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Atheism, Depression and Substance Abuse

RyryMase
Posts: 43
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3/31/2015 1:03:37 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
I have had a history of severe depression, anxiety, alcoholism and substance abuse since I was 16. I renounced religion, Christianity more specifically, when I was 20. Becoming atheist did not help my mental disorders. It only made my drinking and drug use worse which in turn worsened my depression. I no longer give a damn about bettering myself. I can't even believe I'm about to graduate college.

No, this is not a Christian writing this post to make atheism look bad. I'll be honest, becoming atheist has been liberating, but has also almost ruined my life. This is not a representation of Atheist in America. This is my personal struggle with not believing and its impact on my mental illnesses.

Has anyone else experienced something similar to this?

Thanks for reading
FaustianJustice
Posts: 6,240
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3/31/2015 1:12:54 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 1:03:37 AM, RyryMase wrote:
I have had a history of severe depression, anxiety, alcoholism and substance abuse since I was 16. I renounced religion, Christianity more specifically, when I was 20. Becoming atheist did not help my mental disorders. It only made my drinking and drug use worse which in turn worsened my depression. I no longer give a damn about bettering myself. I can't even believe I'm about to graduate college.

No, this is not a Christian writing this post to make atheism look bad. I'll be honest, becoming atheist has been liberating, but has also almost ruined my life. This is not a representation of Atheist in America. This is my personal struggle with not believing and its impact on my mental illnesses.

Has anyone else experienced something similar to this?

Thanks for reading

Have you entertained the notion that you should seek counseling? 16 is a rather tumultuous age in of itself (I know you aren't 16 now, its just a common age for swings in thought to develop), its quite possible that the various goings on of life might have thrown a monkey wrench into the works. Before looking to religion as a cause or affect, it might behoove you to undertake a mental health evaluation, just to see if maybe some of your issues might come from a mild or severe disorder. I did the same, except a little bit earlier (14/15) and was diagnosed with mild social anxiety. Once I worked that particular issue and found productive ways to combat and deal with it, life took a very different outlook.
Here we have an advocate for Islamic arranged marriages demonstrating that children can consent to sex.
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Beginner
Posts: 4,292
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3/31/2015 1:20:04 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 1:03:37 AM, RyryMase wrote:
I have had a history of severe depression, anxiety, alcoholism and substance abuse since I was 16. I renounced religion, Christianity more specifically, when I was 20. Becoming atheist did not help my mental disorders. It only made my drinking and drug use worse which in turn worsened my depression. I no longer give a damn about bettering myself. I can't even believe I'm about to graduate college.

No, this is not a Christian writing this post to make atheism look bad. I'll be honest, becoming atheist has been liberating, but has also almost ruined my life. This is not a representation of Atheist in America. This is my personal struggle with not believing and its impact on my mental illnesses.

Has anyone else experienced something similar to this?

Thanks for reading

It was the same with me when I struck upon the philosophy of nihilism, which is something that might extend from atheism/agnosticism. I couldn't really get myself to do anything for a while. All I saw was a big void of nothingness and the idea that nothing mattered. I fell into abuse of abject pleasures that I won't name here. I felt so tired of everything. I didn't want to do anything, but I didn't want to die either.

In the end, I found one ultimatum: even if nothing has any real objective significance that I could see, subjective significance is still something I could hold on to. The things that I want are what matters, and my base instincts wants myself to survive and flourish in society. And so a kind of semi-narcissistic, semi-solipsistic motivation formed.
I am motivated by my evolutionary instincts to survive, 'reproduce', coexist, empathize, be happy, avoid suffering and death, detract from the suffering of my fellow homo sapiens sapiens and whatever all of that entails.
Agnosticism - neither believing nor disbelieving and allowing oneself to be open to being convinced by evidence if evidence ever favors either. Honestly, anything's possible, and there's no proof whatsoever that the supernatural doesn't exist. Neither is there proof that it does. So it's best to just be agnostic and leave your mind open.
If there's nothing, then at least you've driven yourself to enjoy your life. After all, what else is there?
Senpai has noticed you.
drpiek
Posts: 589
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3/31/2015 1:23:33 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 1:03:37 AM, RyryMase wrote:
I have had a history of severe depression, anxiety, alcoholism and substance abuse since I was 16. I renounced religion, Christianity more specifically, when I was 20. Becoming atheist did not help my mental disorders. It only made my drinking and drug use worse which in turn worsened my depression. I no longer give a damn about bettering myself. I can't even believe I'm about to graduate college.

No, this is not a Christian writing this post to make atheism look bad. I'll be honest, becoming atheist has been liberating, but has also almost ruined my life. This is not a representation of Atheist in America. This is my personal struggle with not believing and its impact on my mental illnesses.

Has anyone else experienced something similar to this?

Thanks for reading

I renounced religion a while ago and found a more open relationship with god because of it. I have also had my bought with substance abuse when i was young so I understand what you are going through. I know it can be hard to clean yourself up but there is no greater high then the one you can get from making your life unbelievable. I am not saying you can't have fun but you need to stay sober most of the time for life to work out well.
RyryMase
Posts: 43
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3/31/2015 1:29:32 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
I've gotten better through counseling, it helped me work a lot of issues out. And I'm on prozac which turned my life around .But now there seems to be nothing that can help me other than myself. I don't think I will be like this forever, I'm only 25.

I'm living with my parents while I finish my last semester. I pay for everything on my own now. I'm too broke to go see a psychiatrist, but I plan on doing so once I graduate and get a good paying job.
RyryMase
Posts: 43
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3/31/2015 1:33:25 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 1:23:33 AM, drpiek wrote:

I renounced religion a while ago and found a more open relationship with god because of it. I have also had my bought with substance abuse when i was young so I understand what you are going through. I know it can be hard to clean yourself up but there is no greater high then the one you can get from making your life unbelievable. I am not saying you can't have fun but you need to stay sober most of the time for life to work out well.

Honestly my life is more stable when I'm sober. But I'm not any more happy. I feel like a zombie. Is this just a phase? I mean I'm only 25
RuvDraba
Posts: 6,033
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3/31/2015 2:00:56 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 1:03:37 AM, RyryMase wrote:
I have had a history of severe depression, anxiety, alcoholism and substance abuse since I was 16. I renounced religion, Christianity more specifically, when I was 20. Becoming atheist did not help my mental disorders.

Ryry, my sympathies for your situation.

You should be aware that atheism itself won't help anything. All it does is reject religious doctrine -- essentially giving you a blank metaphysical and moral canvas to work with.

What you do after that is up to you, but I think it helps to have a moral frame that includes a framework for your own dignity, self-responsibility and personal development.

Please also bear in mind that intensive drug or alcohol abuse when young can leave lasting legacies on a developing brain that there is presently no medical way to fix. There are some things you may need to learn to live with.

Please accept my best wishes.
Philocat
Posts: 728
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3/31/2015 2:48:35 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
Mhmm.. Atheism does seem to be existentially vacuous; it's hard to find meaning in our existence if we are just brute biological facts with no purpose.
RyryMase
Posts: 43
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3/31/2015 3:03:32 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 2:48:35 AM, Philocat wrote:
Mhmm.. Atheism does seem to be existentially vacuous; it's hard to find meaning in our existence if we are just brute biological facts with no purpose.

Exactly. It's not my lack of God that bothers me. its a lack of purpose.
DanneJeRusse
Posts: 12,652
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3/31/2015 7:44:43 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 3:03:32 AM, RyryMase wrote:
At 3/31/2015 2:48:35 AM, Philocat wrote:
Mhmm.. Atheism does seem to be existentially vacuous; it's hard to find meaning in our existence if we are just brute biological facts with no purpose.

Exactly. It's not my lack of God that bothers me. its a lack of purpose.

But, religion does not offer you a purpose other than to become a mindless robot that praises and worships and invisible god. How is that a purpose?

If Philocat believes this is his purpose, then he is free to waste his life. We as humans create our own purpose in life, free from the slavery of religion and it's mindless purpose of wasting one's life praising and worshiping.
Marrying a 6 year old and waiting until she reaches puberty and maturity before having consensual sex is better than walking up to
a stranger in a bar and proceeding to have relations with no valid proof of the intent of the person. Muhammad wins. ~ Fatihah
If they don't want to be killed then they have to subdue to the Islamic laws. - Uncung
Without God, you are lower than sh!t. ~ SpiritandTruth
Philocat
Posts: 728
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3/31/2015 8:24:41 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 7:44:43 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 3/31/2015 3:03:32 AM, RyryMase wrote:
At 3/31/2015 2:48:35 AM, Philocat wrote:
Mhmm.. Atheism does seem to be existentially vacuous; it's hard to find meaning in our existence if we are just brute biological facts with no purpose.

Exactly. It's not my lack of God that bothers me. its a lack of purpose.

But, religion does not offer you a purpose other than to become a mindless robot that praises and worships and invisible god. How is that a purpose?

If Philocat believes this is his purpose, then he is free to waste his life. We as humans create our own purpose in life, free from the slavery of religion and it's mindless purpose of wasting one's life praising and worshiping.

If God exists, then he created us. Presumably, he had a reason to create us and hence we have a purpose.

To use an analogy, if a clock is created by a clockmaker for a reason (to tell the time), then we can assert that the clock has a purpose. Yet if the clock formed randomly without any agent having caused it, then it cannot have a purpose, because it would not have been created to do anything or be anything.

I accept you may think I am wasting my life, but I disagree. Nothing within my theistic belief limits my life or makes it more of a 'waste' than it would be without theistic belief. Sure I do spend time praising God, but that serves more to invigorate myself than to serve God. It is not as if worship was some chore that we have to do, it is necessary for our spiritual health and personal existential flourishment.
DanneJeRusse
Posts: 12,652
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3/31/2015 8:35:03 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 8:24:41 AM, Philocat wrote:
At 3/31/2015 7:44:43 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 3/31/2015 3:03:32 AM, RyryMase wrote:
At 3/31/2015 2:48:35 AM, Philocat wrote:
Mhmm.. Atheism does seem to be existentially vacuous; it's hard to find meaning in our existence if we are just brute biological facts with no purpose.

Exactly. It's not my lack of God that bothers me. its a lack of purpose.

But, religion does not offer you a purpose other than to become a mindless robot that praises and worships and invisible god. How is that a purpose?

If Philocat believes this is his purpose, then he is free to waste his life. We as humans create our own purpose in life, free from the slavery of religion and it's mindless purpose of wasting one's life praising and worshiping.

If God exists, then he created us. Presumably, he had a reason to create us and hence we have a purpose.

Yes, to blindly waste ones life in pointless praise and worship of one of many gods. It's called intellectual slavery.

To use an analogy, if a clock is created by a clockmaker for a reason (to tell the time), then we can assert that the clock has a purpose. Yet if the clock formed randomly without any agent having caused it, then it cannot have a purpose, because it would not have been created to do anything or be anything.

And yet, even if the clock were randomly formed, it can still tell time. Notice how your example is pointless?

I accept you may think I am wasting my life, but I disagree. Nothing within my theistic belief limits my life or makes it more of a 'waste' than it would be without theistic belief.

In other words, you're just as likely to have to deal with reality as the rest of us, but instead, you worship and praise a god that you believe provided us with this reality, yet it is a reality void of any gods, as science demonstrates no gods were involved in our reality.

Sure I do spend time praising God, but that serves more to invigorate myself than to serve God.

Then, you are believing because you want to believe as opposed to serving your God, which is supposed to be your purpose in life, yes?

It is not as if worship was some chore that we have to do, it is necessary for our spiritual health and personal existential flourishment.

Again, I have no problem if you wish to waste your life in pursuit of "spiritual health and personal existential fourishment", whatever that is, it's your life to waste.
Marrying a 6 year old and waiting until she reaches puberty and maturity before having consensual sex is better than walking up to
a stranger in a bar and proceeding to have relations with no valid proof of the intent of the person. Muhammad wins. ~ Fatihah
If they don't want to be killed then they have to subdue to the Islamic laws. - Uncung
Without God, you are lower than sh!t. ~ SpiritandTruth
bornofgod
Posts: 11,322
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3/31/2015 8:51:02 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 1:03:37 AM, RyryMase wrote:
I have had a history of severe depression, anxiety, alcoholism and substance abuse since I was 16. I renounced religion, Christianity more specifically, when I was 20. Becoming atheist did not help my mental disorders. It only made my drinking and drug use worse which in turn worsened my depression. I no longer give a damn about bettering myself. I can't even believe I'm about to graduate college.

No, this is not a Christian writing this post to make atheism look bad. I'll be honest, becoming atheist has been liberating, but has also almost ruined my life. This is not a representation of Atheist in America. This is my personal struggle with not believing and its impact on my mental illnesses.

Has anyone else experienced something similar to this?

Thanks for reading : :

Not only did I suffer with alcoholism at a very young age until I was 25, but I have heard many stories from people in similar situations as you're going through and what I experienced. All I can say to you is that God is in total control of everything because He's the one who planned, created and formed everything.

It's a good thing that this first age is only temporary and when your body dies in this age, you will definitely get new bodies that will never get depressed again. I know this isn't comforting to you at this stage of your life but it's better than someone telling you that you need to follow their advice when they have no clue what God's will is for you.

Many people who suffer the way you and I have come out of it okay because of God's will but there's no guarantee that everyone who suffers with depression and other mental disorders will get peace in this world. Their bodies have to die to get rid of their problems.

The GOOD NEWS is that ALL God's people will be saved from their wicked flesh that has caused them suffering and pain in this first temporary age. Man was created both male and female so you will be rebirthed into Paradise with a perfect partner so you'll never be alone again. We won't suffer with addictions, disease, accidents, aging or death in Paradise.
ethang5
Posts: 4,117
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3/31/2015 8:59:00 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 7:44:43 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 3/31/2015 3:03:32 AM, RyryMase wrote:
At 3/31/2015 2:48:35 AM, Philocat wrote:

Mhmm.. Atheism does seem to be existentially vacuous; it's hard to find meaning in our existence if we are just brute biological facts with no purpose.

Exactly. It's not my lack of God that bothers me. its a lack of purpose.

And the thing about purpose is that it can't just be anything. A "life purpose" must seem bigger than the person, must be seen as something which will outlast the person. Simply picking something you like, say drugs or sex, will quickly show itself to be lacking as a life purpose.

The most effective life purposes seem to be those "found" or "assigned" from outside the person, not those created by the person themselves.

But, religion does not offer you a purpose other than to become a mindless robot that praises and worships and invisible god. How is that a purpose?

Your claim above is obviously not true. Beautiful monuments to the varied purposes found by the religious people adorn the Earth. Great Hospitals saving lives, wonderful Schools lifting people out of poverty, International organizations defending the weak and sheltering the poor. Selfless ideas which have humbled racism, hatred, and intolerance.

It is you who thinks that religion offers no purpose other than to become a mindless robot. And that you think so betrays your ignorance of History, architecture, sociology, and human nature.

If Philocat believes this is his purpose, then he is free to waste his life.

Whether one feels their life is wasted or not depends on the person. A life not spent on what you value is not the definition of a wasted life. Each person finds his own purpose, and for each person who finds a purpose that fulfills them, their life cannot be called a waste.

We as humans create our own purpose in life, free from the slavery of religion and it's mindless purpose of wasting one's life praising and worshiping.

The entire OP is a repudiation of this inane comment. It's like the fact that atheism couldn't give him purpose scares you, so you'll just ignore the real challenges he faced and insist on the rote, glib, party line.
DanneJeRusse
Posts: 12,652
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3/31/2015 9:05:22 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 8:59:00 AM, ethang5 wrote:
At 3/31/2015 7:44:43 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 3/31/2015 3:03:32 AM, RyryMase wrote:
At 3/31/2015 2:48:35 AM, Philocat wrote:

Mhmm.. Atheism does seem to be existentially vacuous; it's hard to find meaning in our existence if we are just brute biological facts with no purpose.

Exactly. It's not my lack of God that bothers me. its a lack of purpose.

And the thing about purpose is that it can't just be anything. A "life purpose" must seem bigger than the person, must be seen as something which will outlast the person. Simply picking something you like, say drugs or sex, will quickly show itself to be lacking as a life purpose.

Notice the dishonestly of the believer, who claims drugs and sex are a purpose in life if one does not follow his god.

The most effective life purposes seem to be those "found" or "assigned" from outside the person, not those created by the person themselves.

Yes, they are created entirely by the person themselves, which can indeed be affected by outside influences.

But, religion does not offer you a purpose other than to become a mindless robot that praises and worships and invisible god. How is that a purpose?

Your claim above is obviously not true. Beautiful monuments to the varied purposes found by the religious people adorn the Earth. Great Hospitals saving lives, wonderful Schools lifting people out of poverty, International organizations defending the weak and sheltering the poor. Selfless ideas which have humbled racism, hatred, and intolerance.

Baloney. Anything that a religious institution can achieve, non-religious institutions do it far better because they don't have an agenda for converting others.

It is you who thinks that religion offers no purpose other than to become a mindless robot. And that you think so betrays your ignorance of History, architecture, sociology, and human nature.

Your free to show you are not a mindless robot, if you can. So far, I see nothing resembling anything other than that.

If Philocat believes this is his purpose, then he is free to waste his life.

Whether one feels their life is wasted or not depends on the person. A life not spent on what you value is not the definition of a wasted life. Each person finds his own purpose, and for each person who finds a purpose that fulfills them, their life cannot be called a waste.

Unless of course, if the purpose they choose is based entirely on lies, which religions appears to be based.

We as humans create our own purpose in life, free from the slavery of religion and it's mindless purpose of wasting one's life praising and worshiping.

The entire OP is a repudiation of this inane comment. It's like the fact that atheism couldn't give him purpose scares you, so you'll just ignore the real challenges he faced and insist on the rote, glib, party line.

LOL. That is hilarious.
Marrying a 6 year old and waiting until she reaches puberty and maturity before having consensual sex is better than walking up to
a stranger in a bar and proceeding to have relations with no valid proof of the intent of the person. Muhammad wins. ~ Fatihah
If they don't want to be killed then they have to subdue to the Islamic laws. - Uncung
Without God, you are lower than sh!t. ~ SpiritandTruth
Philocat
Posts: 728
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3/31/2015 10:34:39 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 8:35:03 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 3/31/2015 8:24:41 AM, Philocat wrote:
At 3/31/2015 7:44:43 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 3/31/2015 3:03:32 AM, RyryMase wrote:
At 3/31/2015 2:48:35 AM, Philocat wrote:
Mhmm.. Atheism does seem to be existentially vacuous; it's hard to find meaning in our existence if we are just brute biological facts with no purpose.

Exactly. It's not my lack of God that bothers me. its a lack of purpose.

But, religion does not offer you a purpose other than to become a mindless robot that praises and worships and invisible god. How is that a purpose?

If Philocat believes this is his purpose, then he is free to waste his life. We as humans create our own purpose in life, free from the slavery of religion and it's mindless purpose of wasting one's life praising and worshiping.

If God exists, then he created us. Presumably, he had a reason to create us and hence we have a purpose.

Yes, to blindly waste ones life in pointless praise and worship of one of many gods. It's called intellectual slavery.

Blindly? Pointless? Definitely not. It isn't blind because I have rational support for my beliefs. It isn't pointless because it provides spiritual fulfilment and maintains my relationship with God.

To use an analogy, if a clock is created by a clockmaker for a reason (to tell the time), then we can assert that the clock has a purpose. Yet if the clock formed randomly without any agent having caused it, then it cannot have a purpose, because it would not have been created to do anything or be anything.

And yet, even if the clock were randomly formed, it can still tell time. Notice how your example is pointless?

You missed the point. Yes it can still tell the time, but its *purpose* isn't to tell the time unless it was created to tell the time. If it comes together randomly then telling the time is a coincidental attribute, not its purpose.

I accept you may think I am wasting my life, but I disagree. Nothing within my theistic belief limits my life or makes it more of a 'waste' than it would be without theistic belief.

In other words, you're just as likely to have to deal with reality as the rest of us, but instead, you worship and praise a god that you believe provided us with this reality, yet it is a reality void of any gods, as science demonstrates no gods were involved in our reality.

All science does is tell us about the material world, hence it is foolish to attempt to provide judgements about the supernatural world (namely whether it contains a God).

Besides, science does not explain why the universe is so exactly tuned to be able to support life.

Sure I do spend time praising God, but that serves more to invigorate myself than to serve God.

Then, you are believing because you want to believe as opposed to serving your God, which is supposed to be your purpose in life, yes?

It's both. I gain personal fulfilment from my relationship with God, whilst it is also true that this relationship is part of my purpose.


It is not as if worship was some chore that we have to do, it is necessary for our spiritual health and personal existential flourishment.

Again, I have no problem if you wish to waste your life in pursuit of "spiritual health and personal existential fourishment", whatever that is, it's your life to waste.

I'm not wasting it though. At least no more than you are, having posted thousands of posts on a forum discussing a being you don't even think exists.
drpiek
Posts: 589
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3/31/2015 10:45:58 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 8:35:03 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:

In other words, you're just as likely to have to deal with reality as the rest of us, but instead, you worship and praise a god that you believe provided us with this reality, yet it is a reality void of any gods, as science demonstrates no gods were involved in our reality.

Science does not demonstrate there is no God. Science simply focuses on how things happen but will never be able to answer the question of where it all came from. God will always be the answer to everything that science will never figure out.
Electric-Eccentric
Posts: 1,309
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3/31/2015 11:58:26 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
That is the big problem with picking things from earthly worldly popular lists of choices.

I choose from a very unpopular list. It is a list that is hated and crucified daily by those of the popular crowds.

You must embrace the monsters that you fear until you understand them enough to make them go away like magic.

When you laugh at a superstitious monster with True unconfused conviction they become afraid and go poof.

I have done in a few of those monsters in my younger days.
Life is what YOU make it,
Most just try and fake it...
bornofgod
Posts: 11,322
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3/31/2015 12:02:23 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 11:58:26 AM, Electric-Eccentric wrote:
That is the big problem with picking things from earthly worldly popular lists of choices.

I choose from a very unpopular list. It is a list that is hated and crucified daily by those of the popular crowds.

You think you made a choice but if you knew Me, you would learn where all decisions were created.

You must embrace the monsters that you fear until you understand them enough to make them go away like magic.

When you laugh at a superstitious monster with True unconfused conviction they become afraid and go poof.

I have done in a few of those monsters in my younger days.
dhardage
Posts: 4,545
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3/31/2015 12:11:12 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
My father was an abusive alcoholic and substance abuse tendencies run in my family. Aware of this, I have made it my business to avoid the possibility of being so ensnared by not allowing myself to partake of any such substances. It's a strategy that has worked for over a half century.

What does this have to do with this post? Only that my father was also a church-going Baptist, as was my much abused but still devoted mother. It took a long time for her to realize staying with him for our sake wasn't really for our sake, it was just familiar and what was expected of a good wife. It took a lot of courage for her to break out and start over.

Courage, my friend, is what you need to exercise. Courage to face your issues, seek help in resolving them, and seeking out what is important to you. We all must find the purpose in our lives. In mine it is my family and their happiness as well as my own. Only you can decide to be better and to whatever it takes to make that a reality.
ThinkFirst
Posts: 1,391
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3/31/2015 12:29:41 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 10:45:58 AM, drpiek wrote:
At 3/31/2015 8:35:03 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:

In other words, you're just as likely to have to deal with reality as the rest of us, but instead, you worship and praise a god that you believe provided us with this reality, yet it is a reality void of any gods, as science demonstrates no gods were involved in our reality.

Science does not demonstrate there is no God. Science simply focuses on how things happen but will never be able to answer the question of where it all came from. God will always be the answer to everything that science will never figure out.

Yes, the "gaps" in scientific inquiry will always be identified as "god" by the believers. We get it. The only problem, for believers, is that the list is continually shrinking.
"Never attribute to villainy that which can be adequately explained by stupidity"
-----
"Men rarely if ever dream up a god superior to themselves. Most gods have the manners and morals of a spoiled child. "

-- Robert A Heinlein
ethang5
Posts: 4,117
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3/31/2015 12:35:50 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 9:05:22 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 3/31/2015 8:59:00 AM, ethang5 wrote:

Mhmm.. Atheism does seem to be existentially vacuous; it's hard to find meaning in our existence if we are just brute biological facts with no purpose.

Exactly. It's not my lack of God that bothers me. its a lack of purpose.

And the thing about purpose is that it can't just be anything. A "life purpose" must seem bigger than the person, must be seen as something which will outlast the person. Simply picking something you like, say drugs or sex, will quickly show itself to be lacking as a life purpose.

Notice the dishonestly of the believer, who claims drugs and sex are a purpose in life if one does not follow his god.

Drugs and sex can be a persons purpose. In fact, one of the atheist posters to this very thread mentioned how his life devolved into simply seeking pleasure. You said a person is free to chose his purpose. Sometimes the choice is sex or drugs, especially in cases where atheism has removed any coherent moral structure.

The most effective life purposes seem to be those "found" or "assigned" from outside the person, not those created by the person themselves.

Yes, they are created entirely by the person themselves, which can indeed be affected by outside influences.

Sometimes people have purpose "assigned" to them by a cause, a mentor, or a situation. Not all life purposes are picked by the person themselves. That is how you get the Maos, Pol Pots, and Hitlers of the world.

But, religion does not offer you a purpose other than to become a mindless robot that praises and worships and invisible god. How is that a purpose?

Your claim above is obviously not true. Beautiful monuments to the varied purposes found by the religious people adorn the Earth. Great Hospitals saving lives, wonderful Schools lifting people out of poverty, International organizations defending the weak and sheltering the poor. Selfless ideas which have humbled racism, hatred, and intolerance.

Baloney.

Yet that is what we see in the actual world. All over the planet Christians have funded thousands of hospitals, schools and missions. Atheists can also, but just don't do so as often. Christians do it better because their motivation is not selfish, which is why they have been so successful at it.

Anything that a religious institution can achieve, non-religious institutions do it far better because they don't have an agenda for converting others.

The point was that Christians have varied purposes, and that fact is evident by the change they have wrought all over the world and the legacies they have left. You want to slide now to who can do it better. Your claim was that religion does not offer anyone a purpose other than to become a mindless robot. Considering the multitude of evidence in the real world, that statement is downright idiotic.

It is you who thinks that religion offers no purpose other than to become a mindless robot. And that you think so betrays your ignorance of History, architecture, sociology, and human nature.

Your free to show you are not a mindless robot, if you can. So far, I see nothing resembling anything other than that.

Lol. If that is your best rebut, I think I can live with it.

If Philocat believes this is his purpose, then he is free to waste his life.

Whether one feels their life is wasted or not depends on the person. A life not spent on what you value is not the definition of a wasted life. Each person finds his own purpose, and for each person who finds a purpose that fulfills them, their life cannot be called a waste.

Unless of course, if the purpose they choose is based entirely on lies, which religions appears to be based.

When your opinion grows into a fact, get back to me.

We as humans create our own purpose in life, free from the slavery of religion and it's mindless purpose of wasting one's life praising and worshiping.

The entire OP is a repudiation of this inane comment. It's like the fact that atheism couldn't give him purpose scares you, so you'll just ignore the real challenges he faced and insist on the rote, glib, party line.

LOL. That is hilarious.

Again no logical rebut. The OP did exactly what you suggest here, he ditched religion and created his own purpose in life but found it lacking. You have no answer for him on the deficiency of atheism, so you default to evidence-free militancy.

The OP, an atheist, wrote complaining of the lack of a fulfilling life purpose. Philocat, a theist, lives a life he feels has satisfying purpose and is happy. But reality can't dent your dogma. So you soldier on, insisting that the emperors new clothes are wonderful.

Not only is the OP braver than you, he's more honest.
drpiek
Posts: 589
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3/31/2015 12:39:09 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 12:29:41 PM, ThinkFirst wrote:
At 3/31/2015 10:45:58 AM, drpiek wrote:
At 3/31/2015 8:35:03 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:

In other words, you're just as likely to have to deal with reality as the rest of us, but instead, you worship and praise a god that you believe provided us with this reality, yet it is a reality void of any gods, as science demonstrates no gods were involved in our reality.

Science does not demonstrate there is no God. Science simply focuses on how things happen but will never be able to answer the question of where it all came from. God will always be the answer to everything that science will never figure out.

Yes, the "gaps" in scientific inquiry will always be identified as "god" by the believers. We get it. The only problem, for believers, is that the list is continually shrinking.

Yes shrinking to infinity. A sum science will always struggle with.
ThinkFirst
Posts: 1,391
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3/31/2015 12:42:32 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 12:39:09 PM, drpiek wrote:
At 3/31/2015 12:29:41 PM, ThinkFirst wrote:
At 3/31/2015 10:45:58 AM, drpiek wrote:
At 3/31/2015 8:35:03 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:

In other words, you're just as likely to have to deal with reality as the rest of us, but instead, you worship and praise a god that you believe provided us with this reality, yet it is a reality void of any gods, as science demonstrates no gods were involved in our reality.

Science does not demonstrate there is no God. Science simply focuses on how things happen but will never be able to answer the question of where it all came from. God will always be the answer to everything that science will never figure out.

Yes, the "gaps" in scientific inquiry will always be identified as "god" by the believers. We get it. The only problem, for believers, is that the list is continually shrinking.

Yes shrinking to infinity. A sum science will always struggle with.

LOL. Try to keep your scientific terms to a minimum, lest it be openly displayed how little you really know of them. It is not science that struggles with infinity... it's the human mind. Further, nothing "shrinks to infinity." Infinity is perpetually expansive. Do you not understand the difference, or were you trying to be "tongue in cheek?"
"Never attribute to villainy that which can be adequately explained by stupidity"
-----
"Men rarely if ever dream up a god superior to themselves. Most gods have the manners and morals of a spoiled child. "

-- Robert A Heinlein
drpiek
Posts: 589
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3/31/2015 1:24:44 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 12:42:32 PM, ThinkFirst wrote:
At 3/31/2015 12:39:09 PM, drpiek wrote:
At 3/31/2015 12:29:41 PM, ThinkFirst wrote:
At 3/31/2015 10:45:58 AM, drpiek wrote:
At 3/31/2015 8:35:03 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:

In other words, you're just as likely to have to deal with reality as the rest of us, but instead, you worship and praise a god that you believe provided us with this reality, yet it is a reality void of any gods, as science demonstrates no gods were involved in our reality.

Science does not demonstrate there is no God. Science simply focuses on how things happen but will never be able to answer the question of where it all came from. God will always be the answer to everything that science will never figure out.

Yes, the "gaps" in scientific inquiry will always be identified as "god" by the believers. We get it. The only problem, for believers, is that the list is continually shrinking.

Yes shrinking to infinity. A sum science will always struggle with.

LOL. Try to keep your scientific terms to a minimum, lest it be openly displayed how little you really know of them. It is not science that struggles with infinity... it's the human mind. Further, nothing "shrinks to infinity." Infinity is perpetually expansive. Do you not understand the difference, or were you trying to be "tongue in cheek?"

Infinity is perpetually expansive and reductive in both directions. You can continually divide something infinite times.
ThinkFirst
Posts: 1,391
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3/31/2015 1:39:21 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 1:24:44 PM, drpiek wrote:
At 3/31/2015 12:42:32 PM, ThinkFirst wrote:
At 3/31/2015 12:39:09 PM, drpiek wrote:
At 3/31/2015 12:29:41 PM, ThinkFirst wrote:
At 3/31/2015 10:45:58 AM, drpiek wrote:
At 3/31/2015 8:35:03 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:

In other words, you're just as likely to have to deal with reality as the rest of us, but instead, you worship and praise a god that you believe provided us with this reality, yet it is a reality void of any gods, as science demonstrates no gods were involved in our reality.

Science does not demonstrate there is no God. Science simply focuses on how things happen but will never be able to answer the question of where it all came from. God will always be the answer to everything that science will never figure out.

Yes, the "gaps" in scientific inquiry will always be identified as "god" by the believers. We get it. The only problem, for believers, is that the list is continually shrinking.

Yes shrinking to infinity. A sum science will always struggle with.

LOL. Try to keep your scientific terms to a minimum, lest it be openly displayed how little you really know of them. It is not science that struggles with infinity... it's the human mind. Further, nothing "shrinks to infinity." Infinity is perpetually expansive. Do you not understand the difference, or were you trying to be "tongue in cheek?"

Infinity is perpetually expansive and reductive in both directions. You can continually divide something infinite times.

No. Just no.

Think about your sentences a little more, and you'll understand the mathematical implications of your error...

Yes, you can divide "infinite times." But as you continue to divide, the NUMBER of times you have divided is what is expanding toward infinity. That which is divided is actually approaching ZERO, not "infinity." No matter how you try to massage it, "infinity" is expansive, not reductive. Infinite amount of reduction does not approach infinity. Reduction can only approach ZERO.

Any questions?
"Never attribute to villainy that which can be adequately explained by stupidity"
-----
"Men rarely if ever dream up a god superior to themselves. Most gods have the manners and morals of a spoiled child. "

-- Robert A Heinlein
Harikrish
Posts: 11,014
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3/31/2015 4:02:22 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 1:33:25 AM, RyryMase wrote:
At 3/31/2015 1:23:33 AM, drpiek wrote:

I renounced religion a while ago and found a more open relationship with god because of it. I have also had my bought with substance abuse when i was young so I understand what you are going through. I know it can be hard to clean yourself up but there is no greater high then the one you can get from making your life unbelievable. I am not saying you can't have fun but you need to stay sober most of the time for life to work out well.

Honestly my life is more stable when I'm sober. But I'm not any more happy. I feel like a zombie. Is this just a phase? I mean I'm only 25

Remember the saying. The grass is always greener on the other side. Listen to the advice you are getting from the old timers here. Many of them are Christians praying for the next age to come because it isn't coming fast enough and they don't want to die in their old miserable bodies and wish it would end sooner.
Given a choice many would like to be 25 again doing exactly what you are doing instead of being miserable because they cannot get more out of drugs booze, sex and greed the way only a 25 year can. You can keep it short and wildly happy or drag it with regrets. But don't burn out at 25 like Brad aka BoG did or you will end up a eunuch and a homeless beggar like him blaming his youthful rush like it was just an illusion. People like him are like spend radioactive material impotent but dangerous to be near.
Nac
Posts: 326
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3/31/2015 4:42:22 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 3:03:32 AM, RyryMase wrote:
Exactly. It's not my lack of God that bothers me. its a lack of purpose.

I can understand that feeling. It is extremely difficult to find a purpose in life as an atheist. Because life has no inherent meaning in this worldview, sometimes it is difficult to cope with that sense of emptiness.

But just because life possesses no inherent purpose doesn't mean we can't give it a purpose. Try to devote yourself to a goal, find something you enjoy, hone your skill at it, seek help from your loved ones, seek to help your loved ones.

Live your life the way you see as most fulfilling.

Honestly, as I've grown and ponder existence, I began to change my way of thinking. If you would, I hope this worldview can help.

Say you are a painter. Now, for a long time you were told that the only pictures that had meaning were drawings of nature. So you diligently doodled depictions of trees, leaves, rocks, whatever you could think of. The only way you could judge your artwork is on its resemblance to the subject of study. However, one day you think to yourself, "Why have I believed this story?" It seems ludicrous. Your beliefs have completely changed. You now realize that you can draw anything you want. But, because you were told and believed for so long that the only true artistry is accurate portrayals of nature, you find no meaning in your job with that substantiation removed from your mind.

I believe that you are at this place right now. You can do anything you want with your life, but it feels as if it is robbed of all purpose.

However, you should not stop painting because of this. Even if it wasn't substantial, you were able to enjoy yourself while drawing, were you not? If you were able to gather something, anything at all, from sketching, then hold on to that. Live for that.

Find out what exactly you found to be beautiful about your drawings and focus on that aspect, until you can consistently find purpose regardless of your focal point.

I hope that this helps.
DanneJeRusse
Posts: 12,652
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3/31/2015 7:32:19 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 10:34:39 AM, Philocat wrote:
At 3/31/2015 8:35:03 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 3/31/2015 8:24:41 AM, Philocat wrote:
At 3/31/2015 7:44:43 AM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 3/31/2015 3:03:32 AM, RyryMase wrote:
At 3/31/2015 2:48:35 AM, Philocat wrote:
Mhmm.. Atheism does seem to be existentially vacuous; it's hard to find meaning in our existence if we are just brute biological facts with no purpose.

Exactly. It's not my lack of God that bothers me. its a lack of purpose.

But, religion does not offer you a purpose other than to become a mindless robot that praises and worships and invisible god. How is that a purpose?

If Philocat believes this is his purpose, then he is free to waste his life. We as humans create our own purpose in life, free from the slavery of religion and it's mindless purpose of wasting one's life praising and worshiping.

If God exists, then he created us. Presumably, he had a reason to create us and hence we have a purpose.

Yes, to blindly waste ones life in pointless praise and worship of one of many gods. It's called intellectual slavery.

Blindly? Pointless? Definitely not. It isn't blind because I have rational support for my beliefs.

No, you don't. There is no such thing as "rational religious beliefs."

It isn't pointless because it provides spiritual fulfilment and maintains my relationship with God.

No, it doesn't, you only want to believe that lie.

To use an analogy, if a clock is created by a clockmaker for a reason (to tell the time), then we can assert that the clock has a purpose. Yet if the clock formed randomly without any agent having caused it, then it cannot have a purpose, because it would not have been created to do anything or be anything.

And yet, even if the clock were randomly formed, it can still tell time. Notice how your example is pointless?

You missed the point.

No, I didn't. Your point was pointless.

Yes it can still tell the time, but its *purpose* isn't to tell the time unless it was created to tell the time.

That makes no sense. If it's a clock, then it tells time.

If it comes together randomly then telling the time is a coincidental attribute, not its purpose.

So what?

I accept you may think I am wasting my life, but I disagree. Nothing within my theistic belief limits my life or makes it more of a 'waste' than it would be without theistic belief.

In other words, you're just as likely to have to deal with reality as the rest of us, but instead, you worship and praise a god that you believe provided us with this reality, yet it is a reality void of any gods, as science demonstrates no gods were involved in our reality.

All science does is tell us about the material world, hence it is foolish to attempt to provide judgements about the supernatural world (namely whether it contains a God).

Sorry, but there is no such thing as the supernatural world, that is, unless you can show it.

Besides, science does not explain why the universe is so exactly tuned to be able to support life.

The universe is not tuned to support life, that is pure baloney.

Sure I do spend time praising God, but that serves more to invigorate myself than to serve God.

Then, you are believing because you want to believe as opposed to serving your God, which is supposed to be your purpose in life, yes?

It's both. I gain personal fulfilment from my relationship with God, whilst it is also true that this relationship is part of my purpose.

You only want to believe that even though it isn't true at all.


It is not as if worship was some chore that we have to do, it is necessary for our spiritual health and personal existential flourishment.

Again, I have no problem if you wish to waste your life in pursuit of "spiritual health and personal existential fourishment", whatever that is, it's your life to waste.

I'm not wasting it though. At least no more than you are, having posted thousands of posts on a forum discussing a being you don't even think exists.

Sorry, I don't believe in childish fairy tales.
Marrying a 6 year old and waiting until she reaches puberty and maturity before having consensual sex is better than walking up to
a stranger in a bar and proceeding to have relations with no valid proof of the intent of the person. Muhammad wins. ~ Fatihah
If they don't want to be killed then they have to subdue to the Islamic laws. - Uncung
Without God, you are lower than sh!t. ~ SpiritandTruth
Double_R
Posts: 4,886
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3/31/2015 8:20:30 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 3/31/2015 8:24:41 AM, Philocat wrote:
If God exists, then he created us. Presumably, he had a reason to create us and hence we have a purpose.

To use an analogy, if a clock is created by a clockmaker for a reason (to tell the time), then we can assert that the clock has a purpose. Yet if the clock formed randomly without any agent having caused it, then it cannot have a purpose, because it would not have been created to do anything or be anything.

Can the clock in your example have a purpose if God does not exist?