Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
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18-02-2014, 06:08 PM
Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
ok so here is a question I often ponder......If the rest of the world came to their senses and realized there was in fact no god, would people start doing "bad" things more since they didn't have to worry about going to hell or making god angry and such?

It seems that many people feel that without god there would be no good.

I myself feel I am a good person and I don't only behave because I worried for soul, I behave because I generally just am a good person, or at least I try. Not everyone is this way however. I wonder if the world would go ape shit crazy and go into some sort of crime spree riot if everyone realized there was no magic man in the sky watching and handing out punishments?

Oh sure, there would be legal consequences to suffer but all that little stuff, the lying, cheating, not sharing and just being an ass in general, would most people not give a shit if they were not worried about god watching them do all these things?

I often envision a world with no religion.....ahhhhhhh utopia....or would it be?

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18-02-2014, 06:18 PM
RE: Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
I think people would still do wrong. I don't know or think that more people would start doing wrong. There is meant to be statistics that show that atheists are already unrepresented in the prisons system by things we consider legally wrong (in the US at least) - without getting into the define good things debate. The prisoner stats with regards to most other religions tend to match their demographic comparisons, while atheists are less than the supposed demographic. There is a lot of grey area because there is a level of people not specifying what they believe and possibly agnostics coming under atheist....

what-percentage-of-prisoners-are-atheists-its-a-lot-smaller-than-we-ever-imagined

I think religion harbours a lot of hate crime however, so I think personally in a world without it, there would be a lot less religious related hate crime, of course.
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18-02-2014, 06:21 PM
RE: Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
From Richard Dawkins' God Delusion:

"Perhaps naively, I have inclined towards a less cynical view of human nature than Ivan Karamazov. Do we really need policing - whether by God or by each other - in order to stop us from behaving in a selfish and criminal manner? I dearly want to believe that I do not need such surveillance - and nor, dear reader, do you. On the other hand, just to weaken our confidence, listen to Steven Pinker's disillusioning experience of a police strike in Montreal, which he describes in The Blank Slate:

As a young teenager in proudly peaceable Canada during the romantic 1960s, I was a true believer in Bakunin's anarchism. I laughed off my parents' argument that if the government ever laid down its arms all hell would break loose. Our competing predictions were put to the test at 8:00 A.M. on October 17, 1969, when the Montreal police went on strike. By 11:20 A.M. the first bank was robbed. By noon most downtown stores had closed because of looting. Within a few more hours, taxi drivers burned down the garage of a limousine service that competed with them for airport customers, a rooftop sniper killed a provincial police officer, rioters broke into several hotels and restaurants, and a doctor slew a burglar in his suburban home. By the end of the day, six banks had been robbed, a hundred shops had been looted, twelve fires had been set, forty carloads of storefront glass had been broken, and three million dollars in property damage had been inflicted, before city authorities had to call in the army and, of course, the Mounties to restore order."

And of course he goes on to say, statistically, these criminals couldn't all be atheists. So, God isn't keeping us in line, the police are.

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18-02-2014, 06:26 PM
RE: Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
So basically, you're pointing out Willhopp that the fear of God doesn't stop anyone now, and that we should be more worried about what happens when the civil forces go on strike... rather than if religion disappeared XD
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18-02-2014, 06:27 PM
RE: Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
(18-02-2014 06:08 PM)Pearl Wrote:  ok so here is a question I often ponder......If the rest of the world came to their senses and realized there was in fact no god, would people start doing "bad" things more since they didn't have to worry about going to hell or making god angry and such?

It seems that many people feel that without god there would be no good.

I myself feel I am a good person and I don't only behave because I worried for soul, I behave because I generally just am a good person, or at least I try. Not everyone is this way however. I wonder if the world would go ape shit crazy and go into some sort of crime spree riot if everyone realized there was no magic man in the sky watching and handing out punishments?

Oh sure, there would be legal consequences to suffer but all that little stuff, the lying, cheating, not sharing and just being an ass in general, would most people not give a shit if they were not worried about god watching them do all these things?

I often envision a world with no religion.....ahhhhhhh utopia....or would it be?

Just because you don't have a book telling you how to be good doesn't mean you were raised in a barn, and it doesn't mean you are absolutely helpless. You have common sense and the ability to make a choice. Ironically, most non-believers I know are better people than those I know that do believe.

If the entire world simultaneously realized there was no god, I could imagine some really nasty riots. However, the realization will not happen abruptly, but gradually instead. With that being said, I don't think there'd be as much religious related hate crime taking place.
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18-02-2014, 06:31 PM
RE: Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
(18-02-2014 06:26 PM)Wanderingcelt Wrote:  So basically, you're pointing out Willhopp that the fear of God doesn't stop anyone now, and that we should be more worried about what happens when the civil forces go on strike... rather than if religion disappeared XD

I am exactly saying that. Do you think people will just start murdering and raping because they won't go to god's hell?

There is a hell and it's called prison. People won't get away with being "sinful" just because there's no god. There are still law enforcement officers, courts and real surveillance. Besides, how scared are these believers anyway when the prisons are full of them and, if they get away with their crimes, they are absolved for admitting their "sin" to some child molester?

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18-02-2014, 07:15 PM
RE: Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
(18-02-2014 06:08 PM)Pearl Wrote:  ok so here is a question I often ponder......If the rest of the world came to their senses and realized there was in fact no god, would people start doing "bad" things more since they didn't have to worry about going to hell or making god angry and such?

It seems that many people feel that without god there would be no good.

I myself feel I am a good person and I don't only behave because I worried for soul, I behave because I generally just am a good person, or at least I try. Not everyone is this way however. I wonder if the world would go ape shit crazy and go into some sort of crime spree riot if everyone realized there was no magic man in the sky watching and handing out punishments?

Oh sure, there would be legal consequences to suffer but all that little stuff, the lying, cheating, not sharing and just being an ass in general, would most people not give a shit if they were not worried about god watching them do all these things?

I often envision a world with no religion.....ahhhhhhh utopia....or would it be?


Northern Europe is the most secular and atheist part of the planet.

They have less violent crime, better education systems, better health care, lower poverty rates, more freedoms, etc, than the vast majority of theist countries.

The country that has the highest rates of upward mobility is Denmark, a largely socialist country with a population that is over 60% atheist (some stats have it as high as 80%).

These countries embarrass the US, a country with a population that is 75% Christian.

They seem to be doing just fine without religion.
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18-02-2014, 07:24 PM
RE: Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
(18-02-2014 06:08 PM)Pearl Wrote:  ok so here is a question I often ponder......If the rest of the world came to their senses and realized there was in fact no god, would people start doing "bad" things more since they didn't have to worry about going to hell or making god angry and such?

It seems that many people feel that without god there would be no good.

I myself feel I am a good person and I don't only behave because I worried for soul, I behave because I generally just am a good person, or at least I try. Not everyone is this way however. I wonder if the world would go ape shit crazy and go into some sort of crime spree riot if everyone realized there was no magic man in the sky watching and handing out punishments?

Oh sure, there would be legal consequences to suffer but all that little stuff, the lying, cheating, not sharing and just being an ass in general, would most people not give a shit if they were not worried about god watching them do all these things?

I often envision a world with no religion.....ahhhhhhh utopia....or would it be?

I don't think the world would spiral out of control if everyone were to break free from their religious spell. That common belief amongst theists is simply a myth that results from not fully understanding atheism. For me personally when I made my transition from faith to reason absolutely nothing changed about my calm and peaceful personality. Ironically, I actually became more loving and accepting of the world's diversity. If you actually go out and read the testimonies written by x-pastors now turned atheists you'll see that abandoning their childish beliefs actually changed them for the better. I believe that this would also be the case for most people if they were to make the transition from faith to reason. Besides, once you really get to understand what x-ianity teaches you begin to realize that not much moral can be derived from such a flawed system. For example, x-ianity teaches that being a good person alone is not enough to get you into heaven which to me personally is complete bull poo. I mean x-ians will tell you that you can be saved on your dying bed after living a life of crime, but for the non-believer who lives his whole life as a good moral person, but rejects belief in a god will go to hell. Not really moral if you ask me. Being a good moral person all falls down to who we are personality wise, our psychological experiences, upbringing ect. The whole notion that religion makes you a good person is a myth man.
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18-02-2014, 08:25 PM
RE: Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
(18-02-2014 06:21 PM)WillHopp Wrote:  And of course he goes on to say, statistically, these criminals couldn't all be atheists. So, God isn't keeping us in line, the police are.

Good Point!!!!

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18-02-2014, 08:43 PM
RE: Nobody would be "good" anymore if the world turned to atheism?
The internal moral/ethical regulator just gets attributed to evolutionary biology and social/cultural memes.
Instead of supernatural overlords.

Minus a few exceptions (ray comfort), people will behave as they normally do.

Theism is to believe what other people claim, Atheism is to ask "why should I".
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