Mundane pointless post about me and theism

In the past I’ve identified as a liberal Christian. This is just a note, for anyone who may have noticed that and would interpret future posts of mine under that understanding, that I am now an atheist, and am not a Christian.

Had this been an actual emergency you would have been instructed to tune in to a local broadcast station for further instruction.

Gonna tell us anything about this transition?

Welcome Brother Frylock - I assume by now you’ve been approached by the membership committee?

Sure, I can say something. Even as a Christian I was, in terms of the actual content of my beliefs, an atheist for all intents and purposes. The only reason I didn’t call myself one* was because I identified as a Christian and, as an extension of my liberal Christian theology, had this idea that the theistic “language game” had a valuable function for at least some people.

Lately I’ve come to realize I have no idea what that valuable function is, and that even if it has some valuable function for some people, it just doesn’t have one for me except the function of “letting me identify with a particular social group that I feel sentimentally linked to” which, if I value that, I really shouldn’t.

Moreover, I had a good hard look at the question of what exactly we can know about Jesus with any reasonable certainty and realized that, as far as I can tell, we have basically no good reason to affirm any particular claim about what Jesus thought or taught. Well, if as far as I can tell we have no good reason to affirm any claim like that, then what sense could it make, really, for me to call myself a Christian?

I mean, I can try it. I can argue that the values I have as a result of what makes me Christian urge the kind of intellectual honesty that affirms, when the evidence seems this way to me, that I really have no idea what Jesus was about. But that’s as much as to say that my Christianity points away from Christianity, isn’t it? (And indeed, I’d affirm that claim.)

So. The transition came about because I came to think I have no reliable reason to think I know anything about Jesus, (hence no Christianity and really I was only a theist of sorts by dint of my identification with Christianity) and because I came to think the theistic language game has not demonstrated itself to have a valuable function. Indeed, I have come increasingly to think it is pernicious, giving people excuses for certain kinds of intellectual and rhetorical dishonesty that we really should be fighting against. That’s putting it a little too strongly though–even now I do think there are plenty of people for whom an honest theism exists and who are right to stand by it, in their own particular circumstances. I just don’t think I’m one of those people, and I think there is a better ideal we can point to.

*though I did sometimes, in some conversations, go ahead and say that my beliefs amounted to a kind of atheism

Now that you’ve lost your moral compass, I assume you’re raping and pillaging and murdering at will (speaking of “certain kinds of intellectual and rhetorical dishonesty”).

That’s why it’s called faith. I believe, without proof.

Welcome to the dark side. :cool:

See you at this weeks meeting!

Thanks for the warm welcome. Just as a reminder, I was promised donuts.

You’ll get them after you die.

Have faith, the donuts will be there.

If he had enough faith, the donuts would already be there.

But now that he is out of the pew - he’ll have to get his own damn donuts - just like the rest of us.

OK fine, I’ll give you all your donuts now:


It sounds like the process a lot of people go through. I don’t consider myself an atheist because I’m no more convinced there is no God than I was ever convinced there was one, but otherwise it’s similar to my own evolution on the subject, though from a different religious base.

Anyway, I’m glad it wasn’t one of those emergency conversions.

By chance did you receive your cape with the target on the back for all well intentioned soul savers that will come out of the woodwork? Because I must have gotten the glow in the dark version with a homing beacon and woven in heathen scent!

I really wish they had a “Like” button for posts, some of them make me smile. I am a simpleton, however, I find the posts on these thread very enlightening. That is all…

Enlightening in what way?

They’re over there, guarded by the squid…

One of us, one of us!

That isn’t how many (most) atheists use the term.
Welcome to the growing club, Frylock. I had more struggle than you did before I could admit I was an atheist. Before then, I tried to crush my doubts and refused to talk about religion lest any cracks appear. I did find that once I acknowledged what I truly didn’t believe, my happiness level went up quite a lot. I hope you get a similar boost, even if it’s from deliriously happy to stupidly happy! :smiley:

Welcome! The black helicopter will be dropping off your anti-rapture helmet real soon.
And the donuts are on the IPU’s horn.