Author Topic: why are you an atheist?  (Read 7480 times)

Offline trdsf

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #165 on: March 08, 2017, 12:18:12 AM »
1. You sound like you speak about the americas slavery? Spain and Portugal stopped their part of slavery (though some may have continued despite) due to religious intervention.
Yes, I explicitly said that I was talking about slavery in America.

However, the notion that religion stopped slavery in Spain and Portugal is ludicrous on the face of it.  In Spain, the enslavement of non-Catholics was essentially ordered by Pope Nicholas V, and  subsequent popes re-affirmed the 'just' enslavement of non-Christians by both Spain and Portugal.

You're better served looking to the Enlightenment than to the various churches for the roots of abolitionism.

Economics? war in US was because of economics but e.c.o. didnt halter slavery. souths economy relied on it. Thats how they climbed and stayed as influencial as they were.
Absolutely economics.  The coming of the Industrial Age made slavery no longer necessary economically, so it was easier to oppose it "morally".

2. Philosophy doesnt need to be religious but it does or can help develop religious thought and following.
Your point?  Just because philosophy can be used to try to underpin a religious opinion doesn't validate the religious opinion.  The vital thing is that no amount of philosophy can prove a religious position -- although logic and reason go a long way toward disproving it.
"It's hard to be religious when certain people are never incinerated by bolts of lightning." -- Calvin and Hobbes
"Confused? At a loss for what to do? Wow, sounds like you're human. Good luck." -- Welcome to Night Vale

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #166 on: March 08, 2017, 01:29:35 AM »
what about natural human curiosity about the universe and spirit?
Well, clearly there is a predilection for magical thinking, because here we are, in a world saturated with it.

But SoldierofFortune is broadly correct in that theistic, organized religion as we know it today wouldn't exist were it not passed on from generation to generation - being a believer in Christianity/Islam/Judaism/etc is not the default human state.

Before theism in general and organized forms of theism in particular, people likely had animistic beliefs if they held any religious beliefs at all.

It is very easy to imagine a violent thunderstorm as the sky being angry or sky spirits fighting each other.  If you further anthropomorphize these spirits, you could come up with a polytheistic pantheon of gods - each personifying and holding domain over some aspect of nature, like the sea (Poseidon) or lightning (Zeus).  In this pantheon, the chief god may become more and more dominant until - viola, something akin to monotheism (Aten worship) or a dualistic scheme with a good god fighting an evil god (Zoroastrianism).  From there, it's a hop, skip, and a jump to Abrahamic monotheism and the world we know today.

Sorry, but religion is not some deep insight into the universe.  It's just runaway magical thinking that, in the process of being spread generation to generation, has adapted to tickle people's ventral pallidum and to seem profound and noble to get passed along that much more earnestly.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2017, 10:58:17 AM by Hydra009 »

Offline Cavebear

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #167 on: March 08, 2017, 08:00:34 AM »
according to some on this thread, athiesm refers to both ideas of no god exist to not knowing if god exist. Is that how you use it?

what about natural human curiosity about the universe and spirit?

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"Atheism" is pretty much "forget it, no deity".  The uncertainty idea is more "agnostic", as I understand it.
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #168 on: March 08, 2017, 11:28:36 AM »
"Atheism" is pretty much "forget it, no deity".  The uncertainty idea is more "agnostic", as I understand it.
Agnosticism is colloquially used to indicate uncertainty regarding the existence of god or a "fence-sitting" position between atheism and theism.

But formally, agnosticism is a position regarding knowledge.  Who actually knows for a fact that a god exists or doesn't exist and how could they possibly know that?  Agnosticism is a position that humans lack the knowledge to determine whether or not god exists.  Taken further, strong agnosticism is the position that such a thing is inherently impossible to know (how could you go about verifying the claim that a god exists?  Or tell the difference between a genuine god and an imposter?)

I really wish the colloquial version and the formal versions of agnosticism had different names, because one gets confused for the other on a regular basis.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2017, 11:31:57 AM by Hydra009 »

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #169 on: March 11, 2017, 12:21:48 PM »
back to the OP....

wasnt ever trained in the gods of any religion except the Christian god. When I had to read about Zeus and Athena in high school I automatically assumed it was a fairy-tale. I had no idea that people actually believed Zeus was real. After that the more time I read the Bible the same two questions kept popping up. Why was anything Paul wrote in the Bible? the guy admits up front that he wasn't there....
The other question is about Jesus. These twelve guys were hangin out with someone that is supposed to be a son of a god and nobody was trying to write down everything he said or did? Why not? There are some dead guys in Egypt that have stupid accounting stuff written down that we can read just because they were a king. I was getting the impression that there was somethin screwy about the whole setup of the Bible. I think I started asking questions way back in junior high.

the short story is when you try to be objective questions about the way the Bible was created and what it says start coming up. Where's the proof that it is legitimate? aint no proof of a Christian god layin around.


maybe ya'll getting bored with me mentioning a previous post but I'm gonna bring it up again. Learned a lot just from the error section comparing Samuels and Chronicles

www.kyroot.com 1513 Reasons why Christianity is false
« Last Edit: March 11, 2017, 12:23:24 PM by fencerider »
god is never early, but he is never late either... so true, so true; but I would rather have him show up late than to not show up at all. When was the last time god showed up for anything??? uh never

Offline Ro3bert

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #170 on: March 11, 2017, 07:13:43 PM »
When I was first formally introduced to mythology, I was impressed at how much of that resembled my own religion.  Think about it.  They each look the same, with hardly a nuance of difference between them, but one is considered to be the truth and the light, while the other is clearly understood to be bullshit.  That seemed like food for thought when I noticed it.

As far as I am concerned the bible is as much myth as Greek, Roman, Norse or Egyptian myth with the caveat that most myths have at least some historical bits and pieces thrown in to help make them look real.

Offline Sorginak

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #171 on: March 11, 2017, 07:21:08 PM »
Agnosticism is colloquially used to indicate uncertainty regarding the existence of god or a "fence-sitting" position between atheism and theism.

But formally, agnosticism is a position regarding knowledge.  Who actually knows for a fact that a god exists or doesn't exist and how could they possibly know that?  Agnosticism is a position that humans lack the knowledge to determine whether or not god exists.  Taken further, strong agnosticism is the position that such a thing is inherently impossible to know (how could you go about verifying the claim that a god exists?  Or tell the difference between a genuine god and an imposter?)

I really wish the colloquial version and the formal versions of agnosticism had different names, because one gets confused for the other on a regular basis.

I used to be agnostic.

Robert Green Ingersoll is a great man.

Agnosticism is fence sitting.  It is not about obtaining knowledge.

After thousands of years of mythology, would there not be some sort of evidence for the supernatural?  Considering there is no evidence, it is more logical to assume there is nothing supernatural. 

Supernaturalism is nothing than mere imaginative fancy.

Reason and logic informs us after thousands of years of faith based ignorance that religious faith is useless. 

Religion is primitive, inventive nonsense.

Offline Ro3bert

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #172 on: March 11, 2017, 07:23:06 PM »
I have moved on from atheism to apatheism. The whole argument is impossible. I neither believe nor disbelieve and don't care either way.

From Wikipedia: "An apatheist is someone who is not interested in accepting or rejecting any claims that gods exist or do not exist. An apatheist may thus decide to live as if there are no gods. The existence of god(s) is not rejected, but may be designated irrelevant."

That is my position especially the "irrelevant" part.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apatheism

Offline Sorginak

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #173 on: March 11, 2017, 07:24:22 PM »
I have moved on from atheism to apatheism. The whole argument is impossible. I neither believe nor disbelieve and don't care either way.

From Wikipedia: "An apatheist is someone who is not interested in accepting or rejecting any claims that gods exist or do not exist. An apatheist may thus decide to live as if there are no gods. The existence of god(s) is not rejected, but may be designated irrelevant."

That is my position especially the "irrelevant" part.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apatheism

So you're an agnostic. 
Religion is primitive, inventive nonsense.

Offline Baruch

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #174 on: March 11, 2017, 11:38:59 PM »
So you're an agnostic.

He is an agnostic who doesn't care.  Are there agnostics who do care?
שלום

Offline SGOS

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #175 on: March 12, 2017, 07:52:01 AM »
He is an agnostic who doesn't care.  Are there agnostics who do care?
Absolutely. I was an agnostic, during the years of my religious quest.  I cared deeply about answering the question of God's existence.  I could think of no greater question that needed an answer at the time.  My position on agnosticism has never changed.  I intuitively knew the big question could not be answered when I started, and I am at the same place today.

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #176 on: March 12, 2017, 08:17:36 AM »
follow up questions may follow.
I've never been anything else. Not programmed to buy into my parents' religion as they had none. The idea of some big sky daddy who can create a Universe but thinks I'm the center of it just caused me to giggle when I was ten years old.
We 'new atheists' have a reputation for being militant, but make no mistake  we didn't start this war. If you want to place blame put it on the the religious zealots who have been poisoning the minds of the  young for a long long time."
PZ Myers

Offline SGOS

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #177 on: March 12, 2017, 08:19:32 AM »
Agnosticism is fence sitting. 
There is no fence to sit on in agnosticism, and some agnostics defend their position fiercely.  It's the only conclusion one can arrive at using logic.  Of course if you prefer special logic, say courtroom logic, you might decide there is or isn't a god.  But you would have done so without precise evidence.

It is not about obtaining knowledge.
That's because there is no justification for knowledge without evidence.  If you see that as fence sitting, you should divest your interest in colloquial definitions, and consider what the guy that coined and defined the word meant it to mean:

Quote
Agnosticism is of the essence of science, whether ancient or modern. It simply means that a man shall not say he knows or believes that which he has no scientific grounds for professing to know or believe. Consequently, agnosticism puts aside not only the greater part of popular theology, but also the greater part of anti-theology. On the whole, the "bosh" of heterodoxy is more offensive to me than that of orthodoxy, because heterodoxy professes to be guided by reason and science, and orthodoxy does not.[12]

— Thomas Henry Huxley

Quote
Agnosticism, in fact, is not a creed, but a method, the essence of which lies in the rigorous application of a single principle ... Positively the principle may be expressed: In matters of the intellect, follow your reason as far as it will take you, without regard to any other consideration. And negatively: In matters of the intellect do not pretend that conclusions are certain which are not demonstrated or demonstrable.[14][15][16]

— Thomas Henry Huxley

From:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agnosticism

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #178 on: March 12, 2017, 08:28:42 AM »
But religion is not about science.
We 'new atheists' have a reputation for being militant, but make no mistake  we didn't start this war. If you want to place blame put it on the the religious zealots who have been poisoning the minds of the  young for a long long time."
PZ Myers

Offline SGOS

Re: why are you an atheist?
« Reply #179 on: March 12, 2017, 09:33:35 AM »
But religion is not about science.
Obviously, but neither is it's opposite (that no god exists).

Agnosticism is a place that disregards all forms of informal logic, in favor of not allowing "the intellect to pretend that conclusions are certain which are not demonstrated or demonstrable."

According to agnosticism, both knowing of God's existence (theism) and knowing of his non-existence (anti-theism) are opposing perceptions that both live together in the pond of conjecture, a place where knowledge is presumed without demonstrable certainty.  Agnosticism is not sitting on the fence; It's a recognition of the limits of what can be known.

Agnosticism in no way preempts the belief that "no god exists."  It just recognizes the difference between belief and actual knowledge.  Describing agnosticism as "fence riding" sounds suspiciously like someone needing another to make a commitment and to take sides ("if you are not for us, you are against us.  Please, come jump off the fence and bathe in the waters of blissful conjecture").  It attempts to cajole the agnostic to give up reason and to join a movement which has no logical platform.  Unfortunately, this is usually a waste of time, because the agnostic may have been in the movement for much longer than the recent joiners, who emotionally rejoice, "There is no God," without demonstrable evidence.