Before I Deconverted: Ministers As Powerful Role Models

To commemorate my 12th year anniversary of leaving Christianity, I am finally getting around to chronicling my Christian youth and my deconversion from biographical and philosophical perspectives. In my first post I described being a Christian kid and talked a bit about Christian camp. In this post, I explore the powerful influence upon who I [Read More...]

Before I Deconverted: My Christian Childhood

12 years ago today, on October 30, 1999 as a 21 year old college junior majoring in philosophy and minoring in religion at religiously and politically super-conservative Grove City College, I stopped being a Christian. Below the fold, for those interested in these sorts of narratives, is the first installment of a series of posts [Read More...]

A Debate About The Wisdom of Trying To Deconvert People

Jaime: So I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how best to debate the existence of God with religious believers… Kelly: Why would you do that? Jaime: Do what? Kelly: Debate the existence of God with religious believers. What’s the point in that? Jaime: What do you mean, “what’s the point?” We live in the [Read More...]

Both Refute The Best Counter-Arguments YOU Can Think Up And Create Gestalt Shifts (Tip 8 of 10 For Reaching Out To Religious Believers)

Top Ten Tips For Reaching Out To Religious Believers 1. Don’t Call Religious Believers Stupid. 2. Make Believers Stay on Topic During Debates. 3. Don’t Tell Religious Believers What They “Really Believe”. 4. Clarify What Kinds of Evidence Warrant What Kinds of Beliefs. 5. Help Break The Spell Of Religious Reverence. 6. Don’t Demonize Religious [Read More...]

Don't Demonize Religious People's Motives, Focus On Their Objective Harms (Tip 6 of 10 For Reaching Out To Religious Believers)

1. Don’t Call Religious Believers Stupid. 2. Make Believers Stay on Topic During Debates. 3. Don’t Tell Religious Believers What They “Really Believe”. 4. Clarify What Kinds of Evidence Warrant What Kinds of Beliefs. 5. Help Break The Spell Of Religious Reverence.  6. Don’t Demonize Religious People’s Motives, Focus On Their Objective Harms Sometimes religion [Read More...]

Clarify What Kinds of Evidence Warrant What Kinds of Beliefs (Tip 4 of 10 For Reaching Out To Religious People)

Top Ten Tips For Reaching Out To Religious Believers 1. Don’t Call Religious Believers Stupid. 2. Make Believers Stay on Topic During Debates. 3. Don’t Tell Religious Believers What They “Really Believe”. 4. Clarify What Kinds of Evidence Warrant What Kinds of Beliefs. Many theists love to argue for the necessity of a generic “source [Read More...]

Don't Tell Religious Believers What They "Really Believe" (Tip 3 of 10 For Reaching Out To Christians)

Top Ten Tips For Reaching Out To Religious Believers 1. Don’t Call Religious Believers Stupid. 2. Make Believers Stay on Topic During Debates. 3. Don’t Tell Religious Believers What They “Really Believe”. All beliefs imply other beliefs. Some things religious believers happily assert as true have possible implications which are dark, disturbing, foolish, and/or in [Read More...]

Make Believers Stay On Topic During Debates (Tip 2 of 10 for Reaching Out To Religious Believers)

Top Ten Tips For Reaching Out To Religious Believers: 1. Don’t Call Religious Believers Stupid. 2. Make Believers Stay on Topic During Debates. Religious believers debating atheists often have a machine gun style of shooting arguments our way. “How could everything just come from nothing? You really think this is all there is? How can [Read More...]

Don't Call Religious Believers Stupid (Tip 1 of 10 For Reaching Out To Religious Believers)

Back in February, I wrote my Top 10 Tips For Reaching Out To Atheists, designed to help Christians (and other religious people) engage atheists in ways that are respectful to them and honest with them and with themselves, and therefore hopefully fruitful for both sides. In a series of posts (fully listed at the end [Read More...]

Attention Religious Believers, THIS Is What It's Like For Atheists Reading Your Holy Books:

Hank offers a brilliant analogy: Say you’ve picked out a private kindergarten for your little girl, and you’ve gone down to take a look at the place to check on a last few details. During the hourlong tour and consultation, you ask “What are the classroom rules here at Bronfield Academy? What will be expected [Read More...]