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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. Answer

    Hey everyone....WHY won't you come to Zeus and be saved?

    You're being totally moronic and you know you're wrong.

    January 21, 2013 at 12:24 am |
    • lol??

      He's the one who put his greekster daughter Athena on all the campuses. When she was born he got a split noggin.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:31 am |
    • Thomas A. Hawk

      Where in Ancient Greek Religion does it claim that Zeus offers to save mortals?

      There are several places in the Bible where the offer to save exists including the famous John 3:16.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:35 am |
    • tallulah13

      I guess Zeus was too honest to promise something that doesn't exist.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:39 am |
    • Answer

      So you've read up on Zeus.. proving that Zeus does exist. Great thing.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:39 am |
    • Austin

      the demons that arent captive under the earth now, are banished to the space between heaven and earth. the fallen angels who bred with women in Genesis ch 6 , were men of "renown" . the throne of Zeus is referred to in Rev as where satan will sit , atleast i think this is correct it is a astrological name, so your talk about Zeus may ignorantly be ironic.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:49 am |
    • Austin

      the antichrist will sit on the throne of Zeus. scary.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:52 am |
    • Answer

      Like clockwork...

      ==The comment for the antichrist comes out==

      –quote–
      Austin

      the antichrist will sit on the throne of Zeus. scary.
      –end–

      Demonize every other god except your own – because you have the right god. HAHA

      January 21, 2013 at 12:59 am |
  2. virginia

    Islam might fit the definition of a cult where its members attempt to openly harm the cults members or outsiders to their believe...usually athiest pretending to be Christians or from other belief system hide to commit their harm to other members cause they know its not acceptable to harm others....with out God's condemnation...

    January 21, 2013 at 12:21 am |
    • Athy

      Virginia, your writing skills give you away as a religie. And that's not a compliment.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:25 am |
    • the AnViL

      virginia – you are another one ignoring the division and discrimination inherent in your religion.

      that's called willful ignorance.

      i know that may seem like invective to you – and you probably won't see past it to recognize the truth...

      but i wonder if you're even va.guely aware.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:26 am |
  3. Austin

    are they related to nephilum?

    January 21, 2013 at 12:17 am |
  4. Pedro

    There is a Christian Talebanism in America, imposing christianity on people. Bible is just a mythological book that the Christian-Talebans try to shove down people's throats

    January 21, 2013 at 12:16 am |
    • Damocles

      They are banning tales??!! Oh no!! What's going to happen to story time?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:19 am |
    • coca-kola

      how are we shoving the bible down your throats? becuase we speak of it? be happy your living in a country where there has been strong biblical influence, you could have been born in an atheist country like russia, china, cambodia. You would be worshiping that spaghetti guy in the sky in a gulag.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:24 am |
    • Domine

      Coca Kola. Those countries still fit the definition of "religious" you do not need a god to be religious. They seeked control over the masses, and those nations made an atheist religion. Called Stalinism, Maoism etc.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:27 am |
  5. I believe

    To tallulah13:
    You seem to have a lot of venom towards people who believe in God. Not to mention how blind, ignorant, and "fearful" you think they are.
    I'm curious as to why you are so driven in your remarks for being such a "decent" person?
    Being so well studied you should know that to be a "christian" means you have to admit you have no "moral high ground" on Christ does. Also if a "Christian" knows this fact why would they have "hatred" towards the godless when they know they are no better themselves?
    We are all in the same boat of life how about we work at encouraging each other than knocking each other down? Life is hard enough as it is and we can all use the help. I know I can even though I believe in God.
    For some reason I think we have all lost sight of that........ Something like love each other as much as you love yourself.

    January 21, 2013 at 12:15 am |
    • Answer

      When you religious people are confronted you say the darnest things. You project outwards a lot to cover your sorry excuses for your beliefs. So tacky.

      Do you hate Zeus? Do you fear Zeus?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:18 am |
    • the AnViL

      why are you ignoring the division and discrimination inherent in monotheistic religions – namely xianity?

      are you asserting that all the ire and indignation is undeserved or unwarranted?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:22 am |
    • Peter Pan

      I believe,

      Perhaps you should have a visit with your cohort, @Dan down the page...

      January 21, 2013 at 12:27 am |
    • tallulah13

      In real life, some of my best friends are christians. We are friends because we understand that we are more than our religion or lack thereof. On this blog, I have been attacked, insulted and baldly lied about by christians. As a result, I have absolutely no reservations about returning your malice with the unvarnished truth about the ludicrous nature of religious belief. Perhaps you call it venom because the truth stings.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:31 am |
    • Domine

      If i love everyone, then what is the value of my love?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:31 am |
    • Thomas A. Hawk

      Answer, the answer depends on if Zeus exists.

      If Zeus exists, no. If Zeus doesn't exist, yes.

      At this point, I'm guessing I don't make any sense. If that's the case, I suggest you go to college and take a class called Logic. (I'm being very serious and I don't think you'll understand unless you actually take the class - and pay close attention.)

      January 21, 2013 at 12:42 am |
    • Answer

      Thomas A. Hawk

      Answer, the answer depends on if Zeus exists.

      If Zeus exists, no. If Zeus doesn't exist, yes.

      At this point, I'm guessing I don't make any sense. If that's the case, I suggest you go to college and take a class called Logic. (I'm being very serious and I don't think you'll understand unless you actually take the class – and pay close attention.)

      ===Tell the religious tards then. Their god depends on it being in existence. How fancy is that? Neat huh?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:48 am |
  6. virginia

    A cult is a guethering of people where its member attemt to harm members of the cult or outsiders of the cult. i surely hope the athiest are careful not to confused the new atheist religion they are trying to form wiht this article and is a cult they form intead of a new religion a guethering of people for the sake or refuting the existence of a creator as the Scientist have try to do by colling themselve athiest...for the most part for there are christ believing scientist to whom science is a tool to explore
    God's creation the universe and human nature and nature itself...so athiest be careful cause if you are drawing from God into a believe away from him what are they drawing you into is time for all athiest to be more careful than ever for if you are not with God what are with????

    January 21, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • Seyedibar

      You have lovely 3rd grade grammar skills. Your philosophy is about on the same level.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:15 am |
    • Dippy

      Virginia, I told you before to go back to school and learn to write. You didn't do it, did you? You're playing with literate people here, and you're not cutting it.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:21 am |
    • Peter Pan

      Can you imagine @virginia thinking for herself! Zounds, who knows what malarkey she would come up with. Maybe we need to leave those like her with their fantasy book - at least we know how to deal with them.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:32 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Virginia, there is help available to assist you in escaping the jesus cult.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:53 am |
  7. Emo Philips

    When I was a kid, I used to pray every night for a new bike. Then I realized the Lord doesn't work that way. So I just stole one and asked Him to forgive me ...

    January 21, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • tallulah13

      Emo was pretty funny back in the day.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:13 am |
    • I believe

      That was funny! But you did the right thing asking for forgiveness.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:18 am |
    • Domine

      This is the reason I feel religion is selfish. While i feel the story is fake: He still avoided actual consequences and has no real desire to seek forgiveness from the victim.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:24 am |
  8. T-Roy

    You would think that having a relationship with a personal god would be a good thing. A god that would answer your prayers, and personally intervene in your life to help you and to look after you. But no, this does not make most Christians happy. You see, they can not be happy until you believe it too...

    January 21, 2013 at 12:11 am |
    • Austin

      that is true t-roy, i ache when i hear people who deny the redemption that has been provided.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:14 am |
    • Answer

      Then why do you deny Zeus?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:15 am |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      A personal relationship with someone who would create Hell, the most excruciating form of torture ever devised? A relationship with someone who ordered genocide of entire races (please read the Old Testament)? No thanks.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:24 am |
    • Len

      That most of the world's population is nonChristian is testimony to the fact that Christian beliefs are not as obviously true as they would like to believe.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:26 am |
    • Austin

      helll was created for the devil and fallen angels. Then people have decided to reject God, all a result of the devil deceiving people, and chosen disobedience. God has justified everyone. people reject their own redemption. maybe instead of asking for faith in haste, you should beg. the fear of the lord is the beginning of wisdom.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:42 am |
  9. coca-kola

    My how we hate God today. My how we despise that book called the bible. My how we are fulfilling bible prophecy. All the hate we can spue toward the Lord Jesus will not stop him from returning and ruling, repent and believe, be saved indeed.

    January 21, 2013 at 12:10 am |
    • Answer

      Do tell us the date.

      Slave.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:10 am |
    • Domine

      Trust me, if God existed, it would be so nice.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:10 am |
    • Damocles

      I'll let someone else talk to you about the 'spue' thing, but I will say that me hating a deity would be the same as me hating Harry Potter, or Snow White.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • tallulah13

      Your threats ring hollow, as there isn't a single shred of evidence that your god, or any god, actually exists.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • Dippy

      Spew, not spue. Typical religie spelling mistake.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:15 am |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      We atheists don't hate god, or even those who believe. I, personally, simply want believers to acknowledge that there is no empirical evidence of god's existence and, thus, my beliefs are as valid as yours.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:21 am |
  10. Mary Grace

    I think it's sad that the rate of non-religious people in America is going up. For those that believe in God, there is a sense of hope and comfort. I don't understand why anyone wouldn't want that. If you have ever experienced anything beautiful or just prayed, you can see the amazing ways in which God works. I respect that some people don't believe, but why limit publicly believing to only in homes and churches? Maybe there's a reason it's hard to be public about not believing....

    January 21, 2013 at 12:09 am |
    • tallulah13

      I am not comforted by fiction. I would rather have ugly truth than pretty lies, but then I was raised to respect honesty.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:11 am |
    • Domine

      I would rather face the truth that no one wants to hear than be lied to. This is why no one trusts politicians.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:21 am |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      Really? Exactly how does god work? Read the headlines much?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:35 am |
  11. Domine

    Religion is all fantasy. Created by man to distract man from reality, Your God is not only dead, but never existed. Unfortunately, only people who dare to step outside of the mainstream can ever realize that. Just because everyone believes something, doesnt make it true.

    January 21, 2013 at 12:05 am |
    • minnie

      I've been out there. I think it's not so simple as that. But I respect how the world looks to you. Namaste.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:09 am |
    • Austin

      scroll downand read the dream about the cat under my post

      January 21, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • coca-kola

      just because you dont believe something, doesn't make it not true.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • Domine

      Indeed it probably isn't quite so simple, however it is still pretty darn simple. All of my education has been through Catholic schools, both primary and secondary. I know the terms but they all just mean really basic things that are what we call common sense. The funny part is that my abjuration of religion and morals can be accredited to one teacher.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:14 am |
    • Answer

      coca-kola

      just because you dont believe something, doesn't make it not true.

      ===Just like that invisible magical tea pot that is floating around our sun everyday.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:14 am |
    • Damocles

      @austin

      Read your dream post. All I can say to you is to lay off the acid for awhile.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:15 am |
    • Domine

      My beliefs are based on concrete evidence based entirely in reality. You cannot switch the burden of truth on to the non-believer. The idea was introduced to the non-believer and he must just if it is legitimate or to be skeptical. I chose skeptical.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:18 am |
  12. Joe

    Those who from heaven to earth came. The Annunaki my friends.

    January 21, 2013 at 12:04 am |
  13. minnie

    There is no more possibility of not having a relationship with God than of not breathing. He loves without exception and without condition. Whether we call Him by name or not.

    January 21, 2013 at 12:00 am |
    • Damocles

      I guess the same could be said of Thor, Odin, Raven, Raiden or any other supposed deity. May they all smile upon you and not condemn you for having not worshiped them.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:04 am |
    • tallulah13

      I just don't have it in me to believe in things for which there is no proof. When I was a kid, I really wanted to, but then I grew up.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:06 am |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      My kids are the only thing I've created and I love them. I'm pretty certain that, even if one of them denounced me as their Father, I would never throw them into Hell to burn for eternity... just sayin'...

      January 21, 2013 at 12:08 am |
  14. Rachel

    So the question is....do you still tell your children Santa Claus exists? Or that Santa is watching, but not God? If that is the case, you should practice what you preach and take ALL fantasy, higher power, and/or do good for others for any other reason than yourself, out. Quite frankly, 'doing good things for others is worthy because it makes YOU feel good and for no other reason' rationalization is the most selfish thing I have ever heard.

    January 21, 2013 at 12:00 am |
    • Damocles

      So are you saying that you tell or would tell your kids that all fictional characters are, in fact, real?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:06 am |
    • tallulah13

      Personally, I think goodness and generosity are their own reward. I don't expect a supernatural being to give me treats every time I act like a decent human being, and I think those that do expect reward are selfish and silly.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:09 am |
  15. missy

    No one is too lost. God delivers with a mighty hand and an out stretched arm. Need a hand? Rise up my love my fair one and come away. Song of songs 2:10

    January 21, 2013 at 12:00 am |
    • Answer

      "Don't be stupid."

      January 21, 2013 at 12:01 am |
    • tallulah13

      I'm not lost. I know exactly where and who I am. Those who are afraid of death and embrace mythology in an effort to subvert nature are the ones who are lost.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:04 am |
    • fsmgroupie

      happy shall he be that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones. paslm 137:9

      January 21, 2013 at 12:04 am |
  16. Edward

    This article, like most others CNN has recently published on the matter, is laden with assumptions about religion and religious beliefs. Furthermore, it tries to paint a universal picture while drawing from a very small sample size. I have no problem with the article, free speech, or the beliefs of the author, etc. I am, however, very disappointed with the overall lack of balance in the mainstream media when it comes to dealing with matters such as these. Why not run a story written by a reasonable religious person detailing the reasons why he/she plans to raise her children with religious values? Simply as a complimentary piece. But no, this new belief system is being forced on us as the new normal in the very same way that traditional religion was heavily criticized for doing. You can no longer talk about religion unless you are talking about your right to have no faith. If that's what you believe then fine. But let's have an honest, respectful and balanced conversation about it.

    January 20, 2013 at 11:59 pm |
    • Damocles

      Just because you missed, or are perhaps too lazy to look for, all the articles written by people who have tried to tout the highlights of their belief does not mean they don't exist.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:01 am |
    • the AnViL

      well maybe when delusional monotheists stop working hard to nullify equality for a group of people they feel morally superior to.. or when they stop attempting to secularize their theistic ideals... ya know – things won't seem to harshly one-sided.

      the abject ignorance of those claiming to be xian is truly stunning.

      looking the other way when it comes to all the division and discrimination inherent in all monotheistic religions is truly repugnant.

      they all claim "oh it's not me!" or "oh no! it's not like that at MY church!" or they blather "well that's not how xianity is supposed to be!" – but that's the way things truly are.

      yes – there's an emergence of aware people who are speaking out against it.... and yes, there are parents who don't want to continue to feed the westboro baptist mentality that is all-pervasive among delusional xian zealots in our nation.

      deal with it

      January 21, 2013 at 12:06 am |
    • Edward

      Of course their out their. But for example, on the homepage right now: "Bible should not be used for inauguration" It's getting relentless...

      January 21, 2013 at 12:39 am |
    • HotAirAce

      ok, I'll be polite. Edward, please provide evidence for believers' delusional beliefs. If you cannot provide factual, verifiable, objective and independent evidence, please shut the fuck up.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:46 am |
    • the AnViL

      well why the heck SHOULD they use the bible???

      the usa isn't an xian nation. it's a nation of people with many religions – and a whole lot without any religion.

      why is that truth so unpalatable?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:46 am |
    • Edward

      @HotAirAce....I'd ask you to do the same of your belief system. And please don't just say science. Remember when the atom was thought to be the smallest known particle? The Earth was thought to be flat?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:51 am |
    • HotAirAce

      I am not proposing any supernatural beings that perform supernatural magic therefore I have nothing to prove. Believers on the other hand have been making claims for 2,000+ years. At some point they will have to admit it is more probable that their gods do not exist than that they do. Re: science, name one claim that science has clung to for 2,000+ years despite all evidence to the contrary, or no supporting evidence. You are mentally ill, a liar or both.

      January 21, 2013 at 3:56 am |
  17. BornAgainAthiest

    To any Believer out there: WHY do you believe in God?

    January 20, 2013 at 11:55 pm |
    • Athy

      Please, Bornagain, spell atheist correctly. Otherwise, I agree with you on all counts.

      January 20, 2013 at 11:59 pm |
    • Austin

      because of spiritual revelations, both personal, and the direct revelation (the bible) prophetic bible.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:01 am |
    • Edward

      The same reason you believe in Science

      January 21, 2013 at 12:01 am |
    • lol??

      Dude, I asked you a question on the previous page.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:02 am |
    • Answer

      Ya right Edward..

      What entails in science is this.. we test the real world and re-test it. You may want to learn that aspect of science.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:03 am |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      @Athy- my bad, apparently I type faster than CNN can read, but thanks for the heads up.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:03 am |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      @LOL?? Must have missed it, please repeat...

      January 21, 2013 at 12:06 am |
    • Austin

      born again athiest....had a cat wonder up to my porch. that night i had a dream that i was in a cabin, and a demonic spirit sang a creep tune, inverted my body upside down, and the cat that was at my house that day ran underneath me with blood gushing out of it. when i woke up from the dream, in knew a spirit had given me a report. i went outside and the cat was ran over at the end of my driveway on the highway.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:07 am |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      @Austin – maybe you should move that m3th lab out of your house/trailer...

      January 21, 2013 at 12:14 am |
    • lol??

      You were talking about your Baptist experience, so I repeat, "So what was their tradition on water baptism? If there's only one baptism how can it possibly be water?"

      January 21, 2013 at 12:23 am |
    • Austin

      born again athiest. dont forget the true instance i just gave you of a modern proof of a spiritual reality of the devil. i am not lying to you.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:27 am |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      @LOL?? – They believed in immersion in water as Baptism. Baptism was a public dispaly of obedience, but not required to be "saved."

      January 21, 2013 at 12:30 am |
    • Austin

      baptism of the Holy Spirit is the assurance of salvation, the seal within you when you confess your sin to God and ask for forgiveness. then being baptised in water is simply a public declaration of your faith. not a requirement for salvation. salvation is through faith in the resurrection, and atoning blood of Christ.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:33 am |
    • LinCA

      @BornAgainAthiest

      Why do you spell atheist wrong in your handle?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:34 am |
  18. Dan

    The reverse is true of athiestx , hoping there is no God, so they can do all that, lying and selfishness and nasty business that they know is immoral,and not have to repent, and face an angry God as an unforgiven sinner. Which is the the fact of the matter if left as is.

    January 20, 2013 at 11:55 pm |
    • Answer

      Why did you say an angry god?

      Isn't that a loving god you religious tards have created?

      January 20, 2013 at 11:57 pm |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      You know, Dan, I was brought up in a Christian home and taught to believe that only non-Christians behaved that way. Then I turned 12 and realized that most of my agnostic/athiest friends behaved better than most Christians I knew. This has been reinforced over the years. So, what's your point?

      January 20, 2013 at 11:58 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Wow, Dan. Not only was that poorly written, misspelled and badly punctuated, it was also ignorant and dishonest. You're batting 1000 here.

      January 20, 2013 at 11:59 pm |
    • Damocles

      I highly doubt that my willingness to donate my time, effort and even money from time to time to my fellow humans is considered immoral, but I guess maybe we have differing opinions of what is immoral.

      January 20, 2013 at 11:59 pm |
    • Athy

      Shit, Dan, you can't spell atheist either.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:02 am |
    • Peter Pan

      Dan,

      You know sometimes I almost wish that your fantasy happy-ever-after scenario were real. Live like I do now – moral, upstanding, loving and as honest as I can be, and be rewarded with eternal bliss! Pretty slick!

      I really don't think that you know a single atheist. We're as good as you are... maybe even more moral for not worshipping that monster Biblegod of yours.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:07 am |
    • BlackhawksOwnPhoenix

      Awful lot of guys in prison with Cross tattoos. They must be secret atheists.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:09 am |
    • kenny

      you sound like an ignorant moron and i'm guessing life is pretty rough for ya and religion makes it just a bit better letting you pretend you'll be in heaven after this... life took a crap on you and its up to you to make it better. no one else can make your life better...believing in a delusion won't help... its that simple...

      January 21, 2013 at 12:14 am |
    • geospatiallibrarian

      Sorry to disappoint you, but many atheists are good, moral people. We do not choose to be atheist so we can be bad; most of us are atheist because religion just doesn't make logical sense to us.

      Things like virgins giving birth; rising from the dead; a piece a bread being transformed into the body of Christ do not make logical sense. That's why they call it faith. Atheists just do not have it. It doesn't mean we are bad people. We can do things because they're the right thing to do – not just because we're afraid of being punished by an old man in the sky.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:15 am |
    • Mark

      @Dan
      You forgot to mention how atheists are baby-eaters. Share that with your friends (or friend) because it's true. Well, not evidence-true. More like faith-true. As in if you believe it to be true then there's no need for evidence.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:55 am |
  19. Gateway

    To all you religious believers, the reason I do not believe in a god is that god has not convinced me he exists.

    January 20, 2013 at 11:46 pm |
    • Alicia

      And you won't be convinced until you seek him, which means, you haven't had the need yet..

      January 20, 2013 at 11:49 pm |
    • Athy

      Haven't you been listening to the religies?

      January 20, 2013 at 11:50 pm |
    • tallulah13

      I think what Alicia is trying to say is that you really have to be messed up to believe in god.

      January 20, 2013 at 11:53 pm |
    • Austin

      try this, in your own quiet heart. ask God for faith, and thank Him for the fact that Jesus justifies all people through His blood of atonement. its a done deal. no one is condemned or damned. the gap is bridged.

      January 20, 2013 at 11:57 pm |
    • Answer

      Here is the phrase for your religious freaks to help you:

      "I give myself permission to be strong. I give myself permission to be free of the fear."

      Try that and be cured.

      January 20, 2013 at 11:59 pm |
    • Domine

      You need concrete proof. Sure you can "ask" for faith, but that doesnt really do anything. Plus, when we tell you it failed, you just say we did it wrong. Some God of yours'. Ill be blunt. God is a figment of your imagination and does not exist in reality.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:01 am |
    • Edward

      What is your criteria for belief?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:03 am |
  20. missy

    Unable to break free everyone faces certain death, physically and eternally. But God has provided a Rescuer, Jesus Christ.

    January 20, 2013 at 11:44 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Why are you so afraid of death? Why do you think that you are too special to die? Why can't you just accept your mortality and embrace this one life you get? Why do you have to be so greedy?

      January 20, 2013 at 11:48 pm |
    • Athy

      Yeah, right. Very logical. Sure thing. Gotta be true.

      January 20, 2013 at 11:48 pm |
    • Answer

      Here are your thoughts:

      "I'm gonna die. Oh crap I will die."

      "I can't deal with it. Maybe – just maybe I will like to believe that I will be saved. This book says I can."

      -Good luck to you.

      January 20, 2013 at 11:48 pm |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      A rescuer from what?

      January 20, 2013 at 11:53 pm |
    • lol??

      "Hbr 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:"

      January 20, 2013 at 11:55 pm |
    • doris

      my, missy – you should call the authorities. how many people are involved? are their faces stuck to ice or something else?

      January 20, 2013 at 11:57 pm |
    • BornAgainAthiest

      @LOL!! – Judgetment – who decides? Who created the punishment? Who created the punished knowing that they would go to hell?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:01 am |
    • tallulah13

      @Doris:

      Hah!

      January 21, 2013 at 12:01 am |
    • Mark

      The natural fear of death immediately elicits the childish fantasy of everlasting life. That's one of the reasons vampires are so popular among the young and immature. It fulfills that childish fantasy. Believing in a god that provides a utopian afterlife fulfills that fantasy as well. Some people's minds never move past needing to believe in the comforts of such wish fulfillment. I'm not at all excited to die, but I am confident that ultimately when I'm gone that's it. Nothing more. Kaput. But that's OK, because that's how it is for everything.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:02 am |
    • lol??

      Well Mark, then why are you trying so hard to impress dead men walking?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:09 am |
    • Answer

      Look at how hard the religious tards need their heaven.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • lol??

      Who, what, and where do you get your commissions, ANSWER?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:19 am |
    • Answer

      And where do you get yours?

      January 21, 2013 at 12:21 am |
    • lol??

      ANSWER, I have a good knock knock joke. You start it.

      January 21, 2013 at 12:28 am |
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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.