Author Topic: Brand new - to this board and to atheism  (Read 1450 times)

*Ace*

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Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« on: December 14, 2014, 01:56:05 PM »
Hi, all!  Quick background info: I was raised ELCA Lutheran but never fully subscribed to Christian "rules." Even my mom always told me she thought any good person would go to "Heaven," regardless of religion affiliation. As an adult I switched to an "open and affirming" United Church of Christ congregation (despite being drawn to the Universalist Unitarians ... they were just a bit too radically different from the Christianity I was raised with for me to embrace at the time; I already felt like I was cheating on the church I had grown up in by making a switch to UCC), and although I love the church family there (complete with several atheist partners who attend with their families just because it's important to them), I've felt hollow and like a fake sitting in service for years and have only been attending when it's my turn to work the preK room a few times a year. I've been self-identifying as "really more agnostic than Christian" for a couple years but never thought I would (never WANTED to) cross over into atheism.

I think I made the leap from agnostic to atheist on Thursday night in the space of a 20 minute conversation with my fiance. We were talking about what I still thought of - clung to - as the great unknown. How can science explain sentient beings? And he broke. it. down. I saw it coming as he talked - like a fast moving train. I couldn't stop it OR move off the tracks. And BAM. There it was. I was left reeling. And I couldn't undo it.

I think I'm still in shock. I took the afternoon off work Friday to digest this new knowledge, to try to process. I feel a bit numb. Like I'm waiting for the grief to overwhelm me. I'm worried this revelation could cause my anxiety issues to resurface. I'm waiting for a breakdown. ... But at the same time I feel mildly hopeful. Relieved to have figured it out with (hopefully) half my life yet ahead of me. Blown away by the waves of implications washing over me. Because this changes everything.

Right now my first and foremost concern is my own mental health as I adjust to a new reality. (Not that I'm terribly delicate, but I experienced anxiety/panic issues for the first time in my life in April about 3 months after quitting drinking. That's gotten progressively better, and I don't want to undo all that.) Followed by a sorrowful concern about what this means for parenting my spirited 5 year old daughter whose father (NOT my partner) comes from mildly fundamentalist roots and is already indoctrinating her with a whole lot of talk about Jesus.

Of all the atheist forums out there (and like the good librarian I am, I researched quite a few), this felt like the best match for me at this time. I'm hopeful it will help me digest everything, educate me, and that someday perhaps my own experiences can help someone else. :)
« Last Edit: December 14, 2014, 02:07:29 PM by *Ace* »
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xSilverPhinx

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2014, 02:04:02 PM »
Hello and welcome, Ace! ;D

I've never been a theist of any denomination so I can't really say I know what you're going through, but I hope that the transition is easy for you. :) 



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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?
Favorite Song, with video
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*Ace*

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2014, 02:09:25 PM »
Hello and welcome, Ace! ;D


Thanks! And I was just in the "where are you from" thread poking around and saw you are from BR! I spent a month in Parana (a week each in Arapongas, Astorga, Apucarana, and Londrina) back in 2006. I love Brasil! <3
My opinions change with new information.

God

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2014, 02:29:11 PM »
Hello Ace I also have never been a theist like Silver, but I surely have beliefs. I have my own beliefs, and I know many people have beliefs that resemble mine sufficiently to be able to call it a religion. Just not labeled, not mentioned, but it is there. I also believe religious practice is for the weak-minded. It is obsolete as the belief itself is obvious, and so is the delusion. If anything useful religion is to me, it is the widespread delusion and corruption that it brings for the lack of getting rid of old texts and replacing them with better ones. Religion has a "timeframe" (even time was invented by humans,  and our consciousness increases and so religion should adapt to that consciousness and knowledge that adds to that consciousness. Rejecting that knowledge isn't only disrespectful towards the scientific body, it also makes way for delusion to become part of a control mechanism in daily practices.

My belief is that "Love doesn't come empty-handed, it comes with the practice of life, and the practice of life comes with truth, where the truth is that we are as big as our body".

Well if you read it all, have a nice day sir :D
I liked the earth before it was cool.

xSilverPhinx

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2014, 02:36:26 PM »
:D Cool!

I've only traversed Paran?'s coastline by car and have never stopped in any of those cities but it's a great state to visit. If you ever come to Brazil again I would recommend visiting Santa Catarina, which is just south of Paran?. Especially the cities Florian?polis and Blumenau. 8)    
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*Ace*

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2014, 02:43:51 PM »
:D Cool!

I've only traversed Paran?'s coastline by car and have never stopped in any of those cities but it's a great state to visit. If you ever come to Brazil again I would recommend visiting Santa Catarina, which is just south of Paran?. Especially the cities Florian?polis and Blumenau. 8)    

My favorite host family still wants me to come spend a holiday week in Florian?polis with them. :) I wish airfare weren't so expensive!
My opinions change with new information.

*Ace*

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2014, 02:47:11 PM »
Hi, God! Man, I find it slightly ironic that one of my first responses is from ... God. :P
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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #7 on: December 14, 2014, 03:37:28 PM »
Hi, God! Man, I find it slightly ironic that one of my first responses is from ... God. :P
Hi *Ace*

And you can tell he's not really 'God' because he didn't know your gender. I however am all powerful (and can see the gender symbol below your avatar)  ;D

I'm a never-theist as opposed to ex-theist atheist. I got taken to church by my Christian mum and I had an atheist dad. So I got both sides of the story and the theistic side never stuck. Couldn't really have cared less about religion until about 2006 when I read The God Delusion and thought Dawkins was joking about American fundamentalists/creationists. So I joined his forum, eventually becoming a moderator, and found there really are creationists! I honestly thought they were taking the piss and couldn't possibly be real/serious. How wrong I was :(

We have quite a few members here whoo have been through what you are going through so don't be shy to vent, or ask for advice or whatever comes to mind.

Welcome to HAF, I hope you enjoy yourself here.

Regards
Chris
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*Ace*

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #8 on: December 14, 2014, 04:00:14 PM »
Thanks much, Tank!
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God

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #9 on: December 14, 2014, 04:13:14 PM »
I ehm, ahem, I need to leave my children something to guess.  ;D
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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #10 on: December 14, 2014, 04:44:38 PM »
Hello and welcome to HAF, *Ace*. It sounds as though even if you made a strong break with belief in a deity recently, you haven't been a firm believer for some time. So perhaps a move from "not really sure; yes or no" to "pretty sure; no" won't be as potentially unsettling as you fear. I think most atheists hold that position, as opposed to having some sort of firm belief that no god of any kind exists. The Christian god described in the Bible (and by various Christians, which can be a completely different varmint) seems to be extremely unlikely, though.

It seems to me that the problem of how to deal with the evangelizing of your daughter by her father will be much more vexing. I hope that some of the members of this site may be helpful with questions about that.  :)

I hope that you enjoy your time reading and posting here.

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #11 on: December 14, 2014, 06:25:54 PM »
Greetings and welcome, Ace!  You are just the sort of person we can help and support, so dive in and discuss things.  BTW there's no need to be serious all the time - you can have some fun here.

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #12 on: December 14, 2014, 09:10:31 PM »
Welcome to the forum!  I'm also a never-theist, so Ive never been through deconversion.  Many here have, though. 

I do think it helps sometimes to remember that the -only- requirement of being atheist is disbelief in God, whether, as previously noted, it's "definitely no" or "probably not".  So many people - including many atheists - get hung up on some supposed common core of atheist ideals.  There are plenty of things common among atheists that I do not hold to, some that I am completely against, and some things I'm not "supposed to" do as an atheist that I totally do. 

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #13 on: December 14, 2014, 09:24:03 PM »
:D Cool!

I've only traversed Paran?'s coastline by car and have never stopped in any of those cities but it's a great state to visit. If you ever come to Brazil again I would recommend visiting Santa Catarina, which is just south of Paran?. Especially the cities Florian?polis and Blumenau. 8)    

My favorite host family still wants me to come spend a holiday week in Florian?polis with them. :) I wish airfare weren't so expensive!

I know right? ;D I would travel much more too if it were easier!

Were else have you been? :) Do you travel often?
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*Ace*

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Re: Brand new - to this board and to atheism
« Reply #14 on: December 15, 2014, 04:20:20 PM »
Hello and welcome to HAF, *Ace*. It sounds as though even if you made a strong break with belief in a deity recently, you haven't been a firm believer for some time. So perhaps a move from "not really sure; yes or no" to "pretty sure; no" won't be as potentially unsettling as you fear. I think most atheists hold that position, as opposed to having some sort of firm belief that no god of any kind exists. The Christian god described in the Bible (and by various Christians, which can be a completely different varmint) seems to be extremely unlikely, though.

It seems to me that the problem of how to deal with the evangelizing of your daughter by her father will be much more vexing. I hope that some of the members of this site may be helpful with questions about that.  :)

I hope that you enjoy your time reading and posting here.


Thanks for the welcome! I think for me the biggest hurdle cognitively is accepting that there is nothing after death. Like, WHAT A BUMMER. haha. And then, yes. My daughter. Sigh. I'm looking forward to reading through the parenting threads.
My opinions change with new information.