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Are Atheists Morally Superior To Theists?

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posted on Dec, 7 2008 @ 01:23 AM
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Originally posted by FSBlueApocalypse

What part?


This part...

"open to learning and tolerant"


An Atheist is on the extreme other end of religious zealous, and extremism either way is a bad thing.

Atheists are as crazy and intolerant as the religious zealous are.




posted on Dec, 7 2008 @ 01:29 AM
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Originally posted by The All Seeing I
Excellent point on the nazis, a detail i had come across when i was researching/writing a tinwiki entry on nazism (still a work in progress), but i had complete forgot about this often ignored/unknown fact, next time i'm tweaking my entries i'll have to add this.


But the Nazis' reason to try and take over the world was not based on religion even though some might have been religious.

Through history you can see when religion is totally removed the human race is not very nice at all. You see an extreme lack of value for life.



posted on Dec, 7 2008 @ 03:01 AM
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reply to post by Xtrozero
 


And so would this be true on the micro scale? Do individual people with zero religion have complete lack of value for life



posted on Dec, 7 2008 @ 12:47 PM
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Originally posted by Xtrozero

Originally posted by FSBlueApocalypse

What part?


This part...
"open to learning and tolerant"
An Atheist is on the extreme other end of religious zealous, and extremism either way is a bad thing.
Atheists are as crazy and intolerant as the religious zealous are.


What the.....

I don't know what atheists you know, but I've never felt like running into a church or mosque with dynamite strapped to me. Perhaps you misunderstand that atheists simply want our views to be out and public as any religion. Granted you have your FANATICAL atheists who do things like try to ban religious displays, but the vast majority simply want to be accepted into the norm.



posted on Dec, 7 2008 @ 01:17 PM
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Thanks Res Ipsa,

I could never word an appropriate answer to this subject better than the way you illistrated it.

The concepts of morality first have to have a foundation to be built on before a rational discussion of their validity can proceed.

Thanks for the post!



posted on Dec, 7 2008 @ 02:37 PM
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Originally posted by Xtrozero
Through history you can see when religion is totally removed the human race is not very nice at all. You see an extreme lack of value for life.


I'm rather curious about when in history you can see religion being totally removed?

You can see it being officially banned, yes. And persecuted by the government. But completely gone?

Plus, the regimes that tend to try and ban mainstream religions usually also try and set up a secular religion of a sort – think portraits of Mao, Stalin, Kim, etcetera.



posted on Dec, 8 2008 @ 01:28 AM
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Originally posted by juveous
What factors make people behave morally/ethically? The pleasures of ones self and others to justify an action.

This is incorrect. Consider a man in the situation described by that well-loved old country-and-western tune, Long Black Veil. He's accused of killing a man ''neath the town hall light':

The judge said 'Son, what is your alibi?
If you were somewhere else, then you won't have to die.'
I spoke not a word, though it meant my life,
For I'd been in the arms of my best friend's wife.


What pleasure can this poor fellow derive from his undoubtedly moral action? He may obtain some personal satisfaction from having done the right thing, but it will be brief, for he is to be hanged in the morning.

Surely this is one of the better-known trapdoors of empiricism, which as you know underpins the philosophy of utilitarianism. A closer inspection of the premises, if you will pardon the pun, might have been in order before trusting one's weight to these floors.

[edit on 8-12-2008 by Astyanax]



posted on Dec, 8 2008 @ 06:19 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
The judge said 'Son, what is your alibi?
If you were somewhere else, then you won't have to die.'
I spoke not a word, though it meant my life,
For I'd been in the arms of my best friend's wife.


What pleasure can this poor fellow derive from his undoubtedly moral action? He may obtain some personal satisfaction from having done the right thing, but it will be brief, for he is to be hanged in the morning.


Interesting...but what is this man thinking about...If he says nothing he is accused of an immoral action, if he speaks the truth, he is accused of an immoral action, but what is he thinking about...the lesser of 2 evils? no.
He was thinking about his best friend. He is thinking about how he would feel if he was his best friend being told this. When you put yourself in position of another, you can imagine their pain.

If he had no regrets - he would have spoke, but he knows why it was wrong (feeling what his best friend feels), and why he deserves his choice.
So this man was in a sense sacrificing - although it can be just looked at as accepting his real deserved punishment as well - (when I used the word pleasures I should have maybe used a more vague synonym how bout feelings or emotions instead.



posted on Dec, 8 2008 @ 06:25 AM
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Personally, I like to think there is something more moral about my deciding to do good deeds merely out of my own will and not because of some list of commandments or a threat of punishment/reward at the end when my deeds are tallied. I do good things because of my own personal desire to help others. I like being surrounded by happy, healthy people and if I can assist or simply not do harm because there is no need to so it is an easy choice, then cool. I do not need a god to tell me what is right and wrong, nor to motivate me to adhere either. What does that make me?



posted on Dec, 8 2008 @ 03:27 PM
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In my view, yes, most Atheists(that I've talked to) tend to be morally superior.

I know theism is a broad term, but I will just focus on Christianity since it seems to be the most practiced religion in this country.

Atheists generally support such things as gay marriage, stem cell research, advancement of science, etc. These things are beneficial for our civilization and demonstrates maturity and progress. Christianity on the other hand, condemns homosexuality, same-sex marriages, stem cell research, pre-marrital sex and from my experience, are generally intolerant of others who condone all of this. I'm speaking of devout Christians, not the teenager who goes to church every Sunday because he has to. And I'm not trying to judge Christians beliefs, because I understand the reason behind your ideals to a certain degree. You stick to these ideals to assure your place in the afterlife. Understood, but I don't think you're morally superior or even equivalent.

For the record, I myself am not an Atheist, though I do not believe in an Abrahamic or personal god.

[edit on 8-12-2008 by GeeGee]



posted on Dec, 9 2008 @ 03:03 AM
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reply to post by juveous
 


when I used the word pleasures I should have maybe used a more vague synonym how bout feelings or emotions instead.

This was precisely my point: 'pleasure' is incorrect. But a 'vague synonym' will only make matters worse. In the words of the original empiricist,


The uneasiness a man finds in himself upon the absence of anything whose present enjoyment carries the idea of delight with it, is that we call desire; which is greater or less, as that uneasiness is more or less vehement. Where, by the by, it may perhaps be of some use to remark, that the chief, if not only spur to human industry and action is uneasiness. For whatsoever good is proposed, if its absence carries no displeasure or pain with it, if a man be easy and content without it, there is no desire of it, nor endeavour after it; there is no more but a bare velleity, the term used to signify the lowest degree of desire, and that which is next to none at all, when there is so little uneasiness in the absence of anything, that it carries a man no further than some faint wishes for it, without any more effectual or vigorous use of the means to attain it. Desire also is stopped or abated by the opinion of the impossibility or unattainableness of the good proposed, as far as the uneasiness is cured or allayed by that consideration.

Locke, An Essay Concerning Human Understanding II.20.vi

My emphasis.



posted on Dec, 9 2008 @ 01:51 PM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
reply to post by juveous
 


when I used the word pleasures I should have maybe used a more vague synonym how bout feelings or emotions instead.

This was precisely my point: 'pleasure' is incorrect. But a 'vague synonym' will only make matters worse.

I was not trying be empirical. It was a quite simple question that could have been answered philosophically in great detail, or simple and understandable. If empiricism is what you are looking for, don't accuse what is vague, ask for an elaboration.



posted on Dec, 9 2008 @ 02:05 PM
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The problem is that theists morals are so set in stone that there is no room for any change.

They grow up hating everything different because its "morally wrong" but they dont see that their morals are morally wrong, they deny people freedoms and rights. Their morals segregate.

Atheists morals, for the most part, have the wiggle room to change if they need to. If i grow up hating gay people and I meet a gay person and we become good friends then my morals change so that I accept gay people as people.



posted on Dec, 9 2008 @ 03:01 PM
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Originally posted by caballero
The problem is that theists morals are so set in stone that there is no room for any change.

They grow up hating everything different because its "morally wrong" but they dont see that their morals are morally wrong, they deny people freedoms and rights. Their morals segregate.

Atheists morals, for the most part, have the wiggle room to change if they need to. If i grow up hating gay people and I meet a gay person and we become good friends then my morals change so that I accept gay people as people.


I couldn't agree more with what you said, maybe not so much about the gay part because of the hate thing - lucid lunacy made a great point on the first page.

If you relinquish your rationality to an outside agency you're completely faithing your morality. That is either a very moral thing to do, or a very immoral thing to do


A religion, more less a theistic belief, should never be to the point of law that is justified by man - If your belief represents the judgment from God and only God, then we should not judge to a point of force by our own law.

The difference between God's law and man's - God will punish those he judges when they pass.
Man will punish those they judge now.

My point being this: If there are such things as responsible right and wrong behavior - you can either constantly adapt, or constantly abide by what you believe.
Man has always been doing both.



posted on Dec, 10 2008 @ 08:47 AM
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Originally posted by The All Seeing I
Obviously not all atheists subscribe to the same philosophy of life. There are some who are complete nihilistic moral relativists, others are altruistic secular humanists. I am not suggesting that Atheism leads to a moral society, but logic and rational thinking. A society who thinks rationally is far less likely to commit or allow atrocities to happen... noting how religious fervor has played a major role in such atrocities over the centuries.

Religion gives many people reason to hate homosexuals, supporting harmful abstinence-only sex education, to deny oneself a life-saving blood transfusion if the need arose, to believe that women are a “weaker vessel” and are incapable of leading/guiding/instructing a male, or to encourage a lack of concern/responsibility for the planet due to a belief of a fast-approaching armageddon where/when God will come to clean house.

When you just lay out some of the basic facts... it's not hard to see the conspiracy/hypocrisy in religion.

[edit on 2-12-2008 by The All Seeing I]


First off, you make some really specious assumptions -

*Only 7% of all the wars ever fought since 2480 BCE have ANY religious basis at all, according to the Encyclopedia of Warfare.

*Abstinence-based sex ed works far more effectively than condom distribution - AIDS rates in Africa where abstinance is taught are proof of that.

*Only 5 Christian denominations deny blood transfusions or medical care from doctors as a matter of doctrine.

*I know of no denominations that say women are incapable of being used as teachers, even if they adhere to notions of assigned gender roles.

*Only that idiot protesting soldier funerals "hates" gays, and most Christians would deny Fred Phelps a seat at the communion table until he repents of his hatred.

*Opposition to gay rights or the agenda of gay leadership does not nor has it ever constituted hatred.

*And where do you get the absurd notion that opposition to the environmental agenda stem from premillenial dispensation? (Mine is based on hard science, which shows that we've been in a 10 year cooling trend rather than heating up as Gore and others claim and want us to base legislation on.)

I would invite you to Google the rate of altruistic giving done by Christians, Jews and atheists.

You will find who is the real altruists then....

[edit on 10-12-2008 by papabryant]



posted on Dec, 11 2008 @ 12:17 PM
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Originally posted by papabryant
First off, you make some really specious assumptions -

*Only 7% of all the wars ever fought since 2480 BCE have ANY religious basis at all, according to the Encyclopedia of Warfare.


I would like to see how they came up with that statistic


*Abstinence-based sex ed works far more effectively than condom distribution - AIDS rates in Africa where abstinance is taught are proof of that.


Say what? Every study ever done on Africa shows that abstinence only education only helped spread AIDS worse then areas where information was freely available.


*Only 5 Christian denominations deny blood transfusions or medical care from doctors as a matter of doctrine.


And that's 5 too many


*I know of no denominations that say women are incapable of being used as teachers, even if they adhere to notions of assigned gender roles.

Quite a few evangelical denominations believe women have no place outside the home. I know Billy Graham has said similar statements when discussing the issue of women priests.


*Only that idiot protesting soldier funerals "hates" gays, and most Christians would deny Fred Phelps a seat at the communion table until he repents of his hatred.

Again, there are quite a few Christian denominations speaking about how God hates gays and says they're going to hell.


*Opposition to gay rights or the agenda of gay leadership does not nor has it ever constituted hatred.

Then what is it? Traditional family values? At the very least it's constructed out of fear and denying basic human rights.


*And where do you get the absurd notion that opposition to the environmental agenda stem from premillenial dispensation? (Mine is based on hard science, which shows that we've been in a 10 year cooling trend rather than heating up as Gore and others claim and want us to base legislation on.)

The hard science backed by oil companies or hard science done by scientists?
Here's a video discussing the various complaints on Global warming



I would invite you to Google the rate of altruistic giving done by Christians, Jews and atheists.

You will find who is the real altruists then....


I believe Jesus said something about vanity and bragging about one's works.

[edit on 10-12-2008 by papabryant]



posted on Dec, 11 2008 @ 02:21 PM
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There are 3 stages:

thesis->antithesis->sinthesis

or

religion (thesis) -> atheists/agnostics (antithesis) -> spirituality/inner knowledge of God (sinthesis)

Now see on what stage you are right now, then think about your position.

If you are very religious, as in you follow a religion very strictly which was given to you by society, then you are in the first, thesis, stage.

If you are sick of religion and do not believe in any form of God then you are in the antithesis stage. This will help you reach the sinthesis one.

While you are in the antithesis stage, you might experience a very profound experience where you will feel/know God, at this moment you move in the sinthesis stage, where God is totaly different from the one in the thesis stage.

This is the classical evolution, exceptions can happen, you don't need to deny God to know him, but when you do meet him, well, then your whole vision of life changes.

I have personally went through all these 3 stages, in a few years. The God in religions is just one layer, bias in most cases, promoting fear and disconnection. When there is no God, you lose the fear which religion put into you. Without fear, now, you are ready to love God and meet him.

All this will only happen if you desire it, if not, then you will stay in the stage you are right now. Your will is God's will.



posted on Dec, 11 2008 @ 02:24 PM
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The title to this thread makes no sense what-so-ever. Christianity is nothing more than a set of morals. It is the churches to blame for the extremity in which it has been exploited. Your religion is not the deciding factor in your morality, your self-conscious is responsible for that. Such a statement assumes completely identical minds in each human ever.



posted on Dec, 11 2008 @ 02:32 PM
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reply to post by blowfishdl
 


It would have been like saying whether having theistic beliefs influences you to behave with better or worse morals than someone who denies theism.



posted on Dec, 14 2008 @ 09:58 AM
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Originally posted by FSBlueApocalypse
I would like to see how they came up with that statistic


If you cannot find it in a library in your area (try at a local college), then check out pg 79-121 on Vox Day's book The Irrational Atheist (you can download the e-book for free here). Day used the text as the centerpiece of his dismantling of the "religion=war" argument.



Say what? Every study ever done on Africa shows that abstinence only education only helped spread AIDS worse then areas where information was freely available.


I'm afraid you've been sold a false story. Find the book AIDS in Africa - A Betrayal by Edward Green (A review of the book is available at The Weekly Standard. In Uganda, which used an abstinence only program, HIV infection rates dropped sharper than in any other nation in Africa. Other African nations began to follow suit, until the threat of being cut off fom American and other foreign aid began. It is a scandal that is completely unreported.

Here is another article from the Heritage Foundation on the subject.


And that's 5 too many


Well, while you and I see eye to eye on the need to utilize doctors when sick of injured, the issue of freedom of conscience is not to be treated lightly. Whether that conscience is informed by religious or secular sources, it is still theirs to follow and cannot be taken away with out right of due process. While it is tempting to say that withholding medical treatment to a child is abuse, legally and morally its not that simple; if the motive is to harm the child then yes, it is abuse. If there is a complete lack of concern one way or another for the child, then yes there is abuse. But if there is a genuine concern for the child's wellbeing, but a severe disagreement on how best to make that happen, there is no abuse, legally or morally.



Quite a few evangelical denominations believe women have no place outside the home. I know Billy Graham has said similar statements when discussing the issue of women priests.


Having defined roles for men and women is not the same as a complete ban on women in leadership roles. The Assemblies of God frown on women pastors, yet when Pastor Charles Thomas of Crystal Springs AG in Jacksonville Florida died, his wife Kay took over with the blessings of the denomination.


Again, there are quite a few Christian denominations speaking about how God hates gays and says they're going to hell.


We must be careful to make sure we are hearing what we think we're hearing. While I have no doubt there are Phelps clones out there, warning people of the consequences of their actions and offering an alternative is different than pronouncing them condemned and writing them off.


Con't





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