Author Topic: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.  (Read 780 times)

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #15 on: September 13, 2020, 01:44:40 AM »
Non-belief is a default state, and therefore requires no active decision-making.

In fact, viewing atheism as a conscious rejection of God is a common theistic argument - nonbelievers have somehow spurned God (very thin skin for an almighty) and therefore are presumed to deserve eternal punishment in retaliation.  The logic behind such reasoning is very thin and falls apart in a few places, but it was only a facade anyway, merely a rationalization of outgroup hostility.

Agree 100%.  But when you've grown up saying there is the big man in the clouds, to exit that thought, you have to make a choice to disregard what you've be taught. I realize that I am new to this and am probably biting off more than I can chew.  But the some-odd 97% of the worlds population is Theist.  That's a hard thing to set aside.

That's why cannot yet just bash on Theist...we (most of everyone who is now Atheist) came from Theism.  I imagine ( i do not know the statistic) that there aren't historically, many children brought up Atheist.  While i think this will soon change, i do not see it yet.
“Religion has had the disastrous effect of placing vitally important concepts, such as morality, happiness and love, in a supernatural realm inaccessible to man’s mind and knowledge.”
― George H. Smith, Atheism: The Case Against God

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #16 on: September 13, 2020, 03:02:31 AM »
I find it funny that God is the only thing we're expected to believe in by default. If someone says they saw an alien spaceship, you say, "Pics or it didn't happen." If someone says ghosts are real, you say, "Prove it." But when someone says there's a god, suddenly it's the skeptic's job to justify his position. It also plays into the way we do labels. If you don't believe in leprechauns, nobody is going to call you an aleprechaunist. Because not believing in superstition without evidence is, in every other circumstance, the default position.
"Oh, wearisome condition of humanity,
Born under one law, to another bound;
Vainly begot, and yet forbidden vanity,
Created sick, commanded to be sound."
--Fulke Greville

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #17 on: September 13, 2020, 03:13:42 AM »
I find it funny that God is the only thing we're expected to believe in by default. If someone says they saw an alien spaceship, you say, "Pics or it didn't happen." If someone says ghosts are real, you say, "Prove it." But when someone says there's a god, suddenly it's the skeptic's job to justify his position. It also plays into the way we do labels. If you don't believe in leprechauns, nobody is going to call you an aleprechaunist. Because not believing in superstition without evidence is, in every other circumstance, the default position.

I go back to what we are taught as kids.  And in America, the default is most likely the Christian God.  BTW - Leprechauns aren't real?
“Religion has had the disastrous effect of placing vitally important concepts, such as morality, happiness and love, in a supernatural realm inaccessible to man’s mind and knowledge.”
― George H. Smith, Atheism: The Case Against God

Offline Baruch

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #18 on: September 13, 2020, 09:40:11 AM »
I go back to what we are taught as kids.  And in America, the default is most likely the Christian God.  BTW - Leprechauns aren't real?

Or you aren't Irish ;-)
Ha’át’íísh baa naniná?
Azee’ ła’ish nanídį́į́h?
Táadoo ánít’iní.
What are you doing?
Are you taking any medications?
Don't do that.

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #19 on: September 13, 2020, 09:50:21 AM »
I think atheists should not use the word 'belief' or it's stronger cousin, 'faith'.  Why?  For example, I have been asked several times by theists something like this--You do have beliefs--you believe the sun will rise tomorrow.  I answer that I don't 'believe' the sun will rise tomorrow, I think it will.  And if it does not, then I will change my thinking.  Plus, a 'rising sun' is a short hand way of knowing the earth is actually rotating and that rotation makes the sun appear to be moving, but it isn't really.  I don't have any beliefs.  Either I know something is correct, incorrect or I don't know. 

It is also used this way--I believe in you.  No, I either trust you, don't trust you or I am undecided. Theists like to use belief and faith as clubs--'see, you do have beliefs and you are simply choosing to not believe in god', as though god is the default state and you are simply rejecting that state.  I'd suggest, as has been stated often on this site, that nonbelief is the default state.  Do we chose to not believe Paul Bunyan is factual?  Maybe there is a bit of a choice there, but it is obvious he is not real.  I view god the same way.  I don't think he/she/it (god) is real--it is a fiction.  I have not seen any proof otherwise.  I think Jesus is the same--a fiction.  There is much more proof that he is indeed, a fiction than that he is factual.  I don't chose not to 'believe' that Jesus was real or not, I look at the facts and then go with the side that has the most data to support that view.  So, Jesus is a fiction.  I think that is correct, but if new evidence shows up that proves me wrong, then I will change my thinking.
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent,
Is he able but not willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able or willing?
Then why call him god?

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #20 on: September 13, 2020, 10:01:57 AM »
I go back to what we are taught as kids. 
I was not taught there was a god.  My mom would take us (5 boys) to church if we wanted to go--and we did, off and on for several years.  We did not discuss much of what we heard, but I do not remember being taught by my parents one way or the other.  I only found out what my mom's views were when she was in her 70's.  I was also taught by my parents that Santa and the Easter Bunny were real.  I don't remember how, but it slowly dawned on me that neither were real.  I did not chose to believe and I did not chose not to believe.  It simply became evident that neither were real.  The same with god, for me.  I spent most of my life in search for god, finally it became evident god is a fiction.  I did not chose to understand that--it simply became evident the more I searched for answers. 

Choice is interesting.  It is a very important word in our lives.  Everything hinges upon our choices.  Yet, I don't think, at this point, I could force myself to believe in god.  I could say I did, act like I did, but still not actually think that way.  I know gravity works, I cannot chose to believe it doesn't.  Why is that?  Because all (and I mean ALL) of the evidence points to god being a fiction and no matter how sincere I believe that, it will not change that.
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent,
Is he able but not willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able or willing?
Then why call him god?

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #21 on: September 13, 2020, 12:29:42 PM »
I think atheists should not use the word 'belief' or it's stronger cousin, 'faith'.  Why?  For example, I have been asked several times by theists something like this--You do have beliefs--you believe the sun will rise tomorrow.  I answer that I don't 'believe' the sun will rise tomorrow, I think it will.  And if it does not, then I will change my thinking.  Plus, a 'rising sun' is a short hand way of knowing the earth is actually rotating and that rotation makes the sun appear to be moving, but it isn't really.  I don't have any beliefs.  Either I know something is correct, incorrect or I don't know. 

It is also used this way--I believe in you.  No, I either trust you, don't trust you or I am undecided. Theists like to use belief and faith as clubs--'see, you do have beliefs and you are simply choosing to not believe in god', as though god is the default state and you are simply rejecting that state.  I'd suggest, as has been stated often on this site, that nonbelief is the default state.  Do we chose to not believe Paul Bunyan is factual?  Maybe there is a bit of a choice there, but it is obvious he is not real.  I view god the same way.  I don't think he/she/it (god) is real--it is a fiction.  I have not seen any proof otherwise.  I think Jesus is the same--a fiction.  There is much more proof that he is indeed, a fiction than that he is factual.  I don't chose not to 'believe' that Jesus was real or not, I look at the facts and then go with the side that has the most data to support that view.  So, Jesus is a fiction.  I think that is correct, but if new evidence shows up that proves me wrong, then I will change my thinking.

Language changes meaning depending on the context. Christians will switch between multiple definitions when convenient for them, hoping you won't notice, and to try to make us appear to be contradicting ourselves. One time I was talking to a Christian, and we were using the courtroom analogy (because of course that came up) and I said that a juror has to remain objective when trying to make a decision. The Christian replied, "But you said you don't believe in objectivity." No... I said that I don't believe in objective truth. It's not the same thing. Objectivity is making decisions based on facts and evidence rather than something subjective like intuition. Objective truth is a concept that cannot be questioned. You just have to be prepared to call them out on their shit when they try to play these word games with you.
"Oh, wearisome condition of humanity,
Born under one law, to another bound;
Vainly begot, and yet forbidden vanity,
Created sick, commanded to be sound."
--Fulke Greville

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #22 on: September 13, 2020, 04:37:54 PM »
Absolutely its a choice...You cannot make a conscious decision to not believe in something, if first you aren't exposed to it or know about it.  I.e.  If we never heard of God, then we would not need the terms Atheist and Theist to articulate the terms of belief in him/them. 

Choice is everything.  And within every choice is the level of commitment in defending that choice.
I don't think you understand what belief and non-belief is.

Hopefully that changes during your time here

Almost smells fishy, that response.

Offline SGOS

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #23 on: September 13, 2020, 06:13:32 PM »
Almost smells fishy, that response.
It does sound like a theist pretending to be a teetering atheist, but keep in mind that many of us newly enlightened atheists came to the table with a lot of theist baggage.  Even after we are convinced about the lack of evidence for God, there are still many theist memes hidden away in our heads.  It takes time to analyze each of those logical errors of thought and correct our perspectives.  Many of these errors don't leave just because the light came on.  Each of those fallacious memes, all of which support the idea of a god, were carefully ingrained in us by our parent's and Sunday school teachers.  The psychology of religious indoctrination and apologetics is complex.

I'm interested in learning more about this fellow.

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #24 on: September 13, 2020, 06:26:28 PM »
It does sound like a theist pretending to be a teetering atheist, but keep in mind that many of us newly enlightened atheists came to the table with a lot of theist baggage.  Even after we are convinced about the lack of evidence for God, there are still many theist memes hidden away in our heads.  It takes time to analyze each of those logical errors of thought and correct our perspectives.  Many of these errors don't leave just because the light came on.  Each of those fallacious memes, all of which support the idea of a god, were carefully ingrained in us by our parent's and Sunday school teachers.  The psychology of religious indoctrination and apologetics is complex.

I'm interested in learning more about this fellow.

Thank you for putting that in words that to couldn't.    I am an open book if anyone wants to help me be more articulate in what I try to convey.  Again, I make no hidden statements about coming from theism.  If it's 30 some odd years of my life, there will still be that history in my head.
“Religion has had the disastrous effect of placing vitally important concepts, such as morality, happiness and love, in a supernatural realm inaccessible to man’s mind and knowledge.”
― George H. Smith, Atheism: The Case Against God

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #25 on: September 13, 2020, 06:47:51 PM »
I remember some of you guys thought I was secretly a theist too when I first joined. Anyone still doubting me? lol
"Oh, wearisome condition of humanity,
Born under one law, to another bound;
Vainly begot, and yet forbidden vanity,
Created sick, commanded to be sound."
--Fulke Greville

Offline trdsf

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #26 on: September 13, 2020, 10:36:00 PM »
Hey, I was 40 before I finally shed theism in all its forms (raised Roman Catholic, practicing Pagan from my early 20s).  As long as you get there in the end, right?

And welcome!
"My faith in the Constitution is whole, it is complete, it is total, and I am not going to sit here and be an idle spectator to the diminution, the subversion, the destruction of the Constitution." -- Barbara Jordan

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #27 on: September 14, 2020, 03:26:41 AM »
Hey, I was 40 before I finally shed theism in all its forms (raised Roman Catholic, practicing Pagan from my early 20s).  As long as you get there in the end, right?

And welcome!

That's the goal. 
“Religion has had the disastrous effect of placing vitally important concepts, such as morality, happiness and love, in a supernatural realm inaccessible to man’s mind and knowledge.”
― George H. Smith, Atheism: The Case Against God

Offline drunkenshoe

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #28 on: September 14, 2020, 05:35:42 AM »
AFactNeedingPerson,

It seems to me that -correct me, if I'm wrong- you feel like you need to behave in a certain way, say/do certain things to be included and accepted to a certain group because you have changed your world vision. This is OK. In my personal opinion this could be some remnant of a form of religious behaviour. This is OK too. And it is also OK, if you do not want to do anything at all. Because nonbelief is the neutral world vision of an informed individual. There isn't anything negative or positive in itself. Positive thing is getting rid off bullshit and toxic stuff which is again about your personal interactions in your personal life. (There are religious people doing the same.) You're not expected to be/do/say anything. Countless atheists in the world do not engage with anyone or say anything about the matter of nonbelief/belief their entire lives, an overwhelming amount of people use the word nonbeliever instead of atheist on purpose. 

(But something...The thing with nonbelievers is that we are not counted and registered while believers all around the world are.  Because nonbelievers do not make money, they're not open to profit from abuse or some sort of con. Religion makes money, religion makes politics, it imposes norms and tell people they're special. That's its power in a nutshell; acting as 'the City Hall' so it is always profitable to push the numbers up. I don't put theists in a different basket personally, if you think you were created by a supreme being, you think you are one...goes down teh hill from there. (For example, esp. in Middle East countries -where I live- there are masses of deists, agnostics and strong atheists -growing as we speak- completely ignored because people are automatically recorded at birth with the name of the main religion in the region.) 

Atheism is not a belief system and you shouldn't pay any attention to its definition further than 'lack of any belief to any deities or gods'. Full stop. But you'll meet people who call themselves 'nonbelievers' of any kind... with beliefs in horoscopes, quantum something, sending energies...all kind of mumbo jumbo,lol. So get ready to that.     

About bashing or making fun of theists or believers because of their beliefs... See, this is not really what it seems because atheists do not care about what individuals believe. Their problem is ORGANISED, INSTITUTIONAL RELIGION. Because it shapes society, human behaviour, even human life and death. It's harmful to human societies. And it relies on being institutional; brainwashing at a very young age. 

Anyway, there is a lot to say about related to all that but this is enough for now I guess... Welcome.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2020, 05:40:15 AM by drunkenshoe »
"I believe you find life such a problem because you think there are good people and bad people. You're wrong, of course. There are, always and only, the bad people, but some of them are on opposite sides." Havelock Vetinari

Re: Lifetime off/on Religious - Atheist, Ready to commit.
« Reply #29 on: September 14, 2020, 06:18:04 AM »
AFactNeedingPerson,

It seems to me that -correct me, if I'm wrong- you feel like you need to behave in a certain way, say/do certain things to be included and accepted to a certain group because you have changed your world vision. This is OK. In my personal opinion this could be some remnant of a form of religious behaviour. This is OK too. And it is also OK, if you do not want to do anything at all. Because nonbelief is the neutral world vision of an informed individual. There isn't anything negative or positive in itself. Positive thing is getting rid off bullshit and toxic stuff which is again about your personal interactions in your personal life. (There are religious people doing the same.) You're not expected to be/do/say anything. Countless atheists in the world do not engage with anyone or say anything about the matter of nonbelief/belief their entire lives, an overwhelming amount of people use the word nonbeliever instead of atheist on purpose. 

(But something...The thing with nonbelievers is that we are not counted and registered while believers all around the world are.  Because nonbelievers do not make money, they're not open to profit from abuse or some sort of con. Religion makes money, religion makes politics, it imposes norms and tell people they're special. That's its power in a nutshell; acting as 'the City Hall' so it is always profitable to push the numbers up. I don't put theists in a different basket personally, if you think you were created by a supreme being, you think you are one...goes down teh hill from there. (For example, esp. in Middle East countries -where I live- there are masses of deists, agnostics and strong atheists -growing as we speak- completely ignored because people are automatically recorded at birth with the name of the main religion in the region.) 

Atheism is not a belief system and you shouldn't pay any attention to its definition further than 'lack of any belief to any deities or gods'. Full stop. But you'll meet people who call themselves 'nonbelievers' of any kind... with beliefs in horoscopes, quantum something, sending energies...all kind of mumbo jumbo,lol. So get ready to that.     

About bashing or making fun of theists or believers because of their beliefs... See, this is not really what it seems because atheists do not care about what individuals believe. Their problem is ORGANISED, INSTITUTIONAL RELIGION. Because it shapes society, human behaviour, even human life and death. It's harmful to human societies. And it relies on being institutional; brainwashing at a very young age. 

Anyway, there is a lot to say about related to all that but this is enough for now I guess... Welcome.

Thank you!  I hope to engage with you more.  Something about your wording syncs with me.
“Religion has had the disastrous effect of placing vitally important concepts, such as morality, happiness and love, in a supernatural realm inaccessible to man’s mind and knowledge.”
― George H. Smith, Atheism: The Case Against God