Author Topic: Hello everyone!  (Read 402 times)

Dragonia

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Hello everyone!
« on: October 14, 2016, 02:56:17 PM »
Well Hi everyone, I have been reading here for quite a while now. Ive been just a little nervous, for personal reasons, to take the leap into posting and getting involved. But I am going to jump....because it seems like a good group, with not too much nastiness..... and the one guy that I found trying to start shit was promptly banned! Yay!
So I was raised very evangelical, and for 35 years I was the most whole-hearted Jesus lover you could ever meet. I always had a couple questions niggling at the back of my brain, but I tried not to think about those, and just had Faith. Well, eventually,  the questions became too pressing, and the conclusions to the discussions of those questions became too easy (Faith).  I also got sick of feeling like we had to defend God and his word. I felt like if this was the great Truth, shouldn't it defend itself? Why does God need such inept people coming to his defense?  So it all unravelled from there. It was a couple years' process, but here I am, having been a very secure, happy atheist for about 5 years now.....
Which makes it very touchy sometimes to make friends where I live now, which is deep south, Baptist-Church-attending, nobody's been anywhere but this county, Bible Belt.
Ugh. I've managed to meet a couple of the more free spirited people here, but as you may notice in the future,  I have a tender place in my heart for Christians, especially genuine, trying-to-do-it-all-right people. Because I know where they're coming from and I am pretty confident that they have been effectively brainwashed, and I know how terrifying and difficult and painful it is to tear one's self away from one's foundation of life.
I love my bees, my chickens, the outdoors and being in nature (trees feed my soul), bugs, dragons (Oh how I wish they were real!) and my family.
Please forgive my posting habits in advance.  I read a lot, but don't post a lot. Part of it is a time issue, part of it is that often I don't feel I have much to add to a particular conversation.
Ok, thanks for reading my super long intro. This is the longest post I'll probably ever compose, because how much fun is it to talk about myself? Ha ha ;)
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. ~ Plato (?)

Magdalena

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2016, 07:26:56 PM »
Hello, Dragonia, welcome.  :computerwave:




“I've had several "spiritual" or numinous experiences over the years, but never felt that they were the product of anything but the workings of my own mind in reaction to the universe.” ~Recusant

"Color me fascinated..." ~Asmodean, The Gray God.

Recusant

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2016, 12:09:38 AM »
Well Hi everyone, I have been reading here for quite a while now. Ive been just a little nervous, for personal reasons, to take the leap into posting and getting involved. But I am going to jump....because it seems like a good group, with not too much nastiness..... and the one guy that I found trying to start shit was promptly banned! Yay!
So I was raised very evangelical, and for 35 years I was the most whole-hearted Jesus lover you could ever meet. I always had a couple questions niggling at the back of my brain, but I tried not to think about those, and just had Faith. Well, eventually,  the questions became too pressing, and the conclusions to the discussions of those questions became too easy (Faith).  I also got sick of feeling like we had to defend God and his word. I felt like if this was the great Truth, shouldn't it defend itself? Why does God need such inept people coming to his defense?  So it all unravelled from there. It was a couple years' process, but here I am, having been a very secure, happy atheist for about 5 years now.....
Which makes it very touchy sometimes to make friends where I live now, which is deep south, Baptist-Church-attending, nobody's been anywhere but this county, Bible Belt.
Ugh. I've managed to meet a couple of the more free spirited people here, but as you may notice in the future,  I have a tender place in my heart for Christians, especially genuine, trying-to-do-it-all-right people. Because I know where they're coming from and I am pretty confident that they have been effectively brainwashed, and I know how terrifying and difficult and painful it is to tear one's self away from one's foundation of life.
I love my bees, my chickens, the outdoors and being in nature (trees feed my soul), bugs, dragons (Oh how I wish they were real!) and my family.
Please forgive my posting habits in advance.  I read a lot, but don't post a lot. Part of it is a time issue, part of it is that often I don't feel I have much to add to a particular conversation.
Ok, thanks for reading my super long intro. This is the longest post I'll probably ever compose, because how much fun is it to talk about myself? Ha ha ;)

Hello and welcome to HAF, Dragonia. I enjoyed your intro post a lot, and so I hope it's not the longest one you ever write.  :)

I'm impressed that you managed to lose your faith relatively late in life. There are a few other members who have similar stories, and it amazes me that somebody can shed something that they've held onto for so long, especially a person like you living in the Bible Belt. It shows a remarkable strength of mind, in my opinion.

With that, I'll give you some links to some threads you might find interesting:

Where did you get your username from?
10 Things About Yourself
Tell us A Bit About Where You're From
Photography
Non-religious pet peeves
Pets...what do you have?
How to tell your family you are an atheist
"Rules for Conducting a Discussion" by Dr. Mortimer J. Adler

. . . And of course, the Forum Rules.

I hope you enjoy your time reading and posting here!  :welcome:
"Religion is fundamentally opposed to everything I hold in veneration — courage, clear thinking, honesty, fairness, and above all, love of the truth."
— H. L. Mencken


Tank

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2016, 01:26:02 AM »
Hello Dragonia

I take it you've read Anne Mccaffray's Dragon Riders of Pern series? I have them all tucked away upstairs. The White Dragon was my favourite. I came across the series in my teens around the same time as I read The Lord of the Rings. And I too wanted one. Have you read any Discworld books? They have dragons, Swamp Dragons. Pitiful little creatures who's flatulence can be fatal. But quite loveable.

Your story is similar to that of Velma who was as faithful as faithful could be. I have never believed and some days I do wonder what it would be like to have faith and to make that trip from faith to reality.

I'm also very pleased you mentioned the removal of a disruptive member as, contrary to popular belief, banning/suspending a member is never a trivial matter.

Welcome to HAF  :cheers:

Regards
Chris
If religions were TV channels atheism is turning the TV off.
“Religion is a culture of faith; science is a culture of doubt.” ― Richard P. Feynman
'It is said that your life flashes before your eyes just before you die. That is true, it's called Life.' - Terry Pratchett

Arturo

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2016, 02:56:20 AM »
Amazing first post! I'm very happy with it. I'm glad you came to note it.
But, uh...well there it is.


OldGit

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2016, 04:15:35 AM »
Welcome, Dragonia!  I'm impressed that you still have sympathy and understanding for the still-brainwashed whose ranks you have now left.  So many ex-Christians go too far the other way, too quickly!  I respect that.

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2016, 05:08:00 AM »
 :wave hi: Hello and welcome, Dragonia (I like your choice of username, btw).
I'm just a student of the game that they taught me.


Dragonia

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #7 on: October 15, 2016, 09:50:13 AM »
Thank you all for such a warm welcome and your comments.
And to Tank, I had to read some Anne McCaffrey dragon book  in elementary school and I hated it for some reason, so no, I've never revisited that, although maybe it's time. But the Discworld series is on my (very long) reading list. Maybe my favorite Dragon series is Eragon.
And....
I'm also very pleased you mentioned the removal of a disruptive member as, contrary to popular belief, banning/suspending a member is never a trivial matter.
Yes, not to harp on this, but I noticed that others wondered whether banning was the best idea, but I guarantee that the fight instigating and attacking would have only increased and ended up bring the entire forum down, no matter how thoughtful or poetic some of the posts were. I've seen it firsthand..... so I definitely support you in this.
And to Recusant,  before you get too high of an opinion of my strength of character, I need to clarify that I moved from Alaska, which was home (born and raised) to Texas, and then to New York during my transition phase, so I really didn't have to face friends and family while I was struggling with all of it. It really made things a lot easier, not being subjected to badgering and concern. It was only after my transition was very complete that we moved to Georgia, where, ironically, i would have fit in SO well before...... and as an atheist, i would have fit in so well in Alaska. So I got it all backwards  :o
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. ~ Plato (?)

Gloucester

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #8 on: October 15, 2016, 12:56:04 PM »
Hi, again, Dragonia.

There are good Christians (and Muslims etc etc) around, it's what people do for this world thst counts, not their motivations.

Tank mentioned the Dragon Riders of  Pern, one of my fave  sci-fi series.
Tomorrow is precious, don't ruin it by fouling up today.

Guardian85

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #9 on: October 15, 2016, 03:12:30 PM »
Thank you all for such a warm welcome and your comments.
And to Tank, I had to read some Anne McCaffrey dragon book  in elementary school and I hated it for some reason, so no, I've never revisited that, although maybe it's time. But the Discworld series is on my (very long) reading list. Maybe my favorite Dragon series is Eragon.
The Inheritance series? I approve.

Welcome to the forum! You sound like quite an interesting person.


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Dragonia

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #10 on: October 15, 2016, 04:29:16 PM »
^^^yes, ha ha, sorry, The Inheritance series. And what made it even better was Christopher Paolini was just a kid when he wrote the first book (Eragon), which was my favorite of all 4 books.
Am I a nerd that I loved Saphira so much that I got a tattoo of her on my arm?
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. ~ Plato (?)

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2016, 06:52:27 PM »
Welcome Dragonia.  I hope that you find the place enjoyable, it is sometimes stimulating. 

If you live in a small town in Georgia you are sure enough in the bible belt. I can sympathize with you because you will be obliged to keep your absence of belief pretty much to yourself, or face ostracism.  That we are regarded as third class citizens by the beguiled ones, is a cause for justified resentment.  We are the ones who occupy the intellectual high ground after all.

Dragonia

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2016, 08:11:40 PM »
Thanks Icarus,
If you live in a small town in Georgia you are sure enough in the bible belt. I can sympathize with you because you will be obliged to keep your absence of belief pretty much to yourself, or face ostracism.
You're so correct. I don't really live in a town, per se,  it's just "The County". It's very close-knit, and I'm already the outsider, so no, I don't offer much to people as far as my personal philosophies. It's partly so I don't get the social pariah label, but also, I keep my mouth shut for my kids. The mamas and daddys probably wouldn't feel comfortable letting their kids hang out with mine, if they knew. The stupid thing is that my kids don't even get that I'm an atheist. We just talk about how to discern thoughts and ideas, and think critically, often in the face of what's socially acceptable.
And yes, the people I work for, I keep my mouth shut to them.  They'd probably fire me if they knew what a heathen I am.  :-X
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. ~ Plato (?)

Tank

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #13 on: October 15, 2016, 11:06:21 PM »
Thanks Icarus,
If you live in a small town in Georgia you are sure enough in the bible belt. I can sympathize with you because you will be obliged to keep your absence of belief pretty much to yourself, or face ostracism.
You're so correct. I don't really live in a town, per se,  it's just "The County". It's very close-knit, and I'm already the outsider, so no, I don't offer much to people as far as my personal philosophies. It's partly so I don't get the social pariah label, but also, I keep my mouth shut for my kids. The mamas and daddys probably wouldn't feel comfortable letting their kids hang out with mine, if they knew. The stupid thing is that my kids don't even get that I'm an atheist. We just talk about how to discern thoughts and ideas, and think critically, often in the face of what's socially acceptable.
And yes, the people I work for, I keep my mouth shut to them.  They'd probably fire me if they knew what a heathen I am.  :-X
When I read things like this it makes me wonder just how many closet atheists are sat in mosques on a Friday, synagogues on a Saturday and churches on a Sunday. Makes you wonder if they all stood up and walked out what would happen.
If religions were TV channels atheism is turning the TV off.
“Religion is a culture of faith; science is a culture of doubt.” ― Richard P. Feynman
'It is said that your life flashes before your eyes just before you die. That is true, it's called Life.' - Terry Pratchett

Tom62

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Re: Hello everyone!
« Reply #14 on: October 16, 2016, 12:21:16 AM »
Welcome to HAF, Dragonia.
I hope that you'll like our little corner on the internet.
The universe never did make sense; I suspect it was built on government contract.
Robert A. Heinlein