what causes a person NOT to believe or have faith?

United States
August 13, 2008 3:27pm CST
i was wondering why there are so many that think God is dead or doesnt exist. is it because everything that you have heard over the years hasn't come true? is it because you werent raised in a family that believes or is it because you were in a family that believes but were forced into it, and now that you are older dont believe the so called fairy tales that were said- is God like the tooth fairy or santa clause - something that you have heard of when you are younger just to find out that when you have kids you have to play the part? I am really interested in why so many people shut down the idea of God? another side to this is why do so many christians out there condem those who dont believe? It says clearly that we are build each other up in Christ. so why do so many christians "bible thump" those who dont believe and harshly tell them that they will go to hell? i think alot of the misunderstanding in faith is because people force their opinions on to one another. Jesus didn't force. He spoke to everyone. and those who have accepted what he has to say justifies why Jesus said that the road to heaven is narrow and few will find it. He came to divid and that is just what is happening. there are those christians that will think that they are above the law because of their faith and then there are those who live "quiet lives" yet it seems to me that those that are quiet are attacked more because they are not out there forcing- what are your thoughts on this? What has made you not believe?
2 people like this
25 responses
• United States
14 Aug 08
I don't say he doesn't exist, he just isn't the one I follow. Reading the bible he has killed many mercilessly, seems rather full of himself and, just overall, if he was human he would be someone I would steer clear of.
1 person likes this
@ClarusVisum (2163)
• United States
2 Sep 08
It's because there's no evidence of a god or gods.
@santuccie (3375)
• United States
2 Sep 08
Just to make sure we're on the same page, here is what I mean when I say "God": http://www.mylot.com/w/discussions/1680590.aspx#2_17887864
• United States
3 Sep 08
santuccie, it seems you're the one who's forgotten that I informed you that irreducible complexity, even if found (hasn't happened yet in any journal I'm aware of--could you link me to an example if you know of one?) does not even 'disprove' evolution, much less prove supernatural agency. Supernatural agency is literally IMPOSSIBLE to prove scientifically, for anytime one could say "a supernatural agent did this" one could also say "a natural agent we're unaware of did this"; in other words, it isn't possible to 'narrow it down' to supernatural causes. The only possible way to logically 'assume' supernatural agency is to rule out ALL possible natural causes first, and that is WAY beyond human capacity. Hell, less than 5% of the universe directly PERCEPTIBLE by humanity (most of the universe is made of up matter/energy that we only even know is there because of its observed effect on 'normal' matter)--how can it make any sense to you that we're capable of positively identifying supernatural agency? P.S. When I say "evidence", I mean objective evidence, since that's the only kind that is reliable and testable. Just want to make sure we're clear on that.
@santuccie (3375)
• United States
3 Sep 08
santuccie, it seems you're the one who's forgotten that I informed you that irreducible complexity, even if found (hasn't happened yet in any journal I'm aware of--could you link me to an example if you know of one?) does not even 'disprove' evolution, much less prove supernatural agency. How many times have I told you that I believe in evolution? Obviously you're not reading my posts, including the last one (I am not a creationist). Evolution and IC are not at odds with one another. The only conflict here is with unguided evolution. I've said it before and I'll say it again, slow down and read. Furthermore, no one is talking about a supernatural agency. You're doing the same thing that Shanks and Joplin did when they called Behe a creationist. Your use of "supernatural" is a classic, atheistic sleight of hand. Supernatural agency is literally IMPOSSIBLE to prove scientifically, for anytime one could say "a supernatural agent did this" one could also say "a natural agent we're unaware of did this"; in other words, it isn't possible to 'narrow it down' to supernatural causes. The only possible way to logically 'assume' supernatural agency is to rule out ALL possible natural causes first, and that is WAY beyond human capacity. Hell, less than 5% of the universe directly PERCEPTIBLE by humanity (most of the universe is made of up matter/energy that we only even know is there because of its observed effect on 'normal' matter)--how can it make any sense to you that we're capable of positively identifying supernatural agency? Again, no one said anything about proof. You said there is "no evidence of a god or gods." Second, you're using an argument from ignorance; again, just as you criticize believers for doing. Some of us choose to believe as Einstein believed when he said, "Everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe - a spirit vastly superior to that of man." Others choose to believe in a deity who parts seas, bashes gays, and turns people into pillars of salt. Others choose to believe there is no God, hence the universe purposelessly and accidentally comes complete with precise and immutable law which compels it to organize itself. While I'll admit that I find you more logical than the second, I do not find you especially so. Irreducible complexity can be disproven, and some people have already tried to do so. As it were, the best they could do was refute one man's arguments by taking the base away from a mousetrap and setting it on the floor, and then exemplifying how the ready-made components of the bacterial flagellum could be interchanged with one another and used for secretion. People have also tried to say that organization of DNA may have begun in a strictly RNA world in hydrothermic vents on the ocean floor. Never mind the fact that the earliest forms of Precambrian life were anaerobic, and therefore could not survive there; or that we're talking about molecules holding together in a hostile environment for eons without chemical barriers. Granted, these are merely hypotheses, but pretty ridiculous hypotheses if you ask me. When I say "evidence", I mean objective evidence, since that's the only kind that is reliable and testable. Just want to make sure we're clear on that. We're on the same page here, except that you plainly don't know enough about science to understand the nature of biochemistry. The scientific arguments I'm talking about are under the scope as we speak. Again, I suggest you brush up on your science before dismissing hard evidence as subjective. If you want to prove me wrong, do it with science.
@CrazCo (409)
• Canada
13 Aug 08
For one there is absolutely no proof of God existing. Sure, some individuals will claim "The Qur'an, Torah or Bible all provide clear evidence of a divine being" but what good is a book. Why would God want to hide his identity and allow science to come in and attempt to change people's minds. Some say "evolution is inspired by Satan" but why would God create Satan to begin with and why would Satan attempt to contest God's powers knowing his is an omni-benevolent, omni-present, omni-potent and he knows what you are thinking at all times. God should be able to anticipate his moves and easily counter them. Why wouldn't he. There is also evidence for events such as Evolution, The Big Bang and Abiogenesis that help support atheism. Since there is actual tested evidence for these occurrences and none for God, why not believe in God? I think the true question is "Why do theists believe in God with the lack of evidence put fourth to support him?"
@CrazCo (409)
• Canada
13 Aug 08
Exactly. It is ENTIRELY faith based to believe in God, so if a theist calls an atheist a fool they are being hypocritical because their standpoint is only off faith. Abiogenesis is the thought that life came from non-life. I don't want to go into too much detail but search Alexander Oparin if you want a detailed explanation on how it is possible for this to occur.
• United States
13 Aug 08
oh very cool someone to look up. thank you. i am always interested in learning new things and this just might prove something that wasn't there before. much apprechiated.
@CrazCo (409)
• Canada
14 Aug 08
I am glad to discover you are opened minded about the issue. I give you props for that.
• United States
14 Aug 08
Well some people have no faith or lose faith because of so many evil in the world. They conclude that if they is a god then he would not allow evil at all. Others don't believe because they don't think the stories in the bible are true. Many also don't like the idea of a god that can manipulate anyone's life and destiny. They rather believe that they are in control then someone else so they choose to not believe.
• United States
14 Aug 08
My husband says that God allows "free will" and so people make decisions that are good, bad, whatever. Not influenced by God.
1 person likes this
• United States
14 Aug 08
True but some people would blame god for the misfortune they receive or think that god has a plan and have no say in it.
@efc872 (1078)
• Jamaica
29 Aug 08
spiderlizard22, It is not a matter of not believing the stories in the bible, It could be the other way round. It is not believing that God could use the vicious acts in the bible to show us that the gates of heaven is open to sinners on repentance. Look at Abraham giving selling his wife to the pharaoh like a pimp. his wife gave her maid to him, she allowed him to go to bed with her then turn the maid out when the belly start to show. The great King David looked over his fence and saw Uriah's wife, send the poor man to the battlefront to kill him for her. Look at how Lot's daughter had to drunk their father to get a man. Are these good stories to teach our children, these are stories you have to hide from them. Faith is blind so it nothing big to blind our eyes from these stories also.
@Adoniah (7515)
• United States
13 Aug 08
There are whole generations in Europe now that were raised without a concept of G'd. Each succeeding year there are fewer and fewer people who believe in the Christ. That is why a good chunk of Europe is now muslim. There is no one to say no and since they are a monotheistic religion they still fit the description of a godly faith. The christians are being outnumbered by the Muslims and the nonfaiths and the polytheists. Very soon they will be the minority. If you take out the cathlics, which they really don't like to be mixed in with they already are. As a boater, I have friends all over the world. Many of them think the states are really behind the times with their bible thumping and religion in politics etc. Shalom~Adoniah
• United States
13 Aug 08
what makes america behind in the times? I feel that they are in several ways but why do you see it that way?
@Adoniah (7515)
• United States
14 Aug 08
I did not say that I see it that way so much as the rest of the western world sees us that way. They do not mix politics and G'd or school and G'd unless it is a religious school. In fact in many places, religion is completely gone. Shalom
• India
14 Aug 08
His own thinking make the faith on the god.I great event happen on my own life my mother she was have more faith on velankani a lady of health. She use to vist the church daily. One mother use to say that when I was 2yr boy I got fall from the 2rd floor of the building. All member of the family felt that I have gone. Every one they cried but my mother that she has faith on god. You will not belive that I not even got any cresh on my body. Now tell it is not a power of faith! faith make a person perfect
@efc872 (1078)
• Jamaica
29 Aug 08
Try falling from the 2nd. floor again and tell me what happens. You didn't have faith at 2 yrs so with faith in your possession now you shouldn't even get a scratch. Try it.
• Philippines
14 Aug 08
I can totally relate to this. Okay here goes my opinion, my side. (no offense to others, this is just me, plain me) I am a Catholic, I was raised by parents believing that there is God, Jesus Christ was His son, Mother Mary was Jesus Christs' mother and all that. I do believe that there is God. I go to church every Sunday and follow all those "beliefs". BUT, I started to question everything when I got into high school, started going to church when I want to but still believe in God, I just have some questions. When I got into college, I entered a Dominican school, yes it was supervised by Dominican friars and so we are required to do this and that and believe in God. There are non-Catholic people in the school and they totally respect them. I dunno to others but I respect those people too. Anyway, more questions started and I start to believe that there is no God, although there are instances when I do believe in Him. At school, when there are Catholic celebrations or the need to pray for someone like the basketball team (they offer prayers to the basketball team ONLY, I am a Taekwondo athlete but we never get masses), we are REQUIRED to go to the mass. You have no other choice but to attend or else. That made me question things more and more. Because, attending mass is BY FORCE. So I was like, WHY FORCE SOMEONE TO BELIEVE THAT THERE IS GOD, WHY FORCE SOMEONE TO ATTEND MASS WHEN EVEN IF YOU MISS A MASS YOU CAN TALK TO GOD. And even one of the Dominican friars whom I confessed to cannot answer this and told me, I was right, the school was wrong for forcing, it was a wrong way of approach to teenagers like you. And I was like, I have a point after all. My dad questioned me too, why I dont attend mass every Sunday, told him the reason, same reason, WHY FORCE. And he did the same thing, he forced me to attend mass. I never got the answer. But in the end, I won. So here goes, I believe that there is God, I still do BUT rarely. Yes, just rarely. A lot of times I dont believe that there is God because well there are still questions in me like WHERE IS HE NOW, WHAT HAPPENED TO JESUS AFTER, BIBLE IS INCOMPLETE WHERE ARE THE OTHER AUTHORS, and yeah, Dan Brown affected me. I know it is just FICTION, his book is just A BOOK, but yeah, he is part of more questions. I respect other people and their beliefs, I have nothing against them. And I think no belief is superior than other beliefs, and all people must respect it. But I think some people just dont think like the way I am, so they question others. So there, sorry for the really long answer.
• United States
14 Aug 08
Good for you for questions.When my husband asked questions and questioned parts of the bible he was told not to ? just believe. Well,when you can't have your ?s answered you tend not to believe so much anymore. He stopped attending church. This was a while before I met him but his belief in a higher power is strong but not in the church sence.
• India
14 Aug 08
well i truly believe in god an his powers. when god answers ur prayers quickly , he tries to increase ur faith in him , an if he delays , he is testing ur patients ...an if does not answer your prayer then he must be having something better for you. i believe in ghosts so why should not i believe in god ?? so keep faith in god an prepare urself fr sumthing betetr
@efc872 (1078)
• Jamaica
29 Aug 08
Can you see them?.
@acc2003 (11)
• United States
13 Aug 08
I grew up in the church. My father was the pastor. I witnessed so much hypocrisy that its unbelievable that men of faith are able to get away with so much for so long just because they carry this title. People are so wrapped up in the Gods Phrophet idea that reality is no longer. Look at the priest who molested so many alter boys! I cursed God in my youth and felt he did not exist. I later realized that there is a higher power or force that tends to show itself in amazing ways. I do not believe in religion because its like everyone is holding a piece of the puzzle and until we put those pieces together we will never come close to the complete truth. Sometimes we just have to use a little common sense. I agree with previous statements that the God that has been presented to us as this all knowing, all caring, suffer not the little children type God, is allowing so many children to suffer in this world. Children are molested, killed, beaten, neglected, and the list goes on, every day and they did not ask to be here. Children can not control the adults and dont have much power to avoid bad things happening to them. I choose to keep an open mind because common sense tells me that the bible does not whole the complete truth!
• United States
13 Aug 08
you have a valid point that all of us carry a peice to the puzzle. i find that if we are to put the puzzle together we might just find that what we have held on to for so long isn't the whole truth but a fragment of it. but if that is the case then the movie Dogma was right.- we must have a 'good idea' of the way faith works but must not kill for it.
@Anne18 (11036)
13 Aug 08
i have no faith and don't believe in god at all. But i do think some of the bible stories are very nice and do give some good morals, but so do some fairy stories. i used to believe in a god and went to church, was a sunday school teacher, rang the church bell, was confirmed, the lot. I then sat on the fence for quite a while and now i don't believe at all. i can't believe there is a god who would let all this suffering of world wars, famine, fighting in the street, good people dying of illness etc. why would he want a unhappy wprld. Also most of the trouble in the world does stem down to reglion. My children haven't been christianed and haven't been to church. But if they decided that they wanted to go to church my husband and i would take them and support there views etc but we would never let them believe that we have changed our views, my husband and i are devoted athistis
• United States
13 Aug 08
do you see a pattern or similarities from the bible to fairy stories? if you were to make a comparison with the two what would be the same and what would be different? what makes a person athistis? and what is it exactly?
• Russian Federation
3 Sep 08
Hi, Pukaprat, I would say that some don't believe because of cruel, ugly, unfair things they see around. The same things are sensitive to me, however I belive in God. So I'm an Orthodox Chrisitan but some things in my mind can be called "heresy" from position of Christian. For example, it seems to me that we are born into the world not once but multiple times, and it seems to me that karma exists. And imagine that it's true. Then, looking at a person can you say how he lived his last lives and what he did? Good or bad? Can you imagine how good or bad were those things person did? In other words I try to say that we never know reason of events that happen in persons life. Probably all that "cruel, ugly, unfair" stuff is working karma? Why do we think hell is "somewhere" and the person will go there "once after"? Why can't it be here and now? The same is for Paradise. So, what seems to us "unfairness" of God and makes us loose our belief, is it in it's reality what we think about it? But you probably may ask me angrily - why a small child suffers so much? I don't know. It makes to me the same pain as to you, (it hurts sometimes so much to see what happens in the world). But I can say that I really know nothing about poor child and reasons af all events in his life, which probably may come from previous lives?. I'm able sometimes to find out why something happens to me, but even in case of my own - quite rarely. And deepest reasons I cannot find at all. Then, if I'm not able to find root causes of events even in my own life - how can I decide about the others?... And why in this case bad things around us must force us to loose our faith or prevent us to start believing in God?... Sorry if I was not clear enough in my post.
@filmore (44)
• Barbados
18 Aug 08
Hi Pukaprat2 At some point in my life, I was doubtful. As a child I keep seeing images of a man figure standing in a white robe with his head covered. I could not see flesh, neither the face, just a mare image of a being. It stood on a rock and showed me people rising from the earth. I use to watch horror movies, but these people were not decayed, they stood up with flesh and wore the clothes they were buried in. I saw this even before I made the decision to accept Christ in my life. I use to wonder what it meant, I even shared it with a Pastor, up too today I can't remember what he had told me. When I was first baptised, I made the mistake of going back into the world. I use to blame the church for this, but I finally realize it was my weakness. I ask Jesus, as I was feeling depress one day to "come into my heart, come in today, come in to stay." a song which He heard, and since then he never left me. I am still developing and sometimes when the enemy wants to attack. I saw a similar vision, but this time, a cloth was wrapped around my hand and around its hand and said something about being bind. I can't remember the exact words, but I remember the word "bind" Christians need to bind together and follow the principle of Jesus, that means read the word more and ask God for wisdom. Wisdom is a vital part of our Christianity. Some who live quiet lives might seemed they are being attacked, but to me they are the ones who are seriously aggressive about preaching the gospel. What are your thoughts??
@syankee525 (6295)
• United States
18 Aug 08
well there are a few reasons, i used to atten church all the time when i was a kid, i was force too. as i grown i guess because being force too and now i had a choice i didn't anymore. but after i had gotten hurt really bad and then getting bipolar and became mainc depresion i was mad at everyone and even god, i blamed him most of all since i couldn't support my family and came close to loosing my house. a couple i was friends with interdouce me to a paster weber, he was real cool. now i grown up a cathlic, he told me it's not about me changing from cathic or anything, all about him helping me to rebuild my faith in god and understanding things. then i got watching shows like ed young and joyce myers. now my faith is stronger then ever. i try my best to live my life how god wants me too. but i think now, it's more you see people who are suppose to reborn or saved. church going people. who read the bible and preach the word of god. but the way they treat others is so sad. they go out and is all fast judging others for whatever reasons they can find. but when i tell them it say in the bible thy shall not judge, unless they judge themself. i hear nothing wrong with me at all it's you, this is one main reason why i don't go to church, too me cathic people are just not too friendly and everyone esle just judge others thinking they are better then everyone else. my dad is one of these people. you aren't cathlic you are not nothing to him. as far as my daughter in law and son, he started to go her family church and his whole attuide had changes. not worry about hurting my feelings or my wife feelings. to me it's more of the people who are suppose to be all relion then the church it's self, even though are some churchs has fault into this as well like making it all about money.
@Ravenladyj (22940)
• United States
18 Aug 08
Some ppl dont believe becuase there is no concrete evidence...some dont believe because its how they were raised..some dont believe because their faith is wiht another religion or spiritual path...some dont believe simply because religion just isnt important to them and their lives..the list goes on....There are as many reasons as there are ppl in the world..The WHY doesnt matter...what matters IMO is the fact that whatever a person believes its what they believe strongly and down to their core being.....How they got to that point really is irrelivent IMO.. and no I dont believe....I did, long ago...very strongly BUT time went on and I clued into a few things and realized that that particular path was causing me to deny myself my true self..thats something that isnt acceptable to me..
@wa2nlinux (179)
• Indonesia
14 Aug 08
I think the answer quite simple, because person have brain to think, have mind to chose . LOL
14 Aug 08
What causes a person Not to believe or have faith? #1 cause I would guess; never Worshiped God.
• Philippines
14 Aug 08
Some people dont believe anymore on the power of prayer or religious stuffs simply because they have bad past experiences. Just for example, at the past he tried to pray ever night that someday his parent will be united again. Then until after 10 years of praying, he just have the news that his father will be marrying another woman. So why pray again? I am talking here, that a person stop his faith or dont have faith if he has previous undertaking not solved and has not to solve even what effort you will be making, only going back to that time will solve it.
@hotsummer (10333)
• Philippines
14 Aug 08
i don't know why others don't believe in the existence of God. but i can't blame them cause life is pretty difficult and i feel that sometimes or many times that people will only believe in God if every thing is going well. now that life is pretty difficult it is really hard to make them believe that God will allow all these problems in life.
• United States
14 Aug 08
I'm a skeptical person, so religion is iffy in the first place. Learning about other religions also helped fuel it as well.
14 Aug 08
as for many, faith or belief in God is just a matter of choice(well at least as far as the postings are concerned)but if you ask me i do believe in God.Why?FAITH thats why.