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  1. That's what I am talking about: Christians should be careful what they wish for in this respect.
  2. As an agnostic atheist, I support Bible Literacy classes. Nobody can deny that the Bible is a huge part of our heritage in the US and the West in general. But the kind of Bible education that would pass muster with the courts would likely not get the result that many Christians, especially conservative Christians, would expect or hope for. This article from the Atlantic is worth a read... "But conservative Christian advocates would do well to think through the shape these classes will likely take if their efforts are successful. They might end up getting what they want, only to realize that they don’t want what they’ve got" ‘Bible Literacy Bills’ Could Backfire on Conservatives - The Atlantic WWW.THEATLANTIC.COM If many evangelicals don’t trust public schools to teach their children about sex or science, why would they want those schools teaching scripture?
  3. Ditto Jim Webb. Remember him? He would have been comfortable in the Democratic party of decades past, but no more. During the early debates, he increasingly had an air of “What am I doing here?” about him.
  4. Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz exploring a possible run for President of the United States is at least a refreshing change from the same-old-same-old we're getting from the Democrats and Republicans. "He's staging an alternative conversation to the increasingly awful one that Democrats and Republicans, liberals and conservatives, insist on having while the ship of state bears down on that deadly iceberg on the horizon. Schultz is pointing in a new direction, one we should all be heading towards unless we are committed to self-destruction." Who's Afraid of Howard Schultz? Just About Everyone, and They're Right To Be REASON.COM The former Starbucks CEO is getting dragged by liberals and progressives because he is talking about debt and spending in ways they don't like.
  5. This guy is definitely the type that could transition pretty smoothly from Group B to Group C..
  6. Wow, I had never seen this! I’m assuming it’s genuine, certainly seems so. I can see why this didn’t get TV time in 2008 or whenever it was. It would have alienated a lot of voters, not just Republicans. Now I’ll be honest with you, I agree with most of what he said about religion. The difference is I’m not gonna pretend to be a believer. Comes back to what I said to you earlier today, William, about honesty and integrity: not being some kind of chameleon, changing who we are depending on the audience.
  7. Although I haven’t read the book, I have heard some buzz about “The Benedict Option”, which I understand advocates a retreat (maybe not the right word) to a smaller purer church. Although as a member of Group C I broadly welcome this change, I also have concerns that many will reject Christianity only to embrace some other quasi-religion, as seems to be happening with those seculars who embrace identity-group politics, become Social Justice Warriors etc.
  8. I think the population (of the US and probably other countries) could be broken into three broad groups: A. Committed Christians who take their faith seriously, are active churchgoers and broadly live their lives in line with traditional Christianity. I assume most members of ChristForums belong in this group. B. Nominal Christians (a larger group) are less regular churchgoers, less committed overall and often reject or ignore traditional Christian teaching on theology or morality. Some are indistinguishable from atheists other than in how they label themselves. C. Those who have rejected Christianity and are completely outside of it. They may call themselves agnostics, atheists, secular, “none”, etc. They will raise their children without religion. I myself (an agnostic atheist) belong to this group, which is smaller than the other two, but growing. I believe that as Group C becomes more socially acceptable and less stigmatized, a good many will migrate from Group B to Group C, so that the Church (broadly defined), which consists of Groups A and B, will become smaller but ‘purer’. Thats just how I see it.
  9. Speaking as one of the Ex-Christian interlopers guests, I am neither strictly Pro-Life nor strictly Pro-Choice. Meaning that if I could write the laws, I would permit abortion for any reason during the first trimester. After that, I'm not sure, but I would favor severe restrictions as we go into the second trimester. And I happen to think a lot of Americans would agree with that. So I'm not aligned with most members here, but I'm also not aligned with the Democrats, who now seem to positively celebrate abortion and insist you're part of a War on Women if you advocate any limits for any reason. But Democrats, Planned Parenthood and most of the news media want us to think that it's all or nothing, and that if Roe v Wade were to be overturned then abortion would be criminalized overnight. Which is far from the truth: states would be free to set their own laws and most would very likely keep at least early abortions legal. But Americans' understanding of the Constitution is so poor that they get away with this bullcrap. I'm no Trump fan, but I am totally disgusted at how the news media conduct themselves anymore. They've largely forfeited the trust of the nation.
  10. I think the best argument for the existence of a creator (let's call it 'God') is the fact that certain physical constants (don't ask me to name them!!) are such that if they were slightly different than what they are, then the universe as we know it could not have come into existence. Meaning a universe where, after the Big Bang, matter started to exist and the first atoms - Hydrogen (H2) - came into existence. And it went from there, with H2 coalescing to form starts, which turned H2 into Helium and eventually heavier elements and, eventually, planets. So none of this could have happened if these constants weren't Just Right. I said it's the best argument for the existence of a creator, but I don't think it requires a creator. If you say some intelligence must have 'set' these constants, or written the laws of physics if you will, I'll say then how did this intelligent being come to be? And if you say "It just always was", I'll ask "Why couldn't the constants or laws just have always been?" So there's a stalemate. Of course the Stephen Hawking types posit the multiverse theory and other ideas springing from quantum physics, which suggest that there may be an infinite number of universes with different constants, most of which fizzle out but at least one of which had all the numbers line up just right so that we got Hydrogen, Helium . . . and ultimately the New England Patriots!! Go Pats!!!
  11. I never said he did anything that is repulsive to me. And I’m not left-leaning: I’ve been a registered Republican for 20 years.
  12. Very good article. I’m one of your Ex-Christian guests and I have been a (novice) student of Stoicism since I deconverted. This is a philosophy that has seen a big increase in following in recent years. In some respects I had been following practicing some aspects of this philosophy without even knowing about Stoicism per se. Anyway I find it to be a very helpful way to approach life. It has often been said that Stoicism and Christianity have much in common and I have heard different opinions as to whether they are compatible. I don’t care whether they are or not, as I’ve rejected Christianity. As more and more people seem to be leaving Christianity, I’d like to see them embrace a positive and uplifting philosophy like this.
  13. Looks like you and I have pretty similar political outlooks, William. I used to regard myself as Conservative but in the age of Trump I don’t even know what Conservatism or Republicans stand for anymore. Now I think of myself as something like a Classical Liberal or Libertarian. Some of my favorite public figures are agnostic/atheist commentators like Charles C.W. Cooke, Heather Mac Donald, Robert Tracinski, George Will. I absolutely agree about today’s left. Which makes me have mixed feelings when people deconvert: going from Christianity to an agenda of identity politics and social justice crusading is no improvement, in my opinion. People tend to want to latch on to something like religion and to find a tribe. So much of the bitter divisions in America today are not about standing for a particular set of beliefs but of siding with your tribe against the enemy.
  14. Mike, I appreciate you taking the time to tell me about your life and the impact that your Christian faith has had on it. I respect you for recognizing that quoting scripture to me would not be helpful. There is no doubt that religious faith has helped many people through the trials of life. I’m sorry you’ve had so many health problems in your life, and I’m delighted that the dire prognosis did not pan out! Nice to know that we are brothers-in-arms, if not in faith: I was Army Aviation 1995-2004. Were you in Vietnam? I am inclined to share why your story, though sincere and heartfelt, does not move me back toward faith. But I want to tread carefully here as a guest in this community of faith. We at Ex-Christian.Net have strict limits on the extent to which Christian visitors may proselytize and I don’t want to barge in here and be seen to be in attack mode. So if it’s OK with you and with William, I will proceed, while doing my best to be honest and respectful; otherwise I will hold my tongue. Best Regards TABA
  15. I came here mainly to witness the dialog already started by my colleagues from the ‘dark side’. I’m not as eloquent as they are! I only jumped in to answer your question. But since you asked, can you tell me how long you’ve been a Christian? Were you raised that way or did you come to it later on? And of course, feel free to ask me anything you wish also!
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