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11/29/2007                                                                                       View Comments

This I Believe!

It amazes me that so many otherwise intelligent people, who use reason in every other aspect of their lives, can believe the .

People who would never believe anything even remotely as far-fetched, somehow believe.

People who question the things they hear, see, and read everyday—and require concrete proof before making a judgment or decision—still somehow believe.

How can this be?



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31 comments:

Can't Spell Christ Without Shit said...

Maybe Jesus was one of those Roswell Aliens that crashed back in 1947. That explains why he hasn't returned yet. He got killed in a UFO Crash.

Gia said...

It's called brainwashing. Starting from childhood it's crammed into one's brain. Then when the people all around you growing up also believe it, more brainwashing. Then as a grown up it's so ingrained in the brain there's no turning back. UNLESS someone is able to unbrainwash themself. I questioned it growing up and as an adult I had to know which religion had it right. Most people are satisfied with being brainwashed. Take that thought away and it's like taking a pacifier away from someone whose sucked it their whole life. They can't handle it. So sad because their fairytale hurts the whole world. :o(

gimmeadrinkawater said...

what about born agains? My friend was raised as a very non-jewish jew and is hook line and sinker into jesus.

Anonymous said...

Call me crazy but I believe the whole Santa Claus routine that adults feed kids, who are too young to reason for themselves, helps to prime them for that leap of faith into religion. Santa is now inextricably tied into the holiday of Christmas, in many ways, even more so than Jesus.

Ever since I've left my beliefs in Christianity behind (praise science), the whole phenomenon of religion with its blatant contradictions (like its iron embrace of pagan rituals) just seems more and more fantastic and unbelievable. Religion is WAY more fascinating to me now from a psychological point of view than it ever was contemplating the boring, musty old rituals of all the religions out there.

Sophia

Rick said...

As an experiment, 10 monkeys were placed into a single large cage to live together. Everything was provided for them as the scientists monitored how they interacted and what kind of social groups formed. Then one day a ladder was placed in the cage that would allow any monkey to reach a banana hanging on a string from the ceiling.

One of the monkeys climbed the ladder for the banana but as he reached for it siren began to blare with flashing lights and men with water hoses began to spray all the monkeys. By the time the sirens died down all the monkeys were soaked and frightened.

Later, after the monkeys had calmed down, another monkey made a play for the banana with the same results. It took quite awhile before yet another monkey made a play for it. Much later another attempt was made with the same result. After that days passed with no monkey trying for the banana.

One of the monkeys was then removed from the cage and another was put back in his place. Seeing the hanging banana the new monkey began to climb the ladder but to his horror all the other monkeys went wild and some attacked him. Each time he went for the banana this happened until finally he quit trying to get the banana.

Another monkey of the original 10 was taken from the cage and a new monkey added with the same results - as each new monkey tried to get the banana all the other monkeys would get agitated and attack the monkey trying to get the banana.

Eventually every single monkey from the original 10 had been replaced with new monkeys and although none of the new monkeys had ever experienced the alarms, flashing lights, and sprayed water they each would get agitated and attack any monkey trying for the banana.

What the scientists had learned was that no monkey understood why they were not allowed to get the banana, but as far as each was concerned, it was just the way things had always been done.

billybee said...

This made me stop and remember back to when I was a hard core believer. Kee-Ryst ! It's like I was a completly different person. We all go though changes as time goes by, but,the jesus phase was by far the weirdest, most insane lifestyle I will ever have been a part of. Critical thinking is what saved me. I'm still struggling with how to live around the believers. Sometimes I wanna scream "WAKE UP"....but I know just about nothing will help them until they reach a point of willingness to be open-minded. I know how they feel......

Aspentroll said...

This jesus mania may be similar to other addictions that humans have. Smoke too many cigarettes and your hooked. Being forced to endure your parents' constant
push of religion on a child is similar in lots of ways.
Maybe they will come out with a patch that will help those poor bastards.

.:webmaster:. said...

Rick,

That was an interesting story, but I don't think it ever actually happened. See THIS LINK

AntiBarbie.net said...

Sophia,

Christians just hijacked Winter Solstice and called it Christmas. It's hilarious how many so-called Christian holidays are pagan.

Jim Arvo said...

Anonymous said "Call me crazy but I believe the whole Santa Claus routine that adults feed kids, who are too young to reason for themselves, helps to prime them for that leap of faith into religion."

I hold the opposite opinion. I think the Santa thing is a GREAT way to teach kids to think for themselves, and to learn that they can "escape" beliefs they once held. We did the typical Santa stuff with my son, and it was wonderful. He started questioning the story very early on, and by five was doing "experiments" to see if Santa was real (e.g. seeing if the cookies left for him really got eaten). He quickly decided it was all make-believe. To me, that was a great lesson in critical thinking that has helped prepare him for challenging other fantastic stories he encounters.

Rick, as the webmaster pointed out, the monkey story may be an urban legend--it has that ring to me. It really is a great story, though, if it's true. Can you cite any reliable sources for it?

Can't Spell Christ Without Shit said...

Aspentroll Said:
"Maybe they will come out with a patch that will help those poor bastards."

Hmmm.....I wonder if the patch would have like bible scripture on it and you tape it to your skin?

Anonymous said...

Oh, I realize Christianity hi-jacked pagan holidays ;-) It just never ceases to amaze me how they embrace these holidays and customs as their own to the point that they will attack anyone else's interpretation of what 'The Holidays' stand for. As in the whole 'Holiday Tree' fiasco. Or insisting retailers say 'Merry Christmas' as opposed to the more inclusive 'Happy Holidays'.

To address Jim Arvo's point about Santa (sorry, my wi-fi isn't working and I'm on dial-up so I thought I'd combine this post). I, too, think Santa can be used as a teaching tool. My husband and I, however, simply chose to 'opt out' of that whole fantasy. We didn't raise our son to 'believe' in Santa because we didn't want to start out his life by pretending or telling him something that wasn't true. My point was more that the majority of people (in this country, at least) set their kids up for these fantastic stories (like Christianity), starting with Santa Claus. There are a number of similarities between Santa and the Christian God, in my opinion:

They are both father figures.

They both have the power to refuse or grant wishes.

They both are watching us at every moment to see if we are being bad or good.

They both evolved from punishing figures into loving, all knowing ones.

No science can explain their magical powers.

No explanation of their powers is even necessarily--just simple faith.

There is 'evidence' of both God and Santa in our lives if you look for it. Ever had some adult try to con you into believing the jingle bells you heard were Santa's reindeer when you were a kid? There was always someone who was trying to point out 'evidence' of Santa's existence to us so we could believe for another year.

Don't get me wrong, I don't think people permanently warp their kids by telling them about Santa--but I do wish people wouldn't tell a kid who can't tell the difference between fact and fantasy that there is a crazy man in a red suit that brings kids presents every year. In the same way that I wish people would stop telling their kids there is a crazy god that lives in the sky that will punish or reward them if they follow his impossible to follow rules. Just my opinion, of course.

Sophia

Jim Arvo said...

Hi Sophia,

I understand your position, and I can appreciate the desire to avoid telling your kids that any magical story is actually true. All parents must decide whether or not to indulge this bit of absurdity when it comes to Santa. I agree that the Santa myth has a great many similarities with the god myth, but to me that is precisely why it's so useful. I liken it to being inoculated against the flu by having a weakened strain injected into you. The fact that Santa is all-seeing and gets around by magic should be a tip-off that this may be a tall story--and hopefully, that's what the kid eventually learns, not that just THIS magical being is made up and the others are real.

But which ever way you play it with your kids, let's agree that the end result should be kids who can see through magical stories and are not afraid to insist on evidence before believing something. How you get there is up to you.

xrayman said...

"what about born agains? My friend was raised as a very non-jewish jew and is hook line and sinker into jesus"

I had an extremely non religious friend fall hook line and sinker for Jesus in his 20's.

Why don't I read about more people like me? I am a prime example of someone who didn't fall for it yet I really wanted it. At my lowest point in life from alcoholism, I tried so fucking hard to become born again. I really did. I went to church, got down on my knees and the whole nine yards, but a little skeptical voice in my head kept if from ever happening, and I owe it all to my parents for NOT ever brainwashing me. They believed in God(so did I), but not religion. My skeptical mind remained objective into my adulthood despite all the tales of Jesus and God being so real from my born again friend and so many others. Once I stumbled on to this site becoming an atheist was like a born again experience. I was awsome !!!!!!!!!!!!

AtheistToothFairy said...

xrayman wrote:
My skeptical mind remained objective into my adulthood despite all the tales of Jesus and God being so real from my born again friend and so many others
---
Xray',
In my late teens I had found this one unique group of xtians that interested me, and so for a time I joined up with them.

They seemed to have more of logical type answers I was seeking from the bible, than other sects did, but just as most xtian sects require, at some point you have to accept "jesus into your heart". Some may do it through a baptism ritual, others call it "being born again', or what have you etc..

At one point the pressure was put upon me to make a "commitment to jesus".
I was forewarned that once I agreed to this commitment, that there was no turning away from jesus, as to do so AFTER one has agreed to this commitment, would surely be a sin that jesus would never forgive.

Even though I was still trying to figure out which sect had the 'right' answers and this one in particular seemed the best-fit for me, I just couldn't rid my logical mind of enough doubting to put down my guard and accept their offer to become a 'saved' xtian.

So like it seemed to be with you, my skepticism of not only needing to be sure I had found the right branch of Christianity, but still having a part of me that was skeptical about the whole jesus story as told in the bible book, was enough to hold me back from committing to this xtian group's mantra.

Looking back on that time as an atheist today, it is quite obvious to me now that while a part of me WANTED to believe this jesus/god was real, my brain was constantly interjecting, asking for more proof that all this xtian stuff was real.

In those days I found it far easier to believe in many other supernatural things, then I found it possible to believe that this jesus god was a real as all these xtians and their bible, were making him out to be.

Of course, any xtian reading this will insist that I didn't open my heart ENOUGH to find the 'truth' about their jesus. If that were true, then why did this god make some of us with brains that can't be shut-down enough to put all reasoning aside?

Why is it that these xtians tell us that this LESS powerful devil can talk to our BRAINS and pull us away from god with such ease, yet the more powerful god is helpless to do the same?
Why is it that god has to enter through some obscure back-door, yet satan has no problem prancing in through the prominent front-door of our beings?

I find it so amazing that this all powerful god not only hides himself away so well, but at the same time allows his enemy to tinker with our minds as he pleases.
Shouldn't such problems be a huge clue to xtians that their god/devil ideas are nothing more than myths?


ATF

Rick said...

@webmaster

I hadn't meant for it to be taken as a literally preformed experiment, more like a common sense story told in a humorous manner to highlight a human tendancy. We are all guilty of taking common ideals for granted or as facts of human nature because its the way we were raised.

Anyway, I was a bit lazy and didn't site its source and took a little liberty in rewriting. It just seemed to fit the topic so thought I'd share.

Can't Spell Christ Without Shit said...

ATF Said:
"Why is it that these xtians tell us that this LESS powerful devil can talk to our BRAINS and pull us away from god with such ease, yet the more powerful god is helpless to do the same?
Why is it that god has to enter through some obscure back-door, yet satan has no problem prancing in through the prominent front-door of our beings?"

You're exactly right ATF! I have said the same thing in my other posts.

Christians talk about accepting Jesus, how it is a free gift where no works are required. They also talk about how all you have to do is accept it, however it seems we have to work our asses off by seeking god in all areas of our lives, of course god can't seem to communicate effectively to tell us his so called perfect will.

Preachers love to talk all of this big hype such as how "God has a plan for your life" yet these same preachers can't ever seem to tell you exactly what god's plan is, and once again god fails to tell us what that plan is.

Maybe god doesn't know how to talk or he lost his voice sometime back.

Or maybe Satan has god bound and gagged and is holding him prisoner in some dungeon down in hell.

AtheistToothFairy said...

Can't Spell Christ Without Shit wrote:
>Christians talk about accepting Jesus, how it is a free gift where no works are required. They also talk about how all you have to do is accept it, however it seems we have to work our asses off by seeking god in all areas of our lives, of course god can't seem to communicate effectively to tell us his so called perfect will

Hi CSCWS,

Exactly !

All that extra un-required work and you get no closer to understanding this Jesus character with any more certainty, than a person from another xtian sect's has gotten, but worse, you find the messages between you two are contradictory from this jesus god.
One would think it should be; One God=One Message.
Therefore, either there are many real gods talking to these xtians, or there are NONE.
I prefer the latter, naturally.


>Preachers love to talk all of this big hype such as how "God has a plan for your life" yet these same preachers can't ever seem to tell you exactly what god's plan is, and once again god fails to tell us what that plan is.

Funny you should bring that up, about this god plan for each of us.
I see the fundies here say this all the time, yet they NEVER explain what this great plan is, other than the obvious god threat of 'do as I say' or go to my hell etc..
Of course, I'm quite sure they would say this god-plan is different for each person, hence we can never know god's plan for us, but rest assured, it's there alright....yeah sure it is.

>Maybe god doesn't know how to talk or he lost his voice sometime back.

I think he had a fight with the devil and lost and had to leave our galaxy by 'high noon' or be crucified (again).

>Or maybe Satan has god bound and gagged and is holding him prisoner in some dungeon down in hell.

Gosh, I hadn't considered this possibility, till now.
I think you might be right here.

The devil probably got all that torture equipment from the old CHRISTIAN "Witch Trial" days, for cheap, and is trying it out in his newly equipped dungeon.
Well if god is really a prisoner in hell, that would explain how he'll solve the problem of having all the xtians WITH HIM for eternity....LOL
To think, all the xtians thought they were destined for a life of luxury in some heaven.
Boy, are they gonna be surprised when they find out.


ATF (who is still waiting for proof that Satan really exists, but so far no xtian has had the nerve to try and convince me here)

stronger now said...

ATF:"Why is it that god has to enter through some obscure back-door..."

ROTFLMHAO!!!

God...the ultimate back door bandit!

You'd think he'd be more lenient with homosexuals!

(sometimes, I just can't help myself)

Can't Spell Christ Without Shit said...

Hey back ATF,

I must say that I enjoy reading your posts.

ATF Said:
"Funny you should bring that up, about this god plan for each of us.
I see the fundies here say this all the time, yet they NEVER explain what this great plan is, other than the obvious god threat of 'do as I say' or go to my hell etc..
Of course, I'm quite sure they would say this god-plan is different for each person, hence we can never know god's plan for us, but rest assured, it's there alright....yeah sure it is."

I told my pastor a long time ago that God's plan was for me to go to work at a career of my choice and make money so I can afford nice things and will be able to survive.

He told me that I was incorrect, and I need to rely on god to provide my needs. He went on to tell me that I am supposed to be content with Jesus alone. Not my career.

Basically it's god's will for me to work my ass off in a church for free with no pay check and be broke the rest of my life while my former pastor lives in his fine and nice home that god provided him.

I wonder why god won't provide me a nice home with a nice salary by doing his work also? I guess I have to be a man of the cloth in some mega church.


ATF Wrote:
"The devil probably got all that torture equipment from the old CHRISTIAN "Witch Trial" days, for cheap, and is trying it out in his newly equipped dungeon."

Yeah, Satan also produces Porn Movies in his spare time.

ATF Said:
"Well if god is really a prisoner in hell, that would explain how he'll solve the problem of having all the xtians WITH HIM for eternity....LOL
To think, all the xtians thought they were destined for a life of luxury in some heaven.
Boy, are they gonna be surprised when they find out"

However if Muslims end up in hell, they might find quiet a bit of luxury with Satan's kinky torture chamber and equipment. That sure would come in handy with all of their virgins that they are going to take with them. It'll be one eternal orgy for them.

Then again, if Muslims end up in hell that may disqualify them from having 72 virgins each.

I don't know what Allah's rules are on that.

xrayman said...

"Why is it that god has to enter through some obscure back-door..."

Great point. It has been so well illustrated by so many well meaning Christians who tell me shit like, "Well God was talking to you or God was helping you, but you failed to notice."

That all mighty all powerful God just plays these subtle little communication tricks yet that Satan guy, he calls me loud and clear as my 44 year old married ass is constantly lusting after so many of my hot twenty something coworkers. Oh that Satan causes so much mental masturbation in my life. What's a guy to do?

boomSLANG said...

ATF(Facetious "on"): ...we can never know god's plan for us, but rest assured, it's there alright....yeah sure it is.

Yes, yes!....out of one corner of their mouths, Christians insist that Mr. Omniscient El Perfecto has a "plan" for each of us, but out of the other corner of their mouths, "HE wants us to have free will"...."HE doesn't want us to be robots"...."it's a choice"...yada, yada, blah, blah, blah. Contradictions abound.

AtheistToothFairy said...

Can't Spell Christ Without Shit wrote:
I must say that I enjoy reading your posts.

Thanks CSCWS !!


I told my pastor a long time ago that God's plan was for me to go to work at a career of my choice and make money so I can afford nice things and will be able to survive.
He told me that I was incorrect, and I need to rely on god to provide my needs. He went on to tell me that I am supposed to be content with Jesus alone. Not my career.


Well CSCWS,

I never got close enough to any one church, for them to get their hooks into me to the point where I would be told in a direct fashion, the things you mention here.
However, at one point in my life I did believe what they were saying about the upcoming rapture, enough to put my future on hold for a number of years.

Obvioulsy this rapture (2nd coming) never happened (and sure won't either) but it still ticks me off that these well meaning xtians had me convinced that I shouldn't worry about things like my education/career because it "would all be over soon enough".

So what I want to know then is why not one of these rapture church believers ever apologized for being so WRONG and for causing many of us to detour our lives for that lame hope they preached?

If you look at the 'end of the world' predictions throughout history, you will see that some excuse is always made as to why it didn't happen, then a new date is quickly given, along with some new evidence as to why the new date is the correct one now etc..

You would think by now that these chaps would have given up on such predictions, but oh no, they still make them.

To all you xtians out there who are leaning towards believing these rapture predictions.
Do yourselves a huge favor and keep your life on track, regardless of any end of the world predictions you might hear, from ANY SOURCE!!

If the earth ever comes to an end, rest assured we won't know about it years ahead of time....more like days at best.


ATF (who wonders how one can know the future, if it hasn't happened YET?)

Can't Spell Christ Without Shit said...

ATF Said:
"I never got close enough to any one church, for them to get their hooks into me to the point where I would be told in a direct fashion, the things you mention here."

You were lucky then ATF. I wish I would've never imprisoned myself in such a place, and subjected myself to such foolishness.

Tried several different sects of the christian cult.

Here's some examples from my christian experience:

Southern Baptists: Judgmental, arrogant, self-righteous, and back biting assholes. Stay broke and give all of your money to god.

Church of God: Similar characteristics to Southern Baptists, except they are more judgmental, and everyone who is not one of them is going to hell one day. Plus they claim that southern baptists teach false doctrine. Church of God whackos are into all of that speaking in tongues bullshit along with other charasmatic craziness. I'll just say that most "Church of God" people belong in a mental institution.

Non-Denominational Churches: Well those vary in different degrees. Some are just as whacko as the Church of God people are, and some believe that god wants us to be rich.

ATF Said:
"Obvioulsy this rapture (2nd coming) never happened (and sure won't either) but it still ticks me off that these well meaning xtians had me convinced that I shouldn't worry about things like my education/career because it "would all be over soon enough".

Too bad we can't file a lawsuit against them isn't it?

ATF Said:
"If you look at the 'end of the world' predictions throughout history, you will see that some excuse is always made as to why it didn't happen, then a new date is quickly given, along with some new evidence as to why the new date is the correct one now etc.."

Yeah, they keep on miscaculating they claim. If I were God I would really enjoying keeping myself entertained with screwing the minds of these christians.

I would also love the xtians second guess me all of the time.

It would be like hanging a carrot out in front of a horse, and leading him on, only to take the carrot away from him whenever he gets close to taking a bite.

I bet teasing and leading xtians on by giving them false expectations would be fun for God.

Checkmate said...

ATF said,

"Why is it that these xtians tell us that this LESS powerful devil can talk to our BRAINS and pull us away from god with such ease, yet the more powerful god is helpless to do the same?

Why is it that god has to enter through some obscure back-door, yet satan has no problem prancing in through the prominent front-door of our beings?"

Since no Christians are loitering about, I'll dig out my preacher's frock and play the fundy...

The standard Xian reply would be that God/Jesus is a gentleman and doesn't force his will on anyone. As stated in Revelation, Jesus stands at the door and knocks. Anyone who wants him must invite him and THEN he will dine with them.

Satan (the "bad guy") just barges in (roaring lion that he is) and takes control loudly, while God speaks in a "still small voice", not wanting to overwhelm the poor sinner.

You'd understand this IF you weren't such sinners, blinded by the enemy. ;)

Blech! After playing the fundy now I have to take another hot shower. I feel very unclean having had to think like a Xian again.

Anonymous said...

Hi,
I happened across this website and read some of the commments. I just want to ask each one of you the question that if you do not have Jesus then what else is there in this life. It's the only solution that makes sense to me. I lost my 19 year old son on August 4of this year and if I had not have taught him the way of salvation then I know for a fact that he would be in hell right now, but I have such peace knowing that I will see him again one day. You may say why did God kill your son, well God did not kill him. Death comes as a result of sin in this world. It was better for him to leave than to stay. Thank you and I will pray for each of you.

boomSLANG said...

The above is quite possibly one of the saddest displays of what religion can do to a human being's mind, that I've ever seen.

Astreja said...

Agreed, boomSLANG. Tragic that the young man died, even more so that he died in thrall to his parent's fear of Hell, and unspeakably obscene for a parent to say something like "better for him to leave."

Anonymous, consider yourself lucky that this is the Internet and not a physical encounter with a real-life bereaved individual. If I had recently lost a family member and you dared to say such a vile thing to Me, I would have no qualms whatsoever about kicking the living shit right out of you. Stick your prayers up your sorry ass.

And no, you will not see your son again. Except in your memories of him. Please don't dishonour those memories with a bunch of crap religious mythology.

Can't think of a name said...

"The standard Xian reply would be that God/Jesus is a gentleman and doesn't force his will on anyone. As stated in Revelation, Jesus stands at the door and knocks. Anyone who wants him must invite him and THEN he will dine with them"

Instead of knocking on the door, Satan comes busting in like a bunch of Feds with M16s and AK47s in the middle of a drug bust.

There is life after Christianity said...

Anonymous Said:
"I just want to ask each one of you the question that if you do not have Jesus then what else is there in this life."

First of all, I am truly sorry to hear about your son, however your question was stupid.

What else is there in this life? Here are some examples:

1) My career
2) My house
3) My friends
4) My hobbies

I could name some more, however I'm sure you get the point. I'm sure you also will say that those same things can be taken away from me in the blink of an eye, which is true.

However, I plan to enjoy my years upon this planet without having to live in fear of pleasing God all of the time. I refuse to do so. I already wasted nearly 14 years trying to serve and please God.

I might be able to relate to you in some sort of way. I lost my girlfriend back when I was 23, and after that happened, I was sad and broken. Then I became a christian, and started going to church all of the time, praying, fasting, and being involved in all sorts of christian ministries.

Then a few years later, I realized how miserable I was living the life of a christian, and my life got incredibly worse. So I decided to give up the christian life, and I got my life back again, and started seeing success and started learning how to live and be happy again outside of Christ.

It was that simple. :)

AtheistToothFairy said...

Checkmate said (while acting-out the fundie part for ATF),
Satan (the "bad guy") just barges in (roaring lion that he is) and takes control loudly, while God speaks in a "still small voice", not wanting to overwhelm the poor sinner.
--------------
Checkmate,

Somehow I just knew the fundie answer would be along these sorry-ass lines.
Heaven forbid that god speaks in more than a hushed whisper voice, while of course god allows satan to infiltrate our minds with an un-muted trumpet blare.

That much god allows the devil, but at the same time there is some rule about the devil not being able to really prove he himself exists.
When one questions this problem to xtians, then one hears how the devil wants to fool us all into not thinking he's real. Yeah right !!

Is there any EXCUSE that xtians haven't thought of, to cover up the multitude of pitfalls in their myth?
They proclaim all these magical things to be true, but never can offer any evidence to support them.
Their feelings rule their world and all one has to do is to shut down one's mind in order to FEEL the power of their god.

Funny, but wouldn't shutting down one's mind this way, also allow the devil to grab hold of it, or do the devil and god battle things out at that moment for control of the dead mind?
How can a xtian in that dead state of mind ever be sure that it'll be their xtian god that fills their brain with "major-input" and not the beast from below.

One just has to love the way xtians justify their blind faith.... in NOTHING.


ATF (who wonders if god or the devil, takes control when a person is fast asleep?)