We Are All Born Ignorant: I Just Didn't Stay That Way

Forgive me... I just couldn't resist. The title is intended to be a tongue in cheek counter to atheist David McAfee's article: We Are All Born Atheists: I Just Stayed That Way.  I mean no disrespect by the title, but I do believe my title is more accurate when dealing with the state of my birth, and everyone else's birth. My response to his article is posted below:

Interesting reading. I experienced the exact opposite while having some similar life experiences. My parents also divorced when I was 2. I was raised far from God and was taught atheism, as far back as I have memory, by my paternal grandfather. But I have no memory of a time when I didn't know there was a God. Unlike you I was not exposed to organized Religion/Christianity to any substantial degree until my early teens.

The notion that "we are all born atheists" is a little disingenuous, since we all know we are born cognitively ignorant of almost everything. I don't mean this sarcastically, but you could have just as easily entitled your article, "We are all born ignorant." Thankfully, none of us completely stay that way.

As I developed and matured from birth it was my exposure to atheism contrasted to what I saw and experienced around me that pushed me toward God. I wrote about this in my post An Atheist At Thanksgiving.

As we develop in life we make decisions. When exposed to God we both clearly made decisions based not in the ignorance of our births, but in the knowledge we had attained since. My preliminary experiences with God felt overwhelmingly right. I did, and still do, have some complications with religion, but I was inexplicably drawn to God.

The late philosopher Antony Flew, perhaps the most influential atheist of the 20th century, seems to have had a similar experience to yours, and he grew up a preacher's son. Mr. Flew continued to be open to follow the evidence wherever it led him. I believe I have done the same, and, I expect, so do you... but our condition at birth has little to do with truth and our quest. Flew also postulated the notion that atheism is a basic natural condition, but the evidence seems to have led him to deism, which means, for him, that the evidence overwhelmed his natural or birth condition. I briefly discuss his evidence in a series of 5 posts beginning with An Atheist No More.

I believe the evidence for God is overwhelming and compelling... and it seems I have always believed this...


  1. I'm enjoying your blog. I'm glad I found you (through Networked Blogs on Facebook). I will be returning regularly.

    I liked to this post on my blog. I have recently had multiple interactions with an agnostic reader of my blog who is searching for rock-solid evidence that God exists. I've tried to gently answer his many questions, but am afraid that I have not done a very good job. His most recent complaint is that I always use scripture, but he doesn't believe the bible. I'm hoping that he will see the link to this post and will read it and see some parallels with his "spiritual journey."


  2. Thanks Richard, I just hit your blog and enjoyed the visit. I am now a follower. The photography is excellent. Keep it up.

    I hope he will see the link as well. I think Antony Flew's book There Is A God is an excellent book to suggest to people who are seeking evidence and are interested in reading moderately technical material on the subject. I linked to the series of 5 articles I posted covering some of his basic arguments in the post above. Thanks for reading and commenting.



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