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  • Dan F
  • Jacksonville, OR
  • United States

TEDCRED 50+

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What prompted you to become an atheist?

How did it happen, all at once, or in steps? Was it a departure from how you were raised? Is this position firm, and if so why? Do you think atheism deserves more credit and respect regarding legal matters and other aspects of government? Agnostics are also invited to comment.

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  • Dec 5 2011: Hello Folks,
    I am what some call a "recovering Catholic", but I am an Atheist, and with regard to the separation of church and State, I'm certain I'd be considered a rather Militant Atheist by those that believe in gods. In my earlier years I was being raised in a strict catholic home. When I was very young I believed whole heartedly in the dogma I was taught. This is probably true for 99% of the population regardless of the particular set of beliefs being "taught".
    Then, as I started attending school (St. Francis Xavier Catholic School), I began the long path that inexorably led to my becoming an Atheist. The mistake the school made, in my case at least, was an improper striking of the balance between relatively objective education and the standard indoctrination of guilt and terror that is still the hallmark of a "solid" catholic schooling and upbringing.
    In short, I eventually became able to think independently and for myself.
    I found the logical flaws in Religion to numerous to mention. First in catholicism and eventually all religions.
    Mind you, this took more than fifteen years to come to fruition, the catholic clergy are experts in the terrorizing of young children, as must be the teachers of ANY enduring religious denomination. Along with the logical flaws were my own observations of members of the catholic clerical hierarchy, my own "strict catholic" parents, and many other family members and friends of the family. And my main observation was this: THEY lived in a "Do-As-I-Say, NOT as-I-DO" universe. Because hypocrisy wasn't taught to me until I was in a Public Middle School, it wasn't until then that I realized what was going on, and my beliefs began to rapidly erode.
    Now, I have no problem with individuals that have a need to believe in some invisible god, goddess, or almighty platypus, with some obvious exceptions. The fanatical fundamentalists from within America and without, need to be rounded up and brought together to slaughter ...Continued...

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