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Through the eyes of Atheism

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posted on Aug, 27 2011 @ 09:09 PM
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Originally posted by Catatonic
Why is it so important to understand atheism? Just be well assured that we are no threat to your god.


I would think that it's not at all important for a theist to understand atheism, except for two things: 1) If he has not informed himself on matters pertaining to atheism, then his faith in a god is flawed and uniformed because he has not explored alternatives. How can one say in an informed way that "I reject that and embrace this" if he has no understanding of what it is he rejects? 2)Knowledge of others should properly promote dialog and dispel unfounded fears.

As you say, atheism is no threat to a god. If it were, then that god would be a mighty weak one, and not worthy of worship. Heck, I doubt that I'd even lend such a weak god a 20 until payday. It's not the perception of a threat to a god that I think needs to be addressed, but there are others, less secure, who might benefit from such reassurance. As a matter of fact, I believe right down in the middle of me that this entire debate was started by some insecure theist or theists, probably of the Christian variety, who, not being secure in their faith, perceived a threat to their god. Some atheists, bless their hearts, were all to happy to pick up the standard and sally forth in response, and conflict was born where none was necessary.

Now, mud is slung and names are flung across the divided camps. You have theist types telling atheists they're hellward bound because they don't believe as the theists do, and you have atheist types telling theists what dull witted, brainwashed dolts they are for not believing as the atheist does. I don't believe either of those attitudes are necessary or proper. It's not my job to force an atheist to "look after his own soul" against his will, nor is it his job to usher me into his brave new world of "enlightenment" against mine. Either side belittling the other doesn't help matters, and only creates resentment where dialog and comprehension are called for.

There is a certain element on either side who want nothing at all to do with the other, unless it's to bash them. Fine. have nothing to do with them, and don't waste time bashing. That problem then solves itself. For the rest of us, who don't mind a bit of diversity, it ought not to be a bar to interaction, but the folks who jump out just to stir the pot keeps most of the rest on edge and wary of the other. A bit of understanding would probably go a long way to dispel that apprehension.

It doesn't matter to me what you believe, or why you believe it. What I believe isn't dependent on what anyone else believes and so can't be threatened by their belief or lack thereof, but that's just me. I can still smile and wave, and give you a hand if you need it, and not be lessened thereby. There are some insecure types around, however, that it does matter to, and I think it feeds their insecurity precisely because they are uniformed.

I don't need you to believe in my god or any other. It enough for me to know that atheists have their reasons to believe as they do, just as I have mine. Beyond that, there's a ball game to be watched or something.




posted on Aug, 27 2011 @ 11:28 PM
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Originally posted by nenothtu
There is a certain element on either side who want nothing at all to do with the other
You mean we have a choice?

Originally posted by nenothtu It enough for me to know that atheists have their reasons to believe as they do, just as I have mine.
Tenacious. I'd give you reasons why I don't believe, but you know that will get me nowhere. In that I have faith.



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 12:11 AM
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Originally posted by gentledissident

Originally posted by nenothtu
There is a certain element on either side who want nothing at all to do with the other


You mean we have a choice?


Why wouldn't you have one? If I don't want anything to do with someone, I don't have anything to do with them. Why would you be any different?




Originally posted by nenothtu It enough for me to know that atheists have their reasons to believe as they do, just as I have mine.

Tenacious. I'd give you reasons why I don't believe, but you know that will get me nowhere. In that I have faith.


Where do you expect it to get you? What do you expect to gain? If you need me to hear them, I can hear, and if you expect me to try to invalidate them, I don't know why I should. They're your reasons, not mine.

I'm all ears... er, "eyes" in this medium.




edit on 2011/8/28 by nenothtu because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 12:19 AM
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reply to post by nenothtu
 


From what I can gather, this nothing TO "understand" about atheism.



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 12:21 AM
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reply to post by nenothtu
 


just because we disagree is no reason to be disagreeable

Unless, of course, we insist on disagreeing over and over again, at great length, in a forum thread dedicated to a subject different from that we are disagreeing over.

Then we become extremely disagreeable. To others.


edit on 28/8/11 by Astyanax because: a change of pronoun was warranted.



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 12:53 AM
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Originally posted by NewAgeMan
reply to post by nenothtu
 


From what I can gather, this nothing TO "understand" about atheism.


Nothing to understand about their belief or lack thereof. That's theirs, they own it, and it doesn't matter if we understand that or not - we don't need to, it's not our concern. I'm more curious myself about issues peripheral to that, such as why so many feel a need to try to belittle theists as some sort of primitive, less than fully human. Not all of them, but there are a few.

Some of the more insecure sort of theists need to understand enough to know that there's no threat present to their god, which would appear to be an internal question rather than an external one, but they tend to externalize it and target atheists, as the perceived source of an assault on their god. What they're doing is taking it personal, as if an assault on their god was an assault on themselves. They seem not to comprehend that an atheist can't assault what he doesn't believe in. What the more disagreeable sort of atheist really assaults is the idea of a god, which is more an assault on the one who holds that belief than it is on the deity itself. They tend to take stuff too personally, while trying to deflect it to their god. In other words, they take an assault on their beliefs as an assault on their god, and seem not to realize that a proper god can handle himself, doesn't need their defense or offense.

Usually the assault is on the belief itself, sometimes on the believer - i.e. "when will you neanderthals let go of that archaic notion and step into the modern world with us humans?", but it is NEVER, by definition of what constitutes an atheist, an assault on any god. Why would they fight something they don't believe exists?



edit on 2011/8/28 by nenothtu because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 01:05 AM
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I run into a few atheists who give me grief (on internet forums) because they want to say Jesus is evil because he is Jehovah, who everyone knows was into genocide.
If I say, I don't believe any of that, then they want to argue my theology because they want me to fit their mold they have that they can ridicule. I decided to just not continue such conversations.
edit on 28-8-2011 by jmdewey60 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 01:06 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
reply to post by nenothtu
 


just because we disagree is no reason to be disagreeable

Unless, of course, we insist on disagreeing over and over again, at great length, in a forum thread dedicated to a subject different from that we are disagreeing over.

Then we become extremely disagreeable. To others.



I'll be the first to admit that I'm a thoroughly disagreeable sort, more to some than to others, but I could have sworn the subject of the thread was atheism, started by a theist, and so by extension the dispute between atheism and theism. If I took a wrong turn there, maybe it's time for me to bow out and let you take the field by a default, rather than a victory through ability?

Maybe we just define 'victory' differently? I mean, if I'm wearing you down, perhaps it's because you're one of the ones who has no desire to get along and would prefer to keep the pot stirred?



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 01:14 AM
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Originally posted by jmdewey60
I run into a few atheists who give me grief (on internet forums) because they want to say Jesus is evil because he is Jehovah, who everyone knows was into genocide.
If I say, I don't believe any of that, then they want to argue my theology because they want me to fit their mold they have that they can ridicule. I decided to just not continue such conversations.
edit on 28-8-2011 by jmdewey60 because: (no reason given)


Probably a wise choice. There would seem to be nothing to gain arguing theology with an atheologian for either side. I some times argue theology with my atheist friends in the real world, but we all realize that it's more for recreation than for blood, and hilarity usually ensues. I know that I can't convert them, nor do I care to, and they likewise know that I'm a lost cause, so we're in it for the grins and exercise.



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 01:19 AM
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reply to post by nenothtu
 

True, and it's not very inspirational either, just a very easy and simplistic position to take. To then bash others with deeply held views they may have arrived at through many years of inquiry, and careful evaluative discernment, is not only insulting, but jeuvenile. To me they appear as brats suffering from rebellious, teenage angst, thing more.
If there was something worth exploring, then it would be a different story, but there's no there, there, and nothing of any substance at all. That they consider their position to represent the height of reason and intellect, is utterly absurd.



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 02:59 AM
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reply to post by nenothtu
 


I could have sworn the subject of the thread was atheism, started by a theist, and so by extension the dispute between atheism and theism.

You seem to have spent rather a long time trying to establish that atheism is a form of belief. Not relevant; it’s just a stalking-horse for believers who find comfort in insisting that everyone is just like them. The topic of the thread appears to be how things look from the perspective of an atheist.


If I took a wrong turn there, maybe it's time for me to bow out and let you take the field by a default, rather than a victory through ability?

I am not debating you. Your argument is with others, not me.


Maybe we just define 'victory' differently? I mean, if I'm wearing you down, perhaps it's because you're one of the ones who has no desire to get along and would prefer to keep the pot stirred?

You are wearing me down because I have to scroll down screed after verbose screed of yours in order to get to the posts by people who are saying things that are on topic, and interesting.

Also, on a purely personal level, I object to avatars with helmets.



edit on 28/8/11 by Astyanax because: of personal reasons.



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 03:17 AM
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reply to post by nenothtu
 


im the opposite, i dont mind how people word things or even if they have spelling mistakes, as long as i understand what they meen. i bet txt language must bug u soething rotten



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 03:18 AM
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reply to post by nenothtu
 


can you imagine the size of a dragon steak.. mmmmmmmmm



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 03:35 AM
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I'm not religious, however i'm not atheist either. religious people are too sold on the fact that what they believe must be absolutely true, while scientists and atheists get so locked into what makes physical sense.

I've seen people claiming that before the big bang there was no time, therefore the chance of a divine creator and heaven is impossible.

However, they even stated that the laws of physics outside our own universe could be so diverse that our minds would not be able to comprehend it.

The atheists don't seem to realize that they don't actually know, and, well, the exact same goes for religious people. you just don't know. you just can't know, not until you die.



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 06:18 AM
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Originally posted by NewAgeMan
reply to post by nenothtu
 

True, and it's not very inspirational either, just a very easy and simplistic position to take. To then bash others with deeply held views they may have arrived at through many years of inquiry, and careful evaluative discernment, is not only insulting, but jeuvenile. To me they appear as brats suffering from rebellious, teenage angst, thing more.


The views, though opposing, are held just as deeply by one side as the other, and in many cases of both are arrived at over years of inquiry and evaluation. The thing is, those evaluations take entirely different experiences and observations into account. Because of that, I won't bash an atheist for their views any more than I'd want to get a thrashing for mine.



If there was something worth exploring, then it would be a different story, but there's no there, there, and nothing of any substance at all. That they consider their position to represent the height of reason and intellect, is utterly absurd.


It's to be expected that both sides will view their own particular views as the height of reason and intellect - otherwise, they would hold different views, since no one wants to knowingly believe a false premise. In other words, if their intellect and reasoned evaluation had led them to a different conclusion, that's the conclusion they would espouse. They have an entirely different basis for arriving there. They way I understand it, the atheists basis is what they consider to be a lack of evidence, and the theists basis is purely subjective evidence that can't be reproduced at will and handed out for repeated observation by others.



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 06:22 AM
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Originally posted by DaveNorris
reply to post by nenothtu
 


im the opposite, i dont mind how people word things or even if they have spelling mistakes, as long as i understand what they meen. i bet txt language must bug u soething rotten


Nah. text Language doesn't bother me any more than say, Swahili does. I don't speak either, and have to get a kid somewhere to translate for me.



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 06:33 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax

You seem to have spent rather a long time trying to establish that atheism is a form of belief. Not relevant; it’s just a stalking-horse for believers who find comfort in insisting that everyone is just like them. The topic of the thread appears to be how things look from the perspective of an atheist.


Ah, I see. You skipped the opening post, then, and went straight for the meat.




You are wearing me down because I have to scroll down screed after verbose screed of yours in order to get to the posts by people who are saying things that are on topic, and interesting.


So your objection is that you don't like scrolling? Maybe we need the "ignore" button to be reinstated so that you don't have to be inconvenienced by having to work that mouse to scroll past opinions differing from your own. I really don't mind if you ignore me or scroll on past. It's your world, I'm just hanging out for the conversation.



Also, on a purely personal level, I object to avatars with helmets.



It's not my fault - it's those damn kids and their super-glue!



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 10:03 AM
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Originally posted by nenothtu
I'm all ears... er, "eyes" in this medium.

What I meant was, we'd get into turtles all the way down, and you'd still be talking about my faith.



posted on Aug, 28 2011 @ 11:58 AM
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Originally posted by AuirOverrun
The atheists don't seem to realize that they don't actually know, and, well, the exact same goes for religious people. you just don't know. you just can't know, not until you die.


Again. Atheist simply means lack of a belief in a deity. It doesn't mean anything else.

It is the only common factor. Beyond that everyone is an individual - - - and interprets what ever else in their own way.

Of course an Atheist doesn't know. No one does.

Science is science - - it is not Atheism.
edit on 28-8-2011 by Annee because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 10:41 PM
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reply to post by Annee
 


Atheist simply means lack of a belief in a deity. It doesn't mean anything else.

Hardly surprising that believers should insist that atheism is a belief. They probably can’t see things any other way. If they could, they might cease to be believers.

I say, let the faith-heads call us believers in something if it makes them happy. For all of that, we unbelievers
  • look to no comforting fairytales to calm our night-fears,
  • pray for no miracles to cure what ails us,
  • take responsibility for our own choices,
  • do not look to Higher Powers to get us out of trouble, and
  • don’t tell ourselves lies about the hereafter to excuse our failures and ease our fears of death.

In short, if atheism is a belief, it is one that provides its believers with none of the consolations of religion.

Instead, it obliges us to face life with courage, dignity and responsibility – knowing it is short, knowing it is painful, knowing that we are mere animals, and knowing, in the end, that the only meaning we take out of life is whatever meaning we bring to it in the first place.

If that is a belief, call me a believer, and I will wear the badge with pride.



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