Today I looked up and called a very old acquaintance–one whom I haven’t seen or spoken with in 13+ years–to tell him that he had been correct all along: god is a myth, the Bible and Christianity are bullshit, and I sure enough outgrew them all. Now, he wasn’t home and I could only leave him a message, but still…
See, back when I was in college, I was still pretty much a Xtian fundie. (I’ve alluded to my past religiosity here and here and here.) For a few years I worked with a guy–let’s call him Danny C.–who was an atheist and scientifically-minded skeptic. He and I would occasionally get into fairly intense religious debates, with me always taking the role of the “caring” and “loving” evangelical who altruistically wanted nothing more than to see him (poor widdle sinner that he was) come to “a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ”. :rolleyes: I really was such a self-assured, sanctimonious little apologist prick back then. And I used all the lame, easily-refuted theistic quasi-arguments in the book: Appeal to Design, Pascal’s Wager, etc, etc, ad infinitum.
Danny C. would often end these discussions by saying, “Mark my words: you’ll outgrow this shit. You’re a smart guy, and one day you’ll realize that it’s all just a myth.” This used to make me FURIOUS. I felt like he was being insulting and patronizing and dismissive.
Except Danny was exactly spot-on fucking right about that. I became an atheist in 2003, and have often thought about him, since. And for a long time I have wanted to let him know that he was right–both about the question of God, and about my eventual apostasy. He’s not on FaceBook or anything, so I had to look him up the old fashioned way, and give him a ring. Feels good to have done so.
Now, Danny was never the most eloquent of arguers, and he had some pretty serious character flaws that I–full of Christian cocksurety and confirmation bias, at the time–attributed to his not being a “partaker of the divine nature” like I was. :rolleyes:
But when you’re right, you’re right, and I have long wanted to tell him that he was right. And today I did just that.
I really do hope it means something to him; not in the sense of a “victory” in a long-forgotten and hopelessly minor debate with a friend, but in a confirmation that he was, all along, speaking up for what was true and good. I hope that one day, if any of my currently Christian friends leave the faith, that they’ll look me up to thank me for trying to talk sense to them, and to lead them toward intellectual freedom.