Thoughts on the state of "atheist vs. theist"

sugarfree
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Thoughts on the state of "atheist vs. theist"

This is troubling me, and I think it is why I keep coming back here.  I am a Christian, therefore, my arguments come from that Christian worldview.  Oftentimes I have simply reiterated a Christian point, and then, to my surprise several people attack what I have said, called me a liar, arrogant, rude, prideful, etc.  And I’m left wondering, what on earth did I say that incited so much anger?  Truth is, I am a caring person who wants to improve and make a positive impact on the world.  I love animals, I respect the earth, I think we need to take better care of it.  If I’ve harmed someone, I want to make amends, etc.  So, I honestly do not understand where your anger comes from.  Is it simply because I don't agree with you?

Taking my Christianity out of the equation, I am a person, I have opinions, I feel strongly about my opinions because they have been formed from decades of searching, thinking, turning things over in my mind.  I am no different than you, in that respect.  It just so happens that you came to different conclusions than me.  But, I can tell, you feel equally strongly about your beliefs and feel I would be better off if I were atheist.  You know that I feel you would have a richer experience in this life if you believed in God, not necessarily even the Christian God.  So, tho our opinions are different, the way we are approach each other is really not so different.  In light of that, what I do not understand is why we cannot converse like adults, hear each other’s view points, accept that we are both attempting to influence the other side with those view points, and let go of all the meanness and personal put downs?

I don’t know who here is American, but what I see happening in this country and throughout the world is deeply troubling.  There is a divide growing between the secular and religious communities, and the two need to come back to the center and start communicating better in order to make some honest compromises.  We have to live in this world together.  You are never going to eradicate the worship of God, I am never going to get everyone to see the need to worship God.  Most likely, you are not going to deconvert me, nor am I going to convert you.  So, can we, instead start listening, and refrain from judging others ideas as stupid, baseless, juvenile?

Also, I do not feel the “delusional” label you have placed on theists is going to get us anywhere positive.  I can just as easily call you delusional.  The fact is, you are not in my brain, I am not in yours.  You have not had my experiences, I have not had yours.  So, you can no more honestly judge me delusional than I can judge you.


Vastet
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sugarfree wrote: This is

sugarfree wrote:
This is troubling me, and I think it is why I keep coming back here. I am a Christian, therefore, my arguments come from that Christian worldview. Oftentimes I have simply reiterated a Christian point, and then, to my surprise several people attack what I have said, called me a liar, arrogant, rude, prideful, etc.

Maybe because it's true?

sugarfree wrote:
And I’m left wondering, what on earth did I say that incited so much anger?

Maybe calling a bird a bird has nothing to do with emotion, but simple logical and physical fact?

sugarfree wrote:
Truth is, I am a caring person who wants to improve and make a positive impact on the world.

Good for you. You're going about it the wrong way.

sugarfree wrote:
I love animals, I respect the earth, I think we need to take better care of it. If I’ve harmed someone, I want to make amends, etc. So, I honestly do not understand where your anger comes from. Is it simply because I don't agree with you?

Why are you seeing anger in simple statements of fact? Can you not accept reality as it is? Must you project that emotion on to everyone who tells you the way things actually are?

sugarfree wrote:
Taking my Christianity out of the equation, I am a person, I have opinions, I feel strongly about my opinions because they have been formed from decades of searching, thinking, turning things over in my mind. I am no different than you, in that respect.

There is a difference between making something up and watching something happen. That is the basic fundamental difference between us.

sugarfree wrote:
It just so happens that you came to different conclusions than me.

You often don't use factual evidence to base your conclusions on in the first place.

sugarfree wrote:
But, I can tell, you feel equally strongly about your beliefs and feel I would be better off if I were atheist.

As long as you're willing to go around preaching about your invisible friend, I actually feel everyone else would be better off if you were an atheist. Maybe you would too, maybe not.

sugarfree wrote:
You know that I feel you would have a richer experience in this life if you believed in God, not necessarily even the Christian God. So, tho our opinions are different, the way we are approach each other is really not so different.

Why should we believe in something that is contrary to everything that we can percieve? How could that possibly contribute anything? It's nonsensical. That kind of attitude would lead to a return of the dark ages. We might as well throw science in the trash can. Reinvent fire every generation(or 2 if the odd one doesn't figure it out on their own).

sugarfree wrote:
In light of that, what I do not understand is why we cannot converse like adults, hear each other’s view points, accept that we are both attempting to influence the other side with those view points, and let go of all the meanness and personal put downs?

We aren't generally discussing opinions when talking to you. We're discussing facts, that you tend to discard/ignore/deflect/dodge/etc. This is a strawman fallacy. And projection.

sugarfree wrote:

I don’t know who here is American, but what I see happening in this country and throughout the world is deeply troubling. There is a divide growing between the secular and religious communities, and the two need to come back to the center and start communicating better in order to make some honest compromises.

Preaching to the choir amusingly enough. It's the theists driving the wedge. That's what started atheists speaking up in the first place. Go tell them that. If they don't make a problem, then there's no problem. But they constantly make problems. So there's a huge problem.

sugarfree wrote:
We have to live in this world together.

For now. Maybe when we get the necessary technology we should abandon all the theists on Earth and move out into space, taking the science theists discard with us. Let them destroy each other. That's of course only if theism doesn't die on it's own, which is something I consider likely to happen within the next hundred and fifty years.

sugarfree wrote:
You are never going to eradicate the worship of God, I am never going to get everyone to see the need to worship God.

Erradication is not the goal, or the RRS would be arming and moving out. But theism will die, mark my words.

sugarfree wrote:
Most likely, you are not going to deconvert me

It's looking like it. I don't like giving up on people who chain their minds however. It can cause too much collateral damage.

sugarfree wrote:
nor am I going to convert you.

You've proved yourself incapable of doing so.

sugarfree wrote:
So, can we, instead start listening, and refrain from judging others ideas as stupid, baseless, juvenile?

Any time you want to show your belief isn't stupid, baseless, or juvenile, you're welcome to do so. You haven't yet. Not by a long shot.

sugarfree wrote:
Also, I do not feel the “delusional” label you have placed on theists is going to get us anywhere positive. I can just as easily call you delusional.

Difference is that you are delusional, and you're lying when you call us delusional.

sugarfree wrote:
The fact is, you are not in my brain, I am not in yours.

I don't need to be in your brain.

sugarfree wrote:
You have not had my experiences, I have not had yours. So, you can no more honestly judge me delusional than I can judge you.

I can and will. Much like I'd call a 40 year old who said he saw a flying meatball with noodles on new years last year delusional. Believing in invisible friends is delusional.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


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Another pridefull rant, and

Another pridefull rant, and you can't even see it sugarfree.


sugarfree
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Vastet wrote: sugarfree

Vastet wrote:
sugarfree wrote:
This is troubling me, and I think it is why I keep coming back here. I am a Christian, therefore, my arguments come from that Christian worldview. Oftentimes I have simply reiterated a Christian point, and then, to my surprise several people attack what I have said, called me a liar, arrogant, rude, prideful, etc.
Maybe because it's true?
sugarfree wrote:
And I’m left wondering, what on earth did I say that incited so much anger?
Maybe calling a bird a bird has nothing to do with emotion, but simple logical and physical fact?
sugarfree wrote:
Truth is, I am a caring person who wants to improve and make a positive impact on the world.
Good for you. You're going about it the wrong way.
sugarfree wrote:
I love animals, I respect the earth, I think we need to take better care of it. If I’ve harmed someone, I want to make amends, etc. So, I honestly do not understand where your anger comes from. Is it simply because I don't agree with you?
Why are you seeing anger in simple statements of fact? Can you not accept reality as it is? Must you project that emotion on to everyone who tells you the way things actually are?
sugarfree wrote:
Taking my Christianity out of the equation, I am a person, I have opinions, I feel strongly about my opinions because they have been formed from decades of searching, thinking, turning things over in my mind. I am no different than you, in that respect.
There is a difference between making something up and watching something happen. That is the basic fundamental difference between us.
sugarfree wrote:
It just so happens that you came to different conclusions than me.
You often don't use factual evidence to base your conclusions on in the first place.
sugarfree wrote:
But, I can tell, you feel equally strongly about your beliefs and feel I would be better off if I were atheist.
As long as you're willing to go around preaching about your invisible friend, I actually feel everyone else would be better off if you were an atheist. Maybe you would too, maybe not.
sugarfree wrote:
You know that I feel you would have a richer experience in this life if you believed in God, not necessarily even the Christian God. So, tho our opinions are different, the way we are approach each other is really not so different.
Why should we believe in something that is contrary to everything that we can percieve? How could that possibly contribute anything? It's nonsensical. That kind of attitude would lead to a return of the dark ages. We might as well throw science in the trash can. Reinvent fire every generation(or 2 if the odd one doesn't figure it out on their own).
sugarfree wrote:
In light of that, what I do not understand is why we cannot converse like adults, hear each other’s view points, accept that we are both attempting to influence the other side with those view points, and let go of all the meanness and personal put downs?
We aren't generally discussing opinions when talking to you. We're discussing facts, that you tend to discard/ignore/deflect/dodge/etc. This is a strawman fallacy. And projection.
sugarfree wrote:
I don’t know who here is American, but what I see happening in this country and throughout the world is deeply troubling. There is a divide growing between the secular and religious communities, and the two need to come back to the center and start communicating better in order to make some honest compromises.
Preaching to the choir amusingly enough. It's the theists driving the wedge. That's what started atheists speaking up in the first place. Go tell them that. If they don't make a problem, then there's no problem. But they constantly make problems. So there's a huge problem.
sugarfree wrote:
We have to live in this world together.
For now. Maybe when we get the necessary technology we should abandon all the theists on Earth and move out into space, taking the science theists discard with us. Let them destroy each other. That's of course only if theism doesn't die on it's own, which is something I consider likely to happen within the next hundred and fifty years.
sugarfree wrote:
You are never going to eradicate the worship of God, I am never going to get everyone to see the need to worship God.
Erradication is not the goal, or the RRS would be arming and moving out. But theism will die, mark my words.
sugarfree wrote:
Most likely, you are not going to deconvert me
It's looking like it. I don't like giving up on people who chain their minds however. It can cause too much collateral damage.
sugarfree wrote:
nor am I going to convert you.
You've proved yourself incapable of doing so.
sugarfree wrote:
So, can we, instead start listening, and refrain from judging others ideas as stupid, baseless, juvenile?
Any time you want to show your belief isn't stupid, baseless, or juvenile, you're welcome to do so. You haven't yet. Not by a long shot.
sugarfree wrote:
Also, I do not feel the “delusional” label you have placed on theists is going to get us anywhere positive. I can just as easily call you delusional.
Difference is that you are delusional, and you're lying when you call us delusional.
sugarfree wrote:
The fact is, you are not in my brain, I am not in yours.
I don't need to be in your brain.
sugarfree wrote:
You have not had my experiences, I have not had yours. So, you can no more honestly judge me delusional than I can judge you.
I can and will. Much like I'd call a 40 year old who said he saw a flying meatball with noodles on new years last year delusional. Believing in invisible friends is delusional.
You have just brilliantly illustrated the points in my post.  How is this type of attack going to lead to anything positive between us?  I would like to have a positive relationship with you despite our difference, but should I conclude that you do not want that from me, simply because of the opinions I hold?  Frankly, I don't see how that is "evolving".  It's backwards evolution in my point...like returning to the attitudes that brought about slavery in the U.S.  (i.e., your not fully human because you are not like me).


sugarfree
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BGH wrote: Another

BGH wrote:
Another pridefull rant, and you can't even see it sugarfree.
BGH, I am holding out my hand to you.  Why can't we come to some kind of mutual respect despite our differences.  You don't agree with me.  I'm okay with that.  How, please, how on earth did you read that post as prideful?  Is it simply because I have theist under my name?


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I do not mind having

I do not mind having friendly discussions with theists, however in my experience, it tends to go nowhere.  I like to be open minded, but not so much my brain falls out of my head.  Some theists I know have their brain dragging behind them on the floor. 

Where a lot of theists go wrong is that they try fight facts with fiction.  The whole point of faith is that it can NOT be proven.  Sure, they can state as many personal experiences as they want, but that means NOTHING.  Sure, I've had a lot of weird experiences in my day that I could have contributed to god, or some other unseen force.  However, I won't lie to myself for something I can not prove.  

JESUS SAVES!!! .... and takes only half damage!


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sugarfree wrote: You have

sugarfree wrote:
You have just brilliantly illustrated the points in my post.  How is this type of attack going to lead to anything positive between us?

You have just brilliantly proved the points in my post. How is ignoring fact and dodging reality going to lead to anything positive between us?

sugarfree wrote:
  I would like to have a positive relationship with you despite our difference, but should I conclude that you do not want that from me, simply because of the opinions I hold?

I don't mind having relationships with theists, as long as they keep their fiction to themselves. When you start preaching it, you can expect a tonne of ridicule in response. If you don't like it, then don't preach in the first place. Being a hypocrite isn't going to get you anywhere.

sugarfree wrote:
  Frankly, I don't see how that is "evolving".  It's backwards evolution in my point...like returning to the attitudes that brought about slavery in the U.S.  (i.e., your not fully human because you are not like me).

I never suggested you were less human than I was. Nor did I suggest you are incapable of seeing how your mind is in chains and breaking free. That's really up to you. In the mean time, don't go spreading a belief you can't defend.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


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Here is my two cents (and

Here is my two cents (and you are getting what you pay for):

 

You feel that you are being personally attacked and have accused several of us of being mean.  Give us and yourself some credit!  No one has accused you of trolling, which means your posts are being read and considered.  What we are doing is challenging you.  We are challenging your ideas and your beliefs in an effort to force you to substantiate them.  So far you have failed to do that other than to offer personal "feel-good" accounts of your beliefs.  Yes, we will continue to push and probe until you produce an answer that satisfies logic and reason.   

Your statements come across as prideful, self-righteous and insulting because you see yourself as belonging to the "right" group and us as belonging to the "wrong" group.  You have stated that you see the world/science/life through a different lens than us implying that your view is somehow better and you do not need to accept facts to clarify it.  Personally, I feel you are doing yourself an injustice by continuing this practice.  Your willful unacceptance of facts is unacceptable to us. 

 


zarathustra
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sugar, you didn't I was

sugar, you didn't I was going to let this slide, did you?

sugarfree wrote:
I am a Christian, therefore, my arguments come from that Christian worldview. Oftentimes I have simply reiterated a Christian point...

That's the problem right there. You are presupposing god/jesus/etc. exist, and give your arguments to conform to that presupposition. More than once, when presented with a challenge to your belief, rather than advancing the discussion with a well-reasoned response, you simply say "I love jesus" or "Why are you so angry", and dodge the issue entirely.

sugarfree wrote:
..., and then, to my surprise several people attack what I have said, called me a liar, arrogant, rude, prideful, etc. And I’m left wondering, what on earth did I say that incited so much anger?

You weren't listening. As an example, I put it to you that there is no evidence for a historical jesus. You responded with what you found by a "quick google search", and when that was shown inadequate, you took to avoiding the issue altogether.

  • arrogant (Sat, 2007-03-17 12:51): "Don't even get me started on Scientology, and if I say what I really feel about Mormonism and Islam, you'll probably say I'm dumb in a smarter sounding way."

Repeatedly, you give generalized arguments to support christianity (it's rapid spread, it's centuries old tradition), yet when it's pointed out that such arguments can be made just as easily in support of other religions, you dismiss them with statements such as this. You argument from this appears to be "christianity is true because I believe in it".

  • rude (Tue, 2007-03-20 17:38): "And exactly HOW MANY hare krishna's have I EVER met in my life?? Hmmm....let's see. Well, there were those bald guys in orange robes I saw when I was in Washington D.C. one time..... Something tells me the Krishna message isn't as relavant to people's current lives as Jesus's message is."

You object to anything less than fawning reverence for your religion, yet you are not beyond juvenile remarks about other religions.

You related your experience at an easter service, essentially boasting to us about how hard you cried when you thought about jesus. The undertone was that non-christians were not capable of the same depth of emotion as you.

There are no theists on operating tables.

πππ†
π†††


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sugarfree wrote: This is

sugarfree wrote:
This is troubling me, and I think it is why I keep coming back here. I am a Christian, therefore, my arguments come from that Christian worldview. Oftentimes I have simply reiterated a Christian point, and then, to my surprise several people attack what I have said, called me a liar, arrogant, rude, prideful, etc. And I’m left wondering, what on earth did I say that incited so much anger?

I've named it, "The Johnnie Cochran" argument. Quick explanation--after the OJ trial, Dana Carvey had a comedy special on Comedy Central that ran every day for about 2 years. In his comments on the trial, he joked about how impressed he was by the fact that although there was a mountain of evidence on file that pointed to OJ as the killer, Johnnie Cochran's attitude in court was, "Why are we even having a trial?--" This is my problem with your christian viewpoint. How it applies here, is that your "christian points" are often things that have been soundly debunked by science over the years, yet you refuse to acknowledge any of them. If it's not proven 100% beyond any doubt, your attitude is, "well, it's only 95% certain, so my belief that god did it is just as valid." No, it's not. Not here at least, so dont expect your "christian points" to be respected in these cases.

Quote:
Truth is, I am a caring person who wants to improve and make a positive impact on the world. I love animals, I respect the earth, I think we need to take better care of it.

Stop right there. Do you agree with the pope's recent statement that christians need to start making more babies?

Quote:
If I’ve harmed someone, I want to make amends, etc. So, I honestly do not understand where your anger comes from. Is it simply because I don't agree with you?

I dont it's anger, really. I think it's frustration because in all honesty, your arguments are often ridiculous.

Quote:
Taking my Christianity out of the equation, I am a person, I have opinions, I feel strongly about my opinions because they have been formed from decades of searching, thinking, turning things over in my mind. I am no different than you, in that respect.

Oh yes you are. We allow the facts and the evidence form the viewpoints we have, you pull a Johnnie Cochran because it makes you feel better. All those "decades" you've spent were a waste of time, because you're not searching for anything that would take that long to find. Warm fuzzy feelings can be found in almost any religion, you just picked the one that made the most sense to someone raised in the American lifestyle.

 

Quote:
It just so happens that you came to different conclusions than me. But, I can tell, you feel equally strongly about your beliefs and feel I would be better off if I were atheist. You know that I feel you would have a richer experience in this life if you believed in God, not necessarily even the Christian God.

A) We dont have "beliefs." We have a lack of belief, and you wonder why people snap at you. B) You please explain to me how my life would be richer if I spent even one second trying to convince a homosexual that his/her actions are sinful?

Quote:
So, tho our opinions are different, the way we are approach each other is really not so different. In light of that, what I do not understand is why we cannot converse like adults, hear each other’s view points, accept that we are both attempting to influence the other side with those view points, and let go of all the meanness and personal put downs?

You've found meanness where there wasnt any numerous times(my post where I used the line, What the hell.. comes to mind). When there has been meanness and putdowns, it almost surely comes after one of your condescending, "pity the poor atheist" posts. And when it does, you deserve it.



Quote:
I don’t know who here is American, but what I see happening in this country and throughout the world is deeply troubling.

Hey! We agree on something!

Quote:
There is a divide growing between the secular and religious communities, and the two need to come back to the center and start communicating better in order to make some honest compromises.

Well, until christianity and islam fade into the annals of mythology alongside osiris and jupiter, I agree again!

Quote:
We have to live in this world together. You are never going to eradicate the worship of God,

In our lifetime, no, but eventually I'm sure of it.

Quote:
I am never going to get everyone to see the need to worship God.

No, because that's stupid.(sorry, couldnt resist)

Quote:
Most likely, you are not going to deconvert me, nor am I going to convert you. So, can we, instead start listening, and refrain from judging others ideas as stupid, baseless, juvenile?

You have nothing to offer us that we would have any desire to listen to. You can listen to what we're saying all you want, but no atheist I know wants to listen to you praising jesus and prostletyzing(sp?). If you expect us to listen to any of this, expect to be disappointed.


Quote:
Also, I do not feel the “delusional” label you have placed on theists is going to get us anywhere positive. I can just as easily call you delusional.

Well, no, actually, you cant. Go look up what delusional means. There is NOTHING in the definition of delusional that you could attribute to an atheist.

Quote:
The fact is, you are not in my brain, I am not in yours. You have not had my experiences, I have not had yours. So, you can no more honestly judge me delusional than I can judge you.

Oh yes we can. See above.

"The powerful have always created false images of the weak."


sugarfree
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Vastet wrote: sugarfree

Vastet wrote:
sugarfree wrote:
You have just brilliantly illustrated the points in my post. How is this type of attack going to lead to anything positive between us?
You have just brilliantly proved the points in my post. How is ignoring fact and dodging reality going to lead to anything positive between us?
sugarfree wrote:
I would like to have a positive relationship with you despite our difference, but should I conclude that you do not want that from me, simply because of the opinions I hold?
I don't mind having relationships with theists, as long as they keep their fiction to themselves. When you start preaching it, you can expect a tonne of ridicule in response. If you don't like it, then don't preach in the first place. Being a hypocrite isn't going to get you anywhere.
sugarfree wrote:
Frankly, I don't see how that is "evolving". It's backwards evolution in my point...like returning to the attitudes that brought about slavery in the U.S. (i.e., your not fully human because you are not like me).
I never suggested you were less human than I was. Nor did I suggest you are incapable of seeing how your mind is in chains and breaking free. That's really up to you. In the mean time, don't go spreading a belief you can't defend.

Treating a person disrespectfully, regardless of their views, is dehumanizing.

I am learning what the hot buttons are for many of you, and I am trying to learn how to more effectively communicate with you, given that new knowledge, so that I say things more carefully in light of what you find offensive.


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jce wrote: Here is my two

jce wrote:

Here is my two cents (and you are getting what you pay for):

 

You feel that you are being personally attacked and have accused several of us of being mean. Give us and yourself some credit! No one has accused you of trolling, which means your posts are being read and considered.

Heh heh. Trolling. This is a new one for me. I was wondering how far I was from getting banned. Eye-wink

jce wrote:
What we are doing is challenging you. We are challenging your ideas and your beliefs in an effort to force you to substantiate them. So far you have failed to do that other than to offer personal "feel-good" accounts of your beliefs. Yes, we will continue to push and probe until you produce an answer that satisfies logic and reason.
This is fair, but I think it is possible to push and probe without resorting to personal attack and name calling. For instance, people have told me I have lied several times. I think that is being unfairly judgemental. You all say many things that I don't agree with, but I have refrained from calling you all liars because I don't feel it is in my jurisdiction, and besides, I think it is counter-productive to the discussion.

jce wrote:
Your statements come across as prideful, self-righteous and insulting because you see yourself as belonging to the "right" group and us as belonging to the "wrong" group.
Putting Christianity aside, JCE, I think I belong to God. That is the only difference. I am not saying you are in the wrong group, not at all. It is not about groups to me. Perhaps, since it is about "groups" to you, you are projecting that onto my words.

jce wrote:
have stated that you see the world/science/life through a different lens than us implying that your view is somehow better and you do not need to accept facts to clarify it.
Not at all, I am trying to show you what the world looks like thru my lense. It's never been about me trying to prove that I'm "better" than you. I am not any better than any of you or anyone else, and I am profoundly aware of that fact. I am however, different, in that I believe in a God, and I don't feel I should be disrespected or that my words should be disregarded simply because of that fact.

jce wrote:
Personally, I feel you are doing yourself an injustice by continuing this practice. Your willful unacceptance of facts is unacceptable to us.
The way I see it, this is an internet forum, not an operating table. It's a place to come and exercise one's communication skills. I feel it is perfectly acceptable to mess up, fall, dust myself off, and start over again with a fresh outlook.  However, sometimes I feel you all have no patience for the learning process.  It seems you want the theist to come in here and be "perfect" from the get go, and when he/she isn't you dive in for the attack.


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zarathustra wrote: sugar,

zarathustra wrote:

sugar, you didn't I was going to let this slide, did you?

Of course not, zarathustra. We go way back, do we not. Ha ha.

zarathustra wrote:
That's the problem right there. You are presupposing god/jesus/etc. exist, and give your arguments to conform to that presupposition.
You presuppose that he does not exist, so I really don't get the difference. I have offered non-material proof for God, but that is not good enough because you all seem to require material proof.

zarathustra wrote:
More than once, when presented with a challenge to your belief, rather than advancing the discussion with a well-reasoned response, you simply say "I love jesus" or "Why are you so angry", and dodge the issue entirely.
Well, I do love Jesus. And you did seem angry on several occasions. Anyway, just because I may not currently be the best at articulating the truths that I hold dear, that does not make them any less true. It just means, I need to hone my skills.

zarathustra wrote:

You weren't listening. As an example, I put it to you that there is no evidence for a historical jesus. You responded with what you found by a "quick google search", and when that was shown inadequate, you took to avoiding the issue altogether.

  • arrogant (Sat, 2007-03-17 12:51): "Don't even get me started on Scientology, and if I say what I really feel about Mormonism and Islam, you'll probably say I'm dumb in a smarter sounding way."

Repeatedly, you give generalized arguments to support christianity (it's rapid spread, it's centuries old tradition), yet when it's pointed out that such arguments can be made just as easily in support of other religions, you dismiss them with statements such as this. You argument from this appears to be "christianity is true because I believe in it".

  • rude (Tue, 2007-03-20 17:38): "And exactly HOW MANY hare krishna's have I EVER met in my life?? Hmmm....let's see. Well, there were those bald guys in orange robes I saw when I was in Washington D.C. one time..... Something tells me the Krishna message isn't as relavant to people's current lives as Jesus's message is."

You object to anything less than fawning reverence for your religion, yet you are not beyond juvenile remarks about other religions.

I accept that your adjectives, on some level, may hold truth. However, I do not see why I have to be repeatedly reminded by you all of my faults, many of which you have attributed to me unfairly. If you want, I can go thru your posts and pick out everything I think is less than perfect about you, but I honestly don't believe that is my place as a human being. You are so quick to judge my faults, but I have not heard you admit any of yours.

zarathustra wrote:
You related your experience at an easter service, essentially boasting to us about how hard you cried when you thought about jesus.
Once again, as I told JCE I am not here trying to prove I am better than you. What I AM doing, is trying, using differing techniques, to actually talk to you guys. Granted, many of my attempts have fallen flat on their face. I ask you, is it not even the slightest bit possible, that you have misinterpretted my motives, and judged my words based on your understood stereotypes rather than giving me a fair shake.

zarathustra wrote:
The undertone was that non-christians were not capable of the same depth of emotion as you.

I apologize that it came across that way. I know you are capable of the same depth of emotions as me. I think I have already said that, but I am saying it again.


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Roisin Dubh wrote: I've

Roisin Dubh wrote:

I've named it, "The Johnnie Cochran" argument. Quick explanation--after the OJ trial, Dana Carvey had a comedy special on Comedy Central that ran every day for about 2 years. In his comments on the trial, he joked about how impressed he was by the fact that although there was a mountain of evidence on file that pointed to OJ as the killer, Johnnie Cochran's attitude in court was, "Why are we even having a trial?--" This is my problem with your christian viewpoint. How it applies here, is that your "christian points" are often things that have been soundly debunked by science over the years, yet you refuse to acknowledge any of them. If it's not proven 100% beyond any doubt, your attitude is, "well, it's only 95% certain, so my belief that god did it is just as valid." No, it's not. Not here at least, so dont expect your "christian points" to be respected in these cases.

My problem with your viewpoint is that you put so much weight in science. You base everything you believe about this world on what you know to be true today. What about 10 years from now, 15 years from now? What about some of the things you "know" now based on science, that science itself will debunk in the coming years? I think science is a valuable tool for understanding this world, but I contend that science is not capable of guiding you in terms of morality because it is a perpetually changing and unfinished "work". If want to have a moral compass, you need the magnetic north, which is God, otherwise you will get lost.

Roisin Dubh wrote:

Stop right there. Do you agree with the pope's recent statement that christians need to start making more babies?

Uhh, what does this have to do with anything? I think people should have babies because they want to.

Roisin Dubh wrote:
I dont it's anger, really. I think it's frustration because in all honesty, your arguments are often ridiculous.
I just don't see how you can say this, given, you do not know all the secrets to this universe. It is as tho you yourself are trying to take on the role of the god you don't believe in when you judge my arguments in this way.

Roisin Dubh wrote:
Oh yes you are. We allow the facts and the evidence form the viewpoints we have, you pull a Johnnie Cochran because it makes you feel better. All those "decades" you've spent were a waste of time, because you're not searching for anything that would take that long to find. Warm fuzzy feelings can be found in almost any religion, you just picked the one that made the most sense to someone raised in the American lifestyle.
You have absolutely no right to makes these sort of judgements about me. How on earth could you, without knowing me, conclude that my searching was a waste of time. Are you my long lost conjoined twin?

Roisin Dubh wrote:

B) You please explain to me how my life would be richer if I spent even one second trying to convince a homosexual that his/her actions are sinful?

No, I don't do that and I would not suggest you do it either.

Roisin Dubh wrote:
You've found meanness where there wasnt any numerous times(my post where I used the line, What the hell.. comes to mind). When there has been meanness and putdowns, it almost surely comes after one of your condescending, "pity the poor atheist" posts. And when it does, you deserve it.
Here again, my religion, which you seem to despise, teaches me not to judge what others "deserve" as that is not in my jurisdiction. And I think it is okay for me to say when I feel people are being rude to me. I think we can be honest to each other about how we feel without resorting to judgement of each other's characters.

Roisin Dubh wrote:
Well, until christianity and islam fade into the annals of mythology alongside osiris and jupiter, I agree again!
Okay, this is a sensitive subject for me. Do you realize how hateful that comment is? How utterly offensive it is to me? Do you also realize that as you and I sit here fighting, our common enemy is waging war against us? (Islamic fascism.) Like it or not, Christians are your brothers and sisters in this fight, and I, as a Christian, if I were to fight, would be fighting for ALL our rights...I would be fighting for myself AND you, so that neither of us have to have our heads cut off under an extremist Islamic government.

Roisin Dubh wrote:

In our lifetime, no, but eventually I'm sure of it.

Given that I believe in God, I have to chuckle at this comment. But...time will tell which one of us is right.


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sugarfree wrote:

sugarfree wrote:
This is troubling me, and I think it is why I keep coming back here. I am a Christian, therefore, my arguments come from that Christian worldview.
What is the xian world view?
Quote:
If I’ve harmed someone, I want to make amends, etc.
Oh ok. Then become an atheist.
Quote:
Taking my Christianity out of the equation,
hahaha...really?
Quote:
I am a person, I have opinions, I feel strongly about my opinions because they have been formed from decades of searching, thinking, turning things over in my mind. I am no different than you, in that respect. It just so happens that you came to different conclusions than me. But, I can tell, you feel equally strongly about your beliefs and feel I would be better off if I were atheist. You know that I feel you would have a richer experience in this life if you believed in God, not necessarily even the Christian God.
So your god is just a feeling? That's what I thought too.
Quote:
So, tho our opinions are different, the way we are approach each other is really not so different. In light of that, what I do not understand is why we cannot converse like adults, hear each other’s view points, accept that we are both attempting to influence the other side with those view points, and let go of all the meanness and personal put downs?
Do you know what atheism is?
Quote:
I don’t know who here is American, but what I see happening in this country and throughout the world is deeply troubling. There is a divide growing between the secular and religious communities, and the two need to come back to the center and start communicating better in order to make some honest compromises.
Why don’t you do that.
Quote:
We have to live in this world together. You are never going to eradicate the worship of God, I am never going to get everyone to see the need to worship God. Most likely, you are not going to deconvert me, nor am I going to convert you. So, can we, instead start listening, and refrain from judging others ideas as stupid, baseless, juvenile?
juvenile? Are you looking in the mirror while you write?
Quote:
Also, I do not feel the “delusional” label you have placed on theists is going to get us anywhere positive. I can just as easily call you delusional. The fact is, you are not in my brain, I am not in yours. You have not had my experiences, I have not had yours. So, you can no more honestly judge me delusional than I can judge you.
Tell me what ‘god’ is. If you can.

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.


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sugarfree wrote: Heh heh.

sugarfree wrote:
Heh heh. Trolling. This is a new one for me. I was wondering how far I was from getting banned. Eye-wink

I am not a moderater, but I do not think you are anywhere near that point.

sugarfree wrote:
jce wrote:
What we are doing is challenging you. We are challenging your ideas and your beliefs in an effort to force you to substantiate them. So far you have failed to do that other than to offer personal "feel-good" accounts of your beliefs. Yes, we will continue to push and probe until you produce an answer that satisfies logic and reason.
This is fair, but I think it is possible to push and probe without resorting to personal attack and name calling. For instance, people have told me I have lied several times. I think that is being unfairly judgemental. You all say many things that I don't agree with, but I have refrained from calling you all liars because I don't feel it is in my jurisdiction, and besides, I think it is counter-productive to the discussion.

You called me a "man". "Scary Princess" I could understand, but "man"! Really! In retrospect, I can see that you may have been paying me a compliment so - thank you. You have, in the past used untruthful statements based on emotion instead of facts. Liar is the only term that fits. You will find in life that some people are kinder about their challenges than others, but that does not remove the burden of honesty from your shoulders.

sugarfree wrote:
Not at all, I am trying to show you what the world looks like thru my lense. It's never been about me trying to prove that I'm "better" than you. I am not any better than any of you or anyone else, and I am profoundly aware of that fact. I am however, different, in that I believe in a God, and I don't feel I should be disrespected or that my words should be disregarded simply because of that fact.

Again, you imply a sense of "special-ness" with these words. I do not doubt that you have been told that you are special because you have a relationship with god. But why do you feel you are entitled to be treated with respect? Because you are human? Because you are female? Several times you have made very disrespectful statements regarding atheists. These statements were made out of ignorant beliefs. If you make false statements you will be called on it here. If you get offended that is your problem not ours. Try another argument.

sugarfree wrote:
The way I see it, this is an internet forum, not an operating table. It's a place to come and exercise one's communication skills. I feel it is perfectly acceptable to mess up, fall, dust myself off, and start over again with a fresh outlook. However, sometimes I feel you all have no patience for the learning process. It seems you want the theist to come in here and be "perfect" from the get go, and when he/she isn't you dive in for the attack.

No one expects perfection, however, your arguments and statements have not improved in validity or substance. You have posted this whiny diatribe in order to convince people to feel sorry for you. I don't. I will continue to encourage you to ask yourself why you believe and when you can produce a valid, verfiable answer I would love to hear it.


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Sugarfree, I have spent many

Sugarfree, I have spent many months trying to avoid joining this website.  My bf (NinjaTux) has roped me in.  I generally do not like to discuss my faith with others.  It is very personal to me.  Debating the existence of God with people does not make me happy.  No one can prove it one way or another.  The thing is, if you do not feel comfortable here or feel oppressed in some way, why do you come here?  If you feel that people are being mean to you, why do you invite it?  This is a site mainly for atheists.  You knew that when you signed up.  In any group of people, there will always be a couple of jerks that will make someone uncomfortable.  When you come here, there will be at least one person to be mean to you.  That is the way of the world.  Why do you invite that?  For another thing, many of the posts that you consider to be mean, aren't.  You state your views, they disagree.  If you are uncomfortable with that, why not just leave the site?  No one is forcing you to stay here.

Ah, the pitter patter of tiny feet in huge combat boots.


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Wishkah311

Wishkah311 wrote:
Sugarfree, I have spent many months trying to avoid joining this website. My bf (NinjaTux) has roped me in. I generally do not like to discuss my faith with others. It is very personal to me. Debating the existence of God with people does not make me happy. No one can prove it one way or another. The thing is, if you do not feel comfortable here or feel oppressed in some way, why do you come here? If you feel that people are being mean to you, why do you invite it? This is a site mainly for atheists. You knew that when you signed up. In any group of people, there will always be a couple of jerks that will make someone uncomfortable. When you come here, there will be at least one person to be mean to you. That is the way of the world. Why do you invite that? For another thing, many of the posts that you consider to be mean, aren't. You state your views, they disagree. If you are uncomfortable with that, why not just leave the site? No one is forcing you to stay here.

Hello.  I am here because I am honestly deeply troubled by the inability for the secular and religious community to communicate.  All you have to do is look at American politicians and see it has become a serious problem.  They are so divided that they cannot get anything done, and they are more interested in pushing their side of the cause than in seeing any real problem get solved.  I think this is the great debate of our time, actually, and I think, if we do not learn to talk to each other, the consequences could be dire for both sides.  That's why I'm here.  I think it is important, no matter how difficult it may be sometimes.  Those of us in the trenches, common citizens, need to rise up and stop this insanity that is threatening to tear our world apart. 


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sugarfree wrote: Hello. I

sugarfree wrote:

Hello. I am here because I am honestly deeply troubled by the inability for the secular and religious community to communicate. All you have to do is look at American politicians and see it has become a serious problem. They are so divided that they cannot get anything done, and they are more interested in pushing their side of the cause than in seeing any real problem get solved. I think this is the great debate of our time, actually, and I think, if we do not learn to talk to each other, the consequences could be dire for both sides. That's why I'm here. I think it is important, no matter how difficult it may be sometimes. Those of us in the trenches, common citizens, need to rise up and stop this insanity that is threatening to tear our world apart.

The only problem with this is that communication is a two way street.  You get to speak, but you also have to listen.  You fail miserably at the listening part.  Just out of curiousity how many atheist politicians are trying to ruin  the world right now??  Better question is for you to name 10 atheist politicians.  Atheists have had to become more vocal because  theistic politicians have started pushing a religious agenda along with their economic and social agendas.  I live in Tennessee where technically atheists are the only group that are able to be disqualified simply because of religious preference.   

No Gods, Know Peace.


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jce wrote: You called me a

jce wrote:

You called me a "man".

Sorry about that.
jce wrote:
"Scary Princess" I could understand,
Naw.

jce wrote:
You have, in the past used untruthful statements based on emotion instead of facts. Liar is the only term that fits.
I don't see how speaking on behalf of my emotion would make me a liar. If you would, would you explain why you believe this to be so? My general feeling is that you all tend to be distrustful of emotions, however, as you can probably tell, I think emotions sometimes bear truth and offer guidance in the pursuit of it. I will never entirely dismiss my emotions as viable truth indicators.

jce wrote:
Again, you imply a sense of "special-ness" with these words. I do not doubt that you have been told that you are special because you have a relationship with god.
I'm not special because I believe in God, I'm special because that's his opinion, and we are all equal in that respect because he honors all his children equally. Which means, you an I are on even playing ground, from my point of view.

jce wrote:
But why do you feel you are entitled to be treated with respect? Because you are human?
Yes.

jce wrote:
Several times you have made very disrespectful statements regarding atheists. These statements were made out of ignorant beliefs. If you make false statements you will be called on it here. If you get offended that is your problem not ours. Try another argument.
Yes, I have made offending statements out of ignorance of atheists. I have tried to catch myself and apologize along the way, and it is a learning process. However, I don't believe I've heard anyone apologize to me for saying things out of context. It's sorta been a one way street... I'm wondering why you think it is wrong for me to offend you, but okay for you to offend me?

jce wrote:

No one expects perfection, however, your arguments and statements have not improved in validity or substance. You have posted this whiny diatribe in order to convince people to feel sorry for you.

Well, no, I don't want your pity. Currently I am seeing if we all can come to the same table, on equal footing, and treat each other respectfully. So far, it's going okay.


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If you really feel that it

If you really feel that it is that important, then quit talking about your "yellow star" and complaining about how everyone is mean to you.  You are the one that is going on about how the banner of "theist" under your name is like a yellow star.  You are playing the victim.  You talk about trying to make theists and athiests capable of discussing nicely.  Well, you are the one bringing up the Holocaust and accusing everyone of persecuting you.  Honestly, I thought that you had given yourself the theist banner.  I wanted one too.  One second you are complaining about being marked as Christian.  The next you are telling everyone that you are a Christian.  You are either proud to be a Christian or you aren't.  you can't basically accuse the athiests of persecuting you to the point of the Holocaust on second, then ask them to discuss religion with you rationally. 

Ah, the pitter patter of tiny feet in huge combat boots.


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sugarfree wrote: My

sugarfree wrote:

My problem with your viewpoint is that you put so much weight in science. You base everything you believe about this world on what you know to be true today. What about 10 years from now, 15 years from now? What about some of the things you "know" now based on science, that science itself will debunk in the coming years? I think science is a valuable tool for understanding this world, but I contend that science is not capable of guiding you in terms of morality because it is a perpetually changing and unfinished "work". If want to have a moral compass, you need the magnetic north, which is God, otherwise you will get lost.

The nice thing about science is, as we learn more about the world in 10, 15 years, if something we think is true today is found to be incorrect, then the viewpoint will change. Most things found in a 2000 year old science book have been found to be untrue today, whereas you want your 2000 year old book to remain irrefutable for no good reason whatsoever. Nobody I know uses science as a moral guide, this is one of your ridiculous arguments that I mentioned earlier. I'll put my morality up against 99% of the theists alive today, and I would be found to have as high a moral standard if not higher than any of you. And I will not get lost without your god, because I dont need the fear of hell to keep me acting as a decent human being should. If you're so sure we need your "magnetic north," then explain to me how I, and surely many people on this site act as moral human beings, everyday.

 

Quote:
Uhhwhat does this have to do with anything? I think people should have babies because they want to.

Not if they truly believe in saving the planet, as you claim to be concerned with. That was why I asked the question.

Quote:
I just don't see how you can say this, given, you do not know all the secrets to this universe. It is as tho you yourself are trying to take on the role of the god you don't believe in when you judge my arguments in this way.

No, I certainly dont hold the key to all the universe's secrets, but I will support efforts to find as many of them as we can, will you?

Quote:
You have absolutely no right to makes these sort of judgements about me. How on earth could you, without knowing me, conclude that my searching was a waste of time. Are you my long lost conjoined twin?

Nope, I just read your posts. If I knew you before you became a christian, and knew what I know about you now, I'd have no problem betting my house and every dollar I have in the bank that you'd become one. Every post you've made on these boards supports it.

Quote:
No, I don't do that and I would not suggest you do it either.

You dont? How would you vote on a gay marriage/civil union bill where you live?

Quote:
Here again, my religion, which you seem to despise, teaches me not to judge what others "deserve" as that is not in my jurisdiction. And I think it is okay for me to say when I feel people are being rude to me. I think we can be honest to each other about how we feel without resorting to judgement of each other's characters.

Only using our interaction as an example, I have no idea how starting a sentence with "What the hell," is any kind of judgement of your character.

Quote:
Okay, this is a sensitive subject for me. Do you realize how hateful that comment is?

It's not hateful, it's an opinion. If you were to say, atheism is a fad and will go away shortly, I wouldnt call it hateful.

Quote:
How utterly offensive it is to me?

Sorry you feel that way, but that's your problem.

Quote:
Do you also realize that as you and I sit here fighting, our common enemy is waging war against us? (Islamic fascism.)

You mean, a different group that claims everything about their religion as you do about yours? I see the enemy alright, but it's not one you and I have in common.

Quote:
Like it or not, Christians are your brothers and sisters in this fight, and I, as a Christian, if I were to fight, would be fighting for ALL our rights...I would be fighting for myself AND you, so that neither of us have to have our heads cut off under an extremist Islamic government.

You could go back a few hundred years and find plenty of people saying the same thing about "extremist christian government." You want peace? Ditch your dogma, and encourage others to do the same.

Quote:
Given that I believe in God, I have to chuckle at this comment. But...time will tell which one of us is right.

Do you realize how hurtful that is? I am so offended that you would laugh at my beliefs.

"The powerful have always created false images of the weak."


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Wishkah311 wrote: No one

Wishkah311 wrote:
No one is forcing you to stay here.

Welcome to the forum, Wishkah.  Remember that no one (including your boyfriend) can make you stay, either.  :D  We want to engage in debate, but we don't want anyone to stay here against their will. Smiling

I'm not in charge of giving badges, but if you want a theist badge, you'll get one.  We thought about giving badges to atheists, but we realized how messy that would get because this is, primarily, an atheist site.  I'd wear an "atheist" badge proudly. 

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Wishkah311 wrote: If you

Wishkah311 wrote:
If you really feel that it is that important, then quit talking about your "yellow star" and complaining about how everyone is mean to you. You are the one that is going on about how the banner of "theist" under your name is like a yellow star. You are playing the victim. You talk about trying to make theists and athiests capable of discussing nicely. Well, you are the one bringing up the Holocaust and accusing everyone of persecuting you. Honestly, I thought that you had given yourself the theist banner. I wanted one too. One second you are complaining about being marked as Christian. The next you are telling everyone that you are a Christian. You are either proud to be a Christian or you aren't. you can't basically accuse the athiests of persecuting you to the point of the Holocaust on second, then ask them to discuss religion with you rationally.

I will reiterate what I just said on the other string.  None of us, not me, not you, not anyone here is exempt from being on the giving or receiving end of that which occured in the holocaust.  

It seems, based on my observations over the past weeks, that those with theist under their name are treated quite differently here (So watch out.  But your BF is here so you'll be treated better, I'm sure).  What starts off as a decent conversation becomes ugly and the theist starts getting bashed.  The theists character gets bashed, the theist gets judged harshly and unnecessarily.  Comments disrespectful to all religions fall off people's tongues like it is nothing, they do not even flinch or feel they are wrong in totally trashing someones honored belief system.  When the theist tries to explain their point, from the THEIST point of view, or tried to reiterate or discuss their own beliefs, they get called names like bigot and liar.  Is this normal and healthy to you?  Is this how people should talk to each other?  I have never once said atheists are ignorant/liars/mentally ill/etc., that the world would be better without atheism.  I have never called anyone's "ridiculous" or a waste of time...  Nor have I used any cuss words when addressing folks.  That is just not how I talk to people.  I have learned that it is wrong to talk to people that way.

 The negative energy towards theism, Christianity in particular, is dangerous.  Plain and simple.  It opens oneself up to hate, and once hate enters the heart...any number of things can happen...in the 1940's it led to the holocaust.

I think it is perfectlly acceptable for me to bring up the holocaust, to remind people that those Jews were slaughtered because people thought they were stupid, liars, because people did not agree with their lifestyle, their religion, anything about them.

We all have in our hearts the potential to do tremendous good, or tremendous harm.  I for one, do not ever wish to forget that, and I feel it is good for us to remind each other of that fact as well.  (Yes, I used the word fact this time, on purpose.) 


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Roisin Dubh wrote: Well,


Roisin Dubh wrote:
Well, until christianity and islam fade into the annals of mythology alongside osiris and jupiter, I agree!

sugarfree wrote:
Okay, this is a sensitive subject for me. Do you realize how hateful that comment is? How utterly offensive it is to me?

Sugar, you are in the Atheist vs Theist thread. If you get all offended at how some of us talk about religion or your god, this isn't the thread for you. Please remember that you came here, we didn't force you out of the Kill 'Em With Kindness thread to post here.

This thread is for a no-holds-barred debate and even cussing is allowed.

It's my opinion that you should be grateful that people have been as kind as they have because, in this thread, they don't have to.

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Roisin Dubh wrote: The

Roisin Dubh wrote:

The nice thing about science is, as we learn more about the world in 10, 15 years, if something we think is true today is found to be incorrect, then the viewpoint will change. Most things found in a 2000 year old science book have been found to be untrue today, whereas you want your 2000 year old book to remain irrefutable for no good reason whatsoever. Nobody I know uses science as a moral guide

You have used science to debunk a great percentage of this world's moral guides, i.e., religious texts. So then, what do you use instead? What is your magnetic north? i.e., that which keeps you on the straight and narrow path of morality and goodness?

Roisin Dubh wrote:
this is one of your ridiculous arguments that I mentioned earlier. I'll put my morality up against 99% of the theists alive today, and I would be found to have as high a moral standard if not higher than any of you.
Your moral standard involves calling people arguments ridiculous. Mine considers this to be rude and disrespectul.

Roisin Dubh wrote:
And I will not get lost without your god, because I dont need the fear of hell to keep me acting as a decent human being should. If you're so sure we need your "magnetic north," then explain to me how I, and surely many people on this site act as moral human beings, everyday.
I do want to know what you will use so as not to get lost in the immoral slush of this world.

 

Roisin Dubh wrote:

Not if they truly believe in saving the planet, as you claim to be concerned with. That was why I asked the question.

I still don't get the point, but I can let it go.

Roisin Dubh wrote:

No, I certainly dont hold the key to all the universe's secrets, but I will support efforts to find as many of them as we can, will you?

Certainly and I will do so while remaining a theist.

Roisin Dubh wrote:

Nope, I just read your posts. If I knew you before you became a christian, and knew what I know about you now, I'd have no problem betting my house and every dollar I have in the bank that you'd become one. Every post you've made on these boards supports it.

Become a Christian? I believe in a spiritual realm. If there is a spiritual realm, the idea of a God is plausable. If I want to learn about God, I turn to religion and, at times, science... But, I'm not really getting your point with this comment, I guess.

Roisin Dubh wrote:

You dont? How would you vote on a gay marriage/civil union bill where you live?

I would consider civil unions. I would not support gay marriage.

Roisin Dubh wrote:

Only using our interaction as an example, I have no idea how starting a sentence with "What the hell," is any kind of judgement of your character.

It wasn't. That was an entirely different issue. My husband and I are getting ready to have children and we have been attending church regularly for the past several years. Those two things have caused us to feel it necessary to omit certain words or phrases from our vocabulary. "What the hell," is a phrase I wouldn't use anymore. Now that I've omitted these phrases and words, now when I hear them, they really rub me the wrong way...and cause me to turn the other way. If you want to know what I'm talking about, give them up for a year...it resensitizes you to them and makes you realize they aren't necessary in regular conversation. I'm not perfect. I still say stuff I shouldn't when I'm really angry (usually at my husband), but, I am making a continuing effort.

Roisin Dubh wrote:

"How utterly offensive it is to me?" Sorry you feel that way, but that's your problem.

No, it's not just my problem. Are you sensitive to other people's feelings, are you tolerant of people who are different than you? Yes or No. Either you are or you aren't.

Roisin Dubh wrote:
You mean, a different group that claims everything about their religion as you do about yours? I see the enemy alright, but it's not one you and I have in common.
Please expand on this comment if you find the time. I think this is an extremely important topic.

Roisin Dubh wrote:

You could go back a few hundred years and find plenty of people saying the same thing about "extremist christian government." You want peace? Ditch your dogma, and encourage others to do the same.

How about we fight our common enemy who has already declared war on us both first, rather than fighting amongst ourselves while they engage in their exceptionally effective propaganda war, and while they plan ways to kill us all and conquer the world. Then, we can address my "dogma" after the dust has cleared.

Roisin Dubh wrote:

Do you realize how hurtful that is? I am so offended that you would laugh at my beliefs.

If I truly believed I hurt you, I would apologize, however, I'm pretty sure you are just making fun of me.  Should I assume, according to your belief system, that is okay to make fun of people, or are you acting against your beliefs in this instance?


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Susan wrote: Roisin Dubh

Susan wrote:

Roisin Dubh wrote:
Well, until christianity and islam fade into the annals of mythology alongside osiris and jupiter, I agree!

sugarfree wrote:
Okay, this is a sensitive subject for me. Do you realize how hateful that comment is? How utterly offensive it is to me?

Sugar, you are in the Atheist vs Theist thread. If you get all offended at how some of us talk about religion or your god, this isn't the thread for you. Please remember that you came here, we didn't force you out of the Kill 'Em With Kindness thread to post here.

This thread is for a no-holds-barred debate and even cussing is allowed.

It's my opinion that you should be grateful that people have been as kind as they have because, in this thread, they don't have to.

My point with that comment was to let him know how a Christian and or Muslim might view his comment.  I'm pretty sure he knows, and just does not care.  Personally, I would care if something I said to you as an atheist was highly offensive.  You all have pointed such things out to me, thus allowing me to be more sensitive to you.  I think, that is part of how we learn to get along and have more effective dialogue.


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We don't need a book full of

We don't need a book full of bullshit to tell us how to behave morally. We judge how our actions affect others. You might want to notice how few atheists are in prison compared to Christians and Moslems.

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sugarfree wrote:

sugarfree wrote:
Roisin Dubh wrote:

"How utterly offensive it is to me?" Sorry you feel that way, but that's your problem.

No, it's not just my problem.

Geez. I just posted this in another thread.

Sugar, you're in the Atheist vs Theist thread. Quit expecting everyone else to conform to your ideas of what's offensive.

sugarfree wrote:
Are you sensitive to other people's feelings, are you tolerant of people who are different than you? Yes or No. Either you are or you aren't.

Please stop playing victim. I think folks have been a lot nicer to you than they have some others in the past.

If you have such a problem with the tone in this thread, please restrict yourself to the Kill 'Em With Kindness thread. Atheists can still bash religion, but they have to do it nicely and they can't cuss or call you names.

[edited for wording] 

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Jeez I'd hate to see her

Jeez I'd hate to see her reaction if she really pissed me off and I, as Iceberg Slim put it "Blasted her with masterworks of pimp profanity!" People here have been pretty nice - no actual attacks, just attacking irrational beliefs. I posted this in another thread - don't know who said it but it's true "People who don't like to have their beliefs ridiculed shouldn't have ridiculous beliefs."

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sugarfree wrote: I will

sugarfree wrote:

I will reiterate what I just said on the other string. None of us, not me, not you, not anyone here is exempt from being on the giving or receiving end of that which occured in the holocaust.

It seems, based on my observations over the past weeks, that those with theist under their name are treated quite differently here (So watch out. But your BF is here so you'll be treated better, I'm sure). What starts off as a decent conversation becomes ugly and the theist starts getting bashed. The theists character gets bashed, the theist gets judged harshly and unnecessarily. Comments disrespectful to all religions fall off people's tongues like it is nothing, they do not even flinch or feel they are wrong in totally trashing someones honored belief system. When the theist tries to explain their point, from the THEIST point of view, or tried to reiterate or discuss their own beliefs, they get called names like bigot and liar. Is this normal and healthy to you? Is this how people should talk to each other? I have never once said atheists are ignorant/liars/mentally ill/etc., that the world would be better without atheism. I have never called anyone's "ridiculous" or a waste of time... Nor have I used any cuss words when addressing folks. That is just not how I talk to people. I have learned that it is wrong to talk to people that way.

The negative energy towards theism, Christianity in particular, is dangerous. Plain and simple. It opens oneself up to hate, and once hate enters the heart...any number of things can happen...in the 1940's it led to the holocaust.

I tend to stay away from your threads Sugarfree, because you tend to really rely on your emotions and not facts. I also think that you don't listen to what others have to say to you so I normally wouldn't bother but you've 'pushed a button'. Plus, I'm procrastinating from writing a paper. Eye-wink

Did you ever pause to think about what you write on here? You started a thread with a post that said 'I'm listening' and did just the opposite. If you feel ganged up on, think about the statistics of the people on this site. Of course there are going to be more atheists replying to your posts than theists. It's an atheist forum. Yes, people can be mean sometimes, it sucks when people are mean to you, but it happens. If it bothers you so much, perhaps you should not attempt debate.

I am perfectly willing (as many others here) to engage in calm, civil discourse with theists. And I have. And others have as well.

You say theists get judged harshly? Be thankful then that you are only judged 'harshly' on this forum. Atheists are judged far more harshly in the real world, Sugarfree.

You're upset that we're 'trashing your honored belief system'? We are discussing it and disagreeing with you. If you don't want someone to disagree vehemently with you about your honored belief system, then do not come here.

Yes, many people here do feel a great deal of negativity towards Christianity. What I have gleaned from this forum is that the marjority of these atheists were once theists. However, because I was raised in a secular household, I cannot speak for those who weren't.

I believe that Christianity is negative. You can accuse me of bashing your honored belief system all you want, but I am entitled to my opinion. I also think all religion is negative, so don't feel singled out. Since you specified Christianity, that is what I will focus on. So much evil has been done in the name of Christianity. Wars have been fought in its name, people have been burned at the stake in its name. Rights are stripped from those that do not follow its tenets. Our science is faltering because of the roadblocks Christianity is throwing up. If you want to be Christian, that's fine. It's your right in this country to be so. That's the great thing about the separation of church and state.

I don't care that you're Christian. I don't care that you believe in god. What I do care about is that laws are being made on the beliefs that you and so many other people share. That's what I have a problem with.

Wishkah311 - Please don't listen to Sugarfree. If you are willing to have open and honest discourse I can assure you you'll be treated with respect.

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sugarfree wrote: You have

sugarfree wrote:

You have used science to debunk a great percentage of this world's moral guides, i.e., religious texts. So then, what do you use instead? What is your magnetic north? i.e., that which keeps you on the straight and narrow path of morality and goodness?

It's really very simple, and I am surprised you haven't seen it mentioned multiple times on these boards. I base my life choices on whether the action will harm someone, or if I would want said action done to me. Yes, also known as the golden rule. And yes, it's in the bible, but it also appears in most cultures' ancient texts as well.

Quote:
Your moral standard involves calling people arguments ridiculous. Mine considers this to be rude and disrespectul.

I dont mean to be rude, but the frustration reaches epic proportions when you go completely off-topic and claim, for example, that atheists use science as a moral guide. This has been addressed a thousand times, and was also completely irrelevant to what we were talking about. It makes it sound, as others have mentioned, that you dont listen to anything anyone says to you here.

Quote:
I do want to know what you will use so as not to get lost in the immoral slush of this world.

See above response. Its(the golden rule, not my response, LOL) brilliance is in its simplicity and its universality.

Quote:
I still don't get the point, but I can let it go.

My point was that, from the decimation of rain forests to global warming, the earth is being battered silly. Much of this is due to overpopulation. Anyone concerned with helping the planet would take issue with the pope's plea for christians to breed at will.

Quote:
Certainly and I will do so while remaining a theist.

OK, then what will you do when science finds enough evidence to announce that homosexuality is purely a result of genetics?

Quote:
Become a Christian? I believe in a spiritual realm. If there is a spiritual realm, the idea of a God is plausable. If I want to learn about God, I turn to religion and, at times, science... But, I'm not really getting your point with this comment, I guess.

Youve professed a love for jesus many times, so would that not make you a christian? This spiritual realm business runs contrary to your past position.

Quote:
I would consider civil unions. I would not support gay marriage.

If a civil union bill then is up for a vote in your state, granting gay unions all benefits and recognitions enjoyed by straight couples, how would you vote?

Quote:
If you want to know what I'm talking about, give them up for a year...it resensitizes you to them and makes you realize they aren't necessary in regular conversation.

I agree that vulgarity is overused in regular conversation, but I wouldn't consider the word 'hell' to be vulgar. It's no different to me than saying "What the shangri-la?"

Quote:
No, it's not just my problem. Are you sensitive to other people's feelings, are you tolerant of people who are different than you? Yes or No. Either you are or you aren't.

Yes, I am sensitive to other people's feelings, but as an atheist, I obviously disagree with you on this issue. You probably know that I think religion will become obsolete one day, so why is it so offensive for me to type it out?

Quote:
Please expand on this comment if you find the time. I think this is an extremely important topic.

All religions think theirs is the one true religion. At one time or another, all of them produced leaders that decided that anyone not under their control(using the religion as a hammer) would have to die. It's more about their ego and their need to control people than the religion itself. It is a handy weapon however.

Quote:
How about we fight our common enemy who has already declared war on us both first, rather than fighting amongst ourselves while they engage in their exceptionally effective propaganda war,

Their propaganda war is hardly successful, IMHO, for one. For two, propaganda wars dont win in the long run. I would also argue that it's not propaganda that makes their message successful, it's the ability to restrict any other information from reaching their subjects. Read up on the madrassas in arab countries.

Quote:
and while they plan ways to kill us all and conquer the world. Then, we can address my "dogma" after the dust has cleared.

While they certainly are dangerous, I believe their ability to kill us all and conquer the world has been vastly overstated. They'll soon be economically isolated, and the money will eventually run out. And that's just one way they'll screw up sooner rather than later.

Quote:
If I truly believed I hurt you, I would apologize, however, I'm pretty sure you are just making fun of me. Should I assume, according to your belief system, that is okay to make fun of people, or are you acting against your beliefs in this instance?

It's always ok to poke fun at people, and to point their hypocrisy where appropriate. Myself first and foremost. Overly sensitive people are rarely any fun, and are usually found behind a push towards political correctness ad nauseam.

"The powerful have always created false images of the weak."


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Susan wrote: sugarfree

Susan wrote:
sugarfree wrote:
Roisin Dubh wrote:

"How utterly offensive it is to me?" Sorry you feel that way, but that's your problem.

No, it's not just my problem.

Geez. I just posted this in another thread.

Sugar, you're in the Atheist vs Theist thread. Quit expecting everyone else to conform to your ideas of what's offensive.

sugarfree wrote:
Are you sensitive to other people's feelings, are you tolerant of people who are different than you? Yes or No. Either you are or you aren't.

Please stop playing victim. I think folks have been a lot nicer to you than they have some others in the past.

If you have such a problem with the tone in this thread, please restrict yourself to the Kill 'Em With Kindness thread. Atheists can still bash religion, but they have to do it nicely and they can't cuss or call you names.

[edited for wording]

I'm not playing victim.  This is simply an exercise to see if we can actually be civil.  I can take your shots.  It's not about that.


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NinjaTux wrote: The only

NinjaTux wrote:

The only problem with this is that communication is a two way street. You get to speak, but you also have to listen. You fail miserably at the listening part.

You are not in my brain.  How do you know I am not listening?  I am learning a lot from this, actually.

NinjaTux wrote:
Just out of curiousity how many atheist politicians are trying to ruin the world right now?? Better question is for you to name 10 atheist politicians. Atheists have had to become more vocal because theistic politicians have started pushing a religious agenda along with their economic and social agendas. I live in Tennessee where technically atheists are the only group that are able to be disqualified simply because of religious preference.

I don't know which senators or whatever are atheist or not.  I don't have those stats.  Speaking for myself, I will support all efforts to avoid the establishment of state run and sponsored religion.  I won't go so far as supporting the scouring of all religion from the country.  I am glad we can worship how we want in the U.S. and I am hoping it remains that way.


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pariahjane wrote: I tend

pariahjane wrote:

I tend to stay away from your threads Sugarfree, because you tend to really rely on your emotions and not facts.

I have relied on facts AND emotions to get where I am regarding my beliefs. Why are you all against emotions? This seems to be a comment thread.

pariahjane wrote:
Did you ever pause to think about what you write on here?
Generally I think about it carefully.

pariahjane wrote:
You started a thread with a post that said 'I'm listening' and did just the opposite.
That first post was a mistake. That was a snap action on my part, and I keep paying the price. I do not believe in holding grudges, however, I'm feeling many of you are holding grudges based on things I've said. This is an experiment with successes and failures, mostly failures...but the failures are teaching me a lot.

pariahjane wrote:
If you feel ganged up on, think about the statistics of the people on this site. Of course there are going to be more atheists replying to your posts than theists. It's an atheist forum. Yes, people can be mean sometimes, it sucks when people are mean to you, but it happens. If it bothers you so much, perhaps you should not attempt debate.
I think it helps us to become better people if we point out to each other when we are being less than kind, or offensive, or whatever. We can improve, morally, via debates like this. It can be like flexing our moral muscles...

pariahjane wrote:
You say theists get judged harshly? Be thankful then that you are only judged 'harshly' on this forum. Atheists are judged far more harshly in the real world, Sugarfree.
Please give examples. I'd like to know.

pariahjane wrote:
You're upset that we're 'trashing your honored belief system'? We are discussing it and disagreeing with you. If you don't want someone to disagree vehemently with you about your honored belief system, then do not come here.
People pretty much seem to think it's okay here to call the Bible a piece of crap. That to me is so highly highly... Ugh. That's not disagreement. That's pure disrespect. Since you all do not have a standard moral guide, I am led to believe you think this is okay...that your morals tell you it's okay to be so totally disrespectful to another human being. So, I guess I'm asking, trying to figure out, if it is truly okay with you? Do you really think such behavior is acceptable, or are you just tripping on a stone in your moral path? (not you in particular...speaking specifically of those who just trash... why should I engage in an argument with someone who is trashing me?)

 

pariahjane wrote:
I believe that Christianity is negative. You can accuse me of bashing your honored belief system all you want, but I am entitled to my opinion. I also think all religion is negative, so don't feel singled out. Since you specified Christianity, that is what I will focus on. So much evil has been done in the name of Christianity. Wars have been fought in its name, people have been burned at the stake in its name. Rights are stripped from those that do not follow its tenets. Our science is faltering because of the roadblocks Christianity is throwing up. If you want to be Christian, that's fine. It's your right in this country to be so. That's the great thing about the separation of church and state.
I used to feel that way about religion, but then I came to the conclusion that it is an over-simplification and a false conclusion. I compare it to this. What do we see on the nightly news? We hear about the murders, robberies, wars, etc. We don't hear about the person that helped the old lady across the street...or specifically, the Christian, who because of their belief system does simple, kind acts everyday. In any given day, the bad is reported, the good remains under the covers, hidden. No one wants to hear about the good. It is "boring". Throughout history, because of Christianity, and I am sure, other religions, people have been doing good for their God. It just, was never reported, because those simple acts of kindness were small acts, not worth bringing to anyone's attention. But when you add them all up, all that unreported goodness, it greatly outweighs the negative. So, I feel your opinion is build upon an over-generalization based on the negative reporting aspects of history. Historians write about the big stuff, most often the bad stuff. Not the simple, everyday, ordinary acts of kindess.

 Regarding road blocks to science, are you talking about stem-cell research?


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Yes, atheists are very

Yes, atheists are very discriminted against! Didn't you see that atheists are less likely to be voted for even if qualified and the person agrees with their position than moslems, homosexuals, women, jews, african-americans or almost anything? And yeah, the Bible is shit! What would you say if there was a book out that said Superman was real, the earth was a cube, 2 + 2 = 7, and anyone who wears blue should be tortured to death? The claims of the babble are no less irrational than these.

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sugarfree wrote: People

sugarfree wrote:

People pretty much seem to think it's okay here to call the Bible a piece of crap. That to me is so highly highly... Ugh. That's not disagreement. That's pure disrespect. Since you all do not have a standard moral guide, I am led to believe you think this is okay...that your morals tell you it's okay to be so totally disrespectful to another human being. So, I guess I'm asking, trying to figure out, if it is truly okay with you? Do you really think such behavior is acceptable, or are you just tripping on a stone in your moral path? (not you in particular...speaking specifically of those who just trash... why should I engage in an argument with someone who is trashing me?)

This is just the thing. It shouldn't be such an affront to you. We're not criticizing the bible to hurt you. We aren't BEING disrespectful to you. We aren't attacking you. It's NOT IMMORAL to disrespect a book. So many theists come here and take our criticisms of religion as a personal insult. Us saying "the bible is crap" doesn't make us horrible people. It's not immoral to call a book crap. I think Dianetics is crap. The Celestine Prophecy is crap. Anything by V.C. Andrews is crap.Undecided

If you want to have productive flowing conversations here, you have GOT to stop taking it so personally and realize that we aren't all suddenly going to start pussyfooting around your weird-ass beliefs. That's what we're trying to fight against! The apathy, the bland nonconfrontation, the "well, I don't believe, but i 'respect the belief'."

'Cause, newsflash, buddy. I don't respect your beliefs.

I respect you. You're a pretty good person to have a discussion with. I respect your right to have your beliefs. The same way I respect my friend's right to believe that she has psychic powers. BUT.....I don't respect your beliefs.

I think they're silly. Look, I'm sorry, but I know a lot of people on here do. If you want to play nice, go to Kill em with Kindness. And please try to realize that calling the bible crap isn't an immoral act, regardless of how strongly you feel about it.


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Roisin Dubh wrote:

Roisin Dubh wrote:

It's always ok to poke fun at people, and to point their hypocrisy where appropriate. Myself first and foremost. Overly sensitive people are rarely any fun, and are usually found behind a push towards political correctness ad nauseam.

Hmmm. One of the reasons I've been alternately concerned about and furious with sugarfree is I can see in her a kindred spirit. According to the work of Dr. Elaine Aron, being what some people call "overly sensitive" is a natural and genetic condition for about 20% of any given population. That includes animals. Apparently, natural selection favors sensitivity in populations.  The "sensitive" are more in tune with what is happening.

I've been "overly sensitive" from birth. Noises, smells, fabrics and emotions affect me more than they seem to affect other people. I was so tuned in to the world that at times it has overwhelmed me. Part of this led to the development of some wonderful creativity and talent; part of it led to my being easily hurt.

When fundamentalist religion was added to the condition of simply being Iruka Naminori, it created a lot of problems. On the one hand I ended up being too curious and intelligent to accept the hogwash that was foisted upon me; on the other, I sort of "needed" it to help me through the day. So, in ways I really understand where sugarfree is coming from.

Part of the problem is sensitivity converts readily to anger. Ewps. I think that's a problem for me and anyone else who is unlucky enough to be born sensitive in the current American culture. We fare much better in cultures like Sweden and China, where sensitivity is more valued.

I've tried to work through some of my reactions to inner turmoil, but the sensitivity itself will not go away because I'm wired that way. When I read Dr. Aron's book, I got pissed off that sensitive people were labeled "priests." I hope that doesn't mean that we sensitive people are mostly destined to be gullible.

Dr. Aron seems to think so. She says sensitive people tend to be more "spiritual." Ugh. I hope not, for the sake of the world. While we can be great healers, we can also get our panties in a bundle rather easily.

I only believe in "spirituality" as a function of the brain. At least in Eastern cultures, those who are sensitive and spiritual don't necessarily have to believe in a holy book and some sky daddy. I wonder what place there is for me here in America: a sensitive person who also tries to be logical?

Anyway, that's my story.

Oh and Glamourkat: I have actually read and enjoyed some V.C. Andrews: the Flowers in the Attic series. By the end, I didn't want to read more V.C. Andrews, thank-you-very-much. It's interesting that when people rag on my taste (or lack thereof), it sometimes really hurts. I don't care much about V.C. Andrews, but there are some things I really do care about that fall into the "fandom" category. When people diss these things, I probably feel a little bit like sugarfree when we diss her religion.

Seriously, I think we should applaud her for listening to alternative views at all. A lot of Christians would have headed for the hills. Yeah, she bitched and moaned about doing just that, but here she is, back for more.

Yeah, I agree that she is demanding the wrong things from our community, but she's here. I pissed and moaned and yelled and screamed when my beliefs were being questioned. I yelled louder than sugarfree, but I think my tone was similar. Eventually, some of it got through. Think about that. Smiling

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sugarfree

sugarfree wrote:

pariahjane wrote:
You say theists get judged harshly? Be thankful then that you are only judged 'harshly' on this forum. Atheists are judged far more harshly in the real world, Sugarfree.
Please give examples. I'd like to know.

 

 

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sugarfree wrote: Treating a

sugarfree wrote:
Treating a person disrespectfully, regardless of their views, is dehumanizing.

Why? How? You need to respect something to consider it human?

sugarfree wrote:

I am learning what the hot buttons are for many of you, and I am trying to learn how to more effectively communicate with you, given that new knowledge, so that I say things more carefully in light of what you find offensive.

This is good. I applaud your efforts. But that doesn't mean I should respect your beliefs. Respect is earned. I realize this could seem insulting but it must be said. You do know what respect actually means right?

the condition of being honored (esteemed or respected or well regarded); "it is held in esteem"; "a man who has earned high regard"

By definition, your faith cannot be respected. It has not earned high regard, just popular regard. It does not deserve honour. It has not shown itself to be factual, or even more useful than useless. Delivering it respect would be akin to respecting a rock.

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sugarfree wrote: My problem

sugarfree wrote:
My problem with your viewpoint is that you put so much weight in science. You base everything you believe about this world on what you know to be true today.

Yes. But that doesn't mean we ignore possibilities for the future or present. The political forum is a perfect example of this.

sugarfree wrote:
What about 10 years from now, 15 years from now? What about some of the things you "know" now based on science, that science itself will debunk in the coming years?

What about them? I really don't have a problem with our knowledge growing and correcting itself. Do you?

sugarfree wrote:
I think science is a valuable tool for understanding this world, but I contend that science is not capable of guiding you in terms of morality because it is a perpetually changing and unfinished "work".

I would also contend science is not a valid tool with which to form morality. But not because it changes or is unfinished. Simply because science is only a process of understanding. It is incapable of providing morality. That comes from society. You can use science to conclude a moral question or scenario, but you can't get the morality itself from science.

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zarathustra
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sugarfree wrote: Of course

sugarfree wrote:
Of course not, zarathustra. We go way back, do we not. Ha ha.

Should you be so lucky. Ha ha.

sugarfree wrote:
You presuppose that he does not exist, so I really don't get the difference.

It's about time you start getting the difference. I am not presupposing anything. I am just asking for evidence. As you have demonstrated, you presuppose that every other god out there doesn't exist, except the one you're batting eyelids at.

sugarfree wrote:

I have offered non-material proof for God, but that is not good enough because you all seem to require material proof.

You still (STILL!) seem unable to comprehend that every other religion can claim "non-material proof" for its god. A good exercise for you would be this: For any future arguments you wish to bring in defense of your faith, first consider whether it can be applied to any other religion. If so, perhaps you shouldn't present the argument to us; and you certainly shouldn't get indignant if the argument gets blown out of the water and crucified to the wall.

sugarfree wrote:
I accept that your adjectives, on some level, may hold truth. However, I do not see why I have to be repeatedly reminded by you all of my faults, many of which you have attributed to me unfairly. If you want, I can go thru your posts and pick out everything I think is less than perfect about you, but I honestly don't believe that is my place as a human being. You are so quick to judge my faults, but I have not heard you admit any of yours.

Um, sugarpie, you are repeatedly reminding us of our anger, hate, and other such glowing attributes. You object to anyone pissing on your religion, but you are content to disparage the other religions ("bald men at the airport", "islamic fascism&quotEye-wink.

Go back to your first thread and observe how I initially thanked you for listening and maintaining an open mind. After a couple of civil exchanges, you accused me of using my knowledge to "try to tear down, and to impress others". You made this cynical and unprovoked accusation rather than continuing the debate. (For the record, I was not showing off, nor have I ever been angry, despite your insistence that I am.) The topic we were discussing was the historical proof for jesus. You essentially never resumed the topic, despite several overtures on my part. So sugar, my initially polite attitude --in appreciation of your "listening" and "open mind"-- changed to meet yours, as it became clear you were not listening. I remember some folk tale which dealt with this hypocrisy very well. Someing about "cast the first stone". Can't quite remember where I read it...


sugarfree wrote:
Once again, as I told JCE I am not here trying to prove I am better than you. What I AM doing, is trying, using differing techniques, to actually talk to you guys. Granted, many of my attempts have fallen flat on their face. I ask you, is it not even the slightest bit possible, that you have misinterpretted my motives, and judged my words based on your understood stereotypes rather than giving me a fair shake.

The title of your thread is "What moves atheists to tears". You relate the emotions you felt when hearing the Coltrane version of "Were you there?", then conclude with the sentence "And this Truth is so magnificent that everything you throw at me pales in comparison".

Precisely what was your technique and motive here? I had to wonder if your thread title implied that atheists were not as well moved to tears as you were. I'm sorry, but if you're unwilling to discuss the lack of historical evidence for jesus, you honestly can't expect this "technique" of yours to be of any purpose. Without something to demonstrate that there was actually a jesus to cry over, I can't help but see this as a bout of tears over a fictional character.

Sugarfree, I'm sure you're a nice person, and you'll have to believe me when I say I am also. But if you're expecting a fluffy debate with a Barry Manilow soundtrack, I'm afraid no can do. At least not until you start "listening".

There are no theists on operating tables.

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Quote: I will reiterate

Quote:
I will reiterate what I just said on the other string.  None of us, not me, not you, not anyone here is exempt from being on the giving or receiving end of that which occured in the holocaust.

Excuse me ... ? from where did the holocaust actually come from within this thread? and why is nobody extempt from being a part of it, exactly ?

Quote:
I would consider civil unions. I would not support gay marriage.

From the point of view of the state, that's all that matters...

Quote:
No, it's not just my problem. Are you sensitive to other people's feelings, are you tolerant of people who are different than you? Yes or No. Either you are or you aren't.

Answer: sometimes.

Quote:
How about we fight our common enemy who has already declared war on us both first, rather than fighting amongst ourselves while they engage in their exceptionally effective propaganda war, and while they plan ways to kill us all and conquer the world. Then, we can address my "dogma" after the dust has cleared.

Nobody has declared any war on you, dude... The world is already conquered, and it's been so for hundreds of years...

Quote:
I have relied on facts AND emotions to get where I am regarding my beliefs. Why are you all against emotions? This seems to be a comment thread.

Unfortunately for you, emotions have absolutely no influence on the truth. It matters not how much you FEEL there's someone behind you, the fact remains that it's nobody there.

Quote:
People pretty much seem to think it's okay here to call the Bible a piece of crap. That to me is so highly highly... Ugh. That's not disagreement. That's pure disrespect.

No ammount of respect or disrespect will change the fact that it actually is a piece of crap... You're practically saying to send the bears to kill the kids for calling you bald, when, in fact, you are bald... oh, wait... someone did that already...

Quote:
that your morals tell you it's okay to be so totally disrespectful to another human being. So, I guess I'm asking, trying to figure out, if it is truly okay with you? Do you really think such behavior is acceptable, or are you just tripping on a stone in your moral path? (not you in particular...speaking specifically of those who just trash... why should I engage in an argument with someone who is trashing me?)

I'm curious: what do you feel about the Qu'ran? Or about the Talmud? Or about the Epic of Gilgamesh?

Now, how about flat-Eartherners? How about those that believe they've been abducted by aliens?

Answer, these, please.

Quote:
Throughout history, because of Christianity, and I am sure, other religions, people have been doing good for their God.

...and for all the rest of the paragraph:

You do admit that doing good things does not relate to one particular religion. Doing bad things, does, however, as most religious wars were one religion against the other, most religious crimes were one religion against its opposants. Truly you cannot have either of these without religion. But charities, homeless shelters, etc., that you can have without religion.

So the simple conclusion is: since good things aren't related to religion itself, but some bad things are, why keep religion ? Hence the nagative aspect.

Inquisition - "The flames are all long gone, but the pain lingers on..."
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sugarfree wrote: I'm not

sugarfree wrote:
I'm not playing victim. This is simply an exercise to see if we can actually be civil. I can take your shots. It's not about that.

Oh?  So this is an experiment on your part to see if you can get us to change how we post in the Atheist vs Theist thread?

The way you are playing victim (and, yes, you ARE playing victim), it would be the same thing if you went into a strip club and requested that the ladies quit stripping because it offended you.

Again, if you want to be assured of civility, please restrict yourself to the Kill 'Em With Kindness thread.  If you're going to continue to post in this thread, quit whining.

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sugarfree wrote:

sugarfree wrote:
I'm not playing victim. This is simply an exercise to see if we can actually be civil. I can take your shots. It's not about that.
Again, if you want civility (and no one has been uncivil, but I guess you need special civility), go to the Kill 'em with Kindness forum

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.


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Oftentimes I have simply

Oftentimes I have simply reiterated a Christian point, and then, to my surprise several people attack what I have said, called me a liar, arrogant, rude, prideful, etc.

Though I personally tend to shy away from ad hominid and dislike it when people do this, I have observed (something I have said before) that you really do not make arguments. You just dont. You showed us poor argumentative skills in that disasterous first thread you started. People are going to get mad at you because your position is hypocritical.

 And I’m left wondering, what on earth did I say that incited so much anger?

You make people annoyed not angry.

 Truth is, I am a caring person who wants to improve and make a positive impact on the world.  I love animals, I respect the earth, I think we need to take better care of it.  If I’ve harmed someone, I want to make amends, etc.  So, I honestly do not understand where your anger comes from.  Is it simply because I don't agree with you?

I'm not angry, I just think you are wrong and have a highly irrational style of arguing. If you want common ground, you should start a thread explaning why you believe in God, and we can all find something to argue about rationally from there.

 Taking my Christianity out of the equation, I am a person, I have opinions, I feel strongly about my opinions because they have been formed from decades of searching, thinking, turning things over in my mind.

What does that have to do with anything? This is an argument from emotion. The atheist v theist thread is about argument. Defense of a position or critique of an opponent's position comes from argumentative logic. Because you lack this ability, you criticize us for having honed this skill. There is hypocritical projectionism attached to this way of thinking,

 I am no different than you, in that respect.  It just so happens that you came to different conclusions than me.  But, I can tell, you feel equally strongly about your beliefs and feel I would be better off if I were atheist.  You know that I feel you would have a richer experience in this life if you believed in God, not necessarily even the Christian God.  So, tho our opinions are different, the way we are approach each other is really not so different.

 The way we approach each other is not different? It's a gaping chasm. We approach things in a highly objective way. Every belief system is subject to ruthless critique. Your's is highly subjective, and grounded in emotion.

 n light of that, what I do not understand is why we cannot converse like adults, hear each other’s view points, accept that we are both attempting to influence the other side with those view points, and let go of all the meanness and personal put downs?

Because I've never seen you actually contribute to an argument about these issues. All you do is make arguments from emotions. This is very annoying. This is exactly what you are doing know.

I am never going to get everyone to see the need to worship God.  Most likely, you are not going to deconvert me, nor am I going to convert you.  So, can we, instead start listening, and refrain from judging others ideas as stupid, baseless, juvenile?

Show me the need to worship God. Seriously. Even if physcologists and neurologists proved that humans have a need to worship God, this would not have the slightest bearing on the truth value of the proposition. Please do not make such naive argumentum ad consequentiam. 

Listening is a two-way street. I listen to you, but never find anything of value because you dont make arguments or listen to us. you want respect? Then defend your God! Get into arguments about ontology and epistemology. Show us the rational coherency of your beliefs! Then we will take you seriously! Don't just whine and whine and whine. We will not take you seriously until you give us a reason to do so. You are very good at putting emotional spin on everything to cover up the fact that your belief system is held together by spit and prayers. If you want us to believe otherwise, you better give us a coherent reason.

 Also, I do not feel the “delusional” label you have placed on theists is going to get us anywhere positive.

 I dont think you are delusional because you believe in God. I just think you are wrong. I think you are delusional because you waste everyone's time by pulling off stunts like this when this time could be much better spent showing us why your belief system is rational. You claim to have thought about it for years! Excellent! THEN SHOW US! Seriously, I'd be happy to critique it. I'd be happy to have sane discourse with you. But annoying the whole forum then whining because you do not understand why the forum is annoyed is a vicious circle.

  I can just as easily call you delusional.

You would have to defend that proposition by pointing out the flaws in our belief system. But the horror! This would require some rational thought.

 The fact is, you are not in my brain, I am not in yours.  You have not had my experiences, I have not had yours.  So, you can no more honestly judge me delusional than I can judge you.

 That's not true, and is a circular appeal to emotion. If someone holds what you believe to be nonsensical beliefs which they cannot justify, you have every right to call them delusional until they show you otherwise (BIG HINT: The stuff in italics was important)

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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People pretty much seem to

People pretty much seem to think it's okay here to call the Bible a piece of crap.

The Bible is a work of literature like the Quran (The Quran is actually better IMHO and I dont like Islam) . The fact that people would treat it like some kind of higher truth is nonsense. If we treated it like a book, and not like the thoughts of a God, then it becomes just a book worthy of literary esteem.

But if you think the bible contains the meaning of life, then yes, it is a piece of crap. All about context. 

That to me is so highly highly... Ugh. That's not disagreement. That's pure disrespect.

Get used to it. We're used to people disrespecting us. The bible is full of internal contradictions, hateful theology (from particularly nasty charlatans like Paul) and ghastly stories. It's a book. Get used to it.  

Since you all do not have a standard moral guide, I am led to believe you think this is okay...that your morals tell you it's okay to be so totally disrespectful to another human being.

Like I said before, if you cannot provide justification for your belief, you cannot criticize us for trashing it. You argue from emotion with passion but no sanity. 

So, I guess I'm asking, trying to figure out, if it is truly okay with you? Do you really think such behavior is acceptable, or are you just tripping on a stone in your moral path?

I think there is nothing wrong with ripping someone's belief to shreds so long as the arguments rational not emotion (BIG HINT). I don't care how sacroscant they are to you. If I think you are wrong, I will point it out. You need to let of your emotions, and stoically defend your beleifs. 

(not you in particular...speaking specifically of those who just trash... why should I engage in an argument with someone who is trashing me?)

What do you want from us? If we tell you your belief system is crap, you can either whine (like now) or you can defend it. LIKE I SAID BEFORE, THAT WILL GET YOU RESPECT. Right now everyone thinks you're a bit of an idiot because you seemingly cannot defend your beleifs. All you can do is whine when someone calls them silly. Which they are. 

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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My problem with your

My problem with your viewpoint is that you put so much weight in science.

Of course. I get paid to do that.

You base everything you believe about this world on what you know to be true today.

 

What about 10 years from now, 15 years from now? What about some of the things you "know" now based on science, that science itself will debunk in the coming years? I think science is a valuable tool for understanding this world,

but I contend that science is not capable of guiding you in terms of morality because it is a perpetually changing and unfinished "work". If want to have a moral compass, you need the magnetic north, which is God, otherwise you will get lost.

This is an absurd non sequiter. Even basic philosophical axiology would tell you this is nonsense. The false dichotomy employed is here is to a mind-numbing degree. Science is morally neutral. However, the false dichotomy comes from God as being the inherent alternative. Like I said before, even if physcologists could axiomatically demonstrate the need for such a being, it has no reflection on the truth value of the entity.

you are essentially telling me that you need God to fill a phsycological void. Personally, anyone who argues with this absurd appeal to emotion is invoking abdication of human responsibility. We have a responsibility for ourselves to decide what is right and wrong. Religious people are so terrified of this notion of an axiologt different from their own that they use a physcoanalytical projectionist technique to arrogantly invoke the notion that God is an inherent requisite for morality. This has never been logically demonstrated, ever.

Well, obedience and morality are two different things. I am highly amused by how you refer to the religous texts as moral guides.

You have used science to debunk a great percentage of this world's moral guides, i.e., religious texts.So then, what do you use instead? What is your magnetic north? i.e., that which keeps you on the straight and narrow path of morality and goodness?

Again, an absurd non sequiter. Religious texts are not moral guides. Again, the theist preaches abdication of moral responsibility, reducing human reason to nothing, as if we are incapable of our own axiology! Religious texts preach obedience not morality. Huge stretches of text in the holy books are barbaric stories and evil anecdotes.

Put it another way, if your looking for slavish obedience or a good, rocking tale about lions eating Christians and people nailing each other to two-by-fours, pick up a religious text. But if you want to live a good, moral life using it, well....you've got a better chance of finding a virgin in an all-boys Catholic orphanage.

And my morality is grounded in humanist philosophy, compassion based on reason and respect for humanity.

It is because of their contradictory nature that religious guides cannot be moral guides ergo your argument collapses.

If someone cherry-picks their scripture, choosing the pieces they like and ignoring the parts they find unpalatable, what right do they have to criticize atheists for lack of absolutist morality? Indeed, it begs another question. They (theists) must have another source of morality which guides them to select only scripture which does not command them to bludgeon their children with heavy stones. What this means is that religion is merely a litmus test for someone’s morality. If you are immoral and believe it is right to kill people by flying a plane into a building, well, your Holy Book can certainly iterate that for you, as evidenced by the nineteen men who did just that. If you are moral and believe in love and compassion, then if you scour enough, you can find that too. So, that means that there must be an external source of morality that guides someone to decide which passages are right, and which are not.

This in itself completely defeats the notion of morality from scripture. When society is violent, the interpretation of scripture is violent. When society is complacent, people fall for sappy Romantic-era insistence of theologians that the Bible doesn’t really warrant you to kill people, when in fact it does. Now matter how someone tries to construe it, absolutist morality from a Holy Book is a logical contradiction. Everyone’s interpretation is different. Don’t think so? Check how many distinct denominations of Christianity exist today. Those lunatics holding up signs saying Thank God for AIDS are just as much Christians as the run-of-the-mill peaceful churchgoer.

Ironically, any theist who says a violent Inquisition preist is not a true Christian is merely defeating his own argument by admitting that religion is subject to the forces of social and moral change which of course, is caused by secularism. The passages that people follow and interpret would merely reflect a litmus test of society as a whole. Since it is so open to interpretation because it doesn't really have any absolute message, the theists adovocation of absolutist morality from the Bible collapses on itself.

This brings me back to the issue of theists cherry-picking their scripture. Social progress has rendered certain codes of the ancient texts obsolete, thus they are ignored save by a few rather frightful fringe elements of religion. After all, any logical person will recognize that we have certainly become more humane and ethical as a society since the time of Christ. This, to me, is why it is so amusing for someone to claim they get their morality from a book which was written at a time when (ironically, as evidenced by this same text), crucifixion was considered an acceptable punishment for blasphemy.

It is secular influence, like the Enlightenment era and non-religious judiciary, that is responsible for much of what we consider to be “social progress” in the West. Conservative taboos are broken down by revolutionaries, not revisionists and certainly not religion. Religion has been forced to be extremely malleable when it comes social progress, because it is not an institution that changes very well. This may explain what we see in Islamic countries, and also why an alarming number of the faithful seem to be attempting to reverse the Zeitgeist.

Humans do not need a book to be moral, unless they are insane, childish, deluded or just stupid. The complete and utter failure to appreciate the highly complex nature of our morality (morality is mostly nueroplastic/synaptogenic), not to mention the utter failure to dictate that Origin belief has no bearing on morality because everyone acknowledges that by the creation of society, humans have fully departed from their evolutionary origins. Religious arguments in the context are naive, silly, and show a lack of appreciation for history and sociology. 

 

 

 

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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"My problem with your

"My problem with your viewpoint is that you put so much weight in science."

 How can putting weight in science be a negative?

When I believe something that science has told me, it is because whatever they're telling me has been thoroughly tested and  re-tested by many independent scientists using the scientific method.

Without the critical thinking methods employed by science, I would be suseptable to any claim that is made, regardless of its quality.

Without scientific scrutiny claims for the existance of bigfoot, ghosts, astrology, vampires, the loch ness monster, etc would be taken on faith just as the existance of god is. 

 


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sugarfree wrote: I will

sugarfree wrote:

I will reiterate what I just said on the other string. None of us, not me, not you, not anyone here is exempt from being on the giving or receiving end of that which occured in the holocaust.

It seems, based on my observations over the past weeks, that those with theist under their name are treated quite differently here (So watch out. But your BF is here so you'll be treated better, I'm sure). What starts off as a decent conversation becomes ugly and the theist starts getting bashed. The theists character gets bashed, the theist gets judged harshly and unnecessarily. Comments disrespectful to all religions fall off people's tongues like it is nothing, they do not even flinch or feel they are wrong in totally trashing someones honored belief system. When the theist tries to explain their point, from the THEIST point of view, or tried to reiterate or discuss their own beliefs, they get called names like bigot and liar. Is this normal and healthy to you? Is this how people should talk to each other? I have never once said atheists are ignorant/liars/mentally ill/etc., that the world would be better without atheism. I have never called anyone's "ridiculous" or a waste of time... Nor have I used any cuss words when addressing folks. That is just not how I talk to people. I have learned that it is wrong to talk to people that way.

The negative energy towards theism, Christianity in particular, is dangerous. Plain and simple. It opens oneself up to hate, and once hate enters the heart...any number of things can happen...in the 1940's it led to the holocaust.

I think it is perfectlly acceptable for me to bring up the holocaust, to remind people that those Jews were slaughtered because people thought they were stupid, liars, because people did not agree with their lifestyle, their religion, anything about them.

We all have in our hearts the potential to do tremendous good, or tremendous harm. I for one, do not ever wish to forget that, and I feel it is good for us to remind each other of that fact as well. (Yes, I used the word fact this time, on purpose.)

 

The day the atheists rise up and mark my body with my symbol of faith and ostracize me from my friends and family is the day I will compare them to Nazis.  They don't hate you.  They don't want to kill you.  They don't feel that you are dirtying up the population with you Christian disease and weakening the race of good strong humans.  They disagree with you.

And if you really want, I'm sure I can go on adnauseum about how they are all going to hell and how they are all wrong and evil and piss them off like a lot of theists.  If they dont spend countless threads cussing me out and making from of me, then it is because I have enough respect for them to say, "hey we don't agree.  That's cool.  Oh you feel that homosexuality is okay, and a gay couple should be allowed to marry?  That's cool.  I agree with you."

or possibly, "hey, you think killing people in the name of church is bad.  So do I.  How about that!"

or even, "You don't believe in God.  That's interesting.  I do believe in God.  Let us share our differences and not try to kill one another.. because that is bad."

They will treat me with respect as long as I treat them with respect.  And if they don't, then oh  well.  I came to them to discuss life.  Not the other way around.  If I don't like it I will leave.  My bf won't be "protecting" me from the mean old atheists.  I can take care of myself thanks.  Don't single me out as getting special treatment because I am dating an atheist.  Trust me, they disagree with my views too.  Even the bf disagrees with me 99% of the time.

Ah, the pitter patter of tiny feet in huge combat boots.


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I think Splenda forgets that

I think Splenda forgets that most atheists take a strong stance gainst violence of any kind.  Most atheists believe that to resort to violence is more of a failure than to lose an argument, any argument.  Yes some people may call us militant atheists, but we are only militant to the extent that we hold our views very strongly and will defend them.  Most atheists have had to develop, at least partially, their own system of ethics and morals.  We do borrow from each other quite a bit, but I think the one universal would still be, treat others as you wish to be treated.  That's not to say we won't respond in kind, but as far as physical violence goes I see no lingering atheist terrorist threats.  that's just not our style.

No Gods, Know Peace.