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(To the religious) Why is it so difficult to accept that some people don't believe in gods?

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posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:21 AM
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To clarify, I am aware that not every religious person feels that "you have to believe in something". However, there are certainly some people whom simply cannot accept that a person can honestly have no ties to some kind of creator. No belief that the universe, the solar system, or humans came from a mystical being. And nothing else that involves the worshiping of a, or several gods. So on and so forth.

If you want to skip right to the question, read the pink text at the end of the post.

I've recently moved and had a conversation with my new neighbor who has never (knowingly) talked to an atheist before. It was a great, long conversation and he was honestly curious at what Atheists believe, what we do, where we go to pray and whom we pray to. I explained that "the only thing that connects one Atheist to another is a lack of a belief in any god(s). An Atheist is free to believe or reject the existence of Aliens, or Ghosts. Some Atheists believe in reincarnation, some don't. Some Atheists accept all of science, some don't really have much of an interest in science at all."

I asked him "why did you choose to be a catholic?" and he explained that his father was catholic, and his grandfather, and everyone he grew up with (to his knowledge). He said that it's a great, kind religion and that he's happy that 88% of the global population is also Catholic. I responded with "Actually, only 31% of the world is Christian. Islam is the second largest religion with 22%. And the non-religious/Atheists/Agnostics/Secular make up about 15%, being the third largest population, and that's only if we don't include religions that are also secular, such as most Buddhists".

He was shocked. He always just assumed that Christianity made up almost the total global population. We carried on talking and have grown much closer since.

I remember reading an article a while back where a child had grown up in the 'bible belt' of America, and as they grew older and started to travel they learned that Christianity wasn't the only religion. They had never known that there were any other religions out there and simply thought that all people were Christian.

To me, this makes a lot of sense. You grow up surrounded by a specific religion, and if no external elements and information ever make it into your surroundings, then it would be very difficult knowing or even wondering about anything else.

What I don't understand is when some people who are subjected to new information every day simply cannot comprehend, or refuse to acknowledge that something like Atheism is simply not what they initially thought it was.

If I came up to you, knowing very little about your religion, and assumed that you worshiped aliens and sacrificed children, but you explained to me that that's not what you do, and elaborated further what practices and beliefs your religion actually has (with proof), I'd change my stance completely.

But what makes a person say "Atheists worship science", "Atheists all hate religion", "Atheists are Satan worshipers", "Atheism is a religion", and when they are kindly explained what Atheism actually means, the information is completely rejected? And then they go on to say the same things, time and time again over the span of years, and everyone who is an atheists (or even people from their own religion) explains how their notion isn't accurate, how does a person still make the same claims?

It's almost as if they are offended that a person has the choice not to believe in a god or higher power. I don't really understand this mentality.

Could someone explain?

edit on 29/8/16 by Ghost147 because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:28 AM
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a reply to: Ghost147

Lol, I don't believe in any gods, or unverifiable claims/concepts, that includes souls, ghosts, pixies, elves, dragons and all religious claims from the Abrahamic to Zoroastrian.

I have also had people say "But you must believe in something?" to me on many occasions, I just chuckle and ask them why they think I should. Sometimes some will say "Ah so you believe in science and evolution claims?" I just reply honestly that I keep an open mind but frankly, I couldn't give a toss either way.

...but then debating a zealot is never going to be productive so meh, I enjoy them for amusement purposes more than anything.



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:30 AM
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Because they're indoctrinated.


I grew up Roman Catholic, became agnostic, and then had some spiritual moments that led me to Islam.


We are all different, Ghost.



You know yourself, percentage wise, that atheists are just as indoctrinated as the worshippers of a god/gods.


Militancy is abundant across the globe. In all flavours.

Take ATS, you can't go one religious thread without being told religion is the cause of all the world's ills throughout history, or on the other hand you need Jesus to save you or the fiery pits await.


I ignore all of them.



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:38 AM
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originally posted by: Hazardous1408
You know yourself, percentage wise, that atheists are just as indoctrinated as the worshippers of a god/gods.

You got the stat's?
Every child is born atheist until they are taught some belief by their parents or whatever.
Religious faith is learned behaviour. Lack of belief in any deities is the natural state of a growing child.



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:38 AM
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Can't prove it either way. As far as 'some intelligent design out there in an infinite Universe'?

Can't rule it out either. That would be silly.

I could affirm there isn't any intelligent design behind the development of aircraft ether. I see them sitting at the airport, on the runway and flying over head, but I have yet to personally see the factory they came from, the people that designed and build them or the people inside them. You can't see any of that from the ground when you look up.

So, therefore, aircraft must have evolved on their own.

Don't try and convince me wth evidence otherwise, thats all fake. Obviously the history as shown in the museums reveals the natural evolution over time from simple to complex. Yes theres some missing links, but theres no proof of intelligent design otherwise.

Human body and all its complex processes, even less proof of intelligent design.
edit on 29-8-2016 by intrptr because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:38 AM
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originally posted by: grainofsand
a reply to: Ghost147
...but then debating a zealot is never going to be productive so meh, I enjoy them for amusement purposes more than anything.


On the contrary, I've found that debating fundamentally religious people is quite productive. Of course, I don't really feel that anything I mention will really stick with them, the information is actually for the audience. Some people have made up their minds and no matter what you say and how much proof you give them, they will hold on to it for whatever reasons they have (still very confusing to me). However, when a person who takes their religion very seriously and is willing to debate with educated people on topics that may not be very well understood by everyone, the answers they received tend to be very easy to understand, and so onlookers often learn a great deal from the responses.

I also find that, on occasion, I'll get a response within one of those debates on a matter that I truly am not familiar with, and so I go off to research the matter and learn something new myself



originally posted by: Hazardous1408
Because they're indoctrinated.
You know yourself, percentage wise, that atheists are just as indoctrinated as the worshippers of a god/gods.


Actually, I'm not aware of that statistic. Could you explain what most Atheists are indoctrinated in?



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:39 AM
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Because they believe that bad things will happen to you, if you don't follow the teachings of _________. Being good people, they don't want that bad thing to happen to you.

It's just like people who believe in man made global warming. If you don't follow the teaching of Al (ManBearPig) Gore, then bad things will happen to us, and they don't want bad things to happen.

or

If you don't follow the same sporting team as someone.....



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:39 AM
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By definition, half the population has an IQ under 100 or average. So fully 50% of the population is 'below average' in mental ability.

They spend most of their reading time (if any) reading the Buy-Bull which is full of language they don't understand and so they make it up in their own minds as they go along, 'Jesus loves me' etc. They don't read the parts that are contradictory and violent or just insane so they continue believing in a benevolent daddy-figure, something like Santa Claus except year round. That's how childlike their brains are. They rarely read anything else which is why they have never heard about other religions, or think that they are rare. They also rarely travel because, being not too bright and relatively uneducated, they don't have good paying jobs that allow them to.

And the Christian religion (like Islam) strongly prejudices against thinking for yourself, lest you spend eternity in hell or your head whacked off.

I've seen children who grew up in religious families go through emotional hell (almost literally) once they started thinking for themselves and rejecting it. It's my belief that subjecting a child to religious training before they're 18 years of age or so is a form of child abuse. But of course, if people weren't brainwashed from the git-go, all religions would fade out, deservedly.

Christians can't understand atheists because they can't understand not living with a shyt-ton of guilt and fear of the sky-daddy. And they apparently don't think you can be a moral person unless 'someone' is looking down on you, watching your every move.



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:45 AM
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Hi ghost..

Believe what you want.. who cares?

Have you ever noticed that humans will find all kinds of things to argue about and will consistently deny the opposing opinion?

I'm going to guess you have, considering some of the threads I've seen you on (latest was about gender).

Cheers, enjoy subscribing to your own personal beliefs! Your mind is one place that nobody else can invade and conquer.



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:46 AM
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originally posted by: intrptr

ah, can;prove it either way. As far as 'some intelligent design out there in an infinite Universe'?

Can't rule it out either. at would be silly.


I feel the same way, as do many atheists.

To be an atheist isn't to outright reject the notion of gods, but to simply lack a belief in any. There are certainly some Atheists that state "There is no god", of course; That stance would be considered "hard atheism". Lacking a belief, however, does not necessarily mean a person is making a statement (Soft atheism).

Think of it this way. Have you ever met an individual who says "I don't have a religion, but I believe there must be something out there". That would be a "soft theistic" approach to theism. What we hear of more often is "God exists! and it is [this god]!", which would be "hard theism".

There are spectrum on both sides.


originally posted by: intrptr
I could affirm there isn't any intelligent design behind the development of aircraft ether. I see them sitting at the airport, on the runway and flying over head, but I have yet to personally see the factory they came from, the people that designed and build them or the people inside them. You can't see any of that from the ground when you look up.

So, therefore, aircraft must have evolved on their own.


I don't know of anyone else who believes what you have just stated. I know you're trying to make a point, but the fact is we do actually know where aircraft come from, and we can go to those factories and watch them being built. We can see the advancement we have made on creating aircraft over the years, absolutely, but we don't assume that it's done in any way other than from a factory, which we also designed ourselves, because we know, for a fact, that we designed the factory.

Or perhaps I'm just not understanding what your post implies



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:47 AM
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Not believing in Gods would mean that there are Gods but one would not believe in their power.

Wouldn't it be more precise to say that Atheists believe that there is no God?
While not a religion, it takes faith to believe in something unprovable.

I lack faith to be an Atheist heh



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:50 AM
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originally posted by: thinline
Because they believe that bad things will happen to you, if you don't follow the teachings of _________. Being good people, they don't want that bad thing to happen to you.


I do believe a lot of religious people may simply be concerned towards others that aren't part of their faith. But I'm not so certain this concern could lead to the rejection of facts.



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:50 AM
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In my purist agnostic kind of view, atheist's are but the binary opposite of theists, like comparing republicans & democrats. Oh, and with atheists while it could be argued they worship science, but more accurately, in my view, is that they worship Atheism. Transhumanists (usually atheists) would be more in specific to the worship of science + evolution, than would be common atheists.

Then, from there, in regards to potential atheist types expelling their natural drive to worship, we get into other realms such as worshiping the State, and / or Cult of Personality type arrangements (often found in state ordained atheist societies).

Next, we have other variables in this 'natural yearnings to worship' dynamic (that is innate in humans), such as idolizing musicians / celebrities, political parties, and then of course self-love narcissism metrics that can also come into play (including as embodied by the atheistic Church of Satan / Levayan Satanism).

The Nazi's understood this, and as such they set about the minds of their citizenry merging these various worshipful dynamics into ONE SOLID concept (thus stomping out any criticisms / doubts of any slice of their mantra / power structure). And then we had WW2. Since I've been an adult I've seen the Neocons play at such (Bush+Party+Patriotism+God+Military), and now even more diabolical, just like the Nazi methods the "progressives" have brought racism into the fold (the one thing the Neocon's were lacking in their version) for the ultimate goose stepping mindjob (see my "Nu-Nazi's link if you're not clear on what I'm getting at).

edit on 29-8-2016 by IgnoranceIsntBlisss because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:52 AM
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a reply to: SentientCentenarian

I strongly agree with everything you've said. However, I'm not so certain a lack of intelligence is always a factor. There are many people that are religious who hold this view that are intelligent, but perhaps the methodology of indoctrination could simply overcome that?



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:53 AM
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a reply to: Ghost147
I think you are talking mainly to American religious.
Europe is a more secular society generally, so even the religious are more conscious that the non-religious exist.
I've been one myself.



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:53 AM
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a reply to: Ghost147


To be an atheist isn't to outright reject the notion of gods, but to simply lack a belief in any.

People that are tired of organized religions dogma, more power to them. They might accept notions of spirit or higher power but not what they've been taught in church.

Me too.

Thats a trap to keep us from really discovering the truth. Its okay, at deaths door, everyone gets it.

I don't label myself a non believer in spirit either.

Its a mystery, I like it that way.

A little glimmer from there once in a while is all I need.



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:55 AM
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originally posted by: grainofsand
a reply to: Ghost147

Lol, I don't believe in any gods, or unverifiable claims/concepts, that includes souls, ghosts, pixies, elves, dragons and all religious claims from the Abrahamic to Zoroastrian.

I have also had people say "But you must believe in something?" to me on many occasions, I just chuckle and ask them why they think I should. Sometimes some will say "Ah so you believe in science and evolution claims?" I just reply honestly that I keep an open mind but frankly, I couldn't give a toss either way.

...but then debating a zealot is never going to be productive so meh, I enjoy them for amusement purposes more than anything.


I do not believe that you do not believe. Your belief is that there is no gods. But what about aliens, evolution, time travel? How do you believe you came to be? and what will become of you when you die? Everyone seeks answers to these questions some never find them.



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:55 AM
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originally posted by: theMediator
Not believing in Gods would mean that there are Gods but one would not believe in their power.

Wouldn't it be more precise to say that Atheists believe that there is no God?
While not a religion, it takes faith to believe in something unprovable.

I lack faith to be an Atheist heh

Nope, as I said above, all children are born without belief in any gods.
Religious faith is learned behaviour.

And your definition of atheist is incorrect. I do not believe in any gods therefore I fall into the atheist category.
I do not believe there are no gods, just there is no evidence to support any claims that there are so I do not subscribe to that belief.

The athiest = religion argument is frankly silly. Everyone is born with no belief in gods, that is learned behaviour.
Lack of belief in gods is the natural state of all children, it is not taught.



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:57 AM
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originally posted by: zosimov
Hi ghost..

Believe what you want.. who cares?


I too agree with this. The issue, however, is that religion is mostly not just a personal thing. It reaches into educational programs, into politics and government, and it can have a very real effect on everyone else.

If a person wants to believe in praying to heal your own ailments, it is certainly 100% your choice. However, if you forbid your child to seeking medical attention and they end up suffering and dying because of that persons belief in prayer healing alone, it all of a sudden becomes a problem.

Education effects millions of people, and if a particular belief suppresses advancement in education, or injects it's own ideologies alongside facts, it becomes very troublesome.
edit on 29/8/16 by Ghost147 because: quote code didn't work



posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 11:58 AM
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originally posted by: grainofsand
Nope, as I said above, all children are born without belief in any gods.
Religious faith is learned behaviour.


True, but the natural inclination to worship / idolize / craze is rather inherent in normal human individuals (especially when group think dynamics happen to come into play).


And your definition of atheist is incorrect. I do not believe in any gods therefore I fall into the atheist category.
I do not believe there are no gods, just there is no evidence to support any claims that there are so I do not subscribe to that belief.


Sounds like agnosticism.




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