Skip to comments.Atheist Group Seeks to Recruit Members With Sign 'Relax, Hell Doesn't Exist, Enjoy Your Life'
Posted on 11/25/2013 8:59:52 AM PST by SeekAndFind
Atheists in San Diego, Calif. are trying a new approach to recruiting non-believers by offering food, such as pretzels and cheezits, and putting up large banners that read "Relax: hell does not exist, or heaven either, enjoy your life."
The atheists are members of the San Diego-based group the San Diego Coalition of Reason, and every Saturday they set up a booth in the city's Balboa Park alongside other religious groups, such as Hare Krishnas and evangelical Christians, to educate passerby on their lack of beliefs. Along with the quirky banner that hangs over their booth, members of the group also lure people into a conversation using pretzels and Cheezits; the pretzels are used to symbolized the "twisted logic" of theism, while the cheezits represent the "power" of non-belief.
"We like to have a gathering place for our members, people that want to chat, get to know each other, they can come do that on any Saturday," Debbie Allen, one of the organizers for the atheist group, told local KPBS-TV. "But also we like to let the community know that there are groups that they may want to participate in."
Additionally, Jim Eliason, another organizer for the group, told the local media outlet that their group is not afraid of being aggressive in their beliefs.
"We're constantly fighting to get religion out of our schools, constantly fighting to get the teaching of creationism out of our schools," he said. "So if we can de-convert people away from these religious ideas that keep them stuck in this dogma that forces them to believe these things, that's a moment of pure joy for us."
Small atheist groups have also been popping up around the country in the form of atheist churches, or Sunday Assemblies where atheists gather to discuss all things non-religious. One such gathering recently arrived in San Diego, and it has been dubbed by some as an "atheist megachurch" because the services include singing, reflection, and fellowship for non-believers.
Allen, who is also an organizer for the atheistic Sunday Assembly, told 10News that the purpose of the Sunday Assemblies is for atheists to form a local community together. "My hope is nonbelievers and non-theists no longer have to hide in the shadows."
Eliason added to 10News that the purpose of the gathering is "to provide some of the same universal needs provided by a house of worship [
] Some people are yearning for that connection and we provide a godless connection to do that."
This rate only gets worse after they die. Most denominations have retention rates between 2/3rds and 3/4th.
Frankly, their message is similar to Ecclesiastes. Except for the last two sentences of Ecclesiastes.
Personally, I became a convert, about three years ago, to the Annihilation theory regarding those who do not accept Christ.
I don’t see it as an “either or” proposition. Rather, I see it as “you are born into sin”. And this means you will not receive eternal life but, as John 3:16 points out, you will perish. It will be similar to what happens to animals, except they don’t go through the great white throne judgement since they are not created in God’s image.
However, Jesus offered more through His Father’s sacrifice, and His death and resurrection. And John 3:16 calls it eternal life, which those who don’t accept the offer don’t receive. He offers us eternity in the presence of our creator and with life so abundant we can’t even imagine it.
Or, as Ecclesiastes points out, we can eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of our labor until we die. Those that do not accept Christ are thrown into the lake of fire (along with hell itself) and are consumed, never to exist again. And the fire is righfully called eternal, since the condition of those thrown into it (death) will never be reversed. It is an eternal condition.
So yeah, if you do not choose to follow Christ, you will experience what men without Christ have experienced for millennia: Life, such that it is, followed by death. At the resurrection those people will suffer the second death and that will be all she wrote.
But for those that choose “wisely”, the course will be different. The final condition will be eternal, and it will be life.
As C.S. Lewis noted in “The Screwtape Letters”, the most important lie Satan can convey to people is that he doesn’t exist.
If you perceive no threat, neither will you be on guard.
They don’t mean “relax.” They mean do whatever the hell you want to do and don’t worry about the consequences.
“.....their group is not afraid of being aggressive in their beliefs.”
Typical atheists. Muzzies are that way, too. If either religion is so gosh darned perfect, why aren’t people lined up like Super Bowl fans waiting to get in? Why the aggression?
I believe there can be no freedom without a faith in God. People are just made that way, otherwise there wouldn’t be need to advertise there is no hell or heaven.
Without God, people will turn to other people, things, or government for comfort to help through tough times or for acceptance. People, governments and things will always let you down and enslave you.
I like the freedom of a life lived with God as the authority and my judge—not people. People can keep moving the goal posts, be dishonest and all that. God is constant, stable and eternal.
Utter stupidity. The proponents of the message don’t seem to realise that their “converts” could easily take their new “faith” (i.e. no Heaven, no Hell, do what you like) and use it as an excuse to cheat, swindle and/or harm their neighbours (including atheists, who would presumably not object to pursuit of pleasure, in whatever vein).
I’d also assume they’re mainly talking about sexual license—a favourite topic among professional atheists...
Seize the day, don’t look at possible fraudulent acts of government, call believers frauds... yep. There you go, a religion the government worships.
They all legalize everything, including terrorists raping them... fools they are indeed.
Whether you think GOD exists or not... you will stand before him for how you spent the gift of Life.
Given by whom???
Uhh, Ecclesiastes repeatedly says we are to fear God while we eat, drink and be joyful in the labor God has given us. The point is there is no way to find ultimate meaning or purpose in the material world alone. ("Under the Sun") Solomon tries this every way he can imagine and fails miserably every time. Every attempt is but vanity - a vapor. He makes the point over and over that we should fear God, trust that he is in control and has a plan and take joy in whatever life he has given us. Ecclesiastes makes it clear that the inescapable consequence of atheism is nihilism. The two cannot be separated.
But what if they had pretzel sticks? And are they also giving out wine?
Their appeal might have some "reason" to it only if this course of action predictably resulted in atheistic people's enjoying their lives more than religious people do.
Exactly. We are in complete agreement on that front.
And the whole thing is brought together starting in Chapter 12, verse 9.
The thing is, life and everything good in it is a gift from God whether you accept Him or not.
FWIW, Ecclesiastes is my current favorite OT book. Whenever I read it, it is always cover to cover. It’s not that long. And from a Christian perspective it is a very pleasing read for me. I say this because even before I became a Christian in 1981 I had this niggling feeling of “is this all there is”? And Ecclesiastes answers that to a great degree, regarding the life of my “earthly tent”.
And for those that don’t accept The blood of Christ, that is all they get.
I hear this a lot and some use this as a basis for arguing that the second half of Chapter 12 (12:9-14) was tacked onto the book at a later time but I don't see anything in Chapter 12 that isn't contained in other portions of the book such as 5:18-20 or 9:7-12. The point of entire book seems to be the folly of life apart from God, or as Peter Kreeft says, "Ecclesiastes is the question the rest of the Bible was written to answer."