Hate Mail “i remember the time wen a girl with a disabled leg shorter than her other leg was healed in church and the leg grew, and she walked off the altar!!!”
Sarah Innes files

Her letters are in yellow, whilst mine are in black & white.

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Hi Bob,

Big fan here. Been reading your website for a long time; I deconverted in 2003, and your site, along with jesusneverexisted.com, really solidified my views. Its taken a few years, but pretty much all my friends and family know that I'm an atheist. I'd like to be more up front about it at work, but I live in Kentucky, and my work involves delivering church brochures to their respective churches.

My question for you is this; how aggressive are you in your atheism? At the moment, I let other people try to draw me in (mormons come to the door, for example), but I balance it with not arguing about it at work. Do you ever find yourself in a situation where you censor your nonreligious views, or feel the need to? Or are you uber agressive? IE, someones says "godblessyou" and you say "THERE IS NO GOD."

I love your style in the hatemail pages, but I'm trying to get a feel for if you act like that in real life, or if you are more restrained. And, by corollary, how aggressive should I be in my own atheism.

Thanks for taking the time to read!

-JP


Hey Jeremy,
I have to admit, in my regular day to day life I try to be what I'd expect and want from others. I don't bring it up unless they do first. The videos I've shot of religious people debating me have always been initiated by them first. They bring it up and I'm happy to take part. If I'm walking by someone and they've got a pamphlet and say to me "Would you like to go to heaven?" or "Are you Jewish?" (there's a lot of that here in ny), I respond with "No thank you, I'm an atheist" and continue on my way. That's how each of those Union Square debates began.





But I also have to admit I put out bait left and right in hopes of being approached. I've got crucified devils tattooed on my arms. I go out dressed as Satan. If I'm asked what I do for a living, I say so, and the Jesus magnets make an appearance if people want to know more. In fact, now that I think about it, I do hand out my GOD IS FAKE flyers to strangers who eat really smelly food next to me at the park. Also, if a bunch of teenagers come up to me and say they love the site or the GOD IS FAKE flyers, I hand them stacks and tell 'em to hand them out. Then I tell them "If anyone asks you who made you do this, or wants to know who's responsible, just send them to me."

And of course it's no secret my web site is another passive-aggressive tool I use to "innocently" inspire others to start a fight. So I have my ways of responding to "God bless you's" even though I like to pretend everyone else started it and I'm just defending myself.

I don't bring it up to friends or family if I think it'll be a problem. My mother and I have an agreement that I'm more than happy to discuss the topic with her whenever she wants, and whenever she says to stop talking about it I stop immediately. I too thrive on those discussions and explaining myself thoroughly at every opportunity, but I also found it's not so satisfying when I've started it.

Luckily I have the hate mail, loads & loads of it, to purge all that I want to say at the world so I can be somewhat less aggressive in real life. That really does the trick for me.

I'm happy I helped.
Thanks.
Bob

“this jesus dress up site is disgusting!!”

this jesus dress up site is disgusting!! you are sick to even think about inventing such thing which makes such a total mockery of the most holy man that walked the earth and took that pain for your wrongs!!.. but i suppose ul have to face him one day anyway so you are answerable to him for what you are doing here!

Sarah Innes

No one other than you can pay the punishment for your wrongs, and to believe otherwise is a perversion of morality. To believe that anyone other than the person responsible can absorb that pain & punishment to absolve the guilty of their crime defeats the entire purpose of punishment.

I hereby declare it is you who is on the side of a disgusting mockery!
Bob

“if i didn't believe in God and the holy bible then i would think that the whole thing is all ridiculous too”

i am not a naive person. i dnt allow myself to be brainwashed either and i hate people forcing their religious opinions on me as it just makes me resist it more. if i didn't believe in God and the holy bible then i would think that the whole thing is all ridiculous too, and i would have the same opinions as yourself. so i completely understand where u are coming from!

however, at the age of 9, i had a spiritual experience, this made me discover a God who is a living presence. growing up i lived my life how i wanted to though, in ways that are certainly not pleasing to God! then at the age of 22 i started having these spiritual experiences again and realised that God was calling me again to him. i dont need to be preached to or told by anyone anything. i live a life now where i see and experience this supernatural presence intervene in many situations. i have watched people be healed of allsorts before my very eyes whilst being prayed over in the name of Jesus. i have seen the miracles that God has worked in my life, and the life of other believers that i know. i see the way God responds to me and answers me when i pray and talk to him. for me, this is enough proof that the rest of the story of Jesus is true.

maybe u could be a bit more open minded? if u wanted to u could spend a bit of time speaking to God and getting to know him, he surely will respond and guide u to what the real truth is. u wont need any human to drum naything into u. yes i understand u probably don't want to 'waste your time' doing such things, but i can guarantee more than anything that there is a God who is waiting to work miracles in your life also, and show u just how much he loves u, and is waiting to pour his love on u. once uv had an encounter with God u will understand exactly what i mean. it can only be worth a try surely?

if u have anything particular in your life that u need praying for, just let me know and i will pray for it for u. u have nothing to lose by that afterall do u!

Sarah Innes

Well first of all, I wouldn't even know which god to begin with if I were to lay my head on a pillow and "open my mind" to whichever god or gods I decide to put to the test first. I suppose I could go alphabetically? "Adad" The Storm God of Thundery Weather is where I'd begin. Not Jesus. He's way down the list. So you've got that working against you right off.

Next, I'd argue that if your whole belief system began when you were 9 years old then you could have most certainly been brainwashed. Children are easily brainwashed, whether they think they're allowing it or not. A child simply doesn't have the maturity or experience to resist a brainwashing. And that includes you, Sarah. I'm so so so sorry. It included me too, so don't feel bad. And take my word for it, there's no better sign you've been brainwashed than if you find yourself declaring "if i didn't believe i would think that the whole thing is all ridiculous too."
I also said those sorts of things, right up until I realized I could be brainwashed, and perhaps believing illogical craziness was the evidence.

Open minded, absolutely! If you present to me ideas with evidence I am more than ready to open my mind to it. Also, if you present to me ideas that make sense logically, that too goes a long long way with me. That's what I finally determined was the way to weed through all the crazy, backwards, and often hilarious beliefs each and every person in the world promises is absolutely true.

If I were COMPLETELY open minded to every different belief system I had thrown at me here in New York I'd not have one spare minute to call my own. I'd be waiting for signs from Allah that specifically show me he's the real deal. I'd have to devote a few months to chanting "Hari christna! Hari christna! Hari hari! Christna christna!" up and down my block waiting for an awakening. I'd absolutely have to give a fair shake to Sikhism, the 5th largest organized religion in the world, ritualizing my sacred Guru Nanak's Jap Ji prayers in my quest to become Guru. I'd have to invest my dollars into Scientology until it proved itself either true or false. Same goes for Sathya Sai Baba, Shoko Asahara, Marshal Applewhite, and pretty much any stranger in the world who claimed all I needed to do was open my mind and give 'em a chance.

And I've hardly begun, especially if you're including this planet's long history of possible gods and goddesses, messiahs and prophets, all of whom have outrageous magical stories that sound just as unbelievable as your god, Jesus, and bible. This is the quagmire you get yourself into if you practice complete & total honest open mindedness. But I'm sure you practice what you preach and have done all of this already, huh? I mean, you wouldn't expect all of this from others if you hadn't first tried it yourself, right??

What?? Are you telling me you went with the first god you were taught of from the very beginning, when you were a child!??! Sarah! That's how everyone in every corner of the globe is brainwashed into believing their different religions are "true" and "for real!" They're all taught it as kids, then take it into they're adulthood! And they all really believe theirs is absolutely the only god and guarantee they weren't brainwashed. Of that they're ABSOLUTELY SURE!

So yeah, my solution to all of this is commonsense. Because whichever god is actually real gave me commonsense so I'd use it to its full capacity. And commonsense at its full capacity tells me all these gods are fake. We make 'em up. Always have. Always will. And that's exactly how an overview of the world's religions reflects it.

Know what I'm sayin'?

Bob

“what i know is that christianity, islam, and judaism are the 3 true religions”

yes ur right, its ridiculous how many God's there are! what i know is that christianity, islam, and judaism are the 3 true religions which actually have meanings from the blood line years ago. the rest are all literally man made.

i understand that children are easily brainwashed. and i understand how i would have obviously been brainwashed to, to have been brought up around this faith in the first place. even having a mother that forced it on us that much in such a hypocrytical manner that she turned us all away from it full stop! even now i refuse to have any conversation at all about faiths and christianity with her.

my particular experience wasnt a brainwashing tho. being brought up to believe in jesus etc fair enough i agree there. just as if i would have been brought up in another country i would have grew up to believe in something else. but that day wen i was younger, i felt this rush, like something id never felt before. it was like a feeling of great inner joy and peace and fire. it felt like my heart had been set on fire- but for God! yes i know it sounds crazy. thats wot happened anyway, and it was the best feeling iv ever felt in my life. i never told anyone about it ever. then as i was growing up i started to hear people talking about this 'holy spirit' they feel, andthey described the exact same feeling to me as id felt. in passing thoughts in my head i thought, well i know it must have been the holy spirit.. then i thought nothing more of it. i went about my teenage years knowing about this experience id had, but i didnt think anything else of it tho coz it had passed and to me that was end of that. i didnt live a life that was particular honourable to god. yes id pray wen i wantd sumthing but that was often infrequent anyway. maybe the rebellious streak in me deliberatly went on to be with a muslim guy, then wen that ended then another muslim. i enjoyed a bit of the rock n roll scene n all that. then one night wen i was 22 i got this same rush again. it was this burning of the holy spirit, the same thing id felt wen i was 9. it was amazing. like nothing id felt before. i still didnt understand properly wot it was n wot it was all about so the next week i went and told the pastor at the local evangelical church. he expained to me thats exactly the feeling he gets and that is wot the bible says too. i went away and started reading the bible for myself and started finding all these details describing gods spirit, as exactly id felt it. i cudnt believe it!

because i suddenly realised at that point that i was onto a winner here with sumthing i never realised b4, i didnt want the feeling of the holy spirit to fade like it had wen i was a child. so i started praying more, but instead of murmurs of prayers that mean nothing, like u often see in churches, id spend quiet time actually meditating in prayer. the more i did this, the more id feel the spirit, till in the end i was feeling it all the time. it was so amazing i jst coudnt believe what had happened so dramtically to my life. now i started learning about spiritual giftings that we all have but dnt really know about coz we dnt use them. the bible shows us these are prophecy so i started thinkin well whats mine, i want mine if iv got them! as i started going to church- evangelical/ penticostal type, who move in the power of the spirit, i started seeing and experiencing loads of awesome stuff. people were being healed from allsorts, both spiritually and physically, in the name of jesus. even myself! i was sceptical at first but iv experinced too much now to make it impossible to deny that there is some sort of higher being that is working these miracles. i started realising a whole new spiritual world that myself until that point in my life, and so much of the world needs but has not found. its a shame that they are turning to all sorts of other magical fairy stories of gods and promised outcomes etc.

i know exactly where u r coming from. it gets to the point where u wana shut urself off from the lot and leave the world to their stupidness! the worse thing is being preached at by anyone while ur trying to go about ur business!

what i can say to tho as iv sed before. im not trying to change ur mind in anyway. thats not up to me. but seriously tho, if there is an area of ur life where u cud do with help, wether its health, career, family stuff, if u want to tell me i will pray on it for u. i have seen the way my life has been intervened with supernaturally time and time again. ud have nothing to lose by it anyway.

Sarah Innes

Sarah, I feel like you're just an arm's length away from realizing your religion is no different than any others. I mean, you're already completely aware that your beliefs sound crazy as all hell, and that all sorts of beliefs have been manmade and believed to be 100% true by their followers. And you hardly have to shift your thoughts an inch to realize those people who pray to Vishnu, Buddha, Ra, or Joseph Smith, all get the same bright and shiny fulfillment & joy in their heart as you do. The same everything, just like you! And they know they're right, you're wrong and they've got a book, or a miracle, or good feeling, or lucky charm to prove it. You're so so close!

You're so close I can almost see your brain switching over during your letters, the awakening, and bedazzlement that you too were just as brainwashed as everyone else whom you thought you outwitted. I mean, do you really think your experience is any different than a Hindu, or a Mormon, or a Scientologist, or a Sikh, or even the followers of Jim Jones, Charles Manson, David Koresh or any charismatic cult leader. Believe me, ask anyone in any cult and they feel the exact same, like they've found the meaning of life and inside they're lit up like a 1000 watt bulb! That's why they're in whatever belief they're in! Because of everything you describe in your letters!

It's so exciting for me to see someone like you who sees the hoax in everyone else, and when you describe them you're describing yourself. And when you describe yourself, you're describing them! But you don't see it... YET!

It just puts such a grin on my face, because I was once where you are now: Knowing your beliefs sound completely insane, and you sound like a kook, but the sane person is inside trying to reason it all out. It's utterly fascinating. It's why I do what I do here. Watching people like you.

I'm sure you understand.
Bob

“yes any sort of spirtual awakening feels good and lights u up inside. this is a totally different feeling tho.”

i think u are missing my point here. i am not at arms length at realising anything at all. wot i sed is i understand how it can sound crazy and i understand that it sounds crazy too. however, i know that it is the truth because i have an alive relationship with this presence which responds to my prayers and intervenes in my life wen i pray thru jesus. therefore i know that it is true. no doubts about that. im so sure, id put my life on it!

yes its obvious that these ppl of false religions feel uplifted and refreshed etc. that is wot happens wen u spend time in any sort of meditation. if i sat down n chanted n meditated i can guarantee i wud feel the same. i do belly dance and i love it as for me that is a form of physically expressing myself. it gives me an uplifting feeling, while im dancing i forget everything else, i connect with my feminine side and the earth. yes it feels great!! but the feeling of the holy spirit is nothing like anything else! it is more than jst a mrer joy in ur heart. wot these ppl DONT feel is the fire in their heart, the anointing of the holy spirit on them,- capable of healing, prophecy, discernment of spirits, driving out demons and everthing else. i worship a God of miracles, and i have seen the supernatural intervention of him in situations that wud scientifically seem impossible. no1 elses god can do that. they mite kid themselves! but u dnt see this happening in any other beliefs. only thru the confession that jesus christ IS lord over all! yes any sort of spirtual awakening feels good and lights u up inside. this is a totally different feeling tho.

i can reason with where u are coming from on it all. i can understand with why i wud seem a hoax myself. i know that my god is tru tho. as i say, i feel his presence, i carry his presence, i ask him to do simple things for me and he does. and theres no way that everything hes done for me is all jst coincidence. yes i admit i sit and try and reason gods ways out. ppl go thru their lives doing that. however, as i know he is true, and i will never be as intelligent and knowledgable as him, to work out the mysterious ways he works in. i accept that he knows best. if i worshipped, but got no response back, id think fair enough its not true. but as i have a living relationship which this higher being, and get a response back i know without doubt that there is a God there and he is always around me. all i need do is ask for wot i need, and i receive. he has never failed me yet!

Sarah Innes


No, I definitely have you down to the fraction. Having a "spiritual awakening" that's coincidentally the exact same religion as your parents? And c'mon. You've really convinced yourself that people who worship other gods don't have a religious experience that's equal to or greater than yours? I mean, there are people out there who've had such a powerful awakening they've taken their own lives! I've seen them dancing in the streets in all corners of the globe over the gods they're completely bananas about! It's just so funny you pretending to know what other people are feeling inside and how you're so sure your feeling inside is more special. I'm curious. Have you actually talked to a Hindu, or Buddhist, or Mormon who's said "Yeah, the light that shines in me isn't really that bright, but it's all right." or "I'd describe my spiritual awakening as an 8. Not quite a 9, but I'm all right with that."

Sarah, I GUARANTEE you they've got it just as much as you! They're ecstatic about Vishnu! I mean, have you seen the beautiful paintings that've been done of the Hindu gods? There's a beautiful love and honor in those renderings that outshines most of Jesus portraits I've seen. Have you ever spoken with a Buddhist monk? I have, and let me tell you, their deep love and devotion to The Buddha meets or exceeds what you've described. Hell, I've even spoken to Zendik followers who've described spiritual experiences that outshine yours tenfold!

Sarah, believe me, I hear ya! You just keep trying to organize your beliefs into some sort of logical order. There's only two finish lines available when you're to that point. Either insanity or abandonment. The boulder's already rolling down the hill and there's no stopping it unless you give yourself a lobotomy. Short of that, your Jesus is doomed, and you won't even get an invite to the funeral.

Bob

“i remember the time wen a girl with a disabled leg shorter than her other leg was healed in church and the leg grew, and she walked off the altar!!!”

my parents arent religious. my mum turned born again wen we were younger but we ignored her and just thought she was crazy anyway! as i agree, any form of spirtuality and spiritual awakening do make u feel full of joy and enlightened. but they do not fill u with the anointing that the holy spirit does. the holy spirit can make blind eyes see, make deaf ears hear. i remember the time wen a girl with a disabled leg shorter than her other leg was healed in church and the leg grew, and she walked off the altar!!! the holy spirit is supernatural. which means nothing is impossible, and nothing is too hard! supernatural means it goes against a situation which otherwise wud be scientifically impossible! u never see these miracles in any other religions. jesus is not doomed. he rose in power, and he is alive today. yes i understand exactly what ur saying, but as i say, i have a God whose presence i can feel and who responds as and when i pray. im not making the responses up in my head. so therefore there must be something there!

Sarah Innes

Yeah, I hear ya. You saw a girl's leg grow right before your eyes, and you didn't think to mention that until 4 letters later. I don't know about you, but if I saw a girl's leg grow right before my eyes I'd start off every letter I ever wrote from then on with that story, in all caps: "Dear mom, I SAW A GIRL'S LEG GROW BACK RIGHT BEFORE MY EYES!!! How's dad? Are you making a pie this weekend? etc, etc..."

I'm beginning to get the full picture here now. Unfortunately you and I are both too familiar with these stories people say about their religions. There's a million miraculous healing stories out there for every religion yet none of them really happened in any sort of way that could be filed under the category "True."

What surprises me is that people don't first attribute all of this wackiness to human error. Instead, leaping to conclusions that require the ceasing of all natural law. Sarah, it's "human error." Probably mostly yours. I think you have a lot of stuff you need to work out before you can go around yelling at people about their beliefs, claiming to know details about the afterlife and the meaning of it all based on this insanity.

A real god wouldn't have modeled it to look like a earth sized psyche ward. That's what people would do all by themselves, without any god at all.
Take a timeout and just look at the picture you're painting.
Bob

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