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Ex Christian Opinion Poll on engaging with Christians


Ex Christians your opinion  

30 members have voted

  1. 1. As an ex-christian, what is your opinion of christians who actively try to spread their faith in the ex-christian.net forums? (Multiple choices allowed.) (Ex TEG)

    • They are intruders who should be discouraged
      5
    • They have the right to spread their faith as long as they are not abusive
      2
    • I would like to try and convert them
      3
    • I enjoy arguing with them
      7
    • I do not care what they do
      7
    • I have no opinion
      0
    • Other (Feel free to reply)
      14


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Hi all

 

Here is a poll from TEG. Hopefully it works. Could be an interesting internal discussion.

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I intended this to refer to those who depart from actual discourse and start preaching, making faith-based appeals, and responding with religious comebacks instead of reasoned argument.  Also, make sure that it is only ex-christians who vote . . . .

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I said other. 

 

I appreciate that this is a space for ex-Christians to recover,  and there are times when being exposed to evangelism may not be helpful. However, I think there are enough "seasoned" members here that Christian arguments are usually dealt with in short order. Also, some new members find it actively helpful to argue with Christians and thereby strengthen their own new convictions. I think that roughly covers my feelings on options 1 and 2.

 

As far as trying to (de?)convert them is concerned, in principle I would like it if more people saw that Christianity is false, but I don't really feel a strong desire to dissuade people of their convictions,  so long as those convictions aren't actively causing harm.

 

I have enjoyed arguing with Christians in the past,  but these days I mainly just find it tiresome.

 

I do think it's important to remember that some Christians may stumble upon this site on their way out, as it were, and may engage in passionate evangelism here in a desperate attempt to justify their own faith. Enchanges with us here may eventually help some of these top find their way out,  which I think is important.

 

Ultimately,  I'm happy to have conversation with anyone who is willing to engage in rational discussion. If someone wants to try to argue for Christianity, fine. They'll have a hard time of it, but that's alright. And if they just resort to preaching ad nauseum, then they're easy enough to ignore.

 

On the whole,  I think I prefer a case-by-case approach.

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14 minutes ago, TEG said:

IAlso, make sure that it is only ex-christians who vote . . . .

 

Um... not sure how to do that. Not sure we can. I think the Christian tag is simply that. Not sure it allows us to sort if its an open poll. Hopefully Christians will see that it's for Ex Christians and refrain. Please and thank you Christians.

 

@webmdave Is it possible to have the poll only open to Ex Christians?

 

 

(PS I made the poll anonymous, but could have had it showing who voted what then we'd be able to pick up if Christians were voting. Bit late now.)

 

 

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The goal of any argument should never be changing the mind of the person you're arguing with; but, rather, perhaps, enlightening those who might be listening in.  That said, let them come, let them do their best.

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So I must admit that I enjoy debate. I don't like to say I like arguing, but selected that as one of my choices.

 

Regarding TEG's directions one the particular type of Christian that is dialoguing with us, even if they are 'preaching' so long s they do so in the Den I care not if they try religious talk on us. It's not that I don't care at all, it's just I'm not fazed by whatever method they attempt to get their point across. Thus I selected other.

 

I think that dialogue should be as constructive as possible, but if a Christian is making wild unfounded assertions or preaching I have no issue with just being blunt with them and showing why their position is bullshit. (IMO of course).

 

I agree with TRP regarding the conversion aspect. We cannot criticise the religious for their constant conversion attempts, then go and attempt to convert them ourselves. That's hypocritical. What we can do is try and get them to challenge their beliefs and world views, and hopefully leave a nugget that they may chew on some point in the future.

 

I also agree with Disillusioned position, except I'm probably more willing than him to engage. I haven't found it entirely tiresome yet.

 

Discussion changes minds. Don't let anyone say otherwise. Mostly it's not instant, and often not with the person you are engaging with, but people read things and it does help. If any conversion is going on, that's it. Not us turning into the atheist version of a bible thumper.

 

I do care what they do, and moderate my responses to match. Clearly I have an opinion and thus didn't tick that box.

 

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Sometimes I find it irritating, but at the same time I like watching our more debate-skilled members tear their arguments apart. I myself, however,  am not very skilled in the debating department, so I don't actively participate much.

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I went with the majority, apparently, by choosing "other."

 

Though there is much in common, Christians are individuals. Some are very much worth seriously engaging, others behave like mindless Christ-bots or outright trolls.

 

I judge on a case by case basis.

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Mostly I ignore them. But they should be sequestered from the general forums. This is our place, for us to decompress and learn from each other. We spent decades in the faith, and just because they want to ignore that and pretend they have some kind of new insight or info that makes all the mythology and abuse good and true doesn't mean they get to preach here. 

 

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The discussion should be moved to the Lions Den as soon as it looks like a debate, and goes past their introduction.  If you enjoy the debate, go for it.  But when it starts getting  circular, or disrespectful, I lose interest, and think it undermines our credibility when we are disrespectful in our replies to them, even if they are trolls.  But will admit it is tempting to do so at times!  It seems they can't understand that we know their arguments, and they just keep trying.  LOL.  After all, God is with them!!

Sometimes I think the best thing to do when it becomes ridicilous is to just quit responding to them. 

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14 minutes ago, Weezer said:

The discussion should be moved to the Lions Den as soon as it looks like a debate, and goes past their introduction.

 

That's what happens. In fact that's how the LMTO question/concern thread ended up in the lions den.

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My reaction includes parts of all the above: I agree that LMTO was one of the better Christians, and I'm glad he was here. The Lion's Den is the place for such chat, and I think it is worthwhile to have our notions challenged from time to time. And for those of us who are not strong debaters, we can learn more about how that works by reading those of you who are skilled at it. The obnoxious trolls can be cut off by the mods and those who are decent but boring and circular can just be ignored.

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3 hours ago, Derek said:

Sometimes I find it irritating, but at the same time I like watching our more debate-skilled members tear their arguments apart. I myself, however,  am not very skilled in the debating department, so I don't actively participate much.

 

But do you feel that by watching these interactions you've learned more about ways in which to debate them? You may get to the point where you feel like you've seen it all (it will happen, there's only so many places these arguments can go) and can yourself address just about anything that a christian could ever throw your way. I like to think that by debating these people, deconverts can use the examples set forward as a type of self defense mechanism that they can turn around use against their opponents, like any other fight or combat training. 

 

 

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1 minute ago, Joshpantera said:

But do you feel that by watching these interactions you've learned more about ways in which to debate them? You may get the point where you feel like you've seen it all (it will happen, there's only so many places these arguments can go) and can yourself address just about anything a christian could ever throw your way. 

  

I do. I'm not good at thinking on my feet. IOW, an in-person debate. Given time, I can write something up but even then I can sense something that doesn't make sense but I don't see the logical fallacies easily. 

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On 2/12/2020 at 8:26 PM, Fuego said:

This is our place, for us to decompress and learn from each other. We spent decades in the faith, and just because they want to ignore that and pretend they have some kind of new insight or info that makes all the mythology and abuse good and true doesn't mean they get to preach here. 

 

That's why mods usually put them straight to the Den. The staff here recognizes and respects the above. We put them in the Den and then it's up to them to defend themselves and the beliefs they're pushing. But we don't have to be nasty about it. Not at all. Especially considering that fact that we have the upper hand in the exchanges - if we simply stick to the facts and available evidence for consideration. 

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7 hours ago, Joshpantera said:

 

But do you feel that by watching these interactions you've learned more about ways in which to debate them? You may get to the point where you feel like you've seen it all (it will happen, there's only so many places these arguments can go) and can yourself address just about anything that a christian could ever throw your way. I like to think that by debating these people, deconverts can use the examples set forward as a type of self defense mechanism that they can turn around use against their opponents, like any other fight or combat training. 

 

 

I have found it quite educational. I guess you can teach an old dog new tricks :)

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I voted “Other”.  I’d say the benefits of us engaging with Christians are threefold...

 

Some “inexperienced” ex-Christians can learn new arguments against Christianity from observing the more experienced ones take on the believers, and so gain needed confidence in their deconversion.

 

Those of us who are confident ex-Christians can exercise our counter-apologetics muscles in debating so we can become more effective in debunking Christianity.

 

Fence-sitters, the lurkers who are teetering somewhere between belief and unbelief, will likely encounter solid arguments against Christianity, and against the idea that religious faith is a sound way of knowing what is true.  

 

The more civilized the discussion, the more likely it is to be useful.  I often feel sympathy for the Christian who ends up alone against the group, trying to respond to multiple lines of opposition.   It’s not surprising when they get defensive and combative.  I agree that LMTO handled himself pretty well.  I see references to him in the past tense: has he departed from among us?  

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15 hours ago, TABA said:

I voted “Other”.  I’d say the benefits of us engaging with Christians are threefold...

 

Some “inexperienced” ex-Christians can learn new arguments against Christianity from observing the more experienced ones take on the believers, and so gain needed confidence in their deconversion.

 

Those of us who are confident ex-Christians can exercise our counter-apologetics muscles in debating so we can become more effective in debunking Christianity.

 

Fence-sitters, the lurkers who are teetering somewhere between belief and unbelief, will likely encounter solid arguments against Christianity, and against the idea that religious faith is a sound way of knowing what is true.  

 

The more civilized the discussion, the more likely it is to be useful.  I often feel sympathy for the Christian who ends up alone against the group, trying to respond to multiple lines of opposition.   It’s not surprising when they get defensive and combative.  I agree that LMTO handled himself pretty well.  I see references to him in the past tense: has he departed from among us?  

 

So maybe people can consciously try to not over do it sometimes with these christian visitors as they show up here. Maybe treat it like a dance. Let people have their dance with the christian. Maybe ask, "may I cut it?" 😂 

 

While the rest of us observe and let the questions come at the christians slowly. Giving them a chance to breathe and get oriented. This sounds like a reasonable request. 

 

My bet is that they'll lose ground and credibility regardless of what we do. 

 

But we can give them the fairest arena possible so there's no cry of fowl play....

 

 

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Like in the old kung fu movies where there are fifty bad guys but they only attack one at a time.

 

 

come-drink-with-me-1966-e1502210180320.jpg

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I voted other. I agree Christians should be approached on a case by case basis. If they keep their evangelizing to the Lions den where it's permitted I've no issue with it. If it appears elsewhere it's not acceptable as the purpose of this site is to support those newly devonverted. I'm not much of a debater myself but I enjoy reading debates with Christians as I find it educational (my biblical knowledge is next to nil , the cult I grew up in had it's interpretation/  cherry picking approach and didn't actively support reading the Bible). 

Debate should remain civilized. If it gets abusive and turns into trolling behavior towards members here I'm for kicking those xtians out. 

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I don’t want this site to be like a Christian fundy site that censors speech they don’t agree with. There isn’t anything a Christian could posts here that we haven’t heard and dealt with. Our rejection of religion is based on facts, evidence, history, science, logic, and reason. I can’t imagine anything a Christian could possibly posts that would cause us to doubt our reasons for leaving Christianity.

 

Christians, on the other hand, might possibly encounter information that could possibly encourage them to investigate their “beliefs” more deeply and hopefully more objectively. Personally, I don’t care whether they are nice or not when they challenge our reasons for leaving religion. I’m a big boy, I don’t take insults personally or even seriously.

 

 

 

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Others have stated this a bit differently, but I do agree there should be some areas of the forum reserved for ex-Christians. That said, I enjoy debating Christians and am interested in attempting to deconvert them. As long as they are in the Den or other allowed forums, I'm content to let them say whatever they wish, provided that we have the unobstructed right to denigrate their faith and challenge their most dearly held beliefs.

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5 hours ago, TABA said:

I see references to him in the past tense: has he departed from among us?  

 

Yes. LMTO requested his account be deleted. He felt the pile on was a bit much. Looking back at the thread one has to agree attempting to simultaneously engage with 5 to 10 others is a bit much. We 'attack' as a group of lions, instead like the movies one on one to make things fairer as TRP was saying.

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I've just voted 'Other'.

 

As I mentioned elsewhere, my main concern is the smooth running of this forum.  If politely advising Christians about the concept of burden of proof helps do that, then I'm happy.  

 

How they conduct themselves here isn't really an issue for me.  If matters get out of hand there are adequate procedures in place to deal with that.  

 

That's all I really have to say on this.

 

Thank you.

 

Walter.

 

 

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20 hours ago, LogicalFallacy said:

 

@webmdave Is it possible to have the poll only open to Ex Christians?

 

Not at this time. 

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