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Godless mom strikes a chord with parents
A CNN iReport essay on raising kids without God draws record-breaking number of comments.
January 18th, 2013
06:32 PM ET

Godless mom strikes a chord with parents

By Daphne Sashin, CNN

Deborah Mitchell remembers the time, when her boys were younger, and another mom asked her about her religious beliefs.

Mitchell was raised Catholic but moved away from religion in her early 20s. She told the other mother that she didn’t go to church and didn’t even really believe in God.

Then, she says, the recruiting started.

“She used to call my house and tell me she was praying for me. She’d leave me messages and leave cards in my mailbox with scripture,” Mitchell says. “I do realize that she meant well, but at the same time, I know my views were seen as wrong. I needed to be ‘saved.’”

Mitchell, a mother of two teenagers in Texas who feels “immersed in Christianity,” started a blog about raising her children without religion because she felt frustrated and marginalized. She didn’t want to feel so alone, she says.

This week, she gained a whole new audience and the reassurance that she's not alone. Her essay on CNN iReport, “Why I Raise My Children Without God,” drew 650,000 page views, the second highest for an iReport, and the most comments of any submission on the citizen journalism platform.

It starts:

When my son was around 3 years old, he used to ask me a lot of questions about heaven. Where is it? How do people walk without a body? How will I find you? You know the questions that kids ask.

For over a year, I lied to him and made up stories that I didn’t believe about heaven. Like most parents, I love my child so much that I didn’t want him to be scared. I wanted him to feel safe and loved and full of hope. But the trade-off was that I would have to make stuff up, and I would have to brainwash him into believing stories that didn’t make sense, stories that I didn’t believe either.

Mitchell posted the essay detailing her seven reasons for raising her children without God on CNN iReport because she felt there wasn’t anyone else speaking for women or moms like her. As she sees it, children should learn to do the right things because they will feel better about themselves, not because God is watching. She asks questions like: If there was a good, all-knowing, all-powerful God, why would he allow murders, child abuse and torture?

Lots of people disagreed with her. Tons. They flagged her iReport as inappropriate and criticized CNN for linking to her essay on the CNN.com homepage. But there were plenty of others who wrote thoughtful rebuttals, respectfully disagreeing with Mitchell while not foisting their own beliefs on her. Take, for instance, a Methodist dad, who said faith can be hard to nail down, but “not to avail ourselves of the power of something we don't completely understand is silly.”

Others said Mitchell presented a simplistic view of religion.

“Presentations such as these seem to ignore a substantial percentage of believers - well-educated, compassionate, liberal folk, Christian and non-Christian alike - who, I feel, are able to worship without being blind to the realities of the world, or without lying to their children about their understanding of these complexities,” wrote commenter RMooradian. “I'll be raising my children with God, but I understand those who cannot!”

But Mitchell’s essay also struck a chord with hundreds of like-minded parents raising children in a world where lack of belief puts them in the minority, often even in their own family.

“Thank you for writing this. I agree with everything you say, but I’m not brave enough to tell everyone I know this is how I feel,” a woman who called herself an “agnostic mommy of two in Alabama” posted in the comments. “Thank you for your bravery and letting me know I’m not alone.”

It’s a growing group. One in five Americans is not affiliated with any religion, and that number has grown by 25% in the past five years, according to a survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. Of that group, 88% said they were not looking for religion, although 68% of the unaffiliated said they believe in God. 

Brittany Branyon, an American graduate student and substitute teacher living in Germany, was also compelled to express her thanks to Mitchell. Branyon was raised Southern Baptist in Georgia and Alabama. In high school, when she began to question the theory of creation and befriended gay and lesbian students, she says her mother tried to perform an exorcism.

“She opened all the windows and doors in the house, brought me to the door, held my shoulders and shook me while screaming, ‘Satan, get out of this child!’, ‘Satan, leave this child alone!’.”

After moving away from the South, she and her husband “became more comfortable in our secular ways,” but still take criticism from family members. They are now expecting their first child.

“Though we are elated to welcome our child into the world, we can’t help but dread the religious uproar that is to come from our families,” she wrote in an e-mail.

Such an uproar is familiar to Carol Phillips, a stay-at-home mother in northern Virginia. When she gave birth to her first child, she said her family was shocked that the baby wasn’t baptized. She said her mother-in-law cried and told her the little girl’s soul would not go to heaven.

Then there are the comments from strangers. Last year, Phillips said she and her daughter were at a birthday party when a tornado warning sounded.

“We were all in the basement keeping safe. A little girl was saying baby Jesus will keep us safe. My daughter asked who Jesus was. The rest of the time was spent hearing ‘I'll pray for you sweetie, we can take you to church with us if you want,’” Phillips told CNN.

Commenting on Mitchell’s iReport, Phillips said, “To live out loud and to speak freely about my beliefs brings many clucking tongues. I would think it’s easier to come out as gay than atheist.”

Mitchell said she spent years studying the history of religion and does believe it has “an important place in our community.” She has told her children that she’ll be fine if they decide to join a church when they are older.

She ended her essay:

I understand why people need God. I understand why people need heaven. It is terrifying to think that we are all alone in this universe, that one day we—along with the children we love so much—will cease to exist. The idea of God and an afterlife gives many of us structure, community and hope.

I do not want religion to go away. I only want religion to be kept at home or in church where it belongs. It’s a personal effect, like a toothbrush or a pair of shoes. It’s not something to be used or worn by strangers. I want my children to be free not to believe and to know that our schools and our government will make decisions based on what is logical, just and fair—not on what they believe an imaginary God wants.

After her post ran on CNN, Mitchell said she was encouraged by the number of people who agreed with her, or who disagreed but wanted to have a respectful discussion.

“I’m not saying that everybody should think how I do. I’m saying the people that do should have a place in our society and have acceptance and respect,” she said. “I just want to have children grow up and be able to not be afraid to say ‘I don’t believe that,’ or ‘I’m not part of that.’” 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Christianity • iReport

soundoff (15,081 Responses)
  1. jolie

    this mother doesn't speak to her kids about God and isn't around people who worship Jesus etc. yet, what this mother is missing is that her own children, are asking about life after death, they are asking about their soils, they are asking about more than what goes on on this earth – there is something in us that is drawn to these questions. I believe we are created by God and our souls, our beings yearn for God to be at one with HIm. These are very small children who intuitively now there is a God. This woman believes that there is no God yet she was afraid to tell these kids what she thinks the truth is about life without God – so she isn't really being honest with them according to her own beliefs. If she is so comfortable with her lack of faith and belief that there is no God, then why not tell her kids this and answer their questions according to what she does believe?

    January 23, 2013 at 5:49 pm |
    • Susan StoHelit

      She's around kids who believe in God – she lives in Texas – every other parent and kid around her is constantly teaching this, it's in the media, she's in a supersaturated area.

      And every kid asks about death and what is next – the first time a pet dies, when they're being taught how and why to be so very careful with small animals and insects, and they extrapolate that to themselves.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
    • Athy

      Delusions know no age limit.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:52 pm |
    • Chuckles

      First off, "asking about their soils" – Funny typo, just had to point that out.

      Secondly, that's straight up foolish to just as.sume that "god", "souls", "heaven" and what not exists because of children's curiosity on the subject. The fact remains is that death is confusing to us and especially at a young age, death seems like an impossibility. You've decided to read into this curiosity as implicit verification that there is in fact a god and an afterlife because your religion (like every other religion out there) answers this question even though we've never known anyone to travel to this after life and then come back and let us know what it's like. The best we've got is someone "dying" in the er and being revivied and saying they saw a "bright light".

      Instead of bending over backwards to try and make your beliefs sound a little less silly, actually take a second and realize that the idea of an second, eternal life is real because you read it in a book is dumb.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:55 pm |
    • A Frayed Knot

      jolie,

      How about if you just let this "God" tell the kids what he wants them to know. Mom would probably tell it wrong anyway...

      January 23, 2013 at 6:19 pm |
  2. Susan StoHelit

    nygil – I see you fell into this fallacy – you need to know this one thing.

    There are two definitions for the word "theory".

    In common speech, when talking to friends – it's just a SWAG – a random guess, an idea, nothing tested. I've got a theory that all giraffes are green.

    But in science – a theory is a strong as it gets. Gravity is a theory. The earth going around the sun – that's a theory.

    To be a theory – it's the end of a very long process. First someone has an idea. They take that idea – and they check and see if their concept matches ALL known facts. If it does – it can be a hypothesis. It is then subject to peer review, tested versus other hypothesises, checked to see if it's predictions (for example – gravity – does it better explain how an apple falls, than magnetism does?) match reality? If it is the best hypothesis, matches every known fact better than any other option – then it finally becomes a theory. It can still be destroyed in an instant if a fact comes up that proves it untrue, or if a new hypothesis comes up that is a better fit than it is.

    Science doesn't tend to call much of anything a fact – a theory that has been around for long enough, and appears to really be solid can be called a fact – but it still can be overthrown in a heartbeat, if it is found to be inaccurate.

    It is confusing if you haven't dealt with it before – but there is no such thing as "just a theory" when it comes to science.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
  3. PJ

    So, wait, how did we end up with all the different races again? What says the bible on this fact?

    January 23, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
    • micky

      good point racist. its the human race. one race. check the dna. all skin is the same color. you can credit this scientific mavel to the righteouss word of God.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:40 pm |
    • 1word

      Genesis 11

      King James Version (KJV)

      11 And the whole earth was of one language, and of one speech.

      2 And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar; and they dwelt there.

      3 And they said one to another, Go to, let us make brick, and burn them thoroughly. And they had brick for stone, and slime had they for morter.

      4 And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.

      5 And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded.

      6 And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.

      7 Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech.

      8 So the Lord scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city.

      When God Scattered the people, he changed our language and color.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:44 pm |
    • PJ

      My comment was racist. And ending that bit with your own words of "When God Scattered the people, he changed our language and color." doesn't count. Bible says nothing about asians or color.

      "PJ 1:2 – And they will post lame responses, because they have none."

      January 23, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
    • PJ

      My comment wasn't racist. And ending that bit with your own words of "When God Scattered the people, he changed our language and color." doesn't count. Bible says nothing about asians or color.

      "PJ 1:2 – And they will post lame responses, because they have none."

      January 23, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      All skin isn't the same color and there are, albeit minimal, genetic differences between races.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
    • Bet

      " And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded."

      Why did he have to come down to see the city and the tower. Didn't he already know about them with his omniscience and all? At the very least he should have been able to see them from up there wherever he is. Or have a few angels scope it out and report back.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:58 pm |
    • micky

      i know you arent a racist. i cant believe this world has come through so much atrocity and pain. we are no where near a peacful solution. things are getting worse fast.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:02 pm |
    • micky

      pj my bad for being sarcastic. sorry. you were asking a question and there is nothing wrong with that.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:07 pm |
    • otto1923

      Plenty of racism in the bible. The mark of cain is an obvious example.

      "The name Cain (He. qayin, meaning spear), is identical with the name Kenite (also qayin in Hebrew), which led some scholars to speculate that the curse of Cain may have arisen as a condemnation of the Kenites."

      The implication with the details of lineage, is that the unfavored siblings went on to found the inferior races. Many of these were objects of genocide and ethnic cleansing.

      Joshuas rampage was a genocidal one. And in the NT, john reminds us that the jews were responsible for killing the moshiach. The prevailing message in both testaments is of the chosen vs the unclean, the unworthy, the fallen. Calvin wanted us to believe that they were born that way.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:43 pm |
    • 1word

      Bet

      " And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded."

      Why did he have to come down to see the city and the tower. Didn't he already know about them with his omniscience and all? At the very least he should have been able to see them from up there wherever he is. Or have a few angels scope it out and report back.

      Who knows, no one knows what God can or cannot do. I choose to believe he is, you can choose to believe he isn't. Your choice.

      January 23, 2013 at 7:33 pm |
    • Bet

      Who knows, no one knows what God can or cannot do.

      And yet you claim to know god.

      January 23, 2013 at 7:49 pm |
  4. Peter

    Religion does not equal God! This mother is confusing her lack of knowledge of anything spiritual, with religion and with God and so on.
    Out of confusion only more confusion can come.
    It is sad to see that so many people are basing their conclusions about God on their own primitive perceptions.
    Shouldn't our inability to "see" God make us all think and look for answers within, rather than arrogantly assume that – "that which I cannot see must not exist"?
    Should we assume that wind does not exist either? I never saw wind, I only saw its effects... and don't even get me started on the weathermen!

    January 23, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Sight is not the only tool for measurement. We can measure the wind and verify that it exists. Not so with god. He is invisible and undetectable and therefore does not exist or wants us to believe he does not exist.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:05 pm |
  5. Rembo

    SantaClaus-less and ToothFairy-less, too, I'll bet.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:35 pm |
  6. JUDY LAN

    THANKS FOR SHARING. I HAVE THE SAME FEELING TOWARD GOD, TOO. I REMEMBER WHEN MY SON WAS SECOND OR THIRD GRADE TOLD ME TOLD ME ONE DAY THAT HE WAS NO LONGER LIKE TO GO TO THE CHURCH BECAUSE THE PERSON TOLD HIM IF HE ATE SECOND BOWL, HE IS IN SIN AS GOD SAID SO. I WAS SHOCK. FROM THAT TIME, I DIDN'T GO ANYMORE. I JUST DON'T WANT MY SON INVOLVING THAT KIND OF ENVIRONMENT. SO DO THIS CHURCH AGAINST LESBIAN, GUYS RIGHT AS SAME AS US. I WISH ALL THE PEOPLE WORKING IN CHURCH WATCH HOW THEY APPROACH TO OTHERS, ESPECIALLY CHILDREN.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:30 pm |
    • Athy

      Turn off your goddamn capslock!

      January 23, 2013 at 5:41 pm |
    • Susan StoHelit

      A friendly note – to people online, all capital letters means you are shouting. It comes across as hostile, not to mention hard to read. Just so you know.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:49 pm |
  7. muezzathecat

    Always with the "pushing" off on everybody their "Invisible Friend". Enough!
    We don't care about you and your Invisible Friend. Keep your religion to yourself.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:27 pm |
    • jolie

      keep your hostility and your nothingness to yourself then too. do as you want tobe treated – so if your don't want people talking about God to you then don't talk about your lack of faith either. you sad little person you

      January 23, 2013 at 5:52 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      sorry, Jolie, that's not going to happen. I'm atheist and proud and able to argue effectively and cogently. Tough t itties.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:01 pm |
    • Zero

      @jolie
      Most people who have no religion do not go to every person they see and advertise their beliefs or lack thereof. Normally it is not until people start becoming persistant in their belief and the need to push them onto them after clearing informing them that they are not interested is when we voice our opinion. You cannot get mad at the bullied for fighting back at some point.

      January 24, 2013 at 9:15 am |
  8. otto1923

    Lets try again:

    Science tells us that the pivotal events of the OT didnt happen, that Jesus is identical to previous sungods, and that 11 books of the NT are forged.

    It tells us that the last 11 verses of mark, and the 'cast the first stone' parable, were added centuries after the books were written. It tells us that adulteration is the norm in all holy books.

    How can we believe in gods whose books are full of lies? Why do the books they wrote fail so miserably to describe the world they created?

    Why do the senses and brains they gave us tell us that these book gods cannot possibly exist??

    Ehrman – Dawkins – dennett – hitchens pbuh – religion poisons EVERYTHING.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:27 pm |
    • micky

      2 peter 3 :5 Peter prophecies that scoffers will spread uniformitarianism (plainly spelled it out) and deny the flood.

      uniformitarianism wasnt scientific until lyell and hutton in the 18th century. so keep up with the science you trust. it isnt very powerful.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:32 pm |
    • otto1923

      Science tells us that the flood, the exodus,and the genocidal joshuan rampage, never happened. It tells us that there never was a great davidic/solomonic kingdom.

      How can we believe in a god who would lie about such things?

      How can we believe in gods who write books that fail so egregiously to describe the world they supposedly created?

      The people who wrote your books were certainly capable of anticipating those who would actually read them and take issue with their obvious flaws. So of course they would warn against this.

      Faith is belief DESPITE evidence. Evidence says the book gods dont exist. Evidence says the books were written by people with fully human motivations.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:41 pm |
    • micky

      go find some literature on uniformitarianism that predates the prophet Peter. anything

      January 23, 2013 at 5:48 pm |
    • Bet

      @ micky

      "For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water:" 2 Peter 3:5

      Well, yes, that plainly refers to uniformitarianism, quite clear. Pip, pip old chap!

      Also, "uniformitarianism wasn't scientific"? What does that even mean?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:49 pm |
    • otto1923

      By the way peters 1 and 2 were written by people pretending to be people whom they were not. This means they are forgeries per bart ehrman. How can we believe in the content of books written by forgers?

      Eleven books in the NT are forgeries. The final 11 verses of mark, as well as the 'cast the first stone' parable, were added centuries after these books were written. How can we believe in a god who would allow such adulterations to stand as his word?

      And what of his promises of wish-granting and immortality? The only place you find these guarantees, is in his books.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:49 pm |
    • micky

      verse 4 Bet read verses 2-6

      January 23, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
    • micky

      nice try otto. I have experienced the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit in miraculous supernatural ways. thats why im here.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:56 pm |
    • otto1923

      Sorry mickey

      "Most scholars today conclude that Peter was not the author of the two epistles that are attributed to him and that they were written by two different authors."

      'Most scholars believe that 1 Peter is pseudonymous (written anonymously in the name of a well-known figure) and was produced during postapostolic times.' Harris, Stephen L., Understanding the Bible. Palo Alto: Mayfield. 1985. p. 352

      "'Virtually no authorities defend the Petrine authorship of 2 Peter, which is believed to have been written by an anonymous churchman in Rome about 150 C.E.' Harris, Stephen L., Understanding the Bible. Palo Alto: Mayfield. 1985. p. 354.

      -Evidence tells us you should be quoting something else.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:58 pm |
    • otto1923

      "nice try otto. I have experienced the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit in miraculous supernatural ways. thats why im here."

      Sure you have. This called an epiphany. Science tells us this is a physiological phenomenon. Most gods (and many drugs) can elicit this. It is often accompanied by bonafide hallucinations, which is why most any other religionist is as convinced as you, in the efficacy of their god.

      It is so compeling that you all are willing to disbelieve your senses and your reason, just to maintain your fix.This is ok I suppose, but your book authors realized long ago that this compulsion could be used to get you to do some really horrific things.

      You should embrace other addicts such as yourself instead of blowing up their mosques and buses full of school children.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:07 pm |
    • Bet

      @ micky

      Sure, let's look at it.

      This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance:

      2 That ye may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour:

      3 Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,

      4 And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.

      5 For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water:

      6 Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:

      7 But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.

      8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

      Basically the author is saying that the followers are complaining that god promised to come back, but things are going on and on and on as they have been since the beginning of the earth. That's not a prediction of uniformitarianism, it's just grumbling. In addition, v.8 seems to argue against uniformitarianism, as it states that the length of a day is subject to change.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:12 pm |
    • otto1923

      Sorry mickey I didnt mean you personally, but I have trouble distinguishing between those who passively believe in the bookgods and those willing to act on what those books specifically require, of believers. You know, kill heathens, burn apostates and adulterers, cleanse the holy land, etc.

      It seems you are all just one big body of delusionists at various stages in your disease. You are all enablers. You condemn the actions of the sickest but you are unwilling to give up your own fixation or at LEAST expunge your books of all the nasty bits.

      Even if you did, someone would just write them back in I suppose.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:16 pm |
  9. Moby Schtick

    Claim:

    God is invisible and undetectable; therefore, either he does not exist or he wants to be treated as not existing.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:17 pm |
    • otto1923

      -And impotent. His miracles never rise above statistical coincidence, no matter how much we beg.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:32 pm |
  10. Steven

    I always find it fascinating how well versed Satan was in scripture, or how knowledgeable the Pharisees were in the traditions, yet American Evangelicals/Conservative "Christians" don't see how their behavior is Satanic and Pharisaical.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:17 pm |
    • micky

      is evangelism satanic? what about defending the gospel as truth? is that satanic?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:21 pm |
    • 1word

      Matthew 10:25
      It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household?

      JESUS SPOKE ON IT. LOL

      January 23, 2013 at 5:25 pm |
    • Tod

      If Satan is so well versed in scripture, and clever to boot, then he really ought to be able to avoid that predicted lake of fire and his defeat as per Revelation, correct?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:29 pm |
    • 1word

      Steven
      The Pharisees were not BORN AGAIN. A lot of Christians who are not Born AGAIN get offended when we mention being Born again but according to scripture you cannot see the Kingdom of God without being Born again. There are a lot of people who consider themselves Christians but you must be Born from above. The Pharisees were not born from above.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:33 pm |
    • micky

      tod, may the Lord indwell your soul with the peace of the irresistable Holy Spirit.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
    • Bet

      is evangelism satanic? what about defending the gospel as truth? is that satanic?

      When you are promoting a law making hommoseduality a crime punishable by death, it's evil. Not satanic, satan doesn't exist. But evil, yes.

      http://www.godlovesuganda.com/film/story/

      January 23, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
    • Bet

      That would be "gay" as the filter is not letting me say h o mo se x ual.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:25 pm |
  11. justin

    as someone who has "come out" as am atheist i strongly agree with this article i really think my mother would have been happier if i told her i was gay.

    January 23, 2013 at 5:16 pm |
    • Susan StoHelit

      Sad but true.

      But.... our numbers are increasing rapidly, hopefully acceptance will follow.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:18 pm |
  12. nygil

    @ susan.....i believe our take on good and bad hasnt been static but have evolved.....like for example i know that in ages past canabilism was a way of life today it isnt.....something more current would be in america and europe it is atrocious to murder people in the name of religion but in some parts of the world its virtuous to do for the sake of religion.....
    also i didnt know that animals made a distinction between good and bad.......can you give me examples....

    January 23, 2013 at 5:12 pm |
    • Susan StoHelit

      Elements change – but canibalism was never common – and it was for enemies – which really – yeah, if you're killing your enemies, what you do after really isn't that much different. Elements change, and evolve, but the basics are there.

      And yep – it's all over the animal kingdom. Playing fair, supporting the weak, etc. There's a mountain of research, I can't think of where to begin except google. Wikipedia (a nice place to start) has a general article on Altrusim in Animals you can start with. Realistically, for any species, ours included, where you need to live together, theft and murder will cause problems with a tribe, society, city, etc. living together.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:16 pm |
    • micky

      exactly, how the heck is it that athiests are so moral and animals arent, they eat eachother? their humanity has evolved?
      so they agree that humans are different but it still feel great to deny the soul. yet they eat a cow for lunch.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:16 pm |
    • micky

      did you see the movie about the apes, that warred for territory? those were the religious ones.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:19 pm |
  13. Prove it

    Someone, somewhere....show us re-producible evidence that this God exists. Demonstrate to us that your reality has some basis in observable reality.

    2,013 years and still waiting...

    January 23, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      "Someone, somewhere....show us re-producible evidence that this God exists. Demonstrate to us that your reality has some basis in observable reality."

      Why?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:08 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Because they're claiming its existence.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:10 pm |
    • some schmuck

      "Why?"

      Because claims that can be made without evidence can be dismissed without evidence. There has been no evidence presented ever for any god's existence.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:14 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      "Because they're claiming its existence"

      Seems more like Prove It is asking for an answer to a question no one asked.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:27 pm |
    • Mike L

      [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7_paMicsi8&w=640&h=390]

      January 23, 2013 at 5:28 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      "Because claims that can be made without evidence can be dismissed without evidence."

      Eh..can't exactly agree with that. If their is no evidence present...it is reasonable from the personal perspective to make a judgment on it. But to make a grand edict that something is or is not because of the lack of evidence is faulty.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:29 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      LOL, isn't claiming that something invisible and undetectable exists, and then wanting me to believe as you do "asking" me to do something? You're trying to sell me the Brooklyn Bridge; prove to me that you own it before I hand you the cash and quit with the "Aww shucks" routine.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:30 pm |
    • damo12345

      I can assure you, there's no shortage of us asking for believers to supply any evidence whatsoever that their deity exists.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      Moby Schtick- "isn't claiming that something invisible and undetectable exists, and then wanting me to believe as you do "asking" me to do something?"

      When someone does this to you....then by all means, please ask them to prove God then. But no one did that to Prove It here. He is merely begging for attention.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:45 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      @Uncouth Swain

      You know, if you could prove it, you'd do it, and you'd not find it necessary to find some escape. But hey, you do what you can, don't you?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:59 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      Moby Schtick- "You know, if you could prove it, you'd do it, and you'd not find it necessary to find some escape. But hey, you do what you can, don't you?"

      I am sorry..did I make some positive statement I am not aware of? What escape are you talking about?

      I guess I could come on here and challenge you to prove that some human created the concept of the Judeo-Christian God and require scientific evidence that shows who did it, where, why and how. But no doubt since you would be unable to prove that...you would probably make some "escape" right?

      January 23, 2013 at 6:48 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      I'm stating what I believe to be true. Sorry if it offends you. If any believers had any proof they'd post it instead of playing semantics. Anybody can play semantics.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:51 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      Moby Schtick- "I'm stating what I believe to be true. Sorry if it offends you."

      Your opinion hasn't offended me yet.

      "If any believers had any proof they'd post it instead of playing semantics. Anybody can play semantics."

      That's obvious from watching you...anybody can play semantics.
      Oddly enough, not everything can be proven by the scientific method. Logic and reason does have limits.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      You offend me when you lie. I am not playing semantics. I judge you by your words, and it's not good, and I'm satisfied.

      January 23, 2013 at 7:01 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      Moby Schtick- "You offend me when you lie."

      I have yet to lie to you. Your offense is therefor irrelevant and nonexistent.

      "I am not playing semantics."

      You are using words are you not? Using them to plot your argument yes? Upset when they do not work out the way you intend right?

      "I judge you by your words, and it's not good, and I'm satisfied."

      Your opinion is noted, though doesn't amount to much. I am glad you are pleased with yourself. Stroking of one's ego from time to time is important to a healthy self image.

      January 23, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Yawn. Boring troll is boring.

      January 23, 2013 at 7:08 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      "Yawn. Boring troll is boring."

      Aha..a pedestrian ad hominem. Maybe you could add a Bazinga to show off your clever ways next time ;)

      January 23, 2013 at 8:17 pm |
  14. micky

    2 peter 2:5 predicts, prophecies that uniformitarianist "scoffers" will deny the coming of christ.

    ALL YOU UNBELIEVERS EXPLAIN HOW PETER KNEW ABOUT UNIFORMITARIANISM BUT IT DIDNT EXHIST UNTIL LYELL AND HUTTON IN THE 18th CENTURY????????????????? OUCH!!!!!!!!

    January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Ah but chicken drumsticks cause cloudy weather in Arkansas during turbulent times. Explain that to a zebra riding a unicycle.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:54 pm |
    • Susan StoHelit

      Same way the palm readers can predict that you'll meet a tall dark gentleman. It's not hard to predict that some people won't believe. Duh! No religion ever gets everyone to believe. And then all you do is use a general term that believers will happily interpret to fit anything that is going on. It's predictable as can be.

      The Bible does as good as Nostradamus, or Gyspy fortunetellers, or websites faking it.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
    • some schmuck

      Hmmm, so a false story claims that it is true, but predicts that people will say it's false. However, this isn't proof that it's false, because it was correct about us thinking it was bunk?

      Sounds legit to me.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
    • micky

      actually Peter, in CH 3 not 2, specifically explained in detail the part about the non flood ,uniformitarianism, in the last days. so in my opinion considering the details of this, this is a major prophetic truth. which is nothing unique in the bible. this is a credible revelation.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
  15. 1word

    As a parent you should train a child in the way they should go. If they believe in God and wants to do good for mankind what is wrong with that???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? Please enlighten me why it's bad to do good?

    January 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      Being good because a child is afraid of an imaginary being sending them to be tortured forever does not make your child good (which is what a parent wants), it makes them a non-thinking sheep. Doing good for good reasons is always preferable, and easily obtainable.
      By the way, it's not "training", it's teaching, guiding, supporting, and loving. What you're talking about is immoral and damaging.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:44 pm |
    • 1word

      hawaiiguest

      So because I want my kids to worship the God I know is real, I am harming them? You have to prove if God is real to yourself, once you find out the Truth you will raise your children knowing who God is.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      Read my comment again instead of merely seeing "atheist says damaging, therefore must be talking about belief in god itself". That's not what I said, so read, comprehend, then try again.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
    • Steven

      I have no idea what point you're trying to make. None of the women mentioned in this article said anything negative about other parents' choices to raise their children with religion. The religious people they did mention in a negative light – the ones who harassed these atheist women – weren't doing good. Harassment isn't a good thing. On the other hand, if these atheist parents don't believe in god and want to do good for mankind, how can you criticize that which is good?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
    • 1word

      hawaiiguest

      There are a lot of children that were raised not knowing God and they were good for awhile until an evil spirit entered them. To cover your kids you must explain to them how harmful it can be not to have God in their hearts. A lot of you guys that don't believe truly don't understand what's going on in the world. Once you come to the truth you will admit boy was I Blind.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
    • Steven

      What about the child who was raised atheist and chose to remain atheist who are good people. People who you would have to be blind to judge them as being 'evil spirits'? These people are all over.

      And what about the Christian who spends his time harassing mothers in real life and on the Internet, trying to convert them and trying to subtly and deceptively convert their children? These are people who are causing real harm in the world, and they are also all over.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:00 pm |
    • Bet

      Telling a child that an evil spirit will enter them if they aren't good is a lie, and it's abuse.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
    • 1word

      "Steven

      What about the child who was raised atheist and chose to remain atheist who are good people. People who you would have to be blind to judge them as being 'evil spirits'? These people are all over.

      And what about the Christian who spends his time harassing mothers in real life and on the Internet, trying to convert them and trying to subtly and deceptively convert their children? These are people who are causing real harm in the world, and they are also all over."

      Stephen we aren't trying to convert you. We are giving you the Truth, you can accept the Truth or not. We have been commissioned to preach the Gospel to all those who are willing to hear. If you choose not to believe or even try to prove to yourself that God is real or fake it will be you answering in the end.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:07 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      One man's truth is another man's turd sandwich.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
    • 1word

      Bet

      Telling a child that an evil spirit will enter them if they aren't good is a lie, and it's abuse.

      If God is real, Satan and his evil spirits are real. I know this to be true, and yes anyone that does not have the Holy Ghost can have an evil spirit living within them.

      "JESUS "GOD" SPEAKING
      Matthew 12:43-45

      King James Version (KJV)

      43 When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none.

      44 Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.

      45 Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.

      Basically this scripture is saying unclean spirits "evil spirits" live in people, and if your body is empty that spirit can bring other spirits to torment you.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:12 pm |
    • Steven

      1word, I do believe in God, and I am very happy in my relationship with him, I just don't accept that atheists are evil spirits, and that harassing good people and deceiving their children is what God asks of me.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:13 pm |
    • 1word

      Steven

      1word, I do believe in God, and I am very happy in my relationship with him, I just don't accept that atheists are evil spirits, and that harassing good people and deceiving their children is what God asks of me.

      So is posting the truth harassing good people? The Atheist who don't believe spill their false lies. The blaspheme God, and if we don't stand up for what's Good then who will? If Jesus preached against and cast out unclean spirits we should call it for what it is, how can you preach the gospel without talking about evil?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:20 pm |
    • Bet

      If God is real, Satan and his evil spirits are real.

      No, that's not true. Many religions do not have a satan character.

      I know this to be true, and yes anyone that does not have the Holy Ghost can have an evil spirit living within them.

      Also false. Evil spirits don't exist.

      Matthew 12:43-45

      I'm familiar with this story as well as the "explanation" you gave. Again, evil spirits don't exist. However, it could also be describing a mentally ill person, a bipolar person, someone with chronic depression, schizophrenia, or even a diabetic person. Little was known about any illness at that time, much less mental illness. It was common to blame bad spirits for sicknesses. Now, most of us know better.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:34 pm |
    • Zero

      @1word
      The problem is, that some people feel they must keep telling people "The Truth". This becomes harrassment and becomes an attack on the other person's freedoms. It causes the whole idea behind what they are trying to do to be null since they have not only shut down the person from even listening, but created the dislike for the type of person. This can go for any case. It is human nature to become defensive when under attack. The "attacker" does not feel they are attacking but wanting to really help the person in their view. But the "defender" is feeling threatened and belittled by the unacceptance of the "attacker" that they are fine with their beliefs and viewpoints.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:38 pm |
    • Raised without religion

      So, 1word... You're saying that because I was raised without a religion, an evil spirit has entered me at some point in my life, and I am ultimately doing wrong now? I don't think so. My parents are both Catholic, but they never pressed religion into me, never tried to force me to church... They let me grow up and decide for myself whether or not I want to believe in a God. And I will tell you now that I believe in a higher being, and that it once existed. I don't believe in a God, necessarily, because I don't believe that there is an overseer looking down and determining how our lives will turn out. But still, I volunteer for relief groups, Habitat for Humanity, and work with under-privileged children. I would say that I do some good for mankind, wouldn't you? What you are saying is ignorant. Growing up without a religion does not make you evil, and it certainly does not mean that an evil spirit is going to enter you... What it means is that I am different from you, and I see differently then you. That is all. I was given the choice at a young age to decide what is it I want. And that is what I will do for my children, also. I want my children to be able to make their own choices, and do good because it makes them feel good & not because they think that they will go to Hell if they don't. I want them to lead the life THEY choose, not the one that religious folk tell them that they HAVE to.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:44 pm |
    • 1word

      Bet

      If God is real, Satan and his evil spirits are real.

      No, that's not true. Many religions do not have a satan character.

      I know this to be true, and yes anyone that does not have the Holy Ghost can have an evil spirit living within them.

      Also false. Evil spirits don't exist.

      Matthew 12:43-45

      I'm familiar with this story as well as the "explanation" you gave. Again, evil spirits don't exist. However, it could also be describing a mentally ill person, a bipolar person, someone with chronic depression, schizophrenia, or even a diabetic person. Little was known about any illness at that time, much less mental illness. It was common to blame bad spirits for sicknesses. Now, most of us know better.

      "When God cast out Satan and the angels that sided with Satan he cast them to earth." To believe in God and not Evil spirits sounds crazy to me. You mean to tell me JESUS "GOD" did not know all things? You mean to tell me, he would lie? God is not a man that he should lie.

      1 Samuel 16:14
      But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord troubled him.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:50 pm |
    • jolie

      evil spirits do exist. oh yeah they do.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:56 pm |
    • 1word

      Raised without religion

      So, 1word... You're saying that because I was raised without a religion, an evil spirit has entered me at some point in my life, and I am ultimately doing wrong now? I don't think so. My parents are both Catholic, but they never pressed religion into me, never tried to force me to church... They let me grow up and decide for myself whether or not I want to believe in a God. And I will tell you now that I believe in a higher being, and that it once existed. I don't believe in a God, necessarily, because I don't believe that there is an overseer looking down and determining how our lives will turn out. But still, I volunteer for relief groups, Habitat for Humanity, and work with under-privileged children. I would say that I do some good for mankind, wouldn't you? What you are saying is ignorant. Growing up without a religion does not make you evil, and it certainly does not mean that an evil spirit is going to enter you... What it means is that I am different from you, and I see differently then you. That is all. I was given the choice at a young age to decide what is it I want. And that is what I will do for my children, also. I want my children to be able to make their own choices, and do good because it makes them feel good & not because they think that they will go to Hell if they don't. I want them to lead the life THEY choose, not the one that religious folk tell them that they HAVE to.

      I commend you on your achievements. It's always good to do good for mankind. You were raised not knowing God, and that was your parents right, but as a Man of God I will raise my children knowing the Truth. I'm not just saying it Truth because I know it to be True. I know that God will not lie and his Word tells me that. After giving my life to him, I have experienced things that would make you jump out of your skin. All I say is KNOW GOD FOR YOURSELF, just because you don't believe in him it does not mean he is not real.

      It would be too easy for God to reveal himself to everyone, if Heaven is a reward wouldn't it require hard work to get there?

      January 23, 2013 at 5:57 pm |
    • OTOH

      Zero,
      "@1word
      The problem is, that some people feel they must keep telling people "The Truth". This becomes harrassment and becomes an attack on the other person's freedoms."

      I agree, but in all fairness, if they are going to do it somewhere, THIS is the place, where we can scroll on by or offer our disagreement freely... not at our front doors or on the street, or as happened to my son a few months ago, in the hot tub at the gym, where 2 guys interrupted his soak with, "Have you been saved, Brother?" followed by a barrage of proselytizing.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:59 pm |
    • Raised without religion

      @1word:

      "I commend you on your achievements. It's always good to do good for mankind. You were raised not knowing God, and that was your parents right, but as a Man of God I will raise my children knowing the Truth."

      I believe that you should have the right to raise your children however you so please, which is why I did not try to convince you otherwise. I am simply making the point that EVERY person should be able to choose for themselves. If I choose not to believe in God, I am not going to tell you that you are misguided for believing in him. And I truthfully think that you should have the same respect for the non-believers. Just because I do not believe does not mean that he is not real. It just means that I choose not to believe so. I will NEVER say that God is not real, I will only say that I do not believe in him and that I do not follow any religion. I think that it is fair to believe what I choose without being told that I am wrong and trying to be convinced otherwise. I think that you should take that into consideration when you converse with other non-believers. All you have to do is say "I know you don't believe in God, but I, myself, choose to." And leave it at that.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:06 pm |
    • Bet

      "When God cast out Satan and the angels that sided with Satan he cast them to earth." To believe in God and not Evil spirits sounds crazy to me. You mean to tell me JESUS "GOD" did not know all things? You mean to tell me, he would lie? God is not a man that he should lie.

      1 Samuel 16:14
      But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord troubled him.

      Sure your god lies. He says he loves you but will torture you if you don't do exactly what he says. Feel free to believe in god, angels and devils yourself though. Throw in fairies, leprechauns, and bigfoot too. Just quit abusing children by telling them this nonsense and frightening them.

      BTW, quoting the bible to prove the bible is fallacious logic aka circular logic. It's like quoting A Midsummer Night's Dream to prove that Puck is real.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @1word

      "There are a lot of children that were raised not knowing God and they were good for awhile until an evil spirit entered them. To cover your kids you must explain to them how harmful it can be not to have God in their hearts. A lot of you guys that don't believe truly don't understand what's going on in the world. Once you come to the truth you will admit boy was I Blind."

      What a sickening cop-out for a child doing bad things. "Oh an evil spirit MADE them do it". So now not only are you advocating scaring them into being good, you want to absolve them of any responsibility for the bad they do. Wow your philosophy is very anti-human.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
    • sam stone

      why do you feel that having a view of god has any correlation to being good?

      January 23, 2013 at 6:50 pm |
  16. Mike L

    It is disheartening to see all the comments refuting Christian theology. As a committed Christian, I have struggled with similar notions of unbelief and the unfairness of God. I too wondered why God would allow for such grief and turmoil in this world. If our God is an all-powerful and good God, then why does he allow for death and damnation of so many? Through my involvement with Intervarsity and Church ministries, I came to understand more clearly what The Bible and Scriptures have to say about God’s providence.

    Regarding the question of “If there was a good, all-knowing, all-powerful God, why would he allow murders, child abuse and torture?” I strongly believe God has done this all on purpose. People will be quick to think cynically and oppose any God that would allow for such things to take place. The first idea that I embraced was that God’s plan is much bigger than my own. We may see situations where no good could come out, but God is working in ways we just cannot understand “His ways and thoughts are infinitely higher than ours” (Isaiah 55:8-9). An example would be the story of the apostle Paul. Before Paul devoted himself to Christ, he actively persecuted Christians. In this case, those being persecuted would see no good coming from God and would feel forsaken by their beliefs. God used Paul later as he became a devoted Christian and through Divine Grace, was able to further the Kingdom of God. Even though this account feels like a fairytale, there are many similar testimonies in today’s world that we will never hear.

    I still struggle to understand how certain situations could be of God. Children who are blameless, those unable to defend themselves, and others who are powerless in their situations seem to always receive the worst of the evils in this world. We tend to blame God for allowing all the world’s problems to occur without realizing the root of the problem. All these problems come from man and the sin that they revel in. It breaks God’s heart to see pain and suffering on a daily basis. So why doesn’t he do something to stop it all? In Genesis, God’s fury was unleashed in the flood he cast upon the earth. With the one righteous man, Noah, he made a covenant to never destroy the earth again. Again, this is a hard idea to swallow and as humans, we cannot force God’s hand to do our work. We are all sinners and we bring evil upon ourselves. Imagine a world with righteous devoted Christians (true believers) who love and worship God, and we can get a glimpse of heaven.

    The other problem that occurs far too often is the stigma of Christian zealots and bigots. Christianity has a violent and oppressive background that carries into today’s world. We can see Christians who hate and condemn others who are not like themselves. They take The Bible out of context and misunderstand the true meaning of the text. By studying the Word, we can see God’s heart and should put forth our best efforts to apply it to our lives. The best form of evangelism isn’t throwing The Bible down a nonbeliever’s throat, but rather showing them compassion. Show that Christians love and care no matter what their situation or background, just like Jesus did for us.

    Jesus came into this world as God’s son and reminded the world to love. Jesus associated himself with the unclean, the poor, and those who needed help the most. In the process, he broke rules that were traditionally kept by the Jews. Jesus was persecuted and condemned to his death for breaking rules that man had received from God. God set these rules to guide humans to love God, not to abide them for the sake of following the rules. Man was blinded by human sin and forgot the true meaning of loving God. In today’s world, Christians left and right are forgetting the true meaning of being a Christian and are forgetting to love.

    So what does my rant say about God? To me, God is real and is, was, and will always be there. God encourages questioning and curiosity. This process draws us closer to God and helps us to understand what it truly means to follow Christ. I hope this will shift some ideas of Christian stereotypes and will challenge you to really explore what being a true Christian means. The most powerful form of evangelism is using our own lives as testaments to Christ.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:39 pm |
    • 1word

      Excellent write up. God is real!

      January 23, 2013 at 4:46 pm |
    • Nice try

      That was easily the worst explanation of the Problem of Evil I have ever seen.

      The No True Scotsman fallacy didn't help either.

      It's all about evidence, and there is absolutely none supporting the existence of any deity.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
    • Sarah M

      That was very well spoken, sir. You truly just stated my entire belief system in a way that I wouldn't have been able to do so eloquently, and I think I'll actually be coming back to your "rant" for reference in the future. Thank you.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:08 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      The one-sentence summation in the last paragraph says it all. To YOU god is real and nothing will dissuade you. That's what the muslim says about his god and the believers of other gods say about theirs. The problem is, you don't have any measurable, verifiable proof that another god believer cannot supply by his belief. You have proof of belief, not god, and therefore, you offer nothing of value to the discussion.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:12 pm |
    • jolie

      I read the Bible, by the Grace of God I was saved, which meant yes, I asked Jesus, the only true son of God to be my Saviour. Thereafter, let me tell you there is a difference between being saved and not believing in God. I have had actualt experience of the HOly Spirit going through my body, being healed, being shaken by satan like sifted as it says in the Bible, I have opened my eyes and seen a light so pure and clean and bright that is is not able to be expressed fully by words – it just is. All this is counted as foolishness to those who do not believe or have hardened hearts. but to say it is not true or didn't happen to me is wrong. becuse this and other things have happened to me. You can know God by seeking Him – faith comes by hearing and hearing comes by hearing the word of God – the Bible. Ask God to read with you – ask God to open your heart and mind – but don't dismiss God out of hand. You want to believe in science – then conduct an experiment – read the Bible asking God to open your heart and mind to Him to take the veil from your eyes and experience His truth be diligent, and truthful just as one would in an science experiment doen with integrity.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:03 pm |
  17. LetKidsDecideForThemselvesDon'tForceThem

    Video about Respecting the Religious or Non-Relgious Beliefs of others: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFDBLZl_9xw

    January 23, 2013 at 4:36 pm |
    • hmmm..funny

      didnt watch the video.... but your tag's message is essentially this: Give religious nuts a shot at your kids.
      Sorry, but im the Law (sometimes) in my house.... when a kid turns 18 and is out on their own, go for it..but be aware im going to do my damnedest to make sure my kid can spot a scam.....

      January 23, 2013 at 5:32 pm |
  18. 1word

    If God revealed himself to the World everyone would believe. That would be too easy, God wants you to seek him and if you seek him with all your heart you will find him. I truly feel bad for those who wants evidence because it will take an action on your part to find the evidence. lol Ask any detector, the evidence doesn't fall in your lap.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:31 pm |
    • Bob

      So your god is being difficult. Uh huh. No thanks, you can keep your jerk of a god to yourself. Silently, please.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm |
    • 1word

      Bob
      God still loves you, you can talk bad about him all you want but it won't change how he cares about you. Know GOD FOR YOURSELF! I found him after seeking him with all my heart and he is AWESOME!

      January 23, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
    • Susan StoHelit

      So, your god doesn't want people to believe. Then punishes them for doing what he's set them up to do? Pretty sick.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:52 pm |
  19. micky

    isaiah 53:12 700 BC
    Therefore I will divide Him a portion with the great, and He shall divide the spoil with the strong, Because He poured out His soul unto death, And he was numbered with transgressors (hung with criminals at his side), and He bore the sin of many, And made intercession for the transgressors.

    this is a messianic prophecy, on of MANY numerious prophecies. and He just happened to be crucified on passover as israel were sacrificing their unblemished lambs, because He is the fulfillment of Gods work on earth . He WAS the sign. and every divine word of the Bible proves it to be true within the heart through the Holy Spirit.

    I have nothing to gain personally for explaining that to you. so why bother? because God loves you. and you justified, and you deserve the truth. you deserve to have someone fight for you. to suffer for you. you are justified. you are not condemned

    January 23, 2013 at 4:30 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Therefore I will poo roses in a forest of smiling traffic lights. Several badgers perused the wanted section, black and white is conducent to burglaries which is an unwanted stereotype. A horse flies to his mattress undergarments which only he noticed.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:34 pm |
    • OTOH

      micky,

      Guess what? Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul (or the others who wrote under those names) READ (or heard) those old-time 'prophecies'. How easy to incorporate them into their stories. There is no verified evidence that Jesus's life or death went down that way.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:49 pm |
  20. nygil

    @ Susan StoHeli .....how can good and evil not be Dichotomies.....are you saying that something can be good and evil at the same time....i have no problems with people rejecting the existence of god, i believe they have a right to disbelieve....but i cant agree with people who call people like me who believe in the existense of god as idiots......when every atheist i have spoken to cannot give me a logical reason why i should believe there is no god....after a point all of them just get all flustered and throw personal insults...

    January 23, 2013 at 4:27 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      I have never met an atheist, Christian, Muslim, etc. who can give me a logical reason why I should not believe in the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:30 pm |
    • Susan StoHelit

      Think about it.

      You're making a presumption that there must be a dichotomy – that if there is one, it implies the other exists, because everything has it's opposite. That's what I'm talking about. It's not always true. Evil doesn't prove good – nor does it prove god. Good and evil may be opposites – but it doesn't mean they must always exist in pairs – we could have an ideal world where everyone was good – or we could have a horrible world where everyone was evil – and the enemy who killed you without torture was their version of 'good'.

      I'm not saying they aren't opposites – I'm saying that your presumption that evil proves good and God – is faulty and false. And your presumption that dichotomies are proven to always exist is not real. Not to mention that if you want to say that evil proves god, via dichotomy, then you can only give god the power that evil has in this world – which is very limited and mild, compared to the power god is claimed to have in the bible.

      There is a sun – there is no anti-sun (no, a black hole is not an anti-star). There is a planet, there is no anti-planet. We have people here – what's our dichotomy equivalent?

      We like to see the world that way, but it's not real, and it leads to often making mistakes – thinking the enemy of our enemy is our friend – that's how we created al Queda (they were the enemy of the Soviets, so we funded and trained them). There are so many possible options.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm |
    • Will

      wait... so you're angry at the atheists because they don't have good reasons why you should convert to atheism? Why do you try to make them convert you? Maybe they're getting flustered because you feel compelled to turn their difference of opinion into a confrontation.

      January 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
    • nygil

      @ susan....again i think you understood me wrong...i didnt say existence of evil proves existence of god.....but when we talk of evil we are assuming something called good.....good and bad is just a moral law....and i believe a moral law necessitates a moral law giver.....and that giver is god

      January 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Which god?

      January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
    • nygil

      @ will ...when did i say i was angry with teh atheist or anybody for that fact....it was the so called atheist who called me stupid and idiot i have nothing against anyone.....

      January 23, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
    • Susan StoHelit

      @nygil – yeah, I did skip a bit and misinterpret – sorry. But I don't agree that good and bad are something that require god to define. No one throughout history has had an issue with defining good and bad – and the rules for both have stayed pretty static throughout time, across all varieties of religions. Heck – our "good" and "bad" – they're the same used in the animal kingdom for species that live in communities. It's really not hard.

      January 23, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
    • jolie

      the hostility of the unbelieving is often the mark of a tormented, broken soul – a hurt that is being blamed and needs God's grace. She is a hostile person to not only people who believe in God but most likely to anyone who doesnot do as she says and wants – she is wondering why she is being left out of things, and is afraid of being ignored.

      January 23, 2013 at 6:08 pm |
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About this blog

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.