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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. Christopher Lewis

    Even as we speak, people who have died atheist are no longer atheist.

    July 31, 2013 at 2:43 am |
    • Athy

      People that have died atheist or otherwise are just that, dead. That's the truth regardless of what you may think.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:46 am |
      • Burt

        You have absolutely no idea if that is actually true or not. You should really watch your mouth.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:54 am |
        • Christopher Lewis

          Burt,

          On a spiritual level and not my lowly intellectual level, I know this to be true. Humanly intelligence has nothing to do with it as I am currently in the planning stages of earning a Doctorate in one of your universities. No matter how intelligent I get, my knowledge can never comprehend God, but my spirit will always connect with him. I know that dead atheist are no longer atheist.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:01 am |
      • Christopher Lewis

        So you consider yourself no more than road kill. How sad. I will pray for you that God helps you to see that you are much more than that. You were created in his image. Claim your heirship!!!!

        July 31, 2013 at 2:57 am |
        • sam stone

          "I will pray for you"

          And we will think for you

          July 31, 2013 at 4:08 am |
      • lol??

        lol??
        Your comment is awaiting moderation.
        Death is an enemy. That's why it's death/2.

        July 31, 2013 at 3:20 am |
  2. Bryon

    I consider myself agnostic, not atheist. I have always said this: "I'm not foolish enough to believe in God, but I'm not arrogant enough to say he's not there."

    July 31, 2013 at 2:42 am |
    • Athy

      So which are you, foolish or arrogant? You've got to be one or the other.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:47 am |
      • Bryon

        Science has answered many questions, such as we no longer think that Helios is driving a flaming chariot across the sky. The Earth's revolution is why the sun crosses the sky. However, the big bang theory, which is pretty much accepted, says the universe suddenly expanded from one small speck of matter. Where did this speck of matter come from? Science doesn't know. That is being an agnostic. It is saying "I don't know."

        July 31, 2013 at 2:53 am |
        • Christopher Lewis

          I know where the speck came from. And God said, let it be so, and it was so.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:03 am |
        • redzoa

          @Christopher Lewis – I see you have a habit of erroneously conflating your faith-based beliefs with actual knowledge . . .

          July 31, 2013 at 3:05 am |
        • HotAirAce

          If believers were honest, they would preamble their statements with something like "Despite not having a shred of evidence for what I'm about to say, I believe ."

          July 31, 2013 at 3:11 am |
        • redzoa

          ""Despite not having a shred of evidence for what I'm about to say, I believe .""

          But to say it to another, is to say it to one's self and would, at some level, require that uncomfortable foray into questioning and skepticism . . .

          July 31, 2013 at 3:41 am |
        • sam stone

          Bryon: Agnosticism and atheism are not mutually exclusive. One deals with knowledge and the other with belief

          July 31, 2013 at 4:11 am |
      • lol??

        lol??
        Your comment is awaiting moderation.
        People are made in the image of a triune God. Blow off that dialectic you are hooked on. Serpents and socies speak with forked tongues.

        July 31, 2013 at 3:18 am |
    • devin

      As a christian theist, and one who ultimately would reject your position, I can on some level sympathize and understand your conclusions. The intellectual integrity of agnosticism is light years ahead of atheism.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:56 am |
      • Bryon

        Thank you Devin.

        July 31, 2013 at 3:02 am |
      • redzoa

        What about agnostic atheists, i.e. those who concede they cannot possess actual knowledge of the existence or non-existence of god(s), but find it a reasonable conclusion, based on the lack of supporting empirical evidence, the long history of forgotten god(s) of the past, and the ever contradictory claims among the present day believers, that they likely do not exist?

        July 31, 2013 at 3:03 am |
      • sam stone

        Athiesm is not necessarily the statement that there is absolutely no god. I do not see anything intellectually dishonest about disbelief.

        July 31, 2013 at 4:14 am |
  3. LFP2012

    Great article, Hemant!

    “I cannot conceive of a god who rewards and punishes his creatures or has a will of the kind that we experience in ourselves. Neither can I - nor would I want to - conceive of an individual that survives his physical death. Let feeble souls, from fear or absurd egostim, cherish such thoughts. I am satisfied with the mystery of the eternity of life and a glimpse of the marvelous structure of the existing world, together with a devoted striving to comprehend a portion, be it ever so tiny, of the Reason that manifests itself in nature.”

    –Albert Einstein

    July 31, 2013 at 2:32 am |
    • Christopher Lewis

      At this very moment, Einstein is saying the complete opposite!!

      July 31, 2013 at 2:41 am |
      • Athy

        At this very moment Einstein isn't saying anything. He's dead.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:48 am |
        • Christopher Lewis

          How sad. if you believe this. All of that intellect but in the end, he was no more than road kill. No, you are mistaken and you will never see with your eyes nor touch with your hand the Glory that is the Almighty. Einstein would stand with me on this today.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:06 am |
        • sam stone

          "No, you are mistaken and you will never see with your eyes nor touch with your hand the Glory that is the Almighty."

          If god is a spirit, what is there to touch?

          "Einstein would stand with me on this today."

          More self-congratulatory babble

          July 31, 2013 at 4:19 am |
    • johnbgood

      I can see a God that is laughing and shaking his head, waiting to see if humanity can figure it out. A big part of society are puppets to something because they can't think for themselves.

      July 31, 2013 at 3:12 am |
  4. Christopher Lewis

    What atheist don't realize is that they are just puppets in a play that has an already determined ending. If there is an exodus from the Church, it is not surprising as the Bible speaks of the coming of such days. Atheist believe that we are doing the work for them when in actuality, they are doing work that marks coming times that the Bible speaks of. People leaving the Church because they cannot "endure sound doctrine" is disappointing but more than expected, and I applaud the pastors and teachers out there who will not compromise the truth to keep the seats filled and the collections plates running over.

    July 31, 2013 at 2:28 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Now all you have to do is show The Babble should be considered anything other than bad fiction.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:32 am |
      • Christopher Lewis

        Again, because I am spiritually minded, your humanistic and intellectual attempt at humor does not connect with me and the way I think about and know God as well as His Son Jesus who gave his life for us on Calvary.

        Here's what I can guarantee you though: Whether you believe in God or not, one day you will kneel and confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:40 am |
        • Observer

          Christopher Lewis

          "Here's what I can guarantee you though: Whether you believe in God or not, one day you will kneel and confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord."

          No. You can't "guarantee" anything. All you have is wishful thinking. A dictionary might be better.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:57 am |
        • redzoa

          "Here's what I can guarantee you though . . ."

          Naw. You can't actually guarantee this. If you could actually guarantee this, then you wouldn't require "faith."

          July 31, 2013 at 2:57 am |
        • redzoa

          @Observer – GMTA 🙂

          July 31, 2013 at 2:58 am |
        • sam stone

          More empty proxy threats, Christopher

          Seriously, are you the d-bag who used to post as Topher, chrisTOPHER?

          Your argument is incredibly similar to his, down to the blah, blah, fvcking blah threats

          July 31, 2013 at 4:24 am |
    • devin

      Succinct. Lucid. Reality.

      Touche.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:42 am |
    • sam stone

      If the ending is already determined, chiristopher, there is no free will

      July 31, 2013 at 4:20 am |
  5. Nobody really believes this article

    Seriously. 33% of the world's population believes Jesus died on the cross for our sins, and that's after 2000 years of eye witnesses telling the truth. We know who God is from the bible text where the apostles told us about Jesus, and the Old Testament that told us about all the prophecies about him. We aren't lame, we want the best, and don't want some 'nothing god'.

    Think about this, who do you know that would willingly walk up to Roman soldiers knowing they'd get beat and cut to near death, without saying a word to stop it, just because they knew by doing so, they could save billions of people all over the world that would believe him? He didn't deserve any of it, but like the best friend anyone could ever have, ever over all history, he did it for us.

    We don't leave Jesus, we love him.

    July 31, 2013 at 2:24 am |
    • HotAirAce

      67% do not believe in your god or a divine jesus. You have many beliefs but do not *know* that all are true, unless of course you have some compelling and conclusive evidence, which no believer has ever delivered to date.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:29 am |
      • Christopher Lewis

        As Christians we know that :"God is a spirit, and those who worship him must worship him in spirit and truth". It is through our spiritual side that God is able to connect with us but you will never understand this because of your embrace of your humanistic and scientific intelligence, which is as far below God as the earth is below the heavens. Therefore, trying to understand him with your carnally minded intellect would be like an ant trying to understand human beings. Besides, if God dropped out of the sky and looked you dead in the face to testify to his existence, you would try to explain it away as some sort of anomaly or camera trick; your carnal mind will never connect with God.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:36 am |
        • Observer

          Christopher Lewis,

          Our "embrace of humanistic and scientific intelligence" is what leads us to believe that slavery and beating children with a rod is wrong, but God's book disagrees.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:00 am |
        • Or

          Christopher Lewis,
          " if God dropped out of the sky and looked you dead in the face to testify to his existence, you would try to explain it away.."

          Wouldn't a real smart god know how to convince everyone? Does "he" only want to collect the gullible ones?

          July 31, 2013 at 3:51 am |
    • Nobody really believes this article

      All these atheists on here hyping it up, puffing up their chests and saying we'll believe nothing... what for? Since when has nothing given ANY evidence it did anything, formed anything, said anything, created anything, or thrilled anyone? Since when? If you can't find any eye witnesses saying nothing did anything... then why would anyone leave God for nothing?

      Well, other than they lost their rational thought... then claimed they have it... when they don't... and stole the word "rational" to sound like they are.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:31 am |
  6. krhodes

    unbelievable. Is cnn sure they should'nt change the name of this blog to the anti-christian blog? What non-sense.

    July 31, 2013 at 2:22 am |
    • loke

      no kidding. I hardly ever see any articles talking about other religions It's always about Christianity.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:25 am |
      • sam stone

        I would imagine that the majority of the readers of these articles are from the United States. And, the vast majority of the citizens of the United States are christian. What do you expect CNN, trying to reach their readership, would comment on?

        July 31, 2013 at 4:28 am |
    • Dave

      The truth hurts, no?

      July 31, 2013 at 2:39 am |
  7. Jonathan Menon

    Good response 🙂

    I would say a couple of things.

    First, science and religion mix well or not, depending on the people doing the mixing. They co-existed brilliantly in Muslim Spain, and they co-exist in the minds of many top notch scientists who also happen to be religious.

    Second, science trumps religion in many things. For example, religion can't help us at all if we want to go to the moon, but science doesn't have much to say about whether or not we should build an atom bomb. It gives no guidance to that decision, whereas religion has much to offer that can be considered. Of course, people make bad decisions based on their religious understandings, but value judgments only rarely operate in the realm of logic. If we were all philosophers they would more often, but most human beings aren't like that. There are other aspects of human experience that logic and reason find it difficult to reach.

    When it comes to the "battle of reason and logic," I think there's an important embedded assumption in your statement. Reason and logic belong to the domain of science, that's why science will get us to the moon and religion won't. But this is also like saying that the New York Yankees will always beat the New England Patriots on the baseball field.

    July 31, 2013 at 2:21 am |
  8. R Burns

    This author gives atheist too much credit! Historically there have been many periods and locations where regular attendance in organized religion was not widely practiced. The modern surge in knowledge has certainly had an effect when so many think that science somehow trumps faith – but the two are not mutually exclusive True faith, from the heart, cannot be dimmed by any amount of nay-saying by those who choose to disregard the communication our brains were built to receive. Some are more sensitive than others, and if you understand what quantum science is saying there is real science behind faith! We are a lot more than what science has been able to explain, but that is what we have been told through the scriptures for millennia. This era of questioning had to happen – and I have faith that, when the answers become more clear, those who have understood without being shown will feel vindicated. It has never been popular to be a person of faith, except among the faithful. Some things never change.

    July 31, 2013 at 2:18 am |
  9. Guille

    What is the big deal?

    If you believe or not. I don't tell atheists to believe or try to impose my belief to them. However, I also expect the same respect I give them. If choose to believe in God. It is my choice. At the end we will find out. I don't need to be proved or disproved. I am not asking for it. Let what is my heart, soul, conscience be that source of energy that lets me feel there is a purpose for this life. You can call it fantasy, immaturity, lack of knowledge but "IT IS MY CHOICE"

    God bless you, and I mean, you "ALL"

    July 31, 2013 at 2:00 am |
    • Locker

      Right on. Don't know any atheists who want to restrict your choice. Just having an opinion and vocalizing it doesn't count as that anyway... to me.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:02 am |
    • Mark from Middle River

      It is because there are some Atheist that are reading from ole Christian program that they are saving you from yourself and to find the middle ground is to find weakness.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:05 am |
    • cheetah2003

      You are definitely in the minority Guille. Most people insist on telling everyone they come into contact with all about their beliefs. A large number of them even go as far as to belittle you for believing something else, or nothing at all.

      I'm glad there are some people out there who believe in tolerance and respecting others, regardless of their 'faith' or lack there of.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:07 am |
    • motorfirebox

      The big deal, in this instance, is that when Christians try to prove atheists wrong, it's called evangelizing. When atheists try to prove Christians wrong, it's called hostile.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:10 am |
    • devin

      This is a CNN post and comment section, it's what we do. The friendly, and at times not so friendly, banter is what's found in this arena. On a side note, you seem like a nice chap.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:17 am |
      • lol??

        lol??
        Your comment is awaiting moderation.
        A&A's are big on silencing other comments, liike gud little Nazis with ovens.

        July 31, 2013 at 3:30 am |
  10. Former Agnostic

    I've read and heard rhetoric of the new atheists. Nothing really new aside from the support they get from the academic world (not research science) and the media. Dr. Francis Collins, Dr. Allan Sandage, Dr Frank Tipler, Dr. Hugh Ross, Professor Anthony Flew... these are just a few of the contemporary scientists/intellectuals who have converted from atheism to faith. Strange how the media never makes much of these conversions. There is a pretty wide strata of Christianity that embraces science, finds no problem with the idea of God using evolution as His means to an end; but these people are never given much ink or airtime by the media. The media seems to like to shine the light only on the most insipid of Christians; I guess they call that "straw man" tactics. But, I have faith. Love will win out, and that means faith will win out.

    July 31, 2013 at 1:56 am |
    • Bob

      Flew was only really active up until the 80s, and he died senile of old age over a decade ago. real impressive!

      July 31, 2013 at 1:59 am |
    • Locker

      It's not just evolution. Heaven, hell, virgin birth, resurrection, miracles. Now their may be some offshoot calling themselves Christians who've completely incorporated their religion with science and have rejected all these things. Wouldn't call them Christians though.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:00 am |
    • tallulah13

      Francis Collins "connected" science with faith by shoving god in where there was no proof of god. The following is borrowed from Samharris.org:

      "Here is how Collins, as a scientist and educator, currently summarizes his understanding of the universe for the general public (what follows are a series of slides, presented in order, from a lecture that Collins gave at the University of California, Berkeley in 2008):

      Slide 1- Almighty God, who is not limited in space or time, created a universe 13.7 billion years ago with its parameters precisely tuned to allow the development of complexity over long periods of time.

      Slide 2- God’s plan included the mechanism of evolution to create the marvelous diversity of living things on our planet. Most especially, that creative plan included human beings.

      Slide 3- After evolution had prepared a sufficiently advanced “house” (the human brain), God gifted humanity with the knowledge of good and evil (the Moral Law), with free will, and with an immortal soul.

      Slide 4- We humans use our free will to break the moral law, leading to our estrangement from God. For Christians, Jesus is the solution to that estrangement.

      Slide 5- If the Moral Law is just a side effect of evolution, then there is no such thing as good or evil. It’s all an illusion. We’ve been hoodwinked. Are any of us, especially the strong atheists, really prepared to live our lives within that worldview?

      There is no actual science in there. Just one man's rather biased opinion (he's an evangelical)"

      July 31, 2013 at 2:02 am |
      • loke

        Of course you would use an atheist's viewpoint as a basis for your argument, rather biased don't you think? If you are going to counter something, try another source other than another atheist or on the inverse, a christian apologist. Collins is evangelical but he has said more than what those slides represent.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:30 am |
    • JWoody907

      Keep hoping. The social constraints that for long kept atheists from organizing have been wiped out by the interconnectedness of the internet, and the acceptance of atheism in social settings. Couple that with the repeated and high-profile failures of the church and it's inability to connect with the younger generations, not only are atheists drawing people in, but the church is pushing people out.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:05 am |
    • motorfirebox

      Perhaps that wide strata of Christianity ought to be more vocal against teaching intelligent design in schools.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:13 am |
      • devin

        Well, that would simply be foolish if they believe in intelligent design. Why would they wish to eliminate it?

        July 31, 2013 at 2:47 am |
    • R.M. Goodswel

      I wouldn't claim Antony Flew as a conversion if I were you.

      a 'friend' of his sicked an evangelical on him when he noticed Antony's declining mental state. Watch the 'Confession' on youtube... its chopped all to hell and the poor man is coached through the interview. Many speculate he was in the grip of Alzheimer's ...judging from the video id say this assessment is correct.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:46 am |
  11. devin

    Nice to see the A-Team rattling their chains again. In all fairness, if my world view was that of only 2 % of the worlds population, I imagine I would also try to compensate with vitriol.

    July 31, 2013 at 1:51 am |
    • Locker

      Says one of the bullies.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:54 am |
      • devin

        Bully? How's that?

        July 31, 2013 at 2:03 am |
    • tallulah13

      Reality isn't a popularity contest, devin.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:55 am |
      • devin

        And yet, the tone on most of these blogs is that theists, more specifically christians, are some "fringe" whacked out group of no "popular" consequence. Can't have it both ways.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:02 am |
        • tallulah13

          And yet reality is still not a popularity contest. Rhetoric doesn't change that.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:06 am |
        • devin

          tal.
          Reality? Perhaps an altered state of reality. I've said it before, on some level I can respect the agnostics position, but this "strong" atheistic view that adamantly pronounces "there is no God" is at best, naive.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:12 am |
        • tallulah13

          There is no irrefutable proof to support the existence of any god, therefore it is not logical to believe that any god exists. If irrefutable evidence that a god exists is somehow discovered, then the situation would change.

          The naivety lies with the person who looks at the unknown and names it god instead of looking for the honest explanation.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:30 am |
        • devin

          If by "irrefutable" you mean that which can be observed and quantified, then of course you would do well to reject theism. Problem is, the entire universe, on both the micro and macro level, SCREAMS that there is a creator- being. The denial of this simple fact reveals that there is another dynamic at work here.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:40 am |
        • redzoa

          "The denial of this simple fact reveals that there is another dynamic at work here."

          Yes, it's that some people out grow the teleological thinking that pervades the mind in childhood. Also, a preferred faith-based narrative stemming from apophenia is not the same as a "fact."

          July 31, 2013 at 2:54 am |
        • HotAirAce

          devin, I dot perceive anything in the universe whispering, never mind screaming, of a creator. Please provide a few examples.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:59 am |
        • Athy

          Maybe you hear screaming, but I don't. It only screams to those that can't see the truth.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:03 am |
        • devin

          You misunderstand, although I'm sure it was intentional, the "fact" that I'm referring to is that of the universe self- testifying to a creator, not any "faith based narrative".

          July 31, 2013 at 3:05 am |
        • redzoa

          "self- testifying to a creator"

          Nope. What you refer to as "self-testifying" is again apophenia and reflects a need to believe there is purpose for and behind everything, when in fact, there is neither evidence nor any logical requirement to support such a position.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:09 am |
        • devin

          Hot Air

          But of course you are already familiar with that infinite list of examples, you just attribute them to Randomness.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:10 am |
        • HotAirAce

          devin, you made a claim which I politely asked for examples of. Your reply did not provide examples and you attempted to put words into my mouth. I can only conclude that you do not have any examples and are otherwise full of sh!t.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:16 am |
        • devin

          Well then, if that is what you "conclude", I will simply attribute it to this pattern of erroneous conclusions you exhibit. Okay?

          July 31, 2013 at 3:26 am |
        • devin

          Red

          This really isn't that difficult. I understand that there are implications in believing in a creator that you wish to avoid, namely accountability, but as much as it pains you to hear this, it's common sense. From the complexity of human biology to the incomprehensible vastness of the universe, the reality of a creator/designer is just that.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:33 am |
    • Ken

      It took Christianity a long time to even reach 2% of the world view. Are you saying that all those early Christians were like us atheists?

      July 31, 2013 at 1:57 am |
      • devin

        Forget about the Judeo part in Judeo-Christian?

        July 31, 2013 at 1:59 am |
        • Ken

          Christians reject most of the "Judeo" part, however. They don't believe in the same God really as Jews don't believe in a trinitarian God. They don't keep the Law. Besides, have the Jews ever reached 2% of the world population?

          July 31, 2013 at 2:05 am |
      • devin

        Ken

        The remaining 98% of the population obviously is not comprised of solely Christians. I was contrasting atheists with theists in general.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:20 am |
    • JWoody907

      Funny how according to THE WORLD FACTBOOK, as of 2010, non-religious people comprised approximately 12% of the population, and if you factor religions that do not believe in a "higher deity" you can inflate that number to about 18-20% of the global population.

      Additionally, research conducted in 2012, Pew Research found that 20% of the United States identified as non-religious, and 33% of 18-29 year olds identified non-religious. Between 2007 and 2012, 18-29 year olds dropped 15% in the research polls for belief in a higher power.

      So your stats are, to put it bluntly, stupid and wrong.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:11 am |
      • devin

        Is there anything more foolish than an individual stating something"bluntly" that is inherently wrong? I referenced the percentage of the worlds population that is atheistic, not " non-religious".

        Words have meaning, think before you type.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:31 am |
  12. Pass the Pasta Pastor!

    It takes more faith to believe in atheism than it does to believe in God 🙂

    July 31, 2013 at 1:42 am |
    • HotAirAce

      And of course you can explain why you believe that to be true. That should be very interesting given that no believer has ever provided a single bit of objective, independent, factual and verifiable evidence for any of their supernatural beliefs or claims.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:48 am |
      • Mark from Middle River

        Ace, it is because when faced with centuries of miracles and testimonies that have been studied and no scientific explanation can not be found, all many Atheist can offer us is that it is anything but God. So, the mind of many Atheist does not have any thing to offer except that the Faithful Belief that it can not be anything God.

        Just another form of Faith, declaring that their Faith is the only true one.

        July 31, 2013 at 1:54 am |
        • Athy

          But Mark, the whole concept of a supreme being is so absurd and preposterous that a clear-thinking logical person just can't believe in it. It totally fails the common-sense test. Science hasn't explained it all yet, but it's making progress. Religion just isn't looking all that logical anymore.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:05 am |
        • Mark from Middle River

          But Mark, the whole concept of a supreme being is so absurd and preposterous that a clear-thinking logical person just can't believe in it.

          Though out history, many of mankind and womankinds greatest scientist and thinkers have held a belief of a God or Gods. At the same time, a few years ago I read the entire speech that Hitler gave at a German sports center, which logically put forth examples of why he felt the German people were superior. Common sense, is arbitrary and often the most dangerous the closer to universal acceptance.

          Science hasn't explained it all yet, but it's making progress. The neat thing is, do you feel that all those in science are Atheist? I do not think that we should not halt science but at the same time I can not help but go back to Genesis and some person writing down what was reveled to him, was not as polar opposite as some Atheist and 700 Club types believe it to be.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:19 am |
        • Athy

          It doesn't matter what scientists or Hitler or anybody else believes. Truth is not determined by popular vote. Logic and common sense works a lot better.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:29 am |
        • Mark from Middle River

          It doesn't matter what scientists or Hitler or anybody else believes.

          I will remember that when a few militant Atheist start with their, "Hitler was a Christian so all Christians are like Hitler" chants. 🙂

          It does matter because so many Atheist have posted that having Faith and Religion are polar opposite of to being a man or woman of science.

          Truth is not determined by popular vote.

          Ok, did Zimmerman murder Trayvon Martin or was it self defense? According to half of America it was murder and half believe it to have been self defense, but a popular vote ,states that according to the laws of the United States, Zimmerman's claim was found to be true. So, common sense and the truth is where, in this scenario?

          Logic and common sense works a lot better.

          In Germany on Kristallnacht, common sense and logic were that what was being done to the Jews was justified. Logic and common sense stated so many things, including a belief that peace could be made with this same man. Over and over logic and common sense can become twisted and dangerous. Both inside and outside of the Faiths.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:00 am |
      • Pass the Pasta Pastor!

        And Evolution is proven right? WRONG. Still a theory.

        Its simple. If there is a building there was a builder right? Its really not that hard. I value education, science and all of that. However, there is more out there we cannot explain than we think. Why are you not growing a tail yet? Or maybe some wings? I understand people get offended with church and religious systems made by men. However, God never intended all of that. If you read the Bible without being so close minded and set out looking to prove your world view and read it with humility realizing you do not understand it all you might see what BILLIONS of people have seen for centuries and not believe whatever one has told you in the past couple hundred years. Atheist pride themselves on education but I've met alot of people that are smart but have not common sense for what is right in front of them and is obvious.

        July 31, 2013 at 1:56 am |
        • redzoa

          "Its simple. If there is a building there was a builder right?"

          This analogy fails with respect to natural phenomena and reflects the teleological thinking most out grow during early childhood, i.e. everything must have some purpose. The reason we can infer a builder is because we recognize the mechanisms and materials a builder uses. Evolution provides validated mechanisms which produce biodiversity and a host of empirical physical evidence indicating the divergence of life on this planet. ID/creationism offers no mechanisms and no testable hypotheses, just the science stopper of "God did it."

          July 31, 2013 at 2:06 am |
        • redzoa

          "Why are you not growing a tail yet? Or maybe some wings?"

          Ironically, we possess the remnants of a tail (there have been reported cases of humans born with tails complete with cartilage and vertebrate) and we possess a defunct gene for egg yolk production. Why do think that is?

          July 31, 2013 at 2:11 am |
        • HotAirAce

          Who created your creator? Time for another special rule to prop up the "some god did it" theory. . .

          July 31, 2013 at 2:12 am |
        • Dave

          If you are going to criticize science at least research the meaning of the the word theory: The defining characteristic of all scientific theories is the ability to make falsifiable or testable predictions. This means that the theory of evolution has withstood repeated attempts of proving it false. The theory of gravity is also an example of a testable and proven fact, yet called a theory.

          Evolution is one of the most proven theories in all of science. If evolution were not a fact bacteriologists and virologists wouldn’t need to constantly find new methods (antibacterial meds and vaccines) to combat the ever evolving (or mutating if you prefer the alternate word) to keep you and your loved ones from falling victim to a horrible disease.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:59 am |
      • HotAirAce

        Name a single alleged miracle or suoernatural testimony that has been *proven* to be as claimed.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:05 am |
    • Ken

      Believing in atheism is as easy as believing that all triangles have three sides, and that reports of some all-powerful, invisible, four-sided triangle are so unlikely as to be unbelievable, and a little ridiculous. 😉

      July 31, 2013 at 1:53 am |
      • Pass the Pasta Pastor!

        Ken that is a strange way to interpret who God is. I will take the Bible's interpretation over your triangle theory any day. 66 books, 44 authors, written over a period of 1500 years, 3 different continents, 3 different languages and yet there is one theme all throughout scripture if you read it with a seeking heart. I think the problem with atheism is that people want to microwave their beliefs so they can trust in something simple without digging a little deeper than whatever someone else tells you. I did not grow up in church or go to a Christian school but after reading the Word of God and allowing my self to look at the EVIDENCE the only problem left was me letting go of my own pride and trust that the God of the Bible is who He says He is. He is more real to me the past 25 years than your breakfast burrito 🙂

        July 31, 2013 at 2:04 am |
        • Ken

          I implied that God is like the four-sided triangle. Our understanding of the universe and intelligent beings cannot explain how God could have existed outside of the universe and time, be eternal and yet powerful enough to create the universe any more than we can explain how a four-sided triangle is even possible. It takes a whole lot of faith, and a firm belief in something like magic, to believe that either could exist. That's how they're similar.

          TTFN Good night folks. Play nice! 😉

          July 31, 2013 at 2:13 am |
        • ThereIsNoGod

          I don't know what you put in your breakfast burrito but I'll keep putting salsa in mine. Just because the Bible is old it doesn't make it true. It is full of scientifically erroneous statements that one would expect "God" to have true knowledge of.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:14 am |
    • tallulah13

      Do you really think this person is serious? The phrasing of his/her statement is downright silly. I had guessed that he/she is simply a poe, because it's the easiest thing in the world to believe in atheism. After all, there are a ton of atheists on this page, proving that atheism exists.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:58 am |
    • Locker

      From the middle it seems like it takes exactly the same amount of faith to be an atheist or a believer. Or to use a better term it takes "certainty".. which I lack... big time. What the fork do I know? A Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Sik, American Indian diety could exist... so could the crab people... I'm a single human with five very limited senses and a pea brain. Asserting that I'm certain about anything... let alone the fabric of the universe and reality... seems to me to be grossly arrogant.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:58 am |
    • 13monkees

      You don't "believe" in atheism. Atheism is simply a lack of belief in any supernatural being. It takes no faith whatsoever to be an atheist. Theists have faith in a being without any empirical evidence to support such a belief. Atheists demand evidence. Atheists don't necessarily deny the existence of a god, they simply don't accept current evidence as proof.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:03 am |
      • Pass the Pasta Pastor!

        Believing in evolution is the only way the atheism argument can be held up. And that is not proven nor will it ever be. So to me it does take more faith to believe in a lie than the evidence of an amazing planet, ocean, fish, sky, birds, human beings, universe which was DESIGNED. To believe an explosion just brought this perfectly aligned universe and planet into being is nonsense. If you really demand evidence than look into the moral corruption in every human heart, look around objectively to see the effects of sin and why we need a savior and then the Bible will make sense. You and me are not as good as we think we are. We cannot all be right. Without a designer, creator we are fooling ourselves to believe that are so wise on our own.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:11 am |
        • motorfirebox

          Incorrect. Atheism does not require a belief in evolution. All it requires is a lack of belief in an active higher power. If evolution were disproved tomorrow, atheists would simply adopt whatever theory arose to replace evolution.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:19 am |
    • ThereIsNoGod

      Are you trying to be philosophical? FAIL! Atheism is the lack of belief.
      By your logic then....It takes more athleticism to not play sports then to play them. It takes more work to not work then to work.
      I suppose a physicist could well argue that last one.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:09 am |
      • Pass the Pasta Pastor!

        Fail back at ya! 🙂 LOL

        July 31, 2013 at 2:12 am |
        • ThereIsNoGod

          ????
          Don't you have a collection basket to loot.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:18 am |
  13. Locker

    Excellent commentary and spot on from my perspective. Religions remain viable for only as long as they serve a need for the people. Christianity is a belief system held together by guilt and force. People don't like that and will jump at a chance to escape if it doesn't also mean being ostracized by society. Individual awareness of logic and reason are the mortal enemy of faith based belief systems. That awareness is growing exponentially and, it seems, will continue until most religions have been consigned to the cloak room with Zeus and Thor. Good riddance.

    July 31, 2013 at 1:41 am |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Yet the churches continue to grow, with the Catholics and many more strict denominations showing the largest growth.

      With this new Pope, ... I think with every positive story, some Atheist are losing hope of seeing the RCC coming to a end anytime soon.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:45 am |
      • Locker

        That is simply not true. The churches are not growing, they are losing members at an increasing rate. The United States is becoming less religious every. You may chose to ignore that and believe your own reality but I fear you'll end up like Karl Rove on election night, shocked about something everyone else already knew was coming.

        July 31, 2013 at 1:49 am |
      • Sue Anne

        The biggest contributor to the RCC's growth is their war on birth control. What you should have said is that they're out-breeding everyone else.

        July 31, 2013 at 1:49 am |
      • tallulah13

        Religion won't realistically be going anywhere for a very long time. It will be around as long as there is poverty and ignorance, and those individuals who profit from poverty and ignorance won't let the situation change any time soon.

        July 31, 2013 at 1:53 am |
      • Mark from Middle River

        "Roman Catholics account for about a quarter of U.S. adults, and members of other Christian faiths account for an additional 3.3 percent. Almost one in six adults are not affiliated with any particular religion, a population that has been growing in recent decades" /www.america.gov/st/diversity-english/2008/August/20080819121858cmretrop0.5310633.html#ixzz2abGCbcHO

        Sorry, but 3.3 percent growth is still growth. If you factor in that Islam is growing in America faster than Atheism, then by the government's figures, you are wrong. Or are you chosing to ignore your tax dollars at work?

        I fear you might end up like Al Gore and taking a decade to finally accept that he lost to GW 🙂

        July 31, 2013 at 2:02 am |
        • Locker

          Dude.. your own quote, which I didn't even check, disproves what you're saying. The 3.3 isn't growth, it's a percentage. The quote also say:

          "Almost one in six adults are not affiliated with any particular religion, a population that has been growing in recent decades"

          Non believes and believes can't be growing at the same time. If there are more non-believers, there are less believers. Just how it works.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:06 am |
      • HotAirAce

        In general, religion is only growing in under developed countries with high birth rates. Almost no one explicitly chooses their cult – it is largely driven by geography, and which cult their parents belong to and indoctrinate their children into.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:44 am |
  14. michele4lost

    hahahahahahahahahahahaha really hahahahahahahahahaha
    ok yes not all christians having been reaching out,been focused on their own soul
    but as in the old people needed signs or to see something to believe so they built them an idol
    even today you have to see the money in your hand to believe in yourself or praise what you do
    you have your house and stats things you build with your hands to believe,well they ate that idol
    all the tiny pieces .As will you when all your stuff is taken away or abolished along with your fake ideas
    your pride crumbled into pieces because you built your house on sand
    as for the tiny number of christians,it only took one stone to kill a giant,
    it will only take one to take down the whole giant world of unbelievers.
    I hope your pride can save you,or your golden calf
    because Christ is coming whether you believe or not.
    May your Light shine in this Dark World
    Forgive them Father for they know not what they do Amen!

    July 31, 2013 at 1:35 am |
    • Athy

      See what we atheists have to put up with?

      July 31, 2013 at 1:38 am |
      • Mark from Middle River

        Well, since we all know that all Christians and all Atheist are not the same, then your point is lost.

        July 31, 2013 at 1:41 am |
    • Locker

      So your way of showing the love and truth of Jesus and Christianity is maniacal laughter and brimstone. Somehow I don't think that's going to win many people over. Good luck though.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:43 am |
  15. akismet-bac7ee3ac48fc6b0d2cf182935e5af67

    Two seriously false statements in this article, a good example of the boxed-in thinking of many atheists:

    1. "Mixing science and religion requires a distortion of one or the other." Not true, Hemant. This is one of those very important assumptions atheists seem to NEED to be true.

    2. "To believe in Jesus means believing that he was born of a virgin, rose from the dead and performed a number of miracles." Wrong. Only believing in certain brands of church doctrine requires believing these other things. A typical straw man atheist argument.

    July 31, 2013 at 1:33 am |
    • Jonathan Menon

      Dear CNN,

      WHY ARE YOU DISPLAYING MY CONFIDENTIAL AKISMET KEY????!!!!
      There is no way for me to delete my previous comment. Please delete it immediately!!!

      This makes your privacy policy seem like a joke.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:38 am |
      • Athy

        It ain't confidential anymore!

        July 31, 2013 at 1:47 am |
        • Jonathan Menon

          I know. Such a boo-boo by CNN. Duh.

          July 31, 2013 at 1:55 am |
      • HotAirAce

        Are you sure you didn't paste it into the Name field?

        July 31, 2013 at 2:24 am |
        • Athy

          I'm guessing that's probably what happened. Most logical explanation.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:32 am |
        • Jonathan Menon

          Sure. I posted with my other email address and then they asked me to sign into WordPress, and when I did that this happened.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:32 am |
    • Ken

      1. Science can neither prove, or disprove the existence of most gods. It takes an assumption, or faith, in something being true, even without evidence, to believe in a God. That is incompatible with scientific thinking.

      2. If you do not believe that Jesus proved his divinity in such ways, then you likely don't believe in a divine Jesus, which puts you on our side of the God debate.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:42 am |
      • Jonathan Menon

        In fact, because science has nothing to say about God, or many other aspects of non-material reality, then believing in something beyond the domain of scientific analysis does not necessarily conflict with science. The atheist assumption is that the only things that are true are things that can be verified scientifically, and this is an assumption that crept uncritically into scientific thinking back with Leibnitz, that all the causes of material phenomena are necessarily material themselves.

        Actually, I do believe in a divine Jesus, but I don't think the miracles are very important in determining the divinity of Christ. More important is the civilizational impact Jesus's teachings had over the long term. There's really nothing to compare with the social transformation engendered by divine religions. As for the miracles, some believe them and some didn't, even if they had seen them themselves, and that has been the case ever since he supposedly performed them.

        July 31, 2013 at 1:54 am |
        • Jonathan Menon

          And I'm not a Christian, by the way, I'm a Bahá'í. So this is another case where someone believes in the divinity of Christ but not certain aspects of church doctrine. The divinity and the doctrine do not have to be bound together.

          July 31, 2013 at 1:57 am |
    • Locker

      Well you can customize things however you want but if you've a religion similar to Christianity but which believes in evolution, the denial of miracles, virgin birth, resurrection, heaven and hell then you aren't really a Christian any more. So yes, the religion would have to be distorted to come in line with science.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:47 am |
      • Jonathan Menon

        And you're right, I'm not a Christian. But I think the customizing, as you put it, is kind of essential. I can believe in God, but I don't have to buy into some obsolete priesthood's monolithic chunk of doctrine. Wouldn't you agree?

        July 31, 2013 at 2:42 am |
    • Archer

      Your assertation that science and religion can mix seems to be unfounded, as you've provided no example of the two co-existing peacefully. It would seem to me that the two in fact mix about as well as oil and water, and more often than not more like oil and fire.

      An atheist does not need the statement that science trumps religion to be true, it simply *is*. I didn't make it true by wishing about it real hard with my eyes closed and my fists balled up like a four year old child, I simply observed the fact that it is so.

      I grew up with no influences on my faith. I read, I learned and I made a choice based upon my findings. One of the many things I found was that science never, ever loses out to religion in the battle of reason and logic.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:03 am |
      • Jonathan Menon

        For some reason this reply didn't show up in the right place:

        Good response

        I would say a couple of things.

        First, science and religion mix well or not, depending on the people doing the mixing. They co-existed brilliantly in Muslim Spain, and they co-exist in the minds of many top notch scientists who also happen to be religious.

        Second, science trumps religion in many things. For example, religion can't help us at all if we want to go to the moon, but science doesn't have much to say about whether or not we should build an atom bomb. It gives no guidance to that decision, whereas religion has much to offer that can be considered. Of course, people make bad decisions based on their religious understandings, but value judgments only rarely operate in the realm of logic. If we were all philosophers they would more often, but most human beings aren't like that. There are other aspects of human experience that logic and reason find it difficult to reach.

        When it comes to the "battle of reason and logic," I think there's an important embedded assumption in your statement. Reason and logic belong to the domain of science, that's why science will get us to the moon and religion won't. But this is also like saying that the New York Yankees will always beat the New England Patriots on the baseball field.

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

      I was going to make an actual reply to your points, but in light of your technological mishap all I can say is:

      Where is your god now?

      July 31, 2013 at 2:20 am |
      • Jonathan Menon

        Well, he's obviously not on staff at CNN!! 🙂

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

      "1. "Mixing science and religion requires a distortion of one or the other." Not true, Hemant. This is one of those very important assumptions atheists seem to NEED to be true."

      I would suggest that it is not a distortion in the practice of science or religion that is necessarily required (although this does seem to be the standard among ID/creationists), it's the distortion of the mind which accompanies the compartmentalization of their respective standards of evidence. In science, we require some testable hypothesis and a validated prediction to accept the hypothesis. In religion, there are claims made with no means to validate them, yet they are accepted nonetheless. The real question is why? I would offer that most frequently, the answer is because humans invariably fear death to such an extent that they will bend over backwards to pacify this fear; including dispensing with that standard of evidence they require to accept a given proposition in virtually every other aspect of their lives.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:49 am |
      • Jonathan Menon

        I just spent ten minutes crafting a thoughtful response to your thoughtful comment, and somehow it didn't get posted. I'm really not too impressed with this commenting system.

        I hope it shows up for you, but right now it's 3:30 am and I just can't write it all out again. I hope you understand.

        July 31, 2013 at 3:26 am |
        • redzoa

          I certainly understand that frustration and for what it's worth, I appreciate your having taken the time. I'm sure we'll cross paths again. Until then, sleep well . . .

          July 31, 2013 at 3:31 am |
        • Helpful Hints

          Jonathan,

          It looks like you ran into the automatic word filter that WordPress has going on here. Probably too late now, but you could page back and find your post and check it for some of the taboo word fragments.

          Bad letter combinations / words to avoid if you want to get past the CNN Belief Blog/WordPress automatic filter:
          Many, if not most, are buried within other words, so use your imagination.
          You can use dashes, spaces, or other characters or some html tricks to modify the "offending" letter combinations.
          -
          ar-se.....as in ar-senic.
          co-ck.....as in co-ckatiel, co-ckatrice, co-ckleshell, co-ckles, etc.
          co-on.....as in racc-oon, coc-oon, etc.
          crac-ker…
          cu-m......as in doc-ument, accu-mulate, circu-mnavigate, circu-mstances, cu-mbersome, cuc-umber, etc.
          ef-fing...as in ef-fing filter
          ft-w......as in soft-ware, delft-ware, swift-water, drift-wood, etc.
          ho-mo.....as in ho-mo sapiens or ho-mose-xual, ho-mogenous, sopho-more, etc.
          ho-oters…as in sho-oters
          ho-rny....as in tho-rny, etc.
          inf-orms us…
          hu-mp… as in th-ump, th-umper, th-umping
          jacka-ss...yet "ass" is allowed by itself.....
          ja-p......as in j-apanese, ja-pan, j-ape, etc.
          koo-ch....as in koo-chie koo..!
          ni-gra…as in deni-grate
          nip-ple
          o-rgy….as in po-rgy, zo-rgy, etc.
          pi-s......as in pi-stol, lapi-s, pi-ssed, therapi-st, etc.
          p-oon… as in sp-oon, lamp-oon, harp-oon
          p-orn… as in p-ornography
          pr-ick....as in pri-ckling, pri-ckles, etc.
          que-er
          ra-pe.....as in scra-pe, tra-peze, gr-ape, thera-peutic, sara-pe, etc.
          se-x......as in Ess-ex, s-exual, etc.
          sl-ut
          sm-ut…..as in transm-utation
          sn-atch
          sp-ank
          sp-ic.....as in desp-icable, hosp-ice, consp-icuous, susp-icious, sp-icule, sp-ice, etc.
          sp-ook… as in sp-ooky, sp-ooked
          strip-per
          ti-t......as in const-itution, att-itude, t-itle, ent-ity, alt-itude, beat-itude, etc.
          tw-at.....as in wristw-atch, nightw-atchman, salt-water, 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!!!!!!!
          x.xx…

          July 31, 2013 at 4:08 am |
        • Jonathan Menon

          Thanks Helpful Hints. I used circu-mstances twice or three times.

          July 31, 2013 at 11:54 am |
        • Jonathan Menon

          That's a crazy policy.

          July 31, 2013 at 11:55 am |
  16. Bryan Rick

    If atheists are right, then morality is merely a human convention. So why should we act "morally," especially when it conflicts with self interest, personal gain, or basic instincts of survival. If God exists then the objectivity of moral values, moral duties, and moral accountability is important, and not just a bunch of subjective social rules that have no binding. Good and Evil do not exist in the atheist world, because good and evil are just a socially created idea. But if God does exist, objective moral values also exist. In other words, if God exists something is good or bad independant of what society, or social laws dictate. So, for example, with God you could say the Holocaust is objectively wrong or evil, regardless of what Hitler's disciples, or allies held as morally accurate.

    July 31, 2013 at 1:22 am |
    • Observer

      Bryan Rick,

      "But if God does exist, objective moral values also exist"

      Yep. And that means we should support slavery and discrimination against women, gays, slaves and the handicapped.
      It means we should beat our children with rods.

      Have you actually read what God's version of "morals" is?

      July 31, 2013 at 1:30 am |
      • Mark from Middle River

        Since you are stating what God said, I guess you have to factor in that part about not killing. It is funny how some Atheist accuse the Faithful of cherry-picking verses, then try to win a argument by doing the same thing.

        July 31, 2013 at 1:39 am |
        • Ken

          What's so special about the sixth Commandment? Even Hitler's Germany had laws against murder.

          July 31, 2013 at 1:45 am |
        • redzoa

          For the record, the command was not to "murder." But ironically, a little while later, the God of Bible commanded the brutal slaughter of children and infants (1 Sam 15:3).

          July 31, 2013 at 2:21 am |
        • Mark from Middle River

          But ironically, a little while later, the God of Bible commanded the brutal slaughter of children and infants

          Yet the same God, it is written, offered to spare Sodom and Gomorrah. God went from fifty to ten. The question has always been posed to Atheist....who and what were the Amaleks?

          July 31, 2013 at 2:47 am |
        • Bryan Rick

          Subjective moral values are what is wrong with the world, it is arguably the biggest indicator for pain and suffering. For precedent, one may look no farther that Hitler (an agnostic, who was extremely anti-Christian), and Stalin (an atheist). Both these men felt very strongly that their ethos were correct, and were able to convince scores of others the same–albeit with manipulative propaganda.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:20 am |
        • redzoa

          I'm sure you have some ready explanation for why it was moral to demand the slaughter of children and infants? Apologize away . . .

          July 31, 2013 at 3:20 am |
        • redzoa

          @Bryan Rick – "Both these men felt very strongly that their ethos were correct, and were able to convince scores of others the same–albeit with manipulative propaganda."

          There's simply too much wrong here to really dig into so I'll just politely remind you that theists, complete with their alleged ultimate standard of morality, have committed plenty of their own atrocities and suggest that you Google "Gott Mit Uns."

          July 31, 2013 at 3:24 am |
      • Bryan Rick

        You must also understand that with the abscense of objective moral values and God, life is utterly meaningless, and without ultimate moral value. If atheists believe what they think they do, they must also believe nihilism to be true.

        July 31, 2013 at 3:11 am |
        • Observer

          Bryan Rick

          "You must also understand that with the abscense of objective moral values and God, life is utterly meaningless, and without ultimate moral value"

          If you want to claim that you would go around killing everyone without a 2,000-year-old book to do your thinking that's fine. If you think you're not bright enough to figure out what would happen if everyone did that, that's your call, too. Fortunately, most people are more intelligent than that.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:27 am |
        • Bryan Rick

          No, your putting words in my mouth.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:30 am |
        • redzoa

          "You must also understand that with the abscense of objective moral values and God, life is utterly meaningless, and without ultimate moral value."

          Nope. I need only empathy to justify my morality and I have a happy and meaningful, albeit temporary existence. Let's just cut to the chase. It's not the morality thing that bothers you, it's that you're going to die and you're scared. That's ok, but don't pretend a moral framework bookended by promises of eternal reward or threats of eternal damnation somehow reflects a valid argument.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:28 am |
        • Bryan Rick

          Haha. No, I live my life with no more fears of death than the next person. I will tell you that I die with a different peace of mind than you. If I am right, when I die I will receive Salvation and my soul will transcend to heaven. If I am wrong my body will be recycled into a plant or a worm or something and I will never know it.

          July 31, 2013 at 3:47 am |
        • Observer

          Bryan Rick

          "No, your putting words in my mouth."

          Without a 2,000-year-old book to do your thinking for you, would you be bright enough to know it's not a good idea to go around killing everyone?

          July 31, 2013 at 3:33 am |
        • redzoa

          @Bryan Rick – Your other posts consistently referencing "meaningless" suggest that you are, in fact, scared of death and only an ephemeral existence. That you invoke Pascal's Wager as a defense is only further evidence that you choose to believe primarily as a means to evade this fear . . .

          July 31, 2013 at 3:53 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Any reasonable human knows the Holocaust was wrong – no god required. But getting back to your ramble, you stopped short of proving your god exists. Please proceed, or admit that there is a non-zero probability that any gods exist and that mankind has done reasonable job at coming up with a set up acceptable behavior standards, even with the apparent absence of all alleged gods.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:30 am |
    • Ken

      Why is not making enemies by refraining from attacking people against my self-interest? Why is cooperating with and helping people who could turn around and help me some time not in my self-interest? Treating people the way you'd like to be treated is completely in anyone's self-interest, and it's an idea that was popular long before Jesus voiced it.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:36 am |
    • R.M. Goodswell

      "If atheists are right, then morality is merely a human convention"

      this doesn't make sense to me....we are all mortal..we will all die, like all living things.

      "So why should we act "morally," especially when it conflicts with self interest, personal gain, or basic instincts of survival"

      moral can only come from god right? .....have you actually read your bible? – your god is anything but helpful...

      "If God exists then the objectivity of moral values, moral duties, and moral accountability is important, and not just a bunch of subjective social rules that have no binding. Good and Evil do not exist in the atheist world, because good and evil are just a socially created idea"

      this is shoving a false view onto atheists in general....and I think you know this = straw man argument.

      "But if God does exist, objective moral values also exist"

      If your God exists then he is a psychotic monster.....refer to your bible. If god is everything you believers say he is, then this whole reality is for his sick pleasure. how can you have free will when you are just a created construct playing out a predetermined destiny?

      "In other words, if God exists something is good or bad independant of what society, or social laws dictate. So, for example, with God you could say the Holocaust is objectively wrong or evil, regardless of what Hitler's disciples, or allies held as morally accurate."

      see above...based on an intentional misrepresentation of atheists and using a bogus definition of morals.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:47 am |
      • ahh - hold up....

        You misread the first sentence. You might want to take a break

        July 31, 2013 at 2:27 am |
    • tallulah13

      Bryan, if you need a book to tell you that hurting others is bad, then your parents really failed you.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:48 am |
    • Connor

      @Bryan Rick

      I would urge you to watch Sam Harris's TED talk on morality. I agree with Harris on many aspects, specifically that science is able to provide a moral framework. Essentially, he describes a moral landscape consisting of peaks and valleys along which societies are located based on their actions. For example, a society that forbids girls from becoming educated and even kills girls that attempt to do so would be considered lower in this moral landscape than a society that allows education for all, ceteris paribus, because the society that allowed education for all results in overall greater human well-being.

      I think its important to note that it is impossible to determine an absolute maxima on this landscape, which differs from what many religions propose (e.g. many Christians believe that Jesus (and Mary) never sinned, meaning that they would be the greatest example of living a moral lifestyle).

      July 31, 2013 at 1:54 am |
      • Connor

        @Bryan Rick

        That being said I think that you bring up a really good point and I think your argument is better than most of those who replied to your post.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:03 am |
        • R.M. Goodswell

          Actually I think Ajax explained away his post very effectively below.

          William Lane Craig uses the exact argument as Bryan Rick and has been refuted by Hitchens and Harris in debates.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:09 am |
        • tallulah13

          Really? I found his comment to be judgmental and ill-informed.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:12 am |
        • tallulah13

          (the original poster, not Ajax)

          July 31, 2013 at 2:12 am |
        • Connor

          I found nothing about his comment judgmental, and while the reasoning is flawed, he presents some perfectly reasonably questions that a person who has been brought up on religion and not necessarily been exposed to multiple view points on the topic of morality (that's an assumption on my part) would ask.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:17 am |
    • Ajax

      That is nonsense. Here is why. False equivalence is a logical fallacy which describes a situation where there is a logical and apparent equivalence, but when in fact there is none. A common way for this fallacy to be perpetuated is one shared trait between two subjects is assumed to show equivalence, especially in order of magnitude, when equivalence is not necessarily the logical result. The pattern of the fallacy is often as such: If A is the set of c and d, and B is the set of d and e, then since they both contain d, A and B are equal. It should be noted though that d existing in both sets is not required, only a passing similarity is required to cause this fallacy to be able to be used.
      The following statements are examples of false equivalence:
      "They're both soft, cuddly pets. There's no difference between a cat and a dog."
      "Marijuana and alcohol are both drugs. A gram is about the same as three bottles. If you think one should be (il)legal, you should think the same of the other."
      "We're all born naked. We're all no different from each other."

      July 31, 2013 at 1:58 am |
    • redzoa

      Whenever I see this type of "objective morality" argument, I remember that theists still have no decent response to Euthyphro's dilemma. Just arguments based in special pleading and definitional fiat.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:27 am |
  17. Don

    Here is truth!
    Agnosticism IS the only true belief system. For an atheist to deny the existence of a supreme being he must first prove he knows everything about the universe. We all know this is not possible. The whole of mankind probably knows less than .001% of what could be known. Therefore, a supreme being could not be competely ruled out. On the other hand, if there is a God, it is the height of huberis for any man to claim to know what He is thinking. No man would be able to KNOW the mind of God. So, for me, evidence one way or the other, I am agnostic. I just don't know. And neither should anyone, let alone flawed human beings with agendas, be they atheist or true -believer.

    July 31, 2013 at 1:18 am |
    • Dippy

      Hubris, not huberis.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:29 am |
      • Don

        My apologies for misspelling a single word. I fat-fingered that one and noticed it as I hit the "post" button. I forgot about the grammar police. Thank you officer (Dippy) Favre.

        July 31, 2013 at 2:47 am |
    • tallulah13

      Actually Don, that was only your opinion.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:47 am |
    • Locker

      Don, I hate to bring this up but the whole point of agnosticism is not to believe anything so it's not really a "belief system" it's a "lack of belief system". Just saying. I'm a fan btw.

      July 31, 2013 at 1:52 am |
    • dude

      Don, your truth is no truth, not even as a suspension of knowledge. we all know we don't know: not truth, but interpretation. atheists are a-theist, i.e., we don't adhere to church doctrine, as for a-deism: like you preach – no body knows. the truth is that our truth is a creative process, a fabrication we all have to live with, especially those theists who cling to myths & fairytales. later. 🙂

      July 31, 2013 at 1:58 am |
    • cheetah2003

      Don, that's really not very helpful. That is MY personal problem with religion. They want me to believe without thinking, what they say. Just like you want me to believe you and follow your beliefs blindly, even going so far as to say my belief is invalid. You are no better than a religious person spouting verses from the bible that I don't wish to hear.

      I respect your beliefs. You are welcome to believe anything you want to believe. But you must abstain from telling others that their beliefs are wrong. Otherwise, you are being disrespectful. And trust me, when you prove yourself a disrespectful person, you will get no respect from anyone.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:02 am |
    • Jonathan Menon

      I don't think you can say that agnosticism is the only TRUE belief system, but I think that, depending on the agnostic himself or herself, it is often a more intellectually honest position than some others.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:06 am |
    • ThereIsNoGod

      Don, while you are technically correct in your definitions of agnostic and atheist, atheist sounds cooler. Also if I believe religiously there is a golden teapot circling Alpha Centauri, you can't prove me wrong! However unlikely and ridiculous my belief may be. Therefore for all intensive purposes atheism applies.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:27 am |
  18. Lou

    "pray in the closet" like your deity commands....your treasures are in heaven so just wait and leave this wicked world for us heathens to clean up...

    July 31, 2013 at 1:17 am |
  19. Lance

    I am confused by today's "atheist". Today's atheists seem more and more agnostic than they do atheist. The point is, being anti-religion is not what an atheist is by definition. An atheist believes there is no God. Yet, today, all I read when I see the mention of atheists, is that they refute Christianity / religion. Also, I find it humorous when the uneducated atheist claims science and the belief in God are mutually exclusive concepts, when the fact is there are no scientific explanations for the grand order of our universe. Lastly, anyone who irrefutably denies the existence of God / a Creator ( a "real" atheist) seems to be practicing their OWN religion, because there are no scientific explanations that prove our universe "popped" into existence without being created. As a matter of fact, it can be soundly debated that science has helped to prove a Creationist belief system. Simply put, its rather ironic that those who rely on "facts", science, and things that can be proven via the senses, are the same people who believe everything came from nothing (which is in complete contrast to the very same laws of the cosmos they claim prove the lack of a Creator). To each their own, but the fact remains, the atheist bears the same burden of proof the Creationist does, yet they continue to hypocritically claim the opposite.

    July 31, 2013 at 1:16 am |
    • Observer

      Lance,

      Christian hypocrisy:

      1) Atheists are wrong because for anything to exist, something must have created it
      2) God exists
      3) Nothing created God
      4) God created everything out of nothing

      July 31, 2013 at 1:23 am |
      • Lance

        Your response is completely devoid of any understanding of the laws of the universe. Time is only a function of our space time continuum – it exists in our universe (only after it was created). Atheists used to argue there was no God because the Universe was static, meaning it was ETERNAL and always existed. I find it rather humorous and ironic that they used to believe the Universe was Eternal but once the Big Bang theory showed that the Universe has a beginning, and therefore is not eternal, that they now cannot believe in anything else being eternal.

        Simply put, the fact the universe has a beginning begets creation. Furthermore, time exists in our universe, but that does not mean whomever created our universe does not reside in a place devoid of time. Essentially, are atheist anti-eternal? Is the concept of something existing outside of our universe too much to comprehend? If so, give me a better theory of the origin of the universe.

        July 31, 2013 at 1:32 am |
        • Mark from Middle River

          Wow.... 🙂

          July 31, 2013 at 1:34 am |
        • Observer

          Lance,

          NO ONE knows how the universe originated. Not you. Not me. Not anyone.

          It could have been created by Zeus or a committee of zombies or the Three Stooges or any of an infinite number of ways. For all we know, we could all be avatars in a giant cosmic video game.

          July 31, 2013 at 1:36 am |
        • HotAirAce

          Observer nailed it! And for me, Stephen Hawking, Lawrence Krauss and other modern day scientists present a much more compelling explanation for the formation of the universe than that provide by the desert dwelling goat herders who allegedly wrote The Babble, with or with the inspiration of some unproven god(s).

          July 31, 2013 at 1:44 am |
        • Lance

          Observer,

          You only further prove my point. If no one knows or can prove the origin of the universe, then the atheist is as much as a faith based religious person as the individual who believes in God / a Creator.

          July 31, 2013 at 1:47 am |
        • Mark from Middle River

          NO ONE knows how the universe originated. Not you. Not me. Not anyone.

          So, I guess we can say that you fail to offer Lance a better theory. I guess it is more of the Atheist closed mindedness. It could be anything ... just anything .... but God or Gods.

          July 31, 2013 at 1:48 am |
        • Athy

          But if there was a creator, who or what created the creator?

          July 31, 2013 at 1:53 am |
        • Observer

          Mark from Middle River,

          I am not an atheist but an agnostic. It's entirely possible that there is a "God" (or gods or zombies) who created the universe. Based on the Bible, I would hope that if such a "God" existed, he was far wiser, kinder, more compassionate, and far less vain and bloodthirsty than the God portrayed in the Bible.

          July 31, 2013 at 1:54 am |
        • Lance

          HOTAIRICE,

          Pray tell me what Observer nailed? Also, please tell me Hawking's and Krauss' base theories on the origin of the universe and how said theories prove our universe "popped" into existence from nothing? Oh I know, his theory of spontaneous creation? LOL – yet this has never happened under the SAME laws of the universe that he relies on to formulate his theories. The fact is, an atheist will sooner believe ANYTHING that refutes the idea of Creationism, with complete bias, as much as any Creationist will refute and not listen to evidence to the contrary to their beliefs.

          Both are practicing religions.

          July 31, 2013 at 1:54 am |
        • HotAirAce

          Saying "I don't believe there are any gods, not even just one" is not the same as saying "there are no gods." I fully admit there is a non-zero probability that there might be a god somewhere, but I also believe the probability is virtually zero. Now, how many believers will admit they might be wrong?

          July 31, 2013 at 1:54 am |
        • HotAirAce

          He nailed "no one knows. . ." To me, explanations by modern day scientists, who also admit they do not have all the answers, is more logical than "some god did it."

          July 31, 2013 at 1:58 am |
        • Lance

          ATHY,

          Your question is a very common one that people who do not understand the laws of our universe ask to either refute the existence of a Creator or just to simply gain better understanding. If you read my prior post, its a rather simple, and ironically scientific answer. Time exists in our universe due to our space time continuum, which translates to the 3 dimensions of space with the 4th dimension of Time. The universe is thought to be nearly 14 billion years old. 14 billion years equals time. Time only existed once our universe was created, as its a function of our space / universe. It used to be that the prevailing theory on the origin of the universe was that it was ETERNAL and always existed. However, the big bang theory shows that the universe actually has a beginning and is not eternal. Moreover, today's prevailing theory is that the universe likely will have an end, too. Now, if the universe has a beginning, what set it in motion? What created the infinitesimal singluarity that eventually became our universe? Furthermore, could whomever created this singularity existed outside of it? Which logically begs the last question, could said creator reside not only outside our universe, but also in a reality that is ETERNAL. If so, then the creator could in fact be ETERNAL.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:05 am |
        • Observer

          Lance,

          It's probably not a good idea for you to talk about "laws of our universe" if you want to lend any credibility to the Bible. To believe all of the Bible you need to believe that all the laws of science, physics, math, etc. are all OPTIONAL.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:10 am |
        • redzoa

          "Simply put, the fact the universe has a beginning begets creation"

          It does not follow that the expansion of the universe from a singularity requires causal agency nor is there evidence to support such a conclusion. While it could have been the act of an external infinite creator, it could also have been the result of external and infinite natural mechanisms. At the very least, at least we're moving away from the ridiculous notion that the expansion took place between 6-10K years ago. Baby steps . . .

          July 31, 2013 at 2:18 am |
        • Lance

          Observer,

          I guess I never pointed out the fact that I personally study science as much as I do religion. My knowledge of science has only bolstered my belief in God and Creationism. I am not on here to try and convert anyone to any organized religion. I am merely pointing out that this is not a black and white issue. Your options are not limited to Religion or Atheism. There are many extremely intelligent and educated people who agree with me that science over the last several decades has bolstered the belief in Creation. Yet, none of it has bolstered the idea of Atheism.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:19 am |
        • Lance

          Redzoa,

          Your statement is true. Moreover, I agree – "baby-steps" – because the old atheist believed the universe was eternal and proof there was no creator. At least now the atheist has to drop that argument. Baby steps indeed.

          July 31, 2013 at 2:22 am |
    • Claver

      You have so expertly and pointedly highlighted the hypocrisy of these atheists, but the BIBLE already spoke eloquently of their kind in Romans chapter one:...Proclaiming THEMSELVES wise, they became fools.....

      July 31, 2013 at 1:32 am |
    • the AnViL™

      lancetard, you blithering idiot:

      I am confused by today's "atheist".

      yes i agree – you are obviously confused about a few things.

      your false dichotomies, non-facts, and argumentum ad ignorantiam is blatant and glaring. everything we've come to expect from theists.

      Today's atheists seem more and more agnostic than they do atheist
      The point is, being anti-religion is not what an atheist is by definition. An atheist believes there is no God.

      wrong.

      while many atheists might believe there is no god, atheism is only a lack of belief in gods.

      atheism isn't a belief. it's simply a lack of belief. an absence of belief... either a partial or complete suspension of belief in deities.

      the point is: atheists do not believe in gods. atheism means without gods.

      you are a theist, lancetard – you believe in the existence of gods.

      atheists do not. it's not that atheists believe there are no gods – they simply hold no belief in gods.

      there are a lot of weak atheists and agnostic atheists – they're just people who are trying to be reasonable and honest in the best way they know how.

      Yet, today, all I read when I see the mention of atheists, is that they refute Christianity / religion.

      many do – and that's a good thing because xianity / religion needs to be refuted. fortunately for everyone involved that's really easy to do.

      Also, I find it humorous when the uneducated atheist claims science and the belief in God are mutually exclusive concepts, when the fact is there are no scientific explanations for the grand order of our universe.

      what's humorous is watching someone who is clearly ignorant, uneducated, and trapped in the ugly clutches of delusional thinking, like yourself lancetard, attempt to assert that science and theism aren't mutually exclusive without providing a shred of evidence to support the claim.

      name one time through human history where science has bent to religion. name one instance through time where some supernatural claim which has been made by any religion has ever been substantiated scientifically. go on, i dare you.... i double dare you.

      i triple dog dare you!

      you can't do it – because it's never happened. not once through history has science ever bent to religion.

      but we have sooooooo many examples of the opposite – don't we?

      also -and most comically, captain educated – there are quite a lot of very good sound scientific explanations of the grand order of the universe. we don't have all the answers – but we're sure working hard at it – where religion isn't. people are beginning to realize that sound science won't be refuted intelligently, so of course theists feel compelled to defend themselves by asserting that religion and science need not be mutually exclusive.... but that's just too bad – because they are.

      theism is the easy way of explaining things.... the lazy way – the ignorant way.... the tragically stupid, insipid. retarded way of explaining the grand order of the universe by skipping allllll the hard work science demands – and jumping directly to GOD DID IT...

      and that's just disgusting.

      so you laugh it up there princess, because to those who have an actual education – and not one in delusional theology, the joke's on you.

      Lastly, anyone who irrefutably denies the existence of God / a Creator ( a "real" atheist) seems to be practicing their OWN religion, because there are no scientific explanations that prove our universe "popped" into existence without being created.

      nothing is irrefutable to the enemies of reason. every day i witness idiots with what surely amounts to barely a high school education refute radiometric dating.

      the delusional enemies of reason work hard to validate their delusions.

      and

      atheism isn't a religion – it just seems that way to you. 🙂

      As a matter of fact, it can be soundly debated that science has helped to prove a Creationist belief system.

      that debate already happened and you're wrong. creationism is in no way supported by science. evolution 1 creationism 0

      lol

      Simply put, its rather ironic that those who rely on "facts", science, and things that can be proven via the senses, are the same people who believe everything came from nothing (which is in complete contrast to the very same laws of the cosmos they claim prove the lack of a Creator).

      once again you're only demonstrating gross ignorance. quite comical.

      where does science proclaim everything came from nothing???

      To each their own, but the fact remains, the atheist bears the same burden of proof the Creationist does, yet they continue to hypocritically claim the opposite.

      your delusional state leads you to falsely believe in some some pretty stupid non-facts.

      those making the positive additive assertion that gods exist have always and will always bear the entire burden of evidence to support that claim.

      those who assert the negative bear no burden of evidence – as they're only responding to the positive additive assertion.

      there are no gods and i don't have to provide a shred of evidence to support that claim... no one does.

      `

      those who believe in the literal existence of gods are delusional.

      the time's coming when that sort of delusional thinking will carry a stigma rivaling the one atheists carry.

      the only difference is – when it happens – it'll be based on sound reason – and not the retarded delusional thinking of the adherents of bronze age, tribal minded, middle eastern death cults.

      those who believe in the existence of gods are delusional – and they should be prohibited from voting, serving on juries, running for or holding public office, purchasing or owning firearms, teaching public school or having any contact with children under the age of 18.

      religion impoverishes all of humanity. it breeds a level of of ignorance that breaks the bounds of decency – as clearly demonstrated by the idiot blabbering of lance and those like him.

      tolerance of religious idiocy has to end – the sooner the better.

      July 31, 2013 at 2:47 am |
    • Lance

      the Anvil is case in point what is wrong with society today. You lash out with name calling and unwarranted criticism because my points sting you to know end. You then write a 2k word diatribe the does not refute a single assertion from any of my posts.

      I remember being in college, and in graduate school, and the many years thereafter, always thinking I knew it all, and that anything known was to be proven first. What you lack is experience and wisdom, which go hand in hand.

      Your instant aggression towards me for being a Believer is proof positive your beliefs betray you. You hold to your atheistic religion as strong as any Believer does, and to pretend this is not true is pure self-delusion.

      How does it feel to know you are a religious person after all?

      July 31, 2013 at 11:49 am |
  20. Exceptional Joe

    If you want to believe in your magical sky fairy, go right on ahead, just do not force it on us.

    July 31, 2013 at 1:13 am |
    • Hello

      Do I hear you forcing your belief on me?

      July 31, 2013 at 1:34 am |
    • lol??

      What's a sky fairy?? A l*e*s*b*o* astronut??

      July 31, 2013 at 2:38 am |
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About this blog

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