Atheismolus......a new religion???

latincanuck
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Atheismolus......a new religion???

Thru tweeter and later other feeds I ended up reading about the "new" atheism, http://freethoughtblogs.com/carrier/archives/2207/ , it seems to me to be more on the religious side than anything else. It has a you are with us or against us mentality. How to behave, they have rules, it just seems more douchbaggery than anything else, especially how Richard Carrier conducts himself already in the responses. The whole compassion part just reads like many theistic views, the whole ostracizing of others, again very much of a cult/religious things. Forget about the whole part in personal integrity about sin and hypocrisy. It just so cultist to me....than and I never thought that I had to be told how to be have from other people that don't believe in god, I never thought that atheism was A) a culture, b) a way of life.....to me and many of my black, white, female, male, gay, straight and others atheists I know it has always been just a disbelief in god, anything beyond that was a philosophy be it anarchy, marxist, socialist, pacifist etc, etc, etc.

Any thoughts?


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Oh please Richard Carrier,

Oh please Richard Carrier, tell me more about my morals and values.

 

 

 


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We have never ceased to be

We have never ceased to be the same species, claiming the label "atheist" does not change that. Trying to take a word like "atheist" which is not a dogma, philosophy, or much less a religion, and turn it into a set of rules, is a bad idea.

Our civility as a species is better centered around common law, not common likes or dislikes, and to accept that, it would also go within the same label. Sharing a label is not a litmus test, ultimately we are still individuals.

In our strive to rise into the accepted mainstream I do not think we need to, nor should, become clones of each other. All the motifs of pluralism, compassion, and cooperation, are and always have been, an evolutionary trait not an invention of a label. Our species has always been capable of both good and bad, and we have never been above nature no matter what label we hold. "Atheist" can only be treated as a position on one claim, that of the off position when it comes to any claim of any god.

An atheist is just as capable of committing crime. Murry Ohair' killer was an atheist. Claiming that label did not prevent him from doing what has been an unfortunate reality throughout our species history.

Ultimately outside our politics, nationalities, and personal beliefs or lack of, we are humans first. Our evolutionary tendency to form groups will always happen, but being in different groups will never change the fact that we still are the same species. We will always look for companionship. We will always feel threatened when our rivals challenge us. We will always seek resources and power. We will always seek some sort of security, which comes mainly within evolutionary safety in numbers.

I do not want to see "atheist" be treated in the same dogmatic manor as politics or religion. I will side politically with a theist first depending on issue, before I would side with an atheist I don't agree with on that same issue. Outside labels and while having this much needed debate about claims of gods and their global impact, we should not become a "club" in any other context other than we only agree that we lack belief. We are still outside that single core common ground, are just as diverse in our politics, races, nationalities, and economic backgrounds.

We dpn't need to refrain from having our own clubs as atheists, clubs will always happen. But we should still in being a collective, always keep the focus, that we are still individuals and that above all, is all any human can be.

We don't have to write down rules or laws to know harming others is bad, humans have always been able to figure that out. We don't have to write down rules or laws to know we can be compassionate and charitable. Nor will doing that automatically make an individual moral, any more than the bible or Koran has.

Our species evolution was never dependent on a label being the sole inventor of morality. Evolution was around before our species and will continue when we go extinct. If we are to convey the idea that a god is not needed to live life, then writing down absolutes like a god would, is counter productive. Our common human condition has always been independent of label.

Hitchens rightfully challenged believers with "Name me one good thing said, or one good deed done, a believer could do an atheist could not do". He is right, but not because their is no god, but because our species has never been above nature, and that includes those who do not believe as well".

We do need the label "atheist" only in the context that is the description of our position. But that is all it can be because humans are still ultimately individuals.

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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While it has a few laudable

While it has a few laudable goals, it is clearly a sexist group favouring women.

"Atheists plus we care about social justice,
Atheists plus we support women’s rights,
Atheists plus we protest racism,
Atheists plus we fight homophobia and transphobia,
Atheists plus we use critical thinking and skepticism."

Like men have no rights. And what about children?
I give 0 support to this group.

Feminazi's, have fun in your little corner where everyone ignores you. I've had quite enough of the sexism lately, on all sides.

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Any -ism that tells you how

Any -ism that tells you how to feel about any topic, prior to investigating it, is a religion. 

I treat this with the same skepticism as Christianity. 

 

"Don't seek these laws to understand. Only the mad can comprehend..." -- George Cosbuc


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Ktulu wrote:Any -ism that

Ktulu wrote:

Any -ism that tells you how to feel about any topic, prior to investigating it, is a religion. 

I treat this with the same skepticism as Christianity. 

 

I am in full agreement with you and everyone else on this issue.

Shit. I have a hard enough time defending " You Atheists believe something came from nothing--" bullshit from all the religious nutbags. The LAST thing that Atheism needs, is some self-proclaimed dogmatic group speaking on behalf of ALL Atheists.

I don't like the sound of this one bit.

“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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harleysportster wrote:Ktulu

harleysportster wrote:

Ktulu wrote:

Any -ism that tells you how to feel about any topic, prior to investigating it, is a religion. 

I treat this with the same skepticism as Christianity. 

 

I am in full agreement with you and everyone else on this issue.

Shit. I have a hard enough time defending " You Atheists believe something came from nothing--" bullshit from all the religious nutbags. The LAST thing that Atheism needs, is some self-proclaimed dogmatic group speaking on behalf of ALL Atheists.

I don't like the sound of this one bit.

Agreed. I think even outside our label, in free societies we see governments that value the individual and protect dissent.

There is no litmus test to be an atheist, you are or you are not.

I also value our eternal beefs  such as those I have with Beyond and others, but not just economics, but also the battles I've had with PC atheists. I can have those same battles with economic theists and PC theists. So by opening society up to our own diversity we allow them to see that we are no different.

I think it is a bad idea to mimic a political party or religion. I think whatever goals we might agree on don't have to nor should involve loyalty oaths or litmus tests.

Again I will side with a theist depending on the individual topic if I agree with them on that issue before I would simply side with an atheist merely because they are an atheist. Humans as individuals are much more complex than one word labels.

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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I brought this up because of

I brought this up because of how the whole thing just sounds so cultish/religious in it's context, I mean there were people merely pointing out about compassion part and they were automatically a douchbag and not worthy of being part of atheism +, i mean it's comes off so arrogant and childish at the same time how carrier was presenting himself. that if  you don't 100 percent agree you are not worthy are are some how less of an atheist per se. I don't need an atheist group to tell me how to behave.


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Vastet wrote:While it has a

Vastet wrote:
While it has a few laudable goals, it is clearly a sexist group favouring women. "Atheists plus we care about social justice, Atheists plus we support women’s rights, Atheists plus we protest racism, Atheists plus we fight homophobia and transphobia, Atheists plus we use critical thinking and skepticism." Like men have no rights. And what about children? I give 0 support to this group. Feminazi's, have fun in your little corner where everyone ignores you. I've had quite enough of the sexism lately, on all sides.

A little miffed at what you are attacking here. I agree having a "mission statement" as if atheism invented evolution and has a monopoly on morality, is absurd.

But what does "feminism" mean to you? I do think women have the right to determine what they wear, whom they have sex with and should have equal pay. But if some woman thinks they have the right to tell another woman to cover up, or not be a porn star or stripper,  then no.

That is not an atheist issue, or even a sex issue in reality. Some humans simply are not happy unless they project themselves on others. I have a co worker who loves Obama and agrees with me with health care, but when I talk about porn or strip clubs she says "why should we allow them"? And I constantly tell her the same thing I would tell someone who doesn't like abortion, if you dont like porno then dont watch it, if you don't want to be a porn star then dont, if you don't want to be a stripper, no one is forcing you to. But she has no right to tell me not to look at naked women ESPECIALLY if those women are NOT being forced to do it and enjoy it.

Not really reading into your post as much as I am asking for clarification.

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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Brian37
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latincanuck wrote:I brought

latincanuck wrote:

I brought this up because of how the whole thing just sounds so cultish/religious in it's context, I mean there were people merely pointing out about compassion part and they were automatically a douchbag and not worthy of being part of atheism +, i mean it's comes off so arrogant and childish at the same time how carrier was presenting himself. that if  you don't 100 percent agree you are not worthy are are some how less of an atheist per se. I don't need an atheist group to tell me how to behave.

I agree we don't. But not to condone this list of rules, but I think the intent is to say "lead by example", but no label needs rules to do that. When you do good people notice, when you do bad people notice.

But lets not scrap the reality that even atheists hang out with like minded people, otherwise why would this website even exist? It is unavoidable in evolution that we group up to some degree. I think the trick in doing it is priorities. I think you can have an idea or a goal without subjecting that to insisting on the blind loyalty of others.

That could not be the case, even with the founders of America considering the First Amendment and the requirements of the oath of office in "no religious test". If the founders rejected the idea of blind loyalty then atheists should not ascribe to loyalty rules either. It is as absurd as the Republican Regan litmus  test subjected to today's republicans  that Regan himself would have failed. Much like if both left and right Christians knew of the blasphemy of God Jefferson wrote about, and even said atheists were capable of morality, most people would not vote for him if he ran today.

We dont need lists or oaths, but we are still no matter our labels judged by our actions. The only oath I can see worthy of is that of protecting others even when I disagree up and until physical harm is advocated or done to anyone of any position. I owe humanity one thing, civility, I do not owe even my fellow atheists agreement.

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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Apparently it's Atheist+

Apparently it's Atheist+ now

http://freethoughtblogs.com/greta/2012/08/21/why-atheism-plus-is-good-for-atheism/

Like google+ where nobody joins?


Vastet
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@ Brian. There are, to my

@ Brian.

There are, to my knowledge, two types of feminists.

There are equality seekers, who desire as much equality between genders as possible. I fully support them.

Then there are feminazi's, who desire to subjugate the male gender, and who are literally just as bad as male chauvinist pigs. They can all die in a fire.

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So I guess it's like a

So I guess it's like a movement for people who aren't assholes, except you can't join if you happen to be religious in any way, even if you aren't an asshole and support all the equality and whatnot. I'm not sure why it has to be tied to atheism at all.

I guess I can kinda understand the motivation for it though. I mostly hang around this forum not to debate religion, that became kinda boring to me a while ago since the opposition is so ludicrous. I'm here because I want to discuss other important things with people who I know possess at least enough intelligence to figure out fairy tales aren't real so I don't have to rifle through absolutely idiotic bullshit like "well teh bible sayz" when discussing ethics etc.

If this didn't make any sense I blame beer.


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Vastet wrote:@ Brian. There

Vastet wrote:
@ Brian. There are, to my knowledge, two types of feminists. There are equality seekers, who desire as much equality between genders as possible. I fully support them. Then there are feminazi's, who desire to subjugate the male gender, and who are literally just as bad as male chauvinist pigs. They can all die in a fire.

Ok, just had to clarify. I think I got you.

There are women who accept individual rights and the "feminists" who think their job is to look pretty and pop out babies and dress in burkas.

A long time ago, I ran into an old couple and for the life of me I don't remember how the conversation got onto gender roles but the old woman claimed that it was the man's role to take care of the woman. I looked at her saying to myself "how convenient". To me that is no different than a boss at work equating pay inequality as meaning those at the bottom are mere tools.

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@brian its not so much the

@brian its not so much the actual rules but how they are going about it, and really how it came about in a sense for me, I didn't believe and I still don't believe that atheism is a culture movement. If you read through the blogs on FTB, it comes about more due to sexism and racism that is perceived to be in the atheist community. In one of the "founders" of atheism+ it is more or less described that she got into the boys club, that atheism is made up of middle age white men. Then of course it is the context in which no one is allowed to disagree, or at least that is how carrier is presenting himself. That when you disagree you are not really an atheist, you are somehow less of one.

I get that most people, because we are social creatures, tend to come together under common goals, but this whole thing just reeks of cultish behavior. that fact is being an atheist is merely not believe in any god or deities. Period, nothing else is required, I do not need to follow a specific set of rules or morals per se to be an atheist.

I agree with you on the whole label part, and well most of what you have stated so far.

 


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Sadly, I can confirm that

Sadly, I can confirm that yes this is rather disturbingly a cult-ish kind of ideologically-driven purge of the so-called 'atheist community' (which I have tried to be very consistent to always put scare quotes around -- though probably forgot on more than one occasion, honestly).

That Carrier has dug-in and doubled-down is exceptionally disturbing, but there may be hope for him yet. We'll see.

I *had* to come check the recent posts here to see how you guys have 'responded', and I'm very stoked to see that it was 'rationally'. (Sorry to have 'doubted' you, but hey, doubt's a good thing, right? And anyway, there are lots of people who've gone 'full retard' in this situation who I never would have expected to do so, so I just had to check in on you guys (hey guys! ) to see how deep this shit goes.)

I hope you guys don't just watch this from a distance. I hope some of you get involved. It's been going on far too long, and -- as we all know -- irrational shit does not go away on its own. It needs to be responded to. I don't necessarily advocate full-on ridicule in this instance, however, as most of these folks are already well-versed in that style of argument and will just throw it back at you and then post some incendiary accusations against you on a popular blog, start spreading rumours about you, etc. (This is hauntingly familiar to what happened to RRS and the rumours spread around about it. Same tactics, same MO.)

Instead of full-on old-style ridicule and mockery (not against it generally, just don't think it's the right tool for this particular job), I have seriously been honing my techniques in just straight-up 'not taking your bait, thanks' point-by-point rebuttal and exposure of hypocrisy, backed by relentless Socratic questioning, a la Reggie Finley.

Guys, if you take the idea of 'rational response' seriously, and you haven't already seen this blog comment thread, please read at least this thread: http://freethoughtblogs.com/greta/2012/06/17/update-clarification-correction-on-holy-fucking-shit/

There is a shitload of backstory to it, but I think that thread distills enough of it that you don't have to read for weeks to get caught up.

I intentionally responded in the comments pre-meditatively using these techniques I've been working on. I knew exactly how the conversation was going to go (more or less; obviously not the specific details). I *definitely* knew exactly how I would respond. (I can back up that claim, too, by referencing an almost identical conversation I had on the Gnu Atheism group I've been hosting on Facebook. Which any of you are absolutely welcome to join, link is in my signature; it's only private to allow for some privacy, there's nothing 'exclusive' about it.)

My first comment in that thread is #11, but please read from the top down to see how the atmosphere was developing before I posted my comment. (Some context at least is important.)  My last comment is #83. Please please please read at least up to there, no tl;dr excuses please. If you don't care, fine, don't read it, but if you do have an inkling of caring about this, but are feeling some apathy or complacency, don't let that stop you from checking this out. It is crazy fucking shit, and it gets worse and worse the deeper you dig. You won't be disappointed, if you care at all about finding and confronting irrationality in all its forms.

Now, if you've read that 'update on holy fucking shit' thread, and you're thinking, where the fuck did this come from?, please carefully read this *other* post I wrote nearly a year ago: http://www.rationalresponders.com/still_unapologetic

This is not something new. This has been brewing for a long long time. It is interconnected with a lot of different things that RRS is about (at least, in my opinion). I called it back then, I'm calling it again now. This is an important challenge we have to face if we are going to bother to face any challenges at all. This is something we are going to have to deal with.

And, I think we already have the tools to do it. The techniques I talked about just now above, and in that 'still unapologetic' article a year ago are not *new* techniques. They are things I learned how to do *here* at the RRS to a very large extent. Dealing with full-on trolls like Jean Chauvin or Mr_Guy_With_Underscores_In_His_Sockpuppet_Usernames without losing your cool is like winning a gold medal at Olympic Rational Relay compared to standing up to this kind of blatant cyber-bullying stuff going on by self-proclaimed 'skeptics' and 'humanists'. This is not only an important challenge, but it's one that you and I are supremely equipped to deal with. The RRS is one of the best examples online of sticking to rational principles over the long term, and dogma like this is no different than religious dogma. It's all the same. The same arguments work against it. The same strategies of asking for evidence of claims, of not letting the troll get to you, of pointing out hypocrisy, of admitting our own fallibility while pointing out that *no one* is exempt from this limitation. It works, guys. That is my main message to you right now. This is a challenge we can face and win hands down. It will take some time, but it can be done, and -- in my opinion -- it will be totally worth it.

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Atheistextremist
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Agree

 

with the rest of you. I can faintly see the attraction of atheists being more organised and vocal about issues, especially in response to religious nutbaggery. I say this given there are so many of us yet we are politically vilified and ignored. I think in Australia we are at 24 per cent non believers and growing faster than any religious group year on year - in other countries I know it's higher still. In any case, 25 per cent of the population arguably trying to think rationally is a real power block. 

But creating in and out groups of atheism just confirms the dumb-ness of the human brain. Furthermore, after a couple of years on the site talking to believers I'd go so far as to say I think there are some people who need their god thing and they should be allowed to have their god thing - we should simply dissuade them from having a murder-god thing.

Some of the loopiest individuals on the site are some of the most interesting. Global conformity to pinko left wing scientism would be desperately tedious and would spell the death of the fun. There's nothing worse on RRS than those quiet weeks when the christians are on some sort or lent fast or other and we are forced to post images of fossils for our heavy-lidded delectation.

 

Truth - super cool but ever-so-tedious...

 

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120827180021.htm

 

Personally, I expected more of Carrier. He's arrogant, I grant you, but I never thought he was becoming the establishment...

 

 

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


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Very well put, Wonderist

 

Wonderist wrote:

The same arguments work against it. The same strategies of asking for evidence of claims, of not letting the troll get to you, of pointing out hypocrisy, of admitting our own fallibility while pointing out that *no one* is exempt from this limitation. It works, guys. That is my main message to you right now. This is a challenge we can face and win hands down. It will take some time, but it can be done, and -- in my opinion -- it will be totally worth it.

 

Honest and open fallibilism is the only 'ism' I have any respect for.  I think a lot of us here are epistemologically, fallibilists. 

 

http://www.iep.utm.edu/fallibil/

 

 

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


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Nice to hear from you

Nice to hear from you Natural!
I know, you're Wonderist now, but you were Natural for so long it's stuck in my head. lol

Edit
I'm going to read it all (damn you!), but I don't know how involved I can get. No offense to anyone who has invested themselves in the situation, but the whole thing comes off as highschool level drama to me. When someone says they thought they were in danger just because they were asked out and then 5 minutes later battle lines are drawn up for a civil war, I tend to sit back and watch. Safer that way.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.