Former Baptist Pastor Became an Atheist

12 comments:

stevec said...

Ouch. Misspelled "Atheist" as "athiest" at 0:27

stevec said...

Excellent video, despite the misspelling at the beginning, Could've done without the narrator's interruptions.

Clare said...

Great video! How did you find it? I think he does not live too far from me. Also I wonder if he checks out the website www.cobourgatheist.com The author is looking for people who might like to join an atheist group in that area. The group I belong to in Ontario is the Quinte Humanists Association which is a little further east in Ontario.

Clare said...

Sorry I couldn't make the HTML hyperlink work.

Glock21 said...

The part where he talks about being unable to tell his own mother how he really felt hit me pretty hard. Had to wrestle with whether or not to tell my grandfather, who had been a de facto father in my life... who would have reacted the same way (or worse). Couldn't bring myself to do it.

He touches upon the freedom issue, which theists generally confuse as shaking off the chains of morality to head down to Mardi Gras, in very pointed way. It's not freedom from the rules. It's freedom from constant fear that one faces once they begin to have doubts. All the hell indoctrination. All of the self-blame for not being good enough for god to show you a way past it. All of the realization of how awful you've been if this stuff simply hasn't been true.

In a chat with another skeptic we got to relate on the "devil music" issue of self-censoring to avoid satan's temptations. Afraid to sing the "bad parts" for fear of eliciting the wrath of the god who "loved" us. Just all sorts of little things in the theist day-to-day is just repressive as all hell.

Those first serious doubts are a nightmare of overcoming childhood traumatizing with hell and abandonment and self-blame. It's such a shame that religious organizations do everything they can to give theists the tools to block out reason. And it's horrifying how impressively good they are at making them feel smart and superior while being willfully ignorant.

Good video though. A nice followup to the interview with the counselor.

Ken Pulliam, Ph.D. said...

The gentleman's website is called
the Former Fundie's Blog. Not to be confused with mine--FormerFundy.

Volly said...

I'm knocked out by the truths he speaks, and can relate so well to so much. The part where you stop and think "Wait a minute, I'm supposed to be so happy and content, but everything's turning to guano, and has been from the day I became a Christian!" The experience was so life-changing for me that while I still remember the day I became a Christian (Friday, Sept. 11, 1987), I regard Friday August 9, 2002 as Emancipation Day, when I got reacquainted with myself. I hope Scott keeps the depression at bay and continues being an inspiration and role model for others who know something is wrong in their lives and can't yet face the elephant in the room.

John Kesler said...

Aside from the already-noted misspelling of "atheist," there is another glaring faux pas. At the 6:27 mark, a quote from Proverbs 3:5-6 is attributed to Hebrews 10:36! How could a former Baptist minister not catch this mistake? Also, by this gentleman's own admission, he still suffers from "the depression stuff" and "life becomes bleak" when he doesn't have the proper medication; It appears that his problem was exacerbated by his rigidly held religious beliefs rather than caused by them.

Chuck O'Connor said...

Untreated depression misunderstood as "sin" was a big part of my de-conversion too.

The necessary premise that one must see oneself as "depraved" in need of saving only intensifies the cognitive illness wrought by depression.

Atheism and a life practicing reason offer huge benefits over the placebo effect religion offers when dealing with a depressive disorder.

gustavolk-swagen said...

An incredibly beautiful and touching story.

Sometimes, as nonbelievers, our shared religious background almost can make us envious of those who are raised to think for themselves and come to the same conclusions on their own without all the guilt, depression, and frustration. Life is too beautiful a thing for a religion to rule one's life and steal those precious moments of wonder with absolutist memes of slavery posing as freedom. Real freedom is so much better.

Christine Vyrnon said...

@Ken P: And not to be confused with mine - Hot-For-Jesus Former Fundie. Always good to see those who have left the faith. :)

jesusfchrist said...

So basically he became an atheist because the particular delusion he was brought up, and followed, didn't fulfill his ideas of what he wanted? In other words a selfish believer has become a selfish atheist and after the fire of semi-realization wears off he will return to depression. The man's real problem was not one of whether God exists or not, but his expectation of an illusionary deity owing him something.