Posted: Feb 04, 2011 5:42 am
by King David
I don't know that I ever "deconverted" anyone, but I did bring my dad out of the atheist closet so to speak, and I believe my criticism of religion has liberalised my mother's views of religion to some degree. I can certainly tell that she is much more willing to criticize fundamentalists and dogmatists these days. I think she still "believes in belief" though. She still goes to church periodically and doesn't want me to criticize religion in front of my younger high school aged sister when I'm at home. My mother's religiosity doesn't bother me though as she is the most liberal and kind Christian I know.

Most other people I associate with are either atheists, agnostics, or vague liberal theists who don't often talk about the matter. I don't really hang around with fundies, though there are plenty in Alabama to be sure, for the reason that we have next to nothing in common.

How would one know if he had deconverted someone or not? Usually in debates people are not willing to change their minds on the spot, as that would cause them to feel defeated. They might think about the issue later and then change their mind, but I wouldn't expect them to come back to you and say "thanks for shattering my illusions with your ironclad argumentation."
If I actually cared about deconverting people I suppose I would take a softer approach which wouldn't immediately polarize the person against me, but I don't usually make a point of inquiring about people's religious views and trying to change them. I'll leave that to the fundies. Religion rarely comes up in conversation with most people, so I don't usually press the matter.