I'm glad to be here. I'm hoping to make for decades of ignorance.
I grew up in a Fundie community and was conditioned to ignore any evidence that contradicted the "Word of God." The only question I had about the 6 days of creation in Genesis 1 and 2 was, why did God take so long to do it? Why not just create everything in an instant? I was so well conditioned that in the 1970s, I wasn't sure that dinosaurs had actually roamed the earth. As more and more fossils were being discovered, then it was obvious the dinosaurs had lived in Antediluvian times...with Humankind. I mean, that's what the Flintstones portrayed so it seemed plausible "to a kid. As I got older, Iearned of Answers In Genesis where "actual scientists" gave irrefutable proof that Evilution" was an insidious plot of the Devil to deceive God's childen.
I remember as a pastor in my early 30s I read a book about the Old Age Earth theory. I felt so progressive in losing my belief in a 6,000 year old earth when I was convinced that the earth was actually 10,000 years old! Later I started to give some credence to the theistic evolutionists that said that some of Darwin's theory was right, only the impetus for Natural Selection was God's doing. I left the ministry 10 years ago, and although I never thought the title applied to me, I had in effect become an agnostic-lite. "Lite" because I was to fearful to say I didn't believe in God. Finally one day, probably within the last 6 or 7 years, I realized that if evolution explained everything about the development of life of this planet, then there really wasn't a need for a deity, was there?
So here I am; a man in my late 40s with a lot of years of education still ahead of me. I do still have some emotional issues about the wasted years of ignorance, but at the same time am excited about that I'm finally learning the truth about this Universe we find ourselves in. I look forward to digging into the posts in this group. Bear with me if it seems I don't have much foundational education; because I don't.
I welcome your thoughts, questions, comments, dirty jokes. :-)
Hello and welcome. This website should keep you busy for a while and is a good reference. http://www.atheistsites.net/#GW
I enjoy tracking the evidence for ancient history (way beyond 6,000 years ago) and organizing it in a progressive timeline, so if your interested in what was happening during a certain time period, let me know. K
Thanks for mentioning that website Kent.
Congratulations Erxomai for making the most important decision you can in your life. I'm glad to see that you're free, and it gives me hope that some of my family members too can join the world and see reality, albeit as late bloomers. I understand that you're going through a period in your life where you realize that you wasted years and years chasing delusions. That can be soul-crushing, and I know what it's like. I've been there. Welcome to the world, and thanks for joining us.
Creationist apostates are always welcome. I'm sure you have much to offer.
Welcome to reason. I am a long time atheist, but only recently found that there were so many others out there. I am grateful for the internet as a way for us to meet and exchange ideas. There were times when I felt very isolated in my lack of belief. This site, and the others out there, really help to see that the atheist community is larger than I had believed. And it seems to be expanding rather rapidly.
You all got on this boat for different reasons, but you all come to the same place.
-- Captain Malcolm Reynolds
I really think that's how it is. Our individual histories are as disparate and different as each of us are. We have all manner of histories, backgrounds, and experiences. In multiple ways, we couldn't be more different ... and yet, here we are, all atheists. All of us have rejected the idea of a god or gods, because for whatever reason, it simply made no sense to us. Even though we may not have all the answers, that was better than assuming an answer which was so unsatisfying, so incredible and unlikely that there was no way we could embrace it or even consider it. So we didn't.
It is never too late to learn you were born right the first time. Consider yourself fortunate that you figured that out on your own.
From here on out, it is fun, fascination, and enlightenment
Welcome Erx. I come from a similiar background (minus the pastor part),although there are many, many, in my fundie family. I'm sure you'll like it here. Unlike you, I always had my doubts, but continued to go to church and pretend to be christian, until I openly came out atheist to my family over ten years ago.
I left the last constraints of religion years ago and, with it, any guilt or fear of anyones god or hell. I'm satisfied with my choice and only miss the sense of community that came with religion. AN helps with that.
Welcome Erxomai! I escaped from my fundy Dutch background when I was about twenty. I still have the emotional issues too, and the feeling that I can never make up for the lost years, the bad treatment and the inadequate education I got, But it's wonderful to learn and never be forced to stop asking questions.
Hi Erxo! Welcome to AN! I feel you on the "lack of foundation education" bit. As I have been coming out of the Adventist church for the past few years, I've read everything from Hawking and Gould to Dawkins and Grayling, and yet I still get caught up on simple things every day. I realized just this week that I didn't actually know what a "tree" was! At least, not in a biological sense. I went to religious schools grades 1-12, and somehow, that got missed. But it's certainly gotten better, and I feel much more comfortable in the world now that I know so much more about it. :)
Thanks for sharing your story, and thanks for being brave enough to leave it all behind. I can't imagine how much harder it would have been for a minister than it was for me. I'm super glad to see you here, and can't wait to hear what you have to add to the conversation.