Atheist Fundraiser From A Theist?

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CallOut's picture
Atheist Fundraiser From A Theist?

Greetings,

I came across Atheist Republic when searching for ways to find people who don’t believe in any god at all. It is here that I learned Atheists feel a sense of marginalization, and for good reason. Unfortunately so do most others, including myself. As a theist I too feel if I make my beliefs known I will be excommunicated from important areas in my life. I’m sure this will already inflame many of you reading, which is all the more reason to read further.

In an attempt not to jeopardize any of my work or friend relationships, I am reaching out to see if I can make anonymous connections with good willed, honest, tempered, and most importantly, reasonable individuals from an opposing viewpoint.

It is easy to consider this as debating, but a more accurate depiction of what I do is collaborate. I would love to know what your story is, and how you have come to your conclusions. With that said this won’t be a therapy session, and I will engage with purpose. I will respectfully challenge anything you might say, and welcome similar challenges in return.

I’m not trying to make money, make a name for myself, nor "save" or embarrass anyone. In fact I do this anonymously, and offer to give money rather than get money. I want this for myself, and my own wellbeing.

As a token of good faith I will donate $20 to Atheist Republic, or any organization of your choosing.

We can work out the details, but I was thinking of a live stream on Youtube. You can invite all your atheist friends to live chat so when I prove you wrong you have an audience to defer to. I’m totally joking, but I do want to encourage as much engagement as I can get.

If you are interested please let me know in the comments.

Thank you, and God bless ;)

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LogicFTW's picture
@orignal post by CallOut

@orignal post by CallOut

I came across Atheist Republic when searching for ways to find people who don’t believe.

I get what you are trying to say, a full completed sentence would read: I came across Atheist Republic when searching for ways to find people who don’t believe in any god at all. Plenty of people all over who do not believe your god, billions of them in fact, those people believe in their version of god and not yours. I just feel it is a bit dishonest to say simply "people who don't believe" as people that do not "believe" includes everyone, even yourself, because you (and everyone else) reject all other god ideas besides the particular one they picked.

It is here that I learned Atheists feel a sense of marginalization, and for good reason.

I am glad you learned that. People that identify as atheist suffer marginalization, just like people of a particular religion/god idea will suffer marginalization, especially if they are not part of what is the most popular in the person's current nearby area. I think it is fair to say: atheist people do not organize nearly to the extent most theist people do, so the possibility of marginalization is greater for someone that identifies as atheist as they typically do not organize much.

I’m sure this will already inflame many of you reading,

I do not count myself as one of the inflamed, cannot speak for other readers though.

I am reaching out to see if I can make anonymous connections with good willed, honest, tempered, and most importantly, reasonable individuals from the other side.

Sure sounds good, I do think it will help if you do not start off with labeling atheist as "the other side" that can easily be construed as divisive. It sounds like your goal is to not be divisive at all.

It is easy to consider this as debating, but a more accurate depiction of what I do is collaborate. I would love to know what your story is, and how you have come to your conclusions.

I like to debate, but I also like to collaborate. I am more then happy to share my story and how I come to my conclusions. I imagine others here are as well. Do be aware we have been asked this many times. I personally do not mind, but others may have grown tired of it, especially because some who ask do come here with, (a frequently not so subtly hidden,) agenda when asking questions to atheist here.

With that said this won’t be a therapy session, and I will engage with purpose. I will respectfully challenge anything you might say, and welcome similar challenges in return.

Sounds good to me.

I’m not trying to make money, make a name for myself, nor "save" or embarrass anyone. In fact I do this anonymously, and offer to give money rather than get money. I want this for myself, and my own wellbeing.

Cool. I am sure the atheist republic website could use 20 bucks. If someone wanted to give me 20 bucks no strings attached because it made them feel good, I would gladly accept it.

We can work out the details, but I was thinking of a live stream on Youtube. You can invite all your atheist friends to live chat so when I prove you wrong you have an audience to defer to. I’m totally joking, but I do want to encourage as much engagement as I can get.

Incase you were actually curious/asking, and just threw in the non committal: "I'm totally joking" to blunt the large ask, at least for myself I am definitely not interested in doing a live stream, or youtube etc. I am happy to discuss here in this thread or others though.
 
 

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▮          I am an atheist that always likes a good debate.          ▮
▮   Please include @LogicFTW in responses directed to me.    ▮
▮        Useful list on forum usage. A.R. Member since 2016.      ▮
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CallOut's picture
I appreciate your thoughtful

I appreciate your thoughtful response, and made changes according to your notes. Let me know if there are any other areas I can correct to indicate more genuineness.

I’ve also noticed your activity on other threads even before this response. I’m glad you responded to this one. Looks like there isn’t much interest to do a live stream, so I’ll gladly take your text response.

Being a prized hunt is no doubt what many theists would view this community as. This is not my intention, and I will do my best to avoid this impression. I can respect if people are tired of answering as well, so long as they aren’t provoking arguments at the same time. As selfish as it might sound, my intention is more to protect myself.

I see society regarding theists as ignorant, misinformed, bigoted, and every other harsh word in the dictionary. I never hear secular society regard theists as logical and worth listening to. I’m not claiming the former is incorrect, but I am claiming it is not uniquely theistic. Likewise the latter is not uniquely theistic either. These are both true for every walk of life, and I dare say even for Atheists.
Because of this negative connotation on theists, you can imagine the trouble I face when approached with a moral disagreement.

Without getting into a long explanation of my background, I will say that I find similar frustrations with many Atheists, in that fundamentalists seem to have no sense of logic or reason for their beliefs. That is something I do not condone, and I want to make that known.

Any comment you have thus far is welcomed, but I would like to take time to hear a bit of your story. I’ve heard people becoming Atheists simply because they disagree with what a person or religious institution says. Perhaps your reasoning goes a little deeper?

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Callout

@ Callout

I'm game. not for a live stream but by messenger, or here on the boards...lets hear your story, rather than being inquisitor...you show me yours and l will show u mine....

CallOut's picture
Fair enough. I sent a

Fair enough. I sent a response to LogicFTW that gave a little background. Would you be okay to join in on that?

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
No problem. On the

No problem. On the understanding ,that you must realise, that if I encounter loaded questions I will kick the bastards very, very, hard into touch. If you are faint of heart and dislike the use of the vernacular, take fair warning.

CallOut's picture
Haha this only makes me all

Haha this only makes me all the more interested. By loaded question I assume you mean a sentiment where something can't be proven either way, therefore I stump you and you are wrong (mic drop). Obviously this is fallacious thinking, and I'll do my best to avoid these.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Callout

@ Callout

NO I mean loaded questions that often contain a pre supposition...like "Why do you hate God?.." Which simultaneously presupposes the existence of such a thing and that, by being an atheist, must therefore hate this imaginary thing! So many come through here with that kind of question I do not suffer them gladly.

The Tin Man, after we have sounded out here on the boards or in PM then maybe an audio session would be in order.

CallOut's picture
Ah, ok. got it. Will do my

Ah, ok. got it. Will do my best to avoid presuppositions. If I happen to do so by accident, I welcome you to call me out on it.

Tin-Man's picture
@CallOut

@CallOut

Hmmmm..... Oh, what the heck... Why not?.... *shrugging shoulders*... I'll be totally honest and tell you up front that I am a bit skeptical. We get people passing through here all the time with the same ol' spiel. But you seem fairly sincere so far, so I'll give you the benefit of the doubt for the time being. Feel free to PM me if you like. It is only fair that I tell you, however, the moment I detect any ridiculous nonsense....? Well, it will either be "game on", or I will simply ignore you at that point. Oh, and feel free to ask Old Man, or Logic, or several others on here, and they will likely tell you that you would much prefer that I ignored you. *chuckle* That being said, I'd be happy to chat with you.

CallOut's picture
Skeptical comment noted. I

Skeptical comment noted. I probably should have been more clear about what I had in mind, and I'm now realizing I'm not the first to test my thinking in this community.

I assure you I carry no nonsense. I can prove it to you because I prayed this morning and God told me it wasn't nonsense.

In all seriousness, I do have sincere intentions. I don't necessarily need to do a live stream. It could do just as well on discord. I'm not expecting webcams, just audio.

Your last comment does leave me a little nervous, but I welcome it nonetheless. Maybe you make quick work of me and I go running with my tail between my legs. Or... I make quick work of you (haha I had to say it).

My preference is an audio conversation with a chat room so others can engage if they want. I recommend Youtube or Discord. Do you have a preference?

Cognostic's picture
Here is a thought for you.

Here is a thought for you. No one here is looking to make "Quick Work of You." That is until you begin spouting nonsense. When you begin making unjustified claims and assertions, you will be called on them.

Here is a secret. You believe in your faith because you want to believe in it and you need not justify it to anyone. "It just seems right to you." That's fine. It is only when you begin calling people who do not share your faith sinners, evil doers, or claiming that morality comes from your Big Book of Confusion and Subjective Interpretation, that you are going to have a problem with anyone. We are just about "FACTS" and "EVIDENCE" for the most part. Theism has not met its burden of proof, there is no rational reason to believe in god or Gods.

CallOut's picture
Noted. I searched my

Noted. I searched my personal notes and found what I feel is a good response to this...

I don't believe all atheists are god hating scientists. This is a misconception. Rather atheists enforce an accountability measure for which many believers fall short, and can oftentimes leave them feeling persecuted. The reality is the believer is simply not giving a good enough answer. Accountability is healthy, and it is reasonable to expect tangible substance as our accountability measure to determine what is correct or incorrect thinking. This includes religious thinking.

I wonder if this is similar to what you are saying.

Tin-Man's picture
@CallOut Re: "I don't

@CallOut Re: "I don't believe all atheists are god hating scientists."

Good to see you still here. Uh, a little heads up real quick.... *chuckle*.... Well, as a technicality, any "atheist" claiming he/she hates god is not truly an atheist. Atheists do not believe in any god(s). Therefore, in order for a person to hate any god(s), that individual would have to believe that/those particular god(s) exist. Hence, not an atheist.... *chuckle*... Anyway, just wanted to bring that to your attention real quick, as I am reasonably sure others will also notice that statement and mention it to you.

Meanwhile, having read your most recent posts, I am looking forward to answering any questions you may have. It is very rare we get a theist here who is able to conduct reasonable discussions. So far, though, you are doing okay. Could be a good learning experience for everybody.

arakish's picture
http://www.atheistrepublic

CallOut: "I am reaching out to see if I can make anonymous connections with good willed, honest, tempered, and most importantly, reasonable individuals from an opposing viewpoint. It is easy to consider this as debating, but a more accurate depiction of what I do is collaborate. I would love to know what your story is, and how you have come to your conclusions."

I'm game. Above is the part of your OP that jumped out at me, especially the bold text.

Forewarning, the best description of me is not just an atheist, not just an anti-theist, but also a Militant Anti-Religionist. As Old Man said, start spewing pure nonsensical diarrhea and I shall pull no punches. None.

Since you are the one who opened this thread, why not be first to give us your story. Besides it is going to take some time to tell my story.

And almost forgot. Your most kind and generous donation can be given to Atheist Republic.

rmfr

CallOut's picture
Much appreciated. I'll take

Much appreciated. I'll take a little time to write out my story. You aren't the first to ask. Not that it will be super long, but I don't have it rehearsed.

I did recognize your name in other threads. Do I sense a bit of jadedness? No doubt for good reason, and I wouldn't ask to change this. I just hope collaboration can still be the goal.

Tin Man is the first to accept the invitation for a live chat, so I'll continue with him for now. I'm suggesting we make it live audio with a chat room, so I'm hoping a few others like yourself might be willing to join us.

Tin-Man's picture
@CallOut Re: "Tin Man is the

@CallOut Re: "Tin Man is the first to accept the invitation for a live chat,"

Oops. Oh, dang. My apologies. When I said "chat" it was a figure of speech. Seriously, I didn't meant to mislead you. What I meant was I would be okay with PM conversations. Although, depending on how that goes, perhaps that could be changed to audio later. One step at a time, though. Meanwhile, at least you seem to have a pretty good sense of humor so far. That's good, because you will need it with this group. lol PM me if you want, and we will go from there, unless you want to ask a few questions out here first. Nothing much I could say that others here have not already heard from me. *chuckle*

CallOut's picture
Not a problem. I'm excited

Not a problem. I'm excited to get written responses as well. Maybe I can just keep responding here and see if anyone opens to the idea of a live audio communication at some point.

CallOut's picture
I wanted to clear up my

I wanted to clear up my description about donating. My intention is to donate when someone chats with me in a live stream (or equivalent). Not necessarily when someone responds in the thread. Though I do appreciate the thread responses as well. For good measure I sent a $20 anyways. Look forward to doing it again if we can get a live stream going. Thanks!

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Tin-Man's picture
@CallOut

@CallOut

No doubt the AR is grateful for your donation. They run a great site here, and I'm sure every penny helps. And your interest is genuinely appreciated. For what it is worth, though, (speaking strictly for myself) even if the money was offered directly to ME, I do not agree or disagree to do things for the simple sake of money. Just a personal "code" of mine. I happen to take a great deal of pride in the fact that I cannot be "bribed". An annoying little quirk of mine, I'm afraid. Just sayin'....

Edit to add: Matter of fact, there are times when somebody offering me money to do something can actually cause me to become LESS interested in doing it. Just a little FYI.

CallOut's picture
Good note. If it felt like

Good note. If it felt like someone was trying to bribe me I could lose interest as well. It would feel gimmicky. If others agree this feels gimmicky please let me know and I can take the donation part out.

Cognostic's picture
Not sure what your opposing

Not sure what your opposing viewpoint is. It sounds like you are looking for theists from your post. I would love to know what your story is and how you have come to your conclusions. ???? What conclusions are we talking about? Atheism is the rejection of God claims. If you think you have a good reason for your belief I would love to hear what you believe and why? I have no conclusion unless it is the conclusion that God claims have not met their burden of proof. (Is that not perfectly obvious to you?)

Happy to collaborate until you start engaging in presupposition nonsense or tossing straw man arguments my way.

CallOut's picture
I agree majority of God

I agree majority of God claims have not met their burden of proof. Praying for food and stumbling across an unopened can of chili is not proof that the prayer was answered. I do think there could be indication of a higher power when applying deep academic discoveries and logic, but this is an angle I don't wish to tackle quite yet. I'm writing a detailed response of my approach which I will post today, and hope you will let me know what you think of it.

arakish's picture
@ CallOut

@ CallOut

Just a little more clarification.

"I did recognize your name in other threads. Do I sense a bit of jadedness?"

Perhaps. But it is mostly directed at those who refuse to use what little intelligence they (please note I am not saying "you") still possess. Many others have come onto these forums just like you have. Then one us may make a legitimate and logical argument that they offense to and either start spewing mind diarrhea and mental vomit as they are trained to do. That is when the gloves come off and the big guns are brought to bear.

"I just hope collaboration can still be the goal."

I have no problem with this. I have had many face-to-face (FtF) discussions with open-minded theists. However, most of these have been the ones who have absolutely no problems with science and their beliefs. As Neil deGrasse Tyson so eloquently put it (and I paraphrase): "I have no problem with a person seeking spiritual answers and fulfillment from the Bible. But keep it out of my classroom and lab. It has no place in my classroom and lab."

Live Chat?

Sounds interesting. However, I have no clue on how to set that up. While I am at work, we use live chat, but it is already set up to go. All I have to do is 2×Click the icon on the desktop. That was the IT people. Me, I am a glorified "rock hound." I used to do computer programming and computer hacking. But that was over 25 years ago. The technology has surpassed my old capabilities.

"I'll take a little time to write out my story. You aren't the first to ask. Not that it will be super long, but I don't have it rehearsed."

Take your time. It will give me time to trim mine down some. It need not be long. Mine only got long as I discussed it here on these boards. I even copied and pasted my posts here into a couple of eBooks and PDFs. However, those two are about 35 to 40 pages each as I tended to delve deeply into each topic. However, I can trim them down to about 5 pages. I hope.

Another forewarning: I can tend to be very verbose. When the train gets started, I almost cannot stop it. I have been trying to work on it. A little success I think. Unless you get me started on geology, geomorphology, volcanology, astrophysics, and celestial formation mechanics. Get me started on one of those and that train may never stop.

And to clarify what I mean by Militant Anti-Religionist. This DOES NOT mean I am going to bomb people, shoot people, except with words. I believe all religion should be utterly eliminated. I once posted a good analogy on how I view religion: It is a heinous boil on the ass of humanity that needs to be lanced and eradicated.

However, there is also My Fourth Commandment of Humanity: "You shall respect the right of ALL persons to believe whatsoever they wish to believe, even if contrary to your beliefs. You may discuss beliefs, but to force your beliefs onto others is condemnable." Notice, this says to respect the right to believe, but not to respect the beliefs. I shall be the first to admit that it may seem as if I am trying to force my atheism onto others, but I do not. I try me damnedest to attack their beliefs, not to force mine.

See? I already got a bit verbose. Let me shut up.

rmfr

CallOut's picture
If only my theist friends

If only my theist friends knew how to speak with this level of honesty. I love it.

I have grown a respect for Atheists, but my theory is there is a disconnect that rests deep within atheistic reasoning, which causes even the most good willed Atheist to grab hold of what they know is not the most reasonable answer. Perhaps I am wrong, but I'm growing more confident this community can help me discover the answer.

Cognostic's picture
The answer to what? As long

The answer to what? As long as you are honest, cite your sources and generally avoid fallacies, unfounded assertions, and outright religious-speak, you are not going to have any problem here at all. An honest inquiry into religion and its practices harms no one and everyone stands a chance to learn something.

CallOut's picture
Agreed.

Agreed.

David Killens's picture
@ CallOut

@ CallOut

Welcome to our little corner of the world. I wish you the best and hope we can develop a positive relationship.

Some of us do not believe there is no god, no deity, no spiritual being, because the definition of an atheist is a "lack of belief in a god". There is a vast difference between believing there is no god, and not believing a god exists. Although atheism falls within both categories. Until it can be proven to me that a "god" exists, then I will fall into the default position, not believing. If I told you I can jump (unassisted) fifty feet into the air, you would have good reason not to believe until I can prove otherwise.

For many, atheism is a hard road to walk. We can face being disowned by our families and loved ones, ostracized and disenfranchised in the workplace, and other places. In some nations, it can be a death sentence. I am not joking, in some nations coming out as an atheist is a sure guarantee that you will be murdered.

If I took you back eighty years, could I make you like Hitler? You may be in Germany, even be forced to pretend. But deep inside your mind, can you sincerely like the guy? This is the same with myself. I wish I did not get the answers I did when in my spiritual quest, but the answers came back that I could not find a god. I can't force myself to accept a god, for the same reasons I cannot force myself to like Hitler.

For myself (and others), the truth is much more relevant and important than a "belief". If I was to define myself, it is "a searcher for the truth". Unsupported claims and wild assertions fall into the "I do not believe them until I am provided proof".

As a suggestion, using the bible as proof can be a circular argument, unless you can prove it truly is the word of your god. No one has ever been able to do that, so good luck.

I also suggest that you provide your personal definition of "god", because there are many interpretations.

CallOut's picture
Woke up this morning and feel

Woke up this morning and feel the love from new responses. I'll try to respond to every one of them today.

For now, here is my answer to those of you asking what my story is...

I grew up Catholic, and slept through most of the services. As a teenager I grew more passionate in my faith when joining a charismatic church. Setting off to college far away from home, I knew I would win the world for Christ. That is until I was approached with provoking questions about my faith which I couldn’t answer.

I considered two options about these questions. Either they were the devil trying to deceive me, or they were legitimate challenges which ought to be addressed. More than being a Christian, I consider myself a seeker of truth. Unfortunately (or fortunately?) when faced with a truth I couldn’t reconcile my beliefs to, I had no choice but to abandon what I was so certain about my faith.

In searching for truth I got into an interesting and serious relationship I never would have imagined. She was very smart, fun, beautiful, free spirit, a passionate atheist, and had kids who were nearly my age. I didn’t see it as healthy even at the time, but she was able to legitimately answer my deep questions far better than any pastor I ever had. I still believe that to this day.

After the relationship respectfully ended I was firmly a completely different person than my Christian upbringing. While I still wasn’t certain God didn’t exist, I was certain the lackluster, subjective, and illogical answers given to me by my christian peers was not God. The difference between this certainty and the certainty I abandoned with my early Christianity is that this was based on logic.

Needless to say I did make my way back to Christianity, but I feel it has been very refined. I believe in theism because I feel it is the most logical answer, not because it was my upbringing. Obviously this is highly contestable, and so begins the debate.

I suspect this will make enemies with my own kind, but I feel that many atheists are closer to God than theists. I’m convinced many theists simply abide by societal and cultural norms taught to them. One of those norms might happen to be Christianity, and if they were raised in a different part of the world they would inevitably follow a different religion. A dynamic which doesn’t suggest virtue, but rather brainwashing. An accusation which can only be combated by deeply questioning one’s beliefs. I find that atheists come to their conclusion through questioning, whereas many Christians (and other religions) are too scared to question. This ironically puts them one step behind the atheist in the pursuit for God.

That’s a bit of my story. Obviously I could go on, but I’ll leave it at that for now. Comments are always welcome. Thanks!

David Killens's picture
@ Callout

@ Callout

That is a warm story, but basically gave us zero on your position.

Do you believe in a god? Please provide a definition of your god.

Do you believe in a devil? Please provide a definition of your devil.

CallOut's picture
This is also a response to

This is also a response to your previous message (putting both into one).

I never thought to give my definition of God, but here goes. God is the all powerful, consious being which is responsible for the existence of the entire universe and everything in it. I could get into deeper definition of what I think God to be, but I feel that is a fair, neutral definition. What do you think?

I don't want to give my take on a devil yet, nor what/whom is god, if heaven is real, etc. I feel it would make sense that I establish that a belief in god is reasonable first, then derive additional reasoning from that. If we can even get that far. Is it okay for me to defer peripheral topics outside of the existence of god for now?

I was not aware of how severe the penalty is for Atheists in other parts of the world, though your description doesn't surprise me. I don't think that's okay.

In regards to my potential use of the Bible, I will give a heads up that I believe the Bible is true, but it is not the foundation of truth. The bible needs to be in line with truth, not the other way around (don't tell my pastor I said that). As a Christian of course I believe in the Bible, but if I can't make a case for the existence of god outside the Bible then I don't feel I have the right to argue God's existence with the bible.

In short, I don't plan to quote any scriptures to make my case for the existence of God. To the contrary, I've had atheists quote scripture to me, trying to disagree with something I said when I never even referenced the scripture to begin with. It was quite an interesting response.

Thanks for your replies!

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