What "turned" you?

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NorthOfTheBorder
Atheist Ireland Member
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Post by NorthOfTheBorder » Tue May 08, 2007 7:48 pm

I freed my mind at the age of 13. Up until then, I hadn't been overly religious, but I did believe. I did have an uncle who was a priest, and his generally obnoxious nature (treated women like servants, in particular) did put me off religion to an extent. But the eureka moment for me was when I realised why people believe in an afterlife - because they're shit scared of death and can't face the idea that their existence really will come to an end. Once that sank in, there was no going back.
Martha
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Post by Martha » Tue May 08, 2007 11:27 pm

divil_a_bit wrote:
I know all the arguements for and against renouncing ones faith, but I feel that the records should be set straight.
The only record that should be set straight is one's own personal history. As for the Catholic Church (the Irish Branch, that is) I know for a fact they don't keep accurate records. At any rate, they don't provide them.

I requested, in writing, a record of an school exam I sat for and passed, and they wrote back to me saying they had no record of it. I also wrote requesting a copy of my "Holy Communion" and "Holy Confirmation" certificates and they sent me back photocopies of makey-up certs, which amused - but intrigued - me: it showed that they did indeed have the relevant information I was looking for, but they were doctoring it.

My point is, if you expect openess and honesty from the Catholic Church, then you might as well continue believing in Santa Claus :roll:
Eternity is a very long time, especially towards the end.

Woody Allen
McBride
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Post by McBride » Wed May 09, 2007 8:11 pm

I never really de-converted because I never really had a belief in it all. And I don't say that tritely. I never really had a real belief in the almighty ged because I wasnt indoctrinated to the extent of others. My dad is an agnostic Presbyterian and my mum a believing COI. So, Iwent to church as a COI by default and went by rote. " I believe in the father God almighty...." but I always knew it was a fairy tale. My mum let me choose my own thing once I had a brain and hasn't questioned my choice since, and fair play to her.

I never believed in the same way that I never believed in the leprechauns, the ghosts. They were just stories.

Although I would still never cut down a fairy thorn and I always salute a magpie... :twisted:
on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam
Colin
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Post by Colin » Thu May 10, 2007 12:27 am

I never questioned religion for ages. I never enjoyed attending mass and only did so because my mother forced me to. When I turned 16 I never needed to attend - although I still go to mass on Christmas day out of respect for my mother and to be honest she gets more out of the family going to mass than any present - and never went back.

Slowly my non attendance turned into non belief. Sadly there was no eureka moment, rather a series of complete disbelief moments, where something said would not resonate with me and I felt it wrong on some level. What that level is I still do not know, but I will hopefully learn.
lostexpectation
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Post by lostexpectation » Thu May 10, 2007 2:28 am

Colin wrote: although I still go to mass on Christmas day out of respect for my mother and to be honest she gets more out of the family going to mass than any present - and never went back.
It'd be more respectful to your mother not to go to mass.
alfonso
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Post by alfonso » Thu May 10, 2007 12:40 pm

My turning point was sometime before highschool, must have been about 11 or so. To be honest, it is all a blur in my memory.

The reason was that I could not accept, believe, take fear as the basis of a (healthy) relationship. I would not love god, or jesus, or any other such creature on the basis of fear, fear of hell, fear of punishment or otherwise.

I had always been though respectful towards religion. Not because I thought it deserved, though. I even accepted that islamic terrorism had nothing to do with religion.

After reading the god delusion late last year it opened my eyes to a whole new world and I spare few if any opportunities to deny god.
bipedalhumanoid
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Post by bipedalhumanoid » Fri May 18, 2007 4:04 pm

divil_a_bit wrote:
zhollie wrote:I was also wondering about why you felt you had to renounce your faith to the church? I respect your right to tackle this personel issue however you see fit but it's not something I would do myself. I don't owe anybody an explaination for my atheism, least of all the church.
I can understand your point of view too. I felt like that for a while too but I always had this niggling feeling that somebody somewhere was counting me as a Catholic and that didn't sit well with me.

I know all the arguements for and against renouncing ones faith, but I feel that the records should be set straight.
I agree with you on this one in terms of why an atheist would want to renounce... but the problem is the church will not have removed you from that big list of catholics. The only people who can be excommunicated from the catholic church are famous people. ie. if you were to put your face on tv every night embarking on a pro-choice campaign then they will excommunicate you. But an average jo sending a letter to them asking to be excommunicated results in no action. There are web sites out there from people campaigning agressively to get themselves excommunicated. it is not as easy as sending a letter.
bipedalhumanoid
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Post by bipedalhumanoid » Fri May 18, 2007 4:12 pm

I was 14 when my mind was freed. The main argument was this... other religions sound like fairy tales to me, what reason do I have to think my religion isn't a fairy tale? Answer: None. I decided God was santa claus for adults on that basis.

I know that it doesn't necessarily follow from that argument that there was no deistic creator of the universe type god... but hey, I was 14.

I still had gaps in my understanding but took the position that "I don't know is a better position than a made up fairy tale".

I was 15 when I learnt about evolution and from that moment on the more I learn about science the more gaps are filled and the fewer "I don't know" gaps I have to live with. But I still maintain "I don't know" is better than a fairy tale.
FXR
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Post by FXR » Fri May 18, 2007 10:46 pm

bipedalhumanoid wrote:
I agree with you on this one in terms of why an atheist would want to renounce... but the problem is the church will not have removed you from that big list of catholics. The only people who can be excommunicated from the catholic church are famous people. ie. if you were to put your face on tv every night embarking on a pro-choice campaign then they will excommunicate you. But an average jo sending a letter to them asking to be excommunicated results in no action. There are web sites out there from people campaigning agressively to get themselves excommunicated. it is not as easy as sending a letter.
There's hope on the horizon. I've been told Ratz made a speech in Latin America saying anyone who did not follow Church dogma has excommunicated themselves which he changed at the last minute. Originally he was going to say they were excommunicated. I'm looking for the link now.
Did any of you heretics hear about this.

(I found it)
http://www.examiner.com/a-718292~Pope_B ... erica.html
Human communication is a very rickety rope bridge between minds. Its too narrow to allow but a few thoughts to cross at a time. Many are lost in the chasms of noise, suspicion, misinterpretation and shooting the message through dislike of the messenger.
AL9000
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Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2007 7:30 pm

re...

Post by AL9000 » Fri Jun 08, 2007 4:48 am

Hello all. First post.

Here's one for yis. Was always fascinated by astronomy. I came across a marvelous book called 'The Universe' when I was @6-7 yrs old. Full of lovely glossy pictures too. Always interested in all things scientific and 'interesting'. Always took notice of reports in newspapers of UFO's and the like, and then lo-and-behold when I was 11yrs of age (1980), me and me mate seen, well basically a silver metallic disc 'thing' in the sky over Coolmine Woods, Blanchardstown. It did some funky shit.
Anyhow, it had a profound impact on the both of us. My friend went all 'spiritual', i.e started reading about 'Astral Projection' and the like. But I went for the nuts+bolts type of thing. Getting back on point, I had to go to school the next day with all this. Given that at that age you are probably at your most impressionable, I questioned everything in school, especially in religion class. I was always getting letters home to my mother for being 'obstructive' in class, when in fact all I was doing was asking questions that the teacher simply couldn't answer, and probably still can't, Grud bless her.
But that would be my turning point. Although I think even before that I often thought that: "would I eat the same food as a 2000yr old people?", "would I wear the same clothes as a 2000yr old people?", "would I even think like a 2000yr old people?", and the answer of course was "No" to all, so why the f**k should I believe the 'beliefs' of some far away person(s) from 2000 years ago?!!
Of course as we all know, if you are a 'normal' kid going through the mill, it's easy to go along with the brainwashing (which is precisely what religion class was in Ireland back then). Luckily for me I was given the spark to question everything, especially religious dogma. Ugh!

Thanks for reading.


AL
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