home
RSS
Atheists to start 1-800 hotline for doubters
The group Recovering from Religion plans to start a helpline for people struggling with religious doubts.
June 4th, 2013
03:08 PM ET

Atheists to start 1-800 hotline for doubters

By Dan Merica, CNN
[twitter-follow screen_name='DanMericaCNN']

(CNN) – Who can people call when religious doubts arise, but they're afraid to talk to their faith leaders or families?

A group that helps people "recover" from religion says it's ready to pick up the phone.

Recovering from Religion, which has about 40 support groups in the U.S. and Britain, plans to launch a hotline that will offer doubters an anonymous place to ask difficult questions and find communities of like-minded nonbelievers.

The group plans to staff the help line 24 hours a day and is modeling it after services like suicide prevention hotlines.

Sarah Morehead, executive director of Recovering from Religion, told CNN that the mission is to help people, not convert them to atheism.

“A lot of the times they just need someone to talk to," Morehead said.

The 1-800 number has yet to be named. Recovering from Religion is trying to raise $30,000 by June 30 to fund "The Hotline Project" with up to 40 counselors.

Ideally, the help line would be live by the holiday season, said Morehead, which is often a difficult time for people struggling with religious doubts.

Photos: Famous atheists and their beliefs

The idea for the hotline sprang up after calls came in to the Recovering from Religion phone line from people who were questioning their faith and needed to talk to someone. Morehead said she gets a few calls every day and hundreds of e-mails a month from people seeking counseling.

From there, she said, it seemed a hotline that provided a permanent, anonymous place to talk to someone was the best option.

"Coming out" as a nonbeliever - or even a doubter - can often be extremely difficult, Morehead and others say. In addition to the existential worries, budding nonbelievers run the risk of alienating family and friends.

The help line’s volunteer counselors will be trained to not engage in religious debate, Morehead said. Instead, they will try to give callers “practical, action-oriented solutions.”

When someone first calls the hotline, the counselor will start by simply asking the caller to talk about his or her personal story, said Morehead.

Later, the counselor and the caller might work on an action plan. The caller's goals may concern formally leaving religion altogether, but Morehead said that counselors will also offer advice on finding a new faith or connecting with a local community of nonbelievers.

Some blogs have questioned the hotline, however, calling it a ploy to increase the number of atheists in America.

Headlines like “New 1-800 Number Funded By Liberals To Convert Christians to Atheists,” for example, have cropped up at a number of conservative blogs.

Morehead said her critics fail to grasp the point of Recovering from Religion.

“Most of the people who contact us are working their way towards disbelief, so of course we are very equipped to handle that,” Morehead said. “That is not the goal, though, or the job of the facilitators.”

Photos: 'Born-again' celebrities

This hotline is not completely unique in the world of religious "nones" – people who either don’t believe in God or don’t affiliate with any religious beliefs. Atheists have long discussed disbelief in the comfort of online anonymity.

“We have seen how important the Internet is, especially young people questioning their faith, and this provides them with another resource with a different focus,” said Jesse Galef, communications director for the Secular Student Alliance. “For people who want more guidance, I think this resource will be very valuable.”

Services that help religious doubters have thrived recently.

The Clergy Project, an online community for preachers who no longer believe in God, has grown from 52 to nearly 500 people since its founding in 2011, said Teresa MacBain, the former executive director of the project.

MacBain, a former pastor who converted to atheism, called the help line "another way for people to contact someone anonymously and discuss the struggles they are having for their beliefs.”

“If this project had been around when I found the Clergy Project, I would have used it.”

MacBain said she plans to get training as one of the counselors and hopes to be answering calls when the service launches.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • United States

soundoff (3,878 Responses)
  1. Brian

    it's cool that they're figuring out a way to monetize this thing

    June 7, 2013 at 8:51 am |
  2. Ted Rodosovich

    prey pray

    June 7, 2013 at 4:10 am |

    • Pray, prey (for all the good it'll do you).

      June 7, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
  3. GodFreeNow

    A Comprehensive Critique by Me:

    God, the giver of all life and all things, seems to be very stingy about giving religious people the ability to design web sites.

    June 6, 2013 at 10:48 pm |
    • GodFreeNow

      Misplaced response to GOOD NEWS

      June 6, 2013 at 10:49 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Pray for the ability to find the reply button

      June 7, 2013 at 8:59 am |
    • HAL 3001

      Clearly prayer doesn't work. As usual.

      June 7, 2013 at 9:50 am |
    • Snopes.com

      Claim: Clearly prayer doesn't work.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

      :mrgreen:      True

      June 7, 2013 at 9:55 am |
  4. Rob

    What is an atheist hot line? Do you call and nobody answers?

    June 6, 2013 at 10:19 pm |
    • mary

      seeing as god never answers prayers, that would be better than what the religious believe.

      June 6, 2013 at 10:28 pm |
    • Mike

      Works about the same as prayer.

      June 6, 2013 at 10:47 pm |
    • Athy

      At least someone will answer. Nobody answers a prayer, not even an answering machine.

      June 7, 2013 at 12:27 am |
    • Sue

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6H9BuxeNro0

      June 8, 2013 at 12:44 am |
  5. Vladimir

    An atheist was taking a walk through the woods, admiring all that evolution had created.

    "What majestic trees! What powerful rivers! What beautiful animals!", he said to himself. As he was walking along the river, he heard a rustling in the bushes behind him. When he turned to see what the cause was, he saw a 7-foot grizzly charging right towards him. He ran as fast as he could. He looked over his shoulder and saw that the bear was closing, He ran even faster, crying in fear. He looked over his shoulder again, and the bear was even closer. His heart was pounding and he tried to run even faster. He tripped and fell on the ground. He rolled over to pick himself up, but saw the bear right on top of him, reaching for him with his left paw and raising his right paw to strike him.

    At that moment, the Atheist cried out "Oh my God!...." Time stopped. The bear froze. The forest was silent. Even the river stopped moving.

    As a bright light shone upon the man, a voice came out of the sky, "You deny my existence for all of these years; teach others I don""t exist; and even credit creation to a cosmic accident. Do you expect me to help you out of this predicament? Am I to count you as a believer?"

    The atheist looked directly into the light "It would be hypocritical of me to suddenly ask You to treat me as Christian now, but perhaps could you make the bear a Christian?" "Very well," said the voice.

    The light went out. The river ran again. And the sounds of the forest resumed.

    And then the bear dropped his right paw ..... brought both paws together...bowed his head and spoke: "Lord, for this food which I am about to receive, I am truly thankful."

    June 6, 2013 at 8:13 pm |
    • mary

      Wow, that's really funny, Vladimir./sarcasm

      P!ss off, you disgusting religiotard.

      June 6, 2013 at 10:31 pm |
    • Austin

      Stupendous!

      June 6, 2013 at 10:36 pm |
    • faith

      DM MURDOCH

      June 7, 2013 at 6:01 am |
    • Larry

      Looney Marie , if you are not into belief and religion why are you on this blog all day long? crazy foolish grandma

      June 7, 2013 at 7:33 am |
    • sam stone

      Larry: It is fun watching religious people try to convince others to adopt their religion, or blather endless empty proxy threats ("we're in the end days (jeebus will be coming back any day now, annnnyyyyy day) and you unrepentent sinners are going face judgement). Do these folks not realize that quoting "scripture" (code word for translated, edited iron age hearsay) to those who do not accept the dubious authority of the book from which the "scripture" is lifted. It is amusing watching folks justify their bigotry by hiding behind a book. Our fave-or-ite little troll, Filth, makes sambo comments about me. My race or gender is not relevant here. This is entertainment

      June 7, 2013 at 8:29 am |
    • Doobs

      A Christian was taking a walk through the woods, admiring all that he believed his god had created.

      "What majestic trees! What powerful rivers! What beautiful animals!", he said to himself. As he was walking along the river, he heard a rustling in the bushes behind him. When he turned to see what the cause was, he saw a 7-foot grizzly charging right towards him. He ran as fast as he could. He looked over his shoulder and saw that the bear was closing, He ran even faster, crying in fear. He looked over his shoulder again, and the bear was even closer. His heart was pounding and he tried to run even faster. He tripped and fell on the ground. He rolled over to pick himself up, but saw the bear right on top of him, reaching for him with his left paw and raising his right paw to strike him.

      At that moment, the Christian cried out "Oh my God! Help me! You promised that you would answer my prayers! Save me from this bear!"

      At the Christian's funeral, his family and friends comforted themselves by saying, "God called him home because he loves him so much." and "This was god's will." and "God works in mysterious ways."

      June 9, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
    • tallulah13

      How about this one, Vlad? Christians in Oklahoma prayed that they would be spared from the tornadoes that ravaged their cities. Several died anyway, including children.

      June 9, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
  6. Ken Margo

    If god "knows all" and "has a plan for us" as some like to say. Then he must approve of this phone line being created, right? He created the individuals that are creating this phone line. Therefore god is promoting the fact he doesn't exist. Right?

    June 6, 2013 at 4:53 pm |
    • Conspiracy

      The question isn't if gods exist the question is why shouldn't people be allowed to have them, or talk about them.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:00 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      I think that is the question. If you have doubts, this number will will give you someone to talk to.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      I'm not religious. I'm just having fun with the topic.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:10 pm |
    • faith

      by golly, i think kenny the kangie stumped us. o well.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:06 pm |
    • anthony parks

      God does know all. He for SURE knows that you are a smartass know it all, and he saved you life today.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:17 pm |
    • faith

      k moe, if i were as tarded as u, i'd still b smarter, u giganitic idiot!

      try again dodo. "if this and that then..." u r so stoopid. try other "thens" u moron. u do do this all the time. good luck u idiot!

      love ur # 1 fan

      Ken Margo
      If god "knows all" and "has a plan for us" as some like to say. Then he must approve

      June 6, 2013 at 6:20 pm |
    • Chessie

      faith: "k moe, if i were as tarded as u, i’d still b smarter, u giganitic idiot!"

      Reported abuse. The derogatory term for mentally challenged people is unacceptable. Especially for one who professes to be Christian. We are all God's creatures. Shame on you.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:30 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @Anthony..............How did he save my life today? I didn't know I was in danger.

      @faith......................What are you trying to say?

      June 6, 2013 at 6:30 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @chessie....................Do you include lesbians and gays as gods creatures also?

      June 6, 2013 at 6:31 pm |
  7. Alias

    Can I prove there is no god?
    Of course not. You cannot prove a negative.
    But considering every civilization made up its own religion, how could you not thik that there are all the same?

    June 6, 2013 at 4:47 pm |
  8. Russ

    The irony never fails to amaze...
    such incisive skeptics and so-called 'doubters'...
    with so much confidence in themselves.

    June 6, 2013 at 4:28 pm |
    • ME II

      I doubt that you understand the concept of skepticism... but I could be wrong.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:31 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      I'd rather have confidence in myself than a god that can't be shown to exist.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:33 pm |
    • Gord

      P!ss off, Russ. Go get back on your knees for your Jesus and open wide.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:33 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Some people do feel that people with low self esteem or a lack of self-confidence are infected by religion at an disproportionate rate.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:37 pm |
    • GodFreeNow

      @ Russ,

      If it helps to make sense, think of us as lazy. We don't want to waste our energy on things that do not have sufficient return on investment. Is it confidence in myself that I believe in the force of gravity? Gravity is. I accept the isness of it. I don't need to work to prove it. I'm confident that it is self-evident.

      Make sense?

      June 6, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
    • Russ

      @ ME II: the hypocrisy of most skeptics is their failure to turn a consistent lens on themselves.
      The skeptic is often incredibly skeptical of everything *except* him/herself.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:21 pm |
    • Russ

      @ truth prevails:
      you exist. and yet you did not make yourself. that alone should bring humility into the discussion.
      after all, supreme confidence in an admittedly finite agent seems a bit contradictory, right?

      June 6, 2013 at 5:25 pm |
    • Russ

      @ TTTOO: is it a lack of self-esteem to have an accurate understanding of one's own limitations?

      June 6, 2013 at 5:26 pm |
    • Russ

      @ GodFree:
      gravity acts upon you whether you choose to acknowledge its reality or not.
      similarly, existence itself...
      yet to be "lazy" about the purpose for which one exists seems incredibly self-defeating.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:36 pm |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      Atheists are much more humble than Christians; we don't believe that the entire point of the universe is us and that the creator of this massive ball of energy is somehow concerned with what we eat and drink and who we find s3xually attractive.

      But existence itself does not imply any particular god with any particular qualities. Mysteries abound.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:47 pm |
    • ME II

      @Russ
      "The skeptic is often incredibly skeptical of everything *except* him/herself."

      "I think therefore I am" is about as fundamental as one can get, but I'm guessing that you mean his/her own knowledge. Although, if one is extremely skeptical of all things and only accepts that which has substantial evidence, then wouldn't the knowledge gained by such process be extremely reliable?

      June 6, 2013 at 5:53 pm |
    • mama k

      Russ @ TTTOO: "is it a lack of self-esteem to have an accurate understanding of one's own limitations?"

      I wouldn't at all consider it a lack of self-esteem to want to understand more of one's own limitations. Quite the contrary. I think we all attempt to analyze what seems to be our limitations. So we are constantly test those limitations in different ways hoping it will either prove us wrong, or at least help us confirm such limitation, but each time allow us to describe it in some way that keeps us learning about it. Without such exercise, one can easily be over-zealous in assuming they are being accurate with their understanding of such limitations.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:54 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Hebrews 1:3

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:00 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Russ, I would not say that a realistic understanding of one's limitations is at all the same thing as low self esteem. But you mentioned (unwarranted?) high self-confidence – ironic, you said. My point was toward low self esteem or a lack of self-confidence. These lead to what, as you know, I would call self-deception: religion. I think I'd rather be a source of irony.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:01 pm |
    • Russ

      @ Cpt Obvious: you preclude the possibility of such a view of existence while admitting 'mysteries abound.'
      which is it? humility or supreme confidence that the universe CANNOT be this or that way?

      June 6, 2013 at 6:10 pm |
    • Russ

      @ ME II:
      1) if you only believe what is empirically verifiable, then the premise itself fails its own condition. it's self-refuting.
      2) the Cartesian revolution is not as fundamental as you can get. it's why Hume & Kant & others who followed would press the issue. it is very ironic (if not hypocritical) to be so skeptical of everything else and not yourself – including your own faculties of logic.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:14 pm |
    • Russ

      @ mama k: then the point holds.
      with so much readily available empirical evidence of our limitations, it is illogical to take such a strong stand against divinity as a mere possibility ("strong atheism").

      June 6, 2013 at 6:17 pm |
    • Russ

      @ TTTOO: on what basis do you make that connection?
      i think you are demonstrating my point – your presupposition (that there is no God) is leading you to conclude all the religious (90+% of the planet) is suffering from low self-esteem. on what basis do you begin w/ that presupposition?

      again, an accurate self-assessment is not low self-esteem. it's integral to living life. otherwise, it's the man who believes he can fly off his own second-story roof saying his neighbors all suffer from low self-esteem.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      Russ,
      " .. with so much readily available empirical evidence of our limitations, it is illogical to take such a strong stand against divinity as a mere possibility ("strong atheism")."

      There is no evidence of a god so it is illogical to believe in it. It is possible that a god put the singularity in place and left the universe to its own devices, but would that be considered a possibility if our ancient ancestors in their ignorance hadn't attributed thunder to the displeasure of the gods, and eclipses as a sign from the gods, or floods and drought as retribution from the gods, and the randomness and uncertainty of life to the whims of capricious gods? I think not.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:26 pm |
    • Russ

      @ Santa: most atheists agree that 'strong atheism' is a logical failure because it necessarily requires omniscience to rule out completely the possibility of God. are you claiming omniscience?

      June 6, 2013 at 6:30 pm |
    • mama k

      Yes, Russ – I definitely don't fall into that strong atheism category. When you say "the point holds", does that refer to your OP, regarding skeptics with "so much confidence"? I wasn't sure if that OP was supposed to be a reply to something else. So your OP was directed at views you perceived as coming from "strong" atheists, or all atheists?

      June 6, 2013 at 6:43 pm |
    • mama k

      People naturally try to be confident when debating, Russ. That doesn't mean that confident debaters never engage in self-inspection; self-analysis.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:47 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      Russ, I'm not claiming omniscience. I could make that accusation of you – you don't know but claim a god. I said
      "There is no evidence of a god so it is illogical to believe in it. It is possible that a god put the singularity in place and left the universe to its own devices, but would that be considered a possibility if our ancient ancestors in their ignorance hadn't attributed thunder to the displeasure of the gods, and eclipses as a sign from the gods, or floods and drought as retribution from the gods, and the randomness and uncertainty of life to the whims of capricious gods? I think not."

      I don't know but I think it extremely unlikely as I outlined above. You have no evidence at all for a god yet you are high-handed in dismissing comments that point that out. Our ancestors didn't know about evolution or astrophysics which disprove all creation myths so I ask again – how likely is it that we'd even think of a god as a possibility if our ancient ancestors in their ignorance hadn't attributed thunder to the displeasure of the gods, and eclipses as a sign from the gods, or floods and drought as retribution from the gods, and the randomness and uncertainty of life to the whims of capricious gods?

      June 6, 2013 at 7:05 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Russ, you said that I "conclude all the religious (90+% of the planet) is suffering from low self-esteem." Actually, I did say "some people do feel that people with low self esteem or a lack of self-confidence are infected by religion at a disproportionate rate." I am one of the people who feel that way. Actually, I learned so from an evangelist who explained that people often need to be at a low point in their lives (he used the word "broken") if they are to come to faith in Jesus.

      June 6, 2013 at 7:23 pm |
    • Science

      Hey Russ also visit link on bottom of post................then leave your comment ok ?

      No god(s) needed..........but physics is required.............and it works every time.

      Quantum Teleportation Between Atomic Systems Over Long Distances

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130606140844.htm

      http://piersmorgan.blogs.cnn.com/2013/06/06/valedictorian-breaks-school-rule-recites-lords-prayer-during-graduation-speech/#comment-190908

      June 7, 2013 at 11:49 am |
  9. Dyslexic doG

    Yesterday morning there was a knock at my door. A pleasant and enthusiastic young couple were there.

    Bill Deacon: "Hi! I'm Bill Deacon, and this is HeavenSent."

    HeavenSent: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us."

    Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?"

    Bill Deacon: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you."

    Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?"

    Bill Deacon: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass."

    Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..."

    HeavenSent: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?"

    Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..."

    Bill Deacon: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us."

    Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?"

    HeavenSent: "Oh yes, all the time..."

    Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?"

    Bill Deacon: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town."

    Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?"

    HeavenSent: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you."

    Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?"

    Bill Deacon: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money."

    Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?"

    Bill Deacon: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it."

    Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?"

    HeavenSent: "Well, maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street."

    Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?"

    Bill Deacon: "In this town, Hank is the same as good luck. All good things are attributed to Hank'"

    Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game."

    Bill Deacon: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you."

    Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..."

    HeavenSent: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank."

    Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?"

    Bill Deacon: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on."

    Me: "Who's Karl?"

    HeavenSent: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times."

    Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?"

    Bill Deacon: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself."

    From the Desk of Karl
    1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town.
    2. Use alcohol in moderation.
    3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you.
    4. Eat right.
    5. Hank dictated this list Himself.
    6. The moon is made of green cheese.
    7. Everything Hank says is right.
    8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.
    9. Don't use alcohol.
    10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments.
    11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you.

    Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead."

    HeavenSent: "Hank didn't have any paper."

    Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting."

    Bill Deacon: "Of course, Hank dictated it."

    Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?"

    HeavenSent: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people."

    Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?"

    HeavenSent: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right."

    Me: "How do you figure that?"

    HeavenSent: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!"

    Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up."

    Bill Deacon: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too."

    Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong."

    Bill Deacon: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure."

    Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..."

    HeavenSent: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese."

    Me: "I'm not really an expert, but not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it plausible that it might be made of cheese."

    Bill Deacon: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists don’t know everything, but we know Hank is always right!"

    Me: "We do?"

    HeavenSent: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so."

    Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.'"

    Bill Deacon: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking."

    Me: "But...oh, never mind.

    June 6, 2013 at 4:23 pm |
    • Bob

      You must share this everywhere!

      June 6, 2013 at 4:48 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      dog, babbling doesn't become you.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
    • anthony parks

      probably one of the dumbest things i half way read. Dude you REALLY babble to much.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:30 pm |
    • Science

      Hey HS...........dog has your attribute ...............lmao !

      June 6, 2013 at 5:32 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      WOW, I made it to THE SHOW! Atheism been veddy good to me. I just want to play well and help the team.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:43 pm |
    • anthony parks

      @HeavenSent
      That is all Dog and Science do is babble and spew hate for anyone who doesn't follow their way of thinking.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:50 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      anthony parks, thank God it could be worse (LOL).

      June 6, 2013 at 6:02 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      just a little gift to my friends HeavenSent and Bill Deacon. 🙂

      All you others, stop getting your knickers in a twist! It's just a fun allegory.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:03 pm |
    • pothead

      LMAO without even smoking one,thanks dog

      June 8, 2013 at 11:11 am |
  10. Bob

    Since we've got HeavenStench dumping select quotes on us again from her horrid Christian book of nasty AKA the bible, it's time to look again at what's really in that evil book. Fine stuff like this, from both awful testaments. And note carefully the points re context and interpretation:

    Numbers 31:17-18
    17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
    18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

    Deuteronomy 13:6 – “If your brother, your mother’s son or your son or daughter, or the wife you cherish, or your friend who is as your own soul entice you secretly, saying, let us go and serve other gods … you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death”

    Revelations 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

    Leviticus 25
    44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
    45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
    46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

    Note that the bible is also very clear that you should sacrifice and burn an animal today because the smell makes sicko Christian sky fairy happy. No, you don't get to use the parts for food. You burn them, a complete waste of the poor animal.

    Yes, the bible really says that, everyone. Yes, it's in Leviticus, look it up. Yes, Jesus purportedly said that the OT commands still apply. No exceptions. But even if you think the OT was god's mistaken first go around, you have to ask why a perfect, loving enti-ty would ever put such horrid instructions in there. If you think rationally at all, that is.

    And then, if you disagree with my interpretation, ask yourself how it is that your "god" couldn't come up with a better way to communicate than a book that is so readily subject to so many interpretations and to being taken "out of context", and has so many mistakes in it. Pretty pathetic god that you've made for yourself.

    So get out your sacrificial knife or your nasty sky creature will torture you eternally. Or just take a closer look at your foolish supersti-tions, understand that they are just silly, and toss them into the dustbin with all the rest of the gods that man has created.

    Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
    Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
    http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

    June 6, 2013 at 4:07 pm |
    • faith

      lol

      June 6, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      and don't forget the VERY important ...

      Leviticus 19:27
      Do not cut the hair at the sides of your head or clip off the edges of your beard.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Bob, I already told you those scriptures are about unbelievers. Also, Jesus became our passover when He died on the cross for all our sins, ascended into heaven and sits on the right hand of the Father.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
    • Bob

      No, HS, those lines apply to all. And again, you fscking stupid imbecile, read what I said about context.

      Now, regarding salvation, how is it again that your omnipotent being couldn't do his saving bit without the whole silly Jesus hoopla? And how was Jesus' death a "sacrifice", when an omnipotent being could just pop up a replacement son any time with less than a snap of his fingers? Pretty pathetic "god" that you've made for yourself there.

      Toss your pathetic religion. You are making a fool of yourself.

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
      Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

      June 6, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Bob, I answered you about freewill already. God didn't make us robots to love and follow Him. He gave us freewill to love and follow His truth so we can dwell with Him for eternity. God made ALL for his pleasure. All that pleases Him will dwell with Him for eternity. All that doesn't please Him gets blotted out. No eternity for the unpleasant.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:09 pm |
    • Bob

      HeavenStench, you moron, the free will defense utterly fails as an argument for your evil sky fairy. Grow a brain.

      Now again, read and try harder to understand:

      Numbers 31:17-18
      17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
      18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

      Deuteronomy 13:6 – “If your brother, your mother’s son or your son or daughter, or the wife you cherish, or your friend who is as your own soul entice you secretly, saying, let us go and serve other gods … you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death”

      Revelations 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

      Leviticus 25
      44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
      45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
      46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

      Note that the bible is also very clear that you should sacrifice and burn an animal today because the smell makes sicko Christian sky fairy happy. No, you don't get to use the parts for food. You burn them, a complete waste of the poor animal.

      Yes, the bible really says that, everyone. Yes, it's in Leviticus, look it up. Yes, Jesus purportedly said that the OT commands still apply. No exceptions. But even if you think the OT was god's mistaken first go around, you have to ask why a perfect, loving enti-ty would ever put such horrid instructions in there. If you think rationally at all, that is.

      And then, if you disagree with my interpretation, ask yourself how it is that your "god" couldn't come up with a better way to communicate than a book that is so readily subject to so many interpretations and to being taken "out of context", and has so many mistakes in it. Pretty pathetic god that you've made for yourself.

      So get out your sacrificial knife or your nasty sky creature will torture you eternally. Or just take a closer look at your foolish supersti-tions, understand that they are just silly, and toss them into the dustbin with all the rest of the gods that man has created.

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
      Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

      June 6, 2013 at 10:33 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Bob, cough Tom. Jesus became our passover when He died on the Cross for everyone's sins, ascended into Heaven, and sits

      Those scriptures are about unbelievers.

      June 7, 2013 at 1:11 pm |

    • Fine, Jesus is your Passover. Why do you have to eat him, anyway?

      June 7, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Mea Culpa, I was interrupted by a phone call.

      Bob, cough Tom. Jesus became our passover when He died on the Cross for everyone's sins, ascended into Heaven, and sits on the right hand of the father.

      Those scriptures are about unbelievers.

      June 7, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
    • Science

      Hey HS and chadie too...................CERN ..............no gods needed !

      Twenty years on, the Web faces new openness challenges

      CERN set the Web on fire by releasing open sof-t-ware without royalty payment requirements. Two decades later, proprietary technology has found a foothold.

      http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57582075-93/twenty-years-on-the-web-faces-new-openness-challenges/?tag=nl.e703&s_cid=e703&ttag=e703

      June 7, 2013 at 1:21 pm |
  11. Greg

    As greater men than I have said, atheism is no more a religion, than bald is a hair color, or than not collecting stamps is a hobby.

    June 6, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      But none have said it more boldly

      June 6, 2013 at 4:12 pm |
    • faith

      it is an extreme, tiny, loud religion filled with punks and perverted, secksual deviants–look at lil fatty loudmouth sambo and her cohort ms. demon possessed dodo of buddha.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:12 pm |
    • Ken

      It's pretty obvious who the 'deviants' here are. real Tom clearly isn't one of them.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:15 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Ok, Bill, I admit, that was funny.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      @faith. you are taking pitiful to a whole new level ...

      June 6, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • sam stone

      hey faithy, ya disaeased gash, how is that lawsuit proceeding?

      June 6, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
    • sam stone

      faith: don't you have to get back on your knees take "Jesus' Truth" into your mouth yet again?

      June 6, 2013 at 4:26 pm |
  12. Freedom

    ATHIESM is another form of "belief system". If you believe that God doesn't exist, then you are athiest which is a belief system.

    Everybody, a belief system has nothing to do with religion alone. A belief system is a label that oneself adopted, e.g. athiest. If you didn't believe how an athiest think or the "belief" of lack of a Diety.

    Example, another belief system is oneself labeling him/herself a libera or republican is because of ideology and belief in the system.

    If you are liberal and believe the Liberal ideolgy than why would you call yourself a conservatives if you don't believe their ideology? Therefore, in saying all this, athiesm is a belief system. No matter how you explain yourselves or define it.

    No matter how you prepare and cook a fish in the end still taste and smell like a fish. Quit trying to put a round peg in a square hole. Athiesm is a belief system. It is what it is.

    Insults and name calling reflects your lack of inteligence. So keep that in mind before vomiting nonsense because of realizing that what you believe is not true at all.

    Belief and believing = assumption, theory, lack of understanding, and most of all not proven.

    June 6, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
    • Thoth

      Atheism to the average atheist simply means a rejection of claims made by men about divine beings. That's the big misunderstanding on the part of many Theists. When you make a claim, you should be prepared to support it. Bertrand Russell described it very well with his 'Celestial Teapot'....

      June 6, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      An atheist believes that the claims regarding gods is not true. It is not a "belief system" it is a non-belief. My belief system, that which I do believe, is not defined as it is unique to me.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      And I guess if saying, "I don't know" equals a belief system, then fine...... define it your way. I'm agnostic, and my whole belief system is I don't think mankind knows what it's been spouting. I mean, we're still in our infancy as a species compared to many others, YET........... we know the guy that created everything. Right. And I'm crazy for NOT taking a side.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
    • If your logic is correct

      Then I also belong to the religions of non-unicorn believers, non-stamp collectors and non-fry cooks

      June 6, 2013 at 3:50 pm |
    • midwest rail

      non – fry cooks ?!? How can you not believe in Odd Thomas ?

      June 6, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
    • GodFreeNow

      @Freedom,

      Even assuming your perspective WERE correct, though I think it's been clearly stated by others why it isn't, there are beliefs based on evidence or reason and beliefs based on emotion. If believing there is no god is a Belief, then it is based on the millennia of evidence and reasoning that points to that understanding.

      The simple fact remains, the more you know, the less likely you are to believe in god. This is why ignorance and renunciation of knowledge has been touted by religious leaders since the first century as something honorable and pious.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Freedom

      You said, "ATHIESM is another form of "belief system". If you believe that God doesn't exist, then you are athiest which is a belief system."
      Atheism*, atheist*, note the letter order.

      Why do some believers want to make atheism a "belief system" so desperately? Why is it that, to try to frame atheism as a belief system, they ignore the simple explanation that it is for most atheists simple an absence of belief?

      Could it be that the believers that so desperately want atheism to be a belief system, are so insecure about their own that they need to level the playing field? Don't they realize that they will be shot down? Every. Single. Time. Don't they realize that all it shows is their own ignorance?

      Just for the cheap seats, here is a primer on atheism. There are two basic flavors of atheism. They are commonly referred to as strong and weak atheism.

      Strong atheism asserts there are no gods. This can be construed as a belief system as there is no evidence to conclusively show this assertion to be true.

      Weak atheism simply rejects the claim that there are gods. It is a non-belief. It is based on the fact that there isn't a shred of evidence to show that any gods exist. It is unreasonable to assume something, anything, exists without any evidence in support.

      It is entirely possible to be both at the same time. You can be weak atheistic toward gods in general, while strong atheistic toward specific ones.

      You can even be theist and atheist at the same time. It is actually very common to be both. Most believers are both strongly theistic with respect to their own god, while being atheistic (either weakly or strongly) toward all others.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Freedom
      Concepts such as ‘state’ and ‘society’ and have no existence save as physically exemplified in the acts of self-responsible individuals. Responsibility, blame, guilt, etc. are matters taking place inside human beings singly and nowhere else.
      Morality is a covenant between humans that enables us to extend our instinctive drive to do that which is least painful for ourselves (self-preservation) to other people. Were it not for our ability to reason this out and cooperate, our species would not survive. As individuals, we are prey animals – soft, squidgy, slow and bereft of in-built offensive capabilities. As a cooperative group, we have become the dominant species in nearly every eco-system on Earth.
      People are not good to one another by default. Effective cooperation is a learned skill and the successful religions recognize that it takes a mighty big stick to beat the selfishness out of us.
      Historically, it has been a God sized stick capable to inflicting unimaginable devastation in this life and the hereafter.

      You can go ahead and label atheism a belief system, but it is nothing more than a negative statement.
      'A" = lack of. "Theism" = belief in gods. A + Theism = lack of belief in gods.
      It is akin to describing the vocalist in a band as the group's "a-instrumentalist" – it says only what they don't do.

      Atheism is not my belief system – Naturalism is.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:06 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      I rather look at atheism as passive or active.

      Passive would be a person never exposed to any belief system of any form. They hold no beliefs in anything because they were never exposed to any beliefs.
      Active, those who have been exposed to belief systems and make a choice not to believe in any of them.

      Personally, I think if you fall under the "active" label...then one could argue that you have a type of belief. Like those belonging to a religious belief system, you are making a choice based on what is before you and mixing it with personal experience. It all comes down to choice. Are you an atheist because of ignorance or because you choose to be?

      June 6, 2013 at 4:07 pm |
    • Brother Maynard

      Freedom sez
      "ATHIESM is another form of "belief system". "
      Oh really?
      Well then I'm sure you can give the tenets of atheism then? The 10 Commandments of atheism?
      The 5 pillars of atheism? Provide on ceremonial ritual that all atheist adhear or practice?

      June 6, 2013 at 4:08 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      uncouth
      I cannot choose to believe in something. Either I do or I do not. They tried to brainwash me, and I tried to believe, but I could not make myself believe it. I never had a choice, I just knew the bible made no sense. After studying many religions , trying to believe, I realized that I cannot choose what I believe, but I can add to my knowledge and temper the belief, removing ignorance as I go. The bible is a manifestation of ignorance.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:10 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      @Richard Cranium- I have to disagree. You are still making a choice.
      Sure one can also be a passive or active believer in a faith.

      I have no doubt there are those that believes on a deity that only do because of their upbringing..those are passive believers.

      But, I hope, most believers are active. Their came a time where they as an individual with a will of their own decided that they were Christian. That whatever belief they knew was right to them.

      I have no idea why you threw in the Bible at the end but whatever.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Uncouth Swain

      You said, "Passive would be a person never exposed to any belief system of any form. They hold no beliefs in anything because they were never exposed to any beliefs."
      True. Babies fall into the "passive" category.

      You said, "Active, those who have been exposed to belief systems and make a choice not to believe in any of them."
      Among them are the weakly and strongly atheistic.

      You said, "Personally, I think if you fall under the "active" label...then one could argue that you have a type of belief."
      I disagree. I am active only to the extend to reduce the influence of religion in my life. I am just as much a non-believer in the Tooth Fairy as I am in gods, but since there is no risk of believers in the Tooth Fairy from inserting their beliefs into law, I don't consider myself an aThoothFairyist.

      You said, "It all comes down to choice. Are you an atheist because of ignorance or because you choose to be?"
      I'm an atheist because I lack sufficient ignorance to be a believer.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:20 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      @LinCA- "True. Babies fall into the "passive" category."

      Agree, they would be the best example of that.

      "I am active only to the extend to reduce the influence of religion in my life."

      In no way am I trying to make this too simple. Putting people into categories is an error unto itself. There are probably just as many levels of non-belief as there are with beliefs in humanity. But for the topic of atheism being compared as a religion, there are those within atheism that hold onto their principles of no divine beings for the same reason that some (if not many) religious people hold onto their beliefs; they simply haven't been given enough reason to change their perspective.
      Off topic a little but that has always been a frustration within these arguments. There seems to be this error to @ssume that if one is religious they are therefor not intelligent. Also, if one is atheist then they are not comp@ssionate or caring. Both are utter foolishness.

      "I am just as much a non-believer in the Tooth Fairy as I am in gods, but since there is no risk of believers in the Tooth Fairy from inserting their beliefs into law, I don't consider myself an aThoothFairyist."

      There is a difference though in religion and the Tooth Fairy. When we talk about those of a faith, they are our peers. No one on here is implying that children are stupid for believing in the Tooth Fairy or even God. But to lump something like the tooth fairy to those of a faith would be no better than comparing an atheist to a deranged sociopath. It ignores and belittles your peers.
      Again, there are those that do not believe because they actively chose their belief and you could compare them to those that belive in the tooth fairy. But there are those that believe because they accepted what that belief means. It's wrong to compare them to tooth fairy belief then.

      "I'm an atheist because I lack sufficient ignorance to be a believer."

      I can respect all of your statements but this. This was stupid. Define the "ignorance" you are implying. I guarantee you that there are Christians, Mulsims, Jewish..etc that understand the theory of evolution just as well as you. I guarantee that those same types of people understand the Fermi Paradox, Multiversal Principle and even Schrödinger's cat.
      Having a faith does not mean one is ignorant.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:37 pm |
    • Brother Maynard

      Uncouth Swain sez:
      "No one on here is implying that children are stupid for believing in the Tooth Fairy or God "
      Totally agree
      But how about adults? Do YOU believe in the Tooth Fairy ?
      ( I'm assuming you do not )
      Why? maybe because you do not have sufficient evidence to show that the Tooth Fairy exists?

      June 6, 2013 at 5:34 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      @Brother Maynard- "But how about adults?"

      What about adults? Do you think they think more critically about their universe than children?

      "Do YOU believe in the Tooth Fairy ?"

      I fail to see the point.

      "Why? maybe because you do not have sufficient evidence to show that the Tooth Fairy exists?"

      I do not have sufficient evidence to show that the concept of God (sticking with Christianity here) was the creation of a man.

      So is that the failure of atheists to prove this? The evidence in their faith that God is a man made sociopsychological construct is lacking.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:08 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      uncouth, As there is no evidence of a god, the only logical conclusion is that a god does not exist. Presumably you don't believe in Khrishna, Zeus, Ra, Odin, Kokopelli, etc. yet there is no more evidence for your god than for these gods (or the thousands of others). You presumably believe that those gods are man-made as you made an evidence-free choice of your god. So by extension, if gods that you don't believe in (because they lack evidence) are man-made. I can't prove that all gods are man-made but there is no better explanation – if there were proof we'd all believe and believe in the same god.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:17 pm |
    • Freedom

      @LINCA – Did you know that laws such as do not kill or go to jail and other laws derives from religion rules? Read history and grow.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:41 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      In Santa we trust- "As there is no evidence of a god, the only logical conclusion is that a god does not exist."

      Correction, there is not enough evidence for you consider the existence of a god.

      Pointing out what one does not believe makes no sense. You are @ssuming that since one does not believe in other types of things they could not believe in something that seems similar. I do not believe in the Out of Asia Theory within biology. That non-belief doesn't mean I have written off the theories of genetics as a whole.

      "You presumably believe that those gods are man-made as you made an evidence-free choice of your god."

      I have not made an issue of my beliefs or non-beliefs in this. However, you seem to be making a leap that those who do have a belief in a god has no evidence. You are ignoring empirical evidence. You cannot prove to me that someone loves you but you believe it just the same. To you, your personal experience is enough..to d@mn what anyone else thinks right?

      June 6, 2013 at 6:58 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Uncouth Swain

      You said, "I can respect all of your statements but this."
      I'm not seeking your respect.

      You said, "This was stupid."
      I guess we'll have to disagree.

      You said, "Define the "ignorance" you are implying."
      Ignorance is one of the easiest ways to remain a believer. Ignorance of how the real world works makes one far more susceptible for the religious bullshit. But that doesn't mean, and I never said, that all believers are ignorant. But to be a believer you'll have to ignore the fact that there is absolutely no reason to believe.

      You said, "I guarantee you that there are Christians, Mulsims, Jewish..etc that understand the theory of evolution just as well as you. I guarantee that those same types of people understand the Fermi Paradox, Multiversal Principle and even Schrödinger's cat."
      Yet they choose to believe in a creature for which there is no more evidence than the Tooth fairy.

      You said, "Having a faith does not mean one is ignorant."
      If you're not ignorant, I can only wonder how painful the cognitive dissonance must be.

      June 6, 2013 at 9:33 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Freedom

      You said, "Did you know that laws such as do not kill or go to jail and other laws derives from religion rules?"
      Bullshit. Just because religion co-opted those rules and codified them into their own rules, doesn't mena that they are religious in origin.

      You said, "Read history and grow."
      Right back at you. Keep in mind that of the two if us, I'm not the one still believing in the Tooth Fairy (or similar imaginary creatures).

      June 6, 2013 at 9:36 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      "I'm not seeking your respect."

      Perhaps not but you wanting it is irrelevant to you having it.

      "Ignorance is one of the easiest ways to remain a believer."

      Perhaps but it is not a requirement of having faith as some (perhaps not you) believe.

      "But to be a believer you'll have to ignore the fact that there is absolutely no reason to believe."

      You are ignoring the empirical evidence of the believer. Yes that may not prove it to you but that doesn't mean it is any less true.

      "Yet they choose to believe in a creature for which there is no more evidence than the Tooth fairy."

      And again you compare the faith of rational adults that understand complex scientific theories to that of a childish notion of the tooth fairy. I am sorry but that is a wrong thing to do. You wouldn't compare the ability of a scientist with a PHD to rationalize information with that of a third grader taking a biology class..but you will do it with the tooth fairy ana logy.

      "If you're not ignorant, I can only wonder how painful the cognitive dissonance must be."

      You @ssume there is a conflict where their may be none. Quit guessing. That's what those of faith do isn't it?

      June 6, 2013 at 9:44 pm |
    • Ken

      Freedom
      I guess, if you consider rational thought to be an actual "belief system".

      June 7, 2013 at 12:42 am |
    • LinCA

      @Uncouth Swain

      You said, "You are ignoring the empirical evidence of the believer."
      If it were anything close to evidence, it would be persuasive. It isn't. There is no evidence. People have an uncanny ability to string coincidences together and make themselves believe anything. That doesn't mean it's real.

      You said, "Yes that may not prove it to you but that doesn't mean it is any less true."
      All you have is an unfounded speculation. There is no evidence. Not a single, solitary shred. There is no reason to believe the nonsense. There is no rational reason to believe it's true. None.

      You said, "And again you compare the faith of rational adults that understand complex scientific theories to that of a childish notion of the tooth fairy."
      There is no fundamental difference between a belief in the Tooth Fairy and a belief in gods. There is equal evidence for both. The only difference is in the way belief in them is cultivated, or not. The only reason people still believe in gods, but don't believe in the Tooth Fairy, is because they are allowed, even encouraged, to shed their belief in one, and not the other.

      You said, "I am sorry but that is a wrong thing to do."
      Without evidence for your god, it is the only correct thing to do. Your belief in gods is infantile.

      You said, "You wouldn't compare the ability of a scientist with a PHD to rationalize information with that of a third grader taking a biology class..but you will do it with the tooth fairy ana logy."
      It is about more than ability. There has to be a willingness to employ the ability. If your "scientist with a PHD" isn't willing to use his/her ability to rationalize information when it comes to his/her indoctrination, there is no difference.

      You said, "You @ssume there is a conflict where their may be none. Quit guessing. That's what those of faith do isn't it?"
      The absence of conflict is not because there is none, but because people who have the ability choose not to go there. If those that have the ability to rationally evaluate their position on gods, actually do, the conflict that invariably arises is resolved in only one way. It ends with the demise of the gods. The only way to keep the gods around, is to not go there. Rational thought is deliberately abandoned to retain a belief in gods.

      June 7, 2013 at 10:52 am |
    • Uncouth Swain

      @LinCA

      "If it were anything close to evidence, it would be persuasive. It isn't."

      The ability to be persuasive is irrelevant. Obviously the atheists POV hasn't been persuasive in convincing the Christians on here to become atheists but I doubt you would consider that evidence that you are wrong.

      "People have an uncanny ability to string coincidences together and make themselves believe anything. That doesn't mean it's real."

      But it doesn't mean it is not real. Letting your own bias cloud your ability to look at an individual situation is an error.

      There is no reason to believe the nonsense."

      If you mean it is your opinion that there is no reason to believe, then that is an accurate statement.

      "There is no rational reason to believe it's true. None."

      There is no rational reason to believe that a person is loved by their parents but yet most believe they are. There are many very "real" things in our existence that doesn't have the type of evidence (whatever type you are promoting here) you require.

      You keep believing that the belief in a tooth fairy without the emotional and psychological attachments is the same as those of an mature belief in the spiritual. I am sorry but I cannot agree.
      I am curious if you would consider that the belief in evolution that is arrived by just being told is the same as the belief in the tooth fairy? Obviously the person has no more evidence in his belief of evolution than that of the tooth fairy.
      For some reason though, I don't believe you would condemn them.

      "Without evidence for your god, it is the only correct thing to do. Your belief in gods is infantile."

      I have not declared a faith nor have I made an issue of any belief or nonbelief I may have. You debate ability is the only infantile thing around here.

      "It is about more than ability. There has to be a willingness to employ the ability. If your "scientist with a PHD" isn't willing to use his/her ability to rationalize information when it comes to his/her indoctrination, there is no difference."

      But an adult that uses their life experiences to arrive to the acceptance of a religious belief doesn't fly for you eh? I am sorry but you are being very bigoted on this.

      "The absence of conflict is not because there is none, but because people who have the ability choose not to go there."

      Or the absence of conflict is exactly because there is none. If those people "choose to go there" and still accept a religious faith what then? Are you going to pass summary judgment on them in some way because they do not agree with you?

      "Rational thought is deliberately abandoned to retain a belief in gods."

      Incorrect. Rational thought is not abandoned just because they do not agree with you.

      June 7, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Uncouth Swain

      You said, "The ability to be persuasive is irrelevant."
      The reasons "evidence" isn't persuasive has two possible causes.

      The first possibility is that it isn't evidence. It doesn't persuade because what is claimed to be shown by it, isn't. So far, every bit of "evidence" for their gods, provided by believers falls into this category. Awesome starry skies don't show the existence of gods. Neither do pretty flowers, or intelligent beings.

      The second possibility is that the evidence is not accepted. Glaring contradictions in the bible, for instance, will rarely persuade a believer to accept that it can't be the work of, or inspired by, a perfect god.

      You said, "Obviously the atheists POV hasn't been persuasive in convincing the Christians on here to become atheists but I doubt you would consider that evidence that you are wrong."
      There are (at least) two problems with that. There is no conclusive evidence that there are no gods. There is no evidence that would conclusive show believers to be wrong. But that, of course doesn't mean that their position is rational. The second problem is that any evidence that shows part of the religion to be complete bullshit is simply rejected (see the second possibility above)

      You said, "But it doesn't mean it is not real."
      There is a non-zero chance that it is real, but without any support in evidence for the position it isn't reasonable to assume that it is real.

      You said, "Letting your own bias cloud your ability to look at an individual situation is an error."
      Without evidence, there is no reason to assume that individual experiences are relevant for anyone else. Claims made based on personal experience apply only to the individual. They provide no indication that their imaginary friend exists anywhere outside their own mind.

      You said, "If you mean it is your opinion that there is no reason to believe, then that is an accurate statement."
      There is no evidence to support the existence of any god, anywhere, anywhen. That means there is no more reason to believe there is a god anywhere, for anyone, than there is to believe in the Tooth Fairy. You are free to believe in either, or both.

      You said, "There is no rational reason to believe that a person is loved by their parents but yet most believe they are."
      Parents are real.

      You said, "There are many very "real" things in our existence that doesn't have the type of evidence (whatever type you are promoting here) you require."
      Bullshit. Name one.

      You said, "You keep believing that the belief in a tooth fairy without the emotional and psychological attachments is the same as those of an mature belief in the spiritual."
      I never said anything about the emotional and psychological attachments. If you were never given the opportunity to question the existence of the Tooth Fairy, and had been dragged to a temple in her honor for your entire childhood, you'd very likely feel the same emotional and psychological attachments to her as you do to your imaginary friend.

      You said, "I am sorry but I cannot agree."
      I wouldn't expect you to. It would be as much as admitting that your entire life philosophy was based on a figment. It takes time, willingness and an open mind. I suspect you lack at least one of those.

      You said, "I am curious if you would consider that the belief in evolution that is arrived by just being told is the same as the belief in the tooth fairy?"
      Bullshit. Evolution is just as real as gravity. Their respective theories are only controversial because believers are clueless about what "theory" means, and they have a vested interest in casting doubt.

      You said, "Obviously the person has no more evidence in his belief of evolution than that of the tooth fairy."
      Bullshit. I sure hope you know better.

      You said, "For some reason though, I don't believe you would condemn them."
      Even if you were correct in your assertion, which you're not, nobody seems to be placing references to it on money. Nobody opens public meetings with references to it.

      You are free to believe whatever nonsense you want. I'm sure I've mentioned that before.

      You said, "I have not declared a faith nor have I made an issue of any belief or nonbelief I may have. You debate ability is the only infantile thing around here."
      So, are you saying you don't believe in a god? Fine, I'll rephrase. A belief in gods is infantile. Better? But, if you are not a believer, why do you capitalize the "G"? By doing that you seem to refer to a specific one.

      You said, "But an adult that uses their life experiences to arrive to the acceptance of a religious belief doesn't fly for you eh? I am sorry but you are being very bigoted on this."
      I'd be bigoted if I tried to force you to abandon your belief. You are free to believe whatever nonsense you want. I think I've mentioned this before. Pointing out that these "life experiences" don't flow from an actual god, but are simply shoved into the mold of there religious indoctrination, isn't bigotry. It's a public service. What you do with the information is entirely up to you.

      You said, "Or the absence of conflict is exactly because there is none. If those people "choose to go there" and still accept a religious faith what then?"
      How many adults that still believe in the Easter Bunny that "choose to go there" will come away believing?

      You said, "Are you going to pass summary judgment on them in some way because they do not agree with you?"
      No, only if there is a risk that it affects society or me personally adversely.

      You said, "Incorrect. Rational thought is not abandoned just because they do not agree with you."
      I didn't say it's abandoned just because I don't agree with it. Rational thought must be abandoned to retain a belief in creature for which there isn't a shred of evidence.

      June 7, 2013 at 5:29 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      @LinCA

      "The first possibility is that it isn't evidence."

      You continue to ignore empirical evidence gleaned from life experience.

      "Glaring contradictions in the bible, for instance, will rarely persuade a believer to accept that it can't be the work of, or inspired by, a perfect god."

      If one is not a literalist, then contradictions mean very little. And those that are literalists, they usually have reasons for the "supposed" contradictions that you would not agree with.

      "There is no evidence that would conclusive show believers to be wrong."

      At an individual level I would have to disagree. There are more than enough atheists on here that felt there was enough evidence to change their beliefs.
      But more to the point, faith is a personal thing. It's foolish to ever think that a "one size fits all" approach would ever work.

      "But that, of course doesn't mean that their position is rational."

      All that it means to be rational is to be agreeable to reason. A person of faith can be as rational as any atheist.
      To be religious does not mean one is instantly irrational.

      "The second problem is that any evidence that shows part of the religion to be complete b****** is simply rejected"

      I would also disagree with this. You keep implying that those of faith are closed minded when there is no evidence of this. There are just as many atheists on here that instantly ignore what a person of faith has to say..they simply reject them without reason. Rejecting information isn't a religious thing, it's a human one.

      "There is a non-zero chance that it is real, but without any support in evidence for the position it isn't reasonable to @ssume that it is real."

      As I have said before, you reject and ignore the evidence of personal experience.

      "Without evidence, there is no reason to @ssume that individual experiences are relevant for anyone else."

      Faith is about the personal experience. One's faith does not require you to believe.

      "They provide no indication that their imaginary friend exists anywhere outside their own mind."

      But oddly enough, no one has proven it is all in their own mind. Should there not be universal evidence of this?

      "There is no evidence to support the existence of any god, anywhere, anywhen."

      Incorrect, there is no evidence for you to support the existence of any god.

      "Parents are real."

      The existence of parents wasn't the topic but the supposed love they show. It doesn't exist but you believe it does correct? And I do not mean the emotion of love but the construct that your form that you call being loved.

      "Name one."
      As I said before, the concept of being loved. You believe it exist don't you? But can you prove it?

      "you'd very likely feel the same emotional and psychological attachments to her as you do to your imaginary friend."

      Did I mention I had an imaginary friend? Please quit guessing things that you do not know.

      "I wouldn't expect you to. It would be as much as admitting that your entire life philosophy was based on a figment. It takes time, willingness and an open mind. I suspect you lack at least one of those."

      Is that a ad hominem I am reading? Yes, I believe so. My life philosophy consists of of the writings of many people and sources throughout history: Wiesenthal, Plato, Camus, Machiavelli, Heschel, Kierkegaard, Ecclesiastes..etc. Don't presume to take the intellectual high road when you know nothing about the people on here. I know you are intelliegent from the writings you put on here but I don't presume to say you are less or more intellegent than I.

      "Evolution is just as real as gravity."

      You misunderstood what I wrote. I said if a person came to say evolution is real just from their parents raising them to believe in it without any other sources, would you respect them or treat them as you would a person that believes in the tooth fairy?

      "Even if you were correct in your assertion, which you're not, nobody seems to be placing references to it on money. Nobody opens public meetings with references to it."

      Perhaps not but now you are going more into the cultural than the pure religious. Like it or not, the majority of the citizens throughout it's history were Christian. It would be foolish to @ssume that their would be no aspect of that within our culture.

      "You are free to believe whatever nonsense you want."

      You are free to believe whatever you want. I however respect you enough as a person not to call it nonsense just because I may not agree with it.

      "So, are you saying you don't believe in a god?"

      I'm I required to so I can participate?

      "But, if you are not a believer, why do you capitalize the "G"? By doing that you seem to refer to a specific one."

      Considering that 95%+ of the time we are discussing the Christian god known as God, why wouldn't I? God is a proper noun like Zeus, Mithra, Darwin..etc. You yourself have jumped from the general aspect of gods to the specific of the Christian god known as God. I just choose, until the topic changes specifically, to keep the topic on the Christian god. Do you want to focus on some ofther deity?

      "I'd be bigoted if I tried to force you to abandon your belief."

      So under that thought, a person that doesn't think blacks and whites should marry isn't a bigot until they try to keep them from marrying?

      "but are simply shoved into the mold of there religious indoctrination,"

      Unless a person arrives to their belief without indoctrination. Then you are at a loss.

      "isn't bigotry. It's a public service."

      So many tragic events in human history came from such words.

      "How many adults that still believe in the Easter Bunny that "choose to go there" will come away believing?"

      That straw man doesn't hold up since we are talking about religious faith. Unless you can point me to a church if the immaculate bunny...this won't fly.

      "No, only if there is a risk that it affects society or me personally adversely."

      I am a supported of the Separation of State and Church. The same concept that keeps atheists from having to say prayers in school is the same thing that protects Christian kids from a teacher that would tell them that God isn't real. It's a good thing.

      "Rational thought must be abandoned to retain a belief in creature for which there isn't a shred of evidence."

      No, rational thought does not have to be abandoned. To be rational simply means to be agreeable to reason. A person might be highly rational and still be a person of faith. Being one of a faith does not instantly mean you are irrational.

      June 7, 2013 at 7:27 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Uncouth Swain

      You said, "You continue to ignore empirical evidence gleaned from life experience."
      That's because it isn't evidence. Someone putting two and two together and getting Wednesday, doesn't mean that it is.

      You said, "If one is not a literalist, then contradictions mean very little. And those that are literalists, they usually have reasons for the "supposed" contradictions that you would not agree with."
      Of course. If it fits with your prejudices, it's supposed to be taken literally, if it doesn't, it's allegory. It's far more likely that it's all just folk lore.

      You said, "At an individual level I would have to disagree. There are more than enough atheists on here that felt there was enough evidence to change their beliefs."
      Most atheists see the lack of evidence as enough reason to not believe.

      You said, "But more to the point, faith is a personal thing. It's foolish to ever think that a "one size fits all" approach would ever work."
      True. That is in part why there are some 38,000 different denomination, sects and cults in christianity, and untold "spiritual but not religious".

      You said, "All that it means to be rational is to be agreeable to reason. A person of faith can be as rational as any atheist. To be religious does not mean one is instantly irrational."
      To believe in something for which there is no reason to believe it exists, is unreasonable. To believe in something that can't exist is irrational. Quite a few believers believe in a god that has contradictory traits, making it impossible to exist, hence believing in it, irrational.

      You said, "I would also disagree with this. You keep implying that those of faith are closed minded when there is no evidence of this. There are just as many atheists on here that instantly ignore what a person of faith has to say..they simply reject them without reason. Rejecting information isn't a religious thing, it's a human one."
      One can only so often reject the claim that a beautiful flower is evidence of a god, and not just any god, no it must be evidence of the god of the believer making the claim.

      You said, "As I have said before, you reject and ignore the evidence of personal experience."
      And as I've said before, I reject it because it isn't evidence. Evidence can be repeated, tested and independently verified.

      You said, "Faith is about the personal experience. One's faith does not require you to believe."
      If you, and everyone else, would keep it personal, you probably wouldn't hear from me or most other atheists. You hear from me because it isn't kept personal.

      You said, "But oddly enough, no one has proven it is all in their own mind. Should there not be universal evidence of this?"
      Actually, god like experiences have been reproduced in the lab by stimulating areas of the brain. See:
      [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y02UlkYjSi0&w=640&h=390&rel=0]

      You said, "Incorrect, there is no evidence for you to support the existence of any god."
      There is no evidence that stands up against even cursory examination. Better?

      You said, "The existence of parents wasn't the topic but the supposed love they show."
      Real people can love.

      You said, "It doesn't exist but you believe it does correct?"
      There is evidence of love. It is shown in human interaction, and chemical changes in the brain.

      You said, "And I do not mean the emotion of love but the construct that your form that you call being loved."
      It's a description of the facets of the chemical changes of the brain, and the human interaction following from it. It's like the theory of evolution, which is a description of a model that describes how and why life forms change over generations.

      You said, "As I said before, the concept of being loved. You believe it exist don't you? But can you prove it?"
      See above.

      You said, "Did I mention I had an imaginary friend? Please quit guessing things that you do not know."
      Yeah, I wrote that before you tried to claim you may or may not believe in a god, down below. I simply didn't think it warranted a rewrite. Still you capitalize the "G" in God. That indicates that you have a specific one in mind.

      You said, "Is that a ad hominem I am reading? Yes, I believe so."
      No, just a suspicion. Maybe you simply don't have the time.

      You said, "I know you are intelliegent from the writings you put on here but I don't presume to say you are less or more intellegent than I."
      intelligent*. Sorry, couldn't resist.

      Thanks for the compliment, but no I don't presume that I'm more intelligent than everyone, or even you, just more than most.

      You said, "You misunderstood what I wrote. I said if a person came to say evolution is real just from their parents raising them to believe in it without any other sources, would you respect them or treat them as you would a person that believes in the tooth fairy?"
      I reread what you wrote three times and I'm still not sure if I can glean what you wrote here from that, but OK. Believing what you're told, just because your told, is no different from believing in the Tooth Fairy. But that doesn't mean that a evolution is the on the same level as the Tooth Fairy.

      And, as I said later on, everyone is free to believe whatever nonsense they want.

      You said, "Perhaps not but now you are going more into the cultural than the pure religious."
      But that is the entire problem. I have no issue with people believing whatever they want. I just don't want any of it. And it doesn't belong in the public sphere. Like you said, it's personal.

      You said, "Like it or not, the majority of the citizens throughout it's history were Christian. It would be foolish to @ssume that their would be no aspect of that within our culture."
      Of course there is a lot of that in our culture. That doesn't mean we shouldn't improve our culture. Make it more equal. More just.

      You said, "You are free to believe whatever you want. I however respect you enough as a person not to call it nonsense just because I may not agree with it."
      You are also free to believe stuff that isn't nonsense, but a belief in gods is no different from a belief in the Tooth Fairy, and thus nothing more than nonsense. Sorry.

      You said, "I'm I required to so I can participate?"
      Nope, just curious.

      You said, "Considering that 95%+ of the time we are discussing the Christian god known as God, why wouldn't I?"
      While that is true 95% of the time, this thread is a response to an attack on atheists. Most atheists do not believe in all gods equally. It is those that argue with atheists that tend to refer to specific gods (95% christian, no doubt). Inwhich case the response may pertain to that specific one.

      You said, "God is a proper noun like Zeus, Mithra, Darwin..etc. You yourself have jumped from the general aspect of gods to the specific of the Christian god known as God."
      I try to be clear when I refer to gods in general, or when I refer to a specific one.

      Btw. Darwin is no god. At least not to my knowledge.

      You said, "I just choose, until the topic changes specifically, to keep the topic on the Christian god. Do you want to focus on some ofther deity?"
      They're all the same to me, and as I mentioned above, this thread isn't specific to the christian god.

      You said, "So under that thought, a person that doesn't think blacks and whites should marry isn't a bigot until they try to keep them from marrying?"
      That depends. Does this hypothetical person have an argument why mixed marriages shouldn't be performed? Is his argument reasonable? Probably not, so yes, he'd still be a bigot and a racist.

      You said, "Unless a person arrives to their belief without indoctrination. Then you are at a loss."
      Show me one that did.

      You said, "So many tragic events in human history came from such words."
      Such as?

      You said, "That straw man doesn't hold up since we are talking about religious faith. Unless you can point me to a church if the immaculate bunny...this won't fly."
      But that's exactly my point. People dismiss equally valid beliefs, except for the one they prefer. It says nothing about their validity. People believe, because that's what they grew up with (mostly). An argumentum ad populum doesn't do anything to support the validity of your claim.

      You said, "I am a supported of the Separation of State and Church. The same concept that keeps atheists from having to say prayers in school is the same thing that protects Christian kids from a teacher that would tell them that God isn't real. It's a good thing."
      I agree. And the irony is that Separation of State and Church is far more a protection for the religious than it is for non-believers. And, if beliefs were kept private, the subject of gods probably wouldn't come up.

      You said, "No, rational thought does not have to be abandoned. To be rational simply means to be agreeable to reason. A person might be highly rational and still be a person of faith. Being one of a faith does not instantly mean you are irrational."
      A highly rational person will have to compartmentalize to maintain a belief in a creature for which there is no reason to believe it exists. That doesn't mean they are irrational in everything they do.

      June 7, 2013 at 11:24 pm |
    • Arthur Bryant

      "DIS-belief" does NOT equal "belief" you moron. Stop trying to sound as if you have a clue what critical thinking actually IS; it just makes you look that much more idiotic.

      June 8, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      @LinCA- "That's because it isn't evidence. Someone putting two and two together and getting Wednesday, doesn't mean that it is."

      True, but that pitiful example doesn't eliminate all empirical evidence from the argument. If through life experience a person arrives at 2+2+4, well...was that true? Or a lucky guess?

      "Of course. If it fits with your prejudices, it's supposed to be taken literally, if it doesn't, it's allegory. It's far more likely that it's all just folk lore."

      You are such an absolutist. Those that are not literalists do not just pick and choose that which is easy. At least they shouldn't if they take their faith seriously.

      "Most atheists see the lack of evidence as enough reason to not believe."

      And they are welcome to do that.

      "To believe in something for which there is no reason to believe it exists, is unreasonable."

      Just because you do not have a reason to believe does not mean there isn't one for others that is reasonable to them.

      "To believe in something that can't exist is irrational. Quite a few believers believe in a god that has contradictory traits, making it impossible to exist, hence believing in it, irrational."

      And yet some believe in a god that has no contradictions.

      "One can only so often reject the claim that a beautiful flower is evidence of a god, and not just any god, no it must be evidence of the god of the believer making the claim."

      I question whether or not there could be a limit to rejection from my experience on this site. I've seen many an atheist reject and reject and reject even rational things because they didn't like either who or what was being said.

      "And as I've said before, I reject it because it isn't evidence. Evidence can be repeated, tested and independently verified."

      Wrong. Expecting that all evidence can be repeated, tested and verified is not the touchstone of truth. There are some real things that cannot be actively tested. Most historical events cannot be repeated or tested obviously unless a time machine is one day invented. And the only thing that could be verified is the after effects and if you know anything about history, that is somewhat subjected as well.

      "If you, and everyone else, would keep it personal, you probably wouldn't hear from me or most other atheists. You hear from me because it isn't kept personal."

      Not to be a stickler, but as far as this blog site is concerned...it's a belief blog. You probably mean in the nation at large and that is somewhat understandable.

      "god like experiences have been reproduced in the lab by stimulating areas of the brain."

      Yes, taking the experience of a person and putting against the experiences of another person..that's not exactly the best scientific evidence now is it? I mean, the scientist isn't witnessing what the person is going through.

      "Real people can love."

      But there is no love to be given.

      "There is evidence of love. It is shown in human interaction, and chemical changes in the brain."

      No no no...the evidence you think is love is actually evidence of a parent doing what is programed into the species to offer sustenance and such for their offspring. The "love" you think a man has for a women is nothing but his instinct to proc reate and hers to find the ideal mate. So no, the perception of getting love from another does not exist.

      "It's a description of the facets of the chemical changes of the brain, and the human interaction following from it. It's like the theory of evolution, which is a description of a model that describes how and why life forms change over generations."

      There are not chemical changes to you thinking you are loved. When you are given a present by someone, that isn't a sign of love but them trying to keep their societal alliance with you strong. If your spouse so smiling at you, they want something based on their nature and instinct. They do not "love" you. There are so many more real life examples in nature of species reacting to one another out of instinct than reacting out of "love" right? So the logical thing to @ssume is that your perception of someone loving you is incorrect no matter what you think you are experiencing...yes?
      Again, I do not mean how YOU feel toward someone. I am talking about how you interpret their actions as love. I am certain you think you are loved in that regard even though you have no evidence that their actions are in fact based in love and not something more logical to our mammalian species.
      "intelligent*. Sorry, couldn't resist."
      I'm certain that you couldn't. Hope you don't correct one that stutters when talking about intelligence.

      "But that doesn't mean that a evolution is the on the same level as the Tooth Fairy."

      Nor is having a religious faith. If one believes in ANYTHING but doesn't use their mind to actively accept that belief..they are in error. I don't care if it's the tooth fairy, evolution or religious faith. It's all the same if you just accept it because you are told to. That is my complaint....most atheists on here think that those of a faith are just following it because they are told to. That is not the case in most cases. They have their reasons that are more complex than "just because" and that needs to be made clear.
      When you or anyone else puts a person's faith down to a level of a kid believing in the tooth fairy, you are being insulting for no good reason other to belittle them and that's hardly a superior position to take.

      "But that is the entire problem. I have no issue with people believing whatever they want. I just don't want any of it. And it doesn't belong in the public sphere. Like you said, it's personal."

      True, but as a society we do have a culture and a history in that culture. If we could wipe away every possible religious aspect of our culture away...good grief our nation would be different and not in the good. How much of our culture has its roots in religion? I don't mean the obvious "In God we trust" stuff...I mean like our African American culture. It is thick in religion. The Civil Rights Movement was carried a great deal by Christianity (and also hurt by it..I do not forget that).

      "That doesn't mean we shouldn't improve our culture. Make it more equal. More just."

      Personally I don't think our religious culture holds us back from improving. Sometimes it helps, sometimes it hurts. I listen to a discussion once about conservatism vs liberalism and the speaker basically said that the job of conservatism is to preserve that which is good in a society while the job of a liberal was to introduce new aspects of good into a society. I think this is where religion falls into things. Traditionally religion is a conservative tool. It tries to preserve what it sees as a good thing in our society. It fights against change that could be bad. It's not wrong in doing this to a point.

      "While that is true 95% of the time, this thread is a response to an attack on atheists. Most atheists do not believe in all gods equally. It is those that argue with atheists that tend to refer to specific gods (95% christian, no doubt). In which case the response may pertain to that specific one."

      Let me understand this...is the existence of this blog an attack on atheists? Because that is the only thing that makes sense considering the sheer number of atheists on here that just attack others without reason.

      "Btw. Darwin is no god. At least not to my knowledge."

      But he is a proper noun.

      "he'd still be a bigot and a racist."

      I was just curious because it almost sounded like you required an action to be a bigot.

      "Show me one that did."

      If I told you about a person raised by atheists and arrived to the belief of Christianity..would that count? Of course I am not entirely certain what you mean by indoctrination. If you meant by being raised in a family of those with a faith, or one that just has the slightest exposure to a faith as an adult. I would @ssume you mean one that was raised in parents of a faith.

      "Such as?

      Project T-4 comes to mind. It wasn't bigotry that the German Govt was selling. It was a public service...to "help" those with disabilities.

      "People dismiss equally valid beliefs, except for the one they prefer."

      There is dismissing a valid belief because one does not examine the other belief at all, then there is dismissing it after understanding it. Those are not equal. Arriving to a conclusion after examination isn't a bad thing.

      "A highly rational person will have to compartmentalize to maintain a belief in a creature for which there is no reason to believe it exists. That doesn't mean they are irrational in everything they do."

      To listen to many of your fellow atheists on here, they consider anyone of faith to be irrational in all things.
      Not to go round robin on this but empirical evidence is evidence, though not the type that can be verified.

      June 10, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Uncouth Swain

      You said, "True, but that pitiful example doesn't eliminate all empirical evidence from the argument."
      It was a carefully selected example, as it reflects how pitiful most arguments, presented by believers for their gods, are.

      You said, "If through life experience a person arrives at 2+2+4, well...was that true? Or a lucky guess?"
      If you get there through life experiences, probably. It is then probably more like a broken clock being right twice a day.

      You said, "You are such an absolutist. Those that are not literalists do not just pick and choose that which is easy. At least they shouldn't if they take their faith seriously."
      My point is that there is absolutely no reason to assume the bible was in any way divinely inspired. There is no reason to assume it is special in any way.

      You said, "Just because you do not have a reason to believe does not mean there isn't one for others that is reasonable to them."
      Of course, a believer will never acknowledge that there is no reason to believe the nonsense he/she believes. To a believer it must be reasonable, he/she would no longer be a believer otherwise.

      You said, "And yet some believe in a god that has no contradictions."
      Of course. Same reason as above.

      You said, "I question whether or not there could be a limit to rejection from my experience on this site. I've seen many an atheist reject and reject and reject even rational things because they didn't like either who or what was being said."
      What rational argument for the existence of gods has been presented here? Ever?

      You said, "Wrong. Expecting that all evidence can be repeated, tested and verified is not the touchstone of truth. There are some real things that cannot be actively tested."
      Bullshit.

      You said, "Most historical events cannot be repeated or tested obviously unless a time machine is one day invented. And the only thing that could be verified is the after effects and if you know anything about history, that is somewhat subjected as well."
      The records, or other evidence of historical events can be studied, but without such records, there is no reason to believe they ever occurred. That doesn't mean stuff doesn't happen if there is no evidence of it. It simply means that we can't establish with any degree of certainty whether they occurred, or not. For most event it is entirely inconsequential whether or not we can establish with any degree of certainty if the happened or not. For others it isn't. Because religious accounts are considered by most to have been significant, to convince others that they actually occurred, requires significant, verifiable evidence.

      You said, "Not to be a stickler, but as far as this blog site is concerned...it's a belief blog. You probably mean in the nation at large and that is somewhat understandable."
      Here and in society at large. Here you should expect to get called on bullshit, and perhaps have the occasional discussion. In society at large, the discourse may get more heated and may end up in court. If everyone is afforded the same rights, freedoms and protection, I have no issue with people believing whatever nonsense they want.

      You said, "Yes, taking the experience of a person and putting against the experiences of another person..that's not exactly the best scientific evidence now is it? I mean, the scientist isn't witnessing what the person is going through."
      The subject's experiences are just as much evidence of gods as those of people who claim to have them without intentional stimulation.

      You said, "But there is no love to be given."
      Yes there is. I give a lot of love to my family and friends.

      You said, "No no no...the evidence you think is love is actually evidence of a parent doing what is programed into the species to offer sustenance and such for their offspring."
      Love is the emotion that helps our species procreate and prosper. It helps form family bonds and protective instincts.

      You said, "The "love" you think a man has for a women is nothing but his instinct to proc reate and hers to find the ideal mate. So no, the perception of getting love from another does not exist.

      Again, I do not mean how YOU feel toward someone. I am talking about how you interpret their actions as love. I am certain you think you are loved in that regard even though you have no evidence that their actions are in fact based in love and not something more logical to our mammalian species."
      I'm not quite sure where you are going with this, but it feels like you are trying to change the definition of "love" in such a way that there is no evidence for it, so that it supports you claim.

      You said, "I'm certain that you couldn't. Hope you don't correct one that stutters when talking about intelligence."
      Of course not. You may note that I only corrected the spelling of one word (that you spelled wrong twice, in different ways, in one paragraph). It was fitting, given the subject of the paragraph. I've not corrected, and don't intend to correct, any others. It was meant as lighthearted, and I meant no offense (there).

      You said, "It's all the same if you just accept it because you are told to."
      Agreed.

      You said, "That is my complaint....most atheists on here think that those of a faith are just following it because they are told to."
      Some may. I don't know if most do. I think most believers have been so indoctrinated during childhood that there is no escape likely, or even possible. The belief in their god is so ingrained, it is accepted without question. Any "evidence" in support is accepted, any argument against it flat out rejected.

      You said, "That is not the case in most cases. They have their reasons that are more complex than "just because" and that needs to be made clear."
      I know, but at the core of their belief, they are relying on what is no more than folk lore.

      You said, "When you or anyone else puts a person's faith down to a level of a kid believing in the tooth fairy, you are being insulting for no good reason other to belittle them and that's hardly a superior position to take."
      I guess that's the risk believers take when they make unsubstantiated claims on a forum such as this. If there is a case to be made for placing gods in a different category than the Tooth fairy, I'm all ears.

      You said, "True, but as a society we do have a culture and a history in that culture. If we could wipe away every possible religious aspect of our culture away...good grief our nation would be different and not in the good. How much of our culture has its roots in religion? I don't mean the obvious "In God we trust" stuff...I mean like our African American culture. It is thick in religion. The Civil Rights Movement was carried a great deal by Christianity (and also hurt by it..I do not forget that)."
      And I have little issue with that. I acknowledge that a great deal of good is done by religious people, for religious reasons. I ave no problem with that and even encourage that. That's not the side or religion that is the problem, as I'm sure you know.

      You said, "Personally I don't think our religious culture holds us back from improving. Sometimes it helps, sometimes it hurts."
      Most of the hurt can be avoided.

      You said, "I listen to a discussion once about conservatism vs liberalism and the speaker basically said that the job of conservatism is to preserve that which is good in a society while the job of a liberal was to introduce new aspects of good into a society."
      I'm guessing that it was the speaker's definition of "good" what needed conservatism to be preserved. I see very little good being preserved by today's conservative movement.

      You said, "I think this is where religion falls into things. Traditionally religion is a conservative tool. It tries to preserve what it sees as a good thing in our society. It fights against change that could be bad. It's not wrong in doing this to a point."
      Actually, that's where I disagree. The areas where religion is fighting against progress is where progress is most needed. A look back in history will quickly show that is was the same conservatism that held back women's rights, civil rights, gay rights, etc.

      You said, "Let me understand this...is the existence of this blog an attack on atheists? Because that is the only thing that makes sense considering the sheer number of atheists on here that just attack others without reason."
      Let me try that again. The discussion on the Belief Blog pertains to the christian god, probably about 95% of the time (give or take 5%). This discussion didn't start out with a specific god. The root post of this thread is an attack on atheists. Since atheists tend to be equal opportunity disbelievers, I see little reason for you to invoke a specific one, unless that is the one that you believe in.

      You said, "But he is a proper noun."
      Yup. I read that too fats.

      You said, "If I told you about a person raised by atheists and arrived to the belief of Christianity."
      Do you know such a person?

      You said, "would that count?"
      Possibly.

      You said, "Of course I am not entirely certain what you mean by indoctrination. If you meant by being raised in a family of those with a faith, or one that just has the slightest exposure to a faith as an adult."
      Indoctrination requires continued exposure and little chance for a different perspective. Most children raised in religious homes fit the bill.

      You said, "I would @ssume you mean one that was raised in parents of a faith."
      Yes. With little room for questioning the core beliefs.

      You said, "Project T-4 comes to mind. It wasn't bigotry that the German Govt was selling. It was a public service."
      Wow, really? You are comparing my derision of infantile beliefs with racial cleansing? Some would say that you have lost the argument.

      You said, "There is dismissing a valid belief because one does not examine the other belief at all, then there is dismissing it after understanding it. Those are not equal. Arriving to a conclusion after examination isn't a bad thing."
      Unfortunately, confirmation bias will sway the "examination" and the conclusions from it in a predictable way.

      You said, "To listen to many of your fellow atheists on here, they consider anyone of faith to be irrational in all things."
      Quite a few obviously are.

      You said, "Not to go round robin on this but empirical evidence is evidence, though not the type that can be verified."
      Empirical evidence can, emotional "evidence" can't.

      June 11, 2013 at 1:09 am |
    • Uncouth Swain

      @LinCA- "It was a carefully selected example, as it reflects how pitiful most arguments, presented by believers for their gods, are."

      At least you said "most".

      "If you get there through life experiences, probably. It is then probably more like a broken clock being right twice a day."

      Of course one has to have the belief in the very persistent illusion of linear time for the clock to even be right twice daily.

      "My point is that there is absolutely no reason to @ssume the bible was in any way divinely inspired. There is no reason to @ssume it is special in any way."

      The mere fact that so many take it seriously throughout the ages should in part make it the subject of serious conjecture.
      And one shouldn't treat the Bible as a singular text. It is a collection of texts throughout many centuries. Yes, it was put together by men but that does not mean that none of it could have been divinely inspired.

      "Of course, a believer will never acknowledge that there is no reason to believe the nonsense he/she believes. To a believer it must be reasonable, he/she would no longer be a believer otherwise."

      It sounds like to you that reason is subjective instead of objective.

      "What rational argument for the existence of gods has been presented here? Ever?"

      Actually what I was meaning is that there have been many atheists that reject anything put out there by those that have a faith. No matter what the topic is, they reject it because a person of faith has said it.
      More on what you said, I cannot think of any arguments made that seem rational (based on science) to prove gods or that the gods were created by man. The evidence is simply not there in either case.

      "B*l ls h*t."

      Sorry you disagree. Perhaps you could tell me how yellow the sun is? How red a strawberry is? How sour a lemon is?
      You do agree that the sun is yellow, strawberries are red and that lemons are sour right? But why is it that I don't believe you will be able to test, verify and repeat whatever it is that you will do to determine these things?

      "The records, or other evidence of historical events can be studied, but without such records, there is no reason to believe they ever occurred."

      And if there is only one record in existence..then what?

      "It simply means that we can't establish with any degree of certainty whether they occurred, or not."

      So it would not be wise to simply say something didn't exist because of a lack of evidence? At least in the historical sense.

      "Because religious accounts are considered by most to have been significant, to convince others that they actually occurred, requires significant, verifiable evidence."

      The truth be known, smaller events and people within the Tanakh have been verified and proven more by the mundane finds in archaeology than the extrava g ant.

      "Here you should expect to get called on b*****t, and perhaps have the occasional discussion."

      I would hope a discu ssion would come first. Especially by those that claim reason.

      "The subject's experiences are just as much evidence of gods as those of people who claim to have them without intentional stimulation."

      But even that intentional stimulation skews the results of such testing and isn't the same.
      The quale is unique in of itself and being unique does not mean it is untrue.

      "Yes there is. I give a lot of love to my family and friends."

      Perhaps you do, but they cannot confirm that.
      To make the argument more clear, prove to me that you love your friends and family.

      "Love is the emotion that helps our species proc reate and prosper. It helps form family bonds and protective instincts."

      I am not talking about the emotion one feels called love. As stated above in past comments, I am talking about the perception of being loved. They are not the same thing.

      "I'm not quite sure where you are going with this, but it feels like you are trying to change the definition of "love" in such a way that there is no evidence for it, so that it supports you claim."

      No. There are (at least) two ways to look at love. There is the emotion...the "I love you" type of love. That which can be measured by your chemicals and such as you have mentioned. Then there is "being loved" by another. You see their actions and interpret that you are loved by them through those actions. You would say it is real that you are loved by another person yes? I call this an example of something you feel is true..a fact but cannot prove it.

      "I think most believers have been so indo ctrinated during childhood that there is no escape likely, or even possible. The belief in their god is so ingrained, it is accepted without question. Any "evidence" in support is accepted, any argument against it flat out rejected."

      With that I agree though I do hold out the hope that most people (regardless of what type of faith they have) would take a closer look at their faith in whatever and really examine it.
      Again, I am pleased you said "most".

      "I guess that's the risk believers take when they make unsubstantiated claims on a forum such as this. If there is a case to be made for placing gods in a different category than the Tooth fairy, I'm all ears."

      I would like to think that among our founding principles of our society is that we show at least a basic respect for ideas and things that others find important. Obviously religion is more important and thought out to the faithful than the tooth fairy is to a child.

      "And I have little issue with that. I acknowledge that a great deal of good is done by religious people, for religious reasons. I ave no problem with that and even encourage that. That's not the side or religion that is the problem, as I'm sure you know."

      Yes but the difference that way of thinking (which I agree) and those that would see religion thrown into the dustpan of history (as one idiot said on here before) is so close you couldn't get a knife's edge inbetween them.

      'Most of the hurt can be avoided."

      Most actions of the mob (the sheep of all beliefs, creeds or att itudes) could be avoided.

      "I'm guessing that it was the speaker's definition of "good" what needed conservatism to be preserved. I see very little good being preserved by today's conservative movement."

      I meant conservatism as perspective of a person, not a definable political movement. Honestly, I do not hold liberalism or conservatism ( as political ent ities) in high regard. They are mostly tools to be used by those in power.

      "Actually, that's where I disagree. The areas where religion is fighting against progress is where progress is most needed. A look back in history will quickly show that is was the same conservatism that held back women's rights, civil rights, g a y rights, etc."

      Again, I am not saying what it tries to preserve is all good. Just like there are some aspects of liberalism that is not always good in what they try to introduce into society. But there are aspects of conservatism through religion that tries to preserve the traditional family. I think most people would agree that a classic family organization of two parents usually works better than the possible more liberal options.

      "I see little reason for you to invoke a specific one, unless that is the one that you believe in."

      If you would look at the multiple posts in this long list of comments started by Freedom, the proper noun "God" was used quite a bit. It's just habit to keep using it.

      "Do you know such a person?"

      Is that needed to answer the question?

      "Indoctrination requires continued exposure and little chance for a different perspective. Most children raised in religious homes fit the bill."

      And one not raised in such a home would not "fit the bill"?

      "Wow, really? You are comparing my derision of infantile beliefs with racial cleansing? Some would say that you have lost the argument."

      No, I was merely answering your question for an example from my statement of, "So many tragic events in human history came from such words." If you felt it was an attack upon your views then you are mistaken. I work with people that have disabilities so that little terrible facet of human history sticks out to me. If anyone would think I lost an argument based on that, then they are quite clueless to what is going on.

      "Unfortunately, confirmation bias will sway the "examination" and the conclusions from it in a predictable way."

      That works in both ways. Just as there are those of a faith that could never let their views on reality change, there are those on the atheist side of things that are so certain of their non-belief that they would never open themselves up to any other possibility. Alas, closed-mindedness is something that plagues many of our species, regardless of belief or non-belief.

      "Quite a few obviously are."

      And quite a few are obviously not.

      June 11, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
  13. Alan

    Story: An atheist was sitting under a tree one day smugly thinking:

    "God, I know you don’t exist but if you do exist you must be really stupid.

    Look at this huge oak tree. It’s got a little acorn on it. And look at this huge marrow carried by such a puny marrow plant.

    Now, if I had been you, I’d have created the oak tree to carry the marrow and the marrow plant to carry the acorn.

    While he was reflecting on his wisdom, suddenly an acorn fell and hit him on the head.

    “Thank God that wasn’t a marrow!” he exclaimed.

    Our thoughts are not God’s thoughts

    June 6, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Alan

      That's one of the dumbest things I've seen written on here in a while.

      Congratulations, you're a moron.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      I get your attempt. Atheist = Wannabe Smarty Pants. God = waaaay smarter than the Atheist. Got that. But do you get that the example fell short?

      June 6, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
    • Hey bobble head

      "If God is small enough to be understood, he would not be big enough to be worshiped" – Underhill

      June 6, 2013 at 3:49 pm |
    • Thoth

      If your god is so ingenious at design please explain: cancer, genetic defects, physical defects, vestigial structures, human frailty.... and that's just within our species....you know, the one he made in his own image.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
    • G to the T

      What the "F" is a "marrow"?

      June 6, 2013 at 3:53 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Bobble, here's your answer.

      Genesis 1:26

      And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:02 pm |
    • Bob

      Since we've got HeavenStench dumping her usual select quotes on us again from her horrid Christian book of nasty AKA the bible, it's time to look again at what's really in that evil book. Fine stuff like this, from both awful testaments. And note carefully the points re context and interpretation:

      Numbers 31:17-18
      17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
      18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

      Deuteronomy 13:6 – “If your brother, your mother’s son or your son or daughter, or the wife you cherish, or your friend who is as your own soul entice you secretly, saying, let us go and serve other gods … you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death”

      Revelations 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

      Leviticus 25
      44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
      45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
      46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

      Note that the bible is also very clear that you should sacrifice and burn an animal today because the smell makes sicko Christian sky fairy happy. No, you don't get to use the parts for food. You burn them, a complete waste of the poor animal.

      Yes, the bible really says that, everyone. Yes, it's in Leviticus, look it up. Yes, Jesus purportedly said that the OT commands still apply. No exceptions. But even if you think the OT was god's mistaken first go around, you have to ask why a perfect, loving enti-ty would ever put such horrid instructions in there. If you think rationally at all, that is.

      And then, if you disagree with my interpretation, ask yourself how it is that your "god" couldn't come up with a better way to communicate than a book that is so readily subject to so many interpretations and to being taken "out of context", and has so many mistakes in it. Pretty pathetic god that you've made for yourself.

      So get out your sacrificial knife or your nasty sky creature will torture you eternally. Or just take a closer look at your foolish supersti-tions, understand that they are just silly, and toss them into the dustbin with all the rest of the gods that man has created.

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
      Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

      June 6, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Bob, I've answered this same question of yours about unbelievers numerous times. I'm not responsible for you never going back through the posts to read my answer.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Bob, Jesus had Holy Men scribe His truth so simple that even a 5 year old can understand His truth.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
    • Science

      HS that 5 year old deal is for chad ......you too !

      June 6, 2013 at 5:07 pm |
    • Monster Banisher

      HeavenSent
      " Jesus had Holy Men scribe His truth so simple that even a 5 year old can understand His truth."

      A 5 year old will believe just about any dang thing you tell him - like Santa Claus brings gifts; the Tooth Fairy pays for lost teeth; Mommy sweeps the monsters out from under his bed and the nightlight keeps them out of his room; wishing upon a star gets results, etc., etc. Gullibility can be cute and endearing at that age - in adults, no.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      HS, When your god says "Let us make man in our image," who else is it including in "us"? If man is in its image does god have a navel and a penis?

      June 6, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      HS, Funny how you, Chad, et al ignore the answers posted to you then complain about others apparently doing just that. What's that called again?

      June 6, 2013 at 5:39 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      In Santa we trust, I'm not ignoring you. I had other things to do.

      You posted "HS, When your god says "Let us make man in our image," who else is it including in "us"? If man is in its image does god have a navel and a penis?"

      Answer: Revelation 4:5

      And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and [there were] seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.

      As to the remaining part of your question was answered in Genesis 1:26.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:37 pm |
    • Pete

      "Revelation 4:5

      And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and [there were] seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God. "

      Who wants to be the HeavenSent in her cherry picking of the bible doesn't even comprehend what the meaning is behind the 7 spirits of God. LMAO! Once again HeavenSent is demonstrating she is clueless about the bible.

      Quick HeavenSent go google it like Chad does since you won't know the answer.

      June 7, 2013 at 9:56 am |
    • Doobs

      I get that you think this is funny and clever, but atheists do not sit around talking to deities any more than you sit around talking to Zeus or any other god about how you don't believe in it.

      June 9, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
  14. sweenbass

    When it comes to matters concerning all of the books that people consider to be "holy" (Bible, Koran, Gita etc...)
    Are there some interesting stories in those books? Some stories are & some are not. The ones that you think are interesting may not be the ones that interest me but that's personal taste.
    Do those aforementioned books contain philosophies that people can use to help improve their lives & the lives of others? Of course they do! This is true of all those books & more.
    However when it comes to questions of a spiritual nature (A deity, A life force or soul, existence after natural death etc...), the best that those books can do is speculate. That is because they were written by people.
    Some people wish to hang their spiritual hat on a speculation that one of those books offer. I do not.
    Is there a spiritual component to the universe? I don't know.
    However, I have not read anything in any of those books that convinces me that the speculations in them are anything more than that.
    That is why I refer to myself as an agnostic.

    June 6, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      I'm agnostic also...you can never be sure, to state otherwise would be dishonest. I'm an Atheist only in regards to the fact that due to lack of evidence for any god, I see no reason to believe in one.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      Yayy, more agnostics!!! Is it me, or do people get really upset when you don't take a side? I mean, with everything being invisible an' all....... I'm still not sure why there's all this pressure. I think agnosticism is the best place for my mind. Keeps my honest!

      June 6, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
    • G to the T

      Same here – agnostic atheist. Certainty is for people who haven't investigated enough or don't understand how evidence and logic work...

      That being said... the spefic actions/attributes of "gods" as described in holy literature can be disputed based on those qualities attributed to them.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:56 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      I do believe this: If there is some "Ultimate Truth" out there, once it's known, it will not, could not, be disputed. It would be as conclusive and agreed upon as saying, "fire is hot".

      June 6, 2013 at 4:04 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Revelation 21:8

      But the fearful, and u.nbelieving, and the a.bominable, and m.urderers, and w.horemongers, and s.orcerers, and i.dolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:13 pm |
    • Bob

      Since we've got HeavenStench dumping her select quotes on us again from her horrid Christian book of nasty AKA the bible, it's time to look again at what's really in that evil book. Fine stuff like this, from both awful testaments. And note carefully the points re context and interpretation:

      Numbers 31:17-18
      17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
      18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

      Deuteronomy 13:6 – “If your brother, your mother’s son or your son or daughter, or the wife you cherish, or your friend who is as your own soul entice you secretly, saying, let us go and serve other gods … you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death”

      Revelations 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

      Leviticus 25
      44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
      45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
      46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

      Note that the bible is also very clear that you should sacrifice and burn an animal today because the smell makes sicko Christian sky fairy happy. No, you don't get to use the parts for food. You burn them, a complete waste of the poor animal.

      Yes, the bible really says that, everyone. Yes, it's in Leviticus, look it up. Yes, Jesus purportedly said that the OT commands still apply. No exceptions. But even if you think the OT was god's mistaken first go around, you have to ask why a perfect, loving enti-ty would ever put such horrid instructions in there. If you think rationally at all, that is.

      And then, if you disagree with my interpretation, ask yourself how it is that your "god" couldn't come up with a better way to communicate than a book that is so readily subject to so many interpretations and to being taken "out of context", and has so many mistakes in it. Pretty pathetic god that you've made for yourself.

      So get out your sacrificial knife or your nasty sky creature will torture you eternally. Or just take a closer look at your foolish supersti-tions, understand that they are just silly, and toss them into the dustbin with all the rest of the gods that man has created.

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
      Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

      June 6, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      @HS – (sigh) ....... your God sounds depressing and bi-polar. He makes us to die not once, but twice. How inefficient. Not just that, but he had FULL knowledge of who's going to H_ell and who's going to Heaven. Because 'free will' is a sham when I know the beginning and end of all things in the known and unknown universe.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:19 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      AverageJoe76. what sounds depressing and bi-polar is the comments of unbelievers and their view of Him. Jesus gave you freewill. You decide whether you spend eternity with Jesus or you send yourself to the eternal flames. Jesus will oblige everyone of their wishes.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
    • Pete

      "Revelation 21:8

      But the fearful, and u.nbelieving, and the a.bominable, and m.urderers, and w.horemongers, and s.orcerers, and i.dolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

      Amen."

      The stupidity of HeavenSent continues because in her stupidity of cherry picking scriptures she can't comprehend that in this particular case this scripture at face value includes everyone including her. What a moron.

      June 7, 2013 at 9:58 am |
    • Pete

      " Jesus will oblige everyone of their wishes."

      Oh so now you're portraying Jesus as the genie in the bottle. LOL!

      June 7, 2013 at 9:59 am |
  15. Dyslexic doG

    @Heavensent

    Job 13:5
    If only you would be altogether silent! For you, that would be wisdom.

    Amen!

    June 6, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Mark 4:15

      And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts.

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      @Heavensent

      Do as Job 13:5 says or face His wrath!

      Proverbs 13:13
      Whoever despises the word brings destruction on himself, but he who reveres the commandment will be rewarded.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
    • Science

      HEY HS

      Your Pretty Face is Going to Hell

      Next Showing: June 07 @ 12:45 AM

      http://video.adultswim.com/your-pretty-face-is-going-to-hell/bathroom-break.html

      June 6, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
    • Science

      Oops forgot to mention HS..................break time enjoy and share with Chad and the gang.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      dog, James Dean you are not.

      Job 24:13

      They are of those that rebel against the light; they know not the ways thereof, nor abide in the paths thereof.

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
    • anthony parks

      IF? That is all i have seen from you is ' iF'... What IF frogs had wings? They wouldn't bump there asses when they hop would they.... IF? If you had a brain you (Might) be dangerous. I really doubt it tho. You computer keyboard smart ass punk.

      June 6, 2013 at 7:58 pm |
    • anthony parks

      Going out on a limb here, but i am guessing you are about 5' 4" 130 lbs. of total punk. But you are 6' 5" and bullet proof on your keyboard right? You s–t talking degrading punk. I know i am not wrong, I know you.

      June 6, 2013 at 8:04 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Calm down, Sgt Maj Dickerson.

      June 6, 2013 at 8:05 pm |
    • anthony parks

      @ HS
      They know the way to the light. Yet they defy it.

      June 6, 2013 at 8:13 pm |
    • anthony parks

      He didn't reply, so i am guessing he is at his Thursday Bible Study. He does every Monday and Thursday. And Sunday.

      June 6, 2013 at 8:26 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      anthony parks, they want the light but don't want to do the work to get it. It's easy, yet they make a make a mountain out of a mole hole.

      June 6, 2013 at 8:30 pm |
    • Pete

      "Mark 4:15

      And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts.

      Amen."

      Why don't you try using this scripture on other christians HeavenSent because they go to church every Sunday yet they surround themselves with greed, gluttony (being overweight), arrogance, adultery and especially ego (like yours).

      June 7, 2013 at 10:05 am |
    • Pete

      "Job 24:13

      They are of those that rebel against the light; they know not the ways thereof, nor abide in the paths thereof.

      Amen."

      Once again HeavenSent in her cherry picking of the bible proves yet again she doesn't understand the scriptures. You are using this snippet out of context. What a moron. The light in this case when taken with the entire chapter is talking about being guilty of the inhumanity, barbarity, and cruelty, dog has not demonstrate any of that in their posts on this particular thread. Keep showing you're clueless about the bible and why it was never meant to be cherry picked the way you are using it.

      June 7, 2013 at 10:10 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Tommy Tom as Pete, stick with the ABCs and never make sentences from those letters. Your obsession with stalking me is out of control,

      June 9, 2013 at 2:06 pm |
  16. Jervais

    Caller: I have a doubt
    Atheist: what is your doubt?
    Caller: will I go to heaven?
    Atheist: I don't know about you, but the pope promised me that I will go to heaven.

    June 6, 2013 at 1:54 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      No he didn't

      June 6, 2013 at 4:08 pm |
    • Lois Rain

      Never call a Catholic on his promises. They never deliver on them. Other than what their priests deliver "in the flesh", so to speak.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:11 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Lois First, heaven isn't the pope's to promise, second learn the difference between redemption and salvation. No wonder you're confused.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:14 pm |
    • Dwayne

      Lois, Dull Beacon will dodge and twist what you say at every opportunity. Just ignore that pathetic little wimp. His religion is dying out anyway.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:20 pm |
  17. Reality

    "The Two Universal Sects

    They all err—Moslems, Jews,
    Christians, and Zoroastrians:

    Humanity follows two world-wide sects:
    One, man intelligent without religion,
    The second, religious without intellect. "

    Al-Ma'arri
    ~1000 CE

    June 6, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Proverbs 28:21
      To have respect of persons [is] not good: for for a piece of bread [that] man will transgress.

      Hosea 4:6
      My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • Ken

      HeavenSent
      That Hosea quote mentions rejecting knowledge, not losing faith. Doesn't that better describe Christian positions like Creationism, where real knowledge is rejected in order to deny evolution, a scientifically proven truth?

      June 6, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Ken, if evolution were true, why haven't we witnessed the microorganism SAR11 evolve into humans, scratch that, apes yet? It's been years and no baby apes to speak of.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
    • Reality

      Death's Debt is Paid in
      Full

      Death's debt is then and there
      Paid down by dying men;

      But it is a promise bare
      That they shall rise again. "

      Al-Ma'arri

      June 6, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Ken, rejecting knowledge is rejecting His word.

      Romans 10:17

      So then faith [cometh] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
    • Reality

      •Exodus 32: 3,000 Israelites killed by Moses for worshipping the golden calf.

      •Numbers 31: After killing all men, boys and married women among the Midianites, 32,000 virgins remain as booty for the Israelites. (If unmarried girls are a quarter of the population, then 96,000 people were killed.)

      •Joshua: ◦Joshua 8: 12,000 men and women, all the people of Ai, killed.
      ◦Joshua 10: Joshua completely destroys Gibeon ("larger than Ai"), Makeddah, Libnah, Lachish, Eglon, Hebron, Debir. "He left no survivors."
      ◦Joshua 11: Hazor destroyed. [Paul Johnson, A History of the Jews (1987), estimates the population of Hazor at ?> 50,000]
      ◦TOTAL: if Ai is average, 12,000 x 9 = 108,000 killed.

      •Judges 1: 10,000 Canaanites k. at Battle of Bezek. Jerusalem and Zephath destroyed.
      •Judges 3: ca. 10,000 Moabites k. at Jordan River.
      •Judges 8: 120,000 Midianite soldiers k. by Gideon
      •Judges 20: Benjamin attacked by other tribes. 25,000 killed.

      •1 Samuel 4: 4,000 Isrealites killed at 1st Battle of Ebenezer/Aphek. 30,000 Isr. k. at 2nd battle.
      •David: ◦2 Samuel 8: 22,000 Arameans of Damascus and 18,000 Edomites killed in 2 battles.

      ◦2 Samuel 10: 40,000 Aramean footsoldiers and 7,000 charioteers killed at Helam.
      ◦2 Samuel 18: 20,000 Israelites under Absalom killed at Ephraim.

      •1 Kings 20: 100,000 Arameans killed by Israelites at Battle of Aphek. Another 27,000 killed by collapsing wall.
      •2 Chron 13: Judah beat Israel and inflicted 500,000 casualties.
      •2 Chron 25: Amaziah, king of Judah, k. 10,000 from Seir in battle and executed 10,000 POWs. Discharged Judean soldiers pillaged and killed 3,000.
      •2 Chron 28: Pekah, king of Israel, slew 120,000 Judeans

      •TOTAL: That comes to about 1,283,000 mass killings specifically enumerated in the Old Testament/Torah. And all approved by the Jewish/Christian/Islamic god.

      The New Testament has only one major atrocity, that of god committing filicide assuming you believe in this Christian mumbo jumbo. Said atrocity should be enough to vitiate all of Christianity.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Reality, I already posted Proverbs 28:21 to you.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:19 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Reality, if you know what happened to doubters, why do you insist on being one?

      June 6, 2013 at 3:29 pm |
    • G to the T

      Just by your comment HS I contend that you have a flawed knowledge of evolution and how it works... No one who's ever actually studied it could make such an ill-informed and backwards comment...

      June 6, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      G to the T. the only thing I lack about the fairy tale of evolution is seeing the varieties evolve. Don't tell me you unbelievers were the first and last and. cough, the fittest.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:24 pm |
    • Reality

      "Common name Millions of
      Years ago

      Cells with a nucleus 2,100
      Animals 590
      Vertebrates and closely related invertebrates 530
      Vertebrates 505
      Tetrapods 395
      Amniotes, tetrapods that are fully terrestrially-adapted 340
      Mammals 220
      Mammals that birth live young (i.e. non-egg-laying)
      P-lac-ental mammals (i.e. non-marsupials) 125
      Supraprimates, bats, whales, most hoofed mammals, and most carnivorous mammals
      Supraprimates (primates, rodents, rabbits, tree shrews, and colugos)
      100
      Primates, colugos and tree shrews
      Primates and colugos
      79.6
      Primates 75
      "Dry-nosed" (literally, "simple-nosed") primates (a-pes, monkeys, and tarsiers)
      40
      "Higher" primates (or Simians) (a-pes, old-world monkeys, and new-world monkeys)
      "Downward-nosed" primates (a-pes and old-world monkeys) 30
      A-pes 28
      Great a-pes (Humans, chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas, and orangutans)
      15
      Humans, chimpanzees, bonobos, and gorillas 8
      H-o-mo and Australopithecina 5.8
      Members of the genus H-om-o[this appears to be identical with the genus]
      3
      Humans, neanderthals, h-o-mo er-ectus, and their direct ancestors 2.5
      Humans 0.5
      Modern humans "

      June 6, 2013 at 6:20 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Reality, why are we not witnessing daily, the evolution of what you listed? If evolution were true, we'd see them in variety of stages as they evolved. We still have apes throughout the world, when are they going to change into neanderthals?

      June 6, 2013 at 6:48 pm |
    • Ken

      HeavenSent
      Faith is not "knowledge". You can know, for certain, that 2 plus 2 equals four, so you don't have to have faith in what the answer is.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:52 pm |
    • Ken

      HS
      faith |fāθ|
      noun
      1 complete trust or confidence in someone or something : this restores one's faith in politicians.
      2 strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.

      I assume any discussion in the Christian context uses the second definition of faith, right? I prefer proof when it comes to determining what is true. Spiritual apprehension is completely subjective, and more like an emotional response, like claiming that opera is better than broadway, or the Redskins are better than the Giants. You might be personally convinced in your heart by something like this, but it does nothing to convince other people. It isn't logical.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:59 pm |
    • Ken

      HeavenSent
      You can't possibly be that ignorant of evolution theory, can you?

      June 6, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      HS, Do you watch the news? Viruses evolve – you know human, bird, and swine flu varieties. You probably have, or at least have you seen, examples of evolution caused by human breeding: dogs, horses, roses, etc. etc. Have you heard of DNA and how individuals can be identified by it?
      All examples of evolution.

      June 6, 2013 at 7:15 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      In Santa we trust, viruses mutate just as the HIV is mutating with TB.

      June 6, 2013 at 7:39 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Ken, not only is the Bible Jesus' truth about life and the hereafter, He ensured His truth was prophesied throughout. Although it hurts Jesus (as does His followers) that some of His beloved humans will be blotted out, Christians that actually read and comprehend God's truth find it exciting that we are witnessing end days that we are living in. What you unbelievers scoff at, Christians find His truth fascinating.

      June 6, 2013 at 7:51 pm |
    • midwest rail

      " we are witnessing end days that we are living in...."
      No. Men have been predicting the end of days since the beginning of days. They were all wrong. So are you.

      June 6, 2013 at 7:53 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      midwest rail,

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

      2 Peter 3:8

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 8:35 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      HS, Exactly they are mutations which is was causes evolution. I know that not all mutations cause evolution but all evolution was caused by mutations. Why do you think many experiments are performed on rats and monkeys – because they are in our evolutionary past.

      June 6, 2013 at 9:39 pm |
    • The real Tom

      HS claims her job was in the field of science. Can you imagine? What kind of idiot that denies evolution is a fact has ANY relevance in a science-related career? The moron must have been a secretary or receptionist. She surely wasn't a researcher or anything approaching a professional.

      What a boob.

      June 6, 2013 at 11:01 pm |
    • Reality

      Heaven Sent,

      When you are finished reading the information regarding evolution as presented by one of the top universities, get back to us. http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/misconceptions_faq.php#a8

      June 7, 2013 at 12:13 am |
    • Ken

      HeavenSent
      Still excited about the end of the world? Well, besides that being really twisted all by itself, didn't every generation of Christians going back to JC himself all think that they were living in the end times? If there is any truth at all in this concept it appears that Jesus was referring to every individual's death, which usually does come at unexpected times. If you're really lucky there will still be a few Christians around when the sun burns out, or when the next killer astroid hits. At least somebody will be happy to see our extinction, sick as that may be.

      June 7, 2013 at 12:33 am |
    • Pete

      "Proverbs 28:21
      To have respect of persons [is] not good: for for a piece of bread [that] man will transgress. "

      And again HeavenSent proves she is clueless about the scriptures and why cherry picking like this is wrong. Yo moron, this is about bribing a judge in a court of law so the he would show favoritism. It's not related to anything Reality just posted. What an idiot.

      June 7, 2013 at 10:15 am |
    • HeavenSent

      The real Tom, you finally spewed you venom under your handle instead of Pete or the multiple dummy handles you use "HS claims her job was in the field of science. Can you imagine? What kind of idiot that denies evolution is a fact has ANY relevance in a science-related career? The moron must have been a secretary or receptionist. She surely wasn't a researcher or anything approaching a professional."

      Answer: Bullying your lie of evolution does not, nor ever, will work with me. You use the same lying techniques as my former bosses that got tossed out of their careers due to lying and manipulation. Thanks for proving what lying, manipulating bullies the spiritually dead are.

      What a boob.

      June 7, 2013 at 11:53 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Tom posting as Pete, ""Proverbs 28:21 To have respect of persons [is] not good: for for a piece of bread [that] man will transgress. " "And again HeavenSent proves she is clueless about the scriptures and why cherry picking like this is wrong. Yo moron, this is about bribing a judge in a court of law so the he would show favoritism. It's not related to anything Reality just posted. What an idiot."

      Answer: We learn Jesus' truth, just as you learn the English language. The rules never said that when speaking or deciding what actions to take in life that you must use A first, followed by B, then follow it up with C etc. Scriptures explain righteous versus unrighteous outcomes that transcend all endeavors in life.

      June 7, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
    • Reality

      Summarizing again with a prayer:

      The Apostles' / Agnostics’ Creed 2013 (updated by yours truly based on the studies of NT historians and theologians of the past 200 years)

      Should I believe in a god whose existence cannot be proven
      and said god if he/she/it exists resides in an unproven,
      human-created, spirit state of bliss called heaven?????

      I believe there was a 1st century CE, Jewish, simple,
      preacher-man who was conceived by a Jewish carpenter
      named Joseph living in Nazareth and born of a young Jewish
      girl named Mary. (Some say he was a mamzer.)

      Jesus was summarily crucified for being a temple rabble-rouser by
      the Roman troops in Jerusalem serving under Pontius Pilate,

      He was buried in an unmarked grave and still lies
      a-mouldering in the ground somewhere outside of
      Jerusalem.

      Said Jesus' story was embellished and "mythicized" by
      many semi-fiction writers. A bodily resurrection and
      ascension stories were promulgated to compete with the
      Caesar myths. Said stories were so popular that they
      grew into a religion known today as Catholicism/Christianity
      and featuring dark-age, daily wine to blood and bread to body rituals
      called the eucharistic sacrifice of the non-atoning Jesus.

      Amen
      (References used are available upon request.)

      June 7, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      All fake religions are 95% copy of Jesus Christ's truth with 5% of satan's lies incorporated to insure evil flourishes. Satan's offspring share this world with us and ensured many fake religions were created throughout history. Why? To create doubt by not knowing you need to follow Jesus' truth so you can join their patriarch's lies into the eternal flames. Satan doesn't want to burn alone. Doubt worked with you unbelievers.

      P.S. Satan's offspring rewrite history which includes fake information as well as dates. No need to stretch your imagination on this fact. LOOK how posts on this site are deleted or the words "Your comment is awaiting moderation." is posted underneath because people refuse truth to be posted.

      June 9, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
    • Reality

      One more time:

      • The moderators of this blog have set up a secret forbidden word filter which unfortunately not only will delete or put your comment in the dreaded "waiting for moderation" category but also will do the same to words having fragments of these words. For example, "t-it" is in the set but the filter will also pick up words like Hitt-ite, t-itle, beati-tude, practi-tioner and const-tution. Then there are words like "an-al" thereby flagging words like an-alysis and "c-um" flagging acc-umulate or doc-ument. And there is also "r-a-pe", “a-pe” and “gra-pe”, "s-ex", and "hom-ose-xual". You would think that the moderators would have corrected this by now considering the number of times this has been commented on but they have not. To be safe, I typically add hyphens in any word that said filter might judge "of-fensive".

      • Make sure the web address does not have any forbidden word or fragment.

      Sum Dude routinely updates the list of forbidden words/fragments.

      Two of the most filtered words are those containing the fragments "t-it" and "c-um". To quickly check your comments for these fragments, click on "Edit" on the Tool Bar and then "Find" on the menu. Add a fragment (without hyphens) one at a time in the "Find" slot and the offending fragment will be highlighted in your comments before you hit the Post button. Hyphenate the fragment(s) and then hit Post. And remember more than one full web address will also gain a "Waiting for Moderation".
      Zeb’s alphabetical listing

      o “bad letter combinations / words to avoid if you want to get past the CNN "awaiting moderation" filter:
      Many, if not most, are buried within other words, so use your imagination.
      You can use dashes, spaces, or other characters to modify the "offending" letter combinations.
      --–
      ar-se.....as in Car-se, etc.
      ba-stard
      co-ck.....as in co-ckatiel, co-ckatrice, co-ckleshell, co-ckles, lubco-ck, etc.
      co-on.....as in rac-oon, coc-oon, etc.
      cu-m......as in doc-ument, accu-mulate, circu-mnavigate, circu-mstances, cu-mbersome, cuc-umber, etc.
      cu-nt.....as in Scu-ntthorpe, a city in the UK famous for having problems with filters...!
      do-uche
      ef-fing...as in ef-fing filter
      ft-w......as in soft-ware, delft-ware, swift-water, etc.
      fu-ck......!
      ho-mo.....as in ho-mo sapiens or ho-mose-xual, ho-mogenous, etc.
      ho-rny....as in tho-rny, etc.
      jacka-ss...yet "ass" is allowed by itself.....
      ja-p......as in j-apanese, ja-pan, j-ape, etc.
      ji-sm
      koo-ch....as in koo-chie koo..!
      nip-ple
      pi-s......as in pi-stol, lapi-s, pi-ssed, therapi-st, etc.
      pr-ick....as in pri-ckling, pri-ckles, etc.
      ra-pe.....as in scra-pe, tra-peze, gr-ape, thera-peutic, sara-pe, etc.
      se-x......as in Ess-ex, s-exual, etc.
      sh-@t.....but shat is okay – don't use the @ symbol there.
      sh-it
      sl-ut
      sn-atch
      sp-ic.....as in disp-icable, hosp-ice, consp-icuous, susp-icious, sp-icule, sp-ice, etc.
      ti-t......as in const-itution, att-itude, ent-ities, alt-itude, beat-itude, etc.
      tw-at.....as in wristw-atch, nightw-atchman, etc.
      va-g......as in extrava-gant, va-gina, va-grant, va-gue, sava-ge, etc.
      who-re....as in who're you kidding / don't forget to put in that apostrophe!
      wt-f....also!!!!!!!

      There are more, some of them considered "racist", so do not assume that this list is complete.
      -–
      Allowed words / not blocked at all:
      anal
      anus
      ass
      boob
      crap
      damn
      execute
      hell
      kill
      masturbation
      murder
      penis
      pubic
      raping (ra-pe is not ok)
      shat (sh-@t is not ok)
      sphincter
      testes
      testicles

      The CNN / WordPress filter also filters your EMAIL address and NAME as well – so you might want to check those.

      June 9, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      What an ignorant filter!!

      June 9, 2013 at 11:41 pm |
  18. JOLEEN

    The ego hates god. (Easing God Out) No one can live a fulfilled life when his ego is on the throne. Surrender to God is the only way. No wonder he said, "I am the way." The Book of Acts makes clear the challenges our brethren overcame on their way to spirituality. It took Sail/Paul years in obscurity and suffering to prepare for the suffering God had planned for him. Moses was 40 years wandering around clueless. Jonah got a brief blast in the furnace of the Lord's refining fire. And each who will live Godly in our Lord will face hardship and pain.

    June 6, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
    • sam stone

      thinking that you know the mind of god is ego

      that goes for blog posters in 2013, or the iron age sheep mounters who wrote the bible

      June 6, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
    • JOLEEN

      That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings being made conformable to His death

      June 6, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Job 12:16

      With him [is] strength and wisdom: the deceived and the deceiver [are] his.

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
    • oOo

      Surrendering to something entirely on faith is an excuse to stop thinking; an excuse to pretend you've categorized and dotted all your "i"'s for the day. Start using the head that nature developed for you.

      June 6, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
    • Science

      JOLEEN and HS are stuck in a little box (the matrix) and can't get out maybe ?

      June 6, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      2 Peter 3:3

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

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
    • Science

      Hey HS ...............the black hole below and above .................the stars are sucking you in fast aye ?

      See post under Billy .

      June 6, 2013 at 2:49 pm |
    • Ken

      JOLEEN
      I think that it takes a whole lot more ego to believe that you're the special creation of the most perfect being imaginable. It's a fantasy similar to many children's daydream that their "real" parents, who are ultra-nice, rich royalty, will show up some day to rescue them from the often nagging people who call themselves their parents. Isn't it rather childish to even assume that some perfect life awaits you?

      June 6, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Revelation 21:8

      But the fearful, and u.nbelieving, and the a.bominable, and m.urderers, and w.horemongers, and s.orcerers, and i.dolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
    • sam stone

      HS: Wow, more comic book quotes

      Go meet jeebus, if you have the guts

      Of course, you don't

      So, blather on, c-word

      June 6, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
    • G to the T

      Ego is believing that there MUST be life after death...

      June 6, 2013 at 4:06 pm |
    • Ken

      G to the T
      Yup, to believe that you are soooo important that it's impossible to imagine the universe allowing you to stop existing is egotistical in the extreme.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:43 pm |
    • Pete

      "Job 12:16

      With him [is] strength and wisdom: the deceived and the deceiver [are] his.

      Amen.'

      Do you even know what this is talking about? It's telling the world that your god, created the deceivers and controls them as well. But of course in your stupidity of the scriptures you probably weren't using it in that context. LOL!

      June 7, 2013 at 10:24 am |
    • Pete

      "Revelation 21:8

      But the fearful, and u.nbelieving, and the a.bominable, and m.urderers, and w.horemongers, and s.orcerers, and i.dolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

      Amen."

      Oh still use this snippet in the wrong context huh. Well at face value that scripture includes you and everyone else in the world. Keep demonstrating why cherry picking the bible like you do is wrong.

      June 7, 2013 at 10:25 am |
  19. JOLEEN

    prooftexting is the art of the devil.

    June 6, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
    • oOo

      Only a BB troll who has no excuse would come up with something this lame.

      June 6, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
    • JOLEEN

      Taking Scripture out of context can be misleading. The soul that sinneth, it shall die. All have sinned. Some are forgiven.

      June 6, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
    • oOo

      What scripture? Where? Which of the 40,000 sects knows the correct context?

      June 6, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • What IF

      JOLEEN,

      "Scriptures" are almost a dime a dozen.

      Here are just some of them:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_text#List_of_sacred_texts_of_various_religions

      Even Korea's Kim Jong Il had his "scriptures".

      Your Middle Eastern Hebrew "scripture" (and it's sequel) has no more evidence of veracity than any of the others...

      June 6, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • What IF

      (*dang: its, not it's)

      June 6, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      @What if – I was prepared to accept your argument but there now seem to be differing versions. That creates a discrepancy which invalidates your position. Sorry, you almost had me.

      June 6, 2013 at 1:54 pm |
    • Science

      GOOD NEWS.....Billy.........no bible needed !

      Oldest Primate Fossil Skeleton Found In China

      Seth Borenstein, Associated Press | Jun. 5, 2013, 2:14 PM

      Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/oldest-primate-fossil-skeleton-found-in-china-2013-6#ixzz2VS35T5QS

      Black Holes Abundant Among the Earliest Stars

      June 5, 2013 — By comparing infrared and X-ray background signals across the same stretch of sky, an international team of astronomers has discovered evidence of a significant number of black holes that accompanied the first stars in the universe.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130605190711.htm

      Join your heroes. Be one yourself.

      Together, you and DC Entertainment have raised more than $2 million. This fight can be won. Here’s how.

      http://www.wecanbeheroes.org/

      June 6, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
    • Ken

      JOLEEN
      That would explain why the Bible is so full of mistakes and contradictions, I suppose. It was written by people of faith, like a lot of the posts here.

      June 6, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Ken, Jesus' word is perfect. If you see mistakes and contradictions within, means you have issues you haven't or refuse to resolve.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      HeavenSent, Jesus has been dead a very long time. No one living has heard Jesus' words.

      June 6, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
    • G to the T

      Way to pass the buck Heaven Sent. If there's an error in the bible its because you are reading it wrong? Wow, talk about ego...

      June 6, 2013 at 4:07 pm |
    • Bob

      Since we've got HeavenStench and Joleen dumping nonsense on us again from their horrid Christian book of nasty AKA the bible, it's time to look again at what's really in that evil book. Fine stuff like this, from both awful testaments. And note carefully the points re context and interpretation:

      Numbers 31:17-18
      17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
      18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

      Deuteronomy 13:6 – “If your brother, your mother’s son or your son or daughter, or the wife you cherish, or your friend who is as your own soul entice you secretly, saying, let us go and serve other gods … you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death”

      Revelations 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

      Leviticus 25
      44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
      45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
      46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

      Note that the bible is also very clear that you should sacrifice and burn an animal today because the smell makes sicko Christian sky fairy happy. No, you don't get to use the parts for food. You burn them, a complete waste of the poor animal.

      Yes, the bible really says that, everyone. Yes, it's in Leviticus, look it up. Yes, Jesus purportedly said that the OT commands still apply. No exceptions. But even if you think the OT was god's mistaken first go around, you have to ask why a perfect, loving enti-ty would ever put such horrid instructions in there. If you think rationally at all, that is.

      And then, if you disagree with my interpretation, ask yourself how it is that your "god" couldn't come up with a better way to communicate than a book that is so readily subject to so many interpretations and to being taken "out of context", and has so many mistakes in it. Pretty pathetic god that you've made for yourself.

      So get out your sacrificial knife or your nasty sky creature will torture you eternally. Or just take a closer look at your foolish supersti-tions, understand that they are just silly, and toss them into the dustbin with all the rest of the gods that man has created.

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
      Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

      June 6, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      G to the T, just because you don't like my answer, doesn't mean I have to be passing the buck. I told you His truth. If you don't accept His truth, you'll refuse. Which is what you do. Therefore, you only know that you reject His truth, never finding out what it's like to accept His truth.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:28 pm |
    • Observer

      HeavenSent,

      The Bible can't even keep it straight how old someone was when he became king.

      It's YOUR problem if you can't resolve the truth about what the Bible says.

      June 6, 2013 at 5:56 pm |
    • Ken

      HeavenSent
      Jesus' words may have been perfect, but the problem is that the gospels are just stories about what Jesus' words were, written decades after he died, by authors unknown to us, writing for the purpose of trying to strengthen people's faith. Not even close to being any kind of impartial reportage of the basic facts as we're use to. It's amazing, then, that so many Christians choose to treat the gospels as completely literally factual.

      I can't resolve the contradictions perhaps because I don't have that kind of imagination. I take the gospels for what they are: four largely separate accounts of Jesus' ministry told for four separate Christian communities each with their own perspectives. You can't just mash them all together into a single "super gospel" and think of that as the whole picture, at least, not without favoring certain versions of stories over others. You can't, for example, have the baby Jesus be visited by both magi and shepherds without messing with the importance Matthew and Luke put on these visitations.

      June 6, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Ken, the Apostles were given so much information. They preached and wrote what Jesus told them and that's why their teachings differ. Eleven of the twelve taught the Jews only. Paul is the Apostle that Jesus told the rest of His truth. It is Paul's gospel that all of us are to follow.

      June 6, 2013 at 8:10 pm |
    • Bob

      Speaking of what the gospels tell us, let's have a look at what's really in HeavenStench's book of nasty AKA the bible:

      Numbers 31:17-18
      17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
      18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

      Deuteronomy 13:6 – “If your brother, your mother’s son or your son or daughter, or the wife you cherish, or your friend who is as your own soul entice you secretly, saying, let us go and serve other gods … you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death”

      Revelations 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

      Leviticus 25
      44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
      45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
      46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

      Note that the bible is also very clear that you should sacrifice and burn an animal today because the smell makes sicko Christian sky fairy happy. No, you don't get to use the parts for food. You burn them, a complete waste of the poor animal.

      Yes, the bible really says that, everyone. Yes, it's in Leviticus, look it up. Yes, Jesus purportedly said that the OT commands still apply. No exceptions. But even if you think the OT was god's mistaken first go around, you have to ask why a perfect, loving enti-ty would ever put such horrid instructions in there. If you think rationally at all, that is.

      And then, if you disagree with my interpretation, ask yourself how it is that your "god" couldn't come up with a better way to communicate than a book that is so readily subject to so many interpretations and to being taken "out of context", and has so many mistakes in it. Pretty pathetic god that you've made for yourself.

      So get out your sacrificial knife or your nasty sky creature will torture you eternally. Or just take a closer look at your foolish supersti-tions, understand that they are just silly, and toss them into the dustbin with all the rest of the gods that man has created.

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
      Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

      June 6, 2013 at 10:37 pm |
    • Ken

      HeavenSent
      So, you're saying that Paul got more out of his brief encounter with a voice claiming to be Jesus than the actual apostles all got from spending years learning from the guy? Amazing! Well, you forgot that they all voted in another guy to take Judas' place, so there would be 13 apostles, not 12 including Paul. Then, you have to admit that it could have been Satan just pretending to be Jesus to Paul. That would certainly explain why Paul's version of Christianity was so different from that of Jesus' actual followers. Certainly Satan could have fooled anyone, including Paul. Jesus never wanted to start a new religion centered on him, now did he?

      June 7, 2013 at 12:17 am |
  20. Conspiracy

    Here's a question. Who is funding this number and why?

    June 6, 2013 at 11:54 am |
    • Dyslexic doG

      God is funding this number. He's sick of Christians whining and asking for things all day every day. He wants a few less of you so the volume will go down a little.

      June 6, 2013 at 11:59 am |
    • sam stone

      I suspect you've honored many with your lips, HS

      June 6, 2013 at 12:25 pm |
    • sam stone

      Amen

      June 6, 2013 at 12:27 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Proverbs 1:22

      How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge?

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 12:53 pm |
    • sam stone

      Ironically, the gash posting the fools hate knowledge is taking that post from an iron age comic book. Amen

      June 6, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Proverbs 14:6

      A scorner seeketh wisdom, and [findeth it] not: but knowledge [is] easy unto him that understandeth.

      Amen.

      June 6, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • Conspiracy

      I didn't state my religion Dyslexic doG, interesting that you would assume. Why is that? By the way you didn't answer my question. None of you did.

      June 6, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
    • What IF

      Conspiracy,
      " Who is funding this number and why?"

      Did you read the article?

      http://recoveringfromreligion.org/

      June 6, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29
Advertisement
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.