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Guest indy107

Don't Have A Story - Yet

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Guest indy107

Hi all, I'm new here and I really like this website. Been coming here often lately, reading other peoples testimonies.

 

I don't think I really have a story to tell yet....maybe I do....all I know is, I'm still in the beginning stages and have a long way to go. My wife asked me last night what was wrong with me....I've changed. I guess I have. My sis-in-law noticed a few months back - where is your spirit? Uh...I don't know. Didn't know I had one. I don't feel any different. But according to them, Ive changed.

 

My wife blames a book, "The DaVinci Code". Yeah, I know it's only a story...but what a story! She won't read it and hated the movie. I totally enjoyed both. And went on to get interested in Freemasonry, Knights Templar, Christian History, the Medieval Church, and other cool historcal subjects i had really never thought of before or shown an interest in before.

 

But what got me wasn't the main plot of the Davinci Code. At that time, as a Christian I could really care less if Jesus was married or not. That wasn't what shocked me. It was the part where they explained our current bible and belief system was all 'voted on' by the Council of Nicea. What?! I had never heard that before. I thought the bible and trinity and all that jazz - just - simply - was..? But to learn the Nicene Creed I read in Church every Sunday was based on a bunch of old guys who all had different ideas on Christianity - and then sat down and voted on it??! Excuse me? "I" didn't get to vote. What makes them right? I thought this was all God inspired or whatever. That opened up something inside me. Doubt I guess.

 

So I started my own quest for the truth- or holy grail - or whatever. I've read alot of website articles, and books since then. Jesus Puzzle, Merle Hertzler's Questioning Website, the Infidels, and this one of course. Right now I'm reading The Pagan Christ. I know the first time I thought about the implications of "The Jesus Myth" I sat down and kinda went blank. All this time it was a lie? 2000 years of a lie? No heaven, no hell, no nothing? I got really depressed. I still think I'm in shock sometimes. I haven't been back to Church in quite awhile.

 

But what worries me the most is my wife. She does NOT approve of my curiosity. I asked her if she'd like for me to share the things I've learned? No. I asked if it bothers her for me to be interested in this - yes. "I married a man I thought would share my beliefs and go to Church with me" she said. Great. So I'm not sure what happens next. Go to church once in awhile to keep her happy, keep studying in private. I don't know. But I do know one thing, like alot of you. I've got to that point where I can no longer go back to the way it was.

 

Freethinker? Yep and proud of it.

Agnostic? Probably.

Atheist? Not sure yet.

Changed? Without a Doubt.

 

Thanks for this website.

 

Chuck

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Welcome Chuck.

 

Good to have you here. Hope you'll find an answer for how to handle the situation. It took me quite a while to really tell my wife, but I was more lucky than most. She had been losing her faith meanwhile too, and I was too busy contemplating my own that I never noticed that she had. And even more funny, she had already figured out that I didn't believe much anymore. Women do have a "sixth" sense. :)

 

If your wife loves you, than I think she's more worried about if you are losing faith in your marriage and if you love her still. If you still do, and you still want your marriage to go through the change, make sure she knows more than ever that you love her regardless of what happens.

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Guest Shiva H. Vishnu

Hey Man, welcome aboard. I'm sorry about the situation with your wife, but I couldn't be happier for your newfound intellectual freedom. Your story sounds very familiar to me. I had always just assumed, because of my upbringing, that the bible was the appropriately qualified word of god. Discovering that it wasn't was probably one of the greatest discoveries of my life. And I also married a woman who was counting on me to "help her get into heaven", and thus felt jipped when she realised that wasn't the case. I dumped that slag. :HaHa:

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Welcome aboard, Indy107!

 

I can relate to your situation and revelations. I recall how amazed and disgusted I felt when I learned about the formation of the canon of scripture (by vote) and the history of the church and denominations. "Where is god in all of this mess?," I asked myself. Apparently MIA.

 

And I, too, am married to a "Christian" wife who wants NOTHING to do with my atheism and criticisms of her faith. (Despite the fact that she is as "lukewarm" as they come.) It makes for a lonely marriage when you can no longer share yourself.

 

Here's hoping things work out for you.

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Hi there,

 

You have an interesting story. When I watched the Davinci Code, knowing that the actual story line was fiction, I hoped that it would make people think about the origins of the faith. Knowing that it helped you open your eyes and see the truth makes me really happy.

 

I am sorry about your wife. I am in the same situation. My husband knows exactly where I stand and doesn't argue with me about it. He goes to church and I go for a walk on Sundays. What bothers me is his pain. I can sense he is in pain, but there is nothing I can do about it.

 

I have decided not to try to de-convert him, because, as you know, it is difficult. Honestly, it is so hard that I don't wish it on anyone. If he is happy worshipping his imaginary god, so be it. But even if I tried to de-convert him, it wouldn't work. I figure it is better to be happy and show him with actions and not words that being out of christianity is a great thing. Let's see how it goes!

 

Good luck to you.

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Welcome Indy :wave:

 

Isn't it great to know we're not alone? I found this site right about the time I discovered religion is BS. Been visiting and learning daily ever since. I'm so thankful that Dave (Webmaster) created this place and that I...and you...found it.

 

My wife is still a believer too, and there is some tension sometimes. She insists that I continue to attend church with her, and she knows that as long as she does that I won't hold back my knowledge and/or opinion of xianity. I think she's mostly afraid of what to say to people if I suddenly stop going.

 

Welcome again, and please feel free to join in the discussions.

 

Dan

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For me it was my fiancee of two years, not my wife, but a similar situation. She agreed to marry me thinking I would remain the same, I guess, and never have questions. If I did have questions, she only wanted me to have certain questions. As soon as I started questioning Christianity and made it known to her, she was gone. There is that whole thing in the Bible about being "unequally yoked," which was her primary reason for leaving.

 

It really hurts when someone only loves you because of the religion you believe, instead of just loving YOU. People change, and the sooner they realize that, the better. The person I was ten years ago is not the person I am today, and it will not be the person I am ten years from now. Where is that unconditional love that goes with being a Christian? Where is the person who said they would love you "for better or worse"?

 

I hope the situation improves for you, I really do. However, if your questions keep progressing, it might only get worse. Welcome to the board. You will find many here who can identify and are willing to be there for you.

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Apparantly there are a lot of us in similar situations.

 

3 or 4 months ago my wife thought I was looking 'odd' and asked what's wrong. That lead to a 4 hour conversation about religion. I told her that I still believe in a god, although I think she assumed that meant The God. Since then it's become more of "maybe there's a god, but I don't know." I stopped going to church a few weeks ago. I just couldn't sit there an listen to all the "joyful noises" and watch everybody raise their arms up to show everybody else how good of a Christian they are. Although my biggest concern was somebody saying something absurd, which wouldn't have been a stretch, and me letting them know exactly how I felt about it. Fortunately for me, deciding to stop going coincided with us moving churches so I could use the "we found a church closer to home" to block any questions from friends at the old church. I've gotten one phone call from a deacon, none from any of our friends. We just sort of disappeared and nobody called to ask why. That's another topic though.

 

I would suggest not going to church if you're doing it to try to white wash over the issue. If she knows you don't believe, or believe differently, and are going to spend time with her, that's fine. But going to church with her believing you're going because you're a "good Christian" isn't good. Same thing with hiding your studies. Christianity makes people hide too much of themselves already - there's no reason you should hide what you're reading.

 

Ultimately the worst part of it was her face after I told her I wasn't going to church anymore. I think the best thing you can do is to be the same person you were before. Don't let yourself become the "heathen" that agnostics / atheists are assumed to be.

 

And I'm not going to try to de-convert her. One of my biggest gripes about Christianity, or almost any religion for that matter, is the forcing of beliefs on another person. Since I can't stand when people shove their beliefs down my throat I refuse to do it to another person. Although I really hope that she'll at least be willing to talk about it at some point. I'd love to see her de-convert, but I don't want to force the issue.

 

Ironically the last church service I went to was part one of two of the pastor trying to debunk the DaVinci Code. Best line from the sermon - 'Why would somebody base their beliefs on a fictional book?" I had to literally bite my tongue to keep from laughing out loud.

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Hi Chuck

 

I live in the UK. Things are different here. My wife and I have known each other for 46 years, been married for 41 years and have a really happy marriage. Religion is a big issue for us. If you look at my first post you will see why. Ruth still believes in her idea of God but she refers to the bible as a fairy tale. During my 'deconversion' I drip fed my findings and changing viewpoint. Tension was always present because some of my intensive relgious studies had led to me having mental health problems. These days she knows I have no religious belief but does feel rather hurt when I occasionally show little respect for the beliefs of others. It is hard to keep religion off the agenda when you watch news on TV or read newspapers together in the same room. If you really love each other you will handle your religious differences. If there is a fundamental weakness in your relationship then the religious issue will be one more threat to your marriage.

But first things first. I hope you clarify your thinking quite soon. The joy I have experienced since discovering that all religions were devised by men alone made the effort worthwhile. Many issues arise when you make that discovery. Relationships with other people is one of them. I'm still working on that.

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If you really love each other you will handle your religious differences. If there is a fundamental weakness in your relationship then the religious issue will be one more threat to your marriage.

 

What a great way to say it! Couldn't agree more.

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Guest indy107

Thanks everyone for the warm welcome.

 

I remember awhile back reading some business books on paradigm shifts. A college class handed out some picture cards and told the students to stare at this picture and not let their neighbor see what they were looking at. At the end of 10 minutes or so they displayed a picture on the screen and asked what they saw. Half the class saw a pretty young girl while the other half saw an ugly old hag. They were 'programmed' to see what their individual cards had shown them, either the girl or the hag, but not both. And they argued with each other over it! But they saw what they saw. Once they reversed it and could actually see the other picture, it was like a light turning on. Ahhhhhhhhh, there she is! I see it now! That's where I'm at. I've had a paradigm shift. I can now see the ugly old hag while my wife can still only see the pretty young gal. Pretty Young Gal

 

The funny thing is, my wife is like thousand of other Christians. They believe, because that's all they were programmed to do. I asked her the other day, have you ever read the Bible from beginning to end. Heck no. My mother-in-law and I were having a discussion some time ago and I asked her, Who wrote the gospels? Why Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John of course. Yeah right. They all have such a limited perspective, and they are happy with that. Sheeple. That's what we all are, herded around by the Church for 2000 years. Believe this, do that, sing here, drop your thithes in the basket on the way out. Thanks hava a nice day. Jesus loves you.

 

I've always been a logical, analytical, type of person. (I'm a computer tech and own my own computer store :) I want data. Right or wrong, I want the information so I can process it myself and make my own conclusions rather than take somebody's word for it. And because of this, I am now looked at like something's wrong with me. Don't try and understand it they say, just have faith. Sorry, can't do that.

 

As long as the subject doesn't come up, we're ok. But god forbid we have any kind of argument. We were 'discussing' the state of our kids affairs the other night, "well we are fine examples for our kids, not going to church anymore..." So yeah - it's gonna be a long hard road. But I think, and hope - that we'll get through it ok.

 

My weak point is going to be debating. I don't have my facts organized in my head enough to offer a good debate. And if I did, do I really want to debate with them? What if as a result, I might open their eyes a little, and lead to their deconversion. That may be a good thing in the long run, but do I want to deconvert them? Am I sure enough of my position on this whole religion thing to want to try and deconvert someone? What if I'm wrong? (yeah, the brainwashing is still there and is hard to completely eliminate) For now, I'm letting sleeping dogs lie. But - like I said - I know this is just the beginning of it all. Wow - what a ride so far.

 

chuck

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I found the debating be easier if I not try to over-convince them of their false assumptions and false ideas all the time. You have to take it in small steps. So in some of the discussions I let the other person claim some things I totally disagree with, but I try to find only one or two things that I can change their view on.

 

It's like the illustration of how to turn a huge oil tanker on the ocean. It takes a couple of miles for it to turn around, so you just have to start steering it one way or the other, but you can't just turn it on a dime.

 

It's all about small steps and small seeds of thoughts. Make people think for themselves so they realize things on their own. Epiphany born from someones own thoughts are far more effective than to only challenge ideas. It's not easy though, which can be seen many times on this site. Sometimes I'm just fed up and give the opponent a truckload of arguments, just to shock them. It all depends on person and situation I guess. Find a happy medium.

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A lot of wise words on here. Remember - you can't use Hell to get her to change. And, honestly, unless she believes that she arrived at the conclusions...through her own determinations...it will be shaky, and she'll continue to question...especially if she's going to lose a lot of social intercourse as a result.

My thoughts on a best way... Don't tell her about history - unless she asks. Be wise (intelligent) in finding interesting "inconsistencies" in the fundamental beliefs her religion is based on...and don't act like you know the answer. Just as you might have "explored the scriptures" with her previously, consider "exploring to find the answers to these inconsistencies"...if she gets interested.

If that seems too sly or deceitful...discard it... You know yourself and your spouse better than I...

What prize do you seek? The more you value something, the greater effort you will invest into gaining/keeping it.

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Guest spawned

When someone goes off on "The Da Vinci Code", it is like they are trading one book (the Bible) for another. A new belief system. It's just a story. Nothing more.

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When someone goes off on "The Da Vinci Code", it is like they are trading one book (the Bible) for another. A new belief system. It's just a story. Nothing more.

 

 

I totally agree with you. It is just a book and a fiction one at that.

However, many people who have never dared to question their faith are reading the book and watching the movie, and that's a good thing.

 

It is like stretching exercizes. Stretching isn't an olympic sport, but by practicing it, your muscles become better prepared for all kinds of activity.

 

I sure hope the Da Vinci Code is stretching a lot of minds out there.

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But what worries me the most is my wife. She does NOT approve of my curiosity. I asked her if she'd like for me to share the things I've learned? No. I asked if it bothers her for me to be interested in this - yes. "I married a man I thought would share my beliefs and go to Church with me" she said. Great. So I'm not sure what happens next. Go to church once in awhile to keep her happy, keep studying in private. I don't know. But I do know one thing, like alot of you. I've got to that point where I can no longer go back to the way it was.

 

Freethinker? Yep and proud of it.

Agnostic? Probably.

Atheist? Not sure yet.

Changed? Without a Doubt.

Hi Indy,

 

I am a bit in a similar situation. My wife refuses to be informed of what I learned to date but recently, partly with the help of my fundie brother who witnessed my deconversion first hand, she accepts the fact that I lost my faith, but I am not supposed to "influence" the kids.

 

Even though I still consider myself an agnost, I grew comfortable with regarding myself an atheist. There are quite a number of reasons for my deconversion (my testimony is here), the single most powerful argument that really closed the door for me was A Ghost in the Machine.

 

Regarding your wife, ask her if you are supposed to lie to her and yourself by keeping up appearances. There's also one more trick up your sleeves, but depending on the situation it can be either damaging or productive. Paul himself argued that a woman should not leave her unbelieving husband since he is sanctified by her believe (1 Cor. 7:13).

 

Cheers,

Rob

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Thanks everyone for the warm welcome.

 

I remember awhile back reading some business books on paradigm shifts. A college class handed out some picture cards and told the students to stare at this picture and not let their neighbor see what they were looking at. At the end of 10 minutes or so they displayed a picture on the screen and asked what they saw. Half the class saw a pretty young girl while the other half saw an ugly old hag. They were 'programmed' to see what their individual cards had shown them, either the girl or the hag, but not both. And they argued with each other over it! But they saw what they saw. Once they reversed it and could actually see the other picture, it was like a light turning on. Ahhhhhhhhh, there she is! I see it now! That's where I'm at. I've had a paradigm shift. I can now see the ugly old hag while my wife can still only see the pretty young gal. Pretty Young Gal

 

Yeah, I had a similar experience. I was working through my deconversion while I was getting my degree in IR (Intl Relations). When discussing various political paradigms I could absolutely relate to the paradigm shift that I was going through with my own belief system.

 

Once you have that "aha!" moment, there is no going back. Jesus (supposedly) claimed you need the faith of a child. Well, once you are not a child anymore, you cannot restore that childlike belief no matter how much you want to. It's really amusing watching xians come to this site and debate. When we show them clear reasons for at least doubt, they refuse to budge, just like the students in your class who were predispositioned toward only one view. You have to stop protecting your belief from criticism if you really want to see it for what it is. Like you, I just want data, no matter where it might lead.

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Guest indy107

Yep, gathering data. That's what I'm doing.

 

I've been looking at quite a few websites lately, and they all have their own perspective which I find very interesting.

 

So to go one step further, I picked up my Bible last night and started right at the beginning. Heck I didn't make it past chapter 6 of Genesis. No to mention the whole creation thing is out of order (plants before the sun, etc etc) I got to the Adam and Eve story. So God walked back then, and talked. Interesting. And what was one of the first things he said? Don't eat from this tree. Ok......uh....why put it there to begin with? And then he said, "if you do you will surely die". Well, that seems to be a blatant lie. Adam DID eat the apple. Did he die? No. In fact he lived to be over 800yrs old? Hmmm.

 

Then.....I got to the Cain and Abel story. So up until this point we have Adam, Eve, Cain, and Abel. That's the entire population. Brother kills brother and god said "where is your brother?" Uh....didn't he KNOW? omni-everything? And then he had him marked so others wouldn't kill him. What others?

 

Finally I get to the 'sons of god' and 'daughters of man' story. The nephilim? Who the heck were they? Only the KJ version used the word 'giants'. But who the heck were the 'sons of god'? I thought that was jesus.....I'm in the OT, not the NT. Heck I'm still in the first book! So who were the 'sons of god? And who's 'daughers' were they making giants with? Its still Adam and Eve, and one son now.....

 

I just don't get it. How can people say that this is the word of god, and every word is true. Have they read it? It just doesn't make sense!

 

Sorry...maybe this should be in the Rant section. Oh well. Enough for now.

 

Indy

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Hi there,

 

You have an interesting story. When I watched the Davinci Code, knowing that the actual story line was fiction, I hoped that it would make people think about the origins of the faith. Knowing that it helped you open your eyes and see the truth makes me really happy.

 

I am sorry about your wife. I am in the same situation. My husband knows exactly where I stand and doesn't argue with me about it. He goes to church and I go for a walk on Sundays. What bothers me is his pain. I can sense he is in pain, but there is nothing I can do about it.

 

I have decided not to try to de-convert him, because, as you know, it is difficult. Honestly, it is so hard that I don't wish it on anyone. If he is happy worshipping his imaginary god, so be it. But even if I tried to de-convert him, it wouldn't work. I figure it is better to be happy and show him with actions and not words that being out of christianity is a great thing. Let's see how it goes!

 

Good luck to you.

 

Lorena,

This is my situation too, except I don't get to take a walk- I still go to church with my husband (and kids). And he prays and sighs at the things people say, and I know it is because of me. But I can't help that can I.

Hang in there.

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Yep, gathering data. That's what I'm doing.

 

I've been looking at quite a few websites lately, and they all have their own perspective which I find very interesting.

 

So to go one step further, I picked up my Bible last night and started right at the beginning. Heck I didn't make it past chapter 6 of Genesis. No to mention the whole creation thing is out of order (plants before the sun, etc etc) I got to the Adam and Eve story. So God walked back then, and talked. Interesting. And what was one of the first things he said? Don't eat from this tree. Ok......uh....why put it there to begin with? And then he said, "if you do you will surely die". Well, that seems to be a blatant lie. Adam DID eat the apple. Did he die? No. In fact he lived to be over 800yrs old? Hmmm.

 

Then.....I got to the Cain and Abel story. So up until this point we have Adam, Eve, Cain, and Abel. That's the entire population. Brother kills brother and god said "where is your brother?" Uh....didn't he KNOW? omni-everything? And then he had him marked so others wouldn't kill him. What others?

 

Finally I get to the 'sons of god' and 'daughters of man' story. The nephilim? Who the heck were they? Only the KJ version used the word 'giants'. But who the heck were the 'sons of god'? I thought that was jesus.....I'm in the OT, not the NT. Heck I'm still in the first book! So who were the 'sons of god? And who's 'daughers' were they making giants with? Its still Adam and Eve, and one son now.....

 

I just don't get it. How can people say that this is the word of god, and every word is true. Have they read it? It just doesn't make sense!

 

Sorry...maybe this should be in the Rant section. Oh well. Enough for now.

 

Indy

 

I think the "you will surely die" statement meant that Adam would become mortal and would surely die one day rather than die immediately. At the time cain supposedly killed abel, there may have supposedly been others. Several hundred years of procreating can make lots of babies. I'm just guessing, but I bet the "But who the heck were the 'sons of god'? " thing has something to do with the polytheistic origins of jewish mythology. At one point, Yahweh was considered a son of another god who had several god children. The Hebrews decided to focus on Yahweh, and eventually decided that Yahweh was the only god.

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Maybe I should have checked the date of Indy's post before bothering to reply.

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Welcome aboard, Indy107!

 

I can relate to your situation and revelations. I recall how amazed and disgusted I felt when I learned about the formation of the canon of scripture (by vote) and the history of the church and denominations. "Where is god in all of this mess?," I asked myself. Apparently MIA.

 

And I, too, am married to a "Christian" wife who wants NOTHING to do with my atheism and criticisms of her faith. (Despite the fact that she is as "lukewarm" as they come.) It makes for a lonely marriage when you can no longer share yourself.

 

Here's hoping things work out for you.

Wow, I feel sorry for you!!! My wife is still a xtian but she admits that it doesn't make any sense. She simply feels that she has no choice- all of family are strong fundys.

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Maybe I should have checked the date of Indy's post before bothering to reply.

 

:grin:

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Good luck with your search and with your wife. It can be very difficult to balance all that is now coming into your life. I can only be harder with opposition and animosity from the one you love the most. Approach with great caution and thought. Only you will know how to handle this one.

 

I have a book suggestion for you. It is a collection of dozens of writers that might give you a bit of an overview of what is out there. The title is The Book Your Church Doesn't Want You to Read edited by Tim C. Leedom. It is an excellent read with loads of good stuff to feed your mind. This book was my launching pad some 20 years ago. I have bought and given away many copies of it.

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Maybe I should have checked the date of Indy's post before bothering to reply.

 

Hahaha, I was reading this and getting excited about offering advice, since I lost my last girlfriend over this issue. Sad now that this was four years old. lol

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