Atheism in the bible belt
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“All about companionship”

Since: Jan 13

U.S.A.

#1 Jan 8, 2013
I'm not sure if I'm a full on Atheist or not.
What I believe is there is no God and that Jesus was just a man and that a group of men sat down and decided that Jesus was the son of God years after the fact. I don't believe in hell, I find the idea of hell laughable yet disturbing that people believe it exists. But I do find it difficult to think this way here in Southeast Missouri, I was born and raised here and brought up Baptist, went to church just like everyone else I knew. But never once felt the things of testimonies from others that I heard. The spirit of God. I've never witnessed a miracle or felt a presence. I love nature, peace and most of my fellow man. I'm fascinated with the solar system, galaxy and universe of which the scope of is beyond imagination. I love science and the precision that comes with it.
The following definition of atheism was given to the Supreme Court of the United States in the case of Murray v. Curlett, 374 U.S. 203, 83 S. Ct. 1560, 10 L.Ed.2d (MD, 1963), to remove reverential Bible reading and oral unison recitation of the Lord's Prayer in the public schools:

“Your petitioners are atheists and they define their beliefs as follows. An atheist loves his fellow man instead of god. An atheist believes that heaven is something for which we should work now – here on earth for all men together to enjoy.

An atheist believes that he can get no help through prayer but that he must find in himself the inner conviction and strength to meet life, to grapple with it, to subdue it, and enjoy it.

An atheist believes that only in a knowledge of himself and a knowledge of his fellow man can he find the understanding that will help to a life of fulfillment.

He seeks to know himself and his fellow man rather than to know a god. An atheist believes that a hospital should be built instead of a church. An atheist believes that a deed must be done instead of a prayer said. An atheist strives for involvement in life and not escape into death. He wants disease conquered, poverty vanquished, war eliminated. He wants man to understand and love man.

He wants an ethical way of life. He believes that we cannot rely on a god or channel action into prayer nor hope for an end of troubles in a hereafter.

He believes that we are our brother's keepers and are keepers of our own lives; that we are responsible persons and the job is here and the time is now.”
http://atheists.org/atheism

I can't say for sure if this defines me or not, I'd say its pretty close but I also find myself to be spiritual and i don't necessarily think that when we die that is it...I believe in a natural flow to the universe through life and death but not "blink out if existence".
I am posting this to see I'd there are others like me in this area seeing as how I have no one else in my life that feels this way, I thought maybe I would post this to find out. Please no haters, I know that's a lot to ask, but I don't hate those that believe in God, quite the opposite, I envy them. I wish i could believe those things but I've tried and i cannot.
New guy in town

United States

#2 Jan 8, 2013
Companion 101 wrote:
I'm not sure if I'm a full on Atheist or not.
What I believe is there is no God and that Jesus was just a man and that a group of men sat down and decided that Jesus was the son of God years after the fact. I don't believe in hell, I find the idea of hell laughable yet disturbing that people believe it exists. But I do find it difficult to think this way here in Southeast Missouri, I was born and raised here and brought up Baptist, went to church just like everyone else I knew. But never once felt the things of testimonies from others that I heard. The spirit of God. I've never witnessed a miracle or felt a presence. I love nature, peace and most of my fellow man. I'm fascinated with the solar system, galaxy and universe of which the scope of is beyond imagination. I love science and the precision that comes with it.
The following definition of atheism was given to the Supreme Court of the United States in the case of Murray v. Curlett, 374 U.S. 203, 83 S. Ct. 1560, 10 L.Ed.2d (MD, 1963), to remove reverential Bible reading and oral unison recitation of the Lord's Prayer in the public schools:

“Your petitioners are atheists and they define their beliefs as follows. An atheist loves his fellow man instead of god. An atheist believes that heaven is something for which we should work now – here on earth for all men together to enjoy.

An atheist believes that he can get no help through prayer but that he must find in himself the inner conviction and strength to meet life, to grapple with it, to subdue it, and enjoy it.

An atheist believes that only in a knowledge of himself and a knowledge of his fellow man can he find the understanding that will help to a life of fulfillment.

He seeks to know himself and his fellow man rather than to know a god. An atheist believes that a hospital should be built instead of a church. An atheist believes that a deed must be done instead of a prayer said. An atheist strives for involvement in life and not escape into death. He wants disease conquered, poverty vanquished, war eliminated. He wants man to understand and love man.

He wants an ethical way of life. He believes that we cannot rely on a god or channel action into prayer nor hope for an end of troubles in a hereafter.

He believes that we are our brother's keepers and are keepers of our own lives; that we are responsible persons and the job is here and the time is now.”
http://atheists.org/atheism

I can't say for sure if this defines me or not, I'd say its pretty close but I also find myself to be spiritual and i don't necessarily think that when we die that is it...I believe in a natural flow to the universe through life and death but not "blink out if existence".
I am posting this to see I'd there are others like me in this area seeing as how I have no one else in my life that feels this way, I thought maybe I would post this to find out. Please no haters, I know that's a lot to ask, but I don't hate those that believe in God, quite the opposite, I envy them. I wish i could believe those things but I've tried and i cannot.
I also stand with you in these beliefs. Raised catholic and practiced Catholicism until I reached a point of why. Why fall in line just cause you were taught that? Where is the individuality in that? I question so many things in the teaching of religion and can't seem to find a logical sense to believe the ideals they force and try to instill in us.
There may be something; I'm just not the one to know.

“All about companionship”

Since: Jan 13

U.S.A.

#3 Jan 8, 2013
New guy in town wrote:
<quoted text>
I also stand with you in these beliefs. Raised catholic and practiced Catholicism until I reached a point of why. Why fall in line just cause you were taught that? Where is the individuality in that? I question so many things in the teaching of religion and can't seem to find a logical sense to believe the ideals they force and try to instill in us.
There may be something; I'm just not the one to know.
Thanks for replying. I've found so many contradictions in that Bible that its astounding. Yet I'm afraid to even express my true feeling to family and friends in fear of putting distance between us. Some of them are extremely religious and every time they say its God's will or I will pray for you I just cringe inside. I just can't buy into it any longer. Well....haven't for a long time. I wonder if it would be best for me just to keep it too myself.
me too

Overland Park, KS

#4 Jan 8, 2013
I also was raised in a very religious family with beliefs I never felt at ease with. People feel comfort from the idea of higher power who has a plan and will make it all okay if you just believe hard enough. And some will tell you they pity you because you don't. What bothers me is that some tout their right to religious freedom, but refuse to respect yours and must "witness" to you. I believe when you die you just die. Just as you didn't exist before you lived, you don't exist after you die. I do believe in the golden rule, loving your fellow man and have a very defined sense of right and wrong. You are not alone, but atheism is not socially accepted here.

“All about companionship”

Since: Jan 13

U.S.A.

#5 Jan 8, 2013
me too wrote:
I also was raised in a very religious family with beliefs I never felt at ease with. People feel comfort from the idea of higher power who has a plan and will make it all okay if you just believe hard enough. And some will tell you they pity you because you don't. What bothers me is that some tout their right to religious freedom, but refuse to respect yours and must "witness" to you. I believe when you die you just die. Just as you didn't exist before you lived, you don't exist after you die. I do believe in the golden rule, loving your fellow man and have a very defined sense of right and wrong. You are not alone, but atheism is not socially accepted here.
That's a great post. I agree its just not excepted openly in this area. Even on my Facebook page its a constant reminder of how different I am than all my family and friends.
New guy in town

United States

#6 Jan 8, 2013
Companion 101 wrote:
<quoted text>Thanks for replying. I've found so many contradictions in that Bible that its astounding. Yet I'm afraid to even express my true feeling to family and friends in fear of putting distance between us. Some of them are extremely religious and every time they say its God's will or I will pray for you I just cringe inside. I just can't buy into it any longer. Well....haven't for a long time. I wonder if it would be best for me just to keep it too myself.
That's what I've done for quite a bit now. I don't like people praying for me or the god bless you stuff. It's their deal so I just let it go. I won't sit and listen to them preach, but I do feel it necessary to avoid the confrontation all together. I once tried to explain in a humorous way, it wasn't so forthcoming lol.
"I don't believe in ghost or spirits. As a kid yous taught me there are no such things. You told me to turn my light off, I'm runnin up the light bill! And dad; you like that Walking Dead show. Ya ever see Jesus on there? Well you know, he died and rose after three days right? That's a zombie by definition."
Yeah.....only my sister who thinks like I found it funny.
New guy in town

United States

#7 Jan 8, 2013
Companion 101 wrote:
<quoted text>That's a great post. I agree its just not excepted openly in this area. Even on my Facebook page its a constant reminder of how different I am than all my family and friends.
Yes! Facebook is horrible about that. Some days I just want to delete it all together cause of all the religious propaganda on there. Gets on my nerves.
Guest

Saint Louis, MO

#8 Jan 8, 2013
Check out The Thinking Atheist on FB and online. Seth is amazing and has built a wonderful community. You will be welcomed there!

“All about companionship”

Since: Jan 13

U.S.A.

#9 Jan 8, 2013
Guest wrote:
Check out The Thinking Atheist on FB and online. Seth is amazing and has built a wonderful community. You will be welcomed there!
Thank you, I will.
....funny..

United States

#10 Jan 8, 2013
If u know right from wrong then ur not atheist retards ur just a non believer and u will answer to that when the time comes!!!!!

Since: Apr 10

St. Louis, MO

#11 Jan 8, 2013
[QUOTE who="....funny.."]If u know right from wrong then ur not atheist retards ur just a non believer and u will answer to that when the time comes!!!!![/QUOTE]
How Christian of you.
This is sarcasm, just in case you cant figure it out.
Logical Reasoning

Saint Louis, MO

#12 Jan 8, 2013
I'm the same as the others. Raised baptist in an extremely religious family, married a Lutheran with an extremely religious family yet can't see the reason to believe. I totally agree with the freedom of religion thing. The religious aren't persecuted but the non-religious are and they say they follow the bible yet they judge worse than the court system.

“Humor is the best medicine!!”

Since: Oct 09

Show-Me-State

#13 Jan 8, 2013
Logical Reasoning wrote:
The religious aren't persecuted but the non-religious are and they say they follow the bible yet they judge worse than the court system.
Interesting remark because I am hesitant to speak openly about my beliefs as a Christian because I fear being reprisal or rejection -or being labeled a Bible thumper - Jesus freak,etc,etc.
Jay

Glencoe, MO

#14 Jan 8, 2013
I too believe this way. I was raised baptist and had it force fed, but never felt it and even tried for several years into adulthood to feel the spiritual connection. It just baffles me at the narrow spectrum of thought that a very very large majority of our society believes. Actually it scares me that there are that many people around me that are living a life out of touch with reality. Even worse than that is, I know more about their religion than they do. If I was going to base my eternal existence on something I would try and know everything about it. That's not the case. People are afraid to think for themselves like our forefathers, instead they are sheep.
The extremely hard part for me is my children's questions. I can deal with the out casting of society to me , but i do not want my children to be made fun of because they are not being sheep. How do you approach this? When they ask me I just answer with a question to them, " well what do you think son. " I have learned that if you let a child think for themselves they are not all that far off. They hear the bible stories and automatically question the absurd level of fantasy in these stories. The only difference is I don't force feed them what my parents told me was the way or I would burn in hell. I let them make logical open minded decisions on what they think and they lean to scientific side of things 9 times out of 10.

TEF

“Non credo quia absurdum est”

Since: Feb 09

Location hidden

#15 Jan 8, 2013
[QUOTE who="....funny.."]If u know right from wrong then ur not atheist retards ur just a non believer and u will answer to that when the time comes!!!!![/QUOTE]

Such a nice, thoughtful post. Tell me, do you know right from wrong?

TEF

“Non credo quia absurdum est”

Since: Feb 09

Location hidden

#16 Jan 8, 2013
As to the original poster, you would be surprised at just how many people are of the same mindset as you, even in this area.
Christian

United States

#17 Jan 8, 2013
I'm proud to be a Bible thumper and a Jesus Freak.
Guest

Saint Louis, MO

#18 Jan 8, 2013
Christian wrote:
I'm proud to be a Bible thumper and a Jesus Freak.
Great. How about you do it somewhere else.
named

Saint Louis, MO

#19 Jan 8, 2013
I prefer to believe in myself. I will find salvation in me. I will find strength in me. I will hold myself responsible for the good I do. I will hold myself responsible for the bad I do. I will exercise my moral beliefs as I deem appropriate. I will judge myself and others as I wish. I will live my life for me. I will not cop out and expect someone else to do these things for me.

“All about companionship”

Since: Jan 13

U.S.A.

#20 Jan 8, 2013
There has been one argument that has made me think and question my way of thinking and i thought I would share it here today. Its an interesting story called "Design demands a designer" oh it doesn't make me believe most of the stuff in the Bible but it did make me think a little more, see what you think.

Sir Isaac Newton was a famous mathematician and scientist who strongly believed in God. The story is told that he had an atheistic friend who did not believe in God. Sir Isaac devised a plan to try to convince his friend that God did exist and had created the Universe. One day, he went to a carpentry shop and asked the owner to make a model of our solar system. This model was to be to scale, intricately painted, and designed to resemble, as closely as possible, the actual solar system.

Several weeks later, Sir Isaac picked up the model, paid for it, and placed it in the center of a table in his house. Some time later, his atheist friend came over for a visit. When the friend arrived at Dr. Newton’s house, the model of the solar system caught his eye, and he asked Sir Isaac if he could inspect the model more closely. Of course, that was fine with Sir Isaac. As the atheist inspected the model, he stood in awe of the fine craftsmanship and beauty of the various pieces. After some time, the atheistic friend asked Dr. Newton who had crafted this wonderful model of the solar system. Sir Isaac promptly replied that no one had made the model; it just appeared on his table by accident. Confused, the friend repeated the question, and yet Newton stubbornly clung to his answer that the model had just appeared, as it were,“out of thin air.” Finally, the friend became upset, and it was at that point that Sir Isaac explained the purpose of his answer. If he could not convince his friend that this crude replica of the solar system had “just happened by accident,” how could the friend believe that the real solar system, with all its complexity and design, could have appeared just by time and chance?

This isn't an attempt at trying to convince anyone anything, I simply thought the story was....cute.

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