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Everything posted by Shinobi

  1. True, and there are very few people I know of who are very good at academically refuting their wild claims. I mean for the average flat-earther it's not enough of a refutation for someone to just come along and say, "I'm so sure. The earth is round, you idiot! Ha ha ha!" Subsequently, because the average Jane and Joe has not taken the time to educate his or her self on why the earth is round, the number of people who believe in a flat earth continue to grow. This is mostly due to the fact that the majority of people do not understand basic geometry and physics. For example, there are a lot of people floating around who think that the shadow on the moon is caused by the earth, and these people (non-believers included) are the ones who end up completely confused by the first flat-earth video / argument that comes along. Now, with that being said, I do think the Mandela Effect is an important topic to research if only for the sake of keeping oneself educated and informed on current trends.
  2. I'm very much inclined to agree with you, florduh. However, this social phenomenon is spreading like wildfire. It's not just a few people who believe it's true - it's more like hundreds of thousands. The only reason I chose to post this topic is because it is very quickly becoming a topic of interest in mainstream Christianity. Chances are, you and others who use this website will eventually run into someone out there who is totally convinced that all of it is true. So, in my humble opinion, it is definitely a topic that is worth getting acquainted with.
  3. Apparently, the pastor in this video is heartbroken because of the Mandela Effect. This video shows him breaking down and telling his congregation that the Bible has changed... There are now many believers out there who are claiming that the Mandela Effect is the "strong delusion" that God has chosen to use to keep people from coming to know the truth in the last days (2 Thessalonians 2:11). Rather than rejecting it as being rubbish, they have chosen to believe that the Mandela Effect is a fulfillment of Bible prophecy. What are your thoughts on this? "And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness." - 2 Thessalonians 2:11-12
  4. It's wet, cold, and cloudy in my part of the matrix.  I'm seriously ready for warmer weather.  Could someone please code that in?

  5. Ha ha ha!!! I've always been fascinated by the simulated reality theory. Believe it or not, many of today's top scientists take the theory seriously. Scientific American featured an article in which author, Clara Moskoitz writes, "Moderator Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of the museum’s Hayden Planetarium, put the odds at 50-50 that our entire existence is a program on someone else’s hard drive. “I think the likelihood may be very high,” he said." In the same article she also writes this, "A popular argument for the simulation hypothesis came from University of Oxford philosopher Nick Bostrum in 2003, when he suggested that members of an advanced civilization with enormous computing power might decide to run simulations of their ancestors. They would probably have the ability to run many, many such simulations, to the point where the vast majority of minds would actually be artificial ones within such simulations, rather than the original ancestral minds. So simple statistics suggest it is much more likely that we are among the simulated minds." Anyway, you just never really know, now do you? Source link: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/are-we-living-in-a-computer-simulation/
  6. I'm not sure if this is where I should be posting this bizarre topic... I apologize in advance if the subject matter in this post doesn't belong here. My reasons for choosing this section of the forums is because the topic in question threatens to turn all of Christian theology on its head. So, I'm sure some of you might have heard of this curious thing called the Mandela Effect. For those of you who haven't, I'll give you a brief run down. The Mandela effect is basically a strange phenomenon in which people report that things in the world around them have mysteriously changed from what they remember them being in the past. Popular examples include scenes in old movies, spellings of popular products, geographic locations of various regions, land masses, cities, etc., lyrics to songs, human anatomy, and the list goes on and on. Sounds pretty crazy, right? If you want to learn more, there are about a thousand YouTube videos currently posted that cover the subject. I recommend the Esoteric Detective's YouTube channel. Anyway, I am normally very skeptical when it comes to claims like these, but there is one particular Mandela effect that I haven't been able to explain away very effectively. It is the fact that it appears as if various verses in the King James version (and only the King James version) of the Bible have mysteriously been hanged... I imagine that some of you are laughing at me right now, and I honestly don't blame you one bit. I would be inclined to do the same thing. However, bear with me, and take a look at the following list I've put together. 1. Job 19:23 "Oh that my words were now written! oh that they were printed in a book!" - I don't think that printing or books existed during the time that Job was written. 2. Exodus 34:19 "All that openeth the matrix is mine; and every firstling among thy cattle, whether ox or sheep, that is male." Ummm... was matrix a word that was commonly used in the 1600s? 3. I Samuel 25:13 "And David said unto his men, Gird ye on every man his sword. And they girded on every man his sword; and David also girded on his sword: and there went up after David about four hundred men; and two hundred abode by the stuff." Does it seem odd that the two hundred men abode by the "stuff?" I seem to remember the KJV being a bit more specific than this. 4. I Samuel 30:24 "For who will hearken unto you in this matter? but as his part is that goeth down to the battle, so shall his part be that tarrieth by the stuff: they shall part alike." Once again, the word, stuff, seems strangely out of place... 5. Ezekiel 12:4 "Then shalt thou bring forth thy stuff by day in their sight, as stuff for removing: and thou shalt go forth at even in their sight, as they that go forth into captivity." The word, stuff, in this verse doesn't even make sense. There are many other instances of this word, but I'll let you do your own research. 6. Luke 1:35 "And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God." I don't remember the baby Jesus being referred to as a "holy thing." Do you? 7. Mark 13:10 " And the gospel must first be published among all nations." Wasn't the gospel supposed to be preached as opposed to published??? 8. Matthew 9:17 "Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved." Ummm.... Wasn't it wineskins? For starters, this parable doesn't make a bit of sense when the word, bottles, is used in place of wine skins. Bottles don't expand, but wine skins do. Do I need to explain myself? 9. Isaiah 11:6 "The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them." Am I crazy, or didn't this verse originally say the lion shall lay down with the lamb, not the wolf? 10. Genesis 1:1 "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." I always remember this verse saying, heavens (plural) as opposed to heaven. 11: Mathew 27:9 "“Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value;” Ummmm.... Since when was the prophet, Jeremiah, called Jeremy??? There are many other verses that appear to be different from what I remember them being as well, but I think I have posted enough here to make my point. I'm really hoping that someone will take a serious look into this. I'm not quite sure what to make of it. If these are not changes, then I have to conclude that the translators of the original King James version Bible were not very good at their job (which is very possible). If they are changes, it makes me wonder if time travelers from the future went back to the 1600s and messed up he Bible on purpose to send a message to us in the here and now that none of it is true. Maybe they are trying to avert world war 3 or something? Who knows? All the same, I don't care how skeptical you are about weird phenomena this has got to strike you as being pretty strange. One last thing... There have actually been reports of preachers breaking down and crying in front of their congregations because the Bible has somehow mysteriously changed. I think some of them have even been recorded doing so on video. So much for the notion that "God's word never changes" right? Thanks for taking the time to read this! I hope you enjoy researching it.
  7. Hey, NaughtyHamster, I'm always down for some vaporwave! Speaking of... Check this one out. The feels are heavy in this one.
  8. Hi, TruthSeeker0. I'm new here as well, but I really think there are some great people on this site who will be able to help get you through this tough time. It really sounds like you and I have a lot in common. My father is a minister, and he still doesn't know that I've left Christianity behind for good. I don't really talk to my mom about it either. The one good thing I've got going for me is that both of my sisters are secretly non-believers as well. So, if I'm ever dealing with issues that pertain to leaving the life I led as a Christian behind, I always have one of them to talk to. It really helps. Anyway, you are absolutely right about the emotional and psychological damage that religion causes. Before I finally left Christianity behind, I was dealing with more psychological and emotional turmoil than I had the capacity to effectively handle. The inner turmoil and guilt I constantly experienced is what actually led me to first start having serious doubts about my faith and Christianity altogether. However, it wasn't until I was able to properly educate myself on the subject in college that I finally gained enough confidence to finally leave it all behind. Christianity, to a great extent, relies on its followers remaining ignorant about how the world really works. For me, education was the key that truly unlocked my mind and gave me the strength I needed to see through the charade. You are really fortunate that you had a therapist who was both brave enough and willing enough to introduce you to Dawkins. I've probably said enough for now. I wish you all the best on this new journey that you are undertaking. It won't always be easy, but in the long run, it will totally be worth it.
  9. Hey, FoundationOfUnity. Nice to meet you! Yes, Christianity truly is a cult, and I don't just use the term as an insult either. By definition, it is in fact a cult - it's just a cult that got really popular over time. Basically, if a man named Jesus (or Yeshua in Hebrew) actually existed and he compelled a number of people to reject the mainstream religion of their time, Judaism, in favor of following his radical new ideas, then he, in essence, started a new cult. And, it almost goes without saying that If someone did the same thing today, most of the world would be in agreement that he or she had started a new cult, and for the most part, it would be shunned and rejected by the majority of mainstream society. It's funny how the passage of time can transform a cult into a respectable and venerated religion isn't it?
  10. Hi, megasamurai. (I like your screen name, by the way.) I completely understand your concerns, and I thought this article I found online might help you out a bit. http://christianaggression.org/2016/04/28/conversion-tactics-deception-lies-deceit/ I haven't spent much time on the website itself, but I thought that what the author had to say about the deceitful tactics missionaries use to "win souls" was very insightful and eye-opening. Hope it helps!
  11. You're welcome! I'm glad you enjoyed it! Everybody needs a good laugh now and then.
  12. Thanks, Syrus! Nice to meet you. I'm actually a sustainability, society, and resource management major. However, history, sociology, economics, and international studies have all played a big role in my studies. You are absolutely right about looking at the Bible from an academic and objective point of view. If a person can ever train his or her self to read the Bible through the lens of critical thinking, he or she will quickly find that there is very little that is inerrant or infallible about any of it.
  13. Easily, the most EMBARRASSING Christian song of all time... (For extra laughs, read the comment section on the YouTube page.) Enjoy! "...I don't want your sex for now..." ♪♫
  14. Hey, ThereAndBackAgain, I completely get what you're saying, and I tend to be in agreement with you. I'm not sure what we can do at this point in time to get people to wake up... It took me years to finally open my eyes to the truth, and I actually consider myself to be an intelligent person (I've made excellent grades in nearly every course I've taken in college). Unfortunately, in the realm of brainwashing, intelligence isn't always a safeguard against falling for ideas that are false. When nearly everyone around you believes in some version of Christianity and a good portion of society is built around the ideals taught by that belief system, it is nearly impossible to break away from it without a little bit of outside help. In the case of Islam, the damage caused by brainwashing is even worse. Most of the governments in the Middle East are built on ideas that are mirror copies of the tenants found in the Koran. The religious situation over there is a lot like what I envision it might have been like for people living during the Middle Ages in Western Europe. For example, in Saudi Arabia, the king rules by the will of Allah and all of his decrees are based upon tenants found in the Koran. That is exactly how it was during the Middle Ages in Christian Europe only the kings and queens were believed to rule by the divine will of the Christian version of God. Last semester, I had to complete a huge group project in an intercultural communications course I took. One of the members of my group was from Saudi Arabia, so my group decided to focus our project on what it would be like for an American to live and work in Saudi Arabia. We figured we would get a good grade because we could use him as a firsthand source of information. After spending an extensive amount of time talking to him, learning from him, and working with him I came to the realization that it might be hundreds of years before the people of that region experience the kind of intellectual liberation and freedom that we enjoy here in the United States. So, yes, I think you are right when you say that Islam is causing more harm in the world right now than Christianity. Nonetheless, under the right set of circumstances, Christianity, if left unchecked, could once again become the societal menace that it once was.
  15. Hi, ThereAndBackAgain. I understand why you have formed such an opinion. There is always a danger that people will do stupid things with the information they freely have access to. However, I really don't believe that censorship is the answer. If we want to stop people from believing that the Bible is a Holy book, then we need to start educating people in every way we can that it is nothing more than a collection of ancient literature. Logic, rationality, and education is the key that is needed to solve the problems you speak of. Consider this. There are very few people in the world today who believe in the Greek pantheon. We didn't have to ban all literature that mentions Zeus to achieve this mindset in the masses. Eventually, people will probably look at the Bible in the same way. It would be a shame to lose all of the history contained in the Bible because we decided that the common person shouldn't have access to it anymore. I do not believe in banning books of any kind. Fahrenheit 451 does not represent the kind of future I want for my kids, grand kids, etc. I have found that banning a person from information only makes him or her desire to access it that much more. If we all start acting like the Bible contains information that people shouldn't have access to, then there is a good chance that people will make an even bigger deal about what is contained within its pages than they already do.
  16. I agree with you 100%. As far as the passage of the Bible you've quoted is concerned, it would be hard for me or for anyone else to find any real fault with it. Nonetheless, like you said, there are other passages of the Bible that are nothing short of criminal. For example, consider the story found in Judges chapter 11 verses 30-39. In this story, Jephthah promises God that he will offer up as a burnt sacrifice the first thing that comes out of his house if he returns home victorious from from his battle with the Ammonites. In other words, if God grants him victory, God gets a sacrifice. As luck would have it, his daughter is the first creature that comes out of his house to greet him after he victoriously returns home from battle True to his word, he offers up his daughter as a burnt sacrifice... Any sane person should be able to look at this story and realize that the Bible is not an epitome of holy wisdom or even a very good guide for everyday life. In my humble opinion, the Bible should be likened to a sugar coated poison apple - on the surface it looks appealing, but within its pages lies a recipe for death of the heart, soul, and mind. This may sound extreme to some, but I really think that any person who wholeheartedly decides to live his or her life according to a literal interpretation of the Bible risks becoming a threat to his or her self, his or her family, and society in general.
  17. Prepare yourself to have a hyper-caffeinated future bass induced eargasm with cherries, sprinkles, and whipped cream on top. ♪♫
  18. I just want to say, "thanks," to all of you who have taken the time to read my posts and introduce yourself! :) 

  19. Hi, Geezer. You bring up a lot of valid points. I tend to be in complete agreement with you. It is a shame that there are so many religious people out there who refuse to acknowledge the vast amounts of damage that their religion has caused in the world. Like you, I don't have much interest in the Bible anymore unless it is in the context of historical, academic, and general research. The Bible is an imperfect literary work that was clearly created by flawed human beings, and it is no more "holy" than The Lord of the Rings. Regardless of what belief system a person chooses to embrace, the real problems occur when the person in question forgets how to draw a clear distinction between fiction and reality. Just ask anyone who has been a victim of religiously fueled Islamic terrorism. And, it almost goes without saying that Islam is not the only source of terrorism in the world. Christianity has played just as large of a role in the world of terrorism (if not larger) as Islam has. Now, with all of the end-of-the-world Christian cults floating around, Christianity could very well be used once again to justify random acts of insanity that may or may not include terrorism. Wouldn't it be nice if people everywhere just started doing what they could to make the world a better place without the aid of religiously fueled compulsion? I mean, why not just be a good person and influence others to do the same because, ultimately, that is the kind of world you want to live in?
  20. Belief is important... Yeah, I know. Some of you are probably thinking that I'm about to write a testimony where I go completely off the rails. But, before you jump to conclusions, just hear me out. The reason I state that belief is important is because I'm nearly 100% convinced that it's true. The Bible doesn't have a lot of good advice, but that doesn't mean that everything written in it is completely wrong either. For example, the book of Proverbs is full of practical life advice, and not every teaching of Christ is completely without merit. Of course, that's not to say that everything in Proverbs falls into the category of sound advice or that everything Christ taught is to be admired either. Now, with that being said, I am going to attempt to make a larger point using an old Bible verse that many of you are probably familiar with - a point that helped me out tremendously during my deconversion process. My hope is that it will benefit you as well. After all, what better way to get mental revenge on the system that held you down for so long than to use its own teachings to further a cause that is contrary to everything it stands for? In the book of Proverbs chapter 29 verse 18 the author states, "Where there is no vision the people perish; but he that keepeth the law, happy is he." I only want to focus on the first half of the verse because, as far as I'm concerned, the second half of the verse can be thrown in the garbage disposal (laws should only be admired and respected when they don't interfere with basic human rights). The truth in this verse is simply that a person needs to have a vision or a hope for his or her self because if he or she doesn't, there is a good chance that he or she might lose the willpower and ambition needed to be successful in life. Part of having a vision for oneself is believing that it will somehow come true whether it be through a combination of willpower, hard work, and a drive to succeed or something else. So, what is a good vision to have for oneself outside of the archaic and misleading teachings that are found throughout most of the Bible? Or, what is it that one should believe in if he or she has given up on the psychologically and emotionally torturous tenants of organized religion? That is a very good question that does not have a one-size-fits-all answer. For some people it might just be a belief in oneself. For others, it might be a belief in the power of love. And still for others it might be a belief in a higher power or a higher order that exists outside of man-made organized religion. None of these answers or belief systems are bad. In fact, I am going to say that embracing some sort of belief system is integral for a person to live a happy and fulfilling life. Some of you might disagree with me, and that is okay. I'm not here to change anybody's mind about anything. I am simply stating a personal truth that I discovered that helped me fill the hole that religion had left behind. For a few years right after I deconverted I was lost and vulnerable. The anchor of religion that I had relied upon for so long to keep the ship of my life steady was suddenly nowhere to be found. For awhile, I drifted aimlessly. I found that I would act out in situations where it was completely inappropriate for me to do so, and I found that my emotions were about as unstable as a dilapidated barn in a wind storm. I could be wrong, but I'm almost sure that there are some of you who are reading this who can relate. It wasn't until I started searching for some truth that I could truly call my own that I was able to finally find something resembling peace of mind. I started studying a mixture of science, eastern philosophy, and pantheism - subjects that are as different as night and day. Nonetheless, I found that these subjects gave me peace and hope in different ways - peace and hope that was much greater than anything Christianity had ever given me. Some of you may not feel the need to follow a similar path, but I think there are others of you who just might. I have always tried to keep an open mind about life, the universe, and everything. I believe in science, but in saying that, I'm pretty sure that the scientific discoveries that are made over the next couple of hundred years will make the scientists of our day and age look like primitive cavemen. For example, it wasn't all that long ago that respected scientists and doctors believed that cutting a person open and bleeding the disease out of him or her was a legitimate way to treat illness... Thank Zeus, Thor, Osiris, and mostly science that doctors do not engage in that kind of ignorant and archaic behavior anymore. Anyway, the point I'm making is that the universe is full of unknowns and those unknowns can be a source of hope and expectation. Just because we have given up on Christianity does not mean that we have to throw in the towel and give up on our hopes, dreams, and our imaginations. All are beautiful things. At one time, the skeptics would have scoffed at the idea that a man or a woman could instantly communicate with another man or woman on the other side of the world through a magic little box we call a cell-phone. What would they think if they could see the world we live in today? Isn't it great that somebody believed that such a thing was possible? So, you see, the power of belief and the strength of imagination is not something any of us should let go of. Albert Einstein had this to say about imagination, "Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand." In my humble opinion, this is something that is worth believing in. I just basically wanted to leave some advice for any of you who might be wondering where to go after your deconversion from Christianity. For some of you, atheism might hold the answers you are looking for. However, for others, an alternative path of spirituality might be more appealing, and that is perfectly okay. No matter what belief system you choose to embrace for yourself just make sure that you keep an open mind. None of us have all of the answers, and anybody who claims to is lying. The universe is much too big of a place for any of us humans to ever truly comprehend. NASA has this to say about the nature of the universe, "It turns out that roughly 68% of the universe is dark energy. Dark matter makes up about 27%. The rest - everything on Earth, everything ever observed with all of our instruments, all normal matter - adds up to less than 5% of the universe" (NASA, 2017). Those statistics should make you stop and really think for a minute (or a lifetime). There is so much we just don't know... In conclusion, I just want to say this. I don't know if there is an afterlife. I don't know if reincarnation is real. I don't know a lot of things. However, I can say with confidence that I do know that the Bible is not the grand source of all truth that it claims to be. I found peace in simply coming to the realization that no matter what does or doesn't await me beyond the grave will take care of itself if I just focus on living this life the best way I know how. I try to be open-minded, I try to show compassion to those who need it, and most importantly, I always try my best to be honest with myself and others about everything. If there is a God, I can't see how he, she, or it won't respect that. If there isn't a god, I can at least go to the grave with the knowledge that I took full advantage of life while I had it and didn't live it with regrets. For me, that is the only belief I will ever need. Well, that is about all I have to say on the matter. I truly hope that what I've written here helps somebody out there. Thanks for taking the time to read this! NASA (2017). Dark energy, dark matter. NASA. Retrieved from https://science.nasa.gov/astrophysics/focus-areas/what-is-dark-energy
  21. You are so right. I felt the exact same way when I was finally able to let go of the Christian belief system. For me, it just got to the point that I couldn't understand why God would demand that his followers remain in a constant state of confusion riddled with anxiety and fear. Salvation is supposedly so simple that even a child can understand it, but the truth of the matter is that everything that comes along with saying the sinner's prayer is extremely difficult. It is difficult to relate the archaic teachings of the Old and New Testament with the world we live in now. It is difficult, if not impossible, to bridge the gaps between science and religion. It is difficult to constantly have to reinterpret certain sections of the Bible into something more human-friendly and rational so that you don't feel like a complete freak for believing in any of it. For example, we don't go around stoning our children to death in the modern age just because they were disobedient, yet the God of the Bible clearly commands us to. It is difficult to make sense of the seemingly endless contradictions that are riddled all throughout the Bible. It is difficult to have to explain to your non-believing friends why you feel the need to view everything that happens in life and in the world within a Biblical context when there is clearly no logical or rational reason to. The list goes on and on... In short, trying to conform ones life completely to the standards found in the Bible is illogical and irrational at best, and it's pure insanity at worst. The Bible is most definitely the product of flawed humans who had an agenda to push. An all knowing and loving God could not possibly have been behind the authorship of such a poorly put together literary work - unless of course he were evil and he did it just to play a trick on his followers for laughs... Either way, outside of an academic and historical context, I want absolutely nothing to do with any of it anymore.
  22. So, true. I lost count of all of the times that I sat alone in my room wondering if I was truly saved or not. When I was young, just the thought of it used to send me into long bouts of depression. However, as I got older, I became somewhat numb to the idea that I might not be saved because I came to the realization that there wasn't much more that I could possibly do to prove my sincerity to God. Come to think of it, that is also about the same time that I seriously started questioning my faith, my religion, and the life I had been leading altogether. I guess it just got to the point that I couldn't psychologically and emotionally take much more of the guilt, the fear, and the general feeling of never being 100% sure about anything...
  23. Thank you, Lavendula! I was thinking about all of the struggles I had to go through to maintain my faith back when I was a Christian, and this list just kind of came to me. Nice to meet you by the way!
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