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CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 11:26 AM
I think there's a difference between Atheists (simply people that don't believe in God) and Anti-Theists. Personally the more and more I see, the more I can't stand Anti-Theists or Anti-Christians. They claim they're just Atheists, but they're not. They're just as preachy as the fundamentalists and religious people they rail against. I'm not an Atheist, but I do think the Anti-Theist or Anti-Christian types give Atheism in general a bad name and seem to be louder and more vocal and visible than the tolerant Atheists.

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 11:51 AM
I believe the people you are describing call themselves "New Atheists".

We're talking Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, Bill Maher, and their ilk.

I consider their intellectual level and theoretical strength of their arguments to be about on-par with a well-educated Libertarian. (you'll find that many of these "loud whiny atheists" are very outspokenly Libertarian, and for a reason, they share similar philosophic roots.)(

I don't like these radical atheists and if they are willing to sit and talk for a bit, push them past post-modern thought, new ways of thinking about reality so the God in question isn't the God of the classical writers (a Person).

wilbur
09-27-2010, 12:51 PM
Meh, this says it all:

http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/atheists.png

I give credit to the popularizers, like Dawkins, Hitchens, et al, even if they don't always use the most robust arguments against theism.

What the new atheists offer is enough to either counter, or at least to challenge the thinking of your average religious person, whose religious belief sits on little more than the shoddy back of a few shallow canards and weak, mushy platitudes. Its Ok that they don't address the most sophisticated arguments for theism - most religious people don't know them, nor care to know them... and most of which would put most of us to sleep within the space of a couple paragraphs.

At least in America, religion has always enjoyed at least one very unreasonable privilege - immunity from criticism. That's beginning to change, thanks to the 'fundamentalist atheists', and that is a good thing.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 12:55 PM
Meh, this says it all:

http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/atheists.png

I give credit to the popularizers, like Dawkins, Hitchens, et al, even if they don't always use the most robust arguments against theism.

What the new atheists offer is enough to either counter, or at least to challenge the thinking of your average religious person, whose religious belief sits on little more than the shoddy back of a few shallow canards and weak, mushy platitudes.

At least in America, religion has always enjoyed at least one very unreasonable privilege - immunity from criticism. That's beginning to change, thanks to the 'fundamentalist atheists', and that is a good thing.

Why is it a good thing?
What is so wrong with people believing what they want?
Why do you seek to challenge what people believe in?
So long as it is not hurting anybody, I don't see the problem.
And Atheists probably 98% of the time attack only Christianity.

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 12:58 PM
Why is it a good thing?
What is so wrong with people believing what they want?
Why do you seek to challenge what people believe in?
So long as it is not hurting anybody, I don't see the problem.
And Atheists probably 98% of the time attack only Christianity.

Challenging what people believe in is offering the gift of growth. Every time you examine what exactly you believe, what it is so to say that you are standing on top of when you assert your reality, you find that it's not as stable, not as understood, not even as existing as you had assumed it to be.

Your foundation is weak but you just don't know it yet.

Break away your imaginary ground, see that you are stepping out into a void, feel the terribly anxiety that comes with the realization of your own freedom, and find Faith in the act of walking into that groundless, empty, darkness.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 01:01 PM
Meh, this says it all:

http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/atheists.png

I give credit to the popularizers, like Dawkins, Hitchens, et al, even if they don't always use the most robust arguments against theism.

What the new atheists offer is enough to either counter, or at least to challenge the thinking of your average religious person, whose religious belief sits on little more than the shoddy back of a few shallow canards and weak, mushy platitudes. Its Ok that they don't address the most sophisticated arguments for theism - most religious people don't know them, nor care to know them... and most of which would put most of us to sleep within the space of a couple paragraphs.

At least in America, religion has always enjoyed at least one very unreasonable privilege - immunity from criticism. That's beginning to change, thanks to the 'fundamentalist atheists', and that is a good thing.


Challenging what people believe in is offering the gift of growth. Every time you examine what exactly you believe, what it is so to say that you are standing on top of when you assert your reality, you find that it's not as stable, not as understood, not even as existing as you had assumed it to be.

Your foundation is weak but you just don't know it yet.

Break away your imaginary ground, see that you are stepping out into a void, feel the terribly anxiety that comes with the realization of your own freedom, and find Faith in the act of walking into that groundless, empty, darkness.

I can examine what I believe in, privately and personally, without someone on the outside challenging, belittling or even mocking it as many Anti-Theists do.
I know I have freedom, but it seems that the Anti-Theists don't want that. They seem to want to create a non-religious world at any cost.

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 01:07 PM
They tend to be borderline-asperger in their obsession with "rationality", holding onto outdated classical principles of the Cartesean ego, they build a dead reality that's extremely "logical", dead, based on the false illusion of yourself, is ego-centric, and leads towards a sort of rabid hatrid for anything "antirational" including religious Faith. It also leads to Libertarianism.

noonwitch
09-27-2010, 01:08 PM
Challenging what people believe in is offering the gift of growth. Every time you examine what exactly you believe, what it is so to say that you are standing on top of when you assert your reality, you find that it's not as stable, not as understood, not even as existing as you had assumed it to be.

Your foundation is weak but you just don't know it yet.

Break away your imaginary ground, see that you are stepping out into a void, feel the terribly anxiety that comes with the realization of your own freedom, and find Faith in the act of walking into that groundless, empty, darkness.


So, you think a life based on faith in God is based on a weak foundation? And you've found faith in what by walking in that "groundless, empty darkness"?


I agree that growth comes from challenges, but you seem to assume that growth only occurs outside of a relationship with God, not within one.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 01:10 PM
They tend to be borderline-asperger in their obsession with "rationality", holding onto outdated classical principles of the Cartesean ego, they build a dead reality that's extremely "logical", dead, based on the false illusion of yourself, is ego-centric, and leads towards a sort of rabid hatrid for anything "antirational" including religious Faith. It also leads to Libertarianism.

From my experience, Atheists tend--not always--to be liberals.
The more polite Atheists are the ones who tend to be libertarian, but then again libertarianism seems to me to be a much less partisan point of view than either conservatism or liberalism. It's a much more subdued viewpoint.
The loud, "Wah wah let's tear down religion" Atheists seem to be more liberally inclined.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 01:19 PM
I can examine what I believe in, privately and personally, without someone on the outside challenging, belittling or even mocking it as many Anti-Theists do.

So your just put off by the fact that others are out there challenging you on your beliefs? Gotta say, don't really sympathize.



I know I have freedom, but it seems that the Anti-Theists don't want that. They seem to want to create a non-religious world at any cost.

Perhaps you are offended by what many say and how they say it, but do you really believe that? That's just silly.

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 01:21 PM
So, you think a life based on faith in God is based on a weak foundation?

I think a life based on faith in God-as-you-conceive-Him is based on a weak foundation, yes. Because God is beyond the limit of what we can experience or conceive, it's only the anxiety of the unknown that gives you access to God, not the false worship of an idea of a Person.


And you've found faith in what by walking in that "groundless, empty darkness"?

Yes. You have to step off the boat if you want to walk on water. My spiritual journey is about doing what people hate to do, look inward, and see that there's nothing there to support me. I don't want to believe in some Personified projection of myself in omnipotent form and call him God. God is beyond anything I can even think, so my faith is faith that even without an image of God to hold onto, even in the midst of darkness, with nothing at all, all that's left is the willfull letting go (or self-sacrifice in the face of your own non-being). This act of giving yourself up, this act of sacrificing everything internally, is the act of faith that illuminates the holy dimension via Christ.

I hope to not offend anyone, but I believe that if you have some image of God and you just perform rituals all day, you are actually just staving off neurotic existential anxiety, which is what a lot of people want out of religion, a sense of existential security. However, I believe that is just neurotic repetition, and that the real leap into the realm of faith requires abandoning even what you believe about God, because even those beliefs are Limits to his unboundedness.

Anxiety is at the root of being, our dual core of both Being/Non-being. It's the acceptance and willful realization of this paradox that lets us commune with God, not repeating a bunch of words over and over.


I agree that growth comes from challenges, but you seem to assume that growth only occurs outside of a relationship with God, not within one.

No I believe incredible growth can occur within oneself by finding the spark of divinity that's always already there. Like I was always told as a child, Jesus lives in your hearth.

Odysseus
09-27-2010, 01:22 PM
I think there's a difference between Atheists (simply people that don't believe in God) and Anti-Theists. Personally the more and more I see, the more I can't stand Anti-Theists or Anti-Christians. They claim they're just Atheists, but they're not. They're just as preachy as the fundamentalists and religious people they rail against. I'm not an Atheist, but I do think the Anti-Theist or Anti-Christian types give Atheism in general a bad name and seem to be louder and more vocal and visible than the tolerant Atheists.

There is. I'm not a believer, but I respect the faith of those who do believe, and who knows, I may come around to their way of thinking. What separates the militant atheist and the mellow atheist is that the mellow ones don't spend much energy on rejecting God, and aren't personally offended by the existence of belief in others.

This goes back to the question about why communists/progressives/sodalists feel the need to co-opt ideas. In this case, they cannot accept a morality that doesn't offer them control. To a socialist, the only authority that they want in their lives is themselves, because that allows them to do whatever they want. Religion imposes limits on them, both directly, with laws and concepts of right and wrong, and indirectly, by proposing that there is something beyond the immediate gratification of desires. Belief in God means that man is not the sole arbiter of truth, and that, while some truths can be appreciated by reason, ultimately reason is only one part of what makes us unique.

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 01:25 PM
I've often wondered about why someone who didn't believe in God would spend so much energy talking about Him.

In all seriousness though, it's the same problem that I've been talking about. These militant atheists also feel the need to have something secure, something stable in their image of themselves and reality, so they hold onto logic but that can only take you so far. In order to keep away the anxiety of "I don't know" when it comes to topics of metaphysics or ontology, they are far happier and feel more secure asserting positively that "THERE IS NO GOD OR ANYTHING SUPERNATURAL ALL IS RATIONAL".

This is similar to what happens with people with Aspergers syndrome, hence the correlation between militant atheism, aspergers syndrome, and occupations such as computer science

wilbur
09-27-2010, 01:27 PM
They tend to be borderline-asperger in their obsession with "rationality"

Ah see... WWW calls all new atheists autistic, and its the new atheists who are the mean ones!



, holding onto outdated classical principles of the Cartesean ego,

Huh, what? Explain.



they build a dead reality that's extremely "logical", dead, based on the false illusion of yourself, is ego-centric, and leads towards a sort of rabid hatrid for anything "antirational" including religious Faith. It also leads to Libertarianism.

Again, wah? Can't really decipher this at all, its just looks like a word salad to me. Maybe you are trying to say that new atheists are reductionists, and that reductionism takes all the romance and beauty out of life (I'd argue that it doesnt, as would many others). Explain.

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 01:38 PM
Ah see... WWW calls all new atheists autistic, and its the new atheists who are the mean ones!

There's nothing wrong with having an Autism spectrum neurotype. They can't help it.




Huh, what? Explain.

they believe in a pure self or "I" that can, or must, be rationally believed to exist persistently through time.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 01:43 PM
I've often wondered about why someone who didn't believe in God would spend so much energy talking about Him.

"God" is probably the most widespread and longest running hypothesis for origin of the universe and the reason for our existence... I have a hard time wondering why that shouldn't interest me, whether I believe it to be accurate or not.



In all seriousness though, it's the same problem that I've been talking about. These militant atheists also feel the need to have something secure, something stable in their image of themselves and reality, so they hold onto logic but that can only take you so far. In order to keep away the anxiety of "I don't know" when it comes to topics of metaphysics or ontology, they are far happier and feel more secure asserting positively that "THERE IS NO GOD OR ANYTHING SUPERNATURAL ALL IS RATIONAL".

This is similar to what happens with people with Aspergers syndrome, hence the correlation between militant atheism, aspergers syndrome, and occupations such as computer science

Ok, good grief - you've got it exactly backwards. The naturalist atheist, which is what most new atheists today could be classified as, are hardly uncomfortable with uncertainty. That, quite frankly, is the *hard part* about atheism, for most people.

Religion has traditionally been the provider of certainty - think about it... most religions can tell you why your here, and where you're going after they die - do you think the 9/11 hijackers were uncertain about "their ontology and metaphysics"?

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 01:46 PM
"God" is probably the most widespread and longest running hypothesis for origin of the universe and the reason for our existence... I have a hard time wondering why that shouldn't interest me, whether I believe it to be accurate or not.



Ok, good grief - you've got it exactly backwards. The naturalist atheist, which is what most new atheists today could be classified as, are hardly uncomfortable with uncertainty. That, quite frankly, is the *hard part* about atheism, for most people.

Religion has traditionally been the provider of certainty - think about it... most religions can tell you why your here, and where you're going after they die - do you think the 9/11 hijackers were uncertain about "their ontology and metaphysics"?

Why can't the militant atheists go be insecure in some corner somewhere and stop attacking what other people believe is all I want to know?
I don't go around preaching on how foolish Atheism is, or ATTACKING the mindset, or mocking it. Militant atheists, however, love to belittle the believer's views.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 01:54 PM
There's nothing wrong with having an Autism spectrum neurotype. They can't help it.

People with low IQ's can't help it either, but its still pretty socially unacceptable and insulting to refer to an entire population of people as having symptoms of low IQ's. Autistic people generally don't have a good sense for what is socially acceptable.. perhaps you are showing symptoms! See how easy that is?



they believe in a pure self or "I" that can, or must, be rationally believed to exist persistently through time.

Err,still don't know. Current research in neuroscience is having a large impact on the naturalist atheist (ie, new atheist) view of the self - and neuroscience is really starting to show us that our sense of "I", that is our sense that our mind is a unified and persistent entity, is illusory. That who we perceive ourselves to be is really an ongoing, and ever changing consequence of the complicated interactions of the many systems of the brain and body.

Seriously, you're getting it backwards again.. its the theists who are advocating the persistent person (and in the process, dismiss or ignore the latest science in favor the opinions of their favorite theist philosophers, many of whom have been dead for over a thousand years) - hell, they even think "I" persists after death.

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 01:57 PM
Why can't the militant atheists go be insecure in some corner somewhere and stop attacking what other people believe is all I want to know?
I don't go around preaching on how foolish Atheism is, or ATTACKING the mindset, or mocking it. Militant atheists, however, love to belittle the believer's views.

Deal with it. It's called the first Amendment and it's something liberals, conservatives, socialists, capitalists, everyone agrees with.

You are free to believe whatever you want but you aren't free from the beliefs of others. If you want to have a nice little bubble of beliefs and you don't want anyone disturbing you, you should stay in a corner somewhere and avoid talking to people because that's the only way to sustain such illusion.

Or you can surround yourself with people who think like you do, an echo chamber, and hope that nothing else breaks through.

Some people find value in ideological deconstruction, you may not, but too bad. deal with it.

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 02:00 PM
People with low IQ's can't help it either, but its still pretty socially unacceptable, and would be considered insulting to refer to an entire population of people as having symptoms of low IQ's ... Autistic people have trouble with socialization.. perhaps you are showing symptoms. See how easy that is?



Err,still don't know. Current research in neuroscience is having a large impact on the naturalist atheist (ie, new atheist) view of the self - and neuroscience is really starting to show us that our sense of "I", that is our sense that our mind is a unified and persistent entity, is illusory. That who we perceive ourselves to be is really an ongoing, and ever changing consequence of the complicated interactions of the many systems of the brain and body.

Seriously, you're getting it backwards again.. its the theists who are advocating the persistent person - hell, they even think "I" persists after death.

Points well made. I believe that the discomfort associate with the disillusionment of this unified persistent self is at the core of many belief systems, religious and political.

Still though, perhaps I should rethink a thing or two here.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 02:17 PM
Why can't the militant atheists go be insecure in some corner somewhere and stop attacking what other people believe is all I want to know?


Well, do you generally think its bad when many people believe false things? History certainly shows us that it can be very devastating.. I don't see the problem with campaigning, or making it your cause to combat what you believe to be widespread false belief.



I don't go around preaching on how foolish Atheism is, or ATTACKING the mindset, or mocking it. Militant atheists, however, love to belittle the believer's views.

The Bible says explicitly, "The fool in his heart, hath no God". Christians the world over have taken this as licesnse to belittle those who question the existence of God. Seriously. Maybe you just have to be on the other side to notice it, but atheism has been and is mocked viciously by believers the world over. Hell, they even have their own TV stations.... they take the street corners... its everywhere, you just have to pay attention.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 02:27 PM
"God" is probably the most widespread and longest running hypothesis for origin of the universe and the reason for our existence... I have a hard time wondering why that shouldn't interest me, whether I believe it to be accurate or not.



Ok, good grief - you've got it exactly backwards. The naturalist atheist, which is what most new atheists today could be classified as, are hardly uncomfortable with uncertainty. That, quite frankly, is the *hard part* about atheism, for most people.

Religion has traditionally been the provider of certainty - think about it... most religions can tell you why your here, and where you're going after they die - do you think the 9/11 hijackers were uncertain about "their ontology and metaphysics"?


Well, do you generally think its bad when many people believe false things? History certainly shows us that it can be very devastating.. I don't see the problem with campaigning, or making it your cause to combat what you believe to be widespread false belief.



The Bible says explicitly, "The fool in his heart, hath no God". Christians the world over have taken this as licesnse to belittle those who question the existence of God. Seriously. Maybe you just have to be on the other side to notice it, but atheism has been and is mocked viciously by believers the world over. Hell, they even have their own TV stations.... they take the street corners... its everywhere, you just have to pay attention.

But, you have no proof that religion or religious beliefs of any form is false. You have objective proof that there is no God, or Gods. I don't either, but I have faith.

Who said I believe in the Bible?

wilbur
09-27-2010, 02:41 PM
But, you have no proof that religion or religious beliefs of any form is false. You have objective proof that there is no God, or Gods. I don't either, but I have faith.

Generally, the burden of proof rests with those who are asserting something to be true.

Hypothetically, lets say I believe that undetectable, invisible leprechauns push and pull things around, and that this is what causes the phenomenon that we call "gravity". There is no proof against this belief, as it predicts our reality just as well as other theories... but there certainly isnt evidence to support it. So then is it bad or mean spirited for you to suggest that perhaps this belief is unfounded and unsupported by the evidence? I hope you don't think so!

But, if by proof you mean "evidence", then on the contrary... there is *TONS* of evidence that the universe was *not* designed by an intelligent creator person.




Who said I believe in the Bible?

Well, then why the targeted criticism of atheists? Religious folk have been doing it longer, louder, meaner, and angrier, with orders of magnitude more media reach and societal influence. Hell, its only in fairly recent history, and in the more westernized parts of the world, that outing yourself as an unbeliever wouldn't put your life at risk.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 02:44 PM
Generally, the burden of proof rests with those who are asserting something to be true.

Hypothetically, lets say I believe that undetectable, invisible leprechauns push and pull things around, and that this is what causes the phenomenon that we call "gravity". Is it mean spirited or unethical for you to challenge this belief? Is it bad for you to suggest that perhaps this belief is unfounded and unsupported by the evidence? I hope you don't think so!

But, if by proof you mean "evidence", then on the contrary... there is *TONS* of evidence that the universe was *not* designed by an intelligent creator person.




Well, then why the targeted criticism of atheists? Religious folk have been doing it longer, louder, meaner, and angrier, with orders of magnitude more media reach and societal influence. Hell, its only in fairly recent history, and in the more westernized parts of the world, that outing yourself as an unbeliever wouldn't put your life at risk.

How's this: We agree to disagree.
But that's not enough for you and those like you. You'll keep attacking religion no matter what.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 02:56 PM
How's this: We agree to disagree.
But that's not enough for you and those like you. You'll keep attacking religion no matter what.

Is it enough for you to agree to disagree with those of a political ideology with which you disagree vehemently? Is it enough for you to just to sit back and watch as their beliefs continue to influence policies of government, and attitudes of the populace? I doubt it. So why's it so hard to understand?

I mean, seriously, give me a break dude - do religious people sit back and say "live and let live"? No, most believe that they have a calling. Most believe that explicit instructions were given to them by the creator of the universe, to witness, to convert, to spread the news, to make sure their belief system is spread as far and wide as it can possibly be. Give THEM the lectures on attacking the beliefs of others, for goodness sake. Will they ever stop attacking atheism? NO!

Now that a few folk on the opposite side of the spectrum have decided to defend themselves against the ever present religious assault and dared question their opinions... you call THAT the "attack"?!? C'mon...

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 03:05 PM
Is it enough for you to agree to disagree with those of a political ideology with which you disagree vehemently? Is it enough for you to just to sit back and watch as their beliefs continue to influence policies of government, and attitudes of the populace? I doubt it. So why's it so hard to understand?

I mean, seriously, give me a break dude - do religious people sit back and say "live and let live"? No, most believe that they have a calling. Most believe that explicit instructions were given to them by the creator of the universe, to witness, to convert, to spread the news, to make sure their belief system is spread as far and wide as it can possibly be. Give THEM the lectures on attacking the beliefs of others, for goodness sake.

Now that a few folk on the opposite side of the spectrum have decided to defend themselves against the ever present religious assault and dared question their opinions... you call THAT the "attack"?!? C'mon...

There is a difference: I don't want to see those political ideologies abolished, or see them disappear; I disagree with far right conservatism, but I don't want to see it vanish. Atheists want to see ALL religion disappear completely, and I am certain would love the chance to outlaw religion. Given that we're a pretty secular country, I don't see Christianity influencing government so much, and I don't see other religions like Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Wicca, etc influencing policy at all. Why do Atheists care so much about the attitudes of the populace--Popular opinion? It seems you feel like you're at war with religion.

Yeah, they do. It's militant atheists who are turning this into a big issue by attacking religion at any attempt and finding shit like depictions of mangers and the words "Merry Christmas" offensive. Maybe where you live is different but I've never had someone try and witness to me or convert me to any religion, but I've had Atheists like you laugh at me for believing.

You guys are the ones in attack and assault mode. Like I said, manger depictions, ''Merry Christmas'', displays of the Ten Commandments--These things are a grave offense to people like you.

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 03:07 PM
Children of religious households are literally taught scripts on how to proselytize to others. I was taught this stuff too growing up. It seemed like the right thing to do too, after all, if you felt like you knew something very important why shouldn't you try to share it and help people? Well it's easy to take it all for granted and forget that other people believe other things, and often times don't like being told they are wrong.

Religious folk do try to change the minds of others FAR more than atheists, this is a blunt fact. It's obvious, they have a moral obligation to do so. It's not just about beliefs, it's about eternal salvation, they are willing to bother people to help save a soul, or at least they should be if they believe what they claim to.

Watch the film Jesus Camp, from an evangelical household, I can tell you it's a pretty spot-on depiction of that culture.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 03:14 PM
Children of religious households are literally taught scripts on how to proselytize to others. I was taught this stuff too growing up. It seemed like the right thing to do too, after all, if you felt like you knew something very important why shouldn't you try to share it and help people? Well it's easy to take it all for granted and forget that other people believe other things, and often times don't like being told they are wrong.

Religious folk do try to change the minds of others FAR more than atheists, this is a blunt fact. It's obvious, they have a moral obligation to do so. It's not just about beliefs, it's about eternal salvation, they are willing to bother people to help save a soul, or at least they should be if they believe what they claim to.

Watch the film Jesus Camp, from an evangelical household, I can tell you it's a pretty spot-on depiction of that culture.

I was raised Roman Catholic, went to Catholic school from grades 3-12 and I was never taught to proselytize, nor given scripts how to. I was never taught to push Jesus on anybody.

Maybe Fundamentalists do, but fundamentalists are fundamentalists and one shouldn't judge EVERY religion by the standards of Christian fundamentalists. That seems to be the main problem. It seems like from experience, the more radical Atheists act like Christianity = Fundamentalist Evangelical Young Earth Christianity. People like the ThinkingAtheist think this way.

I watch Jesus Camp, it was disturbing, but again, I don't think even in Christianity that that's the norm.

But then again I was lucky enough to be born into one of the most ''laid back'' Christian denominations.

But it's like this: I don't agree with Scientology, but I don't want to see it disappear. I don't agree with Islam, but I don't want to see it disappear. I don't agree with Atheism, but I don't want it to disappear. Militant Atheists, on the other hand, won't be happy until there is no such thing as religion, organized or no. They want to eliminate religion from the face of the Earth and are waging an aggressive PR campaign to do so.

I do find people like Ray Comfort as annoying as people like Richard Dawkins. Both are the same.

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 03:18 PM
I was raised Roman Catholic, went to Catholic school from grades 3-12 and I was never taught to proselytize, nor given scripts how to. I was never taught to push Jesus on anybody.

Maybe Fundamentalists do, but fundamentalists are fundamentalists and one shouldn't judge EVERY religion by the standards of Christian fundamentalists. That seems to be the main problem. It seems like from experience, the more radical Atheists act like Christianity = Fundamentalist Evangelical Young Earth Christianity. People like the ThinkingAtheist think this way.

I watch Jesus Camp, it was disturbing, but again, I don't think even in Christianity that that's the norm.

But then again I was lucky enough to be born into one of the most ''laid back'' Christian denominations.

But it's like this: I don't agree with Scientology, but I don't want to see it disappear. I don't agree with Islam, but I don't want to see it disappear. I don't agree with Atheism, but I don't want it to disappear. Militant Atheists, on the other hand, won't be happy until there is no such thing as religion, organized or no. They want to eliminate religion from the face of the Earth and are waging an aggressive PR campaign to do so.

I'm curious, if you believe that when you die you go to heaven or hell, eternal bliss with God or eternal suffering, and that there is a way into heaven and you know that way....

do you not feel any moral push to spread that to others? or do you have more of the "I got mine, jack" attitude towards eternal salvation?

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 03:18 PM
I don't care to see any of these religions dissapear, I think they have much to offer.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 03:26 PM
Children of religious households are literally taught scripts on how to proselytize to others. I was taught this stuff too growing up. It seemed like the right thing to do too, after all, if you felt like you knew something very important why shouldn't you try to share it and help people? Well it's easy to take it all for granted and forget that other people believe other things, and often times don't like being told they are wrong.

Religious folk do try to change the minds of others FAR more than atheists, this is a blunt fact. It's obvious, they have a moral obligation to do so. It's not just about beliefs, it's about eternal salvation, they are willing to bother people to help save a soul, or at least they should be if they believe what they claim to.

Watch the film Jesus Camp, from an evangelical household, I can tell you it's a pretty spot-on depiction of that culture.


I'm curious, if you believe that when you die you go to heaven or hell, eternal bliss with God or eternal suffering, and that there is a way into heaven and you know that way....

do you not feel any moral push to spread that to others? or do you have more of the "I got mine, jack" attitude towards eternal salvation?

I personally feel people have freedom of choice. If someone wants religion, they'll find it their own way. I don't claim that there's one true path. Hell, I'm still trying to find my own way. I'll probably land somewhere between Hinduism, Neo-Paganism or Gnosticism--that's where I've been leaning. I know though that I'll always believe in Jesus' words as a philosophy--I stopped being a Christian because of the Old Testament violence and hatred. Even so, I don't like people who try to push stuff on others. It only splits people.

I'm not a fan of Fundamentalism in any form or witnessing, so I have an equal distaste for both Religious Evangelists and Atheistic Evangelists. That is the thing--There are probably around 5 billion believers of all different religions, and of those, the Evangelist types aren't the majority. In Atheism, however, it seems that the militant Evangelist types either are the majority, or simply speak the loudest.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 03:38 PM
I personally feel people have freedom of choice. If someone wants religion, they'll find it their own way. I don't claim that there's one true path. Hell, I'm still trying to find my own way. I'll probably land somewhere between Hinduism, Neo-Paganism or Gnosticism--that's where I've been leaning. I know though that I'll always believe in Jesus' words as a philosophy--I stopped being a Christian because of the Old Testament violence and hatred. Even so, I don't like people who try to push stuff on others. It only splits people.

I'm not a fan of Fundamentalism in any form or witnessing, so I have an equal distaste for both Religious Evangelists and Atheistic Evangelists. That is the thing--There are probably around 5 billion believers of all different religions, and of those, the Evangelist types aren't the majority. In Atheism, however, it seems that the militant Evangelist types either are the majority, or simply speak the loudest.

Well lets be honest here, you don't speak for every religious person. Your disposition is not the disposition of every religious person, or even most of them. When I look at the state of the world, I see a drastic need for counter apologetics, and continued opposition to religious dogma - these aren't beliefs that have zero effect outside the belief holders mind.. they influence the world. See 9/11.

And no, I don't want to outlaw religion, and I don't know any atheist who does - that includes Dawkins, Hitchens, and all the rest. Most of us recognize that such a cure would be worse than the disease.

But seriously, there are thousands of kids every year, being pumped out of religious and seminary colleges, trained with the most sophisticated arguments it is possible to muster for theism and their religion, specifically to proselytize their beliefs and to attack the contrary beliefs of others. The battle is very asymmetrical, and it aint the atheists who have the loudest voice here.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 03:41 PM
And just what the heck does it mean to say "Yea, I don't like belief X, but I don't want to see it disappear"? Is that supposed to be noble or good? If so, I don't see why.

Do you also feel the same way about white supremacists? What about the belief that demons cause disease, and the only way to fight disease is through prayer? What about the belief that Jews are an inferior race? What about the belief that the Earth is flat? You want those to stick around too?

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 03:42 PM
Well lets be honest here, you don't speak for every religious person. Your disposition is not the disposition of every religious person, or even most of them. When I look at the state of the world, I see a drastic need for counter apologetics, and continued opposition to religious dogma - these aren't beliefs that have zero effect outside the belief holders mind.. they influence the world. See 9/11.

And no, I don't want to outlaw religion, and I don't know any atheist who does - that includes Dawkins, Hitchens, and all the rest. Most of us recognize that such a cure would be worse than the disease.

But seriously, there are thousands of kids every year, being pumped out of religious and seminary colleges, trained with the most sophisticated arguments it is possible to muster for theism and their religion, specifically to proselytize their beliefs and to attack the contrary beliefs of others. The battle is very asymmetrical, and it aint the atheists who have the loudest voice here.

Whatever, continue in your little crusade to eliminate the ''disease'' of religion. Ignore all the good that's been done by religion. Ignore that many are actually happy with their religion and they don't need to be mocked for what they believe in. See, you're just like any other Atheist--you can barely conceal your contempt and hate for religion. Note at no point did I ever refer to Atheism as a disease or anything like it.
But, you can continue preaching the beauty of a meaningless, purposeless existence.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 03:46 PM
And just what the heck does it mean to say "Yea, I don't like belief X, but I don't want to see it disappear"? Is that supposed to be noble or good? If so, I don't see why.

Do you also feel the same way about white supremacists? What about the belief that demons cause disease, and the only way to fight disease is through prayer? What about the belief that Jews are an inferior race? What about the belief that the Earth is flat? You want those to stick around too?

Yeah. People are free to be stupid and believe in whatever they like, that's part of the beauty of freedom.
Nice little subtle attempt to compare religion with white supremacy. Note that not every religion, nor even every denomination of religion believes the only way to fight disease is through prayer. If someone wants to believe in white supremacy, or that the Jews are inferior, or that the Earth is flat, that is their business. That's the thing. I don't believe in collective salvation. You seem to believe all should be ''saved'' by Atheism, similar to how a religious fundamentalist believes all should be 'saved' for X or Y religion.

You have more in common with fundamentalists than you think.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 03:49 PM
Whatever, continue in your little crusade to eliminate the ''disease'' of religion.

Well, thank you, we will, despite your obvious annoyance.



Ignore all the good that's been done by religion. Ignore that many are actually happy with their religion and they don't need to be mocked for what they believe in.


I don't ignore the good done by religion - I think religion does a great many things very well, and any secular, non-religious way of life needs to be able to provide all the net benefits that religions provide, and more.



See, you're just like any other Atheist--you can barely conceal your contempt and hate for religion. Note at no point did I ever refer to Atheism as a disease or anything like it.


I've been fairly restrained as most of your posts have been unwarranted, delusional and mean spirited generalizations of the whole of atheism - so whatever.



But, you can continue preaching the beauty of a meaningless, purposeless existence.

Thanks!

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 03:55 PM
Well, thank you, we will, despite your obvious annoyance.



I don't ignore the good done by religion - I think religion does a great many things very well, and any secular, non-religious way of life needs to be able to provide all the net benefits that religions provide, and more.



I've been fairly restrained as most of your posts have been unwarranted, delusional and mean spirited generalizations of the whole of atheism - so whatever.



Thanks!

No wonder why polls put Atheists as the most hated people in society. So fucking arrogant.
http://newsjunkiepost.com/2009/09/19/research-finds-that-atheists-are-most-hated-and-distrusted-minority/
The only disease is Atheists.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 03:55 PM
Yeah. People are free to be stupid and believe in whatever they like, that's part of the beauty of freedom.
Nice little subtle attempt to compare religion with white supremacy. Note that not every religion, nor even every denomination of religion believes the only way to fight disease is through prayer. If someone wants to believe in white supremacy, or that the Jews are inferior, or that the Earth is flat, that is their business. That's the thing. I don't believe in collective salvation. You seem to believe all should be ''saved'' by Atheism, similar to how a religious fundamentalist believes all should be 'saved' for X or Y religion.

You have more in common with fundamentalists than you think.

You are missing the point - you claimed that you feel certain beliefs should stick around, even though you oppose them. You have not justified why this is good.

Note that the desire for a belief to vanish doesn't mean that you desire *make it vanish* by prohibiting the belief by law. I would like belief in Islam to vanish, for example, but through the free exchange of ideas.

And I guarantee, there are far more Christians, Muslims, etc would *LOVE* to see atheism stamped out *completely*... so again I ask, why not go lecture them?

wilbur
09-27-2010, 03:57 PM
No wonder why polls put Atheists as the most hated people in society. So fucking arrogant.
http://newsjunkiepost.com/2009/09/19/research-finds-that-atheists-are-most-hated-and-distrusted-minority/
The only disease is Atheists.

Yet we're the oppressors! Funny how that works. Non-religious are also the fastest growing demographic in the country...

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 03:58 PM
Well, thank you, we will, despite your obvious annoyance.



I don't ignore the good done by religion - I think religion does a great many things very well, and any secular, non-religious way of life needs to be able to provide all the net benefits that religions provide, and more.



I've been fairly restrained as most of your posts have been unwarranted, delusional and mean spirited generalizations of the whole of atheism - so whatever.



Thanks!


You are missing the point - you claimed that you feel certain beliefs should stick around, even though you oppose them. You have not justified why this is good.

Note that the desire for a belief to vanish doesn't mean that you desire *make it vanish* by prohibiting the belief by law. I would like belief in Islam to vanish, for example, through the free exchange of ideas.

And I guarantee, there are far more Christians, Muslims, etc would *LOVE* to see atheism stamped out *completely*... so again I ask, why not go lecture them?

Why do you want the entire world to be Atheist?
No variety, huh? Everyone must be a non God believing drone in your view.
And yeah, I think the fact that people have the freedom to believe what they want is a perfect justification. If someone is a stupid ass white supremest, it doesn't effect me.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-27-2010, 04:00 PM
Yet we're the oppressors! Funny how that works. Non-religious are also the fastest growing demographic in the country...

Its because of people like yourself that people dislike Atheism.
Don't cry oppression now. Atheists aren't oppressed.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 04:03 PM
Its because of people like yourself that people dislike Atheism.
Don't cry oppression now. Atheists aren't oppressed.

You posted the proof! .

wilbur
09-27-2010, 04:10 PM
Why do you want the entire world to be Atheist?
No variety, huh? Everyone must be a non God believing drone in your view.

Well then let's put it this way - would you prefer everyone in the world held true beliefs, or would you rather that we all held differing false beliefs, simply for the sake of variety? I sure as heck can't see why variety would be so important. Truth matters more to me.



And yeah, I think the fact that people have the freedom to believe what they want is a perfect justification.


So lets get this straight... according to your theory of knowledge, a belief is justified as long as you have the freedom to hold that belief? That seems absurd.

We, as a society, recognize that people have the freedom, under the law, to hold unjustifiable beliefs - that doesn't mean the rest of us can't criticize them, and/or try to convince them that their beliefs are wrong. We just can't and shouldn't punish them legally for it.



If someone is a stupid ass white supremest, it doesn't effect me.

I take it you aren't black...

Odysseus
09-27-2010, 05:07 PM
And I guarantee, there are far more Christians, Muslims, etc would *LOVE* to see atheism stamped out *completely*... so again I ask, why not go lecture them?
Well, to be fair, the Muslims would like to see all other beliefs or lack of belief stamped out.

Why do you want the entire world to be Atheist?
No variety, huh? Everyone must be a non God believing drone in your view.
And yeah, I think the fact that people have the freedom to believe what they want is a perfect justification. If someone is a stupid ass white supremest, it doesn't effect me.
Why do Progressives/Liberals/Socialists/etc., demand that everyone believe in the same things that they do? An angry, dogmatic demand for conformity of belief is proof of doubt, not faith. Look where you have the angriest attacks coming from, and I'll show you those who lack faith in their own convictions.

Well then let's put it this way - would you prefer everyone in the world held true beliefs, or would you rather that we all held differing false beliefs, simply for the sake of variety? I sure as heck can't see why variety would be so important. Truth matters more to me.
How about everyone in the world being free to find the truth for themselves, and being free to choose which beliefs appeal to them? It isn't truth that matters to you, it's control.




So lets get this straight... according to your theory of knowledge, a belief is justified as long as you have the freedom to hold that belief? That seems absurd.
You're missing his point. The belief is not, in and of itself, justified by people having the freedom to accept or reject it, but belief can only exist if there is freedom to accept or reject it. Otherwise, what you have is conformity, not faith or reason.


We, as a society, recognize that people have the freedom, under the law, to hold unjustifiable beliefs - that doesn't mean the rest of us can't criticize them, and/or try to convince them that their beliefs are wrong. We just can't and shouldn't punish them legally for it.
Can't you? Suppose a religious Jew or Christian in a psychiatric residence program is tossed out for referring a gay patient to another practicioner if they are not comfortable treating them within the confines of their lifestyle? How about a Catholic hospital being told that it must provide birth control and abortion services if it wants to remain accredited? Should a New Jersey Transit employee be fired for burning a Qur'an on his own time? How about a Miss America contestant being publicly insulted by a pageant judge for expressing her belief that marriage is between a man and a woman?

The first three involve public agencies, a college, a federal oversight agency and a municipal transportation agency, punishing people for expressions of faith that run afoul of PC dogma. These actions have the force of law, and the people being punished are being punished because they are acting on their faith, to the detriment of no one else. In the fourth case, you have a person being subjected to vicious public attacks for expressing a simple, religiously inspired belief, one that the majority of Americans agree with.

Rockntractor
09-27-2010, 05:12 PM
And I guarantee, there are far more Christians, Muslims, etc would *LOVE* to see atheism stamped out *completely*... so again I ask, why not go lecture them?

Personally it doesn't sadden me that much that you show no interest in heaven, you would depress everyone!:rolleyes:

Lager
09-27-2010, 05:20 PM
Challenging what people believe in is offering the gift of growth.

In your case, it's about showing your misguided sense of superiority by attacking a relatively easy target. It's hip to attack Christianity right now, and kind of cliche. Otherwise you'd never be bold enough to lead the way.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 05:36 PM
Well, to be fair, the Muslims would like to see all other beliefs or lack of belief stamped out.


So would most Christians.... well, maybe not the Calvinists.



How about everyone in the world being free to find the truth for themselves, and being free to choose which beliefs appeal to them? It isn't truth that matters to you, it's control.


If you have a heated, passionate, and even angry argument about conservatism with a liberal, and you manage to convince him that your ideas are more true than his in the process and he concedes to your philosophy, I think we would all still say he has chosen his belief freely. I wouldn't sit here and say that you are trying to "control him".. whatever that is supposed to mean.

And there's no difference in that example from the new atheist/theist debate, or in what the OP is ranting against.



You're missing his point. The belief is not, in and of itself, justified by people having the freedom to accept or reject it, but belief can only exist if there is freedom to accept or reject it. Otherwise, what you have is conformity, not faith or reason.


But that was his point - I stated clearly that I don't think atheism should be mandated or that religion should be outlawed - thats absurd. No "new atheist", the folk that he's ranting about, have ever presented this sort of thing as an argument. Get real.

And before you even try, we all know you can find a few anecdotes of some crazy atheist(s) going too far.. but I can also find anecdotes of Christians blowing up abortion doctors and other such examples... we all know these sorts of things aren't the norm.

I don't think it makes sense to say belief can only exist if we "are free to accept it or reject it" - I don't think its possible to reject my belief that 2+2=4. I simply have no say in the matter, I can't un-believe it. Freedom of belief makes for a better society.. but I don't think it makes sense to say that freedom is necessary for a belief to "exist".



Can't you? Suppose a religious Jew or Christian in a psychiatric residence program is tossed out for referring a gay patient to another practicioner if they are not comfortable treating them within the confines of their lifestyle? How about a Catholic hospital being told that it must provide birth control and abortion services if it wants to remain accredited? Should a New Jersey Transit employee be fired for burning a Qur'an on his own time? How about a Miss America contestant being publicly insulted by a pageant judge for expressing her belief that marriage is between a man and a woman?

The first three involve public agencies, a college, a federal oversight agency and a municipal transportation agency, punishing people for expressions of faith that run afoul of PC dogma. These actions have the force of law, and the people being punished are being punished because they are acting on their faith, to the detriment of no one else.

Yet in none of your examples is anyone actually punished for holding an unjustified belief - they are negatively impacted by their actions, which are considered - in most of your examples - discriminatory. I don't think we should punish the white supremacist for believing he is superior to black people either.. but if he starts discriminating, well then... we have a problem.



In the fourth case, you have a person being subjected to vicious public attacks for expressing a simple, religiously inspired belief, one that the majority of Americans agree with.

Social pressure is fine... but still, she wasn't punished under the law for her belief, and I sure as hell don't want her to be. If you can't take the heat, find a country that doesn't have freedom of speech.

Lager
09-27-2010, 05:44 PM
So would most Christians....


You really feel strong enough to stand by that statement? Do you like... know any Christians yourself? Or only from what you see on the TV.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 06:03 PM
You really feel strong enough to stand by that statement? Do you like... know any Christians yourself? Or only from what you see on the TV.

Yep, pretty confident that this is true...

And growing up in a very Catholic household, and going to catholic school my whole life, Sunday school, church every Sunday till I moved out of the house, yea... I know a few Christians. I know few who wouldn't prefer that everyone else in the world be Christian too.

Odysseus
09-27-2010, 07:19 PM
So would most Christians.... well, maybe not the Calvinists.
One would think that, as a Jew, I'd get more pressure to convert in Christian America, but that's not the case. I've met very few Christians who sought to convert me, and usually, it was girls who saw me as marriage material if I could just come around.


If you have a heated, passionate, and even angry argument about conservatism with a liberal, and you manage to convince him that your ideas are more true than his in the process and he concedes to your philosophy, I think we would all still say he has chosen his belief freely. I wouldn't sit here and say that you are trying to "control him".. whatever that is supposed to mean.

And there's no difference in that example from the new atheist/theist debate, or in what the OP is ranting against.
Usually, when I have angry, intense debates over conservatism vs. liberalism, it's because liberals are trying to impose their agenda on the nation as a whole, or because someone has personalized the argument (>cough< Gator >cough<). In other words, the stakes are high and I perceive a need to fight for something or against something critical. If you feel the need to do that whenever you see an expression of faith, then you are feeling as threatened by that expression as I am by liberal policy positions.


But that was his point - I stated clearly that I don't think atheism should be mandated or that religion should be outlawed - thats absurd. No "new atheist", the folk that he's ranting about, have ever presented this sort of thing as an argument. Get real.
But militant atheists have done everything within their power to eliminate public expressions of faith, except for Islamic expressions, which seem to get a pass from our elites. The logic of thei position is that they claim that a nativity scene or a menorah on public land violates their right to not be offended by the sight of such a thing, and they have enshrined their offense in law.


And before you even try, we all know you can find a few anecdotes of some crazy atheist(s) going too far.. but I can also find anecdotes of Christians blowing up abortion doctors and other such examples... we all know these sorts of things aren't the norm.
But the Christians who have gone after, what, a half-dozen abortion clinics, have not managed to get them banned, but it's a rare city manager who is willing to brave the wrath of the ACLU by putting up a creche by city hall. Attacks on religion, through lawfare, are far more common than attacks on abortion clinics.


I don't think it makes sense to say belief can only exist if we "are free to accept it or reject it" - I don't think its possible to reject my belief that 2+2=4. I simply have no say in the matter, I can't un-believe it. Freedom of belief makes for a better society.. but I don't think it makes sense to say that freedom is necessary for a belief to "exist".
You've obviously never read 1984.

Yet in none of your examples is anyone actually punished for holding an unjustified belief - they are negatively impacted by their actions, which are considered - in most of your examples - discriminatory. I don't think we should punish the white supremacist for believing he is superior to black people either.. but if he starts discriminating, well then... we have a problem.
You are splitting hairs. The impacts are the punishments. Psychiatric doctoral candidates are thrown out of a program for expressing a view, not that homosexuality is wrong or evil, just that it is incompatible with their beliefs, and therefore, they aren't the best qualified to counsel someone seeking affirmation of their lifestyle. The Catholic hospitals are being fined for not providing a medical service that they don't consider a service. The transit worker was denied his job for something completely unrelated to his performance of that job, and in each case, it was a government agency acting to curtail their rights to their religious expressions or protests. These are punishments by government, imposed with the full power of the state, and in each case, the reverse would not have held true. Would a public college have fired a gay psychiatric candidate who refused to counsel a Christian who was having a crisis of faith and sought to return to God? Would the feds deny funding to a fac9ility that actively sought to provide abortions to minors without parental consent (which has actually been documented)? Would the transit worker have been fired for burning an American flag instead of a Qur'an?

Social pressure is fine... but still, she wasn't punished under the law for her belief, and I sure as hell don't want her to be. If you can't take the heat, find a country that doesn't have freedom of speech.
One could argue that she had.

By attacking her the way that they did, the media sought to silence her point of view without actually addressing it. They insulted, defamed and humiliated her because she disagreed with the cool kids' position. In that, what Perez Hilton did was no different than the fatwas imposed by mullahs on apostates, and the message is the same: Toe the line or lose your livelyhood, career, dignity or even your life.

MrsSmith
09-27-2010, 08:17 PM
So would most Christians.... well, maybe not the Calvinists. Well...maybe not Christians at all. Christians would like to see more of the world come to a faith that embraces love of fellow man, love of Christ, self sacrifice, and living an honorable life, but that doesn't mean we want to "stamp out" anything.









Yet in none of your examples is anyone actually punished for holding an unjustified belief - they are negatively impacted by their actions, which are considered - in most of your examples - discriminatory. I don't think we should punish the white supremacist for believing he is superior to black people either.. but if he starts discriminating, well then... we have a problem.



Social pressure is fine... but still, she wasn't punished under the law for her belief, and I sure as hell don't want her to be. If you can't take the heat, find a country that doesn't have freedom of speech.

And yet, this is often active and vicious discrimination against Christians...though many seem quite content and happy with this type of discrimination because they happen to agree with it. Still, discrimination, prejudice and bigotry are all those things even when the target is "a majority" Christian.

MrsSmith
09-27-2010, 08:26 PM
Children of religious households are literally taught scripts on how to proselytize to others. I was taught this stuff too growing up. It seemed like the right thing to do too, after all, if you felt like you knew something very important why shouldn't you try to share it and help people? Well it's easy to take it all for granted and forget that other people believe other things, and often times don't like being told they are wrong.

Religious folk do try to change the minds of others FAR more than atheists, this is a blunt fact. It's obvious, they have a moral obligation to do so. It's not just about beliefs, it's about eternal salvation, they are willing to bother people to help save a soul, or at least they should be if they believe what they claim to.

Watch the film Jesus Camp, from an evangelical household, I can tell you it's a pretty spot-on depiction of that culture.


I was raised Roman Catholic, went to Catholic school from grades 3-12 and I was never taught to proselytize, nor given scripts how to. I was never taught to push Jesus on anybody.

Maybe Fundamentalists do, but fundamentalists are fundamentalists and one shouldn't judge EVERY religion by the standards of Christian fundamentalists. That seems to be the main problem. It seems like from experience, the more radical Atheists act like Christianity = Fundamentalist Evangelical Young Earth Christianity. People like the ThinkingAtheist think this way.

I am a fundamentalist. I have no doubt that Genesis is scientifically accurate, and that our science may eventually become accurate enough to prove this. I have no doubt of the rational basis for Genesis and a fervent belief in God. I find the atheist viewpoint highly irrational, being founded on a Beginning of Life that is completely accidental, something which seems absurd.

However, as an outspoken Fundamentalist, I have never "taught my children a script" to save someone...that is the work of Christ. We have prayed for those that need Christ, and we've made mention of the fact that we could show them evidence, but there is no script, there is no need to proselytize...if you live the life, your life speaks far more loudly than words or tracts.

In truest fact, the only sects that actively proselytize around here are the Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses...and they will mark you off their list as soon as you mention being Southern Baptist. Those that know the foundations of their faith are "dangerous" to those that only know scripts and tracts.

MrsSmith
09-27-2010, 08:31 PM
Well lets be honest here, you don't speak for every religious person. Your disposition is not the disposition of every religious person, or even most of them. When I look at the state of the world, I see a drastic need for counter apologetics, and continued opposition to religious dogma - these aren't beliefs that have zero effect outside the belief holders mind.. they influence the world. See 9/11.

And no, I don't want to outlaw religion, and I don't know any atheist who does - that includes Dawkins, Hitchens, and all the rest. Most of us recognize that such a cure would be worse than the disease.

But seriously, there are thousands of kids every year, being pumped out of religious and seminary colleges, trained with the most sophisticated arguments it is possible to muster for theism and their religion, specifically to proselytize their beliefs and to attack the contrary beliefs of others. The battle is very asymmetrical, and it aint the atheists who have the loudest voice here.

Let us balance this with the hundreds of thousands pumped out of every other college and university in the land with their heads totally filled by leftist, atheist professors...many of whom have absolutely no knowledge of the foundations of the faith the hate, even if they happen to teach classes on it, but have a great love for stamping that faith out of any Christian kid that belonged to a church that fed only milk and not meat. The fact that so many don't know the foundation doesn't mean it doesn't exist, it merely means that most public schooled kids are ignorant, Christian or not.

In truth, the atheists not only have far more educational institutions, they have the courts and government, also.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 09:51 PM
Usually, when I have angry, intense debates over conservatism vs. liberalism, it's because liberals are trying to impose their agenda on the nation as a whole, or because someone has personalized the argument (>cough< Gator >cough<). In other words, the stakes are high and I perceive a need to fight for something or against something critical. If you feel the need to do that whenever you see an expression of faith, then you are feeling as threatened by that expression as I am by liberal policy positions.


Well, yes - and yes. So what? I am threatened, as all we are, by religious belief in various forms. You sure seem to feel threatened by Islam.

The dots you aren't connecting though, is that just about every single high level argument for God as used by Christian apologists can be leveraged to justify the reasonableness of Islam - and the Muslims do use them.. as the religion grows in the west you are going to see them borrow more and more all the sophisticated arguments of the Christian theologians - and quite frankly, all those who have bought into their philosophical hype, but still want to oppose Islam, will have undermined themselves.



But militant atheists have done everything within their power to eliminate public expressions of faith, except for Islamic expressions, which seem to get a pass from our elites.

This conflates differing groups of people: PC politicians may sure be kissing the ass of Islam, but we're talking about new atheists here.. the movement that started on Sept 11, 2001. Islam doesn't get any less comfort under their wing than Christianity does.

And they've been calling out the left for ages on their hypocrisy and mild indifference to the human rights abuses of Muslims and the like.



The logic of thei position is that they claim that a nativity scene or a menorah on public land violates their right to not be offended by the sight of such a thing, and they have enshrined their offense in law.


Actually, do some digging and you'll find many instances where secular groups or persons desiring some equal representation, attempted to put up their own monuments or holiday signs... only to be denied the right or to have them defamed or taken down by Christians, while Nativities and the like stayed on display.

The laws that "get enshrined" in these instances generally come in two forms. Either everyone who desires it can put up a sign, or no one can. In other words, take your ball and go home, or learn to share. Sounds fair, right?



You are splitting hairs. The impacts are the punishments. Psychiatric doctoral candidates are thrown out of a program for expressing a view, not that homosexuality is wrong or evil, just that it is incompatible with their beliefs, and therefore, they aren't the best qualified to counsel someone seeking affirmation of their lifestyle. The Catholic hospitals are being fined for not providing a medical service that they don't consider a service. The transit worker was denied his job for something completely unrelated to his performance of that job, and in each case, it was a government agency acting to curtail their rights to their religious expressions or protests. These are punishments by government, imposed with the full power of the state, and in each case, the reverse would not have held true. Would a public college have fired a gay psychiatric candidate who refused to counsel a Christian who was having a crisis of faith and sought to return to God? Would the feds deny funding to a fac9ility that actively sought to provide abortions to minors without parental consent (which has actually been documented)? Would the transit worker have been fired for burning an American flag instead of a Qur'an?


The distinction between belief and action is very real, and very important. It's no semantic quibble.

One might have the deepest conviction that the world really be better off without, say... Asians. One might hold this to be true with every fiber of their being. One can hold this belief with complete impunity from the law - at least when its operating like it should. But the minute that beliefs starts having an effect in the real world, we have the power (and responsibility) to put a stop to it - or to criticize it with all the fury we can gather.

Nothing wrong with that at all.



One could argue that she had.

By attacking her the way that they did, the media sought to silence her point of view without actually addressing it. They insulted, defamed and humiliated her because she disagreed with the cool kids' position. In that, what Perez Hilton did was no different than the fatwas imposed by mullahs on apostates, and the message is the same: Toe the line or lose your livelyhood, career, dignity or even your life.

The media attempted to get ratings and serve up some fresh meat - no more conspiratorial than that. And Perez Hilton a Mullah issuing Fatwas? You do make me laugh sometimes..

Wei Wu Wei
09-27-2010, 09:54 PM
I am a fundamentalist. I have no doubt that Genesis is scientifically accurate, and that our science may eventually become accurate enough to prove this. I have no doubt of the rational basis for Genesis and a fervent belief in God. I find the atheist viewpoint highly irrational, being founded on a Beginning of Life that is completely accidental, something which seems absurd.

how does this happen

wilbur
09-27-2010, 10:01 PM
Let us balance this with the hundreds of thousands pumped out of every other college and university in the land with their heads totally filled by leftist, atheist professors...many of whom have absolutely no knowledge of the foundations of the faith the hate, even if they happen to teach classes on it, but have a great love for stamping that faith out of any Christian kid that belonged to a church that fed only milk and not meat. The fact that so many don't know the foundation doesn't mean it doesn't exist, it merely means that most public schooled kids are ignorant, Christian or not.

In truth, the atheists not only have far more educational institutions, they have the courts and government, also.

Man, really... is *anyone* not out to get you? Another phenomenon grossly exaggerated by one with a persecution fetish.

Whatever effect the leftist professors here and there who let their bias spill out overtly into their classroom have, is absolutely nothing to the effect of getting rigorous and targeted apologetics training for an entire curriculum.

m00
09-27-2010, 10:04 PM
Whatever effect the leftist professors here and there who let their bias spill out overtly into their classroom have, is absolutely nothing to the effect of getting rigorous and targeted apologetics training for an entire curriculum.

So, you don't see "modern liberalism" as a religion?

To use the evolution/creationism example... do most people who believe in evolution really understand the theories, and scientific data? Or do they just believe?

wilbur
09-27-2010, 10:06 PM
Well...maybe not Christians at all. Christians would like to see more of the world come to a faith that embraces love of fellow man, love of Christ, self sacrifice, and living an honorable life, but that doesn't mean we want to "stamp out" anything.


Duh, well... when one belief is accepted and other conflicting beliefs are rejected, they are essentially "stamped out" - that doesn't mean gulags and death camps, it just means people changed their mind. I have a hard time picturing many Christians who wouldn't think it a desirable thing to have the entire world change their mind to Christianity.



And yet, this is often active and vicious discrimination against Christians...though many seem quite content and happy with this type of discrimination because they happen to agree with it. Still, discrimination, prejudice and bigotry are all those things even when the target is "a majority" Christian.

Sure, it happens sometimes, but that makes Christians rather unexceptional - sometimes they get discriminated against, sometimes they do the discriminating. Point me to a rigorous sociological study that demonstrates Christians are victims of greater and more unjust discrimination than any other group, and I'll give your comments some weight... till then, your just asserting without justification.

wilbur
09-27-2010, 10:09 PM
So, you don't see "modern liberalism" as a religion?

I don't know... I'm perfectly content to not abuse the term religion by applying it to everything - liberalism is an ideology and a philosophy to me, not a religion.



To use the evolution/creationism example... do most people who believe in evolution really understand the theories, and scientific data? Or do they just believe?

No definitely not. They generally trust scientists when speaking about matters in their area of expertise. Which is fine.

FlaGator
09-27-2010, 10:14 PM
Personally it doesn't sadden me that much that you show no interest in heaven, you would depress everyone!:rolleyes:

wilbur is just another lost soul who instead of trying to find his way out has instead plopped himself down in a mud hole and called it home.

m00
09-27-2010, 10:24 PM
I don't know... I'm perfectly content to not abuse the term religion by applying it to everything - liberalism is an ideology and a philosophy to me, not a religion.

What is your definition of a religion?

wilbur
09-27-2010, 10:41 PM
What is your definition of a religion?

I don't know... #1 on dictionary.com seems like a meaningful one to me:


a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, esp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

m00
09-27-2010, 10:51 PM
I don't know... #1 on dictionary.com seems like a meaningful one to me:


a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, esp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.


This was a bit too fun to be serious. :D I give you, Liberalism (the religion):

a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe

Evolution, Big Bang, Global Warning, Serving Mother Nature
usually involving devotional and ritual observances

Attending activism rallies, smoking weed at 4:20, not eating meat...
and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

Welfare, taxing the rich, socialism, cap & trade...


Okay, now back to being serious. My point was that if an Atheist was to say to a Christian "Well, you justtake Creationism on faith without evidence" wouldn't this only be valid if all Atheists actually understood the evidence for evolution, and the science behind it? Because otherwise, one goes to a school and simply reads in a text book about evolution, natural selection, and sharing common ancestors with other living organisms without really understanding it. But believing it, because the science book said so. How is this different than a Christian saying the Bible says so?

I highly doubt most people who answer, when asked, that they believe in evolution actually understand concepts like genetic drift (for example). What's the difference with them still believing in Evolution because book A says so, and Christians believing in Creationism because book B says so? Other than, of course, everyone agrees book A was written by the good people at Proctor&Gamble where Christians at least believe book B has divine origins.

wilbur
09-28-2010, 08:54 AM
This was a bit too fun to be serious. :D I give you, Liberalism (the religion):

a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe

Evolution, Big Bang, Global Warning, Serving Mother Nature
usually involving devotional and ritual observances

Attending activism rallies, smoking weed at 4:20, not eating meat...
and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

Welfare, taxing the rich, socialism, cap & trade...


Heh, niiiice...



Okay, now back to being serious. My point was that if an Atheist was to say to a Christian "Well, you justtake Creationism on faith without evidence" wouldn't this only be valid if all Atheists actually understood the evidence for evolution, and the science behind it? Because otherwise, one goes to a school and simply reads in a text book about evolution, natural selection, and sharing common ancestors with other living organisms without really understanding it. But believing it, because the science book said so. How is this different than a Christian saying the Bible says so?

I highly doubt most people who answer, when asked, that they believe in evolution actually understand concepts like genetic drift (for example). What's the difference with them still believing in Evolution because book A says so, and Christians believing in Creationism because book B says so? Other than, of course, everyone agrees book A was written by the good people at Proctor&Gamble where Christians at least believe book B has divine origins.


The big difference is that most creationists openly say that evidence doesnt matter. The statement of faith at answersingenesis explicitly says that they take it as an axiom that the creation story is a literal and historical story, and everything we discover in our studies of the natural world, *must* be interpreted according to that belief, no matter what. Evidence simply doesnt enter into it for them. They do like it when they can manage to make it appear that some evidence confirms their beliefs or poses problems for TTOE.. but that's just an extra bonus, not a necessity.

So not only do they have no evidence for creationism, but they actually say they don't need it.

The rest of us who arent biologists accept evolution based on reliable scientific authority, just like we usually accept the opinions of our doctors. And of course, evidence always matters... and we trust that it at least matters to the biologists, even if we laymen don't particularly care to know the details.

Odysseus
09-28-2010, 10:28 AM
Well, yes - and yes. So what? I am threatened, as all we are, by religious belief in various forms. You sure seem to feel threatened by Islam.
I am threatened by Islam. So are you. Don't take my word for it, though, take theirs:


We -- with God's help -- call on every Muslim who believes in God and wishes to be rewarded to comply with God's order to kill the Americans and plunder their money wherever and whenever they find it. We also call on Muslim ulema, leaders, youths, and soldiers to launch the raid on Satan's U.S. troops and the devil's supporters allying with them, and to displace those who are behind them so that they may learn a lesson.
That's Osama Bin Laden's 1998 call to Jihad against America, after we saved Muslims in Bosnia, liberated Kuwait and provided hundreds of millions of dollars in food aid to impoverished states like Afghanistan and Sudan.


The dots you aren't connecting though, is that just about every single high level argument for God as used by Christian apologists can be leveraged to justify the reasonableness of Islam - and the Muslims do use them.. as the religion grows in the west you are going to see them borrow more and more all the sophisticated arguments of the Christian theologians - and quite frankly, all those who have bought into their philosophical hype, but still want to oppose Islam, will have undermined themselves.
There have been over 16,000 documented terrorist acts committed in the name of Islam since 9/11. How many acts of terror have been committed by Christians or Jews in the name of God? The dots that you willfully refuse to connect are that not all religions are equally tolerant. A Christian's salvation is not threatened by your lack of faith; he only gets his back up when you attack his, and even then, the most that he's likely to do is write something bad about you here. A Jew isn't bothered by your eating bacon, and your foreskin is no skin off my nose. But to a Muslim, whose world is divided into Dar al Harb and Dar al Salaam (House of War and House of Peaceful Submission), the presence of even one non-believer who is not subservient to them is an affront to Allah, and it is their duty to carry it out. And, as noted above, they are doing their duty with a vengeance.


This conflates differing groups of people: PC politicians may sure be kissing the ass of Islam, but we're talking about new atheists here.. the movement that started on Sept 11, 2001. Islam doesn't get any less comfort under their wing than Christianity does.
Okay, you treat peaceful Christians with the same contempt, derision and loathing that you treat violent, extremist Muslims. What part of this makes sense to you?


And they've been calling out the left for ages on their hypocrisy and mild indifference to the human rights abuses of Muslims and the like.
I'm sure that will be a great comfort to the next woman stoned in Iran.


Actually, do some digging and you'll find many instances where secular groups or persons desiring some equal representation, attempted to put up their own monuments or holiday signs... only to be denied the right or to have them defamed or taken down by Christians, while Nativities and the like stayed on display.
And you can, of course, provide examples of this? Because this is news to me, but the ACLU's forcing the City of Los Angeles to take the cross off of their seal (the city was founded by Catholic missionaries, will they be forced to change the name next?) is well-known, as are the lawsuits in which atheists attack any mention of God or religion that isn't derisive.


The laws that "get enshrined" in these instances generally come in two forms. Either everyone who desires it can put up a sign, or no one can. In other words, take your ball and go home, or learn to share. Sounds fair, right?
Until you examine it closely. Why should a movement whose basic tenet is not belief in something, but the absence of belief, be given equal time with believers? What are you expressing with your signs except mockery or disdain of the beliefs of others?




The distinction between belief and action is very real, and very important. It's no semantic quibble.
Funny, but that's not what you said up top, when you compare Islam and every other faith in the world and pointed out that all beliefs are equally invalid, and to be threatened by Islam is no more rational than to be threatened by B'Hais or Zoroastrians.


One might have the deepest conviction that the world really be better off without, say... Asians. One might hold this to be true with every fiber of their being. One can hold this belief with complete impunity from the law - at least when its operating like it should. But the minute that beliefs starts having an effect in the real world, we have the power (and responsibility) to put a stop to it - or to criticize it with all the fury we can gather.

Nothing wrong with that at all.
And if that fury includes threats, slander and invasions of privacy, that's okay too? Which brings us to...


The media attempted to get ratings and serve up some fresh meat - no more conspiratorial than that. And Perez Hilton a Mullah issuing Fatwas? You do make me laugh sometimes..
Ah, the chilling effect that liberals hate whenever someone treats their speech with the derision that it warrants doesn't apply to Carrie Prejean and anyone else who might have agreed with her, but was cowed by the fear of loss of their jobs or public humiliation? Nice double standard there. But, let's say that those are only words, and that they can't hurt you (guess we can ditch all of those pesky hate crimes laws now, right?), what about actions? How about gay activists invading churches during services and committing acts of vandalism? Does that go over the line?

wilbur
09-28-2010, 11:36 AM
Well, I'm going to keep the answers short - not sure what to do with your post, almost all of it is not relevant to anything I've said in this thread.



I am threatened by Islam. So are you. Don't take my word for it, though, take theirs:


Yes - I acknowledged as much.



That's Osama Bin Laden's 1998 call to Jihad against America, after we saved Muslims in Bosnia, liberated Kuwait and provided hundreds of millions of dollars in food aid to impoverished states like Afghanistan and Sudan.


Yep.



There have been over 16,000 documented terrorist acts committed in the name of Islam since 9/11. How many acts of terror have been committed by Christians or Jews in the name of God? The dots that you willfully refuse to connect are that not all religions are equally tolerant. A Christian's salvation is not threatened by your lack of faith; he only gets his back up when you attack his, and even then, the most that he's likely to do is write something bad about you here. A Jew isn't bothered by your eating bacon, and your foreskin is no skin off my nose. But to a Muslim, whose world is divided into Dar al Harb and Dar al Salaam (House of War and House of Peaceful Submission), the presence of even one non-believer who is not subservient to them is an affront to Allah, and it is their duty to carry it out. And, as noted above, they are doing their duty with a vengeance.


Meh - of course, there are a billion or so Muslims who aren't terrorists, and interpret their own violent book as benignly as Jews interpret their own violent atrocity filled book (don't worry, I still criticize those Muslims). But whatever. This is all just not relevant to anything I ever said. I'm not arguing that extremist Muslims aren't a threat.



Okay, you treat peaceful Christians with the same contempt, derision and loathing that you treat violent, extremist Muslims. What part of this makes sense to you?


It doesn't, but I don't do as you accuse.



I'm sure that will be a great comfort to the next woman stoned in Iran.


Who says that all of these people aren't in a position to help prevent some of these abuses - either directly or indirectly?



And you can, of course, provide examples of this? Because this is news to me, but the ACLU's forcing the City of Los Angeles to take the cross off of their seal (the city was founded by Catholic missionaries, will they be forced to change the name next?) is well-known, as are the lawsuits in which atheists attack any mention of God or religion that isn't derisive.


Here's one from my hometown. There was a rather benign secular billboard put up here recently... and it was defaced with in a few days:

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2010/06/28/1531001/controversial-atheist-billboard.html

Hey look, in this case everyone seems to get along:
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,461424,00.html

One where they don't get along:
http://articles.cnn.com/2008-12-05/living/atheists.christmas_1_sign-freedom-from-religion-foundation-nativity-scene?_s=PM:LIVING
http://freethinker.co.uk/2010/02/03/religious-zealot-files-lawsuit-over-%E2%80%98hateful%E2%80%99-atheist-winter-solstice-sign-in-illinois/

And if your *really* interested.. you can find more.



Until you examine it closely. Why should a movement whose basic tenet is not belief in something, but the absence of belief, be given equal time with believers? What are you expressing with your signs except mockery or disdain of the beliefs of others?


Why shouldnt it? Got a good reason, other than it annoys you?



Funny, but that's not what you said up top, when you compare Islam and every other faith in the world and pointed out that all beliefs are equally invalid, and to be threatened by Islam is no more rational than to be threatened by B'Hais or Zoroastrians.


Reread what I read - I said the high level philosophical arguments used by theologians to defend and justify Christianity can be employed by Muslims wanting to justify Islam. And they are.. they use the same cosmological arguments, the same moral arguments, many of the same questionable, self-serving historical methods that help them make the case that their holy book is actually divine... all these things have been given credibility in the west because of Christianity. And Islam finds great shelter under them. Christianity supports Islam more than any liberal ever has.



And if that fury includes threats, slander and invasions of privacy, that's okay too? Which brings us to...

Ah, the chilling effect that liberals hate whenever someone treats their speech with the derision that it warrants doesn't apply to Carrie Prejean and anyone else who might have agreed with her, but was cowed by the fear of loss of their jobs or public humiliation? Nice double standard there. But, let's say that those are only words, and that they can't hurt you (guess we can ditch all of those pesky hate crimes laws now, right?), what about actions?


What is wrong with any of the above? Its a regular occurrence for public figures to come under fire for saying controversial things. Often, they lose their platforms. So what?!


How about gay activists invading churches during services and committing acts of vandalism? Does that go over the line?

Of course it does. Every gay person I know was face palming themselves when this happened.. because they know most of you won't bother to distinguish this group of idiots from the rest.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-28-2010, 11:58 AM
Yet we're the oppressors! Funny how that works. Non-religious are also the fastest growing demographic in the country...

If it were up to Atheists, beautiful ceremonies like this wouldn't exist.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4GB5YXWIGVs
But then, the greatest contribution of Atheism to society was Nihilism. That's their crowning achievement.

wilbur
09-28-2010, 12:07 PM
If it were up to Atheists, beautiful ceremonies like this wouldn't exist.
But then, the greatest contribution of Atheism to society was Nihilism. That's their crowning achievement.

Hate to break it to you, but few atheist thinkers are nihilists. And their contributions include prominent, robust, powerful theories of moral realism, meaning love, and more.

And good god... I had to play a part in many of those types of ceremonies... no I sure won't cry if there's never a confirmation ever again.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-28-2010, 12:10 PM
Hate to break it to you, but few atheist thinkers are nihilists. And their contributions include prominent, robust, powerful theories of moral realism, meaning love, and more.

And good god... I had to play a part in many of those types of ceremonies... no I sure won't cry if there's never a confirmation ever again.

I know you won't. You hate religion.
And just as much as you hate religion, I hate atheists.

Wei Wu Wei
09-28-2010, 12:27 PM
I know you won't. You hate religion.
And just as much as you hate religion, I hate atheists.


whoa now

Odysseus
09-28-2010, 12:32 PM
Well, I'm going to keep the answers short - not sure what to do with your post, almost all of it is not relevant to anything I've said in this thread.
Translation from Wilburspeak: I lost, but I won't admit defeat.


Yes - I acknowledged as much.
Yep.
Meh - of course, there are a billion or so Muslims who aren't terrorists, and interpret their own violent book as benignly as Jews interpret their own violent atrocity filled book (don't worry, I still criticize those Muslims). But whatever. This is all just not relevant to anything I ever said. I'm not arguing that extremist Muslims aren't a threat.
The presence of non-terrorist Muslims is a nice straw man, but it evades the point (and obscures it, as well, since polls show overwhelming support for jihadi goals among "mainstream" Muslims, as well as a significant lack of sympathy for their victims, which is one of the reasons that such acts continue). Islam, as practiced by significant percentages of Muslims, is inherently violent. Christianity and Judaism are not. You cite ancient texts, but ignore modern interpretations. Leviticus, for example, demands stoning of adulterers, but when was the last time that a Christian or Jew participated in such an act? OTOH, Muslim states not only impose this in their current legal codes, but act upon it regularly. Judaism hasn't been a prosletyzing religion since before the fall of Rome. Christianity hasn't sought converts through force in centuries, but Islam not only demands that unbelievers convert, but that unbelievers in non-Muslims states abide by Sharia law, and millions of Muslims act upon those demands, rioting on cue, undermining western governments that don't toe the line and pushing against every act of resistance to the spread of Islam with violent force. There is no comparison, but that doesn't stop you from continually making moral equivalence arguments.

It doesn't, but I don't do as you accuse.
That;s exactly what you did when you wrote this: "Well, yes - and yes. So what? I am threatened, as all we are, by religious belief in various forms. You sure seem to feel threatened by Islam." You equated a violent religion with peaceful religions and lumped them all together.

Who says that all of these people aren't in a position to help prevent some of these abuses - either directly or indirectly?
Anyone who is paying attention? First, there is the fact that these abuses occur with apalling regularity throughout Islamic states; Not to mention honor killings, child marriage and a host of other ills which are not only sanctioned by Islam, but commonly occur throughout the Islamic world, and have begun to occur in those parts of the world where Muslims have settled. Second, since those states which, while supposedly secular, have enshrined Sharia law, any attempt to mitigate or oppose the sentences handed down by Sharia courts is considered blasphemous, and results in similar penalties. So, even if there were people in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia or Iran who oppose these practices, the power in the hands of the fanatics cows them and prevents them from acting against these atrocities.

Here's one from my hometown. There was a rather benign secular billboard put up here recently... and it was defaced with in a few days:

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2010/06/28/1531001/controversial-atheist-billboard.html
You consider a sign next to a Nativity Scene and a Menorah that says, "There is only our natural world. Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds," benign? That's just mockery next to symbols that other consider holy. The Christmas Tree and Nativity Scene inspire Christians, as does the Menorah inspire Jews. What does the insult to religion inspire in atheists, beyond smug contempt for believers?


Why shouldnt it? Got a good reason, other than it annoys you?[?QUOTE]
Several.
First, a movement whose basic tenet is not belief in something, but the absence of belief, is based on the absence of values, rather than any real values. If, OTOH, you are claiming that atheists have beliefs which are just as valid as those of theistic believers, then you are admitting that atheism is a belief system, a religion, in other words.
Second, why is it the obligation of a neutral state to give equal time to the mockery or disdain of the beliefs of others? The Nativity Scene and Menorah are not meant to offend you, but the mockery of atheists has no other purpose but to offend believers. Why must the state subsidize and enshrine your hate?

[QUOTE=wilbur;317962]Reread what I read - I said the high level philosophical arguments used by theologians to defend and justify Christianity can be employed by Muslims wanting to justify Islam. And they are.. they use the same cosmological arguments, the same moral arguments, many of the same questionable, self-serving historical methods that help them make the case that their holy book is actually divine... all these things have been given credibility in the west because of Christianity. And Islam finds great shelter under them. Christianity supports Islam more than any liberal ever has.
This demonstrates a fundamental lack of understanding of Christian and Muslim cosmology. The Judeo-Christian tradition proposes that God is bound by His own laws, and that those times when He suspends them are exceptions (and thus, miracles). The Islamic concept of Allah holds that Allah is bound by nothing, that the universe exists in accordance with his will as it stands, that there is no cause and effect, no morality except that which accomplishes the will of Allah and that all things and people must submit. The obvious difference in the way that the two cultures approach science should demonstrate the profound difference caused by this divergence of thought. The moral arguments differ as well. In Judaism, God makes a covenant with man, and conducts himself in predictable and knowable ways. In Islam, Allah rules absolutely, and man can only submit. A Jew or Christian who bears false witness, steals, murders or otherwise transgresses against God's laws, even for the benefit of the faith, is in the wrong. In Islam, such actions are permissible if they advance Islam. There is no morality except that which advances Islam, Sharia and those who follow either.


What is wrong with any of the above? Its a regular occurrence for public figures to come under fire for saying controversial things. Often, they lose their platforms. So what?!
Okay, so we can ditch those hate crimes laws that penalize public statements of bias?

Of course it does. Every gay person I know was face palming themselves when this happened.. because they know most of you won't bother to distinguish this group of idiots from the rest.
They palmed the wrong faces. If a few of them had slapped down the activists, hard, this wouldn't be an issue. Where is the public denunciation of this kind of conduct from gay activists? Where did gay public figures come out against that kind of attack? The answer: Nowhere. If there was a huge gay opposition to the conduct of the activists, it is a well-kept secret, just as the Islamic opposition to terrorism is one of the quietest opposition movements in history.

wilbur
09-28-2010, 01:40 PM
Translation from Wilburspeak: I lost, but I won't admit defeat.

The presence of non-terrorist Muslims is a nice straw man, but it evades the point (and obscures it, as well, since polls show overwhelming support for jihadi goals among "mainstream" Muslims, as well as a significant lack of sympathy for their victims, which is one of the reasons that such acts continue). Islam, as practiced by significant percentages of Muslims, is inherently violent. Christianity and Judaism are not. You cite ancient texts, but ignore modern interpretations. Leviticus, for example, demands stoning of adulterers, but when was the last time that a Christian or Jew participated in such an act? OTOH, Muslim states not only impose this in their current legal codes, but act upon it regularly. Judaism hasn't been a prosletyzing religion since before the fall of Rome. Christianity hasn't sought converts through force in centuries, but Islam not only demands that unbelievers convert, but that unbelievers in non-Muslims states abide by Sharia law, and millions of Muslims act upon those demands, rioting on cue, undermining western governments that don't toe the line and pushing against every act of resistance to the spread of Islam with violent force. There is no comparison, but that doesn't stop you from continually making moral equivalence arguments.

That;s exactly what you did when you wrote this: "Well, yes - and yes. So what? I am threatened, as all we are, by religious belief in various forms. You sure seem to feel threatened by Islam." You equated a violent religion with peaceful religions and lumped them all together.


Check out stories from Africa, and you can see Christians slaughtering kids for witchcraft, proposing death penalties for homosexuals, etc. But in any case, I agree, Islam is more consistently violent (today) and never said otherwise. That does not mean less violent religions don't pose serious threats to the world in their own unique ways.

First and foremost, they pose threats to the world because they are false.

But your drawing unwarranted inferences from my words... again with you, always working off of some caricature liberal/atheist template in your head instead of what's in front of you.



Anyone who is paying attention? First, there is the fact that these abuses occur with apalling regularity throughout Islamic states; Not to mention honor killings, child marriage and a host of other ills which are not only sanctioned by Islam, but commonly occur throughout the Islamic world, and have begun to occur in those parts of the world where Muslims have settled. Second, since those states which, while supposedly secular, have enshrined Sharia law, any attempt to mitigate or oppose the sentences handed down by Sharia courts is considered blasphemous, and results in similar penalties. So, even if there were people in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia or Iran who oppose these practices, the power in the hands of the fanatics cows them and prevents them from acting against these atrocities.


Again, who are you talking about?! Liberals in government, or new atheists? You're all over the place. Cuz I gotta tell ya again... this thread was about new atheists, not the vaporous liberal boogey man that haunts your mind. And new atheists have been vocal adversaries of Islams and Sharia.



You consider a sign next to a Nativity Scene and a Menorah that says, "There is only our natural world. Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds," benign? That's just mockery next to symbols that other consider holy. The Christmas Tree and Nativity Scene inspire Christians, as does the Menorah inspire Jews. What does the insult to religion inspire in atheists, beyond smug contempt for believers?


Yep - quite frankly, I doesn't matter whether you think it tasteful or not. Again, if you can't take the heat, find a country that doesn't have that pesky freedom of speech. And notice how no religious monuments are removed in these stories.




First, a movement whose basic tenet is not belief in something, but the absence of belief, is based on the absence of values, rather than any real values. If, OTOH, you are claiming that atheists have beliefs which are just as valid as those of theistic believers, then you are admitting that atheism is a belief system, a religion, in other words.

Second, why is it the obligation of a neutral state to give equal time to the mockery or disdain of the beliefs of others? The Nativity Scene and Menorah are not meant to offend you, but the mockery of atheists has no other purpose but to offend believers. Why must the state subsidize and enshrine your hate?


"Why must the state subsidize your hate?"!? Going right for the melodramatic, theatrical rhetoric... you should work for a news network. In none of those cases, was anything "subsidized by the state". The monuments, the signs, etc were erected by private parties.



This demonstraes a fundamental lack of understanding of Christian and Muslim cosmology. The Judeo-Christian tradition proposes that God is bound by His own laws, and that those times when He suspends them are exceptions (and thus, miracles).

Huh? You are mixing up laws of nature and God's nature. Generally God is considered to be bound by his nature, not the laws of this universe, over which he is completely sovereign.



The Islamic concept of Allah holds that Allah is bound by nothing, that the universe exists in accordance with his will as it stands, that there is no cause and effect, no morality except that which accomplishes the will of Allah and that all things and people must submit


Which is really divine command theory in a nutshell - a theory popular with many Christian sects.



. The obvious difference in the way that the two cultures approach science should demonstrate the profound difference caused by this divergence of thought. The moral arguments differ as well. In Judaism, God makes a covenant with man, and conducts himself in predictable and knowable ways. In Islam, Allah rules absolutely, and man can only submit. A Jew or Christian who bears false witness, steals, murders or otherwise transgresses against God's laws, even for the benefit of the faith, is in the wrong. In Islam, such actions are permissible if they advance Islam. There is no morality except that which advances Islam, Sharia and those who follow either.


You simply aren't familiar with the philosophical material here. Divine Command Theory, Cosmological arguments (Kalam, Leibniz), reformed epistemology, etc.



Okay, so we can ditch those hate crimes laws that penalize public statements of bias?

I don't think they are particularly good for anything - but hate crimes don't punish public statements of bias. They are penalty escalations for crimes of a certain character. Keyword there, being "crimes". It has to be a crime before it can be reclassified as a hate crime.

Hate crime laws have no bearing on anything said in this thread.



They palmed the wrong faces. If a few of them had slapped down the activists, hard, this wouldn't be an issue. Where is the public denunciation of this kind of conduct from gay activists? Where did gay public figures come out against that kind of attack? The answer: Nowhere. If there was a huge gay opposition to the conduct of the activists, it is a well-kept secret, just as the Islamic opposition to terrorism is one of the quietest opposition movements in history.

Did you look for one? How do you know they haven't?

And Muslims also denounce terrorism all the time, but if you wait for foxnews or Rush Limbaugh to deliver those messages to you though, you aren't ever going to see them.

Odysseus
09-28-2010, 06:48 PM
Check out stories from Africa, and you can see Christians slaughtering kids for witchcraft, proposing death penalties for homosexuals, etc. But in any case, I agree, Islam is more consistently violent (today) and never said otherwise. That does not mean less violent religions don't pose serious threats to the world in their own unique ways.
Rather than simply make the assertion, perhaps a link would be in order?


First and foremost, they pose threats to the world because they are false.
There are benign falsehoods, or do you consider the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus a threat as well?


But your drawing unwarranted inferences from my words... again with you, always working off of some caricature liberal/atheist template in your head instead of what's in front of you.
What's in front of me is already a caricature. I simply point out the logical fallacies of your arguments. Don't blame me for pegging you.


Again, who are you talking about?! Liberals in government, or new atheists? You're all over the place. Cuz I gotta tell ya again... this thread was about new atheists, not the vaporous liberal boogey man that haunts your mind. And new atheists have been vocal adversaries of Islams and Sharia.
I don't recall the words "New Atheists" in the title of the thread, just atheists. If you want to try to narrowly define the rules to suit your argument, don't expect me to play along. The thread is about atheists, but more specifically, those atheists who feel the need to demonize all faiths (you) as opposed to those who accept and respect the faiths of others (me).

Yep - quite frankly, I doesn't matter whether you think it tasteful or not. Again, if you can't take the heat, find a country that doesn't have that pesky freedom of speech.
No one is denying the atheists the right to speak, but they don't have the right to a venue that is meant to celebrate a holiday. What holiday were the atheists celebrating? Before I clicked on the link, I expected a generic "happy holidays" poster, or even something about the Winter Solstice, which would have made sense, but this was simply the equivalent of graffiti.

And notice how no religious monuments are removed in these stories.
But in other stories, they have been. I cited the ACLU suit against Los Angeles, in which a cross was removed from the city's seal. There's also the Mt. Soledad Cross, a veteran's memorial in San Diego that atheist groups are constantly attacking through the courts. Then there's the cross that atheists had a court remove from a private memorial that had been placed on public land in the middle of the desert. Apparently, just knowing that the cross was there offended them.

"Why must the state subsidize your hate?"!? Going right for the melodramatic, theatrical rhetoric... you should work for a news network. In none of those cases, was anything "subsidized by the state". The monuments, the signs, etc were erected by private parties.
And yet, I don't hear you denying your hatred of religion, which tells me that the rhetoric was accurate. And since the signs were on public land, they were just as "subsidized" as the cross and the menorah.

Huh? You are mixing up laws of nature and God's nature. Generally God is considered to be bound by his nature, not the laws of this universe, over which he is completely sovereign.
But even that is blasphemy in Islam. Allah is bound by nothing, not even his own nature.

Which is really divine command theory in a nutshell - a theory popular with many Christian sects.
Minor sects, to be sure. The mainstream churches don't subscribe to divine command theory, and Judaism certainly doesn't.

You simply aren't familiar with the philosophical material here. Divine Command Theory, Cosmological arguments (Kalam, Leibniz), reformed epistemology, etc.
Nice try. The differences that I cited between Islam and the Judeo-Christian traditions are valid, and unless you care to cite specific refutations by Kalam, Leibniz or any other source, you're just playing bait and switch.

I don't think they are particularly good for anything - but hate crimes don't punish public statements of bias. They are penalty escalations for crimes of a certain character. Keyword there, being "crimes". It has to be a crime before it can be reclassified as a hate crime.
And yet, the State of New Jersey deprived a man of his livelyhood for burning a Qur'an. What law did he break? A public college drove PhD candidates out of its doctoral program because they didn't follow its line on homosexualty. These are state actors penalyzing private citizens for thoughts and actions which are neither criminal nor even out of the mainstream of American throught. If they aren't "hate crimes," then what is the basis for the state to deprive these people of their jobs, positions or livelyhoods?

Hate crime laws have no bearing on anything said in this thread.
When I make an assertion, I follow it up with a reason that I believe it. Feel free to do the same. Otherwise, this will just degenerate into "Is not!" Is too!" arguments.

Did you look for one? How do you know they haven't?
I did look. Didn't see much. If it was there, it went unreported. Now, perhaps there was a massive rally in which gays went to a church and brought cakes and cookies and tried to build bridges, but I think that I'd have seen that if it had happened. What did get coverage was a wave of gay anger against Mormons (which is funny, because black churches in California were far more vocally opposed to gay marriage, but I didn't see gays attacking black churches; guess they knew that the Mormons wouldn't kick their asses....).

And Muslims also denounce terrorism all the time, but if you wait for foxnews or Rush Limbaugh to deliver those messages to you though, you aren't ever going to see them.
Muslims usually make it a point to denounce terror in the abstract, but refuse to identify specific groups (except for Israel and the US, which they will happily call terrorists). For example, Imam Rauf refused to characterize Hamas as a terrorist group, but says that he opposes terrorism. That makes it very easy to support terrorist acts by groups that you deny are terrorists. The result is that useful idiots cite the condemnation of terrorism in the abstract, but miss the fact that they don't condemn those specific groups that commit the worst atrocities.

wilbur
09-28-2010, 11:55 PM
Rather than simply make the assertion, perhaps a link would be in order?

C'mon... Google is your friend.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/10/18/african-children-denounce_n_324943.html
http://af.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idAFTRE66L2TT20100722?sp=true

http://www.thelangreport.com/im-mad-as-hell/ugandans-want-death-penalty-for-homosexuals/
http://newsbusters.org/blogs/brad-wilmouth/2010/03/15/abc-links-american-christians-anti-gay-death-penalty-uganda-ignores-r
http://theweek.com/article/index/103908/A_gay_death_penalty



There are benign falsehoods, or do you consider the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus a threat as well?


Benign?! Has Christianity and/or Judaism had any impact on western society? Has it had a any impact on science? What about our government and the philosophies behind it? Has it at all shaped the world view of the west and the way of thinking for the people in our society?

If you answer "yes" to any of these questions, you concede that religion is not benign, but has influence outside the minds of those who choose to live by it.

It's a little funny how when one criticizes religion's place in society, apologists and people like yourself often argue that it has a positive and essential role in bringing about all the good things in the world.. but other times you say that its influence doesn't extend beyond the minds of those who believe it, and that therefore, non-believers have no justification for their complaints - because "it doesn't affect them".

So what is it - is religion benign, or does it affect the world?



I don't recall the words "New Atheists" in the title of the thread, just atheists. If you want to try to narrowly define the rules to suit your argument, don't expect me to play along. The thread is about atheists, but more specifically, those atheists who feel the need to demonize all faiths (you) as opposed to those who accept and respect the faiths of others (me).


It's been pretty clear since the beginning that we've been talking about new atheists - we certainly haven't been talking about leftist, Islamic sympathizing politicians - most of whom aren't atheists themselves.



No one is denying the atheists the right to speak, but they don't have the right to a venue that is meant to celebrate a holiday. What holiday were the atheists celebrating? Before I clicked on the link, I expected a generic "happy holidays" poster, or even something about the Winter Solstice, which would have made sense, but this was simply the equivalent of graffiti.


Those signs were celebrating the winter solstice - go re-read the articles. And again... not really concerned if the signs aren't to your liking. It's nobody's responsibility to please you.



But in other stories, they have been. I cited the ACLU suit against Los Angeles, in which a cross was removed from the city's seal. There's also the Mt. Soledad Cross, a veteran's memorial in San Diego that atheist groups are constantly attacking through the courts. Then there's the cross that atheists had a court remove from a private memorial that had been placed on public land in the middle of the desert. Apparently, just knowing that the cross was there offended them.


And I posted stories of Christians defaming perfectly legal secular advertisements and monuments. You don't seem to mind when religious people illegally attack secular messages.



And yet, I don't hear you denying your hatred of religion, which tells me that the rhetoric was accurate. And since the signs were on public land, they were just as "subsidized" as the cross and the menorah.


Do you rape children on Friday or on Monday? C'mon, yes or no?!

Anyways, I think the word "subsidy" has lost all meaning, if you want to sit here and say that its a "subsidy" when the government extends to any group the right to put up a holiday message or monument to represent their values on public property... on their own time and dime, no less.



But even that is blasphemy in Islam. Allah is bound by nothing, not even his own nature.


Uh c'mon... seriously, Google...



Minor sects, to be sure. The mainstream churches don't subscribe to divine command theory, and Judaism certainly doesn't.

And it just gets worse.. "Small sects"? No. All Calvinists believe it, most Protestants do, and even some Catholics do.



Nice try. The differences that I cited between Islam and the Judeo-Christian traditions are valid, and unless you care to cite specific refutations by Kalam, Leibniz or any other source, you're just playing bait and switch.


The Kalam actually *came* from Islam... Christians took it, expanded upon it, and re-purposed it for their own use... and now Islam is using their improvements.

Islamic intellectualism is coming to prominence on the back of the modern achievements of Christian theology. Christian theology has gotten pretty insane these days with things like reformed epistemology. It's a philosophy that nearly all Christians rely upon today, and can easily justify any belief as a "rational" belief so long as one has a strong inner conviction that it is true. It takes relativism to a whole new level.



And yet, the State of New Jersey deprived a man of his livelyhood for burning a Qur'an. What law did he break? A public college drove PhD candidates out of its doctoral program because they didn't follow its line on homosexualty. These are state actors penalyzing private citizens for thoughts and actions which are neither criminal nor even out of the mainstream of American throught. If they aren't "hate crimes," then what is the basis for the state to deprive these people of their jobs, positions or livelyhoods?


So what? Businesses can punish or fire their employees for all kinds of reasons that are not actionable under the law. The only one there that seems wrong to me is the New Jersey guy. But was the guy charged with a crime? How bout a hate crime? What hate crime statute was he charged under?



When I make an assertion, I follow it up with a reason that I believe it. Feel free to do the same. Otherwise, this will just degenerate into "Is not!" Is too!" arguments.


http://tinyurl.com/2ftcvdr



I did look. Didn't see much. If it was there, it went unreported.

Ding! We have a winner!

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-29-2010, 05:27 AM
C'mon... Google is your friend.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/10/18/african-children-denounce_n_324943.html
http://af.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idAFTRE66L2TT20100722?sp=true

http://www.thelangreport.com/im-mad-as-hell/ugandans-want-death-penalty-for-homosexuals/
http://newsbusters.org/blogs/brad-wilmouth/2010/03/15/abc-links-american-christians-anti-gay-death-penalty-uganda-ignores-r
http://theweek.com/article/index/103908/A_gay_death_penalty



Benign?! Has Christianity and/or Judaism had any impact on western society? Has it had a any impact on science? What about our government and the philosophies behind it? Has it at all shaped the world view of the west and the way of thinking for the people in our society?

If you answer "yes" to any of these questions, you concede that religion is not benign, but has influence outside the minds of those who choose to live by it.

It's a little funny how when one criticizes religion's place in society, apologists and people like yourself often argue that it has a positive and essential role in bringing about all the good things in the world.. but other times you say that its influence doesn't extend beyond the minds of those who believe it, and that therefore, non-believers have no justification for their complaints - because "it doesn't affect them".

So what is it - is religion benign, or does it affect the world?



It's been pretty clear since the beginning that we've been talking about new atheists - we certainly haven't been talking about leftist, Islamic sympathizing politicians - most of whom aren't atheists themselves.



Those signs were celebrating the winter solstice - go re-read the articles. And again... not really concerned if the signs aren't to your liking. It's nobody's responsibility to please you.



And I posted stories of Christians defaming perfectly legal secular advertisements and monuments. You don't seem to mind when religious people illegally attack secular messages.



Do you rape children on Friday or on Monday? C'mon, yes or no?!

Anyways, I think the word "subsidy" has lost all meaning, if you want to sit here and say that its a "subsidy" when the government extends to any group the right to put up a holiday message or monument to represent their values on public property... on their own time and dime, no less.



Uh c'mon... seriously, Google...



And it just gets worse.. "Small sects"? No. All Calvinists believe it, most Protestants do, and even some Catholics do.



The Kalam actually *came* from Islam... Christians took it, expanded upon it, and re-purposed it for their own use... and now Islam is using their improvements.

Islamic intellectualism is coming to prominence on the back of the modern achievements of Christian theology. Christian theology has gotten pretty insane these days with things like reformed epistemology. It's a philosophy that nearly all Christians rely upon today, and can easily justify any belief as a "rational" belief so long as one has a strong inner conviction that it is true. It takes relativism to a whole new level.



So what? Businesses can punish or fire their employees for all kinds of reasons that are not actionable under the law. The only one there that seems wrong to me is the New Jersey guy. But was the guy charged with a crime? How bout a hate crime? What hate crime statute was he charged under?



http://tinyurl.com/2ftcvdr



Ding! We have a winner!

What about the religions that have no influence on society at large?
Are they dangerous too? Should they disappear too?

Sonnabend
09-29-2010, 06:49 AM
Yet wilbur wont admit HE is a member of a religion: the Church of Mother Gaia. :rolleyes:

Note: when you are asked if you "believe"...that's faith, not science

wilbur
09-29-2010, 08:03 AM
What about the religions that have no influence on society at large?
Are they dangerous too? Should they disappear too?

Ideally, people would stop believing false things, but yes, there would be less incentive to make an issue if few people believed these things and they didn't really influence the world outside their minds.

Sonnabend
09-29-2010, 08:32 AM
Ideally, people would stop believing false things, but yes, there would be less incentive to make an issue if few people believed these things and they didn't really influence the world outside their mindLike the non existent "threat of global climate change" that has spawned a neoliberal "green faith"? Like the almost religious fanaticism of its adherents, that sneer that those who do not "believe" as "deniers"? Like those environuts who, hypocrites all, deem us to do as they say and not as they do?

Like those of the "green faith" who would impose draconic measures to "save the planet" , whose real agenda is money, and power? As I seem to recall, this was tried some time ago...and in the end, some guy sat down, wrote for a while, then went out in the night with hammer and nails?

"Carbon offsets" = sale of indulgences

Those who, and I dont use the word loosely, preach the "end of the world" and hide behind the cloak of "authenticity" and "consensus?"..when the proof of their failure in this absurd "faith" is staring back at them.

Do you, wilbur, deny that you are a member of this "religion"? That you are an adherent to this "faith in global warming"?


the nature of science is to have a debate about the evidence," Craft said. "Therefore, I think it's healthy to have dissenting opinions regardless of where you stand of the issue."Yet, you, wilbur, are a modern day New Age theist of your own making, denouncing those who do not "believe" as heretics. You even fall into the meme of attacking Christianity as "false" yet cling to your own "faith" as "truth undeniable"..and let none dare dispute you.

Your contempt and disinterest in any debate or discussion of "your settled science" (read as the gospel of Saint Gore and the Global Warming Myth) is clear as day, and just as obvious, if not more so over your continued attacks on the faiths of others.

You're not an atheist, for you yourself believe in a Higher Being...Mother Nature...or Mother Gaia as she/he/it/whatever you call it.

And even when the evidence and proof turns against you, it is rebadged as "climate change" instead of global warming. Only for you, as well, yours is a more vicious faith, for it would wish that all those who disagree be "silenced"

Here endeth the lesson.

wilbur
09-29-2010, 08:34 AM
Rabble, rabble, rabble.

Have you learned the difference between a scientific theory, and a "wild assed guess" yet? :D

Sonnabend
09-29-2010, 08:37 AM
Have you learned the difference between a scientific theory, and a "wild assed guess" yet?Nice evasion. How about sticking to the topic and the comments above?


Religion: Doing what you are told, regardless of what is right."Democracy should be suspended"

Ring a bell?

Is it right to tax people into starvation?
Artificially create a food crisis through the enforced use of "biofuels"
Campaign for "green power sources" that dont work and cause massive blackouts?

You do and say what you are told, regardless of what is right,. all to "save the planet" My points above pinpoint you in the context of your own tagline.

Well?

wilbur
09-29-2010, 08:50 AM
Nice evasion. How about sticking to the topic and the comments above?

Nope - your post not even close to the topic of the thread or the discussion going on within it.. that makes you a troll. As I usually say... start a new one if you want to have one of your crazed tirades.

Rockntractor
09-29-2010, 08:58 AM
Nope - your post not even close to the topic of the thread or the discussion going on within it.. that makes you a troll. As I usually say... start a new one if you want to have one of your crazed tirades.
His post is anything but irrelevant for you are an alter boy of the church of the changing climate, and your church does not like competition.

Odysseus
09-29-2010, 11:28 AM
C'mon... Google is your friend.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/10/18/african-children-denounce_n_324943.html
http://af.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idAFTRE66L2TT20100722?sp=true

http://www.thelangreport.com/im-mad-as-hell/ugandans-want-death-penalty-for-homosexuals/
http://newsbusters.org/blogs/brad-wilmouth/2010/03/15/abc-links-american-christians-anti-gay-death-penalty-uganda-ignores-r
http://theweek.com/article/index/103908/A_gay_death_penalty
The Lang report appears to be a radical site, and I give it little credence. The witchcraft story appears to be well-documented, and I stand corrected.


Benign?! Has Christianity and/or Judaism had any impact on western society? Has it had a any impact on science? What about our government and the philosophies behind it? Has it at all shaped the world view of the west and the way of thinking for the people in our society?

If you answer "yes" to any of these questions, you concede that religion is not benign, but has influence outside the minds of those who choose to live by it.
No, if I answer "yes" to any of those questions, I accept that it has had an impact. That impact can be benign or malignant, or both. But, by assuming that all religious impacts outside of religion are negative, you are exposing your narrow view of the influences of Christianity and Judaism on western culture, most of them being very positive. The first universities in Europe were founded by monastic orders, and the contributions made by Christian and Jewish academics to the advancement of human knowledge far outweigh any negative effects of their religious beliefs. Darwin would have gotten nowhere without the work of Mendel, who was a monk. Newton's desire to explore the rules of the physical world was derived from his belief in a rational God, and while Einstein was not a believer, he stood on the shoulders of the giants who were. In every field of human endeavor in the west, you can draw a line from the origins of rational thought from the Greeks to the Romans to the Renaissance and Enlightenment, and in each case, the Judeo-Christian tradition nurtured knowledge more than it hindered it. In terms of politics, our government was founded on the belief that all men are "endowed by their creator" with inalienable rights. To call this a negative impact of religion would be absurd, but you do seem to be going there. Your automatic equation of religion with every evil in the world is no different than any other form of bigotry.


It's a little funny how when one criticizes religion's place in society, apologists and people like yourself often argue that it has a positive and essential role in bringing about all the good things in the world.. but other times you say that its influence doesn't extend beyond the minds of those who believe it, and that therefore, non-believers have no justification for their complaints - because "it doesn't affect them".

So what is it - is religion benign, or does it affect the world?
It's both. The two are not mutually exclusive. Benign means favorable or positive (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/benign), not ineffectual.


It's been pretty clear since the beginning that we've been talking about new atheists - we certainly haven't been talking about leftist, Islamic sympathizing politicians - most of whom aren't atheists themselves.
Clear to you, perhaps, but to the rest of us, the term atheist has a broader meaning than your little cult.


Those signs were celebrating the winter solstice - go re-read the articles. And again... not really concerned if the signs aren't to your liking. It's nobody's responsibility to please you.
Or you. But the signs did more than celebrate the solstice. The one that I cited denigrated the beliefs manifested by the other displays. You have a great deal in common with Islamists. You don't want equality, you want submission to your ideas. It's not enough for a sign to wish everyone a happy solstice, you have to have the right to insult the beliefs of others with impunity.


And I posted stories of Christians defaming perfectly legal secular advertisements and monuments. You don't seem to mind when religious people illegally attack secular messages.
I have the same problem with vandalism from any source. But atheists are a very small minority in America, and yet there are far more examples of atheists attacking the beliefs of the majority than vice versa.


And Do you rape children on Friday or on Monday? C'mon, yes or no?!
Obviously, I don't rape children, while you clearly do loathe religion, and this is just another attempt to obfuscate. But, this is low, even for you.

One of the bad things about the internet is that it gives people like you a safe distance from which to say things like this, things which you wouldn't dare say to my face if you were within arm's reach. I regret that there's nothing that I can do in response that will cause you the same visceral disgust that I feel towards you right now, so I'll just add you to my ignore list and consider myself well rid of you.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-29-2010, 11:50 AM
Ideally, people would stop believing false things, but yes, there would be less incentive to make an issue if few people believed these things and they didn't really influence the world outside their minds.

Who are you to define what is false and what isn't?
That's the thing, unlike you, I don't believe Atheism is the answer, but I also don't want to see it disappear from the face of the Earth. You seem to hate religion in all of it's forms. I don't hate Atheism. But I do have a hate for militant atheists like yourself who mock, belittle and wish to erase my faith from the earth.

Odysseus
09-29-2010, 12:45 PM
Who are you to define what is false and what isn't?
That's the thing, unlike you, I don't believe Atheism is the answer, but I also don't want to see it disappear from the face of the Earth. You seem to hate religion in all of it's forms. I don't hate Atheism. But I do have a hate for militant atheists like yourself who mock, belittle and wish to erase my faith from the earth.

He's homo sapiens amorens, the man who is in love with his own thoughts and believes that we must all be subject to his view of reality. He decides what is true and not, and we must submit. As I said before, he's much like the Islamist radicals who also demand submission to their worldview.

Joe Inflate
09-29-2010, 03:12 PM
Meh, this says it all:

(Infantilic stick figures drawn by far left atheist militant nerd who's very popular with Internet losers)

(Anti-God screed)

Ew. XKCD? Ew. Ew. EW!

Sonnabend
09-29-2010, 04:12 PM
Nope - your post not even close to the topic of the thread or the discussion going on within it.. that makes you a troll

Hit too close to home for you?

m00
09-29-2010, 09:51 PM
The big difference is that most creationists openly say that evidence doesnt matter. The statement of faith at answersingenesis explicitly says that they take it as an axiom that the creation story is a literal and historical story, and everything we discover in our studies of the natural world, *must* be interpreted according to that belief, no matter what. Evidence simply doesnt enter into it for them. They do like it when they can manage to make it appear that some evidence confirms their beliefs or poses problems for TTOE.. but that's just an extra bonus, not a necessity.

Well, lets say hypothetically some old texts were dug up in the Negev desert that had Jesus talking about evolution in parables. Then, the Pope came out and said "this is the un-alternated word of Christ. Furthermore, it was Christ's plan that the theory of evolution was not revealed to the followers of Christ until now." Would Catholics start believing in the Church's interpretation of evolution? You betcha.

The only difference between (most) Atheists - lets say laypeople who have to trust the expert, and followers of a faith, is who the expert is. The argument that scientists have better methodologies that lead to the discovery of natural truths is a "my expert is better than your expert" argument. Unless, the laypeople actually understand double-blind experiments, and the nitty-gritty of scientific discovery. Which has changed quite a bit from the hypothesis/theory/observation/evidence/repeat model we were taught in school, because a lot of things in the universe simply can't be directly observed.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
09-29-2010, 09:54 PM
Well, lets say hypothetically some old texts were dug up in the Negev desert that had Jesus talking about evolution in parables. Then, the Pope came out and said "this is the un-alternated word of Christ. Furthermore, it was Christ's plan that the theory of evolution was not revealed to the followers of Christ until now." Would Catholics start believing in the Church's interpretation of evolution? You betcha.

The only difference between (most) Atheists - lets say laypeople who have to trust the expert, and followers of a faith, is who the expert is. The argument that scientists have better methodologies that lead to the discovery of natural truths is a "my expert is better than your expert" argument. Unless, the laypeople actually understand double-blind experiments, and the nitty-gritty of scientific discovery. Which has changed quite a bit from the hypothesis/theory/observation/evidence/repeat model we were taught in school, because a lot of things in the universe simply can't be directly observed.

Hindu texts actually describe--in ancient language, of course--what we'd consider to be evolution.

"In the beginning there was only the great self," says the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad. "Reflecting, it found nothing but itself. Then its first word was 'This am I.'" Finding nothing but itself, the Upanishad continues, the Great Self divided into two halves, male and female. These two halves divided into the various animals and plants and things that make up our world.

Also:

One Day of Brahma is divided into 10,000 parts called charanas. One Charana is 432,000 years. The Satya Yuga is 4 chanaras long (1,728,000 years), the Treta Yuga is 3 (1,296,000), the Dwapar is 2 (864,000) and the Kali is 1 (432,000). The number of chanaras in each cycle is equivalent to the number of legs the Dharma bull stands on, so in Satya Yuga, he stands on four legs, Treta Yuga, three and so on.

One cycle of these four is called one Mahayuga. There are 1,000 Mahayugas in 1 day of Brahma. So, adding up the number of years in one Mahayuga:

1,728,000

1,296,000

864,000

+ 432,000

= 4,320,000

And since there are 1,000 of these in 1 day of Brahma, times that by 1,000

=4,320,000,000

4.32 billion years in 1 day of Brahma. Compared to 4.54 billion for the age of the Earth. That is quite an impressive calculation.

Of course, this is just one day of Brahma. According to the Mahabharata, 30 days is 1 month of Brahma, 12 months is one year of Brahma, and 100 years is 1 Mahakalpa, or the lifespan of Brahma (311 trillion years).

Right now, the current Brahma is in his 51st year as Brahma (155 trillion solar years) and in the Kali Yuga, which began in 3102 BC. At the end of each Mahayuga, the world is annihilated.

wilbur
09-30-2010, 01:28 PM
No, if I answer "yes" to any of those questions, I accept that it has had an impact. That impact can be benign or malignant, or both. But, by assuming that all religious impacts outside of religion are negative, you are exposing your narrow view of the influences of Christianity and Judaism on western culture, most of them being very positive. The first universities in Europe were founded by monastic orders, and the contributions made by Christian and Jewish academics to the advancement of human knowledge far outweigh any negative effects of their religious beliefs. Darwin would have gotten nowhere without the work of Mendel, who was a monk. Newton's desire to explore the rules of the physical world was derived from his belief in a rational God, and while Einstein was not a believer, he stood on the shoulders of the giants who were. In every field of human endeavor in the west, you can draw a line from the origins of rational thought from the Greeks to the Romans to the Renaissance and Enlightenment, and in each case, the Judea-Christian tradition nurtured knowledge more than it hindered it. In terms of politics, our government was founded on the belief that all men are "endowed by their creator" with inalienable rights. To call this a negative impact of religion would be absurd, but you do seem to be going there. Your automatic equation of religion with every evil in the world is no different than any other form of bigotry.


Well, you are just arguing against positions that I am not advancing. So far, for the purposes of this thread, I have simply claimed that it is generally preferable to hold true belief than false belief, and I am defending the position that it is rational and reasonable for an atheist to have an interest in what others believe. I haven't argued that religion has done more harm than good, or that it has only done harm.

When it actually comes to determining whether religious belief has done more harm than good in the world, I think its pretty indeterminate. We can point to examples where it causes some really bad stuff, and we can point to some examples where it caused really good stuff. That's all just a distraction to the more relevant question; is it true or false?

I will just finally say here that your examinations of history seem shallow and one sided. Christianity or Judeo-Christian thought was largely incidental or unnecessary for many (or even most) of our greatest achievements in the advancement of knowledge or at the very least its connection isn't as obvious or strong as you want to claim. There are also clear cases throughout history where it hindered (or at least de-prioritized) the advancement of knowledge. A famous example that highlights the general attitude of Christian Monks during the Dark Ages, was when one used one of the last remaining copies of Archimedes Codex for spare parchment on which to copy prayers, destroying the information within, in the process. Another is the long time prohibition of the church on the dissection of human bodies.

(Man, just feel the hatred of all things religious just dripping off these words :rolleyes:)



It's both. The two are not mutually exclusive. Benign means favorable or positive (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/benign), not ineffectual.

Or "not malignant" (ie, harmless, ineffectual). I don't think I have *ever* seen or heard anyone use the word benign as a synonym for "good" or "beneficial" and I don't think this is unusual. The term as its used in medicine is nearly ubiquitous in my experience, which translates to 'harmless' or to 'no effect'. When one wants to communicate that something is beneficial today, they generally use the word "beneficial" - not benign. So I don't think it was unreasonable for me to interpret it that way.

In either case, if I re-read your words in light of your clarification, that is that 'religion is beneficial', I don't think I need to address it - because I did above.



Or you. But the signs did more than celebrate the solstice. The one that I cited denigrated the beliefs manifested by the other displays. You have a great deal in common with Islamists. You don't want equality, you want submission to your ideas. It's not enough for a sign to wish everyone a happy solstice, you have to have the right to insult the beliefs of others with impunity.


Sheesh, give the dishonest rhetoric a rest will you? If by "submission", you mean "to see my beliefs, which I think are less wrong that most other beliefs, adopted freely by the world at large", then sure - I want submission.



I have the same problem with vandalism from any source. But atheists are a very small minority in America, and yet there are far more examples of atheists attacking the beliefs of the majority than vice versa.


There are more religious billboards, ads, signs, monuments, etc than atheist/secular ones around the country, yes? Of course there are, there are thousands and thousands more. Atheists/secularists only have only managed to put up a scattered handful in the recent years. I would bet a million bucks, that if someone ran the percentages, acts of vandalism and the like of atheist/secular monuments/ads/whatever would be orders of magnitude higher than the other way around.

And there are plenty of self-interested religious media outlets who damn well make sure you know about it each time a Christian monument is defaced or removed, even though the vast majority go untouched. They don't care so much for the other side of the coin though, do they.... hence, that's why you can tell us all about the latest ACLU case or every time the 10 commandments is removed from a courthouse, yet have no knowledge of any of the cases I presented - which are only the tip of the iceberg. Confirmation bias, my man... its real.



Obviously, I don't rape children, while you clearly do loathe religion, and this is just another attempt to obfuscate. But, this is low, even for you.


Nah, its just an illustration in response to your overblown, hyperbolic, childish rhetoric... like when you say things like: "And yet, I don't hear you denying your hatred of religion", and "You just want submission!!!111". You stop with your own BS, and I'll stop with the uncomfortable responses.

wilbur
09-30-2010, 01:34 PM
Hit too close to home for you?

Meh, more like hit with exasperation.

wilbur
09-30-2010, 01:38 PM
Who are you to define what is false and what isn't?
That's the thing, unlike you, I don't believe Atheism is the answer, but I also don't want to see it disappear from the face of the Earth. You seem to hate religion in all of it's forms. I don't hate Atheism. But I do have a hate for militant atheists like yourself who mock, belittle and wish to erase my faith from the earth.

What's wrong with erasing falsehood through rigorous argument? Shouldn't we appreciate it when one of our false beliefs is corrected?

Sonnabend
09-30-2010, 08:53 PM
Meh, more like hit with exasperation.

Another evasion. Typical.

wilbur
09-30-2010, 11:30 PM
Another evasion. Typical.

Yes. An evasion of another of your spittle-flecked, crazed, nonsensical tirades (of the variety that make you a running joke of a poster on CU)? Yea, its an evasion, just like its an evasion when I dodge the toothless, schizophrenic, hepatitis infected homeless guy who tries to accost me on the street. The situation does differ a little bit, in that the schizophrenic homeless guy is both far more cogent, and far more clever than yourself. Get lost you clown.

Sonnabend
10-01-2010, 01:14 AM
Yes. An evasion of another of your spittle-flecked, crazed, nonsensical tirades (of the variety that make you a running joke of a poster on CU)?

Translation: I will throw insults and not answer what he has said. Again.


The situation does differ a little bit, in that the schizophrenic homeless guy is both far more cogent, and far more clever than yourself. Get lost you clown.

...still waiting for you to actually prove me wrong.

Zathras
10-01-2010, 02:11 AM
Translation: I will throw insults and not answer what he has said. Again.



...still waiting for you to actually prove me wrong.

Why do you bother with this piece of shit? Just put this ignorant troll on ignore and be done with his sorry ass.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
10-01-2010, 06:57 AM
What's wrong with erasing falsehood through rigorous argument? Shouldn't we appreciate it when one of our false beliefs is corrected?

What's wrong with the phrase "Live and let live"?
Seems like you have a problem with it and need to challenge what people believe in.
\But what does it matter what someone else believes? Be happy in thine own self.
Why someone would hate all religion is beyond me.

Sonnabend
10-01-2010, 06:59 AM
Just put this ignorant troll on ignore and be done with his sorry ass.

More fun to see what he says, and kick his ass :D

wilbur
10-01-2010, 07:18 AM
What's wrong with the phrase "Live and let live"?
Seems like you have a problem with it and need to challenge what people believe in.
\But what does it matter what someone else believes? Be happy in thine own self.
Why someone would hate all religion is beyond me.

I think you need to stop accusing me of "hating religion" - its untrue, unnecessary, and I've already explained myself several times on the matter.

I already did give reasons for all these things... what people believe affects the world. And perhaps I think if more believed the same way I do, the world might be better.

Notice that both threads I have involved myself in over the past few days have *both* been pretty vitriolic criticism of atheists... not the other way around. They weren't even really criticizing atheism as a philosophy or a belief... but they were attacking the actual people. When I criticize religion, its almost always about the belief, the philosophy, or the theology - not personal attacks against the people themselves. I know a lot of atheists don't do that, but that's really a human problem, not an atheist problem People across the board are just bad about doing that.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
10-01-2010, 07:50 AM
I think you need to stop accusing me of "hating religion" - its untrue, unnecessary, and I've already explained myself several times on the matter.

I already did give reasons for all these things... what people believe affects the world. And perhaps I think if more believed the same way I do, the world might be better.

Notice that both threads I have involved myself in over the past few days have *both* been pretty vitriolic criticism of atheists... not the other way around. They weren't even really criticizing atheism as a philosophy or a belief... but they were attacking the actual people. When I criticize religion, its almost always about the belief, the philosophy, or the theology - not personal attacks against the people themselves. I know a lot of atheists don't do that, but that's really a human problem, not an atheist problem People across the board are just bad about doing that.

It's worse to broad brush and attack a belief than an individual who is acting like an ass.
You attack, and wish to see EVERY SINGLE RELIGION on Earth disappear, and think the world would be better off without ALL of them. I'd say that's worse than me attacking militant Atheists like yourself.
I don't think the world would be better off if EVERY SINGLE PERSON on Earth was an Atheist.
Sorry. Not buying it.

wilbur
10-01-2010, 08:38 AM
It's worse to broad brush and attack a belief than an individual who is acting like an ass.
You attack, and wish to see EVERY SINGLE RELIGION on Earth disappear, and think the world would be better off without ALL of them. I'd say that's worse than me attacking militant Atheists like yourself.
I don't think the world would be better off if EVERY SINGLE PERSON on Earth was an Atheist.
Sorry. Not buying it.

Let me try to be as clear as I can about what I actually want, because you aren't getting this right. What I want is for the people of the world to hold as many true beliefs as possible, and as few false beliefs as possible.

In a world where people hold mostly true beliefs, I don't think religion would exist, sure... but that's only a consequence, not the end itself.

Best I can tell, what you seem to be saying is that you would like to keep a variety of religions around the world, for the sake of... well, I don't know, you haven't said. Maybe you can clarify.

But when you think about it, most religions are mutually exclusive with one another. If one is actually true, the others generally can't be. So what you are essentially saying, is that you would like to see many people around the world believe and live by false beliefs.

I find that pretty shocking, actually. Perhaps you can explain why you think it's a good thing for many people around the world to live by and harbor false beliefs. I, for the life of me, can't figure out why that is a good thing.

Lager
10-01-2010, 08:52 AM
I already did give reasons for all these things... what people believe affects the world. And perhaps I think if more believed the same way I do, the world might be better.


That kind of says it all, doesn't it? I could not have constructed a more clearer distillation of the modern liberal/leftist philosophy, had I tried. What about Santa Claus? You must be a joy around your relative's children during family gatherings.

wilbur
10-01-2010, 08:57 AM
That kind of says it all, doesn't it? I could not have constructed a more clearer distillation of the modern liberal/leftist philosophy, had I tried. What about Santa Claus? You must be a joy around your relative's children during family gatherings.

Oh, give me a break. Who here wouldn't say the same about their own strongly held convictions?

Are you telling me that if liberals started thinking like conservatives, you wouldn't find this to be a good thing? I find that hard to believe.

Sonnabend
10-01-2010, 09:39 AM
Every single religion except the AGW church :rolleyes:

NJCardFan
10-01-2010, 10:29 AM
What I don't understand from Atheists is how they can see anything wrong with a large group of people who believe that there is peace, love, serenity, and a reunion with loved ones waiting for them when they pass on? Is your belief that when you die it's lights out that much better? Even though they're a pain in the ass, this is what fundamentalist Christians want of you. They don't hate you, they don't want you to be left out when the time comes. The kooks aside(and there are as many atheist kooks as there are Christian kooks), most Christians when they talk about their faith and try to convert you, it's done out of kindness. Christians want to see everyone go to Heaven. However, if you choose not to listen, we won't cut off your head. This is the fundamental difference between radical fundamentalist Christians and radical fundamentalist Muslims.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
10-01-2010, 04:45 PM
I think you need to stop accusing me of "hating religion" - its untrue, unnecessary, and I've already explained myself several times on the matter.

I already did give reasons for all these things... what people believe affects the world. And perhaps I think if more believed the same way I do, the world might be better.

Notice that both threads I have involved myself in over the past few days have *both* been pretty vitriolic criticism of atheists... not the other way around. They weren't even really criticizing atheism as a philosophy or a belief... but they were attacking the actual people. When I criticize religion, its almost always about the belief, the philosophy, or the theology - not personal attacks against the people themselves. I know a lot of atheists don't do that, but that's really a human problem, not an atheist problem People across the board are just bad about doing that.


Let me try to be as clear as I can about what I actually want, because you aren't getting this right. What I want is for the people of the world to hold as many true beliefs as possible, and as few false beliefs as possible.

In a world where people hold mostly true beliefs, I don't think religion would exist, sure... but that's only a consequence, not the end itself.

Best I can tell, what you seem to be saying is that you would like to keep a variety of religions around the world, for the sake of... well, I don't know, you haven't said. Maybe you can clarify.

But when you think about it, most religions are mutually exclusive with one another. If one is actually true, the others generally can't be. So what you are essentially saying, is that you would like to see many people around the world believe and live by false beliefs.

I find that pretty shocking, actually. Perhaps you can explain why you think it's a good thing for many people around the world to live by and harbor false beliefs. I, for the life of me, can't figure out why that is a good thing.

Because my opinion is like I said, live and let live.
I don't care what other people believe, personally. I love religions and all of the varied ideas, and I believe the truth is somewhere.
I also find Atheism to be a bit immoral and will lead to a Nihilistic world, which is why personally I feel the world is better with believers in it. But unlike you, just because I find something wrong or 'false' doesn't mean I have to crusade to defeat and erase it. Nor does it mean I want to see it vanish.

Let me ask you a question: What is wrong, for example, with Wicca, whose ONLY law in essence is "If it harms none, do what you want?"

m00
10-01-2010, 06:40 PM
Let me try to be as clear as I can about what I actually want, because you aren't getting this right. What I want is for the people of the world to hold as many true beliefs as possible, and as few false beliefs as possible.

Heh, I hope it isn't lost on you that muslim extremists say exactly the same thing.

wilbur
10-02-2010, 11:21 AM
Heh, I hope it isn't lost on you that muslim extremists say exactly the same thing.

So do Islamic moderates, Christians, and just about everyone else - its a fairly universal thing to think that truth matters. That's why its so shocking to see somebody hoping that falsehood is widespread for what appears to be the sake of 'diversity'.

Wei Wu Wei
10-02-2010, 11:58 AM
Because my opinion is like I said, live and let live.
I don't care what other people believe, personally.

http://i.somethingawful.com/forumsystem/emoticons/emot-jerkbag.gif


Question for Wei Wu Wei:

Do you believe in Marxism (either of the social variety,l or the economic variety as in Socialism and Communism)? If not, what exactly do you believe in? You seem to make very controversial threads which ever so lightly seem to promote Communism. Perhaps I am misreading your words, and your threads, but I ask you earnestly to tell us what you believe in; Give us your vision or beliefs and your best argument(s) for it.

Thanks.

Rockntractor
10-02-2010, 12:33 PM
http://i.somethingawful.com/forumsystem/emoticons/emot-jerkbag.gif

Communism does not allow the live and let live philosophy you idiot!

hampshirebrit
10-02-2010, 02:00 PM
I hate atheists.

Oh noes. :eek:

I'm an atheist.

Oh well. :cool:

Rockntractor
10-02-2010, 02:09 PM
Oh noes. :eek:

I'm an atheist.

Oh well. :cool:

You'll get over it!:D

hampshirebrit
10-02-2010, 02:35 PM
You'll get over it!:D

What, get over being an atheist? I'm expecting not to. :D

warpig
10-02-2010, 02:38 PM
Gee what kind of world would it be if everyone followed the Ten Commandments.............:rolleyes:

hampshirebrit
10-02-2010, 02:46 PM
Gee what kind of world would it be if everyone followed the Ten Commandments.............:rolleyes:

Overpopulated, in the context of what would be severely limited food and energy resources, and technologically, very backward indeed.

HarryHeart
10-02-2010, 03:26 PM
Overpopulated, in the context of what would be severely limited food and energy resources, and technologically, very backward indeed.

Hi. I'm new here but had to respond. I don't remember one of the Ten Commanments being to make lots 'o babies. :D And, honestly, there are a whole lot more scientists who are Christians than the powers that be, primarily the news in this case, would like you to know so I doubt we would still be livin' in the dark ages.

Btw, I have no problem with you being an atheist and applaud your honesty.

hampshirebrit
10-02-2010, 03:38 PM
Btw, I have no problem with you being an atheist and applaud your honesty.
And I applaud yours.

You'll be glad to learn that I have no problem with you being a Christian, Jewish or Muslim, or whatever else it is that you may happen to be.

Actually, it would be more accurate for me to describe myself as an anti-theist, rather than a mere atheist, but my concerns are with the religions, rather than the rank and file members of the religions.

Welcome to CU, Harry. I saw you joining earlier today. Please, start a thread in our Welcome Wagon and introduce yourself.

We're quite nice people at CU (well, most of us are. :cool: ).

HarryHeart
10-02-2010, 04:18 PM
And I applaud yours.

Actually, it would be more accurate for me to describe myself as an anti-theist, rather than a mere atheist, but my concerns are with the religions, rather than the rank and file members of the religions.

Welcome to CU, Harry. I saw you joining earlier today. Please, start a thread in our Welcome Wagon and introduce yourself.

We're quite nice people at CU (well, most of us are. :cool: ).

Thanks, I'll do that.

BadCat
10-02-2010, 04:29 PM
What, get over being an atheist? I'm expecting not to. :D

LOL! I know of three conservative atheists on this board.

And we're all moderators.

hampshirebrit
10-02-2010, 04:44 PM
LOL! I know of three conservative atheists on this board.

And we're all moderators.

This is very true.

I would also hazard to conclude that as such, we are a great deal more tolerant of religion than religion would be of us, should we be unfortunate enough for religion to become aware of us (one of the reasons I decided to limit my travels in the north of Pakistan when I visited a few years back).

Rockntractor
10-02-2010, 04:46 PM
You're agnostics!:rolleyes:

hampshirebrit
10-02-2010, 04:50 PM
You're agnostics!:rolleyes:

You can :rolleyes: as much as you want, but I can assure you, my porcine comrade, that I am not agnostic, in any way at all. :(:p

Rockntractor
10-02-2010, 04:55 PM
You can :rolleyes: as much as you want, but I can assure you, my porcine comrade, that I am not agnostic, in any way at all. :(:p

You can no more be sure there is no God than I can prove there is one!

hampshirebrit
10-02-2010, 05:57 PM
You can no more be sure there is no God than I can prove there is one!

Indeed, you are correct in this.

However, I think (even believe, if I dare say so, and you will allow me) that the onus is on those that believe in gods to prove their existence, far more than it is on me to disprove any human- imagined entity's lack of existence.

It is far more likely that there are no gods at all, rather than the myriad that humankind has dreamt into existence thus far.

Wei Wu Wei
10-02-2010, 05:59 PM
Exactly

That same burden of proof applies to you proving there are no hindu God's, or that muhammad wasn't the last true prophet.

Rockntractor
10-02-2010, 05:59 PM
Indeed, you are correct in this.

However, I think the onus is on those that believe in gods to prove their existence, far more than it is on me to disprove any human- imagined entity's lack of existence.

It is far likely that there are no gods at all, rather than the myriad that humankind has dreamt into existence thus far.

But the label of atheist affirms you leave no possibility and the label of believer means only that I have faith.

Wei Wu Wei
10-02-2010, 06:03 PM
atheist implies the absense of positive believe,rather than the presence of negative belief. i do NOT believe there is a tiger in my room, but i can't say (nor do i imply) with 100% absolute certainty that a tiger was not somehow placed there.

agnostics would say they reserve an answer to whether or not they believe a tiger exists there, as if because there are two options (a tiger is there or a tiger is not there), it's implied that there must be 50% probability of either option (which is a not too uncommon mistake), and thus they cannot take a stand.

hampshirebrit
10-02-2010, 06:14 PM
But the label of atheist affirms you leave no possibility and the label of believer means only that I have faith.

Not really.

The label really means that we see no reason for singular or multiple deities to exist. It is your positive to prove, not my negative to disprove. There is no need for me to disprove a negative ... I'm assuming that nobody on CU will require me to disprove the existence of Juno or the Invisible Celestial Teapot.

If anyone seriously expects me to believe in their favourite god, they will need to provide me with much better evidence to support their case than I have seen to date.

The anti-theist label, by the way, means that we are opposed to structures that falsely promote such belief systems and profit from them, to the detriment of humanity as a whole, which I would hold applies equally to all three of the Abrahamic religions.

Odysseus
10-02-2010, 08:18 PM
You're agnostics!:rolleyes:
I'm not sure if I believe that. :D

atheist implies the absense of positive believe,rather than the presence of negative belief. i do NOT believe there is a tiger in my room, but i can't say (nor do i imply) with 100% absolute certainty that a tiger was not somehow placed there.

agnostics would say they reserve an answer to whether or not they believe a tiger exists there, as if because there are two options (a tiger is there or a tiger is not there), it's implied that there must be 50% probability of either option (which is a not too uncommon mistake), and thus they cannot take a stand.
Atheism is not simply the absence of belief, but belief in non-belief. An atheist not only believes that there is no God, but that any belief to the contrary must be false. Look at Wilbur's posts for an example.

hampshirebrit
10-02-2010, 08:27 PM
I'm not sure if I believe that. :D

An atheist not only believes that there is no God, but that any belief to the contrary must be false.


Obviously, this is so, or at least that any belief to the contrary is likely to be misplaced belief on the part of the believer.


Look at Wilbur's posts for an example.

Or indeed, look at mine. I'm assuming that a bacon-eating person such as yourself gets the point.

Odysseus
10-02-2010, 10:37 PM
Obviously, this is so, or at least that any belief to the contrary is likely to be misplaced belief on the part of the believer.
Or indeed, look at mine. I'm assuming that a bacon-eating person such as yourself gets the point.

Well, there is a little known exemption to the Kosher rules for pork in Chinese take out. :D

wilbur
10-02-2010, 11:14 PM
I'm not sure if I believe that. :D

Atheism is not simply the absence of belief, but belief in non-belief. An atheist not only believes that there is no God, but that any belief to the contrary must be false. Look at Wilbur's posts for an example.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spectrum_of_theistic_probability

Its a little odd you tell others to look at my post, when your comment here is proof positive that you have never even bothered to read them carefully.

I am not, and have never claimed to be, an atheist in the sense that I am certain no God exists.

Christianity is almost certainly false, Judaism is almost certainly false, and Islam is almost certainly false.... the probability is so low that any of these religions are true, that one can generally refer to them as false without all the wordy disclaiming... but there is a tiny probability that they could be true. As for a God existing... well, I'd say that probability is a bit greater than any of the above probabilities... but still either small or unknown and a poor explanation for the universe.

I've beat this drum and reiterated these points so much on this forum.. you really should get it by now, and so should the rest.

Rockntractor
10-02-2010, 11:18 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spectrum_of_theistic_probability

Its a little odd you tell others to look at my post, when your comment here is proof positive that you have never even bothered to read them carefully.

I am not, and have never claimed to be, an atheist in the sense that I am certain no God exists.

Christianity is almost certainly false, Judaism is almost certainly false, and Islam is almost certainly false.... the probability is so low that any of these religions are true, that one can generally refer to them as false without all the wordy disclaiming... but there is a tiny probability that they could be true. As for a God existing... well, I'd say that probability is a bit greater than any of the above probabilities... but still either small or unknown and a poor explanation for the universe.

I've beat this drum and reiterated these points so much on this forum.. you really should get it by now, and so should the rest.
Oh my, I no longer have the honor of being in your sig line?:confused::(

Sonnabend
10-02-2010, 11:26 PM
Wilbur: Please define "scientific theory".answer


An explanation of why and how a specific natural phenomenon occurs. A lot of hypotheses are based on theories. In turn, theories may be redefined as new hypotheses are tested. Definition of hypothesis


hypothetical - conjectural: based primarily on surmise rather than adequate evidence; "theories about the extinction of dinosaurs are still highly conjectural"; "the supposed reason for his absence"; "suppositious reconstructions of dead languages"; "hypothetical situation"Translation: hypothesis and scientific theory: wild assed guess based on "supposed facts" not yet in evidence.

AGW: a theory / hypothesis, as yet remaining conjecture and guess work based on models that cannot be scientifically proven unless one has a time machine.

Therefore: scientific theory = wild assed guess = no one knows yet

wilbur
10-02-2010, 11:32 PM
answer

Definition of hypothesis

Translation: hypothesis and scientific theory: wild assed guess based on "supposed facts" not yet in evidence.

AGW: a theory / hypothesis, as yet remaining conjecture and guess work based on models that cannot be scientifically proven unless one has a time machine.

Therefore: scientific theory = wild assed guess = no one knows yet

Haha you dumbass, you just pasted a definition of "hypothetical", not 'scientific hypothesis'. Two very different things.

Zathras
10-03-2010, 12:00 AM
http://images.cheezburger.com/completestore/2010/9/13/d2a250b3-fa38-4c74-a021-47f1b2aa46a9.gif

Fixed to reflect what the idiot Wilbur is really saying.

Sonnabend
10-03-2010, 05:28 AM
I am not, and have never claimed to be, an atheist in the sense that I am certain no God exists. Yet in order to have proof that God does not exist, as you cannot prove God does exist, you are relying on FAITH.


Haha you dumbass, you just pasted a definition of "hypothetical", not 'scientific hypothesis'. Two very different things. Either is the same. A series of conjectures based on what is believed, rather than on what is scientifically proven to be correct.

If I drop a hammer on a planet with gravity, I do not need to see it fall to know it has fallen, as gravity is a scientific fact.

If you show me a hundred "models" of AGW, they are theory and conjecture, not proof, as the results of said models will not be available for over a hundred, or as Flannery has said, thousands of years, therefore AGW is a wild assed guess based on hypothetical predictions that will take centuries to prove or disprove..by which time the scientists that made those predictions will have changed their minds yet again.

One cannot, with ANY degree of any form of certainty, state what things will be like in a hundred years. Is your name H.G.Wells?

Been to 2230 have we?

If there is an Earth, and a humanity, in a hundred years, or a thousand, or ten years.

No one knows, and no one can state for a fact what will happen.

And that, wilbur, is the plain and simple truth.

wilbur
10-03-2010, 10:22 AM
See last post... see sig....

hampshirebrit
10-03-2010, 10:25 AM
Yet in order to have proof that God does not exist, as you cannot prove God does exist, you are relying on FAITH..

Nonsense.

It is a complete fallacy, to equate faith and atheism.

wilbur
10-03-2010, 11:14 AM
Faith is a small word, but it hides a *ton* of deep, complicated philosophizing, and has all kinds of different meanings in different contexts. It also means different things based on your particular religion. For example, just have a look at the lengthy explanations of faith in the Catholic encyclopedia (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/05752c.htm).

So its almost certain that no two people actually are picturing the same concept in their head when the term 'faith' is thrown around in general conversation.

If one uses 'faith' as a synonym for trust then sure, I and every other atheist have faith in lots of things. I'm not going to shrivel away like a vampire from garlic from the admission that I trust certain things (like my five senses, for example), that would be ridiculous.

What is ridiculous, is presuming that one belief is on equal footing (or equally irrational) with another because they both require some form of trust.

But really, all that's required to be an atheist is to think that all the arguments and evidence *in favor* of theism fail to show that theism is probable or true.

Sonnabend
10-03-2010, 11:16 AM
Nonsense.

It is a complete fallacy, to equate faith and atheism.You are denying the existence of something you do not know exists, save through faith, so by that definition you "believe" ( as in "have faith in" ) the "belief" that God does not exist.

Denial of faith is in itself an exercise IN faith.

Oh and wilbur, your sig doesnt matter to me. That you are too much of a chickenshit to talk to Rock, that you continue to prate on as an "expert on AGW" without ANY scientific qualifications to back it up, says far more about you than it does about me.

Unless you would like to tell us just WHAT your qualifications in climate science are, what university you went to , and to what level those qualifications are.

What makes you the expert, pray tell?

My definition of you and the Greenie "religion"...stand.

hampshirebrit
10-03-2010, 12:18 PM
Let's try to stay on thread topic, folks, if everyone is ok with that. :)

This one is about atheism and anti-theism. There are plenty of AGW threads running, one started just today, as it happens.

Calypso Jones
10-03-2010, 12:34 PM
what is AGW?

but some of the posts reminded me of this piece of scripture:


Professing themselves wise, they became as fools.

http://hubpages.com/hub/Professing-Themselves-To-Be-Wise-they-Became-Fools

You're not lookinf for Freedom of, but rather FREEDOM FROM.

wilbur
10-03-2010, 12:44 PM
You're not lookinf for Freedom of, but rather FREEDOM FROM.

This sort of generalization is unwarranted, because you cannot presume to know the minds of all those who reject religion. Freedom from what? You presume that all of us must be be scared of accountability and/or don't want to practice the kind of self-restraint that religions ask of us - but you can't know any of these things.

I see few theistic religions, if any, out there today that I *could* actually live by. This is not because they won't let me do the things I want... but because they won't let me do what I believe to be right, good and moral.

I'd have to violate my own conscience every day to be a practicing Christian, Jew, or Muslim.

Sonnabend
10-03-2010, 12:59 PM
This is not because they won't let me do the things I want... but because they won't let me do what I believe to be right, good and moral.

Sorry wilbur, but wanting others imprisoned for daring to argue with the Holy Church of AGW, having them blown up a la 10:10 and silencing "dissenters" isn't moral in any sense, unless of course you are Joe Stalin or Kim Jong Il.

Odysseus
10-03-2010, 04:06 PM
Sorry wilbur, but wanting others imprisoned for daring to argue with the Holy Church of AGW, having them blown up a la 10:10 and silencing "dissenters" isn't moral in any sense, unless of course you are Joe Stalin or Kim Jong Il.

And ultimately, aren't all leftists Joe Stalin or Kim Jon Il under the skin?

wilbur
10-03-2010, 04:49 PM
And ultimately, aren't all leftists Joe Stalin or Kim Jon Il under the skin?

Man, I hope that is sarcasm. But you never know around here...

Sonnabend
10-03-2010, 06:36 PM
Man, I hope that is sarcasm. But you never know around here...

Scratch a leftist, find a fascist, every single time.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
10-03-2010, 06:37 PM
Man, I hope that is sarcasm. But you never know around here...

See Wicca. Only rule is to do what you want so long as you harm none.Nothing against gays or anything.

Odysseus
10-03-2010, 06:47 PM
Man, I hope that is sarcasm. But you never know around here...

Nope. You guys have spent every waking moment seeking to control the lives of others, with horrific results every time. The only difference is how much you can get away with.

Sonnabend
10-03-2010, 06:58 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eEW8IR1p-z0

Sonnabend
10-03-2010, 07:03 PM
One of the main obstructions to meaningful action is "modern democracy", he added. "Even the best democracies agree that when a major war approaches, democracy must be put on hold for the time being. I have a feeling that climate change may be an issue as severe as a war. It may be necessary to put democracy on hold for a while."

and this in the last few days. This is what Greenie lefties want. Obey or be murdered

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JfnddMpzPsM

Sonnabend
10-03-2010, 07:11 PM
And you are not an atheist, Wilbur...you are a member of the Green Church of mother Gaia...


Anyone who has studied the global environmental movement has no doubt heard the term “Gaia”. Gaia is a revival of Paganism that rejects Christianity, considers Christianity its biggest enemy, and views the Christian faith as its only obstacle to a global religion centered on Gaia worship and the uniting of all life forms around the goddess of “Mother Earth”. A cunning mixture of science, paganism, eastern mysticism, and feminism have made this pagan cult a growing threat to the Christian Church. Gaia worship is at the very heart of today’s environmental policy. The Endangered Species Act, The United Nation’s Biodiversity Treaty and the Presidents Council on Sustainable Development are all offspring of the Gaia hypothesis of saving “Mother Earth”.

Wei Wu Wei
10-03-2010, 07:13 PM
And you are not an atheist, Wilbur...you are a member of the Green Church of mother Gaia...

He's got a point here. Maybe not specifically about wilbur idk, but modern ecology is quickly becoming the new opiate for the masses in a post-god West

wilbur
10-03-2010, 07:29 PM
Once again, see sig. Can a mod split this thread or something... get the off topic crap out. I've already told Sonnna that if he wants to continue bringing this shit up with me to take it to a thread where its relevant. Instead he continues to threadjack with his offtopic trolling.

Sonnabend
10-03-2010, 07:32 PM
I've already told Sonnna that if he wants to continue bringing this shit up with me to take it to a thread where its relevant.It is perfectly relevant. The "anti theist - anti Christian movement" is directly tied to the Church of Mother Gaia , of which you are an adherent.

hampshirebrit
10-04-2010, 02:57 PM
It is perfectly relevant. The "anti theist - anti Christian movement"[B] is directly tied to the Church of Mother Gaia.

Really? News to me. I am a declared atheist and anti-theist, yet I have no affiliation whatever with this "Church" you refer to, and I don't buy into the PC dogma of AGW at all.

Sonnabend
10-04-2010, 11:00 PM
Really? News to me. I am a declared atheist and anti-theist, yet I have no affiliation whatever with this "Church" you refer to, and I don't buy into the PC dogma of AGW at all.

There is a universe of difference between you and wilbur, our own self confessed "expert".

Rockntractor
10-04-2010, 11:03 PM
There is a universe of difference between you and wilbur, our own self confessed "expert".
Wilbur has more hair too.

hampshirebrit
10-05-2010, 02:41 PM
Wilbur has more hair too.

Probably more teeth at the moment, too.

Odysseus
10-05-2010, 03:03 PM
Probably more teeth at the moment, too.

That can be fixed. :D