Friday, January 11, 2013


Harry: "I expected the Rocky Mountains to be a little rockier than this."
Lloyd: "I was thinking the same thing. That John Denver's full of shit, man."
--excerpt from "Dumb and Dumber"

There are a number of people whom I have read about or seen videos of, or whom I know personally who have left their inherited religion after investigating its history. To a lesser extent this would apply to myself, although most of my research into the history of the Mormon Church occurred after I had already apostasized, and did so primarily out of curiosity. This seems like a common occurrence for lay people or those who are not as invested in their beliefs as, say, theologians and clerics. But from time to time I do hear of extremely learned people uncovering the uncomfortable past and teachings of their religion, and thus are compelled by their own conscience to abandon their beliefs. The following are just a few examples.

Matt Dillahunty, President of the Atheist Community of Austin and host of the Atheist Experience, was raised a baptist and spent about a year and a half studying to become a preacher when he came to the conclusion that his beliefs were untenable. Here is his story in his own words:

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

Next up is Dan Barker who was a preacher for 19 years, and after becoming an atheist went on to found the Freedom From Religion Foundation (similar to the ACLU), and Freethought Radio.

Here is Dan explaining atheism to a Muslim audience:

And here is Dan paying tribute to Christopher Hitchens on Freethought Radio:

Finally, we have Bart Ehrman, who is a Christian theologian and Bible scholar who after years of study lost his faith. Yet, he continues to teach college-level Bible courses and regularly gives seminars for Christian audiences. The following lecture exposes the fraudulent history of how the New Testament was compiled, at the end of which the theologian conducting the meeting asks Mr Ehrman questions about his lack of belief:

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