When did your religion or worldview first begin?

Christian View

The Christian Perspective

This question requires a two-pronged answer.

When God created man, at the beginning of creation, man recognized God and worshipped Him in the way God ordained. In this sense, the worship of the Christian God and reliance on His grace (which is the essence of Christianity) has been around since the time of the very first man, Adam.

However, a proper understanding of God's plan for mankind has slowly been revealed by God through His prophets over the course of several millenia, culminating in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ in the first century AD, approximately 2,000 years ago.

Christ's closest companions, called his Apostles, and a few other followers, wrote down what they witnessed and what God had divinely revealed to them in what we call the New Testament, a set of books in the Christian Bible.

As of the completion of these writings, no new universally applicable special revelation has come to man from God, and therefore, in a different sense, we can say that Christian thought, as it is today, has been around for approximately two thousand years.

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Atheist View

The Atheist Perspective

The idea that everything could be explained as a product of nothing more than mindless natural forces acting on material objects, without gods or the supernatural, primarily originated in Classical Greece (600-330 B.C.), with certain Presocratic philosophers like Democritus. Then in the Hellenistic period (330-100 B.C.) this was developed into sophisticated worldviews by philosophers like Epicurus and Strato. With the rise of Christian and Muslim dominance over the West and Middle East in the Middle Ages (400-1250 A.D.) these views were condemned or suppressed, until the rise of democratic freedoms allowed them to be pursued again in the Age of Enlightenment (1650-1800 A.D.). Since then naturalism has been greatly refined by innumerable scientific discoveries, which many believe have so thoroughly confirmed its predictions that naturalism of some form now underlies most modern philosophy and is a working assumption of most scientists. Philosophers now who have articulated naturalism as a complete worldview include Richard Carrier and Mario Bunge. A parallel development occurred in the East, with a Confucian form of naturalism developed by the Han philosopher Wang Chung (in the 1st century A.D.), though it was not influential.

The History of Metaphysical Naturalism

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