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Holy Trollers: How to argue about religion online
They are the same cast of characters that surface during every online debate about religion. Do you know a "Holy Troller?"
October 5th, 2013
08:00 AM ET

Holy Trollers: How to argue about religion online

By John Blake, CNN

(CNN) –"Yo mama..."

Whenever I heard those two words while growing up in inner-city Baltimore, I knew something bad was about to happen. Trading insults was a childhood ritual. But everyone understood that one subject was off-limits. You didn’t talk about anybody’s momma unless you were prepared to start swinging.

Now that I’m all grown-up, I’ve discovered a new arena for combat: The reader’s comments section for stories about religion.

When I first started writing about religion for an online news site, I eagerly turned to the comment section for my articles, fishing for compliments and wondering if I had provoked any thoughtful discussions about faith.

I don’t wonder anymore.

When I look at the comment section now, I see a whole lot of “yo mamas” being tossed about. Readers exchange juvenile insults, condescending lectures and veer off into tangents that have nothing to do with the article they just read.

For years, I’ve listened to these “holy trollers” in silence. Now I’m calling them out. I’ve learned that the same types of people take over online discussions about faith and transform them into the verbal equivalent of a food fight. You may recognize some of these characters.

You might even recognize yourself.

The Street Corner Prophet

When the Belief Blog ran a recent article on a television host who declared that atheists “don’t have to live here,” a commenter identified as “Karie” got into a heated exchange with someone who called themselves “Bible Clown.”

Karie called Bible Clown a “disgusting, deviant perverted virus,” and a “Bozo,” before ending with this prediction:

Hell is coming for you love. Special dungeon just for u and u won’t be able to die. LOL.LOL.”

The street corner prophets often act as if they’re deeply concerned about the fate of souls they disagree with, but you can tell that they relish the prospect of eternal torment for their online enemies.

Some don’t even try to hide their true motives:

“I hope you like worms because you will have your own personal worm to feed off your fat drippings in hell for all eternity…”

That’s what a commenter called “HeavenSent” said to another following an article on evangelical Pastor Rick Warren. HeavenSent ended his malediction with one word: “Amen.”

Okay, so that’s the wrong way to argue about religion online if you’re a street corner prophet. Now, here’s the right way:

Not everyone who disagrees with you deserves eternal torment. People rarely listen to someone who is in perpetual attack mode.

“We change no one’s mind by attacking,” said Charles Camosy, an ethics professor at Fordham University in New York City.

Camosy has made a career out of bridging religious differences. He’s part of a “Contending Modernites” group, which finds common ground between Christians and Muslims. He’s also the co-founder of a website devoted to dialing down the heat in religious arguments entitled, “Catholic Moral Theology.”

Camosy says that online discussions about religion are difficult because they are not in person. Tone and nuance gets lost online.

“You can’t look them in the face,” he said. “You can’t shake their hand or give a hug. You find it very difficult to have that sort of embodied trust.”

The Provoker

There isn’t any notion of “embodied trust” with the next online character: The provoker.

The provoker doesn’t even pretend to care about the final destination for someone’s soul. They come out punching, and they love to say things that they probably wouldn’t say to someone in person.

In the recent article on Warren, a reader who went by the surname of “Just the Facts Ma’am,” tells another:

“Thanks for once again confirming how vulgar, uneducated and delusional you are Meredith.”

In an article about millennials leaving the church, a reader who identified herself as “Jenna,” tells another: “Jesus never said any of that mess. You are a false prophet if I’ve ever seen one.”

How to argue about religion if you’re a provoker:

No one will listen to you if they don’t like you, said Joe Carter, an evangelical blogger and author of “How to Argue like Jesus,” a book that explores how Jesus verbally tangled with his enemies and persuaded his friends.

Carter said Jesus was such an excellent communicator because he told stories that provoked emotions, took surprising twists and forced people to draw their own conclusions. But he also connected with people because of a simple reason: he cared about them.

“When people know that you care about them, they’re more likely to be persuaded by you,” Carter said. “We tend to be persuaded by people we like and trust. Jesus had that in spades.”

The Atheist

One of my best friends was an atheist. Whenever we ran into one other, we’d launch into these long, philosophical discussions about religion.  I loved it. Like many atheists I subsequently met, I discovered that he knew more about the Bible than most people who claimed to be religious.

It’s too bad that many of the exchanges between atheists and people of faith in our comments section don’t follow the same script. In fact, they have some of the nastiest religious arguments I’ve witnessed online.

A sample:

In a recent Belief Blog article about atheism, a reader identifying himself as “Sam Stone” says to another: “Free people do not need a savior, Kate. Only slaves need saviors.”

Another reader who identifies himself as “CamDEn1” tells a Christian, “You are an uneducated fool. Ever you heard of Richard Dawkins? Sam Harris? Atheists have more respected scholars than Christianity…”

I get the source of frustration for some atheists. They have longed been caricatured by people of faith as moral degenerates who don’t care about morality. Some of them, in turn, have caricatured people of faith as weak-minded hypocrites who believe in fairy tales.

Here’s how to argue over religion if you’re an atheist:

Get beyond the stereotypes and actually spend time with a person of faith. And if you’re a person of faith, do the same with an atheist. You might be surprised.

That’s what happened when Camosy, the Fordham University ethics professor, embarked on a speaking tour with the renowned atheist and philosopher, Peter Singer, who is seen by many as the founder of the animal rights movement.

Camosy said the speaking tour forced him to read and pay attention to Singer’s arguments. He discovered that they share concerns over global poverty. He saw Singer as a person of good will.

“That created the space for us to have an honest, open and fruitful exchange with one another rather than exchanging barbs,” Camosy said.

It also created the space for personal transformation.

“Actually reading him converted me to being a vegetarian,” Camosy said. “But it was only being open to his arguments that made me see.”

The Scholar

I have a friend who is smart – scary smart.  He’s a genial, funny guy who happens to be a theology professor. I try to hang with him when we talk religion, but there’s always a point in the conversation when he loses me. I compare that moment to watching the starship Enterprise go into warp drive. He just goes into hyperspace and my brain just isn’t big enough to follow.

There a lot of big brains in our blog’s comment sections. I call these readers “the scholars.”

Some of them are self-appointed biblical experts. They talk as if they have God’s cell phone number: God has revealed great mysteries to them. They know the divine plan.

In a recent article I wrote about contemporary Christians feeling as if they were persecuted, a reader identified as “Tom Skylark” let me know what all this persecution was really about.

 Skylark said:

“Christians will face continued persecution then 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 will happen right before the 7 year tribulation when Israel burns Russia’s weapons for 7 years. (Ezekiel 39:9). Those who are not taken in the rapture will have the opportunity to receive Christ during the 7 year tribulation but will be beheaded for their testimony. (Revelation 20:4). How far is Russia towards its prophetic position which means the rapture (! Thessalonians 4:16-17) is even closer?

Actually, I did not know that, and I’m still not sure what it means.

Sometimes the scholar is someone who believes all religion is hopelessly derivative: it’s all based on something that came before.

A reader by the name of “Seyedibar” responded to my article on Christian persecution with this:

“A little study of history and comparative religion goes a long way. Abraham is based on an Egyptian figure. His god was Ptah, not El, and his vision was of Memphis, not Israel. Jesus was likely based on a Merkabah mystic, one of a hairdresser and carpenter. .. And if you back a little further, Uguritic archaeology shows us that the book of Genesis is based on the ancestor kings of the Canaanites. Most Christians and Jews aren’t aware that the creator of the Garden of Eden, El, is recorded to have died of a wild boar attack.”

 Like I said, hyperspace. I just can’t go where “Seyedibar” has gone before. I love the scholar’s passion for religion, but some of them lose me when they try to deploy all their knowledge of history and religion in any effort to change someone else’ beliefs.

How to argue about religion if you’re a scholar:

Accept that there is a limit to knowledge. I’ve never seen anyone say in response to a religious argument: “You are right. Your argument is irrefutable. I’m going to jettison a lifetime of beliefs on the spot right now because I obviously have no coherent reply.”

It just doesn’t happen.

Gordon Newby, a professor of Middle Eastern and South Asian Studies at Emory University, said most people change religious beliefs “not because of one argument” but only after long conversations and intimate exposure to another faith.

“Logical arguments are nice but they're not going to change someone’s life,” Newby said. “We’re way too complicated for that. We’re not programmed machines. We have this whole limbic system of emotions and appetites and everything else.”

The Peacemaker

There are some readers who give me hope when I go to the comment section. They are the “peacemakers,” and they surely bless me with their attitudes.

Peacemakers try to keep arguments from getting personal. They are the online referees.  They turn the other cheek.

An exchange between someone called “Bootyfunk” and “KatieRose” shows a peacemaker in action.

“Bootyfunk”  gets upset with “KatieRose” because she says  “we must respect all ideas in the world, no matter how crazy.”

Bootyfunk says people don’t have to respect all ideas, and tells Katie Rose she shouldn't tell people not to debate religion on a blog about religion.

What does KatieRose say in response? She doesn’t go to war. She makes the peace:

“Okay! That works for me,” KatieRose said. “I’m sorry if it sounded like I was ordering people not to talk about an issue: I just disagreed with the focus of the discussion.”

“Bootyfunk” ends the discussion with a smiley-face symbol and a “smooches, Katie.”

How to argue about religion if you’re a peacemaker:

Keep on doing what you’re doing.

If only the rest of the comment section had more peacemakers. I actually e-mailed readers like “Bootyfunk” and “KatieRose” to get their perspective, but all I got was silence. Not one commenter wanted to talk on the record for this story. Only one person – an atheist – responded to my invitations to chat, and he didn’t want his name used.

But I have a feeling I’ll hear again from these holy trollers when I scan the comment section of Belief Blog. So will you, even if you don’t read that much about religion. These holy trollers show up in our lives and our workplaces. Many of them will sit next to us at the dinner table when families and friends get together for the upcoming holidays.

When the conversation turns to religion, you may meet your holy troller, and you will have to make a choice.

Do I make the peace, or do I go the war?

What kind of holy troller will you be?

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Ethics • Internet • News media • Nones

soundoff (3,856 Responses)
  1. Lionly Lamb

    I am a God fearing, loving follower of Christian ideology... And you..?

    October 5, 2013 at 5:50 pm |
    • denver

      I'm a nice guy who can't even begin to believe in god that considers himself throughly moral and loves a number of Christians w/o regard for their faith.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:52 pm |
    • God

      Boo.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:52 pm |
    • ME II

      not

      October 5, 2013 at 5:54 pm |
    • Lamb of Dog

      I think you love fear.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:58 pm |
    • Opposing View

      I am a Saint of the Most High God. Baptized in Jesus Name and filled with the Holy Ghost. Which is the only true way to be saved (see Acts 2:38)...

      October 5, 2013 at 6:27 pm |
      • sam stone

        wow, a saint of the most high god

        nothing pompous about that, is there?

        October 6, 2013 at 10:46 am |
    • sam stone

      you are a man who is too afraid of the po po to consume a plant that god gave you

      October 6, 2013 at 10:44 am |
  2. Susieklove

    You can call me evil, ignorant, a member of a cult, stupid, or nutjob. It will never make stop believing in God. He has gotten me through diffecult time I thought I wouldn't get through. Done thing logic, science or proof couldn't ever prove. Faith is beliving without seeing, proof or logic. As science, and logic our part of our lives, its not everything. Anyone who doesnt believe is inscure in thier own lives, and finds joy call other names. I'll pray for you. God Bless.

    October 5, 2013 at 5:48 pm |
    • One one

      That ok. But why do believers keep trying to push their god into everyone else's lives? And why do they preach non-believers will burn in hell ?

      October 5, 2013 at 5:55 pm |
      • Susieklove

        Were to let our light shine, but what sometimes happens is we go too far. I don't believe in the burn in hell or fiocing it on anyone. God love all, even if it isn"t returned in kind. He sent his son Jesus to die on a cross for us. Thats enough for me to try to love every one else.

        October 5, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
        • Kat

          Right on Susieklove!

          October 5, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
    • Maxwell's Demon

      "Anyone who doesnt believe is inscure in thier own lives, and finds joy call other names. "

      Wow. Just... wow.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:57 pm |
    • Pastoria

      "Faith is believing without seeing, proof or logic."

      WELL SAID! Faith is exactly that, believing without a shred of proof and even believing in the face of evidence against you. Some might even say Fanatical.

      Prayer has been studied over and over and does not seem to actually be useful. But keep at it if you like to smile smugly. Also, think long and hard about your own "soul" because maybe you won't be up to snuff for your god, and maybe he will condemn you to the pit of Hell to rot and burn and suffer for EONS. Who knows, you might be reborn again as a child of Satan?

      October 5, 2013 at 6:00 pm |
      • Susieklove

        Angry much.....so you hell fire and brimstone kind person.

        October 5, 2013 at 6:38 pm |
    • unbeliever

      nope. nothing will ever stop you believing in god. because you are cookoo for cocoa puffs.

      thanks for proving athiests right, nutjob.

      October 5, 2013 at 6:01 pm |
      • Susieklove

        lol... I love cocoa puffs. Thanks for the luaghs.... You made my day

        October 5, 2013 at 6:41 pm |
    • denver

      Re: "You can call me evil, ignorant, a member of a cult, stupid, or nutjob. It will never make stop believing in God."

      I don't want you to stop believing in god. And I don't think you're evil or stupid, I just think you're wrong. But I'll take your prayers if they're made in good faith. 😉

      October 5, 2013 at 6:08 pm |
  3. Higgs Boson

    I really am the GOD particle, send your offerings, cash or credit card, to.....

    October 5, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
    • denver

      Well, if anyone ever figures out a way to peak at god it'd probably be a particle physicist.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:48 pm |
    • Higgs Boson

      Forgot to mention, that I am all the GODS, so don't be shy about sending your donations. The more primitive societies, I will pass on the burnt offerings, burning flesh makes me gag.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:56 pm |
  4. in god we trust

    i believe that the bible is an inter-median to communicate with god, he show you what you need to see. and with everything thats happening around the world- fear the lord!

    October 5, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
    • denver

      I believe the Bible was a politically driven, selective consolidation of disparate philsophical works based on existing myth that span centuries.

      It's got some good ideas but a lot of cruft. Loving your fellow man is great. Summoning bears to kill children who make fun of you is not. The golden rule is great. Killing an entire town because they worship another god is not. And so on.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
    • fsmgroupie

      why do you want to have a lord? why do you need to have a lord? I feel no need or want whatsoever.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
    • Lamb of Dog

      FEAR!

      October 5, 2013 at 5:55 pm |
  5. Kat

    I think many people these days that call themselves Christian have completely missed the mark to what it actually means to be a Christian. What Jesus taught was LOVE. It all comes down to loving others. If they think that name calling and condemning others to the fires of hell is how Jesus would want them to behave they know nothing about the religion that they say they embrace. I see more love and concern for others in Atheists than I do in most "Christians." These are the people that use religion to hide behind as they try to keep their skeletons well hidden in the closet while telling the world what good God Fearing people they are... People seriously need to do some real soul searching and starting being honest at least with themselves about their true intentions while pushing their beliefs on others. The last several years I too have watched many religious people go to war with anyone that doesn't belief just what they believe and more and more I see this as a mental illness, because it certainly isn't what would please Jesus....

    October 5, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
    • Lamb of Dog

      They are also more likely to support the death penalty and war.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:48 pm |
      • Kat

        That is true

        October 5, 2013 at 6:41 pm |
    • If horses had gods, their gods would be horses

      and remember Kat, that to many of us, your attachment to Jesus is still ridiculous. You have still made the metaphysical leap to tell yourself that you have something called a soul, and that you will live after you die, and that god(s) exist. To non-believers this is still notions that could put you in the Nut House, if you just changed some of the words so that you weren't in a collective of millions. Strength in numbers right? How could so many people be wrong? LOL, answer: we Humans are still not very bright 🙂

      October 5, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
      • Kat

        You missed my point... Whether he lived or not or whether there is life after death, none of that is the issue at hand... I have no "attachments" My point is from what his teachings are in the bible, Christians have missed the mark. If they are going to follow this religion, then follow the true teaching, not use it as a weapon to hurt others. His was a message of peace and love, whether he was real or not has nothing to do with the point I am trying to get across... Personally I want nothing to do with religion. I have grown beyond the need for it and feel completely free now. But my concern is with those that forcefully and hatefully push their beliefs on others... That is what this is about...

        October 5, 2013 at 6:25 pm |
    • CD

      But not all religious people go to war .... And atheists show more sense of love because they want you to be attracted to their ideology and not all Christians are unloving. generalizing in this topic is never true. And just because a person is religious doesn't mean he can't sin. we are all human beings

      October 5, 2013 at 5:58 pm |
    • Dennis

      Sing along with me and add your own verses:
      There are No True Scotsmen.
      A true Scotsman will only wash his knickers once in a blue moon.
      A true Scotsman will only drink neat whiskey and brush his teeth with it.
      There are No True Scotsmen.
      There are No True Scotsmen.
      Fa la la la la

      Seriously, google it already.

      October 5, 2013 at 6:23 pm |
    • Opposing View

      Kat... You're clearly a person who has no clue what "Love" is. When your mommy and daddy whipped your butt or made you go stand in the corner, that was love too, although you didn't understand it at the time. To judge people negatively all because they tell you the truth or tell you things you don't like is childish.

      October 5, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
      • Kat

        You have proved my point. You know no "truth" you only believe. And you have a right to believe whatever you wish. I too have that same right and I should be able to believe in whatever I chose to without "Holy Trollers" getting hateful on me. If you were to read what I posted I did not group ALL Christians into this hateful category. It is comments like the one that you made that I am referring to. Do you think you are pleasing your savior by how you just talked to me? I dont think so...

        October 5, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
      • Lamb of Dog

        Sounds to me like you had abusive parents and so have confused love and fear. Sorry

        October 5, 2013 at 6:43 pm |
  6. CD

    If God doesn't exist then why are we here. Why is there life in the universe. how was the small piece of matter that created the bing bang created ( the bible might of said that God created the world in 7 days, but that could of been a metaphor). Where does are conscience come from. Science can't explain these questions that is why there still reason to believe in a one true living God. Also, I have figured that all the "non-believers" that I know (which are many) , don't believe because they are just lazy and don't want to make any simple sacrifice of just believing and going to Church.

    October 5, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
    • Lamb of Dog

      Oh thanks now it all makes sense. Becasuse of God.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
    • unbeliever

      The question "why are we here?" is made up nonsense, like "why this mountain", and "what is the purpose of rocks?"

      There is no purpose beyond what people give to life. Meaning is made in the mind, not a priori.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:54 pm |
      • CD

        the mountain is there to be part of panorama. Rocks were originally supposed to be part of a mountain. Everything made naturally must have a reason.

        October 5, 2013 at 6:09 pm |
      • Opposing View

        You exist in this world for only one reason – to prove yourself worthy to be with God in heaven. If you fail to do that, then nothing else matters because you will end up in hell...

        October 5, 2013 at 6:18 pm |
        • sam stone

          Well, another OPINION heard

          October 6, 2013 at 11:00 am |
        • sam stone

          OV, you delusional twit....

          how do you expect people to fear something in which they do not believe

          fvck you, your god and your empty proxy threats

          if you are sooooo right with god, why not show some initiative and go meet him now?

          come on, big mouth...put up or shut the fvck up

          October 6, 2013 at 11:02 am |
    • If horses had gods, their gods would be horses

      Ridiculous. Not knowing the answer doesn't mean you make up the most crazy idea possible! souls? gods? life after death? REALLY?!!

      Your logic is the same as asking for directions in China. If the Chinese doesn't know, rather than say "I don't know", they will make up an answer and send you on your (wrong) way!

      This is why science is always best, always trumps religion, and why the two are completely and utterly incompatible. Because science loves to say, "WE DON'T KNOW...but let's keep looking anyway". AWESOME, go science. Religion tells you not to look anymore, stick your head in the sand, and toe the line. YUCK.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:55 pm |
      • CD

        I was just saying that it is not stupid to just keep believing in God. Why not believe?

        October 5, 2013 at 6:11 pm |
        • sam stone

          which god?

          October 6, 2013 at 11:03 am |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by 'CD' presents an instance of the Argument from Ignorance fallacy.

      http://fallacyfiles.og/glossary.html

      October 5, 2013 at 6:15 pm |
    • sam stone

      why do you a-s-s-ume there is a "reason" we are here?

      October 6, 2013 at 10:47 am |
  7. BiteADick

    Why bother arguing about religion at all? It's like arguing about who your favorite Harry Potter character is.

    October 5, 2013 at 5:44 pm |
  8. Sun Myung Moon

    This has to stop.

    October 5, 2013 at 5:43 pm |
  9. If horses had gods, their gods would be horses

    Christians and Muslims and Hindus are all pretty offensive if you're stuck in the middle of them. The other theists are a small degree less disturbing.

    Sam Harris for President 2016!!!

    October 5, 2013 at 5:43 pm |
  10. God

    I should have made Humans smarter.

    October 5, 2013 at 5:36 pm |
    • Jesus

      Dad are they going to kill me again?

      October 5, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
    • Satan

      I'm killing everyone, a little bit each day 🙂

      October 5, 2013 at 5:38 pm |
    • David Koresh

      Not again.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:39 pm |
    • Joseph Smith

      And again.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:40 pm |
    • denver

      Honestly, O Lord, a better plan would have been to just poof the rule book into existence yourself rather than relying on a bunch of disparate characters to write a whole bunch of inconsistent books which later had to be kludged together in a political process.

      As far as making Your will know to us, the process by which You instigated the Bible really couldn't have been worse.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:44 pm |
    • mohammed

      and yet again

      October 5, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
  11. Opposing View

    I find it quite ironic and strange that the writer of this article choose to "call out" the so-called "holy trollers" on this forum, but yet said nothing at all about or against the near unlimited number of ungodly, unholy, and don't have a clue, mudslinging atheists and unbelievers who tend to dominate these forums on a daily basis. Any truly religious people are in the slim minority on these forums and most don't even visit here because it's too confrontational. Atheists tend to outnumber Christians on these forums by a factor of at least 20 to 1. Yet the writer seems to think it's the Christians that's causing the problem. LOL. That's a joke. It only tells us which side of the issue the writer is standing on. It only tells us he's actually an atheist himself...

    Even worse, the writer loves to pretend like it's the believers and "holy trollers" who are the source of the problem. When the real source of the problem is that writers like himself don't = have a clue, and shouldn't even be allowed to write on a topic like this because clearly he not qualified to understand it or deal with it.

    Lastly, the author goes on to say – "One of my best friends was an atheist", and then concludes with the line – "I discovered that he knew more about the Bible than most people who claimed to be religious". If that is true, then the author truly has never meat a genuine saved person. Because atheists themselves don't know anything They only "think" they know a lot. But the reality is, they know nothing and are deceived. Every atheist will be in hell and not one atheist is going to heaven. That alone should tell you how much they know...

    The bible make it very clear – darkness and light cannot co-exist, and there will always be a battle when they meet. The bible also states "what fellowship has light with darkness, or righteousness with unrighteousness, that you cannot be partakers of the Lord's table, and of the table of devils. The bible also specifically tells us to "separate ourselves from unbelievers" and to be ye separate, said the Lord. Thus, it is not possible for a truly saved person to have "friends who are atheists". If you have friends who are atheists and you see nothing wrong with it, then the bible states you're of the devil yourself and you will not be saved. To be saved, you have to stand against darkness, stand against unrighteousness, and stand up for God in the face of evil. And that will often mean telling people things they don't want to hear and won't like. And many will hate you for it. But that is the price you must pay to be saved. Look at what Jesus did. He only told them the truth, but they crucified him for it...

    October 5, 2013 at 5:36 pm |
    • lamb of dog

      yo mamma

      October 5, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
    • If horses had gods, their gods would be horses

      There is no god. Thanks for playing. You also have no soul, and your ancestors lived in trees. Get over it and be happy without the need for all of your magical voodoo drivel 🙂

      October 5, 2013 at 5:40 pm |
    • Akira

      I find it odd that you didn't know that Bootyfunk, Seyedibar, sam stone, Bible Clown and Just the Facts are, in fact, atheist/agnostic. And the person who Just the Facts called out is Karie, who stole Meredith's name, a 9/11 widow, to post her hate under.
      Yeah, I read these blogs a LOT, lol.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:48 pm |
    • unbeliever

      I'm curious...If you were born in India, would you believe in Krishna? Think about it...

      October 5, 2013 at 5:56 pm |
    • Blame of God

      Wow! With your insightful comments and astounding logic, I think you may have convinced. I feel I'm ready to convert. Wait, no! Just a bit of indigestion. The moment's passed, but I could go for one of them grilled cheese sandwiches with the Holy Virgin's face toasted into it right about now.

      October 5, 2013 at 6:21 pm |
  12. Lionly Lamb

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Jm5oNTgyHA&w=640&h=360]

    October 5, 2013 at 5:36 pm |
  13. Akira

    I find it quite amusing that they used "Karie", also known as faith/hharri, as an example; they can use her responses in the non-existant lawsuit she is always threatening us with.
    Follow the IP's CNN.

    October 5, 2013 at 5:35 pm |
  14. Tyllor Parker

    Maybe if you don't like your beliefs being made fun of, maybe try not to believe such silly things.

    October 5, 2013 at 5:34 pm |
    • If horses had gods, their gods would be horses

      True.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:44 pm |
  15. Atheist Activism

    Well, John Blake, I'm not sure many of the commenters actually understood your article.

    October 5, 2013 at 5:32 pm |
  16. in god we trust

    omg

    October 5, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
  17. in god we trust

    so in a day of chaos who will pray for help? what word does most-everyone say when things go wrong?

    October 5, 2013 at 5:30 pm |
    • Andy B

      How about praying for an end to childhood cancer and see what happens? How about praying for anything and see what happedns? Nothing!

      October 5, 2013 at 5:33 pm |
    • Atheist Activism

      F***

      October 5, 2013 at 5:33 pm |
    • lamb of dog

      Son of a bit**

      October 5, 2013 at 5:36 pm |
    • Lamb of Dog

      I think thats the same as "jesus christ"

      October 5, 2013 at 5:57 pm |
  18. Doris

    One of the greatest thinkers of our age tackles one of the most important questions of our time: why people believe in God and how religion shapes our lives and our future. In this lecture, based on his new book of the same title, Dr. Dennett shows that for the vast majority of people there is nothing more important than religion. It is an integral part of their marriage, child rearing, and community. Dennett takes a hard look at this phenomenon and asks: Where does our devotion to God come from and what purpose does it serve? Is religion a blind evolutionary compulsion or a rational choice? In a spirited investigation that ranges widely through history, philosophy, and psychology, Dennett explores how organized religion evolved from folk beliefs and why it is such a potent force today. Deftly and lucidly, he contends that the 'belief in belief' has fogged any attempt to rationally consider the existence of God and the relationship between divinity and human need.

    Dr. Dennett is a professor and director of the Center for Cognitive Studies at Tufts University, and the author of the highly acclaimed Darwin's Dangerous Idea, Consciousness Explained, and Freedom Evolves.

    (Published on Apr 24, 2013)

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UZYv2WYbK1o&w=640&h=360]

    October 5, 2013 at 5:28 pm |
  19. tony

    Is there a religious truth anywhere, that can be tested and found to be correct?

    October 5, 2013 at 5:25 pm |
    • Bret

      NO.

      October 5, 2013 at 5:28 pm |
    • sam stone

      depends on who you ask

      fvcks like gopher will say yes and then say it is true because they believe it to be so

      October 6, 2013 at 11:04 am |
  20. Lionly Lamb

    Scientific Research and Real Facts about the Cannabinoids in Cannabis

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hHnQ-YAqAsA&w=640&h=360]

    October 5, 2013 at 5:21 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.