Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
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28-11-2011, 01:38 PM (This post was last modified: 28-11-2011 01:42 PM by Seasbury.)
RE: Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
(28-11-2011 11:36 AM)Denicio Wrote:  Well, i live in the deep south, so everyone here is baptist by default.

The way momma raised me is to open the door for everyone and help the elderly.
Heck, if i see someone filling their car with groceries and they are about done, i'll ask them if i can take their cart for them (regardless of age). Thats more of a selfish move for me as i want to reduce the ghost driven shopping carts. But its in the spirit of helping people.

But when i do, and someone smiles and says "God Bless You" i smile back and say its not necessary as i am a "Friendly Neighborhood Atheist" (props to Dan Barker).

It ALWAYS gets a reaction of a grimmace, but it plants the seed and causes some to think that "He just helped me like a good christian fellow, but he isnt...bzzzt bzzt...does not compute....bzzzt bzzt". If ALL i do is plant the seed.....then i have done my part.

Dennis

Dennis - It's a good plan.

Several weeks ago my wife and I went out to dinner with a former co-worker of hers. Many friends and family of the co-worker showed up for this impromptu dinner and I ended up sitting next to her brother, who just so happened to be in catholic seminary school studying to become a priest. He insisted on saying a blessing before eating and spent the bulk of the evening wanting to discuss religion, despite my attempts to change the subject.

My wife was very "impressed" that I didn't get into an argument with him and kept my cool throughout, but he never point blank asked me about my religion; although he did ask if we went to church and I simply replied "no, no, no church..." without a qualifier.

I try to weigh things before engaging in a debate. In this case, there would have been little point to get into a discussion with a seminary student and aspiring priest who believes he's filled to the brim with the holy spirit and all it could have led to was spoiling an evening with friends.

Under different circumstances I would have relished that conversation...time and a place for everything I guess...
(27-11-2011 02:49 PM)Kaos MD Wrote:  I think that atheists need to show that we aren't just "baby-eating god mocking satanists" by helping out the community in much the same way that theists do. However, being confrontational about it is the only way we will get our voice heard. At least in the USA, atheism is the underdog so we need to be on the attack until our stance can be affirmed.

Kaos - not sure if you are aware of this, but there are plenty of good "baby-eating" members of this forum. Ask for recipes! Tongue

I'm leaning more toward confrontation, but it's the tack that is the question.

Is attacking religion at the heart of the matter the way ahead? Just seems that pisses believers off and while cathartic, doesn't serve a useful purpose. ...

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28-11-2011, 02:42 PM
RE: Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
(28-11-2011 01:38 PM)Seasbury Wrote:  Is attacking religion at the heart of the matter the way ahead? Just seems that pisses believers off and while cathartic, doesn't serve a useful purpose. ...

My feeling is that you're right about this. Believers are told to expect atheists to attack their religion. By doing so we show the divide between "them angry atheists with their tricky words and pretend science" and "us straightforward Christians". If on the other hand we just get on with life and don't make a big deal over it, religious people will learn that we're just as nice and friendly as everyone else, with more free time on Sundays Smile

Of course, the flip side is often that ye olde religious crowd with their tricky words and pretend science tend to attack us friendly straightforward atheists for no reason whatsoever...
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28-11-2011, 02:49 PM
 
RE: Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
As INSANE as this sounds, after being forced to 'self identify' as an athiest...the next question i generally get is "So you believe in Satan?". NOT KIDDING!

The igornance is astounding!

Here in the the south, one of the first things asked of you after you are introduced to a new person is "SO...what church do you go to?".

Its ASSUMED you GO...just a matter of which one so they can size you up!

I choose my battles wisely. At times i have fun with the whole Baby eating Atheist approach...then by the end of the converstion (that ususally involves eithics and morals) i close with the "Gee, it appears i am MORE moral than your god, as i dont support rape, incest, slavery or genocide....as a matter of fact Mr Chistian..how many times have you done these things? Golly Gee, that makes YOU more moral than your own god". That ALWAYS gets them thinking :-)

D
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28-11-2011, 04:37 PM
RE: Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
(28-11-2011 02:49 PM)Denicio Wrote:  As INSANE as this sounds, after being forced to 'self identify' as an athiest...the next question i generally get is "So you believe in Satan?". NOT KIDDING!

The igornance is astounding!

Here in the the south, one of the first things asked of you after you are introduced to a new person is "SO...what church do you go to?".

Its ASSUMED you GO...just a matter of which one so they can size you up!

I choose my battles wisely. At times i have fun with the whole Baby eating Atheist approach...then by the end of the converstion (that ususally involves eithics and morals) i close with the "Gee, it appears i am MORE moral than your god, as i dont support rape, incest, slavery or genocide....as a matter of fact Mr Chistian..how many times have you done these things? Golly Gee, that makes YOU more moral than your own god". That ALWAYS gets them thinking :-)

D

I've only lived in the south for about 3 years, but I found that out quickly. People even bring their bibles to school everyday, as if that will give them some sudden insight. How do I find the behavior of a curve? Oh wait! Good thing I brought my handy dandy bible! Now let's see, numbers 2:21...
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28-11-2011, 04:51 PM
RE: Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
Great article, it was a good read!
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28-11-2011, 07:49 PM (This post was last modified: 28-11-2011 07:53 PM by Glaucus.)
RE: Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
(28-11-2011 01:38 PM)Seasbury Wrote:  Is attacking religion at the heart of the matter the way ahead? Just seems that pisses believers off and while cathartic, doesn't serve a useful purpose. ...

It's never about the person you're arguing against, because they will hold their ground even when proven wrong, it's about getting the message out there so that the audience will start to think. That's why I enjoy talking religion in groups. Getting your opponent to doubt is nearly impossible, but getting an observer to doubt (or acknowledge their doubt) isn't too difficult. That's what got me to become an atheist, I watched Hitchens, Dawkins, and Harris on youtube and realized that they were saying what I was thinking.

Of all the ideas put forth by science, it is the principle of Superposition that can undo any power of the gods. For the accumulation of smaller actions has the ability to create, destroy, and move the world.

"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." -W. E. Henley
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30-11-2011, 07:20 PM
RE: Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
Full text here.

Do You Believe in Atheists? Distrust Is Central to Anti-Atheist Prejudice

As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
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30-11-2011, 07:51 PM
RE: Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
(30-11-2011 07:20 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  Full text here.

Do You Believe in Atheists? Distrust Is Central to Anti-Atheist Prejudice

Wow - if only I would have waited another week I wouldn't have dropped $12 to APA for that study Sad

It's actually a well written study and I thought, at the time, worth buying...

I still think the biggest driver of the distrust issue is this:

One of the drivers for this inherent religious prejudice is the inability to understand how an atheist, not being bound by the belief in a supernatural overseer, could behave according to religious norms - i.e., live their life as though they too were subject to supernatural supervision.

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30-11-2011, 08:06 PM
RE: Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
(30-11-2011 07:51 PM)Seasbury Wrote:  Wow - if only I would have waited another week I wouldn't have dropped $12 to APA for that study Sad

It's actually a well written study and I thought, at the time, worth buying...

I still think the biggest driver of the distrust issue is this:

One of the drivers for this inherent religious prejudice is the inability to understand how an atheist, not being bound by the belief in a supernatural overseer, could behave according to religious norms - i.e., live their life as though they too were subject to supernatural supervision.

Sorry for your lose of $12 Sad. Either way, I think your observation really nails the problem on the head. I'm good friends with a theist, and he just can't wrap his mind around the idea of living without a god. Therefore, it makes it hard for him and other theists to understand atheists.
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30-11-2011, 08:06 PM
RE: Anti-atheist Distrust and combating Religious Prejudice
(27-11-2011 11:57 AM)Seasbury Wrote:  I've posted several of my blog articles on this forum in the past - primarily in the Politics Forum, and haven't received much feedback or discussion.

Sorry!

I hate not getting feedback or discussion, but I've gotten used to it. Both here and on richarddawkins.net I tend to kill off discussion, and very few people post after I do. (Is it my breath scaring them away? I'll bet it is.)

I haven't read your post yet, but I will. Starting a topic was a good way to draw some comments, though.

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
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