The cost of atheism
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28-08-2014, 06:44 AM
RE: The cost of atheism
(28-08-2014 05:08 AM)phil.a Wrote:  OK then, I will gently nudge a bit more, if I may. I do not identify as a Christian, but as you may have inferred from some of the things I've said, I am quite a big fan of Jesus and so have complete respect for anyone who places him at the centre of their worldview.

Re my question, it's true that the question is absurd, but absurdity is the mark of a paradox.

Paradoxes seem like worthless pebbles to be discarded, yet they can also be cracked like a nut to reveal hidden gems. Because this paradox is about Jesus, It's my opinion that resolving the paradox can only take you into an even deeper relationship with Jesus, it's not possible for it to lead in any other direction.

Please just discard it if in fact it does not seem appropriate though!

Nah, I completely disagree with it being a paradox. A paradox is something that can't happen.

ex - The God-Rock paradox

This is simply a word issue. Plain and simple.

So, refer to my previous answer.

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28-08-2014, 07:32 AM
RE: The cost of atheism
(27-08-2014 06:59 AM)ChristianMan Wrote:  Hi all,

Brief disclosure, I am a christian but not here to get into bun fights. Been there, done that, not interested.

I do want to raise a point about the cost of atheism to the western world. In particular I live in the UK, but I'm sure this holds true for the US etc.

I do not think that atheism ever has a chance of winning the day. Thats not because I am a christian its just that human beings have an inherent need to worship and derive meaning from God - however they articulate or formulate that. Thats why in the US Atheists are the most mistrusted people in society. Thats not going to change. Again, not a christian point, just a point.

However, atheists main point of attack has been on christianity. I realise that in the heat of debate silly things are said, christians are demonised, described as violent because of the OT, etc etc. And this has had an effect on society, you have had an impact. I think thats been seen in gay marriage etc.

Here is the rub. People are not turning to atheism, they never will. Instead Islam is filling the void. I predict that within 20 years the UK will be an Islamic state. I don't know about the US. If you want to know what that will look like, take a look at the Calaphate. This is the cost of atheism. You are trading Christianity for Islam.

Of course Christianity will continue and perhaps even thrive. Historically, it is when we are marginalised, and persecuted that the church is refined, becomes what it was meant to be, and grows. But what will society look like? Your attacks on Islam them will not be met with the same non-violent response that you have received from christians. This is the cost of atheism.

"I do not think that atheism ever has a chance of winning the day."

Atheism isn't bent on spreading its views at the expense of other religions. Atheism isn't a belief system that attempts to spread itself at the expense of other religious opinions. It has no design on "winning the day."

"Thats not because I am a christian its just that human beings have an inherent need to worship and derive meaning from God - however they articulate or formulate that. "

Humans have an inherent need to survive and reproduce, such as you would find in any other animal.

"Thats why in the US Atheists are the most mistrusted people in society. Thats not going to change. Again, not a christian point, just a point."

Atheists appear to be distrusted for a variety of reasons, the simplified reason you present is misguided. Atheists are distrusted because we are a minority of opinion that is critical and skeptical of an opinion that most people believe should be automatically respected to the point of not being questioned.

We are also mistrusted because the perception that has been painted of atheists has led to a characeture of atheists that is warped to the point of being a strawman (I was asked if I worshipped the devil by own mother). This is no different than how any other minority has been treated in any other human civilization whereby stereotypes are used to fabricate lies about a group so as to intentionally lead to distrust and resentment of them.

"Here is the rub. People are not turning to atheism, they never will. Instead Islam is filling the void. I predict that within 20 years the UK will be an Islamic state. I don't know about the US. If you want to know what that will look like, take a look at the Calaphate. This is the cost of atheism. You are trading Christianity for Islam."

I think people have already posted statistics on how religious opinions are changing that demonstrate the inaccuracy of this statement. But in the end, all that actually matters is secularity. I don't care what the religious opinion of any educator or politician is, as long as they are not educating or legislating with their religious opinion. It tends to be however that most religious people can't do that.

"Of course Christianity will continue and perhaps even thrive. Historically, it is when we are marginalised, and persecuted that the church is refined, becomes what it was meant to be, and grows. But what will society look like? Your attacks on Islam them will not be met with the same non-violent response that you have received from christians. This is the cost of atheism."

You don't think Christians and Christianity have ever responded with violence to opinions that they consider counter to their own? I know of a few abortion clinic bombings and murders of abortion doctors that are not examples of the peaceful nature of the christians who considered it their theologically moral duty to carry out.

In fact, the reason why atheism as a religious opinion has apparently increased in numbers and visibility in the last century is not because it suddenly appeared out of the vacuum, but because for centuries those that identified as atheist could not do so publicly for fear of being murdered by the christians for heresy or blasphemy.

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28-08-2014, 07:51 AM
RE: The cost of atheism
(28-08-2014 07:32 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  
(27-08-2014 06:59 AM)ChristianMan Wrote:  Hi all,

Brief disclosure, I am a christian but not here to get into bun fights. Been there, done that, not interested.

I do want to raise a point about the cost of atheism to the western world. In particular I live in the UK, but I'm sure this holds true for the US etc.

I do not think that atheism ever has a chance of winning the day. Thats not because I am a christian its just that human beings have an inherent need to worship and derive meaning from God - however they articulate or formulate that. Thats why in the US Atheists are the most mistrusted people in society. Thats not going to change. Again, not a christian point, just a point.

However, atheists main point of attack has been on christianity. I realise that in the heat of debate silly things are said, christians are demonised, described as violent because of the OT, etc etc. And this has had an effect on society, you have had an impact. I think thats been seen in gay marriage etc.

Here is the rub. People are not turning to atheism, they never will. Instead Islam is filling the void. I predict that within 20 years the UK will be an Islamic state. I don't know about the US. If you want to know what that will look like, take a look at the Calaphate. This is the cost of atheism. You are trading Christianity for Islam.

Of course Christianity will continue and perhaps even thrive. Historically, it is when we are marginalised, and persecuted that the church is refined, becomes what it was meant to be, and grows. But what will society look like? Your attacks on Islam them will not be met with the same non-violent response that you have received from christians. This is the cost of atheism.

"I do not think that atheism ever has a chance of winning the day."

Atheism isn't bent on spreading its views at the expense of other religions. Atheism isn't a belief system that attempts to spread itself at the expense of other religious opinions. It has no design on "winning the day."

"Thats not because I am a christian its just that human beings have an inherent need to worship and derive meaning from God - however they articulate or formulate that. "

Humans have an inherent need to survive and reproduce, such as you would find in any other animal.

"Thats why in the US Atheists are the most mistrusted people in society. Thats not going to change. Again, not a christian point, just a point."

Atheists appear to be distrusted for a variety of reasons, the simplified reason you present is misguided. Atheists are distrusted because we are a minority of opinion that is critical and skeptical of an opinion that most people believe should be automatically respected to the point of not being questioned.

We are also mistrusted because the perception that has been painted of atheists has led to a characeture of atheists that is warped to the point of being a strawman (I was asked if I worshipped the devil by own mother). This is no different than how any other minority has been treated in any other human civilization whereby stereotypes are used to fabricate lies about a group so as to intentionally lead to distrust and resentment of them.

"Here is the rub. People are not turning to atheism, they never will. Instead Islam is filling the void. I predict that within 20 years the UK will be an Islamic state. I don't know about the US. If you want to know what that will look like, take a look at the Calaphate. This is the cost of atheism. You are trading Christianity for Islam."

I think people have already posted statistics on how religious opinions are changing that demonstrate the inaccuracy of this statement. But in the end, all that actually matters is secularity. I don't care what the religious opinion of any educator or politician is, as long as they are not educating or legislating with their religious opinion. It tends to be however that most religious people can't do that.

"Of course Christianity will continue and perhaps even thrive. Historically, it is when we are marginalised, and persecuted that the church is refined, becomes what it was meant to be, and grows. But what will society look like? Your attacks on Islam them will not be met with the same non-violent response that you have received from christians. This is the cost of atheism."

You don't think Christians and Christianity have ever responded with violence to opinions that they consider counter to their own? I know of a few abortion clinic bombings and murders of abortion doctors that are not examples of the peaceful nature of the christians who considered it their theologically moral duty to carry out.

In fact, the reason why atheism as a religious opinion has apparently increased in numbers and visibility in the last century is not because it suddenly appeared out of the vacuum, but because for centuries those that identified as atheist could not do so publicly for fear of being murdered by the christians for heresy or blasphemy.

Well done, I have been too busy to truly take him to task over his views outside of some quick posts. Besides he recognizes truth and runs from it like most creationists rather than attempt to engage my posits, typical.

Nicely worded. Thumbsup

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
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28-08-2014, 08:25 AM
RE: The cost of atheism
(28-08-2014 06:44 AM)kingschosen Wrote:  Nah, I completely disagree with it being a paradox. A paradox is something that can't happen.

ex - The God-Rock paradox

This is simply a word issue. Plain and simple.

So, refer to my previous answer.

I'm gonna have to say no to that.

The problems entailed by the usual definitions of "omnipotence" are valid. If the terminology of the shibboleths is inconsistent, better to change the terminology than resort to the ol' "oh, but it's all ineffable, see"...

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28-08-2014, 08:32 AM
RE: The cost of atheism
(28-08-2014 01:04 AM)phil.a Wrote:  
(27-08-2014 04:14 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:  I did see the smiley, but it's also a legitimate question. Many atheists would say that it's all bullshit anyway, so who cares who wrote it? But there's a reason why people like GWOG go to some lengths to establish that they are not eyewitness accounts. The Christian apologist's case is strengthened if he can legitimately claim that the gospels are eyewitness accounts written by apostles who actually hung out with Jesus, heard his sermons, witnessed his miracles, etc. And his case is considerably weakened if he cannot make such claims. There is a connection between who wrote it (and when they wrote it) and the likelihood of it being "true" rather than just myth and/or hearsay.

I feel that's engaging with the bible on it's own terms, and that will legitimise it, not contradict it. The axiom for that discussion is the belief that the whole thing might be meaningful, supporting the possibility that we should all be taking it seriously (e.g. converting to Christianity).

Forget the specifics of the debate for a minute, but the premise of the discussion itself is going to leave the religious person secure in his beliefs! You are taking him seriously!

I think there's more chance of getting through to someone by taking him seriously than by ridiculing him. I might change my mind about something in response to a reasoned argument, but if the other person just makes fun of me and calls me an idiot, I'm more likely to just get defensive and stop listening. I don't think Christians are any different than me in that respect.

Also consider fence-sitters who might be lurking. We won't win them over by giving the impression that atheists are a bunch of rude assholes. I would much rather come across as a reasonable adult.
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28-08-2014, 08:34 AM
RE: The cost of atheism
(28-08-2014 06:44 AM)kingschosen Wrote:  
(28-08-2014 05:08 AM)phil.a Wrote:  OK then, I will gently nudge a bit more, if I may. I do not identify as a Christian, but as you may have inferred from some of the things I've said, I am quite a big fan of Jesus and so have complete respect for anyone who places him at the centre of their worldview.

Re my question, it's true that the question is absurd, but absurdity is the mark of a paradox.

Paradoxes seem like worthless pebbles to be discarded, yet they can also be cracked like a nut to reveal hidden gems. Because this paradox is about Jesus, It's my opinion that resolving the paradox can only take you into an even deeper relationship with Jesus, it's not possible for it to lead in any other direction.

Please just discard it if in fact it does not seem appropriate though!

Nah, I completely disagree with it being a paradox. A paradox is something that can't happen.

ex - The God-Rock paradox

This is simply a word issue. Plain and simple.

So, refer to my previous answer.

Dang. My priceless gem discarded as a worthless pebble ;P

Here's a cool paradox - this one is attributed to Jesus (in the gnostic gospel of st Thomas):

"When you make the two into one, and when you make the inner like the outer and the outer like the inner, and the upper like the lower, and when you make male and female into a single one, so that the male will not be male nor the female be female, when you make eyes in place of an eye, a hand in place of a hand, a foot in place of a foot, an image in place of an image, then you will enter the kingdom."

Is it impossible?

Phil
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28-08-2014, 08:40 AM
RE: The cost of atheism
(28-08-2014 08:32 AM)Grasshopper Wrote:  I think there's more chance of getting through to someone by taking him seriously than by ridiculing him. I might change my mind about something in response to a reasoned argument, but if the other person just makes fun of me and calls me an idiot, I'm more likely to just get defensive and stop listening. I don't think Christians are any different than me in that respect.

Also consider fence-sitters who might be lurking. We won't win them over by giving the impression that atheists are a bunch of rude assholes. I would much rather come across as a reasonable adult.

Yup I agree with all of that - I like your approach.

I think sometimes though, it can be better to just fail to respond. It does not work quite so well in a forum as in real life, watch what happens in real life when someone is talking nonsense and you just remain completely silent and present, not reacting to it in any way but paying attention to it.

Sometimes it's possible to get quite a big shift just by doing that, it can kind of wake people up to what they are saying sometimes.

Phil
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28-08-2014, 08:42 AM
RE: The cost of atheism
(28-08-2014 08:34 AM)phil.a Wrote:  
(28-08-2014 06:44 AM)kingschosen Wrote:  Nah, I completely disagree with it being a paradox. A paradox is something that can't happen.

ex - The God-Rock paradox

This is simply a word issue. Plain and simple.

So, refer to my previous answer.

Dang. My priceless gem discarded as a worthless pebble ;P

Here's a cool paradox - this one is attributed to Jesus (in the gnostic gospel of st Thomas):

"When you make the two into one, and when you make the inner like the outer and the outer like the inner, and the upper like the lower, and when you make male and female into a single one, so that the male will not be male nor the female be female, when you make eyes in place of an eye, a hand in place of a hand, a foot in place of a foot, an image in place of an image, then you will enter the kingdom."

Is it impossible?

Phil

Not impossible with a goodly amount of Play-Doh, although Silly Putty would be an adequate substitute.

We have enough youth. How about looking for the Fountain of Smart?
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28-08-2014, 09:06 AM
RE: The cost of atheism
(28-08-2014 08:34 AM)phil.a Wrote:  
(28-08-2014 06:44 AM)kingschosen Wrote:  Nah, I completely disagree with it being a paradox. A paradox is something that can't happen.

ex - The God-Rock paradox

This is simply a word issue. Plain and simple.

So, refer to my previous answer.

Dang. My priceless gem discarded as a worthless pebble ;P

Here's a cool paradox - this one is attributed to Jesus (in the gnostic gospel of st Thomas):

"When you make the two into one, and when you make the inner like the outer and the outer like the inner, and the upper like the lower, and when you make male and female into a single one, so that the male will not be male nor the female be female, when you make eyes in place of an eye, a hand in place of a hand, a foot in place of a foot, an image in place of an image, then you will enter the kingdom."

Is it impossible?

Phil

No, it's meaningless.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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28-08-2014, 09:12 AM
Re: The cost of atheism
It's also not a paradox, it's a bland metaphor to disregarding labels or dualness.

Does he think that's a paradox? Or is the point thinking kc would think that's a paradox for some reason.

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