I am John Purcell, a 58 year old, white, married male, a lawyer by trade, living in America, and an atheist. I’ve been agnostic, or areligious, or just intellectually lazy (pick one) since I was a teenager. I attended Catholic elementary and secondary schools, but never found much substance to the various religious courses I was forced to take. None of the thinking ever coalesced for me. Once I graduated from high school, I became convinced that organized religions were simply institutions of self-perpetuation, but I avoided the ultimate question of whether there was actually a god. To a certain extent, it didn’t matter to me, I didn’t care, because I was (pick one from above). But in quiet moments it bothered me. Did he or didn’t he? Was she or wasn’t she? Is he or isn’t he?
Finally, about four or five years ago, once I reached the age where my children were almost grown, and it was natural, and even expected, to be a bit more philosophical as one got longer in the tooth, and after some chance discussions with online friends, I took the bull by the horns, and began a serious, systematic inquiry, on the pros and cons of whether there was a god. I read all the books I could get my hands on. Some day I’ll list them. I joined Internet Infidels and debated many of the issues I was reading about, but mostly read other posts, and learned a lot. As I said, I started from the agnostic position, so my tendency was to confirm that, but I kept an open mind. Once I felt conversant in skepticism and critical thinking, I knew that theism made no sense.
So here I am.
Oh. And I’m not Spanish. Not even remotely Hispanic. More like a mongrel mix of Irish, German, and a few other northern Europeans so far unidentified.
And at About the Inquisitor – Redux, I’ve expounded a bit more.