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Why are there so many Atheists on FST?

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posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 10:25 AM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
So... I just want to check this out and see if I understand your position on this... Are you saying that it's ok and even good and righteous for you to try to "convert the fence-sitters" to your beliefs, but NOT ok for someone who believes differently than you to do so?


Oh, Oh, can I answer for him please?

YES!

Why?

Because we believe there is only ONE way to get to the father and that is through the son. There is one way to save your soul and that is through Jesus Christ. Some of you seem to think that we want to bring people to God out of hate and self serving purposes when in fact it is out of love for all of Gods children.




posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 10:57 AM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
spines!
I cracked up at your response! Thank you for making that point so crystal clear.


I am glad that somebody enjoyed it. This thread was getting far to pretentious and I needed (for my own benefit) to give that a small break.


Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
GreatTech, you talked about how self-centered, egotistical, and arrogant you were as an atheist. Read over your 10 assumptions about atheists and agnostics (those who are likely to view this thread because of the title) and ask yourself how much that has really changed.



Ah, my love goes out to you for this. I didn't feel that I, a relative new comer to this site, should be calling people out in regards to their personalities but since you have taken the chance here I only feel it right to give my support in this area.



Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
In fact, I know plenty of God-believers who are self-centered, egotistical, and arrogant jerks. A belief in God and one's personality really have nothing to do with each other in my experience.


Originally posted by GreatTech
I went through a 6 year period of atheism myself and in retrospect I was a self-centered, egotistical, and arrogant jerk.


And with GreatTech aside (I am not judging you with this next bit...simply using your quote to illustrate a point), I can honestly that the most smug and self centered man I have ever met was not an atheist in any sense of the word. He was my senior english teacher and a devout catholic (It is probably important to know that my high school was a catholic school).

You could never debate a single theological issue with him because there was no speaking to the man. His response was always a firm "Well, I know that I am right because my religion is the only correct one. No others have it right and because of that I know that your point is moot." This seems to fit the view of an atheist the OP put forward.




Please tell me how atheists and agnostics are spiritual.


I would like to add my answer to this 'question' that Heretic put forward.

I am not a religious man by any means. The concept of a forced worship just does not suit me. I know many religious people from all walks of life who are happy with their spiritual path and more power to them...as long as they do not attempt to convert me. You wan't to express 'concern for my soul'? That is fine as long as it goes no further than that; and not every day.

With that being said, I love the academic study of religion (as I have said many times on this forum). I love visiting every place of worship that I can find and somply asking questions. The history and belief systems of religions is, in my life, a nice little hobby that keeps me busy on those boring days.

Now, to actually answer the quote up there (finally): I am spiritual. I can say that with much confidence. I believe that there is something that I do not quite grasp. Like I have always said: I am not a religious man, but I am a spiritual person in every sense of the word.

Oh, and to the title of the this thread: Why should we not be allowed in this forum? I have spirituality and faith. What makes me less worthy than yourself? Is it because my belief does not run parallel to yours?

Man, I get far to long winded sometimes...:bnghd:

[edit on 12/15/0606 by spines]

[edit on 12/15/0606 by spines]



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 11:08 AM
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Originally posted by kinglizard
Oh, Oh, can I answer for him please?

YES!

Why?

Because we believe there is only ONE way to get to the father and that is through the son. There is one way to save your soul and that is through Jesus Christ. Some of you seem to think that we want to bring people to God out of hate and self serving purposes when in fact it is out of love for all of Gods children.


Not to ruffle any feathers here but, most of us fence-sitters want to be left alone by people who feel this way.

My Muslim friends do not activley try to activley convert me. My Hindu friends do not either. Neither do my truly atheist friends.

It is strange that the only people who really 'get on my case' about converting are my Christian friends...and sometimes not even friends, just people who feel that I need to be 'saved'.

You feel that your way to god is the best way? Awsome. I am genuinley happy that you have managed to find a belief system that you can identify with; something that you can really feel connected with and that makes you feel 'completed'. That is an amazing accomplishment in your spiritual development and I am truly awe struck by most true believers.

But it is those who feel that it is their job to tell me that I must convert have no respect from me.

So in short: Most of us do not want to be saved. And no, that is not an pen invitation to make me your personal goal in life (here is looking at you devout christian across the street).



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 11:22 AM
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Originally posted by spines
Not to ruffle any feathers here but, most of us fence-sitters want to be left alone by people who feel this way.


So you represent all of these people? How about the ones that ended up being saved by converting or accepting Jesus Christ as their savior?

BTW- my feathers are far from being ruffled, afterall we are just talking here.



Originally posted by spines
My Muslim friends do not activley try to activley convert me. My Hindu friends do not either. Neither do my truly atheist friends.


That would be relevant if indeed we were talking about Muslims and Hindus.


Originally posted by spines
It is strange that the only people who really 'get on my case' about converting are my Christian friends...and sometimes not even friends, just people who feel that I need to be 'saved'.


They must really love you, this is one of the ways they show it. Take it as a complement.


Originally posted by spines
You feel that your way to god is the best way? Awsome. I am genuinley happy that you have managed to find a belief system that you can identify with; something that you can really feel connected with and that makes you feel 'completed'. That is an amazing accomplishment in your spiritual development and I am truly awe struck by most true believers.


We just want the same for you....so we spread the word. It's your choice to listen or see the light if you will. Nobody is going to kidnap you in the middle of the night and take you to a brainwashing center to remove pieces of your frontal lobe. lol We are just talking, providing information so that people can make an educated decision.


Originally posted by spines
But it is those who feel that it is their job to tell me that I must convert have no respect from me.


Nobody forces anything on you do they? Anyway you are right some Christians feel it's their job to spread the word, but it's just that a word, not a stone.


Originally posted by spines
So in short: Most of us do not want to be saved. And no, that is not an pen invitation to make me your personal goal in life (here is looking at you devout christian across the street).


You are far from my "goal in life". lol but I do care for you.
There is nothing wrong with that is there?

*waves from across the street*

[edit on 12/15/2006 by kinglizard]



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 11:39 AM
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Originally posted by kinglizard
Oh, Oh, can I answer for him please?






Because we believe there is only ONE way ...
There is one way ...


Yeah, I get that. You think there is only one way and that's your way (the way you've chosen) and that you're right and everyone else is wrong. I get that.




Some of you seem to think that we want to bring people to God out of hate and self serving purposes when in fact it is out of love for all of Gods children.


That's not what I think.
I was raised in a Christian home, so I know all about witnessing and bringing people to the Lord. I used to do it myself. I was saved and baptised when I was 13. I attended church 3 times a week, bible school in the summer and any revival that my mother could find.

I used to write and sing songs about it. I stood outside the "Jesus Christ, Superstar" play in Columbus OH and passed out fliers that my sister and I had made up, titled "Jesus Christ is More Than a Superstar"...
So, I don't think you're doing it for malevolent reasons. Not at all. But I do think you should be more conscious about something.

What bothers me is the lack of respect and the arrogance inherent in most "believers'" approach to saving the rest of the world. It's the assumption that you're right and we're wrong and the idea that you have the right to try to sway us to believe the same way you believe.

I know, you feel you can't do anything else but try to save all the lost souls. I get that. And there's a certain amount of respect I can muster for that, but only because I do believe you're doing it out of love.

But I take offense at the assumption that I'm not smart enough or sensitive enough or loving enough or wise enough or something enough to choose the "right" way (as you have).

I have chosen the right way for me. I do not assume that it's the right way for everyone. And I resent the assumption that you have that you are right and I am wrong and I should come over to your side of the fence and think and believe more like you do. I resent that more than I can tell you. And although I don't often speak for others, I'd wager that that's why many non-Christians "attack" Christianity.

We pretty much hate basically being told "Hey! I know better than you do! Listen to me! I'm right! Do what I'm doing and you'll be happy." (even though I'm perfectly happy - happier than I've ever been in my life) I hate being told that my beliefs don't matter, are wrong, that I'm misguided, uninformed, and that basically, all the spiritual searching and experience that I've had and done in my 50 years are just meaningless.

It's terrribly condescending for you to assume that I'm even interested in changing my beliefs, especially to something I have already been exposed to for many, many years!

My mother was such a good Christian. She never approached anyone with the assumption that she was going to witness to them. She witnessed by example. People used to ask her why she was so happy, why a light seemed to come from her face. Only then would she tell them that it was the love of Jesus shining through her. And SO many people were drawn to her! She was responsible for bringing more people to God than anyone I've ever known. And she NEVER pushed herself or her beliefs on a soul.

In fact, she would be ashamed to see how so many Christains are operating these days. She would be aghast at some of the posts written here by so-called Christians, with put-downs and swearing and arrogance... If she had read this thread, she would shame GreatTech for turning SO many people away with his assumptive words.

But, I digress... My point is, I have seen true Christianity in action. I have felt the love of a true Christian. I have heard the loving words of acceptance and grace that, to me, signify Christ-like behavior. So that's why I'm so critical of what I read on here by supposed Christians. Because I've seen the real thing...




Originally posted by kinglizard
so that people can make an educated decision.


I HAVE.


[edit on 15-12-2006 by Benevolent Heretic]



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 12:39 PM
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So your main issue is what other "people of faith" think about you?


Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
...assumption that you're right and we're wrong

...offense at the assumption that I'm not smart enough, sensitive enough, loving enough, wise enough, something enough

...I resent the assumption that you have that you are right and I am wrong, I resent that more than I can tell you

...We pretty much hate basically being told "Hey! I know better than you do!

...I hate being told that my beliefs don't matter



For the record I do think you are wrong even though I have NO idea what your beliefs are. I believe that Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life! ...and I'm not afraid to say it. If some takes offence to me expressing my beliefs then there is nothing I can do about that. I WILL share my thoughts as will other Christians.

It seems like a person doesn't even need to attack or question your beliefs for you to rise in arms, I have yet to see ANY attacks on whatever it is that you believe. They just need to say that they believe their faith is the way, the only way and you will rally the troops and sharpen your sword.

No matter, my faith is STRONG enough to take any assault and I'm confident enough to withstand verbal attack.



Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
My mother was such a good Christian. She never approached anyone with the assumption that she was going to witness to them. She witnessed by example. People used to ask her why she was so happy, why a light seemed to come from her face. Only then would she tell them that it was the love of Jesus shining through her. And SO many people were drawn to her! She was responsible for bringing more people to God than anyone I've ever known.


She sounds like a wonderful person with a deep capacity to love, I'm sure her daughter follows in her steps.



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 01:04 PM
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Originally posted by kinglizard
So your main issue is what other "people of faith" think about you?


No. And you know that. I don't expect you to understand what I was saying. I'm sure some people do, though.



For the record I do think you are wrong even though I have NO idea what your beliefs are.


Yeah, I know.
Even though you don't have a clue of my beliefs, you're just sure that they're wrong. I get that. So, even if I believe the same as you, I'm still wrong... Hmmm...



It seems like a person doesn't even need to attack or question your beliefs for you to rise in arms,


What arms? What are you talking about?



I have yet to see ANY attacks on whatever it is that you believe.


I haven't claimed anyone has attacked my beliefs. However, read through the religion forum and you'll find plenty!




They just need to say that they believe their faith is the way, the only way and you will rally the troops and sharpen your sword.


Troops? Sword? What are you talking about? I have made no verbal attack or assault. Where?



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 01:16 PM
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Originally posted by kinglizard
So you represent all of these people? How about the ones that ended up being saved by converting or accepting Jesus Christ as their savior?


I didn't mean to speak for us all. I mean to speak for myself and a large amount of people whom I know and share the same feelings as I do on this subject.


Originally posted by kinglizard
That would be relevant if indeed we were talking about Muslims and Hindus.


I still see it as relevant to my point. I was stating that the majority of 'enthusiastic' christians seem to have the urge to save people while the majority of 'enthusiastic' Muslims, Hindus, Jews, etc do not seem to have that urge. (And yes, this is not counting all members of those respective faiths...just the ones who I know and have interacted with often...which is still quite a large number).


Originally posted by kinglizard
They must really love you, this is one of the ways they show it. Take it as a complement.


I am sure they have the best of intentions. But when I say "Thank you, I appreciate it but I am not interested in converting." that does not mean "oh please, 'love' me more."

I am not playing coy here, I genuinely do not want to be pursued in this matter and some people (once again not all) do not understand that.

It is like theological rape at a certain point.


Originally posted by kinglizard
We just want the same for you....so we spread the word. It's your choice to listen or see the light if you will. Nobody is going to kidnap you in the middle of the night and take you to a brainwashing center to remove pieces of your frontal lobe. lol We are just talking, providing information so that people can make an educated decision.


See above response.



Originally posted by kinglizard
Nobody forces anything on you do they? Anyway you are right some Christians feel it's their job to spread the word, but it's just that a word, not a stone.


When my wishes that they stop are met with nothing but more feavored and persistent attempts to change my mind and save me then it is a stone. When it gets to this point it is unwanted and often gets to be rude: "You are living a life of sin!", "You are unhappy and you do not even know it!" or my favorite that I have heard more times then I would like, "You are wrong, you can never be complete without god in your heart!"

Just so nobody takes this the wrong way I will say it again...This does not apply to all christians! Only those who practice this method of 'saving'!


Originally posted by kinglizard
You are far from my "goal in life". lol but I do care for you.
There is nothing wrong with that is there?


I appreciate the warm feelings. Just understand where I, and a good number of people, stand on the subject of 'being saved'.

Just stop to think that we may not want to be saved and no matter how well-intentioned the attempts are they do nothing but turn us off to the faith even more.


Originally posted by kinglizard
*waves from across the street*


Hey there!


[edit on 12/15/0606 by spines]



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 01:31 PM
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Originally posted by kinglizard
For the record I do think you are wrong even though I have NO idea what your beliefs are. I believe that Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life! ...and I'm not afraid to say it. If some takes offence to me expressing my beliefs then there is nothing I can do about that. I WILL share my thoughts as will other Christians.


I am not trying to answer for heretic here. However, I am going to throw my response out to this section of text:

I think both heretic and myself are trying to say that you are allowed to share your beliefs if somebody asks you for them. If someone asks you what makes you so happy then you are more then welcomed to say that it is Jesus and all that.

But, if someone has expressed no interest in the beliefs which you hold then do them a favor and do not share them with that person.

It is not that your belief system offends us. It is not your faith that offends us. It is your assumption that we are wrong that offends us...after all, it comes off as smug and self-centered.

(I am not refering to you specifically in that last bit...it is more of an abstract 'your' refering to anyone who practices the task of saving individuals)

This, however, is straight at you: Jesus Christ was a fraud, and all who follow him are as ignorant as the dirt on the ground. His teachings are nothing but a misconstrued version of egomania. --by that I mean that he is nothing more then what most cult leaders are: full of themselves. You should stop following that belief system and follow that which I follow. It is the only way you won't be damned to eternal suffering and sorrow!

Now, if it was not understood that I was simply making a point and that I do not really mean an ounce of what I just said I am sure you would have taken offense to it.

If I was just some man standing on the street near your childs school handing out fyers and yelling my message then I am sure you would take offense.

If I was coming to you every day and telling you how wrong and ignorant you are for believing these things. And that I am only telling you this because I love you and want you to be a better person and to stop living a spiritual lie I am sure you would take offense or at least be irritated and want me to stop (not to mention hate how smug that "I tell you that you are wrong because I love you and I know that what I am saying is correct" sounds).

Do you see my point?



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 01:37 PM
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Benevolent Heretic

I know a person like your mother. He is a very accepting and open Catholic who encouraged us, his theology students, to research and learn about the history and belief systems of other religions.

He taught us to see the good in all of them respectively and to not judge others based on what they believe.

He taught us to come into our spiritual selves on our own terms and that whatever we found that made us feel complete (as long as it was not self destructive and hurtful) he would support and be more then happy for us about.

He was a good man and a great teacher. I am happy to know someone like him. And happy that you can relate



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 02:09 PM
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Originally posted by spines
If I was coming to you every day and telling you how wrong and ignorant you are for believing these things. And that I am only telling you this because I love you and want you to be a better person and to stop living a spiritual lie I am sure you would take offense or at least be irritated and want me to stop (not to mention hate how smug that "I tell you that you are wrong because I love you and I know that what I am saying is correct" sounds).

Do you see my point?


No maybe you should type another couple paragraphs, You remind me of someone.


Is someone "coming at you every day telling you how wrong and ignorant you are"? If so I would suggest you reconsider the company you keep. I can't comment on your relationships though I don't recommend you stay in an abusive one.

Would I take offense to you saying something negative about my belief?

Not really, my beliefs come from a place of truth (Bible) yours doesn't.

Hows that for arrogant?

Arrogant because what I believe is Gods truth (you don't need to agree).

Can I be irritated?

Sure I'm human.



[edit on 12/15/2006 by kinglizard]



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 03:15 PM
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Originally posted by kinglizard
For the record I do think you are wrong even though I have NO idea what your beliefs are.



Originally posted by kinglizard
Is someone "coming at you every day telling you how wrong and ignorant you are"? If so I would suggest you reconsider the company you keep.


I couldn't agree more... I don't know why I thought we might be able to come to some sort of mutual respect. Just naive, I guess. Why didn't I listen to those who told me not to waste my time? :shk:



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 03:38 PM
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Originally posted by kinglizard
No maybe you should type another couple paragraphs, You remind me of someone.



Was that an insult? I am a bit lost, I will assume it wasn't. Just curious as to who and why.



Originally posted by kinglizard
Is someone "coming at you every day telling you how wrong and ignorant you are"? If so I would suggest you reconsider the company you keep. I can't comment on your relationships though I don't recommend you stay in an abusive one.


Which would be my point. I ask them to stop yet that only makes them want to 'save' me more. Like I said, it is more or less theological rape.


Originally posted by kinglizard
Not really, my beliefs come from a place of truth (Bible) yours doesn't.


So my beliefs are not true because I didn't grab them from a book. You are telling my flat out that I am wrong because I do not agree with you. You say they do not come from a place of truth so I must assume that you mean they are not true.

That seems a bit abusive.


Originally posted by kinglizard
If so I would suggest you reconsider the company you keep. I can't comment on your relationships though I don't recommend you stay in an abusive one.


It seemed appropriate to quote it again I suppose.

However, thank you for the interesting conversation; kept my mind working and my fingers moving.



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 03:43 PM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
I don't know why I thought we might be able to come to some sort of mutual respect. Just naive, I guess.


If by mutual respect you mean that I would believe, accept or support your rejection of Jesus then I agree you were naive.


Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
Why didn't I listen to those who told me not to waste my time?


Only you can answer that but it seems they were right on the money.



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 03:53 PM
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Originally posted by spines
So my beliefs are not true because I didn't grab them from a book.


Yes, exactly, the Bible is the way and the truth.


Originally posted by spines
You are telling my flat out that I am wrong because I do not agree with you.


No, you are wrong because you don't believe in the word of God as written in the Bible.


Originally posted by spines
That seems a bit abusive.


Telling someone that they are wrong is far from abusive. As a matter of fact leading someone to God or speaking his word is a form of love.



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 03:57 PM
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Originally posted by spines
Was that an insult? I am a bit lost, I will assume it wasn't. Just curious as to who and why.


No it wasn't, far from it actually though I shouldn't have said that because I can't give the name.

Anyway it wasn't any type of insult.



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 04:36 PM
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Originally posted by kinglizard

Oh, Oh, can I answer for him please?

YES!

Why?

Because we believe there is only ONE way to get to the father and that is through the son. There is one way to save your soul and that is through Jesus Christ. Some of you seem to think that we want to bring people to God out of hate and self serving purposes when in fact it is out of love for all of Gods children.


kinglizard, thank you. I could not have said it better.

God Bless!!!



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 04:46 PM
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Originally posted by GreatTech
1) To attack believers?

i've learned that in civil discourse you attack the argument, not the arguer, i have never attacked a believer for their beliefs, just the beliefs themselves



2) Hatred of God even if there was a slightest possibility that He might exist in their minds?

well, if said being exists, i wouldn't hate it
i'd be incredibly angry, because said being does not let the rational mind and logical processees that said being supposedly gave me to be able to find it



3) To show "superior" intelligence in their minds?

that's a stereotype
the arrogant atheist



4) A negative view of life that must be shown?

no...
i actually think life is quite positive, though the condition of life can be quite bad for some



5) Worship of Charles Darwin?

another stereotype, atheists worshipping at the altar of evolution
atheists do not worship



6) Educational enlightenment or educational lapse?

enlightenment



7) Lack of humility?

becoming an atheist was actually quite the humbling experience
having realized that you were wrong for the majority of your life does that to you
before i became an atheist i was a smug and arrogant jerk who thought he knew everything because of my knowledge of god



8) Belief that they can create the Universe that exists?

nope, it would be impossible to create an identical universe, evolution may turn out differently
and also, where is this whole "atheists think they can create a universe" thing coming from?



9) A bad family?

i find this incredibly offensive
my family isn't horrible
i have a very functional family
i was always treated with love and care
i always had what i needed
and i wasn't abused
where do you pull this stuff out from?



10) Self-centeredness?

AGAIN with the stereotypes
did you not read my 16 Common Myths About Atheists thread?

why must you be so offensive towards atheists?



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 05:09 PM
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i've learned that in civil discourse you attack the argument, not the arguer, i have never attacked a believer for their beliefs, just the beliefs themselves


Did you even realize what you said? you attack the beliefs but not the Believer?WTF? that does not make any sense, how can you seperate the two?



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 05:47 PM
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Originally posted by thehumbleone

i've learned that in civil discourse you attack the argument, not the arguer, i have never attacked a believer for their beliefs, just the beliefs themselves


Did you even realize what you said? you attack the beliefs but not the Believer?WTF? that does not make any sense, how can you seperate the two?


I guess it's a bit like 'hating the sin but not the sinner'....




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