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I Don't Want Atheism Shoved Down My Throat [Pic]

Hits: 11150 | Rating: (3.3) | Category: Community & Lifestyle | Added by: sweepofdeath
Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Next >   Jump to: Bottom    Last Post
Male, 40-49, Western US
 3227 Posts
Sunday, April 28, 2013 7:08:40 AM
oh come on guys, that poor theist gets oppressed with book learnin at school. see it from his side.

Female, 40-49, Midwest US
 1805 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 4:19:04 PM
5Cats- I think basically some people are willing to take the big gamble that there really is a god and build their life around that (with some self-imposed limitations and guilt about certain pleasurable things and for some people, some really crappy behavior towards people they think are living incorrectly) and others who are more interested in what they actually know to be real by experience and live their life knowing they are primarily responsible for their destiny and how they deal with people and events. I suppose there's also a gamble that I'm wrong and I'm going to hell for not practicing a religion but it's pretty sucky if I never do anything seriously wrong compared with people who go to heaven and still go to hell. just my opinion :) On the plus side for religious people, if death is really just a big off switch they'll never really know they were wrong about the whole thing.

Male, 50-59, Canada
 29175 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 3:35:06 PM
@artmunki & @lauriloo (and @GuySmiley too!)

I have a coin in my hand.
You examine my hand, there's no coin there!
You're wrong (you say)
But it's true, and I am right...
(answer below)

@TheGuySmiley: So you'll agree that "God is internal" and that one needs to "find faith on one's own" too! Cool. But other people "seeing God" still isn't proof of anything, correct? Except for them, internally.

you play pin the tail on the kittycat

Awww! That's sweet! :heart:

That's a LOT of faith for a 5 year old. But yeah, that is how faith is SUPPOSED to operate, I'll agree (after thinking it over a bit. I was all set to argue...)

Also: The Twinkies Are A Lie! (lolz!)

That coin?
I didn't say -which- hand it was in...

Male, 50-59, Canada
 29175 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 3:26:28 PM
@lariloo: The cake is a lie! (I love Portal too, even though I've never played it! lolz!)

@artmunki: I'll gladly agree that "atheism" is broken into two groups, gnostic & agnostic. BUT when someone says "Atheist" I believe it's most common meaning is "Gnostic Atheist". In EITHER case, the question of: Do you believe God exists? Their answer is NOT YES.

idk if an Agnostic Theist is possible! Deism takes the existence of "God" (in whatever form) as a given... is SUPPOSE one could "stretch it" and say that Deists "don't know for sure" what God is (that's true) but I'd argue that's an entirely different topic...

Theist (whatever sort): Yes God(s) exist(s).
ALL OTHERS: different than Theists...

Instead of "Atheist" I'd agree that "NON-Theists" would be a better term... except no one ever uses it... In my opinion: "Atheist" is slang for "Non-Theist"

Female, 40-49, Midwest US
 1805 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 2:21:46 PM
The cake is a lie.

I love Portal!

Anyway, I can't with your story because I find it hard to believe anyone literally "saw" God like someone could see a cake. You can see something, call it a miracle and say it's evidence of God or have a hallucination during some trauma but that doesn't empirically make it actually God. I could see the same miracle and say "wow, that was an amazing series of totally possible events."

In your analogy, an atheist keeps getting told there's cake but every time they look into the room there's no cake. People keep insisting there's cake and even point in some general direction but there's no cake there. So the atheist says "whatever" and leaves to get some ice cream on their own.

Male, 18-29, Canada
 1222 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 2:02:35 PM
...will come to be known by others

Male, 18-29, Canada
 1222 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 2:00:04 PM
5cats: so you have faith that this is not the 'real' cake, and that the real cake is in the room and that's going to roll out soon. No dice. Your dad opens up another pack of twinkies and people are still eating twinkies. "But daaad!" you say, "there's a cake in the other room, when are we going to eat that". "i dont know anything about any cake" says your dad. "There is no cake!" your friends tell you "These twinkies are just great" they add. So now even though you know there's a cake, everyone's against you about what you know, you are now hoping and having faith that that cake will still be coming out. Sure enough, at long last your mum rolls out the 3 layered cake, and all the kids get a a big surprise, a piece of cake with lots of frosting, and everyone lives happily ever after until they turn into teenagers.

That is examples of how you can know, and also have faith, and also hope that the things you know are real

Male, 18-29, Canada
 1222 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 1:54:46 PM
5Cats: Lets say you were 5 years old, and you had a birthday, with all your 5 year old friends over at the house. During the excitement you had to go to the bathroom, and as you were walking down the hallway you passed a room and saw your mum in the room, and behind her you glimpsed a 3 layer birthday cake. Your mum saw you and said "run along" and closed the door. You went back to the party after the bathroom and opened your presents, but you know that there is a cake in that room. So you open your presents, you play pin the tail on the kittycat and have some supper, and then your dad brings out a single twinkie with 5 candles on it, and says this is your birthday cake. Now, you know there is a cake in the other room because you saw it, but your dad is giving you this twinkie. he doesn' tlet up either, for 30 minutes he cuts the twinkie into small slices and gives it to your friends. But you know there's a cake in the other room.

Male, 18-29, Canada
 1222 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 1:41:40 PM
patchouly: You're entitled to your opinion, but you don't know what other people know; only what you know. For example, I'm thinking of a number between 1 and 1000 as i type this, you have one guess, what is the number i'm thinking of? See, you don't know. Knowing God is kind of like what Morpheus said about the matrix, one can't be told what God is, they have to see Him for themselves, and then they'll know. You can know God a bit better yourself by studying the scriptures and following the procedures contained in them, like an ancient science text book (even though the procedures may be old, they still work today). But based on your responses, it could require you to let go of things you've come to rely on, such as prejudice and bias, and learn to be more open and humble. But it may be for the best.

5Cats: Some people have met God, so they not only have faith in God, but also know that He's real.

Female, 40-49, Midwest US
 1805 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 1:17:24 PM
artmunki guess ya got me on that one :) Maybe the rule is you have to be able to reasonably measure the absence of that thing. Like, you can measure a vacuum, which is the negative of air.

Religious people foil the attempt at measuring whether there is a god by saying "god's will" for both having a prayer answered and ignored.

Male, 30-39, Europe
 176 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 11:54:43 AM
lauriloo - actually, it is entirely possible (often easy) to prove a negative, but only if the claim in question is at least reasonably well-defined.
If I hold out my hand and tell you I'm holding a coin and you don't believe me, you can prove me wrong by opening my hand - if there's no coin you've just proved a negative. This is dependant on us agreeing on what's meant by 'coin' and 'hand'.
However, if I then say 'no, I meant the other hand', you have to check again to prove me wrong, but I'm guilty of having moved the goalposts. If I then keep altering my definition (the coin's invisible; I have an invisible hand; gloves count as hands; the coin is transcendental; 'my hand' refers to all possible hands that could ever exist) it quickly becomes impossible to prove the coin isn't in my hand. But it also quickly becomes reasonable to question whether there's any reason to accept my claims, or even whether I have any idea what 'hand' or 'coin' actually means.

Female, 40-49, Midwest US
 1805 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 10:54:19 AM
"agnostic atheist - doesn't believe in gods/doesn't claim to know that gods don't exist. This is the position of the majority of people who identify as 'atheist', and almost all those who identify as 'agnostic' "

This is true. Since you can't prove a negative, it's impossible to say you KNOW something doesn't exist. I don't KNOW know Santa doesn't exist since I haven't explored every corner of the Earth looking for him but I can be pretty darn sure about it based on evidence in my lifetime. You can believe in Santa for all I care but please don't make public policy decisions that affect me based on that.

Male, 30-39, Europe
 176 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 9:22:55 AM
agnostic theist - believes in god(s)/doesn't claim to know god(s) exist - not sure how widespread this position is, but may be more common in Deistic beliefs.

agnostic atheist - doesn't believe in gods/doesn't claim to know that gods don't exist. This is the position of the majority of people who identify as 'atheist', and almost all those who identify as 'agnostic'

gnostic theist - believes god(s) exist/claims to know they exist - this seems to be the position Smiley is arguing, which he shares with the majority of religious theists.

gnostic atheist - doesn't believe in god/claims to know gods don't exist - this is broadly the definition you're trying to define as atheism, but only represents a minority subset of atheists

These are all descriptive terms which can be applied on the basis of an individual's responses to these two questions (belief and knowledge), regardless of whether or not a person personally identifies themselves by these terms.

Male, 30-39, Europe
 176 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 9:06:32 AM
Nope. you're still not getting it. Let's try a different tack.

Theism/athesim address the question of belief in gods - if you believe in any gods you're theist; if not, you're atheist. As I keep saying, athiest means not-theist, and that's *all* you can reasonably assume it to mean.
Gnosticism/agnosticism address the question of claimed knowledge of the existence of gods; if you think you know whether gods exist, you're gnostic; if not, you're agnostic (again literally not-gnostic)
Accurate use of these terms to describe any individual position on a more general question about 'what do you believe?' (with regards to gods) requires that you address both belief *and* knowledge. This gives you four basic positions: agnostic atheist; agnostic theist; gnostic atheist; gnostic theist. (definitions to follow)

Male, 50-59, Canada
 29175 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 8:38:21 AM
From what I've read,

I'd say you've read some accurate stuff!

I'm of the "Whomever created the Universe is God" camp. It could be that the "Big Bang" is God!

Early Deism maintained a strong "Christian" feel to avoid persecution, I think. But since it's a VERY open-ended philosophy there's nothing wrong with that.

>Idiot/Accidental God: The Creation was an accident, mistake or force of nature. No "intelligence" behind it.
>Inactive/uncaring God: God created the Universe and set it in motion, and hasn't touched it since.
>Slightly Active God: Lets things take their course, but occasionally steps in to make small or huge changes
>Active God: Listens to prayers, watches sparrows &etc.

I find it endlessly fascinating! As you can probably tell by the way I blather on about it...

Male, 50-59, Canada
 29175 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 8:29:47 AM
@TheGuySmiley: "I have FAITH that God is real."

Fixed it for you! I don't think even @patchouli can disagree when it's worded this way. Saying "I know" implies positive proof (of some sort) or 100% certainty. A so-called true Christian should have 100% faith, but NO certainty! He should ALWAYS be open to learning, correct?

@artmunki: Well, if you lump Agnostics and Atheists together (which a lot of folks do!) then sure!
I equate between "believing in" and "having A belief" eh?

Theist: I believe God(s) exists
Atheist: I know NO God(s) exist
Agnostic: I'm not sure / it's impossible to tell
Christian: I have FAITH but need no "proof"

For me? Atheist and Theists are two sides of the same coin. While an Agnostic has little in common with either of them.

But I do see your point(s), they're not uncommon.

Male, 30-39, Europe
 176 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 8:17:18 AM
From what I've read, Deism had it's roots in the Enlightenment, the original distinction being a rejection of the concept of a god with direct influence on the world. This was expanded to include rejection of religious scripture etc., and the term was often used to defend such beliefs from Christian theist equivocations of these 'new' Deist beliefs with atheism. Like, it was a way of saying 'unlike atheists I do believe in god, just not *your* god'. But even from this early period Deism included both Christian-rooted beliefs and entirely non-religious beliefs, and the scope has since broadened. I'm not even sure the 'non-involved god' part is still anything like universal to all Deists.
The only thing you can assume from the term 'Deist' is that someone believes in a god but *probably* doesn't belong to any particular religion. And the only thing you can assume by the term 'atheist' is that a person doesn't believe in any gods.

Male, 30-39, Europe
 176 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 7:52:37 AM
(cont.) ... I think it's reasonable to assume you'll agree that it's possible to have an opinion about politics without actually being involved in the politicfal system. And I would hope you also agree that it's possible to have opinions about politics (in general & specific ideologies), and even to take part in political debate and discussion, without having any affiliation or involvement with any ideology, or with the political system in general. Simply having an opinion (or even a LOT of opinions) doesn't mean you're involved in the system or with any ideology. And atheism is just *one* specific position, addressing one specific binary question: do you believe in any gods?

Atheists do believe other things, but the only reasonable assumption you can make about anyone who can be identified as atheist is that they don't have belief in any gods. Any other beliefs, including any sepcific beliefs *about* gods, are in addition to the position of atheism.

Male, 30-39, Europe
 176 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 7:23:17 AM
5cats - no worries, man - I didn't take the 'lazy' thing personally. I was just pointing out the incongruity of calling me lazy while you were relying on one-line dictionary definition for your understanding of athesim.

But let's see if we can round off here.

""Atheism is..."
Sounds like what I said. "

Sounds a bit like what you said, but actually means something quite different. You said repeatedly (and inferred by analogy), that atheism is both a religion and a belief, which is simply not true. Atheism is simply the non-acceptance of *one* aspect of many religions, specifically the belief in gods. Maybe it'll be clearer if I switch the playing field. (these damn sporting analogies just won't go away! ;p) ...

Male, 40-49, Canada
 4704 Posts
Thursday, April 25, 2013 5:27:17 AM
"I know God is real"

No, you don't. You can claim you do, but you really don't. And if you insist on it, you are lying.

There is zero proof of God's existence. There is a mountain of proof that he does not exist. The only reason you believe is because you were told to and grew up being brainwashed. If you had grown up unaware of it, you would automatically have taken on an Atheist role. It is only because of the brainwashing that you believe.

There are only three types of people who continue to believe under the huge mountain of evidence. Those who are too stupid to wrap their heads around the concept so choose to blindly follow (which I don't think you are); those who have been so totally and completely brainwashed that they are afraid to question and look at the facts and those who know, deep down, that it is fake but don't want to admit it to themselves.

Male, 18-29, Southern US
 918 Posts
Wednesday, April 24, 2013 8:35:32 PM
The truth about TheGuySmiley. Everyone should read this. Its amazingly educational and eye opening into his psyche.

Male, 18-29, Canada
 1222 Posts
Wednesday, April 24, 2013 8:13:17 PM
whodat6484: You're entitled to your opinion, but I know God is real, I hope some day you'll know it too, because it is truly an enlightening experience. I figured you would know that calling names is generally the last resort of those who have no argument. Hopefully now you do.

patchouly: actually it's quite to the contrary. A lot of people know that God is real. In fact, scripture states that all people have knowledge of God in them. While you can imagine its not the case, the reality is that those with true faith don't even need to question the existence of God - It's the fact of life.

Male, 50-59, Canada
 29175 Posts
Wednesday, April 24, 2013 7:56:04 PM
@artmunki: Sorry, I've referred to myself as "lazy" several times lately, in that joking way, so that wasn't serious.
I'd hoped linking the Thesaurus of "Lazybones" would convey that... El Oops! I guess not. You've been polite (thx!) and I hope I can return that, despite disagreeing.

"Atheism is, in a broad sense, the rejection of belief in the existence of deities."

Sounds like what I said.

"...there is no one ideology or set of behaviors to which all atheists adhere."

Which applies to every rel... I mean "belief philosophy"

(Should I include more smileys to indicate humour? @davymid would blow a gasket...)

Deism used to be more organized, sort of a "humanistic branch" of Christianity... not so much now. Oh well!

Male, 30-39, Europe
 176 Posts
Wednesday, April 24, 2013 7:36:11 PM
Now, I've encountered Deists who were still essentially Christian/Jewish/whatever, except that they observed few (if any) of the rites and didn't attend any places of worship. At the other end of the spectrum, I've met Deists who are more nebulously 'spiritual', and pay heed to no religious practises at all (some are even more stridently anti-religion than many atheists). Between these poles is a wide array of varying beliefs - all personal, all with different basis and details, sharing only the belief that some kind of deity exists and that no existing religions really have it right (at least, not totally right). You'd be rightly annoyed if I argued against Deism, using only a particularly narrow selection of those who identify as 'Deist' to make my argument. I only ask that you show the same courtesy.

Male, 30-39, Europe
 176 Posts
Wednesday, April 24, 2013 7:33:43 PM
5Cats - come on, I know you're smart enough to know better than that, man. You seem to be keen enough to look up pages of research & figures for every other topic, but you're relying on an eight-word dictionary definition to define atheism? Would you ever be satisfied in anyone understanding what you believe from eight words?

Please don't accuse me of being lazy if you can't be bothered to do a little reading yourself. Atheism

But I think we're getting somewhere. Yes, I'll certainly concede that worship (or at least, some modes of worship) is internal, but worship is only *part* of religion, not religion itself. Deism can include many aspects of religion, but it's a sort of catch-all term (more or less) for non-religious forms of theism. Without a coherent shared belief system, it isn't a single religion; just lots and lots of little private ones.

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