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Please tell me there are more Atheists out there...

Discussion in 'Alley of Dangerous Angles' started by Saber, Oct 10, 2005.

  1. Saber

    Saber A revolution without dancing is not worth having! Veteran

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    I am an Atheist. I don't believe in God. Or other religions, for that matter. They were all written by MEN thousands (or perhaps hundreds, or less) of years ago to explain the unexplainable. But now, there is a thing called science, which has actual proof. Yet, for some reason, people can't seem to let go of Religion.

    This thread is for all of the non-religious people out there to state their opinions on religion, and such (although, everyone is welcome to say whatever they want, really). I would like to know how others feel about religion (which i personally hate, although i do not hate religious people), death, and so on.


    Religion: Way to long to say here. But briefly: I don't like it, and I will be the first to say that it is a bunch of man-made crap. Not going to go on much longer about it, because many, many people will start screaming about how i am wrong, blah, blah, blah. But I would like to say that I am not in anyway hateful towards relgious people, and I do not perform (or condone) acts of hate against religous people.

    On death: I believe that when we die, we rot in the ground. We have no souls. The only thing that makes us unique is our brain. Yet, I am not scared of dying. Sure, I don't like pain, and many ways of dying are painful, but death itself isn't that scary. I also don't believe in reincarnation, or afterlife, or anything. It just seems too irrealistic.

    Anyways, I would like to here other peoples' opinions, particularly why they do or do notlike religion, and what they think about death.

    [ October 10, 2005, 19:01: Message edited by: Saber the Arsonist ]
     
  2. NonSequitur Gems: 19/31
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    I'm not an atheist; if anything, I'm nominally a Uniting Church Christian. Essentially, I like the core ideas of just about every religion (the whole "be-nice-to-each-other" stuff) and believe very strongly that without a spiritual dimension to life, things tend to lose meaning outside of a purely utilitarian perspective. That's no way to "live" - it's a way to survive.

    I don't agree with the exclusivity granted to humans by some religions; I think that in the end, we're mostly just meat, bones, chemicals and a few volts running around in search of a purpose. It's that last part - and the whole element of abstract thought - which makes religion (of some kind) so important, in my view. A human being is not really a person without some spiritual dimension, IMO. Whether that's God or someone/something else is up to them.

    My gripe is with organised religious hierarchies and the misuse of corresponding spiritual authority. Like you, I am concerned at how it has been abused over the ages. I won't reiterate on that; I've said my piece before and will let it rest. I would also like to add at this point that there are many ideologies (read: secular religions) which are every bit as poisonous as you seem to believe mono- or polytheistic doctrines to be.

    Umm... you're not exactly setting the table for a frank discussion with this comment, Saber. But I could be proven wrong, I guess.
     
  3. AMaster Gems: 26/31
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    I'm agnostic (or weak atheist, depending on who you ask; I actively disbelieve in the religions I've been exposed to, but don't completely discount the notion of some deity or other), but all I have to say is...

    I've never understood the need to attack religion that seems to drive so many of my fellows. If anything, I have a great deal of respect for those of faith (fundamentalists of all stripes excepted).
     
  4. Elwithral Irenicus Gems: 20/31
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    I mostly agree with Saber's comment, but, I am yet to truly experience religion or live with it, seeing as though I am 13.

    But I feel that God is not real, there are no souls, or reincarnation or anything. Although, I don't *care* what people believe in as a religion, but I won't think of them any differently or shun them.
     
  5. kemanmaldea Gems: 12/31
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    Chalk me up in the Agnostic category, I believe that some divine may exist, however I am certain that most any religious beliefs found on earth are but a shallow attempt to create a system use able for human goals. An individual may truly believe what he says he does but the organization is a different story.
     
  6. Saber

    Saber A revolution without dancing is not worth having! Veteran

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    Ah, I am sorry for what I said: I did not mean what people don't like about religion, i meant why they do or do not like about religion. Excuse me for that.
     
  7. Gnarfflinger

    Gnarfflinger Wiseguy in Training

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    I'm on the opposite side of the debate you propose to start. I'm quite heavily religious and find the notion of no God and no governing Ethics to be an extremely foreign concept. Perhaps as unimaginable as my beliefs may seem to those that identify themselves as atheists...
     
  8. Alavin

    Alavin If I wanted your view, I'd read your entrails Veteran

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    Strongly agnostic. I have moments where I feel there's a god, and moments where I feel the opposite. I bought the Satanic Bible to summarise an atheist point of view, which is very interesting, and I've read the Bible in the past. Not sure yet which was the most persuasive.

    @ Saber:
    Judging from your perspective, you might find the Satanic Bible very interesting. :) It's a book about why the existence of religion is wrong literally and morally, and that people should be re-educated into behaving as they are, rather than as the church wants them to. (Just to be clear, Satanism and devil-worship are completely different)
     
  9. Aikanaro Gems: 31/31
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    Hmm, I was going to make a thread with my thoughts on agnosticism/atheism and such, but here's a better place.

    Recently I've decided to just throw away the agnostic label entirely and go for all out atheism. The common attack on atheism being 'oh, it's just as much as a faith/belief as a religion' is, IMO, bull****. If someone came up to you and said 'Oh, there are purple monkeys living in craters on the moon' you'd (hopefully) not believe them. Religion is the equivilant of that, and I don't really see any reason to keep an open mind about it any more.

    Satanism is a very interesting philosphy and I take a few ideas from it ('You are your own God' is a brilliant concept). Have a look at www.churchofsatan.com and ignore the front page as much as possible, as it looks like the site of a dodgy 80's heavy metal biker gang band or something...
     
  10. Pac man Gems: 25/31
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    Atheist here, although i'm not even sure if i like that stigma. I just don't believe in fairytales, that's all. :D
     
  11. Morgoroth

    Morgoroth Just because I happen to have tentacles, it doesn'

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    Cultural background definently Christian but probably qualified as an agnostic these days. I've got no big problems with religion in itself but I don't like it when religion has a great influence in legistlation or politics, that is against my view of a separation between church and state.

    Religion to me is a personal thing. A relationship between an individual and a god. The problem comes when you start organizing it to churches and have the one priest saying what's the correct way to follow god, and it can be easily abused and it has been abused so many times. Organized religion is not necessary bad though, if the priests have enough tolerance, open mindness and understanding to see beyoned their own faith, too often however they don't, which leads to conflict and trouble.
     
  12. DarkStrider

    DarkStrider I've seen the future and it has seen me Distinguished Member

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    My mother is Jewish and my father is Salvation Army/Church of England. Neither are strong practitioners of their faith and allowed my sisters and I to be educated in both faiths and able to choose are own paths.

    The older of my sisters has become Catholic which suits her narrow-minded all things are black or white nature.

    My younger sister is mainly agnostic but still has CoE tendencies and she's happy with that.

    I on the other hand became a cynic at the age of 12, which is when I realised that high school education is not actually meant to teach anything but to pigeon-hole people for what type of job they should do; further education is actually where you learn. Religion was used by their heirarchies as a means to control people. Both of these archaic methodologies are breaking down because the flow of information which they used to control has broken down and is easily available (the net, tv, papers) although not necessarily accurate.

    I read philosophy extensively when I was younger particularly eastern and as a result would say that my belief system is sort of Zen-Daoist, which negates the belief in a judeo-christo-islamic diety/trinity etc.
     
  13. Sir Fink Gems: 13/31
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    There's atheists and there's non-religious folks, which can be separate things.

    There are Buddhists, Taoists and other religions which have no god or gods, though some members of those religions do believe in some sort of god. Buddha never spoke of any sort of god at all. Nevertheless, Buddhism is considered a religion.

    I suppose you could say there are theists who are not the least bit religious.

    Atheism is simply lack of belief in any sort of god. It doesn't necessarily mean they are existentialists, nihislists, satanists, selfish hedonists, etc. That's up to them, and such philosophies and outlooks on life have been around probably since man crawled out of a cave, looked around and started thinking about this crap.

    Also, lack of belief in God doesn't necessarily mean a lack of morals or ethics. As Nietzsche said, we need morality because there is no God.
     
  14. Wordplay Gems: 29/31
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    Rock-hard atheist here. Said this on another board a little while ago I will say it again: religion is much like a fairy tale, except that it is the adults that believe into it. They had their place in the past as a "bringer of comfort", but nowdays that job is done better by psychologists and such. Religion, at most, hinders modern development with misplaced morals and restricting ethics.

    People want comfort and a nice way to evade the inevitable, hard question of what happens to them in the end. I believe ("believe" and "believe") the same as Saber; there will be only oblivion and thus it's pretty logical that many people don't want to understand this. After all, the idea of dying and rotting is hardly as comfy as dying and living in another form is.

    [ October 11, 2005, 14:52: Message edited by: Wirhe ]
     
  15. Saber

    Saber A revolution without dancing is not worth having! Veteran

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    Ah, morgoroth, i agree with you. America was built (not entirely, but at least somewhat) on the separation of church from state. Yet, today, there are many laws that are influenced by religion (gay marriage, for one). If you want a fair country, remove religion from politics.


    And as Aikanaro said: people commonly say atheism is a religion, which blows my mind. We don't believe in a god, or an afterlife, or any of that which makes a religion a religion (and i say 'we' because it makes for a more compelling argument than 'I', even though not all atheists necessarily believe what i just said).


    Now for something a little different (and more radical, perhaps): Religions have screwed this world over.
    In old times, religions started wars and took money from people. Leaders killed people for not believing in something that makes no sense whatsoever (the world made in seven days, come on..., etc).

    Today, they corrupt governments. In some cases (obviously not all), people kill because their god told them to (suicide bombers).

    People thank their god for things that are obviously done by man (such as thanking god for putting food on their plates, etc: who made the money? YOU. who bought the food? YOU. who cooked it? YOU. I don't see any god whipping out a frying pan and frying fish for you.)

    Plus, when something happens that they think they can't explain, they say "The Lord works in mysterious ways." That is one of the stupidest things to say ever. How about figuring out why something happened instead of placing the explination on your god?
     
  16. chevalier

    chevalier Knight of Everfull Chalice ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran

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    Separation of church and state doesn't mean that whatever a religious group believes is wrong should automatically be allowed. This line of reasoning goes like this:

    Christians believe abortion is wrong, ERGO if we ban it, we are enforcing Christianity, ERGO to non-enforce Christianity, we need to allow abortion.

    But Christians also believe third degree murder is wrong. So do we need to legalise third degree murder if we don't want to enforce Christianity?

    No. Separation of church and state means politicians don't write the dogma and clerics don't administer the country or make its laws.

    Neither does separation of church and state mean religion has to disappear from public life. That would actually violate the very core of separation of church and state by enforcing an atheistic view, which is, of itself, and taken to such an extreme, a quasi-religious faith (atheism is as much of a faith as Catholicism or Judaism is). Outlaw religion or drive it into catacombs and you end up enforcing a secular religion, an atheistic belief, soon to come up with his own quasi-deities, quasi-clerics, quasi-saints, quasi-holidays and a collection of dogmatic tenets. ;)

    You're welcome to have your opinion but if you want it to be taken seriously, you'd better come up with something tangible to back such claims.

    Leaders have killed people for coming into their way, first of all, and the biggest killers so far has been those who actively hated and fought religion (Nazis, commies).

    Next, why does seven days make less sense than big bang if you can't really evaluate the likelihood without being a professional physicist or similar? What difference does it make in your life? Well, part of the problem is taking the seven days too literally, of course.
     
  17. Saber

    Saber A revolution without dancing is not worth having! Veteran

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    But if only one religion believes in abortion, we should allow it. I'm pretty sure the majority of people are opposed to it. If everyone believes in something, it should be considered to be a law (depending on the situation). If only one group believes in it, perhaps not.

    You want something tangible? Look in some history books about the Roman Church selling indulgences, or perhaps about the Crusades. Evidence. Common knowledge. Whatever you call it, there it is.

    I wasn't talking about the biggest killers, i was talking about the most common killers (not necessarily at this time, but earlier). Plenty of rulers killed because of heresy or blasphemy or whatnot. But it isn't blasphemy in the victims' eyes, now is it? So do they deserve to die? No. And even if they did commit blasphemy, is that a reason to kill them? I don't think so.


    And another thing on abortion: Abortion is doing you a favor. It is killing a parasite. A parasite is something that benefits from you while you suffer. It uses your blood, your food to grow. It causes you pain. An unborn child is a parasite. Period.
     
  18. chevalier

    chevalier Knight of Everfull Chalice ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran

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    That's an old and long refuted bogus theory made up by a less than stable "expert". Basically, you are claiming that you were a parasite yourself, someone would have done your mother a favour by aborting you away from her womb and that you have no right to live. Why not kill yourself to make things right? Not saying you should, but this is where your logic leads.
     
  19. Saber

    Saber A revolution without dancing is not worth having! Veteran

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    Well, i'm not a parasite now, or at least not directly. I don't actually leech off my parents for food (although, if you ask them, i'm sure they would say otherwide, hah), and i don't harm them by doing it. But at the time when a baby is in the mother's womb, they are a parasite. And if i had been aborted, so be it.
     
  20. Felinoid

    Felinoid Who did the what now? ★ SPS Account Holder

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    @chev:
    But Saber's already born, so he's fine now. :D Though, strictly speaking, all humans are parasites, leeching off of Mother Nature's resources and doing damage to her. Oh, to wipe this scourge from the planet would be a joyous thing indeed. :hahaerr:
     
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