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June 22nd, 2012
11:27 AM ET

Prominent atheist blogger converts to Catholicism

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN) – She went from atheist to Catholic in just over 1,000 words.

Leah Libresco, who’d been a prominent atheist blogger for the religion website Patheos, announced on her blog this week that after years of debating many “smart Christians,” she has decided to become one herself, and that she has begun the process of converting to Catholicism.

Libresco, who had long blogged under the banner “Unequally Yoked: A geeky atheist picks fights with her Catholic boyfriend,” said that at the heart of her decision were questions of morality and how one finds a moral compass.

“I had one thing that I was most certain of, which is that morality is something we have a duty to,” Libresco told CNN in an interview this week, a small cross dangling from her neck. “And it is external from us. And when push came to shove, that is the belief I wouldn’t let go of. And that is something I can’t prove.”

CNN's Belief Blog: the faith angles behind the big stories

According to a Patheos post she wrote on Monday, entitled “This is my last post for the Patheos Atheist Portal,” she began to see parts of Christianity and Catholicism that fit her moral system. Though she now identifies as a Catholic, Libresco questions certain aspects of Catholicism, including the church’s positions on homosexuality, contraception and some aspects of religious liberty.

“There was one religion that seemed like the most promising way to reach back to that living Truth,” Libresco wrote about Catholicism in her conversion announcement post, which has been shared over 18,000 times on Facebook. “I asked my friend what he suggests we do now, and we prayed the night office of the Liturgy of the Hours together.”

At the end of the post, Libresco announces that she is in a Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults class and is preparing for baptism. She will continue to blog for Patheos, but under the banner, “A geeky convert picks fights in good faith.”

According to Dan Welch, director of marketing for Patheos, Libresco’s post has received around 150,000 page views so far.

“Leah's blog has gotten steadily more popular since she arrived at Patheos, but a typical post on her blog is probably closer to the range of 5,000 page views,” Welch wrote in an email. “Even now, a few days later, her blog is probably getting 20-30 times its normal traffic.”

Libresco’s announcement has left some atheists scratching their heads.

“I think atheists were surprised that she went with Catholicism, which seems like a very specific choice,” Hemant Mehta, an atheist blogger at Patheos, told CNN. “I have a hard time believing how someone could jump from I don’t believe in God to a very specific church and a very specific God.”

Mehta says that Libresco’s conversion is a “one-off thing” and not something that signals any trend in atheism. “The trends are very clear, the conversions from Catholicism to atheism are much more likely to happen than the other way around,” he said.

But while atheists were puzzled by the conversion, others commended Libresco.

“I know I’ve prayed for her conversion several times, always thinking she would make a great Catholic,” wrote Brandon Vogt, a Catholic blogger. “And with this news, it looks like that will happen. Today heaven is roaring with joy.”

Thomas L. McDonald, a Catholic Patheos blogger, welcomed Libresco to the fold: “Welcome. I know this was hard, and will continue to be so. Don’t worry if the Catholics make it as for difficult for you as the atheists. We only do it to people we love.”

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Libresco says one of the most common questions she has received is how she'll deal with atheists now.

“The great thing about a lot of the atheist and skeptic community is that people talk more critically about ideas and want to see proof provided,” Libresco said. “That kind of analytical thinking is completely useful and the Catholic Church doesn’t need to and should not be afraid of because if you’ve got the facts on your side, you hope they win.”

Libresco is just switching the side she thinks the facts are on.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Atheism • Catholic Church

soundoff (7,475 Responses)
  1. Mcurren

    Welcome Home, Leah!

    June 25, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
    • Just Claims, No Truth

      "Welcome Home, Leah!"

      Now bend over...

      June 25, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • She's in for a rude awakening

      A bisexual gay rights activist "goes home" to a scandal-plagued organization with 2,000 years of atrocities to its name, because it is the best path to Moral Law.

      Mayday! Mayday!

      June 25, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
  2. Paul Falduto

    I'm the opposite, Catholic turned atheist. But hey, whatever floats your boat. If she thinks Catholicism is the route to truth, fine. I would point out she is very young and may not have thought it all through. I was a Catholic for the first 25 years of my life, a deist for the next 25 and an atheist only for the last five. It took me a long time to sort through things. Check back in 10 years, she may be saying she's an atheist again.

    June 25, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Time will tell for us all I suppose. But whether one changes their beliefs or not does not change the truth

      June 25, 2012 at 5:53 pm |
  3. Powdered Donuts

    How convenient: her boyfriend also just happened to be a Catholic. She will dump it as soon as he dumps her.

    Hmm?...

    June 25, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
  4. Oskar

    She was an atheist, and now she a Catholic? Are the Catholics christians? I don't think so. The office of the Pope is the biggest killer of innocent christians of all time. These popes, brought in the church idols and demonic practices, that over the centuries
    have taken the church to the pits of hell. Their lies and ignorance of the bible, lead the people to untruths and destruction.
    They have given us the purgatory, that is the biggest lie on this earth. The tradition they have given us, is nothing more then satanic lies and fabrications. So dear lady, you are not a christian if you are a Catholic.

    June 25, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • Getreal

      Really?...the Catholic church originally founded by Jesus Christ is not a christian denomination. Not according to the catholics because they are the one true church. Catholics not christians....pull the other one

      June 25, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
    • sam

      Jesus didn't found the catholic church.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
    • Getreal

      According to catholic doctrine, Jesus Christ founded the church at the confession of peter

      June 25, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • sam

      Wishful doctrine. No proof.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Ach, laddie!
      If ye shag altar boys instead o sheep, yir nae true scotsman.

      June 26, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
  5. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    If you believe ... that some jewish zombie can make you live forever if you symbolically eat of his flesh, drink of his blood, and telepathically tell him that you accept him as your master. So he can remove an evil force from your soul that is present in humanity because a sinful woman was convinced by a talking snake to eat from a magical tree!..... You MIGHT be a redneck...

    June 25, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • Cq

      She turned Catholic so there's nothing symbolic at all about the eucharist. The Church teaches that what they hand out to eat really did become the body and blood of Christ.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
  6. Mass Debater

    This whole issue of an atheist going back to religion is much like a person who has bumper stickers all over their car but decides to remove them all for a time, and now after years of driving without them has decided once again to slap on a fish decal. There is no story here. There might be if atheism was an ideological belief system she was abandoning for a different one, but it's not. It's just a clear and clean bumper.

    June 25, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
  7. Jim in PA

    This actually makes perfect sense. Aetheists are often as unyielding and judgemental as the Vatican. She probably has the kind of personality that fits both.

    June 25, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
    • Cq

      Come now, there are plenty of born-again types here who will gladly tell you that you cannot be a "real Christian" unless you oppose gay marriage, oppose evolution, believe that the Bible is 100% factual, and that the rapture is just around the corner. I've had lively debates with fellow atheists over just about everything, from gun control to abortion rights. Even the issue of how strong an atheist you can be is up for discussion. Most of us agree that we'd believe in God if he showed up, or provided valid proof. Conservative Christians, however, have all basically stopped discussing Jesus' divinity back when they tortured to death the last of the heretics.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
    • fred

      Cq
      There is no need to discuss the divinity of Jesus because His work on the cross is finished. It is a done deal, Satan is finished and as soon as the last soul that belongs in paradise is born again we welcome in the End of Days.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
    • Cq

      fred
      Check your Church history. The divinity of Jesus was a pretty loose topic back in the beginning among Christians and some even question whether Jesus need be a demigod in order for his teaching to have enough meaning in their lives. You may not fel the need to discuss it, but others do.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:18 pm |
    • fred

      Cq
      Our discussions do not change what happened 2,000 years ago only how we respond to what happened 2,000 years ago may change based on discussions. If Christ is all he claimed to be and the words of Christ are His words then His work is a finished work. The Holy Spirit is imparted to the believer just as Christ said it would be. We have proof of the Holy Spirit (or illusion of Holy Spirit) active in people’s lives since that day forward. I consider all of Paul’s letters to be proof of the divinity of Christ. Even if we only accept those letters accepted by all reputable scholars they are sufficient.
      All debate among churches and scholars since that time seems more about justification of denomination rather than question of divinity. To those who do not believe Jesus said the only sign they will be given is the sign of Jonah. To those who believe they have the Holy Spirit who Jesus said will lead them to all truth. The works of man cannot trump the Holy Spirit nor can the works of man by any way other than faith reveal the divinity of Christ. To each is given a measure of faith and it is by faith that we can see God.

      June 25, 2012 at 6:28 pm |
    • Cq

      fred
      "I consider all of Paul’s letters to be proof of the divinity of Christ."
      Why consider the opinions of one man concerning another's divinity as more valid than, say, the people who wrote of the Roman Emperors' divinity?

      I was referring to specific branches of Christianity, like Arianism, that disputed the idea of Jesus' divinity. The Church was only able to stamp out such rival forms once it got the clout of the Roman Empire behind it.

      Other faiths don't reveal the divinity of Jesus any more that Christianity reveals anything about the Buddha. Why should they? It'd be like expecting to learn about the rules of Baseball by watching Chess.

      I don't see where you can claim that everyone is "given" some faith. I don't feel as though I was given any.

      June 26, 2012 at 12:32 am |
    • fred

      Cq
      “Why consider the opinions of one man concerning another's divinity as more valid than, say, the people who wrote of the Roman Emperors' divinity?”
      =>If you refer to those that wrote of an Emperors divinity while under the wing of the Emperor or his power base compared to Paul who was under threat and physical harm not only from the political powers but religious powers that opposed Christ’s divinity I go with Paul. Paul faced death and rejection for his claim verses the pandering of the elite.

      “I was referring to specific branches of Christianity, like Arianism,”… “Other faiths don't reveal the divinity of Jesus”

      =>yes, which is why I said divinity discussions related to justification of denomination (Christian denominations regarding Old and New Testaments)

      “I don't see where you can claim that everyone is "given" some faith. I don't feel as though I was given any.”
      =>To each is given a “measure” of faith. Just as we receive other gifts as part of who we are we are also given a measure of faith. The best part is it only takes a small amount of faith. Earnest prayer before Christ will reveal the faith that is given to all.
      As to arguments over divinity by the faithful these are no different than what Paul experienced when establishing the church. This is the way of man. When the Holy Spirit is involved and men allow the Holy Spirit to lead there is no doubt of divinity. Even if I were to flip over to a very liberal view and see Christ as delusion of mind the divinity of Christ would remain. The manifestation of God in Jesus, in the burning bush, in the visions of Isaiah, in smoke and fire, at the mount before Moses, in the Holy Spirit, etc. all left a clear radiance and glory that transformed lives of all who would see. The message is the same the message is clear and men will do with it what they will. The result is the same to this day lives are transformed into the glory of God or the rejection of God for the glory of man.

      June 26, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
  8. Fufu

    Plucky this is a commentary and that is my comment.

    June 25, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
    • Smurfette

      Oh, Fufu! Debate challenge just down the page. We're waiting!

      June 25, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
    • Richard Milhouse Nixon

      Well let me say this about that.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
    • Fufu

      What is the subject Smurfette?

      June 25, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • Smurfette

      We have our moderator – the late, great Richard M. Nixon. Perhaps he can kick things off with the "Tale of the Tape".

      June 25, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • Fufu

      Not sure I understand that. I suppose that makes you the superior intellect.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
    • Smurfette

      The existence of god. Or gods. Or a specific god. I shall take the non-believer's position, in an attempt to demonstrate that such position can be presented with contempt, arrogance, or other emotional bits of ka ka. (I note that you had posted suggesting that atheists often resort to such measures).

      You, Sir, may take the believer's position.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
    • Fufu

      Faux pas much Smurfette? "demonstrate that such position can be presented with contempt, arrogance, or other emotional bits"

      June 25, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
    • Smurfette

      "twas only a bit of wit. I likened our soon to be engaged battle of wits to a boxing match, a characteristic of which is the "Tale of the Tape"; a summary of the physical measurements – height, weight, reach, etc – of the two combatants. The late President Nixon was well known for his involvement with the Watergate scandal, where audio tapes played a role.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • OOO

      Come on... Get it on, you two. Lets see where this goes...
      Fufu, since you are making the claim (that god , or a go, exists) you should start with an explanation.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • Smurfette

      Well noted, Sir! Well struck! I intended to say "without", but of course, said "with".

      Could you present your view on the existence of god?

      June 25, 2012 at 3:02 pm |
    • Fufu

      I'm pretty sure in a debate the challenger makes their position, after which the opposition gets to reply, not the other way.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
    • OOO

      OK,
      I'll start then (man this is moving slow)
      There is no proof of a supernatural being. So why make one up to believe in, worship, run your daily life by, etc...

      How's that!

      June 25, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • Richard Milhouse Nixon

      Fetch the tapes, Checkers!

      I am not a crook. My wife pat has a good Republican cloth coat. Fetch the tapes, Checkers!

      You won't have Dick Nixon to kick around anymore.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • Fufu

      OOO you do not ask a question in making your first posit in a debate. You state your argument and allow for rebuttal.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:10 pm |
    • Fufu

      Furthermore OOO, the challenge was issued by another. Is this supposed to be 2 on 1 now?

      June 25, 2012 at 3:10 pm |
    • OOO

      FF why are you such an a-ho-le?

      June 25, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
    • Fufu

      OOO is the lack of following debate rules followed by the base method of name calling your final admission of defeat? Oh well, I've not heard from my original challenger and must move on to other things......

      June 25, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • Smurfette

      fufu – I am trying to post, without success. please stand by.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
    • Smurfette

      I could not get this to post. My apologies.

      I consider myself to be an atheist. By that I mean the following:

      1. I do not believe in the existence of the Abrahamic God specifically. I make this first point because this appears to be a primarily Christian-oriented discussion.

      2. I do not believe in other gods of other religions, both past and present.

      3. I do not take the belief position that there is no god ie – "I believe there is no god"

      4. I do not assert positively that there is no god.

      5. I hold open the possibility that there is a god, or gods.

      6. I have not seen any proof that is both reliable and sufficient to form a rational and reasoned basis for believing that a god or gods actually exist. Such an extraordinary claim requires far, far greater evidence than a claim such as, "There is a pencil in my pocket"

      7. When I use the term god, I am referring to a traditional model of a supernatural ent-ity that exhibits omniscience and omnipotence as characteristics.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • Smurfette

      Beware the "t-it" in "ent-ity"

      June 25, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @Smurfette

      Might I make a suggestion on point #7?

      June 25, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
    • Smurfette

      @ Hawaii – of course. That was only an introduction, mind you. Ultimately, if one cannot agree beforehand on what one is debating ie god, then of course debate will be pointless, as the goalposts will simply be moved during play. But please, your comment?

      June 25, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      I think it should be qualified that the traditional characteristics of god that you mentioned are more specific to the abrahamic religions. Many of the older religions are polytheistic and their dieties are by no means all powerful or all seeing. They're actually quite limited in their capacities.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • Smurfette

      Excellent point. I agree. Unfortunately, we have not heard from fu fu, and I have to leave to deal with an emergent matter. Hawaii, if fu fu returns, please act as my agent, and please ensure that all comments are professional, measured, and rational.

      Kind regards, Smurfette

      June 25, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      Apparently I'm debating now LOL. Fun times.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • Fufu

      Smurfette, being that the things you list are things that YOU believe, starting each point with "I believe," I cannot counter-argue your points, as I do not have conviction or proof that you do NOT believe those things.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fufu

      Perhaps I can help.

      There is insufficient evidence to posit the existence of a god/gods. If you like we can limit this to merely the abrahamic god of the bible.
      This is not a positive assertion of "there is no god/gods", merely a position of non-belief, and non-acceptance of a claim.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
    • Fufu

      Hawaii this would depend on what you consider evidence. Can you study the universe and compare to Abrahamic scripture and prove to a non-believer there is a God? No. Can millions, however believe based on their own individual experiences and experiences of those around them that there is a God. Yes.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
    • Fufu

      And if I wanted to be technical you say there is insufficient evidence to "posit" the existence of God. You can "posit" anything you want, so in an official debate your point is easily defeated. But I understand your true intent. Carry on.......

      June 25, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      So you want to make an appeal to popularity then? Sorry, but just because a bunch of people believe something means nothing to the validity of the claim. Otherwise, the earth apparently transformed from flat to spherical once enough people believed as such.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • Fufu

      Hawaii I fail to see how your response is a rebuttal to my counter-response. I consider this "debate" no longer a valid "debate" as originally proposed by Smurfette.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @Fufu
      Perhaps we should start in you stating your position though, as I have stated mine.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
    • Fufu

      In a debate my responsibility is to counter whatever your position is. I did so and received in response something unrelated to the subject matter. I was challenged to a debate by Smurfette, he or she would understand. You, however, need to review the rules of engagement.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @Fufu

      Your "response" held no weight at all. Personal experience is always necessarily first person, and has no use to anyone other than that person. You ask what kind of evidence, how about something that is independently verifiable? Something testable, with repeated results, you know, actual science. At this point I'm willing to address a logical argument for the existence of a god unless it's something stupid like Kalam or TAG.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
    • Fufu

      Hawaii you cannot continue to evolve, change and reword your original proposal. To do so admits your original points weakness. I really do tire of this and am moving on from this particular post. I can also see you are getting ready to devolve to insulting and anger so let's move on.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @Fufu

      I stated the type of evidence you asked for, and even addressed why personal experience is not of use to anyone other than that individual. How is that "evolve, change and reword your original proposal."? Especially when you bring up the point of what kind of evidence I am talking about. If your position is that scientific evidence cannot prove god, then you agree with me on that, and I don't even see the point of this.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • Smurfette

      @ fu fu and hawaii Guest: first of all, my apologies for having to leave all of a sudden, but emergencies happen. To Hawaii, thank you – an excellent job. @ fu fu: In reviewing the thread, in your post at 3:56 you said, "Smurfette, being that the things you list are things that YOU believe, starting each point with "I believe," I cannot counter-argue your points, as I do not have conviction or proof that you do NOT believe those things." With respect, you completely mis-stated my position. Review my initial position. I provided a list of things I did NOT believe in. I did not, as you claimed, provided a list of thing I did believe in. You then presented a position that millions of people believe in God. When challenged on this by Hawaii, you ultimately left the debate.

      Please note that there was no disrespect, anger, or arrogance in the responses from both Hawaii and myself. What happens is that atheists can get frustrated when, as in this case, the believer side mis-stakes the atheist position, and when challenged on their position, they simply don't answer valid questions put to them – in this case, by leaving the debate.

      Oh well – one tries

      June 25, 2012 at 6:57 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @Smurfette

      Well I'm glad you're happy with my responses.

      June 25, 2012 at 7:00 pm |
  9. W Murderface

    Christians PLEASE answer my question. First people Adam and Eve world pop. 2. They had Cane and Able world pop 4. Cane killed Able world pop 3. Cane wandered the desert and begat himself a wife??????? Where did the wife come from?

    June 25, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
    • dave

      The Bible is not a history book

      June 25, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • Atheist Hunter

      .......history books have errors, the Bible is not a history book. IT IT THE HISTORY BOOK, INFALLIBLE, AND THE FUTURE BOOK! Just any history book can't do that.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • Matthew Peters, Christian

      For for Christ sake, you damn atheists think you are so cute with stuff like this. Well guess what, bigshot? The Bible answers that perfectly because the Bible is infallible and perfect and you are just a little atheist twirp who is going to sizzle in the Lake of Fire!

      You want to know where that wife came from? It's right there in Genesis! Just before he created man, God created livestock, so there were plenty of sheep roaming around for him.

      I sometimes wonder how there could be livestock before people when "livestock" are domesticated wild animals, and you need humans to domesticate wild animals, BUT THE BIBLE IS STILL PERFECT AND INFALLIBLE!!

      I love you and hate your sin, you atheist piece of dung!

      June 25, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • Jim in PA

      My favorite question to ask the anti-evolution crowd is: If Adam and Eve were the first two people and they were white, and there is no such thing as evolution, there where did all the black and asian people come from?

      June 25, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      Anything touched by man is capable of fallacy. The Bible was created and manipulated by humans.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      @Matthew Perry (or whatever your name is) hilarious post... "lake of fire" hahaha... if it exists, i'm sure its filled to the brim with fvcking christians...

      June 25, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • sam

      Good job, Matthew.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
    • shawnjacobs

      Adam and Eve had more children than Cain and Abel.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • W Murderface

      @Matthew Peters, Christian
      So if this "GOD" of yours is real I'm going to hell for being the way "GOD" made me? "GOD" loves me. From "GOD" I love you now go to hell.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • Cq

      Genesis 5:4 states that Adam had other sons and daughters. Notice that it's not specifically with Eve that he has these children. He lived for 800 years and it's implied that there was a whole lot of inbreeding doing on during that time and beyond.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
    • Matthew Peters, Christian

      Gotta read it all the way through, WM. You fell for the set-up.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:44 pm |
    • Apatheist

      @Jim in PA They evolved... hehe

      June 25, 2012 at 7:36 pm |
  10. godlies

    typical.....girl changes/adds religion to please fiance....he ain't gonna marry her unless she converts....big deal....who cares

    June 25, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
  11. Dunk

    @just claims – I don't know. stop asking me religious questions.

    Some of you don't operate in a logical paradigm. Some of you operate in a non-rational fight w/ religious people because I need to feel smarter paradigm.

    @Cal – #1. If there is a God (no i'm not saying there is one so chill out people), maybe this God is so wise we don't understand.

    If there is a God, I don't think it's a very cruel God. If God was cruel, life could be a lot worse.

    Maybe it's an incompetent God.

    Or maybe it's a paradoxical God who turns bad into good somehow,

    or maybe we're random dust particles.

    #2 – stop asking me religious questions.HAHA.

    @BRC – philosophers for eons have said this. the most modern ones are the positivists. you can wikipedia them

    @EVERYONE – so if an asteroid is definitley going to destroy the planet tomorrow, why would it be wrong to go raping everything & pillaging?

    Or more specifically, what right do you have, or by what logic can you tell someone not to act like there's no tomorrow if there isn't going to be one?

    June 25, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
    • BRC

      @Dunk,
      Sorry about the long delay, but I did in fact wikipedia "Positivism", adn they pretty much say the EXACT opposite of you. In fact Compte (one of the founders of positivism) believed that the highest elevation of human civilazation is the point where people work together and merely through cmulative observed knowdeldge, free of any external forces, lay out the logical and proper way to live. Morals from logic would be considered their highest acheivement.

      And you still oh me a why for my last response. Your asteroid example is a bit silly, but for me it's because morality is not temporal, just because this situation sucks doesn't mean I get to violate my moral code. If I do break my personal rules just because I'm about to die, then I am not a moral being.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
  12. jungleboo

    Leah is simply looking for her own version of a Julie/Julia movie deal in the not too distant future. How anyone could be identified as "a prominent blogger" is unclear to me, but her motives for playing this conversion game are too clear for words. Let us wish her well on her AHA moment. She will make the talk show rounds like so many flash in the pans, and ride her little donkey into Jerusalem amid waving palms. Learning the secret to fame and fortune certainly is a trip, and she is definitely on it. Perhaps her script/screenplay will include responses such as mine. High Five!

    June 25, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
  13. Fufu

    If there were no religions, atheists would soon learn that they are still angry and bitter and move on to something else to blame all their woes on.

    June 25, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
    • plucky

      Stick to the argument rather than generalizations.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
    • Fufu

      Plucky this is a commentary and that is my comment..

      June 25, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
    • Getreal

      I am an atheist, neither angry not bitter, and I don't blame my woes on anyone or anything. I simply see them as lives challenges and deal with them as needed. I needed a crutch when I broke my ankle. My mind is not broken, so I need no crutch for it.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      OR...... they'd be content because mankind would be focused on what it could deal with in reality as opposed to conjuring up rules surrounding a God that no one has proven to have had contact with.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
    • plucky

      OK,
      Just remember... Message received is the message sent. Making generalizations sends a message of naievety..

      June 25, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
    • Peteyroo

      FeeFee, atheists are not angry. Where do you get that? I'm fine. I enjoy pointing out your shortcomings and false arguments because it's fun. It's not my job to straighten you out, but I'm willing to guide you the minefield of absurd beliefs and pure fantasy. Call the Atheist Hot Line. We're here to help.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
    • Fufu

      Plucky, children love to play. Am I i naive for this? Old people impart a lot of wisdom. I can go on.....

      June 25, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
    • Fufu

      Peteyroo you've already been proven a liar with no moral compass. No time to rehash that here, but at least you know it.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
    • plucky

      FF,
      You are making sweeping generalizations, and that tells me you are naieve wrt human interactions.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • Mass Debater

      If there were no religions atheists would be a lot less exasperated. Without constantly being told we are going to heII or that we must be evil people who are incapable of kindness and love without a deity enforcing our good behavior we would likely just have more time in our day to enjoy being kind and loving to others as we tend to be with no top down morality being forced upon us. You religious folk just havn't grown up enough yet and still need to believe SantaGod is watching you day and night so you better behave, otherwise you obviously would be out murdering and stealing and fornicating since you have absolutely no self control and require invisible spirit creatures to help hold you back from perverse and deviant behavior.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • Fufu

      Mass those same people who have twisted religion to tell you that you are going to hell would just be politicians or some other sort of leader. Your anger and exasperation would still be there. I believe in God and I believe I have no right to judge you. I have, however shared an OPINION about the disposition of atheists on this commentary.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • Jim in PA

      Similarly, if there was no religion, the power-hungry control freaks of the world would quickly adopt a different belief system to conslidate power and justify their intolerance. In short, religion is misused by many people for their own reasons.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • Mass Debater

      @Fufu – Yes, and I shared my opinion that you believe in SantaGod because you believe morality to be top down. I disagree aqnd believe morality is bottom up coming from our empathy for others not handed down from on high. We both believe in the same morals, to treat others as you would want to be treated, love your neighbor as yourself, but we believe them for different reasons. You believe it because you think an invisible spirit deity said so, I believe it because I think that is the best way to live and prosper as humans on this planet.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
    • sam

      If there were no internet forums for you to make silly, bitchy posts on, I guess you'd find a neighborhood bulletin board somewhere and regale your neighbors with your bullshit.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
    • Nii

      Atheists confuse these two words. Religious and theists. Theists are the opposite of non-theist or Atheist. Religious are the opposite of irreligious or the opposite of spiritual. Atheist in terms of spirituality may be religious or spiritual! Basic theology!

      June 25, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
    • Fufu

      Sam you realize from your post it is entirely impossible to tell with certainty who you are addressing, right?

      June 25, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
    • Cq

      Nii
      Spirituality I get, but please explain to me how my not believing in any gods might still be religious?

      June 25, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
    • sam

      Since it was phrased very much like your original post, Fu, and I didn't specifically address anyone else, it would follow that it was for you.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • Lros

      Athiests are bitter? no, some people are bitter, both athiests and religious zealots. The major difference between athiests and religious people is that athiests dont go out actively searching for religious people, and then hassle them to try and make then stop believing. In fact the majority of the athiest argument for god is "there's no proof" and when people rebuttle that in some of the insane ways they do (my favorite was "prove there isn't a god! There i just proved there is a god with that question"). If more religious people would stop with the inane ridiculous arguments that make no sense athiests would have much less reason to hate on... Remember it's not that athiests hate religious people, it's that athiests hate stupid people.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • Lros

      Sorry forgot one thing. The argument of "I believe because I want to" should just be the bottom line. There is no evidence of god. There's only evidence of past things humans have done... other humans that believe in god. There's nothing wrong with just saying "I know there's no concrete proof, but it's what i believe". Tell that to any athiest and if he keeps arguing, he's the idiot, not you.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  14. CNN fumbles their facts

    "Prominent atheist blogger . . . "

    "One of the top atheist bloggers . . . "

    I guess if you don't do any research at all and have no clue of what you are talking about, those would be appropriate. In the same way that saying Little Bobby Smegma from down the street is "One of the top baseball players in the country" would sound right if you knew absolutely nothing on basaball.

    Interesting little example of how distorted news gets by the time it reaches the public, despite the fact that it was easily checkable.

    June 25, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
  15. anon

    Atheists are an interesting group of people. Everyone I've ever seen had what looked like a hard, almost angry glint in their eyes. At least, that is the best I can describe it. There's just something in their eyes. But hey, it's probably just my imagination, and inability to use reason that sees this.

    She looks happy. She positively glows. If she is wrong, then she will have wasted her whole life being happy.

    June 25, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • Fufu

      They claim to have the intellectually superior argument, but must add insult and sarcasm to their points to attempt to make them stronger. You would think somebody so convinced of the truth would not need to do so.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
    • gubernova

      Excellent point!

      June 25, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      She's probably pregnant and this is the only way to get her Catholic boyfriend to marry her and support the child.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      You were probably talking about God when they had that look.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
    • Comrade23

      Yes, that's fair, painting everyone with a such a broad stroke. What kind of glint do you see in the eyes of all Muslims, or gay people, or blacks, or Jews, or Baptists, or Asians? I'm very interested in hearing how once can judge someone based on something you can see in their eyes. Can this skill be taught?

      June 25, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
    • gubernova

      On sober second thought, I've reconsidered. It was not an excellent point – it was the epitome of the straw man argument. Tsk, tsk, tsk.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
    • Fufu

      Comrade23, you know, there are investigators that know how to read things like guilt or dishonestly. I think its fair to say some can ready certain things about certain groups. I've noticed the same, and there are definite traits common among many, not all, atheist posters here.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • Peteyroo

      FeeFee, please explain the atheist traits for me. Besides inteligence, imagination, decency, goodness, and an appreciation for diversity, what is there?

      June 25, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • Fufu

      Peteyroo, for you there is hatred, deceit and contempt.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • Just Claims, No Truth

      "Everyone I've ever seen had what looked like a hard, almost angry glint in their eyes.'

      So you can tell just by looking at someone what they believe? I don't think so.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • Peteyroo

      FeeFee, you little scamp! I don't hate anyone. I don't love everyone to be sure, but the only comtempt I have is for false arguments. I think there's hope for you in spite of what the others say. With hard work and dedication, I feel you can become an adequate debater–perhaps even an average one. It won't be easy, so you should get started now. Call the Atheist Hot Line for guidance. We're here to help.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:02 pm |
    • Fufu

      Peteyroo, whereas I am confident you will never make a good argument, because you have proven over and over again that your points are only made with contempt, sarcasm and outright lies.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
    • Think-About-It

      Anon, your observations are correct.
      The reason they are angry and try desperately to show their "superiority" is because of their inward insecurities, which their pride prevents them from acknowledging them.
      Every person deep down inside KNOWS that there is more to them than what meets the eye. They have souls, and even though they deny them, they can't do away with their existence. We also need to keep in mind that they are utterly deceived, meaning, they have accepted the lies of Satan who is out to destroy every human soul. And the best way he can do that is to tell them, there is no God, and he himself doesn't exist. There is a video on pg77 posted by Atheists, "Afterlife". my spirit grieved watching it. They are lame people, unable to see beyond their god of "reason" that they have made themselves crippled in this life! How sad!

      June 25, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
    • sam

      Are you yet another of those people who are convinced they can magically know who's religious or atheist just by looking at them? LOL

      June 25, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
    • not atheist but still pretty annoyed

      What a bunch of smug as-s-holes you guys are..

      June 25, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
    • Think-About-It

      @Fufu, may I ad also that we who know the Lord have His Spirit who o gives us discernment to see beyond the facade and pretense on the surface! That's something the world can not understand, but it is nevertheless true!

      June 25, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
    • sam

      Great, now think-about-it believes that believing in god makes you magical. This can't get any better.

      June 25, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • Think-About-It

      ....and Sam believes he is a soulless beast. It can't get any lower!

      June 25, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • sam

      ...you really have no right to use the word 'think' in your handle. It's like you're randomly pulling previously installed, mindless rhetoric out of your ass.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
    • Think-About-It

      @sammy-boy
      And just WHAT makes YOUR rhetoric better and more relevant then mine?
      My response is usually according to WHOM it is directed.
      So, if you asked for it, why being offended...Hm?

      June 25, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
    • ????

      "But hey, it's probably just my imagination, and inability to use reason that sees this."

      Good job, you figured it out!

      June 26, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
  16. gubernova

    Like I said your ignorant and a coward. You can sit in your mom's basement trolling all day while the grownups go make money all day to pay for your silly toys.

    June 25, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • Mass Debater

      "Like I said your ignorant" lol

      June 25, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
    • gubernova

      You know, I regret not paying attention in English class. I keep making that your/you're mistake. I'll try not to be so dim next time I'm talking to me.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
  17. gubernova

    Thank for proving my point clone

    June 25, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
    • gubernova

      Listen, me, I blame me for making broad sweeping generalizations that one side is too pious, the other two bigoted. I'll promise myself in the future to choose my words with more care.

      Sincerely, your – I mean my – conscience

      June 25, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • gubernova

      Just like most of the people on this board who make supid remarks based on cursory knowledge of religion without even knowing the basic tenets of the myriad number of belief systems. Everyone is not a fundamentalist christian. To my self..

      June 25, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
  18. gubernova

    This board is a troll's paradise. Both sides of the debate can't seem to make any points without insulting each other. One side is too pious and the other side bigoted.

    June 25, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
    • gubernova

      Granted, i really don't know what I'm talking about, ever since my prescription ran out

      June 25, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
    • gubernova

      I bet you wouldn't say that to my face.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • gubernova

      Are you calling me two-faced? Hang on – am I calling me two-faced? Am I threatening me now? Dear oh dear – I am nuts!

      June 25, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • Just Claims, No Truth

      "And this bed is tooo hard!, and this bed is tooo soft!

      June 25, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Gobernove
      You're schizophrenic too?
      That makes 9 of us!

      June 25, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
    • fromtheid

      Leave it to the schizophrenic to have the best handle on the issue. 🙂

      June 25, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  19. Grant C

    What an astounding coincidence that the one religion that happened to match her moral compass happened to be her boyfriends!

    Sigh... this is just pathetic to watch.

    Oh, and "prominent atheist blogger"? Who is this person anyway, I've never even heard of her. Who makes the call on "prominent" and what wacky criteria are they using?

    June 25, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
    • poopman

      agreed

      June 25, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Probably the same criteria that they use when they put up some pastor or minister and Atheist expect all of the Faithful to know them.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • Mass Debater

      Plus the fact that she looks all of 20 years old, i'm sure she's the best example of an atheist to use. She was in high school longer than she's been an atheist but they call her a 'prominent atheist', but then believers will use any examples they feel validates their illogical attachement to an invented deity so they don't feel so stupid. They can say "Hey look, one of you smart people decided to come back to our ideology of 'ignorance is bliss' where we don't need to worry about global warming, or sharing what we have with the poor or any science and wellfare stuff at all because God will just take care of it..."

      June 25, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • Nii

      I think all Atheist trolls shud line up and convert so we see whose most prominent. First up MOMOYA/MOBY SCHTICK
      LOL
      Seriously though they actually read and value her comments. The Historical Jesus debate showed that they monitor what u write. So stop dotting all ur words!!

      June 25, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • Mass Debater

      How can you convince someone their God doesn't exist when they even keep insisting a nonexistant blog monitor exists?

      "But I never used any words that would get blocked, there has to be some gay atheist who keeps deleting my exciting Christian words of wisdom!! There just has to be!!"

      June 25, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
    • Nii

      Funny that I've heard both sides complain about the editor! It can be due to naivete not stupidity. I've never thought atheists stupid when their comments don't come through or posts wrong! On de other hand while getting round de text editor I've read atheists declare premature victory. Thats stupid

      June 25, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
  20. Rae Ann Pointer

    Why do atheists always insert so much contempt in their reasoning?

    June 25, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
    • Grant C

      Responding in kind to what gets directed their way most likely.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      I hear ya, but it's due to impatience.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
    • Smurfette

      @ Grant – I think she's displeased that atheists use reasoning – makes for a rather uneven playing field

      June 25, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • Fufu

      They are afraid to stand solely on their arguments.

      June 25, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
    • Mass Debater

      It's likely because organized religion is so contemptuous...

      June 25, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • Smurfette

      Fufu,my good – um – fufu, that sounds like both a sweeping generalization and a challenge! Shall we cross verbal swords, you and I – Fufu vs. Smurfette, two falls out of three? I shall be restricted to non-contemptuous language. You shall be barred from quoting scripture as evidence of your position. Agreed? Agreed!

      You may begin, Sir! Bring hither your opening salvo!

      June 25, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      @Rae Ann – why do christards refuse to see or use reason?

      June 25, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.