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An honest question for atheists....

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posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 05:25 PM
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Originally posted by PoopDawg

Most people deny there is a heaven because they are afraid of being held responsible for their immorality.
Just because you tell yourself there isn't a hell doesn't mean you will be excluded from it.
Wake up, grow up. The end is near. Would you risk eternity just because God isn't "logical"?
Sounds like a risky gamble to me.
edit on 18-4-2011 by PoopDawg because: (no reason given)


I hope you are trolling. If not, you sir, are stupid.

You would believe in God only because of fear ? Why are you so sure you have the right religion ? There were far more ancient religions, there are many new ones. In each and every one of those happened some kinds of miracles, each of them has some kind of prophet, many of them dont contradict within its own fairy tales as much as christianity.

You are not a good person if you are doing good deeds out of fear then out of your own belief, whole thing with hell is so stupid that one must scratch his head to believe it. Tricks that work on children certainly work on large group of population...




posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 05:25 PM
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Originally posted by The Djin
reply to post by OptimusSubprime
 





My intent with this post is not to challenge your belief as an atheist, we can have that debate at another time and in another thread. I welcome it. I respect your belief, and would never try to cram mine down your throat, and I expect the same courtesy.


Hm, perhaps a good start to your thread would be be to knowledge the fact atheism is not a belief but a lack of belief . So, you are not challenging anyone as there is no belief to be challenged,bald is not a hair colour.

Hope ? Faith ? An atheist is more likely to understand this as wishful thinking and less likely to be drawn to it.


You make a great point, and I debated on whether or not to word it as you have suggested. I look at it as a matter of semantics I guess. Good analogy about bald not being a hair color.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 05:27 PM
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We find hope in ourselves, from our own strength. From the knowledge that our thoughts will effect the world however intangibly but fundamentally on a quantum level. We find hope in every continued heartbeat of an ill person. In all of the tiny wonders that spill forth from coincidences. Hope is born from the wonderment, not that a deity brings about miracles, but that miracles happen by sheer chance. The don't have to happen, no one tells hem to, but they do. I find hope in the universe and in nature, which have proven time and time again that it has a way of righting it's self when we have done something wrong. I find hope when I look up at the stars and realize, that in this tiny corner of a spiral galaxy we exist. We just as easily couldn't. But we do.


Those that need god to find hope are the truly hopeless.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 05:30 PM
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reply to post by Heckren
 

You can call me stupid, but you have no clue about my faith or relationship with God.
You are speaking about a christian stereotypes.
I do good things because its right.
Ill pray for you.
The grow up part was for people like you.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 05:31 PM
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Originally posted by Tephra
How does putting your hope in a mystical creature any more inspiring than putting your hope in the flow of things?

I don't really see the difference between a religious person, and a non religious person, in this regard other than the fact that the religious person usually loses their faith when something terrible happens, and a non religious person has no faith to lose.

My simple point that I'd like to make is this, if an omnipotent being did exist, and I was presented before it, I would spat on it, for all the suffering it has allowed in this world.
edit on 18-4-2011 by Tephra because: (no reason given)


Isaiah 57:1

1The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 05:32 PM
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Originally posted by kylioneXsushi
We find hope in ourselves, from our own strength. From the knowledge that our thoughts will effect the world however intangibly but fundamentally on a quantum level. We find hope in every continued heartbeat of an ill person. In all of the tiny wonders that spill forth from coincidences. Hope is born from the wonderment, not that a deity brings about miracles, but that miracles happen by sheer chance. The don't have to happen, no one tells hem to, but they do. I find hope in the universe and in nature, which have proven time and time again that it has a way of righting it's self when we have done something wrong. I find hope when I look up at the stars and realize, that in this tiny corner of a spiral galaxy we exist. We just as easily couldn't. But we do.


Those that need god to find hope are the truly hopeless.


I can't speak for other believers, but I personally don't necessarily need God in order to find hope, but when in a situation that seems insurmountable it is then that hope in God is nice to have. I admit that this could be a form of denial in that I should just accept the situation at hand or focus my energy on solving the problem myself instead of somewhat giving up and putting my hope in something that has never been proven to exist. This is the reason for my original post, to have these kinds of conversations.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 05:39 PM
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reply to post by OptimusSubprime
 


I think many people often look to many forms of lies or childish fantasies to know that this life, that is filled with pain and misery is not for an ending big fat "zero". People have a problem with goodbyes. And to think that dying is a goodbye...an end...scares them.

But the thing that many fail to realize is that we don't need hope because we are not afraid to accept the inevitable. Religious people need hope. Hope by definition is wishing for a positive end result. Hope is for those that "wish" for something better after it all ends. What most fail to see is that we KNOW one thing. We are here now. We are living NOW. Why have hope that it is all for something else.

Religion kind of screws it up for the rest of us. It promotes fear and misery and limitations. Where hope and faith is what religious people have, it is replaced by respect and common sense in those that do not have a deity.

I am living my life. It is the only one I have, so I must work hard to achieve what I wish to achieve. I have the power to change my future if I start heading down a path I do not want to be on. I have the understanding that it is the only one you have too. So I work hard to make it so that your life is good as well. I am not greedy...I will gladly offer my shoes to someone who has none even if it means I must walk barefoot for a while. Why? Because it makes his one life here better and makes me feel good as well knowing that I have done something to make someone's life better.

If we could all have this understanding, it would make life a lot more precious, more important to everyone.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 05:41 PM
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Originally posted by OptimusSubprime I know that there may be some who reply to this with contempt or insults, but I am looking for the atheists who are willing to honestly answer the question of " without a belief in God, where do you find hope?


Interesting question and for the sake of learning, I will ad my two cents. Normally, I do not discuss politics and religion, as a rule, but, since I take your (OP) thread as a genuine dialogue, then by all means we should all give our opinions.

Let's understand "hope" at first.. In my view, hope is the response or opposite to desperation. Desperation is a mental/emotional state at which one can arrive due to many external and internal factors. We seek hope as an attempt to balance our desperation, aka our loss of control, loss of ability, lack of...

Those who believe in God turn to him for hope. Those who do not believe in God turn to themselves.

So my personal answer to your question is that if I needed HOPE, I also would know that I am profoundly imbalanced in one way or another, therefore, I turn my focus on my own resources and potential. I never failed to "achieve" hope, in other words, I never failed to re-balance myself from within. As a person who is not religious at all, I would actually find it counter-productive to ask anyone else for something I must do myself.

God has no place in my life, other than as an occasional subject of conversation - such as this one. Everyone is free to live by their own code, if they so choose, as long as their life does not hinder anyone elses rights either.

The other great thing about seeking inwards and using my own potential instead of asking someone else for help/hope is waiting time. Accessing my inner strength is faster.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 05:46 PM
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I'm an athiest so i don't ascribe to there being any god or divine creator. If anything, my belief system would sway towards buddhism which isn't a religion, it's a philosophy.



where do you find hope? What gives you strength in the face of adversity?


Don't need it, i learnt a long time ago that life will take me where it chooses to, i'm just along for the ride.


Do you ever feel alone and empty inside without a belief in a higher power?


Sometimes, but i don't believe that it has anything to do with not having a belief in a higher power, to me it's just a state of mind based on a perception of reality which is infinatly changeable. I may feel one emotion now, another later but generally my enviroment hasn't changed, just the way i feel about it.

Buddhism teaches that a lot of suffering that people experience is due to us trying to push certain experiences away that we don't want whilst pulling other things towards us that we do want, both can have negative consequences on our lives and it's suprising how calm and clear minded you can be by not doing this and by just experiencing reality as it comes to you.


edit on 18-4-2011 by snoochieboochies because: (no reason given)

edit on 18-4-2011 by snoochieboochies because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 06:04 PM
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reply to post by OptimusSubprime
 





There is one thing about religion that I do love and that is the faith that people have in God. I also love the hope that people find in God.


this is the part that is disturbing to me in your statement..

1faith
noun ˈfāth
plural faiths
Definition of FAITH
1 a : allegiance to duty or a person : loyalty b (1) : fidelity to one's promises (2) : sincerity of intentions
2 a (1) : belief and trust in and loyalty to God (2) : belief in the traditional doctrines of a religion b (1) : firm belief in something for which there is no proof (2) : complete trust
3 : something that is believed especially with strong conviction; especially : a system of religious beliefs

You like idea of people holding on desperately in a firm belief in something for which the is no proof of while suffering emotional trauma, with no self esteem, grovelling before other equal humans who are all the while controlling them through superstition? its as if your in Love with the idea of being in Love without experiencing Love looking for someone to tell you how to fall in Love .. act in Love.. stay in Love.. Faith for Faiths sake is foolish... looking fondly upon peoples Faith seems mean spirited.. you might as well say "I like the way the suffer through it".. the capability to express Love, Kindness, Friendship, is all with in US.. you do not need an imaginary Man in the Sky keeping a ledger so reward you to act Decent.

My Hope is in my own heart & mind.. and the company I keep..after 38 times around the Sun I have found no one has any answers. if they tell you that, they are lying.. religion is NOT God's doing. It is a system. It is a man controlling another man through fear of the unknown. God is not what men think. Too many humanistic traits given to Him. There was no Holy Fax from Heaven. Men wrote the rules to control other men. You can still see the hypocrisy to this day. Jesus had simple practical teachings that have been twisted & ignored from Day One resulting in the corrupt Church's feeding off the weak you can see all around the world today..


sorry for the rant.. peace



edit on 18-4-2011 by reeferman because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 07:27 PM
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Originally posted by restlessbrainsyndrome
reply to post by OptimusSubprime
 


I think many people often look to many forms of lies or childish fantasies to know that this life, that is filled with pain and misery is not for an ending big fat "zero". People have a problem with goodbyes. And to think that dying is a goodbye...an end...scares them.

But the thing that many fail to realize is that we don't need hope because we are not afraid to accept the inevitable. Religious people need hope. Hope by definition is wishing for a positive end result. Hope is for those that "wish" for something better after it all ends. What most fail to see is that we KNOW one thing. We are here now. We are living NOW. Why have hope that it is all for something else.

Religion kind of screws it up for the rest of us. It promotes fear and misery and limitations. Where hope and faith is what religious people have, it is replaced by respect and common sense in those that do not have a deity.

I am living my life. It is the only one I have, so I must work hard to achieve what I wish to achieve. I have the power to change my future if I start heading down a path I do not want to be on. I have the understanding that it is the only one you have too. So I work hard to make it so that your life is good as well. I am not greedy...I will gladly offer my shoes to someone who has none even if it means I must walk barefoot for a while. Why? Because it makes his one life here better and makes me feel good as well knowing that I have done something to make someone's life better.

If we could all have this understanding, it would make life a lot more precious, more important to everyone.



Thanks for your reply, I really enjoyed reading it. I think you made some greats points and have certainly cleared up some of my ignorance and preconceived notions in regards to atheism.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 07:29 PM
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Put simply, people want to have the answers to things. You don't need OCD to desperately want the solution to a situation that seems without solution. History has shown that people gravitate toward leaders that promise change and/or solutions/answers. (some good, some bad, some horrific) The human condition will always be cursed with the burden of intelligence and aspiration. We value our existence to the point where we assign actual value to it. Someone or something must be pulling for us, otherwise, who/what is?

It's completely natural to pine for an answer to the question of existence. I would honestly not be surprised if this tendency is somehow shown in future experiments to exist in what humanity would currently consider "lesser life forms". (insofar as intelligence is concerned)

Some just choose to allocate themselves to the growing body of scientific evidence that has been steadily chipping away at the classically considered theistic domain, while others do not.

That said, in my mind, there is a HUGE difference between spiritualism and religious tendencies. One is structured, and one is limitless.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 07:34 PM
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Originally posted by reeferman
reply to post by OptimusSubprime
 





There is one thing about religion that I do love and that is the faith that people have in God. I also love the hope that people find in God.


this is the part that is disturbing to me in your statement..

1faith
noun \ˈfāth\
plural faiths
Definition of FAITH
1 a : allegiance to duty or a person : loyalty b (1) : fidelity to one's promises (2) : sincerity of intentions
2 a (1) : belief and trust in and loyalty to God (2) : belief in the traditional doctrines of a religion b (1) : firm belief in something for which there is no proof (2) : complete trust
3 : something that is believed especially with strong conviction; especially : a system of religious beliefs

You like idea of people holding on desperately in a firm belief in something for which the is no proof of while suffering emotional trauma, with no self esteem, grovelling before other equal humans who are all the while controlling them through superstition? its as if your in Love with the idea of being in Love without experiencing Love looking for someone to tell you how to fall in Love .. act in Love.. stay in Love.. Faith for Faiths sake is foolish... looking fondly upon peoples Faith seems mean spirited.. you might as well say "I like the way the suffer through it".. the capability to express Love, Kindness, Friendship, is all with in US.. you do not need an imaginary Man in the Sky keeping a ledger so reward you to act Decent.

My Hope is in my own heart & mind.. and the company I keep..after 38 times around the Sun I have found no one has any answers. if they tell you that, they are lying.. religion is NOT God's doing. It is a system. It is a man controlling another man through fear of the unknown. God is not what men think. Too many humanistic traits given to Him. There was no Holy Fax from Heaven. Men wrote the rules to control other men. You can still see the hypocrisy to this day. Jesus had simple practical teachings that have been twisted & ignored from Day One resulting in the corrupt Church's feeding off the weak you can see all around the world today..


sorry for the rant.. peace




No need for an apology. When I think of people of faith I don't think of desperation, those are your words, not mine. Also, in my OP I specifically mentioned my hatred of organized religion, so I am in agreement with you in regards to people kneeling before another man. No man is deserving of being knelt before. The Pope is no better than any other man. In my humble opinion, organized religion is nothing but a perversion of the true intent of God's purpose for mankind. I don't need the permission or blessing of another human to talk to God. I think the Catholic Church is the biggest scam in history, as well as the biggest money laundering cult in history. I believe in one's individual relationship with God, and mine is different than someone else's, and one isn't better than the other, nor is it better than your non-belief in God. To each his/her own.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 08:05 PM
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Originally posted by OptimusSubprime
"without a belief in God, where do you find hope?


Why do I need something outside myself to be positive and believe in goodness and good things happening?

I do believe everything is an energy - - and energy affects energy - - so positive energy would be like Ripples in a pond spreading out and touching everything they come in contact with.

I believe that group prayers are about the energy - - and not about some omnipotent being answering them.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 08:41 PM
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Originally posted by PoopDawg

Most people deny there is a heaven because they are afraid of being held responsible for their immorality.
Just because you tell yourself there isn't a hell doesn't mean you will be excluded from it.
Wake up, grow up. The end is near. Would you risk eternity just because God isn't "logical"?
Sounds like a risky gamble to me.
edit on 18-4-2011 by PoopDawg because: (no reason given)


I am a gambling man.

I really like my odds.



posted on Apr, 18 2011 @ 09:36 PM
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Atheism isn't a belief most of us don't have clubs. By not having a super being in our lives we realize that what happens to us is a function of the lives we have built and luck.

There is no fear of death because you realize that being dead is just that - there are no regrets no guilt no anything.actually; a state that seems to be very difficult for the human mind to wrap itself around.

You go through life loving the people who love you and helping the people you can, the golden rule. Always remember the favors people do for you and forget the favors you do for others.

The thing that keeps you on the straight and narrow is your conscience. That is why it is important to teach a child what is right and wrong and why right is the high road, even if it is not the easiest. Not every one will feel the same way as you; go home feeling that what you did is right, children need to know this.

You are the master of your ship be it a canoe or an ocean liner. You are responsible for forgiving yourself and for not getting yourself into positions that require you to exercise that forgiveness. You are a small cog in a very large machine, some are more important but in the end we all die and that is it.

Live your life collecting great stories be as kind as you can, pull your load, remember that you share the earth and all its resources, don't be greedy.

There was a little ditty written in the 20s (last century) Google Desiderata It is a pretty good guide.

BTW a lot of us are democrats


edit on 18-4-2011 by spyder550 because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 19 2011 @ 04:39 AM
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Originally posted by graphuto

Originally posted by Tephra
How does putting your hope in a mystical creature any more inspiring than putting your hope in the flow of things?

I don't really see the difference between a religious person, and a non religious person, in this regard other than the fact that the religious person usually loses their faith when something terrible happens, and a non religious person has no faith to lose.

My simple point that I'd like to make is this, if an omnipotent being did exist, and I was presented before it, I would spat on it, for all the suffering it has allowed in this world.
edit on 18-4-2011 by Tephra because: (no reason given)


Isaiah 57:1

1The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come.



Oh so you're saying this god brutally murdered, instilled cancer, or just generally caused the painful death of millions of innocents because of this evil which he is in control of? What a nice guy.

Genius.
edit on 19-4-2011 by Tephra because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 19 2011 @ 06:30 AM
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Originally posted by Tephra

Originally posted by graphuto

Originally posted by Tephra
How does putting your hope in a mystical creature any more inspiring than putting your hope in the flow of things?

I don't really see the difference between a religious person, and a non religious person, in this regard other than the fact that the religious person usually loses their faith when something terrible happens, and a non religious person has no faith to lose.

My simple point that I'd like to make is this, if an omnipotent being did exist, and I was presented before it, I would spat on it, for all the suffering it has allowed in this world.
edit on 18-4-2011 by Tephra because: (no reason given)


Isaiah 57:1

1The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come.



Oh so you're saying this god brutally murdered, instilled cancer, or just generally caused the painful death of millions of innocents because of this evil which he is in control of? What a nice guy.

Genius.
edit on 19-4-2011 by Tephra because: (no reason given)


I see your point but you are looking at it from a secular point of view, which is fine so don't get me wrong. The biblical point of view is that man caused the murder, cancer, etc.. by sinning in the first place. I know that you will find this explanation just as ludicrous, but it is an important distinction.



posted on Apr, 19 2011 @ 08:05 AM
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without a belief in God, where do you find hope?


Where to begin....I find hope in everything.

I find hope when i discover that my attempts of becoming a better person are a little succesful.It means if i can do it everyone can and eventually will.
I find hope when i look in the nightsky and i see all the stars.
I find hope when i see a beautiful landscape.
I find hope when i see someone smile or even better laugh.
I find hope when i read a great achievement from a fellow human
I find hope when i hear music
I find hope when i see people trying to regain their freedom.
I find hope everytime i think that we are not alone in the universe

Ok i admit i'm a positive person or at least i try.The secret is not to ask for hope noone, not even your God will give it to you,but to find it yourself.



posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 01:43 AM
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Humanity.

There is nothing i cherish more than my mere existence and the fact that I am a member of this amazing race.

I recognize the terrible strife in our world, I am quite concerned about global condition. But then I think about life from a longterm perspective. Life on this planet, life in the past or future, the lives of animals, the lives of single celled organisms, the lives of other species and I think how lucky we are. Sometimes I even question the human identity! Is it as valuable or important as we traditionally thought? Who knows, it seems to be relative.

To sum it all up, existence and experience is my hope. The fact that I can comprehend our existence in this way. The fact that I am capable of building incredible instruments and playing them. The fact that I am going to wake up tomorrow go to school, learn, laugh, meet up with my friends, enjoy the holiday, eat some food, play with my dog, maybe i'll even have sex. I have so much to look forward to.

The human potential is limitless, we just need to realize how to use it en masse.
edit on 20-4-2011 by Marulo because: (no reason given)



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