The Christian missionary that wanted to translate the Bible into the Piraha language became an atheist after his encounters with the natives.
His name is Daniel Leonard Everett, and he is an American author best known for his study of the Amazon Basin’s Piraha people. Today, he’s the Dean of Arts and Sciences at Bentley University.
He got married at age 18 and completed a diploma in Foreign Missions. He and his wife made it their goal to translate the Bible into all the world’s languages. When he moved to begin translating Piraha, his faith was shaken. The Piraha had a concept of truth that was foreign to him, and it started to wear on his belief in Christianity.
Over time, his belief diminished and he became an atheist. He was apparently having serious doubts in 1982 and lost all faith by 1985. He kept quiet for nearly fifteen years, but when he finally told his wife, his marriage fell apart and two of his children ceased contact with him. Today, he’s remarried and back in contact with his kids.