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Author Topic:   Oh my God, I'm an Atheist !!
Posts: 5987
Joined: 05-02-2006
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Message 169 of 183 (410806)
07-17-2007 11:54 AM
Reply to: Message 166 by ikabod
07-17-2007 10:07 AM

mean while back to the OP .. i wonder do xians think of god in the last moments of life .. or do they assume that they have done all that they can .. and think .now where did i leave that will ??
Well, judging from "atheists in foxholes", they do. And it terrifies them.
A Viet Nam vet told of being in the base club when mortars began raining down on them. He and another atheist just settled in under a table with a bottle to wait it out -- if they died they died and there wasn't anything they could do about it. Another group of soldiers whom he knew to be fundamentalist Christians were all hysterical with fear of dying. He reported to have seen the same scenario play out repeatedly during every attack, with the believers terrified of death and the non-believers able to face death.
Our first minister (Unitarian Universalist) once related a healing he performed in a hospital -- in case you don't know about UU's, the very thought of faith-healing is antithetical to us. A terminal patient who was a devout Christian was lying there terrified. Not knowing our minister's denomination, he confessed that he was afraid that he might not measure up to God's terrible Judgement, that he might have done something wrong. So our minister read from his favorite passage:
He hath showed thee, O man, what [is] good; and what doth
the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy,
and to walk humbly with thy God?
  —"Micah 6:8"
And the patient was visibly relieved with these words and slept that night peacefully.
Fundamentalist proselytizers will frequently resort to what I have called the "Christian Death Threat", which is the threat of facing God's Judgement without having been saved. This is the playing on people's fear of death that has already been touched upon in this thread.
And yet, ironically, it seems to be precisely belief in God's Judgement and in what is supposed to happen if you do not pass muster -- excuse me, Muster -- that makes believers so much more terrified of death than non-believers.
Back to "atheists in foxholes". I had read and heard several testimonials of how people had become atheists. A number of them lost their faith in combat when face-to-face with their own imminent death. I believe that applies to the OP's question.
Edited by dwise1, : No reason given.
Edited by dwise1, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 166 by ikabod, posted 07-17-2007 10:07 AM ikabod has not replied

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