Thursday, 23 August 2012

What do you call a 'born again' atheist?

Evangelical Christian converts have a name for themselves, and we all have our ideas what it means for them to be 'born again'.

But what is the name for people who regain a sense of rationality and escape from religion - or those who find a cure for the 'virus of religion'?

In the case of Christianity of course the escape is not sufficiently life-threatening (for most) for the expression 'dead again' to seem politically incorrect.  After all, whatever can be born is going to die and so it seems not too inappropriate for the process of the death of faith.

Born again atheist tee-shirt
Born again atheist tee-shirt (from here)

In Islam of course it is a different matter, and although I do know a few Muslim apostates quite well, I think they tend to stay fairly quiet on the matter when they are with their families and those friends who are still Islamic.  Generally they seem quite safe from those who are only 'Islamic' but could find themselves threatened by those who are 'Islamists'.

What other terms might we use?

Many people who no longer believe in the supernatural friend in the sky shy away from the label 'atheist'.  Why label yourself as something that you are not?

I would like to collect phrases that people use to describe themselves, whether serious or humorous.  I'll start off with a few and hope for comments.

I'm a member of the church of Richard Dawkins.

I'm a born-again atheist.

I'm a recovering Christian.

Any more?

7 comments:

SpaceGhoti said...

I was Baptist once, but I got better.

Derby Sceptic said...

How about 'I speak Darwin'?

Ewell Barret said...

Hello! I am not sure of a good term for you. I was raised as a Lutheran, and, for a few years in High School, I was an agnostic. I then returned to Christianity, but was not yet "born again." After being "born again," some time later, I referred to my previous "Christian" state as being a false convert. In some Christian denominations, they refer to this as backsliding. Maybe you could be a backsliding agnostic? Indicating that you are going from agnosticism to atheism? I am not a troll, I promise. I came upon your blog by accident. anyway, have a good day.

Plasma Engineer said...

Thanks to all for the comments.

@Ewell - I hope will come back and find other interesting things. Thank you for contributing.

Thomas Lawson said...

Think Again Atheist

@EdGibney said...

Well, I call myself an Evolutionary Philosopher now since that encapsulates my atheism against religion AND my pro-science stance that results in a whole belief system.

As for those who have broken free from religion (as I once had to)? How about:
- Re-enlightened Atheist
- Rationalized Irrational
- Unchained Unbeliever
- Dogma Defeatist

Thanks. That was fun.

Anonymous said...

i just use that exact phrase "born again atheist" ~ most people do a double take. i also stick "dyed in the wool.." in front of it to great effect! from @polsters, cheers