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Study: Some atheists with children attend religious services
December 7th, 2011
06:00 AM ET

Study: Some atheists with children attend religious services

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN) – Nearly one in five atheist scientists with children involve their families with religious institutions, even if they personally do not agree with the institutions teachings, a recent study says.

The study, conducted by Rice University and the University at Buffalo, found that these scientists affiliate with churches for both social and personal reasons. Additionally, the scientists indicated a strong desire to prepare their children to make educated decisions about their personal religious preference.

“This was so surprising to us just because of all of the public discussion about the ways in which scientists are very against religions people,” said Elaine Howard Ecklund, a sociologist at Rice. “When in fact, those we might most expect to be against religious people are sitting alongside them.”

Study participants also indicated they were involved in a religious institution because of the religious preferences of a spouse or partner.

One of the most interesting findings, according to Ecklund, was that some atheist scientists want to expose their children to religion due to scientific reasoning.

"We thought that these individuals might be less inclined to introduce their children to religious traditions, but we found the exact opposite to be true," Ecklund said. "They want their children to have choices, and it is more consistent with their science identity to expose their children to all sources of knowledge."

Ecklund said there were cases in which survey respondents identified that not only did they introduce their children to one church, but they also attended other religious services in the hope that the children would better understand each denomination.

"I think that understanding how nonreligious scientists utilize religion in family life demonstrates the important function they have in the U.S.," Ecklund said.

Sociologist Kristen Schultz Lee of University of Buffalo co-authored the study, which can be found in the December issue of the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion.

The data was pulled from a survey of 2,198 tenured or tenure-track faculty at 21 U.S. research universities. Around half of survey respondents identified a form of religious identity, while the other half did not.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Atheism • Church • Culture & Science

soundoff (2,129 Responses)
  1. Wallace

    As an atheist, I try not to discourage my daughter from her involvement with her church. I feel that the decision whether or not to believe in a higher authority is a personal one. On the other hand, I also do my best to balance the ignorance, bigotry and hatred inherent in organized religion with an equal amount of enlightenment, lest she get totally caught up and lose touch with reality.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:39 am |
  2. Jimbo

    Perhaps the "atheists" are really agnostics.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:38 am |
    • Wallace

      I'd be the first to admit that I'm not "all-knowing" and could be wrong. BUT- my heart of hearts tells me that a "god" who is so negligent as to leave his "children" alone with a serpent is not worthy of worship. Imagine, if you will, one Sunday morning in church, your neighbor leans over to you and says, "God just spoke to me. He demands that I take my son out into the field and kill him today, right after church." Are you going to let him take that boy home 20 minutes later?

      December 7, 2011 at 8:44 am |
    • Fred Bleeke

      For the children's sake, I thank God for the openness of the atheists to bring them to church where they hear the Gospel of Christ. Just as I am baptized and confirmed into the Lord, maybe the atheists should confirm their knowledge/belief by a confirmation statement, "I reject the concept of God and certainly reject Christ and what Christians say is his redeeming work." I pray then that God may have mercy on their souls. They may not want my prayers, but I want to pray anyway. It is God's Holy Spirit that gives faith in Christ.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:50 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Wow Wallace that is so non sequitur it is funny.

      First God did not leave his children alone, an issue with omnipresent

      Second, even if He did, you do that all the time, you send them to school and off to live their life.

      So are we to take your personal opinion of 8-50 yrs of experience or the historical record of over 6,000yrs

      December 7, 2011 at 8:55 am |
    • Cedar Rapids

      "Mike from CT – So are we to take your personal opinion of 8-50 yrs of experience or the historical record of over 6,000yrs"

      Is that the argument? The story is old so it must be right? Really?

      December 7, 2011 at 9:37 am |
    • Chase

      Mike from CT – "So are we to take your personal opinion of 8-50 yrs of experience or the historical record of over 6,000yrs"

      PLEASE tell me you don't believe the Earth is only 6,000 years old!

      December 7, 2011 at 10:14 am |
    • todd in DC

      Mike from Cedar Rapids does not believe in science, except when he does. Go to doctors Mike, or just get faith healed? Have any technology in your house? Or do you just live with fire in a cave?

      And for the "left alone" thing, seriously? You hate free will? You want someone to decide everything for you? you want to be just some silly robot who has no choices?

      Doing things wrong is better than not being able to make any kinds of decisions, you know.

      December 7, 2011 at 10:21 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Chase, personally,I do not. I was referring to the length of the historical record.

      Ceder, I did not make the argument that length equals truth. But that your finite time here, where you have been wrong before is no measure of authority or truth. Sorry that went over your head.

      December 7, 2011 at 10:58 am |
    • Mike from CT

      "Mike from Cedar Rapids does not believe in science, except when he does."
      Didn't know you knew me. But yes being a computer science major myself I believe in Science. In the scientific sense that the only job of science is

      Science works by experiments. It watches how things behave. Every scientific statement in the long run, however complicated it looks, really means something like, "I pointed the telescope to such and such a part of the sky at 2:20 A.M. on January 15th and saw so-and-so," or, "I put some of this stuff in a pot and heated it to such-and-such a temperature and it did so-and-so." Do not think I am saying anything against science: I am only saying what its job is. And the more scientific a man is, the more (I believe) he would agree with me that this is the job of science- and a very useful and necessary job it is too. But why anything comes to be there at all, and whether there is anything behind the things science observes-something of a different kind-this is not a scientific question. If there is "Something Behind," then either it will have to remain altogether unknown to men or else make itself known in some different way. The statement that there is any such thing, and the statement that there is no such thing, are neither of them statements that science can make. And real scientists do not usually make them. It is usually the journalists and popular novelists who have picked up a few odds and ends of half-baked science from textbooks who go in for them. After all, it is really a matter of common sense. Supposing science ever became complete so that it knew every single thing in the whole universe. Is it not plain that the questions, "Why is there a universe?" "Why does it go on as it does?" "Has it any meaning?" would remain just as they were?

      Go to doctors Mike, or just get faith healed? Doctors
      Have any technology in your house? Yes how do you think we are chatting, that this post is a cosmic random accident

      And for the "left alone" thing, seriously? Seriously
      You hate free will? No
      You want someone to decide everything for you? No
      you want to be just some silly robot who has no choices? No

      Doing things wrong is better than not being able to make any kinds of decisions, you know... but two wrongs doesn't make one wrong option right, you know.

      December 7, 2011 at 11:05 am |
    • Dr. Logic

      @ mike from CT

      im curious to your responce to the question of 'if a man says "God just spoke to me. He demands that I take my son out into the field and kill him today, right after church." Are you going to let him take that boy home 20 minutes later?'

      And, what would be the difference between said man and Abraham and his "God told me to kill you, sorry son"?

      December 7, 2011 at 11:58 am |
    • Mike from CT

      I guess my response would be No because why the person in your hypothetical would be talk to and not God talking directly to the father, as in Abraham's case. Going forward the bible talks a lot about people who deceive with persuasive stories.

      December 7, 2011 at 12:20 pm |
    • Theyre ComingAround

      Yes, and it's GREAT to hear that they're finally coming around, slowly but surely, to accepting the truth little by little that God truly exists!! Praise God!!

      December 7, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
    • Josh

      @ they are.... agree, atleast 1/5 of those scientist are letting their children go to Church, which is a good sign!

      December 7, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
    • Qualia

      "Perhaps the "atheists" are really agnostics."

      If this was a purely a joke statement, then disregard the rest of my response.

      IIf it was serious, then I would advise somene making a semantic argument to at least understand the definitions of the words they are using.

      Theism: The belief in the existence of God or gods.
      Atheism: The lack of belief in God or gods.

      Agnostic: a lack of certainty that God or gods exist, or the belief that one cannot be certain that God exists.

      As one can see, Agnosticism is not a "middle" ground between theism and atheism. Theism and Atheism deal with a belief status, either you believe or you do not believe.

      Agnosticism deals with certainty. You do not have to be 100% certain something is true to believe it is true. For instance, if you do not think that God is likely, and you do not have enough reason to believe in a God, then you are atheist. You do not believe in God. But being an Atheist does not mean that you must believe that it is impossible that God exists.

      There is no grey shade of belief. Belief is purely bimodal. To say that, "I am not sure," is to not answer the question, "Do you believe?"

      December 8, 2011 at 11:38 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Re: "So are we to take your personal opinion of 8-50 yrs of experience or the historical record of over 6,000yrs" does not support the factual existence of any god. Lots of wishing that one or more gods exist, but no facts.

      December 8, 2011 at 11:44 am |
    • Mike from CT

      HAA,
      If you would like to discuss, please try and keep up with the thread. This was already answered

      ***Ceder, I did not make the argument that length equals truth. But that your finite time here, where you have been wrong before is no measure of authority or truth. Sorry that went over your head.

      Creation is proof of the creator Romans 1.

      December 8, 2011 at 12:45 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      And no proof that the "creator" is an intelligent being. Frankly an omnipotent and omniscient being should be able to do a much better job of it. Reality is such a hack.

      December 8, 2011 at 12:50 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      Mike, I aplogize for an unclear post. I was not commenting on the length of the recorded history, but the content. There is nothing in recorded history, other than wishful thinking and various mythologies, to support the existence of any god.

      December 8, 2011 at 12:55 pm |
    • Get Real

      Mike in CT: "Creation is proof of the creator Romans 1."

      Your first mistake is calling existence, "creation".

      December 8, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      Get Real, please explain. Can one not be created and still exist or do we look at existence of something after it is created.

      December 8, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
  3. JAB62

    They don't need to take them anywhere because they can see it all on TV every Sunday so if they're going it is because one spouse insists and they're just using education as an excuse. I've shown services to my children too, on TV, just so they can see how truly whacked it all is. Believe it or not when I did they weren't very interested. They don't care and that's fine with me. Even though I'm an atheist I still made them aware that it is out there if they ever wanted it but I made sure they know that there is no logic, reason, or reality involved.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:37 am |
    • Littleolme

      That's sorta like saying I let my children watch reality tv so they can see how wacked reality is. Television evangelists don't even have a basic understanding of the Christian gospel or its long-standing doctrines. They're clowns in expensive suits and it grievs me to see what they've done to Christ's name. Matt 7:23-25.

      December 7, 2011 at 9:01 am |
  4. Bill

    This doesn't surprise me at all. I am an atheist and I think that, by nature, atheists believe in making educated decisions for yourself with all the information possible. My 6 year old daughter asked me about 4-5 months ago if she could go to church with her friend that lives across the street. My answer?..."of course, lets get you ready"

    December 7, 2011 at 8:35 am |
  5. CosmicC

    The villificantion of scientists, and anyone with a decent education, is killing our society. Our economy is dependent upon a highly educated workforce, yet much of the country puts athletics above academics. The idea that "scientists" are a breed apart, as indicated by sociologist quoted in the article, is a symptom of an illness spread by those who seek power through enforced ignorance. I won't point fingers at a particular political party or religion, but we all know who they are.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:28 am |
    • Ironicus

      (nudge nudge wink wink)

      December 7, 2011 at 8:33 am |
  6. KP

    Church is one of the best places to pick up chicks, whether you're religious or not, married or not 😉

    December 7, 2011 at 8:27 am |
    • CosmicC

      My dad was a member of the Communist Party in the late 1930's. I asked him why. He said most of the members were girls.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:30 am |
    • JF

      Confuscious say, "Man who fart in church, must sit in his own pew."

      December 7, 2011 at 8:34 am |
    • Karen

      It's a good place to pick up men, too. Those deacons can be very naughty!

      December 7, 2011 at 11:51 am |
  7. Rich

    I hope my child is smart enough not to fall for money grubbing right wing bible thumpers.They should pay their taxes and stop grubbing money from the poor people that don't know any better...

    December 7, 2011 at 8:26 am |
    • petemg

      But when people have a need of clothes or food, the church is there without questioning.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:29 am |
    • ABeliever

      There are a lot of us Christians who are not right wing Bible thumpers. In fact, many of us believe that God is more interested in us helping the poor and needy among us than in making sure we're rich at others' expense. Don't take the right wing media crap as any real depiction of the larger Christian church. It isn't representative of anything but the right wing fable.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:34 am |
    • Ironicus

      petemg, what church? The ones that demand you be a believer before they'll help you or let you sleep there? Right. Gotcha.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:34 am |
    • Chicken Flippers

      Christian Churches are very active in helping out the needy in their local communities and typically have a sister parish in another country to also help out thier cause. Yes, churches collect money for the purpose of supporting these activities, paying their bills of taxes, utilities, repairs, education efforts, and the small living expense. I am not talking about the mega churches on tv on Sundays, I am talking about the typical 95% of the typcal American churches in our local communities. Nobody in church HAS to give money to the church, although most will say 10% of your income, no one is going to put a gun to your head and demand money. If you want to give, you give. If you dont want to give, you dont. You can hang back and ask questions of the parish of how they use the money and ask for their financial report and then you can donate money as you feel comfortable. Its just like anything else you would donate money too. You should do it in a informed and intelligent way.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:37 am |
  8. fc

    I myself is an Atheist but I do not shove my beliefs down anyone's throat especially my daughter. I have always encouraged her to go to church and learn what she can so she can make her own decisions. Before an religious zealot makes a comment about my beliefs I was a very involved church attendee when I was younger. I fortunately decided to think for myself and learned that the bible is just a very good fantasy novel.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:26 am |
    • petemg

      It is sad that many Christians turn people away from the true values of Christianity. Your feelings are typical of what the Bible says about End Times. The end of one time and the beginning of another. I am happy you have given your child the advantage of freedom thinking, whether atheist or a religion.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:32 am |
    • Ironicus

      petemg, what are these "true values" you speak of when it is all open to individual interpretation? There can be no standards and no common morals when everyone is free to interpret everything in their own way according to whatever they feel like doing. Religious people have no morals, just convenient excuses and empty justifications whenever they are asked as far as I've ever seen in all my years as a believer and as a non-believer. Consider yourself busted.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:39 am |
    • Burger Fries

      It is great you give your daughter a choice, however your actions are her teacher. Most children are very impressionable and only have their parents as their immediate role models for religion. Besides Christ, there are no super stars of religion on tv and on our lunch boxes or shoes like the NFL football or NBA players. YOU are your childs role model for how to live life and how to incorporate God into your life as you see it.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:40 am |
    • Dr.Funktastic

      Score one for the "intelligent" side.

      I mysefl "is" and athiest. - am
      "anyones throat especiially my daughter" -daughters
      "an religious zealot" -a

      learn to write before you post.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:45 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Please teach us, how did you "learned that the bible is just a very good fantasy novel." Does this mean the person of Jesus never existed? Would you recommend historians stop using the Bible to line up various historical events in the middle east?
      How has your learning comprehended the growth of the 1st century church of The Way?

      December 7, 2011 at 8:59 am |
    • Jeff Williams

      """Would you recommend historians stop using the Bible to line up various historical events in the middle east?"""

      Historians, unless they're biblical scholars, don't use the bible to "line up various events" in the first place.

      December 7, 2011 at 9:47 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Start here and work back to modern day historians and archaeologist, like the ones that found the pools of Salmon

      Secular history supports the Bible. For example, in The Antiquities of the Jews, book 18, chapter 3, paragraph 3 the famous historian Flavius Josephus writes:

      “Now, there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was a doer of wonderful works—a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews, and many of the Gentiles. He was [the] Christ; and when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him, for he appeared to them alive again the third day, as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him; and the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.”

      In 115 AD, P. Cornelius Tacitus wrote the following passage that refers to Jesus (called “Christus,” which means “The Messiah”) in book 15, chapter 44 of The Annals:

      “Consequently, to get rid of the report, Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus, and a most mischievous superst-ition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their centre and become popular. Accordingly, an arrest was first made of all who pleaded guilty; then, upon their information, an immense mult-itude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city, as of hatred against mankind. Mockery of every sort was added to their deaths. Covered with the skins of beasts, they were torn by dogs and perished, or were nailed to crosses, or were doomed to the flames and burnt, to serve as a nightly illumination, when daylight had expired.”

      December 7, 2011 at 10:07 am |
    • Ironicus

      And here's a fool quoting scripture without a god to back him up on any of it. Gotta love them fundies!

      December 7, 2011 at 10:20 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Ironicus, if that was directed at me to what scripture are you referring to being quoted?

      December 7, 2011 at 11:06 am |
    • Ironicus

      Oops, I didn't read your post close enough. Mybad. Nevertheless, Tacitus has been debunked. Might as well have quoted scripture, really. Third-hand reports are not proof and never will be.

      December 7, 2011 at 11:57 am |
    • Mike from CT

      1. It was a sample list not an exhaustive list
      2. Tacitus has not been debunked, please provide evidence (not discussion) to the contrary

      December 7, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
    • Mickey

      @mike

      Its a fantasy novel because it details stories of the actions of omnipotent gods written in an omnipresent tone by a bunch of men.

      Grow up, son.

      December 7, 2011 at 12:30 pm |
    • ohreally

      Saying the bible is fact because it contains some events from recorded history is ridiculous. I read a book about a vampire in the revolutionary war era. Since the revolutionary war was a real, recorded fact, I guess by that logic, vampires exist too.

      December 7, 2011 at 12:41 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      Mickey,
      It would behoove you to read it again. It is not a story of "gods" but of the Personal God. It is not written in the form of a fantasy novel like "Once upon a time" but in the historical narrative of at this time this ruler was in place, this nation existed and this person did this. Again confirmed by historians.

      All history books are written by men.

      So you do not believe that the person of Jesus of Nazerath existed? Let's start there.

      And then we can both grow together.

      December 7, 2011 at 12:42 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      ohreally, it does not contain historical events. It is a recording of historical event. Big difference my friend.

      December 7, 2011 at 12:44 pm |
    • Ironicus

      It is a third-hand "report" of gossip that mentions a cult that call themselves Christians. That is not proof. That is just a pathetic joke desperate Christians use to prop up their lack of proof because they think it provides some support. Well, Mike, it doesn't.

      Tell me, Mike, where are the first-hand reports? Where are the words written by Jesus himself? Where is anything proving that he existed? Nowhere.
      Starting a cult is easy. It doesn't even require the actual presence of the central figure of the cult. Or didn't you think of that?
      Idiot.

      December 7, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      ***Tell me, Mike, where are the first-hand reports?***
      1 Corinithans
      1& 2 Peter
      1,2,3 John
      Matthew
      John
      Acts

      ***Where is anything proving that he existed?***
      1 Corinithans
      1& 2 Peter
      1,2,3 John
      Matthew
      John
      Luke
      Acts

      ***Starting a cult is easy. It doesn't even require the actual presence of the central figure of the cult. Or didn't you think of that?***

      I did think of that, and the problem you have to wrestle with is the growth of the church in the 1st century. When there were still about 500 witnesses to the facts. If there was no Jesus where is the reports to the contrary that says when Paul says "don't believe me ask the witnesses" or when Peter says " 16For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased," 18we ourselves heard this very voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain. 19And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts,"

      See the issue is you constantly changing your position. 1st There are no historians, 2nd I don't believe the historians now because they are 3rd witnesses, even though I believe the same historian when they are third witnesses to Ceasar, then I don't apply the same scrutiny.

      So please explain to us the explosive growth of the Way in the 1st century while there where first hand accounts if there was never a person of Jesus Christ?

      December 8, 2011 at 7:56 am |
    • HotAirAce

      If a cult's growth rate is a measure of the credibility of the cult's myths, doesn't that mean that islam is a more credible cult than christianity?

      December 8, 2011 at 8:05 am |
    • Ironicus

      I have never changed my position and have never relied upon ancient hearsay for my position, so you are shown to be a liar or a fool or both.
      And you never have shown any proof or even words written by Jesus, so you have still failed to show that he existed.
      Simply pointing at all the books in the NT is not a valid argument and not valid proof and never will be. Circular reasoning does not establish the circular "facts" but only establishes and reinforces the fact that you are an imbecile and don't have a single clue on how to argue effectively.
      Where are those missing words by your "savior" himself? Nowhere. But to be honest it wouldn't matter much because they could have been forged just as easily the NT texts were. I have proof your god does not exist. And if you don't like what I put forth all you have to do is cough up some proof we can all examine for veracity.
      There is no veracity to the Bible. You make assertions without any verifiable evidence and act like a child who doesn't want to admit he got caught with his hand in the cookie jar.
      Tacitus heard a few things about a cult. That is gossip. That is hearsay. All it establishes is that there may have been a cult calling themselves Christians during Tacitus' lifetime – and he was born well after Jesus supposedly lived and died.
      All the NT books are known to have been written many decades after "30 AD", and this is during a time when the life expectancy was mere decades regardless of your "threescore and ten" BS.
      I really think you should stop posting here. You clearly can't argue your way out of a wet paper bag, much less make any sort of cogent case for your demonstrably false religion, demonstrably fake "god" and fake "messiah."

      December 8, 2011 at 11:54 am |
    • ffdd

      Ironicus-First learn to write good sentences.
      Spouting garbage with verbose only proves you are an idiot.

      December 8, 2011 at 12:03 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      HAA,
      I did not say it gives creditably, I simply asked people, who seem to be smarter than me and know it all, to explain it. To look into the actual history.

      IR,
      And you never have shown any proof "that this is a dream we are living"... asking for proof that you know does not exist is not a failure.

      The proof is the witnesses standing in front of king and countrymen saying these things you heard and taken place

      ***Circular reasoning does not establish the circular "facts"***

      Teach me how to argue, teach me why you hold rationalism so high without using a rational argument, after all that would be circular?

      So I point you to the evidence and you say show me thje evidence without the evidence. Remember the NT is not one book but 27 independent ones. If a article goes into Reader Digest, does it then become invalid?

      ***Where are those missing words by your "savior" himself?
      There the red ones, but as for the missing words, how would you know they are missing unless found. Do you say the shoes you never owned are missing?

      ***But to be honest it wouldn't matter much because they could have been forged just as easily the NT texts**

      This is the point, PROVED IT TO ME BUT IF YOU DO I WONT BELIEVE ANYWAY, your rebellion cries like a infant.

      ***I have proof your god does not exist. ***
      ***There is no veracity to the Bible. You make assertions without any verifiable evidence "
      That is not proof this is how we started this, archeology, history and no-counter claim that the people of the WAY lied, is the verifiable evidence. What more are you looking for? Compare the roman record to the bible. Compare archeology to the OT.

      Funny how we both use child simalies

      So your issue with Tacitus is that he was born after Jesus. So Lewis and Clark are dead, should we redrawn the USA or take information that was handed down from eyewitnesses. 1 Corithians

      ***All the NT books are known to have been written many decades after

      Wrong 10 years for the first most with in 30 and the last no later then 60 years after

      ***You clearly can't argue your way out of a wet paper bag,***

      When you make statements like *But to be honest it wouldn't matter much * then yes I can see how you don't read, which you already confessed to, then think it is not an arguement.

      December 8, 2011 at 12:43 pm |
  9. gary

    Only deranged or delusional really believe in a grand ghost in the sky ... most "believers" say they believe just to fit in, to be part of "correct society". It's all silly ancient myth and most understand that.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:24 am |
    • ABeliever

      You probably shouldn't state things as facts that you clearly know very little about.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:30 am |
    • CosmicC

      I think a good number of believers are just scared of the alternative. It's a big empty universe and easy to feel lost, so believing is like a security blanket. It can't really protect you from the monsters under your bed, but since they're also imaginary, it does actually help.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:35 am |
    • Ironicus

      Good point, CosmicC.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:40 am |
    • Richard Snyder

      Padre Pia stated that during a confession he had a man who said he was an atheist and did not beleive in hell. "Don't worry the Padre replied, you'll have no problem once you get there.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:49 am |
  10. runswithbeer

    Regardless of my personal religious beliefs, my children have a right to form their own opinions and beliefs when they become adults. Therefore it is important that they be exposed to as much philosophy outside my own narrow experience as possible.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:21 am |
    • Steve

      Interesting thought. But what if the brainwashers succeed, and they join the ranks of delusional believers?

      December 7, 2011 at 8:30 am |
  11. Jim McDonald

    I had a Grandfather who did not believe, but he made sure had all his children were Baptised and received 1st Holy Communion and Confirmation. I don't know if he was an atheist. Perhaps he was more of an agnostic who was still looking.

    As for me, I've almost always felt there was more to this existence than the physical. I've meet people over the years who have never felt or sought anything beyond the corporeal, and never had a problem. I have also always believed in the American 'live and let live' philosophy. I wish more people on the left could accept that outlook, and stop castigating Christians.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:18 am |
    • claybigsby

      castigating christians? are you serious? It is christians who castigate non-believers. cry me a river.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:25 am |
    • cool

      thats fine, just keep YOUR religion out of OUR government

      December 7, 2011 at 8:30 am |
    • Madtown

      Way to politicize it. As long as you went there, how 'bout those on the right, not castigating anyone who doesn't share their christian viewpoints?

      December 7, 2011 at 8:30 am |
    • Steve

      "I've almost always felt there was more to this existence..." I require more evidence than just a "feeling" before I believe in something.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:34 am |
    • ABeliever

      I'm on the left, and I'm a deeply committed Christian. In fact, I believe that Jesus would be considered a left wing liberal, given that he was all about helping the poor and stated that it would easier for a camel to get through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to go to heaven.

      As as far as I can see in this long stream of comments, there are few Christians castigating anyone, but lots and lots of posters saying really disrespectful things about Christians and their faith. In my experience, that is the norm in our world now.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:40 am |
  12. If horses had Gods ...

    I'm an Atheist & I encourage my children to attend services & learn as much as possible about religion. We all live in the same world & it's best for all of us to understand each other & what motivates people.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:16 am |
  13. GreenMtnBoy

    if anyone should belong to a faith it is scientists. Their work continually tries to find answers and it always seems to bring on more questions. I am a Christian, I believe that the 'Big Bang' happened, I do believe a day is a thousand years to God and a thousand years but a day. So the Big bang works just like the book of Genesis describes but it was written so people of that time had a reference to it. The Christian Bible was not written originally for the 21 century, but for people in the first century. How would I explain to a person what a basic cell phone does or even just a radio? Educationally they had no basis of understanding and I would have been killed for being a warlock.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:15 am |
    • Algebra101

      "I do believe a day is a thousand years to God and a thousand years but a day"
      D= day
      Y=year

      1D = 1000Y
      1000Y = 1D
      therefor
      1D = 1D or 1 day = 1 day

      God sucks at math

      December 7, 2011 at 8:27 am |
    • claybigsby

      this argument is garbage. you have alot of absolutes in here. being a christian, i am not surprised. "Big bang works just like the book of Genesis describes but it was written so people of that time had a reference to it. The Christian Bible was not written originally for the 21 century, but for people in the first century." What a crock. The big bang theory, which is what it is; a theory only, does not work like the book of genesis describes, considering it says god created the heavens and the earth. So basically you are saying god is the big bang or created the big bang which created everything we see. Not buying it without substantial proof of god, other than a book written by man.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:30 am |
    • MarcTTF

      “if anyone should belong to a faith it is scientists. Their work continually tries to find answers and it always seems to bring on more questions. “
      Yes that is exactly how it works. There will never be “The End” at the end of a science text book.

      “{I am a Christian, I believe that the 'Big Bang' happened, “
      What is you biblical reference for this belief?

      “I do believe a day is a thousand years to God and a thousand years but a day. “
      You are misquoting, and misunderstanding your bible. Read the passage again and do some research on it.

      “So the Big bang works just like the book of Genesis describes “
      Wrong.

      “but it was written so people of that time had a reference to it. “
      Why would god withhold this information if it were available? He expected people to believe he created the first man from clay, but it was too much to explain the big bang in simple terms?

      “The Christian Bible was not written originally for the 21 century, but for people in the first century.”
      The old testament was around a long time before the 1st century CE.

      “How would I explain to a person what a basic cell phone does or even just a radio? Educationally they had no basis of understanding and I would have been killed for being a warlock.”
      Start with the basics and work your way up.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:45 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Algebra101, you are correct IF you confine your math to our linear scale, but when tomorrow isn't something to happen but a place God has already been then you can understand how your equation is limited.

      December 7, 2011 at 9:02 am |
    • Algebra101

      @MIke
      So in other words, god works in mysterious ways, right?

      December 7, 2011 at 9:09 am |
    • Cedar Rapids

      so apparently tomorrow is a place god has been but he still cant see that someone is about to eat an apple it seems.

      December 7, 2011 at 9:44 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Algebra101, no

      Cedar Rapids, where do you get the idea that God could not see that, as a matter a fact, the opposite is shown to be true since God immediately questions Adam.

      December 7, 2011 at 9:56 am |
    • Algebra101

      @Mike
      Would you care to expand on that 'no', or is that all you got?

      Time, as it relates to days and years, is linear wheather it's past, peresnt or future.

      December 7, 2011 at 10:11 am |
    • Ironicus

      Mike, "God" does not "immediately" question them...if you'd just READ THE DAMN THING!

      December 7, 2011 at 10:21 am |
    • Mike from CT

      "Time, as it relates to days and years"... think about a story in a book or a movie as an analogy. You can put the book down for 5 minutes but from the characters pov no time has pasted.

      Let's read seven verses together then you can read the rest

      6So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.

      8And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. 9But the LORD God called to the man and said to him, "Where are you?" 10And he said, "I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself." 11He said, "Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?"

      December 7, 2011 at 10:55 am |
    • GreenMtnBoy

      Wow... people are doing exactly what i was trying to say. Some of the comments were meant to be funny and were! 🙂 The Bible is written 1st century Christians, salvation in the new testament was for all regardless of the time but... My comment on a day = 1000 years isn't literal, just a statement that God is not confined to our time scale. The number 1,000,000,000 meant nothing to any person 4000 or 2000 or 500 years they had no bases to understand that, it didn't mean a whole lot even 100 years go. that is why when Abraham wasn't told his decedents would equal a billion. Abraham could not have conceived that number but he does understand 'as numerous as the stars in the sky and sand on the seashore'.

      In my church (Grace Baptist), we have room for anyone. we may not agree on everything (and won't on issues) but I'll listen and respect what you have to say and what you believe. Please take heart and have faith in what you believe! I really only want the same.

      December 7, 2011 at 11:06 am |
    • Algebra101

      @Mike from CT

      "think about a story in a book or a movie as an analogy. You can put the book down for 5 minutes but from the characters pov no time has pasted."

      That's becasue they're not real you stupid moron! We don't have the luxury of putting time down for 5 minutes, then coming back to it. How can you not get that? If you go to sleep at 10:00 PM tonight, then is it still 10:00 PM tonight when you wake up the next day? NO! It's the next phuking day you idiot!

      You are beyond hopeless.

      December 7, 2011 at 11:48 am |
    • Ironicus

      Mike, you amaze me with your lack of reading comprehension. Congratulations. Not only do Adam and Eve have time to create a bunch of clothes, they have time to hide and all that before "God" calls out to them. He isn't all-seeing is he?
      And he didn't do it immediately after they ate the fruit, did he? Nope. But keep trying. Someday you'll figure out who wrote all that trash and then you'll be dead from shock and good riddance to ye.

      December 7, 2011 at 12:02 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      Algebra101 and Iron,
      Key word in that post "analogy". How can someone explain you heavenly things when you do not understand earthly things?

      December 7, 2011 at 12:16 pm |
    • Algebra101

      @Mike from CT

      Calling something an analogy doesn't make it one.

      Were you born into this young earth creationism thing, or did you come to it on your own? I'm just curious because of all the fundamentalists out there, YECs intrigue me more than all the others combined.

      December 7, 2011 at 12:55 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      The story book in realation to its reader is an analogy to people inside of time (us) to the one outside of time.

      The issue is do you believe God is outside of time.

      I wouldn't consider myself a YEC. I lean more toward gap theory but still examine all sides of the arguments. I would say I am a YHC, for humans and animals.

      But like every other historical event I learned in life, I learned from someone else.

      December 7, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
    • agnosticandrew

      nah god is awesome at math because its the same answer on either side of the equation, but his logic sucks because that was a retarded process of coming to the solution. But even that makes sense because almost everything to do with Christianity is @ss backwards. If you truly read the bible cover to cover you will find that it is a giant contradiction, God pity's humanity one day and smites them with fire the next ( would provide more specific bible quotes but as I don't know them off the top of my head and it is 3:20AM I really just don't feel like finding them). But enough about that, my true belief is that religion in general is a crutch for the foolish, weak and ignorant, throughout history it has been proven time and time again that religion comprises most of the suffering and persecution of the human race. I feel that the more Athiests/ Agnostics there are the closer humanity will be to world peace and common understanding of the masses. Also education, can't forget education.

      December 8, 2011 at 3:31 am |
    • Mike from CT

      God pity's humanity one day and smites them with fire the next

      That's the contradiction, to have mercy and to judge. Do you not have children that you will punish as needed but do not desire to punish?

      "my true belief is that religion in general is a crutch for the foolish, weak and ignorant,"

      Yes that makes sense it is much weaker to restrain and to forgive some one then to bash their heads in... nice logic

      "Also education, can't forget education."
      History, time and time again, has proven this is not the answer. For it was the most educated in Africa and the Middle East that have been invovled in terrorist attacks.

      December 8, 2011 at 7:45 am |
    • Algebra101

      @Mike

      Mike
      “The story book in realation to its reader is an analogy to people inside of time (us) to the one outside of time.”
      You’re presupposing the existence of god, and also assuming that he can exist “outside time”

      “Do you not have children that you will punish as needed but do not desire to punish?”
      If I had the ability to create a child that didn’t need to be punished, I would, but that is out of my hands. Your god on the other hand, has the ability to create a being that needs no judgment, but chose to create them with that need instead. Sounds kind of like a d-bag to me.

      “Yes that makes sense it is much weaker to restrain and to forgive some one then to bash their heads in... nice logic”
      Who said anything about bashing someone’s head in? You don’t need religion to forgive someone.

      “History, time and time again, has proven this is not the answer. For it was the most educated in Africa and the Middle East that have been invovled in terrorist attacks.”
      Seriously?! You can’t, with any bit of honesty, equate terrorist attacks to education, and if you had one, you would know this. I don’t even know where to go with this one, it’s just that ridiculous.

      December 8, 2011 at 9:23 am |
    • Mike from CT

      I am serious, sorry the point went over your head. Andrew was trying to draw the conclusion that Education will create peace on earth. However, the opposite has been proven to be true

      Just a taste

      Bergen and Pandey further observed that 54 percent of the perpetrators either attended university or had obtained a university degree. The terrorists they studied “thus appear, on average, to be as well educated as many Americans—given that 52 percent of Americans have attended university.

      Finally, they observed that two-thirds of the 25 terrorists involved in the planning and hijacking of the four aircraft on September 11th 2001 had attended university and that two of the 79 had earned PhD degrees while two others were enrolled in doctoral programs.

      December 8, 2011 at 9:37 am |
    • Mike from CT

      You’re presupposing the existence of creation without a creator, which you don't as.sume for any other highly designed concept. "Because I would have done it different" is not a correct answer. For you can not have love without freedom of choice and anger towards the object you love making the incorrect choice.

      December 8, 2011 at 9:40 am |
    • Chuckles

      @Mike

      Aren't you presupposing that there is a creator that needed creating? I mean, your argument can be turned back on you and all you can say is that he's always existed and always will, with little evidence in the bible (your only sourcematerial) that tells you so.
      There's also the theory that since the big bang was such a humongous expansion in such a short amount of time, nor do we know what the universe was like pre-expansion or even immediatly post-expansion. The rules, laws, logic and everything else we hold to be true about the universe weren't born yet, didn't exist. Anything could have happened.

      December 8, 2011 at 9:51 am |
    • Algebra101

      @Mike from CT
      “You’re presupposing the existence of creation without a creator”
      You mean like you are doing with god?

      “"Because I would have done it different" is not a correct answer. For you can not have love without freedom of choice and anger towards the object you love making the incorrect choice.”
      God can do anything he wants can’t he? Why is it automatic that free will also means doing wrong? If god is perfect, he would surely have the ability to create a being that is capable of doing no wrong, while still having free will, n'est pas?

      December 8, 2011 at 10:53 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Chuckles,
      Is it presupposing to assume that StarBucks makes StarBucks coffee? Or is it logical that the creator makes the creation?

      Now as for the well it could be that way before the universe argument. Let me try two things. What was before the big bang, are you saying nothing produced something.

      Also the famous poker argument. If I deal my self 20 four of a kinds in a row, is it wrong for you to make the conclusion that I am cheating or will you accept my "hey man there is a 1/(what ever billion chance of happening) so you should expect that one day "Anything could have happened."

      It's funny that you list the bible as one source material since it is 66 different books. Do you consider articles in Reader's digest one of the same source.

      But hey who mentioned the bible, we are talking about when in life you have seen creation and say I don't think there is a creator I think Starbucks is a random collection of accidents.

      Chuckles, you have great faith.

      Algebra,
      I can't believe you put

      " being that is capable of doing no wrong" and free will in the same sentence

      Why is it automatic that free will also means doing wrong?
      Christians define this as iniquity, transgression and sin.

      Again don't go to the Bible, go to your local bookstore. Find out what the largest section of books are– self help– so you don't have to be a believe in God to believe something has gone wrong with man kind.

      December 8, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
    • Algebra101

      @Mike from CT
      “Is it presupposing to assume that StarBucks makes StarBucks coffee? “
      No, it is not presupposing. Any person in any city that has a Starbucks can go into one and get a coffee that should taste exactly the same as any other Starbucks. That is not a presupposition, it is a hard fact.

      “Now as for the well it could be that way before the universe argument. Let me try two things. What was before the big bang, are you saying nothing produced something.”
      Personally, I’m ok with not knowing that answer to that, and I’m also ok with the fact that if it is ever answered, it most likely won’t be in my lifetime.

      “Also the famous poker argument. If I deal my self 20 four of a kinds in a row, is it wrong for you to make the conclusion that I am cheating or will you accept my "hey man there is a 1/(what ever billion chance of happening) so you should expect that one day "Anything could have happened."”
      That would be like trying to convince yourself you didn’t win the lotto when in fact you did. The odds of something happening are meaningless once they have happened.

      “But hey who mentioned the bible”
      You do all the time.

      “" being that is capable of doing no wrong" and free will in the same sentence”
      Why is that such a stretch for you? I truly don’t see why an all-powerful, all-knowing, all-loving god.could not create such a being. God already sets the boundaries for the constructs of our free will, so why is it so hard to believe that he could have set them differently to remove the possibility of wrong doing while still giving us the freedom to make our own choices within the given constructs.

      “Christians define this as iniquity, transgression and sin.”
      That’s nice, but why does free will have to lead to wrong doing? That would be like designing a machine with an unnecessary flaw that serves no purpose other than to make the machine fail. Not the best design in my opinion.

      “so you don't have to be a believe in God to believe something has gone wrong with man kind.”
      ...or you could just realize that we have gotten much better at diagnosing and coming up with ways to cope with problems that have been around forever, or at least as long as the root causes have been around.

      I’ve enjoyed this debate Mike (no sarcasm intended), and I’ll let you have the final word on it, but I’m going to call a potato a potato and move on.

      Till next time.
      Algebra101 – MarcTTF – TheTruthFairy

      December 8, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
    • Chris

      This is crap.

      Evolution is the theory that something came from nothing (scientifically impossible).

      Creation is the theory that something came from nothing (scientifically impossible).

      The very laws of nature disagree with the very notion that "something can come from nothing" so to use the laws of nature to try to establish that theory as fact, is as useless an effort as anything I've ever seen.

      It takes just as much faith to believe in evolution as it does to believe in a God who created the world. Regardless of how you break it down, either something came from nothing, or something has existed for eternity, all of which are scientifically impossible. Atheist or Religious, you have to have faith in whatever you believe.

      December 8, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
  14. Dragon

    Palestine was asked to leave any sort of questionable Holy Land Neutral Zone yesterday by the local cloud cover here in Littleton, North Carolina. Israel In my heart looks to grow to a size ten to fifty times it's present size in the next two decades. Simply by respectful Camel Jockies who know it's time to bring it in. Islam lost a world war!!! We Jewish, Christian, Buddhists are sick and tired of loving a building that hasn't but a prayer to stay up. The Sears tower should be just a tall and just as WHITE as before Obama was elected. God Bless Israel.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:15 am |
    • cmdvimes

      Let me guess, you're off your meds?

      December 7, 2011 at 8:19 am |
    • Ironicus

      This is why pharmaceutical companies should not be allowed to lobby / bribe our legislators.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:22 am |
    • Jeff Williams

      This is serious mental illness here, people. Don't make fun.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:51 am |
    • AG

      Don't mind him, he's just stoned on God.

      December 7, 2011 at 9:09 am |
    • Cedar Rapids

      I think it must be an example of speaking in tongues or something.

      December 7, 2011 at 9:46 am |
  15. Timothy Stiles

    This study seems to small to warrant attention on the front page of CNN. If you look at the study, you will see it is not 2198 surveys but only 275. Of those, half "do not identify a religious affiliation" and are put in the "atheist" group, so that's only 138 people. Of those, the ones with children (let's say about 70) are the one we studied. 17% of those 70 said they go to church for the sake of their children, that's an entire report based on the results of 12 surveys. Twelve people out of tens of thousands of professors are not a good sample.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:11 am |
  16. Deany Jim

    Okay, and what else is new?

    December 7, 2011 at 8:10 am |
  17. Bob A. Boohigh

    Only the self proclaimed religious folks claim scientiists are against religious people. Religious folks like to try to take the position that their right to religious freedom is under attack and that they are victims. Most people see through this smokescreen though.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:08 am |
  18. Andy

    Great headline: "Some atheists with children attend WITH religious services"

    Also liked this line: "are very against religions people"...did you mean RELIGIOUS people?

    Does anyone look at these articles before they're published? This is an epidemic and it's infuriating.

    December 7, 2011 at 8:03 am |
    • Dallas

      I agree! The scrolling messages at the bottom of the TV are horrible as well!

      December 7, 2011 at 8:08 am |
    • Jeff Williams

      """This is an epidemic and it's infuriating."""

      Welcome to the concept of Idiocracy and the descent of mankind.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:11 am |
    • Ironicus

      That's just Dan Merica. He didn't get the job because of his writing abilities, that much seems clear.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:25 am |
    • Ken

      I'm so glad someone else noticed! Most of the posts on here are even worse. It's so discouraging! How can we ever hope to solve all the complex problems we face if the citizenry can't even master their own language?

      December 7, 2011 at 8:35 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Just cuz you gots more gooder english, that don't mean I ain't smart to.

      December 7, 2011 at 11:57 am |
  19. wayne317

    I could not date anyone that wanted to me and my kids to attend church on a regular basis. Having been to chuch almost every Sunday for over 20 years, i'm still trying to figure out the benefits of it. I've had to spend the past 3 years getting rid of all the lies and junk that i was taught.

    Adam and Eve did not exist
    No worldwide flood
    No tower of babel
    Human female virgins can't have kids
    The bible was created by men, without any divine inspiration.

    100% man made junk.

    December 7, 2011 at 7:59 am |
    • Wimsy

      Not only that, but you don't need a priest to pray, and you don't need a church to be moral.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:05 am |
    • Dallas

      Amen, Wimsy!!

      December 7, 2011 at 8:09 am |
    • Ec1warc1

      I think what this article fails to address is that atheist men attend church to pacify their religious wives.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:12 am |
    • CosmicC

      While improbable, it is possible for a human female vigins to become impregnated in swimming pools.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:19 am |
    • Ironicus

      Time to read up on se.x education, wayne. Virgins can get pregnant with ease because sperm will swim for several feet and there isn't that far to go from the entrance to the uterus anyway. So the virgin thing is still BS but you've missed some details there.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:30 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Wayne, can you please cite your sources that make you come to these conclusion of faith.... especially the world wide flood and how the sediment layer contradicts your faith claims.

      December 7, 2011 at 9:03 am |
    • Cedar Rapids

      easy mike.....there is no world wide sediment layer that suggests a global flood, of any kind. there.

      December 7, 2011 at 9:48 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Apparently not that easy start here and work backwards

      http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/am/v4/n2/folded-not-fractured

      http://www.earthage.org/EarthOldorYoung/scientific_evidence_for_a_worldwide_flood.htm

      December 7, 2011 at 10:01 am |
    • Ironicus

      Oh, yes! Mike wants us to work BACKWARDS! Good going Mike, you win the idiot award for the next five minutes.

      December 7, 2011 at 10:23 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @mikefromCt
      Answer in Genesis is a series of rationalizations, not facts.

      The Center for Science and Culture (sponsored by the Discovery Inst.itute) and other Creationists openly admit that their goal isn't to teach what they think is fact. An internal doc.ument leaked in 1999 described the Discovery group's objective in pushing for creationism to be taught in schools as "to defeat scientific materialism and its destructive moral, cultural and political legacies". They want to use Intelligent Design as a "wedge" to separate science from its allegiance to "atheistic naturalism".

      December 7, 2011 at 12:03 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      Hey Doc,
      I would be interested in said 1999 doc-ument. But moving on, i think we can all agree that we all teach "what we think are facts"

      There is another doc-ument linked to the post..

      December 7, 2011 at 12:15 pm |
    • Chris

      Mike from CT is actually 100% correct.

      Ask any archeologist or scientist about the earths sediment, and they all agree that there IS most definitely sediment found world-wide, regardless of where you look.

      In fact, not only that, animals around the world were buried instantaneously in mud and water with food still in their mouths, many times still standing up, perfectly preserved. How could that possibly happen? Instantaneous MASSIVE flood that INSTANTLY freezes time in it's tracks, capturing plants, and animals immediately, and preserving them perfectly.

      Not to mention the power of water. Plenty of studies have been done, and huge masses of water could have carved the grand canyon out in a matter of days.

      Water run-off is evident from the structure of the mountain ranges across the world. If you look at a globe, they're all aligned perfectly as if water has run off to the sides, and on the sides of many of these mountains, lakes, rivers, oceans, etc were created instantaneously. We've seen just small examples of the power of water with hurricanes, floods, tsunamis, etc... A world-wide flood would cause unimaginable damage, and would change the earths appearance forever.

      http://www.icr.org/worldwide-flood/

      http://www.icr.org/recent-universe/

      http://www.icr.org/articles/view/6425/289/

      http://www.icr.org/articles/view/5106/355/

      The above ^^ mentioned, is just the beginning. I could go for days and weeks with more and more evidence against evolution, and for creation.

      December 8, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
    • HellBent

      Chris,

      While I could blow away every one of the points bit by bit – the science behind them can't even be called that – please answer these two simple questions:

      Where did all of the water come from, and then where did it go?

      Also, why would a creator give us an organ that provides little to no benefit, is entirely unnecessary, and occasionally kills?

      December 8, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
    • Chris

      Hellbent,

      The reason you won't refute the points made, is because you can't. Every single one of those guys have PH.Ds coming out of their @ sses. Many of them graduated from places like Yale, Harvard, etc... Please, I dare you to attempt to refute their studies, research, and proven tests. Many of their points actually came from the results of evolutionist scientists research/studies themselves, lol.

      Secondly, you must be mentally handicapped, because if you knew ANYTHING you would know that water covers over 71% of the earths surface. The depths of which is unimaginable.

      Reference: http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/env99/env300.htm
      Reference: http://www.noaa.gov/ocean.html

      Secondly, a HUGE amount of additional water is stored BENEATH the earths surface in massive oceans/lakes.

      Reference: http://www.livescience.com/1312-huge-ocean-discovered-earth.html

      If the entire earths surface was covered with JUST the water present on the surface now, it would be approximately 1.8 – 2.0 miles deep in every spot. If you took the water UNDER the earths surface and also put that on top, it would be even deeper. We're talking MILES deep in EVERY spot.

      Geez... Where do you people come from =\

      December 8, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
    • HellBent

      "Secondly, you must be mentally handicapped, because if you knew ANYTHING you would know that water covers over 71% of the earths surface. The depths of which is unimaginable."

      Thank you for that insight – proving that you haven't thought this out in the least. In order to have a flood that covers all of the land in the world, you wold necessarily need more water than is currently in the ocean. Since this is apparently hard for you, try this on for size. Put a large rock in a fish tank. Fill the tank up so that half of the rock is covered. Now try flooding that rock completely using only the water in the tank. Good luck.

      December 8, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
    • HellBent

      That you can't see that using science to argue the existence of a flood is amusing.

      I still see there's no response to that second simple question. I won't be holding my breath.

      December 8, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
    • Q

      Worse still for the flood mythologists is that pesky fossil record showing a nice progression of forms, e.g. first fish, then amphibians, then reptiles, then birds combined with the discrete stacking of modern/extant forms over top of ancient/extinct forms, e.g. pterosaurs exclusively found below whales, etc. No viable explanation for this when arguing a single mass extinction of all those coexisting forms, but of course, this just scratches the surface when it comes to YEC global flood contradictions...

      December 8, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
    • Chris

      Hellbent,

      Again, you are coming at it from the perspective that the surface of the earth IS and always HAS BEEN the way it is NOW.

      If you are going to argue against the idea of a world-wide flood, you have to argue against the WHOLE idea of it. Meaning, that the earths surface was completely re-shaped as a result of the flood. Meaning, you didn't have the huge depths of the oceans that we have now. That you didn't have the mountains that you have now. That you didn't have the canyons that you have now. The list goes on.

      IF there was a world-wide flood that happened according to the Scriptures, then it would have been a MASSIVE natural disaster. The Bible talks about "the fountains of the deep opening up" and the whole earth being shaken, the Bible also gives reference to the possibility that there was a "water canopy" surrounding the earth prior to the flood that was released, and ALL the water from that canopy fell onto the planet, and that as the earth shook, the fountains of the deep roared up, the waters from the heavens fell, and as the water was diminishing, the mountains rose up as plates shifted, etc...

      We're talking about a MAJOR restructuring of the surface of the planet. And scientific evidence supports that idea. Some of the links below give pieces of that evidence.

      Rapid Rifting in Ethiopia Challenges Evolutionary Model by Brian Thomas, M.S.: http://www.icr.org/articles/view/5106/355/

      Continents Didn't Drift, They Raced by Brian Thomas, M.S.: http://www.icr.org/articles/view/5588/355/

      When Did the Mountains Rise? by John D. Morris, Ph.D.: http://www.icr.org/articles/view/103/355/

      Archaeopteryx Is a Bird. . . Again by Brian Thomas, M.S.: http://www.icr.org/article/6429/

      Evolution Is Biologically Impossible by Joseph Mastropaolo, Ph.D.: http://www.icr.org/article/evolution-biologically-impossible/

      Both Argon and Helium Diffusion Rates Indicate a Young Earth by Larry Vardiman, Ph.D.: http://www.icr.org/article/6229/

      What Magnetized the Moon? by Brian Thomas, M.S.: http://www.icr.org/articles/type/9/

      A Well-Watered Land: Effects of the Genesis Flood on Precipitation in the Middle East by Larry Vardiman, Ph.D.: http://www.icr.org/article/6091/

      'Dinosaur Plant' Evolution Stories Conflict by Brian Thomas, M.S.: http://www.icr.org/article/6433/

      The above mentioned ^^ are just the beginning... I can keep going if you'd like. But why don't you chew on those for a bit.

      And again, if you're going to attempt to refute the concept of a world-wide flood, then you have to refute the ENTIRE concept, not just a part of it. OBVIOUSLY if the worlds surface was the same as it is today, then that wouldn't be possible.

      Again, where do you people come from....

      December 8, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
    • Q

      Oops. Can't forget the mammals miraculously showing up after reptiles and prior to birds...

      December 8, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
    • Q

      Those who link to ICR really should cross-reference with TalkOrigins.

      December 8, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
    • Chris

      Hellbent,

      I am using scient to argue the point. You just refuse to accept the idea that things haven't always been the way they are now. Which is foolish, because even evolution states that the mountains have only recently risen in the past 2 million years. Which in evolutionist years, that's like yesterday compared to 500+ million years ago. You're arguing against yourself, but ok.

      And, I don't even know what organ you're referencing. Our organs kill us every day. Starting with our heart. Livers explode in our bodies and kill us. Our brains blow up with anurisms, and we die instantaneously. What exactly are you referring to? =\

      Q, if you look at the concept of a world-wide flood happening instantaneously, then yes, you would have the fish species buried first, then mammals, and then birds. Obviously the surface of the earth billowing out mud/water would bury millions, if not billions of fish instantaneously, then as the water rises around the world, the mammals would be next, and finally, the birds can only fly so long, and stay alive so long before being buried themselves. So yes, you are correct, that is the order in which the geological column is set up.

      Funny thing is, those same species that are at the BOTTOM of the geological column, are still alive today. No adaptation, no mutations, no variations... the same exact species. Infact, over 95% of the species found in the geological column, are still alive today. And the other 3 – 5% of species that aren't around anymore, are found up and down the geological column at different times/ages. So, according to evolution, that would not be realistic either. That's just common sense... That's why many evolutionist scientists are struggling with evolution as a theory, and how realistic it really might be or not be. It's a religion. It takes faith to accept it. There still is NO missing link. There are no different species that have mutated, or "evolved". If we have evolved like evolution says we have, then there would be BILLIONS of "evolved" species. But... Alas, there's NONE. There would be BILLIONNNNNNNSSSSSS of evolved species. We're talking MILLIONS of years worth of "evolving" creatures, and life forms... WHERE ARE THEY?!?!?

      December 8, 2011 at 5:47 pm |
    • Q

      @Chris, you fail to see the simple point in that pterosaurs, i.e. extinct flying dinosaurs, are found exclusively below whales, aquatic mammals. Your explanation of successive eco-niche burial fails here. Go ahead and search ICR and AIG (again) and you'll not find a viable explanation, rather you may find "Hydro-dynamic sorting" (fail) or "floating biomes" (fail again).
      geology". Your ICR contentions have been well-refuted so again, I encourage you to cross-reference those claims against the TalkOrigins archives...

      December 8, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
    • Chris

      Q,

      Once again, your own statements are arguing against you. The Pterosaur was originally claimed by evolutionists to have gone extinct because it couldn't compete with other birds in the air. That it wasn't "advanced" or "evolved" enough, that it was a "primitive" model of a bird. The Pterosaur wasn't the only bird type that low in the "geological column" either.

      Secondly, there are no connected species to the Pterosaur that show that any "evolution" was present. Just like every other species/fossil in the geological column, it was a sudden appearance. No evolution involved, whatsoever. Which again, points to instant creation by an intelligent being. NOT "evolution", evolving from a mammal into a flying creature. Again, all this supposedly happened over the course of MILLIONS of years, so there should be BILLIONS of fossils proving your point. And yet, there are none. Also, the Pterosaur has every characteristic of a unique bird.

      Lastly, after new technology became available, evolutionists actually discovered that the Pterosaur easily out-performed, and out-maneuvered other birds, and should NOT have gone extinct, because it could have easily been the most DOMINANT thing in the air, even more sophisticated then bats.

      http://www.icr.org/article/pterosaur/

      Pterosaurs do nothing but argue against you, again.

      December 8, 2011 at 6:14 pm |
    • Q

      @Chris – First, pterosaurs are dinosaurs, not birds. Second, it is exclusively found below whales and all other mammals and more recent reptiles, amphibians and fish. Again, this could not be if it coexisted with these other forms, died and was buried at the same time. Your linked article says nothing of its relative position within the fossil record and says nothing to explain why it is exclusively found below the other forms mentioned, i.e. if it coexisted with the other forms, it shouldn't be so discretely isolated far, far below those other forms (e.g. we should see eagles, and vultures and bats, etc right alongside them in the same geologic strata rather than far, far above).

      The rest of your article is a mashed up misrepresentation of what evolution does and does not predict. Of course all fossils are found "fully formed", they're complete organisms. The evidence for evolution is found within their respective positions as they relate to other forms, i.e. a single point doesn't yield a slope. Fossils are rare (and so your demand for billions of fossils is not realistic unless confined to aquatic invertebrates (wherein there is immense evidence of evolution, even over relatively short geologic time frames, e.g. 50-200K yrs). Vertebrate fossils are exceptionally rare and the resolution of the available forms over the applicable temporal scales is not sufficient to provide the demanded step-by-step transitions for every form (though there are plenty of examples of intermediate/transitional forms in various species). It's very clear your only apparent source is ICR, so again, please cross-reference with the TalkOrigins archives to learn why the ICR claims simply don't stand up under a minimal scrutiny. There are plenty of other confounding observations for flood geology ranging from physics, chemistry, paleontology, bio-geography, population genetics, etc, etc but it's clear if I were to bring these in too, you'd head back to ICR, search on a key word, and then fail to understand the basic science underlying the conflicts. Suffice it to say that the relative positions of the classes of vertebrates combined with the general relationships of extant species residing far above extinct species (regardless of their respective vertebrate class) is an impossibility in a scenario where they are claimed to have all lived simultaneously and were all drowned and buried simultaneously.

      December 8, 2011 at 6:46 pm |
    • Q

      Correction: pterosaurs were flying reptiles, not technically dinosaurs (I misapplied "dinosaur" in its general sense).

      December 8, 2011 at 6:51 pm |
  20. JT

    Actually, they take their children to these churches to show them how ridiculous it all is and to see actual grown adults worshiping sky fairies and zombies. "See Jimmy, look at all these superst-itious people muttering to themselves with their eyes closed".

    December 7, 2011 at 7:58 am |
    • Jeff Williams

      """they take their children to these churches to show them how ridiculous it all is and to see actual grown adults worshiping sky fairies and zombies."""

      It IS much easier to see when you're standing outside the box looking in.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:01 am |
    • Scott

      I take my son for the reasons stated in the article above. I hope that he is able to think critically and see what it is, but if he becomes religious, that doesn't change anything. I made sure that he was exposed to all viewpoints.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:13 am |
    • CosmicC

      I'm with Scott. I'm an atheist and both of my girls were brought up Unitarian Universalists, a religion that requires that each individual make an informed decision. Probably as many as half of our congregation is atheist.

      December 7, 2011 at 8:22 am |
    • Ironicus

      CosmicC, is that you Peace?

      December 7, 2011 at 8:31 am |
    • But ThenAgain

      On the outside looking in, Jeffy? Actually, it's going to be a lot HARDER when you stand on the outside looking into Heaven and find out you will not be able to enter because of your non-Belief! That will be truly hilarious for you I would imagine. Yet the alternative will be a truly HOT one! And it's for Eternity, Jeffy!

      December 7, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.