It's not the non-believers are uncomfortable (at least not myself) when a believer states their beliefs...that's fine. It's the very unfriendly implication that if I don't beleive as they do I'm damned to their "hell" or some nasty place. They are judging me and sending me to the worst place they can imagine. That's not love by any means even though their religion may teach otherwise.<quoted text>Just as it is wrongly labeled hate when we respond to the billboards or the ridicule that is showing up on this thread. We are merely trying to have discussion. The issue, as I see it, is that the non-believers (for lack of a better word) are uncomfortable when the believers (for lack of another better word) present their views, therefore, they view it as hate speech. No one (at least none that I know) hates those who don't believe. The constitution indeed guarantees your right to not believe, but it does NOT diminish or forbid my right to believe and to express that belief. For example, I don't hate those who don't believe as I do. In fact, I would welcome a sit down, face to face discussion with those who don't believe as I do. Why you ask? And NO, it is not to "convert" anyone, it is to have an honest open discussion on why I believe the way I do and why you believe the way you do. However, I will not sit down to ridicule and demeaning and name calling, especially since I do not partake in that foolishness when discussing religious subjects. I have been involved in many of these type of discussions in my lifetime and I must say, it has only been in the 15-20 years that I have seen such vitriol from people both those who believe and those who don't believe. It accomplishes nothing.
A non-believer such as myself does not wish anything bad upon someone who is religious that would even compare to being brandished to a hell-place.
As far as having a discussion about differing beliefs...I've been engaged since I was 18 years old with just what you wish for. It's very hard however, to have such a conversation in a forum like this. I've had 7th Day Adventists, Baptists, and Mormons in my home trying their best to convert me that eventually leave realizing they can not do so but still leave on a good note. What they are surprised about most is that I can quote scripture back at them without a Bible whilst they are busily paging back and forth trying their best to counter me.
I'm not arguing there are some nasty posts on this thread...I expected it. I hope you don't think I'm being that way and am enjoying this exchange.
Have a nice day!!