Why We Bother

scoop712
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Why We Bother

Hi all.

This is more an introspective kind of forum; I'd like to ask how you guys would respond to this question:

Let's take it as granted, for this discussion, that religion is irrational by nature.  In attempting to dissuade others from holding religious views, are we acting out of fear of the social impact of mass irrationality, out of the desire to share the joy of our freedom from fallacy, out of anger that they insult our position by claiming it's bullshit without any evidence whatsoever, out of sadness that they suffer under undue burdens and impediments, or for other reasons?  I know my own motivations, but I'd be really interested to hear yours.

 

 


Atheistextremist
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All your reasons, Scoop.

 

 

I think it should be considered a moral decision to hold an open position on things we don't have adequate evidence for. A lot of my angst comes from the fact this position is considered a default sin. 

The idea it's all either sprung from 'nothing' or is the work of a human style god is such a resounding bunch of crap. 

Then there's the fact that a discussion group like this one allows people from godly backgrounds who don't believe to feel they're not alone. That's important.

 

 

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


robj101
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I don't care if they want to

I don't care if they want to worship a flying purple people eater, just don't inject it into my life. Some low iq folks probably NEED religion but I do try to persuade the more intelligent and people I care about to think about it.

As Hitch said "They can play with these toys at home but do not make me play with these toys" or something like that lol.

Faith is the word but next to that snugged up closely "lie's" the want.
"By simple common sense I don't believe in god, in none."-Charlie Chaplin


Wonderist
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scoop712 wrote:Hi all.This

scoop712 wrote:

Hi all.

This is more an introspective kind of forum; I'd like to ask how you guys would respond to this question:

Let's take it as granted, for this discussion, that religion is irrational by nature.  In attempting to dissuade others from holding religious views, are we acting out of fear of the social impact of mass irrationality, out of the desire to share the joy of our freedom from fallacy, out of anger that they insult our position by claiming it's bullshit without any evidence whatsoever, out of sadness that they suffer under undue burdens and impediments, or for other reasons?  I know my own motivations, but I'd be really interested to hear yours.

Ordinarily, I couldn't really care less what other people believe, as long as it doesn't affect me or society or the planet in a negative way. But unfortunately, we've seen time and time again that a 'live and let live' approach to things like religion doesn't work, because religious believers simply cannot leave their faith-based beliefs out of reality-based situations. 9/11 was the wake-up call for me, proceeded by Bush's 'election', and followed by his astonishing re-election. When religious nuts fly into buildings, and the so-called 'leader of the free-world' is another religious nut (voted for by a largely religious population in the US) who is willing to start massive wars based on ideology.... well, let's just say that when peoples' fantasy-world beliefs influence their real-world actions, we have a serious problem. And the only long-term solution is to get to the root of the problem -- faith-based belief. Religion just happens to be one of the biggest sources of these beliefs, so that's the highest priority nut to crack.

Since then, I've found many other reasons to continue pursuing this goal, and your post covers several of them.

Ultimately, I'm looking to bring about a better future than the one I currently feel we are headed towards. Things need to change, things can be changed, things are changing. A lot of people feel apathetic, like "How can any one person change anything?" It's true, one person alone can't change much. But one person who helps to champion some good ideas can spread those ideas to many people. And many people together -- sharing common ideas and goals -- can definitely change things. So that's what I try to do, champion good ideas over bad ones.

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Atheistextremist
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Agree with Natural

 

9-11 and the semi-religious response was a major wakeup call. And so was London and Madrid and Bali, the Australian Embassy in Jakarta and all the other more recent planned attacks I am forgetting.

Religion showed its true colours over the past ten years and it didn't look good. It's negative of me but there will be further attacks by religious nutjobs, of that we can be sure.

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


Athene
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Why it matters

http://www.atheist-community.org/atheisteve/?id=60

 

Tracie Harris has drawn a lot of awesome "Atheist Eve"-Cartoons (check them out! Link above), but this one remains one of my all-time favorites.


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Probably because I grew up

Probably because I grew up around a lot of so called christians. I would watch my mother go to church on Sunday and then turn around and do things that she considered sin. Made no sense to me whatsoever. My view on christianity is that it is a mental condition. I think people use it to keep their asses in line as much as they can stand to be in line.

I spent years trying to believe that there was a god/jesus because it would be great if prayers worked. The reality is that they don't. If you want things in your life to be better, you have to make them better.

I also think there are people who need religion, as long as they only read certain parts of the bible. What's scary is that if they were to read about the raping, killing and other bad stuff, it really wouldn't do them any good.

If all the Christians who have called other Christians " not really a Christian " were to vanish, there'd be no Christians left.


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I bother because I want a

I bother because I want a lawless society where everything goes and everyone has no morals. How else are we going to as atheists live up to their stereotypes? Jeeze wizz, I am tired of people blasting me merely because I like barbecuing kittens.

Either that, or I am tired of people claiming Santa exists and affecting global politics by voting and killing in the name of their fictional friend in the sky. It would be nice for humanity if they would treat their superstitions like a pass time instead of a global game of capture the flag.

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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harleysportster
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Response to the Tracie Harris Cartoon

That cartoon states, that the fact that an Atheist would spend so much time arguing our worldview would speak volumes to her ?

I would say, the fact that Harris wants to silence everyone that doesn't share her worldview, speaks volumes to me about her absolutist way of dictating to people who should talk and who should not. It also says that Harris believes in trying to condemn all of those that do not think just like her, if you ask my opinion.

 

If we honestly believe that God doesn't exist, then why argue at all ?

Probably because the religious people refuse to allow Atheists to exist without making attempts to FORCE their worldview upon us.

 

 

Why would you even care what religious beliefs or ideas other people have ?

That is a presumption that I do care what other people think. Partially for the same reason as the one listed above and also because alot of people that are strugguling with their faiths need to find out that there is a way out of that life and there is nothing wrong with them for questioning their faith, because their faiths are INSANE. Therefore, when the churches and the false values, that have been forced upon them for years no longer works, they know that their are people out there like us and that they are not alone.

 

There is no reason religion or belief in god would even matter to you unless there was something internal that causes us all to seek out god .

How about an internal desire to seek truth ? How about that truth having nothing to do with a god ? How about alot of things that could be inferred from that statement because that seems like more presumptions to me.

Seriously why do you have such a problem with religion ?

I have not gotten enough room to answer that here. Suffice to say, there are way too many reasons to even begin counting.

Can you please explain why you spend so much time worrying about what other people believe ?

There are not any Atheist groups that are knocking on your front door and trying to preach  the Atheist gospel to believers. Unlike the religious.

 

 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


Athene
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harleysportster wrote:That

harleysportster wrote:
That cartoon states, that the fact that an Atheist would spend so much time arguing our worldview would speak volumes to her ? I would say, the fact that Harris wants to silence everyone that doesn't share her worldview, speaks volumes to me about her absolutist way of dictating to people who should talk and who should not. It also says that Harris believes in trying to condemn all of those that do not think just like her, if you ask my opinion.

Uhm...I think you profoundly misunderstood the cartoon ^^ The right part is the argument, and left part is the answer. A somehow similar idea is

However, you don't really need religion for terrorism. Anyone remember the Oklahoma city bomber?

 

 

harleysportster wrote:
I have not gotten enough room to answer that here. Suffice to say, there are way too many reasons to even begin counting.

Name eight Eye-wink But general points please.

 

harleysportster wrote:
There are not any Atheist groups that are knocking on your front door and trying to preach  the Atheist gospel to believers. Unlike the religious.

Well, that's their own fault. Imagine the next Political Candidate telling himself and his supporters "Door knocking? Oh no, we don't want to annoy the people." And then he moans about how nobody votes for him despite putting much more "effort" in being polite and non-evangelical. My ill-tempered answer to such a candidate would be "What?! you can't get your ass in gear and even try to sell this as a pro-argument for you? I'm a free citizen, I can think for myself, and I see that you avoid getting in talk with self-thinking people. Man, what do you think are the conclusions I will draw from that?"

Steve Edwards gave insight into his experiences with door knocking ( http://silkcityindependent.blogspot.com/2009/09/knocking-down-doors.html ). Here's one excerpt:

"So if your house has one or more people who ALWAYS vote, you knock on that door, no matter what. And it is interesting. When running as an Republican, I've met Democrat's who wouldn't think of voting for the Democrats. I've met Democrats who ran me off their property and told me I should be ashamed of myself for being an Republican. It runs the gambit. Same with Republicans... I've had them tell me I have their vote... and I've had them tell me they would NEVER vote for a Republican again... For those that haven't done it, knocking on doors is almost always fun in that something new will happen every year. I've met crazy people, people who want to know my views on abortion when I'm running for the [Board of Education], people who want me to privatize the whole thing... and the stories are incredible some times. Anyway, unless you've done it, you can't really appreciate how odd the whole experience can be. But mostly you meet nice people. And the largest subgroup I've met are folks who say something like, "Well, you knocked on my door, so I'll vote for you." One on one works."

Also, one should have a look at some basic rules ( http://www.campaignpros.com/adspice/door-knocking-checklist-what-every-political-candidate-should-bring ) like the following:

"This may sound like a no-brainer, but make no mistake, you will be asked questions when the door opens. The two most common questions will be “What are your ideas and plans?” and “What qualifies you for this position?”.  These two questions might be wrapped up in the more broad question, “Why should I vote for you?”. You MUST be able to answer these questions.  Simply put, if you can’t tell a voter why she should vote for you, don’t bother adding your name to the ballot. Be prepared to share your platform (three issues you stand on) and qualifications (short resume of qualifications).  You can also talk about the neighborhood and history of the city or district.  You not only have to be qualified, you have to be personable and available."

 

Now any reasoning which amounts to nothing more than "My position? My position is that you don't vote for the other guy! He's insane and evil!" is not exactly impressive, let alone convincing. If atheists ever thought about knocking doors, many of them would have to ask themselves for the first time what other arguments they have. They couldn't retreat to "You're dumb, I'm smart!" or "Show me your colors now!" or "I'm a victim, have sympathy!" or any else of these maneuvers, which are far from being rare. They'd have to think about contents instead of slogans, about confidence instead of arrogance, about debating instead of fighting, about listening instead of preaching. Maybe *that's* the reason why they aren't doing it?

In the series West Wing, Presidential Candidate Santos said "Senator Vinick is very quick to attack my plans, but the Presidency is about more than just saying no, no, no. You have to say yes to something. You have to do something." I'd vote for him.


harleysportster
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Misread on my part about Atheist Eve

It appears that I did misread that completely. I clicked on the link and checked out her website. If I had sat there and truly studied that a minute I would have gotten it. It appears that I have stuck my virtual foot into virtual mouth. Totally mistaken and totally misread on my part, thank you for clearing that up. Give me the moron of the day award.

 

I was being sarcastic about the door knocking remark. But you make some good points. If I personally were to  enter into a debate, I would not do so with the notion of I am right and everyone else is wrong. That, like you have already pointed out, would be an ignorant stance. After all, if my beliefs were not continually challenged and if I only spoke to people of like minded opinion, how could I ever be assured that I was correct ?

 

8 Reasons why I don't like religion ? I am on my way out the door to work right this second, but I'll get back to you with an answer.

 

 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


Athene
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*gg* No need to be that

*gg* No need to be that harsh to yourself Eye-wink Tracie Harris publishes only once a month, but she has done so since October 2004, so there are 72 cartoons by now. I'm sure you will find her work quite entertaining.

 

I agree with you that only by keeping convictions falsifiable, one can rightly assume that one has taken best measures to ensure their correctness. Good attitude Smiling

 

Please take your time. I don't doubt that you will easily find more than eight reasons, but I'd like to hear the eight reasons that you consider to be the most important and well-thought-out ones to you. Also, I'd appreciate if you write at the beginning of that post what definition of "religion" you use. Thanks in advance for the upcoming input Eye-wink


harleysportster
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Thanks for understanding

Thanks for the understanding. Will definitely need a little time to actually think about forthcoming answers and how I would like to word them.

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


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I bother for the same reason

I bother for the same reason that I don't steal or kill... because I know the difference between right and wrong, and I feel that its important to stand up against those who would do harm to others.....