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The Growth of Atheism and What it Means for Our Future

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posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:31 PM
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Are you suggesting that country 2 would have more donations at the lower income levels because it would be christian? I know a lot of low income christians personally that barely pay their tithes much less donate to a charity.


 
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posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:32 PM
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Originally posted by Ryanp5555

Don't confuse non-religion affiliated with don't believe in god. There are way more organizations that are non-religious affiliated because it gives everyone the ability to donate (or makes everyone feel like they can donate). Some of these organizations you listed are US governmental organizations which cannot have religious affiliation per the United States Constitution. The largest charitable organization in the world is a religious organization.


What would make you think I am confused?

Why are you making excuses for people to donate to these organizations.



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:34 PM
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Originally posted by kallisti36If there is no God, no universal spirit, or individual soul then there is no point, no plot, and no reason.
Does the truth hurt so much you will believe a lie?

We naturally try to survive, feel good, and reproduce. That is what animals do. You'd do better if you stopped fighting it and learned to maximize the surviving and feeling good. The reproduction part is easy.



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:38 PM
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Originally posted by dominicus
reply to post by Annee
 



YES! And I'm annoyed and tired of people telling me I don't because I am now Atheist.

Its impossible to explore the esoteric core and really experience the truths there, and come away and Atheist. 100% impossible.

I would therefor wager a years salary .....that on your behalf it was merely surface level window shopping that lead to a final assumption of atheism.

Every time I explore this, its always the case.


No its not.

And you are wrong.



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:49 PM
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Originally posted by gentledissident

Originally posted by Student X I can see why atheists like that feel-good myth. But newborns are neither atheists nor theists. They transcend that pair of opposites.
I'm sure you enjoy that feel good thought, but a God is like a lunchbox. You get sold one later on.


Yeah you get sold a lunchbox, or you use a brown paper bag. Either way to got a lunch. Atheism is like the bag. Until you go to school, you don't make a choice.
edit on 13-6-2011 by Student X because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:49 PM
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Originally posted by Annee

Originally posted by Ryanp5555

Well put. This was what I was trying to get across and I think it is a very honest assessment that others try to deny because they don't want anything that others may deem bad to be affiliated with them when they are arguing about getting rid of all religions (ESPECIALLY christianity as the OP put it). Similar to you I was born christian went atheist but unlike you I began to believe in God again FWIW.


Why? Is there a reason you stopped believing in God?

What made you start believing again?


I became an atheist because I couldn't see how God made sense. I was born Catholic, so we had to take CCD classes. Since around 3rd grade I was asking the teacher where God came from or how God was created every day in class. People HATED it in class, but the teacher couldn't answer it, and no one could answer it around me. This resulted in me not being able to move past this one point. I thought the whole thing was stupid and illogical. We were just supposed to believe some guy created us and ignore obvious flaws in the reasoning for his existence?

I was a firm atheist when I actually re-converted back to Christianity. In High School I was by no means popular. I was closer to the loser category. Didn't have many friends, but I had a close group of 5-10 friends. Anyways, my rejection of atheism and belief in God came at the very end of my senior year. I had been led to believe that if I didn't go to prom I would miss out on some significant life event, which was obviously wrong. The problem was that I was incredibly shy. But for how shy I was, I was a million times shier around girls. I literally couldn't talk to them. I mean I could say Hi, but I couldn't hold a conversation. I would immediately get awkward and there would be silence. So, I began to pray to God to help me overcome my inability to talk to girls and to get a girlfriend to go to prom (it was one of those God, if you do this for me, I'll actually try to see that you possibly exist). This started in the very beginning of May. By the end of May I had a girlfriend, was able to talk to girls, and was at prom.

Then, her aunt used to take her to church. Well, she started bringing me to church. She wasn't one of those religious people. I think she went out of guilt. Anyways, at certain moments in my life where I was having issues, the sermon would be directly on those issues. To be clear, after the whole praying for a girlfriend thing, I started praying about certain things in my life. Some things I really needed answers to, and I'd pray and the sermons would be directly on those things. At some point in there it was like a flood of realization. It was like Oh yeah, God does exist. This was obvious. If only I had let myself see this before.

Other things that could be chalked up to a coincidence happened (this is sort of a stupid one but I remember this specifically. I was driving home from somewhere and the lanes merged on a street b/c of construction. I was unaware of this, and I ended up getting sort of boxed in by this one particular car. He wouldn't let me into his lane. So, I asked God to help him access his "nicer" side and immediately he let me in). I later met my wife, who is catholic. I have issues with the catholic church, but I'd say I'm catholic for the most part.



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:53 PM
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Originally posted by Annee

Originally posted by Ryanp5555

Don't confuse non-religion affiliated with don't believe in god. There are way more organizations that are non-religious affiliated because it gives everyone the ability to donate (or makes everyone feel like they can donate). Some of these organizations you listed are US governmental organizations which cannot have religious affiliation per the United States Constitution. The largest charitable organization in the world is a religious organization.


What would make you think I am confused?

Why are you making excuses for people to donate to these organizations.


I'm not making excuses for people to donate to these organizations. It seemed like you were presenting these non-religious affiliated organizations as evidence that atheists/agnostics donate as much if not more than people from religions. Ignoring the fact that many of these organizations members are religious or the people who donate to them are religious. Perhaps I was confused.



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:55 PM
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Originally posted by dominicus
reply to post by Annee
 



YES! And I'm annoyed and tired of people telling me I don't because I am now Atheist.

Its impossible to explore the esoteric core and really experience the truths there, and come away and Atheist. 100% impossible.

I would therefor wager a years salary .....that on your behalf it was merely surface level window shopping that lead to a final assumption of atheism.

Every time I explore this, its always the case.


Yeah I mostly agree. Atheists usually have an ignorance of esoterica and mysticism. Look behind the surface of pop-culture crap and materialist crud and there is a void where esoteric knowledge and mystical experience should be. They don't have the will or the strength or the inspiration or something to go past the window dressing.



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:56 PM
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Originally posted by Student X Yeah you get sold a lunchbox, or you use a brown paper bag. Atheism is like the bag. Until you go to school, you don't make a choice.
OK...what?



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:56 PM
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Originally posted by gentledissident

Originally posted by kallisti36If there is no God, no universal spirit, or individual soul then there is no point, no plot, and no reason.
Does the truth hurt so much you will believe a lie?

We naturally try to survive, feel good, and reproduce. That is what animals do. You'd do better if you stopped fighting it and learned to maximize the surviving and feeling good. The reproduction part is easy.

I can see how someone would deny God, but to deny the spirit I cannot understand. I mean, it's subjective, you can't put your finger on it, but we are all aware of it. Call it a consciousness, but what you're really doing is using loaded Freudian language. A thousand years later and we might have a better word for it and "conscious" will be seen as trite and as quaint as you see the word "spirit". Or perhaps, by then we will have outgrown our immature materialism and might come to understand the ancients as being right.

The atheist can put a happy face on the state of the insignificance of life. They can wring their hands, and force smiles and say we're all "stardust" and the chemical reactions in our brains like "love" (pshaw) can still be experienced and enjoyed "and that's something... right?". Forgive me, but I had enough friends go crazy, burn out, and kill themselves by thinking that feeling and this life are all we have. Put a happy face on it, but whose being delusional then? The honest nihilist-atheist do see themselves and all others as animals and from this comes the will to power, to be alpha, to only be concerned with survival and pleasure. The body pile at the feet of that mindset is higher than all others put together. Many people blame atheism for the horrors of Hitler and Stalin, but it's not entirely honest. Yes, they were atheists, but that's only one symptom (though the beginning) of the Nihilism of Destruction. It's like saying that the serial killer became who he was, because his parents never loved him, but to leave out that he was schizophrenic.

If you are going to be an atheist, I can't stop you, but for the love of God, at least be a humanist. To bring mankind to the level of animals in your mind is a horrible mistake.
edit on 13-6-2011 by kallisti36 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:59 PM
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Originally posted by kallisti36To bring mankind to the level of animals in your mind is a horrible mistake.
We're not plants. We are cognisant, intelligent primates. By the way this thread has gone, it could be an evolutionary dead end.



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 03:59 PM
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Originally posted by kallisti36
Atheism taken to it's logical conclusion is nihilism. If there is no God, no universal spirit, or individual soul then there is no point, no plot, and no reason.


Although it was a really nice post, thought provoking, I disagree with the premise.

Atheism leads to nihilism...sure, a understanding of the pointlessness of existance, however, that doesn't then immediately turn it into destructive or obscure behavioral patterns by nature.

Consider a actual real world pointless example.

Bowling...yep, bowling.
Totally pointless. you take a ball, toss it at some pins, they fall down, a machine picks them back up, you grab another ball, and whip it at the pins, etc etc etc
no point beyond "hit the pins". This doesn't prepare you for a greater life, this doesn't allow you to understand your soul better, or somehow make you a better person.
Some minor points...a good score, perhaps an award over time, but otherwise, it is absolutely pointless.

By the philosophy of nihilism (all things pointless turns to destruction and/or are abandoned) bowling shouldn't exist (along with a ton of other pointless things we enjoy doing)...yet we do them, and do it happily.

Life can be just like bowling. Pointless actions, however done happily and enjoying the round as it were. the hippies you point out had an issue. they went from a society mostly innundated with fanatical religious roots, they explored this new philosophy of differences and pointlessness and without reference, explored many things...some being various human centric systems of beliefs (asian exotic religions and cults), anger, etc...it was a birth of a new mindset, and it has hiccups because its new and without clearcut examples and references.

We have matured a bit since then, refined the understanding, and are able to put perspective on it. Western society is past the suicidally depressed or insane aspects that come from a new idea...its not accepted, and in some areas, preferred in order to have a fulfilling life.

Many atheists of today have stopped asking "what is the point of life", and instead are asking the better question, "what point do I want to make with my life".



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 04:02 PM
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reply to post by SaturnFX
 


Your dismissing the actual point of bowling (winning or losing or in some cases social interaction) by limiting it only to knocking down pins. If you were put into a room where all you could do was throw a ball down a lane and hit pins over and over and over non-stop. It would probably lead to frustration and eventual lashing out.



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 04:03 PM
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reply to post by kallisti36
 



Originally posted by kallisti36
Atheism taken to it's logical conclusion is nihilism.


Wrong.



If there is no God, no universal spirit, or individual soul then there is no point, no plot, and no reason.


Ok, for the umpteenth time. Atheism says nothing about souls, spirits, or any other supernatural idea besides deities. No deities is not the same as nothing supernatural. Buddhism? Some forms of it are atheistic.

The lack of a deity provides us with the opportunity to create meaning, instead of being forced into a role that we didn't choose. We have our own reasons for living. Mine? Well, those are personal. Or living is its own reward, there's that too.



Nietzche was right in his prophecy that in the 20th century nihilism would rule, especially the will to power.


...except that we are far from a nihilistic society.



What we saw with the rise of atheism, moral relativism, and theism turning to deism among the 'faithful' was indeed a horribly violent, bigoted, and dynamic century.


...correlation doesn't equal causation. Furthermore, religion has been at the heart of a hell of a lot more bigotry than atheism. You know...all of those religious wars were pretty bad, right?

I'd like to point out that people living in this century have the greatest standard of living on average out of people living at any point in history.

I just...there's so much wrong with this bit. It's fractally wrong. You're wrong about reality, you're wrong in your causal chain, you're wrong wrong wrong.



Christianity is crumbling, because it became a cultural thing that no one bothered to research or understand and it became a skin deep agnostic theism for most people (myself included).


Or maybe it's crumbing because people are seeing through the deception.



Peace upon you all and remember there is a point.


You've yet to prove that there is no point in atheism...



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 04:04 PM
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Originally posted by Ryanp5555 If you were put into a room where all you could do was throw a ball down a lane and hit pins over and over and over non-stop. It would probably lead to frustration and eventual lashing out.
Some of these metaphors are going way out to left field



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 04:07 PM
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Originally posted by kallisti36
to deny the spirit I cannot understand. I mean, it's subjective, you can't put your finger on it, but we are all aware of it. Call it a consciousness,


Actually, I sort of agree with this..although I don't like using loaded terms (such as spirit)...

A good way to have someone understand what your saying is simple though and may help you out later.
Consider Star Trek (everyone knows, to talk with a skeptic about matters of spirit, you must envoke sci-fi).

Consider the teleporter. the "science" behind it (yes, I was a trekky...even had the "manual" of the starship that talked of the science behind the fiction of everything) is that a swarm of nanobots takes a picture of you, right down to the atoms.
then it disassembles you as you stand.
the information is then sent (not the matter, just the information..1's and 0's) to a recieving computer and a swarm of nanobots grabs basic elements from a vat...assembles the information exactly as it was read, and creates an atomically precise copy of you.

If we are nothing more than the sum knowledge, experience, and chemical makeup of ourselves, then this should be no problem
however, we "know" there is something more...there is a untouchable intangable something that wasn't transferred..."us". the new copy may be just as alive as us, however, it is not us, because we are more than the parts and the memories...there is a identity that exists outside of it all..



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 04:08 PM
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reply to post by gentledissident
 


Yeah, I should have qualified my statement with an: I don't know if I actually believe that morality and atheism do go hand in hand. However, its at least an interesting thought and would be nice to see if we could somehow prove one way or the other.



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 04:10 PM
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reply to post by Gorman91
 



Originally posted by Gorman91
reply to post by madnessinmysoul
 


Not really. Faith is faith. Unless it can be proven without a doubt, it is faith. I would argue there are varying scales of it.


Yes, and religious faith would be the furthest away from truth and 'faith' in science (which is really being used as a synonym for trust here, which is why it's skewing things a bit) is as close to truth as we can possibly get in this world.



We as humans take the first act of faith in believing all that we see is real.


...anyone who thinks what they see is real doesn't understand that they have a massive blindspot in the middle of their field of view.



Also, "reasonable trust based upon previous experience" isn't faith. I don't really know what it is. Age? Experience? wisdom? It's not faith though. It's basically just consistency.


...it's the scientific method. If I swing a pendulum I can be very sure that the crest of the arc on the other side will not be higher than the dropping point on the side of origin.

That's what science is. No faith needed. It's repeated testing that's been cataloged and critiqued and restested over centuries.




I should also add that to live without any faith is to be an animal.


...wow, that's only moderately insulting.



Because humans, by their own minds, question everything. Only something not mentality capable of choosing can have truly no faith. Most lower animals are true atheists perhaps then.


...except that I have no faith in any deity, in any concept. I have trust based upon experience and testing, nothing more. I am readily aware that new evidence could change my position on just about anything, which is why I'm open to allowing for that. This is what separates me from someone who has faith, I don't claim that my position is unassailable.



But even Gorillas apparently believe in something. We asked them with sign language. Who knows.


Citation needed much?



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 04:11 PM
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Originally posted by Ryanp5555
reply to post by gentledissident
 


Yeah, I should have qualified my statement with an: I don't know if I actually believe that morality and atheism do go hand in hand. However, its at least an interesting thought and would be nice to see if we could somehow prove one way or the other.



Google: Secular countrys and crime rates.

Your answer awaits..with suprising results no doubt.



posted on Jun, 13 2011 @ 04:12 PM
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reply to post by Annee
 




No its not.

And you are wrong.

please prove. Otherwise, its you who are wrong.

Have you ever explored your own consciousness, the source of thought, the source of awareness, the states that exist prior to consciousness, the source of emotion, ......I go on forever.

If you haven't, then you are simply assuming atheism



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