300 episodes

The Atheist Experience is a weekly show in Austin, Texas geared at a non-atheist and atheist audience. The Atheist Experience is produced by the Atheist Community of Austin.

The Atheist Community of Austin is organized as a nonprofit educational corporation to develop and support the atheist community, to provide opportunities for socializing and friendship, to promote secular viewpoints, to encourage positive atheist culture, to defend the first amendment principle of state-church separation, to oppose discrimination against atheists and to work with other organizations in pursuit of common goals.

We define atheism as the lack of belief in gods. This definition also encompasses what most people call agnosticism.

The Atheist Experience Atheist Community of Austin

    • Religion & Spirituality

The Atheist Experience is a weekly show in Austin, Texas geared at a non-atheist and atheist audience. The Atheist Experience is produced by the Atheist Community of Austin.

The Atheist Community of Austin is organized as a nonprofit educational corporation to develop and support the atheist community, to provide opportunities for socializing and friendship, to promote secular viewpoints, to encourage positive atheist culture, to defend the first amendment principle of state-church separation, to oppose discrimination against atheists and to work with other organizations in pursuit of common goals.

We define atheism as the lack of belief in gods. This definition also encompasses what most people call agnosticism.

    Atheist Experience 24.07 2020-02-16 with Don Baker & Jenna Belk

    Atheist Experience 24.07 2020-02-16 with Don Baker & Jenna Belk

    SHOW TIME-STAMPS
    00:00:00 Introduction
    00:03:03 Daniel - MN: I Want to Believe in An Afterlife, but I'm an Atheist
    00:10:40 Alex - CO: A Rational Person Can Use Faith, & Faith Can Be Rational
    00:24:09 Mark - ME: The Koran/Quran is More Accurate than the Bible
    00:35:47 Dalton - NJ - Used to Be Christian, Now Hindu but Doubting...What Do I Do?
    00:44:35 Joshua - NY: How Do I Come Out as an Atheist to My Family?
    00:54:37 Joseph - NY: People Misunderstand the Zodiac Signs (Astrology is Real)
    01:01:05 Shattered - OR: Personal Experiences Are Reliable for Personal Beliefs
    01:10:43 Samuel - GM: Star Wars is a Religion
    01:19:53 Mark - FL: What is the ATHEIST AGENDA? (Guy tells US what WE believe.)
    01:33:05 Julian - WA - Are Atheists Willing to Abandon Christian Morality?
    01:47:17 Outro
    SHOW NOTES
    Today we’re hosted by Don Baker & Jenna Belk, who spare no time in getting straight to calls!
    Our first caller, Daniel, is an atheist who wants to believe in an afterlife. He describes his discovery of Carlin as his first steps toward being an atheist, but seems confused about gods and related topics.

    Alex in Colombia thinks that a rational person can use faith, and that faith can be part of a rational worldview. Jenna and Don explain that rational people can use non-rational tools, and get a little into epistemology with Alex.
    We get a rare sort of call with Mark in Montenegro, who wants to defend the Koran/Quran is more accurate than the Bible because we’re closer to it in time, know that it hasn’t been changed as much, and is written in a living language rather than a dead language. Don & Jenna explain some of their issues with the book, and the caller continues attempting a defense of the book.
    Dalton in New Jersey is an interesting case. He started years ago as a Christian, is currently a Hindu, but is doubting his beliefs. He seems to be headed down a road of skepticism, and Jenna gets to throw him Street Epistemology as a recommendation for his topic.

    Joshua in New Jersey is a deconvert of only 4-5 years ago, and calls to ask the question so many of us have dealt with in the past: how do I come out to my family as an atheist? Specifically, Joshua is concerned about coming off as an “angry atheist” and “without being flashy.” We get to go over that with him, and also get a little into death and grieving as an atheist.
    Joseph in New York explains to us that zodiac signs and astrology are actually reliable, but people mis-apply them by using the sun sign...which is correct in its own way? Uh, vaguery is fun, I guess.

    Shattered in Portland, OR is a pantheist. He doesn’t offer up a defense or justification for his belief, but instead tells us that personal experience is reliable for personal beliefs, but can’t be used to convince people. The question is, why is such reasoning reliable for oneself but not for others?

    Samuel in Germany thinks that Star Wars has a cult-like following and fascination because people dress up and get upset when movies “violate canon” and similar issues. Does this guy know about the actual Jedi religion? Someone should tell him.

    Mark in Florida tells us that all the atheists he’s encountered are aggressive anti-theists to point out that we’re more than “just” agnostic atheists...people telling us what we believe is always the best.
    Here comes a Pordan B. Jeterson fan to ask if “atheists are willing to abandon a Christian morality.” Apparently we’re actually Christians. At least he didn’t call us murderers...actually, never mind, he does say something about Pol Pot.

    Now, it’s meatloaf time. Goodbye! Join us at tiny.cc/acadiscord, and support us at patreon.com/theatheistexperience. Check out our merch at bit.ly/aenmerch.

    • 1 hr 36 min
    Atheist Experience 24.06 2020-02-09 with Matt Dillahunty & Jim Barrows

    Atheist Experience 24.06 2020-02-09 with Matt Dillahunty & Jim Barrows

    SHOW TIME-STAMPS

    00:00:00 Matt - TX - Epic postcard reading by Matt
    00:16:55 Jonathan - KY - Is there a moral question about slavery?
    00:27:07 Walter - MI - Proof of God because of a NDE
    00:38:07 Jonathyn - AZ - Can believe in something and not know it/be aware of it.
    00:50:58 Jonathan - AL - How to create a secular community when in a hostile area.
    01:05:39 Kevin - TN - Agnostic theist, believes in emanation
    01:25:03 Keith - OK - People in prison are better off with religious belief.
    01:27:20 John - TX - Evolution points to theism

    SHOW NOTES
    Woooot! Your normal notes writer is back in the writer’s chair. Just kidding, there is no writer’s chair, it doesn’t exist. In today’s episode of the Atheist Experience, Matt Dillahunty is joined by Jim Barrows. Does Matt have more postcards to read? (Oh yes he does and it is EPIC!) Who is this Jim Barrows character? Does God exist? Stay tuned to find out all this and more!

    Let’s get to calls. The first caller is Jonathan from Kentucky. He is wondering if there has always been a moral question regarding slavery. What about prisoners of war? He claims that in history, it was more moral to have slaves than now because of tribal warfare. That’s not an excuse.

    Walter is next up calling in from Michigan, claims to have met God after a very violent car wreck. He experienced a near death experience and saw the light! People convinced him that it was all God’s doing. Sadly, he doesn’t provide any evidence though, except “look at the trees.” Oh and science isn’t real.

    The following caller named Jonathyn from Arizona is wondering about the argument that folks can believe in something and not know it. He queries Matt on it and Matt responds in kind. Tune in to watch the salad spin!

    Jonathan from Alabama is next, he is calling in about how to create a community when in a hostile and possibly violent area to secular/atheists.

    Next up, Kevin in Tennessee has an argument he’d like to share. He believes and is an agnostic theist and that this reality we deem as real is only a small part of something greater.

    Afterwards we have Steve from Canada. He is an Atheist turned Catholic and is wondering if there is purpose or point in life if you don’t believe. Why does it matter if anyone benefits he asks. It absolutely matters to those around us. C’mon dude, a scribe?!

    Keith in Oklahoma would like to discuss how prisoners are better off religious. This was a speedy call and Matt definitely disputed that. Might want to watch it to capture more than I did.

    Our last caller of the day, John in Texas claims that evolution is linked or tied to theism. Um, nah. Natural selection is random and is all about time. Thank you very much, Goodbye!

    Whew! And that’s it! See you all next week!

    Send your prayer postcards for Matt to answer on the show to 1507 W. Koenig Lane, Austin, TX, 78741. Otherwise...goodbye!

    • 1 hr 24 min
    Atheist Experience 24.05 2020-02-02 with Matt Dillahunty & Jenna Belk

    Atheist Experience 24.05 2020-02-02 with Matt Dillahunty & Jenna Belk

    SHOW TIME-STAMPS
    00:00:00 Introduction
    00:07:50 Hermer-NY: The Bible Supports Science
    00:18:01 Yoel-NY: I Can Convert Everyone!
    00:43:39 Brant-CA: Native American Church Member’s Peyote Path to God
    01:00:34 William-NE: Deductive Proof of NO God
    01:12:36 End of Show Announcements

    SHOW NOTES
    Matt and Jenna are back to experience being atheists, and we’re starting off today with some shenanigans! Matt Dillahunty answers prayers sent in on postcards, including a miracle healing of a hen! Jenna has some Christian music looping in her brain today, and has a thought about why this music is such an effective indoctrination tool.

    Hermer calls us from a cavern deep inside the Earth, approximately 5 meters from its core, and explains to us how the Bible says, “Avoid opposition to science.” He somehow completely misses the fact that the Bible is loaded with scientific inaccuracies. He proceeds to justify Lot’s wife turning into salt because sweat tastes like salt. (“I Tasted Lot’s Wife and It Tastes Like Sweat | Hermer - NY | Talk Heathen 03.51” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tE5RxZzVKHw) Also, everyone who has ever seen Hermer’s face believes in God! Wow! How does he know this?

    Yoel from Brooklyn calls in to give us PROOF of God that will turn all of us into believers! Pack it in, folks, the Atheist Experience is over. What will I do with my Sundays now? At the end of the call, it appears that Yoel has some trouble constructing proper syllogisms...while discussing this, Matt demonstrates a concept by eating crickets with Jenna. Ew.

    Brant presents a case for his Native American Church beliefs, which involve a peyote path to God, because we all know altered brain states are the way to truth!
    After all this life-altering proof God DOES exist, William is able to provide us with deductive proof that NO god exists. Matt expects to disagree with him just as much as the “proof of god” callers...let’s see if he’s right.

    Send your prayer postcards for Matt to answer on the show to 1507 W. Koenig Lane, Austin, TX, 78741. Otherwise...goodbye!

    • 1 hr 23 min
    Atheist Experience 24.04 2020-01-26 with Matt Dillahunty & Don Baker

    Atheist Experience 24.04 2020-01-26 with Matt Dillahunty & Don Baker

    Hi friends. I'm not your regular audio editor for today's show, but I am the guy who agreed to do show notes and then got caught up in modding the live chat and grabbing live clips and neglected to do show notes. Get out your flogging equipment, I'll wait here.

    Also, sorry about that...

    • 1 hr 28 min
    Atheist Experience 24.03 2020-01-19 with Matt Dillahunty & Jenna Belk

    Atheist Experience 24.03 2020-01-19 with Matt Dillahunty & Jenna Belk

    ATHEIST EXPERIENCE 23.03 for 2020-01-19 with Matt Dillahunty & Jenna Belk

    SHOW TIME-STAMPS
    00:06:57 Christian - Denmark - Further discussion about antinatalism
    00:34:39 Kayla - CT - Caller update: Has deconverted and hiring a humanist celebrant for her wedding.
    00:51:23 Alan - CA - Afraid of not having a “guide” that would intervene at the last moment
    01:00:28 Cory - NY - Would like to talk about biblical slavery, oh he gets mad.
    01:03:55 David - KY - Clarity on the position of what is life and if it is precious
    01:20:38 Michael - AZ - Is both a believer and a non-believer, but how though?
    01:21:50 Mike - Toronto - Is struggling with helping as many animals as possible and there is still suffering.

    SHOW NOTES
    In today’s episode of the Atheist Experience, Matt Dillahunty is joined by Jenna Belk. It’s going to be a great show!

    Let’s get to calls. The first caller is a returning caller, Christian from Denmark. He is still struggling with antinatalism (arguing it’s morally wrong to have children because they would possibly suffer in life and the afterlife) and would like to continue to talk about it.

    Next up, Kayla from Connecticut has an update on her deconversion and her wedding. They have decided to have a humanist celebrant. Congratulations Kayla! We are so happy for you! (Love Rings!) Keep being your awesome sassy self!

    The following caller named Alan from California is afraid of not having a “guide” that would intervene. Jenna provides some amazing advice, surround yourself with others where they can help if you stumble. Listen in to hear more!

    The next caller in the queue is Cory from New York wonders if God has the moral right to endorse slavery. Oooooh, one of Matt’s “favorite” topics. Listen in to hear Matt show how immoral slavery is.

    Next up, David in Kentucky is seeking clarity on what value we assign to life and if that life is precious. Tune in to hear Matt and Jenna talk through this topic.

    Afterwards we have Michael from Arizona. Claims to be a believer and non-believer. HOW THOUGH? We don’t get to find out… goodbye Michael. Don’t call back.

    Our last caller of the day, Mike from Toronto is calling about how he and his family are struggling with how to help animals and others who are suffering in the world. What can we do to help? Yes there are bad things that happen, a good response is how can we prioritize how we help out. Keep saving those older and elderly kitties Mike, they need all the help they can get.

    • 1 hr 27 min
    Atheist Experience 24.02 2020-01-12 with Matt Dillahunty & Don Baker

    Atheist Experience 24.02 2020-01-12 with Matt Dillahunty & Don Baker

    ATHEIST EXPERIENCE 24.02 for 2020-01-12 with Matt Dillahunty & Don Baker

    SHOW TIME-STAMPS

    00:15:25 Joe - NY - Would like to talk about how bad behavior is caused by atheism.
    00:24:02 Matt - MI - No true believer would knowingly lie to create Bible stories.
    00:47:40 Ralph - FL - What is our criteria for evidence of claims for the existence of God.
    01:01:51 Ryan - FL - We can come to God through skepticism
    01:30:48 Ken - PA - Incredibly freeing to become an atheist, is becoming despondent

    SHOW NOTES

    In today’s episode of the Atheist Experience, Matt Dillahunty is joined by Don Baker. Great to see you Don! We start the show with Don’s list of Failures. Today's topic is “God’s Anointed Leaders.” Ooooh, fun.

    Let’s get to calls. The first caller is Joe from New York. He would like to talk about how bad behavior is caused by atheism and lists off a couple bad actors/leaders from humanity’s past. People doing bad things who happen to also be atheists does not mean all atheists are bad. Matt moves in to dismantle his arguments quickly.

    Next up, Matt from Michigan would like to talk about how extraordinary resurrection claims could have happened and continued to talk about how religious people did not knowingly lie to tell a story. Tune in and watch Matt walk through his claim and show how it is untestable and logically unacceptable.

    The following caller named Ralph from Florida would like to discuss the criteria for evidence of claims for the existence of God. Also is it absurd to believe the Universe is God? Ummm, yes it is and this is broaching the topic of some sort of designer in creator of the Universe. Watch Matt and Don dispute these claims.

    The next caller in the queue is Ryan from Florida wanting to discuss how we can come to God through skepticism. Claims to have been an atheist until 3 years ago. Turned to a church because of their willingness to say “I don’t know” and became a believer again. Listen in to hear Matt unpack this.

    Our last caller of the day, Ken in Pennsylvania would like to talk about how freeing it is to become an atheist, and has started to lose the drive and ambition to continue his activism. How do we continue doing what we do? Knowing we make an impact on their journey, we are convinced that not doing it will lead to a worse life. Plus be satisfied with planting seeds of doubt in others and not seeing it fruit. People can change their minds and these seeds can potentially help.

    • 1 hr 34 min

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