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New Atheism/Militant Atheism

Cerebral_Narcissist
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10/27/2011 2:22:43 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
I am going to be flamed... but oh well.

As an atheist I find myself opposed, at least in part to the new atheist/militant atheist movement. That is to say the increasing desire for atheists to preach and condemn.

That is not to say that religion should be sacrosanct, far from it, it should regularly be the subject of satire, parody and critical analysis.

So what is my problem?

The new atheists are increasingly bigoted, tribalistic and cowardly. Three traits that ought to be anathema to them.

By bigoted I mean that they often make broad and generalised statements against religion. Any sort of approach like this will always produce false and dishonest statements. Such as blaming the Catholic Church for the African Aids pandemic, whereas a truer picture is that though we might be justified in condeming the consequences of the catholic prohibition against condoms, in reality catholic sexual practices would have prevented much of its spread. We don't need hyperbole or half-truths, the accurate nuanced reality of the situation is enough for us to successfully attack a negative manifestation of religon... and it is the negative parts we should be attacking not the whole package.

By tribalism I mean this... atheism is an intellectual position, not a social club, not a football team, not a gang. Though tribalism is a natural human respone, intelligent humans ought to be aware of it and keep a lid on it. We should not be saying things like "yea right on Dawkins, you go bash that theist". Inevitably we will of course because we are fallible... but in our lucid moments we should understand that atheism is a personal conclusion based on the facts. If an atheist is humiliated in a debate we should be embarrased, because they either failed to make a case... or atheism failed. In the former case our personal convictions survive, in the latter case we convert. This tribalism rant applies equally to the religious of course, but I am not ranting at them. The ongoing desire to preach and mobilise and campaign on a permanent basis will engender tribalism.

It is cowardly because it attacks easy targets and often the wrong target. The current Pope deserves a permanent tirade of abuse of course, but he is an easy target. Creationists do not need to be permanently attacked unless they actually involved in diluting education. Liberal Christians who support or are indifferent to stem cell research but will only vote for someone who is... or pretends to be a Christian do not need to be permanently attacked... but what really irks me is the lack of condemnation for Islam. Or the lack of desire these atheist preachers have to turn their attention to the middle east. Because they are scared.

There are bound to be a lot of holes and flame worthy things in that but I am sleep deprived so whatever.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
izbo10
Posts: 2,995
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10/27/2011 8:37:25 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 10/27/2011 2:22:43 AM, Cerebral_Narcissist wrote:
I am going to be flamed... but oh well.

As an atheist I find myself opposed, at least in part to the new atheist/militant atheist movement. That is to say the increasing desire for atheists to preach and condemn.

That is not to say that religion should be sacrosanct, far from it, it should regularly be the subject of satire, parody and critical analysis.

So what is my problem?

The new atheists are increasingly bigoted, tribalistic and cowardly. Three traits that ought to be anathema to them.

By bigoted I mean that they often make broad and generalised statements against religion. Any sort of approach like this will always produce false and dishonest statements. Such as blaming the Catholic Church for the African Aids pandemic, whereas a truer picture is that though we might be justified in condeming the consequences of the catholic prohibition against condoms, in reality catholic sexual practices would have prevented much of its spread. We don't need hyperbole or half-truths, the accurate nuanced reality of the situation is enough for us to successfully attack a negative manifestation of religon... and it is the negative parts we should be attacking not the whole package.

By tribalism I mean this... atheism is an intellectual position, not a social club, not a football team, not a gang. Though tribalism is a natural human respone, intelligent humans ought to be aware of it and keep a lid on it. We should not be saying things like "yea right on Dawkins, you go bash that theist". Inevitably we will of course because we are fallible... but in our lucid moments we should understand that atheism is a personal conclusion based on the facts. If an atheist is humiliated in a debate we should be embarrased, because they either failed to make a case... or atheism failed. In the former case our personal convictions survive, in the latter case we convert. This tribalism rant applies equally to the religious of course, but I am not ranting at them. The ongoing desire to preach and mobilise and campaign on a permanent basis will engender tribalism.

It is cowardly because it attacks easy targets and often the wrong target. The current Pope deserves a permanent tirade of abuse of course, but he is an easy target. Creationists do not need to be permanently attacked unless they actually involved in diluting education. Liberal Christians who support or are indifferent to stem cell research but will only vote for someone who is... or pretends to be a Christian do not need to be permanently attacked... but what really irks me is the lack of condemnation for Islam. Or the lack of desire these atheist preachers have to turn their attention to the middle east. Because they are scared.

There are bound to be a lot of holes and flame worthy things in that but I am sleep deprived so whatever.
DDO's marketing strategy has certainly paid off just not sure I agree with the target market: http://tinypic.com...
It's amazing to me that you still have yet to grasp the difference between believing something, not believing something, and having no belief at all -JCMT
To respect religion, is to disrespect the Truth!

If this board was a room and you all were the light bulbs, I'm bringing a flashlight.
unitedandy
Posts: 1,173
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10/27/2011 10:29:45 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
The most offensive aspect of new atheism for me is that their arguments suck. But I do agree with you C_N that they are pretty outrageous in some of the statements they make as well.
vbaculum
Posts: 1,274
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10/27/2011 12:01:29 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 10/27/2011 2:22:43 AM, Cerebral_Narcissist wrote:
I am going to be flamed... but oh well.

As an atheist I find myself opposed, at least in part to the new atheist/militant atheist movement. That is to say the increasing desire for atheists to preach and condemn.

That is not to say that religion should be sacrosanct, far from it, it should regularly be the subject of satire, parody and critical analysis.

So what is my problem?

The new atheists are increasingly bigoted, tribalistic and cowardly. Three traits that ought to be anathema to them.

By bigoted I mean that they often make broad and generalised statements against religion. Any sort of approach like this will always produce false and dishonest statements. Such as blaming the Catholic Church for the African Aids pandemic, whereas a truer picture is that though we might be justified in condeming the consequences of the catholic prohibition against condoms, in reality catholic sexual practices would have prevented much of its spread. We don't need hyperbole or half-truths, the accurate nuanced reality of the situation is enough for us to successfully attack a negative manifestation of religon... and it is the negative parts we should be attacking not the whole package.

By tribalism I mean this... atheism is an intellectual position, not a social club, not a football team, not a gang. Though tribalism is a natural human respone, intelligent humans ought to be aware of it and keep a lid on it. We should not be saying things like "yea right on Dawkins, you go bash that theist". Inevitably we will of course because we are fallible... but in our lucid moments we should understand that atheism is a personal conclusion based on the facts. If an atheist is humiliated in a debate we should be embarrased, because they either failed to make a case... or atheism failed. In the former case our personal convictions survive, in the latter case we convert. This tribalism rant applies equally to the religious of course, but I am not ranting at them. The ongoing desire to preach and mobilise and campaign on a permanent basis will engender tribalism.

It is cowardly because it attacks easy targets and often the wrong target. The current Pope deserves a permanent tirade of abuse of course, but he is an easy target. Creationists do not need to be permanently attacked unless they actually involved in diluting education. Liberal Christians who support or are indifferent to stem cell research but will only vote for someone who is... or pretends to be a Christian do not need to be permanently attacked... but what really irks me is the lack of condemnation for Islam.

Oh! For a moment their I didn't know what you were talking about. Now I know you don't either.

Look in the index for "Islam" in any book that has been called "new atheist".

Or the lack of desire these atheist preachers have to turn their attention to the middle east. Because they are scared.

There are bound to be a lot of holes and flame worthy things in that but I am sleep deprived so whatever.
"If you claim to value nonviolence and you consume animal products, you need to rethink your position on nonviolence." - Gary Francione

THE WORLD IS VEGAN! If you want it
Cerebral_Narcissist
Posts: 10,806
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10/27/2011 1:16:06 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 10/27/2011 12:01:29 PM, vbaculum wrote:
Look in the index for "Islam" in any book that has been called "new atheist".

They barely touch upon Islam.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
Stephen_Hawkins
Posts: 5,316
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10/27/2011 1:23:17 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
i like it. it seperates those intellectuals from those with seperate aims. These divisions are natural, and forcing a solidarity seems to be bordering stalinism. However, I do find the position distasteful.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

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Ren
Posts: 7,102
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10/27/2011 1:29:17 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 10/27/2011 2:22:43 AM, Cerebral_Narcissist wrote:
I am going to be flamed... but oh well.

As an atheist I find myself opposed, at least in part to the new atheist/militant atheist movement. That is to say the increasing desire for atheists to preach and condemn.

That is not to say that religion should be sacrosanct, far from it, it should regularly be the subject of satire, parody and critical analysis.

So what is my problem?

The new atheists are increasingly bigoted, tribalistic and cowardly. Three traits that ought to be anathema to them.

By bigoted I mean that they often make broad and generalised statements against religion. Any sort of approach like this will always produce false and dishonest statements. Such as blaming the Catholic Church for the African Aids pandemic, whereas a truer picture is that though we might be justified in condeming the consequences of the catholic prohibition against condoms, in reality catholic sexual practices would have prevented much of its spread. We don't need hyperbole or half-truths, the accurate nuanced reality of the situation is enough for us to successfully attack a negative manifestation of religon... and it is the negative parts we should be attacking not the whole package.

By tribalism I mean this... atheism is an intellectual position, not a social club, not a football team, not a gang. Though tribalism is a natural human respone, intelligent humans ought to be aware of it and keep a lid on it. We should not be saying things like "yea right on Dawkins, you go bash that theist". Inevitably we will of course because we are fallible... but in our lucid moments we should understand that atheism is a personal conclusion based on the facts. If an atheist is humiliated in a debate we should be embarrased, because they either failed to make a case... or atheism failed. In the former case our personal convictions survive, in the latter case we convert. This tribalism rant applies equally to the religious of course, but I am not ranting at them. The ongoing desire to preach and mobilise and campaign on a permanent basis will engender tribalism.

It is cowardly because it attacks easy targets and often the wrong target. The current Pope deserves a permanent tirade of abuse of course, but he is an easy target. Creationists do not need to be permanently attacked unless they actually involved in diluting education. Liberal Christians who support or are indifferent to stem cell research but will only vote for someone who is... or pretends to be a Christian do not need to be permanently attacked... but what really irks me is the lack of condemnation for Islam. Or the lack of desire these atheist preachers have to turn their attention to the middle east. Because they are scared.

There are bound to be a lot of holes and flame worthy things in that but I am sleep deprived so whatever.

I respect your conclusion that there is logically nothing substantive about supernatural or spiritual things. Indeed, you can remove yourself from it completely in latter day society, making it easy to believe that it may as well not exist. Science has revealed how infinite existence truly is, and how little we understand of it. Moreover, how infinitesimally minute our relevance to the great scheme is, as humanity. Believing in an infinite supernatural being all for us just seems self-aggrandized and delusional, and that's a logic to which I can relate.

However, once you being to truly explore spirituality, you realize that--although many of the arguments made for it are preposterous, and many of its proponents sound outright insane--there may actually be some substance to it. You also come to realize that it also appears as infinite, incredible, and intimidating as science, and no one truly understands it. Perhaps, understands it even less. Therefore, you must follow your own path to enlightenment, exploring the reaches of everything that may or may not exist, until you find yourself somewhere that feels "right."

This is the best way I can describe my own experience.

The reason why I share this with you is because what you just did with that post, is completely destroy every atheist argument that criticizes religion and/or the religious. I hope this helps you realize that every human construct will be just as ignorant and hilariously misguided as humanity itself. But, my belief is at the heart of the truth lay more than the fragment of reality detectable by our senses.
Cerebral_Narcissist
Posts: 10,806
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10/27/2011 1:37:50 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 10/27/2011 1:29:17 PM, Ren wrote:
The reason why I share this with you is because what you just did with that post, is completely destroy every atheist argument that criticizes religion and/or the religious.

I don't I did, but I do understand what you are saying. It is another flaw of the new atheists that when someone attacks the human construct it is taken to be an attack on the existence of God, and this is flaw philosophically.

I hope this helps you realize that every human construct will be just as ignorant
and hilariously misguided as humanity itself. But, my belief is at the heart of the truth lay more than the fragment of reality detectable by our senses.

You are at once sound a little like your espousing God of the gaps, but at the same time you are making sense. The conclusions to be drawn from science at the moment are staggering.

As an amendment Atheists need to draw a distinction between atheist arguments against God, and Secular arguments against reliigion, or in favour of the secularisation of society. The two aspects are merely overlapping.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
izbo10
Posts: 2,995
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10/27/2011 5:37:07 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I would love to here a religious person who does not take their religion and have an effect on others.
DDO's marketing strategy has certainly paid off just not sure I agree with the target market: http://tinypic.com...
It's amazing to me that you still have yet to grasp the difference between believing something, not believing something, and having no belief at all -JCMT
To respect religion, is to disrespect the Truth!

If this board was a room and you all were the light bulbs, I'm bringing a flashlight.
vbaculum
Posts: 1,274
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10/27/2011 7:38:21 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 10/27/2011 1:16:06 PM, Cerebral_Narcissist wrote:
At 10/27/2011 12:01:29 PM, vbaculum wrote:
Look in the index for "Islam" in any book that has been called "new atheist".

They barely touch upon Islam.

So, your basically saying you don't own any copies of these books. I was going to go through my copies of The End of Faith, The God Delusion and god is not Great and list all the pages Islam covered. However, after reviewing them all, I can see I would be here all day. These authors cover Islam - and in no small detail. Again, you only need to consult the indexes of their work - especially Hitchens' and Harris' but also Dawkins', though to a lesser extent.
"If you claim to value nonviolence and you consume animal products, you need to rethink your position on nonviolence." - Gary Francione

THE WORLD IS VEGAN! If you want it
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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10/27/2011 7:43:04 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I understand the frustration with the new atheists. I personally don't much like Hitchens or Dawkins anymore. They rely too much on common sense moral arguments, talking about how evil God is, ignoring any comprehensive moral system of their own though, save of course secular humanism which is apparently just assumed. However, I'm not wholly opposed to the movement, I think it's a good way to push some of the more militant fundamentalists off of their high horses. I welcome bringing anything formerly sacred into the public sphere for critical analysis.
: 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.
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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10/27/2011 7:50:12 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Also Cerebral, on Islam and the new atheists supposed lack of critical examination of it, that seems to be completely false or at least not completely accurate. Hitchens and Harris especially devote much time in their books and their speeches to condemning fascistic Islamic states and basic Muslim doctrines. They're both actually known to ally themselves with neo-conservatives on foreign policy, primarily against militant Islam.
: 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.
rogue
Posts: 2,325
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10/27/2011 8:51:23 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I think that they have the right idea but some of them go about it in the wrong way. I have rather radical views even for an atheist but I think as long as you are ready to back up your arguments and admit defeat if you are wrong, you are intellectually sound.
Cerebral_Narcissist
Posts: 10,806
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10/28/2011 1:32:42 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 10/27/2011 7:38:21 PM, vbaculum wrote:
At 10/27/2011 1:16:06 PM, Cerebral_Narcissist wrote:
At 10/27/2011 12:01:29 PM, vbaculum wrote:
Look in the index for "Islam" in any book that has been called "new atheist".

They barely touch upon Islam.

So, your basically saying you don't own any copies of these books. I was going to go through my copies of The End of Faith, The God Delusion and god is not Great and list all the pages Islam covered. However, after reviewing them all, I can see I would be here all day. These authors cover Islam - and in no small detail. Again, you only need to consult the indexes of their work - especially Hitchens' and Harris' but also Dawkins', though to a lesser extent.

The God delusion barely touches upon Islam.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
Cerebral_Narcissist
Posts: 10,806
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10/28/2011 1:33:25 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 10/27/2011 7:50:12 PM, socialpinko wrote:
Also Cerebral, on Islam and the new atheists supposed lack of critical examination of it, that seems to be completely false or at least not completely accurate. Hitchens and Harris especially devote much time in their books and their speeches to condemning fascistic Islamic states and basic Muslim doctrines. They're both actually known to ally themselves with neo-conservatives on foreign policy, primarily against militant Islam.

Fair enough then.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.