It didn’t take long for “TrustinJC” to respond… and I’m kinda glad that he did because it helps to nail the point home. Here is his first response and my reply to it:
His first response
Seriously, I am a little taken aback at this accusation – what the hell have I done to justify his accusation that I have been trolling? I ask him this. So far, no answer has been forthcoming.
Hedonistic Beliefs and Lifestyle, WTF?
Here he goes again with the whole accusation of a hedonistic lifestyle. Where does he get that? Who knows! After all, consider the typical things that are associated with hedonism. Wikipedia defines hedonism as:
“a school of thought that argues that pleasure is the only intrinsic good. In very simple terms, a hedonist strives to maximize net pleasure (pleasure minus pain).”
I am not a hedonist under this definition. I believe that pain has the power to transform us and that, in doing so, it is useful and good. After all, exercise would be anathema to me if I were a hedonist. Also, there is the popular definition of hedonism, which is conflated with unconstrained sex, drugs, drinking and food. I don’t exceed in any of these means because I see them as a road to ruin to what I truly want in life (see Will vs. Whim in my previous post). I’m not having sex because I want to improve myself so I can start dating again. I don’t do drugs because I want to be as alert and conscious as possible. I don’t drink because my Christian parents drank, I don’t want to be like them and my family seems to have a genetic disposition to addiction.
Unlike him, however, I do not denounce these things because I don’t see these things as bad. True, they are bad for what I want to achieve but if you want to enjoy responsibly, all the more power to you! Hell, I sure as hell intend to indulge once I am at that point in my life – but responsibly, which – again – is not hedonism.
“TrustinJC” Failed the Reading Comprehension Test
The fact that he claims that my previous post confirms his weird and inaccurate accusations just goes to show how he didn’t actually read what I wrote in my previous post. How unfortunate. Hopefully, he will read this one.
His Second Response
Just Your Standard Christian Transphobia
First of all, I left Christianity before I transitioned – when I went to Bible College and figured out that it was all untrue and a collection of middle eastern fairy tales that make no sense when amalgamated together into the Christian Bible.
But it is an interesting position he takes, because this is something that I commonly talk about – why is it that if I am a woman but I was born with male genitalia, why – if there was a god – did he fuck up? Isn’t the god of the bible supposed to be infallible? Isn’t he supposed to be omnipotent, not impotent? Why would he create a person who was a girl in a body that made it impossible for her to socialize as a girl?
Okay, maybe he might just write off transsexuality as a mental illness (protip: It isn’t) so let’s use another example. Children born with cleft palates. Why were these children born with these deformities? Why would the god of the bible hate these children so much that he would deform them when he was “forming them in the womb” (a passage anti-choicers love to use)? Why is the god of the bible that much of a bastard? How about children born with down’s syndrome?
I’m Not Angry at Your Imaginary Friend
Now, let me be clear, if I for a moment believed that there was a god, I would be angry with him considering how evil the god of the bible is. However, since I do not believe there is a god and I believe that pretty much every god under the sun (including the sun god himself) is a construct of mankind to understand a world which they could not understand yet, this accusation is pretty ridiculous. Especially since he should know this. I did make it clear that I am an atheistic Thelemite in previous comments, but considering how he believes that my previous blog post proves his libelous ad hom attacks to be correct, his reading comprehension skills leave much to be desired.
My “Lifestyle” is Legitimate, Thank You Very Much.
Here’s another comment from him on this point:
Here is the weirdest thing, he presumes that my claim that the Christian religion is evil is an attempt to “legitimize” my “lifestyle”. Now, while my lifestyle consists of things such as hot yoga, being a college student and living in beautiful Boulder, Colorado – I think he probably means my being lesbian and transsexual. So, I’ll respond to that.
Frankly, my “lifestyle” is legitimate. I am a lesbian woman and a transsexual woman and there is nothing wrong with that. I am not dating right now because I am trying to improve myself and I want to be the best me I can be when I am dating again and I don’t think I will be dating until I move to Canada again. I am working to lose weight, graduate from college, get a nice job at a web design firm and live the life I want to be living. Once I do those things, I will start looking for a partner again and hopefully, I’ll find the right woman for me. As for the transsexual thing, I don’t see how my “lifestyle” is illegitimate. I had my name changed, I got the gender marker on my ID changed, I live full-time as a woman and everyone in my community knows that I am a woman… how’s that illegitimate?
I’m also a full-time college student. I don’t get much sex, I am not wealthy (especially considering that I am a student at the Art Institute of Colorado) and I am on public assistance. Not too hedonistic, I must say. I work hard at my courses, I scour the community for good internships so I can get a good job as a web designer once I graduate and I am studying all the time for my Zend Certification so my CV will have that extra oomph once I graduate. Hedonistic my ass, but I’ve already gone into that. But it is legitimate.
The Pot Calling the Kettle Black
He claims that I am unteachable and uninterested in the truth. Which is interesting, considering that he is the one refusing to engage in an honest discussion.
Let me ask you, dear reader, if I am the one who is unteachable and uninterested in the truth, then why am I bringing up the issues and why is he bringing up ad hominem attacks and refuses to talk about the issues?
The third, and final, response from TrustinJC (so far)
On Therapy for Christians
Now, do I believe that all Christians need medication? No. I’m not a doctor and I cannot diagnose psychosis and some of these people have just been brainwashed. What I think most Christians need are effective “exit counseling“, much like every member of most cults need upon exiting. I know this because the exit process was hard on me as well. It was a hard six or seven months after exiting Bible College and I was in constant fear of hell fire… but I could not go back to believing, I knew too much.
So, it was a hard process for me but it was important because I am no longer a gullible fool who believes what she is told just because of some bullshit reason (like that the person selling the lie is a “person of god”). It was worth it, I am happier with my life now and it is a legitimate happiness because I am free from the lies that I was indoctrinated into from the cradle. Most people never do that, they grow up clinging to the lies, even if these lies cause them great pain and suffering, to the grave.
So yes, I do believe there needs to be some sort of “exit counseling” for people who are brainwashed into the lie of Christianity.
Bringing This Conversation In Context
I want to remind you that all of this conversation happened in the comments section of a video where the guy in the comments is trying to tell people that Young Earth Creationism is the reason why young people are leaving the church. It is not the fact that Christianity is evil and is hurting their gay and lesbian friends, thereby stirring their sense of empathy and causing them to see their religion they grew up with accurately. It is the fact that atheists are starting to speak out and people are listening to the other side of the argument. They are no longer listening to only one side of the argument and I believe this is a good thing, because Christianity will start to wither and die.
- “TrustinJC” does not concern himself with the unethical nature of Christianity, nor the epistemophobia which is apparent in Christianity. This is why he doesn’t talk about it in his video.
- “TrustinJC” does not concern himself with the disgusting homophobia that runs rampant in Christianity, which is why he will not understand why young people are fleeing like rats off the Titanic.
- “TrustinJC” does not concern himself with the disgusting misogyny that runs rampant in Christianity and manifests itself in the ugliest ways such as Quiverfull, Complementarianism and the anti-choice movement.
And it is this lack of understanding and unwillingness to adapt and learn that will result in the world leaving “TrustinJC” and Christianity behind. As the world’s morality evolves, we will eventually realize how idiotic it is to hold on to a bronze-age belief system that systematically hurts everyone. That, my friend, is good news as Christianity has been a plague upon this world for centuries – it’s about damn time it died!
Recently, I watched (and commented on) a video from a Christian making the point that it was Ken Ham’s Young Earth Creationism that was driving people away from Christianity, not the fact that it is a toxic, xenophobic belief system that has contributed to the declining culture of this country. Nothing to do with that at all! So it didn’t surprise me too much when I got up this morning and saw this response waiting for me. This is a response to a comment I made on his video:
Dude, you don’t get it. You haven’t been listening at all. The reason why I detest Christianity in a way that I do not detest Judaism, Buddhism or Zoroastrianism is because (1) it tries to inject it’s noxious views into society at all levels and (2) it hurts everyone I care about. It has nothing to do with the way I live my life… okay, I do take that back, it does have to do with the way I live my life…
I’m a compassionate human being.
You see, I cannot in good conscience support something that hurts so many people. Christianity is actively hurting so many people across the globe. It is working on passing anti-gay bills in backwards countries that don’t know any better and cannot see the humanity in their fellow citizens. They are trying to roll back women’s rights and the free exercise of those rights, which explains the war against contraception and abortion. They are trying to make our world a worse place to live as a result of their bullshit dogma. And everything they are doing demonstrably makes our world a less kind, compassionate and loving place to be.
Love is what matters. Not faith. Love for your fellow human beings. Not faith in some phony baloney god that some cave-dweller centuries ago made up.
It’s not about hedonism, as you so put it. It’s about caring about the world in which we live. If we believe that this is the only life we have to live, then we are more likely to make every moment meaningful. Even if it were a demonstrable concept, the idea of eternal life would be abhorrent to me, because it would make the time we have now meaningless and worthless. The fact that we will all die at some point brings meaning to life and value to every second of it. If this is the time I have now, I had better make the most of it and use it as wisely as humanly possible.
Will vs. Whim.
Now, onto the oft misinterpreted precept of Thelema. When the Book of the Law says “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.”, obviously that is not license to do whatever the hell you want. Liberty, not license. Your Will, not your whim. For example, it is my will to live the best life possible. To do that, I will go to college, work hard and move to Canada. Hopefully, sometime in there, I will meet another woman who I will fall in love with and get married to and that will make me happy. That is my Will. Now, if I were to act on my whim, certain aspects of my Will will be harder to achieve and thus, I am not doing what I wilt.
I don’t believe in fate but I do believe in auspicious coincidences.
The fact that this guy is brushing my objections off just because I am a Thelemite shows the lack of intellectual honesty this guy has. Would he act the same way if I were a Buddhist? How about if I were a Taoist or a practitioner of Shinto? What if I ascribed to the Juche Idea? The thing is, if anyone sees his comments and his responses, they would be have his number. They would know that this guy doesn’t care about what is true and he’ll look for any way out of a debate. He’ll look for any way to try to discredit his opponents without even touching their positions.
So, what’s this guy’s excuse?
As for the fact that the Christian Bible is evil, well – there are many sources that have verified that and documented all the reasons why and I don’t think I need to go into all of them, now do I? It wouldn’t be such a big problem to believe something untrue, if it weren’t for the fact that Christianity weren’t so damned evil. True, it would still suck not having a world view that aligns with reality but there’s no real reason why someone should believe Christianity considering how toxic it is to our world.
There is a reason why people like me who were raised with these beliefs cannot hold them when we get into adulthood… they are absolutely evil to their core. That’s why so many young people are fleeing Christianity like rats off the Titanic. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe Christianity will die in my lifetime, but if it did, that would be nice. After all, there are always gullible people who will believe anything that some shyster or another will tell them so there is a place for Christianity. Much like there is a place for Scientology and Amway.
Oh, one last thing: The author of the Skeptic’s Annotated Bible is finally publishing a print version. Pre-orders should arrive and be mailed out next week. Woot.
Okay, I want to make it clear that being around (most) children is akin to having my teeth pulled (an experience I’ve had recently, so I’d know!) but I am, in actuality, very pro-child. I am pro-child in that…
- I oppose corporal punishment in all instances. I believe that it is hypocritical to expect a child not to grow up into an adult that commits assault and yet, hit that child for doing something you don’t like. Surely there must be more effective ways to punish your little darlings for screwing up.
- I oppose parents brainwashing children with their religion. I make it no secret that I view Christianity as the rape of the soul. I make it no secret that I believe that it is a sexually transmitted disease, that goes from parent to child. I also make it no secret that it need not be this way!
- I oppose parents continuing to hold custody over children they abuse. If you hit a child, your tenure as a parent should be over. Period. Much like if you commit partner abuse, that partner should have the right to be protected from their abuser, children should be protected by abusive parents.
- I oppose schools not allowing special needs children to have a say in their IEPs when possible. This is a biggie, especially since I was a kid with Aspergers and had to deal with the special education system. I was fortunate in that I was mainstreamed quite a bit but there were a lot of rough edges, especially when they released me into the real world. Some of them I have overcome on my own, some of them I have yet to do so.
These are a few of the things that make me pro-child. However, I am also anti-natalist in that I believe that…
- Every person has a right to decide if/when they want to have children.
- Every person has a right to be free from ridicule for making the decision not to have children.
- Having a child is a very personal choice and that it is not appropriate to bully or cajole people for having a position different than yours.
- This personal decision is just that… personal. A partner does not have the right to bully or cajole a their partner for their position.
By virtue of being a post-operative transsexual woman, I will never have children. I will never have to worry about the “accidents” that Julie’s insurance company paid thousands of dollars to ensure wouldn’t happen for her. I also never bothered to “bank sperm” as some trans* women do prior to transition and it wasn’t just a money decision – it was a decision regarding the life I wanted to live.
At first, it was a sense of guilt, thinking that I would never be a good parent because my parents were horrible people and horrible parents and since I had no good example, that it would not be wise to try. However, as I have grown as a person, my reasons for not wanting children have evolved. The original reasons are still valid, however, they are bolstered by the fact that I want to have my own life and live the best life I can and for me – that means not having children.
And frankly, because it’s my life and I’ll be childfree if I wanna.