1. Joined
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    05 Aug '11 19:193 edits
    I am a theist and I would like to be an atheist; or more accurately, I would like to revert to being an atheist.

    The arguments put forth in this forum by atheists, has convinced me that this is the rational place to be.

    What should I do next please?

    Thanks.

    Edit: this is a theoretical question of course.
  2. Standard memberSoothfast
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    05 Aug '11 19:462 edits
    Originally posted by divegeester
    I am a theist and I would like to be an atheist; or more accurately, I would like to revert to being an atheist.

    The arguments put forth in this forum by atheists, has convinced me that this is the rational place to be.

    What should I do next please?

    Thanks.
    That's a matter of the heart. I'd never pretend to know what's best to do next. If you're finding it problematic to "revert" to being an atheist, I'd wager that means you're not yet entirely convinced of the nonexistence of a god.

    Perhaps some books relating to the subject are in order. The arguments on this forum, oftentimes good, are nonetheless inevitably going to be abbreviated and fragmented. If you haven't read it already, you might find The God Delusion by Dawkins an accessible synopsis of many (not all) of the arguments in favor of a godless cosmos. Or perhaps The Blind Watchmaker would be better. Obviously no one can prove there is no god; one can only provide arguments for why the god hypothesis is unnecessary and/or unwarranted. It comes all down to this: is an omnipotent and omniscient intelligence who has "always existed" really the simplest answer, or does it merely beg the question?

    Others will likely have better recommendations.

    Edit: this is a theoretical answer, of course. 😉
  3. Standard memberAgerg
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    05 Aug '11 20:033 edits
    Originally posted by divegeester
    I am a theist and I would like to be an atheist; or more accurately, I would like to revert to being an atheist.

    The arguments put forth in this forum by atheists, has convinced me that this is the rational place to be.

    What should I do next please?

    Thanks.

    Edit: this is a theoretical question of course.
    You need to pray to your god for a signed TTA-05 form (standard release from theism form) and despatch this to

    Richard Rawkins
    Atheists Inc.
    123 Iveanew Avenue
    Birmingham
    B1 2AB

    You should send with this form a 2500 word essay detailing why you want to join the atheists supplemented with references from your last two guardian angels (the worse these are the better).

    On a more serious note (and I was aware before your edit this wasn't a serious request for guidance), supposing that your claim that the atheist argument is more rational is what you actually believe, it is likely to be the emotive side of you that has juristiction over whether you believe or not. Only when the tension between
    1) what you want to be true, and
    2) what you rationally acknowledge cannot be true, or lacks any tangible degree of plausibility

    reaches a critical point can you consider dropping what ever theistic position you currently hold.
  4. Joined
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    05 Aug '11 20:05
    Originally posted by divegeester
    I am a theist and I would like to be an atheist; or more accurately, I would like to revert to being an atheist.

    The arguments put forth in this forum by atheists, has convinced me that this is the rational place to be.

    What should I do next please?

    Thanks.

    Edit: this is a theoretical question of course.
    when you joined the site i thought you were a believer...
  5. Joined
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    05 Aug '11 20:06
    Originally posted by Agerg
    You need to pray to your god for a signed TTA-05 form (standard release from theism form) and despatch this to

    Richard Rawkins
    Atheists Inc.
    123 Iveanew Avenue
    Birmingham
    B1 2AB

    You should send with this form a 2500 word essay detailing why you want to join the atheists supplemented with references from your last two guardian angels.

    On a more ser ...[text shortened]... ches a critical point can you consider dropping what ever theistic position you currently hold.
    as opposed to believers in god sending their wishes to 123 fake street?
  6. Standard memberAgerg
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    05 Aug '11 20:11
    Originally posted by trev33
    as opposed to believers in god sending their wishes to 123 fake street?
    Yeah that place has been derelict for over 2000 years!
  7. Joined
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    05 Aug '11 20:12
    Originally posted by divegeester
    I am a theist and I would like to be an atheist; or more accurately, I would like to revert to being an atheist.

    The arguments put forth in this forum by atheists, has convinced me that this is the rational place to be.

    What should I do next please?

    Thanks.

    Edit: this is a theoretical question of course.
    Go about your daily business.
  8. Standard memberpyxelated
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    05 Aug '11 20:353 edits
    Originally posted by Soothfast
    That's a matter of the heart. I'd never pretend to know what's best to do next. If you're finding it problematic to "revert" to being an atheist, I'd wager that means you're not yet entirely convinced of the nonexistence of a god.

    Perhaps some books relating to the subject are in order. The arguments on this forum, oftentimes good, are nonetheless in ly have better recommendations.

    Edit: this is a theoretical answer, of course. 😉
    Maybe a little synoptic reading is in order here as well.

    Before, during, or after reading Dawkins's book(s), or those by Dennett, Hitchens, et al., you might also want to read "The Last Superstition" by Edward Feser. (EDIT: if you're inclined more to the scientific/mathematical way of looking at things, "The Science before Science" by Anthony Rizzi might also appeal to you.)

    Ultimately, the decision is yours, of course... but before making it, it might be wise to hear arguments from both sides.

    --pyx
  9. Joined
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    05 Aug '11 20:431 edit
    Am I being harsh if said that reading anti-theism material is like arguing with a theist from another doctrine? Edit: or indeed reasonable?
  10. Standard memberpyxelated
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    05 Aug '11 20:45
    Originally posted by divegeester
    Am I being harsh if said that reading anti-theism material is like arguing with a theist from another doctrine? Edit: or indeed reasonable?
    🙂

    If it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck....
  11. Standard memberpyxelated
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    05 Aug '11 21:02
    Originally posted by divegeester
    I am a theist and I would like to be an atheist; or more accurately, I would like to revert to being an atheist.

    The arguments put forth in this forum by atheists, has convinced me that this is the rational place to be.

    What should I do next please?

    Thanks.

    Edit: this is a theoretical question of course.
    But your intuition from the other thread is good--that God is good 🙂

    And there is a lot wrong with organized religion. But it (or parts of it) does get some things right. And if you really think about it, if some religion is true, then it has to have some kind of social, interpersonal, organized component, however imperfect it may be.
  12. Joined
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    05 Aug '11 21:07
    Originally posted by pyxelated
    🙂

    If it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck....
    it's a pigeon pretending to be be a duck. i've seen them in parks, you think you're feeding a duck and then BAAM a pigeon gets it.
  13. Standard memberSoothfast
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    05 Aug '11 21:321 edit
    Originally posted by divegeester
    Am I being harsh if said that reading anti-theism material is like arguing with a theist from another doctrine?
    Not the same.

    Say Wooga-Booga, who has a bone in his nose and wears a coconut-husk thong, is saying that a volcanic eruption is best explained by a supernatural (i.e. not subject to known natural laws) god who is invisible, omniscient, and omnipotent. Wooga-Booga believes that the god, by dint of its omniscience, knows that its people have been lately insufficiently worshipful and thinking unholy thoughts (the god requires absolute obeisance, lots of attention, and can read minds), and concludes that the volcano is erupting because the god, in its infinite mercy, wishes to shepherd its wayward people back toward righteousness. Wooga-Booga understands that the most efficacious way an omnipotent being can accomplish the reestablishment of moral rectitude is to loose a lava flow indiscriminately through the villages, killing the good and sinful in equal measure.

    Suppose next that an atheist comes to Wooga-Booga's island, points out that a volcanic eruption could also be explained as a simple release of pressure from deep within the Earth that has no correlation with the moral disposition of the island's inhabitants, and then walks away to leave Wooga-Booga to his thoughts.

    The atheist was not proselytizing. He was pointing out an alternate explanation that is by every measure simpler and more plausible. The best "anti-theism arguments," as you call them, do not lay down any laws, save for natural laws known to exist; and they don't ask for faith in anything, but instead provide simpler or more plausible explanations to phenomena that do not require invocation of a cheat (i.e. God) that essentially short-circuits scientific inquiry and causal chains.
  14. Joined
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    05 Aug '11 21:38
    Originally posted by divegeester
    Am I being harsh if said that reading anti-theism material is like arguing with a theist from another doctrine? Edit: or indeed reasonable?
    The transition to atheism from theism usually includes a period of anti-theism, as people do not like having been fooled.

    In terms of reading, I started out with a book that looks at the history of gods, generally western gods:

    Man and His Gods, by Homer W. Smith:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homer_Smith

    Full text with forward by A. Einstein:

    http://www.positiveatheism.org/hist/homer1a.htm

    Some of the scientific findings may have been revise since it was written, that being the nature of science. The stories of the gods and faith are interesting.
  15. Joined
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    05 Aug '11 21:46
    Originally posted by Soothfast
    Not the same.

    Say Wooga-Booga, who has a bone in his nose and wears a coconut-husk thong, is saying that a volcanic eruption is best explained by a supernatural (i.e. not subject to known natural laws) god who is invisible, omniscient, and omnipotent. Wooga-Booga believes that the god, by dint of its omniscience, knows that its people have been late ...[text shortened]... was pointing out an alternate explanation that is by every measure simpler and more plausible.
    Do you think Woog-Booga's belief structure accurately represents what modern day theists associate with?

    You can of course take the piss a bit, but assume (despite appearances) that you are talking to a reasonably rational and at least averagely educated person.

    PS: we can negotiate on the coconut-husk thong in another thread.
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