Has anyone on the board had the experience of being able to believe something that wasn't actually believable to you, simply by deciding to do so?
"I assume here you are not talking about suspension of disbelief. Part of enjoying a movie or a book is accepting for the duration of the experience that the characters are real or suspending disbelief in the fact that they are fictional creations. I have no issues at all with doing this, but when the credits roll or the book is closed the characters are back in the category of fictional. The problem I have with believers is that they cannot make this distinction. They put the Bible back on the shelf, but God doesn't go away.
This is characteristic of small children. Dick, Jane and Spot are real and stay in the childs world. On my 5th birthday I got The Red Pony as a gift, and for a year or so Jody was my best friend. He went with me to school, I played in his barn. As my mind matured I learned the difference between my real friends and Jody. I always wondered why my religious friends did not make this distinction with their real friends and God."