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Paul All1313
...even the Mona Lisa is falling apart.
01:32 PM on 06/02/2013
Is any atheist really shocked that groups known for intolerance of other cultures, creeds, and lifestyles have a distaste for us? We try to keep their beliefs out of public schools, we stand up for equality for gays, and we fight against their attempts to turn our country into a "Christian nation" so of course they think we aren't changing the US for the better.

My question is, why is it the responsibility of Atheists to make a bridge to the unreasonable? Why should we care that we are not embraced by a group (or groups) who by and large have a history of oppressing anyone who isn't of their standards?
CognitoErgoSum
CogitoErgoSum was taken when I signed up.
04:07 PM on 06/02/2013
And yet Atheists are so shocked when tehy insult us, that we call them out for their uncivil discourse as though they didn't expect for us to act like actual people and not appreciate having our intellect and rationality insulted.
09:16 PM on 06/02/2013
In 1992, Carl Silverman had to go to court to become a notary public because he didn't believe in God. Christians wrote laws saying we should not be in public office.

But still treat religion with kid gloves.
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Cye
09:20 PM on 06/02/2013
I love how you totally ignore the insults and uncivil discourse directed at atheists by the religious. In your world, atheists are rude and insuting, while the religious are saintly.
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Anna Nicole Dahmer
Lie like that & you won't go to heaven
09:34 AM on 06/03/2013
THANK YOU!
12:57 PM on 06/02/2013
As a Christian Apologist (carm.org) my experience with atheists has been almost universally negative. I've met some very nice, intelligent atheists who can discuss ideas and challenges without becoming insulting, but they are rare. Admittedly, my experiences with the mare personal and, of course subjective. But the majority of the ones I've encountered are anti-Christian, full of hatred, bigoted, illogical, and ill-informed when it comes to the Christian faith they so frequently attack. This seems to be consistent with the manifestation of atheism which has gotten prayer removed from schools, had cross removed, promoted "separation of church and state" (only to have secular humanism be supported by the state), and generally attack so many of the virtuous beliefs held by Christians. What do atheists expect with this kind of consistent behavior? Just my opinion...
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Paul All1313
...even the Mona Lisa is falling apart.
01:48 PM on 06/02/2013
Religion has no place in the public school system. The separation of church and state is apart of our rights. Not only are you granted the freedom of religion, but I am also allowed freedom from your religion.

I can see why you've had problems with atheists... you seem to be of the mind that everyone should be forced to suffer through your mythology. Quite sad.
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CodyGirl
Truth is worth pursuing.
03:18 PM on 06/02/2013
Paul,

You seem to lump all people of faith into the same batch. This is stereotyping. There are many people of faith who are strong advocates for upholding our First Amendment rights and who speak out equally strongly against violations of these rights by religious folks as by any other group. In fact, atheists have very little political power as a group unless they/you work collaboratively on many issues where many people of faith and secularists and/or atheists share common goals and values.
03:53 PM on 06/02/2013
Your opinion is noted. However, perhaps you might want to consider the thoughts of those who were of greater understanding than you regarding this. "The highest glory of the American Revolution was this; it connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity. From the day of the Declaration...they (the American people) were bound by the laws of God, which they all, and by the laws of The Gospel, which they nearly all, acknowledge as the rules of their conduct". -John Quincy Adams (6th U.S. President), July 4th, 1821. And, "It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religions, but on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. For this very reason peoples of other faiths have been afforded asylum, prosperity, and freedom of worship here. -Patrick Henry (1736-1799). There is SO much more like this.

Second, seriously, you're not thinking clearly. You infer without evidence and make assertions you cannot validate. And with that kind of thinking you make moral assertions? Not Good. Can you demonstrate that the Bible is mythology? Or are you just reciting the mantra of unfounded, atheistic rhetoric?
02:49 PM on 06/02/2013
as a person in the world my experience with christian apologists has only been positive when i nod my head politely and keep quiet.
the idea of god can be thought of as unreasonable from a theistic perspective, too. so, good luck trying to rationalize the unreasonable.
10:07 PM on 06/02/2013
I find that atheism is intellectually indefensible and the justifications offered by atheists for their denial of God are not rooted in logic, but in feeling and experience.
12:38 PM on 06/02/2013
I think the conflict would be lessened a great deal if the christians were less evangelical. The jews do not evangelize, they actually make it a challenge to "become" one of them. The Atheist reaction is to the evangeism efforts more than the substance of christianity. Being an Atheist, I think one should have the freedom to believe what they want, so long as they require nothing from others who do not share their beliefs. There are many religious system that exist without conflict with others, christianit can and should do th same.
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12:18 AM on 06/03/2013
Yes. That's one of the problems. The thumpers, fundies, super catholics, LDSers and others try to recruit you. Then, when you first politely say "no", they say "I will pray for you" or "I am sorry for you". Using their prayers or pity as a 2x4 because you wouldn't shut up and be an easy convert.

The worst are the bible literalists and the mormon literalists. You can't talk details. They won't have it. So then you get a prayer challenge and when you say "no" a second time, they want to leave literature with you. I have a Bible for reference, so I don't want one. I accept BOM, D&C and Pearl of Great Price as garden mulch.

BZ.
02:51 PM on 06/03/2013
Well said Inquisition

I applaud your words.

Treat others as you wish to be treated. many Christians are not Christian.
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1waitasec
theology = opinion based on conjecture, so what?
09:47 AM on 06/02/2013
we are facing a transition period...
i am not particularly surprised that atheists are the least trusted people, because like homosexuals...everyone knows an atheist...they're just in the closet...and the more that speak and are not worried about "insulting" a believer simply for the fact that they don't want to make them uncomfortable, the easier the transition....transition is uncomfortable...

it is absolutely ludicrous to have a low opinion about someone who doesn't believe in the flawed and unverifiable claims about any god
ultimately people are judged by what they do, not what we do or do not believe in....
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CodyGirl
Truth is worth pursuing.
03:22 PM on 06/02/2013
There you have it. You're subjective judgement about the beliefs of those who believe in God. Why should people of faith take your opinion of our faith into account? When you approach a discussion about religion with the statement you make here, that in your not-so-humble opinion, the other person's beliefs are "flawed and unverifiable", you should not except to make much headway toward being seen in a more positive light.
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1waitasec
theology = opinion based on conjecture, so what?
04:03 PM on 06/02/2013
"You're subjective judgement about the beliefs of those who believe in God."which was?
"Why should people of faith take your opinion of our faith into account? "they shouldn't..what are you whining about?
"When you approach a discussion about religion with the statement you make here, that in your not-so-humble opinion, the other person's beliefs are "flawed and unverifiable", you should not except to make much headway toward being seen in a more positive light."
they are flawed and unverifiable....as there is no objective empirical experiences to unite any theists POV....go figure that one out sparky
CognitoErgoSum
CogitoErgoSum was taken when I signed up.
04:14 PM on 06/02/2013
You said it. Faved.
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Keith Roragen
09:04 AM on 06/02/2013
Chris, you have done your part to bolster the negative stereotypes of atheists. You couldn't even get through this article without a criticism directed at an atheist group. If you want to promote a positive image of atheists then that is what you should do. But you do atheists no favors by tearing down some in order to ingratiate yourself in the eyes of theists.
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The Seventh Chakra, amazon
08:45 AM on 06/02/2013
The power of "Positive Atheism."
1. Do not use God to justify your desire to kill.
2. Do not use God to judge people for the things you don't like them to do.
3. Do not use God to legislate laws that govern a person's body or sexuality.
4. Do not use God as an excuse to post signs that try to influence other people's children to believe things you don't practice.
5. Do not use God to cripple a person's thinking or creativity.
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12:23 AM on 06/03/2013
Wow, sounds like the Captain Mosey and the Eight "I'd Really Rather You Didn'ts".

Your list I will review, however.

R'Amen.

BZ.
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The Seventh Chakra, amazon
09:24 AM on 06/03/2013
Thanks for turning me on to ""The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster"  I am anxious to read it.  I want give you a copy of my book, The Seventh Chakra, J.R. Bowles, you can get it free at amz, still charging at kobo, B&N, sony...enjoy.
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CodyGirl
Truth is worth pursuing.
05:24 PM on 06/03/2013
IMHO, Jesus Christ agrees with you on every one of these "do not's".
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The Seventh Chakra, amazon
02:38 AM on 06/04/2013
Thank you and I respect all forms of worship, even if I don't agree with it and there are many religions and denominations.
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Craig 212
Tide goes in, tide goes out.
11:54 PM on 06/01/2013
It does seem as though atheism would benefit from having a PR rep, doesn't it?
researcher
researcher
03:57 AM on 06/02/2013
Why not a pope?

What is a pr person? someone that can make a lie into a truth. someone that can tell you to go to a very hot place and you are so excited about it you want them to come along with you.

What do you get when a lawyer marries a pr person and their children become judges, bankers, and politicians? ie the america dream.
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The Seventh Chakra, amazon
08:46 AM on 06/02/2013
Well said.
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1waitasec
theology = opinion based on conjecture, so what?
09:52 AM on 06/02/2013
feeling a little uncomfortable?

good
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1waitasec
theology = opinion based on conjecture, so what?
09:49 AM on 06/02/2013
there isn't one precept atheists follow....

a pr person would diminish the idea of individualism and free thought...
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Craig 212
Tide goes in, tide goes out.
01:45 PM on 06/02/2013
A PR rep could help establish the fact that there is not one precept that atheists follow. The American people as a whole don't seem to be aware of this, and many (most?) of them actually believe that atheists have no sense of morality. This is a perception that must be reversed.
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stciappelletto
margaritas ante porcos
11:01 PM on 06/01/2013
It would be helpful if a small number of athiests weren't engaged in petty and hateful litigation.

Trying to remove Christmas displays, crosses and other things doesn't accomplish anything but antagonism.
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Craig 212
Tide goes in, tide goes out.
12:24 AM on 06/02/2013
I get that. Such displays ARE unconstitutional on public property... but perhaps we should pick our battles.
01:09 PM on 06/02/2013
If they are so unconstitutional, then why did the majority of American Politics allow and promote such things throughout US history? Why is it that only NOW, in modernity's infinite wisdom, does it see the necessity of removing God from its halls and hills? Somehow, I don't think you're thinking very deeply and that you've let the pseudo-thinking of liberalism infest your frontal lobes.
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The Seventh Chakra, amazon
08:48 AM on 06/02/2013
It keeps propaganda away from children.
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stciappelletto
margaritas ante porcos
12:28 PM on 06/02/2013
It raises intolerance to a cultural norm and that is the worst kind of propaganda.  
It also makes the secular campaign appear to be narrow minded and hateful. 
It undermines those of us who are trying to create a tolerant secular society because we get lumped in with these extremists. 
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samearl
What is truth?
10:35 PM on 06/01/2013
I honestly try to start conversations in the manner of Rebecca Vitsmun but if that tactic is met with a virulent attitude I believe it’s fair to switch strategy to something more akin to the new atheists. There are a lot of people who don’t respect anything less and simply walk over you with their “righteousness.” It’ll take both types of atheists to move forward and gain acceptance.
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Craig 212
Tide goes in, tide goes out.
11:29 PM on 06/01/2013
I'm starting to wonder if it's best to just not engage those types of belligerent theists at all.
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samearl
What is truth?
01:14 AM on 06/02/2013
Could be. I do think that if we just sit and take it or ignore it then we’ll continue to be demonized but if we speak up with reason and show we are just as caring, loving and outgoing then people will recognize that we have the same rights, that we care as much and we are ever as trustworthy than anybody. Personally I can’t imagine it any other way but I know a lot of people have this bugaboo about atheists. On a public forum it’s not the person who we argue with but it’s the people reading the posts that matter. Me I don’t need to convince anybody about anything other than the fact that guy is using common sense and not mumbo-jumbo.
04:41 AM on 06/02/2013
It's such a difficult judgement call to make. I'm often labelled militant the instant they hear 'atheist'. Expressing a simple non belief is too much for many. And there are a good number of people to whom it is merely a good debate with mutual respect. I will continue to politely and calmly challenge views of people in the all too common face of vitriol and hatred. I've been called evil, been told by good people that they hope I meet a lingering painful death, all because I said 'I don't believe'.
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The Seventh Chakra, amazon
08:57 AM on 06/02/2013
I had to google her. Thanks for the heads up.
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CodyGirl
Truth is worth pursuing.
08:40 PM on 06/01/2013
Atheists have two things going against them if they want to be seen in a more positive light: atheism and the New Atheists.
SelfAwarePatterns
blogger; programmer; science fan
09:49 PM on 06/01/2013
I'm feeling pretty good about the classiness of Rebecca Vitsmun and Juan Mendez, particularly in comparison to your comment.
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DakkonA
www.DisentangledReality.com
10:12 PM on 06/01/2013
You are your own counterexample.
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Ozvoxhumana
My life is too big for a micro-bio.
08:20 PM on 06/01/2013
Fortunately I live in a country where secularism is not under threat like it is in America.

Here it is Christians trying to get themselves represented in a positive light (and not doing a very good job of it).

Never mind, America will eventually find its way out of the cloud of primitive superstition.
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samearl
What is truth?
01:18 AM on 06/02/2013
It can't happen too soon!
07:07 AM on 06/02/2013
it can. people just need to get education instead of getting brainwashed in church every day.
01:39 PM on 06/02/2013
Atheism is a modern superstition, a belief not based in reason and/or knowledge. Think about it. Atheists deny God's existence. But, can any atheist prove there is no God? If so, let's see it. Without proof, you're left with faith - not by reason and evidence. But, to escape such philosophical difficulties within atheism, atheists often retreat to the perceived unassailability of "I lack belief in God". But this doesn't work either because people don't "lack belief" (have no intellectual position) in things of which they are conceptually aware. They affirm, deny, or hold off judgment until more information is available. Either position is an intellectual categorization. In addition, actions flow from beliefs, not lack of beliefs. Atheists' attacks on God are motivated from what they believe, not with a lack belief in.

Furthermore, atheism (unlike Christianity) as a philosophical position (i.e. there is no God, lack of belief in God, etc.), cannot account for the necessary preconditions that allow for rational discourse in other words, the laws of logic themselves cannot be justified in atheism. Furthermore, our own existence cannot be justified without God's initial creative work since the "no God" position would necessitate the logically impossible infinite regression of temporal based events that lead to our own existence. Finally, atheism can only provide moral subjectivity and can in no way justify any moral absolutes. Basically, atheism is intellectually bankrupt position to hold that is, of course, the greatest of modern superstitions.

www.carm.org/atheism
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xraygrrl
Incorrigible. Please do not incorrige :P
05:01 PM on 06/02/2013
"But, can any atheist prove there is no God? If so, let's see it."
Prove to us that Thor doesn't exist...then we can use your method to prove the non existence of your god as well.
I'll save you some time....you can't prove non existence. You are the one claiming a god exists so the onus is on you to prove existence.
My intellectual position is that I don't think it very likely that god exists so I live my life accordingly as an atheist. Absolute statements like "there is no god" are a good thing to avoid unless you have definite proof, which I don't.

Infinite regression, eh? Where did god come from then? He had to come from somewhere or something. Science has no explanation for what existed before the big bang, you have no explanation for where god came from. So there.

I love the old moral subjectivity chestnut. Sorry to burst that bubble but morality evolves and changes. There are no absolutes. Do we still stone disobedient children to death? It's in the bible. Admit it, most people nowadays cringe at some of these so called moral absolutes in the bible. 60ish years ago drunk driving was just shrugged off as a "boys will be boys" sort of thing that wasn't considered a big deal. It is most certainly considered a big deal in our time. That is a modern example of how morality evolves.
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12:42 AM on 06/03/2013
"infinite regression" That is the prime cause. Who created god? Humans. {snicker}

With nothing being ever created (the Universe/Multiverse is eternal), that one is off your list. And it seems that Lucretius is right on that one. Nothing is created. An infinite number of particles has always existed.

We are made of particles.

BZ.
08:05 PM on 06/01/2013
[Qur'an 5:9] "O ye who believe! be steadfast in the cause of Allah, bearing witness in equity; and let not a people’s enmity incite you to act otherwise than with justice. Be always just, that is nearer to righteousness. And fear Allah. Surely, Allah is aware of what you do."

[Qur'an 16:91] "Verily, Allah enjoins justice, and the doing of good to others; and giving like kindred; and forbids indecency, and manifest evil, and wrongful transgression. He admonished you that you may take heed."

[Qur'an 2:63] "Surely, the Believers, and the Jews, and the Christians and the Sabians — whichever party from among these truly believes in Allah and the Last Day and does good deeds — shall have their reward with their Lord, and no fear shall come upon them, nor shall they grieve."
01:43 PM on 06/02/2013
Quran 86:5-7, "Now let man but think from what he is created! He is created from a drop emitted-Proceeding from between the backbone and the ribs."

Surah 3:54, "But they were deceptive, and Allah was deceptive, for Allah is the best of deceivers."

Quran 5:51, "O you who believe! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends; they are friends of each other; and whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them; surely Allah does not guide the unjust people."
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12:44 AM on 06/03/2013
You can pick the same kind of stuff from the Bibble.

You are not that clever. Actually, you would have followed Jesus better by NOT posting that vengeful list of things that are meant to hurt the previous poster.

BZ.
CognitoErgoSum
CogitoErgoSum was taken when I signed up.
04:23 PM on 06/02/2013
I'm not a Muslim, but in my experience and acquaintance with those who are, more of them seemed to have their beliefs and actions informed by those verses you cited, then the out-of-context verses that taken alone, are what they project onto all of Islam.
09:42 PM on 06/02/2013
Unfortunately yes. Thanks!
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demcratville
Science makes you think.
07:50 PM on 06/01/2013
The Pope Flip-Flopped on his "Atheist can do good" Position.
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Craig 212
Tide goes in, tide goes out.
11:30 PM on 06/01/2013
Did he? I knew that the Vatican officials came out and said that the Pope was full of sh*t, but I hadn't heard that the Pope himself had retracted his statement.
12:57 PM on 06/03/2013
Actually, not even that is story. Rev. Rosica who wrote the rebuttal is NOT a Vatican official. He was before Francis was named Pope, but since then he has gone back to his gig as head of some Catholic university in Canada.

So, the Vatican has not rebutted the Pope.
researcher
researcher
02:16 PM on 06/01/2013
This morning I tried to make something from nothing and ended up with nothing.

This afternoon I am going to try to make nothing from something and see how that works out.

No one does a better job of creating atheists than religious folks, especially the Catholics.

One day a group of scientists got together and decided that man had come a long way and no longer needed God. They picked one scientist (Dawkins) to go and tell Him that they were done with Him.

The scientist walked up to God and said, “God, we’ve decided that we no longer need you. We’re to the point that we can clone people and do many miraculous things, so why don’t you just leave us be.”

God listened patiently to the man and after the scientist was finished talking, God said, “Very well. How about this? Let’s have a man making contest.”

The scientist, with great arrogance and confidence said, “That would be fine.”
“Sure, no problem,” then bent down and grabbed a handful of dirt.

God said to the scientist, “No, no, no. You have to make your own dirt!”
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bbriani3842
400+ yrs of science & STILL no evidence for a god
08:31 PM on 06/01/2013
Why do horrible things happen with your all-powerful god?

Is it because

A) He can't stop it
B) He allows it
C) He caused it
D) He doesn't exist

(nod to Ricky Gervais)
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12:25 PM on 06/02/2013
I'll take D for $500, Brian.
CognitoErgoSum
CogitoErgoSum was taken when I signed up.
04:24 PM on 06/02/2013
E) Humans have free will to make choices, not all of which have good outcomes.
SelfAwarePatterns
blogger; programmer; science fan
09:31 PM on 06/01/2013
Them uppity scientists. Who do they think they are? Trying to actually undertand how the universe works? Hah! Mark my words, nothing will good will come of it.

Oh, well, sure, there's the curing of the most common scourges of mankind, the understanding of gravity, taming electricity and quantum mechanics so we can do these interesting posts, lightening up the night, flying the skies, flying to the moon, enabling world wide communications, climate controlled buildings, higher crop yields, painkillers, vaccines, longer lives, and a few other overhyped things.

But nothing ELSE good will come of it! (Now where did I put my smartphone?)
11:34 AM on 06/01/2013
Lets put all religions aside. I've never heard an atheist explain how we can have a planet and universe that operates under perfect precision. Does the earth ever go out of orbit? We were created perfectly in 9 months with organs that operate whether we ask them to or not. The heart always beats, brain functions (in some cases) and liver/kidneys cleanse even when we are asleep. We don't have to think about it. Even the stock market operates under perfect precision. Everything in the Universe has a perfect order to it. How did it get this way? Has to be a higher power or some form of universal intelligence., This would point to a God.
On a personal note, my father happens to be an atheist. He is holocaust survivor and can't bring himself to believe in God because obviously God wouldn't allow the things to happen that my father has witnessed. A long time friend became an atheist after his sister was killed at a University in NY when a concrete slab fell from about 10 stories up and struck her on the sidewalk, she never saw it coming. That was many years ago, he never really recovered.

This doesn't apply to everyone but from what I've seen many turn their back on God because they were disappointed, didn't get prayers answered or life beat them down in such a way they became wounded. The more extreme the case, the more likely the wound runs deeper.
SelfAwarePatterns
blogger; programmer; science fan
01:53 PM on 06/01/2013
There are actually scientific explanations for many of the questions you asked, but answering all of them in a credible way in a comment isn't feasible. I recommend reading 'Origins' by Neal deGrasse Tyson. (BTW, this is a science book, not an atheism one.)
http://www.amazon.com/Origins-Fourteen-Billion-Evolution-ebook/dp/B0089NTV46

Some nonbelievers lose belief because of some traumatic event, but that's relatively rare in my experience. My belief faded over a period of decades as I learned more about history, science, and philosophy. From what I've seen, my story is fairly common.
07:23 PM on 06/01/2013
that's fair, there's generally 2 kinds of people in the world, those who believe what they see and others who can believe what they can't see yet. That's the faith element, its not easy to develop
researcher
researcher
02:24 PM on 06/01/2013
"Even the stock market operates under perfect precision." really?

But I do agree with your article both the atheists and the religious either accept or reject a God made in their own human image.

Charles Darwin asked "have we any right to assume that the Creator works by intellectual powers like those of man?" (Origin 1st edition, p. 188).

"The possibility of life originating from accident is comparable to the probability of the unabridged dictionary resulting from an explosion in the printing shop." Edwin Conklin, biologist.

Now what the scientific materialists have come up with to explain life is the infinite universe theory. that is like the turtles all the way down holding up the earth.

"Leon Lederman director of the Fermi accelerator stated: “we have reached a crisis in physics where we are drowning in theoretical possibilities not based on a single solitary fact”."
07:26 PM on 06/01/2013
at the end of the day scientific people have scientific hypothesis, none of which explains why your heart beats right now. As far as the stock market goes, study Gann and Fibonacci