About

Welcome all of you who are jealous that I snatched up this domain name! Believe me, I was shocked to discover that it was available.

You must have come to this page to find out about me, so I’ll indulge you. My name is Kate Jones, and I’m a poor soul once wounded in the crossfires of religious faith. Joking–I really had a nice run with my faith. I come from a Reformed Baptist background. If you’re not interested in clicking on that link, just think along the lines of Martin Luther and John Calvin, and you’ve pretty much got the picture.

Like many others, I came to a place of very seriously doubting my faith and ultimately embracing that doubt after I was able to fight the guilt and shame I felt over opposing the strict orders I was under not to allow “the world” to destroy my faith. I was finally able to see the world as a place not filled with demonic potholes, and Things Got Better.

The most important part of coping with this unexpected turn of events in my life has been embracing blasphemy and keeping conversations open to all possibilities. I felt very boxed into one way of thinking as a Christian, and allowing my mind to wander across viable possibilities has been like learning how to fly a plane for the first time. Not that I’ve ever done that, but it seems like it would be scary and awesome, which is what losing faith is like.

Life is scary and awesome in general, so let’s sing our blasphemelodies to the heavens.


22 Comments on “About”

  1. SciAwakening says:

    I’m really enjoying your site here. Keep the honesty flowing. It’s always nice to see new people who have been unplugged from the twisted Matrix that is conservative religion. Some recommendations from a person who is a little farther down the road than you:

    Enjoy yourself some George Carlin, no one satirized religion better.

    If you’re a reader here are some books that I wish I had read when I was younger:
    The True Believer by Eric Hoffer – Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements
    On Being Certain by Robert Burton – Believing You Are Right Even When You’re Not
    Mistakes Were Made (but not by me) – Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts

    The “New Atheists” are pretty good reading for the newly deconverted, but over time I have found books about psychology and social psychology to be the most enlightening.

    Anyways, enjoy the journey and keep sharing your thoughts with us!

  2. Kate says:

    No tossing with belief in Bible God really… some of my language might be a bit misleading. I don’t discount that there might be a God, but I am not sure how I would define one if one exists.

    • Tom Loghry says:

      What led you to not believe in the God of the Bible?

      • Kate says:

        In short, I didn’t see how the doctrine fit with how I saw the world. I started to question some of the presuppositions I’d been taught since I was a child, such as the reality of sin and evil and the idea that we need to seek redemption from these ideas that are seemingly constructed. I ultimately came to question whether there was a God at all, and came out saying, “I don’t know.” At that point, I felt I was finally being intellectually honest about God’s existence by recognizing that it is not evident but instead hoped.

        There are a lot of reasons I lost my faith, and it was a process that happened over the course of a few years. It’d take a while for me to explain it thoroughly, so I appreciate direct, specific questions that I can respond to about it. Thanks for asking!

  3. Kate says:

    1. I see the world from a naturalistic perspective, since that is the extent of what I can actually see. I recognize the possibility of the supernatural, but with it being supernatural, it can’t really be proven in a way that we can know it patently. So, I do speculate about gods and other supernatural powers, but I haven’t found a reason yet to believe in them. It’s not that I don’t want god to exist. It’s that I’m not sure if or how he/she/it does exist. Unlike how the Bible paints non-belief, it’s not necessarily a rebellion to truth. I believe I am pursuing truth, but I have not seen how the truth I pursue is god. Does this make sense? I can try to clarify where I might be too vague here.

    2. I do believe that objective morality exists, but I’m not sure why it exists. Evolution very well explains the pattern of objective morality–we see how we’ve evolved and what pieces of objective truth were in place to help flourishing, including our striving to love ourselves and one another and acts of peace and nurture that encourage what we perceive to be a positive, purposeful existence. Sure, all this stuff might have come from god, but it also might have happened in some other unexplained way. Again, I have no way of actually knowing god did all of this, and it only feels intellectually honest for me to admit as much.

    I can’t really tell Christians how they should respond to those facing doubts. I had a very hard time articulating my doubts to Christians when I was losing my faith, because I didn’t want to hurt or offend anyone. At the times I did share my doubts, they scared Christians. It’s like I crossed the line into the “dangerous” kind of doubting, as opposed to the kind that they think is good (doubt that leads to repentance and a stronger faith). From my own experience, the most helpful reactions are ones that accept the validity of my experience and understand why I don’t believe. Having people tell me they’ll pray for me, that I’m just rebelling, or that I’ve been deceived are not comments I respond well to. I’d rather people meet me where I am and engage on the actual topic rather than dismissing my loss of faith as a bad thing that needs to be redeemed–especially since I think that losing my faith DID redeem me.

  4. Kate says:

    1. No, and I know where you’re going with that question. I’ve used it, too.
    2. No, the process is more nuanced than that, and I was insinuating the theme of objective truth in the consistent idea of “progress” through evolution.
    3. I’m not elaborating on the former points, because the point is that I don’t know, which means I don’t feel the need to defend what I do know. I don’t believe in God because I am aware of my lack of certainty. Christianity puts up a good guise of saying they don’t know and only God knows. However, they are insinuating that they know that God knows. How can you know that?

    I am an agnostic atheist, which means I don’t know whether God exists or not, and I live as though one does not exist, which pretty much means that I don’t believe that God exists. This doesn’t mean that I am certain of this belief. It’s just the one that makes the most sense to me right now.

    I was a Calvinist, too, so I understand where you’re coming from in your own journey. It is nice that you don’t feel burdened with other people’s salvation.

    • Tom Loghry says:

      What is needed to be certain about anything?

      What constitutes knowledge?

      Do you believe you have good reasons to believe that objective morality can be based in evolution?
      My impression is that you require 100% certainty to know anything. Yet by claiming to be an agnostic atheist, you must believe there are better reasons to believe that God does not exist. If 100% certainty isn’t necessary for you to believe in atheism, then why must it then be necessary for me to have 100% certainty to believe in theism? Perhaps you don’t believe you need 100%, but I’m merely assuming that at the moment. For myself, I can say that I don’t have 100% certainty that God exists, but I have reasons that lead to me a rational confidence that He does exist. So if 100% certainty is your standard, then I don’t know that God exists, but honestly I don’t see the problem with that.

      Could you provide an example of something Christians claim they do not know but that God does know?

  5. SciAwakening says:

    “can you explain how morality can be objective if it is relative to the process of evolution? Does this not reduce down to consequentialism?”

    I don’t mean to intrude on this conversation, I signed up for follow-up comment notifications on my original post so I’ve been seeing this whole back and forth. Anyways, I’m reading an excellent book by the moral psychologist Jonathan Haidt about this very subject called “The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided By Politics and Religion”. If you have a real interest in understanding morality from an evolutionary perspective, bringing in threads from psychology, social psychology, sociology and other disciplines, I highly recommend it.

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Righteous-Mind-Politics-Religion/dp/0307377903/

  6. Kate says:

    Your questioning is giving me anxiety, by the way, so I might have to cut it off. It’s nothing against you personally–it’s just that I have a little PTSD from my deconversion experience and revisiting some of these questions puts me back in that vulnerable, anxious place.

  7. Tom Loghry says:

    Atheism is more than merely lacking belief. That would put the lacking on you and your belief, rather than on God and His existence. Therefore, an atheist believes that God is lacking in the sense that He does not exist. I don’t believe unicorns exist. My belief is based on the reason that there ls no evidence to support such existence. An atheist does not believe God exists, based on the lack of evidence for God’s existence. Just turning this into an issue of lacking belief, makes it more of an issue of faith than of reason. I haven’t seen any evidence for unicorns, so I’ll assume also that they do not exist, but the lack is not in my belief but rather in the evidence that would lead to me believe they do exist and so I believe they do not exist.
    I was asking the questions about certainty and knowledge, because you say “I don’t know.” What would it take to know anything?

    As for my beliefs, confidence and 100% certainty are very different things. I am confident in God’s existence, just as I’m confident in your existence. But there are very few things in life one can be 100% certain of, there is very little one cannot doubt. I could doubt your existence, I could doubt God’s existence, but I cannot doubt my own existence for in even doubting my existence it is shown that I exist. I think therefore I am. Therefore I am 100% certain of my own existence. Richard Dawkins recently identified himself as an agnostic. He landed on the side though that God probably doesn’t exist. I simply land on the side that He probably does exist.

    Essentially my whole point in that was to say if your basis for knowledge is 100% certainty, then I and others who are Christians are agnostics like yourself that land on the God side of the chart, whereas you land on the atheist side of the chart. What has led you to land on that side of the chart? Perhaps it is a lack of evidence for God’s existence? That would be a valid reason which would probably lead one to conclude He does not exist. If I found that to be true, I would say I believe God does not exist. Unfortunately, the word believe/belief scares atheists because they think it has religious connotations, but beliefs are simply those things which one holds to be true based upon certain reasons, regardless of the quality of those reasons.

    By identifying as an agnostic atheist, you are no longer truly neutral. It’d be like Switzerland in WW2 claiming to be neutral yet officially saying they support the Allies. I’m fine if you land more towards the atheist side, I’m just wondering what led you to that side. Is it because we can’t know if God exists? If it is, what would it take to know God exists, what kind of evidence?

    As for your example, I don’t see how it would be a cop out to say only God would know that. Let’s say at 6 yrs old that I was adopted. When I’m 7 let’s also say my parents go on a vacation for two weeks. While they’re gone, one day the question strikes me, “Why did my parents choose me but none of the other children?” Hmmm…I do not know this answer, but my parents must know. How do I know that they must know? I know that they must know because they are ones that made the decision. Therefore they must know the reason why they made that decision.

    I’m sorry I’m causing you anxiety…however I hope you will continue in the search for the truth.

    • Kate says:

      Richard Dawkins has ALWAYS been an agnostic atheist. If you read his books, you’d see that. You still seem to have no idea what atheism actually means, and your argument for atheism making a positive claim makes absolutely no sense. What you are referring to is called “strong atheism” and I am not a strong atheist. I’m an agnostic atheist, which signifies a lack of belief in God. We were all born not believing in God. We acquire that belief. You’re now getting condescending, and I’m done talking to you. As if I would stop on my quest for truth. That quest is how I stopped being a Christian, which is not something I wish to justify to you or anyone else. Go witness to some atheist on a different blog. I’m not interested in you forcing me to admit that I know things that I don’t know.

    • Kate says:

      Sorry for being so bitchy. I’m just really sick of the types of questions I get from you and other apologetic Christians. I don’t feel like I need to answer them, and I’m tired of people expecting me to answer them. Having answers to them might seem essential to you. I recall thinking they were key questions for life. However, I don’t see it that way anymore, and I won’t be pressured into seeing it that way.

  8. Sandra says:

    Katie, I think you’re brave to post your thoughts here and even braver to engage in conversations with folks who would challenge you point by point.

    For me, I realized that every word spoken, every hymn sung was a farce and I thought I would throw up if I had to hear another word. Nothing resonated as truth anymore. Why is that? I’m not sure, except it was like having blinders removed and I was able to see the people for who they were, clueless people who were sold a bill of goods long ago and they then came up with story after story to support those beliefs. This realization didn’t happen overnight, but took many years. I don’t think anyone wants to become “deconverted”, as it is easier to stay in church and be part of a warm loving community. It would be easier to believe that God will take care of me and that I’m safe and that my sister is in heaven. However, if it doesn’t resonate as truth in the deepest part of me, then I can’t do it.

    • Kate says:

      I went through several phases in college where I felt very numb at worship services and Christian group retreats. I remember one retreat in particular, where I was basically a completely in denial atheist standing there in a room full of Christian college kids across Virginia hooting and hollering for Jesus. I wanted to stab myself.

      I don’t really like responding to apologists who come to my blog, but I figure I ask for it by writing in a public place. I disengage when it starts bringing back my anxiety, though, like with the dude above. I know they *try* to be kind and thoughtful but the underlying ideas that they’re arguing are often so detestable to me still. I’m hoping eventually that I can be far enough removed from that belief system to at least respect it as another person’s perspective so that I can handle those conversations better.

      Your final statement is so great. “However, if it doesn’t resonate as truth in the deepest part of me, then I can’t do it.” Yep, that right there. That’s why I blog about this stuff and why I tweet obnoxiously about it. I only know how to live by what is true to me and call out the bullshit as I see it.

      I think you’re swell.

  9. John says:

    One person’s blasphemy is another’s freedom. What if blasphemy to you wasn’t even blasphemy to God?

  10. I’ve nominated you for the Liebster Award. Just wanted to let you know that I’ve been trolliping through your blogs, and I’ve very much enjoyed what I’ve read thus far. Feel free to play along with this little award bit, or ignore it as chain garbage. It’s not a bad way to get new eyes on your blog. Either way, you can rest easy knowing that you have at least one little fan. :D

    Check the link of my blog for info on the Liebster Award below:
    http://suspendedoblivion.wordpress.com/2013/06/03/liebster-award/

  11. dbbeecat says:

    I came across your blog quite by accident. I used to think there were no accidents, that everything was tied together in some sort divine plan. Harder to describe is where I’m at now. I still believe in some sort of Creator but no longer believe in the “truths” of the Bible and Christianity.
    I felt so strongly about the truths of my faith that I wrote a book-a testimonial to the ability of “God” to bring us to him through all sorts of supernatural means-that until recently I was working with Tate Publishing to have published. It still amazes me how I was fooled for so long. And it all started with the simplest of questions which is now my rule to live by: How much of what I believe is someone else’s opinion? I went looking for proof what I believed was true, and it wasn’t there.
    I would value your opinion as I can’t talk with anyone I know. They would be so upset I was going to hellthere couldn’t be any reasonable discussion. If you wouldn’t mind reading my testimonial to give you an idea of where I am coming from. But it is rather long and in need of editing and might be a difficult read.
    Just let me know.

  12. bubucho says:

    Haha I can totally feel how ‘blasphemy’ helps to free yourself from the the christian worldview. It works for me too. ;)


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