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Carole Westby - Confessions...
I couldn't make it all the way through, but I think the article missed the point.
The point for me is as simple as this: I don't "believe" in a supreme being/creator/ god. If I could give a xian all the good reasons why I am right, it would not cause him/her to "feel" right about agreeing with me UNLESS s/he also embraced it as a belief. Lifewise, I can know all the reasons people have for being xians, but as long as I don't "believe", I cannot be a xian. This is not a knowledge thing - it is a feeling - either in favor of a god or in favor of there not being a god. So all this history has no impact upon feelings or spirit.
Since these are feelings - and not opinions - there is virtually no chance that people can be taught the truth as we see it. BUT, we can question them to see if they truly believe or just buy in to their church for the social reasons/benefits. Ask them if they had never read or heard of anything that is in the bible if they would have "god" in their heart - most will (if they are honest) admit that their belief is based upon the teachings, sermons, biblical scripture, etc. of their religion. Then if you really want to show what a cruel, godless, heathen you are, ask them why they trust the church/preacher/bible, especially considering that there are some many earlier teaching aids with a different story/religion, i.e, the teachings of Buddah, the Koran, the Talmud, the aborigine oral teachings, etc. Whereas I come by my truth (nothing exists except the life I see and it is caused by the natural processes largely explained through science) simply because that is what I feel and therefore have no problem believing. Put you hand on a hot stove burner and your feeling will be far more convincing than anything anyone can tell you to the contrary. See what I mean???
This sermon has been brought to you through the "church of the what's happening now" which also offers discounts on airline tickets, rental cars and lodging. After all, bizness supports the WASPs in this good ole god-blessed america!

Think I should save this diatribe for when Janice sends me another one of her inspirational emails...

re: the article's last statement about the "intelligence and civic courage to publicly state ..being an atheist." I think, considering the history, it should take more courage to admit being a believer in light of the wretched history - but that's just my opinion.
Maya Angelou said a person told her that he was a Christian, and she responded, "Already?" Good answer as the program is an ongoing quest as I understand it and it wouldn't be up to the speaker to pronouce his state - That's god's job!
Author: Carole Westby Date: 29-12-2003

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