Reddit Reddit reviews A Manual for Creating Atheists

We found 102 Reddit comments about A Manual for Creating Atheists. Here are the top ones, ranked by their Reddit score.

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102 Reddit comments about A Manual for Creating Atheists:

u/astroNerf · 40 pointsr/atheism

A few pointers:

  • Get yourself a copy of Peter Boghossian's A Manual for Creating Atheists and read it yourself. It's a good manual for teaching people how to talk to people of faith about their faith in a non-confrontational way using the socratic method. I liked the audiobook version. Gently challenge him on things he learns at church. Try to get him to explain what he's learned in his own words. Ask him if that makes sense, and so on.
  • Science: get your kid interested in science, whether it be dinosaurs, astronomy, chemistry, electricity - something. If there's something he's already into, encourage it.
  • Supplement his church with other mythologies. Take him to a mosque or synagogue. Talk about how different people have different beliefs. Read him Norse and Greek mythology before bedtime. Get him a book like C. Scott Littleton's Anthology of Mythology. It's got lots of pictures.
  • Cosmos. If you have not seen it with him, you need to see it with him. Prepare to pause each episode when he has a question. Do your best to answer them and if you encounter something you don't know, be honest but follow up afterwards with a visit to wikipedia. You can get it on DVD as well as stream it on Hulu and Netflix, I think. If he likes science shows like that, there are plenty others folks here could recommend.

    One common theme here is this: teach him that it's important to value having as many true beliefs as possible. Instruct him on the importance of wanting to have good reasons or evidence for the things we believe. Part of this is the scientific method, but also a general desire for intellectual honesty comes into play here as well.

    You might also get some good suggestions are /r/atheistparents.

u/BlunderLikeARicochet · 33 pointsr/atheism

Trying to talk to believers about their belief is often frustrating and unproductive. Based on a great deal of practice and a deep interest in the best techniques to approach these difficult conversations, I think I can offer some constructive tips. I've written the following to help skeptics have productive conversations about religion. These techniques are heavily based on Peter Boghossian's "Street Epistemology" concept, and Anthony Magnabosco's work. (Anthony's videos are highly recommended to see these strategies in action)


  • You cannot convince someone else of anything — You can only provide new information, and if they accept it, they convince themselves. Sounds simple enough, but the problem is the backfire effect. This is the defensive tendency, upon hearing something contradictory, to reflexively reject it in order to preserve a belief. The result is an even stronger belief. Simply put, people like to be right, and they dislike being wrong, especially about something they consider important. So we are faced with the difficult task of getting someone to question their cherished beliefs, while we avoid being contradictory. Sounds impossible, but it's just tricky. The key is to ask questions and inspire empathy.

  • Establish at the outset that you are open to new evidence, that you are willing to change your mind. Religious people like to define atheism as a religion because it's easier to dismiss dogma than an honestly curious person. But atheism has no dogma, and as an atheist, you are unattached to anything except a commitment to finding the truth, whatever it may be. You are not certain or closed-minded. You are agnostic, open, and honest, and it is this attitude that you want to inspire within the believer as much as possible. The best way to do that is to lead by example.

  • Your entire discussion (and every future discussion) should primarily concern the investigation of one subject: "Why do you believe, and is it a good reason?" Instead of engaging in an argument, establish a teacher-student dynamic, with you as the student.

  • How do we determine what is most likely true? Does your proposed method work consistently for everyone, or only when you use it? It's so easy to get entangled with irrelevant details, but stay on point. We want to help the believer discover that their epistemological method is unreliable, because this is the foundation of belief.

  • Socratic method. Ask questions often and make assertions as sparingly as possible. I cannot overstate how important this is. Ask "why" enough, and you'll soon realize how comfortable the faithful are at describing "what" they believe, and how unprepared they are to explain the "why". And the "why" is what matters.

  • Frequently summarize, in your own words, what you've heard. Ask if your summary is accurate. This assures them that you are listening and sincerely want to understand, and helps them to consider their own ideas, which can sound much less convincing when expressed with different verbiage and coming from outside one's own head. (No, I don't mean to summarize Christian doctrine as ancient blood magic. Be charitable.)

  • When you hear the word, "faith", ask for a definition and don't continue until you get something reasonably coherent. Explore the reliability of faith. Ask about scenarios where faith leads to false conclusions. Listen carefully for when they use "faith" to mean something else, then return to asking what faith means. Believers often use "faith", "trust", "hope", and "belief" interchangeably. This is symptomatic of a circular belief structure — If all those words mean the same thing, then, "I have trust in my belief because I have faith" is really saying, "I have faith in my faith because I have faith".

  • Avoid counter-apologetics. There are logical answers to every theistic argument, but they always fall on deaf ears. Why is this? The backfire effect plays a role, but also important to note: Apologetics are typically post facto rationalizations, and not the core reason for belief. Nobody ever converted to theism upon hearing the cosmological argument. Trying to rebut these kinds of excuses is not only argumentative, but irrelevant. If forced to engage apologetics, a good question is, "Were you a believer before you learned about these arguments?" The honest answer is always yes, so try to explore those foundational reasons for belief.

  • The example of other religions should always be at the ready. When a spiritual revelation is mentioned, ask how the authenticity of one revelation can be established over another. When they talk about their holy book, ask how we can determine which holy book is most correct. When they appeal to faith, ask about people who have faith in a false god.

  • "If the Muslim / Hindu / Mormon is mistaken about their revelation / book / evidence / faith... how can they discover their mistake?" You won't believe how effective and incisive this question is until you try it. It's a simple question about falsifiability, and believers, though well experienced with confirmation, don't think much about falsifiability. Whatever the answer, explore the reliability of the method.

  • These kinds of questions tend to make believers uncomfortable because they rarely (if ever) consider their foundational reasoning. Expect responses of rhetorical tap-dancing which don't really answer the questions posed. Expect elaborations on "what" they believe, and not "why". Be patient and try not to interrupt. But...

  • Don't get sidetracked. If you're asking good questions, you'll often get answers to questions you didn't ask. These answers will often contain fallacies or absurdities you'll want to counter, but resist that urge! Stay on topic, but don't be argumentative. If your question isn't answered, listen respectfully, then ask again, as gently as possible. I mean, avoid saying, "You didn't answer the question!" This is an accusation of evasion, and adversarial. Repeat what you just heard, ask if that's a fair summary, say, "Hmm" thoughtfully and then say, "But I don't understand how that explains..." Do you see the difference? The first response is an accusation. The second establishes that you are listening, and accuses yourself of a failure to understand. This humble attitude is important. Lead by example.

  • Where appropriate, instead of saying, "I" or "You", say, "We". For example, "How can we tell the difference between something non-physical (supernatural) and something that doesn't exist?" This is a subtle but effective way to inspire empathy. You are inviting them to be your partner in an honest search for truth.

  • You want to follow the beliefs of the person who is most correct. There are many competing religions and the reasons for belief offered by members of most religions are strikingly similar. Illustrate these similarities in your questions. Can the believer demonstrate that their reasons are superior to what other religions can provide? The object is to inspire empathy and get them thinking about the issue from your open perspective, faced with a variety of god claims, rather than from a position of closed certainty. If you are successful, you won't need to ask why their god hides from an honest seeker of truth — If they trust your sincerity, they'll ask themselves.

    I cannot guarantee that these strategies will make atheists out of everyone you encounter. But I can assure with some confidence that your conversations will be more productive, and will better provoke honest self-reflection in the believer. And that's the first step.
u/ReturnedAndReported · 18 pointsr/exmormon

The thesis of this book is : Don’t attack specific truth claims. Undermine faith and epistemology to create critical thinkers.

u/distantocean · 18 pointsr/DebateAnAtheist

You might want to look into street epistemology, which is specifically geared toward making people rethink their religious views in a non-confrontational way. You should check out some of Anthony Magnabosco's videos or the book A Manual for Creating Atheists by Peter Boghossian.

u/HapHapperblab · 15 pointsr/DebateAnAtheist

I've come to enjoy this youtube channel specifically for the way he engages with people in a largely non-confrontational role.

I believe the techniques are well described in a book by Peter Boghossian called A Manuel For Creating Atheists. The guy in the youtube channel might even be the author, I don't know.

Anyway, I think it's a good basis for discussion. It's not about "You Are WRONG!". It's about taking a closed door and nudging it ajar so the person goes home and thinks about the topic more.

u/KingPabo · 12 pointsr/exmormon

Try less of being an immature asshole and more of a critical thinker. Read some books on church history, the ces letter, A Manual For Creating Atheists, How to be a really good pain in the ass, etc and provide helpful rational polite commentary as the appropriate topic comes up. Really know your stuff and where the sources are coming from. Think about what their responses are likely to be and how to counter them. Consider it waging a polite private war on seminary if it helps you. If the teacher see you as an articulate and convincing influence on the other kids they won't want you there. Otherwise they will just think you are just another immature kid throwing a tantrum.

Or if that sounds like too much work for you than you can just nap your way through seminary or read a book for the few minutes a day they take up. I got a lot of good reading time in there when I was your age.

u/markevens · 11 pointsr/TrueAtheism

If he doesn't want to read something, don't push it on him.

Even if he does end up reading it, it won't be a proper reading, just something to please you that he begrudgingly does.

It is like reading a book that you were forced to read in school years after the fact, and you love the book on the 2nd reading but because you were forced to read it the first time you didn't engage it the way you should have. Same thing.

If you want to have a good discussion with him, you need to stop telling him things and instead start asking questions. With the right questions, he comes to his own answers instead of some kid (which you are in his eyes because he is your uncle) telling him.

This is the socratic method, and it works. If you want to learn more about applying it to atheism, check out A Manual for Creating Atheists.

u/SuperDaleCooper · 10 pointsr/TrueAtheism

You're not likely to change theists minds through debate or argument. I find that Street Epistemology/Socratic Method is the best method for examining beliefs and what methods someone uses to arrive at a particular belief (e.g. faith vs scientific method). Check out Anthony Magnabosco's Youtube channel or Peter Boghossian's book "A Guide for creating atheists".

u/holyschmidt · 10 pointsr/atheism

If you value your relationship (long term), i would suggest taking a different approach.

I went through a similar situation with my GF (now wife). We were both pretty confident YEC's (then i took a Critical Thinking class and boom). The method i used was explaining my thought process and asking her what she thought about it. It's important not to make the issue adversarial, but to make it a conversation. No debate will make her change her mind (or better yet see where you come from).

The problem is not god/religion/church (not directly anyway), but faith. Faith is what causes logic/critical thinking not to work. It allows for magic. Faith is a bad epistemology (how you know what you know). My old CT professor wrote a book about it: A Manual For Creating Atheists. (foreward by Michael Shermer)

The edgy title is a little misleading, the book is about critical thinking and about how you know what you know. It tackles the issue of faith. The method advocated (honest, non-adversarial conversation etc) is pretty well demonstrated by this guy on youtube.

My relationship was very important to me and i almost lost it because of difference of belief. She was also reasonable and agreed to hear me out. Now we both still share utter incredulity that we could have ever held those views. Don't listen to the "just dump her" comments. Relationships with people are too important to just discard.

*full disclosure Amazon link is Smile link to support the skeptic society.

u/thesunmustdie · 10 pointsr/atheism

There's a book called "A Manual for Creating Atheists", which talks about various non-confrontational techniques like Socratic questioning.

u/RickHadANubianGoat · 8 pointsr/IAmA

Read A Manual for Creating Atheists by Peter Boghossian. Also, check out Anthony Magnabosco's YouTube channel. He interviews people while using the methods from Boghossian's book. I was able to get my parents out of Mormonism because of that book and YouTube channel.

u/refrigeratordiamond · 8 pointsr/atheism

I think the first thing you need to do is undermine the idea of faith. The opposition to evolution, and science generally is deeply rooted in faith and if that isn't talked about, there is a good chance you will talk past each other. Peter Boghossian wrote a good book on this

u/pckizer · 7 pointsr/TrueAtheism

I'd argue that trying to leave them dumbfounded is actually the wrong approach, instead you need to get them thinking and accepting that when they're really trying to solve problems, even when they claim to be relying on faith, if they're really trying to resolve the problem they'll end up using reason and critical thinking (or rely on those that do so like doctors, engineers, etc).

To do that, the arguments you use will vary greatly depending on the individual, their background, and how open or closed they are to reason and new ideas.

A good recent book that covers an overview of the topic is Peter Boghossian's recent book:

  • A Manual for Creating Atheists, by Pater Boghossian

    as he points out, sometimes bringing up arguments just for argument- or "gotcha"- sake can set them to trying to refute what you just said or double-down on explaining their own beliefs and can entrench them further that can also insulate them even from reason.

    Seek out ways to not only get them to agree with you, but ways in which they want to agree with you that faith is useless (or worse) and reason is the best way to approach their problems.
u/epicskeptic · 6 pointsr/TrueAtheism

You need this book. You're debating on his turf. Try using the Socratic method and treat him like a "patient" on your couch of psychology and find out "why" he thinks these things, then he will (maybe), realize that he is wrong in the future. Other than that, there is no other way for you to make him see the light.

u/bjlmag · 6 pointsr/TrueAtheism

Arguing in the sense of counter-apologetics and debate will very rarely change anyone's mind. Generally people have to be open-minded and willing to be wrong in order to change, and a debate setting immediately turns off both of these factors.

If you haven't already heard of Street Epistemology, [this channel] ( is an excellent place to start. Based on [this book] (, Anthony uses the Socratic Method to get believers to start considering the reliability of their beliefs on their own, which is generally much more effective than slamming down silly arguments with counter-apologetics.

If you get into a debate, especially with fundamentalists, you're only hurting yourself.

u/pater_familias · 6 pointsr/exmormon

I was this missionary. Not really, but I could rationalize with the best of them. Logic just did not enter my way of thinking. This missionary is SMART. You have to be smart to maneuver a conversation the way he did.

Looking back on it, I'm not sure if one conversation could change my mind. My mind was changed very, very slowly and by many, many conversations. With that said, I think you should just debate one topic and stick to it. Don't change...don't let him change. The reason to select just one topic is because five years from now, that's all he'll remember.

I had a conversation 10 years before I left the church with a guy. He said "Is the world more righteous now than it was 50 years ago?" I said "NO! We are more wicked now than ever!"

Then he said, "We're curing cancer, providing insulin, creating artificial limbs, and generally healing more people with more technology and medicine than in the history of the world. Surely God wouldn't bless us with such longevity for no reason? We're SUPER righteous!"

That stuck with me for a long time. It made no sense to me. Why would God do that? If God wasn't doing that, then why would Satan bless us with long, happy lives?

I guess what I'm saying is that this conversation might have been a major victory for you, but we won't know for years to come. People need lots of time to abandon their delusions.

Personally, I think you were on the right track when you attacked faith. Everyone feels the spirit. Everyone thinks it tells them what is true. Everyone believes in really different things. Therefore, faith and the spirit must be an unreliable way at arriving at truth. His central message is that faith is the ONLY reliable method for arriving at truth. He's using a method that is deeply flawed at finding ANY truth.

This is directly from Peter Boghassian's book, A Manual For Creating Atheists

u/crash4650 · 5 pointsr/exmormon

What an awesome perspective! I've been out for four years and I'm constantly frustrated that my exmormon missionary efforts have been mostly fruitless.

Recently I've been studying Street Epistemology and though I'm still inexperienced, I'm hopeful that I can finally talk to friends and loved ones without anybody getting defensive. You should check it out if you haven't already. This book is literally a manual for using Street Epistemology. Interestingly enough, the goal isn't too de-convert people but rather get them to recognize, just by asking the right questions, the flaws in their own reasoning. If you can get them to be less sure of their beliefs, even slightly, then your encounter is considered a success.

u/sbicknel · 5 pointsr/TrueAtheism

Anthony's approach is based on Peter Boghossian's book A Manual for Creating Atheists, and there is also the Street Epistemology website.

u/Morpheus01 · 5 pointsr/atheism

I would recommend a few changes to your approach. Instead of telling him what to think in a briefing, begin trying to teach him how to think. Because religion thrives in an environment where kids are told what to think and not taught how to think.

I'd use this video on critical thinking to start:

I would also recommend that you only allow him to go if he reads this book:

It's also a book on critical thinking. The premise is if you learn critical thinking it eventually leads you to atheism. Oh, and you should read it together.

An easier book may be:

Critical thinking is about learning how to ask questions. And this book asks critical questions about Christian beliefs in a friendly manner. It would provide great questions that he can ask his peers.

But if books are not the right approach for him, then you can also try this video series:

Good luck.

u/e0052 · 5 pointsr/exmormon

Reading that made my head hurt, so many today blindly following the path of hatred...

Also, I suggest this book, if you have not already read it. You can listen to a sample on Amazon.

u/im_buhwheat · 5 pointsr/TrueAtheism

Read this A Manual for Creating Atheists

At least look the dude up on youtube for an idea about what the book is about.

u/massimosclaw · 5 pointsr/exmuslim

I know how you must feel. I went through the same thing. I was threatened by my mother, grabbed by the chest, and threatened to be kicked out of my house. I refused because I had no place to go, as my dad tried to calm her down, luckily they had to leave. I've learned a lot since then, and went back into the closet (though you seem to have a job, and security, so I'd say you don't have to do that) I think there's one effective persuasion technique that you may have not been exposed to - but maybe now it's too late because you're out of the closet. You might even be going through what many people call "an angry atheist phase", this can cause you to become more tribal which can send you into a downward spiral of anger and pain, and suck time like hell.

Here's the effective strategy I came across - this must be approached after you are both cool and preferably the other person doesn't know you are an atheist (but again, to me, it just seems too late):

It's called Street Epistemology. It's most concisely put in this book "A Manual for Creating Atheists", and you can see a good example of it on video here.

If you were an American Indian and you were dancing around the fire with feathers in your head gear, and I walked up to you and said "What are you dancing around the fire for?" You don't take your hat and throw it on the ground and say "You know I never thought of it that way!" We can't do that, we look at the world with our background, we have no other way of doing it.

Why is it that a Nazi gets a lump in his throat when he sees a swastika, and an American feels anger? The difference is the environment they've been brought up in. And if you're brought up in an environment with misinformation, you will behave that way.

No Chinese baby was ever born speaking Chinese, no matter how many generations of Chinese.

A child never writes his own alphabet

I believe, all behavior and actions that all people take are perfectly lawful to their environment and background. How your wife reacted, while it is very harmful to you, and I certainly empathize all the pain that my family has caused me specifically, is perfectly appropriate to her background and upbringing. Not saying what she did to you was beneficial. I'm saying that that is perfectly appropriate to the way she was brought up, and because of her indoctrination, it requires a different approach if you would like to change her beliefs and behaviors.

Over the years I've discovered a better way to convince believers. It's not hard either. It just takes some reading, and understanding on how human behavior works and how people are brainwashed. And how they are victims of that, not acting with their own free will and their own ideas.

A few books that helped me with convincing believers were: Nonviolent communication by Marshall Rosenberg, and semantics to clear language, the easiest book: Language in Thought and Action by Hayakawa. To understand psychological biases check out You Are Not So Smart by David McRaney

But perhaps the most helpful person was being exposed to Jacque Fresco - I shared some of his thoughts above. I highly recommend him - his ideas have changed my life.

I shared this snippet from Jacque Fresco on another post in this subreddit, but it bears repeating:

Conflict occurs when a person doesn’t seek your advice but you advise them.
So the way to get along with people is to let them be what they are unless they say I don’t seem to get along with pollocks whats my problem? Very few people say “What do you think of my value system?” If they do that and it’s sincere, not an ego thing...
If they ask a question, thats where you can get in and suggest but if they don’t, don’t s superimpose your values even if they’re better

If you suggest, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5

and they say I don’t like 4 and 5,

don’t argue.

Your question is: How different is the persons background than yours? And does the person seek information? And if they did, don’t feel like you’re instructing them.
If you come home and you brother is using a shovel in the lawn, and he's struggling with it and you come up to him and say "That's no way to use a shovel!"

That's not going to change him. If, however, you say nothing - and he comes up to you, and says "I can't seem to use this shovel efficiently, can you help me?" then you can instruct them but don't feel like you're instructing them so you say "I used to do it that way, then another person taught me to push it down with my foot, and that was easier"

Sometimes people don’t want advice. They feel they’re being put down. So stop giving one another advice, that produces antagonism, unless they ask for it.
You can’t point out “The trouble with you is you don’t listen to anybody” That doesn’t cause em to now listen. They’ll go on with their same pattern.

Unless they say to you “Am I inattentive? Or Do I appear inattentive?” Very few people talk like that. That’s what sane means. Sane means when a person comes over “I’m not familiar with that jigsaw. How do you use it?” Then you instruct them. If they come over everyday and ask you - watch them and guide them through it.
Making a comment “Your’e dimwitted or slow. The trouble with you is you have no imagination.” That doesn’t alter behavior, it only increases conflict.

In order to avoid conflict don’t generate it. You generate it when you offer something to somebody that they didn’t ask for. Let them be. Whatever they say. Unless they turn to you.

If someone says “I’m a catholic” Say “Do you fully accept everything in the catholic doctrine?” “yes!”

The door is shut. It’s welded.

But if he says “Im not sure” thats an opening.

That goes for any subject. Check for openings before you talk. If you’ve had conflict all your life cause you believe that what you say enters their head the way you want to - thats projection. When you tell something to somebody for their own good. “If you keep drinking the way you are - you may become addicted” But if you come at a person and he says “fuck you” then shut up.

If I’m talking to religious people I would say “The bible says thou shalt not kill” How do you handle war?

I would say “The bible says love thine enemy - if a man strikes you turn the other cheek” How do you deal with that?

u/Toru_El · 5 pointsr/exjw

What you're saying actually applies to the much more broad area of talking people out of their beliefs. You're on point about many things.

You do have to create cognitive dissonance. Another term for it is "doxastic openness". The worst way you can do this is start directly attacking God, the Bible, the org, the GB, etc. People immediately go on the defensive and shut down. In other words, don't engage in apologetics. You have to attack their epistemology. Ask them to prove how they know what they know. Provide counter examples to those if you can.

There's a book that I cannot recommend enough. It's called "A Manual for Creating Atheists", by Peter Boghossian.

It's a very gentle, accommodating approach and is rather effective.

u/HermesTheMessenger · 5 pointsr/atheism

[related repost from a different thread]

>> So you sound like you began to explain how to make someone have solid seeds of doubt about God and then didn't go any further than the first question. Could you perhaps elaborate on what further questions should be asked and good explanations should they ask something in return?

The question and the follow up steps are there to understand what someone else means. If you try and use what you learn to convince them that they are mistaken, they will start to spout propaganda as a defense mechanism. I covered that a bit when I wrote;

> Why are they convinced? Almost always, they are convinced because they felt something or experienced something. That's it. Yet, if you criticize them or mock them or simply point out why a personal feeling or experience is not very good evidence, they will just switch back to telling you some of the BS about scripture, or the wonders of nature, or some philosophical puzzle; they will stop talking about what they think and they will only focus on the BS.

If you want to get them to change their minds, you have to use an entirely different set of questions and comments but the basis is still on understanding the individual even if their ideas are not (ever?) unique.

> Could you perhaps elaborate on what further questions should be asked and good explanations should they ask something in return?

While there are only a few things that I usually do, I assume that I will not have enough time to deconvert someone. To be honest, if I can get them to stop giving money and time to organizations that do bad deeds, I'm happy. I have no personal interest in deconverting them and it would take a few weeks to do it even if I found it a compelling goal to reach. The time needed is mainly because people tend to take a while to absorb these ideas, and if you are over aggressive they will just reject them and double down on their personal biases out of comfort or to have a sense of certainty.

The primary goal in any conversation is to have the conversation. You don't want to have them drop into a propaganda loop where they just repeat the words and/or ideas they have been indoctrinated with. So, you have to keep them off of their script.

You also have to keep in mind that very few thoughts are constructed in the moment. Our brains don't work that way. Instead, we piece together bits over time and our nerves are biased towards keeping the old structures in place. To change someone's mind over a deeply held socially taught construct takes time and if you rush it they will just re-write the old structures and make them stronger. You want cognitive dissonance. You want them to think things through on their own time for their own reasons, not to robotically reprogram them even if that is exactly how they were trained before to adopt those bad ideas.

So, what are the few things that I discuss with them?

  • The moral value of facts; that all moral decisions by humans require facts and that obedience/subservience is not morality.

  • How do they know what they say is true (when they pop back into the BS; I do not challenge the intuitive felt experience ... at least initially).

  • I listen and I show that I understand exactly what they mean and why they say what they say.

    To tie those three things together, I point out that while we are in agreement on these points -- that I am not debating the facts nor am I challenging their personal conclusions -- I have reached a different conclusion. With that in mind, I ask why can I understand all that they think, agree with the details, and yet not come to the same conclusion? What is the difference?

    The difference is their intuitive felt personal experience that they attribute to some deity or proxy for a deity. **Yet, wait ...* that's the exact same thing that they said in the last wall of text, so what has changed? Nothing, actually, except for the time you have spent talking with them.

    As an experiment, go and ask other atheists that used to be firmly theistic (religious or not) if they have had some similar personal felt experience when they were theists. Many will say yes or that they attempted to have that and failed. Of the atheists that had that experience, many of them did not realize that it was possible not to think any gods existed. They thought that everyone must think that gods exist since that is what they have been told.

    So, by showing that you have the same facts, and understand the same ideas, yet you are not personally convinced that any gods exist, you demonstrate to them that what they have thought about what others think is not entirely true. That opens up the possibility that they themselves can also change their minds. So, do they? It depends on many factors, and while emotions are a factor so is the need to be honest about what can be known and how conclusions should be reached.

    I don't know if this method is similar to Peter Boghossian's book, but it is likely to be complementary. I've listened to his interviews and his emphasis on epistemology overlaps with some of my 3 points, but I have not read his book yet so I can't say how much of an overlap there is.




    [Tag: waterfall 1 & 2.]
u/nickelro · 4 pointsr/TrueAtheism

>Why does Krauss have to be "humble"

Emulate the change you wish to see in someone else.
You want people to be more honest, blunt, and humble? Project that.
Peter Boghossian constantly reiterates this. But let me put it this way, no one has ever changed my mind by coming up to me and yelling at me about how wrong my world view is and how irrational/delusional I am.

If you need further evidence in how bad Krauss is at debating, look no further than here.. Krauss has never read any of the Koran and decided to jump into a debate of Atheism/Islam which went ugly real quick. Hitchens and Harris would have mopped the floor with this guy.

u/iHaveAgency · 4 pointsr/atheism

Youtube video series: Street Epistemology

Mobile app: Atheos

Book: A Manual for Creating Atheists by Peter Boghossian & Michael Shermer.

All highly recommended.

The best way to deconvert (don't say "convert", convert is when you turn TO religion, not away from it) is not to convert in the first place. That means: get religion out of schools (wouldn't that be great?) and keep kids away from organized religion until they are at least 16 or older. But unfortunately, that's common sense.

u/Fenzik · 4 pointsr/TrueAtheism

For an approach that isn't argumentative and doesn't ridicule them, I'd recommend checking out the book A Manual for Creating Atheists by Peter Boghossian. It has some good tips for talking to all kinds of people of faith and helping them to critically examine why they believe the things they do, and whether those beliefs are justified. There are lots of examples on YouTube as well under the banner of Street Epistemology.

u/Biohack · 4 pointsr/atheism

I took several classes from Peter at Portland State right after I became an atheist. He is an awesome guy and an incredibly excellent professors, I learned so much from him about skepticism and critical thinking.

If anyone is interested despite the provocative title his book A Manual For Creating Atheists has a lot of good tips for engaging people on a variety of issues relevant to skepticism without creating adversarial relationships.

Anyway I don't have anything to add relevant to the video but I just wanted to give him a shout out since he had such a large impact on my life.

u/Cool_Hwip_Luke · 4 pointsr/atheism

Street epistemology. There's a whole YouTube channel devoted it.

Edit: one example

another example

even atheists can be interviewed

Edit2: Hey u/FirePhantom, here are a couple more I forgot to add.

A Manual for Creating Atheists

Atheos app for Android

u/KF5KFJ · 4 pointsr/atheism

You could learn street epistemology, which is a method of showing that faith is neither good nor useful.

A manual for creating atheists

Street epistemology in practice

u/TheFeshy · 4 pointsr/TrueAtheism

A Manual for Creating Atheists, A book about how to have more civil and productive conversations about religion by using the Socratic method and focusing on epistemology.

u/sharplikeginsu · 3 pointsr/atheism

You might want to check out A Manual For Creating Atheists. He describes a good framework for having these sorts of discussions.

u/aw232 · 3 pointsr/exmormon

I'm fairly sure that /u/alyosha3 is using techniques described in the book Manual for Creating Atheists.

It's a fantastic read and will help you understand that the base problem with TBMs is that they value faith above evidence and instead of piling on easily dismissed facts, you should attack that foundation.

u/slipstream37 · 3 pointsr/DebateAnAtheist
u/skafast · 3 pointsr/atheism

If she said you're not allowed to be an atheist, that means she's still planning on forcing you to go to Sunday School. Not much you can do about that in the short term, but if you want to play spy, read Boghossian's "A Manual for Creating Atheists", check out /r/StreetEpistemology/, and plant some seeds of doubt over there.

u/atheistlibrarian · 3 pointsr/atheism

Read A Manual for Creating Atheists by Peter Boghossian. He walks you through using the Socratic Method to help someone examine their own beliefs with a critical eye. Rather then pointing out the flaws in their reasoning, you'll be coaxing them into figuring out what they are on their own.

u/aoflex1 · 3 pointsr/atheistvids

I love Anthony's method, which is an application of Peter Boghossian's book. I'd love to try this method the next time I speak de novo with someone about religion. It's so soft yet cuts through all barriers if applied correctly.


u/BigCircleK · 2 pointsr/exmormon

This! I'm reading Boghossian's 'Manual' on street epistemology right now. It's helped me have calm, rational discussions with my TBM family members when it comes to faith - because it ALWAYS comes back to faith.

Edit: link

u/DornImFleisch · 2 pointsr/exjw

Take your time to detox from the indoctrination.

Regarding your wife: Only use questions here and there. Google for the Socratic method or watch videos from Peter Boghossian

I recommend this book:

u/dante50 · 2 pointsr/atheism

Peter Boghossian is a scholar who teaches at Portland State University and he is getting ready to launch a book in November called A Manual for Creating Atheists. He's not so much out to disprove God as much as he is about improving critical thinking and challenging the way people of faith "know" certain things. If you're interested in an argument for spreading skepticism, look him up.

I dig what he has to say and am eager to read the book.

VIDEO: Jesus, The Easter Bunny and Other Delusions: Just Say No!

VIDEO: Peter Boghossian at Imagine No Religion 3


u/GradysGhost · 2 pointsr/suggestmeabook

A Manual for Creating Atheists by Peter Boghossian, which is unfortunately titled because it's not really about atheism. It's about epistemology and how we know what we know and how we can check that we actually know what we think we know. I get the sense that the title of the book was chosen to generate some controversy and probably target a particular market. It's only about godlessness to the extent that that's one conclusion drawn from proper epistemology. He makes the point that it applies equally to beliefs about out of body experiences or alien abductions or vaccines causing autism.

u/K0ilar · 2 pointsr/atheistvids

just ordered the book A Manual for Creating Atheists. Really loking forward to it!

u/46Romeo · 2 pointsr/atheism

I naturally never want to do anything that would cause my mother undue pain, and my revelation at this most inopportune time was definitely a mistake.

As far as continued discussion of the reasons why my brother and I rejected religion, I have never sat down and discussed this with her. I dare say I may never do so, unless invited by her. For as evil as I feel religion is in the public sphere, and as ridiculous as I find its teachings, I am loathe to bring to her the internal struggles of my late adolescence.

In all honesty, my parents have now moved on to a much more liberal Methodist congregation, and I don't feel religion is harming them all that much. Their new church runs the local food pantry, a homeless shelter, soup kitchen, feeds children lunch all summer break, and will pay for anyone's utilities or rent to avoid homelessness.

I have now convinced them of the soundness of evolution, that climate change is real (how is this even wrapped up in religion?) and that science in not the boogieman.

If the genie is out of the bottle - so to speak - with your mother, I would recommend reading Peter Boghassian's A Manual for Creating Atheists. Chapter 6: After The Fall deals with this exact issue. He talks of replacing the definiteness about death with wonder and love for family, etc.

Dan Barker's Godless: How an Evangelical Preacher Became One of America's Leading Atheists might also help. Chapter 19 - Life and Death Matters would be a good place to start. While the arguments against religion made earlier in the book may have been better stated by other authors, he is an excellent source on replacing faith with meaningful purpose, as he was a minister for so long.

Best of luck, and if you need any help, I'm just a PM away.

u/[deleted] · 2 pointsr/atheism

The bible is irrelevant. A lot of the folks you meet won't have read it either.

Read boghossian's book.

u/touchmystuffIkillyou · 2 pointsr/TrueAtheism

Read Boghossian's book. It has what you're looking for.

u/window-sil · 2 pointsr/samharris

One of the speakers has a book out, called A Manual for Creating Atheists.

u/FadedGenes · 2 pointsr/exjw

A Manual for Creating Atheists is not directly an anti-cult book, but its logic is highly applicable.

u/epwnym · 2 pointsr/TrueAtheism

>Or places with suggestions for "things you can do to fight theism and religion" that are likely to make a real difference in the world.

Read this book: A Manual for Creating Atheists

u/TheoriginalTonio · 2 pointsr/atheism

[this book] ( tells you how to deal with religious people

u/KyOatey · 2 pointsr/atheism

If they force you to keep going to the same therapist (even if they don't), here's a book you might find useful:

It talks about "street epistemology" which is basically asking questions of believers (such as your therapist) to get at why they believe there is a god. You can also find some good videos on YouTube that demonstrate how others do it.

If your therapist is giving answers like "it's hard to wrap your head around," perhaps her belief is not as strong as she thinks it is. Show her you're truly "exploring both sides" and make her answer why you should believe god exists - because you want to believe what's true. It may rattle her faith just a bit. She may even get uncomfortable and suggest you change therapists.

u/ReasonOnFaith · 2 pointsr/exmuslim

A great resource that has taught me tons, is "The Atheist Debates Project" run by and featuring Matt Dillahunty. Watch the episodes for free on YouTube. I'm a patron to support the excellent work that Matt does.

Further, you can see these ideas in action, by listening/watching the podcast/YouTube/live stream of the Internet TV show, "The Atheist Experience". Some callers aren't interesting, but some exchanges are just gold.

I myself have written a primer on beliefs and labels to help introduce one to the landscape. Read that to understand the concepts. View the links in the green resource boxes to dive deeper into any subject. Watch the debates linked to, to see how others argue the material.

Just be a sponge for this. Prop up you iPhone in the bathroom and play debates while you brush your teeth or in the kitchen as you scramble your eggs. You'll get in an extra 30+ minutes a day of absorbing this content.

To learn about how best to get people to think without ever really arguing, but instead, using the socratic method to get them to think about their own positions, read the book (or listen to the excellent audiobook), A Manual for Creating Atheists. Based on these techniques, you can watch Anthony Magnabosco as he approaches people and politely asks them questions to get them to think. This technique is called Street Epistemology.

Finally, go through the Philosophy playlist on YouTube, from the channel Crash Course. They do an excellent job of introducing a lot of the concepts and terminology involved in philosophical argumentation--which is what all of this comes down to.

We need more people who educate themselves and can speak intelligently to the issues. So thank you for taking an interest. This is an awesome journey. Welcome.

u/baronvoncommentz · 2 pointsr/atheism

Why don't we remove the parts of the Bible that condone rape or genocide? (Pick some passages from from both the new and old testament to have ready).

Read up ( and walk in ready to talk about the problem of faith as a means of knowing anything at all.

u/Autodidact2 · 2 pointsr/atheism

Read this book. It explains exactly how to talk to people such as this kid. He would say something like, "How do you know?" or "How did you become a Christian?"

u/garbonzo607 · 2 pointsr/exjw

Thanks for the kind words. If I wrote a book it would likely turn out to just be a copy of this one, replacing a few of the words with "Jehovah's Witnesses", etc. and I don't want to be sued for plagarism. 😆

I'm sure asking for more book recommendations on the topic would prove fruitful.

Where is that video? I can't find it. I just don't want for you to get your hopes up. Peter Boghossian has years of experience and he says it's really rare to wake up a believer. All we can do is try.

u/Ohthere530 · 2 pointsr/atheism

Peter Boghossian argues that in arguing with such deluded people, it's best to step back from the details of what they claim and ask how they know what they know. (The philosophical term for this question is epistemology.)

His point is that digging into the detailed claims themselves will just drive you batty. Things will go in circles.

If you focus on how people know what they know, you might be able to lead them into a place of less certainty. That's not all the way to believing what you do, but it is a necessary first step.

u/brennanfee · 2 pointsr/PoliticalOpinions

Firstly by not using labels. Labels suck anyway.

> perhaps part of the reason people fall in line with all the positions of a particular party is that it's just easier that way

That's partly the reason, the other reason is that we only have two parties. So, in essence you aren't making a "positive" choice but a "negative" one instead. One may not agree with everything Blue but are certainly against Red for instance.

Funny clip:

If we had a greater variety of parties you would find people gravitating to ones that believe more of what they believe. That, however, is a pipe dream given our current electoral system so no sense talking about it.

I'm not going to talk about any of your other beliefs or points as we could be here all day (both those I agree with and those I don't). But instead stay with your philosophical angst.

> And yet, l have a low opinion of the modern left.

My only advice is this. Don't do what labels are intended to do... box people in. When confronted with someone who claims to be a Liberal, or a Libertarian, Conservative, Democrat, Republican, Christian, Muslim, Atheist, or whatever... don't foist your understanding of what they then should believe onto them. For every person, in every instance, and on every topic you have to ask.

Learn to ask open questions rather than closed questions. Questions like, "Do you believe X" are ok, but even better is "What do you believe?" Rather than, "Do you believe X about immigration", "What do you believe regarding immigration?". The open questions will always produce better results. Often times you will "catch" them in a contradiction, and that's ok. Don't rub it in their face, simply ask them about it as kindly and gently as you can. Make them consider their position through your questions. Don't try and change their mind but instead reconsider... to think. Providing them data sometimes help although a lot less than you might think. The mistake many, including myself, make is that we feel that the person we are talking to is merely ignorant of the facts. But it turns out that when it comes to beliefs, especially personal beliefs, facts are much less important than you might think.

Your goal should be to get to know the person, not the label. This technique is called Street Epistemology and you should look it up if you are interested. It can be done with varying degrees of success, I am still struggling with some aspects of it myself. Here is one of the books that founded the technique:


u/lurk_moar_diaries · 2 pointsr/TiADiscussion

This reminds me a lot of how people talk about trying to de-convert people. They try showing them evidence of how a particular religion is false, but no matter how much they push the point home the person they're talking to doesn't listen.

(Here's a concrete example for that: Consider someone who believes in a literal interpretation of Noah's Flood [God creates the earth, doesn't like what people are doing, decides to drown them all in a global flood, chooses one man {Noah} and his family to build a boat and collect up 2 of each animal into said boat, they float around on water covering Mt. Everest for 375 days, all animals depart to repopulate the earth]. This story has a list of problems so long in boggles the mind, but ask how Noah and his family simultaneously kept the penguins cold and desert foxes hot without refrigeration, keep the carnivores from eating the herbivores, or whatever else and you get a whole raft of rationalizations if they don't just claim you hate god or are an agent of the devil sent to deceive them.)

What I've learned so far about this problem is that it requires a different approach than facts and evidence. It requires instilling a sense of doubt in what one knows, and how one knows it and modeling an intellectually honest framework for answering such questions.

In the religious example how one knows the truth of claim x is usually answered with faith. They have faith that god helped Noah in every way he needed to get that boat stocked and taken care of. And how do they know their faith is true? To put it one way: They know that they know that they know. It is felt with the same level of conviction that one has asking if they exist.

I hope this was helpful without rambling too much. I am mostly taking from A Manual for Creating Atheists Which I found to be a useful source of information about changing people's minds even outside of religious contexts.

Edit: Please know I'm not trying to hassle anyone about religion here. There are goals worth banding together for and finding ways to help get people out of toxic and counterproductive mindsets is one of them.

u/swiskowski · 2 pointsr/vegan

Read A Manual For Creating Atheists by Peter Boghossian. Talking to people about God is an entirely different subject. If they are using theism to prop up their decision to eat meat you have to address theism.

Also, watch some of Peter's lectures on YouTube. He teaches to debate/question/query not about facts but rather how one knows what one knows. Theism is based on faith which is an unreliable method for arriving at truth. Illustrate that to be true, or better yet, ask great questions so that your subject discovers it to be true and theism will crumble.

u/czah7 · 2 pointsr/TrueAtheism

Watch this video first

And if you really want. Buy this book

What you should know is you may ostracize yourself from friends and family if you attempt this on them. I would first have light conversions simply asking what they believe and why to gauge how open they may be to a discussion. Don't just start with these attacks on their beliefs.

u/vriendhenk · 2 pointsr/TrueAtheism

You [should read this book] (, it taught me to argue a bit more structured, not make statements but ask very difficult questions.

Being blunt and honest at the same time, seems to scare the posers(most of them that come in groups) and make the true believer actually think about the validity of things he or she believes and question [faith as a method of getting reliable information] (

u/Darth_Face2021 · 2 pointsr/atheism

I find from reading the comments you seem to be getting a lot of flak for various things. I think part of it may be your insistence on labeling positions as worldviews. I don't think it is necessarily wrong, but the word carries some baggage that may be implying more than you intent, or more than others would wish to be labeled with. While labels can be useful for quickly describing a position you or someone else may hold, be certain to know of the variations and try to attach specific answers to specific questions that underly labels, and to make sure you have specific definitions as well (i.e. Q: Do you believe in God? A: Generally no, but it would help if you could define God, as I can't say if I believe in something that I can't define or describe).

>Atheism is not a stance, not really. Atheists do not believe in anything

I think I can see what you mean here but be really careful with -ists and -isms. Atheism being a stance or not a stance is very much in how someone views themselves. One can be a "strong atheist", as it has been put, and actively believe and assert that there is no God, god, gods, godesses or supernatural beings (which is the term I will stick with), or one can be a looser form of agnostic atheist. There are many who would even say that, regardless of what agnostics say, they are in fact atheists because atheism, being not the opposite but the negaitve of theism (a- theism) is the lack of belief in supreme supernatural beings (this includes Penn Jillette, as he mentions this view in his book "God No!). So I think the error you made here is saying Athiest do not believe in anything, as that is not true. I call myself an Atheist (or Real Big Atheist; mild or moderate anti-theist; Ignostic Agnostic Atheist; etc) but I believe in lots of things. I believe I am sitting in a chair while I write this. What I think you meant to say was Atheism does not imply a belief in something. Under any definition it is either the lack of belief or belief that another belief is false, it is not a statement on the existence of a thing.

>Anti-Theism, on the other hand, IS a worldview.

Again, worldview is a risky word to use as it suggests that there is larger over-arching position to it. I would call secular humanism a worldview, but I don't know if I would call anti-theism a worldview (and there are secular humanists who would see themselves as anti-theist and some who wouldn't). I would be more tempted to call it a position. Regardless of semantics, I think anti-theism is easier to define. Anti-theism is the opposition to theism. Simple. Theism being the belief in one or more gods (Theos), and thus being anti that.

On anti-theism, I agree with you, but I find anti-theism is subservient to a larger desire for truth. As has been argued below, theism can be used for good or bad. People could be motivated to work harder for Dear Leader, and improve life for us all. If theism is not true though, then can we truly consider that an appropriate course of action? In doing so we would subvert informed consent, and undermine the freedom of a person live their own lives and to choose their own beliefs. However, I have never been shown a case where theism was used where a non-supernatural alternative could be used. The teaching of philosophy to elementary students has shown be very useful for improving not just academic outcomes, but also social outcomes 1. Here is the group that published that document, there are many more on their resources page.

The above paragraph completely ignores any harm that may come from religion, and I do that intentionally. If a given religion is true, then extreme measures can be justifiable if you are preventing someone from enduring annihilation or eternal torture. Utilitarian defenses of religion can only be relevant if they are false. However, if they are false, then any harm that comes along is thus completely unjustifiable unless the benefits outweigh them AND you are willing to admit that truth is not intrinsically valuable. The first constraint is difficult to measure, and does not seem to add up, especially when considering that magical thinking can overlap into other areas, and thus a firm belief in the supernatural (as opposed to an allowance of the possibility, or a thought experiment) could be a hindrance to honest political or philosophical discourse, and technological progress. I prefer discussing religion and supernatural beliefs in an epistemological framework, epistemology being the philosophical study of knowledge, or how we know what we know. While I have enjoyed Hitchens, I find his arguments to fall short of compelling in terms of convincing me of the accuracy of atheism or value of anti-theism; his moral arguments work for a current common moral standard which I happen to agree to a fair degree, but they do not do much to convince me of any implicit truth, nor that the moral standard being used is necessarily correct and thus failing to adhere to it is truly as abhorrent as would naturally appear.

A book I recently listened to on audiobook (from was "A Manual for Creating Atheists" by Peter Boghossian. I would strongly recommend this book, especially if you want to actively act as an anti-theist and atheist activist.

I would love to discuss any other aspects of atheism or anti-theism, especially if you disagree with any points I have made. I would also suggest looking into ignosticism (as it is a good additional label for getting people into discussion), the /r/philosophy subreddit and the /r/antitheism subreddit.

u/XtotheY · 2 pointsr/TrueAtheism

Keep trucking. I'm curious if you've used any of the techniques from Peter Boghossian's A Manual for Creating Atheists?

u/busterfixxitt · 2 pointsr/atheism

I'm currently reading through Peter Boghossian's "A Manual for Creating Atheists".

He has some excellent points on why we should get people to leave faith behind. Not religion, but faith. If we can get more people valuing evidence, that can only be a good thing for society.

u/Astramancer_ · 2 pointsr/atheism

I haven't read this specific book, but maybe a book on epistemology?

u/korsair_13 · 2 pointsr/atheism

Have you read "A Manual for Creating Atheists"? It's really good and shows a method that is completely different from debate. The author, Peter Boghossian, illustrates why debates don't work with religious people (they don't believe based on evidence, but on faith) and shows how you can instead target the foundation of their belief and assist them in realizing that it is a flawed system for forming beliefs. The method doesn't actually require you to know anything about arguments in order to demonstrate the flaws.

Here is the link to the book on amazon.

And here is a link to a channel of a guy on youtube who puts it into practice. Have a watch of some of them and see if either party comes away frustrated or worked-up.

u/hackdefendr · 2 pointsr/atheism


Check out this book...

It has some interesting insights on how you may be able to achieve what you are wanting. Ultimately, finding a way to make him give reasoning for how and why he believes what he says....and never give them any information to which they can formulate an answer. Force him to explain it to you...and just maybe his beliefs will intersect, thus causing him to doubt his own words.

Then you walk away and let that seed grow.

u/shiekhgray · 2 pointsr/atheism

If you're leaning towards trying to talk him out of it and want some resources, I'd highly recommend reading Peter Boghossian's "A Manual For Creating Atheists" I just finished reading it a few days ago, and it talks you through using the Socratic Method. The main idea is that you just ask pointed questions until the arguments fall apart and look silly. You never ever state what you want them to believe, you only ever offer alternate possibilities, and even these you just ask if they are reasonable possibilities or not.

Obviously, he's his own man and might be too tied up with this girl to react to reason, hormones are strong, strong things. But approaching life with reason instead of faith is the best we can do, and it follows that helping others to do so is the best for humanity. Good luck with whatever choice you make!

u/drinkmorecoffee · 2 pointsr/exchristian

I'm in a similar situation, stuck in the midst of huge discussions about your faith with the parents. Fortunately I've been able to get mine to do it over e-mail so I have time to think. I'd be totally overwhelmed doing this in person. I feel for you.

I would avoid tackling each individual issue. You will lose these battles even if you make the better case. Instead, ask questions. Specifically, "how do you know?" Every time they make a truth claim about anything, get them to explain how they know it's true. If it comes back to faith, you know they're out of ideas.

Grab a copy of this (though I can't recommend you hand it directly to your folks unless you want to start a fight!)

u/prophet_nlelith · 1 pointr/atheism

I suggest reading this book:

u/Ben_ICU · 1 pointr/atheism

Are you familiar with Dr. Peter Beghossian Manual for Creating Atheists? I ask because he has good points on how to counter argue and to plant the seed of doubt. The Socratic method will probably be a big help when the class attempts to rebut your points.

  • Edit: spelling corrected and link added.
u/im_not_afraid · 1 pointr/atheism

If you need help having a conversation with the faithful, try reading A Manual for Creating Atheists and watch videos made by Anthony Magnabosco.

u/Leaves_Swype_Typos · 1 pointr/nottheonion

Oh damn that's gotta be rough to see. I really wish I had a way to help you help her.

u/Commentariat1 · 1 pointr/atheism

When r/atheism forgets all about Street Epistemology, the one method known and shown to work, it forgets it pretty damn thoroughly, eh? At least it does for the first 4 hours...

Street Epistemology (with Anthony Magnabosco)

Street Epistemology (with Tyrone Wells)

A Manual for Creating Atheists by Dr. Peter Boghossian (forget The God Delusion and God Is Not Great; they are unpersuasive to most religious people). This is the book that started the SE phenomenon.

Atheos app The mobile phone version of the above book. 1^st module is free!

Dr. Boghossian (philosophy prof. at PSU) wrote the book and the app. because he recognizes how bloody hard it is to overcome indoctrinated world views.

u/rasungod0 · 1 pointr/atheism

Oh I just checked the click through and that's because its an Amazon referral link, they're banned on all of reddit as spam so i have to remove the comment till you edit that out.

this string in the URL:


A user called "as_li_ss_tl" is getting a cut of sales from anyone who buys after clicking that link.

Here's a non-referral version you could edit in to have your comment restored:

u/HunterIV4 · 1 pointr/atheism

I glanced at the thread, and it seems like you were very unprepared for this sort of discussion. If you just wanted to dispel myths about a secular lifestyle, I would have made that clear from the outset. Frankly, you were unprepared to make arguments supporting atheism as a philosophical position.

Part of the reason you got trolled so hard is that you made assumptions about theists and they noticed. Your own prejudices got in the way. Theists are not stupid; I personally was a theist until late into college, and I learned Christian apologetics in detail. I don't consider myself stupid, and I still believed the Christian side of things. It's not like I've suddenly become smarter as an atheist...I've just abandoned some unjustified beliefs based on new evidence that convinced me those arguments were false.

Unfortunately for you, it seems you aren't familiar with these've either only had to deal with the most straightforward of religious beliefs ("I believe because it's so!") or you never really examined your own beliefs. This is don't need a master's degree in philosophy or natural sciences to be an atheist. If you're going to argue those positions, though, it helps to be prepared for what the opposition is going to bring. You weren't. You naively assumed they wouldn't have good reasons for believing what they believe, and they wielded it against you.

Some general things that could have helped you:

  1. Asking you random questions that are unrelated to the subject is common and acceptable in an AMA. This is not (necessarily) trolling, and if your original goal was to dispel myths that you are some sort of strange person, answering these in a straightforward manner would have helped, not hurt, your position. Also, people are going to assume when you do an AMA that you have a good understanding of the subject (frankly, and I'm not trying to don't).
  2. It's always risky to assume what other people believe. If you aren't sure, ask. There were many "gotcha" moments where people pointed out your own straw-men regarding the Christian worldview. There are many Christians who are highly educated and have a deep understanding of their beliefs, and these beliefs may not conform to the Bible-belt anti-science faith healing shenanigans (stereotypes intended). You confronted their beliefs with an assumption that they lacked reason yet showed an incredible lack of interest and knowledge in science and philosophy. Again, you don't need these things, but if you're going to argue they support your position you should damn well know what they are.
  3. I found it odd that you came from a position of doxatic closure (in plain terms, close-mindedness). Several times you mentioned that nothing would change your mind. This is a terrible place to begin a debate from, and isn't a very intellectually honest one. You invite comparisons to religion by doing so, because such closure is usually associated with strong dogmatic belief. I recommend saying coming from a position of doxatic openness, as you are more likely to get honest responses and discussions, not to mention it's generally a good idea. One of the key differences between most atheists and theists is around this an atheist, I am willing and able to adjust my beliefs based on evidence, and theists generally are not. If God were proved by solid, scientific data that could not be explained any other way, I would change my mind. If you're going to have a rational position, you need to be able to accept "Reason 101"...all hypothesis must be falsifiable (in other words, all your beliefs must have criteria that would disprove them, or they cannot be justified beliefs as there would be no way to discern truth from fiction). At one point you tell someone they weren't "devoted" enough to atheism, which is an extremely strange statement, and negates other statements you made about how atheism isn't a religion.
  4. Finally, you really need to learn some philosophy. I know, I know, for some reason many atheists (especially young atheists) have this thing against philosophy, thinking it's some anti-scientific nonsense about mystical caves and pretending that nothing can be true or known. This couldn't be further from the truth. Philosophy is all about logic and conclusions, and science is heavily based on philosophy. In fact, physics used to be called "natural philosophy", and you could argue that science is a specific form of philosophy in regards to reality. Is there bad philosophy? Absolutely. Is there practically meaningless philosophy? Oh, definitely. The same is true of virtually any area of human knowledge, but if you really want to get involved in learning about atheism you can't really do it without a basis in philosophical thought. The fact is you're using philosophy whether you think you are or not, but without a solid base you were running into issues when people brought up common arguments against your philosophical position. While learning general philosophy will be useful, if you want something specific, I recommend A Manual for Creating Atheists by Peter Boghossian. It really gets to the essence of epistemology and would have greatly helped you in your discussion. It appears you came to the conclusion of atheism because you experienced a situation where you had to deal with a lot of asshole Christians. While this may be your reason, it's not going to be something that will convince anyone of anything. I highly recommend finding out why you believe the way you believe.

    Hope that helps. Good luck on your journey.
u/CaptainExecutable · 1 pointr/exmormon

Don't talk too much of about history, facts, or counter-apologetics. You do not need to justify yourself to your family. Arguing with uniformed family members rarely leads anywhere useful.

However, if you find that your family is open minded start with epistemology.

Read this book.

Work through this app.

Use your study Mormon history to correct any misconceptions that may arise in the course of discussing epistemology rather than using history as a starting point for disagreement.

And above all remember that it is Mormon believers who are making the truth claims. They have the burden of proof. However, if you start making claims about this or that then you will find that you will have to shoulder the burden of proof, and the discussion can get sided tracked. Watch Matt Dillahunty. He is the master of not letting his debate opponent shift the burden of prove. He doesn't make many claims and he is willing to say "I don't know".

When a believer makes a claim, your first question should be:

>"How do you know that?"

From there you can easily keep the burden of proof where it should be or transition the topic to epistemology when you are ready.

u/Batrachus · 1 pointr/exmuslim
u/Dargo200 · 1 pointr/exchristian

I see two options here:

He's already admitted that he's unwilling to change his mind and that his faith is more important than truth. He could be telling the truth, which would mean you're wasting your time, or, it's just his mental conditioning coming out and subconsciously some of the stuff is getting through and making him uncomfortable. You need to determine which is the case.

If you want to try to get through to him then I would suggest getting this book. I would also suggest subscribing to a YouTube user called Anthony Magnabosco who puts the books techniques into practice on the street. The book focuses more on epistemology, so you won't have to teach anyone science or formal logic. The book show you how to make people cast doubt on what they think they know (when they actually don't). Once people have doubts then it's usually the beginning of the end for faith.

u/maltose66 · 1 pointr/atheism

Street epistemology can help people question their faith. Have you read Peter_Boghossian ?

u/meowmixmotherfucker · 1 pointr/relationship_advice

Damn man, this sucks. But you know, there are plenty more fish in the sea... also, insert multiplying fish joke here.

Faith isn't a thing you can choose to have or to be given. It's deeply rooted and by definition stands in the face logical thought processes. It's a feeling in your gut that can slip away despite the most sincere efforts to hold onto it. Likewise no amount of her relating miracles will make it take root. She's trying to connivence you to have a feeling, and inherently non-cognative thing. You can't control feelings, at least not with that degree of control. Faith has to creep into your consciousness like all other superstitions. Usually this happens as a child grows, it's easier to indoctrinate the young. In adults, all intents and purposes, faith spreads like a virus. That's why you tend to get preached to when someone dies or before big life events - it's easier to manipulate someones thinking when they're distraught or distracted. Constantly trying to persuade you isn't going to work for her, which will cause frustration at best but most likely a great deal of resentment. It's going to drive a wedge between you. And really, do you even want the faith? Remembering that side effects may include faulty epistemological claims, poor reasoning and a willingness to indoctrinate others, especially children, in a sick self loathing misogynistic homophobic middle eastern blood cult. Not worth it man.

hmm, apparently I woke up on the grumpy side of the bed. But still...

Luckily there's a cure. It's called logic and it's easy to administer. Engage the discussion sincerely and ask good questions. You might find A manual for creating Atheists by Peter Boghossian useful.

Alternatively you could take her up on her offer to read the Bible, but on the condition that you read it cover to cover. No pull quotes or 'special readings' from her paster. Just cover to cover. After all, it's the authoritative word of God, how could reading it all be a bad thing? By the end of the book god will be a lot less important to her life. Because he's a fucking monster, never-mind all the internally inconsistent nonsense and outlandish claims about the world that we know to be false.

But all of this assumes that the relationship it worth your time and energy because helping someone out of a faith-based delusion is a long shitty road.

Some others have commented that they have successful inter-faith relationships and that's great. Good on them. If you can do that too awesome, but given that she's so desperate to push it on you and you're already annoyed but it... seems like 'live and let live' isn't going to be the solution. Besides, even it does work out eventually it will be time to indoctrinate, or not, your kids. Never-mind religion's constant medaling in, and association with, politics and culture. There are going to be more large issues. It might be a better call to acknowledge that you have different world views and will likely grow in different directions. Finding someone with your value set or outlook on life might be the better path.

u/ziddina · 1 pointr/exjw

Try this technique on her.

Here's the book mentioned in the first few minutes of that broadcast:

If she doesn't change her mind or at least begin to let go of the Watchtower Society fundamentalist, apocalyptic Christian literalism, within a year, I'd suggest you cut your losses & let her try to find a suitable marriage mate among the dwindling resources at her local Jehovah's Witness kingdom hall, instead.

u/matruschkasized · 1 pointr/atheism

They have already heard a lot of "arguments" in their "logic" classes, so I always try to find one that they haven't heard yet.

After that, I try to steer the discussion towards faith, as far away from religion as I can think of.

Did you ever see [any lecture from Peter Boghossian?] ( because he kinda wrote [the book] ( on that.

u/DrAceManliness · 1 pointr/exchristian

I agree, to an extent. OP is going about it the wrong way. I don't know if I'd say there's no value in trying to get friends and family to see reason, though.

To OP (/u/VirusMaster3072), I'd recommend reading A Manual for Creating Atheists. It's not perfect, but the strategies it lays out make for a better foundation for discussing religious topics with people of faith. Going back and forth each saying "I'm right" isn't all that productive. The best approach, though the hardest, is through patience and carefully constructed questions. This book lays out very practical strategies for achieving that.

The alternative is nothing more than digging yourselves further into your own ditches until you're so entrenched you can no longer see eye-to-eye.

u/andrecunha · 1 pointr/atheism

I would start with the classic Some mistakes of Moses, by Robert Ingersoll.

There is a short book called Why There Is No God: Simple Responses to 20 Common Arguments for the Existence of God, by Armin Navabi, that is also a nice read.

One that I recently finished reading and enjoyed very much is The Foundational Falsehoods of Creationism, by Aron Ra. The book is not exactly about atheism; it's Aron's rebuttal to many creationist arguments, but Aron is a widely known atheist activist, and the book is very enjoyable.

I usually listen to The Thinking Atheist podcast, from Seth Andrews (a podcast I highly recommend, by the way). There are some book he suggested in his podcast that I haven't read yet, but which I included in my to-read list:

u/13lacle · 1 pointr/worldnews

I skimmed all your references and I find it a weird way to teach atheism as it seems to be largely an historical account and nothing explicitly to do with why/how.
The only reason atheism (without god(s)) exists is due to the large population of theists whom have no rational basis for that claim. The only sort of common trait is the use of logic and the scientific method, largely due to the departure from theism which required those skills. But this is not even a requirement either as the lack of belief could have been inherited from parents or from a separate false belief.

If one was to teach atheism, as in why people don't hold the belief that god(s) exist, I would think it would start with logic (valid, invalid, weak, strong arguments, soundness etc), the scientific method, skeptism/critical thinking, common fallacies(with a religious bias), some philosophy and some of the common arguments and counter points Some sort of challenge to try to prove one religion as true over another where you have to apply the same logic to both equally could also be useful for rooting out errors. ie if your holy book is true because the book/author states it is then you have to assume the other holy books self referential claim is true because it also makes the same claim with the same amount/quality of evidence which should show that it invalid as a method for proof.

Some better alternatives to your course material, in my opinion, are A Manual for Creating Atheists, The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe: How to Know What's Really Real in a World Increasingly Full of Fake and this youtube playlist on logic and argumentation

u/crypto_kthulhu · 1 pointr/atheism

I recommend reading the A Manual for Creating Atheists by Peter Boghossian. According to the author, your dad suffers from "Doxastic closure": a person who is resistant to belief revision.

Peter Boghossian borrows techniques from his experience teaching prison inmates and university students in how to convince people out of faith. He emphasizes the importance of not targeting religious concepts (e.g. God) but the base of religious thinking: faith. Once the subject realizes that faith-based reasoning is a flawed way of thinking, religious concepts will just fall apart. He recommends using the Socratic method to engage a person to use critical thinking to realize that faith is an incorrect belief formation mechanism. It is worth the read. Good luck.

u/YahwehsUnderpants · 1 pointr/atheism

I do try it. Of course it doesn't work on everybody.

u/ethicsengine · 1 pointr/atheism

Oh man, you've hit on a really hard topic.

First off, before I get into any of the juicy topics, let me say this: Consider where your parents are coming from based on their views. An analogy: If you were evacuating a building on fire and saw someone who didn't know they are in danger, would you try to notify them? For the sake of argument, let's say yes (I expect so). They see this world as a building burning down and they view themselves as trying to warn us of the danger we are supposedly in. Expand this to the fact that they are your parents and as their kid, you told them you are walking back into a burning building. They are literally scared for you. Irrationally scared, but still scared non the less. I am not sure if your short term situation or plans, but in the long term you need to accept that they are not going to share your views and may not accept you. Don't let them abuse you! They have to independently accept you for who you are or you need to distance yourself if they don't. Take care of yourself, maintain your dignity and self respect, and make decisions that make you happy and lead you towards living a happy and fulfilled life.

Some information on their reaction:

> I tried to be gentle about it and not criticize her but she kept telling me to defend why I didn't believe in God, and then when I answered she was like "you're trying to disprove God and attack my beliefs" . she later said I was being rude, (I was being as respectful as possible) when I explained that she said I was being "politely rude"???? But because of my beliefs I obviously thought she was a moron and I reject her values. (I never called her a moron and I said that I respected her faith and I didn't want this to be a source of contention for us)

Let's step back and parse this. Typically, strongly religious people follow a form of ethics called "Theological Ethics." The theological ethics system may incorporate other forms of ethics such as utilitarian, kant or phenomenological, but it is ultimately rooted in theology. Do [Action] because god demands it in or through [insert religious book, prophet, etc...]. In their view, all ethics and morality flow only from god. If god says give to the poor, you give to the poor. If god says kill that tribe, you kill that tribe. All ethics and morals are literally rooted in their version of god.

So, when you say "I don't believe in god," many people will imply "therefore I am not a moral person" OR "you think I am an idiot because I need god to work out what is right or wrong." In some cases, a person "without god" is seen as downright evil. However, we know that people can be moral and develop an ethics system without attributing it to or believing in god. We often follow heuristics such as the golden rule, informed consent or "no person is a means to an end."

Some theologians argue that this is only by the grace of god that he has allowed us to be a tool for good despite disbelieving, never mind that in many religions we are still considered doomed to eternal torment no matter how much good we do in the world and that an immoral or amoral person who believes in god has a higher chance into being accepted into paradise over an atheist who genuinely wanted to help others.

A few things you can do is work out why you can continue being a good person without needing to believe in a god. I personally see value in both society and individuals. I want the world to be a better place so that I can enjoy less violence, longer healthier lives. I want to see people individually succeed because it betters our society. Society is made up of individuals. Because life is precious, and this is our one life, we must make the most of it but not at the expense of others because their life is precious too. Informed consent is incredibly important. A society following informed consent reduces or prevents rape, murder, irresponsible or malicious human testing, robberies, etc...

Anyways, if you are interested in ethics and morality in the context of atheism and why reason will likely lead to a more just society, you should pick up a copy of The Moral Arc by Michael Shermer.

If you're interested in why atheism and why you don't need religion to be moral, you should pick up a copy of The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins (who is giving an AMA this may 27).

I personally think you will have a hard time converting your family to atheism, but if you want to shore up some of your arguments about why atheism, you should pick up a copy of A Manual for Creating Atheists by Peter Boghassian. I don't recommend you actively seek out these conversations with your family at this point, but they can help give you a better grounding about your belief system (yes, atheism is a belief system).

To conclude, don't stop loving your parents but don't let them abuse you either.

[edits for minor typos and formatting]

u/Exit75 · 1 pointr/atheism

You should read Pete Boghossian's new book "A Manual for Creating Atheists" when it comes out. Pete is a philosophy professor at Portland State University and a prime example of antitheist, as well as an all around brilliant guy. Might be good for some footnotes in your next work.

u/Sansabina · 1 pointr/exmormon

hey, nothing wrong with having hope and optimism that the court case would've gone somewhere, but hey, shit happens.

My folks sound very similar to yours. I've just accepted that they will choose to believe, and refuse to really look to closely at the evidence (or if they did they'd dismiss it anyway).

If you haven't already seen it, I'd highly recommend this book, it's approach is quite different and I think worthwhile.

u/mischiffmaker · 1 pointr/atheism

If you actually plan on engaging them, there's a manual for that. Can't vouch for it, but you might find it interesting.

Good luck. Sounds kind of like you had an anthill show up in your yard one day.

u/redchris18 · 1 pointr/KotakuInAction

> You're telling me to accept it on faith again.

Not true at all. I cited sources and directly quoted them as pointing out the difference between the various professors and lecturers. I even pointed you directly to the fact that gaining promotion from Boghossian's current position is based on contributing original research.

And this is all on top of the fact that I have previously referred you to Boghossian's publication histosy. If he was required to meet mandatory publication criteria then he'd surely have been fired by now, because he's averaging well under a paper per year. He's producing some useful work, like presentations, letters, etc., but nothing that would be counted towards bringing in grant funding (which is what these scholarly targets are all about).

In fact, if you recall, my original reason for directing you towards his publication history - which you are now trying to submit in its entirety without having to quote any part that backs up your claims - was to outline how little there is for someone whom you claim to be unduly affected by a temporary halt in sponsorship for such work. I count no more than five total publications since he joined PSU, and that includes maximum of two submissions that would qualify. One of them is literally less than a single page in length.

Like I said, scholarship evidently isn't his primary concern, which is why he likely appreciates a role in which it is not required.

>Your own source said they either contribute significantly with academic research and become professors or they're asked ot leave the position in 5-7 years.

So? In what way does that invalidate anything I said? He's only just reaching the lower bound of that range now, so are you trying to claim that he should have been fired early in order to fit that same data?

Incidentally, I suggest you look up the word "generally". Then I suggest you re-read those sources that you so disparaged while consipcuously failing to properly comprehend them.

>your sources do not say that it is the default position for assistant professors

One of them explicitly states that promotion to a tenured position requires that Assistant professors should demonstrate an aptitude for regular and/or noteworthy scholarly contributions. In other words, it clearly states that promotion is for those who show an ability to produce research that goes beyond the typical.

Note that not a single one of those sources states that such research is a mandatory aspect of that position, which has been your claim this entire time. You are trying to shift the burden of proof again.

>the default position isn't that Assistant professors do no research infact to reach the next level of the job

So you've noted - as I myself pointed out - that promotion to a tenured position requires some degree of scholarly contribution. And why is this relevant? For this to be valid you would first have to demonstrate that Boghossian wants a promotion and that he's actively working towards it.

>YOU have to prove that Boghossian either doesn't have research requirements to advance or that he wants to have his position terminated under that set of criteria.

Heh, no, I really don't. You have to demonstrate that he wants tenure, or that his department will fire him if he fails to do so. After all, it's not a legal requirement that they do so, nor that he should be aiming for promotion.

What a hilarious misapplication of logic, and you can bet your life that I'm archiving that little gem.

>under the UK criteria you have to prove Boghossian

He's at PSU. why would I have to prove anything related to the UK system. I only included that as a supplement to the US system, because they both work in the same way.

It is, however, highly useful as a demonstration of your innate dishonesty. You grab at a single word or number, twist it out of all context, apply it to whatever context you think you can use to fabricate a case, then switch it in for the original point. All of a sudden you go from a position which "generally" lasts for 5-7 years to a situation in which Boghossian must be fired or promoted right now, and - for some reason - you get to assume that he's working on the former rather than awaiting the latter, and without even considering the possibility that they'd simply retain him for longer than the typical period out of convenience for all.

Answer me this - assuming you're even capable of answering simple questions if you think they'll force you into a losing position: do you believe that Boghossian must either be promoted to tenured positions or fired between that 5-7 year period? If so, please cite the legally-binding document that decreess that it be so.

>Your own sources support that research being required is the default position in most cases.

Only if promotion is sought. You are now disingenuously attempting to insert yet another axiom: that Boghossian is actively seeking a tenured position.

Once again, you are trying to bullshit your way out of a lost dispute, and I'm not stupid enough to fall for it. This isn't a surprising tactic, but it's certainly interesting to note how carefully you quote around inconvenient words, like "generally". Pure cowardice.

>illusory superiority

Ah! Another new buzzword to stand in for a coherent thought process. I wonder how many times you'll trot this one out...

Three. All in close proximity. Fascinating...

>The Null hypothesis would be Boghossian not being different from other assistant professors

I agree, which means:

>he would be expected to produce research to be able to advance in his position and not be terminated

You have no evidence that this false dichotomy is correct. In fact, You have cherry-picked a quote around evidence that proves that it is untrue. Boghossian has no set time limit on his role by which he must either seek tenure or leave. That's how long that role "generally" lasts, but it is not a mandatory action.

Your entire reply seems to have been predicated upon this non-sequitur (note the correct use of that term). On top of that, it requires that he wants to seek a tenured position, and I previously outlined verifiable data that suggests that this is not the case. I'm going to bet that you won't even try to address any of that.

>research is one of the easier ones of the list

It really isn't.

>provide evidence of him having done the other methods to support your argument

You mean such as:

>> The mid-level position is usually awarded after a substantial record of scholarly accomplishment (such as the publication of one or more books ...) that the kind of thing you mean? Then this will suffice. And, as I mentioned last time, he has another one out this year.


>you wish to use a very small sample size to represent it

Fine, then you can do so for everything he has published. Please read through all of his published works and cite examples of things he did to produce those papers that may have required sponsorship. Because, as established previously, I have no call to address anything in his papers until you can cite something within them that I need to check. You need to read it all, not me. I was trying to save you some work.

>I had at least 3

I'm not going to buy any of that nonsense from you, so don't bother trying.

Now, that aside, you continue to claim that Boghossian is directly impacted in his regular duties by being temporarily denied sponsorship. With that in mind, please present some evidence that Boghossian's work over the last five years actually requires some form of financial outlay in order to produce it. If not, he requires no sponsorship and any research he feels like doing remains unaffected. If you can provide no examples of this being a potential limiting factor then it is not a limiting factor.

In a similar vein, you have asserted that conducting research is a fundamental part of his job, despite the fact that his position is routinely understood to only rarely confer a mandatory research target. As such, please present evidence that Boghossian has a research quota to meet as part of his regular duties. Please do this with specific reference to the work he has produced within the past five years while at PSU. If you can find no such evidence then you have no basis for insisting that his position differs from everyone else who shares a similar role.

Oh, and have you found out why I'm finding one of your cited papers so funny yet? I was more than a little disappointed that you never tried to read it to see if he did anything that required sponsorship, but the fact that you still mistakenly think that it remains valid is almost as humorous. Do you need that hint?

u/jeffsthename · 1 pointr/exmuslim

I agree with the above. Most ex-moose figure it out on their own. The more you try to show them that their beliefs are wrong the more defensive they get. I suggest you read this

u/KellieReilynn · 1 pointr/atheism

There are lots of entirely secular ways to arrive at morality. The basics appear to be hardwired into most people. The lines of reasoning all arrive at striking similar conclusions (i.e. Slavery is wrong, women are people).

Answer briefly, then put them on defensive. How do they call slavery moral? How do they call 9/11 or the Orlando nightclub shooting or whatever the latest terrorist attack happens to be, moral? There are people who sincerely believe that these are things god wanted. If that is your criteria, and those are your morals, then

Sorry for the rant. With everything going on in the world today, I just feel like we should have done less to tolerate religion and more to make people responsible.

It is my sincerely held hope that atheist, with science and reason and clear, easily understood arguments for the children, will one day be considered the cause of the demise of Islam. Not that I expect to live to see that day.

u/DavidAssBednar · 1 pointr/exmormon
u/ahawks · 1 pointr/offmychest

I'm not sure how helpful this will be... but I've been learning a lot about Street Epistemology. It's a conversational style based on the socratic method, where instead of trying to convince someone of your view, you ask them about their views.

The idea is, when you push a view on someone else, they get defensive and block you. But when you ask them to talk about their own thoughts/beliefs/views, they open up. At that point, you can ask things like "why?", which ultimately makes them back their dumbass views up. When they can't, they may lose some confidence in that view.

Look into it...


u/_satan_in_a_dress_ · 0 pointsr/DebateReligion

> Your sources for disproof are (1) a URL someone created, and (2) a tumblr someone created.

No, the first was a dictionary. The second was casual uses the dictionary definitions make feasible. They used it just like I did.

>Your account is 34 minutes old and you've said you were a philosopher.

Never did you read me write that I was a philosopher. I wrote that I had a degree in philosophy & religion.

>Tell me how the latter is possible.

An atheist apologist would be one who defends views important to atheism or attacking theism. Richard Carrier is a good example. Or books like A Manual for Creating Atheists.

u/Katholikos · -11 pointsr/worldnews

> prostulatize

Just as an FYI, it's "proselytize".

Manuals for conversion to atheism exist.

Some people proselytize for Atheism.

I mean, obviously it's a much newer concept in general, but let's not act like the worst atheists aren't just as annoying as the worst religious people.