The Instigator
andymcstab
Pro (for)
Losing
4 Points
The Contender
Ajab
Con (against)
Winning
8 Points

Atheism is more a product of indoctrination than Theism

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
Ajab
Voting Style: Open with Elo Restrictions Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/29/2014 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,302 times Debate No: 58320
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (14)
Votes (3)

 

andymcstab

Pro

Atheism is more a product of indoctrination than theism.


Definitions
:

in·doc·tri·na·tion
the act of indoctrinating, or teaching or inculcating a doctrine, principle, or ideology, especially one with a specific point of view

in·cul·cate
1.
to implant by repeated statement or admonition; teach persistently and earnestly (usually followed by upon or in ): to inculcate virtue in the young.
2.
to cause or influence (someone) to accept an idea or feeling

atheism
the position that there are no deities.

theism
belief in one or more deities


Rules:

Only the resultion may be debated, not definitions, nor whether the resolution is valid, etc.
Any claims of fallacy must be demonstrated.

4 Rounds
6000 words
72 hours

First round for acceptance only

BOP is shared. Con must argue that theism is more a product of indoctrination.

Please welcome my opponent!
Ajab

Con

I accept this debate, and I thank my competitor for instigating it.
Debate Round No. 1
andymcstab

Pro

Thanks to Con for accepting!

1: We see that almost every nation on Earth has been predominantly theistic, throughout the whole of history, while there were no atheist states before the 20th century. Even those had to rely on brainwashing through the enforced teaching of atheism in the classroom - see Mao's China or Stalins Russia.

In this image from the Pew Research Center we can see that the only population on Earth whose majority is unaffiliated to any religion, also happens to be the one with the most recent tyrannical atheist government. This would strongly indicate that the resolution is true - atheism is largely inflicted through indoctrination. Unless con can show that every other country in the world did more to indoctrinate their population into theism than China did to indoctrinate theirs to atheism, this debate will be very difficult for him to win.



2: We see that when the Atheistic regime is thrown out of such a country, (which, by happenstance, it always eventually has been), then the people revert back to Theism as a default position, under their own volition. Again see Russia or China. The growth of Christianity in China today is such that by 2030 it is estimated that there will be more Christians in China than America.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk...

This image shows the immediate and continued fall of atheism in Russia since the destruction of the atheist-indoctrinating Soviet Union




3: Since 1970 and the dissolution of the two major atheist states in Russia and China, the % of Earths population which is atheist has fallen from 4.5% to just 2%. This is due to both populations resounding rejection of the enforced doctrine of atheism, and the new freedom to believe what comes naturally, rather than what was taught. The huge numbers of new theists in China is more than cancelling out the small gains of atheism in the western world.

http://www.cnsnews.com...

4: Scientists have hypothesized that belief in God is part of the Human nature, and that children left alone on a desert island would come to believe in God. This would necessarily indicate that belief that there is no God, is something which must be taught.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk...
http://www.ox.ac.uk...

5: The same study also found that "people living in cities in highly developed countries were less likely to hold religious beliefs than those living a more rural way of life", suggesting again that atheism is synthetically inflicted, whereas theism is natural.

6: In this image we see a map showing the importance of religion to each nation

We see that 'developed' nations are always less religious than 'undeveloped' nations. What do developed nations have which others don't? They force their children to sit in a classroom their entire childhood, cut away from nature and being forced to learn 'atheist creating' doctrines such as evolution. More of the population is located in concrete junglers, passively indoctrinating people into atheism through a synthetic environment which keeps their minds away from the wonder of God. (ie no-one in a city gets to see the stars at night). Also they posess far greater access to all forms of media, through which small groups of people can influence billions. I would postulate that all of this accounts for the difference in religiousity between 'developed' and 'undeveloped' nations.



In summary: all of the evidence indicates that atheism is far more a product of synthetic indoctrination, than theism is.


My opponent now will present his arguments to show that theism is more a product of indoctrination that atheism.


Ajab

Con

I thank my opponent for his excellent round. As my opponent did not mention whether my first argument is to be positive or only rebuttals I will try to do both. I should however note that the Latin rule goes: 'Onus probandi incumbet ei qui deciet, non ei qui negat'. So the Burden of Proof rests on my opponent.

R1: My opponent actually concedes something very important. Andy concedes that the world before the 20th century was predominantly theistic, which means that people converted to atheism, they were not indoctrinated into turning atheists. The first point of Pro does not show much that atheism is the product of indoctrination than he blames all evil people for being atheists. He quotes Mao's China, or Stalin's Russia. I would just as easily point out Hitler's Germany where he brutally enforced Christianity. "I am to uphold the supreme race, such were the commands of the Almighty Creator. I must protect myself against the Jews'[1] Both points are not important as the resolution attempts to debate what 'is' not what 'was'. Or shall I quote Afghanistan, and places like Pakistan where (today) a child can be jailed and hanged for converting from their religion?
[1]Mein Kampf
[2]http://genealogyreligion.net...
[3]http://en.wikipedia.org...

R2: I have a problem with my opponent's source. It is a newspaper article and can hardly be taken to be an accurate form of information. My opponent should have provided a journal entry or a scholarly book. While people in China may become Christian, atheism is the worlds fastest growing belief. While atheism is at rate of 6.54, and agnosticism is at 5.54, Christianity is only at 1.32, Islam at 1.97, and Daoism at 3.2. This shows that people dont convert to theism, but theists do convert to atheism. The only conclusion is that the reason people remain theists (since the conversion rate is so low) is because they are born into it. This sufficiently defeats my opponent's arguments. Please tell me where your photos are from, my source is much more respectable.
[4]https://web.archive.org...

R3: My previous statistics already show that atheism has actually increased. The population of non-believers/non-religious is near 16%, here are some more sources showing this.
[5]http://en.wikipedia.org...
Here is another source which shows how much atheism has increased in religious countries. In Britian where the Church and State is combined atheism has increased from 9.6 to 17.7%, In Denmark from 14.2 to 18.4% and so on.
[6]http://www.scienceandreligiontoday.com...

R4: The key word being 'hypothesized'. As you are making the claim you need to prove with scientific journals, and/or psychological sources that this is true. I cannot accept your word for it. Below is a source which talks about how humans dont need the idea of God, nor is it innate.
[7]http://nowscape.com...

R5: I am not going to adress the first part because there is no proof. As for the second part, I think that 78% of schools teach Creationism over Evolution. In other news the American students are required to recite the pledge, with 'under God', this causes subliminol messaging. After all was this not the reason the pleadge was introduced in the first place.
[8]http://en.wikipedia.org...

In essence the voters should ask themselves, as the proposition who holds the BoP, did Andymcstab win you over. Did he actually show, beyong doubt, with his faulty statistics, that atheism is a produce of indoctrination. One does not even need positive arguments, it is clear with how Creationism is taught, how there is a very low conversion rate from atheism to theism that theism is more a product of one's parents being theistic. Therefore the arguments do not hold. Most of my arguments are found in the answers to the contentions themselves. I remind all of you, that accorrding to the wording of the resolution the BoP is on my opponent. The resolution collapses.

Onto you then Andy!

Ajab

Debate Round No. 2
andymcstab

Pro

Thanks to Ajab for his careful response. First I would like to spend a moment considering my opponents first and last statements.

" I should however note that the Latin rule goes: 'Onus probandi incumbet ei qui deciet, non ei qui negat'. So the Burden of Proof rests on my opponent.",
"In essence the voters should ask themselves, as the proposition who holds the BoP, did Andymcstab win you over. Did he actually show, beyong doubt, with his faulty statistics, that atheism is a produce of indoctrination."

I am sorry that my opponent failed to properly read the debate rules: "BOP is shared. Con must argue that theism is more a product of indoctrination." My opponent cannot shift BOP, in attempting to do so he is flagrantly breaking debate rules which stipulate shared BOP, and that no argument may be made which does not concern the resolution.

With that said, on to his rebuttal of my first argument:

1.
"My opponent actually concedes something very important. Andy concedes that the world before the 20th century was predominantly theistic, which means that people converted to atheism, they were not indoctrinated into turning atheists. "

This is a misleading statement; I assert that world history shows a universal predilection towards theism. Some people converting to atheism does not imply they did so without indoctrination.

"The first point of Pro does not show much that atheism is the product of indoctrination than he blames all evil people for being atheists. He quotes Mao's China, or Stalin's Russia. I would just as easily point out Hitler's Germany where he brutally enforced Christianity. "

This is nonsense. My first source shows that the majority of the world are theistic, and the only majority which is atheist had atheism forced upon them. Hitlers Germany did not enforce Christianity, it utilised the existing Christianity to coerce the population. It was Christian before Nazi Germany.

http://www.britannica.com...

I will also point out that atheism in Germany after ww2 was also a product of indoctrination.

"In eastern Germany both religious observance and affiliation are much lower than in the rest of the country after forty years of Communist rule. The government of the German Democratic Republic encouraged an atheist worldview through institutions such as Jugendweihen (youth consecrations), secular coming-of-age ceremonies akin to Christian confirmation which all young people were strongly encouraged to attend (and disadvantaged socially if they did not). The number of christenings, religious weddings and funerals is also lower than in the West."

http://en.wikipedia.org...

In summary then my first argument still stands, and my opponent has acheived nothing to show that religion is more a product of indoctrination than atheism.

2.
He only has a problem with my source which demonstrates the growth of theism in China since the days of Chairman Mao. My source quotes the work of Fenggang Yang, a sociology professor at Purdue University. More information can be found here

http://www.oxfordscholarship.com...

My opponents source only argues that atheism is on the rise internationally, but does not assess whether the rise would be natural or a product of indoctrination. Nor is it the kind of atheism which we are concerned with in this debate, defined as "the position that there are no deities.", not merely just "lack of religious affiliation". Hence my opponents argument is irrelevant.

I should also point out that I am taking the word of my opponent here regarding his statistics, as he has linked to an 80 page document and essentially told us "trust me, its in there somewhere".

3.
My opponent has the same issue with #3, he is trying to argue that atheism is on the rise internationally, but doesn't even attempt to analyse the relationship with indoctrination. I accept that atheism is rising in the west, the question is, why?
My sources on the other hand show a rejection of atheism which we know was a product of indoctrination in Russia and China. Again my opponent is not arguing for the definition of atheism given in this debate, his stats only concern the "religiously unaffiliated".

4.
This was my argument that belief in God is human nature.
I sourced a major study headed by one of the most respected universities in the world.

http://www.ox.ac.uk...

My opponent is trying to make something out of my use of the word "hypothesized", again this is spurious as the actual source is clear: "A three-year international research project, directed by two academics at the University of Oxford, finds that humans have natural tendencies to believe in gods and an afterlife.", "The studies (both analytical and empirical) conclude that humans are predisposed to believe in gods and an afterlife"

There is no room for uncertainty in the language used.

My opponent tries to source the claim that belief in God is not innate; he supplies a 322 page book written by an unqualified atheist author, for which he doesn't even give us a page number to assess the claim. The author considers atheism to be a "lack of belief", which is not the definition used in this debate.

Again, I have fulfilled my BOP, my opponent has neither refuted me nor fulfilled his own BOP.


5. "I think that 78% of schools teach Creationism over Evolution.", is completely unfounded. He seems to have plucked this number from thin air. His source doesn't refer to any such thing. The pledge of allegience was introduced in 1954, Christianity was the majority belief in the USA long before then, so the pledge has not been shown to be indoctrinating anyone. Rather, I can argue that the very existence of such a pledge denotes the freely found theistic belief of the majority.



In summary then; my opponent has not refuted a single one of my arguments, nor has he even began to fulfill his burden of proof!









Ajab

Con

I am short-pressed for time, do yo think we can skip one round.
Debate Round No. 3
andymcstab

Pro

I am sorry that my opponent failed to make any argument.

In Summary:
My opponent didn't refute any of my arguments, nor did he fulfil his burden of proof. He flagrantly ignored the rules of the debate, and disrespected us all by failing to produce an argument in round 3. If he produces an argument or refutation in round 4, I ask that it be ignored as I will have no opportunity for response.

Vote PRO!
Ajab

Con

Well you heard my opponent, I am no longer allowed to post an argument.
I believe that even then I have won, because I have not forfeited, I told my opponent I had a family emergency. Also my opponent has not fullfilled their Burden of Proof, it is clear that the Burden is decided by the resolution, and this resolution places the Burden on my opponent. He has not shown how atheism is, beyond doubt, a product of indoctrination.
Please vote Con.
Debate Round No. 4
14 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by andymcstab 3 years ago
andymcstab
lol, voters are a joke.
Posted by andymcstab 3 years ago
andymcstab
There is only closing statements remaining, Ajab
Posted by Ajab 3 years ago
Ajab
Please post after 2 days.
Posted by XLAV 3 years ago
XLAV
Come on Ajab, you can do this.
Posted by GeminiContractor 3 years ago
GeminiContractor
I don't agree with Pro.
I was home schooled by Christian parents, and the reason that I stopped believing in God or gods is more of a result of reading the Bible and other religious texts, than a result of atheistic indoctrination.
Posted by Geogeer 3 years ago
Geogeer
A couple of good debates today. This'll be one worth following.
Posted by Wylted 3 years ago
Wylted
I think I know where pro is going with this, and if I'm right it's a pretty strong case. It's got some fatal flaws, that most people wouldn't think of, but I think Ajab will do fine.
Posted by Dano 3 years ago
Dano
Also my mom has her kids heavily indoctrinated into the Catholic church. It makes me feel like me becoming an Atheist when I did is like dodging a bullet.
Posted by Dano 3 years ago
Dano
Well, while I guess this is debate worthy, I just want OP to know that the way my mother has pushed her religion an me is crude and obnoxious. She stresses to me how ostracized I am every Sunday. The things she says to me about my worldview are unsupportive and just hurtful sometimes. But, I wish both parties very well throughout the debate.
Posted by ShadowKingStudios 3 years ago
ShadowKingStudios
Looks like Pro has set his opponent up for failure. I could be wrong, but I think I know Pro's angle of presentation. The Catch22 approach.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by Subutai 3 years ago
Subutai
andymcstabAjabTied
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro never even got close to meeting his BoP. Con's argument that theistic beliefs are often the result of one's parents far outweighs the forced indoctrination of a few countries to "atheism". The number of free-thinking (i.e. not indoctrinated) atheists is increasing, as con pointed out. Further, pro's arguments were either irrelevant, out of context, or non sequitur. Also, while con did forfeit, it was extremely out of line for pro to force con to not post an argument for the final round. Contenders are naturally supposed to have the last word, as they are usually the ones who don't hold the BoP.
Vote Placed by Ameliamk1 3 years ago
Ameliamk1
andymcstabAjabTied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: I found Con's arguments more convincing, but a missed round is not acceptable, and Pro does not need to specify that one cannot miss a round. Con forfeits.
Vote Placed by Splenic_Warrior 3 years ago
Splenic_Warrior
andymcstabAjabTied
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Reasons for voting decision: I have awarded Con conduct because I find it distasteful that Pro tried to force a forfeit vote when there was no forfeit. Stating that you aren't going to make an argument is not a forfeiture, it simply means that Con has lost a chance to make his point. I have also awarded arguments to Con. Con is mistaken in that he shared the burden of proof with Pro (it was stated in the first round), but I am convinced that he met it anyway. Con pointed out that when the world was almost entirely theistic, atheists wouldn't have been able to indoctrinate others, so they must have simply (de)converted. While this isn't a terribly strong point, Pro wasn't able to fulfil his burden at all, so its Con by a hair.