I have not visited this forum in a considerable amount of time, but I would like to share a common quote I hear many believers/theists often say:
"I was just like you, I was an atheist. I was convinced/ knew that God does not exist, and I knew there was no such thing as some of the stories from the Bible or the Quran, until I had an experience".
These kinds of charlatans will give any kind of experience as proof. Some examples are: "miracles", dreams, psychic mediums, near death experiences, after death communications, "realizing" that the cosmos could not have come from nothing, going to bible/quran class and having an "expert" interpret the books for them in a way that makes sense, losing a debate to a close friend, having had "contact" with God or Jesus or Krishna while "totally sane and awake in full consciousness", and the list could go on forever.
I have only listed a few of the reasons people give me as to why they were "once like me" and now they believe. While I am an agnostic, they still file me into the "skeptic" drawer.
There are so many issues with this claim! First, how can they say they were like me? They are not me, so they have no idea what it's like to be me.
Second, if it is in fact true that they had some sort of supernatural experience and are completely accurately relaying what they saw/heard, how can they expect anyone who has not had the "privilege" of that experience to believe them? And how can they be so sure they are interpreting this correctly?
Third, we are all born unbelieving. A three month old toddler has no concept of religion, or the supernatural, etc, same as a cat, a dog, and a chicken do not. I feel that when these people patronize you by saying "I was like you", they are implying that your position is not normal. I think that everyone was once a non believer, so the person with the testimony is no special case.
Fourth, saying "I knew there was no God, and I knew the bible/quran were false" is just lying. Even an agnostic or an atheist does not "know" or claim to know for a fact that there is not a supernatural creator, or that the religious texts are false. In fact, if these people "knew" that it was all fake, then it is a fact. If it is a fact, then they are simply lying that they are theists. Once you "know" something to be true, you cannot change that. I feel it is somewhat insulting actually.
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