By Bob Patterson
Debating fundamentalists is difficult because the battle involves differing weapons.The atheists uses logic while the fundies use emotion. There is almost no quick way to convince someone their long held emotions are incorrect. One way or another, the result is usually sticking their fingers in their ears and singing, "La La la la -- I don't want to hear you," or some other similar way to tell you to get lost. Testing emotions will usually invoke anger, as well. At least online debating has some advantage in that you don't have to withstand a shouting contest.
If you could convince a fundie to become an atheist or even an agnostic, it would involve the following difficult changes:
1.You'd have to admit your parents lied to you, or at least, mislead you.
2.You'd have to admit you were wrong!
3.You'd have to become a minority.
4.You know that being an atheist isn't usually good in the workplace.
5. Your family and some friends may reject you.
6. You'd have to give up your imaginary ticket to your imaginary heaven.
The reward for being an atheist is the satisfaction of being correct, not worrying about going to hell, keeping the 10% of your money you used to give to the church (You did contribute 10% right?), and the knowledge no one is watching you. It's my personal opinion that atheists have a moral obligation to expose the fraud of religion, as well. Another reward is knowing other atheists and comparing experiences, which is why I always forward Dave VanAllen's ExChristian.net. in my daily rant.It makes available a lot of interesting and comparative experiences.
Just to show I'm not closed minded or dogmatically opinionated I will immediately accept the religion of the first god who restores missing limbs for amputees and sight for the blind. This should not be a major challenge for any real deity.
Online Reading List
- An Outline of Intellectual Rubbish by Bertrand Russell (1943)
- Bible Teaching and Religious Practice by Mark Twain
- God is Imaginary
- Is there an Artificial God? by Douglas Adams (1998)
- Skeptics Annotated Bible
- The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine (1795)
- Which Way? by Robert Ingersoll (1884).
- Why I Am Not A Christian by Bertrand Russell (1927)