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Monday, August 13, 2007

Near Death Delusions

Like every typical morning, i arrived to work, and like always, the first thing i do is check my e-mail, then I found an e-mail waiting in my inbox with the subject "Saved from Hell - Rev. Howard Storm's near-death experience" so I would like to quote some text from the e-mail and present it to you in this blog post:

“Rev. Howard Storm, a Professor of Art at Northern Kentucky University, was not a very pleasant man. He was an avowed atheist and was hostile to every form of religion and those who practiced it. He often would use rage to control everyone around him and he didn't find joy in anything. Anything that wasn't seen, touched, or felt, he had no faith in. He knew with certainty that the material world was the full extent of everything that was. He considered all belief systems associated with religion to be fantasies for people to deceive themselves with. Beyond what science said, there was nothing else.”

After reading this, it got me thinking about the other large amount of emails I received regarding famous scientists converting to Christianity or to Islam, not just e-mails, but I also you can read about it in religious blogs that are spread all over the internet like butter on toasted bread.

As I read the e-mail I’m filled with shock and dismay as to how religion always portrays Atheists. As if we are savage blood thirsty monsters. Therefore I decided to write this post and perhaps manage to explain the motives of such accusations made towards Atheists by religion.

First I need to stress out and clarify to the readers that Humans are emotional beings when it comes to family values friendships and life or death experiences. For example a person who gets insulted reacts to the insult according to his/her emotions. And depending on that persons “sensitive nature” dictates the amount or the magnitude of the reaction of that person. In our everyday life we go through all sorts of emotional experience that by itself shapes and defines how we act, react, and respond to those experiences, and how we act, react, and respond to similar experiences in the future.

Sometimes those experiences could have a strong impact on us, and it could and in most cases can alter how we behave to certain factors that contributed to that experience. Now, let’s set up an equation for this:

Magnitude of Experience + Person’s Emotional state = the amount of Alteration of that person’s behavior.

Rev. Howard Storm went through an emotional experience due to a perforation of the stomach that according to his emotional state changed his behavior. That blinded his mind from facts and logic. The high level of experience that he experienced made him delusional for that period of time, which made him imagine “a bright light at the end of a long tunnel”. It is a very well known fact that our mind plays tricks on us in certain times especially when we’re being deeply in an emotional state. There is however other factors that lead Rev. Howard Storm to his delusion during his near death experience. Which is the rule that religion plays in our everyday life, and how it always manages to infiltrate our minds with its teaching and preaching, just like a magician who prepares his audience for hypnosis, as the crowd carefully watch his hands and eyes gestures and listen to his words that echo deep in to their minds, then they find themselves helplessly giving in then the magician starts programming his audiences minds through spoken words and commands them to execute his word after he counts till three and snap his fingers. Religion plays the same role as the magician. It fills our minds with fairy tales and stories that are not related to logic or common sense in what so ever way. This goes on from the day you’re born till one day you go through an experience that makes you lose your sense of logical judgment for a certain amount of time in that amount of time religion snaps it’s fingers, as all the teachings and preaching you’ve had heard since your childhood till that day storms through your mind and you become fully hypnotized to religion’s will. At that moment of weakness a person admits to his/her delusion as facts. Religion finds opportunity in times like this to spread its disease to gain more control over the masses, it takes advantage of our weakness of our fears and emotions. And turn it all against us if we decide not accept to swallow their poison.

And if you do not accept superstations as facts, then you become abandoned and neglected and hated and despised by the vast majority of religious people whom your parents friends family the society that surrounds you could be part of. I can’t recall meeting an Atheist who’s unpleasant, in fact all Atheists that I have crossed paths with are people who are concerned with global issues and the wrong moral teachings of religion such as war against nations with different beliefs and forcing religion down the troths of people whom by their birth right have the right to say decline such doctoring of the mind.

The way that religion forces itself on Atheists contributes to the way how Atheists react to such attitude taken towards them, and being a minority in a society that has no respect for your rights to think and believe freely it builds hatred and discomfort, not to mention the feeling of oppression which leads to being resentful and in many cases sarcastic towards the very same people that exercise oppression and brutal force to subdue beliefs other than theirs.

People come in all sorts of colors and backgrounds; it is not an Atheist’s convictions that dictate his/her actions, but it’s the lifestyle that he/she was brought up upon. If you teach a child to hate a number of people, then that child will grow up with that hate built in to his/her mind which is what religion exercises through church, mosques, and school in a systematic manner.

Religion has been dictating how we should behave and live and eat for thousands of years, and we’ve submitted our most precious gift (our minds) to a delusion, I believe it is time for us to rid ourselves from this delusion and start dictating to ourselves on how to best behave and act in a way that is not harmful to others.


Bob said...

can't read it on the site. color choices prevent that.

Re-post with readable colors and we can enjoy the post.

Thanks, bob

Anonymous said...

You're in my prayers today. From an insane previously aethiest believer.

oh, well, i mean--- said...

i respect your decision to be atheist- for along time i wasn't sure what i believed when it came to God.

i personally just read Rev. Storm's account last night, and it had a profound affect on me. i'm a college student at a liberal ivy league university where it's definitely tabooed to profess any kind of intense religious faith. while admitting to "being spiritual" is ok, "being religious" definitely brings connotations of conservatism and closed minded radicalism. while i consider myself a political liberal and also an intellectual, i have to say that faith, and religion -both the hindu and christian traditions- are playing an increasingly large part in my life. and it's making me happy.

at the same time, i don't think that people "need" religion. what comfort one person may find in christianity, another person may find in science, or literature, or playing basketball. i think we all need something to immerse ourselves in, and if religion does it for you, great. if not, there's no loss.

we all know of "devout" christians (and hindus, and muslims) who seem to live against everything their religion dictates. at the same time, i also know of atheists who live in accord with the fundamental tenet of every major religion-- that is, they love themselves, and they love others.

i think that this mutual respect is the ultimate goal of every religion, and not everyone needs religion to reach this goal.

christianity, perhaps more so than any religion, has built a bad rep. for itself by dictating (as an institution) that people "need God" or else they'll be damned. i think this is true only to the extent that God is, in fact, love- for humanity, for oneself. i think there are many names for god, and thus, there are ways to happiness and peace that have nothing to do with formal religion at all.

i don't think the institutionalized corruptions of religion should cloud our access (if we feel compelled to access it) to the purer wisdom that all religions have at their root.

this message has been a long way of saying: as a spiritual person who believes in Rev. Storm's account, i think there should be more room for spirituality in rationality and academia. that said, i respect your account, and think that there's room on this planet for all of us.

David Byers said...

There are many who are open to the idea of a greater reality based on science NOT religion.

Quantum Physics is an interesting field of research. Michael Roll, who does not believe in God, does believe in a greater reality and that our minds and brain are separate. You might no agree with him and even take issue with him but the good news is he does not believe in religion and dogma and would respect your views. As he says “a material atheist and survivalist can live side by side, just differing in their views about the nature of existence” now that’s a nice thought!

Francys said...

David, you would like to know that exist others Atheists that had near death experience and after that they change the view of their world.

I read some of your post and realized that your base your atheist on the aternal errors of the fundamentalist, in that way your never going to get the idea that their is creator and that you can also be a co-creator.

Sorry, my english is better speaking that writing so I am going continue in spanish.

Al hablar sobre fisica cuantica debes tener cuidado, pues te puedes contradecir, la fisica cuantica explica la separacion de la mente y el cuerpo, otros le puden decir la conciencia y el cuerpo, el alma y el cuerpo, el espititu y la materia. Lynne Mcggart autor de "El campo" afirma la idea de que la conciencia sigue adelante despues de la muerte, entonces, si tu puedes creer en lo que afrima Michael Roll, sabras entonces que en tu vida existen conciencias o mentes superiores a la tuya, con increible mas conocimiento que el tuyo, tan solo pensar en ese hecho te hace llegar al punto de la existencia de una concienca universal, la cual la humanidad durante toda su existencia la ha llamado Dios.

La fisica cuantica tambien explica la teoria de una conciencia cosmica, el universo existe hace mas de 12.000 millones de años, podemos dudar que este no ha desarrollado una inteligencia muy superior a la nuestra y por supuesto una conciencia cosmica?.
"No es una idea nueva, ya los neoplatonicos, hermeticos y alquimistas creian que el Cosmo estaba animado de un alma colectiva capaz de manifestarse espiritual o fisicamente".

De hecho la fisica cuantica explica que estamos formados por atomos que forman parte del universo, somos el Universo mismo. Y por lo tanto los fisicos se hacen esta pregunta: No sera la muerte un retorno a nuestro origen que no es otro que el Universo? Ironicamente las religiones tambien hablan de nuestro un retorno, un retorno al padre, como el cuento del "hijo prodigo". La fisica cuantica explica que somos el Universo y que el Universo esta en nosotros y nosotros en el. Ironicamente colocan al Universo a la misma altura de un Dios. Los cientificos tambien relacionan la conciencia humana con una conciencia cosmica, nuevamente caemos en la teoria de algo o alguien superior que forma un todo y ue nosotros somos parte de ese todo.

Los fisicos cuanticos dice que no pueden probar que existe un Dios, pero tampoco pueden probar que no exista.

En realidad puedo seguir extendiendome, pero es tarde voy a dormir. Quiero que sepas que no tengo religion, soy libre de ella y ademas soy Ing. Electronico, por lo que he estudiado la fisica cuantica.

Por ultimo quiero resaltar, que lo verdaderamente importante en tu vida, no es la creencia de un Dios o no, lo verdaderamente importante es tu relacion con los demas seres cosmiscos que viven contigo en este Universo, solo trata bien a los demas, manifiesta respecto y amabilidad para todos y paranogicamente estaras crean un paraiso en la tierra.

Best Regards,


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huey said...

i recommend a book authored by edward sanger
titled "god the failed hypothesis".

sanger is a physicist and lecturer. he presents
an argument posited on current knowledge of
our physical world.

to our "believing" friends i would like to point out this simple metric of science; when current thinking is exposed as incorrect through trial and error that
thinking morphs to a more reasoned construct.

beyond that i quote sam harris, "belief is what happens to credulity when it achieves escape velocity from the restraints of terrestrial discourse"