Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
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19-10-2012, 06:42 PM (This post was last modified: 19-10-2012 06:46 PM by PoolBoyG.)
Star Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
Special note: The great majority of the world and society is still religious, so never make the mistake in thinking that atheism is something taken for granted, or common place. You may live in a secular or atheistic bubble, but just be aware you and your clique are in the minority. And will be for a long time to come.

I'm curious how many users here have, or once did, a romanticized and over defined view of Atheism?

Like most people, I looked for this or that to define myself. Some people try religion, or nationalism, or a political philosophy, or a social fad, etc. Usually romanticising it "me and people like me are right, others should follow."

Long story short, I was a bit dismayed by how some "atheists" held beliefs, some terribly ignorant or insane. Some of them were immoral, and cruel. I later understood that atheism was a very simple definition that didn't speak of how they became an atheist, and how they would act. You could be an atheist for absurd reasons. And once you were, you could be a pacifist, or a war monger, vegan, or club baby seals, humanitarian, or racist sexist bigot, well read, or border line feral, etc.
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19-10-2012, 06:49 PM
RE: Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
I'm a new atheist so I'm glad you brought this up. I just began my journey a few months ago. I really don't know what "being an atheist" means but I'm learning every day and I only understand the internal changes that took place that lead me here. Thanks for posting because it is something important to keep in mind.
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19-10-2012, 07:48 PM
RE: Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
(19-10-2012 06:42 PM)poolboyg88 Wrote:  Long story short, I was a bit dismayed by how some "atheists" held beliefs, some terribly ignorant or insane. Some of them were immoral, and cruel. I later understood that atheism was a very simple definition that didn't speak of how they became an atheist, and how they would act. You could be an atheist for absurd reasons.

Atheism doesn't have a defined set of behaviors. The only thing all atheists have in common is they don't believe in deities. I don't think it has much to do with how/why a person became an atheist, it has to do with whether or not that person is an asshole.


But to answer the question in the topic, not really. The problem is that most people are intellectually lazy, rather than their specific system of beliefs or lack of belief, or that many people are assholes. You're going to have lazy assholes in any group of people. Even with atheists, they could still be an asshole or follow insane, stupid, or cruel ideologies.

Quote: Usually romanticising it "me and people like me are right, others should follow."
Most people think that. Religious people often think they're right and others should be converted.

On the other hand, I don't think it's the same thing if you're an atheist. Religious people have their faith. Atheists are only looking at the world, seeing a lack of evidence for deities, and saying that deities are unlikely to exist based on the evidence out there. So I think that's the reason atheists think they are right: evidence. On the other hand, I've had many theists simply say they have a "feeling" that God exists, and for me, that's not evidence; it doesn't justify belief in a supernatural being. So I don't really think it's romanticizing anything, it's just an interpretation of the world based more on evidence and scientific method than on subjective feelings, ancient texts, and anecdotes.

As for trying it out like a fad, I don't think you can do that. I've heard of more people claiming to reject god and worship the devil than people "trying" atheism as a fad. You either believe or you don't, and I don't think you can try out belief or lack thereof. I'd agree people often bounce around to other religions. I've seen people get into wicca, paganism, etc but not atheism. I'd think you'd need bigger reasons to gain or lose belief in supernatural beings.
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19-10-2012, 08:53 PM
RE: Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
I'm having a real relationship with reality.

Bury me with my guns on, so when I reach the other side - I can show him what it feels like to die.
Bury me with my guns on, so when I'm cast out of the sky, I can shoot the devil right between the eyes.
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20-10-2012, 02:27 AM
RE: Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
If you were previously religious, of course you did.

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20-10-2012, 02:37 AM
Re: Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
Not entirely sure what that means but I think not. I did perhaps at a point have a view like that to thinking beyond atheism.. As if it was so much more meaningful and impressive to say I wasn't atheist because why would I give an idea of a God credence.. See that as just pointless jumbo now.

"Allow there to be a spectrum in all that you see" - Neil Degrasse Tyson
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20-10-2012, 02:38 AM
RE: Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
(19-10-2012 07:48 PM)amyb Wrote:  ... Even with atheists, they could still be an asshole or follow insane, stupid, or cruel ideologies.


Hey!
Who you callin' an asshole?!?!?

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20-10-2012, 05:51 AM
RE: Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
I never gave my atheism much thought, nor did I actively look for like minded people until my husband passed away and I got really irritated with all the religious babble that was served up to me as a consequence.

I probably subconsciously selected for people who were atheist or inactive believers all my life. My husband was atheist.

Last time I touched a bible I was 10.

Anyway, I came here actively looking for atheists because I needed to get away from all that religious dribble. I was actually surprised to find that so many atheists had such an in depth knowledge of the bible and other religions. I found it too darn boring to read. Just a bunch of killing and begetting. Kill the existing folks and make new ones. Then someone else comes along and kills your new ones and makes new ones of their own. All very animalistic and primitive.

We live in better times now for the most part, although some religions, particularly Islam, continue to live by these barbaric laws.

So, no, I never romanticized Atheism, nor did I think too much about it. I mostly just avoided religion and people who kept talking about it. It just annoyed or bored me.

Here people talk about religion but in a rational manner, and I find I actually enjoy it this way. It's a phenomenon people created in days of constant war and insecurity, and for some reason it survived into times where secular rules and laws had taken precedence. Logically, it needs to just fade out now, and I think that is happening based on recent statistics.

I can see though how someone who is constantly surrounded by religious talk could romanticize atheism - as freedom from all that nonsense.

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20-10-2012, 03:58 PM
RE: Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
Quote:So, no, I never romanticized Atheism, nor did I think too much about it. I mostly just avoided religion and people who kept talking about it. It just annoyed or bored me.
Yeah, pretty much the same. Not that I totally avoided the topic, but I avoided the topic with people who seemed psychotic about it and unwilling to consider other points of view. This might be because I never really considered myself religious, even when my parents still made me go to church. I just wasn't interested.

I have a lot of religious cousins, aunts, uncles who are the types who mention Jesus in every sentence, and I'd rather not deal with that. So I'd say I sought out people with common interests who who weren't trying to beat me over the head with their bibles. I have no idea what religion 95% of my friends in college were, or if they were religious at all, for example. Since then, I have sort of gravitated more toward some people who are atheists, though. In my old age I have started to find things like childhood indoctrination more disgusting, which has led me to be more outspoken about atheism.


(20-10-2012 02:38 AM)DLJ Wrote:  
(19-10-2012 07:48 PM)amyb Wrote:  ... Even with atheists, they could still be an asshole or follow insane, stupid, or cruel ideologies.


Hey!
Who you callin' an asshole?!?!?

Well, I see someone has a guilty conscience. ^_^
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20-10-2012, 06:50 PM
RE: Do you have a romanticized view of Atheism?
(19-10-2012 06:42 PM)poolboyg88 Wrote:  Special note: The great majority of the world and society is still religious, so never make the mistake in thinking that atheism is something taken for granted, or common place. You may live in a secular or atheistic bubble, but just be aware you and your clique are in the minority. And will be for a long time to come.

I'm curious how many users here have, or once did, a romanticized and over defined view of Atheism?

Like most people, I looked for this or that to define myself. Some people try religion, or nationalism, or a political philosophy, or a social fad, etc. Usually romanticising it "me and people like me are right, others should follow."

Long story short, I was a bit dismayed by how some "atheists" held beliefs, some terribly ignorant or insane. Some of them were immoral, and cruel. I later understood that atheism was a very simple definition that didn't speak of how they became an atheist, and how they would act. You could be an atheist for absurd reasons. And once you were, you could be a pacifist, or a war monger, vegan, or club baby seals, humanitarian, or racist sexist bigot, well read, or border line feral, etc.

I think the reason for your disillusionment is that you think of atheists as a group. There's something to that -- obviously, most of us pal around on forums like this for that reason. But if we are a group, we're a group identified by what we aren't rather than what we are.

It's the same case in any group defined by exclusion. Do you expect to find only moral and kind people among non-coin-collectors? Do you expect to find no racism or bigotry among people who don't watch football? Do you expect to find rational and reasonable thought among those who are not in school? Why should there be a common thread among us non-believers?

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