The Religious Delusion

August 22, 2008 at 12:01 am 33 comments

There are a few points that I would like to summarize in relation to my objection to religion.  These are becoming highlighted as I read through numerous books, such as God Without Religion, What’s So Great About Christianity, and The Diamond in your Pocket

Religion is delusional as it supposes to name the unnameable and objectify the subjective

Whatever can be said of that which is beyond our perception and beyond our understanding will always fall short.  Language can only deal with what is; supposed supernatural events can only be explained in natural terms.  All of religion is explained through the mediation of particular individuals, often regarded as prophets or sages, who have been said to have received a unique revelation.  The substance of this message is then adhered to by followers, who find ways to verify the message through their own subjective experience.  In the subjective, there is no right or wrong, there is only experience, which is quantified to be truth.  This experience is then identified to be something that can be explained, bringing it into the realm of language.  From this religion is created.  In religion, truth is mediated from outer, rather than inner sources.  This is delusion.

Religion is delusional as it creates unnecessary boundaries

Our world is suffering due to the delusional thinking of religious followers, who insist that their higher truth demands respect.  These deluded people are willing to kill and be killed for the sake of beliefs that have no basis of reality.  Granted, such instances might constitute a minority within religious circles, nonetheless the larger problem is one of boundary – namely that one group claims to have final revelation.  These peoples have identified with mental positions based upon their respective religious texts.  What is the point of such boundaries, when all they do is inflict harm and disharmony?  From the Christian perspective, not only is there one major boundary, but also many internal boundaries, known as denominations.  Of course, this also occurs in every other religion.

Religion is delusional as it prevents people from thinking for themselves

It is my firm belief that the majority of religious texts were not written to create followers, or religious movements.  Rather, they were created out of the unique experience of individuals and groups as sources of inspiration.  It is delusional to rely on any source as final and authoritative.  Our task is to go beyond these sources, not for the sake of creating something better, but to get to the essence of that which inspired the creation of the sources.  Monotheism called this God, but this is an anthropomorphized concept, or in other words clothing the unnameable in human form.  The problem of taking these mental concepts and prescribing them to groups only prevents people from arriving to that which is beyond all thought.

Ultimately, you must search yourself and find that which is true.  Some may find themselves in this place through religious devotion, but I see religion as more of a stumbling block, for it is more likely to cloud the way.  Using the words of one who inspired a religion, but who it has been said was not a Buddhist, the Buddha used the metaphor of clouds as an apt way of describing how delusion mars the way to truth, love, peace, and happiness.

- Gary

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33 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Gary  |  August 22, 2008 at 5:27 am

    I wrote this a little while ago and must now add that I no longer consider that religious texts were by and large created as sources of inspiration. They are far too complex to lay such a simplistic explanation. Also, I’m highly skeptical of a single ‘essence’ that can be said to lay beyond the sources. They are useful as historical texts, and anything beyond that is purely speculation and applying our own matrices of thought. It’s hilarious to think that I’m becoming skeptical of myself! :)

  • 2. kjelllee  |  August 22, 2008 at 5:30 pm

    Job 11:7,8,”Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty?” Unbelief and despondency may indeed often seem to find the limits of God’s nature. We doubt God’s power and love; and for this reason we dare not fully rest in His mercy or leave life’s riddles to Him.

    But remember: It is unbelief which acts in this manner. Faith is never able to plumb the depths of God’s love or to reach the uttermost boundaries of the Almighty. God is eternal, unlimited, absolute. His love is like a bottomless ocean. He who would lower himself into this ocean will gaze into an abyss of God’s sheer mercy. Fling yourself into this ocean; you will be encompassed and borne by love, just as the swimmer in deep water is surrounded and borne up by the water.

    And who can fathom the extent of what God is able to do? Where is the uttermost limit of what God can perform? He who is almighty has no bounds. How then can you doubt?

    You can only speculate and speculation is not knowing.

    Sincerely, Kjell Lee
    http://www.kjelllee.org

  • 3. Yurka  |  August 22, 2008 at 7:07 pm

    Religion is delusional as it supposes to name the unnameable and objectify the subjective

    You are assuming that religion is 100% subjective. But then you aren’t dealing with actual Christianity, only a strawman version of it. According to the Bible, miracles were done that were seen by all, so I’m not sure what your point here is. If you think miraculous accounts in the Bible are fabrications, then say so, but don’t imply that people are ‘deluding’ themselves into describing detailed chains of events on the basis of having a single ‘subjective experience’ of some sort.

    All of religion is explained through the mediation of particular individuals

    All of *anything* not experienced first hand is explained through the mediation of individuals. Do you renounce all knowledge that you haven’t come through by first hand experience?

    Religion is delusional as it creates unnecessary boundaries

    But of course not all boundaries are unnecessary. Why are religious boundaries unnecessary? Because *all* they do is inflict harm and disharmony. How do I know that’s *all* they do? Because they’re based on delusion. Therefore religion is delusional because it’s delusional. QED. Gary, you see how circular this is? You must yourself admit not all boundaries are unnecessary, and some necessary boundaries create harm and disharmony (let’s say disabling an intruder in your home). You’ve got to show *why* the boundary is unnecessary. Anyone can make the kinds of assertions you’re making about anything. Your boundary of skepticism is fair game as well.

    It is my firm belief that the majority of religious texts were not written to create followers, or religious movements.

    “Whoever would be my disciple must deny himself, take up his cross and follow … oh wait a second, never mind. According to Gary I couldn’t possibly be trying to convince people to follow me.” Uh huh.

    Rather, they were created out of the unique experience of individuals and groups as sources of inspiration.

    Or they were the recording of events that occurred in time and space. I could just as easily assert that your whole post was inspired in your head by some ‘subjective experience’. The point is that you are making objective claims, and it would simply be evasive of me not to deal with your claims, but to pretend I’ve refuted you by saying ‘Ah, he’s just trying to objectify an subjective experience. I think.’

    It is delusional to rely on any source as final and authoritative.

    Is that your final, authoritative word on the subject? We all have ‘properly basic’ beliefs and axioms. Otherwise we’d be reduced to thinking we were brains-in-vats.

    As for the rest of your post… I have no idea what you’re talking about. You’ve been dipping a little too heartily into the McLaren sauce. Please consider pulling your head out of it and holding it under the clear cold waters of the Gospel.

  • 4. LeoPardus  |  August 22, 2008 at 7:33 pm

    But then you aren’t dealing with actual Christianity, only a strawman version of it.

    That’s all there is old bean. Everyone setting up their own version and then insisting that it’s the “true” one.

    If you think miraculous accounts in the Bible are fabrications, then say so

    “so”

    but don’t imply that people are ‘deluding’ themselves into describing detailed chains of events on the basis of having a single ’subjective experience’ of some sort.

    Oh no! That never happens.

  • 5. Gary  |  August 22, 2008 at 8:40 pm

    {chuckle}
    {sigh}
    Not much more to say about that, Yurka. Your arguments are far too polished to argue with, so I may as well retreat now back into my cave.

  • 6. brian  |  August 22, 2008 at 10:58 pm

    Hello, I just found your blog; you guys have a stimulating discussion going on here overall, and it’s fun to read. So thanks. I’ve flirted on and off with de-conversion throughout the years, but I am currently a somewhat dissatisfied and angst-filled churchgoer. I am also a PhD student in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations in the Cambridge, MA area, specializing in Hebrew Bible, Assyriology, and the history/archaeology/ancient languages of the Levant.

    So, having pitifully tried to establish credibility and relevance to the discussion at hand, I would like to make the following two comments:

    1. “It is my firm belief that the majority of religious texts were not written to create followers, or religious movements. Rather, they were created out of the unique experience of individuals and groups as sources of inspiration…” This is very true for the Hebrew Bible, and I think mostly so for the New Testament, though the NT does sometimes speak with a kind of self-conscious kind of voice that would indicate some portions were written with the knowledge that they would be viewed as “authoritative” in some way (2Pet. 3:15-6 alludes to this, possibly?). Arguably, there are some HB passages like this as well, but perhaps not many. The Quran, on the other hand, repeatedly reveals itself as a self-conscious attempt to create “Scripture,” as a rule for the religious community, and refers to itself as such in many instances. Not that this is a good or bad thing per se, just an observation.

    2. In the sidebar: “For the most part, we believe the teachings of Judaism, Christianity, & Islam, based on the perceptions and myths of a nomadic ancient Middle Eastern tribe, should be viewed critically…”
    Good idea to view everything critically.
    For the sake of critical intellectual and historical credibility, however, I would suggest that you strike the statement about nomadism; the ancient Israelites were not nomads in any technical sense (though some people mistakenly thought they were in the 19th and early 20th centuries, as does one renegade Israeli archaeologist today), and the early Christians were certainly not nomads. Some early Muslims did in fact live as nomads, though not all of them, and none of the three religions mentioned here constitutes a single “tribe” of any kind. But anyway, the use of the word “nomad” in your description comes off as a type of slur–do the ancient faiths of these folks seem more silly because (you think) they were nomads? Do good ideas come from cities? Or semi-nomads? Or farmers? Or hunter-gatherers? Anyway, a little re-wording could fix all of that.

  • 7. brian  |  August 22, 2008 at 10:59 pm

    The bottom of my post got cut off; I also wanted to say, “Thanks for the blog, and keep up the good work”! Or something like that.

  • 8. Gary  |  August 22, 2008 at 11:42 pm

    Thanks Brian for your detailed analysis. This particular post of mine is probably not the best candidate for intellectual scrutiny, I originally put it together as a collection of thoughts that, as can be seen from my first comment, I do not take too seriously. Regardless, you have raised some interesting points.

  • 9. The Apostate  |  August 23, 2008 at 12:14 am

    Gary,

    Religion is delusional…

    and then in comment 1,

    Also, I’m highly skeptical of a single ‘essence’ that can be said to lay beyond the sources.

    I guess it is hard to critique this article then. Each point hat is addressed presupposes an essentialist definition or religion – which is not exactly in vogue in scholastic circles nowadays. Each point can easily be refuted simply by one example of any number of religions. Gary, when you wrote this article, could you admit to a deeply western bias against the three so-called monotheistic western religions?

  • 10. The Apostate  |  August 23, 2008 at 12:25 am

    brian,

    For the sake of critical intellectual and historical credibility, however, I would suggest that you strike the statement about nomadism

    I do not believe that when the claim concerning nomadism was written it was meant in a derogatory sense – it was meant to place the reader in a historical situation. It was most certainly written, I am sure, with the Hebrew or proto-Israelite nation in mind. A nomad, by definition, is someone who is part of a society which has no permanent abode. This has been the mythology of the Hebrew people, whether historical or not. Technically speaking, it is the sort of nomadism that the majority of scholars are in dispute about, mainly due to the the amount of archaeological ambiguity of pre-Roman Palestine (this, of course, is not caused by the lack of data – there certainly is a lot of pieces that archaeologists and anthropologists have yet to put together).

  • 11. to Garry  |  August 23, 2008 at 4:37 am

    Why do you think, religious texts are not a source of inspiration any more? Any text could be inspirational, even school-book or an article in newspaper: why cant the Bible or Quran?

    Sorry for my English…

  • 12. John McCunt  |  August 23, 2008 at 10:15 am

    Blasphemy.

  • 13. nara  |  August 23, 2008 at 10:39 am

    I by myself found that religion or the follower is really inconsistent about god. They say god is almighty then why he must create heaven and hell since he can change our mind and behavior in no time. Even Gandhi or Buddha or some priest can change people heart with their words. Doesn’t it mean our perception and our thought can’t reach by him

    Some also say that god are infinity and beyond our perception. But why people can count god(monotheism or polytheism)? If you can count him that could be mean he has body/shape and shape arranged by limited thing.

    I’m not questioning about god here but the way how people describe god.

    If he really almighty than doesn’t matter how we think about him, either we believe him or not, because he is not that desperate for needing any agreement from such low human like us. If we prefer doing good things than bad thing is about human matter. If he has personality than he will more concern about how all of his creature get along each other rather than about himself in the eye of his creature.

    I agree with you since I see many hatred and war are caused by religious fanatics. I never heard war between atheism.

    Sorry for my english, hope you got my point of view. Love U all

  • 14. yurka  |  August 23, 2008 at 12:28 pm

    #4 LP re:
    but don’t imply that people are ‘deluding’ themselves into describing detailed chains of events on the basis of having a single ’subjective experience’ of some sort.

    Oh no! That never happens.

    I just meant that very few texts are similar to, say, Paul’s Christophany, and yet Gary seemed to be applying his ‘subjective experience’ critique to the Bible as a whole. But let’s take the Exodus out of Egypt in the OT, or the feeding of the multitude in the NT.
    It’s hard to see how such narratives arose out of someone contemplating their navel or what have you until they had some massive ‘experience’, therefore Gary seemed a bit optimistic in dismissing all of religion on this basis.

  • 15. yurka  |  August 23, 2008 at 2:00 pm

    Gary, I’m guessing you were never a part of the Episcopal Church, or else, with your beliefs, you’d probably be a Bishop by now instead of a deconvert.

    Read chapter 5 of C.S. Lewis’ Great Divorce, written long before postmodernism became popular. Here he argues against the ‘relative truth’ point of view in the form of a dialogue.

  • 16. brian  |  August 23, 2008 at 4:00 pm

    The Apostate,

    “I do not believe that when the claim concerning nomadism was written it was meant in a derogatory sense…”
    I agree; I don’t think it was/is meant this way, either. And yet, this is not the first time I’ve heard the term “nomadism” used in a kind of way that could (and I’m only talking about how it could look to a reader, etc.) somehow seem to indicate that ideas coming from ancient nomads must be wrong, or that nomadic lifestyle is inherently unenlightened or irrelevant (there are hundreds of thousands of people who still adhere to this mode of subsistence today). They may indeed be wrong; and few Westerners are nomads. But it just obfuscates the issues, and it’s ambiguous, and it’s simply not the historical reality for 2.5 of the religions mentioned in the sidebar.

    “A nomad, by definition, is someone who is part of a society which has no permanent abode…” Sort of; specialists in the anthropology of nomadic cultures might quibble about an exact definition, but this is not my specialty so I will digress. Suffice it to say that, apart from a few, situational and (relatively) short-term experiences, the Bible never presents any of its “chosen” people as permanent nomads.

  • 17. The Apostate  |  August 23, 2008 at 5:50 pm

    Brian,

    But it just obfuscates the issues, and it’s ambiguous, and it’s simply not the historical reality for 2.5 of the religions mentioned in the sidebar.

    I can agree with that.

    Sort of; specialists in the anthropology of nomadic cultures might quibble about an exact definition, but this is not my specialty so I will digress. Suffice it to say that, apart from a few, situational and (relatively) short-term experiences, the Bible never presents any of its “chosen” people as permanent nomads.

    Which is why I made note of the “sort of nomad” – my definition is strictly from the Oxford English Dictionary.
    As for the Bible, it may not present the people as “permanent nomads,” but it never really does give them a permanent abode either (apart from the goal of the permanent abode).

  • 18. Gary  |  August 23, 2008 at 6:08 pm

    Apostate,

    Gary, when you wrote this article, could you admit to a deeply western bias against the three so-called monotheistic western religions?

    The only thing I’ll admit to is writing ideas that I simply pulled out of the air and put into an article. So I advise not to take this article seriously in any way, it certainly doesn’t reflect what I believe at this moment, and it was probably written after a glass of wine. The only thing it really does demonstrate is that deconversion can be one hell of a ride!

  • 19. Yurka  |  August 25, 2008 at 7:50 am

    So I advise not to take this article seriously in any way, it certainly doesn’t reflect what I believe at this moment, and it was probably written after a glass of wine.

    What would you (anyone) think if your doctor said the same thing after giving you a diagnosis? This illustrates the problem with ‘Liberal’ Christianity. They don’t *really* take it seriously in any way, which is why so many are leaving. This is why UU, UCC, Episcopals are so dangerous. They’ve reduced the Bible to weekly entertainment, yet still insist in some way that they are ‘religious’, or ‘Christian’.

  • 20. brian  |  August 25, 2008 at 9:49 am

    Yurka,

    I was talking with some new parents a few weeks ago, and they said a funny thing, regarding new parents who spend thousands of dollars on high end baby apparel, strollers, $900 play-pens, etc. The mom said: “Parents can buy that kind of stuff if they want, no problem–as long as they realize it’s for themselves, and not for the baby…”

    I thought that statement was really wise, because it’s true on so many levels, and has a lot of broader, even if metaphorical, applications.

    So, to turn the metaphor on you, and your comments that I have read on this post, and elsewhere on the blog: You can keep writing things like this, but please, please, just know (even if you can’t admit it to anyone else–though that might take you in surprisingly good directions in your attempts at persuasion if you could admit it openly?!) that these things you’re saying cannot in any way convince anyone of anything–you comment *for yourself,* for your own benefit, apparently, and that’s OK (in my view). But you should be able to admit that, and as it stands, your tone seems to indicate a different attitude.

    And in case anyone hasn’t told you…the de-converts represented here did not, for the most part and with some notable exceptions, is seems, leave faith because they did not hear clear apologetic arguments. And, as a Christian myself, I would say that the “clear cold waters of the Gospel” you would seem to advocate appear to be a sickening version of fundamentalism–you, in fact, represent the “straw man” version of Christianity that has, at the very least, given the non-Christian world something to dislike.

    I shouldn’t even be saying any of this, of course, since you see opposition and (what you perceive to be) “persecution” as a sign of validation, but that’s another story…

  • 21. kjelllee  |  August 26, 2008 at 2:51 pm

    THE FOLLOWING WAS WRITTEN BY BEN STEIN AND RECITED BY HIM ON CBS SUNDAY MORNING COMMENTARY.

    I am a Jew, and every single one of my ancestors was Jewish. And it does not bother me even a little bit when people call those beautiful lit up, bejeweled trees, Christmas trees…I don’t feel threatened. I don’t feel discriminated against. That’s what they are: Christmas trees.

    It doesn’t bother me a bit when people say, ‘Merry Christmas’ to me. I don’t think they are slighting me or getting ready to put me in a ghetto. In fact, I kind of like it. It shows that we are all brothers and sisters celebrating this happy time of year. It doesn’t bother me at all that there is a manger scene on display at a key intersection near my beach house in Malibu. If people want a crieche, it’s just as fine with me as is the Menorah a few hundred yards away.

    I don’t like getting pushed around for being a Jew, and I don’t think Christians like getting pushed around for being Christians. I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed around, period. I have no idea where the concept cane from that America is an explicitly atheist country. I can’t find it in the Constitution
    and I don’t like it being shoved down my throat.

    Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we should worship celebrities and we aren’t allowed to worship God as we understand Him? I guess that’s a sign that I’m getting old, too. But there are a lot of us who are wondering where these celebrities came from and where the America we knew went to.

    In light of the many jokes we send to one another for a laugh, this is a little different: This is not intended to be a joke; it’s not funny, it’s intended to get you thinking.

    Billy Graham’s daughter was interviewed on the Early Show and Jane Clayson asked her ‘How could God let something like this happen?’ (regarding Katrina)
    Anne Graham gave an extremely profound and insightful response. She said, ‘I believe God is deeply saddened by this, just as we are, but for years we’ve been telling God to get out of our schools, to get out of our government and to get out of our lives. And being the gentleman He is, I believe He has calmly backed out. How can we expect God to give us His blessing and His protection if we demand He leave us alone?’

    In light of recent events…terrorist attacks, school shootings, etc. I think it started when the atheist Madeleine Murray O’Hare (she was murdered, her body found a few years ago) complained she didn’t want prayer in our schools, and we said OK. Then someone said you better not read the Bible in school. The Bible says you shall not kill, you shall not steal, and love your neighbor as yourself. And we said OK.

    Then Dr. Benjamin Spock said we should not spank our children when they misbehave because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem (Dr. Spock’s son committed suicide). We said an expert should know what he is talking about. And we said OK.

    Now we are asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they do not know right from wrong, and why it doesn’t bother them to kill strangers, their class-
    mates, and themselves.

    Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out. I think it has a great deal to do with ‘WE REAP WHAT WE SOW.’

    Funny how simple it is for people to trash God and then wonder why the world is going to hell. Funny how we believe what the newspapers say, but question what the Bible says. Funny how you can send ‘jokes’ through e-mail and they spread like wildfire but when you start sending messages regarding the Lord, people think twice about sharing. Funny how lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene articles pass freely through cyberspace, but public discussion of God is suppressed in the school and
    workplace. Funny how when you forward this message, you will not send it to many on your address list because you are not sure what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it.

    Funny how we can be more worried about what other people think of us than what God thinks of us.

    I was asked to pass this on if I thought it had any merit If not then I could just discard it…no one will know what I did. But, if I discarded this thought process, I should not sit back and complain about what bad shape the world is in.

    MY BEST REGARDS, HONESTLY AND RESPECTFULLY,
    BEN STEIN

  • 22. orDover  |  August 26, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    That “Ben Stein” email has been debunked. Not that I wouldn’t put it past Stein. He’s one of the most idiotic people alive today. But he didn’t write the majority of that “speech.” Everything from the fifth paragraph onward was added to the chain email.

    http://www.snopes.com/politics/soapbox/benstein2.asp

    Yet another example of the dishonesty religious people imply to further their cause.

  • 23. Obi  |  August 26, 2008 at 6:20 pm

    kjelllee–

    (1) Explicitly atheist country? Atheists are discriminated against so much in the United States that I wonder what the author of that article was thinking when he wrote it. There are actually laws on the books in several states banning atheists from holding office, and the words “In God We Trust” (when many of us don’t) are plastered all over our currency.

    (2) He laments about the atheism that is “rammed down our throats”, which is surely a reference to the separation of church and state. Ironically, he mentions not finding this in our constitution, meaning that he’s clearly never heard of the Establishment Clause in the First Amendment.

    (3) The Bible also commands the slaughter of unbelievers, disobedient children, homosexuals, and women raped in cities. Furthermore, stating that removing the Bible from schools has increased rates of violent crime is laughable at best. First of all, violent crime rates have decreased over the years ( http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/glance/viort.htm ); and second of all, the time periods when Christians had free reign over society were most definitely worse than what we have now, as any European history class will clearly reveal to you. Wars of religion were fought, people were killed and burned as “witches” and heretics, and the poor (the vast majority of the people) lived in squalor as the rich heads of state taxed them to death, while the Church attempted to follow them beyond the grave by selling indulgences and demanding religious taxes on top of that on threat of hell fire.

    Christianity, based on its stellar historical track record, would do us a world of good by teaching our children about morality and giving them “consciences”, right? Right?

    (4) If the disasters we see around us, such as Katrina, are due to God retreating from us because we “shunned” him, why were times when people believed strongly still so bad? Case in point being the Black Plague. In 14th century Europe, Christianity was by far the dominant religion in Europe. It can’t be understated how pervasive the religion was in everyday life, with people attending Church for hours multiple times a week. The songs they sang, the stories they told — all about their religion and belief in God. However, during that century one of the worst, if not the worst epidemic in human history, the Black Plague, wiped out at least one-third of the European population.

    Where was God?

  • 24. Yurka  |  August 26, 2008 at 6:41 pm

    #20 brian,
    And in case anyone hasn’t told you…the de-converts represented here did not, for the most part and with some notable exceptions, is seems, leave faith because they did not hear clear apologetic arguments.

    Yes, it seems to be the case, but I have seen instances where people going through a crisis of faith stumble onto this site and it would be a shame for them to be lost simply because they uncritically soaked up the *attitude* of this site (many of the articles here consist merely of polemical assertions, or objections that have been dealt with before).

    you would seem to advocate appear to be a sickening version of fundamentalism–you, in fact, represent the “straw man” version of Christianity that has, at the very least, given the non-Christian world something to dislike.

    You act like I study Fred Phelps and Jack Chick every day to pick up style points. This is clearly an exaggeration – you are just not used to Christians boldly and confidently proclaiming the truth, so you consider it rude whenever a Christian doesn’t immediately curl up into a ball in the corner when you argue against him.

  • 25. LeoPardus  |  August 26, 2008 at 6:50 pm

    you are just not used to Christians boldly and confidently proclaiming the truth,

    HAHAAHAHAHAHAAHAHA!!!!!

  • 26. Cooper  |  August 26, 2008 at 7:13 pm

    In defense of Ben Stein, “Clear Eyes” really does get the red out.

  • 27. DeeVee  |  August 31, 2008 at 9:33 pm

    I have hundreds of stories in my experience as a former christian as to how religion does not work, it is a massive, 2000 year old lie, up to and including the Old Testament, which we now find was written some 800 to 1000 years later “after the fact”…by Hellenistic Jews who lied their faces off making stuff up. Apparently in that time period, all religions lied and made up fictional stories to enhance their religion.
    Hugs, DeeVee

  • 28. Blue Nine  |  September 3, 2008 at 2:40 am

    Yurka is absolutely correct. I am just not used to Christians boldly and confidently proclaiming the truth. I truly am not.

    Because they do not proclaim truth.

    (I’m surprised nobody posted that sooner.)

    Do you think I have not been to church? Do you think I have not read the Bible? Do you think you are the ONLY person who has yacked about this religion? Why does every christian think they are the only person who has talked to me about jeebus?

  • 29. Nostrodumb  |  June 10, 2009 at 7:09 am

    “you are just not used to Christians boldly and confidently proclaiming the truth”

    Haha, that is the most (unintentionally) funny comment on this blog. I know, those door-to-door people aren’t TRUE christians.

  • 30. Pat  |  April 16, 2011 at 11:46 am

    Fugitive Slave Laws were once promulgated by government in defense of furthering slavery and appeasing the masses until the Civil War and Emancipation Proclamation.

    Recognizing that reality, it makes little sense not to also recognize the utility of Separation of Church and State in Religious Dogma that defends and furthers gender persecution as anything different than the social and cultural equivalent of the Fugitive Slave Laws.

    Within the schemes of the Civil Rights laws, gender equity is very much a part of religious fiction that is allowed to exist under the separation of church and state to favor gender and sexual identity deception and misinterpretation for discriminatory advantage. In this respect, separation of church and state is a perverse use of the Constitution to perpetuate cultural condemnation on the basis of the 14th Amendment which prohibits such discriminatory use of the Constitution.

    If churches do not rise themselves to end the schizophrenic interpretation by preaching that the world is flat when it is round, the state and federal government must intervene to prevent the harms that arise from such propaganda in the name of religion. Government’s hands off attitude is one the Constitution “invented” for fear of challenging ecclesiastical authority though it has never been shown nor proven that God favored men over women in Biblical scripture. For millions of humans in every generation, this preferred persecution has no basis in law, and likely, no basis in fact to permit such a hands off attitude by government, and religion, if not God, needs to be on trial much like the famous historical Santa Clause identity trial over whether humans can defend such cultural persecution in the legitimate name of religion – for any religion. God may not have been a racist, we are taught; but God was biased in every other form of discriminatory prohibition forbidden by the American Constitution. Why should not churches be held to the same standard as everyone else?

  • 31. Gary  |  April 17, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    The above comment pops into my inbox years after I write the original blog post, and I reflect back on it with a smile; Gary the Skeptic wrote those words, while Gary the Believer has defied them by taking up faith in Christ again and seeking refuge in a church again. I have put aside all manner of arguments as I was driven to my knees through a major health crisis.

    I’ve written on my blog that Mystery reigns over intellect for me, and I am more than happy to play the fool. As to the above comment, if Christians were about “kingdom of God” business as Jesus spoke so much about, there would be no discussion of political involvement. And if they’re not about “kingdom of God” business, I’d hesitate to call them ‘Christian’ anyhow.

  • 32. cag  |  April 17, 2011 at 9:08 pm

    Gary # 31 – so sorry that modern medicine was unable to get you off you knees. You did eschew modern medicine and replace it with prayer, right? It would be unconscionable for anyone to receive all the benefits of medical knowledge and then thank some imaginary villain rather than the doctors who performed the “miracle”. You wouldn’t do that, would you?

    By the way, did you curse out the big guy for putting you in this predicament? Makes as much sense as praising the sky fellow for a good outcome.

    I would call you a “Christian” – that is not a compliment. You do know that “what Jesus spoke so much about” is hearsay.

  • 33. Larry  |  March 9, 2013 at 6:37 pm

    delusion

    in psychology, a rigid system of beliefs with which a person is preoccupied and to which the person firmly holds, despite the logical absurdity of the beliefs and a lack of supporting evidence. Delusions are symptomatic of such mental disorders as paranoia, schizophrenia, and major depression and of such physiological conditions as senile psychosis and delirium. They vary in intensity, extent, and coherence and may represent pathological exaggeration of normal tendencies to rationalization, wishful thinking, and the like. Among the most common are delusions of persecution and grandeur; others include delusions of bodily functioning, guilt, love, and control

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Attention Christian Readers

Just in case you were wondering who we are and why we de-converted.

de-conversion wager

Whether or not you believe in God, you should live your life with love, kindness, compassion, mercy and tolerance while trying to make the world a better place. If there is no God, you have lost nothing and will have made a positive impact on those around you. If there is a benevolent God reviewing your life, you will be judged on your actions and not just on your ability to blindly believe in creeds- when there is a significant lack of evidence on how to define God or if he/she even exists.

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