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Atheism's Tolerance of Religion

Subutai
Posts: 3,223
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10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.
I'm becoming less defined as days go by, fading away, and well you might say, I'm losing focus, kinda drifting into the abstract in terms of how I see myself.
apb4y
Posts: 480
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10/1/2014 10:06:44 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

What you have to remember is that Atheism is not "lack of belief in God". That's Agnosticism. Atheism is the belief that there is no God. Agnostics are unconvinced by religion, whereas Atheists have already made their mind up on the issue. Therefore, you will get just as many fanatical Atheists as you will fanatical Theists... and fanaticism is where things turn nasty.
Envisage
Posts: 3,646
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10/2/2014 12:04:11 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me.

There certainly are positive reasons for challenging belief systems which you believe are false, and destructive. You iterated thst with fundementalist, some atheists do that over a larger range, and others simply don't care either way, each to their own.

That's going to be exemplified on a debating forum, or on some atheist blog where like minded people concentrate, but I suspect most atheists don't really care about religion except when it has serious manifest consequences (such as fundementalism, Islam, etc).

To be an atheist, does one have to do this?

No. And you know that.

If not, why do some atheists do this?

Why do some atheists eat Kellogg's Cornflakes, and others eat weetabix? The question seems meaningless.

This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

I have looked into secular Buddhism too, if that's what you are wondering...
the_croftmeister
Posts: 678
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10/2/2014 1:46:45 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 10:06:44 PM, apb4y wrote:
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

What you have to remember is that Atheism is not "lack of belief in God". That's Agnosticism. Atheism is the belief that there is no God. Agnostics are unconvinced by religion, whereas Atheists have already made their mind up on the issue. Therefore, you will get just as many fanatical Atheists as you will fanatical Theists... and fanaticism is where things turn nasty.

To be fair, many people do not agree with either of these definitions. Though it is useful to clarify which definition is being used in any discussion one is having.

Atheism (as any religion) is ultimately a personal choice. Taking either common definition of Atheism strictly does not require you to attack the religiose. It is the surrounding values that you hold (extraneous to your atheism) that will determine this portion of your world-view.

Just as some believers take their religion as a mission to convert and others do not, so do some atheists.

I have made the choice to voice my support of non-religion when it is relevant and contextually appropriate. What is yours?
RoyalAries
Posts: 43
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10/2/2014 1:33:55 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

Well I think that alot of it has to do with the fact that these types of Athiests are looking for something to convince them to believe something else, to be swerved. Or they are looking for ways to strengthen their own arguments or challenges.
Whether or not you argue with someone over what you believe does not in any way change your personal stance. You can easily be an atheist and not be aggressive.
"If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything. -Mark Twain

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Sidewalker
Posts: 3,713
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10/2/2014 5:16:53 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

I think there are certain personality types that are just attracted to extremism and conflict, the religious fundamentalists you speak of and the atheists you speak of are one and the same. They are simply polarized individuals, when they do battle they are mirror images of each other, the same but inverted, but they don't recognize that it"s themselves in the mirror they are barking at. That"s why I have met those who have gone from an extreme religion to radical atheism as well as those who have gone in the other direction, but they never go to the middle.

Huston Smith is one of our foremost scholars and interpreters of the world"s religions, he says "There are really two dogmatic fundamentalisms in America today. Dogmatic secular modernity came first and produced conservative religious fundamentalism as a reaction to it."

I find that more than just interesting as I do in fact see two groups of extremist that taken by themselves, are inexplicable within the context of their respective positions and which do in fact represent these two "polar opposite" categories of one and the same extremism that Huston Smith is describing. On one side of this polarity is an excessively dogmatic secular modernism that doesn"t appear to be true to science, and on the other side of the coin, it is opposed by a dogmatic Christian fundamentalism that doesn"t appear to be true to Jesus.

Perhaps Huston Smith is providing the key to understanding here, to say that "opposites" are "polar" is to say much more than they are opposed or separated; it is to say that they constitute a whole. There is a reciprocal, transactional relationship being described. Polar opposites don"t even exist without each other, they are contingent upon each other, you just can"t have the one without the other. Polar opposites are like the two sides of a coin, or the two ends of a stick; they reference two opposing aspects of one and the same thing.

This would certainly explain why there are more similarities than differences between the posts of so many Christian and Atheist fundamentalists, they only appear to be opposites but are in fact inseparable opposites; they constitute a whole. Seen as mirror images of one and the same extremism, they are not mutually exclusive at all; in fact they are mutually sustaining, reciprocal in their true nature.

They say all wars are internal wars, so maybe on a deep level they really do recognize themselves, and perhaps that is why they need the fight, they aren"t really opposed, they just need each other to be whole.
"It is one of the commonest of mistakes to consider that the limit of our power of perception is also the limit of all there is to perceive." " C. W. Leadbeater
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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10/2/2014 6:46:17 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

It could be, in some sense, reductive to the scientific/philosophical backdrop by which 'modern atheism' (as if such a homogeneity exists) situates and refers itself. I'm thinking of positivism which universalizes its object if analysis and (re)inscribes it into its own matrix of intelligibility (that is, scientific intelligibility). But one need not only take this intelligibility to refer to a sort of 'visibility' or a neutral 'bringing out of darkness' the claims made by religion. That is, to take this rationality to (purely) mean appropriating religion (along with other cultural artifices) via an instrument used to render viewable (or testable) the claims made by it. There's also a normative element at play. An element which, alongside this 'viewability' instrument, subjects such claims to a standard which is at once specific (ethnocentric and culturally conditioned) but which renders 'itself' visible by reference to the supposed universality of its own rationality.

So, I dunno. On one side it seems as though the 'inappropriateness' of certain actions common in some atheist circles finds a coherent place within a normative-scientific structure but on the other it could just be that some people are dlcks and this just happens to be the way that those atheists who are dlcks practice their dlckishness.
: At 9/29/2014 10:55:59 AM, imabench wrote:
: : At 9/29/2014 9:43:46 AM, kbub wrote:
: :
: : DDO should discredit support of sexual violence at any time and in every way.
:
: I disagree.
HououinKyouma
Posts: 1,030
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10/2/2014 7:01:33 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

I would say that to be an atheist you only have to say "I don't believe in a god," everything else is up to you. The reason why some atheists, such as yours truly, often attack other belief systems is because that is one way to start a debate, and I don't think that one should be too charitable to the religious who still have too much power in politics. Also, it is fun.
"Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe; if you wish to be a devotee of truth, then inquire." F. Nietzsche.

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Natec
Posts: 84
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10/2/2014 7:08:41 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

Atheism by definition is the rejection of theistic claims... Some people get a little to into the whole thing. I also disapprove of some atheists who tell anyone who is less educated on the subject and disagrees with them that they're bigots,idiots, etc.
Dude... stop...
Subutai
Posts: 3,223
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10/2/2014 9:30:35 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/2/2014 12:04:11 AM, Envisage wrote:
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me.

There certainly are positive reasons for challenging belief systems which you believe are false, and destructive. You iterated thst with fundementalist, some atheists do that over a larger range, and others simply don't care either way, each to their own.

That's going to be exemplified on a debating forum, or on some atheist blog where like minded people concentrate, but I suspect most atheists don't really care about religion except when it has serious manifest consequences (such as fundementalism, Islam, etc).


You make sense. As others have mentioned I guess I'm confusing atheism with agnosticism. Atheists are naturally supposed to be opposed to religion. I was talking specifically about intolerance of peaceful religion. But I guess, as you've said, to each his own.
To be an atheist, does one have to do this?

No. And you know that.

If not, why do some atheists do this?

Why do some atheists eat Kellogg's Cornflakes, and others eat weetabix? The question seems meaningless.

This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

I have looked into secular Buddhism too, if that's what you are wondering...

Cool dude. I've read a lot on Buddhist philosophy myself.
I'm becoming less defined as days go by, fading away, and well you might say, I'm losing focus, kinda drifting into the abstract in terms of how I see myself.
SamStevens
Posts: 3,819
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10/2/2014 9:41:52 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

It bothers me too when other atheists start calling theists idiots, retards, or bigots. These actions give other atheists a bad name and ruins religious forum.
"This is the true horror of religion. It allows perfectly decent and sane people to believe by the billions, what only lunatics could believe on their own." Sam Harris
Life asked Death "Why do people love me but hate you?"
Death responded: "Because you are a beautiful lie, and I am the painful truth."
Mhykiel
Posts: 5,987
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10/4/2014 9:20:11 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

America is supposed to have freedom of religion. Many Atheist push fro freedom from religion. I think it is the motivating force behind students in public schools being disallowed from reading religious scripture during their study halls, disallowed from wearing the American flag on their clothes, People being silenced from praying or reading from religious scripture when they are supposedly given a forum to express their views.

I would say many especially the vocal ones that take political and legal actions are pushing for a country that is forcefully secular.

I find it astonishing that teachers when talking about certain historical figures are directed not to mention the persons religious affiliations, even when such religious thought was key to the historical persons views and motivations.

However if it is slanderous of religious thought, such as the provocative and often exaggerated tale of the Catholic church treatment of Galileo, then that is allowed.
Daltonian
Posts: 4,797
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10/5/2014 12:07:41 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.
I detest atheists like this. The situation you describe outlines the difference between a "militant atheist" and a "tolerant atheist". Atheists like you describe can be alternatively described as "anti-theists"

I'm an agnostic atheist and I don't even like to identify as one like that because it's such an irrelevant detail to my character that it'd be stupid to ask people to judge me based upon it.

Am I an anti-theist? It depends on the god you present me. If said God wants to burn me forever just because I didn't worship him properly, I could describe myself as "anti-that god".

Even still, I agree with your sentiment. Atheists whose goal in life is to harass religion and "end it in entirety" make all secularist people look like asses..
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Double_R
Posts: 4,886
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10/7/2014 9:55:07 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 10:06:44 PM, apb4y wrote:
At 10/1/2014 9:26:07 PM, Subutai wrote:
I really didn't want to post this in the religion forum, as I don't want trolls coming on and essentially illustrate the problem I hope to address. So, I put in the philosophy forum for better traffic.

As an atheist, I try to be respectful of other belief systems, specifically those that do not harm anybody (i.e. anything but fundamentalism). However, I always see a lot of atheist attack belief systems other than their own viciously, and this has always bothered me. To be an atheist, does one have to do this? If not, why do some atheists do this? This has been something that's bothered me for a while, and I'm wondering what your own personal thoughts are.

What you have to remember is that Atheism is not "lack of belief in God". That's Agnosticism. Atheism is the belief that there is no God. Agnostics are unconvinced by religion, whereas Atheists have already made their mind up on the issue. Therefore, you will get just as many fanatical Atheists as you will fanatical Theists... and fanaticism is where things turn nasty.

No, it's not.

Theism and atheism address whether you believe a God exists. Agnosticism addresses whether you believe God claims are knowable. Those are two different things, and they are not mutually exclusive. Knowledge is stronger than belief. You can believe God exists without believing God claims are knowable (agnostic theist), you can also not believe in God while believing God claims are not knowable (agnostic atheist).