you after you told them you were an atheist? Mine wouldn’t (thesecularhumanist_)
It’s funny. I’ve been an atheist for 10 years, and I’ve only recently told my parents that I don’t believe. My sister is the only other family member who knows that I’m an atheist. None of my other family would shun me or treat me poorly if they found out. I think many of them would be surprised, especially because I used to be so “on fire for god.”
Do you believe that, despite the flaws in religion in the world, we should still try to fix things peacefully?
Yes, I think that’s really the only way. Religion has caused enough war and death. The internet has ushered in a new age of individual learning and connecting with like minded people. Non-belief will continue to rise. Religion isn’t going anywhere for a long, long time–maybe ever, but I think that it will fade with advancements in science and an increase in freethinking people.
What are your political views?
I’m socially liberal, for sure. I think anyone should be able to love any consenting adult they want. I think that no man has the right to tell a woman what she should do with her body.
Fiscally, I was raised to be conservative. Things started to change for me a few years ago when I realized that the most important thing that I vote for is the overall good. I don’t need to vote for the candidate who will help me, personally, the most.
So, overall, I lean left. I don’t think I can ever vote Republican again because overall human rights are more important than anything else to me.
Have you ever successfully deconverted someone?
Not that I know of, but that’s not my goal. I’m not actively trying to deconvert people. My main focus is to help people who are already in the deconversion process or those who have recently left Christianity. I want to be someone who is relatable to those people.
Have you ever won an argument against a Christian and he acknowledged that?
I’m not sure that I can say that I’ve won an argument, but I think I’ve made some valid points that they acknowledge. One of the most common ones I can think of is discrediting Pascal’s Wager when they present that. They usually don’t understand that it’s a false dichotomy.
Do you believe religion should be eradicated? Why/why not?
I think that religion truly does help some people, and if we’re being honest, there’s no way that religion can ever be eradicated. Do I think that many people would be better off without it? Yes. Do I think they’ll ever realize that? Hell no.
Favorite argument for the existence of god?
I like this question. Genetically Modified Skeptic has a great video on this on YouTube, where he ranks all of the arguments. He puts the Teleological Argument at the top. I think that’s probably my favorite one, too. Basically, if the laws of the universe weren’t exactly the way they are, we wouldn’t be able to exist. It still doesn’t prove god or even come close, but it’s probably the one where you can say that the universe has the “appearance” of design.
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