Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
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09-06-2013, 09:00 AM
Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
Over and over and over again I encounter people who cannot wrap their head around someone not having "beliefs".

They keep looking to find something atheists believe in.

I wonder if there is something about human nature that makes people want to believe stuff?

Or is the recognition that not believing is even possible a threat to their entire world view?

It just seems odd that people constantly trip over that simplest of points when considering what atheism is.

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09-06-2013, 09:03 AM
RE: Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
I don't think it's not able to grasp the idea of non-belief, I think it's the idea that it's hard to grasp that people have different opinions to one's self.

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09-06-2013, 09:06 AM
RE: Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
Exactly. Even when I was a believer and would have conversations with atheists I got it. It's just not that hard.

But now I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.

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09-06-2013, 09:14 AM
RE: Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
I can't count how many times I've heard the phrase, "But what do you believe?" As though it's impossible to walk around without some sort of delusional belief. It's almost like religious people can accept that you don't share their particular brand of insanity, but find it completely mind boggling that you don't subscribe to any insanity at all.

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09-06-2013, 09:17 AM (This post was last modified: 09-06-2013 09:20 AM by Tartarus Sauce.)
RE: Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
What Muffsie said. For the theists of this nature, denying their god is taken as a personal insult. You are attacking both their ego and their security blanket.

No belief is the ultimate insult to them. Not only are you not subscribing to their delusional beliefs, you are relegating their delusional beliefs as being no more significant than any other delusional beliefs.

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09-06-2013, 09:18 AM
RE: Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
I remember when I realized I could "not believe". Before that I was taught that we have to believe...preferably in Christianity, but if not that then something. Not believing was never put out there as an option. I thought I was flawed by not buying into a theist belief.

Some people never come to the realization that you can "not believe".

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09-06-2013, 09:21 AM
RE: Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
(09-06-2013 09:00 AM)Dom Wrote:  Over and over and over again I encounter people who cannot wrap their head around someone not having "beliefs".

They keep looking to find something atheists believe in.

I wonder if there is something about human nature that makes people want to believe stuff?

Or is the recognition that not believing is even possible a threat to their entire world view?

It just seems odd that people constantly trip over that simplest of points when considering what atheism is.

As part of life as primates, humans are driven to recognize and develop patterns to create a frame work to understand things from. This is difficult to do with complicated issues like how did the universe begin or what is the purpose of life, so belief acts as a sort of surrogate to concrete concepts to establish patterns from.

As such, a religious person would be confused by a rational person as the rational person would not appear to have this anchoring in life, which the religious see as a required part of human psychology. 'You have to believe in something' would be a logical assumption on their part.

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09-06-2013, 09:28 AM
RE: Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
Going from saying "The one(s) I am following is/are the right one(s)." to then hear "I don't believe in any." can be quite baffling to those who have never come face to face with an atheist before. Even after. Even for their whole lives.

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09-06-2013, 09:31 AM
RE: Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
(09-06-2013 09:00 AM)Dom Wrote:  Over and over and over again I encounter people who cannot wrap their head around someone not having "beliefs".

They keep looking to find something atheists believe in.

I wonder if there is something about human nature that makes people want to believe stuff?

Or is the recognition that not believing is even possible a threat to their entire world view?

It just seems odd that people constantly trip over that simplest of points when considering what atheism is.

I think they use "god of the gaps" as a way to end the discussion. Why look any further? I think they're maybe afraid, one day it will be discovered that life on our planet, didn't require a god.


God is a concept by which we measure our pain -- John Lennon

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09-06-2013, 09:35 AM
RE: Why is "no belief" so hard to grasp?
(09-06-2013 09:21 AM)Carlo_The_Bugsmasher_Driver Wrote:  
(09-06-2013 09:00 AM)Dom Wrote:  Over and over and over again I encounter people who cannot wrap their head around someone not having "beliefs".

They keep looking to find something atheists believe in.

I wonder if there is something about human nature that makes people want to believe stuff?

Or is the recognition that not believing is even possible a threat to their entire world view?

It just seems odd that people constantly trip over that simplest of points when considering what atheism is.

As part of life as primates, humans are driven to recognize and develop patterns to create a frame work to understand things from. This is difficult to do with complicated issues like how did the universe begin or what is the purpose of life, so belief acts as a sort of surrogate to concrete concepts to establish patterns from.

As such, a religious person would be confused by a rational person as the rational person would not appear to have this anchoring in life, which the religious see as a required part of human psychology. 'You have to believe in something' would be a logical assumption on their part.

I couldn't figure out how to put that into words. Nicely done. Yes

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