If you were an atheist, and now are Catholic, how did this happen? Tell your story!


#21

[quote="samiam1611, post:18, topic:264381"]
I'm curious how many theists have been "converted" to atheism by reasoning.

It boggles my mind how someone can go from atheism to Catholicism. Atheism to Buddhism - sure. Atheism to deism - yep. Atheistic Jew to theistic Jew - yes, I can see that happening.

But atheism to Christianity? Toottttallly don't get it. Unless one wasn't really an atheist to begin with - perhaps a nontheist/apatheist though?

Were you guys really and truly atheists?

[/quote]

Reminds me of the arguments atheists always have. 'If they are now religious, they weren't atheist to begin with!'. How about this: If they left Catholicism to atheism, they weren't Catholics to begin with!


#22

Thanks to everyone who has posted so far! This is really fascinating to me - and yes, I agree with Contra Mundum that conversions don't happen with argumentation or logic. The Holy Spirit moves in and changes the person's heart somehow.

:love:

I feel sad for atheists who reach their absolute end of any solutions to a problem, and have nowhere to turn. I was on my knees last night, crying out to God, "I can't do this at all, any more God, I broke my life, please help me fix it!" Like a little child sitting in the middle of a big mess, not understanding how she got there or how to get herself out of the situation...I handed it all to Him, and I trust that He will get it sorted out for me. Where or to whom can an atheist turn when life is broken??

:(


#23

I was an atheist then a Catholic then an atheist. Confused? Let me explain, when I was a Catholic I used to think that I was an atheist (simply because there is evil in the world, and I didn’t want to worship god, I don’t want to follow him) a phase of rejection which all people pass by and think that they were atheists, while actually they believed in God and rejected him. When I truly turned into an atheist, I realised that there is plenty of reasons to dismiss personal gods and religions, and actually do not believe rather than believe and reject ( which many people think its atheism).

To those who we love and love us.


#24

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:22, topic:264381"]
Thanks to everyone who has posted so far! This is really fascinating to me - and yes, I agree with Contra Mundum that conversions don't happen with argumentation or logic. The Holy Spirit moves in and changes the person's heart somehow.

[/quote]

I agree too. It's funny how the philosophy forum is full of posts saying atheists are illogical, theism is logical. They make arguments and the vast majority of the time I just plain old disagree with them. Particularly bc their main argument (the universe couldn't come from nothing/the first cause has to be intelligent) really only argues for deism yet they never acknowledge that. They seem to think existence itself is proof that a supernatural entity exists and intervenes in human affairs. :shrug:

I feel sad for atheists who reach their absolute end of any solutions to a problem, and have nowhere to turn. I was on my knees last night, crying out to God, "I can't do this at all, any more God, I broke my life, please help me fix it!" Like a little child sitting in the middle of a big mess, not understanding how she got there or how to get herself out of the situation...

Aww I'm sorry you were sad. :console:

I handed it all to Him, and I trust that He will get it sorted out for me.

If it doesn't get sorted out, where does that leave you? I hope it gets sorted...but you really can't count on God to do it for you, sometimes you have to grab life by the reins and make it happen.

Where or to whom can an atheist turn when life is broken?? :(

What Flyingg said. Don't be sad for us, Julianne :hug1: We have other ways of coping when life is broken.


#25

[quote="GreggAlvarez, post:3, topic:264381"]
From Atheism to Catholicism is the biggest jump anybody can make. From believing that no god(s) exists to believing in the Holy Trinity, where one Person is both Man and God!

I am going to mix around the questions to make it a little easier for me.

I was an atheist for several reasons:

  1. Lack of empirical evidence
  2. The good ole' problem of evil argument (except my version was much more cogent than most)
  3. The absurdity of even the idea of any god(s)
  4. Suffering (sort of ties in with #2)

There are more, but those are the ones I can think of right now as I lie in my bed during another sleepless night while drugged up... (Medication)

People who are who atheists because of religious wars or immorality of the religious are irrational.

This is sort of a vague question considering the topic.

Well, eventually I met this adamant Catholic girl with an unbreakable faith. That didn't phase me much, until I started realizing she would NEVER debate the non-existence of God with me. The only thing she EVER said to me that was remotely close to anything resembling apologetics was this:

"I was in a Bible study this week and they brought up Heaven and Hell. We were wondering what Hell is REALLY like and somebody said that Hell is the opposite of Heaven and I thought of you. Heaven is a warm place and Hell might be cold, and I know you hate the cold."

That's it! That is the only "argument" she EVER gave. Haha... Granted its not a win-all "argument", but it broke the ice, so to speak. (For any atheist reading this, you can debate all you want that this is unreasonably stupid, but I can and will defend myself to the point that you will have no choice but to see that it is reasonable.)

I say it broke the ice because it made me stop reading reading any books that had to do with religion, including Atheist books.

I did that because I just wanted to have absolutely no bias in my thought process. That girl might have been there with me, but she certainly didn't implant the idea that God existed in my head. I still didn't believe a God existed while I was with her. I am not even sure she knew about my thought process.

I started writing down questions and thinking of any and all possible answers and even explained all of those possible answers, whether I agreed with them or not. Well, eventually I joined RCIA to see what the deal was there. Even when I joined I didn't believe in God. BUT the questions had become deeper and deeper.

Strangely enough, it was the Blessed Virgin Mary. That friend of mine had sneakily snuck in a scapular under my mattress. I didn't know until about 1 year into my conversion. I imagine that she had something to do with it. I think it was the green scapular. (I am not so great with colors, so don't quote me on that.)

Catholicism and Judaism were the only religions that had the ability to reasonably answer the questions I had without resorting to any sacred texts. As an Atheist, I had always thought that IF I was wrong (and I was 100% sure I wasn't wrong), Catholicism or Judaism would be right. No other religion made sense, well, so to speak. The fact that these two religions believed in God was nonsensical to me. Just plain dumb... Well, you could only guess which one I rightfully picked. (I still have utmost respect for Judaism... So rich in culture and tradition.)

That and my friend's faith was by far stronger than any person I knew. Just unshakeable.

So, things that brought me into the Church:

  1. The grace of God
  2. Blessed Virgin Mary
  3. My friend's faith

Besides my stupidity (which I've lived with since birth)? Not that I can recall. The process did take me two years.

This is a REALLY rough and disorganized draft of the story of my journey.

I would be happy to answer questions. Be patient though. It may or may not take a while.

[/quote]

Interesting.
Do you trust your own emotions enough to conclude that your chosen religion is the true one? What you had some sort of spiritual awakening to some vaguely defined "god" and just "glided" into Catholicism because of your surroundings? If you had the same spiritual awakening in an Islamic country you might be Muslim, right? Maybe religion is a solution to some of your questions about the meaning of life, etc? If it is, it works for you, but does it make it true in the same way that 1+1=2 is true or true in some "spiritual" way.

Please do not take offense at this post. I'm just interested in understanding spiritual people because I am complete non-religious/non-spiritual.


#26

Love this thread Julianne!

Yes, I too have been praying for my husband and two sons for eight plus years now. My husband is still atheist or agnostic. He doesn't want to talk about anything religious. My oldest son who is wonderful, hardworking, charitable, SSA is probably either agnostic or atheist. My younger son is openly atheist. Alas, I have surrendered it all to God. But I am still going to pray without ceasing. St. Monica pray for us!


#27

[quote="PathDiagnosis, post:25, topic:264381"]
Interesting.
Do you trust your own emotions enough to conclude that your chosen religion is the true one? What you had some sort of spiritual awakening to some vaguely defined "god" and just "glided" into Catholicism because of your surroundings? If you had the same spiritual awakening in an Islamic country you might be Muslim, right? Maybe religion is a solution to some of your questions about the meaning of life, etc? If it is, it works for you, but does it make it true in the same way that 1+1=2 is true or true in some "spiritual" way.

Please do not take offense at this post. I'm just interested in understanding spiritual people because I am complete non-religious/non-spiritual.

[/quote]

I don't think he really mentioned his emotions much in here, save as a reaction to the glorious things he found. And what he found directed him into the Catholic Church.

God alone knows what would have happened in a Moslem country. Maybe he would have become a Moslem. It is more real than atheism. Any religion that observes the existence of God or a deity like God (as opposed to the "supermen" like Zeus or Odin of classic mythology) is more realistic than atheism.

I say this as a more "practical" Catholic, myself. I find my faith to be based in three things besides faith: philosphy, and history, and logic. Like theology, these are not empirical "sciences". But they are just as useful as the empirical sciences. They simply don't provide quantifiable results or knowledge as science does. Worth looking into them, though, instead of limiting yourself to biology, physics, etc.


#28

[quote="PathDiagnosis, post:25, topic:264381"]
Interesting.
Do you trust your own emotions enough to conclude that your chosen religion is the true one? What you had some sort of spiritual awakening to some vaguely defined "god" and just "glided" into Catholicism because of your surroundings? If you had the same spiritual awakening in an Islamic country you might be Muslim, right? Maybe religion is a solution to some of your questions about the meaning of life, etc? If it is, it works for you, but does it make it true in the same way that 1+1=2 is true or true in some "spiritual" way.

Please do not take offense at this post. I'm just interested in understanding spiritual people because I am complete non-religious/non-spiritual.

[/quote]

This issue -- sometimes referred to as the problem of "pluralism" -- was one of the two main things that caused me to become an atheist (the other being the problem of evil). When I was moved to become a believer again, I dealt with it in a very practical way. I had a yearning for God, and given that I don't have an infinite amount of time in which to fully research every form of belief in a god or gods, I decided that almost any relationship with God, even if it turns out to be theologically incorrect, is better than no relationship with Him. So I opted for the religion in which I was raised (Catholicism), and my life has improved accordingly.


#29

[quote="Langdell, post:28, topic:264381"]
This issue -- sometimes referred to as the problem of "pluralism" -- was one of the two main things that caused me to become an atheist (the other being the problem of evil). When I was moved to become a believer again, I dealt with it in a very practical way. I had a yearning for God, and given that I don't have an infinite amount of time in which to fully research every form of belief in a god or gods, I decided that almost any relationship with God, even if it turns out to be theologically incorrect, is better than no relationship with Him. So I opted for the religion in which I was raised (Catholicism), and my life has improved accordingly.

[/quote]

Thank you. I really liked this answer. It's starting to become clear to me that religious people don't necessarily claim to be correct about.


#30

[quote="PathDiagnosis, post:29, topic:264381"]
Thank you. I really liked this answer. It's starting to become clear to me that religious people don't necessarily claim to be correct about everything

[/quote]


#31

[quote="GreggAlvarez, post:3, topic:264381"]
Strangely enough, it was the Blessed Virgin Mary. That friend of mine had sneakily snuck in a scapular under my mattress. I didn't know until about 1 year into my conversion. I imagine that she had something to do with it. I think it was the green scapular. (I am not so great with colors, so don't quote me on that.)

Catholicism and Judaism were the only religions that had the ability to reasonably answer the questions I had without resorting to any sacred texts. As an Atheist, I had always thought that IF I was wrong (and I was 100% sure I wasn't wrong), Catholicism or Judaism would be right. No other religion made sense, well, so to speak. The fact that these two religions believed in God was nonsensical to me. Just plain dumb... Well, you could only guess which one I rightfully picked. (I still have utmost respect for Judaism... So rich in culture and tradition.)

That and my friend's faith was by far stronger than any person I knew. Just unshakeable.

So, things that brought me into the Church:

  1. The grace of God
  2. Blessed Virgin Mary
  3. My friend's faith

Besides my stupidity (which I've lived with since birth)? Not that I can recall. The process did take me two years.

This is a REALLY rough and disorganized draft of the story of my journey.

I would be happy to answer questions. Be patient though. It may or may not take a while.

[/quote]

I love your conversion story!


#32

:popcorn:
God bless all of you.


#33

This is a short reply, but I was an atheist for a number of years. I attribute it to embracing the dominant culture, early negative influences in life, and some of the attitudes/beliefs I was indoctrinated with at college.

I can't say what fully changed me. I can say, most people who knew me in those years, who've been away for a while, then run across me again are quite shocked to find I attend Catholic Church. Most say something along the lines of, "You're the last person we would expect..."

If I had to sum it up: I turned toward Catholicism in bits and pieces as the paucity of meaning in the atheistic mindset was revealed to me through life experience. The great maturity of strong Catholic faith, the unfailing love, and the "wholeness" of the Church drew me ever closer.

There just wasn't enough to sustain me in atheism. It lacked...everything. At least, as far as I'm concerned this was the case.

I wasn't looking for an "easy answer" or "comfort" or "the opiate of the masses"... or a crutch. Trying to fully accept and embrace Catholicism has been one of the most challenging and best experiences of my lifetime.

Atheism just fell flat for me. Absolutely useless is the way I found it--a dead end. "Nothing to lose" as some might say, but also nothing to gain in terms of knowledge, acceptance, maturity, fullness of being....and so on.

But, I think a person has to come to that conclusion on their own. The best way to help is to be a good example...or at least the best example you can be. Arguments never solve the problem. People don't become atheists lightly or change direction lightly. Words won't make much of a dent, I guess is what I'm saying. In my worst moments of atheism, wordy would-be converters were just a nuisance. People who really tried to live it... totally different story.


#34

[quote="samiam1611, post:18, topic:264381"]
I'm curious how many theists have been "converted" to atheism by reasoning.

It boggles my mind how someone can go from atheism to Catholicism. Atheism to Buddhism - sure. Atheism to deism - yep. Atheistic Jew to theistic Jew - yes, I can see that happening.

But atheism to Christianity? Toottttallly don't get it. Unless one wasn't really an atheist to begin with - perhaps a nontheist/apatheist though?

Were you guys really and truly atheists?

[/quote]

Total atheist. To the point I participated in groups/discussions/educational outreach (JREF member) and advocacy--to some extent. Most of my friends were atheists, even some of my family of origin were atheists--something I was exposed to as a concept early in life by people I respected. I even pushed some of it on my older children during the earlier parts of their childhood. And my husband remains somewhat of an agnostic...although, he's changing in increments.

It boggles my mind and confuses everyone who has known me long-term. My own father can't believe I'd be Catholic or touch Catholicism with a ten foot pole.

And yet, here we are. It may sound unlikely... but apparently it's not unusual at all.

:shrug:

I will say, I think my atheism had a purpose. Because I don't think I'd be the sympathetic person I am today if I hadn't experienced that profound absence contrasted against the amazing presence. I don't take faith for granted because of where I've been and I don't feel the need to judge others, either. I do judge my own life and for my own family. But, I see the other side and the hurt/frustration or lack of positive experience that can come with the "atheist" attitude. And I have more of an attitude of, "Well, that's where they are at now. I pray God helps them in His time, but maybe He also has a reason for it. Hopefully some faithful Christian/Catholic will show him the light of Christ through their behavior in following Him. Maybe, if I behave myself like a true follower of Christ, it will be me one day."

I'm sometimes frustrated, but I also remember where I was once. :shrug:

A friend recently posted (during Lent no less) an image of a perverted Last Supper where Satan was eating Jesus. Then, asked me why her (Christian) friends were so angry and dropping her from their social networking connections.

I saw the whole thing as 1) horribly immature 2) distasteful 3) socially clueless... and on and on. I guess I was the one person who didn't vehemently attack her for it or stop speaking to her entirely. Her inability to get a rise out of me actually gave her pause. My only reaction when questioned was, "Of course it's offensive, but you knew that. And?"

It reminded me of one of the kids saying something "naughty" just to get attention (any attention... negative or not).

I tried very hard to be compassionate toward her/her family. I spoke with the charge nurse when she was mistreated in the hospital, looked after her a bit after she got out, supplied her with meals/help while she recovered. Was it appreciated? Maybe, maybe not. All the same, I think I did what God would've expected of me at that moment. Who knows? Maybe one day she'll think back on it and make a difference?

I think the prayer of St. Francis of Assisi really distills the essence of what I love MOST about Catholicism. I love Catholicism because it isn't easy at all in what it asks of a person.


#35

Great story, and thanks for sharing it! I DO NOT WANT this thread to become an argument between the atheists and Catholics!!! Please, what I want to hear are conversion stories, from atheist to Catholic, not people scoffing at our faith or denigrating others’ lives in any way.

My own path back to the Church has been a convoluted one…Was never an atheist but went through paganism, witchcraft (wasn’t called “Wicca” way back when), Buddhism, and even a short agnostic phase, where I was “spiritual but not religious” (chicken’s way out). So I have been searching for something, most of my life. When God led me back to the Church, I knew that was where I belonged, and I’ve never looked anywhere else. I’m still far from being a good Catholic - lots of catechism to catch up on, and it’s been a real challenge for me, a previously lapsed Catholic, to transfer the faith to my sons, partly because their father is faking it and I can’t share that with them right now (maybe never). Right or wrong, I was afraid if I got too Catholic, he might leave. So I toned it down a lot when the kids were growing up.

Anyway, enough about me. Please, anyone who is still atheist and subscribed to this thread - just read and don’t get into a theological argument with people who are now Catholic. I just need to hear their stories. If you want to start a thread for yourself, about how happy you are to be an atheist, feel free.

:slight_smile:


#36

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:35, topic:264381"]
Great story, and thanks for sharing it! I DO NOT WANT this thread to become an argument between the atheists and Catholics!!! Please, what I want to hear are conversion stories, from atheist to Catholic, not people scoffing at our faith or denigrating others' lives in any way.

My own path back to the Church has been a convoluted one...Was never an atheist but went through paganism, witchcraft (wasn't called "Wicca" way back when), Buddhism, and even a short agnostic phase, where I was "spiritual but not religious" (chicken's way out). So I have been searching for something, most of my life. When God led me back to the Church, I knew that was where I belonged, and I've never looked anywhere else. I'm still far from being a good Catholic - lots of catechism to catch up on, and it's been a real challenge for me, a previously lapsed Catholic, to transfer the faith to my sons, partly because their father is faking it and I can't share that with them right now (maybe never). Right or wrong, I was afraid if I got too Catholic, he might leave. So I toned it down a lot when the kids were growing up.

Anyway, enough about me. Please, anyone who is still atheist and subscribed to this thread - just read and don't get into a theological argument with people who are now Catholic. I just need to hear their stories. If you want to start a thread for yourself, about how happy you are to be an atheist, feel free.

:)

[/quote]

Sorry, I wasn't trying to denigrate. I was just trying to say that maybe, sometimes, a period of honest atheism is part of the journey to deeper faith...odd as that sounds.

Main reason for giving that example:

I don't think I could deal as effectively with angry non-believers without having been an angry difficult non-believer myself. Not all non-believing people are angry and difficult--not trying to say that. I'm just saying that my moment without faith--and getting a "taste" of what that felt like--- I think gives me greater tolerance for others.

Just a simple, "God certainly knows what He's doing." There are plenty of atheists, especially some authors, scientists, etc. that I enjoy/like and find to be very amazing people. If anything I'm sad we don't share faith in common, but that is what it is and we all walk our own path. :thumbsup:


#37

I was a second generation atheist and was raised in an entirely secular community. I knew there were religious people out there somewhere, probably living in caves or something, but to me it was bizarre and foolish thing. As a young adult my atheism could have been described as militant, actively seeking converts. It was not a wishy-washy atheism, but a total acceptance of its philosophical implications. Total nihilism.

Then I met a Catholic man and fell in love. He was the first religious person I had any sort of real connection to. He was not a simpleton but rather one of the most intelligent people I had ever known. This had no impact on my opinion of religion or God, but it did affect my opinion of religious people. The Bible talks about “hard hearts,” loving this man was the first step in the softening of my heart.

The next steps were not so pleasant, and I certainly hope for the OP that her husband does not experience these sorts of losses, but for me they were what broke down my defenses to God’s love. In the course of five months I experienced a miscarriage, the collapse of my father’s business and the consequent loss of my own employment, the end of my relationship with the man mentioned above to whom I was engaged and had hoped to spend my life with, and the sudden death of my sister who left behind her husband and 15 month old daughter. In the midst of all this my ex-fiance and I were listening to a sermon by a very traditional priest, whose name escapes me at the moment, when we both experienced a profound feeling of the presence of the Holy Spirit. At least that’s what I determined it to be upon further education; all I knew at the time was that something really weird had happened, something I couldn’t explain, but something that demanded explaining.

I know how an atheist would view this. I was suffering extreme emotional distress, had a sort of mental breakdown and experienced a delusion as a survival response. I could ask why then it happened to both of us at the same time. I’m sure they’d come up with something, I know I would have back in my atheist days, but I don’t really care what they would say. It didn’t happen to them.

Since then I have been studying religion and found, just as GreggAlvarez did, that only Catholicism and Judaism have what I call an internal logic. That means that once you accept the basic precepts of the faith the rest of it flows logically and lacks any unfounded theology, dogma, or practices. With me heart drawing me to the Catholic Church, and my mind finding no foothold for its dissent, I become more and more convinced that the Church was were I needed to be.

It is still a struggle. I’ve made a couple attempts at RCIA, but always found a reason to turn tail. To be honest, baptism terrifies me. I feel myself still beholden to my past of sin. I find the habits of 27 years dragging me back, again and again, to seek delight in the things of this world rather than the things of heaven. I try often to unconvince myself, to find an out, to think like I used to and be unburdened of this call to a more holy life. So far it hasn’t worked, not even close. I might be quite stubborn and clever, but God is more so and I continue to make my two steps forward and one step back.

I know that the prayers of my ex and his family, especially his mother, were and are a powerful force in moving me towards the Church. I know she had masses said for my conversion and light candles for me often. I know she hid medals in her son’s house, and that he used to “forget” his brown scapular at my house. All these things are signs of love, and love, when it is real and unselfish, becomes a window in a dark room through which God’s light can enter. I am sure you are already doing these things for your husband, and I encourage you to keep doing them, God will do the rest.


#38

[quote="ladybug99, post:37, topic:264381"]
I was a second generation atheist and was raised in an entirely secular community. I knew there were religious people out there somewhere, probably living in caves or something, but to me it was bizarre and foolish thing. As a young adult my atheism could have been described as militant, actively seeking converts. It was not a wishy-washy atheism, but a total acceptance of its philosophical implications. Total nihilism.

Then I met a Catholic man and fell in love. He was the first religious person I had any sort of real connection to. He was not a simpleton but rather one of the most intelligent people I had ever known. This had no impact on my opinion of religion or God, but it did affect my opinion of religious people. The Bible talks about “hard hearts,” loving this man was the first step in the softening of my heart.

The next steps were not so pleasant, and I certainly hope for the OP that her husband does not experience these sorts of losses, but for me they were what broke down my defenses to God’s love. In the course of five months I experienced a miscarriage, the collapse of my father’s business and the consequent loss of my own employment, the end of my relationship with the man mentioned above to whom I was engaged and had hoped to spend my life with, and the sudden death of my sister who left behind her husband and 15 month old daughter. In the midst of all this my ex-fiance and I were listening to a sermon by a very traditional priest, whose name escapes me at the moment, when we both experienced a profound feeling of the presence of the Holy Spirit. At least that’s what I determined it to be upon further education; all I knew at the time was that something really weird had happened, something I couldn’t explain, but something that demanded explaining.

I know how an atheist would view this. I was suffering extreme emotional distress, had a sort of mental breakdown and experienced a delusion as a survival response. I could ask why then it happened to both of us at the same time. I’m sure they’d come up with something, I know I would have back in my atheist days, but I don’t really care what they would say. It didn’t happen to them.

Since then I have been studying religion and found, just as GreggAlvarez did, that only Catholicism and Judaism have what I call an internal logic. That means that once you accept the basic precepts of the faith the rest of it flows logically and lacks any unfounded theology, dogma, or practices. With me heart drawing me to the Catholic Church, and my mind finding no foothold for its dissent, I become more and more convinced that the Church was were I needed to be.

It is still a struggle. I’ve made a couple attempts at RCIA, but always found a reason to turn tail. To be honest, baptism terrifies me. I feel myself still beholden to my past of sin. I find the habits of 27 years dragging me back, again and again, to seek delight in the things of this world rather than the things of heaven. I try often to unconvince myself, to find an out, to think like I used to and be unburdened of this call to a more holy life. So far it hasn’t worked, not even close. I might be quite stubborn and clever, but God is more so and I continue to make my two steps forward and one step back.

I know that the prayers of my ex and his family, especially his mother, were and are a powerful force in moving me towards the Church. I know she had masses said for my conversion and light candles for me often. I know she hid medals in her son’s house, and that he used to “forget” his brown scapular at my house. All these things are signs of love, and love, when it is real and unselfish, becomes a window in a dark room through which God’s light can enter. I am sure you are already doing these things for your husband, and I encourage you to keep doing them, God will do the rest.

[/quote]

God bless you for sharing your story! I urge you to go through RCIA, you will find great solace in confession and especially the Eucharist...If I lived near you, I'd be honored to be your sponsor...Thank you for caring about my husband, for hoping he does not have to go through the same sort of loss in order to open his heart to God's love...I hope the same thing...But many times pain is what drives us to our knees, calling out for help and hope.

When we come to the very end of our ability to do anything, that is where God meets us.


#39

[quote="samiam1611, post:18, topic:264381"]
I'm curious how many theists have been "converted" to atheism by reasoning.

[/quote]

My answer would be "not very many". Then, those "not very many" will get defensive and start arguing with me.

[quote="samiam1611, post:18, topic:264381"]
It boggles my mind how someone can go from atheism to Catholicism.

[/quote]

Atheism to Catholicism is certainly the biggest jump.

[quote="samiam1611, post:18, topic:264381"]
Atheism to deism - yep.

[/quote]

This is the one that boggles my mind.

This is part of the thought process I came through during my conversion and I am certainly not debating anyone on Deism here. The implications of deism are that this being is sentient (since he created the universe) and rational (since he left it to be). But a rational being wouldn't create anything if it were not for a reason.

Especially if there were Life and things that LOVE life, etc...

I had thought about a LOT of things during my conversion.

[quote="samiam1611, post:18, topic:264381"]
Atheistic Jew to theistic Jew - yes, I can see that happening.

[/quote]

I asked a Jewish friend of mine if an "Atheistic Jew" exists. He says, "no". I believe him.

If you mean that AJ (Atheistic Jew) only participated in the cultural aspect but didn't believe in God, then he is still not a Jew.

[quote="samiam1611, post:18, topic:264381"]
But atheism to Christianity? Toottttallly don't get it. Unless one wasn't really an atheist to begin with - perhaps a nontheist/apatheist though?

[/quote]

Well, I get it.

[quote="samiam1611, post:18, topic:264381"]
Were you guys really and truly atheists?

[/quote]

This depends on you. Would you believe us without question if we gave you an answer?

You wouldn't have asked this question had you not doubted that we were what we said we were. So, our answers wouldn't really matter now. Would they?


#40

[quote="samiam1611, post:24, topic:264381"]
I agree too. It's funny how the philosophy forum is full of posts saying atheists are illogical, theism is logical. They make arguments and the vast majority of the time I just plain old disagree with them. Particularly bc their main argument (the universe couldn't come from nothing/the first cause has to be intelligent) really only argues for deism yet they never acknowledge that. They seem to think existence itself is proof that a supernatural entity exists and intervenes in human affairs. :shrug:

[/quote]

That does not argue for deism.

[quote="samiam1611, post:24, topic:264381"]
If it doesn't get sorted out, where does that leave you? I hope it gets sorted...but you really can't count on God to do it for you, sometimes you have to grab life by the reins and make it happen.

[/quote]

Yes, we can count on God.
Phil 4:13
That was one of the conclusions I arrived at after about a year and a half through my conversion.


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