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Thread: Are you an Atheist?

  1. #106
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    An eternity of existance sounds like real hell. Atheist? Of course. Why? Nothing else makes any sense to open eyes and an inquiring mind.
    Tom L

  2. #107
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by TomF View Post
    I do wish that experience was transferable, good gents.
    That could jump both ways TomF
    “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge” - Charles Darwin (1809–1882)

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  3. #108
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by gypsie View Post
    That could jump both ways TomF
    It could, in theory. But in my experience...
    If I use the word "God," I sure don't mean an old man in the sky who just loves the occasional goat sacrifice. - Anne Lamott

  4. #109
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Religion has actually convinced people that there's an invisible man living in the sky who watches everything you do, every minute of every day. And the invisible man has a special list of ten things he does not want you to do. And if you do any of these ten things, he has a special place, full of fire and smoke and burning and torture and anguish, where he will send you to live and suffer and burn and choke and scream and cry forever and ever 'til the end of time!

    But............... He loves you. He loves you, and He needs money! He always needs money! He's all-powerful, all-perfect, all-knowing, and all-wise, somehow just can't handle money!”


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    Quote Originally Posted by skaraborgcraft View Post
    I have driven a 6.5l Dodge with diesel Cummins and it was glorious....

  5. #110
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by gilberj View Post
    What an interesting thread. Some have been more or less amusing, and others have made comments on topic. Even Bobby spoke more or less from the heart, well his fathers comment..... still meaningful though. I stayed away from this as it seemed like a troll thread, now I am curious.
    My own take.....NONE OF THE ABOVE......
    If you believe in a god it is your own personal god, not a pastiche peddled by the plethora of unauthorised franchises for power and influence reasons.
    If you don't then all the bumpf is irrelevant.

  6. #111
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    George was extraordinarily funny, but on that one, his brush was a bit broad. I don't know *any* Christians within my circle who believe what he (and many) are convinced we do.

    But Carlin is absolutely hilarious anyway.
    If I use the word "God," I sure don't mean an old man in the sky who just loves the occasional goat sacrifice. - Anne Lamott

  7. #112
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Very funny. I'm sure the breadth of the stroke was commensurate with level of humor achieved.
    Quote Originally Posted by skaraborgcraft View Post
    I have driven a 6.5l Dodge with diesel Cummins and it was glorious....

  8. #113
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Religion and the accompanying belief in an invisible being has had its uses for good.
    I have no doubt, contrary to popular denigration, that there's been less suffering in the world because people believe(d) in a God who demands they are good.

    Humans are flawed and the gains from being immoral and unethical are often too great for flesh and blood to withstand. So bad stuff happened. But religions would definitely have mitigated that. This is the function of religion, and those who gain the most from it are the weak and powerless.

    However, my opinion is that, in the modern world, to be an educated person, with full use of your faculties, average or above intelligence, and to continue to believe in a God, is simply the abrogation of your responsibilities as a member of the world.
    “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge” - Charles Darwin (1809–1882)

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  9. #114
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by gypsie View Post
    Religion and the accompanying belief in an invisible being has had its uses for good.
    I have no doubt, contrary to popular denigration, that there's been less suffering in the world because people believe(d) in a God who demands they are good.

    Humans are flawed and the gains from being immoral and unethical are often too great for flesh and blood to withstand. So bad stuff happened. But religions would definitely have mitigated that. This is the function of religion, and those who gain the most from it are the weak and powerless.

    However, my opinion is that, in the modern world, to be an educated person, with full use of your faculties, average or above intelligence, and to continue to believe in a God, is simply the abrogation of your responsibilities as a member of the world.
    Respectfully , I would suggest that significantly more people have been killed / murdered , in the " name of god " , than if there had been no religion at all.
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  10. #115
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by skuthorp View Post
    If you believe in a god it is your own personal god, not a pastiche peddled by the plethora of unauthorised franchises for power and influence reasons.
    If you don't then all the bumpf is irrelevant.
    Having ones own personal God is more than slightly presumptuous. Rejecting organized religion while accepting the possibility of some great spirit, or force beyond ourselves.... possibility I say....... it allows me to accept persons of faith... whatever faith.... openly ....without taking that faith for myself in any way more than I feel inclined to.... which is not much.....I also feel no need to affect another persons faith in any way.

    Each finds their own path to god.... or not..... To me Atheism is no different than any other religion..... either way it is your journey...

    Damn... now I go and get serious.....bugger!!!!

  11. #116
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by gilberj View Post
    Atheism is no different than any other religion
    I don't understand this one, do you mean Atheism is a religion? And then like other religions?
    “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge” - Charles Darwin (1809–1882)

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  12. #117
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    In a nutshell......yes.
    .perhaps the suffix " ism..." is a clue.
    Oh and the fact that to be an 'atheist ' devalues other people's perceived reality, which is....pretty much saying my belief is better than yours
    .........
    Pretty arrogant really don't you think?

  13. #118
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by gypsie View Post
    I don't understand this one, do you mean Atheism is a religion? And then like other religions?
    Of course it is. Just the same as not collecting stamps is a hobby. Personally I am an avid stamp not collector and believe I have a duty to take the Good News of the freedom that not collecting stamps brings to us all.

    More seriously, of course there are people who want to spread atheism in the same way that some religious folk want to share their faith. And both sides believe the other is harmfully deluded. So if evangelism is characteristic of religion then atheism may sometimes share that characteristic. But I think most on both sides of the divide are willing to live and let live, as long as the active elements other people's beliefs (or delusions) are not imposed on us.

    My friends in the little Christian charity with which I am involved are good models for atheistic me, I think. They know I share their values, but not their faith. Never once have they tried to raise their beliefs with me, but they are open about their faith and live a life, as a community, that I think is just about the best example of Christianity as I imagine it can be that I know. And individually, they are the most loving and faithful friends. There have been plenty of meetings for prayer and reflection in my cockpit and I am happy to join in (respectful silence for prayer and active participation for reflection) I've known this organisation a long, long time and it is one of the most enriching areas of my life. I think TomF would fit in well with this lot.

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    Last edited by downthecreek; 04-10-2018 at 02:44 AM.
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  14. #119
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by downthecreek View Post
    But I think most on both sides of the divide are willing to live and let as long as the active elements other people's beliefs (or delusions) are not imposed on us.
    Therein lies the rub.

    It has been my experience that religious people are far too prepared to impose their beliefs on others. The anti-gay marriage cohort is exclusively religious. Add to that a continuous list - including in my state here in New South Wales where children until recently HAD to attend Christian classes regardless of their parents wishes. Shall we mention the right for a woman to decide what happens to her own body?

    I just do not live in a world where religious people do not shove their beliefs down my throat.
    “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge” - Charles Darwin (1809–1882)

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  15. #120
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by gypsie View Post
    I just do not live in a world where religious people do not shove their beliefs down my throat.
    I'm happy that I don't live in such a world. But your experience in Ireland has probably been very different, perhaps. Changing now, but a way to go, still, I imagine? Religious based divisions still run deep in NI, but I think they as much a proxy for social and political division.

    No idea how it pans out in Australia.
    "Mozart is the heart's touchstone" (Edwin Fischer)

  16. #121
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Very gently .
    '' You ain't gonna learn what you don't want to know. ''
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  17. #122
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    " To me Atheism is no different than any other religion"
    To someone who has a belief it seems to be that way gilberj. It is actually an absence, not even a negative, an absence which it seems those who do believe cannot get their heads around.
    This has been argued to a standstill with the formidable SamF, but because at base there is no common point of contact the parties pass each other by. Anyhow I have no intention of going round again, sufficient to say that I don't call myself anything at all, certainly not atheist which in itself seems to admit there is an argument to be made.
    But I remain an amused spectator and occasional participant in the argument to end all arguments, and to which none of us will ever have the answer.

  18. #123
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by twodot View Post
    I have absolute faith that you will move on to the next bomb throw and not back that up.
    Bobbys has a broad brush. His attackers of Christianity and defenders of Islam are probably not doing what he claims. They actually attacking toxic extremism in both camps and defending those in both camps who are caught up in the turmoil and wrongly condemned as a result of being tarred with the same brush.
    "Mozart is the heart's touchstone" (Edwin Fischer)

  19. #124
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by gilberj View Post
    Having ones own personal God is more than slightly presumptuous. Rejecting organized religion while accepting the possibility of some great spirit, or force beyond ourselves.... possibility I say....... it allows me to accept persons of faith... whatever faith.... openly ....without taking that faith for myself in any way more than I feel inclined to.... which is not much.....I also feel no need to affect another persons faith in any way.

    Each finds their own path to god.... or not..... To me Atheism is no different than any other religion..... either way it is your journey...

    Damn... now I go and get serious.....bugger!!!!
    Quote Originally Posted by gilberj View Post
    In a nutshell......yes.
    .perhaps the suffix " ism..." is a clue.
    Oh and the fact that to be an 'atheist ' devalues other people's perceived reality, which is....pretty much saying my belief is better than yours
    .........
    Pretty arrogant really don't you think?

    You may have to get together to pactice your religion, but your version of your God is persoanal to you and you alone, being a melding of your experiences and prejudices.
    As you may have missed it I'll quote myself.
    Atheism is as much a religion as not collecting stamps is a hobby. Atheism is an absence of belief.
    How can an absence of belief affect anyone else? Please explain how my atheism affects you personally? Do it with care, you have accused me of arrogance.
    Last edited by Peerie Maa; 04-10-2018 at 03:30 AM.
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  20. #125
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by bobbys View Post
    I have noticed our atheists only seem to attack christianity and pay alms to Islam.
    Drawing a long bow there mate. Besides Christianity, Judaism and Islam are basically all the same God anyway.
    The definition of stupid has got to be the belief that more guns will negate the bloodshed done with guns.

  21. #126
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    twodot, both my grandfathers and my father abandoned their religions as a result of war. My father at least had no expectations as he was dying.

  22. #127
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    Default Are you an Atheist?

    There is a big difference, in practice, between being atheist and being an Atheist. As an atheist I often wonder at Atheists who promote Atheism. It gives fuel to the theists who claim Atheism is just another form of belief, hence a self-defeating position.

    When you realise that you don't need a concept of God in your concept of goodness you don't need a defining flag, badge or symbol to define your position.

    When you can accept that your existence is brief, tiny and in long scales of time quite pointless, yet still totally meaningful in a sense of personal identity and your immediate positive impact on the lives of others, you can willingly accept a world that does not need a God concept.

    I'm blissfully happy to be atheist.


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  23. #128
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by gilberj View Post
    In a nutshell......yes.
    .perhaps the suffix " ism..." is a clue.
    Only if you ignore the prefix. "A-", as in "Not". As in, "not theism". That's what atheism means. An atheist is one who is not a theist.

    Quote Originally Posted by gilberj View Post
    Oh and the fact that to be an 'atheist ' devalues other people's perceived reality, which is....pretty much saying my belief is better than yours
    .........
    Pretty arrogant really don't you think?
    "Devalues other people's perceived reality", huh? Seems to me that every person who claims that any religious belief is correct "devalues" the "perceived reality" of everyone with a different belief. Oddly enough, you don't seem to have a problem with that.

    But yeah, I "devalue other people's perceived reality", and I don't think there's anything arrogant about it at all. Claims that lack evidence may be dismissed out of hand. That's not arrogance, it's intellectual hygiene.

    What are you doing about it?




  24. #129
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    That's pretty much what I said. I refuse to be defined by God botherers. Therefore whilst I don't for a moment believe in this whole God thing, I'm not interested in the Atheist tag.

  25. #130
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by gilberj View Post
    Perhaps the suffix " ism..." is a clue. Oh and the fact that to be an 'atheist ' devalues other people's perceived reality, which is....pretty much saying my belief is better than yours . . .Pretty arrogant really don't you think?
    No, I don't think so. Some atheists can be arrogant, no doubt; it's a common enough human failing. People tend to adopt beliefs (religious or otherwise) that reflect their personalities, and rigid dogmatic arrogant people tend to have rigid dogmatic arrogant beliefs.

    But the mere fact of saying one is an atheist, i.e a shorthand way of indicating that one doesn't believe in any of the thousands of various gods that other people have believed in - that in itself is no more necessarily arrogant than any case of believing one thing rather than another. I hold those ideas I think are true. If I didn't think they were true, I would hold other ideas. So does everybody. If I think certain things are true, I have to also think other contradictory ideas are false. That's not arrogance (although one can certainly be an arrogant jerk about it), it's an inevitable consequence of thinking.

    Now I tend to be pretty agnostic myself, meaning that I try to be careful not to claim I know more than I do; I have no problem admitting my human ignorance about very large questions. But even I think that a lot of ideas other people hold are just dead wrong. The earth was NOT created in seven days 6000 years ago; that's hogwash. An all-merciful all-loving infinitely-benevolent God would NOT condemn souls to hell; I wouldn't myself, and I'm not nearly that benevolent. If you think one thing is true, you think contradictory things are false. This doesn't mean that atheists (or religious people, for that matter) are necessarily arrogant, not that atheism is merely another religion; many aren't, and it isn't - it's just logic.
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  26. #131
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    In it's best forms, I think faith in God is similar to faith in Love.

    I don't believe in the former, but I believe in the latter. Neither concept really stands up to logic, at least not with respect to anthro-centricism and agency.

    I guess I'm an atheist but I won't ridicule theists. I have my own cherished illusions.

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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Wilson View Post
    This doesn't mean that atheists (or religious people, for that matter) are necessarily arrogant.
    There is an arrogance displayed in telling a person what that person thinks or does or does not believe..

    That is a no no.
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  28. #133
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    i guess I would loosely affiliate myself with the secular humanists. It’s got values, ethics and all that stuff that some believers would argue can only come from religion.
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  29. #134
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    If you have doubts about faith and something to hold on to look at a recovering alcoholic that's been dry for an extended time and is now a solid contributing member of society. To them it's putting your faith in a "higher power" and it's a successful system that has been proven for many years. I personally know some of them, many of us do but may not always not know it.

  30. #135
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    I'm quite familiar with 12-step programs; they do a lot of good. 'Higher powers' come in all types and flavors, though, from Yahweh or Allah to things far more nebulous, or things far more earthly and concrete.
    "For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations,
    for nature cannot be fooled."

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  31. #136
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    For some, "GOD" stands for "group of drunks". Whatever works.

    What are you doing about it?




  32. #137
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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    For an OP posted in humor to encourage more humor this thread has certainly taken a deflection to a (semi)serious discussion, which was not the original intention.

    However do carry on.
    Enjoy a good rum on the rocks at sunset.

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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Religion and politics, wonderful subjects that people can go on and on about until the end of time without coming to a conclusion. My father was an atheist, so he claimed. I have never managed the level of certainly required to become an atheist. I know I certainly do not believe in The Christian, Jewish, Muslim versions of god and I have my doubts about all those various and assorted gods that the Hindus subscribe to. Then there are the hordes of retired gods from ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome and who knows what else. However, I am not about to leap to some rash judgement and say that no god or supernatural force exists. Best to sit on the fence.

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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by bob winter View Post
    Best to sit on the fence.
    All that gets you is splinters in your bum.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Are you an Atheist?

    Quote Originally Posted by brucemoffatt View Post
    When you can accept that your existence is brief, tiny and in long scales of time quite pointless, yet still totally meaningful in a sense of personal identity and your immediate positive impact on the lives of others, you can willingly accept a world that does not need a God concept.
    ^Here I find delightful freedom, inasmuch as the world does indeed not need a God concept -- I am able to accept God as a concept. (A manifold of manifolds filling all of the eleven dimensions required by theoretical physicists, encompassing many fields and forces not yet "known" to modern science.) And at the same time, I don't need it. I have been able to provide a positive influence on many people so far, and am able to take much comfort in it.

    Quote Originally Posted by woodpile View Post
    If you have doubts about faith and something to hold on to look at a recovering alcoholic that's been dry for an extended time and is now a solid contributing member of society. To them it's putting your faith in a "higher power" and it's a successful system that has been proven for many years. I personally know some of them, many of us do but may not always not know it.
    As a 30+ year friend of Bill, I have observed a fellow friend who considered his chair at his home group to be his higher power. Many of us struggle with the "God Concept", and I suspect that our salvation lies in the very fact of our struggle.
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