Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Getting to know more about a particular group

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rikuoamero
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Former Atheists - What convinced you?

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Post by rikuoamero »

What I'm writing here is for those people who consider themselves to be former atheist i.e. at one point in life, they either lacked a belief in a god of any kind, or actively disbelieved there is a God (there's a difference between the two).
I'm hoping that at least some people who are of this group (and hopefully joined the usergroup called 'Former Atheist' on this site) are/were also skeptical, in that they demanded evidence for religious claims.

My question is - What is it that convinced you? If you were to somehow go back in time and meet your previous, atheist (hopefully skeptic) self, would you or could you use whatever it is that convinced you to convince that version of you? Or would your past self be skeptical and dismissive of what it is you present?

Just to be clear - This isn't restricted to Christians only. You can be a Muslim who considers him/herself former atheist or whatever religion or belief you subscribe to. I want to hear from you.
I also promise NOT to debate in this thread. All I want are responses and your thoughts on this question. I will probably debate elsewhere, but not on this thread. This thread is solely for me to gather information.

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Re: Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Post #201

Post by bluegreenearth »

Purple Knight wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 3:12 pm Basically I think he means horrible consequences: A lot of people die who didn't have to.

Many people have a vague sense of these being the end times and I'm one of them despite not being religious. I think society is going to collapse because it's too corrupt to sustain itself. I think we live in an intentionally created system wherein no one really knows the rules, so the people at the top can follow none and claim to be following all the right ones.

The question is what to do about that.

If there was some hero who rushed in with guns blazing and somehow fixed things, he'd be exalted. The ledger of heroes is filled with people who took bold action and happened to succeed.

And the ledger of villains is ten times as full, with the names of people who did the same and didn't happen to be right.
If the claim is that society is going to collapse within the next decade or so, the first step is to identify what we would expect to find during an investigation if the claim is false. How would you know if society was not going to collapse within the next decade or so?

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Re: Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Post #202

Post by 2timothy316 »

bluegreenearth wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 3:24 pm
Purple Knight wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 3:12 pm Basically I think he means horrible consequences: A lot of people die who didn't have to.

Many people have a vague sense of these being the end times and I'm one of them despite not being religious. I think society is going to collapse because it's too corrupt to sustain itself. I think we live in an intentionally created system wherein no one really knows the rules, so the people at the top can follow none and claim to be following all the right ones.

The question is what to do about that.

If there was some hero who rushed in with guns blazing and somehow fixed things, he'd be exalted. The ledger of heroes is filled with people who took bold action and happened to succeed.

And the ledger of villains is ten times as full, with the names of people who did the same and didn't happen to be right.
If the claim is that society is going to collapse within the next decade or so, the first step is to identify what we would expect to find during an investigation if the claim is false. How would you know if society was not going to collapse within the next decade or so?
The easy answer on how to know, is to know how societies collapse. We have thousands of years of history to look at and many examples of societies that completely disappeared off the face of the Earth. What do they have in common?

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Re: Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Post #203

Post by bluegreenearth »

2timothy316 wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 3:41 pm The easy answer on how to know, is to know how societies collapse. We have thousands of years of history to look at and many examples of societies that completely disappeared off the face of the Earth. What do they have in common?
In effect, each of those societies had been conducting themselves in accordance with a claim that they would prosper by behaving in a particular way, but the subsequent collapse of their society demonstrated where their respective claims were false. Accordingly, if we were to adopt the same way of life as one of those failed societies, it is reasonable to expect our society will most likely collapse as well. Since a significant portion of those failed societies were conducting themselves in accordance with unfalsifiable beliefs in an authoritarian deity, would it be reasonable for us to avoid making the same mistake?

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Re: Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Post #204

Post by 2timothy316 »

bluegreenearth wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 4:20 pm
2timothy316 wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 3:41 pm The easy answer on how to know, is to know how societies collapse. We have thousands of years of history to look at and many examples of societies that completely disappeared off the face of the Earth. What do they have in common?
In effect, each of those societies had been conducting themselves in accordance with a claim that they would prosper by behaving in a particular way, but the subsequent collapse of their society demonstrated where their respective claims were false. Accordingly, if we were to adopt the same way of life as one of those failed societies, it is reasonable to expect our society will most likely collapse as well. Since a significant portion of those failed societies were conducting themselves in accordance with unfalsifiable beliefs in an authoritarian deity, would it be reasonable for us to avoid making the same mistake?
Here is a TED talk by Jared Diamond - Civilization Scholar about why societies fail. Watch and then we can discuss.

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Re: Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Post #205

Post by bluegreenearth »

2timothy316 wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 5:04 pm Here is a TED talk by Jared Diamond - Civilization Scholar about why societies fail. Watch and then we can discuss.
The video confirms that a society will most likely collapse if it doesn't seek to discover if its claims about how to best organize and manage itself are false or not. Nothing in the video seemed to support the claim that a society should conduct itself in accordance with an unfalsifiable claim. In fact, every example discussed in the video was of a society that failed because it was conducting itself in accordance with an unfalsifiable claim. So, I'm not entirely sure what you would like to discuss here.

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Re: Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Post #206

Post by 2timothy316 »

[Replying to bluegreenearth in post #206]

Sadly you completely missed the point of the talk.

Earlier I asked are if we living in a critical time of mankind, offered the video, and this is the answer you give....I don't know where to go from here. Its like reading comments from one that doesn't live on earth or the here and now. I don't know what to do with your answers. Its just you talking about what you want to talk about. Its not a debate or a discussion, it's just a commentary on my posts on a subject that adds nothing except to whatever it is you want to talk about. I give up. Perhaps PK can keep an enjoyable discussion going.

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Re: Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Post #207

Post by bluegreenearth »

2timothy316 wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 9:05 pm [Replying to bluegreenearth in post #206]

Sadly you completely missed the point of the talk.

Earlier I asked are if we living in a critical time of mankind, offered the video, and this is the answer you give....I don't know where to go from here. Its like reading comments from one that doesn't live on earth or the here and now. I don't know what to do with your answers. Its just you talking about what you want to talk about. Its not a debate or a discussion, it's just a commentary on my posts on a subject that adds nothing except to whatever it is you want to talk about. I give up. Perhaps PK can keep an enjoyable discussion going.
If that is your perception of my posts, then you have completely missed the point. I'm out of ideas on how to make my point simpler for you. You still haven't answered any of my questions either. So, maybe you could go back and reconsider answering those questions I've asked.

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Re: Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Post #208

Post by 2timothy316 »

bluegreenearth wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 8:49 pm
2timothy316 wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 9:05 pm [Replying to bluegreenearth in post #206]

Sadly you completely missed the point of the talk.

Earlier I asked are if we living in a critical time of mankind, offered the video, and this is the answer you give....I don't know where to go from here. Its like reading comments from one that doesn't live on earth or the here and now. I don't know what to do with your answers. Its just you talking about what you want to talk about. Its not a debate or a discussion, it's just a commentary on my posts on a subject that adds nothing except to whatever it is you want to talk about. I give up. Perhaps PK can keep an enjoyable discussion going.
If that is your perception of my posts, then you have completely missed the point. I'm out of ideas on how to make my point simpler for you. You still haven't answered any of my questions either. So, maybe you could go back and reconsider answering those questions I've asked.
Yes there is a way to make your answer simpler. Yes or no. I'll ask one last time. Based on the video I showed you, Is mankind living in a critical time in it's history?

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Re: Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Post #209

Post by bluegreenearth »

[Replying to 2timothy316 in post #209]

Yes, mankind has always lived during a critical moment in history and has demonstrated the potential to live through this critical moment as well. However, there are no guarantees as long as the majority of humans place unjustified faith in unfalsifiable claims.

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Re: Former Atheists - What convinced you?

Post #210

Post by 2timothy316 »

[Replying to bluegreenearth in post #210]

That is a surprise, I was expecting you to say we are not at a critical civilization ending time in our history like the video suggests.

Though I don't think we have had such time like we see today though-out all history. The global threat to ending life as we know though environmental destruction, humanity ending nuclear weapons, and a rotten global tight nit global economy has only been around in the past 100 years and not all of the history of mankind.

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