Posts tagged ‘christianity’

Sufficient Reasons to Consider Leaving Christianity

The title of this post is the title of a new book that de-converts might find valuable in encouraging their families and friends to rethink Christianity. The PDF book and companion website include 50 substantial arguments that may stimulate a reassessment of faith among those you care for. Check it out.

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[ Sufficientreasons.Com ] …

Continue Reading June 25, 2017 at 6:13 am Leave a comment

Religious, but not Spiritual

For some people, not having to participate in ritual is one of the benefits of deconversion. This was not true for me.

True, rituals tend to be silly when looked at objectively. Lighting candles on a birthday cake just to blow them out a minute later while everyone sings at you is a practice I expect some anthropologist has spent a fun day with. But for me, rituals are a helpful tool for building community and celebrating what (and who) I value.

I’ve been asked why I don’t keep the trappings of my old faith, continuing to go to the churches I know. I can’t do this. I’ve tried. Those rituals are tied too tightly to feelings of loss and anger for me to take up lightly. And the stories told, if not true, are not ones I consider moral. So I tried joining other communities who might gather for joint ritual and song, and work together to make themselves and the world a little better. I missed that….

Continue Reading January 11, 2015 at 4:43 pm 3 comments

If Christ truly rose from the dead, would I follow him?

Ubi DubiumSeveral years ago, I began receiving private messages on our now-defunct forum from a xian with the handle “Rocky”. He sent me some generic questions that were not directly preachy and I answered in ways that briefly made my position clear without directly challenging his faith. Until one day he asked a rather more pointed question, to which I drafted a detailed answer:

Rocky, sorry this has been so long in coming. You asked a question which I know touches on a subject near and dear to your heart. So far I have tried to stay away from direct challenges to your faith. But to give you an honest answer to this question, I must directly address just those issues. So if you have had a bad day, or are feeling particularly touchy just now, I recommend you put this answer aside and read it later.

Take a deep breath, here we go.

You asked: “I have a question for you, if you found out tomorrow that Christ truly rose from the dead would you submit to and follow Him? I am really interested in your answer.”

The short answer, which may surprise you, is NO…..

Continue Reading January 7, 2015 at 12:04 pm 2 comments

An interview with an ex-Evangelical Christian

interview
Thanks for coming to this interview. We’re all curious to hear about your journey.

Thanks for having me.


So let’s just jump right in. Did you have any Christian background before you “joined the tribe” so to speak?

I grew up in a suburb of Vancouver, Canada. Basically in the countryside. Where I lived, our only choices were to be “secular”, or to adopt Evangelical Christianity. A few became Jehovah’s Witnesses. My own family was not religious, although my parents brought me and my siblings to Sunday School at various churches. That was common practice in those days. Just to give kids a foundation of morality, or so the parents thought. Really it was about arts and crafts, a few fantasy-like Bible stories and silly songs. My generation of kids didn’t take it all very seriously.

If I grew up in Saudi Arabia, I’m pretty sure I’d be a Muslim. If in Thailand, I’d be a Buddhist. Or in India, a Hindu. I think the planet’s citizens are most often tied to their religion by geography than anything else.

Did any person, or book, or something else, win you over to Christianity?…..

Continue Reading December 26, 2014 at 9:35 pm 3 comments

Turtleism in the Age of Reason

These are dark days in which the forces of evil have besieged The Lord Turtle Almighty. Aturtleists the world over have risen up against the truth of the turtle upon which the world rides. It is high time for Turtleists to come out of their shells and defend the foundation of our faith.

In years past, our faith in Our Almighty Turtle was dismissed as a blind faith as if the number of Turtleists itself did not prove the existence of the Turtle. However, we are here to assert that our faith is based on real evidence, and it is the Aturtleists who are dependent on faith in science and a misguided logic. I, for one, don’t have enough faith to be an Aturtleist. Allow me to elaborate.

I have personally confronted Aturtleists in many universities across the globe, and have asked them one simple question. “What does the Earth sit on?” Scientists have demonstrated that gravity pulls down. Therefore, we stand firmly on our front porch. Our front porch stands firmly on the cement, the cement on a substrate of clay, the clay on bedrock, and so on. What is the first foundation that supports all that is? Aturtleists have yet to give me a coherent response. However, we Turtleists know this foundation. And we know this foundation personally. It is the wonderfully shelled back of The Lord Turtle Almighty.

Some Aturtleists have actually suggested that there is no foundation needed. How incredibly ignorant! Nowhere in this world will you find anything of substance that does not rest upon something. And that something will be found resting upon another something. Now here is the interesting thing. Scientists have recently told us that this Earth is finite. Logically then, there is a point at which something that is not the Earth is the foundation. This is logical common sense! How can there be no ultimate foundation? The Aturtleists have no answer. But those of us who have a personal relationship with the Lord Turtle Almighty have an answer that daily comforts us since we know that our world does not precariously hang in the air.

Other Aturtleists ignorantly ask, “What is then the foundation of your turtle?” It is true that former Turtleists had, at one time, suggested that there was another turtle supporting the turtle that supported the Earth. And another turtle supporting that one, and so on. We modern Turtleists reject such silly notions. This is called “an infinite regress”. There cannot be turtles all the way down.

For this reason, our particular faith has the doctrine of The Infinite Legs of Turtle Almighty. There is no need for other turtles. Our Almighty Turtle has infinitely long legs. It is this doctrine that makes the Aturtleists arguments looks so silly. The Earth must have a foundation, and we Turtleists have personal knowledge of this foundation. We all have our foundation on the eternal legs of Our Almighty Turtle.

You might hear some Aturtleists respond that the doctrine of Infinite Legs is logically incoherent, an ephemeral plug, and that we just made it all up. But the spirit of the Turtle bears witness with our spirits that all the Almighty Turtle says is true. Aturtleists who have not the spirit of the Turtle cannot discern the things of the Turtle. To them, Eternal Legs seem like foolishness, but for us, it is the foundation that they, in rebellion, deny is necessary. Only those who have submitted to the Turtle are privy to the mind of the Turtle.

It is sad to see that the bulk of the same scientists who have told us that the Earth is finite and that gravity pulls down, actually turn their backs on logic when it comes to the question of the ultimate foundation. But the Almighty Turtle has clearly told us why this is so. This is the work of the invisible evil crow who sets about to turn their minds away from the truth. The crow has many of them suggesting that Earth supports itself. I’ve never seen something support itself, and I don’t have enough faith to believe such silly theories. And I don’t need education to give me the common sense to know there must be a big turtle beneath this world. Would you want to live on an Earth that had no turtle foundation?

So you see, even in these dark days when many former Turtleists have rebelliously abandoned all notions of a foundation for our world, Turtle apologists have provided us with an arsenal full of the powers of both logic and scientific facts that will allow us to fearlessly affirm our Turtleism until the day we all have infinite legs.


-phil stilwell

February 13, 2010 at 7:25 am 9 comments

Salvaging Santa

This year has been a bit disappointing for Santa believers. Fewer and fewer souls seem to be taking the Santa story seriously. Anti-santaists have been enticing young minds away from the Christmas magic that has been essential in the maintenance of a healthy society. They ridicule Santa as a myth, along with all the accompanying concepts that have given us warmth and comfort for all these years. They actually suggest that the notion of a Santa rewarding only “good” children is not necessary to rearing well-behaved children. They are constantly asking for evidence of our Santa, not understanding that there would be no magic if Santa was subject to scientific scrutiny.

If we are to save our Santa culture from this insidious secularism that makes mockery of our faith, we need to acknowledge our weaknesses, and adapt to the changing cultural climate. Here are a few suggestions.

  1. Place Santa out of the reach of science.
    Some point to what they consider the absurdity of a voluminous man descending a narrow chimney and other mysterious aspects of Santa. Here are a few ways to deal with this form of persecution.

    • Announce that Santa’s magic is far above human understanding. Santa, in his infinite magic, can fatten flues at will, create chimneys where there are none, and leave everything intact as if he had never descended from the roof at all. Ask the secularists how they even dare with their puny minds to question the magic of our Santa.
    • Call problematic parts of the Santa story figurative. Suggest that the notion of “descending the chimney” is a metaphor of Santa’s intent. He actually may come through a window. What matters is that the presents are there in the morning. In doing this, never submit a standard for discerning between literal and figurative elements of the Santa story. That will make it convenient for you to choose which is which as aplogetics needs arise.
    • Remind non-believers that, if the Santa story could be tested and confirmed, we couldn’t employ the faith that feeds the magic. Accuse them of not listening to the clear voice of Santa that each of us carries deep in our hearts if we only listen with open minds.
    • Affirm the magic. Point out all the cases in which reindeer dung was found on roof tops. Suggest that any father who would simply throw dung on his roof in an attempt to create the illusion of a rangiferine landing would have to be either a lunatic or liar. The only sensible inference is that Santa’s sleigh had indeed visited your house.
    • Belittle science and its tools. Point out that science is often wrong and is therefore not an appropriate method to assess the magic of Santa. Claim that statistics are a silly invention, and strongly affirm the idea that anything can be “proven” through statistics. The stronger you affirm this, the more true it will become. In this way, reports that suggest poorer (not misbehaving) children receive fewer presents can be dismissed. If secularists suggest this is not logical, claim that Santa logic is not the same as secular logic, but don’t bother explaining how.
    • Suggest that science and magic fall into two non-overlapping domains. Declare that scientific methodology cannot assess the wonderment of magic. When asked about specific claims of Santaism that seem to fall within the reach of science, offer evasive permutations of the particular doctrine to make it impotent and thus unassailable. Fudging a bit on exegesis is forgivable if the net result is an increase in believers.
    • Disparage the notion of belief based on “evidence”. This is becoming one of the most troubling issues that has already led to the apostasy of thousands. You’ll hear secularists claim that the degree of confidence in an idea should match the degree of the evidence. Where is the magic in that? Evidence only goes so far and is largely linear. How can belief be linear? Choose a side! Unless we go beyond the evidence with faith, we would be left saying “I don’t yet know” on many questions, a wholly unacceptable option.
  2. (more…)

December 28, 2009 at 9:07 am 19 comments

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Attention Christian Readers

Just in case you were wondering who we are and why we de-converted.

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Whether or not you believe in God, you should live your life with love, kindness, compassion, mercy and tolerance while trying to make the world a better place. If there is no God, you have lost nothing and will have made a positive impact on those around you. If there is a benevolent God reviewing your life, you will be judged on your actions and not just on your ability to blindly believe in creeds- when there is a significant lack of evidence on how to define God or if he/she even exists.

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