Can Christians and Atheists Find Common Ground? Part II
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26-04-2011, 09:12 AM
Can Christians and Atheists Find Common Ground? Part II
I'm a little wiped after putting in these graphics and sources, but here's my latest...

http://centersolid.blogspot.com/2011/04/as-long-as.html

Hope you enjoy Blush

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27-04-2011, 03:18 AM
RE: Can Christians and Atheists Find Common Ground? Part II
So here are a couple comments received on this article - scary stuff! I'm working up a response, but I can't get to it until later today....

Steve said...

Sean, the thing that i find troubling in alot of your writings is this. The morals, and values, set for to govern and guide this country. Are the very things that keep you and your family safe, and able to believe what ever you want. And you are free to disagree and decent etc. These are the things the founders gleened from the Bible. The ten commandments, Jesus, etc. We, are not your enemy. WE, have hope for you. We,, want great things for you. And we, , know you can choose to ignore us. WE,, are fine with that my friend. But,, what WE, put together here. Protects YOU and your lovely family from the evil of the world. Like the Nazi's, or communist, or dictators etc. This thinking, of moral value. This is why we are great. And, safe. So far that is. You unknowningly, are helping the enemys of America.
April 27, 2011 12:42 AM
Steve said...

We must find common ground. Or we will fall to either the tyranny of communist China, or of Islam.

"A house divided against itself cannot stand." I believe this government cannot endure, permanently, half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved — I do not expect the house to fall — but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one thing or all the other. Either the opponents of slavery will arrest the further spread of it, and place it where the public mind shall rest in the belief that it is in the course of ultimate extinction; or its advocates will push it forward, till it shall become alike lawful in all the States, old as well as new — North as well as South."
Abraham Lincoln

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27-04-2011, 11:57 AM
RE: Can Christians and Atheists Find Common Ground? Part II
Here's a take on secularism from a The Guardian writer:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/...secularism

The God excuse: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument. "God did it." Anything we can't describe must have come from God. - George Carlin

Whenever I'm asked "What if you're wrong?", I always show the asker this video: http://youtu.be/iClejS8vWjo Screw Pascal's wager.
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27-04-2011, 12:34 PM
RE: Can Christians and Atheists Find Common Ground? Part II
Steve's comments are proof of themselves about the theist stance. "We can find common ground, as long as you accept that your morality comes from us and to question that is to aid the enemy (other faiths)."

I just hope you can educate him on some of the other "morals" found in the bible.

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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27-04-2011, 01:18 PM
RE: Can Christians and Atheists Find Common Ground? Part II
Steve needs a reality check. I think the biggest thing he needs to see is just because it's in our law and in the bible doesn't mean that law came from the bible. Not everything in the bible is bad. Most people agree, murder is bad. The foundering fathers really didn't need to open the bible to figure that one out. And think we can all be thankful that they didn't, in fact, base our laws on the bible. Ten minutes skimming through Leviticus or Deuteronomy can confirm this.

I don't believe Jesus is the son of God until I see the long form birth certificate!
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27-04-2011, 01:43 PM
 
Music Why would I want to find common ground w/theism?
The common ground that we all in America share, is citizenship. And we can't even agree as to what entitlements are afforded there, because of the striation between gays and straights. And between Christians and everyone else, when it comes to running every aspect of this nations law and order.

Quote:"I have two grandchildren — Maggie is 11, Robert is 9, I am convinced that if we do not decisively win the struggle over the nature of America, by the time they're my age they will be in a secular atheist country, potentially one dominated by radical Islamists and with no understanding of what it once meant to be an American." Newt Gingrich

Does Newt sound like he's up for finding common ground? He was elected as a law maker in this country and hoped to one day be President, and he's that stupid in public? Rolleyes He'd laugh at the notion of common ground when he clearly thinks there's a battle for America against a new enemy, going on. And he has a gay daughter! Equal rights for Newt's child! I'd rally for that.

However, for Newt he can't even concede common ground with respect to consensual adult sex, relationships and lawful equal entitlement in marriage.

Sea's , you should really consider joining Theologyonline.com, or some other Christian discussion forums and post these blog articles there, to at least not only provoke conversation but plant the seed for consideration. Wink
One comment that I received, when I posted your part I article on a forum was, the reference to Invisible man in the sky, was taken to be dismissive and already a sign of disrespect to theists. So then,how could common ground be hoped to be achieved when straight off there is no respect afforded the religious or their god?

In part I that you posted here, I gave a simple straightforward, "No!" as an answer.
Now, I'll elaborate. (Oh god's watch her talk the ears off corn in Nebraska again!RolleyesTongue)

For common ground to be achieved, theists first would have to give ground. They would have to relinquish what they see as the god given right to save America from sin, vice, errant free will, homosexuality, and any other threat that is perceived among the individual, the collective and their agenda that, regardless of their own inability to find common ground as is evidenced in secularism, America needs vigilant policing so as to insure she remain a "Christian Nation".

I don't foresee that happening in the lifetime of any of us. Not even in the lifetime of our children. Because in that regard, we must remember "Jesus Camp". Wherein militant Christians proudly train their children to be just as zealous in defending the faith of the Christ as their parents believe Palestinian Muslim children are being trained in their respective camps to defend Allah and the teachings of his prophet, Muhammad.

So in that respect,and as just one example, Christians are insuring the future generations are instructed to be vigilant for the cause of god and the Christ so as to insure they hold their ground against all sinful errant cults. (As they perceive everyone else to be wrong, compared to the only one true religion that is Christianity).

Common ground would also imply we as non-theists and theists hold something in common, aside from the religious or non-religious ideologies. However, that's not the same as thinking what is held in common is like unto a fondness for chocolate, or pastels, or new cars. The moral fiber of both the non-theist and the theist are grounded in their understanding of what it means to be someone who accepts atheism as logical and correct, which then has no common ground in itself to theism, which holds hope, faith, that reality is not solely within their control. And that something unseen, anthropomorphic or not, bears human characteristics and super natural powers and is a co-creator of every aspect of life. Both the subjective interpretation and the objective behind the scenes machinations.

And as such the theist defers to that hoped for, or in the case of some, that absolute and true living being to inspire, guide, watch over, answer prayer, influence outcome, police and judge the theists behaviors as it's earthly mortal representative.

And so, aside from being constantly vigilant against the Devil's influence, the theists is constantly on guard against that other antithesis of the divine. The one, the many, the collective, the perceived agenda, of the unbeliever(s) in all the theist holds dear. Which is keeping god first in all things, as their Bible commands. And that includes the parochial, the ecclesiastical, and the secular realms.

That's why Neo-creationists created "Intelligent Design", so as to hope to infiltrate government public school systems and teach religious creationism in the guise of science. It's why there are prayer groups in public schools, but not yet and not for the lack of a concentrated effort to overcome, prayer in school. It's why religious bigotry is interjected throughout every aspect of the secular community, under the cloak of religious freedom and thus entitlement to continue the mission. No matter how subtle the tactics are to keep that agenda on point.

Christians, as a whole and as the majority religious population of the U.S. and the world, which reinforces their notion they are indeed correct because they've achieved that number with god's blessing, can never give ground to those they see as inspired by the Devil, deluded with sin and thus damned until they find redemption, because they rule by majority the ground they'd have to relinquish in part if they were to elect to respect a minority group in comparison to their number, who literally stand against everything the theist holds true and dear.
Especially when for the theist, their soul and the soul of this nation, depend on their steadfastness.

It's never going to happen. For common ground to be achieved, respect would have to be achieved and shared first, for all things theist and atheist among the two camps. And that would require that each side agree there's a common good to be found in the philosophy, rationality of each side. And that's not going to happen because religion is born from the irrational. And for the theist, the rational is what helps insure damnation in the first place.
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27-04-2011, 02:38 PM
RE: Can Christians and Atheists Find Common Ground? Part II
GK - you're a fantastic thinker! Really enjoy reading your posts!

I admit to a certain amount of skepticism when I wrote part 1. My going in thought before writing it was along the same lines as your short response: "no."

That said, I do think at that micro level, it's possible. I have many theist friends (truth be told, too many theist friends) and there are several (not many) that I can engage with in good theological debate that is not intended to convince the other that either is right or wrong - akin to jousting for fun and not for the win. We can deal with each other on common ground in the sense there exists a level of mutual respect for the others view - so I used that model as my starting point to see if it could extrapolate.

Institutionally, the two sides can not achieve what individuals can for the doctrinal attitudes you highlight. But it was fun to watch the debates ensue and "check the pulse" of many outside my little circle of friends - which is why I enjoy this forum very much. I really love reading through these threads and reading the ideas people bring here. I don't always chime in because I'm time challenged and can't often offer such a cogent reply such as the one you put up above.

I've been wanting to write this last article for quite awhile now, but I needed the right context to bring it about - on the heels of "common ground" seemed the appropriate time Smile

Really appreciate the folks that take the time to read these pieces and I really hope it's time not wasted Smile

Sean

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27-04-2011, 04:30 PM
 
RE: Can Christians and Atheists Find Common Ground? Part II
(27-04-2011 02:38 PM)Seasbury Wrote:  GK - you're a fantastic thinker! Really enjoy reading your posts!
[Image: 21.gif] Do you drink?
Tongue

Quote:I admit to a certain amount of skepticism when I wrote part 1. My going in thought before writing it was along the same lines as your short response: "no."...

I can say if I thought your articles were not worth my time, I'd know that by the first paragraph. Thank you for taking the time to make us think and for doing your part in bridging the gap so as to inspire dialog between atheists and theists alike. Smile

I have tried to win an argument at times when I'm in a debate with a theist. I admit it. Probably because I use to be one and so I presume myself to know all their counter points because I was raised to parrot them when the occasion arose. So now that none of that makes sense, and I long ago took the time to dig, which wasn't that far down Wink, and know that truth for myself rather than simply parroting something new, it's a matter of trading places.

Is it any wonder that one of the earliest scriptures in the closed canon of the Bible, a designation in itself that says what amounts to, "this is all that was inspired by god's breath and he shall have no new messages for human kind. It's official! " , you shall not question god.
And then there's that reiteration behind what inspires the overall fear paradigm, "fear of the lord is wisdom."
It's like any other terrorist decree. Do! Obey! Or die!

Micro-dialog, goes on all the time I think even among the theist community members who have no respect for atheists at all, saving to think they need saving. That's why bus ad's, billboards, atheist titles out selling theist in 2007, lecture tours by Dawkins, Hitchens and others, the American Atheist convention, and not atheistic but definitely an in your face ommission when Obama did not give a Good Friday or Easter declaration this year, but had done so for Ramadan and other faith's holy days, is that Christianity and deferring to that what for so long occupied the lead in the mainstream, is over.

When I was a kid atheism appearing front and center in the public domain, as in ad's, billboards, teeshirts, anti-tracts, wasn't even conceivable. Now, while there's yet to be an atheist billboard or bus ad in my State that I'm aware of, at least it's possible.

So while change is slow in coming,what's began and is gaining momentum in the atheist community as well as all those oppressed by mainstream thinking, can do nothing but move forward and gain more ground for itself.

Maybe Christians can realize that at one time in the world, it was they who were persecuted, prosecuted and oppressed as a minority. Maybe that will help in recognizing it's impossible for all people to think of only one way of living a good and moral life.

Because as we all know, and as has become evident even so that the most staunch Fundy can't miss it, atheists aren't going anywhere anytime soon.
(()))OK, that's because we don't have a Rapture! Everybody knows that. Tongue(())
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