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Ask An Atheist Anything

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posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 05:44 AM
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Originally posted by Lurch

Originally posted by The Djin
reply to post by justwokeup
 





If the question was open to all atheists....Probably because human beings don't normally shape societies, fight wars, blow themselves up, stone people to death etc over belief in Pokemon.


Excellent response, no doubt at some point the apologists will predictably make themselves look foolish by raising the subject of dictators that happen to be atheists .


Just before the inevitable happens (if it hasn't already, I haven't read the whole thread yet);

I'd like to point out that no war in history has ever been fought in the name of atheism. Whether Hitler or Stalin were atheists or not (and it is certainly debatable, there is strong evidence that Hitler was a Roman Catholic for example) - it is irrelevant because there is zero evidence that the actions of those individuals were motivated by their alleged lack of belief in a deity.

Wars motivated by religion on the other hand...


thats hogwash. nazi and communist societys are secular in nature.




posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 05:57 AM
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Originally posted by traditionaldrummer
All too often I see remarks lodged against atheists in general. Very rarely do I find anyone asking an atheist for opinions and facts about their non-beliefs.

Perhaps I can help clear up any misunderstandings or incorrect assumptions you may have about people without beliefs. This can only help, as an overwhelming majority of negative comments about atheists and atheism are tragically incorrect.

Feel free to ask anything. Thanks for your time and have a great day.


Have you seen this video? It's wonderful and funny. Plus, he backs everything he says with references to the contradictions.

www.youtube.com...



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 05:58 AM
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Originally posted by kaskade
Im sorry bout your response looks rather dim in comparison to his question. You know...you can simply state "I DONT KNOW HOW TO ANSWER YOUR QUESTION", instead of blabbering on saying check your premise.


I can't answer anything based on flawed premises. I find it better to point this out than to attempt to undo all the new age misunderstandings that were presented.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 06:03 AM
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Originally posted by Esoteric Teacher
i got 2 questions:

1- What is your favorite verse in the bible?

2 - Which holy book is your favorite?


I don't think I could pick a favorite verse because there's so many goodies in there. It'd be like picking a favorite band. There's just too many out there to comment on.

I'd pick Revelations as my favorite book simply for the fleeting fantasy imagery.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 06:04 AM
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Originally posted by JohnPhoenix

4) I would still like the OP to take a crack at it.


I did.

It's in the first few pages.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 06:10 AM
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Originally posted by Auntie Matter
My question is really about feeling, and particularly how an atheist feels about death or dying. Whether it’s you, or someone you love. It is also my experience that staunch atheism is most often put to the test in matters of life and death. How do you feel about this? Is there any fear there? Or is there complete peace, and if so, what motivates that inner peace? Do atheists tend to ponder the meaning of things the way that the more spiritually-inclined do or does it all boil down to facts and proof? I’m curious.

And thanks, btw. I'm all ears.


I fear dying only because I like being alive and often it can be a painful, unwanted passage. I do not have fear of religious warnings about religious suggestions of judgments and unpleasant necrodestinations though. I am human too and will most expectedly grieve at the loss of loved ones. I might ponder the meaning of things though in the end it is simply my subjective interpretation.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 06:10 AM
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reply to post by Proudconservative
 


The point still stands! Hitler didn't murder millions of Jews because he said "I don't believe in a God, and therefore Jews have to die". Being an atheist (which he wasn't btw, he was Christian) wasn't the motivation behind his atrocities.

A LOT of wars have been fought for religious reasons though...



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 06:19 AM
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Originally posted by dominicus
Can you explain to me exactly how Atheism is not a belief system? I have sat with brilliant atheists before you, in discussion, and they all (some of them phd's) had to come to the conclusion that yes, atheism is a belief system.


I already have.


You can't argue that you know atheism is true .....because that makes it relative to what one knows.


I haven't claimed that I know atheism is true.


When you say you searched for evidence, what kind of evidence were you looking for exactly?


Evidence supporting any religious claims


I can say the same thing about Atheism. There is no evidence for the non-existence of God ...therefor this stance is null and void.


Then you can make any non-falsifiable and unsupportable claim and believe in its validity. Anything goes under this premise.


Well, the evidence you seek is relative to the conditions/standards you have set for your personal definition of "evidence". If you need to see God face to to face and that's the only way you'll have your proof, but in order to see God requires, let's saying putting on a certain set of quantum mechanics glasses that won't been created yet until the year 2300 ...well you get the idea.


The standards of evidence are not relative. There either is evidence or not.


A belief system ....would you agree or is there any way possible to even argue out of this one?


It's fairly clear that non-belief is not a belief. Beliefs are formed when you have hypotheses you cannot prove. That tends to be the province of theists. The fact that I do not believe in someone's deities or religious texts because they remain unsupported by evidence is not a belief system. Much as if not believing in dragons and fairies is not a belief.

[edit on 15-7-2010 by traditionaldrummer]



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 07:25 AM
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I respectfully disagree, but if the previous post was offensive it was not meant to be and I apologise.

However, I was attempting to explain why (in my opinion) some atheists feel the need to talk about it. Its fear and the fear is rational. Its not fear of god (since we don't believe in god) its fear of what people who do believe are capable of, borne out by history and current events.

There are lots of reasons people have committed atrocities on one another. Religion is a major one and its a supremely effective way of getting people to do heinous things to themselves and others in the here and now (don't worry, you'll be rewarded in heaven). You cant defend it by attacks pointing to another flawed belief system. That makes no sense.

That basically boils down to - "Religion, its no worse for you than Nazism so must be ok". I'll pass on both of those equally.

Its 'unquestioning belief' thats seen as the problem. The ability to believe something with total conviction without any requirement for evidence. Believers have that, atheists generally do not. I don't think it has anything to do with intelligence. There are geniuses and dolts on both sides of the divide.

It wasn't my intent to provoke an argument since as I indicated at the end of my original post I don't think its productive. Neither side stands a chance of converting the other in debate. Atheists because theres no evidence and believers because they genuinely don't see a need for any.

Best wishes.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 07:30 AM
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Originally posted by darkbake

Would you be prone to support the lifestyle of someone who has their own vision and through hard work achieves that vision? Are you a proponent of altruism? Do you believe in free will (according to newer advances in quantum mechanics this is possible)? I would say that thought has to be matched with action in order to have any effect on reality.


Basically yes to all of those.


What do you think about recent movements to take out capitolism and people's ability to make comfortable lives for themselves? What do you think about competition?


I prefer capitalism to other known systems and see many benefits to competition.


Do you make close friends with people or have lasting relationships, what are your opinions on those?


I have many close friends, some going back to over 25 years.


What is your opinion on relaxing, doing hobbies or gaming?


They're good for maintaining a healthy mind. I enjoy playing music in bands.


How do you relate to other atheists? Do you believe in the possibility of an afterlife, or soul, or karma?


I get along fine with both atheists and theists. There is a possibility of afterlife, souls and karma though there's not much in the way of objective evidence to support those notions.


Do you think that there is a higher law than the law of the land?


"Laws of the land" are arbitrary rules. Often, basic human morality transcends such laws.


Do you believe that positive problem solving using imagination is possible?


Certainly so. Experimentation for verification is also good.


Are you worried about Islam, I noticed a few threads on here that seem to be promoting Islamic law, which appears to be based on completely disregarding worldly goods and ruling with a lot of fear. I am not sure why, but in the past few days I have sensed something like that on the horizon.


Islam itself is just another religious story. Much like a firearm, it's not going to hurt anyone until it gets into the hands of the wicked.


This is not related to the above paragraph. But are you worried about the Obama administration taking away the rights of Americans?


Absolutely. Always remain vigilant of government no matter who is in charge.


Do you believe in free speech and such?


Yes. I value it and cherish it.


Also, are you worried that the recent atheist movement is going to basically set us up for some kind of rigid right-wing rule?


Just the opposite. Theist movements are much more closely tied with right-wing ideology. I feel that the current radical government's actions will set us up for a rigid right-wing government.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 07:32 AM
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Originally posted by franspeakfree
Could you please tell me what is going to happen to me when I die? am I ever going to see my loved ones again?


I don't pretend to have those answers but it seems to me that there is no objective evidence indicating you will either somehow survive death or be able to interact with loved ones after death.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 07:54 AM
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reply to post by traditionaldrummer
 


Hey man, I'm an atheist too so not really too much I think I need to ask.

What is your favourite colour?



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 08:00 AM
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Originally posted by Namaste1001
I would ask you if you believe being an atheist really means having no beliefs. For me it is just another belief system. Albeit one that denies the beliefs of others.

I used to think I was an atheist until I realised giving my self a label meant I had to conform to the belief of there being no God/deity. I can't prove there isn't therefor it was just a belief. I'm comfortable admitting that I just don't know.



Agnostics FTW - anyhow, ya I'm an agnostic as well. I do wonder how come atheists are so sure there is no god.

I dont ascribe to any god of this or that book idea, and I dont see any evidence he is at all interested in this speck of dust we call earth - but the universe appeared from somewhere - who is to say all this stuff isnt going on inside some super brain, and our reality is nothing more than the alcoholic dream of some big ass dude sleeping it off under some cosmic sized tree.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 08:00 AM
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Originally posted by traditionaldrummer

Originally posted by JohnPhoenix

Originally posted by traditionaldrummer

Feel free to ask anything. Thanks for your time and have a great day.

Answer this:

1) DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.
2) All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.
3) Therefore DNA was designed by a mind.

If you can provide an empirical example of a code or language that occurs naturally, you've toppled my proof. All you need is one.


There are many things unknown to science. You cannot, however, use this lack of knowledge to make the assumption that all codes are created by conscious minds and therefore DNA was created by a mind. Such a claim has not been supported by any evidence you've presented, only your conjecture.

We do know of many ways in which nature forms orderly systems. In fact, all orderly systems throughout the universe that are not sourced to human activity were the result of natural processes. It would be quite remarkable indeed then that this particular molecule you've singled out amongst all the others was specifically designed by "a mind" rather than through nature's typical process of keeping hat works and discarding what doesn't. I won't rule out that it wasn't but it will take a lot more to convince people of this than your "if, then, therefore" reasoning process.



I suppose that's a fair answer. I didn't write the above.. it was copied from a website with challenges for atheists. I wanted to see what you would do with it.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 08:01 AM
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Does an after life appeal to you? It doesn't necessarily have to be the monotheistic religious version of an afterlife. I know many atheists who don't believe there is an afterlife but wish there was one...I myself think the idea of an afterlife is utterly repugnant, whichever form it may take.


[edit on 15-7-2010 by Solomons]



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 08:02 AM
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Originally posted by jokei
reply to post by traditionaldrummer
 


Hey man, I'm an atheist too so not really too much I think I need to ask.

What is your favourite colour?


I like black because it goes with every other color.




posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 08:04 AM
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I have a question if this is still being taken seriously.

After reading through some of the responses to peoples questions, it appears to me that Atheism is nothing more then the ultimate cop-out.

It just seems like a big excuse not to ask/answer any questions. Answers like "its not up to me to prove the existence of dieties or an afterlife". I would have to ask what atheism actually entails besides not actually entailing anything.

Sure, you can go through the day holding absolutely no beliefs and choosing not to think critically about the questions that are important to our existence, instead living in a world of only positive facts.

But aren't you even curious? i feel like humanity necessarily entails curiosity, because i dont know anyone who can walk through the day blindly accepting only that which is apparently true. There are so many unknowns, and so much room to expand our philosophies, that it seems redundant not to so much as question these things.

If your an atheist, do you also disbelieve in UFO's, life on other planets, or anything else that cannot be proven true given our technologies? If atheism is grounded in science and absolute knowledge, do you actually think you know anything?

It would be impossibly humble of you to deny all claims to knowledge. and, given our modern sciences, nearly ever little fact (down to our existence) is heavily disputed.

I guess my question is, based on all that, whats the point in atheism? does it actually even exist, or are you just calling yourself atheists for the sake of opposing organized religion?

i dont get it. I used to call myself an atheist, until i realized that i could never blindly accept reality as it is presented to me.

Existence is way bigger then what is immediately apparent to you and me!

edit: my beliefs are simply that there is something "greater". I have no idea what that is, and i dont like to give it a label. But, it simply stems from my belief that something from nothing is a redundant impossibility. You cannot justify something from nothing scientifically, no matter how many times you posit that "the big bang" and "waves coliding with waves" caused an eruption of matter into the universe (which came from?...). where would the waves come from? do these "waves" even exist? It is illogical to think that the universe stretches back ad infinitem. It is the end to a means, and the means are what alludes us.

If your a human, and you cant think of something along those lines (or even completely different, but still of a certain belief) then your... i dont even know. an atheist i guess. I still don understand the thinking, or lack thereof.

[edit on 15-7-2010 by SPACEYstranger]



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 08:05 AM
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Originally posted by Solomons
Does an after life appeal to you?


In many ways it would be comforting to think that we could survive death. However, the afterlife portrayed in the Abrahamic religions sounds utterly awful.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 08:20 AM
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Originally posted by SPACEYstranger
But aren't you even curious?


I am 100% curious about everything in the universe. I am simply not satisfied with shortcut answers that religions provide because of a desperate need to have an immediate answer. I'm fine with not knowing some things, confident that one day we will, and this position is in no way a "cop out".


If your an atheist, do you also disbelieve in UFO's, life on other planets, or anything else that cannot be proven true given our technologies? If atheism is grounded in science and absolute knowledge, do you actually think you know anything?


I don't view such things as matters of belief. UFOs as aliens visiting the earth is unsupported by evidence. Life on other planets should be expected but none has been discovered at this point. I don't necessarily think that atheism is grounded in science or absolute knowledge at all. My own certitude was formed on the astonishing lack of evidence which would favor religion, deities, creators or gods.


It would be impossibly humble of you to deny all claims to knowledge. and, given our modern sciences, nearly ever little fact (down to our existence) is heavily disputed.


It's apparent that humans know astonishingly little about the universe. I am fine with that. I enjoy the change in zeitgeist when new discoveries and technologies are presented.


I guess my question is, based on all that, whats the point in atheism? does it actually even exist, or are you just calling yourself atheists for the sake of opposing organized religion?


The point in atheism for me is not to follow false beliefs no matter how comforting I may find them. Consequently I am opposed to many organized religions for inculcating people with false hopes and incorrect ideas, providing them with misleading answers about the universe that stand in opposition to observed truths.



posted on Jul, 15 2010 @ 08:34 AM
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Now i dont want to call into question the classification you hold yourself to, so take no offense. (because maybe im misunderstanding atheism)

Considering that your "confident we will one day know the answer", you must believe that there is an ultimate, final answer. So i would posit that you do actually hold beliefs, they are just extremely vague and not based in any organized idea. This is much like me (if you read my post edit). I dont believe in organized religion, and i dont make any attempt to comprehend the answer (because i feel that would be impossible), but im still confident there is one. But to me, thats not atheism, because atheism (i think) entails complete disbelief in the idea that there is an answer that cannot be comprehended that is in fact greater then us. So, are you actually an atheist, or just a religious skeptic?



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