When do you first suspect or start to doubt Santa’s existence?
Should we still believe until Santa’s nonexistence can be conclusively proven?
Or should we disbelieve until such evidence for his existence in reality be demonstrated?
How in Santa’s North Pole would you even go about “conclusively proving” the nonexistence of something or someone anyway?
Would you be safe and sane living your life, making real life affecting decisions, and treating others accordingly… Voting in Public elections… as if Santa actually exists?
Would you feel justified mocking and deriding others who don’t believe and treating them harshly because of it?
Or rather… do you eventually grow up and safely assume Santa to be a useful and happy family myth, with no real world application past treating others with kindness and trying to live as Santa might want you to… if he were really real?
Do you still believe in the actual existence of Santa Claus even though you haven’t any real evidence or demonstration of his existence in the real world?
Or do you expect others to “prove” Santa doesn’t exist before you’ll “not believe” anymore?
Passing on what previous generations have said or believed is not Evidence. It’s a Claim… Hearsay.
They may indeed have said it. They may have believed it. Neither makes it automatically true. And the fact that they said it and/or believed doesn’t constitute Evidence for you to believe or say that it’s true either.
“My loyalty lies with truth. Truth is that which conforms to reality and what can demonstrate to have the quality of truthfulness. If it’s not True, then it can not and should not be regarded as Truth.” -mike
I once thought I knew what Truth was.
I once thought… now there’s a funny one. In actually thinking, I discovered that What and even Who I thought Truth was… was not really Truth or True at all.
In thinking for myself and allowing myself the Freedom to question outside the lines and find answers that might equally be “out of bounds” I discovered that I had been hunkered down and comfortably chained of my own volition in a type of Plato’s Cave, interpreting the shadows on the walls within the framework of the traditions and worldviews of people who haven’t lived for centuries. Those who didn’t have access to the Evidence and means of searching for and obtaining that Evidence that we do today.
I walked away not only when I discovered these things, but after seeking out, listening to and considering what the best Apologists from “our side” had to answer about the questions and answers I was finding out. What I heard from “our side” was excuses, arrogant and rude dismissiveness, logical fallacies and misdirections, outright lies and misrepresentations. A “Whatever it takes” mentality and attitude at pushing the Evidence now being discovered away from me and those like me, and a condescending and personally insulting attempt to bully me back into the Cave, lest I suffer the consequences of Apostasy.
You see, in the final analysis… it wasn’t primarily Truth that finally made me willing to leave the comfort of the Cave. That of course provided the reasons. But in the final analysis, it was the Apologists and their dishonety in defending what they mus have known to be the indefensible, given the lengths they were willing to go, even to intentionally distorting and misrepresenting both the Truth and the Opposition, who pushed me out even as their efforts were dessigned to keep me in.
The Exodus that Never Happened… and my personal one that did
This post bears the evidence that is sorely lacking in support of what we’ve been told of the biblical history of Israel. The lack of actual Archaeological Evidence for the Old Testament Biblical Accounts is at least reason for pause and deep consideration. The implications actually lead to conclusions that Christians such as I was are sometimes not willing to accept let alone think about.
I reblogged this post about 3yrs ago on another incarnation of the RKIA, but I coming back to it because this was the beginning of my willingness to disbelieve the biblical accounts. I suspended my Suspense of Disbelief long enough to lookk at the evidence with an Outsiders Point of View. I took the “Outsiders Test of Faith” encouraged by John Loftus and before long “mene, mene, tekel, upharsin” found the very foundations of my Faith Tradition “wanting” and utterly corrupt.
I’m not trying to convince anyone. The Bookish Recovering Know It All isn’t a “Counter Apologetics Ministry”. I believe I’m past that phase. But it is important to own and explain where I come from and how I got here. If there is a God, and I still believe there may be, it isn’t the Judeo Christian God described in the Old Testament. And if there actually was a Jesus of Nazareth, which I still believe there may in fact have been, he was not the Jesus described in the New Testament. He would have been just a simple preacher of righteousness calling his people and his nation back to their cultural God and moral base… and ended up getting killed for his efforts.
I no longer believe in a historical, actual, physical resurrection of the man Jesus, son of Joseph. If he was crucified, he would not have been laid in a “new tomb” owned by a rich man. He would have been tossed unceremoniously into a common grave after allowing the birds and dogs to pick his bones clean. That is what the Romans did. Crucification’s whole purpose was to deny proper, honorable, and decent burial.
That Jesus is and has been dead for millennia. For me, the NT Jesus has also been dead for about four years now. And in his death, I’ve gained New Life. My hope for you as well.
The Jewish origin tale recounted in the Pentateuch is a work of geopolitical fiction. This is the uncontested consensus of biblical archaeologists and bible scholars. It has been the consensus position amongst professionals for nearly three generations now, but as the Chief Archaeologist at Jerusalem’s Israel Museum, Professor Magen Broshi, explained: “Archaeologists simply do not take the trouble of bringing their discoveries to public attention.” So solid is the consensus, and so definitive the evidence supporting it, that in 1998, the American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR), the primary American professional body for archaeologists working in the Middle East, changed the name of its professional publication from Biblical Archaeologist to Near Eastern Archaeology simply because the bible had been determined to be (beyond all doubt) an entirely unreliable historical source to direct research into the early Jews, pre-Babylonian captivity. Indeed, in that same year, even Christianity Today’s Kevin D…