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General Discussion
Is Christianity An Obsession?

I am curious to the ACA's purpose.

What are you people "really" about? What is your goal? If this is true: "Promoting Positive Atheism..." Then what is so fruitful about your organization in the bashing of the world's greater and positive Christian religion, however heavily you regard it's human short-comings - as any organization will and may have, even yours? How are you building the community of Austin by this tireless chopping at a tree that has produced more positive fruit than any human organization in the history of the known world? <!Of coarse, you'd love to dig up dirt on the common "human" dynamic of Christianity.> This is typical, but I'm sure you people are sharper than this. Putting your positive efforts in the balance and comparing it to a local Christian church - would seem obvious that you people are a huddle of obsessed and vicious intellectual wolves snarling at everything that looks positive. I just want to know what's makes this organization less common than any other angry atheist club. What makes ACA so "positively atheistic" or even serviceably legitimate to the local community? Is there a real cause or is it just an elaborate club for after-college "spit at the preacher and make a score" fun?

Our main mission is education.

Since we're perhaps more familiar with the impact of your religion than you are, we view our role as trying to raise the awareness of the harm of Christianity and, more generally, belief without sufficient evidence. I would assert that Christianity is one of the most immoral belief systems that has ever been invented. Perhaps the most immoral feature of the religion is the the fact that believers don't seem to feel a sense of responsibility for the impact of the religion on others.

If you have concrete examples where we have said something inaccurate about your religion, then please present them. If you aren't able to do that then please understand that we will treat your post as a whine or "special pleading" for your cherished belief system.

Christians claim to be worshiping the author of morality, to be able to get instructions from that author at any time, to be directly guided through the "holy ghost", then why is it that we can find anything wrong with Christianity?

Greg said, "Then what is so fruitful about your organization in the bashing of the world's greater and positive Christian religion, however heavily you regard it's human short-comings - as any organization will and may have, even yours? How are you building the community of Austin by this tireless chopping at a tree that has produced more positive fruit than any human organization in the history of the known world?"

You must be joking-"positive fruit?" christ- insanity has inspired millions of murders, rapes, and wars-that is not positive. The Salem witch trials were pretty negative, too.

Greg said, "Putting your positive efforts in the balance and comparing it to a local Christian church - would seem obvious that you people are a huddle of obsessed and vicious intellectual wolves snarling at everything that looks positive."

I was walking down Guadalupe the other day and there was a huddle of homeless kids. I gave them some soda. I also made a huge salad for FNB to feed to the homeless-meanwhile, the UT Church of Christ and the Catholic Church and the Baptist Churches that lined the street stood as empty buildings doing absolutely nothing for anyone.(Unless you consider getting all dressed up on Sunday and handing some preacher 10% of your earnings "doing something charitable.") It seems to me you are the one with the obsession-we are not writing on christian message boards telling you your churches are worthless-you are on an atheist message board calling atheists names and telling us we shouldn't exist. This community exists FOR THE SUPPORT OF ATHEISTS, just as your christian churches exist for the support of Christians. If you don't like our fruit, stop shaking our tree!

Don said, "I would assert that Christianity is one of the most immoral belief systems that has ever been invented. Perhaps the most immoral feature of the religion is the the fact that believers don't seem to feel a sense of responsibility for the impact of the religion on others."

This statement is exactly the concrete inaccuracy of Christianity that I present and do challenge. : : Christianity has not and has never been an advocate for immorality but a beacon of reward for moral behavior and a guarantor of destruction for immoral behavior. Its testimonial, the Holy Bible, still the world's best seller, is highly tuned with universal and eternal due process unlike any other book ever written, because it still prods and curbs human law and human behavior. Thus, 'immoral' is hardly the word for such a large and positive influential organization, ever present and ever stronger than mere talk. You point at human fallacies and close your eyes, trying to deny the ever greater majority force under a greater good. Our impact on the world is intentional and intentional enough for you to notice that Jesus is indeed an obsession(or according to you - the greatest conspiracy in the world.) You should wonder why any other testimonial cannot compete.

Rational Greg,

You have disregarded most of what I said.

I agree that Christianity markets itself as moral. It's too bad you believe the marketing. The truth is not hard to find.

Please explain how the systematic killing and persecution of Jews for centuries (including the Holocaust) is an example of morality? Did you know that the anti-Semitism of Martin Luther became the blueprint for the Chrystal Night? What about the pedophile cover-up? What about the conquest of the Americas? Are you aware that Christian missionaries have killed far more people than they have converted? What about "witch" burnings? Indulgences? Fake holy relics? Televangelists? The faith-based charity scam? The suppression of study of the human body for centuries, stifling many potential medical advances for centuries? The burning of the library of Alexandria? The Crusades? I'm just scratching the surface.

I'm curious whether your church has taught you any of these things, or you just get marketing/indoctrination?

Again, Christians claim to be worshiping the author of morality, to be able to get instructions from that author at any time, to be directly guided through the "holy ghost", then why is it that we can find anything wrong with Christianity?

The Bible is a genocide manual. It's loaded with atrocities, contradictions, and utter bullshit. Tell me, do you support slavery?

I predict you will respond with a lame rationalization that exonerates your and other Christians' belief without evidence.

--Don

don

you say that christianity is immoral. but i have a few questions for you. have you ever seen an athiest hospital or an organization of atheist that travel to africa or a place in need of help. i havent. but i have seen christian hospitals and christian orginizations that help people. so how can you say christianity is immoral. if anything atheism is immoral. and all the things you have said in your post i havent been able to find on the inernet. so please tell me where you found all the information that you have posted. or you do not have evidence

Johnathan,

Look up "Gott Mit Uns", "On the Jews and their lies", "Pedophile priests", "Christian woman drowning her own children", "Pious Fraud", "Stem cell ban". That should get you started. You haven't found anything because you're lazy.

Christian's have a good marketing arm. Most charities are secular, but people don't advertise them as "atheist" or "humanist". They do charity. The Lance Armstrong foundation is run by an atheist. He just doesn't feel a need to advertise it. His focus is on cancer survival.

What charity do Christians do that doesn't advance their chances of going to heaven? If you're getting a reward, it isn't charity.

Also, read http://moses.creighton.edu/JRS/2005/2005-11.html . It shows how shorter lives, the murder rate, the teen suicide rate, teen pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and abortion are all positively correlated with religious belief. If Christianity is so damn wonderful, why can't they and their god solve these problems? Secular societies can. Atheist societies are correlated with higher education, intelligence, peace, and happiness.

don

all the things you told me to search up where about catholics not christians. hitler was catholic not christian. and all the other stuff you told me to search up is all catholic. all the catholics are the ones to blame for all the killings not christians. for example the dark ages the catholics killed christians. and the emperor nero kiled apostale paul and peter and nero was catholic. so this is a dumb argument. but one person i want you to search up is madalyn murray o'hair. did you know she stole millions of dollars. and she basically cursed her own son by never forgiving him. and her son said that she was one of the most evil people in the world. and america said that she was the most hated person in america. and this is the face for atheism. thats a great person to want to be like. you see atleast the face for christianity was a great man and never had a reputation for being evil. plus he is god but that is besides the point. now please dont try to change the subject and please reply to me. god bless

Johnathan,

Your post made me laugh.

Catholics are Christians. Protestantism and all of its branches broke off from Catholicism in the 14th and 15th century. If Catholics aren't Christians, then neither are Protestants or any of the other Protestant sects. They do seem to all have trouble getting their stories to agree. Look up "Protestant Reformation".

Hitler loved the writings of Martin Luther, especially "On the Jews and Their Lies", which advocated merciless persecution of the Jews. Hitler used Martin Luther's writings as a blueprint for Kristallnacht (look it up). He even began on Martin Luther's birthday as a tribute. Martin Luther himself is famous for inciting the Peasant's War, which killed thousands. Who is Martin Luther? The founder of Protestantism. It's his theology you probably practice.

More recently, the abstinence-only education (a mostly Protestant movement) has been credited by our own government in having unnecessarily doomed many people to death in Africa. See http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060405/pl_nm/aids_gao_dc_2 You can largely thank James Dobson and Franklin Graham for that bit of "Christian love". They have sabotaged programs that work and replaced them with programs where people have to convert to their religion in order not to die. Back home, these people did a big marketing effort to claim that they were helping Africans, when they actually were engineering the deaths of more than they helped.

Many churches you would call "Christian", such as John Hagee's and Ted Haggard have been actively involved in trying to orchestrate the apocalypse, a time when they believe that most of the people in the world will die and they will be washed to the next great world on a tidal wave of Jewish blood. Glory! Even if they don't cause it to happen, selling this sociopathic crap is a big business. Christians love it.

Please understand that you will never learn about your religion in church. They value your ignorance too much. You're easier to manipulate that way.

Madlyn Murray O'Hair's killer stole the money. Check your facts. She was hated because she didn't put up with bullshit and she was more intelligent that pretty much all of the religious nuts that tried to debate her.

I'm sorry that you spend so much of your time steeped in Christian lies. They have to lie to you because you wouldn't believe (and give money) if they told you the truth.

I believe I've answered your question on another thread. You have not responded to very much of what I've told you.

don

you made me laugh. catholics in the dark ages persecuted christians how come then there was a difference between catholics and christians. but now there isnt any difference. and the times of hitler baptist were getting jews out of europe. and infact i bet you dont know who is john wesley, john calvin, and all these other great men. they wanted no peace of the catholic church thats why they made methodist and calvanist. and all the other branches of calvanism. so before you make fun of me why dont you read your church history. because i have studied this even though i am only 14 years old.

You are showing an incredible ignorance of the history of your own religion. Christianity came out of The Holy Roman Empire and the first Church was the Catholic. The Pope, based in Rome, is the successor to Saint Peter (as most anyone knows) that Christ appointed Peter as the first head of His church. The first Catholic Church was founded on St. Peter. He therefore stands in what Catholicism calls the apostolic succession, an unbroken line back to Peter and has supreme authority. Popes can speak infallibly on matters of faith and morals but in practice do so rarely. I am Irish and I have a long history of Irish Catholic ancestry, and if the Pope isn't Christian nobody is. The first Church Christian Church in Rome is the Catholic Church. And I can't believe that you think that you could tell anyone anything about religion. Any atheist would be better at it. Every Christian Church came from that Church. The reason for branching off (starting other sects) is the same reason it happens today. When people within any religion decide that their interpretation is better they break off. They have done that since the beginning.

Archaeological exploration makes it possible for us to study ancient cultures. These ancient scrolls/ manuscripts are what actually make up the Bible. The Bible is made up of picked and chosen works from many different sources.

The Dead Sea Schrolls the records of religious events, important commentaries and chronicles by a sect of Essene scribes and scholars (Jews not Christians) writing in Judea for a hundred years up to 70 A.D. These scrolls have now been deciphered and nowhere is mention made of a new religion, a Messiah, a worker of miracles, a preaching to multitudes, a trial and crucifixion, nothing! All the scholars know this and only apologists deny it.

The Dead Sea Scrolls confirms Saul/Paul assisted Rome in the attack on Jerusalem. It would be pretty embarrassing for Christians if the major player in starting the "new religion" actually helped kill James (supposed brother Jesus) James was the head of the temple and a very important figure. These Jews didn't start a new religion. Even If Jesus was based on any Jew living at that time he wouldn't have started a new religion, and especially one that is based on Pagan myths, and Jesus was supposed to have been a Jew. They wanted to exalt the Jesus myth to be more important than James. Rome was at war with the Jews. It is known as the Jewish wars. The wars were over slavery and the Jews were opposing slavery. Christianity was invented so Rome could continue slavery. The Romans did not simply come to Judea in 70 CE to suppress a small uprising; they came to stop political dissidents for good. As anyone can see by the dates it is the history of things that happened long before Constantine deified Jesus and made Christianity the official religion of Rome. Constantine was a psychopath who murdered his wife and son.

The Dead Sea Scrolls prove that the practices that people regard as Christian innovations are not, for example the Lord's Prayer and the Lord's Supper, because they can be traced to the Qumrans. They go back at least one century before the birth of Christ. This sect was not Christian they were Jewish. The contents of the Dead Sea Scrolls are known among scholars, but are never preached to enlighten the common man. The Catholics were the first Christians, but as any Jew could tell you no Jew, including Jesus, would have followed that faith. And Jesus was supposed to be a Jew.

Constantine was never a Christian he was a pagan. "Constantine declared the "Sun's day" it was probably never called Sunday. Constantine elevated Christianity to the state religion of the Roman Empire and in doing so deified Jesus. Constantine deified Jesus, which was not all that unusual in those days. Julius Caesar deified by the Roman Senate 27 BCE -14 CE Reign of Emperor Augustus. Augustus was the first Roman ruler to be worshiped as a SON OF A GOD (divi filius), and the day of his birth was considered the beginning of his glad tidings or "gospel" for the world. This is common well-known history.

Constantine deified Jesus, which any historian or a scholar knows. They also know how common that was in Rome. Julius Caesar deified by the Roman Senate 27 BCE -14 CE Reign of Emperor Augustus. Augustus was the first Roman ruler to be worshiped as a son of a god (divi filius), and the day of his birth was considered the beginning of his glad tidings or "gospel" for the world.

The origin of Judaism: One Ugaritic text testifies that among the inhabitants of Ugarit, Yahweh was viewed as another son of El ( sm . bny . yw . ilt ) "The name of the son of god, Yahweh." All religion is nothing more than the rehashing of ancient superstitions.

They have found ancient writings that confirm the rehashing of myths in the bible, and deliberate misinterpretation produced ideas for revised creation myths like the one in Genesis. Some Jewish traditions of the first century B.C., however, identified Yahweh (Jehovah) with the serpent deity who accompanied the Mother in her garden. Sometimes she was Eve, sometimes her name was given as Nahemah, Naama, or Namrael, who gave birth to Eve and Adam without the help of any male, even the serpent.

linda

wow linda can you be any dumber?

the catholic church didnt exhist until 313 by constantine. so it is impossible that the catholic church named peter the first head of his church if there was no catholic church at that time. catholics think that what jesus believed was catholism. but they are wrong because acts and romans easily prove that to be wrong. but the actual name of catholic being used was not until 313. there goes your whole philosphy. you fool! saying i dont know my church history. why dont you find out what church history is before you say an idiotic statement. and for my proof is right here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_Catholic_Church

god bless.

Jonathan, You are ignorant, arrogant and simpleminded. Here are the facts, and I'm sure it's too long for you to read. It is very obvious that you have never read much. Most especially you are totally ignorant of any history and you know nothing of the origins of Christianity.

Constantine ordered the First Council of Nicaea in 325, a year after ending the civil war of 324 and emerging as the victor in the war of succession. This First Council of Nicaea was formed to oppose Arius who had challenged the deity of Jesus Christ. The result was the branding of Arianism as a heresy. Catholic Christianity, as opposed to other religious groups, became the official state religion of the Roman Empire on February 27, 380 through an edict issued by Emperor Theodosius I in Thessalonica and published in Constantinople. All cults, save Christianity, were prohibited in 391 by another edict of Theodosius I. Destruction of temples began immediately. When the Western Roman Empire ended with the abdication of Emperor Romulus Augustus in 476, Christianity survived it, with the Bishop of Rome as the dominant religious figure. Christianity did not become the official religion of Rome until long after the myth of Jesus and all the apostles were dead. Based on the (unknown and not an eyewitness to anything) Matthew 16:18 - "And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." This is the Roman Catholic position. They believe that the church through the pope is the "Vicar of Christ on earth" and the power of making binding decisions has been given to Peter and his successors. This notion did not gain prominence in church history until after the Bishop of Rome gained preeminence over other bishops. They base their doctrine on the wordplay between Peter (petros) and Rock (petra). They believe that in this passage Christ is installing Peter as the head of the Apostles.

Paul (based on the Jesus myth) and working for the Romans was the founder of Christianity as a new religion. Paul experiencing a vision of Jesus during a journey from Jerusalem to Damascus (Acts 9:1-19, 22:5-16, 26:12-18) about 33-35 AD. That means long after everyone was dead (Jesus and all the apostles). That was necessary to present the new religion to Pagans. Paul established his credibility by maintaining that Jesus spoke to him after he was raised to Heaven.

(2 Peter 3:16), and then he said that: "as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures." Peter was referring to the teachings of Paul. Peter was referring to untaught and unstable people?

The New Testament was established by the Council of Nicea in 325 C.E. and confirmed in Western churches in 397. However, the famous heretic, Marcion, originally conceived the idea for a New Testament. He formed the very first collection of the kind in 150 C.E. It included an abridged version of Luke and the majority of the Pauline epistles. Somewhere between the year 150 and 200 C.E. other books were added and the Bible took on a similar pattern to the text of today, however the Apocalypse of St. Peter was still in the canon. It is said to be lost, but a copy was discovered in Egypt at a later time, but no effort has been made to restore it in modern versions.

During its earliest years Christianity was a peaceful pagan (rustic) religion assuming its place among the many other pagan religions. Maria (Ma Rhea) was a form of the Goddess Cybele, Christ was a form of her Savior son, Attis, and Yahweh, the Father, a form of Zeus. Christianity came to replace the older pantheon as the state religion of Rome, and the original Roman religion faded; though many aspects of its hierarchy remain ingrained in Christian ritual and in Western traditions.

From 70 AD to about 140 AD, the Gospels of Mark, Matthew, Luke, and John appeared. They did not constitute the first Christian documents: the letters of Paul dated well before them. None of these were eyewitnesses of Jesus life, and nobody knows who wrote the Gospels. The names associated with them are only titles. Paul, Saul of Tarsus, coming to dominance in Christianity, brought a strict discipline that set the stage for later Christianity to become master of the Roman Empire. Not only did they persecute other pagans, murdering them in their temples and then burning their temples, but the same fate was meted out to dissident Christians, those not in accord with the teachings of Paul.

Baptism, originally a means to exorcise devils, became a dedication to their Lord. Saints replaced Greek heroes, goddesses, and gods often retaining the legends as well as the names. Christmas, set on December 25th, was the birthday of Jesus/Attis and the practice of a decorated pine tree, popular among the laity, was never addressed. It was, and is, a celebration of the death of Attis, the Gentle Shepherd, by castration and, after three days, his resurrection.

From their Jewish origin the Christians, pagan Jews, took Pesach, the Easter Festival, and created the anniversary of Christ's resurrection. Pentecost, which commemorated the giving of the Law to Moses on Sinai, became the pouring of the Holy Spirit (Sophia, the feminine aspect of God) on the Apostles. The church, although openly more hostile to Hellenism than to Judaism, became Hellenised because from the time of its origin it was a pagan adaptation of Judaism.

We are defending atheism and skepticism. We did always exist, but our history was erased, those who murdered people, and those despicable leaders of the church and acting upon the admonitions of Paul. Often the only proof of our existence is found in the inimical writings of our persecutors. This information is recorded in the archives of the Vatican. Even other Christian sects, now called heretical, fell under the onslaught of anti-libertine Christians.

Hellenized Judaism in the cities of the eastern Mediterranean fused a multiplicity of themes - Wisdom, Logos, Son of God, Son of Man, Redemptive Sacrifice and Messiah - into a universal saviour God.

Paul who spread the idea of Christianity to the gentiles, and as it appears in the New Testament, was little different from Christianity today. Nascent Christianity was a minority religion that spread from within Judiasm. If he existed at all Jesus would have been a Jew.

Until the arrival of Emperor Constantine Christians were a small minority because of their ``acts of faith '' against other religions; primarily intolerance and prejudice which led to demonstrations, vandalism, and attacks against anyone who refused to bend knee to their God. This was much like Christians today.

The early Christian movement, with Constantine as its champion, was relentless. The religion that sprung up around Paul was a religion that used the Roman government and a sword to dominate. It was not Christians under attack, as they lie. It is everyone else.

Historians agree that the triumph of Christianity over paganism and all other religions was violent and bloody, but to temper the necessity of presenting uncomfortable truths they "make claim" that Christianity was the first educative force in Europe. One of the biggest lies of Christianity, since it was nascent Christianity that destroyed the academic knowledge of pagans, who were the first educative force in Europe. After burning the Library of Alexandria, destroying the majority of writings and books by pagan scholars, (hiding a few away in church vaults), they exterminated anyone who was pagan; exemplified in the brutal murder of Hypatia. They plunged the world into a thousand years of darkness, the only knowledge remaining retained and hidden by the church. Only by the steadfastness of courageous scientists such as Galileo was the church forced to withdraw its influence over the lives of the people. The church fiercely opposed each step. The church fathers recognized clearly that learning and wisdom, truth in the classic meaning, were, as they still are, the eternal adversaries of faith and dogma.

Christianity is essentially a reflection of the worship of Attis, Osiris, Dionysos, Orpheus, and Adonis. All are built around the theme of a Savior-god who takes human form, teaches, suffers, dies, and rises again.

There are a plethora of writings and documents written near the time of the formation of Christianity. Held with equal historical authority to those in the canon, the only difference was that the selected writings were expected to raise fewer doubts among the faithful. Church authority for centuries proscribed common folk from reading the Bible, lest they lose their faith in doubt and confusion over the sacred texts. Jesus who emerges from all this is neither a paragon of virtue nor a simple philosopher, he is from the works of many hands over generations of pious reflection? The earliest works on the Christian godman were simple documents designed for liturgical use. The figure of Jesus had no discernible features, no true biography merely attributes befitting his messianic status, such as absolute assuredness and "authority" and the accompanying display of anger, irritation of one who expects to be obeyed. Each worthy tenet of a higher morality, every pithy statement of priestly wisdom, was coupled to his name to give sanction and assurance of its heavenly origin. Grant (Jesus, p180) "A cycle of lessons, or perhaps a manual for preachers, was drawn up for ecclesiastical usage, and it was upon this liturgical foundation that the Gospels were based."

Martin Luther, a German theologian and religious reformer initiated the Protestant Reformation and forever split Christianity from Catholicism. Protestant Christians so admire Martin Luther that he stands as a respected "Patron Saint" to their beliefs and morals. Unfortunately few popular books go into detail about Luther's hatred for Jews at all. Luther's 1543 book, "On the Jews and their lies" took Jewish hatred to a new level when he proposed to set fire to their synagogues and schools, to take away their homes, forbid them to pray or teach, or even to utter God's name. Luther wanted to "be rid of them" and requested that the government and ministers deal with the problem. He requested pastors and preachers to follow his example of issuing warnings against the Jews. He goes so far as to claim that "We are at fault in not slaying them" for avenging the death of Jesus Christ. Hitler's Nazi government in the 1930s and 40s fit Luther's desires. Luther's Jewish elimination rhetoric virtually matches the beliefs held by Hitler and much of the German populace in the 1930s.

William L. Shirer "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich" (very famous book) Martin Luther's teachings helped to perpetuate and indeed to sharpen the hopeless divisions not only between classes but also between the various dynastic and political groupings of the German people. It doomed for centuries the possibility of the unification of Germany."

In Mein Kampf, Hitler listed Martin Luther as one of the greatest reformers.

Linda, can you put this stuff on Wikipedia please with all the names and sources. I would especially like for the following information to be there, "The origin of Judaism: One Ugaritic text testifies that among the inhabitants of Ugarit, Yahweh was viewed as another son of El ( sm . bny . yw . ilt ) "The name of the son of god, Yahweh." At least put all your historic knowledge on IronChariots.org even if they allow your information on en.Wikipedia.org

Wikipedia is all right for those looking for the kind of information that is pretty well known. I do not find much of anything on Wikipedia of much interest. Especially anything that is new or scholarly work. I'm sure that people who read books and know about the latest finds do know about Ugarit. I wouldn't waste my time on Wikipedia and I don't doubt that Linda wouldn't either.

Jonathan,

The Catholicism is a branch of Christianity, just like Lutherans, Baptists, Pentecostals, etc. They are all Christians. I'm sorry you don't know these basic facts about the thing you spend so much time lying about.

Church founders are people who realize their parent religion is a lie, but don't have the guts to throw it all away. They just create a new version of the lie. That's why there are so many branches of Christianity. It's certainly not based on any sort of truth. It's just competing version of lies. There are something like 2000 versions of Christianity that make incompatible claims. Anybody can see it's nonsense. Why can't you?

Read about O'Hair here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madalyn_Murray_O%27Hair

She was a tireless advocate of reason and a defender of the US Constitution. The "stealing the money" thing was a lie told by Christians to discredit her. As I've explained many times, Christians' main talent is lying.

don

the catholic church supposably is part of christianity. but there beliefs are tottaly different. since you dont know church history ( and lie and tell me that i dont know church hitory). martin luther wrote 100 hundred things the catholics were doing wrong. so he made the lutheran church which is very much like the catholic church. even though they had 100 hundred differences they had about 1000 agreements. so the christians started to make other denominations to try to stray away from catholics. thats why they have so many other denominations because we have been straying away from catholics. now our church is so different that we think most catholics are just a bunch of fakes. and one more thing did you know during the dark ages they killed a bunch of christians when they wiped them out the dark ages began. the dark ages are the only time in history when mankind stood in a stand still and didnt progress. wow what a coisidence when christianity gets wiped out the dark ages start and we dont go anywhere. but when the christians came back the dark ages went away and manking started to progress. thats kind of odd.

i am going to give you a qoute that ohair's son said. "My mother was an evil person... Not for removing prayer from America's schools... No, she was just evil. She stole huge amounts of money. She misused the trust of people. She cheated children out of their parents' inheritance. She cheated on her taxes and even stole from her own organizations. She once printed up phony stock certificates on her own printing press to try to take over another atheist publishing company....Regardless of how evil and lawless my mother was she did not deserve to die in the manner she did."

you see everything i tell is not a lie and please if your gonna make claims with out any evidence then dont bother on writing back.

god bless.

Jonathan,

The original ignorant remark was "Catholics are not Christians". Now you are saying something that magnifies your ignorance and stupidity.

The Roman Catholic Church, officially known as the Catholic Church, is the world's largest Christian church and represents over half of all Christians and one-sixth of the world's population. With a two thousand-year history, the Church is the world's oldest and largest Christian institution. From at least the 4th century, it has played a prominent role in the history of Western civilization.

The first Christian Church was in Rome and is there today. It is the Catholic Church and any half-ass history teacher could tell you that.

The Catholicism is a rigid belief, but their basic belief is in the same things that all Christians believe. That God created heaven and earth. There is one God in three persons; Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Jesus' sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins and his death on the cross and resurrection. His birth from a virgin, and that we will have eternal life through Jesus. Jesus is coming back again. The rest is all a matter of dogma and does not affect one's salvation.

The first Christian Church was in Rome and is there today. It is the Catholic Church and any half-ass history teacher could tell you that.

The Catholicism is a rigid belief, but their basic belief is in the same things that all Christians believe. That God created heaven and earth. There is one God in three persons; Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Jesus' sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins and his death on the cross and resurrection. His birth from a virgin, and that we will have eternal life through Jesus. Jesus is coming back again. The rest is all a matter of dogma and does not affect one's salvation.

St Peter's in Rome. The present 16th-cent. building replaced an older basilica structure, erected by Constantine on the supposed site of St Peter's crucifixion. Nicholas V (1447-55) planned to replace it by a new church in the form of a Latin cross. Work, begun under Julius II in 1506, was continued by a succession of architects, who all made changes in the design. The building was finished in 1614 and consecrated in 1626.

The traditional burial-place of St Peter is the confessio under the high altar. Excavations carried out since 1940 have revealed the existence of a Christian shrine dating from the 3rd century, if not earlier.

The Irish in Washington who still identified themselves as Catholic in some way were affected during the early twentieth century by growing anti-Catholic sentiment in Washington. In the 1920s, the Ku Klux Klan held rallies in Tacoma and Issaquah. This group noted for its campaign for white. Protestant supremacy promoted Initiative 49, an anti-private school bill. While defeated by nearly 60,000 votes, more than 131,000 citizens voted for the initiative. Among Catholics, this opposition and bias increased a sense of Catholic identity.

Your admiration for the anti-Semite Martin Luther, along with your remarks about Catholicism, is about the same as all your remarks Madalyn Murray O'Hair. You are an uneducated dope that speaks out of ignorance and bigotry.

I guess I said it twice because he never gets it if you only say it once.

linda

the first church was the church in the book of acts. if you were to read it then you would know that. that catholic church you said was the 1st catholic church.

The Christianity of Constantine was a pagan Church that adhered to pagan doctrine while using the name of Christ to gain followers. The other would have been a Jewish sect that were annihilated as heretics and disappeared. There's much more to this story than most professing Christians realize. The rise of Pagan - Christianity to a position of dominance over the social and political aspects of the Roman Empire was a monumental change that eventually led to the creation of the Roman Catholic Church and her daughter churches. There were no "early Christians" they were Jews and if Jesus had been an actual figure he would have been a Jew.

The Empire remained divided, and Constantine acted in the fall of 312 A.D. to rid himself of a major rival to the Roman throne, a certain Maxentius, ruler of Italy and the master of Rome at that time. Constantine invaded Italy, which eventually led to the famous decisive battle at the Milvian Bridge.

Defeating your enemies in the name of God or a religious relic doesn't constitute conversion. Such a notion stems from pagan concepts inherited from the hero worship of the Babylonian mysteries. Constantine, however, never totally removed the pagan symbols of the sun god that were a prominent feature of the paganism that dominated Rome. In fact, he incorporated his belief of the sun god into the emerging Roman dominated form of Christianity. Constantine was not baptized until just before his death and this is a well known pagan ritual of purification.

Before Constantine came to power Emperor Diocletian had reinvigorated ancient paganism as the state religion. When Constantine came to power, he inherited a pagan Rome.

One of the prominent forms of Roman paganism was the cult of Mithraism, which included many of the ancient Babylonian mysteries. This cult worshipped a pantheon of gods, but the "One Supreme Power" stood above all the rest. This "One Supreme Power" was the sun god and was worshipped on the first day of the week called the "Venerable Day of the Sun". Today we just call this same day Sunday based on the Gregorian calendar. The Roman emperor was the high priest of this cult, and was given the title of Pontifex Maximus or Supreme Pontiff and Holy Father. As the Supreme Pontiff of this pagan religion, the emperor wore a mitre, purple robe, and the fisherman's ring of the ancient god, Janus. All the holy garments descended from the ancient worship of the fish god Dagon. This mystery religion was absorbed from Egypt, Greece, and Phoenicia.

Paganized Christianity was really just a ploy to combine all the sects including the Jewish together. Constantine thought that it would work because it had equal status with other pagan religions from the viewpoint of the state. Constantine donated his own Lateran palace to the bishop of Rome, and built the first Basilica of St. Peter as well as other churches throughout the empire. He built these church buildings on the site of ancient pagan temples, and replicated them in pagan style and architecture.

Under Constantine the clergy were exempt from serving in the army, performing forced labor, and were even given civil authority. This alliance between church and state made him very popular within the church. Constantine began to take over control of the direction and doctrines of the church. Mass conversions where social conformity; the chief motivating factor, as well as, the persecution of dissenters as a menace to the unity of the state.

In 325 A.D., Constantine presided over the Council of Nicaea Constantine enter wearing the robe of Supreme Pontiff (the title of the high priest of the sun cult) he guided the clergy all of their decisions. Constantine left this council declaring a victory in uniting the empire.

Constantine made changes that also resembled his early belief in the sun god. He changed the biblical Sabbath from the seventh day of the week to the first day of the week. The 'Venerable Day of the Sun." Historians also note another change to the calendar as, "Christmas originated in the fourth century when Constantine joined it with a pagan feast celebrating the birthday of the sun on December 25. This militant and highly political church continues to reflect Constantine's own image to the present time.

The Vatican was built upon the grounds previously devoted to the worship of Mithra (600 B.C.). The Orthodox Christian hierarchy is nearly identical to the Mithraic version. Virtually all of the elements of Orthodox Christian rituals, from miter, wafer, water baptism, alter, and doxology, were adopted from the Mithra and earlier pagan mystery religions. The religion of Mithra preceded Christianity by roughly six hundred years. Mithraic worship at one time covered a large portion of the ancient world. It flourished as late as the second century. The history of Jesus and the history of Christianity that we know today is the dogma that the Roman empire forced on all its provinces. When Constantine converted to Christianity, Rome became the center of power also for Christianity and any challenging center was wiped out. If Jesus ever really existed at all will probably never be known. Many gospels were written, including and besides the four official ones. The four official gospels were written in Greece in Greek, the earliest (Marks') dating from the year 70 and the last one (John's) dating from the second century after Christ. (The oldest manuscript of the gospels that we found dates from the fourth century, but we have fragments that have been dated from the mid second century and we can deduct the date of composition from references in the texts). There is general agreement that three of the official ones (the "synoptic" gospels) derive from a common source (or Luke's and Matthew's simply derive from Mark's).

It is also likely that the gospels as we know them have been heavily rewritten after they were originally written. Papias of Hierapolis in 110 talks of the gospel of St. Matthew as a collection of oracels, not of miracles.

All four official gospels were written after Paul wrote his letters. Paul's letters are the oldest Christian documents. But Paul admits he never met Jesus and, in fact, his letters contain almost no reference at all to Jesus' life.

Irenaeus (at the end of the second century) is the first Christian writer who mentions the dogma of the four gospels. Before him there is no mention of those gospels as being the only "good" ones. Justin Martyr (150) does not mention a New Testament, does not mention Mark, Matthew, Luke or John. On the other hand, he mentions the "memoirs" of the apostles, which could be the letters and the "gospels" attributed to Peter and others (mostly not recognized by the Church) besides the letters of Paul and the acts of the Apostles. In 170 Tatian admits he was working on a new gospel that would summarize all the other ones, thereby implying that Christians were still writing and rewriting gospels based on their own assumptions and All four official gospels were written after Paul wrote his letters. Paul's letters are the oldest Christian documents. But Paul admits he never met Jesus and, in fact, his letters contain almost no reference at all to Jesus' life.

Irenaeus (at the end of the second century) is the first Christian writer who mentions the dogma of the four gospels. Before him there is no mention of those gospels as being the only "good" ones. Justin Martyr (150) does not mention a New Testament, does not mention Mark, Matthew, Luke or John. On the other hand, he mentions the "memoirs" of the apostles, which could be the letters and the "gospels" attributed to Peter and others (mostly not recognized by the Church) besides the letters of Paul and the acts of the Apostles. In 170 Tatian admits he was working on a new gospel that would summarize all the other ones, thereby implying that Christians were still writing and rewriting gospels based on their own assumptions and preferences, not on historical facts.

Also, in the second century, Clement of Alexandria admits that two versions of Mark's gospel existed. One was being suppressed because it contained two passages that should not be viewed by average Christians (both passages were about Lazarus and Jesus) and his "resurrection" as being an "initiation" to some kind of rite. The way most pagan "mysteries" implied a death and a rebirth.

The texts were being chosen, edited and purged for the first two centuries of the Christian era. That process had solidified by the time Irenaeus wrote that there were only four gospels.

Irenaeus' choice was formalized in 325 at the council of Nicaea, where those four gospels became the official dogma of the Roman Church and all other histories of Jesus were banned.

The Church was already at work to completely reinvent the story of Jesus to suit whatever ideology. For example, if one wanted people to believe in Paul's letters, then he would probably choose those four gospels over all the other ones. The fact is that the dogma immediately ignited a very contentious issue.

Jonathan,

Apparently, you're slowly beginning to learn something. First you said that Catholics weren't Christians at all. Now you're saying they're "tttttottaly" different, but only about 10%, according to your figures. It seems that you're trying to save face, rather than admit you were wrong. I'll give you a D for the effort, but there's still lots of room for improvement.

From my perspective, all Christians believe in Jesus Christ as a savior--a source of infinite perpetual orgasms and a means to cheat death. All Christians who seriously believe this ridiculous story will gladly sell out their fellow man to make that happen. The details are unimportant.

Here's another similarity. Hitler was never excommunicated from the Catholic Church and he did the Church's work of killing Jews. They think he's in heaven. The Protestants, on the other hand say all you have to do to get to heaven is believe and be born again. For all we know, he repented at some point. So Catholics and Protestants both believe Hitler is in heaven.

I admit that O'Hair's son did say those things. Now for the bonus round: were they true? I don't think so. He clearly had issues and he did tell some lies. According to the Wikipedia article on Madalyn, his claim about the money (the issue we were arguing about) is false.

So what, though? Atheists come to their own conclusions all by themselves. Madalyn Murray O'Hair was an advocate -- a public voice. We have many of them today: Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, Vic Stenger, James Randi, Michael Shermer, and on and on. I have been an advocate for atheism for years now. I do my own thinking.

Theology, on the other hand, is a creation of an individual or group and people rarely come to the same conclusion independently. They have to be indoctrinated. Martin Luther's antisemitism is part-and-parcel of his theology, even if Christians try to downplay it.

By the way, you have made a large number of claims without evidence, so please don't try to duck away from your own problems. That's a mind game called projection.

So far, I have yet to hear any serious defense of Christianity from you. On the other hand, you've ignored about 9/10ths of what I've written.

don

how does believing in jesus make you cheat death? i still die i just go to heaven instead of hell.

okay you wanna use an example of hitler okay fine. ( even though i still dont agree with you that catholics are the same as christians.) but ill give you this as an example of how atheist are. a man just as bad as hitler is an atheist. his name is fidel castro he has killed so many people that it surpasses hitler. fidel castro discriminated against groups like christians. he kills anybody that does not believe in what he believes. you guys are always talking about believing in what you want to believe but in cuba you are killed for believing in god. there are also many other atheist like fidel castro for example chavista the dictator of venezuela. all these people dont believe in a god. but you see just because these 2 men are atheist and have killed so many people i dont blame the atheist community for it. the same way you should blame the christians for what hitler did. it was only one catholic. so before you say anything else about hitler being a christian. you have to remember that you have some terrible people to that are atheist.

Save face, that's what I did when I blamed Baker on not understanding one of my questions. But to say that I didn't know that Atheism only has to do with Disbelief, like one person did, is a lie. I guess I didn't know that ACA didn't have a position on Capital Punishment is all.

Just like Baker, I expected to get responses on every point I make to see if they understood it, but that didn't happen Don; and I didn't complain about it. You should ask Jonathan instead, about a specific fact that you wrote him: what his thoughts were on it. Or on all of it or else he didn't get your request. All he got was a dis. That causes people to put their guard up and an UNWILLINGNESS to admit fault. Then you see him spouting the same disses you sent at him and that takes up his message instead of what you wanted.

I would like to see how your side's heroes are good because of their religion. I know that they strive towards what they believe is a good god, but I see in the Bible commandments for atrocities. If you see things some would question as good, don't believe that it must be good just because it was ordered by God. Good things come from non-Christians too. When I argue with my dad he keeps telling me that Christians made all the branches of science and all the good they've done. But, who else is going to make those discoveries when it's not because of Good, but that a large percentage of the populous is Christian. Not to mention they don't even tout that it's because of their Christianity or god that they make their discoveries--are you saying this?

devin

i respect you more than i respect linda or don. because you are open minded and dont make lies. and answer with logic.

what i am saying is that don tried to blame christianity for what hitler did. (even though he was a catholic and not a christian.) so what i did was that i got every atheist leader that has done wrong. he wanted to blame one whole belief system on one man's bad descision so i did the same thing. showing him that every orginization has people that claim to be part of them and do things wrong but its not the system's fault. for example teachers there have been many cases that teachers have sexually mollested kids does that mean that all teachers are evil people. ofcourse not. so there are gona be people that say there part of a system but the matter of fact is does the system accept them. thats what i was trying to say. christianity does not accept hitler as a good man. you cant blame a belief system on what one man did. or even several men did. because every belief sytem has a bad person.

i hope you keep your openmindendness while reading my post.

god bless

Your daddy thinks "Christians made all the branches of science"? Was he also home schooled?

Most religions were formulated at a time when the origin of life, the workings of the body, and the nature of the stars and planets were poorly understood.

Christians have done nothing but impede science and reason. They imprisoned Galileo because he believed that the earth revolved around the sun. They beat and killed Tycho Brahe, a brilliant astronomer, through the streets because he too disagreed with the church. They tried to stop the age of reason. It required the annihilation most of northern Germany to get the Huns to covert to Christianity.

If religion is so good for civilization why does every poll confirms that religious belief is a factor in poor economic progress. Religion is most important to uneducated people in poor countries. Of the 143 countries surveyed, Egypt was at the top, where 100 per cent of the respondents believe that religion was an important part of their everyday lives. Poor countries in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa follow this. The least religious country in the world are the world's fast-growing economies. Some of the countries with the fastest growing economies are Estonia, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Hong Kong, Japan and France.

The better-educated populations and the least deprived countries are not the most religious. World wide religious beliefs are falling at an amazing rate.

The first century BC Roman poet, Titus Lucretius Carus, in his magnum opus De Rerum Natura (I'm sure you have read it) wrote: "But 'tis that same religion oftener far / Hath bred the foul impieties of men:" A philosopher of the Epicurean school, Lucretius believed the world was composed solely of matter and void, and that all phenomena could be understood as resulting from purely natural causes. Lucretius, like Epicurus, felt that religion was born of fear and ignorance, and that understanding the natural world would free people of its shackles.

Writing in 1776 of the ancient Romans, Edward Gibbon said: "The various modes of worship which prevailed in the Roman world were all considered by the people as equally true; by the philosopher as equally false; and by the magistrate as equally useful."

But there is still no finer way to make a fortune than to get stupid people to tithe.

linda

when the catholics started to kill all the christians the dark ages started. what happened in the dark ages? man did not move forward. we did not get smarter. so what a coisidence christianity is destroyed then man doesnt move forward. thats odd. then when christianity comes back the dark ages stop and man gets to move forward again. again what a coisidence. by that you can see that when christianity is in the world we are smarter. what would have happened if the catholics wouldnt have tried to kill the christians. we would be about 800 years ahead then what we are now. if it wasnt for the christians be killed we would be flying in cars, started a civilization on the moon, and ect. all these things would have ben possible. only if christianity would have exhisted. so your remarks on "Christians have done nothing but impede science and reason" are not very good.

god bless.

Excuse me, it is called the "Christian Dark Ages" by scholars for a reason. At the heart of the Dark Ages was the Christian Bible. The Christian Dark Ages lasted right up until the middle of the 20th Century.

The Christian Dark Ages was a period in European history which was between approximately 800 AD and lasting until the Renaissance. The common thread throughout this period of history was the total dominance of Christianity and the repression of all art, science and progress that was not Christian in nature. During the 'good old daze' of Christ-insanity they spread the love of Jesus with genocidal evangelism. Christianity became widespread throughout Europe because those who didn't agree were dead. Without the homicidal psychopaths and savagery, which the bible justified (the Biblical God told believers to kill non-believer enemies) it is unlikely that Christianity would ever have displaced the original religions.

The end of the "Christian Dark Ages" was the influenced of the Renaissance, which was the origination of new ideas. As the world moved towards Enlightenment thought in the late 17th century, as debates concerning science, especially (Church approved) Aristotelian doctrine that scientists knew was wrong. Philosophy, political ideology and commerce became the engines of social change. This was obviously not in the interests of the church, as it attempted to suppress many scientific discoveries. Eventually, however, Christianity was forced to accept that religion was no longer to be used as the basis of explanation. It was the French encyclopedia of Diderot and others that was instrumental in bringing Europe out of the Christian Dark Ages during the Renaissance. There is every reason to believe that a universal source of basic information would be a great step forward today, because the Christian Bible is not a source of reliable information, and is not moral. During the Dark Ages all scientific thought, which contradicted the Bible, was suppressed. The most notable being the Christian taught stupidity that the earth is fixed and everything else revolves around it.

Early science was started sometime during the late Renaissance (1550-1700) during that time there were established academic institutions devoted to the pursuit of science. That is when there were remarkable discoveries made by the physicist Isaac Newton (1642-1727), who conceived of a universal set of laws for physical movement, and the astronomers Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543), who discovered heliocentric cosmology, the geocentric Church stupidity was always wrong. Galileo Galilei (1564 - 1642),who discovered the Earth's rotation. These and other individuals made discoveries that challenged the Church and created a tradition of rational inquiry, which would attain pre-eminence during the Age of Enlightenment. Around 1600, Galileo did something that was nothing more than using your common sense, he tested the idea of gravity. He reasoned that two weights held together would fall at the same rate as one weight. Then he did experiments to test the idea and found that it was true. This was the start of modern empirical science. In 1610 Galileo looked at Jupiter and discovered that he could see four moons. If moons orbited Jupiter then not everything orbited Earth, as the Church taught. The motions of the planets in our skies made sense if the theories of Copernicus were true, and Earth and the other planets orbited the sun. This was what Galileo taught, and in 1616 he was subject to the Inquisition. They banned him from teaching this idea, which was opposed to the true faith and contrary to Holy Scripture. The Inquisition had already executed Galileo's friend Giordano Bruno in 1600. Galileo was eventually put in prison, but did escape execution by repenting for teaching real scientific knowledge.

Another "Christian Dark Ages" dumb-ass belief was that all civilization started in the Middle East. This "belief" went on right up until the middle of the 20th Century, when scientific advances proved it was wrong. There were older buildings and structures in Europe, with the megalith structures predating the Middle Eastern civilizations by sometimes thousands of years. Modern science relies on methodological naturalism. This means that science doesn't incorporate any supernatural or religious assumptions and doesn't seek any religious or supernatural explanations. Science also depends on mathematics, which likewise has no religious or supernatural component.

The Protestant Revolution was the religious struggle during the 16th and 17th century which began as an effort to reform the Catholic Church and ended with the splintering of the Western Christendom into the Catholic and Protestant churches. It is interesting that at around this same time in America the Salem Witch Trials occurred in 1692, the superstition and religious hysteria that afflicted Salem Massachusetts. But, back to Germany, it was ravaged by the Thirty Years War, primarily the outcome of the Protestant Revolution. The Thirty Years War was the most bloody and destructive war ever fought in Europe until the Napoleonic Wars of the early 19th century. It was actually a series of wars involving most European countries, but fought primarily in Germany. The war was exceedingly brutal, in part because of the religious passions of the Reformation. The struggle was between Catholic and Protestant aided by non-German Congregationalist. It was a religious war that was complicated by dynastic rivalries. It is believed that about 6 million civilians, mostly Germans, perished in the conflict.

Luther, Calvin, and other early Protestant leaders did not promote tolerance. They did not argue that people should be free to choose. They promoted the idea that only they had found the true doctrine for the Faith. The Protestants were every bit as intolerant as the Catholics. The outcome of the Reformation (Protestantism) was the religious wars. Not only did terrible devastation take place, but also Western Christendom was ripped into two competing world views and the Protestant side had already begun to splinter into a multiplicity of sects. Luther had wanted to be the Pope of one universal church; he wanted a new church with his ideology not a bunch of churches.

The outcome of all this was the development of a more secular outlook in Europe. The Renaissance affected the European outlook, and the destruction caused by The Religious Wars certainly caused many people to question religion. The many religious denominations that sprang up must have given rise to questions about religion period, and the state was less able to suppress non-belief, which is not what was wanted, but is what they got. There was no longer a single canon of "truth" in religion, which inspired inquiring minds to seek truth in other areas, most importantly in science.

The Enlightenment is the best demonstration of the virtues of freethought. One good thing came out of this chaos, and that was the idea of questioning the authority of religion and monarchy, which ardently supported each other and not democracy. People wanted a champion for academia, which was bold enough to challenge (in various ways) the institutions, which had conspired to keep society immobile, because religion and corrupt rulers can only survive when it can control the information.

"Faith Healers" do not have submissive half-witted listeners on this message board. Your limited knowledge along with the name calling when you can't get your way is a pretty good example of your schooling? I don't think you have a very bright future, because this country is going to have to change. America is behind the rest of the industrialized world in everything, and the main reason is America has not liberated itself from superstitious idiots. It is a fact that the politicians, who have nothing to offer, need to promote religion and ignorance to get elected, to hell with an educated population. America is rated about the same as third world countries in math and science, and suppression of information. Everyone but Americans knows that other countries are passing us by.

Your altar calls on an atheist message board prove how desperate you all must be. It won't work. You can continue to try and force your ignorance on people, but your inadequate abilities and limited knowledge makes it very unlikely that you would ever succeed with any educated person. You need to understand that you have nothing to offer anyone. What you need to do is find some illiterate, superstitious people who believe in witch doctors to preach to. All that you have proven is that you are ignorant and conniving. So, it's time to take your silly crap to the banjo pickers, who do agree with you, because it is very difficult to decode your tirades.

I thoroughly disagree with Don Baker who said that "you are learning"? No! I'm not wasting any more time on your crapola.

linda

who did the catholics kill? they killed the christians! so again you have no argument.

god bless.

Rational Greg said-

"Christianity has not and has never been an advocate for immorality but a beacon of reward for moral behavior."

I disagree. Christians have the Get Out Of Hell Free card. Sin all you want and ask forgiveness, you still get to go to heaven. You are rewarded ONLY for worshipping your god, NOT for moral behavior.

Though I am fairly new to the ACA, I can say that it really does provide a positive community of atheists. With every event I've been to, it has never been about bashing on Christianity, or bashing on religion in general. Mostly we get together to enjoy each other's company and have good conversations. We've discussed many topics from politics to religion to movies and music.

The ACA also provides a group of support for atheists in the Austin area who feel left out by not being a part of a religious community. Growing up as a Christian, much of my social environment was based around the church, from sports teams to picnics, it seems like there were always events and a community to be a part of. When I could no longer be a part of the church community, I had a piece missing in my life and a desire for a community that I could feel a part of, and that is what the ACA has offered. I guess you could say the same thing if I joined a rugby team or any other organization, but this one just seemed to be right for me, as I enjoy a mental workout more than a physical one.

Also, if you notice to the right of your screen, the ACA also does community service, including blood drives, food donations, street cleanups, etc. It produces much positive "fruit" in the community. I think in general you misunderstand what the ACA does. The ACA is not obsessed wolves that snarl at anything positive. We encourage positive action and rational thinking. We just don't believe in any gods.

Rational Greg said, " I am curious to the ACA's purpose."

If you can't see, hear, taste or smell it - it's not there.

Rational Greg said, "What are you people "really" about?"

It's not that hard (but you still don't get it) the group is for people who don't hear voices in their heads or see "visions." The agenda isn't hidden.

Rational Greg said, "What is your goal?"

Make your life as happy as you can even if you are surrounded by ignorant a**holes. People actually have the right to think for themselves.

Rational Greg said, "If this is true: "Promoting Positive Atheism..." Then what is so fruitful about your organization in the bashing of the world's greater and positive Christian religion, however heavily you regard it's human short-comings - as any organization will and may have, even yours?"

Nobody has the right to force a religious dogma on a population; everyone has the right to challenge anyone making extraordinary claims - even if they get extraordinarily angry - they have been programmed or indoctrinated to react with murderous vehemence whenever their "faith" is challenged. It is this kind of ignorance that has always lead to violence. However, people do have the right to question any form of indoctrination and the right to resist a belief system being forced on the population.

Rational Greg said, "How are you building the community of Austin by this tireless chopping at a tree that has produced more positive fruit than any human organization in the history of the known world?"

IT'S NOT THAT HARD - America is one of the most corrupt and violent countries on earth. America is near the bottom in education, social services, medical care and many other areas -no better than many third world country. There are people in America that work hard every day and go to bed hungry. Edward R. Murrow did more to raise the conscience of the American people with the documentary "Harvest of Shame" than any preacher ever did. The Danes and Swedes that ignore religion have a far less violent (and much more caring) societies. No religious organization can or will address the social problems in America. Religion has never cured any disease nor has religion done any of the fantastic mumbo-jumbo that fanatics swallow like guppies. Big religion is big business - they do it for profit - it is part of the old guard.

Rational Greg said, "This is typical, but I'm sure you people are sharper than this. Putting your positive efforts in the balance and comparing it to a local Christian church - would seem obvious that you people are a huddle of obsessed and vicious intellectual wolves snarling at everything that looks positive."

I don't believe that any atheist would compare what they are doing with what many people consider a form of insanity. I recently read an article with a long list of the big money making ministries that got caught up in a Ponzi scheme. The minister who wrote the article said that their greed was the reason they got caught up in the Ponzi scheme. The article stated that they wondered if the contributors knew where their money went. Americans don't know the truth about almost anything.

MacArthur's admiration extended to naming the US base in Okinawa after General Smedley Butler (1888-1940). After he retired from the US army, General Butler spent some time in reflecting on his career before he concluded: 'Like all members of the military profession, I never had a thought of my own until I left the service. My mental faculties remained in suspended animation while I obeyed the orders of higher-ups. This is typical with everyone in the military service.'

His first book was entitled "War as a Racket". Its thesis was simple. He was no longer in favor of offensive wars. He would defend his country, but he would never again become 'a racketeer for capitalism'. 'War is just a racket. A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small inside group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the very few at the expense of the masses.' In a speech in 1933, General Butler expounded his views with remarkable clarity, spelling out the nature of US imperialism in Latin America:

Rational Greg said, "I just want to know what's makes this organization less common than any other angry atheist club. What makes ACA so "positively atheistic" or even serviceably legitimate to the local community? Is there a real cause or is it just an elaborate club for after-college "spit at the preacher and make a score" fun?"

Some people believe that they have the right to malign anyone who does not believe as they do (in invisible spirits and spooks.) These fervent devotees have the right to malign any group of people who think that they have the right to express an opinion that is different from frothing-at-the-mouth fanatics. It might come as a shock to a "thinker" but that's one of the reasons for the Bill Of Rights - to protect the people who dissent. Writer Henry David Thoreau's famous 1849 essay on civil disobedience still resonates to Americans: "The authority of government is still an impure one: to be strictly just, it must have the sanction and consent of the governed."

Just to clarify her point, R. Greg, everyone's thinking are in voices or visions. She means, since the god idea came from people who believed in the people they dream about as others instead of part of one's own mind, that those who believe that these dreams are anything other than from themselves even including those people who believe they can hear other's thoughts (known as telepathy) are not welcome here. But I would love for those people to come here so we can reason with them and not shut them out with hateful words.

There is no need for a blockhead to clarify what anyone means. Nobody needs you to explain anything that they post because you are too uneducated, and frankly, too stupid. You are mixing up what the psychologist Julian Joyce thought about the primitive brain with telepathy. Hearing voices, because of a primitive malfunctioning brain that made people think that something outside themselves told them what to do, has nothing to do with the pseudoscience of telepathy.

The consensus of the scientific community is that psychic abilities have not been demonstrated to exist, and that includes telepathy. Scientists view the study of parapsychology or the (nonphysical) as pseudoscience. Parapsychology continues to "investigate" although no one has demonstrated any evidence of psychic abilities in more than a century of research; it's not at all different from the Intelligent Design debacle.

People's desire to believe in paranormal phenomena causes them to discount all the evidence that it does not exist just like creationism or religion. In 1988, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences published a report on the subject that concluded that "no scientific justification from research conducted over a period of 130 years for the existence of parapsychological phenomena."

Atheists don't believe in visions and self-deception as evidence of the existence of anything, because it's not. You and your superstitious friends have never met anyone that is an atheist. Not only do atheists not believe in unsubstantiated claims, but also we don't have to. It is simply your ignorance and inability to comprehend that fact that keeps you hanging around putting forth the typical theist arguments that we have all heard before, and you have never listened to the answers to any of your rhetorical questions anyway. We don't believe in the supernatural period, and there is no reason for anyone to. You should have been stopped long ago.

Atheists do not have to respect your silly "beliefs" you digg? You need to be asked to prove that your superstitious beliefs have any merit. You couldn't come up with anything reasonable if your life depended on it. You need to grasp the simple fact that you and your crap are never going anywhere with any atheists. The reason that no atheist believes in god is not because they don't know anything about the subject, as most fanatics love to promote. The fact is that in most instances the theist knows very little true facts about any religion. And you are arguing for religious beliefs.

The questions that the theist on this thread is asking are not new. They are very common rhetorical questions about atheism and atheists. The are the same kind of accusatory questions that atheists are very familiar with. He might as well have said, "how dare you not believe in my illusions"! I like being lied to why don't you? He also wants the atheists to say that they are wrong, and are being cruel to the theists who impose themselves on atheists message boards with a post like the one on this thread. All this ignorant jerk wants is for the atheists to admit that they are wrong and ask an idiot to forgive them for their sins. Atheists will not admit that they are wrong and they do not believe that any god/gods exist. Atheists are honest enough to tell any idiot that wants to know what the truth is, but the fact is, no theist really wants to know.

Your beliefs have nothing to do with reality; they have been drilled into your head along with condemnation. Atheists do not have to convince theists that they have the right to not believe something. Atheists do not have to continue to deal with theists who remain convinced of their beliefs and absolutely no amount of information given to them that proves their belief wrong will be seen as any reason to reconsider. In that case the theists need to go somewhere else, and they are pretty stupid not to understand that.

Taking all of this into consideration, why did this theist post these ridiculous questions to begin? Why is he asking questions of people who he says are out to destroy something wonderful, his god hallucination? Neither one of you are asking questions, you are here to make accusations, you already know the answers. Neither one of you, like any ignorant uneducated fanatic, would listen to any answers, evidence, nor arguments that are contrary to what you already believe.

The obvious answer is that the post does not indicate any real question at all. This is not a person who wants to gain some knowledge of something he is clearly ignorant of, and neither are your posts. This is a person who wanted the opportunity to make accusations in the form of a question for what ever the stupid reason.

People who ask genuine questions postulate that there are things they could learn which they don't already know, or that they might be mistaken about some of the things they think they know. Under those circumstance every atheist on this message board does answer those kinds of questions, but none of your silly little games are in that category. Furthermore, you don't accept what you hear from the atheists, and you actually expect to attack their positions and get support from the atheists to back you up. That's how stupid you really are.

I don't know what percent of the population hears things and sees things that are not there but I think it's smallish. I'm just saying that atheists think that someone who hears voices or sees manifestations are schizophrenic.

The more you present yourself as "hey atheists, why don't you reject your rational ideas and become a simpleton", the more I am convinced that you are too dumb to reason with. We know that's never going to happen, but you don't. If you think the reason more people are rejecting your ideas is because of the atheists, it's not. People are just not that dumb as a rule anymore.

Hope that helps you out...

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