I left the following comment on a fundamentalist Christian blog today:
As an agnostic, humanist, and naturalist, I am sure that you view me as the enemy. But I am actually a friend; a friend trying to rescue you; a friend trying to rescue you from a false belief system; a friend trying to rescue you from a cult.
Imagine that I am a friend or family member and imagine that I have joined a new belief system, a belief system that believes in black magic, witches, wizards, and evil goblins that have the power to control one’s brain. In this belief system I am taught that “the movement” is right, and everyone else is wrong, and not only wrong, but evil. I am told that all my friends and family who are not members of this belief system are incapable of seeing the truth because evil goblins control their minds and blind them to the “hidden” truth that only members can see. I am told not to listen to my non-member friends and family. I am told to obey and follow, without question, the teachings of our “error-free” holy book. I am told that the leaders of the movement have special, advanced training in “the truth” and therefore I should trust that they understand the truth better than I as a layperson ever can.
So what would you do if you really cared about me? Would you leave me in this cult without lifting a finger to rescue me? Would you refrain from criticizing my new belief system for fear of insulting me? I hope not.
What I hope you would do is this: You would try to expose me to information that would open my eyes to the delusion that my cult has convinced me to believe as absolute, unquestioned truth. You would ask me to read information that counters the supernatural claims of my cult. You would not let me live my entire life in this false, delusional belief system without making an effort to rescue me.
That is what I am attempting to do for you, friends. I am attempting to rescue you from a false belief system; a false belief system based on the powers of the supernatural; on the powers of MAGIC. You have been convinced that the world is controlled by magic.
Your magical belief system tells you that witches exist and have the power to call up the dead (I Samuel chapter 28). Your magical belief system teaches you that wizards can turn walking sticks into snakes (Exodus chapter 7). Your magical belief system teaches you that goblins (demons) can enter and possess large herds of pigs (Mark chapter 5) driving them to commit mass suicide. Your magical belief system tells you that blindness can be healed by rubbing mud and spit into someone’s eye sockets (John chapter 9).
This is not a rational, informed, belief system, friends. This is an ancient, scientifically ignorant, superstition. It is magic.
I once was a member of your cult. I know how you think. I know how your magical beliefs seem so real. But it is a delusion my friends. It isn’t real. If it were real we would still witness these fantastic, magical events occurring today…but we don’t, do we? Think about that: so many magical events allegedly occurred several thousand years ago, but you have never seen one single magical event occur in your lifetime, have you? And neither has any other rational, educated human being living today.
It is odd how magic never happens when there are television cameras, video recorders, cell phone cameras, tape recorders, or scientific observers to verify the claim. Think about that, friends.
Your “movement” has had 2,000 years to come up with every imaginable excuse and harmonization to explain why these alleged, ancient, supernatural events really did occur. But Hindus, Muslims, and Mormons can do the exact same thing for their supernatural claims. You may think that their excuses and harmonizations are nonsensical and easily falsifiable, but they think the same about yours!
Bottom line, friends: Magic is not real.
I strongly encourage you to do this:
1. Allow for the possibility that your belief system is wrong.
2. Read information that challenges your belief system.
—I recommend the following websites: Bart Ehrman’s blog, Debunking Christianity, and The Secular Web.
I am available for questions anytime.