The “Dear Atheist” Letters


Dear Atheist,

For all of you who were religious before you turned to atheism, why do you believe there is no God? Oh, you may back it up with current facts, but something started you on this path before the facts came into play. Maybe religion left a bad taste in your mouth. Maybe someone did something to you. Maybe God didn’t come through for you like you wanted him to. Whatever formed your opinion about God, scientific evidence probably didn’t play a huge role in it. And all this talk about God being a totalitarian, or asking unreasonable human sacrifice from Abraham, or not being the God we think he is doesn’t back up your point. It just reveals your hurt.

Sincerely,
Theist

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8 thoughts on “The “Dear Atheist” Letters

  1. “For all of you who were religious before you turned to atheism,…”
    You do realize we were all “atheists” before we turned religious, don’t you?

    “…why do you believe there is no God?”
    You are putting words in my mouth. From my perspective, it’s not that I “believe there is no God”, but that I “don’t believe there is a god”. A subtle difference perhaps.

    “Oh, you may back it up with current facts, but something started you on this path before the facts came into play.”
    For many of us, we just came to the realization that our faith was unsustainable.

    “Maybe religion left a bad taste in your mouth.”
    What does that mean?

    “Maybe someone did something to you.”
    No, not me personally.

    “Maybe God didn’t come through for you like you wanted him to.”
    Yes. “The non existent and the invisible often look very much alike”. You see, he, God that is, NEVER came through. No evidence during my 25 years as a believer, that the God of the bible had any supernatural influence in my life, or in the lives of a single believer I had contact with.

    “Whatever formed your opinion about God, scientific evidence probably didn’t play a huge role in it.”
    You are correct. But later, after doing a lot of reading, scientific evidence played a huge role in forming my view of the bible.

    “And all this talk about God being a totalitarian, or asking unreasonable human sacrifice from Abraham, or not being the God we think he is doesn’t back up your point. It just reveals your hurt.”
    Some may have been hurt in their religious experience. I was not. But what’s your point? People have been hurt. Does that bolster the point of what ever you are trying to say in this post?

    Here is a sampling of my experience –
    http://i-smell-smoke.blogspot.com/2007_07_22_archive.html

  2. I’m not bolstering a point of my own. These are things I have seen in others. Hurt sometimes drives people’s beliefs. As for God never coming through for you, I can’t speak to that effect. I don’t answer for God and he doesn’t explain himself to me. What I do know is how God deals with me in my life, and I am not exempt from the hurt and painful events of this world. God is not my cheat code to life. I don’t have special treatment because I believe in him. Who am I to demand that he take my Aunt’s cancer away, or stop my Uncle from dying in the hospital. He didn’t stop my parent’s divorce or give me super strength to deal with my own shortcomings. But he has used these things to help me to know him more. I have reacted with hurt and bitterness a few times, but I must admit to you that God doesn’t DO these things to me. I hurt myself most of the time. God’s influence in my life is in my inner man. The outside influence of this world and my own selfishness is as a stark mirror in the light of the inner man God has created inside of me. I come to realize that seeking after the world and following my own selfish needs is bondage and that seeking after God is freedom and life to my inner man.

  3. When I was very young, I believed in God the same way I believed in Santa Claus, because grownups told me about both of them as if they were real. I never felt the presence or saw any evidence of either of them, and by the time I was 10 or so, I didn’t believe in either one. They both seemed improbable from the beginning. I went on to be an altar boy, and continued to go to church because it was expected, but never had any faith to lose.

  4. Hi Daniel,

    If you would permit me to, I would like to ask you a similar question by modifying your original one: Why do you believe there is a God, and only one? Oh, you may back it up with current facts, but something started you on this path before the facts came into play. Whatever formed your opinion about God, scientific evidence probably didn’t play a huge role in it. And all this talk about God being just, or sparing Abraham from killing his son, or being the God you think he is doesn’t back up your point. It just reveals your faith.” What made you believe in the first place?

    Thanks.

    1. Faith was introduced to me by my parents. But, it wasn’t real in me until the point in time that I found God to be experientially true in my life. So to answer your question, it was experience that proved God to me. How do you get that experience? A leap of faith in him.

      1. This is what I think you are saying, but I don’t want to put words in your mouth. Please clarify for me. Actual events occurred that proved to you that God existed, at which point you began to believe that he existed. But you believe that those events would not have occurred unless you already had believed that he existed? Or that they would not have meant the same thing to you if you didn’t already believe that he existed?

        Thanks.

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