Good day, good sirs and madams.
Hello, I'm El-ahrairah, and I'm an atheist.
Oh, you want to know more? Okay, then let's start with my user name. My user name comes from a character in a novel called Watership Down. It's a book about rabbits, and...no, wait! Come back! Okay, it's a book about rabbits, and the character of El-ahrairah is, according to their mythology, the first rabbit and the Prince of all rabbits. His name, in their language, means "Prince with a Thousand Enemies," and I think it's quite appropriate to use it as a user name for this website, considering that atheism is kind of a minority position, and many people are vehemently opposed to it. So, there you go.
I'm not a rabbit, if that's what your thinking. I'm actually a 17 year-old senior in high school in Buffalo, New York. I grew up as a Catholic, but never really developed an interest in my faith until freshman year of high school. I came across some C.S. Lewis books, read his arguments, and decided to explore and develop my faith further (it also led me to consider different political views, but that's another story). I became involved in some youth groups, went to some Catholic youth conferences, and generally had a good time. I'm still friends with many of these people. However, during my time at these groups and conferences, I started to see some unusual stuff, such as Adoration (which is basically the closest that Catholicism gets to Pentecostalism, complete with fainting, speaking in tongues, etc.), and I started to actually read the Bible. These doubts that sprung up in my brain caused a knee-jerk reaction in my head to find arguments to defend my views (I try not to have those knee-jerk reactions anymore; I'm much less close-minded nowadays, I promise), and so I started reading apologetics. Still, no matter how I could rationalize my faith, and coupled with the gradual maturity of my critical thinking skills as I got older (I'm always been intellectually curious), I still couldn't shake off these doubts. Between my sophomore and junior year, I decided to explore these doubts rather than reject them entirely. Over the course of a few months, I rejected religion, rejected the supernatural, became a deist for a while, and I finally gave in to the inevitable. I became an atheist, and I have been for about a year now. All that's left now is to start telling people and become more open about it.
Besides all of that background, I'm a libertarian (I told you that was another story), I love listening to music (as of this writing, I've got over 7500 songs), I love reading books (I'm cracking into Ulysses right now, no joke), I have a passion for learning more about philosophy, economics, and other weird things; I like a good movie (or a B-movie) every now and then; and I drink coffee a lot.
Wow. After reading all of this over, I didn't know how uninteresting I really am. O_o Well, then, never mind about me.
"The Aim of an Argument...should not be victory, but progress."
-Joseph Joubert (1754-1824)
"All the world will be your enemy, Prince with a Thousand Enemies, and whenever they catch you, they will kill you. But first they must catch you, digger, listener, runner, prince with the swift warning. Be cunning and full of tricks and your people shall never be destroyed."
-Richard Adams, Watership Down, 1972