• April 21, 2024

American Christian apostates abused and threatened

We are harangued, harassed and cyberstalked relentlessly. Our personal information is exposed against our will on the internet, endangering us and our loved ones. We are ridiculed, slandered and libeled endlessly, with all manner of hate speech and evil epithets. We are ostracized and censored relentlessly [rp] in sustained campaigns of malevolence, silence and shunning – even by other unbelievers such as certain organized atheist and skeptical groups.Why?

In my case, it is because I go “too far” in my analysis of certain biblical characters such as Jesus Christ and Moses, definitively declaring them to be mythical figures. For that simple “transgression,” I have been subjected to sustained campaigns [rp] of abuse for the past 15 years by believers and unbelievers alike. It does not matter how much evidence I and others hold up, what sources it comes from, who previously held this position – the mere fact of our existence is assailed relentlessly [rp]. This mythicist position vis-a-vis Jesus – which is one manner of becoming an apostate for those who previously held Christian beliefs – is a simple one, as summed up by an acquaintance: “The case for a composite Christ is overwhelming.” He continued: “I wish more people would look objectively at the evidence and abandon faith-based slave morality.” So do I!

Again, it’s that simple: No shrieking or freaking out is necessary. No abuse required – and what I have endured personally of that simple and rational understanding borders on the unbelievable in its degree of shear hatred and savagery. This abuse stops just short of the Inquisition, fortunately.

I have also been viciously attacked by many non-believing groups and individuals.  Why? I have received very little support and encouragement from any atheist group. Why not? Atheist writer David Mills provides some insight:

D.M. Murdock/Acharya S, like all authors on controversial subjects, has many critics. But they all share one commonality: They don’t know what they’re talking about…. Having given a fair hearing to some of her online detractors and their “rebuttal” videos, I have detected not only a lack of knowledge on the part of her critics, but also, in some cases, a thinly disguised misogyny.

I am loathe to play the sexism card, but it is undoubtedly a factor. Moreover, it seems as those of us nonbelievers who are mythicists – not mindlessly accepting the existence of a literary character based on the flimsiest of “evidence” – are particularly despised, as if pariahs and untouchables. We are, in effect, the lowest of the low – even scorned atheists can look down up on us, because, in spite of all their rationality, they are so conditioned to believe in Jesus Christ that they just can’t let go of that last little bit of the “historical” Jesus. Perhaps, like their believing counterparts, who project onto Jesus whatever they themselves find meritable, once Christ is stripped of all his supernatural powers, he reveals someone even atheists can relate to? Do atheists identify themselves with this mortally reduced Jesus?

The bottom line is that you can be the nicest person, a loyal and responsible citizen, a loving parent and a dear friend. You can give the shirt off your back to your neighbors and go out of your way for strangers. You could be viewed as a saint for your social activism, but just say the words “Jesus is a myth,” and you will see fear, shock and horror in the eyes of your coworkers, friends and family, who may more or less immediately shun you and run for the hills, never to be seen again. Or, if they are heard from again, it may be in an abusive and threatening manner.

Your character over your entire lifetime matters not – just your questioning of whether or not there is sufficient, credible evidence to declare the gospel Christ any less mythical than the Greek god Hercules will get you placed in the “untouchable” category.  Heck, you can even lose your livelihood! In the past, of course, you could lose your life for such scientific inquiry, which is almost entirely lacking the public at large, despite pretenses to enlightenment.

The bottom line is that Christian apostates in the U.S., with its fiery brand of fundamentalism that still provokes its followers to violent and malevolent speech reminiscent of the Inquisition, endure abuse, whether or not they believe Jesus really existed. The latter, called mythicists,