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When did you start to identify as an atheist/agnostic?

Was there a specific instance where you started to identify as an atheist/agnostic, or was it a gradual process?

By AshleyM1997
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I started to identify as agnostic early in my college years and gradually realized I was an atheist. Philosophy 101 really opened my eyes.

Jenn Level 2 Oct 23, 2017
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2010 even though I was never a believer growing up Catholic. That's when I started to call myself an atheist.

Woodchuck Level 2 Oct 23, 2017
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Began to realize life was just what it is at the age of 25, when I unwillingly broke up with my ex on the bases that I am not from the same country or share the same believe with her. It was quite awful as an African being dispair by the same race, same religion fanatics who keep saying "god was love"

King7 Level 1 Oct 23, 2017
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Since I recall 'being me' I have not believed in god. Having a nihilist/narcissist mother probably helped!

badpenguin Level 2 Oct 23, 2017
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always and forever

RonaldJames Level 3 Oct 21, 2017
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At the age of 7, saw a kid shot by military...I asked everyone why didn't God prevent that from happening if he could ? Why allow such a thing in the first place ?

At that moment, when no one could give me an explanation of this thing; I identified myself as an atheist.

Johar Level 2 Oct 20, 2017
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Rather recently starting by late 2016. It was a long conflicting process for me to be an atheist cause of my very religious background and family but eventually, I couldn't avoid the truth.

Tre98th Level 3 Oct 17, 2017
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I believe it was when my family started bringing me to church with them just before I started high school. I never believed in any religions, but had started researching the options once it became relevant to my life and realized that there was simply no evidence for any gods. This is when I began watching a lot of debates and thinking seriously about the topic and began labeling myself as an atheist and a secular humanist because the religious apologists never made a single good argument or had any evidence.

ElijahStone Level 2 Oct 17, 2017
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When I was 19. I had moved an ocean away from my parents and was free of the continually religious atmosphere. I did try to hang on to my faith by going to church, but I could not quieten the logical war that was waging inside me. I felt like a traitor to myself and ultimately abandoned religion. Best decision I ever made.

Sntrada Level 1 Oct 17, 2017
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I remember questioning my mother about Methuselah being 967 years old and things like that. She told me to study the Bible and pray about it and I would understand when I got older. I really wanted to believe but the older I got and the more I knew the harder it got to believe. At age 41 I was forced to accept that the Bible didn't make sense.

Jamesd Level 2 Oct 17, 2017
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I'll be 43 next month, and I cannot remember there ever being a time where the mythology made sense to me. My parents did not push religion on me, and I thank them for that.

BobBierly Level 2 Oct 17, 2017
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I knew since my last couple of years in CCD (catechism). I was like, umm.. nah. Don't believe any of it. That was me turning Agnostic. I wasn't ready to say there was no higher power, but I knew the formal, mainstream religions weren't for me. At about 20 yrs old I gave up trying to force myself to believe in any of it and went full athiest.

Jayleebee Level 2 Oct 15, 2017
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My mother raised me going to Christian day care facilities and Sunday church. They made me memorize quite a few of the more popular verses. But everybody there seemed fake. I had questions and their answers were robotic. They were frequently easy to confuse and anger when challenged. Always deferring to "You just have to have faith." ## puke ##

I was probably about 8 when I openly defied the existence of God. I remember sitting outside yelling loudly and daring "him" to appear.

JeffnDFW Level 2 Oct 12, 2017
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12

DCNatural Level 2 Oct 12, 2017
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From a very young age, round about 7 or 8, it just never made sense to me at all.

Eddiestone3454 Level 3 Oct 10, 2017
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Mine was a gradual process, and finally realized in high school, that I don't believe in god.

AccursedHalo Level 4 Oct 9, 2017
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I remember a time in my 20s in the military. Our mail was delivered to us at work and was in the break room. I was in the break room getting coffee, and noticed some kind of atheist publication in a coworker's mail slot. I was a little shocked. I talked to him about it, and he made it seem like no big deal. I remember thinking "I don't really believe in god, but I'm not an ATHEIST!" LOL!

I don't know if I ever REALLY believed. I know there was a period in my teens when I really WANTED to believe - I went to church and youth group regularly. But it just never felt right. Then, I didn't really think too much about it for a long time.

Years later, when I was almost 40, Dawkins published The God Delusion. That was the turning point, I guess. Then I discovered the Atheist Experience podcast. I binge-listened to every single episode they made. I worked mostly alone in an office at the time, so it just played all day long. Sometimes, I'd put on headphones. The year after The God Delusion, Hitchens came out with God Is Not Great.

So, it was around 2006-2007 that I became OK with the label "atheist."

carlyhorton Level 3 Oct 9, 2017
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Seventh year of Catholic School. It was hard to believe what they were teaching when they didn't practice it themselves most of the time.

Theresa Level 2 Oct 9, 2017
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I identified as atheist for as long as I can remember until I wrote a paper for my 9th grade religion class (I attended a Quaker school at the time). At the end of the paper where I justified my atheism, my professor wrote "so just because Ben hasn't directly observed proof in a god means god doesn't exist?"

It got me thinking about how I was atheist because I believed science and the scientific method to be the best possible belief structure because of what humankind has been able to achieve with it. However, as I understand it, the scientific method cannot be used to prove something - such as a deity - doesn't exist. As a result, I've identified as agnostic ever since.

bnielsen Level 3 Oct 9, 2017
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My spiritual journey has certainly been a life-long effort. I was raised in a conservative christian home and then explored Wicca, New Age and Buddhism as a young adult. I attended a Baptist and then a Methodist college and minored in Biblical Studies. I've probably read a library of books on the subjects of Religion and Spirituality along the way, and I've certainly gone back to church many, many times over the years. It's only been in the last 15 years or so that I've settled on Secular Buddhism and Secular Humanism as a Life Stance.

I remember questioning the idea of God when I was very young. My father was a minister for 30 years and didn't take my questions very well at all. And I remember declaring my disbelief to friends as a teenager. So, yeah, it's been a long process of back and fourth for me.

roberbro Level 5 Oct 9, 2017
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always, actually pantheist describes me better

AndyMorris Level 2 Oct 9, 2017
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In the time leading up to my so-called confirmation, so 11-12. Being an atheist in a Catholic School board sucked.

ensignRedShirt Level 2 Oct 9, 2017
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Ten years old.

Marblesthegreat Level 4 Oct 8, 2017
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At age 8 when I stopped believing in Santa Claus.

HeathenFarmer Level 6 Oct 8, 2017
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What? no Santa? I suppose you're going to tell me there is no Easter Bunny next?
#spoileralert
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I grew up going to church, etc., but thankfully got away from that. I started saying I was agnostic when I was maybe 19-20, and became very confident with calling myself an atheist when I was maybe 22-23. It seems like it’s been longer than only a few years since I’m 24 now.

spidermom Level 2 Oct 8, 2017
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