Tuesday, September 27, 2005                                                                                       View Comments

Intelligent Design

From a friend of Ex-C ~

Hi everybody,

The subject of Intelligent Design has come up a lot, so I thought I'd share this with you. I recently got into an argument, or debate with a Christian apologist called Kyle Butt. What happened was this: I read this debate:

http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/frank_zindler/morris-zindler.html

which was between Zindler (an atheist) and Morris (a creationist) about whether or not Noah's Flood and Ark were real.

Then I read this article, written by Kyle Butt:

http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/1855

in which Mr. Butt took a few lines out of the debate and twisted them around to blame atheists for being arrogant. Butt said Zindler said he could make a better Universe than God, and that this was arrogance typical of these unholy atheists. Shock horror! What Zindler actually said was, "If I were God I could have done better". I wrote to point this out, and we started debating it. He started off by sending me the following three articles designed to prove the existence of God:

http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/269

http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2518

http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/271

Their basic arguments are:

(First one) God is the only possible explanation for the existence of the Universe

(Second one) The Universe shows evidence of design (because it's so beautiful and complicated and all works together so well), therefore it must have been designed by an entity which we could call God.

(Third one) Theism is the only satisfactory ethical justification for the meaning of life (proceeds to list alternatives and debunk them).

My idea is to poke holes in the logic in all of these. It's the first time I've been in a debate, but if that's the calibre of the material offered (check the articles and I'm sure you'll see what I mean) it shouldn't be too difficult. Some of the points I'm thinking of making are:

* The first article: Just because we don't know where the Universe comes from, does that follow that it was God who made it? And, by the way, if it was designed (how, and from what, and by what method?) how do you know the designer is still alive?

* The second article: The universe is like it is because it's evolved to be that way. Don't go trying to impress us with a lot of nonsense about how fortunate it is that the Earth is just the right distance from the sun to support life. It could have turned out otherwise and, if you look at the some of the trillions of other planets in the Universe, you can see that it did.

* The second article: It also doesn't impress us when you say things like, "Gosh, isn't it amazing that the earth's atmosphere is just right for us to breathe? Surely that CAN'T be a coincidence!" Look, if the earth's atmosphere had been methane then we would have evolved to breathe methane. Or not at all (see argument above)

* The third article: Look, criticise moral and ethical systems all you want. It still doesn't prove God has to exist just because you want him to!

In addition, in response to the articles in general:

* How exactly do you make the leap from a deity to the God of the Bible?

* Why bother looking for evidence of God's existence like Sherlock Holmes examining footprints and match ends? If God IS an all-powerful, all-knowing deity who exists, why not just ask him to part a sea or two for us? (What do you mean it doesn't work that way? Have things changed since the Bible was written?)

* And on that subject: How come God doesn't do miracles any more? Or, to put it another way - how come as the number of scientists has gone up, miracle workers have gone down?

After six months spent reading through exchristian.net, Farrel Till's “The Skeptical Review” and other similar websites, I feel sure I'll have no trouble answering the nonsense in these articles. Yes, I know it sounds arrogant, but really! If you read through them, you'll see that a lot of the time they're preaching to the choir. And a lot of the time they're talking nonsense. For example (from the conclusion of the first article):

"Every material effect must have an adequate antecedent cause. The Universe is here; intelligent life is here; morality is here; love is here. What is their adequate antecedent cause? Since the effect never can precede, or be greater than the cause, it stands to reason that the cause of life must be a living Intelligence that Itself is both moral and loving. When the Bible records, "In the beginning, God..." it makes known to us just such a First Cause."

To be honest, that one sounds more like faith and wishful thinking than logic.

Thanks for reading through all that. If anybody wants to look through the articles and has any ideas about them, feel free to post them.

Monday, September 26, 2005                                                                                       View Comments

No such a thing as ex christian

Hi there, dear ex christians, I am glad I read my bible and I remember parts of it, as a fanatic ;) Anyhow I was reading your testimony, and you sound like a haters. I used to be worldly like you, but I would never return to the lifestyle I used to live.

Anyhow I just wanted to you to consider my opinion about being an ex christian*(which means christ like) based on the bible, 1 John 2:19 says:
"They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us."

So you think you were ex-christian, this is not true my friend, I think you only had an immaginary friend, and as you grew up , you did not feel like doing childish stuff. Anyhow I hope you enjoy your work, and website, I just want to warn you that believe it or not, a day of judgement will come, and your works might not stand the fire.

Chris
Male
Fort McMurray
AB
Canada
21
United Pentecostal Church - Oneness movement
Saint of God
God choose me
Email: sinhron@yahoo.com

Wednesday, September 21, 2005                                                                                       View Comments

Just wanted to say hello

I know this is a site for exchristians but I'm an exmuslim and I have to say I have enjoyed reading the posts here over the last few days. There are some exmuslim sites but none are as good as this.

I come from a moderate Muslim family and was born and raised here in America. I was very religious growing up, praying five times a day and fasting at Ramadan. I was raised in a tolerant household and had gay, Jewish and female friends. My parents taught me to always respect others. My mother and sister didn't cover up.

When I was 15 I decided to read the Koran and the Hadiths (the sayings attributed to Mohammed). Like many of you who read the Bible and were disgusted, I too was shocked by some of what I read. The Koran had some bad stuff but the Hadiths were the worst. There was also a lot of contradiction. For example, Mohammed condoned wife beating and also condemned wife beating.

I loved and respected Mohammed and Islam when I was growing up. I didn't know what to think. I either had to justify and explain away the bad stuff (which is what good Muslims do) or accept it (and become an a$$hole which is the only way to describe observant Muslims). I don't know if Mohammed was a bad man or if he was a good man who had false sayings attributed to him after his death. But really it doesn't matter. Even if he didn't say bad things (such as the angels will curse a woman if she refuses sex to her husband) many people believe he did, therefore they can justify doing bad things believing they have God's and the Prophet's approval.

I just couldn't accept Islam anymore. I did read the Bible and considered Christianity but I also thought the Bible was shocking and the whole virgin birth and trinity thing is just too absurd to believe. And there are so many Christian denominations. What's with that? Now I believe in God and that's it. I don't believe in prophets, saviors and holy books.

My parents are very upset but they still accept me. My mother cried for days after I told her I no longer considered myself Muslim. They blame Al Qaeda for my loss of faith, because they have given Islam such a bad name. I haven't told them I have doctrinal problems. I let them believe what makes them feel better.

I have told my younger sister my views and she no longer believes either but she's afraid to tell my parents because she knows it will completely break their hearts. I'm away at college, so it's easier for me. She's 17 and still at home.

I know what all you have gone through. First the guilt and confusion. Then fear of how family and friends will react and of course rejection from some. Then the anger kicks in because you realise you devoted a lot of time to something that is nonsense. You are angry at yourself for ever believing in it.

Good luck to all of you and for new exchristians, stay strong. It's hard at first but worth it when you finally become free from religious faith.

Faruk

Thursday, September 08, 2005                                                                                       View Comments

RACISM AND LAMPOONING THE VICTIMS OF HURRICANE KATRINA ON PASTORS.COM

Forgive me for the loooong letter but it is important. Would someone from your group PLEASE post something about this. My editing is terrible and you probably need to look at the site for yourself but something needs to be said on your site about the horrible things the religious right is saying about victims of Katrina.

I think America needs to know that on Rick Warren's pastors.com website that there are pastors there making JOKES about the New Orleans victims and some of the worst jokes are coming from the website moderators!

Rick Warren is the Right Wing Minister that has the best seller "The Purpose Driven Life" and is appearing all over the place and was just on tv.

The website is a forum to introduce pastors to HIS products and get them to buy them. He has a huge forum that has many pastors on there and the forum is run by his own people. The jokes are demeaning to blacks and the poor and I even contacted Josh Warren (Rick Warren's son?) and was given the cold shoulder. The coarse jokes against blacks, gays, liberals and other minorities continues to go on every day and the WARRENS KNOW IT.

The forum was open to the public for years but recently went to being one that you need to sign up for. All you need is a user ID and you are in. The WORST posts are in the CURRENT EVENTS section.

In the topic: What Would You Do With New Orleans?

A question about what you would do with New Orleans now,
THE MODERATOR of the site posted,

"Fishing should be good there with all the submerged structures."

He was making fun of the houses that had been destroyed!

One Pastor quickly responded,

"And all the sewage and toxic chemicals. The fish might grow bigger."

Other pastors poked fun as well.

One said, Give it back to the French.

One said, use it as a paintball park!

Another Pastor said to, Burn it all, and then said it was his yankee talk coming out!

Still another Pastor responded,

"Evacuate it, leave it as is for the looters to stay wallowing in their mud; they seem to be having fun.
Build elsewhere for the decent folks and don't waste more tax $ on "land Titanic 2".


3) They are DEFENDING the use of the word REFUGEE to describe victims of the hurricane on the forum:

In the topic:

"Use of Word 'Refugee' Stirs Race Debate in hurricane aftermath"

2)In the forum topic: NEW ORLEANS FLASHBACK: OFFICALS WARNED RESIDENTS 'YOU'LL BE ON YOUR OWN'

One Pastor wrote in response about posting warnings:

"You know, they should have printed this at the bottom of one of those go cups you get at the bars on Bourbon Street. Then someone might have read it."


3) In the topic: "Sean Penn at it again. How Stupid can one man be":

They all lampooned Sean Penn and one of the regulars refered to him as a "freak."

4) In the topic: New Orleans City Council President: "Maybe God's Going To Cleanse Us"


One regular posted:

"They want God now, but haven't wanted Him (at least in the true biblical sense) for many, many decades"

5)WORST OF ALL: Blatant racism and class defamation going on in this one by THE website moderator.

In the topic he started:

TOPIC: "These are my kind of men in New Orleans"

He gloats over those who are in their houses and plan to shoot people and responds:

"I wonder how we can ship those guys some more gas and ammo?" This is THE HEAD MODERATOR SAYING THIS!

And when someone comments about his statement he replies:

"I thought about the women and children thing, too. From the description in the article, it seems to be a nicer neighborhood, so they probably had enough sense to get their families out."

And then he later adds:

" No, that's just a fact. There wasn't anyone wearing polo shirts looting and raping."

When I tried to counter his shocking and unbelievable comment the MODERATOR replied

"It's not classism. It's not being mean, either. It's a reality. Politically incorrect, yet a reality. What do you reckon the percentages were "polo shirt" owning looters vs. non? If you don't admit the problem, you're not gonna be very helpful in fixing it."

You can find the above comments in the topic:

Let the Chastening begin.


In the topic:

Martial Law Declared in New Orleans

THE MODERATOR posted

"They should declare Martial Law at least once a year anyhow - usually in the lead up to Easter Sunday."


Rick Warren has taken the Limelight as usual and has been on Larry King and Fox recently talking about the hurricane. The truth needs to get out what HIS OWN WEBSITE is saying!! He has moderators who have been warned about this before who simply ban those who disagree with them. Rick Warren's own family oversees the forum.

I want you to get the word out about this. There are people there who are dying slowly and there are right wing Pastors and leaders in Rick Warrens Purpose Driven Life organization who see it as an opportunity to rake in money, steal the limelight and make racist and class related jokes about those suffering. If we are going to rebuke Mrs. Bush over ONE saying, then Rick Warren needs to be rebuked for what are YEARS worth of crude and racist comments on HIS site.

Sorry for the long email.


Sincerely,
JM

Saturday, September 03, 2005                                                                                       View Comments

This was "God's Judgment" on New Orleans

With the recent tragedy of Hurricane Katrina on New Orleans and other parts of the U.S. I can just imagine how so many Fundies are saying right now that this was "God's Judgment" on New Orleans for all of its debauchery, hedonistic parties, breast exposing, and voodoo practicing. Sure they might not come right out and say it in front of non-believers, but they're saying it. They're programmed to think this way, so of course they are saying it and Amening it to themselves.

Now as an ex-christian I look upon such disasters from a totally different perspective. Such a heart-wrenching event as this does not happen because of any evil in New Orleans, but rather to bring love and compassion out of all and to bring that compassion to them practically. Instead of sitting back in some pew or padded chair and criticizing New Orleans of evil, pronouncing judgment, shouting Amen and then go out to a buffet and stuff ones face, everyone should be moved in love for these poor people to face such a travesty. Love and not judgment, compassion and not condemnation, positivity and not negativity should be everyone's heart for all the victims of Katrina.

Its funny, now, as an ex-christian, even though I no longer believe in Jesus Christ, I feel more like what a Christian ought to be than I ever was as a Christian. Christians are supposed to be the kindest, the most loving, the most compassionate, the most giving of any people in the world, but as we all know from experience it is mainly the opposite. Cruel, fearful, condemning, judgmental, intolerant, dogmatic and self-righteous are the "fruits" of most Christians in their hearts. Sure they are masters of making it seem like they "care" for such victims of Katrina and the Tsunami and praying for their "salvation" but in reality they are just as destitute and poor inside as the victims are in their outward circumstances. This is one of the reasons why I could no longer be a Christian. It made me, along with mostly all other Christians that I've ever known, into a cold, critical, judgmental, self-righteously negative person. I was a better "Christian" before I ever became a Christian if you know what I mean.

As ex-christians I know that we can be looked upon as critical and unloving from the viewpoint of those still in the vices of mind control Christianity, but exposing the truth and the "fruits" of Christianity is not being "bitter" or "damaged" as many fundies have called us. Regaining our common sense, our intuition, and our minds and being truthful about it is not being bitter or "hurt". We can show more love and compassion now than mostly any fundie ever can. Let's do what we can for the victims of Katrina and show the compassion that the religious can never show.

John Blatt
psychicevolution at yahoo dot com

Friday, September 02, 2005                                                                                       View Comments

A Question

Is there any ex-Chrisitan out there who is willing to conversate without the gobful of swearing that I have read on almost every posting on this site?

If so please could you, (without taking offense please) answer my question as to why is there so much hatred and adversity against Chrisitans/the Chrisitan faith?

Jasmin

You're an idiot!

Just took the opportunity to read your post:

Tim Simmons, one of the regular posters to this site, and the author of The Gospel Story Quiz and The Christian Origins Test, has created another scathing exploration of the interesting, irreconcilable, inconsistencies inherent in the so called infallible, inerrant Word of God!

(That's aie, yai, yai, yai, yai, yai, for those who speak in tongues.)

Thanks Tim!

(Click here to find out what God would do!)

Then come back here to make comments.


Comments? OK. You're an idiot. I don't care what you claim to have "discovered" in this life and now need to spread as "truth". Yours is meaningless opinion on the issues of life. You have nothing to offer humanity. When speaking to the Katrina tragedy, one of your sheep says "Our thoughts are with you." Now you tell me, what good is that, that we "think" about someone in the midst of disaster?

Now go on in your ridicule of prayer, idiot, because the opinions of idiots are irrelevant anyway.

Don