To help people like this.
I’ve recently met (virtually) a woman who calls herself Â Lady Through the Looking Glass. She is an amazing person who is going through the process of de-conversion. On her blog she is open and honest about her many struggles and provides a wonderfully eye-opening view onto the glorious and painful process of leaving faith behind. Reading her blog makes me so sad for what she is having to go through, but happy because she is well on her way to coming out on the other side as a whole and healthy human being. In some small way, everything I write is infused with the hope that it will help others break out of bonds of illusion and manipulation that are so often caused by religion.
In light of the comments on my recent post on how we should talk to believersÂ and a discussion on the Friendly Atheist site, this makes me worry that I am crossing a line. Am I trying to get people to convert to atheism? I don’t think so. I think I am being honest when I say that I want people to think for themselves and use evidence as a foundation for their own decision making. I think I can accept that many people will view the same evidence that I view in the world and come to different conclusions about the existence God. I think I am being honest when I say that I believe you can be a skeptic and still believe in God.
So, what do you think? Am I being a hypocrite when I rant about ChristiansÂ proselytizing? I know from my own past experience and from my born-again friends and family that fundamentalists and evangelicals think they are actually helping people when they witness to them and tell them about the saving grace of Jesus. The classicÂ explanationÂ is that they know a bridge is out and people are driving forward full-speed to their deaths. Wouldn’t they be remiss not to shout out a warning? But I also know the unhealthy mental and emotional life which often results from the born-again experience.Â
Are good intentions enough? How can we know we are really helping people and not leading them into more garbage and confusion? Am I just the same as a missionary when I say that I want to do everything I can to help people recover from the damage that they’ve suffered from religion?
I worry about this a lot.