Monday, November 12, 2007

Interesting E-mail exchange - posted with permission

I have heard that, as an atheist, when you manage to break ground with a theist and get them to reconsider their beliefs, it gives you a rush. I never thought that I would be the one changing people, but...I was wrong.

A few months ago, I started conversing (via e-mail and phone) with this really cool, but very Chritsian, young lady. Her name is Kate and she posts here under the pseudonym of Evodevo_goddess. She asked me to share her story and okayed' my using some of her e-mails to do so.

Kate began e-mailing me after this post about the Catholic Church. Here was her first e-mail to me:

Hi PMomma, my name is Kate and I'm a student at *insert university name*
(expunged for privacy). I started reading your blog when I was doing a web
search for blogs about people having personal experiences with the Catholic
church and molestation. I really like your post on the matter. You will get no
high talk from me protecting the church. I don't know about atheism. Do you
think you're angry at God for the wrong reason? He did not abuse the children
you post about. I think God will punish the priests in hell. Are you an atheist
because you don't like this catholic stuff? My knowledge about atheism is

So...I responded to her with the usual and appropriate responses.
Unlike some theists, she seemed to actually READ what I wrote and we entered into a discussion of mutual respect. About a month in, she said she was starting to understand what the atheist position was/is and how it made sense. Another two weeks went by and she was saying that, in her biology class, things were making more sense than they ever had and how she was so happy not to have to worry about the apparent inconsistencies between religion and science. She took on the name evodevo_goddess. Still, I said nothing about what or how she should believe/think/whatever.

She sent me the following after John's tantrums -
Me, again! John is an idiot. You have beautiful children! I
have been thinking about our talks and I want to thank you for helping me
separate religion from reality. I believed because it was what I
wanted to be true. I still have big questions. I don't want to
accept made up answers anymore. I want fact.

I'm posting this to show how unnecessary the strong arm tactics are. If you allow people to think for themselves, they will! :)


Sean the Blogonaut F.C.D. said...

I don't know about a rush, but I get a similar feeling when I am teaching and people - just get it. When they make a realisation on their own.

jimmy said...

That's what scares the people like John. Giving people a chance to think for themselves. I'm glad you helped someone open their eyes!

SWE said...

And a big cheer for Evodevo_goddess. It takes real courage to open your mind to new ideas and to seek them out is just fantastic. I wish we all had more of that kind of fortitude. :)

Anonymous said...

Yeah for Kate! I know how scary it is to start questioning your faith and it takes a strong person to ask the hard questions and look for the REAL answers. You should be proud of yourself :)

Maggie Rosethorn said...

Hooray for Kate for being willing to look openly and honestly at her beliefs and the world, and to you, Pmomma, for leading by encouraging research and learning rather than by force and threats.

Poodles said...

Way to go Kate! I think you are correct in saying that there isn't any need for strong arm tactics. The truth doesn't need any bullying.

Summer Squirrel, FCD said...

I have to second the remark by swe. Evodevo_goddess is a wonderfully courageous young woman. It's not such a big bad scary world out there after all. It's mysterious and wondrous and science does a good job in explaining it with out all the magic weird stuff.

I hope she continues to grow!