Hey there! Remember me? The atheist who used to write this blog?
It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Well, if I’ve ever had a good excuse for not keeping the blog updated, believe me, it’s now. I can’t go into much detail about it (trying to stay anonymous, remember?), but our family suffered a pretty devastating loss a while ago, and had another not very long after.
We’ve weathered both of them as best we can, and have been steadily recovering ever since, thanks to our own perseverance and the help of family and friends. One of my favorite religious catchphrases is the one that goes “The lord helps those who help themselves,” because when you really think about it, it’s a subtle hint at what’s really going on – we’re doing all of the hard work, and some of us are giving the credit for it to a god.
But I digress. Since I haven’t had any atheist-related questions posed to me for the last few years, I thought I’d ask one of the believers who might still check this blog from time to time for any signs of life. It comes with a little bit of background, so please bear with me.
As I’m sure many of you are aware, the film “God’s Not Dead” has been rather popular lately, first in the theaters and now on DVD. For those who aren’t: it’s the story of a Christian college student who is challenged by his philosophy teacher to prove the existence of god, or fail his class. The film appears to be based on a popular glurge email that you’ve likely gotten from a sweet and caring grandmother or aunt, and presents a dubious list of cases in the end credits that are purported to be identical to the one portrayed in the story.
I haven’t seen the movie myself (I’m waiting for my library to get a copy, as I’m not comfortable with supporting it monetarily), but the reviews I’ve seen – even from Christian sources – have described it as being very heavy handed against atheists, portraying all of them as bitter, joyless, and angry at every turn. (This one is one of my favorites, and this one is very good as well).
My social network accounts frequently show me statuses from friends who have seen the film and loved it – friends who love and respect me, and whom I love and respect. When a family of these friends went to see the movie in the theater, the two sons both texted “God’s Not Dead” to my phone, a practice which I believe is encouraged near the end of the movie.
And as I read these texts on my phone, I really started to wonder – What if they knew? Would it change their minds?
And that got me to thinking even further, which brought me to the question that I’d like to ask the believers who read this blog:
If someone that you loved and respected revealed to you that they are an atheist – would that change your opinion of atheists, or would it instead change your opinion of them?