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July 30th, 2013
02:17 PM ET

Why are millennials leaving church? Try atheism

Opinion by Hemant Mehta, Special to CNN

(CNN) - Articles and books about why millennials are leaving Christianity often focus on what churches are doing "wrong."

They're anti-gay, anti-women, anti-science, anti-sex-education and anti-doubt, 
to name a few of the most common criticisms.

I don't disagree with those critiques, but there's another side to the story.

While Christians have played sloppy defense, secular Americans have been showing off some impressive offense, giving young Christians plenty of reasons to lose faith in organized religion.

For instance, atheists dominate the Internet, rallying to thriving websites and online communities in lieu of physical meeting spaces.

Even a writer for the evangelical magazine Relevant admitted that “While Christianity enjoys a robust online presence, the edge still seems to belong to its unbelievers.”

Atheists outnumber Christians on popular discussion forums like Reddit, where subscribers to the atheism section number more than 2 million. The Christianity section is not even 5% of that.

The Internet-based Foundation Beyond Belief, which encourages atheists to donate to charitable organizations, just celebrated raising $1 million for worthwhile causes. (Disclosure: I serve on its board of directors.)

Moreover, blogs and websites espousing non-religious viewpoints and criticizing Christianity draw tons of Internet traffic these days. For every Christian apologist's argument, it seems, there's an equal and opposite rebuttal to be found online. I call that "Hitchens' Third Law.”

READ MORE: Why millennials are leaving the church 

Christians can no longer hide in a bubble, sheltered from opposing perspectives, and church leaders can't protect young people from finding information that contradicts traditional beliefs.

If there's an open comment thread to be found on a Christian's YouTube video or opinion piece online, there's inevitably going to be pushback from atheists.

There has also been a push by atheists to get non-religious individuals to "come out of the closet" and let people know that they don't believe in God.

Among other things, this proves that anti-atheist stereotypes aren't accurate and, just as important, that atheists aren’t alone in their communities.

There's the Richard Dawkins Foundation's Out Campaign, with its Scarlet A badges.

There are atheist-encouraging billboards in 33 states financed by groups like the United Coalition of Reason.

There's even going to be an 1-800 hot line for people "recovering" from religion.

READ MORE: Atheists to start 1-800 hot line for doubters

And last year, an estimated 20,000 atheists turned out for the Reason Rally in Washington, a tenfold increase from the previous atheist rally in 2002.

But more than anything else, atheism's best advertisements may be the words of Christian leaders themselves.

When Pastor Mark Driscoll belittles women, Rick Warren argues against same-sex rights or Rob Bell equivocates on the concept of hell, we amplify those messages for them - and it helps us make our point.

(It goes without saying that the pairing of Pat Robertson and YouTube has been great for atheists.)

Pastors are no longer the final authority on the truth, and millennials know it.

Even if they hold Jesus' message in high esteem, the Bible as it has traditionally been preached by many evangelical pastors is becoming less and less attractive to them.

A 2012 study by the Public Religion Research Institute (PDF) showed that many Christians aged 18-24 felt that Christianity was hypocritical (49%), judgmental (54%) and anti-gay (58%).

In addition, Christianity Today reported last year that fewer than half of born-again Christians under 35 opposed same-sex marriage.

When millennials' pastors and hearts are going in different directions, church leaders should be worried.

Can churches win back the youth?

Barring a complete shift in beliefs, that may not be possible. Some of the proposed solutions seem ludicrous to millennial atheists like myself.

For instance, there's been talk of finding a better way to reconcile science and religion. Whenever that battle takes place, religion loses.

There are some questions we may never know the answer to, but for the ones we can eventually answer, the scientific explanation will devour the religious one. Mixing science and religion requires a distortion of one or the other.

READ MORE: Behold, the six tribes of atheism 

What about focusing on the message and life of Jesus?

While this sounds good philosophically, the myth surrounding Jesus is part of the problem with Christianity.

To believe in Jesus means believing that he was born of a virgin, rose from the dead and performed a number of miracles.

There's no proof of any of that ever happened, and atheists place those stories in the same box as "young Earth creationism" and Noah's Great Flood.

To be sure, if Christians followed the positive ideas Jesus had, we'd all be better off, but it's very hard to separate the myth from the reality.

In short, there are many reasons the percentage of millennials who say they've never doubted God's existence is at a record low, and nearly a quarter of adults under 30 no longer affiliate with a faith.

The church has pushed young people away, yes, but there are also forces actively pulling them in the other direction.

It appears that atheists and Christians are finally working together on the same task: getting millennials to leave the church.

Hemant Mehta blogs at The Friendly Atheist. The views expressed in this column belong to Mehta. 

Photos: Famous atheists and their beliefs

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Church • Culture & Science • Faith • Internet • Nones • Opinion • Science • United States

soundoff (5,653 Responses)
  1. Calvin

    God knows you don't believe in Him.

    "If there were no God, there would be no atheists." G.K. Chesterton

    July 30, 2013 at 11:38 pm |
    • Answer

      Go ask a newborn if they're already in a religion.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:40 pm |
      • AE

        Can we be born again?

        July 30, 2013 at 11:42 pm |
        • Answer

          Subscribe to Buddhism. You're guaranteed to be reborn.

          You christards will be bowing and scraping on your knees for all of eternity in front of your god. Pity.

          July 30, 2013 at 11:45 pm |
        • Bingo

          I wanted to be born again, but my mother said no way.

          July 30, 2013 at 11:47 pm |
        • Answer

          @Bingo

          I've always loved that line. It cracks me up every time.

          Thank you.

          July 30, 2013 at 11:52 pm |
        • AE

          Answer

          Christards. I can see you are hostile to Christians. Do you not like mentally retarded people either?

          July 30, 2013 at 11:53 pm |
    • bostontola

      He sees you when you're sleeping
      He knows when you're awake
      He knows if you've been bad or good
      So be good for goodness sake

      July 30, 2013 at 11:42 pm |
    • Anton

      you must like pretzels

      July 30, 2013 at 11:44 pm |
  2. Deb

    About three things I was absolutely positive. First, Edward was a vampire. Second, there was a part of him-and I didn’t know how potent that part might be-that thirsted for my blood. And third, I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with him.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:37 pm |
    • jsad

      This isn't from the Bible!

      July 30, 2013 at 11:38 pm |
    • Answer

      Too bad your "love" is a phony.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:39 pm |
  3. bostontola

    We look back on humans from centuries ago as somewhat barbaric, they killed mercilessly, they treated disease with leeches, etc. Someday in the future, people will look back on the early 21st century and marvel at the idea that mass delusion still existed with billions believing in man made gods.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:36 pm |
    • Anton

      The way people feel about a 14 year old that believes in Santa: shocked.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:41 pm |
  4. jsad

    Can anyone here answer a question about my 1974 Ford Mustang A/C? It's been giving me trouble. I think Jesus hates me.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:32 pm |
    • jsad

      Wait ... this isn't the auto blog. Sorry Jesus.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:38 pm |
      • Anton

        funny!!!

        July 30, 2013 at 11:44 pm |
        • Dave

          I love the sense of humor that being an atheist allows. Very funny!

          July 31, 2013 at 12:08 am |
  5. Austin

    the guy that wrote this looks exactly like a skeleton.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:32 pm |
    • Deb

      Oh my gosh. Prevert here. Abuse! Abuse!

      July 30, 2013 at 11:33 pm |
      • Bat Guano

        It's "deviated prevert."

        July 30, 2013 at 11:43 pm |
  6. Austin

    Anton, people have spiritual gifts. mine lasted a few years and was a supernatural testimony where the spirit delivered truth to my soul.

    literally.

    so you to me sound totally arrogant. i know i couldnt last in a room with you i would have to leave and go outside.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:31 pm |
    • Anton

      What?

      You have a spiritual gift and I sound arrogant??

      I highly suggest you look up the term: literally.

      YOU would have no clue of my belief system if you were in a room with me, because I don't make it a habit to shove it down others' throats

      July 30, 2013 at 11:37 pm |
  7. Answer

    Plan of action for you religious freaks: go buy your allotment of caves and start moving in to them.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:31 pm |
    • Bill Kilpatrick

      What do you have against trailers?

      July 30, 2013 at 11:37 pm |
  8. Gorsh

    This article is bragging about atheist success at one of the things atheists hate about Christians-Evangelism.

    Is there a word beyond hypocrite?

    July 30, 2013 at 11:25 pm |
    • Anton

      what

      July 30, 2013 at 11:26 pm |
      • Gorsh

        One of the biggest complaints I hear from atheist friends about Christians is their evangelism.

        This entire article is one long boast of successful evangelization.

        July 30, 2013 at 11:29 pm |
        • Anton

          okay, I guess it comes off somewhat like that.

          July 30, 2013 at 11:32 pm |
        • Dave

          Gorsh, I guess that my take on the article is that the inherant tendancies found in religion promote growth in atheism, not that he was campaining for more numbers.

          July 31, 2013 at 12:12 am |
        • Dave

          Hi Gorsh, speaking from my own perspective , after being quiet for years I think the reason I’ve finally begun to speak out and participate in these type forums is that I see the religious community constantly trying to pervade public policy. I don’t have an issue if the religious parents who adhere to creationism want to send their children to a parochial school, but as a member of the science community I find it detestable when the religious try to force creationism into the public school system, or interfere in the huge life saving potential of stem cell research when they don’t even realize what a pluripotent stem cell is and as a father of 3 daughters and a former member of the christian community, I find the treatment of women by most religions abhorrent.

          July 31, 2013 at 12:53 am |
    • Answer

      So we can't boast about our achievements to de-convert the children of our next generation from becoming a bunch of freaks?

      July 30, 2013 at 11:27 pm |
      • Gorsh

        Just amusing to me. You don't even see the hypocrisy. Perhaps you will think about it later and sympathize with the next nut who tries to convert you to his belief system.

        July 30, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
        • Answer

          Just amusing to me that your freaks are in hysterics over the tide of reality. 😀

          July 30, 2013 at 11:32 pm |
    • narbonne1944

      You are correct in a way, but generalizing atheists together is no different then generalizing all Christians. They have an even less coherent system of beliefs. Many atheists don't appreciate what you are saying, and I think you are right about some, however not all atheists are 'evangelical atheists'. Atheism is for some a religion itself.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:41 pm |
  9. Deb

    Why do they have a statue of Jesus riding a dinosaur at the Creation Museum in Florida? Craziest thing I've ever seen. Okay, we Christians do not necessarily thing the Earth is 4 billion years old, but I sincerely doubt that anyone would go so far as to think Jesus rode a dinosaur? Am I crazy? Jesus said he'd return soon – it's been 2000 years – obviously time means something different to Jesus than it does to us. It doesn't mean that he's not returning to save us.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:23 pm |
    • Answer

      You – on your death bed – still the same plea.

      Get saved? – only in your dreams. Haha.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:26 pm |
      • Deb

        I don't get it...what does my death bed have to do with dinosaurs?

        July 30, 2013 at 11:34 pm |
    • Bill Kilpatrick

      You don't have to believe any of the stuff attributed to Jesus to find inspiration in the teachings of Jesus, as reported n the gospels. They're the same ethical ideas, regardless of whether Jesus said them, Jesus existed or Jesus is just a figure in a story. If these stories help to inspire better behavior, I couldn't care less if the stories are just stories. If they don't, I fail to see how religious conversion is of any use.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:36 pm |
    • EnoughAlready

      How about "Obviously, he's not coming back" And save "us" from... what?

      July 30, 2013 at 11:37 pm |
    • Dave

      Deb, I think you hit on a large portion of the strife between religious creationists and atheists. There is a large amount of irrefutable evidence that the earth is indeed 4.7 billion years old found in geology authenticated with argon/potassium and negative electron spin dating techniques as well as fossils and fossil genes, yet the more aggressive religious members are on a campaign to ensure that creationism is taught in public schools disguised as intelligent design. I don’t think there would be near as many confrontations if both parties stayed in their own camp.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:04 am |
  10. Anton

    Anyone who is an atheist and then has a child understands how easy it is at an early age to just make up anything you want and have the child believe it.

    What Christians do not understand is when an atheist hears a Christian it is like a child telling them a story about Santa: a disconnect of reality.

    That is why it is so hard for us to be patient.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:23 pm |
    • Sh00tinTheBreeze

      BINGO!

      July 30, 2013 at 11:28 pm |
    • Take a breath

      Anyone (atheists and religious folks alike) who has an infant knows how simple it is to make that child think that you have actually disappeared when you play peek a boo, simply by covering up their eyes from seeing you.

      Atheists who are unwilling to concede an existence beyond that which can be observed by science are not unlike those infants at peek a boo. And this is why it can be challenging for people of faith to have patience when speaking with atheists.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:59 pm |
  11. bostontola

    Why are millennials leaving church? Try atheism, or agnosticism, or deism, or unaffiliated.

    While no one can prove there is no god, believing in any of the man made religions and their god(s) is delusional. I happen to believe there is no god(s), but any of the above alternatives outside man made religions is reasonable to me.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:22 pm |
    • Take a breath

      Thank goodness; I was hoping to align my religious beliefs around your personal standard of reasonableness.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:26 pm |
      • bostontola

        We're you unaware that these blogs are to express one's opinion?

        July 30, 2013 at 11:28 pm |
        • Chris

          I'm curious why you need to call yourself anything at all, simply because you don't want to follow a particular religion. Do atheists gather and discuss their belief of non-belief?

          I don't like basketball, but I haven't sought out other people who don't like basketball, give ourselves a label and a website then run around slamming people who do like basketball.

          Your whole 'cause' entered the world of petty once you proclaimed your views where better than anyone else's.

          July 30, 2013 at 11:50 pm |
        • AE

          Good points, Chris.

          Some of these people like to claim they are really into science. But I doubt they ever post on science blogs.

          They keep coming back to faith and belief blogs. Maybe they are searching for God?

          July 30, 2013 at 11:55 pm |
        • bostontola

          Chris,
          This is the belief blog, not the religion blog. I believe there is no god(s).

          July 31, 2013 at 12:01 am |
        • Take a breath

          Not at all. However, my opinion directly contravenes your own. I find the unwillingness to consider the existence of something greater than what science can observe to be rather delusional (and a bit of a depressing, dull existence). I was applying a modest amount of sarcasm in an attempt to respond with a lighter tone than many of the other exchanges in this comments thread.

          July 31, 2013 at 12:09 am |
        • Or

          "They keep coming back to faith and belief blogs. Maybe they are searching for God?"

          "My new pony has just _got_ to be somewhere under this pile!"?

          July 31, 2013 at 12:11 am |
        • Johnny

          Chris, I bet if people who liked basketball kept trying to tell you who you could marry, and how you should live your life you might change your tune.

          July 31, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
  12. Matt Dortch

    What a cute little article.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:21 pm |
  13. Bart

    20K to your rally. Nice. 3 million to see the pope at the beach, many wearing bikinis. I call this impressive and awesome.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:21 pm |
    • Anton

      What do you call a cafeteria catholic that by picking and choosing is acknowledging on some level THAT they understand it is BS

      July 30, 2013 at 11:25 pm |
      • Bart

        :)... no matter what you say here Anton... numbers don't lie...

        the world population as 7,021,836,029 (July 2012 est.) and the distribution of religions as Christian 31.59% (of which Roman Catholic 18.85%, Protestant 8.15%, Orthodox 4.96%, Anglican 1.26%), Muslim 23.2%, Hindu 15.0%, Buddhist 7.1%, Sikh 0.35%, Jewish 0.22%, Baha'i 0.11%, other religions 10.95%, non-religious 9.66%, atheists 2.01%. (2010 est.).[1]

        You can read, right... atheists 2.01%. There are more non-religious folks out there than atheists. Good luck with the next rally. I hope it is sunny day so you can see how truly small your numbers are. Bless you...

        July 30, 2013 at 11:56 pm |
        • Dave

          Bart, I know this is an old argument, but you do know that the very definition of atheist is one who doesn't beleive in a deity, otherwise non-religious.

          July 31, 2013 at 12:18 am |
    • Austin

      suspect liscensious sensuality?

      July 30, 2013 at 11:28 pm |
  14. Dyslexic doG

    The Legend of King Arthur is not evidence for Merlin.
    The Greek Myths are not evidence for Heracles.
    The Epic of Beowulf is not evidence for Grendel.
    The American Folk Tradition is not evidence for Paul Bunyan.
    The New Testament is not evidence for Jesus.
    The Old Testament is not evidence for Yahweh.

    The miracles happened ... in the story.
    The prophesies were fulfilled ... in the story.
    The character was emotionally appealing and morally right ... in the story.

    Get out of your stories.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:19 pm |
    • AE

      Do millions of people meet every Sunday morning to honor Merlin, Heracles, Grendel or Paul Bunyan?

      Do they sing songs, confess their short-comings, pray to do better and share peace with each other?

      Do they dedicate money, time and resources to people in need?

      Do they set up shelters to feed and house people in need?

      Do they offer a support group and fellowship. Do they create a community?

      People are doing those things in the name of Jesus Christ.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:28 pm |
      • Hemlock

        They also murder others in the name of Jesus, or whoever the handy deity figure is for the time period.

        July 30, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
        • AE

          People murder in the name of atheism, too.

          July 30, 2013 at 11:34 pm |
        • Jonathan

          Amen Mr. Sister! And this is still going on to this day. Perhaps not so much in the USA but certainly most of you read the news frequently and know that I only speak the truth.

          July 30, 2013 at 11:44 pm |
      • R.M. Goodswell

        in many cases the Churches created the problems to begin with.(see Africa, Central and South America).....and the ones that do help do so as a token effort...and many time their help come in the form of public donations.

        July 30, 2013 at 11:32 pm |
      • exothermal

        Here's the rub: Christianity doesn't actually seem to improve people much at all. In the end, when people form congregations about ANYTHING they do and feel better. Christianity is simply taking credit for a completely secular, human practice. In fact, it's hijacking our natural tendency and warping it terribly.
        Here: http://freethoughtblogs.com/reasonabledoubts/2013/07/19/rd-extra-a-skeptical-review-of-religious-prosociality-research-with-luke-galen/
        and here: http://freethoughtblogs.com/reasonabledoubts/2012/05/16/episode-102-the-skeptics-psychology-of-religion-toolkit/

        July 31, 2013 at 12:02 am |
      • Dave

        People did in fact meet in large numbers to worship ancient Greek and Rome Gods, to name just a few. Hercules was among them and there are several temples still standing in Greece and Sicily, to which there were indeed songs and elaborate plays written in honor. And similar to persecution and ostracizing by religions of today, Socrates was executed by being forced to drink hemlock because he was considered an atheist.

        You obviously didn’t read the entire article as the author states that there are several atheist support groups and the beginnings of atheist funded charities. These things are done in the name of the free thinking individual free from religious bondage.

        July 31, 2013 at 12:33 am |
  15. Marla

    The more I learned about ancient religions, the more I realized that they all had borrowed from each other.
    Christianity borrowed from Mithraism and from the Egyptian cult of Isis. Most of the dates for celebrations in the Christian religion were set to lure people away from the older celebrations that were popular, such as setting Christmas at a date that would compete with Saturnalia and other celebrations of the winter solstice.
    Once all of this clicked into place, I realized that all religions were based on myths, including Christianity.
    I always considered myself to be something of a secular humanist, but now I'm a middle-aged happy Atheist.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:14 pm |
    • Anton

      Yep, Maria, it is an evolution of thought.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:16 pm |
    • Gorsh

      I know this will sound backwards to you, but as an agnostic I always looked at it as if they were all telling their various takes on the same reality.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:19 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      Horus from Egypt in 3000 BC (Jesus is a copy of Horus), or Attis from Greece in 1500 BC (Jesus is a copy of Attis), or Mithra from Persia in 1200BC (Jesus is a copy of Mithra), or Krishna from India in 900BC (Jesus is a copy of Krishna), or Dionysus from Greece in 500 BC (Jesus is a copy of Dionysus) .... or any of the DOZENS of other gods predating the bronze age book character Jesus who were born of a virgin on Dec 25, traveled as a teacher, had 12 disciples, performed miracles, was killed and lay dead for 3 days and was resurrected.

      Christians are not even original! What a joke!

      July 30, 2013 at 11:20 pm |
      • AE

        Got some evidence to back your claims?

        http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/2012/06/better-atheist-fact-checking.html

        July 30, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
      • AE

        Horus the Child is associated with the healing of snakebites and scorpion stings.

        Jesus healed the sick.

        That's all you got????????????

        July 30, 2013 at 11:37 pm |
    • AE

      A lot of times people post that Christianity borrowed (they usually say plagiarized) from Mithra or Isis.

      They give some examples, and it never seems to add up. The references they post (which they hardly ever post references) are some atheist website with an obvious agenda.

      Where did you get your information about Mithra and Isis?

      I really don't care about the December 25th birth date. That is not Biblical and in some countries they celebrate Jesus' birth date on a different day.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:23 pm |
    • David

      You must be talking of catholics or pagans because everybody knows the bible doesn't talk of christmas or easter it was just man made holiday.... If you can prove to me anywhere where jesus the role model of a true christian failed or contradicts himself i will take you seriously...... Most of you see every church goer as a christian but hell NO not every one that saith lord lord will get into the kingdom of God like jesus said... He also said they will do great things in his name but he won't know them because they are sinners... So when next you call christians out understand that the word christian was first used to describe the followers of jesus in antioch because they behaved like him not because they called themselves christian...

      July 30, 2013 at 11:37 pm |
      • Dave

        Jesus’s statement:
        Matthew 5:22 "... but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire."

        Jesus’s contradiction:
        Matthew 23:17 "Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?"
        and
        Matthew 23:19 "Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift?"

        July 31, 2013 at 1:23 am |
  16. Professor and Dr.

    Reasons why atheism is horrible and unhealthy for our children and living things:

    – Atheists do not have any morality, are heartless, soulless and cold.
    – Atheists grew up in a bad family, not being loved and abused.
    – Atheism was brought upon during the French Revolution, one of the most evil time of history.
    – Communism – evil system created by atheists!
    – Atheists cannot prove God does not exist and how Earth was created.
    – No atheist org. contribute to charitable causes, unlike Christians, due to atheism beliefs in Darwinism.
    – Atheism making you agree with mass murder leaders like Stalin, Mao, Pot, Mussolini and even Hitler!
    – Atheists are mentally ill, that's why they have no faith and belief.
    – Countries with high rate of atheism = high suicide rate (Nordic nations).
    – Atheists tries to convert (young) people into their evil belief over the internet.
    – Atheists believe in evolutions, and want us to act like animals.
    – Atheists bash Christianity based on Jewish scriptures (Old Testament/Torah) and organized religion, and tend to ignore or forget how amazing, loving, friendly, supportive, and excellent the most influential person who has even walked on Earth, Jesus Christ, was. Christians found hospitals, universities, science, etc.
    – Atheists do not believe in Jesus Christ; therefore they must hate their neighbor and enemy. Remember the Sermon on the Mount?

    Atheists are minority in the U.S. and the world no matter what "secular" sources and polls voted by few thousands of people tells you that were made up by silly atheists dreaming about making America more atheist, unbiblical and unGodly than what it actually is. More than 90% of Americans believe in God. Period! Christianity is the world's largest religion, and the main religion in the western world. Christianity grows dramatically and goes global!

    July 30, 2013 at 11:11 pm |
    • Anton

      you ranting is the best case we can make...

      you appear to be a tool, and then we just say, look the other side is just filled with tools

      July 30, 2013 at 11:15 pm |
      • ThatsRight

        oooooh – great reply

        pfffft.

        July 30, 2013 at 11:21 pm |
        • Anton

          Thank you.
          Or maybe I should create a list calling Christian's names, would that suit your taste more.

          July 30, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
      • AE

        I imagine that is what Dyslexic doG would sound like if he were Christian.

        Same tactic and style. Same hostility and language.

        July 30, 2013 at 11:40 pm |
    • John

      Professor and Dr.? An ounce of pretension is worth a pound of manure.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:17 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      LOLOLOLOLOL ... thanks for that ... hilarious!

      July 30, 2013 at 11:18 pm |
      • ThatsRight

        ... what – nervous laughter?

        July 30, 2013 at 11:22 pm |
    • Hemlock

      Thank you for doing a magnificent job of reinforcing Mr. Mehta's stance.

      Some of the best people I have known were religious, as were some of the worst. Some of the best people I have known have also been atheists, as well as some of the worst. People are people, and their belief structure, or lack thereof, has nothing to do with the quality of that person.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:22 pm |
    • Robin Jones

      About halfway through reading this comment, I thought it might be a satire. Sadly, it is not. It is a clear example of exactly what the author of the article is talking about. "Professor and Dr." has just succeeded in driving another few hundreds away from his religious viewpoint. Congratulations, "Professor and Dr.".

      July 30, 2013 at 11:23 pm |
    • Larry Wise

      Not a SINGLE statement in this diatribe is anywhere near accurate. Simply put: These are the blatherings of a Flat Earther suffering from psychosis.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:24 pm |
    • Clint

      No WAY! I did not realize Charlie Brown's teacher was a CNN commenter....

      WHA WHA WHA WAAA< WHA WAWA WA WA WHA...........

      July 30, 2013 at 11:27 pm |
    • Jerry

      Actually from what I have read, it would appear that Islam is the largest religion in the world at this time. No matter though. They happen to worship the same god as we do (though the name sounds strange to us), and the majority of muslims are very "christian". They have Al Queda, and we have the Ku Klux Klan and other evil extremists. Christianity and Islam both come in many flavors and colors.

      As to the atheists thinking they are outnumbering us, that is their foolish imagination. They are the only ones in that dialog. The real christians and muslims (and other deity-based religions) are quietly doing what they are supposed to be doing, and mostly not doing a bunch of silly grandstanding. I don't quite understand what atheists think they have to gain by bad mouthing something much larger than they are. They are acting like a bunch of little kids stomping on adults' feet to get their attention.

      Maybe when they grow up (and especially when they die and figure out they are still there), they will stop.

      I know some of you reading this have sensed the presence of loved ones that have passed, and in some cases have even seen and heard them. Those fortunate enough to experience that (and I promise you it is not a trick of the mind – it is very real) understand that life is a continuum. Atheists and others of like ilk will never have that experience in this life as long as they spend all their efforts looking at their genitals instead of looking outward and trying to really do good in the world. What a bunch of morons!

      July 30, 2013 at 11:31 pm |
    • OTOH

      Professor's list is a compilation of actual statements made by Christians on these blogs over the couple of years that they have been running. I saw most of them first hand.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:32 pm |
    • Reason in Nevada

      No different than how x-ristians treat Gays and Lesbians. And truly let us not forget that it was the Romans that deified Jesus at the first First Council of Nicaea in 325ace. Making Jesus into a divine being was the only way to convert the Roman masses. But of course x-ristians would not know that because their only exposure to history is in that book of mythology they read.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:36 pm |
    • oakstave

      That's it. I'm converting to atheism. If you nutcases like you are what Christianity is all about, then I'm not one of them.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:38 pm |
    • Andy Klein

      Are you... for real? You have to be trolling. Atheists are, on a whole, against eugenics, Stalin, Hitler, etc. There are plenty of Secular and Humanist charities, and they are growing in size and spending power every day. Common morals pre-date Christianity; they were there before, and they will be there after Christianity and other religions cease. The New Testament is as much a silly fairy tail as the Old (have you ever actually seen someone walk on water, be born of a virgin, and return from the dead after days? No, and neither have any of us). Jesus was a horrible character, who stated he came here to divide and turn brother against brother,

      The Sermon on the Mount was actually Jesus talking to fellow Hebrews (cough... Jews). So, his lessons taught would be applicable to other Jews. Don't believe me? Check the Greek.

      Christianity is growing? ::blink:: Explain why for every church that opens, over a dozen close their doors. I've been inside of the churches, I was a devout Christian for 11 years. The young and the young adult age groups are NOT present in the pews. They've left and developed an appreciable relationship with reality.

      I just checked the statistics on global suicide rates. The highest rates are in Eastern European and Central Asian nations (Nordic nations don't even show up on the list until far further).

      Mentally ill? No? By no medical standards would the lack of "faith" in an imaginary friend be a sign of illness. Quite the opposite actually.

      Act like animals? You must be trolling. No. In fact, the humanist in many of us comes out. And humanists seek to see man take care of his fellow man, and treat him/her as he would like to be treated.

      You know what? You must be a troll. As I've looked into a response for you, I've come to the conclusion. Only a person of diminished mental capacity would actually believe what you posted. There's no way you actually think that.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:42 pm |
    • Observer

      (Prov. 6:19) “The Lord hates a false witness who utters lies”

      Oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooops !!!!!

      July 30, 2013 at 11:45 pm |
    • Dave

      Professor and Dr? Really? Evident from your grammar and spelling you must have gotten your degree from a 2 room bible college, or you’re lying; isn’t that a sin in your bible? Just the same someone must address your absurd hatred:

      Your statements are easily disputed with peer reviewed facts:
      -First of all, there is no evidence that a soul exists. Dr. (a real doctor) McDougall in 1907 claimed the soul weighs 21 grams, but the experiment was found to be bogus. Without evidence of a soul the claim that someone is without mute as no one is proven to have a soul. In addition, some of the most charitable people on the planet are atheists; this includes Bill Gates and Warren Buffet.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:23 am |
    • Dave

      -Communism is a political philosophy created by Karl Marx, much like Democracy is a philosophy created by John Locke and has nothing to do with atheism. As a supposed professor you should realize the rhetorical device that you are attempting to employ here: argumentum ad crumenam.
      -Evolution is not an atheist belief as there are a lot of christians who accept evolution because it is substantiated with an abundant amount of evidence found in the fossil record and DNA fossil genes found in each of us.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:25 am |
    • Dave

      -Some of the most intelligent people to have ever lived on the planet are atheists including Albert Einstein, Peter Higgs, Bill Gates, Richard Feynman, Steve Wozniak and Sigmund Freud to name but a few. To be fair, the brilliant catholic priest/physicist George Lamaitre proposed the big bang theory.
      -The suicide rate is higher in the U.S. than Norway and Sweden, contrary to your claim.
      -Atheist promotion is miniscule, if at all, in comparison to christian efforts of coercion: when have you ever been handed a atheist tract, or witnessed to, or seen an atheist missionary?
      -The most peaceful nations on earth, Sweden and Switzerland, have the highest population of atheists and lowest population of religious people. By the way, you remember the Norwegian Christian terrorists who went on a killing spree murdering numerous Muslim children? Purely because they were Muslim? Nice

      July 31, 2013 at 2:26 am |
    • Dave

      – Adolf Hitler was Christian. Read his Mein Kampf if you don’t believe me.
      -Science is very close to proving how the earth was created (accretion), and you have to be a moron for asking for your opponent to prove that something doesn’t exist: as with all arguments the burden of proof is on the person making the claim, just as it is with any claim made by atheist or christian.

      Christianity will likely be considered mythology just like the Greek religion in time and atheism will be dominant. In short, your claims are moronic and spiteful making you a poster child for the author.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:29 am |
  17. Austin

    Everything in this life gives us the reason to have Chrsitianity as the tradition of the World. Get rid of the seperation of church and state. It is not necessary. we dont' need to be so sensative that people go to hell. there is power in the word. the word of God , and the New covenant, are measures of peace and love. Since it is ordained by God, who could say that this is not exactly what Christ is going to do when He gets here? so we should peacefully get it ready for Him!

    July 30, 2013 at 11:11 pm |
    • Austin

      Prepare YE The Way of The Lord!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

      July 30, 2013 at 11:12 pm |
      • Athy

        Stop ranting, Austin. You sound insane.

        July 30, 2013 at 11:14 pm |
    • Gorsh

      You do know that Jesus himself declared the "separation of church and state" when he said "Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's?

      July 30, 2013 at 11:18 pm |
      • Austin

        that meant pay taxes and obey the law right. but bro, we can change the law. and thats what we should do to lift up God's word.

        July 30, 2013 at 11:21 pm |
        • Hemlock

          Yes, because becoming a theocracy sounds so tempting. Instead of Sharia law, we can have Christian law, with all of the same perks, just named differently, with a fictional man who looked more like Muhammad than what Westerners like to portray as the head of state.

          July 30, 2013 at 11:26 pm |
  18. Professor and Dr.

    Reasons why atheism is horrible and unhealthy for our children and living things:

    – Atheists do not have any morality, are heartless, soulless and cold.
    – Atheists grew up in a bad family, not being loved and abused.
    – Atheism was brought upon during the French Revolution, one of the most evil time of history.
    – Communism – evil system created by atheists!
    – Atheists cannot prove God does not exist and how Earth was created.
    – No atheist org. contribute to charitable causes, unlike Christians, due to atheism beliefs in Darwinism.
    – Atheism making you agree with mass murder leaders like Stalin, Mao, Pot, Mussolini and even Hitler!
    – Atheists are mentally ill, that's why they have no faith and belief.
    – Countries with high rate of atheism = high suicide rate (Nordic nations).
    – Atheists tries to convert (young) people into their evil belief over the internet.
    – Atheists believe in evolutions, and want us to act like animals.
    – Atheists bash Christianity based on Jewish scriptures (Old Testament/Torah) and organized religion, and tend to ignore or forget how amazing, loving, friendly, supportive, and excellent the most influential person who has even walked on Earth, Jesus Christ, was. Christians found hospitals, universities, science, etc.
    – Atheists do not believe in Jesus Christ; therefore they must hate their neighbor and enemy. Remember the Sermon on the Mount?

    Atheists are minority in the U.S. and the world no matter what "secular" sources and polls voted by few thousands of people tells you that were made up by silly atheists dreaming about making America more atheist, unbiblical and unGodly than what it actually is. More than 90% of Americans believe in God. Period! Christianity is the world's largest religion, and the main religion in the western world. Christianity grows dramatically and goes global..

    July 30, 2013 at 11:11 pm |
    • Anton

      you ranting, is the strongest case we can make.
      you appear a fool, and we just say, look there goes a fool

      July 30, 2013 at 11:14 pm |
    • jsad

      Jesus lives in my closet. He steals my nutella and puts in on his banana. What should I do, Professor and Dr.?

      July 30, 2013 at 11:14 pm |
    • CommonSensed

      Oh my goodness that is so...much...fail.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:17 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      ROTFL ... that's brilliant ... wait ... you were being ironic right?

      July 30, 2013 at 11:18 pm |
    • Observer

      Brainless lies.

      God hates people who tell lies. Oooooops!

      July 30, 2013 at 11:39 pm |
    • ay the ist

      ROTMFFLOLWPMP!!!! I was told this all the time as a kid by my religious classmates, teachers, townsfolk, etc. I really love that Hitler was an atheist..."My feeling as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded only by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God's truth! .." Adolf @ Munich 12 April 1922

      July 31, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
  19. Dyslexic doG

    If I was powerful enough to have created the universe, I wouldn't be so narcissistic that I would demand that people worship me. That’s the difference between me and your God.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:11 pm |
    • Zeus_z

      Jesus said the only way to God is through him.. Meaning we must have faith in Jesus Christ, as Lord and Savior.. How do we have Jesus in our life if we dont read the Bible, and try to understand his message and who he is? Its love. He said to love your enemy! To pray for your enemy! If someone hits you, let them hit the other cheek!

      Selflessness.. and love. You can keep spamming the world every reason in the world not to believe in God... When thousands of years before Christ there were prophesies of Christ, and what he did came true. Im a sinner just like you- actually greater sinner than atheists- We are greater SINNERS... because we say we believe in Christ, yet we SIN every day.. We have to ask for fogiveness every day..

      We shouldnt get mad at atheists. Just talk to them, its ok for us to express why we believe in Christ.. Christ will fnd a way into a willing heart.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:21 pm |
      • jsad

        So then how does it work for the kathylicks? Isn't the pope an intermediary between man and God?

        July 30, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
  20. Dyslexic doG

    If I was powerful enough to have created the universe, I wouldn't have a hissy fit and drown the world because people didn't do what I said. That’s the difference between me and your God.

    July 30, 2013 at 11:10 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.