I'm confused by the inability for the religious to actually read

18 posts / 0 new
Last post
Meepwned's picture
I'm confused by the inability for the religious to actually read

I've noticed, many, many times that a religious person comes here and starts a debate. That's all fine and dandy. However, the biggest issue arises when they don't take the time to fully read/process the replies they get.

Does anyone have an inkling as to why this is so commonplace? I've looked at many religious themed forums as well, and they have the same issue. To me it seems like a very common feature of belief in a deity.

Subscription Note: 

Choosing to subscribe to this topic will automatically register you for email notifications for comments and updates on this thread.

Email notifications will be sent out daily by default unless specified otherwise on your account which you can edit by going to your userpage here and clicking on the subscriptions tab.

algebe's picture
@Meepwned: they don't take

@Meepwned: they don't take the time to fully read/process the replies they get

That's because most of them don't come to the Debate Room to debate but to preach and proselytize. They aren't even putting forward their own ideas, but rather than the nonsense brainwashed into them by their cults. Typically, they have only a very limited understanding of their own doctrines, which they learn by rote.

For the religious, dogma isn't a matter for debate. And judging from the faithful who pop up here, sincerity and intellectual honesty aren't valued much in their "absolute" morality systems.

Meepwned's picture


Thanks for the wonderful replay and explanation.

Grinseed's picture

Its pretty obvious most simply don't read atheist replies and I think they might harbour fears they could be influenced by our demon ideas or the devil might snatch their intellect while reading reasonable common sense replies and scientifically validated explanations.

algebe's picture
To put a positive spin on it,

To put a positive spin on it, you could say they come here with a sense of mission to save our poor souls from Satan's grasp.

boomer47's picture



I agree with Algebe, and would like to add:

The Christian apologists we get here have shown themselves to be impervious to reason or fact. They are anti reason and anti science.

To believe some of the drivel they accept,it is my opinion that many/most Christians also suffer from severe cognitive dissonance and conformation bias .

To keep this post to a reasonable length , I'll only back up the 'impervious to reason' claim.

In the 16th century, Martin Luther,father of the Protestant Reformation stated:

“Reason is a whore, the greatest enemy that faith has; it never comes to the aid of spiritual things, but more frequently than not struggles against the divine Word, treating with contempt all that emanates from God.”

― Martin Luther

No less a person than Jesus himself is reported as saying (to 'Doubting Thomas') :

John 20:29 " Jesus said to him, "Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."

Jesus is quoted through the Gospels as saying and doing a great many really ignorant/ stupid things. Imo they reveal a deep ignorance of Mosaic Law and Jewish custom. Such things led me to suspect that no Jews actually wrote the gospels.

Silly Bill E.'s picture
I only read the original post

I only read the original post by the way.

While all humans show a spectrum of narcissistic behaviors or tendencies ranging from very slight not very often to Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and then all the different variants inbetween whether it be a martyr parent or whatever, my mind went blank at that point..

I think there's a certain frequency of narcissism involved in being a theist. I only have experience believing in one variety of theism, and I don't believe anymore, but you attach yourself to it so you can believe it. And right then and there if you didn't want to wear psychological masks and costumes, you failed.

Anyways, I mentioned 'in my experience' for a reason, because at some point in life, I started having the ability to notice that I ignore things that may be trying to tell me a truth.

A memory of Homer Simpson being called a 'narc' when he wore the hat at the concert. One day I looked up the word narc, found the word narcissist, look around me, then I looked at myself. Then I looked around me again. Then I looked at myself again. And that went on for years because I shed religion around the same time.

My mother was a martyr parent. My father a distant enabler. I'm most likely a co-dependent with enough life experience to create healthy boundaries and have good social experiences with good hearted emotionally stable people, which is difficult to find these days with covid going around and everyone being all high strung.

That and a likely false religion.

My brain was mush when the reality bus ran me over. Add in a lot of morphine from a 3 year waiting list for gall bladder removal and 8 years of thrombosis with two bum knees.

Man it's easy to ignore stuff to just stay comfortable since the world likes to kick your ass so much. And it's the narrative of all the lies kicking your ass, that are ultimately the reason for it all.

Life's been great since I stopped believing in fairytales. But when you think reality is a fairytale, it's pretty hard to choose something that sounds less beautiful, even though reality truly is more beautiful.

boomer47's picture
@Silly Bill E.

@Silly Bill E.

"My mother was a martyr parent. "


It is said the Jews invented guilt. Perhaps, but it was the catholics who made it an art form.

My darling mum was the most self absorbed person I ever met. Apart from myself of course.

"My brain was mush when the reality bus ran me over. Add in a lot of morphine from a 3 year waiting list for gall bladder removal and 8 years of thrombosis with two bum knees."

I'm truly sorry you suffered so much.

"Life's been great since I stopped believing in fairytales."

Wish I could say the same. I left the church at 20. Searched for meaning for the next 20 years. Found only more questions. Slowly realised I was atheist and not just agnostic at around 40. I'm afraid I'm far too neurotic for those changes to have made any noticeable changes to my daily life. However, I CAN say life has been lot better since the divorce. Even if only because I no longer get those crippling headaches.

As a child I was terrified of my father,who I thought was a complete bastard. When he was 70, he was diagnosed as suffering from PTSD from WW2. I stopped thinking of him a bastard .Instead, he became a bastard with PTSD. He was also a rabid Irish catholic.***


***Irish Catholicism: The most superstitious, dogmatic, bigoted and hateful form of a pernicious faith I have ever encountered

Silly Bill E.'s picture
This is why I wanted to get

This is why I wanted to get away from the misconception in the other thread. We can actually talk and have fun ya know. :)

I'm tired. I'll come back tomorrow.

Edit: lmao I totally read you entire post and my response looks like what I complain about. I'm so sorry. Lol I'm actually just getting into bed.

boomer47's picture
@Silly Bill E

@Silly Bill E

Thanks mate.

Yeah, lets have some fun. From reading your post it seems we are of like mind in a lot.

raphael28589's picture

The only solution for that, is to repeat again the points they didn't understand, take a few replies to discuss it until they agree or get you to agree with them,

And if they go for "you idiot", put pressure on them until they leave, because this mean they'll misunderstand the rest of your arguments.

Ask moderators to add a stupidity indicator on their profile, make them understand that if they arn't here to debate they're not welcome.
(that's a little agressive, but I have no idea what we could do else)

LogicFTW's picture
Do not forget less than 5% of

Do not forget less than 5% of the US population (and really worldwide,) can read and write above a high school level.

Then realize "high school level" reading and writing skills in the US public, (free,) education is probably around middle school level for countries that actually have decent public education programs.

boomer47's picture


"Do not forget less than 5% of the US population (and really worldwide,) can read and write above a high school level."

I worked for Social Security Australia for 25 years. The region we served was working class with pockets of real poverty. I was appalled to discover that 25% of our clients were functionally illiterate. In practical terms that meant a reading age of under 12.

I've belonged to a lot of atheist forums over the last decade or so. It is my opinion that the members of these forums tend to be atypical in several ways. Literacy levels is one fairly obvious difference. It's great; I often learn.

Thought for today:

“Enlightenment humanism, then, is far from being a crowd-pleaser. The idea that the ultimate good is to use knowledge to enhance human welfare leaves people cold. Deep explanations of the universe, the planet, life, the brain? Unless they use magic, we don't want to believe them! Saving the lives of billions, eradicating disease, feeding the hungry? Bo-ring. People extending their compassion to all of humankind? Not good enough—we want the laws of physics to care about us! Longevity, health, understanding, beauty, freedom, love? There's got to be more to life than that!” "
― Steven Pinker, Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress

Silly Bill E.'s picture
I'm in Canada, I worked in

I'm in Canada, I worked in Fort McMurray during and after the oil boom, very rich place, you make a lot of money and somehow the government ends up with it all. Too much to explain there.

Anyways, at one point it was the richest little society in the world, and when about a quarter of the boys came to sign off for whatever whether it be meals or rooms or whatever, I had to sign for them. They didn't even understand the concept of the signature which is why they couldn't learn. And they were born here, same schools as I. After society pretty much dropped me is when I noticed things like this and how society just dumps people when they're not drinking the kool aid they were trained to drink.

I'm going to go someplace quiet and read your thought of the day. It's loud here.

leprechaun's picture
My mother would always say I

My mother would always say I didn't listen. I did listen, I just didn't agree uncritically. That's an entirely different matter.

I think it might be a human trait to not use reason. Often they think they are I suppose. Other times they may be deluding themselves. Two people can both reason and arrive at different conclusions. That's fine but I think reason is underused. Life is hard. People are on their paths. People struggle, religious and otherwise. Keep pounding it out. Keep messaging. Consider it training. Training never stops. Good for you and good for the other person, but to answer your question I think it's a function of human nature. Religion can help inure them or insulate them with ready responses to your challenges. That's annoying for sure.

I noticed that Christians don't even read their own bible. My sister (religious) guessed right when I asked what book made most people atheist. Not Darwin. The bible! She interpreted it different- no bible no atheism/theism (in her mind) whereas I just meant, if you read that book fully you'll likely question it. Anyway she got it right. To convert people to Christianity, if that is your goal, quote scripture conservatively and embellish on it. To convert people to atheism or non Christianity, quote scripture as well. Let it speak for itself. Quote it deadpan. Tell them to read it more. Read Leviticus. Most will soften in their beliefs- or exercise their rationalization hamster. A small few will go full crazy and start living a stricter life in accordance with the "Old Covenant". I don't have any covenant with anyone except my lenders I suppose Haha.

boomer47's picture


"I noticed that Christians don't even read their own bible. "

Don't be too hard on the poor sheep.

At the Catholic boys school I attended we were actively discouraged from reading the bible. "lest you become confused" (I kid you not). Being 16 with that Irish anti authority thing, Of course I read the whole thing from covert to cover as soon as I could. They were right. It confused the hell out of me. When I asked one of the brothers about something which confused me, the reply often as not was "Oh,that's a mystery of faith,we just believe it"

"A small few will go full crazy and start living a stricter life in accordance with the "Old Covenant".

If you really wan to confuse a believer,ask them 'which covenant'. The Old testament shows god made several covenants, the first being with Adam. Which god broke. When speaking of covenants,people tend to mean the Abrahamic Covenant , where god made the Jews his chosen people. He broke that one too. I guess it's hard for an imaginary being to keep any promises...


There's an excellent film, of a stage play, called 'God On Trial'. A group of Jewish men are in a concentration camp,and know they are to be killed the next morning. They put god on trial. The reasoning being that in allowing the holocaust, god broke his covenant with Abraham. Won't add any spoilers.

God actually made seven covenants:

Adamic, Noahic, Abrahamicm, Palestinian, Mosaic, Davidic and the New Covenant.


Cognostic's picture
I wanted to make a short

I wanted to make a short dictionary of religious terms and their "Theist" definitions but found I just don't have the time or interest to wade through all the bullshit to try and be funny. Perhaps it could be done as a group effort. When a Christian says "Holy Ghost" what do they really mean?

Holy Ghost: An excuse for doing things that normal people would not do; talking in tongues, barking like a dog, handling venomous snakes, witnessing to people who do not want to hear their inane bullshit, or begging for money because the spirit moved them to do so.

Whitefire13's picture

Love the description ...Also add to Holy Ghost: “also responsible for the sacred scribbling and gathering of such scribbling and protection of such scribbling throughout the ages that Aim being the miracle of “united, sound of mind, followers” of said “scribblings”.

Donating = Loving

Heart Icon

Bringing you atheist articles and building active godless communities takes hundreds of hours and resources each month. If you find any joy or stimulation at Atheist Republic, please consider becoming a Supporting Member with a recurring monthly donation of your choosing, between a cup of tea and a good dinner.

Or make a one-time donation in any amount.