Religious Evolutionary Atheists

The transition from religion to atheism was incredibly easy for me. Roughly 80% of Mormons who leave the faith become atheist and never align with another belief system. Made me wonder why. I knew that as a Mormon from my own way of thinking, that if I wasn’t LDS, I wouldn’t be anything. After a few years of atheism now think I figured out why. It is probably the most materialistic world view of any other religion.

Mormon theology teaches three basic principles about where we came from, why we are here, where are we going, and also how to get there.

1. Where we came from– LDS doctrine teaches that we existed before the world was created. That we were intelligences of fine spirit matter. Energy. Spirit offspring of god, and that matter has always existed but some is more pure or fine. But matter nonetheless. That the gods organized existing matter to form the worlds. We are eternal beings living in a mortal existence capable of progressing, evolving, if you will, in a cosmos completely filled with matter. There is no empty space, but all is comprised of matter according to the doctrine.

2. Why are we here? Ultimately the goal is to become like god. Man is as god once was. He is part of the same matter that makes up man. Not separate from it. He is governed by the same natural laws that we experience, only he has perfected it. He was once a man, and though multiple progressions or cycles of learning he was able to achieve godhood. That when you die, you don’t go straight to the highest heaven, but you progress to become more through training and experiences and obedience. Essentially Mormonism was directing me on a concise , focused program to progress (evolve) to the highest life form. Just different wording.

3. Where are we going? Mormon doctrine teaches that when you die, you continue on in spirit form for a time, then after resurrection you have a body of flesh and bone in its perfect form. Then judgement comes and those that are most worthy progress to the highest level. Not as gods, but ready to become such. To continue on the path. To take your place in the expanding universe. (Hubble Deep Space) This is the LDS version of natural selection or, evolutionary exaltation of the fittest or most worthy. The best get to continue on. The other are not damned to hell, but damned as in a halt to their progress. Unknown if those get another chance.

The sole purpose of this creation and the universe is for all of gods creatures to have joy and find happiness and reach their full potential. It feels to me that Mormons transition to atheism easily or naturally because when no longer believing in god or religion, a evolutionary alignment with an atheist worldview is a switch flip. Making the world a better place and for everyone to find the most happiness and joy. Personal happiness and human potential. Also, Matter/Energy cannot be created or destroyed but can only change forms. It can evolve to a higher form given time. Very materialistic view incorporating different forms of matter and potential life cycles.

Author: jim-

One minute info blogs breaking the faith trap.

44 thoughts on “Religious Evolutionary Atheists”

  1. Delusion abounds. The Mormons believe they have always been the same person. In the preexistence, God already knew which one was Jesus and which one was Lucifer. And Jesus took the nod for the suicide mission. Joseph Smith was quite the con man, and there have been many of them, con men selling resurrection and eternal progression! GROG

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Agreed. His whole story was a con, most likely developed by his father (family business) An entire family doesn’t join a church because a child does, but they often do because of the father. This was the case in the large smith family, and there is other evidence Sr was the mastermind and had the resources and writing ability that Jr lacked.

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      1. The whole religion thing is based on belief in the supernatural and the delusion of resurrection. Whatever a good conman needs, Joe Smith had it, and the scam goes on. GROG

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  2. I don’t see that higher forms have much to do with evolution. I’m not opposed to the possibility that a religious view and a scientific one can coexist. That just seems like shaky ground for doing it.

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  3. Hey, Jim,
    You are probably in for a long read, so please get comfortable.
    My sister was baptised United Church of Canada (as was I), but she switched to Mormonism around the age of 20. I saw very little of her thereafter, until about 20 years ago. In the interim I became agnostic, then atheist, and finally spiritual atheist (where spiritual is neither a religious or a supernatural term, but more of that later). 20 years ago I had occasion to move in with her, and we used to stay up nights talking religion and philosophy. I talked to her about my atheist philosophy, which at the time I was still developing, and she tried to explain Mormomism to me. She was very subtle, but I could see she was hoping to convert me. I let her try, but didn’t ask her to stop because I enjoy learning about religions and philosophies.
    Then, one night as I was telling her of some of the things I was coming to terms with, she surprised me, at first, by telling me that my philosophy was extremely close to what her new religion was teaching to her. My thoughts: “She’s got to be kidding. Religion close to an atheist philosophy? How gullible does she think I am?” I figured it was some kind of scam to get me to join her, and I was having none of that.
    Then I read this post tonight, and discovered she had been telling the truth.
    I would have to say, after reading the above post, that while he was in the woods that fateful day, John Smith ate a particular variety of mushroom, or some other kind of fungus. The three basic principles of LDS are very closely related to experiences I had while under the influence of LSD (no pun or misspelling intended, nor am I dyslexic). LSD is a hallucinogenic drug extracted from a rotting fungus. Along with hallucinations, which were a widely-publicized side effect, was also a side effect not so widely known, to change a user’s conciousness level. I found this out by a form of intentional accident.
    I do not want to go into this too deeply here (it is fairly well discussed on my blog at rawgodsspiritualatheism.wordpress.com), but I can see where a religious believer could have a similar experience to my own, and interpret it completely from a religious viewpoint. If you bear with me I will give you a (hopefully) quick synopsis.
    1. LIFE, which is a designation to distinguish it from life on the earthly plane–and from a superbeing or god–existed prior to the beginning of life on earth, and may coincide with the Big Bang, or sometime in between. Where it came from, or if it has always existed on some other plane, is unknowable to us here on earth. How life came to exist here on earth is probably unknowable, though I have a theory which is impossible to test.
    2. One of the spiritual purposes of life is to evolve spiritually (I obviously call this “spiritual evolution,” which is only tied to physical evolution in a particular way) toward an unknowable (on earth) end. (There are purposes for life on earth, but again those are on my blog site.)
    3. The way to be able to evolve spiritually is through reincarnation. This is a very tricky part I am still trying to develop more fully, because it is hard to describe within the bounds of the English language, and I do not know any other language well enough to try. However, and this might or might not be a surprise to you, this is where LDS teaching actually hooks up with both christianity, and the Oriental trio of jainism, hinduism, and buddhism. (Once you know some of the tenets of the Oriental trio, you can see the connection to christianity as long as you can accept the theory that Christ studied Buddhism in India during his questionable 40 year period in the desert). The difference between Smith’s interpretation of the vision he had to the experience I had was that I saw no evidence of any particular levels of progression through reincarnation. My own experience tells me each living being (not just humans) has a connection to LIFE through the sparks of life inside each and every living being–anywhere within the universe which contains and is our present plane of existence. These sparks, which all come from the same source, is what gives us the feeling of connections to other living beings. The bad part, for those of us here in the Western world, is that because of our scientific underpinnings which started in Ancient Greece, most of us lost our connection to almost all other species, especially microbes and plants.

    Therefore, when you say it is an easy change from LDS to atheism, I can understand your point. My own deconversion was not quite that simple, and I did not come to understand my LSD experiences for many years, years during which I often thought I might be insane… Fortunately, though, when I had those LSD experiences, I had already been questioning my christian beliefs, and had already started studying buddhism. That was one of the things that made me able to accept what I experienced as real. A second thing was that I was able to recreate the experience 10 days after after the first such experience.

    All in all, I learned something today, and whether or not you accept my experiences, I am grateful for having encountered your blog. I will be following it for awhile to see if we connect in other ways.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is quite an interesting and believable interpretation. If you recreate the experience it is IMO a brain function. Neurotheology advances are linking the god experiences to regions of the brain and also can recreate/observe spiritual experience in epilepsy and other brain injury. The field is only a few years old, but technological advances are driving neurotheology to advance quickly. I have a huge day today with concrete, roofing, siding and trucks in and out. I’ll check in when I can but I’d like to follow your blog too. Thanks so much for sharing. The answers seem to be in our physiology and we are finally finding ways to observe them.

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  4. OK, I have a question I’ve been wanting to ask a Mormon (or ExMo) for awhile. If “God” started out as a man living on a planet, then was that planet made by some other god? When “God” was a man, was there a god that he worshipped and a religion that he followed?

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    1. Not sure on what religion he would have followed but as far as Mormon scripture the Peral of great Price book of Abraham. The gods said let us form these materials into earth. The gods is repeatedly mentioned in the creation story. God is as man once was. Even Christ says anything you see him do so has the father done. If you’ve seen me , you’ve seen the father. Gods purpose is to bring to pass the happiness and eternal life of man. Romans states in 8:16 that we are children of god. If children then heirs and joint heirs with Christ. Literally everything god has including power and principalities can be yours. Making you a god with that same power through obedience. That’s the shorter version but yes, we would take our place in the expanding universe with our own worlds.

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      1. I’m somewhat confused. Apparently when “God” was a man, there were previous gods who created his world. Did “God” worship those older gods? Do Mormons have any reverence for those gods? Were those gods also once men, and if so is that an infinite regression? Are those gods then still above “God”? Or is he now co-equal with them? When a Mormon gets his own planet to run, is he then co-equal with “God” or is he still supposed to worship and obey?

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        1. Yes he would have worshipped other gods. “To us there is but one god”. And most everything only pertains to this earth. Yes they would be his equal in time. It’s actually kinda cool if it were true.

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        2. A short way to see it is earthy life. Your father wants everything for you, and to surpass him as your equal.

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  5. As we briefly talked about Jim prior to this post — which is done well, btw — I was curious as to the framework of this construct. For example, what would be the probability/possibility of OTHER life-forms on other planets in other solar systems and galaxies? These life-forms could be much much further advanced, while being quite different than us Homo sapiens, and “more pure” with “God matter.” In other words, we Homo sapiens may be God’s 2nd, 3rd, 20th, or 1,689th choice — when considering how VAST the Cosmos is — in your speculative heirarchy here! Just my initial thoughts Sir. πŸ™‚

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    1. The “pearl of great price” teaches worlds without number inhabited by gods children. It also has some references to time reckoning differences based on how fast your planet moved. I would have to speculate about other life forms/dimensions/etc. personally i tend to believe the cosmos is much stranger than we know yet. The possibilities are mind boggling. Especially in leu of that Hubble deep space. It would take over 12million photos like that to get the entire night sky. We just haven’t found them aliens yet. They’re there!

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      1. Assuming there is indeed a God-Creator of all this — a HUGE assumption — how would it make Mormons or any God-faith-follower feel if on a highly-evolved scale where by comparisons one (strange) species (not us) was #1 and we Homo sapiens were truly #1,689th on that scale… way below so many other species? What sort of “God-Creator” sets that up? πŸ˜› And how would the human-created (wrong) theology change under these parameters? πŸ˜‰

        I ask these questions hoping that they might illustrate how very, VERY self-centered, i.e. geocentric, egocentric, the Abrahamic religions, and others, are in light of what we now know about the Cosmos and life (statistically) and time on other planets.

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        1. They do feel that man is the ultimate creation in the chain and they do believe theirs is the one true church. Hard to hold that feeling when you look at a snapshot of deep space the size of a grain of sand. I showed my six your old grandson that Hubble video and he cried. My 7 year old daughter said wow! We’re small. It’s very likely Mormonism is a little narrow for my liking. All that and a farmer from New York got the all encompassing truth in the universe. Nice try though. Also that Jesus sacrifice was universal. He came here because this is the only planet cruel enough to kill their god. That part may ring true. Evil bastards everywhere. Look at the humanist!

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          1. Hahahahaha!!! Those Humanist… they’re the WORST kind! πŸ˜‰ πŸ‘½

            Mormonism is a LITTLE NARROW for your liking!? Bwahahaha…I do love extreme understatement. The Brits have that comic technique cornered. Are you British Jim!? πŸ˜›

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  6. I have tons of mormons in my neighborhood, and so I did a lot of studying on their beliefs. I attempted to learn about them from personal interactions, but once they found out I wouldn’t convert they wouldn’t talk to me. Oh, and they didn’t like the “cult” I was in: catholicism (these days I totally agree I was in a cult, but not at that time). All of us were very hard core in our beliefs, so perhaps friendships were never possible. I do know they had a very similar lifestyle of devout belief, with religion encompassing pretty much their entire lives. Though I’m sure not every Mormon family is devout.

    In your experience Jim, what general percentage would you say were very devout when you were a believer? Was your family devout? I’m curious because you say you had an easy time with deconversion, which I think might be harder to achieve in super-religious families.

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    1. We we’re in it pretty hard. Lots of church callings and fasting and prayer. Full tithe paying card carrying Mormon. About 30% run that way which is about normal for most organizations. You have all spectrums but the ones that work their way up are devout. Half the people that attend weekly are hardcore. I have an earlier post about how I came into the world. I’ll link it. As far as friendships it’s like any cult. Great friends as long as you believe. But even there friendships are superficial and usually if you move to a neighboring ward you lose touch even if it’s just a boundary adjustment. Love the ones your with kinda thing. The church keeps a tight reign on knowledge too. It’s sinful to look at criticism of the church. An old friend I know is struggling and he keeps sharing testimony on FB. he keeps saying hang in there! I know the feeling. You lose all your friends and start a new life when you leave.

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      1. Interesting. Did your family and friends go as far as shunning you when you left? Did you feel you had less access to job opportunities because you weren’t a believer?

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        1. You lose all of your friends. Even a chance meeting at the grocery store they act all weird. The only church friend I have left is another exmo. Literally a thousand people that don’t want you in their life any more. Lol. Superficial. As far as work opportunities I am a pretty resourceful guy. I never believed god took part in my every move. Some do though. That would be a helpless way to live no matter the faith. But that door as far as church/business relationships is closed. Se la vi.

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          1. Even more interesting. We have 2 serious differences in our religious lives, and these may explain why we had such vastly different deconverions. 1) it seems that perhaps you never achieved full “buy-in”…meaning faith in the fact that god controls everything, whereas I did 2) you live in a location more religiously progressive

            I certainly lost my friends when I deconverted, but I also lost my family. As a nurse I’ve had trouble in jobs because we’re often asked to pray with patients, and if I refuse I’m fired shortly after. I can’t find any non believing friends in real life now that I’m out of the church…as in I can’t find any non believers.

            I live in a very a religious community though in a very religious part of the country (midwest). I wonder if you lived in Utah, the mecca of mormons, if you’d have found more limitations?

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            1. I was a medic 20 years. Prayed with many folks so I get that part. I quit prior to deconversion. Maybe paramedicine created my cynicism.

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  7. It’s strange but I live in a community filled with Mormons and yet have little clue what they actually believe. Your post has been pretty eye opening. Thank you for sharing.

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    1. Not really Darwinism, but just a couple of differences. In genesis to change one word sums up a lot of Mormon creationism. Instead of the word “day” use the word period. Like period of time or a phase. That allows for the time of evolution as that period of time could be billions of years in eternal perspective. In their book of Abraham the creation is very evolutionary. God “prepared” the earth that IT might bring forth grass and trees and so forth. He “prepared” the waters that they might bring forth. And so in. It allows for evolution everywhere except for man. Nothin was left to chance. “Let us go down and Create Man in out image and likeness”. But we shunned the Darwin explanation. That why I know very little about it. Working in that though.

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      1. Thank you for this reply:-)<3. It is very interesting information. It reminds me a little bit about Jehovah Witnesses. They include a lot of science in their teachings. Only they pick and choose a lot. They also alter words in the Bible so that it fits with their view.

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  8. Sorry, I do not know enough about the Mormon church to know if it is an evolution from being a Mormon to being an atheist (why can’t we capitalize).

    As long as you are talking about cultural or personable evolution and not evolution by natural selection, its use as a metaphor for growth is okay. As an analogy to natural selection it is not really correct in my opinion.

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    1. From my viewpoint it was just a little different wording but thought the similarities were astounding. But, there again my view for 50 years in the church has its biases. Lol. Working on that! Thanks

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    1. Somehow Jesus is a big part of the story too. They tie a lot of angles together trying to answer everything

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        1. I’ve done a lot of looking over the years to find where Smith came up with his ideas. He predates the On the origin of Species by about 25 years

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  9. It was very nice to learn your background story. I do not know a lot about Mormons and this was a great summary:-)

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    1. Thanks. I don’t think many Mormons see how well they align atheistically. It was a little eye opening for me too to finally notice the similarities.

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      1. I had no idea that the Mormon faith is so far away from everything I am familiar with. This was a great learning experience and very well written.

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