Online Atheists

The internet is known for bullies and trolls. Any idea or thought put out online will draw fire and criticism. Anyone who expresses their point of view will likely be attacked. I am not opposed to the system. It is what it is.

That being said, the online atheist group is the nicest set of people I have run across! I know I have only met a small segment of the non-believing crowd. I am comparing atheists to interactions with various religious groups, political groups, demographic groups, and geological groupings of people I have dealt with personally.

I think that speaks volumes about the concept that morality must be associated with any particular deity concept.

66 comments

  1. archaeopteryx1 · October 10, 2015

    …the online atheist group is the nicest set of people I have run across!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Logan · October 10, 2015

    I know what you mean. Fellow bloggers are kind and understanding. And the many fellow atheists I’ve met locally via meetup.com have been truly great people. It’s wonderful to share conversation and laughs without worry of crazy judgmental attitudes.

    Like

    • adisillusionist · October 11, 2015

      I am still trying to get use to that. I keep waiting for someone to “let me have it”.

      Like

  3. KIA · October 10, 2015

    my problems, as I have sought to reach out for answers or questions on blogs, have been mainly from fellow believers. the most hateful, spiteful, cruel and unchristian things I have ever heard in my christian life have come from other believers who have been unable or unwilling to ‘Come let us reason’.
    the NT would have us believe that Jesus said to “leave the 99 and go after the one”. I think these days its more like “Beat the One into silence or submission in order to warn the 99 not to do likewise”
    has this been your experience too? -KIA

    Liked by 1 person

    • adisillusionist · October 11, 2015

      Yes, there seems to be a great fear of anyone who questions things. I was told once by a Christian mentor “Don’y witness to atheists. They are poison and they are crafty with their words.”

      I think there are people who know they cannot defend their position against true reason and evidence, so they do their best to ignore it.

      Hence “beat the one, warn the 99, and stay in our own religious bubble.”

      Like

    • adisillusionist · October 11, 2015

      KIA, are you a believer in god searching the truth, or a former believer, or where do you stand? (No judgement here)?

      Like

      • KIA · October 11, 2015

        Former christian (very recently) struggling to hold on to god, if there is one there to hold on to. Honest as I can be for now. Former missionary and minister

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      • adisillusionist · October 11, 2015

        Gotcha. I understand. I tried to hold on to my belief with everything I had, but in the end I would rather view life by what is true than what is easy. I hope you find peace with yourself whatever path you travel.

        I can say loosing my faith was tougher than the death of someone close to me, and I am not done facing hard times associated with my change.

        Like

      • adisillusionist · October 11, 2015

        The good news is there sure seems to be support for you regardless where life leads you.

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      • KIA · October 11, 2015

        Amen. Support is good. Silence from former friends and brothers in Christ is deafening, interrupted only by the noise that is ‘apologetics’ these days.

        Liked by 1 person

      • adisillusionist · October 11, 2015

        I imagine I will go through that when I starting telling my family and friends. It must be difficult.

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      • archaeopteryx1 · October 11, 2015

        I have more suggested reading for you, should you choose to avail yourself of it, from the blog of my friend, Matt Barsotti, who operates a blog he calls, “Jericho Brisance.” I suggest you read his piece, “The Journey,” which relates his journey of deconversion – and you’ll be doing yourself a disservice if you leave his blog without reading, “Paisley” – if Paisley doesn’t touch your heart, you don’t have one.

        Liked by 1 person

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 11, 2015

        I’ve always wondered if theists who say, “Amen” know that they are swearing by the Egyptian god, Amen (AKA, “Amun”/”Amon” – later combined with “Ra” into “Amen-Ra”) that what they say is true? Oh, the irony —

        Like

      • KIA · October 11, 2015

        Force of habit. I guess I meant, I’m with you.

        Liked by 2 people

      • adisillusionist · October 11, 2015

        I did not know the origin and I cannot imagine the number of times I’ve said Amen.

        Like

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 11, 2015

        Those who speak Hebrew will likely tell you it means “so be it,” or some equivalent, and likely it does now, but the Hebrews and Egyptians had an ongoing relationship of sorts for millennia, and words and their meanings evolve.

        BTW – food for thought – recall Gen 14, where 90+-year old Abraham and his band of 300 Ninja-shepherds chased five entire, battle-seasoned armies from the plains of Mamre, all the way to Dan? Note verse 13: “And there came one that had escaped, and told Abraham the Hebrew;….

        Footnotes in “The New American Bible” speculate that that chapter was written by a non-Jewish author, possibly about an Arab chieftain named Abraham, then adapted to the Torah, as no Jewish author would ever refer to a member of the Jewish people as “Hebrew.” Their reasoning was that just as no member of the Romani would ever refer to themselves as “Gypsy,” so neither would a Jew refer to his people as Hebrew, from the Sumarian word, “Hiburu,” meaning – much like “Gypsy” – “wanderer,” so named, quite likely, from their nomadic lifestyle before they settled into an agrarian existence around 1000 BCE.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        I now that silence well…I was tossed off like a rabid skunk from my family and friends when I started questioning (hadn’t even lost my faith yet). The only good thing about that was by the time my faith truly died, I was more prepared for the social suicide that was to come.

        Good luck on your journey, whether it be in or out of the faith. If your end road takes you out of the faith, you’ll find great support from online atheists and deconverts…it’s the only support you’re likely to receive, and that’s why we’re an understanding bunch.

        Liked by 1 person

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        tossed off like a rabid skunk” – Vi, you never fail to put a smile on my face — πŸ™‚

        Liked by 2 people

      • adisillusionist · October 12, 2015

        I can say without doubt my road isn’t over but my faith is. It is absolutely amazing the difference too!

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      • adisillusionist · October 12, 2015

        So sorry to hear about you being pushed aside and thrown out. It is painfully sad to hear how people are treated when they loose their faith! It doesn’t seem very Christian like. I mean really, if you no longer believe you actually fit into the group that Christians should be the nicest to.

        Like

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        Well, not really. If you’ve never know christ then christians will still love you. But if you’ve known Him and then fell away, you’re an apostate, and christians definitely do not love apostates (neither did the jesus of the bible).

        Liked by 1 person

      • adisillusionist · October 12, 2015

        But the Christians usually claim “you weren’t really saved as you say”. So they should be nice.

        Like

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        Oh yes, the “you were never really saved” stance…this is how some protestants view things (I think maybe they’re called calvinists?). Those people usually love bomb me and try to convert me…then when I can’t be converted the hammer comes down.

        In catholicism, when you deconvert it’s because you’re the arm of the devil, the hand of satan, the black sheep, the evil goat, a daughter of perdition, etc. The names are really fun!

        Like

      • adisillusionist · October 12, 2015

        Ah, I see. I would say there are many non Calvinist Christians who go with the “never saved” thing. Most who believe “once saved always saved” find that is the only choice left so they embrace it.

        The argument ends in some form of “You are lying to me or lying to yourself if you say you were a christian and now you aren’t.”

        I always felt that way when I heard someone claimed they didn’t believe any more. I put that idea in the same category as unicorns. Those simply cannot exist.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        Interesting…I’m not overly familiar with protestant teachings, so I was unaware the “you were never a real christian” idea was so prevalent. I wonder if even some catholics believe this? I never heard about it in my church though…unbelievers were always the “seed that landed on rock” and were therefore useless to god to begin with.

        Like

      • adisillusionist · October 12, 2015

        I suppose it would be more prevalent with people who know you better. They cannot believe you are pure evil so they have to believe you are fooling yourself or just faked it all along so others would like you.

        I think it may be common in many versions of Christianity because it is a simple way to justify things that don’t make sense. How can anyone give up faith when God is perfect? That doesn’t make sense.

        Liked by 2 people

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        Let me explain Violet (with, I hope, her blessing, as she is 90 pounds and scares me to death – and I’m fearless!). She first came on the blog of a friend of mine as “Ain’tNoShrinkingViolet” – and as such she will always be to me, no matter how many times she might alter her name. Her self-admitted goal there was to convert all of us heathens to the Word. I approached her – how shall I say – rather forcefully, after which, she told me how afraid she was to approach us. Upon this revelation, she says I “crumpled” – I say I have never crumpled and never will crumpled. Still, she maintains I crumpled (poor delusional child –).

        She has a history, which is hers, not mine, to reveal.
        (But I never crumpled!)

        Liked by 2 people

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        Understand that I say that because Vi is most certainly, “No Shrinking Violet,” she is in fact, the most courageous woman I have ever known (“Zoe” is a VERY close second!). She has closed her blog, which saddens me – as even if she chose not to write more, I think she could have left it open so that others could be inspired by her story, but that’s not my decision to make.

        Suffice to say, she is a beautiful woman with a beautiful son, who was told it can’t be done – and did it. ‘Nuf sed.

        Liked by 1 person

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        Liked by 1 person

      • KIA · October 12, 2015

        I’ve already been the appreciative recipient of the community’s many kindnesses. Thank you for your generous and warm welcome. I’ve been asleep for too long. It’s time to awake to reality. -KIA

        Liked by 3 people

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        My goodness Arch, you’re making me blush with all the praise! I’ll always be Ain’t No Shrinking Violet in my heart.

        Some small details to add to Arch’s how-we-met story: when I first lost my faith (about a year ago) I was unable to put my disbelief into words…I hadn’t the faintest idea how to argue against the christian position. So I would fearfully go onto blogs and throw out christian apologetics to see what the atheists would say. Arch took the bait and sparred with me a bit (scared the shit out of me too), and in doing so, gave me the language to explain my disbelief. Then I confessed to him I was a new deconvert; his bark lost all it’s bite, he crumpled like a schoolgirl, and he became one of the nicest athiests I’ve ever known.

        And *that’s* the truth!

        Liked by 2 people

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 13, 2015

        I’ll always be Ain’t No Shrinking Violet in my heart” – and in mine, dear sweet lady.

        And *that’s* the truth!” – Ruth Buzzi? “Edith Ann“?

        This girl should tell you her story, but far be it from me to do it. (Say “Hi” to “Handsome” for me —)

        Liked by 1 person

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 13, 2015

        I DIDN’T CRUMPLE!!!!!!!!!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Violet · October 13, 2015

        Like hell you didn’t!

        Liked by 1 person

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 13, 2015

        Like

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 13, 2015

        Little girl, if you weren’t married, and i was a couple of million years younger —

        Like

      • Violet · October 13, 2015

        I’m 95 lbs of solid steel…you will not contradict me, you feathery, leathery bird, you! Or I’ll tell everyone you don’t exist, and more than half the population will believe me. So there!

        Like

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 13, 2015

        There remains the other half – I can live with that. Go to bed, you need to get up early and take Handsome to school!

        Liked by 1 person

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 13, 2015

        Liked by 1 person

      • ... Zoe ~ · October 13, 2015

        You go girl!

        Like

      • ... Zoe ~ · October 13, 2015

        LOL!

        Like

  4. Peter · October 11, 2015

    As someone who has gone along a similar path I can only endorse what you say.

    When I still called myself a Christian it used to genuinely puzzle me how some of the the most decent caring people I knew were not people of faith.

    I might also add that I have had similar experiences to our friend KIA in regard to seeking answers from Christians for my doubts and questions.

    Of course our friend archaeopteryx1, is a true gem, though unpolished at times. He picked his on-line user name for a transitional fossil, but this is generally lost on the Young Earth Creationists he loves to engage with

    Liked by 2 people

    • archaeopteryx1 · October 11, 2015

      I have read the works of (and can emulate) the most polished of authors, but I didn’t find them the least bit funny. A spoonful of sugar humor helps the medicine go down —

      But thanks, Peter. I once bought my son a stone polisher, and I can only imagine what those poor rocks must go through, to get that way – not for me.

      Liked by 2 people

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        Not surprisingly, one of the most unpolished of authors, also happens to be one of my favorites —

        “Faith is believin’ what you know ain’t so.”
        — Mark Twain —

        Liked by 1 person

      • adisillusionist · October 12, 2015

        I have just started to delve into Twain’s unbelief. I love it!!!

        Like

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        May I suggest his final works, published posthumously – “Letters From the Earth“? The main portion, by the same title, involves Satan being banned from heaven, as he often is (according to Twain), for 1000 years, and deciding to spend the time observing what humans have made of the earth they inherited, and writing his observations in a series of letters that he then sends back to his fellow archangels for their amusement. The book also includes, “The Diary of Adam and Eve.”

        Liked by 1 person

    • Violet · October 12, 2015

      “He picked his on-line user name for a transitional fossil, but this is generally lost on the Young Earth Creationists he loves to engage with.”

      That line had me laughing for some time, and I could quite use a laugh today, so thank you. The YECS (“young earth creationists” if anyone doesn’t know) are completely oblivious to Arch’s user name, and this makes me laugh like a hyena whenever I see it happening!

      Liked by 1 person

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        And it is for that reason that I often see fit to present them with this award – the Golden Crockaduck —

        Liked by 1 person

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        Was the “crocoduck” originally in response to Kirk Cameron’s little diatribe about the impossibilities of evolution? As an insider of religion I thought him a hero of the faith (willing to take abuse for his beliefs). Now I see myself as stupid as he was for a long time. Egads.

        Liked by 1 person

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        Oh, the shame of it all — (*hangs head*)

        Like

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        Poor Kirky. He needs to read some rationalwiki. I’ve grown so fond of rationalwiki since losing my faith, if I had any spare money I’d give them a donation:

        http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/How_come_there_are_still_monkeys%3F

        Liked by 1 person

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        Actually both monkeys and apes like us evolved from a common ancestor, not one from the other. All dogs, from Saint Bernards to Teacup Chihuahuas, evolved from wolf cubs captured 30,000 years ago by our ancient Stone Age ancestors – evolved through selective breeding, rather than natural selection, which would have taken untold millions of years, if it happened at all – and yet there are still wolves. Imagine that!

        Like

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        All races of humans evolved from the original Homo Sapiens Sapiens who lived in Africa, and whose skin was black, due to the production of melanin, which served as protection from direct rays of the sun. Yet surprisingly, there are still humans with black skin, living in Africa.

        Genetic scientists have determined that blue eyes originated a mere 10,000 years ago, and came from a mutation in only one man, who seemed to really like spreading his genes around (OK, Carmen – time to chime in!) – yet brown-eyed people still exist. Hmmm —

        Liked by 1 person

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        Next time I’ll just give them your email. πŸ™‚

        Like

      • ... Zoe ~ · October 13, 2015

        Always knew I was a mutant.

        Like

      • adisillusionist · October 12, 2015

        I feel the same way!!!!!!!

        Like

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        Yes, the wiki article goes into the common ancestors thing. I was asked “how come there are still monkeys” just yesterday and tried to explain. Perhaps I wasn’t very clear, or perhaps they have their brains blocked off from certain information (probably a combo of both)…either way, the conversation devolved quickly.

        Like

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        I was asked ‘how come there are still monkeys’ just yesterday and tried to explain.

        Was that conversation online or in person – because you KNOW, if online, you can always call on me! You will always be under my wing.
        (a little archaeopteryx metaphor —)

        Liked by 1 person

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        The conversation was in person. All of my religious conflicts are in real life now, because I’m surrounded by the cult and I no longer blog. I’m still tempted to throw your email at them, but I don’t think they’re likely to contact my “crazy online friends who are forming an army against god.” (I just knew you’d love that word-for-word description, Arch.) πŸ˜‰

        Like

      • archaeopteryx1 · October 12, 2015

        crazy online friends who are forming an army against god.”

        Who let the cat out of the bag? That was supposed to be top secret!

        Liked by 2 people

      • Violet · October 12, 2015

        I tried to explain that we weren’t “an army against god,” because we don’t actually believe in god. It didn’t help. πŸ˜‰

        Like

  5. Brad D · October 11, 2015

    Hey there, just got the referral to you from Pastor No Faith’s blog, and I wanted to add my voice to the chorus of support. One thing you said that jumped out at me from your first post, that the truth will stand on its own and doesn’t need our help. And while that is true, that doesn’t mean people don’t need help with finding and coming to terms with it. So this is me extending a helping hand, even if it’s just for a pat on the back.

    Like

  6. Thomas · October 12, 2015

    In my very limited experience there are roughly two groups of atheists online:

    – The intellectual “bloggers”/contributors. They are kind, compassionate, understanding people who have patience in explaining why they think what they think, and why religion is not so helpful. They have often been religious before as well. You are definitely one of them, and almost all commentators as well. Patheos is full of them. Also, virtually all of them are secular humanists. They want to better mankind and not be just living for themselves.
    – The anti-religious “masses”. E.g. look at a group like Atheists Unite on Facebook. I was seriously appaled by the atmosphere in there. Not liking Jesus is one thing. Sharing pictures about him having sex while crucified is quite another. Other atheists who point out that this is offensive get called names. In a way, their atheism (actually: anti-religion) has become their “religion”. They really don’t give a damn about what anyone else thinks of them. It’s sad to say but I have seen the most hatred and disrespect in that Facebook group compared to all my evangelical years in church.

    So for me I start to identify myself more with a secular humanist than an atheist, just to avoid that association, although both labels apply.

    Liked by 1 person

    • adisillusionist · October 12, 2015

      So, that group is like the Westboro Baptist group in a way. They are the hateful fringe that get the rest of the group a bad name? Those are the ones Christians claim all non believers are in their hearts.

      Like

    • Violet · October 12, 2015

      The problem is the labels tend to get tricky for the non-religious, just like they do for religious folks. I am an atheist, an antitheist (I believe religion is harmful), and a secular humanist! Antitheism tends to get a bad rap, and there are certainly assholes amongst us (as there are assholes everywhere). Yet many of us have experienced the harm religion causes and seek to talk about it openly, in hopes we can prevent others from being harmed. It’s not so awful, and we’re not all so evil. πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 2 people

      • adisillusionist · October 12, 2015

        Heck, I might even like the evil ones. Some of my best friends are assholes. (My wife insists I fit in that category regualarly.)

        Liked by 1 person

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