Answer on @Quora by Vincent Beauregard to What was your first step on the road to atheism?
Answer by Vincent Beauregard:
Honest, I don't recall ever taking an actual step toward atheism.
In fact, I'd be hard-pressed to state whether or not I'm a deist so maybe I'm disqualified from answering this question.
The thing is that my sheltered upbringing did not include a lot of religious stuff. I developed an interest in philosophy at an early age and I also learned before my teens to develop a keen sense of humour.
So when I finally got exposed to some religious theories and practices, they did not 'take on'. The gel did not fix. Nothing I have read/seen or heard on that line of thoughts ever struck a chord of significance in my life, intellectually or not.
For instance, when I learned about the crucifixion story and how it had saved us all from our sins, being a kid at the time:
– I felt I had never sinned on any significant level
– I could not feel the need to be forgiven about anything because I had mostly been as nice as possible to everyone I knew
– I could not get an interesting answer on why someone else dying horribly thousands of years ago was in any way helpful now
– I could not get afraid of Hell because its description was too unreal to apply in my life
– There was so many holes in that story, even for a kid, that I could not make myself take it seriously
Soon after, in my teen years, I stumbled upon all sorts of horror stories involving priests in other time or places that I privately decided that I would never accept the word of God if it came from anyone else than God.
And I stand by this proposal to this day:
If a real God shows up to me and my family personally, I will listen.
If that real God babbles about ridiculous stuff like how to get married, how to pray, how to skin a goat or gore an ox, how many slaves I can own, I will start to question, hard!
And if he/she/it can't or won't answer my questions, I will tell him/her/it to bugger off and leave me alone.
But one things is sure, I will never take the word of a human about what a supreme divine authority want me to do or not.
I will instead consider that human a liar and a fraud until proven otherwise and I will hide my contempt only to the extent that I desire a civil exchange with that person.
I must admit that the writings of a warrior merchant or a wanna-be preacher from the 1st century do not impress me much.
Especially considering that both comes from an era of haggling cultures where the norm, at the time, was to rely on the fact that information was hard to come by.
It was the golden age of the street pedlars and you expect me to believe that a Supreme Being picked one of these idiots to send us a message and that message had nothing more important to say than 'believe everything my guy says or you will be in pain forever'?
Come on! Get real!