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calling all atheists

September 23, 2007

it is commonly told from the pulpit that all atheists are lost lonely souls, aching and empty inside, with no real hope or joy in their lives.

 

now me, i think that’s bunk, but being a theist i cannot present any firsthand evidence as proof (except to say that, as a theist, i am miserable, and joyful, sorrowful, and glad, content, impatient . . . in short – human).

 

so this is a call to any of you in the god-free camp who might care to chime in contrary to the dearly held christian opinion and perhaps offer an example or two of why you’re NOT quivering piles of flavorless jello waiting for god’s strawberry goodness to fill your day and give it meaning?

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40 Comments leave one →
  1. September 23, 2007 10:52

    I’ll bite. I don’t have any belief in a higher power. It’s not that I believe there is no God, but more accurately I don’t have any reason to put belief in that direction at all. Therefore I’m an atheist. That doesn’t mean I’m lost and wandering. I’m a confident man with a small business and a family. I take pride in my work, in my kids, in my life, and I don’t lie or cheat or steal. I have a lot of honor, in fact. For me, as cliche as it might sound, my word is my bond and what I want to leave my life with is an idea that I was an honorable man who gave the world children who also value the truth and their word. It’s secular humanism – the idea that what we have in life is the ability to do what’s right because we know that one’s motivations needn’t be magic-based, but instead are based on compassion and morality that is the core of civilization. In other words, the fabric that holds us all together isn’t religion, but is helping each other, loving each other, and respecting each other.

    It is insulting when theists declare that morality comes from their own version of God and his teachings. Look at the ten commandments for example. The first five are God commandments and don’t apply to me at all, much less give a guideline for a society, state or nation to behave. The last five are Man commandments and are good advice, but so rife with interpretations and nuance as to be unusable when described by a Christian. For example, Thou Shalt Not Kill. But bombing Middle-Eastern cities is righteous and napalming Southeast Asian villages is justified? The death penalty is just fine because that’s also just and moral? It seems to me, an outsider, to be pretty unambiguous but scholars and rationalizers across the board will claim translational authority over that verse and define and redefine murder until it’s only poor people killing other poor people, or brown people killing white people. (sure, my explanation is extreme and open to many logical holes, but I’m just trying to make a quick point).

    I’ve taken up too much of your real estate already, Cat Juggler, but my life is filled with joy and meaning. My son had his first date last night. She’s a cute girl, brunette with shiny white teeth and sparkling blue eyes and she adores him. I know that he understands how to respect a girl and how to open doors for her and pay attention to her and treat her nicely because he’s been shown that by example for years and years. I know that he understands the ideas of love and lust because we’ve talked a lot about it. I know that he respects me more than I ever respected my father because he came to me before inviting this girl to the movies and asked me how to do it, how to handle rejection (as if), and what he should do on a date to ensure that there’s a second and third.

    That’s what life is all about. That’s what gives it meaning.

  2. September 23, 2007 12:09

    bravo.

    well said (with content like that you can take up as much of my realestate as you like.

    i’m at work, but later tonight i’m going to add in a link to a friend’s post regarding the surprise one of her friends felt over how good her teenage heathen daugher was despite the fact that she never went to sunday school.

    myself, i am amazed that such amazement is commonplace

  3. amy permalink
    September 23, 2007 13:56

    I get that amazement all the time.

    Not to totally derail things, but I am amazed by the number of parents who are amazed my kid is so well behaved….as if they expect kids to be obnoxious, whiney, screaming meme brats. There have been numerous occasions where I would have liked nothing more than to say “Of course he’s well behaved, he’s been raised properly”.

    As to the actual post. My husband self identified as athiest. He had a family, a home, a (grantedly strange) grasp of morality and justice. He was lost for a while in depression, but that wasn’t a lack of god, that was a lack of our child.

    I can’t really say that I’m surprised the amazement is there, I’m more surprised by the lack of common sense and thought that goes into those kinds of statements.

  4. September 23, 2007 19:39

    I have good days, months, years, and bad ones, just like anyone else. That’s kind of how it goes for us humans. If and when I decide it’s more than I can handle, I go for a drive, look at the mountains, change the scene and the thoughts. If something becomes too much for me to deal with, I’ll go see a shrink. A face-to-face with another non-judgmental, understanding human being is going to help me a lot more than a one-sided conversation with an invisible God who might or might or might not be listening (is his cell phone on?) and most certainly is not going to help me work out my problems (nope, no signal).

  5. September 23, 2007 22:16

    here is that LINK i mentioned, from Lady Rose over @ A Blog of 2 Witches

  6. amtog permalink
    September 24, 2007 01:10

    I came across this post through the WordPress dashboard and it feels like a bit of synchronicity.

    In the queue of my own blog I have a post waiting in which I also send out an invitation to athiests to fill in the large gaps of my knowledge about them regarding a different subject.

    I look forward to seeing more responses from athiests to this post.

  7. September 24, 2007 03:22

    I’m an atheist, and sometimes I honestly feel like my life is more fulfilling than religious folk. Not all the time, mind you, but somtimes. It’s nice to know that I’m living my life for me, the way I want to instead of “living for Christ” or anything like that. But I can also see how religion is a very fulfilling experience for people. It’s just not my thing. That’s my two cents. 🙂

  8. September 24, 2007 04:11

    Belief is easy because you are not required really to do anything — just a superficial dressing, a decoration. You can believe in God, you can believe in the concept of no-God. You can say God is, with a fanatic attitude; you can say quite the reverse, that God is not with the same fanaticism. Atheists, theists, are all believers…

    G.I.Gurdjieff says that you are not one, you are a crowd, not even when you say “I”, there is any “I”. There are many “I’s” in you, many egos. In the morning, one “I”; in the afternoon, another “I”; in the evening, a third “I”, but you never become aware of this mess because who will become aware of it? There is not a center who can become aware. “You don’t have any center, and unless you are centered whatsoever you do will create more mischief.”

    Bliss means absolute silence, and silence is possible only when there is a harmony-when all the discordant fragments have become one, when there is no crowd, but one. When you are alone in the house and nobody else is there, you will be blissful….

    Yoga : The Alpha and The Omega
    Commentaries on Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras – Osho

  9. September 24, 2007 08:14

    Jugglingcats,
    With you all the way!
    Bit pushed for time, but very briefly I’ve rejected it all after 3 years in a missionary bible college.

    Catch up with you later.
    bye

  10. September 24, 2007 10:21

    it is commonly told from the pulpit that all atheists are lost lonely souls, aching and empty inside, with no real hope or joy in their lives.

    As an atheist I don’t spend a lot of time near pulpits but this strikes me as an odd assertion to make considering the lack of evidence. If anything I think that my atheism makes me happier with my life. I mean belief in a divine judge who could allow me into paradise or condemn me to hell on my thoughts alone is sort of unsettling. I’d rather live my life secure in the knowledge that it is the only chance I’ve got to experience the wonders that it has to offer, to contribute to the betterment of my species, my environment and my society. I am free from the worry that my actions are right or wrong from the perfect viewpoint of a deity. I decide if what I do or think is right and I take great comfort in this.

    Furthermore I cannot be influenced by religious voices trying to turn my beliefs around for political gain.

    If you want some empirical evidence that atheists are happier and better adjusted you may wish to look at the suicide rates of a “religious” country like North America (3% -9% atheist) with a largely “atheist” country like England (31% to 44% atheist). I think that you’ll find that they are pretty much the same.

    I would recommend reading Penn Jillette’s article: This I Believe

  11. September 24, 2007 11:24

    “i am miserable, and joyful, sorrowful, and glad, content, impatient . . . in short – human” – that’s a good description of me too, even though I am non-religious / atheist.

    I don’t see my live as meaningless at all. I just run a different mental script nowadays that doesn’t need God as a reference point. Life, for me, is as meaningful for me as for any theist. (I know because I’ve been there and worn the T-shirt). The only difference I can see is that the meaning I have now is more my own, more based on common sense, and not imposed on by some supernatural authority. I see a lot of meaning in looking after my kids, attending to my career so I can give my kids as secure an upbringing as possible, and in my interactions with friends. I take meaning out the passage of life: the good things and the bad things – how I learn from adversity, what I can control and what I can’t. I enjoy beauty and I love taking photographs. To me, there is a wonder about nature. Not necessarily a supernatural wonder, but a beauty and majesty all the same.

    I’m quite happy to accept that bad things happen sometimes, and I don’t waste time trying to find deeper meanings to that. Bad things happen to the best of people, without them having to have done something beforehand to cause it. To be quite frank, I am offended by the idea that bad things always happen to people for a reason. It’s such an unfair and unjustified outlook!

    I have a rather practical view of death. It’s not something I need to be too worried about because I won’t be around to worry about it. Sure, I’m worried about the process leading up to my demise, and what I’ll go through, but I don’t think this is much different to people who believe in God. Surely, for them, the benefits from belief only kick in after death and not before necessarily before it?

    When it all comes down to it, belief or no belief, we’re all just folk.

  12. September 24, 2007 11:37

    thanks for all the comments (i had to fish them all out this morning since i have all first time comments held for moderation here).

    @-30- –the beauty and horror of the natural world and the insight of random flawed humans (i can’t afford to talk to a licensed shrink, but you’d be amazed at what the average street bum or bartender has to offer) is the best medicine there is

    @ amtog – wish you had included a link to your post

    @ turtlebutt – great handle – and thanks for the 2 cents. i think that’s what a lot of people miss, theists and atheists alike – just living LIFE, rather than living a cause

    @ gatelessgate – “when you are alone in the house and nobody else is there, you will be blissful . . .” as the father of three children i can relate to that. i also agree with what you say about all of us being believers, though i’m not so sure i agree that belief is easy. i certainly don’t think – even if we are all believers in something – that all belief is equal. some, as you say, are come by easily with little thought, soul searching, or fact finding. others are come by arduously, built out of countless tiny bits of evidence strung together with intellect and faith

    @winslieGomez – rejected atheism? or rejected chiristianity? sorry, but having been to bible college i can conceive either outcome :mrgreen:

  13. September 24, 2007 12:35

    @ woodpigeon – looks like you posted while i was replying to these others.

    “I am offended by the idea that bad things always happen to people for a reason. It’s such an unfair and unjustified outlook!”

    as father to a little girl with cancer i can only say: well said.

    while she was in recovery our pastor, preaching on the effects of sin, offered up the opinion that sin is @ the root of physical ailments.

    i wasn’t there that day (i work retail) but my wife and daughter were, and of course, my daughter’s immediate question (asked aloud in the middle of the sermon) was

    *what did i do so wrong that i have to have cancer in my bones?*

    my wife wrote about it @ length HERE

  14. September 24, 2007 13:58

    Lol! I can see the point, now that you’ve made it. Does look a bit DUHH! Glad to see you’ve got a sense of humour. Is that from juggling cats, pesky things, will have to try it!!
    Actually did Islam in my last year, but was also born a catholic to boot, altar boy, mass in latin. But Bible college enabled me to study Greek and Hebrew (only a teensy weensy bit, just enough to sound very eloquent from the pulpit) which was very useful.
    I could already speak modern Greek from being in the mercahnt navy and living in Piraeus for six months before I got “born again” and dumped the navy life.

    Can I be an almost 99% Atheist just in case I do meet that bearded bloke! One needs insurance. always makes sense.
    Long answer but rejected all theistic tendencies!

  15. amy permalink
    September 24, 2007 14:16

    with regard to your comment. My kudos to your daughter! Out of the mouths of babes…

    And the pastor is probably lucky he’ll never meet me.

    I once overheard a pastor (denomination not even known) say something to the effect of “the sins of the father are visited on the son”. It took every ounce of willpower I had, and then some, not to strangle him while saying “apparently your father was a smug sob who needed to be throttled into sensibility”!

    Again, I’d hate to derail this…but I think what gets me most, what hurts most, is that all of these “well intentioned” people, say things without really thinking all the way through the course of their thoughts.

    I do believe in the powers of psycho-somatic illness, that hanging on to things like anger, rage, and hatred can make us sick. That laughter really can make you healthier, just like petting a cat can lower your blood pressure. But what I refuse to believe, is that my daughter was punished so thoroughly and so horribly for anything I ever did. I cannot believe that any child of 3 could have done anything, committed any “sin” so grand, as to deserve what thousands of children go through every year before they die…and anyone who thinks otherwise needs to have their bodies rot out beneath them and let them hold that same opinion till they die screaming in pain.

  16. September 24, 2007 14:41

    brahnamin, my very best wishes for your daughter’s recovery.

    And I agree with amy. Although I’m a very shy, nonconfrontational person, I’d have had a tough time not “laying hands” on that pastor. (amy, please come back and post a link to your website).

  17. September 24, 2007 15:25

    @ win – thought that might’ve been the direction you meant, given the context, just wanted to be sure.

    @ amy – yeah, we were none too happy, and this is precisely the thing i’m talking about, he could have gotten the point across (about the dangers of psycho somatic ailments – which i firmly believe is what he actually meant) without making a sweeping blanket statement.

    the most fun i ever had listening to this man (fun reads as seething anger) was when he tried to convince the congregation of the superiority of christianity by pointing out the *obvious faults* of the other major religions (sorry, paganism didn’t even blip the radar – a point which i tossed over his head later – and it sooo went over his head). i’ve never seen such a a broad brush in my life, not even from naked water. he misrepresented the beliefs of every single one of them.

    i sometimes wonder why i still attend (though it’s been awhile for me)

    @ -30- – i don’t think amy has a website (though if she does, i hope she will post the link)

  18. September 24, 2007 15:26

    Jugglingcats.
    This is what I posted to day before I read your post. (not self promoting I promise) just my whacky sense of humour, hope you don’t mind.

    satan :: the funny kind
    Cheers

  19. September 24, 2007 15:29

    i don’t mind @ all.

    if it’s relevant to the discussion (or, amusingly anecdotal) go for it

    i have my blog set up to accept two links in a comment. any more than that and it’ll toss you in the spam filter (which i do try to check at least once a day, since sometimes it throws innocent bystanders in the pit with the criminals)

  20. September 24, 2007 15:30

    on a side note, i will edit long string-links to a descriptive title (as i just did with yours) just so folk can navigate my site a little easier

  21. September 24, 2007 15:38

    For a cat juggler! I willingly take off my hat.
    Your’e the guv’nr! Do as you wish!
    I’ve survived being a back slider.
    And grace to your daughter (in the ancient meaning of the word) Takes courage to speak up!

  22. September 24, 2007 15:46

    :mrgreen: -guv’nr . . . i like the sound of that

  23. September 24, 2007 16:12

    I was never really a crazed devout believer. I simply believed because that was pretty much all I knew (even though I did hate going to church). I do remember thinking Atheists were the stupidest people on the face of the planet, though, so here’s how the “loss of God” went for me:

    I pretty went from Catholic to Agnostic to Atheist in three months or so (a year or more if you count that slowly-festering-doubt stage). The Agnostic weeks were pretty bad–all that leftover fear of hell from being brainwashed as a kid trying turn me back. But by the time I came out on the other side I can tell you that I was happier than I had ever been. Not that I ever lived for Jesus, but just the sureness that this time is all I get and that I’m living for myself, not some all-powerful spaceman, made me incredibly optimistic somehow.

  24. amy permalink
    September 24, 2007 16:36

    i don’t have a webstite, unless you are talking about a blog, in which case i have one at LJ …

    which is this : http://sammy7626.livejournal.com/

    the only other one I maintain, isn’t updated any more, as it was a site tracking my daughters life and illness…which at this point is only read by family members and those who stumble across it randomly.

  25. September 24, 2007 16:39

    @ emilia – i think there are a lot of folk out there who believe merely because they were taught to believe rather than because they are actually convinced.

    myself, i believe what i believe and am convinced of what i believe, and i know why i am convinced. i walked through fire before i really believed.

    but to me the most discouraging answer a theist can give is *because the [insert holy book or prophet here] says so*

    i’m much more willing to listen to someone who says . . . because i lived it, and then launches off into *once upon a time . . .* and tells me about something they lived and breathed and felt.

    @ hoverfrog – sorry, you got caught in my spam filter for some reason. *shrug* i don’t pretend to understand akismet.

    re: your comment, however – As an atheist I don’t spend a lot of time near pulpits but this strikes me as an odd assertion to make considering the lack of evidence.

    erm, not to put to fine a point on it, but when did a christian with a point to make ever need evidence? the sad part is often times *evidence* (read as *made up stuff*) was presented along with the point to give it added weight with the congregation.

    you make a good point about being better able to enjoy this life if you aren’t hanging around waiting for something better in the hereafter.

    ps – i’m going to take out the hyphen and activate the url you left in your post so folk can just click it (seeing as how my spam filter ate you up even when you didn’t make the link hot)

    excellent read, BTW, i highly recommend it to anyone reading these comments :: This I Believe

  26. September 24, 2007 16:55

    ty for the link, amy

  27. September 25, 2007 08:59

    That so many theists can really think that we aren’t human: that we don’t laugh, cry, love, and all the rest, is profoundly upsetting.

  28. Teresa permalink
    September 25, 2007 11:20

    Well, I’ve just checked in with Amtog on the question of atheists — see some thoughts there. I live in the happy netherworld of agnostic — free to explore and question the existence or non of a supreme being (or “being”). From my vantage point on the agnostic fence, I consider life a fabulous miracle, a gift, a joy. As a non-Christian, a non-Buddhist, a non-Muslim and a non-(your religion here), I believe in enjoying a passionate attachment to this glorious world, in living as fully as possible, and in facing my fears sometimes alone, sometimes with that indescribable sensation of support from the unknowable.

    I’m delighted to see a dialogue developing between religious folk and others. For years, it’s been completely unacceptable to talk about religion without being the religion. You will notice that I’ve left off my blogsite in this comment. This is because I am afraid of religious people. I’ve seen them attack, criminalize, and generally devastate people who do not agree with them. That is scary. And I am gay and female and married and vulnerable to the anger of an energetic religioso.

    Like your daughter, I had cancer when I was a little girl. Cancer in my bones. And I asked my father the same question — what did I do? My father was an agnostic, my mother kind of a lukewarm Methodist (go to church if the choir is appealing). Their answer to me was god did not give you cancer and you are not being punished, it’s something in the physical world that has made you sick. And as sad and awful as it is to be a child with cancer, you’ve also got strength and humor and a good heart, and will go out and enjoy the world just the way it is. Gifts from the non-religious. I thank them for it.

  29. September 25, 2007 12:05

    @ bad & Teresa – Sorry, getting a late start today, but thank you for leaving your comments. one of the most sorrowful things to me, whenever the notion of god is brought up the notion of humanity is set aside – or worse, reviled.

    we are, first and foremost, people.

  30. September 27, 2007 07:32

    This really is comment on several comments on this post.
    1. The first comment by CV Rick: Why call it secular humanism when religion is an older word upholding the same values? I think Rick has mistaken the notion of God to be the notion that is upheld by the episcopacy.
    2. The seventh comment by turtlebutt: Christ is not God. Christ is an idea. It is how a certain crowd imagines God.
    3. The eleventh comment by woodpidgeon: What if I humiliate a person today and then, because it is only a momentary joy for me, forget about it in due course of time? Should I not be held responsible for any retaliation much later? The limitations of my memory do not grant me the privilege of being beyond repercussions. (Yes, I am indicating towards a memory beyond life. It may be called before-life, previous-life …. anything. Hinduism adheres to this concept. Buddhism does. Christianity refers to this by obliquely stating that we are all fallen angels.)

    There are two ways of looking at this.
    First: Don’t believe in any power beyond human comprehension (bad things happening to good people is, for instance beyond our comprehension). And then live your life believing that our universe rests on chaos.
    Second: Believe that there is a reason for everything. Call that reason God. Call it science if you don’t like God. And then, having thus established a logical path, start walking on it till you find your answer.

  31. September 27, 2007 08:45

    well, given that this post is a few days old, i kinda doubt that the people you addressed will be back to offer further comment, but i’ll kick in my two cents.

    1. why call it secular humanism? why not call it secular humanism? it is accurate in describing which religion you are referring to and does not uphold precisely the same value as the word religion alone. i don’t understand this notion that just because something is older it makes it better or more preferable.

    and if you think rick views god as that incredibly zeus-like figure that the church machine has cranked out then i think you are missing his point altogether.

    2. turtlebutt did not equate christ with god in his post, so i don’t see your point here either. he stated a chirstianism and many christians DO equate christ with god. you may call christ an idea, but historically the christ was to be a man. christ being merely the greek rendering of the hebrew messiah, or anointed one.

    whether yeshua ben miriam was that anointed one . . . christians say yes, jews say no, muslims say maybe but mohammed was better. either way, the religions that hold to a christ all acknowledge that he was to be a man . . . not just an idea.

    3. as to the issue of karma, it is entirely human. every culture has some version of it and for my money it is wishful thinking at its worst, that there must be some grand retribution to right all the wrongs. no one thinks a young wolf will be held accountable for killing the old pack leader when he is old and decrepit. it is just the way of things. let a man kill another man, however, and there must be justice.

    NOTHING in the natural world shows karma. NOTHING in the universe around us gives any evidence that life is fair. yes, i’ve heard the schpiel of: For every action there must be an equal and opposite reaction. that ain’t justice, it’s physics.

    and it is not entirely accurate in many instances.

    if i thrust a knife into your belly, the *equal and opposite* reaction is that your belly gives way, forming a hole where it had once been solid. chain of reaction ended.

    i’ve already stipulated that every religion has some form of retribution philosophy built into it, but your assertion that christianity alludes to all people being former fallen angels seems a bit absurd unless you’ve been hanging out with anti-mormons. in any case, your vague assertion is just so much smoke and light if you aren’t willing to provide a reference.

    ——————————————————————

    as for your two ways of looking at the universe, well, *two way* thinking is limited thinking. i suppose you subscribe to way number 2 and would have us all follow that oh sew logical path, but i don’t really see it so.

    one, there are infinite ways of looking at our universe.

    two, they all come with the same disadvantage of an ant observing a fallen elephant. all we really know is that it is there, it is vast, and we can only see the bit that’s shoved right in our face . . . oh, yeah, and we’ll never see it all.

    to say that the denial of god equates to the belief that the universe rests on chaos is to ignore the fact that everywhere in the universe we see evidence of order and patterns. from the microscopic to the macroscopic patterns repeat. look at an atom and then look at a solar system. look at the veins in your arms and then look at a tree.

    but is order evidence of god?

    some would say yes. others don’t need that final surety to account for the order around them.

  32. September 27, 2007 12:20

    i don’t understand this notion that just because something is older it makes it better

    I never said it is better. If you already have a term for something, why invent another? Why reinvent the wheel, and then redefine the earlier notion of wheel?

    that ain’t justice, it’s physics

    If science does not justify the univere, why are we wasting time on it?

    if i thrust a knife into your belly, the *equal and opposite* reaction is that your belly gives way, forming a hole where it had once been solid. chain of reaction ended.

    Nothing illustrates myopia better than this argument. Simply because you think the reaction ends there does not mean it actually ends there. I would, for instance, say that the reaction continues as follows:
    My brother comes and kills you. End of reaction.
    I can’t see beyond this. But I am not claiming that the reaction ends here . . . all I say is “I have my limits”.

    Finally:
    You claim that you see order in the universe around you (the atom and the solar system example). Why does this order not extend to fairness of human life? Why is it that when justice is concerned, things suddenly turn topsy-turvy?

    I have learnt my lesson. For the umpteenth time, the reply of an atheist I have seen. And not once has it come without sarcasm, No wonder I prefer religious people in general!

  33. September 27, 2007 12:56

    i will be quoting you in italics so that everyone may easily follow along without having to flip between posts

    note to all – i will not necessarily be quoting entire paragraphs, just the relevant text i am answering. for unabridged reference, please refer back to ritwik’s post above.

    ——————————————————————

    I have learnt my lesson. For the umpteenth time, the reply of an atheist I have seen.

    well, if you had read the bloody post you would know i am actually not an atheist. i believe in god. i just don’t believe blindly.

    If you already have a term for something, why invent another? Why reinvent the wheel, and then redefine the earlier notion of wheel?

    you say the term religion is good enough that the term secular humanist is unnecessary. that is like saying the term beverage is enough and the terms orange juice and cola are not necessary.

    If science does not justify the universe, why are we wasting time on it?

    science does not justify the universe. it attempts to study and quantify it. justification is, indeed, the realm of religion.

    Nothing illustrates myopia better than this argument. Simply because you think the reaction ends there does not mean it actually ends there. I would, for instance, say that the reaction continues as follows:
    My brother comes and kills you. End of reaction.

    as for my knife / hole-in-belly being myopic – bah. the hole in the belly is the only direct reaction to the knife. death might be a reaction to your hole in the belly and your brother coming to kill me for it a direct reaction to your death, all of which you could say stemmed from that first stab.

    but neither death nor vengeance are foregone conclusions. you might not die. your brother might not care enough to come after me.

    i suspect by *myopia* you mean anyone who does not agree with you.

    you managed to touch on every irrelevancy of my reply without answering the core of any of them.

    you have a superiority complex. most religious folk do (in my experience). so do most atheists (in my experience). it is the nature of people to be arrogant like that. because you are so convinced of the cleverness of your own arguments you won’t admit that other arguments might be valid.

    your world is black and white.

    without shades of grey to soften the edges it must be like stumbling against knife blades at every turn.

  34. September 27, 2007 13:09

    @ ritwik banerjee –
    i will continue to entertain replies for a bit on this topic, but in this case you are certainly the interloper here.

    my post asked for the opinion of atheists on the notion that theists seem to hold that they all, deep down, consider their lives worthless.

    atheists and theists alike commented on this question and the overwhelming roar was that theists who hold this assumption are just flat out wrong.

    this was expressed, not with philosophy or witty argument, but with simple life statements and life experiences. to put it in religious terms: testimony.

    near as i can tell, you, on the other hand, came in here to tell all the poor atheists how deluded they must be and you didn’t even make a good show of it.

    this is my blog

    this is not a debate forum

    i don’t insist that you stick to the question at hand – if you have another point to make, go ahead and make it – but i do insist that you at least try to offer up your points intelligently and with a modicum of respect for the people posting with you.

  35. September 27, 2007 15:45

    By chance, I’ve been writing an article about the topic of meaning and value that I just finished today that might be somewhat relevant (and I’m coming at it this time from the angle of an argument instead of a direct appeal to demonstrative experience).

  36. September 27, 2007 15:49

    cool. I’ll go check it out.

    [edit to add :: excellent post – it’s long, but i highly recommend it to anyone who has a few minutes to look it over – very well thought out]

  37. September 27, 2007 18:13

    Secular means NonReligious. Humanist refers to human beings. A Secular Humanist puts faith and confidence in the ability of people to do moral and right things without fear of eternal damnation to back up commandments. A Secular Humanist thinks that by and large, people will do the right things because they want to, and because it makes society a better place in which to live. To say it’s a religion, or another word for religion is completely misunderstanding the concept.

    Other than that, Brahnamin responded eloquently and completely to Ritwik Banerjee. It’s people like Ritwik Banerjee that characterize my interactions with the religious throughout my life . . . and given those interactions, I prefer all religions to just go away and die quiet deaths.

  38. September 27, 2007 20:23

    my money is on them dying kicking and screaming. if they die at all

Trackbacks

  1. I Need an Athiest « All My Thoughts on God
  2. H&A Family Tree: Chapter II: Juggling Cats « HATE AND ANGER

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