God stole my friend/mother/etc: essay submissions (PRIZES)

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God stole my friend/mother/etc: essay submissions (PRIZES)

This thread is part of the Great Big Submission drive, letters to your loved ones should go here.

Write a letter to a specific loved one or friend who embraces an irrational theistic worldview. Example here

We recently purchased several new websites that will likely get a lot of public attention once they are up and running. The theme of these websites is that "God stole my friends/mom/family." Very often we hear people with prayer requests for non believers, or we get told that Satan led us to non-belief, however there is another side to that story, a side which is often silenced likely due to the fact that non-believers are a minority. Who cares what we think right? Well not anymore. Atheists have emotions too, we care too, theists don't have the market cornered on emotion. If you choose to accept this mission you should write a letter to a specific theist you care about, explain to them how much it hurts to see them have a deluded view of reality, or a life based on faith, hypocrisy, etc. Write about whatever flaws in your relationship or their life you feel have come out of their religious belief. You don't have to send this letter to them, and if you want, it can all remain anonymous, however it will be posted for public viewing. Letters can be as short as two paragraphs and as long as several pages.

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chadagg
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If I were to die tomorrow

Dear Mom:

If I were to die tomorrow, I fear my death would bring about much more pain for our family than mere remorse. I fear that it would hurt our family and some of my friends more than the simple idea that they would never see me alive again. I see the events unfold: I die. Next, attention is drawn to any lasting impressions I've left behind – among them being my journal and my MySpace page. Eventually, everyone I know will be made aware of a haunting truth: I died as a non-believer in Christianity. My mind quickly focuses on the reactions of you and Dad. Dad wouldn't be too surprised since I've talked with him about what I've learned about the Bible, the foundation of Christianity and faith in general. I came to him because he is the only one who could listen to me and not lose his mind over the matter. You on the other hand are not as approachable when it comes to questioning religion. As you read this, I have no doubt that your mind is filled with anger, hate, confusion and anguish. If I were to die tomorrow, you would believe your only son would be burning in hell for all eternity. You might blame yourself for not forcing me to go to church more often. You might blame Dad for not enforcing some sort of intervention or counseling with someone knowledgeable in Christianity when he learned of my views.

There is no conceivable amount of cognitive dissonance that you would have to endure to convince yourself that "everything's ok." It is because of this that I wish I could believe in Jesus – just to make everyone happy and at peace. But as Jesus himself said, "Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth: I came with a sword. For I came to set a son against his father and a daughter against her mother." Matthew 10:34-35. But for me to believe in Jesus now would be to believe in the greatest lie of all history and my rationality can not suffer that. Jesus is not the son of God any more than his predecessors were: Osiris, Dionysis, Attis, Adonis, Mythras, or countless others. All these god-men, “existing” before the time of Jesus, share strikingly similar traits to those of Jesus (born of a virgin, water to wine, sacrifice for sin, last supper, communion, etc.)

To say that the bible is the word of God shows either complete ignorance of the text or repulsive acceptance. Mass murder, slaughter of babies and children, sexism, bigotry, impossible requests of followers, and inconsistencies are all [ironically] consistent themes in the bible that are rarely mentioned in church. Thomas Paine once said "The bible is a book that has been read more, and examined less, than any book that ever existed." For this reason, people proudly announce they are Christian without even having read the book that founds their beliefs. I know you haven’t read the bible, Mom. You were raised in a Pentecostal church where you and your sisters spoke in tongues and people would run around the room, feeling embraced by the Holy Spirit. These heightened emotions and spiritual happenings are the foundation of your faith. For this reason, you don’t feel the need to read the bible for yourself. You’ve based your faith on feelings, not facts or rational thought.

Faith has been successful for so long for many reasons, but mainly because it offers the ultimate bribe and the ultimate punishment: heaven and hell. From an early age, you and countless others were scared into submission and reinforced with the belief in an eternally blissful reward. But if I were to die tomorrow, I ask you this, Mom: how can you believe that when you die you will be eternally blissful and happy while knowing that your son, or anyone for that matter, is being tortured for an eternity in a lake of fire? It doesn't add up. There is no hell. Nobody knows what happens after you die, and the last people I would trust on the matter are the ancient scribblers of a society that is completely backwards from today's societies…except for, possibly, the stagnant nations of the Middle East.

I write this message not only as an immortal explanation if I actually do die soon, but also as a beacon of light that might shine on any Christian that reads this. My revelations about Christianity did not happen over night – I have questioned Christianity for years and finally studied it very critically before believing what I do now. For this reason, I don't expect you to share my opinion after reading this message. I do, however, ask that you start asking questions. Examine the bible. Listen to what the skeptics have to say. Religion has served for centuries as a way to explain the unknown to us. Now, in this scientific, brilliant, and connected world we live in, we have many answers. It's time to let religion go.

In Reason,

-Chad


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Excellent work Chad, this is

Excellent work Chad, this is exactly what we're looking for. Would you mind if we embedded one of your Youtube videos into it when we load it into our content section? Either "Revelation about Christianity" part 1 or 2, it's up to you.

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Nick
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Dear friends,I come to you,

Dear friend,

I come to you, not out of hate or bigotry as some would have you believe; but merely out of love. I’m writing this simply because I love you, because you are my friend.

Many times have I sat by and smiled as I saw your life and your mind become corrupted and blinded. I thought I should just let you be, after all, everyone says you must respect others decisions and beliefs. However, I am convinced these decisions weren’t yours at all, and I simply can’t lie to myself or you any longer; your beliefs should not be respected, because they do nothing but hurt you and those around you.

If my loved one was addicted to cocaine or heroin, I would try to help them. Regardless of how futile it was, I could not sit by and watch them destroy their bodies with drug addiction. I would draw a line in the sand and make a stand, for their own good, even if they hated me for it. That is what I am doing now; I refuse to watch this any longer. I refuse to spend one more night awake, worrying about my loved one’s futures and their minds. I must be honest. There is no God. And you know it.

You would have yourself believe otherwise... You would cling to your beliefs, just as an addict would cling to their drugs; as if that’s all they have, as if that’s what their life is worth, and without it there would be nothing. That’s exactly the kind of close-minded denial I simply can’t put up with, because I do not share your beliefs, and I am perfectly happy. I don’t live in fear of Hell, and I don’t do nice things out of hope for reward after death. I’m happy, and I have purpose: To be happy, and to make others so. You should have this too, and yet your mind withers and drowns in your faith. You shouldn’t. You are worth more.

Your faith is a lie. You would try to argue otherwise, yet as I have come to know, no arguments you could forge would justify what you base your life off of. But your parents and your pastor tell you otherwise, as they always have. They tell you faith is a good thing, yet they don’t tell you why. They say you should believe, but they don’t give you a reason. They say their religion is right, yet they can’t prove it, or defend it. They tell you what to believe, but they can’t ever give you any reason other than you must just “have faith.”

Seems pretty convenient, does it not? Something so ridiculous, something so fantastic can’t be proved or defended, must advertise blind faith, because they know no one would believe it if it didn’t say you had to without question or you’d go to hell. Ah, but they would cling to their arguments just as you would. “Faith is a good thing,” they would scream, “It gives purpose! It makes people happy, and gives them comfort!”

But they are all liars. Your purpose isn’t to serve a king and be his slave. Comfort does not come from fairy tales about good and evil, happiness does not come from thinking you are serving something greater than yourself. You are worth more. Your life can be happy, purpose-filled, and free without being a slave to lies. I know.

Your entire faith is based on the idea that there is a God who watches over you and cares about you… And yet your faith system is contradictory to this. You go to Church and read the Bible to please God. And yet, you believe God is all forgiving and loving. Why can you not just live your life fully and happily? Why go to Church and read the Bible and pray and serve? Why?

If there is a loving God, then I guarantee he won’t care what religion you are. A loving and understanding God would never prosecute someone, especially with eternal, unbearable and unyielding pain for not believing in… whatever you say is the truth. All of the religions are guilty of this insanity; the insanity that is believing God is good and understanding, and yet also believing he hates, or even holds any contempt over people who don’t believe in, say, Jesus Christ. Just because we don’t believe in Jesus doesn’t mean we are bad people, and any good God would never punish a good person.

Of course you may make yet more excuses you know aren’t true, like “I don’t go to Church and read the Bible out of fear; I do it out of love and respect to God.”

Those things are a waste of your time. God isn’t sitting up there watching us, going “Hey, I wish they would, like, worship me, or something.” If he wanted people to worship him, he would create people to worship him. In other words, he wouldn’t have given us free will.

You want the truth? This, right here, is the truth: If there is a God, he does not want you wasting your time with the Bible. There are many reasons for this as well: First, you could be doing better things, like enjoying your life and helping others. Second, you do not need the Bible to tell you what’s right… you have morals for that. That’s why you have them. I have morals, and I realize the Bible is hogwash.

The ‘Loving God’ idea and faith just don’t mix. But you may say religion gives you meaning.

There is plenty of meaning in your life. Regardless of who you are you can make a difference for yourself and others and you can be happy. You do not need religion for this, because it hinges on an unproven and uncertain idea that is easily defeated and proven wrong. You do not need a Bible to know what is right, and you do not need a Church for friends, or for a community, and you do not need a hope of and second life to enjoy this one.
Do you have morals? Do you feel bad when you do something bad, and do you feel good when you do something good? Alright. You do not need religion to be a good person, to do good things, to feel good, or to make others feel good. Trust yourself. You do not to too keep yourself in check with a two-thousand year old book. You are a good person, and you are not born an evil sinner as some folks might have you believe. Religion uses the fear of hell, and the fear of losing control over yourself to keep you believing it, ever since you were a child. But there is nothing to fear, because you have morals, and any loving God would reward you for being a good person and doing good things, which you are more than capable of.

“But what about meaning?” you may ask. You do have a meaning: To be happy. That’s why feeling happy feels so good. That’s why doing good things makes you feel good, because you make others happy. If there is a meaning, that is it. Not the great commission. Not to kill all the infidels. Nope. We are here to live happily and peacefully, to have children and to insure that they will be happy as well. Faith does not bring happiness; it restricts it with fear and lies. You do not need faith to enjoy things, you do not need faith to love, and you do not need faith to live with purpose.

Religion is a terrible thing. Religion wants, nay, scares you into forcing your beliefs on others, hating others, and, in America, jeopardizing the freedoms of people who do not believe the same thing you do. It closes your mind to reason; it convinces you from an early age that having blind faith in something is a good thing. It is not. There are reasons for everything we do and everything we believe. There is no reason to have blind faith, for it brings no happiness and no purpose. You’ve been brainwashed to think it does. You are addicted to a thought-destroying, evil, and false belief that twisted your view of the world, twists your morals, and mangles your mind and your heart.
A world without religion is even more meaningful. People wouldn’t be so blind to what’s really going on. Even if you are religious, you think those other religions are wrong, do you not? Your religion is not at all anymore credible than theirs. If religion would go away, we could all focus on what’s important, like being happy and doing good, instead of worshiping and trying to convert others.

I’m sorry for what the lie of religion has done to you. I’ve seen it. Every part of your life that is affected by your religion turns black. The dark hand of faith reaches out, and regardless of what reason may say, regardless of what common sense tells you is true or not true, if your religion says otherwise, you will believe otherwise, because you are blind. I know you. Your mind is beautiful, and could be so much. It is held back by your virus. Your religion is a disgrace to mankind, to reason, to all that is right, and to you. Do not take this great world lightly and pass it off as magic, and please do not live your life thinking that without your religion you would be unhappy. You can argue the existence or nonexistence of God as much as you want, but none of that makes your religion any more right. If there is a God, he hates religion. Because he knows what evil it is.
I care about truth, and I care about you and your happiness. I love you, and when I see your mind cut off and imprisoned by the lie that is faith, I can hardly stomach it.

It is showing more respect, and far more love, to confront your irrational, hurtful faith than to let it slide on the basis of “respecting people’s beliefs.” That’s why I fight.

I’m just sorry I didn’t realize that sooner.

There is only thing you need to do in order to wake up: You need to think. You need to stop limiting your thought with your faith and simply think about what’s true. There are some great books to read that may also help you out of your mental crutch: Richard Carrier’s “Sense and Goodness Without God,” Richard Dawkins’ “The God Delusion” and anything by Sam Harris are good places to start. They will help you understand the impossibilities of your beliefs. I will be here for you, always, if you need to talk or if you have questions.

Please, if only to humor me, read something. Think about things. You must question everything. You should not believe in something blindly without any reason, simply because you want to. If you take anything from this, please at least ask yourself, “Why do I really believe?”

I’m convinced if you think long enough about it, you will realize you don’t.

With love,
Nick Poling

Wilson: "We were afraid that if you found out you solved a case with absolutely no medical evidence you'd think you were God." House: "God doesn't limp."


Secular Spice
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Is this rant kosher?

Is this rant kosher?

An atheist expresses angst over a religious roadblock at lunch.

No WAY. I’m sorry I’m acting so surprised, but damn. You really keep kosher?

Deep down, I secretly think, “There’s no God who’d mind if you try the crab cake.”

(Seriously. I bet it won’t matter in the long run. But I’m not going to ruin our meal or our friendship by saying so.)

It’s strange, as an atheist, to see someone who I admire and respect impose some strange dietary restrictions on herself just based on religion. Deep down I wonder, do you really, truly, honestly believe that there actually is a God, and it’s a He, and He doesn’t want you to eat certain foods? COME ON! IF there were a God, IF there were a Supreme Being, a Creator of Earth and the Universe and everything in it, would it even care if you had shellfish? Don’t you think a Creator of EVERYTHING might be a tad, I don’t know, LENIENT on dietary restrictions for one of the species it created in one of the worlds it created?

I think it, but I don’t say it. I don’t want to offend you or lose your friendship. I just forget sometimes that your faith is very important to you, and that you’re really into it. I associate with so many nonbelievers, or with believers who don’t follow the letter of their religious law, that I’m not used to seeing the devout do their thing.

I don’t want our difference of religious opinion to get in the way of our friendship. But sometimes it’s hard. To an atheist, it’s frustrating when any person thinks that their religion is “THE right one.” It’s sad for us to see a brilliant, beautiful mind, shackled by superstition. It’s not always easy for atheists to be friends with theists. Yet these relationships thrive, in our culture of tolerance and acceptance. I learn to deal with your kosher diet and you learn to deal with my hellbound heathenism.

While I’m over here shaking my head at your religious rules and restrictions, you’re shaking your head at my refusal to believe in even one of the many gods out on the belief market today. Neither of us talks about it, neither of us is willing to jeopardize our friendship by confronting each other over our religious beliefs. We don’t want to fight; we don’t want to make each other uncomfortable. We just want to get along and be friends; live and let live.

And that’s the beauty of religious freedom, that’s what makes America special. I can be best friends with a person of differing views, and I can openly challenge those views at my leisure. I can think what I want and say what I think. But not at lunch.

I don’t want to argue with you, I don’t want to change your views. But when we have everything else in common, I am surprised by your beliefs. Maybe since I’m friends with so many freethinkers, I am accustomed to a more naturalistic approach to life. I want to respect you, and I don’t want to deny your right to religious liberty, but wow, do you really believe all this stuff?

I mean, come on, the BIBLE? Hello? Shrimp is an abomination? You can’t mix fabrics? Adam and Eve? Noah’s Ark? Lot and his daughters? Eek! What’s a skeptic supposed to think? And how can a person as smart and as cool as you be so enwrapped in such a tired old religious belief?

I’m sorry. I don’t want to hurt you or insult you or mock your faith. But it’s hard for me sometimes, it’s really tough to accept that amongst all the many world religions, you have settled for one, and despite all arguments against it or refutations of it, you still hold steadfast to your faith.

I admire it and I regret it. I wish we had just one more thing in common, but I applaud your commitment to your family’s legacy. I don’t want you to be mad at me for wishing that you were less religious. I just want you to understand that there are so many more tangible things in life to devote oneself to, and you’re so smart and so cool that I sometimes forget that we can’t share a simple meal.

I’ll apologize for my angst, and I’ll try to be more understanding. Next time, I won’t order the shrimp sushi, because I would rather share with you than try to change who you are or what you think, and I appreciate the fact that you don’t infringe my right to be who I am or to be as godless as I want to be.

Next time, I’ll try to be a little more tolerant of the religious beliefs I don’t agree with, even though, deep down, I just want us to share the crab cake.

Secular Spice on Dangerous Talk.net: Savory suggestions, opinions, columns, and rants about politics, sex, theocracy, and the internet, from an atheist secular activist and irreverent rabblerouser.


K9sByte
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Dear Grandpa

Dear Grandpa,

I would like to thank you for always being there for me no matter what happened throughout my life. You always listen to me rant and vent, and provide great advice or just a shoulder for me to cry on. Even though I have looked up to you my whole life, I feel that you don’t know me as well as you think, and there is much that I have not told you about my life and who I am. Well, here goes.

From a very young age, I was taught to live the Christian way of life. I was taught that blind faith was a virtue, and that I should believe in Jesus, God, and life after death without question. Every Sunday, I would walk a mile to church and back, in the snow and the freezing rain and cold, without fail, because I believed that it was what my family wanted. For some reason, I did not completely accept the things that were taught to me like the rest of the children in Sunday school. The answer to our existence that is written in the Christian Bible only raises more questions than it actually answers. I cannot help feeling this way; I am programmed to question everything I see and to accept only the facts. Around the age of ten, I knew for sure that I did not believe in the god that you or the church taught me to believe in. I continued to attend church just because my friends were there, and I allowed myself to be baptized for the same reason. When I finally stopped going to church, I was introduced to an alternative belief system, but I found that it was not the right path for me either.

Throughout my life, I have come to understand the truth about the formation of our planet and our solar system and the evolution of life on earth. I will probably never know every detail, but there are more than enough pieces to the puzzle in place to see the whole picture. With Christianity, I had too many unanswered questions, and scientific proof is the only way for me to answer them, not blind faith.

Since I know how strong your religious beliefs are, I am not sure if I will ever mail you this letter. You claim to have spoken to and known god, but it happened during a time in your life when you were at your most vulnerable point. Although you have my complete love and trust, and I know without a doubt that you believed the experience to be real, I simply cannot believe that it was.

Not believing does not make me a bad person. Not believing has actually been a very positive influence in my life. I have the ability to question everything and to learn about the world around me. I do not waste time worrying about whether or not I am going to go to hell; instead I just try my best to do the right thing. I do not spend time speaking or praying to someone who does not exist. I can donate my time and money to truly worthy causes instead of making the people who have tried to suppress me rich. I am a good person, I am your granddaughter, and I am an atheist.

Love Always,

Lori


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Letter to my dad.

Hi Dad,

Sitting at home today, it being ‘Eid’ in Afghanistan, so at a bit of a loose end. Thought I’d take the opportunity to check in with you and see how things are going.

It was quite the 2006 for us. First, we had the disastrous loss of Carol after her short battle with cancer. The fact that her condition deteriorated so rapidly was in its own strange way, merciful. Had her cancer progressed more slowly, her battle would’ve been drawn out, filled with more pain and suffering. It was cruel for her and for us that her death came sooner than it had to, but she died with dignity and spent her last weeks in the company of those whom she loved.

My prolonged absence from Canada in working over here, and the dangers of working over here came to a head last August when I was in the roadside bomb attack that killed one of my local staff members. Since this time, two more of my Afghan colleagues have been killed working on the project that I started. It has been an ethical struggle for me of late in coping with the knowledge that the work I do has life and death impact. I am used to being responsible for valuable resources, but until now, I have never been so closely responsible for the loss of life.

We were able to share some valuable time together this past September when you accompanied me on our short cruise. I gather you enjoyed yourself, even if you found some of the speakers (James Randi and Dr. Michael Shermer to name but two) to challenge some of your beliefs. I want to thank you for your willingness to discuss, frankly, your deeply-held beliefs in the company of a group of sceptics and atheists. Your attendance and participation took guts and bravery, and I thank you.

You were clearly shaken by the video ‘The God that Wasn’t There’ when we watched it together, and you were moved to the point that you asked me for a copy to explore some of the points made in the film more deeply. I am curious to hear from you what your research showed, and if you have any questions, or wish to rebut any of the points made in the film. Again, I applaud your willingness to watch the movie and to be open to the ideas expressed therein. Questioning takes guts. I have since watched a similarly themed documentary by Richard Dawkins called ‘The Root of All Evil’, made for the BBC. I would encourage you very much to check it out. If you are interested, I’ll send you a copy, or can send you a link on the internet where you can watch it online. Specifically, there is an interview with the Anglican Bishop of Oxford that I think you would find particularly compelling. Furthermore, I heartily recommend you pick up a copy of ‘The God Delusion’ by Richard Dawkins. It may be easiest to order it from Amazon.com – let me know and I can arrange a copy to be delivered to you.

I hope that in spending more time with me, you understand more of why I chose many years ago to learn more about religions in general, how these studies led me to explore atheism (not as a religion, but as a way of looking at the world), and why I came to renounce my faith in the Christian god. I trust you see me, and those atheist friends of mine you’ve met as ‘good’ people. People who are ethical, moral, productive, vibrant members of society. People who do not need a belief in some higher power in order to be ‘good’. In fact, I find life more fulfilling in the absence of belief in any higher power. I cannot now live my life with the excuse that my effort and torment in this world is short-lived, and the important bit is ensuring that I get into paradise. Now, I live each day to its fullest, striving to extract the most experience and knowledge from every second.

I’m not suggesting to you that my context is right and yours is a wrong way to look at the world. I am suggesting, however, that I have found a way to look at the world that works for me; and it is a worldview that in my opinion, is fulfilling and sustainable. And, since I am invigorated by this way of looking at the world, I would like to share this vigor with those I care about. I also share the concern of Dr. Dawkins and other thinkers that the world is going through a revival of religion that threatens to send civilization and progress back to the bronze age origins of religion itself. My encouragement to you in exploring these questions of religious belief is not to torment you or upset you, but to demonstrate to you that there is wonder and amazement – indeed, MORE wonder and amazement in a life without god.

Religion and faith have been responsible for a number of disagreements we’ve had throughout my teenage years and early adult life. Years of tension and non-communication between us resulted from incompatible systems of how each of us views the world. I think there is a sense of irony that as I have grown older and more willing to discuss my atheistic worldview, and as you have also grown more entrenched in your conservative religious viewpoint, that we are now able to both discuss beliefs in a rational and mature sense, without erupting into conflict.

I look forward to spending time together in a few weeks, although as you know, I won’t have much time in Vancouver. I wish us all the best in 200Love,

{changed font color} 


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Letters to my parents.

"Dad,"

I am sorry that you felt that hope only came from your God. I am sorry that even as an intelligent, educated man you could not find wonder in the world without God. I am also sorry that you felt that ethics only came from the Bible.

I am, however, not sorry for many things. I am not sorry that I finally stood up on my own two feet and spoke out against the wrong you were doing in "God's name." I am not sorry that I know now that "spare the rod..." does not mean to beat your kids into a bloody pulp. I am not sorry that I do not believe that I am an evil creature just because I do not follow your biblically inclined views.

You were once a driving force in my life. I wanted nothing more that to please you and make you proud of me. I am happy now, realizing that nothing could be done to make you happy. Due to your fanatical beliefs and other underlying issues that I'm sure came from your fundamentalist upbringing, I was made into something other than a daughter to you. I once told you that your God wouldn't approve of your actions. I still believe it. A young girl who is molested by her grandfather does not under any circumstances, even under fundamentalist beliefs, turn into "The Whore of Babylon."

Sometimes, I wish that things could have worked out between us, but mostly, I look back and see that there was no way to continue a relationship with you. Part of me aches because of that. I have no father, just as you have no daughter. I am truly sorry that your beliefs led you to destroy all the relationships you had. I am truly sorry you lost a wife, daughter and son. I believe that is your religion's fault that this happened to you. A lot of blame still lays on your shoulders, though. At any point, you could have turned away from the religion that was tearing your family apart. You didn't. You clung to it and held tighter than ever. You are a coward for this. I do not appreciate cowardice and do not condone it.

I credit you with my awareness. If you had not been so fast to act out the mistakes of the religion, I would not have seen. Thank you for that, at least. I am better for it.

Niki.

Mother,

I realize that your life has been hard. I understand why you turned to religion. I still disagree with your choice because your religion has strained our bond to the point of breaking.

I know it must pain you to see that your children are not "Godly." I could list all the things that I know we have done wrong in your eyes but we both know what we've done. I could throw insults at you or accuse you of doing wrong by the Bible, the way you do to me. I won't. I don't care about the Bible or what it says is wrong. I believe in common curtsey and kindness. You have rarely shown that to me.

The Bible says divorce is wrong, so you say it is wrong too. I am separated from a man who was horrible to me and sent me to mental institutions. I left. I was strong because of that. I was right. You, have been divorced twice and are on a third marriage. I will not throw stones. You were right to leave your last husband. You should have left twenty years earlier. But please, do not judge me on different standards than you would judge yourself.

Please, do not continue to tell your children that they are killing you because we live lifestyles you disagree with. Do not tell us that we are the catalyst to your drinking. You will kill yourself with drinking. I see signs of alcoholism and serious health problems. You are sick. You need help. Your children have tried. You want God to heal you of your illness. You are hiding. God is a hiding place for you, where you can hide your illness, your mistakes and you can ignore all the blame that is on you. If you actually went to a doctor or to A.A, you might have to admit that you, and no one else, put that bottle to your lips.

I'm sorry for the harsh life you had. Much like dad, your life has been tainted by your religion. Not just that, but a twisted, fundamentalist, absolutist religion that was forced on you. You, in turn, forced that religion on me and that, I cannot forgive. Through you and dad, I have questioned everything because of the many mistakes you acted out. I went through years of searching and thinking that if you were wrong about one thing, how many other lies did you teach me? I am still asking that question, daily and my answers continue to go against you. You both have lied to me, forced me into a religion that I want no part of. Only now, that I am older, smarter and more independent, can I move away from it and see it for what it is.

I would thank you and dad, both for being so blatant with the mistakes and lies. It made it easier to see the flaws of religion.

Niki


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Please people, we need more

Please people, we need more of these stories.  We purchased several domain names with the purpose of using this material.  THERE ARE PRIZES!

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.


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Bump  

Bump

 


dogg724
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It's almost too hard

Dear baby doll,

 

Jesus didn’t know pain. The Son of God had only to suffer and die and get his reward. He struggled only with the demonic acts of people who disagreed. The grotesque depictions of his crucifixion are set atop a pedestal as the worst form of suffering humanly imaginable. I wish I could make you see they are a lie. I wish I could make you see how much I know of your suffering. I wish this “real world” wasn’t characterized as a devil infested sinful abyss. Jesus cares about? He matters more than anything. He lifts you up to those mountains and keeps your head bobbing on top of seas. I care about you. I care about you so much that I suffer. I don’t get beaten and nailed. I don’t condemn your actions. I don’t ask for anything in return. Nothing compares to the mental suffering you can put yourself through when you can’t understand someone you love. I watch you everyday deny the beautiful person inside that struggles to find value. You let your stressful and down trodden life twist and defile your mind until your unable to see straight. What night would be complete without the tears and fears about the day and days to come?  I’ve been there. Everyone’s been there. Why don’t you trust me? You speak of eternal love and happiness. You proudly claim your purpose and dive headlong down the path of righteousness. You simply can’t see it.

            I feel terrible thinking you are merely self righteous and pious. I hate to believe that your self respect and esteem could be so low as to insistently berate yourself to mental mutilation. I don’t want to blame you for being your own undertaker. I wish there was a hell for those who made you think such things to go. They failed at their lives and want to destroy yours as well. Fight back. You have a choice in everything you do. You openly accept denial, delusion, dogma, and depression for “love.” This is mere abuse of the word. Your faith allows you to trivialize what the world around you has to offer. The friends and family love you more than you can imagine and its all the more easy to ignore them when you already have the perfect answers. It’s not that your stupid or out of touch. Your simply afraid.

            What bigger weapon is implemented to manipulate? What strikes you as an aching in your chest and stifles your breath? What makes rationality take a back seat to dramatic displayed reactions than fear? The news litters televisions with kids dying and “terror” lurking around every corner. Your parents threaten to shackle and hinder your life. It becomes the norm in your everyday life. Without waking up and thinking something is going to go wrong it just wouldn’t feel right. I promise you it can be overcome. You can find your heaven in this world. If only you could see how much power there is in choice. God doesn’t give you a choice. You can’t disbelieve as you will burn in hell. So automatically your destined to be on the road to perfect. Such a shining path truth and trust, how could anyone find time to fear hell.

            You ask hundreds of questions. You accuse me of terrible thoughts and actions. It’s all I can do to not respond on how becoming such acts are in respect to a believer. Where is there room to be defensive in your lifestyle? If only to scoff at its ignorance I hope you watch and read what I show you. But its to no avail. A mental Berlin wall is around your head and heart. How evil do I seem when I knock with my left  hand holding a sledge hammer in my right? I know its hard on you, but I can’t respect fear. I can’t love fear.

            I’d never discount your life. I don’t judge you as you judge yourself, as your God judges you. I only love. Everything I so, do, or feel is out of that love. But I don’t matter. This life doesn’t matter. One day all this will go away and you will be happily prancing about heaven for all eternity as I burn in hell for caring about you. God sacrificed his Son in the name of sins he could ignore for the sake of humans he never has to let go unprotected. You sacrifice actual living love and power of self for an idea that originated in  beliefs you denounce quicker than existence fairies. This Christian life you cherish isn’t just absurdity wrapped in dogma sprinkled with contradictions and cling wrapped in a bowl of delusion. Its an outright lie. You lie to yourself, you lie to me, you lie about love, you lie about knowledge, you lie about precious faith. Its your choice to call it salvation.

[i]You know your god is man-made when he hates all the same people you do.


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gave me an error

accidentally kept posting, my bad


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Dear Grandma,  I know

Dear Grandma,

 I know that you strongly believe in God, so what I'm going to say is probably going to hurt, though I think it needs to be said. I've come to the realization that the whole concept of God is ridiculous. 

Again, I reiterate, that I know how strongly you believe in God and that you believe one day I will probably be smitten and sent to burn in the lake of fire. Though, I plead with you to read your Bible with an open mind and without any personal bias. If you do, you'll come to the same realization that I did. I now know that the Bible is a disgusting book with an even more disgusting "hero." A book that promotes slavery, sexism, and killings of innocent people is repulsive, and that's the bottom line.

 I wish to let you know that however I might disagree with your beliefs, I wish to remain a close relative of you and that I still love you with all my heart. It is you that have closed yourself off to me. You call me closed-minded, but I think its time you took a look at yourself in the mirror, because once you do then you will realize that you're actually the closed-minded one.

I'd like to conclude by saying that it truly hurts me that you are not willing to accept me for the person I am. I know you pray for my soul and that's fine, but be informed that it will have no impact on who I am or how I believe. I've chosen this path after much research and personal study. Your time is running out, and I implore you to open your mind to new ideas, even at your advanced age. The choice is yours. You can either accept me for who I am, or you can continue to hurt nobody but yourself by pushing me away. I honestly do still love you though.

 Your loving grandson,

L.G. 


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A Letter to a Christian Father

I just posted one, but I wanted to give it it's own thread. You can find the letter here: http://www.rationalresponders.com/node/12744

 

"But still I am the Cat who walks by himself, and all places are alike to me!" ~Rudyard Kipling

Mazid the Raider says: I'd rather face the naked truth than to go "augh, dude, put some clothes on or something" and hand him some God robes, cause you and I know that the naked truth is pale, hairy, and has an outie
Entomophila says: Ew. AN outie


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My uncle's deep intelligent design belief...

Dear Uncle Bill-

Your intelligent design belief is rather different than all the other ones I heard so far, and it too falls apart miserably, because of its logical fallacies and poor arguments.  You kept defending it with the infinite regress as these designer super-beings who made us were made by other super beings and those other super-beings were made by other greater super-beings and so on, while you were claiming the universe is infinitely old, therefore, super-beings can go back infinitely.  I assure you that regress got to end at some point; because of the fact it creates a bigger problem than it solves.  No matter how far you want to go back, these super intelligent beings must have come from a planet where life was possible, and the planet must have formed initially by a slow gradual accumulation of star dust over hundreds of millions of years.  This means that the super-beings must have evolved from a simple beginning, and they would not be supernatural by any means.  Those super-beings must be mortal & natural beings just like us regardless of their differences & advancements.

 

I am willing to agree with you that it is possible for those highly intelligent and advanced being exist somewhere in the universe as long as they are natural (natural is the key here, and it’s okay to be an agnostic about naturalistic beings, when there is no evidence for it either way; it would be weird for me to be an agnostic about the existence of fairies and unicorns, simply because they are supernatural).

 

If there are highly intelligent beings somewhere in the universe, they must have two things in common with us no matter how different and advanced they are, just because the way intelligence solves problems by being intelligent.  One is that they must have the universal language of science (mathematical laws & constants such as the Pi value and Pythagorean Theorem; their names maybe very different but they will be universal as they too will have circles & triangles) so that technological devices are possible.  Another thing is that they must have evolved from a simple beginning from simple to complex (not the other way around, since all complex things are made up simpler units like atoms & molecules).  I suppose the universe being infinitely old or the existence of multi-verse is possible, but there is no evidence for either of them. 

 

I know you are not satisfied with the current scientific theories, especially with the theory explaining our own origin and our evolution.   Yes, I can say that the origin of life is still not well understood at the moment, but that doesn’t mean we don’t know anything about it.  Based on our current scientific model for it, we have some level of understanding.  We know there are plenty of self-replicating molecules, and we know all living things are genetically related while they all came from their ancestors that eventually linked to our ancestors.  Despite the fact we still don’t understand much about the origin of life, Evolution actually happened.  You should accept Evolution, because evidence is very strong (at least, much more convincing than your intelligent design belief, which is nothing more than a religious belief that is not even compatible with other religions).

 

Your nephew Tommy     

 


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I choose God. No one does it

I choose God. No one does it for me. I am not coerced, I choose Him.  Let Him truly be a part of you.  He will come but you must mean what you say.


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So, I don't have any of the

So, I don't have any of the sad (or hilarious, 'cause a few of those are) stories about people around me being religious, but I will post here anyway. I understand people here might have had pretty bad experiences with religion. While I was young my main worry was staying alive in the midst of ethnic clensing and murder of tens of thousands of people around me, including a good part of my family and friends. Purely pragmatic reasons, no religion involved other than as a periferial excuse.

You want your uncle, dad, mom etc. to stop praying to an imaginary dude in the sky. Well, I have a few questions then. Did the person you are here to talk to kill anyone yet? Did he/she fry a baby in a microwave? Does he/she collect bodyparts of victims and make decorations of them? Or is he/she a loving family member and a productive member of the society, added some issues that all of us need to work with, preferably not by ourselves?

If the latter is the case, you don't have a problem. He/she believes in fairies - so what? you believe the presidential change in 2008 had an effect on the overal US foreign policy, all the while you inertly watch as millions are slaughtered, raped, thrown out on the deadly streets, courtesy of the global tax payer. I will take the fairies over our secular delusions any day.

So why am I posting then? While you don't have a problem with the person you are talking about, you both are having a problem with a third party dividing you by using something as stupid as religion, party line, color, class, etc. You might want to stick your heads together and try to figure out a way around it. Sure, this will be harder than bitching over the person's belief system, but maybe a bit of religious zeal can help here.

Logic is a systematic method of coming to the wrong conclusion with confidence.


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ZuS wrote:So, I don't have

ZuS wrote:

So, I don't have any of the sad (or hilarious, 'cause a few of those are) stories about people around me being religious, but I will post here anyway. I understand people here might have had pretty bad experiences with religion. While I was young my main worry was staying alive in the midst of ethnic clensing and murder of tens of thousands of people around me, including a good part of my family and friends. Purely pragmatic reasons, no religion involved other than as a periferial excuse.

You want your uncle, dad, mom etc. to stop praying to an imaginary dude in the sky. Well, I have a few questions then. Did the person you are here to talk to kill anyone yet? Did he/she fry a baby in a microwave? Does he/she collect bodyparts of victims and make decorations of them? Or is he/she a loving family member and a productive member of the society, added some issues that all of us need to work with, preferably not by ourselves?

If the latter is the case, you don't have a problem. He/she believes in fairies - so what? you believe the presidential change in 2008 had an effect on the overal US foreign policy, all the while you inertly watch as millions are slaughtered, raped, thrown out on the deadly streets, courtesy of the global tax payer. I will take the fairies over our secular delusions any day.

So why am I posting then? While you don't have a problem with the person you are talking about, you both are having a problem with a third party dividing you by using something as stupid as religion, party line, color, class, etc. You might want to stick your heads together and try to figure out a way around it. Sure, this will be harder than bitching over the person's belief system, but maybe a bit of religious zeal can help here.

 

Because sometimes the people in question are so near and dear, but they let their intense beliefs or dogmatic bigotry override their desire to coexist peacefully with those around them. It's not as simple as "stick[ing] your heads together and try[ing] to figure out a way around it." I really really wish, for more than my personal figurative sanity that it were that easy. But sometimes we're dealing with a person that will put their church, beliefs, etc, before everything else. And I get it. I really do. I know the reasons they're asked to do so, and I'm not expecting anyone who needs to cling to a personal deity to deny it. That would be selfish of me.

But it goes beyond just "following the teachings of Jesus." It becomes an emotional dividing factor because their need to have that deity comes before caring and loving their friend/family member. And for what reason...

Why does religion need to come before family?