Monday, April 6, 2009

This May Explain Some Conversations You've Had

atheism, atheist, christian, evangelical, evangelism, fundamentalism, god, jesus, religion, silly, witness, witnessing
I do so enjoy a look into the mind of a fundamentalist, especially as it concerns atheists. It explains a lot of what I read, and a lot of conversations I've had. It's also tremendously frustrating, because it never seems to occur to any of these people to talk to a real life atheist, and actually listen to what they have to say.

What would you say is the strongest point to bring up to an Atheist? Something that really gets them thinking about God.
The question alone is a fallacy: that atheists have never thought of god. In the US, most atheists are former christians. Most of us were raised christian, and have thought about god a lot. In fact, if you're like me, it was thinking about god, and reading the bible, that was the death blow to your faith.
Earl: The strongest point to bring to the atheist is that scientific method is useless really? so how does this guy think all the scientific advances, um, ever, were achieved? magic? he's using a computer to state that the scientific method is useless. and there is spiritual substance unknown by the uncomprehending unspiritual unexperienced atheist. yeah. i'm going to have to ask for proof on that one. oh, but wait, the scientific method is useless! i should just accept anything anyone says to me is true! it's going to be a bitch worshipping yhwh and krishna- and the other few thousand gods humans have worshipped over the years.
One must experience spirit to recognize it's existance-a spiritual experience which the self claimed atheist will admit he/she has not had. you won't know it's true until you accept it as true. but i won't accept it as true until i know it's true. circular reasoning is just so much fun. Spiritual recognition is by experience of the Spirit not by scientific method. which is useless anyway. this cannot work on anyone.
Rebecca_D: How do they think man ever got here? Hatched? Ape? I would ask how their life is going. okay, all things considered. And then go from there. cause anyone without God, their life is miserable. so, why even ask how my life is going if you already know the answer? how arrogant can you be? Rebecca_D knows exactly how my life is without even having to ask. in fact, she knows how everyone's life is going. move over, Sylvia Brown!
catherine: I also read Greg, that alot of people are Atheist's because of their relationship with their earthly Father, while they were young growing up. was that an actual scientific study or from the back of one of Ray Comfort's tracts?
catherine: God created everything and everyone for His glory. Someone ought to tell an atheist this. I wander wonder if they would get angry about that, I mean, if someone told them. "Of course, I wouldn't care." I think the question was how to convert atheists, not how to make them angry, though that wouldn't make me angry, it would make me laugh.
Rebecca_D: I would ask how we all got here in the first place. Then I'd ask who do they run to when all hell breaks lose and it seems there is no way out. God is my refuge from the storms, he'll hold me, hide me, he would shelter and never deny me. Honestly, Rebecca, I don't know. Of course, I'm not a physicist. I'm also okay with not knowing things. There's lots of things I don't know.
Who do I run to when things get bad? Friends and family. God will hold, hide, shelter and never deny you? What about all the people he doesn't hold, hide, shelter and never deny? What about who are horribly killed, suffer from diseases are raped, lose loved ones, etc.? Does god just not love them as much as you?

jana: just ask them, "Who is Jesus Christ the one you mention when u get angry? I would like to know Him, can you tell me about Him?. Who is My God whom u so mention a lot in your speeches. I would also like to know Him. Okay, being christian doesn't give one the right to butcher the english language, and, that made no sense. i think jana is positing that if you've ever said "goddamnit" or "jesus christ!" in anger, that you must necessarily believe in god, which is just silly. curses are cultural.

Helen 5378:
I think that the strongest point, so to speak, to bring up to an Atheist is to tell them how very much that God loves them. I like to tell them that God knows exactly what they are thinking right at that moment, whereas I do not have a clue. That's quite the non sequitur. Hey, some guy you don't believe in knows what you're thinking and loves you! Oh, really? Who? Santa?

There is so much more, but we'll end with Tanya:
You should start with the begining, God is the reason they woke up this morning.How in bad times if they call on God, that he will make a way. Well, heck, that worked for me!


  1. Here is a good read for you, PF.

    This was posted on the old Raytractors blog. It is the mindset of the fundamentalist.

  2. Y'know, it recently struck me that I'm actually treated by people I spent 2+ decades of my life going to church with or who know my story as if I have no clue about this whole "god" thing. I mean, I wrote the outreach book for a couple organizations and yet I'm treated as if I'm about to be astounded by apologetic parlor tricks.

    I might well have to do a write-up of that. It's mind boggling...

  3. Oh you missed this good one:

    I believe that I would say. "Don't tell me there is no God, I need God."
    ---catherine on 3/4/07

    To quote Terry Pratchett in Going Postal -

    You knew that the man running the Find the Lady game was going to win, you know that people in distress didn't sell diamond rings for a fraction of their value, you knew that life generally handed you the sticky end of the stick, and you knew that the gods didn't pick some everyday undeserving tit out of the population and hand them a fortune.

    Except that, this time, you might be wrong, right? It might just happen, yes?

    And this was known as the greatest of treasures, which is Hope. It was a good way getting poorer really very quickly, and staying poor. It could be you. But it wouldn't be.

  4. One of the things I love about fundies is their utter refusal to meet you half way. I've been stalked by the Mormons for about 10 years now (it's actually kind of creepy, I've moved about 5 times and they find me each time), and though they are really annoying, they at least try to meet you half way. What your religion is, express interest in that, ooo and aah over kids that may be present, and then gently ease into their pitch. Which is kind of funny to watch in a raging thunderstorm when you won't let them in the house and they are soaked to the skin. But that's not the point. Th epoint is, they are closer to an actual way to convert people than fundies are with these hit you with a brick approaches.

  5. geds: no, they don't try that with people they went to church with, do they?

    leigh: you have to give mormons that. they do attempt to tailor their message to their audience.

    thanks, beamstalk!

    and, while one may need god, this does not prove god. i need tiny pink unicorns, but i haven't seen them yet.

  6. if you're like me, it was thinking about god, and reading the bible, that was the death blow to your faith.

    That did it for me, that and reading mythology and of course the whole lie about Santa.

    he's using a computer to state that the scientific method is useless

    That one always gets me... If you want to be a fundy, go live like the Amish do.

    There was a recient earthquake in Italy so I guess God doesn't like Italians. (facepalm)

  7. The lesson of this is: when speaking to an atheist, always get advice from someone who's clearly never spoken to one.

  8. Also a good rule in advertising: when marketing to women, be sure to use a team that only includes men.

  9. "The strongest point to bring to the atheist is that scientific method is useless..."
    It is pretty bad at measuring love. It says that it's just chemicals. Outrageous! Neurons are clearly involved as well. Also, wine.

    "...and there is spiritual substance unknown by the uncomprehending unspiritual unexperienced atheist."
    I realize that he's probably using "spiritual" in a specifically Christian sense, but it bugs me when I'm told that, as an atheist, I must be follow "scientism" and be completely rational. Anybody here have a spiritual experience when, say, looking up at the stars, or holding a baby or gardening?

    "Spiritual recognition is by experience of the Spirit not by scientific method."
    Of course, when people from other religions have essentially the same experience, they're clearly wrong.

  10. You know, PZ Myers just did a post on this: the idea that if one adheres to logic and rationality, one must imitate Spock at all times. Of course I'm not logical and rational while holding babies or playing with my dog or planting flowers. I don't have to be Vulcan to lay claim to logic and reason.


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