Goodbye, God: Stories from Atheists December 10, 2008

Goodbye, God: Stories from Atheists

Frederik Sisa and Nick LaRue are a couple guys who would like to write a book on living life without God.

We want to write a book which shows atheists are really no different than anyone else by using people’s personal stories.

To do that, they need your personal stories — if you’re willing to share.

Specifically, they’d like to know how you deal with some of the following (for good and bad):

Love
– Dating.
– Relationships.
– Marriage.

Illness
– Coping.
– Overcoming.

Death
– Coping with one’s impending death.
– Coping with the deaths of friend and family.
– Funerals.

They also have questions for religious people who no longer attend church.

Information on where to send your stories is on their website. You can also email them if you have any questions.

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  • Larry Huffman

    Much better than signs on busses!!

    A collection of this type of story will go so much farther to promote atheists and atheism than inflamitory signs on busses and capital steps. I agree with the statements on the signs, but to shove a negative message in the relgious community’s face…especially in a holiday display (come on guys…we do not have a holiday), does not speak for me at all.

    Losing faith and religion is personal. It is not done because of a sign or bumper sticker, it comes about by questioning and soul searching. Breaking with traditions and compromising family and friends.

    People who are struggling with their faith do not need us to wade in with ‘in-your-face’ tactics…they need to read personal accounts from other people who ahve followed the same path. They need to understand that we are NOT the kind of people who want to stand on capital steps and cause trouble during a religious holiday period. They need to know that we do not all have groups and individuals speaking for us. They need to read that we are just average people who have found that life is quite rewarding and enjoyable without religion…that it hurt us when we left religion…that we did lose family and friends with the decision, but that honesty with ourselves was more important.

    Maybe I am wrong…maybe the signs on capital steps and inflamatory diaglogue is what is needed…if I had all of the answers I would not be an IT guy…lol. But it just feels a little over the top to me. This kind of book project feels like it will eventually touch more people than a sign would and do so in a more friendly and respectful manner.

  • Nick LaRue

    I would just like to take the time to express my thanks to Hemant for posting this for Frederik and myself. Getting traffic to a blog is not that easy.

    Larry you have hit on the head. We don’t disagree with any of the campaigns that have been going on with regards to signs and buses we just feel that a personal touch would be nice.

    Other authors have concentrated on dealing with God and the problems of religion, we want to concentrate on people. Real people with real lives. We want to prove that life is fulfilling without God and religion. We felt this was the best way to do it.

    I would like to say a personal thank you in advance to anyone who will be sending us their stories.

  • @Larry Huffman:

    The atheist signs and whatnot are really not about converting anyone. (At least, not as far as I know.) They’re about reaching out and finding other atheists and skeptics who are unaware that there is an atheist community out there.

    I live in a conservative region of southern California, and for a long time I thought that I was the only atheist in the area, or at least one of few. I’m now involved in a group of over 200 (and growing), and we all agree we felt the same way before we had the fortune to google “inland empire atheist”. So it’s not about shoving any sort of message into the face of the religious, it’s about showing other atheists that unbelief is okay.

    This, by the way, is why I really like the FFRF’s clouds ad, the one that reads “Don’t believe in god? You’re not alone.”

  • Do people of a theistic bent do “love” differently? I thought is was essentially a basic human emotional need. Perhaps coping with the failure of a relationship might be difficult and so might the shared interests but the core of it should be the same.

    Hang on though, we don’t get to profess that we love Jesus more than anyone do we. That must be a strain for a jealous person.

  • Nick LaRue

    Hi hoverFrog,

    We are not proposing that atheist and agnostics are different in love or any of those other things. We’re obtaining stories from atheist/agnostics about their lives and have provided a general list of things for people to tell us about. Love life is just part of the package. (graphic details about your love life are not necessary by the way) 😛

    I’ve been hanging around on many blogs for a long time now and I know the difficulties that a lot of atheists have in finding partners. So it’s not too unreasonable to ask these questions.

    We are also open to other suggestions if you have any.

    Thanks

  • Larry Huffman

    Justin,

    I live in a conservative part of So Cal too. I have known I am not alone for a long time…but I am not really interested in forming atheist churches or anything like that. I do not need to organize on the basis of a lack of belief. That is not basis enough to organize. There are secular groups that serve a purpose…but they should not try to speak for atheists. We are not a large in-step body of people. Far from it. And the fact that we spread accross all ideologies should be what we want people to see. Placing signs as if we are one organization speaking out against religion is not accurate or fair at all.

    The FFRF is about seperation of church state…that is their purpose. While I agree with their ideas about the holiday displays, for example, I totally disagree with them putting signs up. It is far too ‘in your face’ to the religious community. Expecially since we do not have a holiday. And using the solstice is just stupid…that is a pagan holiday. As an atheist, I also do not believe in pagan gods and customs. But…the sign goes up…they call it a Solstice sign…and astute christians are already asking in blogs, “So atheists believe in pagan gods and customs?” Nice…not only speaking for us…misrepresenting us.

    I have had co-workers asking me about the signs. They are not intrigued or anything…they are questioning me because they are wondering if these signs speak for me. No…they do not. I would never want to attack religion in this manner. Even if I totally agree with the sentiment. It is not the right way to coexist with our religious counterparts…who still outnumber us.

    And I know that the signs are not about converting. I never have thought they were. All they have done is upset the religious community with us…and most of us would have never done such a thing.

    My point about the signs and conversion is this. There are currently people out there struggling with faith. The sign issue, being so in your face and causing so much alarm in the religious community, will only tend to scare those who are struggling back into their rose-colored-glasses world. I do not think the signs are trying to convert at all…if so they are way way off base…they are obviously designed to incite…and my intentions are not to convert anyone…but, the signs can have a negative impact on people who would have otherwise left their faith behind.

    This book idea is a much better offering for those who are questioning…and those of us who are already atheist…well, do we really need to shove it in people’s faces with ‘holiday’ signs? Really?

    I do not even care if a group does this…and these groups have the right, completely. Not saying they should stop…just pointing out that when an atheist organization speaks…as far as the religious are concrned those groups are speaking for all of us…and that is just not true. I would think that intelligent and concerned atheist leaders in these organizations would stop to consider that fact…and maybe choose some more low-key and meaningful ways to forward the message.