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After Christianity


Guest thenotchosenone
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Guest thenotchosenone

I'm curious about other people here. Did you become an atheist when you figured out that christinity was bull shit or did you change to a different religion? I consider myself mostly agnostic only because I cannot absolutely 100% prove that there is no god. I surely don't believe that there is a god but, I wonder about some things like consciousness (not conscience). Did it evolve into part of us and if it did how does it work. Why do we realize that we exist. Computers process information also but don't realize that they exist. It's hard to define consciousness but it is a very interesting mystery perhaps the most interesting mystery besides where the universe came from. The mystery of these things is way more interesting to me than that bullshit in the bible about god's glory and all that shit. I'm just curious what others think.

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I was an agnostic for a good deal of time but came to an understanding all at once (and not too long ago) that agnosticism is only a tenable position for a period of time. Either you believe is the supernatural, you don't if you believe or not or you absolutely don't believe. I don't see there being much gray area. It's my personal view that remaining an a lifelong agnostic shows either laziness or a lack of concern in the matter... neither of which exemplify me. Your very questions show that you're a thinker and you don't strike me as being particularly lazy. Who knows, though. You may prove my theory wrong. I do, however, think that your definition of atheism needs a bit of tweaking. As an atheist, I don't posit that there is no such thing as a god or gods, I simply state that with all available material, the likelihood is extremely low and that I find no good reason to believe in one or any of them.

 

By the way, welcome to the group. It's a good bunch of people with great thoughts and advice.

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Guest thenotchosenone

I think I agree with you except maybe for semantics. I will probably be agnostic for my whole life since there is no way to prove or disprove anything definitively. But there are a lot of questions we don't have the knowledge to answer currently. That being said making up answers is no better. When scientists start finding answers to these questions i just wonder if we won't find even more questions. String theory is said to revolutionize science, it says that the elementry particles of everything is small vibrating strings that determine certain things about the matter that they make up. It's very interesting but what makes up the small strings. Even if we find the answers to all of these questions we still don't know where they came from. If we ever did figure out what caused the universe then we would have to say what caused that which caused the universe. It's exciting but depressing to know that I will not live long enough to see some of the answers to these questions.

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Infinite regression, right? Well... it's much easier to answer the infinite regression question with tangible, natural evidence than with another mystery (ie. the supernatural) which, in itself, explains nothing but compounds the question.

 

If you find a definition of "atheist" or "atheism" you will see that it is not a positive statement in that it asserts nothing other than a lack of belief in a deity or deities. Positive statements require backing evidence to be considered absolute truth or even theory whereas negative statements do not.

 

Believe me, I was an agnostic for the better part of my life since my deconversion (seven years) but as I mentioned, I feel like it is a more transitional viewpoint than anything else.

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Funnily enough I went pagan at first. Then I started paying attention to Buddhism and Hinduism and also believing that all religions had a bit of truth in them and also a fair bit of bullshit.

 

Then I went all New Age - everything is part of One Consciousness - sort of thing. Pantheism or Advaita Vedanta are two other ways you could put it.

 

Now I'm atheist.

 

It's been an interesting journey :grin:

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It took me 15 years to figure it out. I was Christian for about 5 years, then agnostic for right around 10 years. Then one day I was sitting at work and I over heard a co-worker exclaim, "Praise God!!!" I thought, "God doesn't exist." Bam...the realization hit that I was an atheist.

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I would be slow to label myself "atheist," but the truth is, that's really what fits. I might actually prefer the term freethinker, in hopes that implies that I think, rather than simply maintain a position. I'd use FF's definition, that the probability of a god or gods is extremely slim and that I have no good reason to believe. I didn't turn from xian to non-theist instantly, as though a light switch had been thrown, but I never traded fundyism for a liberal xianity, Wicca, New Age or alternative beliefs.

 

I do, however, share the same questions as you have. I find consciousness fascinating and I have little clue as to really understanding it. I'd like to learn more, both personally, and for we humans to gain a greater understanding of it.

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I'm just curious what others think.

 

After leaving Xianity, I was a Deist for a brief time, then was a Theistic Asatruar, then burned out and walked the Atheist path, and proceeded to burn out on that and now identify, usually, as an Agnostic. I still waver between Theism and Atheism, depending on my moods and desires, and realize I lean one way or the other generally because of my disposition at the moment. I just do whatever suits me. I think the Atheists will be proven right, in time, but not in our time. Until we know for sure, I will remain ultimately Agnostic.

 

But, though it's an interesting topic to ponder, I also realize it's hardly important. The most important thing any religion can offer is ethics; the ethics, the overall lifestyle and zeitgeist, a religion connotes by far outweighs its position on theology. That is, at best, a tertiary concern, even beneath ritual practice.

 

Ultimately, in terms of gods, I don't think I really care.

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I grew disillusioned with God/Christianity first, then started looking into it and realize it was a load of bunk. When I found a forum for Ex-Pentecostals, I found a label -- humanism -- that matched my own values and embraced that.

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I'm curious about other people here. Did you become an atheist when you figured out that christinity was bull shit or did you change to a different religion?

 

Strictly speaking I already knew that christiaNutty is bullshit before I first got into contact with what's now my faith. I adhered to the jebus doctrine (the liberal kind of it that is) as a philosophy, not as anything involving the supernatural. ;)

How crappy it really is, however, didn't occur to me until after I had found my spiritual home in Valhalla and started to develop (kind of) an interest in religion in general. Off I went into the great wide web and examined some stuff about the jebus cult, found the 4th reich morontheism sites (like gawdhatesfags et al), and the rest of the story you can easily imagine I trust... :HaHa:

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If pressed I will tell you that I’m an atheist, but I rarely think of myself in those terms. I am much more likely to think of myself in terms of what I do believe. I believe in natural law. I think that understanding can be obtained, and I think understanding is very valuable. I respect and yield to those who demonstrate understanding.

 

I think questions about consciousness are good questions. I used to ask plenty of them myself. In time it led me to ask questions about life, and it is towards biology that I find myself increasingly drawn.

 

However science is not my religion. If anything can be said to be my religion then it is the quest for understanding. Biology happens to be my chosen vehicle. But there are any number of humanities to choose from. And I don’t feel the need to belittle those who think that the study and practice of art is the surest way to understanding.

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I wandered from Christianity into different flavors of Paganism until I just became basically a "general theist." After hanging around here on this forum for about 6 months and going through a difficult period in my life, finally one day last Autumn I sat back and thought about it, and realized that I really don't see any evidence of an intelligent being with an agenda running the world. So far, believing or not believing has not impacted my life a great deal. It was kind of weird at first, but I haven't seen any earth-shattering changes in the patterns of my life.

 

I personally see no evidence to the contrary that there are no gods, but my ego isn't so wrapped up in the idea as to claim that I know everything about how the universe works. I'm a convinced atheist, but my ego won't suffer if I'm proven wrong someday.

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I went straight from Christian belief to Atheism for a few years, but now that I'm over being angry and bitter about my Christian experience I tend to be a very vague sort of Deist. I'm not religious at all, and I guess I really don't care if there is a God or not since I can't imagine one worth knowing being one who would roast me for an eternity for really not caring anymore one way or the other. If there is a God, mankind's religions have nothing to do with him/her/it, so God is basically unknowable except perhaps through an appreciation of nature or something vague and non-specific like that.

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When I stopped being a christian I sort of dabbled in Wicca, Taoism, Heathenry, Druidry, Native American spirituality, La Veyan Satanism and Chaos magic. Now tend to fluctuate between atheism and theism depending on the day.

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After realizing I'd been duped by xianity my entire life, I spent a few years learning about logical errors and studying philosophy, science, early lit and early greek theater (school). After a while I realized that all extraordinary claims I had been exposed to were without merit. One day I just realized that I didn't believe any of the god claims and as such realized that I was an atheist. It wasn't a decision, just a realization.

 

One of the biproducts of my journey has been that there are no sacred cows for me anymore. Everything that I (and what I observe from others) took for granted is valid to be questioned. That includes faith, country, the institution of marriage, the democratic process, etc... That doesn't mean that when questioned all the values related to these things have fallen apart, just that I'm compelled to test them. The result of this has led to a lot of disillusionment in some areas.

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When I first ditched Xianity for good, I became a pagan for awhile. I was a generic eclectic everything-goes pagan, then a Greek Reconstructionist pagan. While I still enjoy the mythology, at some point I realized that I couldn't figure out how pagan deities were any more viable than Abrahamic ones (who were ultimately pagan in origin anyway), so I backed out of that and was something close to a pantheist for awhile. Gradually I adopted the agnostic label; about a year and a half ago I realized that atheism fits far better than any other label does. I currently define myself as an agnostic atheist: I have no firm clue whether or not a god or gods exist, but I haven't seen anything yet to convince me that they do. Neither do I see any need to assign a supernatural cause to anything (though, oddly enough, I don't entirely discount the paranormal).

 

That's it, in a nutshell.

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