Archive for De-Conversion

CTC is back! 1.5 years of faithlessness and still going strong.

Posted in Atheism, Christianity with tags , , , , , , on April 2, 2009 by carriedthecross

It was with much surprise that when I checked this blog for the first time in many months, I found that it still receives a lot of traffic.  Who would have guessed.  A while back I had taken a job which restricted my abilities to take part in any online communities.   Recently, I’ve decided to make a return, if for no other reason than to have a reason for the swarm of often incoherent thoughts that crowd my mind.

It’s been more than a year and a half since I made public my departure from the Christian faith.  The difference in not only my relationship to Christianity, but also my perception of Christianity, has changed so much that it is hard to describe.  The fact that I spent seven years as a Christian is almost surreal to me.  My interaction with religion is now more of a moviegoer with a passing interest than a participant with a vested interest.
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Am I Ashamed of Atheism?

Posted in Atheism with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 18, 2008 by carriedthecross

Over the weekend I had a most unusual encounter.  My grandparents were having their 60th Anniversary party in our hometown, so I made the journey home to make an appearance (I was informed in no uncertain terms this was not an optional event, mind you).  Clad in my ‘Sunday Best,’ I arrived and endured many grueling introductions as my grandmother showed me off to her friends.  It really was an awkward event.  I come from a rural family dominated by farmers.  Still, my grandmother is like a chapter out of a 1950s movie: prim, proper, mildly racist, and obsessed with perceptions.  So this party of two hundred or so people included a mix of country bumpkins and suburban snobs.

The exchanges between members of these diverse groups was not the source of my discomfort.  In fact, it was quite entertaining.  The incredibly awkward encounter came when I ran across a woman from my old church.  A German immigrant, she retired a few years ago as the general manager of the local bank.  During the course of our smalltalk she caught me off guard.  In her thick German accent she asked, “Still going to church?”

I didn’t skip a beat, “Yeah.” What!?  No, no, no.  I couldn’t believe the word came out of my mouth, but at the same time I had no inclination to take it back.  I found reprieve from further probing when I noticed my nephew in the corner of the room pestering his sister. “Excuse me,” I politely asked, pointing to the bullying going on. 
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Reasons I Remained Faithful (for so long)

Posted in Atheism, Christianity with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 15, 2008 by carriedthecross

 A re-post from something I put up on de-Conversion a few days ago.  Worth reading are some of the personal stories various people left in the comments section…. 

It’s now been more than a year since I intellectually gave up Christianity and six months since I publicly renounced my faith. They say hindsight is 20/20, and true to form, it seems incredible to me that I was a Christian for seven years. Those seven years now seem like an eternity to me, overshadowing the previous fourteen. Maybe it is just because they are the most recent seven years or maybe because the last third of my life has been the most formative to who I am. Regardless, it is still almost unbelievable to me that for seven years I prayed, I studied the Bible, I attended church, I spoke proudly about my ‘relationship with Christ,’ I preached and I witnessed to those around me.

So why did I remain a Christian for so long? What is it about the Christian metaphysic, which I now find so distasteful, that hooked me? This is a question I have been pondering for a while now, and though my list is more than likely not exhaustive, I’d like to record some of the prominent reasons I remained faithful for as long as I did.
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Evangelical Atheist?

Posted in Atheism with tags , , , on January 17, 2008 by carriedthecross

Upon coming to the conclusion that I could no longer call myself a Christian, perhaps the most important question I asked myself was, “What now?” As a Christian, I had a very clear purpose in life. The Great Commandment (Matthew 22) and the Great Commission (Matthew 28) were the guiding forces in my life (in theory, if not always in action). As an atheist, I have no such mandate to change the world. But inaction isn’t in my nature. Being idle isn’t an option.

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Case Studies in Christian Reactions to my De-Conversion

Posted in Christianity with tags , , , on January 14, 2008 by carriedthecross

Below are some “case studies” in the reactions of the students at the Christian college I attend after my “coming out” as an atheist. Some of the reactions have been amusing, some have been frustrating. Some have encouraged me to hope that while I think Christians have a flawed metaphysic, they are genuine. Others have caused me to doubt the sincerity of faith.

Allow me to set the stage: It was only a couple of weeks before move-in day that I decided that I didn’t want to take the route of “faking faith” for an entire year. As a tech-generation college student, the quickest, easiest, and least personal way of disseminating the information about my de-conversion was naturally Facebook. And so in the true form of a impulsive youth, I published my conclusions about Christianity in the form of a series of Facebook notes.

The response was, shall we say, overwhelming. Literally nearly two hundred “comments” on the posts themselves, but that was the tip of the ice berg. The weeks before school were filled with e-mails and phone calls from concerned friends. I even received a few “praying for you” cards. For the most part, the messages were well intentioned. When I arrived at school, e-mails and phone calls gave way to personal conversations. Dozens of people approached me, making awkward conversation, only to finally ask the question: “So why

are you mad at Jesus?” And dozens of times I patiently explained my philosophical convictions that led me away from theism.For the most part, life at my evangelical college remained quite normal. Classes and work dominated most of my time. By nature I tend to know a lot of people, but am close to very few. So my relationships predominantly stayed the same.

There were; however, some notable, and often surprisingly humorous, reactions from my fellow students.

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My Story

Posted in Atheism with tags , , , , , on October 14, 2007 by carriedthecross

In his Poetics, Aristotle says that any good story should have a proper beginning, middle and end. In that tradition, I feel the need to quickly catch up to speed any casual reader. Here is my beginning, the story of my conversion, de-conversion, and life as an atheist among evangelicals.

I was not raised a Christian. Nor was I raised in any other religion. Likewise, I was not raised an atheist. My parents are, for lack of a better word, non-theists. They are religiously apathetic. While they never encouraged any belief in God, nor did they seem to have made any decision against an idea of God. And so until late into my elementary school years, I had no conception of a transcendent God, positive or negative.

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