Bryce Harrington interviews the Graceful Atheist

Atheism, Deconversion, Humanism, Podcast, Secular Grace
Bryce Harrington
Click to play episode on anchor.fm

My guest this week is Bryce Harrington. Bryce and I have been colleagues off and on at a couple of different companies over the years. But most importantly he and I had a seminal discussion back in 2012 while killing time in an airport. At the time I was a dedicated Evangelical Christian and Bryce has been a life long atheist. Even though I had an ulterior motive at the time Bryce was kind, gracious and genuinely curious as he wanted to understand how and why I believed. As you will hear, ironically, my former believing self changed Bryce’s view of religious people.

And so I went through a lot of my childhood with this kind of weird relationship with religion. It was like, I just didn’t get it, it didn’t make any sense to me. And everyone around me seemed to be just totally bought into it. And I just didn’t understand why.

Fast forward to today, I told Bryce I had deconverted last year. He was shocked and amazed and wanted to understand how I had changed my mind and why I was doing the podcast. This turned out to be a really fun and interesting conversation that I am glad to be able to share with you. We did not pre-plan the questions. What you hear is Bryce’s genuine curiosity. He may have a career in podcast interviews.

I felt very alone. Everyone else in my family that I knew was religious but I couldn’t share with them at all about these questions that I had or these feelings.

We also get to hear Bryce’s story. The isolation and loneliness he felt growing up the only non-believer in his community. That sense of isolation lasted for much of Bryce’s life. I think many of you who are life long atheists or who have just recently deconverted will be able to relate.

You certainly should not be rude to other people but you should also not pretend to be somebody that you are not just for someone else’s sake.
And I have found myself in that role from time to time and it is very uncomfortable.

Interact

Hell is the Absence of God (thought experiment)
https://gracefulatheist.wordpress.com/2017/06/04/review-hell-is-the-absence-of-god/

Secular Grace
https://gracefulatheist.wordpress.com/secular-grace/

Deconversion
https://gracefulatheist.wordpress.com/deconversion/

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Via Paypal: paypal.me/gracefulatheist

Attribution

“Waves” track written and produced by Makaih Beats

Welcome to the Graceful Atheist Podcast

Deconversion, Podcast, Secular Grace
Click to play episode on anchor.fm

Premise of the podcast

My name is David and I am trying to be the Graceful Atheist. I am a humanist. And I believe that human connection is the most profound experience one can have. It is this human connection that will be the focus of the podcast.

There are three main themes that I want to explore: Faith Transitions, Secular Grace and having an Honesty Contest.

Faith Transitions

The first theme is faith transitions from doubt to deconstruction to deconversion.

If you are anything like me, the process of deconversion feels lonely and one of the first things you want to do is tell your story. But who are you going to tell? It is possible that your friends and family are still believers and they will be unlikely to appreciate your story. Even the non-believers in your life may be non-pulsed if they have never gone through a deconversion experience. Telling your story is a cathartic part of the deconversion process. If you want to tell your story for the podcast, you can remain anonymous, use a pseudonym, or if you are out as a non-believer, you can tell the world.

The message of the podcast is that if you are going through a faith transition, you are not alone.

Secular Grace

The second major theme is Secular Grace.

Secular Grace is a proactive acceptance, love and caring for our fellow human beings person to person. Think of it as humanism plus. Where humanism has tended to focus on the rational for ethics and human rights, Secular Grace focuses on human connection, belonging, awe and love. Rather than be defined by what I don’t believe. I want to be defined by what I do believe. I believe in people.Self Honesty

Honesty Contest

The final theme, brutal honesty, will be an aspirational goal and the ethos of the podcast. One of the plans I am most excited about for the podcast is a role reversal interview called “A Believer Interviews the Graceful Atheist.” In these episodes, I will have friends of mine who are believers who I trust interview me in an honesty contest. I’ll allow them to ask the hard questions and rather than try to argue with them I’ll see if I can get them to understand why I no longer believe. If, and only if, they are interested they can come back for a second episode where I will ask them some tough questions about their faith.

Join me

Please join me on this journey. If you want to tell your story about your faith transition, get in touch with me at gracefulatheist@gmail.com or @GracefulAtheist on Twitter.

Attribution

“Waves” track written and produced by Makaih Beats

Support the podcast
Via Anchor.fm and Stripe
Via Paypal: paypal.me/gracefulatheist