Right off, excuse my crappy english, its my third language with german being second.. anyway..
I am a HUGE fan from the small tormented country of Bosnia and Hercegovina, which is islamic for the most part.
Born into a Muslim/Christian mixed marriage, my parents decided to let me decide what i want to believe in, which i am very thankful for since that gave me the open mind to realize that both their religions are full of crap and that i not only don't believe the horrific fairytales they have been feeding the world for millenia already, but moreover got crushed by the fact that i am surrounded by mindless puppets who abuse and ruin the whole world and ridicule themself with their illogical incoherent jibberish that you may under no circumstances disprove because its blasphemy yaddayaddayadda, well i don't need to tell you what i realized when i looked at the past of their religions and the hypocrite puppet masters, and the effects of the religions on the whole world today.
But in short, i am shocked that its so hard to feed the people some reason and wake them up from their trauma, especially in those very scientific times..
My father being raised in a strongly conservative environment, has a hard time dismissing the religous concept (fully), however i remember his words long ago being "if you want to be an Eskimo, and believe in fruit flies ruling over the world and using you as their host, go ahead, but please do so because you believe it and not because some idiot told you so or because you read it somewhere. Might go and hug him next time i see him because i remembered this again haha
My mother on the other hand tried secretly dragging me to her side of "the dark side" but failed miserably, even more supported me in my (dis)belief which, as one of the few atheists who do not hide their (dis)belief in this country where i share the air with procentually many more mindless idiots than you guys have to endure, caused me lots of problems and pain. (With all due respect to the halfway reasonable and non-hostile broad-minded believers who i respect and have no real problems with although i wish i could "help them" but thats a different story.)
I highly respect your work, most i have seen from Matt and i almost worship his way of thinking (yes i said worship hehe), his detailed argumentation and halfway patient persistance, to put it that way. Wish i could join your group although i am not from Austin, to get deeper into the scene, can't afford it, wouldn't even know how to pay it from here, however i will keep an eye on you guys and stay posted and well entertained.
Well i thought i should tell you where i'm coming from, obviously i had an easy start given my familiary background, but what i actually want to know is.. What made Matt change from a 25 year old (religiously) obviously very well "educated" Christian to such a passionate atheist?
Its remarkable and i really have a burning desire to hear that story and hopefully also the story of some of the other members who also experienced that change at some point and opened their minds to the extremely obvious fact of crap being.. crap..
But i know that it is almost impossible to break that blockage in the brain and actually turn it on and start thinking for oneself instead of stuffing everything contradictory and absurd into that "god did it, his/her/its ways are mysterious, i am unworthy of even trying to understand it, if i don't fool myself into finding it's ok i'll rot in hell"-locker
thats pretty much all i want to know, how did you break out of it?
Thanks in advance, on a different note, once more thanks for being there for us atheists to regain some faith in humanity, if you manage to wake up one or the other feeble-minded out there.. even better!
Tough job, i wish you best luck :)
ps. if you do wish to answer my question but rather kill this topic, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
pps. i am new to your homepage, only managed to read few things so far, so if you answered that question somewhere already please point me to where i can find the stories :)
once more thanks for everything