By way of contrast, I was liberal Christian, allowed to question the Bible during adult Bible study. One of the first nails in the coffin was Joseph Campbell, who showed how to interpret it all as myth. I was kinda doing that, but didn’t look at the bigger picture. Then I read “50 Voices of Disbelief”, many of them were horror stories of being raised fundamentalist, something I hadn’t experienced. That put a big hole in the “what’s wrong with believing something if it gives you comfort” argument.
It took a while, but I saw how my belief, no matter how benign, supported the fundamentalist belief. It legitimizes it and provides cover for it.
That’s good for you! :-)
Yeah for me it’s the opposite. Discoveries first led me out of regular Christianity and into Hebrew Roots because Gentile Christianity contradicts strict laws in the Tanakh. Then I became a fervent anti-Trinitarian adoptionist Messianic Jew. Finally a non-Pauline Messianic Jew / neo-Ebionite. I was actually comfortable with all of these because they are more intellectual than regular Christianity. It was strict but fun. Back then I didn’t realize that voices in my head aren’t from any deity and mistakenly believed that I was some sort of prophet. Later what the voices “prophesized” did not come true but instead it sounds like the voices were basically my own thoughts because they did not include anything I did not know other than random guesses. The voices tried to predict politics in Christian Africa and they miserably failed. The voices predicted that Assyria would be a nation (because of a Biblical prophesy few people other than Assyrians themselves and me noticed) within 20 years but Assyria does not look like it will happen. The voices predicted back in 2014 that Burma and Bangladesh would descend into a devastating Buddhism vs Islam war by 2015 with more than 100,000 died. OK now it is 2017 and the countries aren’t fighting. LOL. The voices apparently did not even know that Tausus is in Turkey, not Syria (the place in Syria with a similar name is called Tartus which the voices and I identified with the Biblical Tausus).
After recovering from the voices I got attracted by the Pentacostals. They are just irrational and crazy people who completely destroyed any love I had for AG. It was so oppressive that I wish I were never born (Come on, who wants to be born so that he/she can casted into that stupid place of torture, I mean hell). When I was poisoned by that nonsense I just wish that there could be a place other than heaven or hell, like a grassland neither AG nor Satan cares about for me to do my math and enjoy my simple life.
Finally I left. :-) I’m free.
Here are my comments:
1.Schools really need to teach reasoning. Deductive reasoning, inductive reasoning and abductive reasoning. A person who only knows deductive reasoning can be a great mathematician or a computer scientist but without proper inductive reasoning skills he/she is always vulnerable to fundamentalism and other forms of dangerous nonsense.
2.The love of science is good. Religion never took away my love of science even when I was deeply poisoned by fundamentalism. Hence I was never comfortable with these stupid and irrational claims Pentacostals and other spiritual fundies talked about.
3.We need to have a database of spiritual and supernatural claims and whether they come true. There are enough “prophets” who prophesize almost everything we can think of, such as a large part of Eastern US would be destroyed by a flood due to divine anger by the end of 2014. (Yeah I can give you links from that amusing “prophet”).