The second presentation of trinitarian Christian beliefs may or may not appear any less ridiculous than the first, depending on who's reading it!
Joan, your discussion caught my interest and reminded me of a discussion I might start.
The title I'm thinking of would seem to leave an opening for uncommitted atheists to return to belief:
"I didn't reject God; I rejected the god I learned of in Catholic schools."
I would explain with some personal history, hoping to encourage others to do the same. Summarizing my history:
"I found that when I'd rejected the Catholic god I had also rejected the one with the capitalized name."
Somewhere in the OP I would say that when xians don't try to recruit me, I tell them that if I hadn't gone to Catholic schools I might still believe a god exists.
Metaphorically, I don't kick crutches out from under people who need walking aids.
I don't think I wrote “Jewish zombie.” I may have shared a message with that reference. However, I am not the only one harmed by religious principles. I have no reason to respect nor hold Jesus or any other person from the Neolithic Era in high regard. The history of religious domination, exploitation and manipulation throughout history overwhelms me. Perhaps your life has not been so cruelly impacted. Don't presume that others have had such a benevolent experience as you.
Sidney, you offer me a wonderful challenge to defend my position, although it is not up to me to instruct you, it is up to me to express my thoughts and reflect on my understanding.
First of all, I grew up in a violent home, I married into a violent home. I travelled to 32 nations of the world talking to women about their lives, I worked for 20 years teaching in a community college, at a boys ranch where the court placed delinquent boys, in prisons, in battered women's shelters, and with abused children. I lived in many different places, including my small home town of Tekoa, WA, and Spokane, Seattle, Tacoma, and in military housing for 20 years from Alaska, Washington, DC, and several places in Texas, So, you see, I do not speak from a provincial point of view.
Now, as to my conclusions, these are based in research I completed at the undergraduate level, looking specifically at psychology and research with rats. I completed a master's degree and was awarded an honor for best master's thesis, "Toward a Theory Of Family Violence, Its Antecedents, Treatment and Prevention". I completed my doctoral dissertation entitled, "A Splendid Heresy".
Now, to my findings. The overwhelming conclusion was that Abrahamic faiths, including Judaism, Christianity and Islam sanction the second class status of women and children and even though men no longer can murder their wives and childlren without penalty, men continue to have a "dominator" mentality. This attitude is harmful to not only children and women, it is also harmful to men.
I coined the term, "The Passive Gospel" in which women, in their secondary role hear, learn and must submit to male domination even if the man is a bully and a thug. It involves yielding, praying, obeying, submitting, acquiescing, crucifying oneself and rejoicing in self-crucifixion.
Working with children, women, men, young, old, professional, uneducated, free and prisoners, they all suffer living under the yoke of the dominator society. If you want more information about that, read "The Chalice and the Blade Our History, Our Future". By Riane Eisler.
You are quite correct to say that Jesus did not live during the New Stone Age. He was a Jew, was raised as a Jew and held many of the beliefs of the Jews. He is reputed to have brought a new gospel, but quite frankly, a kinder, gentler dominator is not much better than the mean spirited one.
To deny that people suffer under Abrahamic beliefs is naive and just simply uninformed. Delusions, whether out of the Neolithic Age, or the time of Jesus, or out of modern religious beliefs, continue to harm, not enrich people's lives. Quite frankly, I experience your attitude as belittling, degrading, insulting and of little interest to me. I have heard your comments before and find them uninformed.
Joan, thank you for stating so clearly the importance of each person's expressing her/his own thoughts. I'm glad you escaped and made so much of your life. My older sister escaped an abusive husband and also worked in a battered woman's shelter.
Your story reminded me that the personal is political and always has been.
In old England, circa the 1100s, a king's council reminded barons that serfs had rights: they were serfs to serve, not to be slain.
In a more recent England, James I (of King James Bible infamy) announced the divine right of kings (to rule as they wished). One of his lackeys explained: when a king was cruel, the people had a right to pray for him to change his ways.
The struggle continues.
Joan...I am truly impressed by the breadth of your experience and by your qualifications to discuss religion's evils. Couple comments:
(1) I reserve a healthy portion of doubt as to whether Jesus even existed. His story is so similar to that of so many other semi-divine characters in that time and place.
(2) More evidence that religion is (in fact, has to be) humorless: the "zombie" comparison is half-snide, half philosophical. How exactly is the risen Jesus different from any other member of the walking dead? Is it that he doesn't want to eat human brains?