You can be skeptical and friendly at the same time.
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Hemant Mehta is the chair of Foundation Beyond Belief and a high school math teacher in the suburbs of Chicago. He began writing the Friendly Atheist blog in 2006. His latest book is called The Young Atheist's Survival Guide.
Jehovah’s Witnesses might be a good fit, though.
This was good but I think it would have been funnier if the pig had held out the bowl and said, “Ramen?”
Last time I interacted with the local Mormons one of the young men told me I should just kill myself. The irony was I had a loaded firearm on my side. It was concealed but they never understood why I started laughing when he made the comment.
And here I thought Mormons were really, really nice!
I had a Mormon tell me that my broken arm would never have happened if I had simply trusted in God. I nearly smacked him with my cast.
“Well now you have a broken nose, where was your god, huh?”
(BTW, the “really, really nice” thing is from a song on ‘The Book of Mormon’ soundtrack)
When I was in college I was home on break and some guys in white shirts and black pants came knocking on my parents’ door one morning when I was home alone; not sure if they were Mormon or JW. I just told them I already had a church (which at the time was still technically true, though by then I only went on holidays) and they went away. Once or twice I’ve had people from the Agape church (don’t know much about them) ring my bell but I just told them I wasn’t interested and closed the door. While it sounds like it could be fun I’m really not interested in engaging them. Sometimes I wish I was the type to argue, though.
White shirts and ties with black name badges are generally Mormons.
I get the occasional mormon or two visiting. Big beaming smiles and a programmed wholesome goodness. The most amazing thing is, that they actually seem to really believe the nonsense they trot out. People can’t really be that silly, can they?
I invited them in at one point, out of a combination of boredom and depression. The resulting pitch was filled with numerous logical fallacies and high pressure sales techniques.
However amazing it sounds, they do.
That is why education and blogs like this are so important.
I am a Mormon; I have quite a lot of education, Mormons in general tend to be highly educated and to be more active in the faith if they are highly educated then if they are not.
Then educate yourself further.
What field of study, precisely, do you think I should educate myself further in? Also, what qualifications do you have to say to educate myself further?
JohnH writes, “I am a Mormon; I
have quite a lot of education, Mormons in general tend
to be highly educated and to be more active in the faith if they are
highly educated then [sic] if they are not”; PietPuk writes, “Then
educate yourself further”; and JohnH asks, “What field of study,
precisely, do you think I should educate myself further in?” JohnH
should examine the criticisms leveled by historians at The Book of Mormon, including criticisms of Joseph Smith, Jr.’s claims about it. For starters, he should read these articles in Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia: (1) Book of Mormon
(see the section called “Historical Authenticity”), (2) Historical authenticity
of the Book of Mormon, (3) Criticism of the Book of Mormon, (4) Archaeology and the Book of Mormon, (5) Genetics and the Book of Mormon, (6) Linguistics and the Book of
Mormon, (7) Origin of the Book of Mormon, (8) Plates of Nephi, and (9) Book of Mormon anachronisms. Then he should follow all the bibliographical references in those articles. Joseph Smith, Jr. claimed that (1) The Book of Mormon
was his English translation
[which has the ring of the English of the King James Version of the
Christian Bible...] of a text in Reformed Egyptian [a variety of
Egyptian recognized by no serious student of the Egyptian language...],
that (2) he had found the text in Reformed Egyptian on gold plates, the Plates of Nephi
(as he called them), on a hill outside Palmyra, New York [presumably,
Smith's inspiration for that part of his story was the Jewish claim that
Moses received the Pentateuch from God on Mount Sinai], (3) the location of the plates had been revealed to him by the angel Moroni,
(4) after finishing the translation, he returned the plates to the
angel, and (5) the angel then went back to Heaven. Anyone could make up
such a story, claim that all the evidence for it is no longer available
for public examination [how convenient for Smith that the plates and
the angel have "disappeared"], and market his original text as his
translation of a sacred work (Wikipedia rightly captions its facsimile
reproduction of a page of Smith’s alleged translation “A page from the original manuscript of the Book of Mormon”).
For an almost identical example (“almost,” because Selbourne does not
claim that the alleged original text is sacred), see the preliminary
version of David L. Gold’s A Fresh
Essay on Duty and Responsibility: Evidence Suggesting that the Alleged
“Original Manuscript” of Which a Purported “Translation” Appeared in
David Selbourne’s The City of Light: An Authentic Traveler’s Tale, Is Either a Nineteenth- or Twentieth-Century Fake, or, More Likely, Has Never Existed (posted in several parts at uwyo.edu/sward/davidlgold/selbourne-).
JohnH may have “quite a lot of education” but he has not yet examined
the evaluations based on the standards of evidence current among
non-Mormon historians of the empirical truthfulness of Joseph Smith,
I had a job where I spent an absurd amount of time just sitting around (and then mad activity!!!) and then sitting around. One guy there was a Mormon studying up for his mission. He’d talk any and everyone’s ear off. I agreed to debate him but asked that he agree to one condition – reality exists.
Many of his planned arguments relied on doubting reality and then saying that since you doubt reality why shouldn’t the supernatural be given the same level of credence? Every time he did that I reminded him of the one condition and how he was assuming that there was a problem with reality.
Again, I am a Mormon and have never met a Mormon that says that reality doesn’t exist. I can potentially see why someone might try and argue that way but would be quite happy to argue with them using our scriptures.
Rat is good, but Danny Donkey is my hero.
St. Peter: what good did you do in your life to get in to heaven?
Danny: I sat on the couch in my underwear, and drank beer.
St. Peter: hmmm…I don’t think that qualifies
Danny: look! behind you! [Jumps pearly gates]
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