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Sunday, December 6, 2009
Militant Atheism, not what you think.
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That's the thing about atheists Brett,Most of us don't shove our disbelief down peoples throats.In fact most of us don't even give a shit what everyone else believes,we're just satisfied with our opinion on things.But when people have found out that I am indeed an atheist,I've gotten every reaction from shaking heads in sorrow for me to actually being disgusted and pissed off,I just don't get it.And I as well came from religious upbringing,I was saved born again Christian and it was a major part of my life.but a lot of negative experiences changed my view greatly,such as finding my pastors porn collection to being at church camp sitting in the main lodge having our nightly speaker when a bat somehow got into the building and doing what bat's do...swooping down on people.Well this douche bag start yelling I'S SATAN EVERYONE IT'S SATAN!HE'S TRYING TO DISRUPT OUR PRAISING OF THE LORD! EVERYONE HOLD HANDS AND PRAY SO HE CAN'T GET YOU! Needless to say there was about 50 or so scared shitless and traumatized little kids.And don't even get me started on what those F%$#*ING "left behind" movies did to me.So when I got old enough to have a mind of my own I got downright pissed off thinking back on those experiences,and that coupled with my own research brought me to the state of mind that I have now.Religion (especially Christianity) is means of control through fear,and I refuse to take part in warping the next impressionable young mind and making them afraid of their own shadow because they're going to burn for all eternity in hell.And society wonders why kids are sooo f%$#ed up these days.
I find it somewhat sad how both sides of the God argument sometimes don't play fair. Of course for an atheist who has sworn off absolutes, truths, and a universal standard of ethics this is a correct extension of their beliefs. To mischaracterize Christianity for an atheist is to be expected. Militant Christians are not outside abortion clinics with guns anymore than drinking a beer is a correct understanding of militant atheism. It is just a fun cute way to try to get some cheap shots in without promoting understanding. If this was accurate we would have on record thousands of cases of Christians shooting abortionists, not to mention maybe a Bible verse or two to support it. Instead we have less than 20 instances on file and a small handful of perpetrators (I'm looking for the actual number of convicted abortion killers-it is extremely low, last time I looked it up it was 9 people-does anyone have a more up to date number?) So even if it was as high as 50 people we are talking about an infinitesimal number my calculator says: 2.5e-9. So if out of 2 billion practicing Christians you have a problem with 50 of them, that is cool. I have problems with them too. If by militant you are saying those who are in error and act in a way contrary to their beliefs; Amen, we are in perfect agreement. So let's instead not discount Christianity based off of the fruit cakes and wing nuts, people who confuse bats for Satan. Rather why not consider real Christians and the true claims of Christ? I'm always perplexed by those who reject God and Christianity and then offer some absurd distortion of what Christians actually believe and practice. You are free to reject but at least get your facts right.
well pooh, where is my signature?
Okay Wikipedia is still listing it at about 9 murders of abortion doctors-no way of telling the religious beliefs of the murderers. So the cartoon is obviously a mean-spirited misrepresentation of Christians in general, hopefully it will soon come down if there is a desire for tolerance, love, and accuracy.
Steve, you seem to be stuck on a cartoon, and missed the whole point of the post! I'll indulge you for a sec. The image is just one of many that represents the Christian 'love' through time. The Inquisition, the Crusades, Cross Burnings/Killings, all done in the name of your god. This is just the most recent. There would be more abortionist killings if the pastors/preists wouldn't be charged with accessory crimes. Funny how they never seem to be a 'righteous' as their sheeple.
I always wonder why it's better to be religious, any flavor of religious than it is to non religious? People are strange.
Well, I think the cartoon summarizes much of your whole post. For instance Julia Sweeney is highly Biblically ignorant. She is arguing against an inaccurate unsupported view of the church. She makes no distinction between Catholic denominational practices and what the Bible actually says. She points to people sinning in the Bible as if that was proof that God wasn't real (I'll help you out Julia; the bulk of the Bible offers examples of people sinning and God offering forgiveness-that was the whole reason for a guy named Jesus coming on the scene) Either she is willfully ignorant or has not researched the topic. Still I haven't read her whole book, just watched her videos and interviews-I have her book reserved at the library.
It is the same for when people raise the topic of the crusades or the inquisition. Christianity doesn't condone everything done in God's name. I imagine that is a big part of the reason Jesus spent so much of his earthly ministry showing the distinction between simply being religious and actually serving God. Remember it was the "Church" of the day which was the driving force behind Jesus' trial and execution, so when you kill God I think you can see sometimes organized religion makes mistakes. There will always be mistakes, nutjobs, and fruit cakes who say they are acting on God's orders. That is why it is foolish to assume everyone who says they speak for God is actually representing them. That is why the Bible makes it clear that true Christians will be known by their fruits (what they produce.) Christians and atheists agree that when people stray from God's examples they are wrong. You can't reject Christ just because some people are screw ups. Christs actual teachings and his life are what first must be looked at.
Pat Condell is not just logically sitting back and impartially evaluating the facts. He has a predetermined religious bias against God and Christian values. That's cool, it isn't logic based, but he is entitled to his opinion. He just can't argue that what he is offering is rational rather than personal opinions motivated. He also can't say he is more right than I am for holding my views. I find that it is usually the atheist who first stoops to making personal attacks and vilifying those who disagree with them all the while imagining in their minds (like in the cartoon) they are easy going folk just enjoying a pint at the local pub minding their own business. It would be comical if it wasn't so sad.
Once again missing the point Steve. I'll indulge in the cartoon for a bit here, since Jess has a different view of it. You don't see Atheists protesting churches or baptizms do you? We don't scream at people and condemn them, bully them for doing something we don't agree with, threaten them with violence? Who protests at the abortion clinics? The religious, who takes away rights from gays or Atheists? The Religious. Perhaps if you really seemed to understand that others are different from you maybe you will see how morally wrong the religious actually are. You seem to tout that closed minded homophobic ideas are better than open minded tolerance? Can you simply not see how repulsive and ugly that is? You cling to that simply because an old book tells you to? I'm supposed to think that those are moral I would want to have? It's disgusting to me.
Did you actually see Sweeney's special? She didn't seem very ignorant to me, or is once again she's ignorant on MY version of Christianity? She was a catholic so she was arguing about that specific view. She also tried Budhism but that also didn't work for her. You can't use the argument of numbers if you all call your branch real. SO next time please leave out all the Protestant, Catholic, Baptists, ect groups the next time you decide to say how many Christians their actually are.
'Christian' values, don't make me laugh. Once you guys figure them out let me know, since they rarely coincide with your bible. You should really say right wing values, since that's what they are. Pat was simply giving his opinion in that piece. But he arrived at his views from reason, which is why i posted it since they seemed to sum up what I've been thinking about for the last few months. How if it not logical to award everyone the same rights? It's only fare.
As always Brett you raise some good points, but you have some conclusions which miss the mark. Umm yes, I have seen atheists, feminists, homosexuals, muslims, Jews, and assorted nuts protesting churches. So yes it happens, I imagine if you searched the web you would see it too. So not real sure on your point. It neither legitimizes or negates a belief system. It proves where people disagree sometimes picketing happens. My old church got threats of physical or bodily harm, hate mail, and occasionally we had the FBI involved when the threats were serious. So again, yes, people claiming to be atheists do threaten, picket, and act in a manner illegal. Cool? We agree the world is full of kooks, some claiming to be Christian, some believe they are aliens, some believe they are atheists. People are just screwy; doesn’t matter what side of the line you are on. You will attract nuts.
The Church seeks to impact people to make moral decisions based off of God’s character. The church is not a legal governing body, so no it doesn’t give or take away people’s rights. I think you are trying to imply Christians vote in such a way as to try to get our laws to reflect what is moral. So it is in the hands of the people. Abortion is legal, it is immoral, but still it is legal. So something can be legal and not moral.
Atheism is as intolerant and closed minded as organized religion. They speak in absolutes about who is right and wrong. Most religions relate moral values back to a higher power which exists outside of the created order. God is above and beyond creation so his will supercedes the mere opinion of man. Without God we are left with rule by the majority to make our moral judgments. You can argue that homosexuality is okay, or that NAMBLA is normal, or Nazisism is acceptable, but you have nothing above man to link your argument to, you are left with opinion. I get you believe that I’m closed minded for believing human sexuality is morally acceptable only in one man and one woman marriage. You will not tolerate my view. I get that. You believe yourself to be more tolerant, but would you allow for bestiality, polygamy, and incest? Well no, of course not because those are just wrong. So homosexuality is to be tolerated, but anything outside your circle of acceptability is to be not tolerated. See the problem? We are all intolerant. I’m very intolerant of drunk drivers, spousal abuse, cruelty to animals, slavery, and country music. Some things are just wrong, but with out a higher moral authority you are left with the opinions of man.
You want to argue against Christianity start with Jesus, not with Darwin, Dawkins, Sweeney, the Pope, etc. Jesus, Jesus, Jesus. You will never get anywhere arguing against Christianity unless you start at the central and focal figure. Everyone gets it wrong, I do. I try my best and by God’s grace I succeed more times than I used to, but if you want to see sin and hypocrisy in my life you will find it. If all you want to do is find fault in the followers of a faith eventually you will. Start with Jesus, he never fails. His followers, his Church, and even his pastors will drop the ball. We are easy to find mistakes in, but intellectually you must deal with the central character of Christianity if you wan to know the truth.
Fricken computer keeps deleting my posts so this will be short.
Proof please, I'm talking about Atheists, not other religions, protesting people simply going to church, not for any Church state stuff, child molestations or stuff like that, simply protesting you going to church. I've never heard of this.
Not believing in something because there is no evidence for it is NOT closed minded, you provide some we'll look at it. WE don't simply ignore facts that disagree with our religion.
There is little to no evidence that Jesus actually existed, everything was written 30-70 years after his death, this would be second to third hand evidence, it's even worse than eyewitness testimony, you can't actually, logically, think this is any sort of proof? You bible can be proven false with simple geologic evidence.
Done for the day, time to get some work done.
I’ll save us both some time and frustration on this one. There is ample evidence to be considered for the claims of Christ. There are thousands of letters, documents, and books. There are historical structures, buildings, and artifacts on display in museums which all support the Bible. The problem is not in the evidence or the validity of the Bible. The problem is you’ve never given it a fair look. You’ve always approached religion as something you resolutely disagree with. Your attitude is convince me against my will; not let’s give both sides a fair shake and see which prevails. I will never convince you against your will. In fact I can’t convince you even if you were willing. As a Christian I’m simply supposed to share what I know, and then trust God to work on a person’s heart.
I believe you correctly realize that if God is real it would radically affect the way you should live. You would no longer be the highest moral authority in your own life you would have to bow your will to what God wants for your life. This is where we all start; heck I was religiously going to church for years giving God lip service before I realized God wasn’t interested in me just going through the motions but he actually wanted to change me at a foundational level.
I am not even sure you are consciously aware of your anti-religion bias. You may even believe yourself to be open minded and rational on the subject, yet your blogs and postings over the last few years is clear evidence to the contrary. To the best of my knowledge you’ve never read any of the serious scholarly examinations of the evidence for the Christian faith, but you will link and post any video from someone who hates Christianity.
To the best of my ability I’ve read and digested most of what you direct me to which opposes my faith. Even if I disagree with something I feel I’m enriched by at least understanding it.
Atheism is not provable from science, it is a philosophical belief based on faith. Philosophical evidence is of a different category than empirical evidence.
I say all this believing you to be a good friend. I also believe you consider me to be sincerely delusional on matters of faith. I get that. 19 years ago I would have believed the same. I believed religion had its place and anyone who took it too seriously was a fanatic, then I met Jesus and things changed.
Just an update, I'm almost done with the audio book for Julia Sweeney's Letting Go of God. She is very funny, an entertaining listen. Leaves me a bit confused though how she could claim to have been a Catholic and not had access to better Bible study materials. She gets almost every fundamental truth of Christianity wrong, and apparently no one in her church could help her with her easy questions about Noah, Lot, Abraham, etc. What up with that? I agree with Brett, every religious person should read/listen to her book. She correctly identifies reasons to reject religious faith, unfortunately she never digs deeper to find out what truth is and chucks the Baby out with the bath water. Still she seems bright and inquisitive. Hopefully she eventually will examine the true God of the Bible rather than simply rejecting the misconceptions of her upbringing.
thanks for the recommendation,
I've said this once and I'll say it again.If you are so dead sure that the one true god of the bible exists and to completely discount the idea is closed minded and ridiculous then you had better be ready and and able to accept every god and pantheon of every religion that ever existed because if the one true god could exist,then why not all of them.
because to be that closed minded and pretentious to think that you were the ones to get it right and every other religion in history was wrong,well that just crazy.and lets hope you did get it right because if you die and find yourself standing in front of Odin and have to tell him you lived a good life full of kindness,forgiveness and pacifism...well sorry but your screwed.And if your saying to yourself that well that's just stupid,everyone knows there is no such thing as Odin or Zeus,that's just mythology,there's no way that could be real.Well hello our Mythology was their die-hard religion,they believed it as whole heartedly as you believe in yours.And proof,there is just as much proof for those religions as there is to support Christianity(meaning none).The ONLY reason Christianity is as wide spread today and you are one of it's practicing members is because Christians have either wiped out or enslaved anyone who thought other wise or a powerful leader has succumbed to it and the people followed suit because they had to.
And think about this,if something happened to where humanity were wiped out and an archeological expedition from another world came here started searching around and excavating.And say they found boxes upon boxes of oh I don't know...old comic books! Because they were bagged and boxed and so well preserved,what would those people think.Would their first impression be WOW this world was full of monsters and people who could fly and have energy come out of their hands and this is the proof or would they say Hmmm common sense says these must be stories that the people of this planet made up to entertain themselves.And there you have the bible,PROVEN to be a collection of entertaining stories morality lessons borrowed mostly from religions and text that came before it and placed in actual geographic locations of the time to give it that flavor of reality.
And I'm SURE you could try yo reason out everything that I've just said with blah blah this and faith that,with out a single bit of hard proof.But then that's the great thing about faith isn't it.It doesn't require a single shred of proof or hard evidence does it,just blind obedience and hope that you got it right.PRAISE BE!
Well put Fatboy73! Those are exactly the thoughts I had about twenty years ago when I became totally disillusioned with God. My girlfriend of three years dumped me because she thought Jesus wanted us to stop having sex. That totally ticked me off, I wanted nothing to do with God, because after all, I really only went to church because I was raised that way. I had never examined any evidence and I really just sort of had a blind faith not based off of fact but just feelings and the way I was raised to believe. In the army I ran into atheists, Muslims, and probably what would be called New Agers. I decided at that point I needed to investigate the claims of all religions for myself to see what was true. It is a fascinating study.
I finished Letting Go of God-pretty short book. Not a bad little read.
Brett and Jess- I thought I came for the beautiful dogs! I was afraid the poll on the 1st page might have been sarcastic so I had to investigate... Love it- thanks! Jessica
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