Since it seems that Facebook is the place where most of my interaction with believers takes place (and they love to send me private emails about god), I figure I’ll post some of the interactions here for whatever parts of the bloggosphere would like to appreciate them. (the name’s have been changed to protect the guilty and the innocent). I did not get a response after my reply, so either my argument was good, or this one just gave up on me! 🙂
Know What You Believe
2 Timothy 1:12-14
All people have a belief system, whether they realize it or not. Even those who claim there is no God have faith that He does not exist. What we believe affects every area of our lives and shapes every decision we make, yet few of us take the time to really think about what we accept as true.
All belief systems have a foundation. Some people base their convictions on what fits their lifestyle, reasoning, and desires. However, Jesus calls His followers to adapt life to their faith in Him and the authority of His Word.
Anytime we add other philosophies or ideas to Scripture or pick and choose which parts of the Bible to believe, we create our own version of faith based on personal reasoning. God’s Word is the only true and reliable foundation for belief, because it contains the recorded thoughts of an eternal, all-knowing God. All other concepts must be measured against it
to determine their validity.
Knowing what the Bible says is essential for developing a sound system of beliefs founded on the truth and wisdom of God. This world will offer you a variety of philosophies which sound good but are laced with lies. A faith anchored in the Scriptures is your protection against deception.
Each time you face a problem or decision, search for the answer in Scripture. Begin your day by reading the Word and asking God to help you understand what He is saying. He loves communicating with you, and as you spend time with Him, He’ll open your mind to know His thoughts.
Thanks for thinking of me. I appreciate it greatly. That being said, I think you know that I can’t just let that rest as is. It’s just not in my nature.
So, here’s my thoughts…
“All people have a belief system, whether they realize it or not”
I can’t really argue that much. It’s true. But what’s also true is that those ‘beliefs’ vary greatly from person to person. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, most atheists don’t claim that ‘there is no god’. That would be rather arrogant to make a claim like that. However, we believe that the chances that there is a god are so remote, that it’s really not worth being concerned about it. I personally reject any concept of a ‘personal god’ who knows all our thoughts and who controls every aspect of life in the universe. The concept is just absolutely absurd to me. I’d probably be willing to say that MAYBE there was some kind of higher power that started everything off, but then I believe that that would be stretching the definition of the word ‘god’ too far.
As for the scripture quoted. You can find encouraging words in all sorts of ‘religious’ and non-religious texts. Frankly, I think that the morality expressed in the bible (if you REALLY read it), is awful. It’s hateful, divisive, murderous, etc etc (I could site examples…but I just don’t have the time right now).
Ultimately, as I’ve said before, I find my strength within myself, and the people around me who I love, in order to get through tough times. I don’t need to look to an imaginary friend to help me through. I try not to be cocky about that, but that’s just the way I work. I understand that the world/nature is a brutal place, and that I am ultimately in control of what I can control, and the rest is just going to happen. And I’m perfectly ok with that. After billions of years of things working that way, who am I to try to convince myself that it’s otherwise?
So, I’m not sure what your motive is for sending this, as you have to know what my thoughts/response will be, but like I said at the beginning, I do appreciate you thinking about me and being concerned. I’m great though. Heavily overworked…but great.
Talk to you soon!
My best friend’s Mother posted this as her Facebook status today:
“The worst moment for the atheist is when he is really thankful, and has nobody to thank. – Dante Gabriel Rossetti”
I thought for a while before commenting on this. I was going to just let it go, like I do most everything else that the ‘fundies’ post on FB, but instead I decided comment with this:
“There lots of people that I can thank”
Pretty harmless and innocent in my humble opinion.
Shortly after my comment, she follow up with a:
And I responded:
“Oh c’mon, I could have gotten all offended and defensive :)” (yes, I did use the smiley emoticon on my comment)
Shortly after that, my wife called me to tell me that my friend’s mom had deleted my comment. I said “All of them?” She said that she had only seen one of them. I told her there were a couple and i would check it out.
Low and behold, when I logged in, all the comments were gone, but her original post was still there. It makes me angry that believers are so small minded that they can’t even SEE how something like this could be offensive. Or in this case, I believe the intension was TO be offensive. I would love to repost on her post again, but in respect for my friend I’m going to let it go. As frustrating as it is, my relationship with my friend is more important than me making my point to his mom, which is probably a futile effort anyway.
It’s so tiring to be constantly bombarded with religious ‘stuff’. I’m very much a Facebook junkie and 90% of the folks on my friends list are fundamentalist Christians. That’s because they are mostly family, and people that I grew up with. I know I could just launch them from my page, but then, what kind of a positive atheist would I be by doing that? And that’s definitely not the kind of person I want to be or portray.
Still, I get so tired of the religious posts. “need prayer for..” this. “god is great” that. 1 person in particular finishes ALL her posts and comments with “Jesus Loves You”. And sometimes I just want to post in all caps “NO HE DOESN’T. AND HE DOESN’T LOVE YOU EITHER”. But alas…I don’t. All in the name of maintaining the peace and harmony.
I know for certain that if I was to post some of my TRUE thoughts on topics there, I would never hear the end of the preaching. I don’t HIDE my non-belief. My religious view are set to ‘Atheist’ and most of my family knows my stance. But I still feel that I can’t express my thoughts the way I want to without pissing someone off. It’s just frustrating at times.
I apologize for the rant. I guess I’m just overworked, under-rested, and not feeling particularly well lately. All that added together usually makes for a less-than-happy me. I hope that this all fades pretty soon, and I expect that it will. Just feeling a bit ‘down’ today.