The few atheist conversions to the dark side of belief I’ve heard of are rather famous. CS Lewis, the author and Xtian apologist claimed to have been an atheist who found Jesus. Problem is, as I discussed in The Atheist Camel Chronicles, he was 15 years old when he came to Jesus, and said he was an atheist because he was “angry at God.” It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that being fifteen and “angry at god” (an oxymoron for a genuine atheist) does not an atheist make.
Another famous, and presumably genuine, atheist convert is Dr. Francis Collins, the head of the Human Genome Project, who says he was an atheist while a graduate student, but then was asked by a patient what he believes in, causing him to examine the existence of god. (that’s the short story). He was also swayed by CS Lewis’ insipid (oops sorry), by CS Lewis’ apologetic arguments for the existence of god. While he embraces the concept of a supernatural being, he rejects young earth and creationism (pick and choose religionist).
Collins has deluded himself so effectively that he has created a unique comfy little zone that allows him to accommodate non-evidence supported supernatural belief and yet still practice the objective evidence driven demands of genuine science.. He does it brilliantly. He has convinced himself that his work in deciphering the human genome is deciphering the language of god. Thus, he is an anomaly among his peers in the hard sciences whose work and discoveries have lead well over 90% of them away from belief and firmly planted in the reality of atheism/agnosticism.
So what to make of this? What’s behind this young atheist blogger’s sudden belief that eating a magical wafer and drinking wine is cannibalizing the actual body and blood of a 2000 year old dead man-god? That a demon can infest ones body? That dead things spontaneously come to life; that virgins give birth; that hundreds of saints are standing by to act as a conduit for your prayers to god; and that telepathically telling this being you accept him as your master will give you eternal life in heaven after you become worm chow? In my opinion, and by my experience, there are at least four possible explanations for this girl’s sudden abandonment of reason:
1. She harbored but suppressed the culturally induced beliefs of her parents and boyfriend (a Catholic by the way) all along, perhaps unconsciously; and now feels left out and yearning to be embraced by the community and receive the nurturing she see’s in church centered religious life.
2. She is an immature girl who has succumbed to the pressures of her boyfriend and his Catholic circle of friends and is experiencing the equivalent of the Stockholm syndrome.
3. She is suffering from a mental imbalance or undetected brain tumor.
4. She is pulling a world class poe; will eventually out herself, laugh at how everyone fell for her gag; and make quite a few thousand dollars from a tell all book.
If it’s three... sorry, get well soon..