You are either not logged in or not registered with our community. Click here to register.
 
December 03, 2016, 11:53:34 AM

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length

Click here if you are having problems.
Default Wide Screen Beige Lilac Rainbow Black & Blue October Send us your theme!

Hark!  The Herald!
Holiday Issue 2016

Wiki Blogs Dicebot

Author Topic: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle  (Read 7467 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Stattick

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #200 on: December 05, 2012, 02:32:40 AM »
The frightening thing about threads like this is that there are self-professed atheists here who are holding themselves up as representative of atheism.  They make broad statements like the one highlighted above. 

I'm not a representative of anything. Hell, I'm not even an atheist. I didn't mean to imply that I was an atheist, or that I speak for them.


I don't feel Stattick's point about atheists having nothing in common other than a disbelief in God holds water.  They are a recognisable demograph - more likely to be right wing, more likely to be male and so forth.

If either of those links said anything of the sort, I missed it. The first was a story talking about how religious people in Britain tended to be more left wing. The second link was to an image file of a poll.

Quote
4. Gnostic-Atheist: believes it can be proved that god does not exist

Yeah, that's some Grade A stupid right there. In science, you can't prove a negative.



Also, there's apparently atheist social clubs. My mind's blown. I've been around for 41 years, and it's the first I've heard of an atheist club. Still, I'm willing to bet a glazed doughnut that most of them aren't very church like at all, and that the overwhelming majority of atheists aren't members of such a club. But I'm willing to be proven wrong.

Offline Stattick

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #201 on: December 05, 2012, 02:40:15 AM »
Walk up to an Atheist and ask them politely about why they agree with it and really listen to what they say, rather than how, and you will see that it is as full as personal life experiences and choices and beliefs as any properly worshipped religion.

I've never talked to an atheist who's claimed to have had a supernatural experience that convinced them that God doesn't exist. I've never talked to an atheist that claims to have studied science and math textbooks and had gotten a lot of comfort from them, or gotten a deeper understanding of existence. I've never talked to an atheist that's gone to talk to a scientist when they've struggled with a moral quandary, and have gotten sage advice. I really don't understand what on earth you're trying to say here, other than "Atheism is a religion". Honestly, to me, it just sounds like you're making stuff up.

Offline Sabby

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #202 on: December 05, 2012, 02:43:17 AM »
They mostly pop up when organization is needed. A group of 100% Atheists are unlikely to group up in any official capacity. But in an area like Austin, Texas, where Religion is a vocal and powerful majority, things like the Atheist Community of Austin pop up in response to this.

Offline Torch

  • Pay no attention to the woman behind the curtain/Trieste's sarcasm buddy
  • Suspended
  • Enchanter
  • *
  • Join Date: Jan 2009
  • Location: USA
  • Gender: Female
  • "Soul meets soul on lovers' lips." P.B. Shelley
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 0
Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #203 on: December 05, 2012, 05:54:43 AM »
But in an area like Austin, Texas, where Religion is a vocal and powerful majority, things like the Atheist Community of Austin pop up in response to this.

You've never been to Austin, have you? Seeing as how you live in Australia, I'm going to guess you haven't. If you had, you would have realized the folly of your assumption.

I have been to Austin, and I lived in Texas for seven years. Austin is about as left-wing as one can get (in Texas, anyway). You might want to do a bit of research on a city before making statements like that.

Offline Sabby

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #204 on: December 05, 2012, 05:59:47 AM »
Whoops, my bad. >.< I just assumed it was more localized, but Texas is a very religious state. I apologize.

Offline Torch

  • Pay no attention to the woman behind the curtain/Trieste's sarcasm buddy
  • Suspended
  • Enchanter
  • *
  • Join Date: Jan 2009
  • Location: USA
  • Gender: Female
  • "Soul meets soul on lovers' lips." P.B. Shelley
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 0
Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #205 on: December 05, 2012, 06:19:50 AM »
The only "vocal and powerful majority" in Austin are music fans.

Or Longhorn fans during football season.  ::)

While Texas may be a Red State, the city of Austin is most assuredly not.

Offline Sabby

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #206 on: December 05, 2012, 06:26:35 AM »
Still, my point was they formed in response to other groups.

Offline Caela

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #207 on: December 05, 2012, 06:46:33 AM »
Still, my point was they formed in response to other groups.

Sometimes, but not always. Sometimes people form a group, not because of other groups in the area, but just to make it easier to find like-minded individuals. In a large city it's easier to make a group with a planned meeting place and set time then it is to just try and pick random people out of a crowd.

Offline Sabby

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #208 on: December 05, 2012, 06:53:41 AM »
Oh, of course, but do you think a lack of belief in something will even be noticed, let alone congeal into an organized group, unless that specific belief raised its head? How many of you thought of how silly Rhubarb is before I brought him up? No one. And no ones going to form a meeting until I start trying to give pop up versions of the Book of Quackerations to kids.

This is the major thing to remember. Atheism is a rejection of a claim based on reasonable doubt. trying to demonstrate atheism happens without the presence of the rejected claim is like saying fire fighters living in Atlantis still end up building a fire station.

Offline Braioch

  • Devil. Mad Scientist. King of Debauchery. Brat Prince. Duke of Snark. Warlock of Orgies.
  • Knight
  • Enchanter
  • *
  • Join Date: Nov 2009
  • Location: Michigan
  • Gender: Male
  • Imfinewhydoyouask? Canyoutastetime?Ican
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 1
Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #209 on: December 05, 2012, 07:00:17 AM »
But, but... 'Belief'?  I thought atheists don't believe at all.  But to deny the existence of a deity figure(s) according to you requires belief.  But atheists deny that it's a belief...

This is not facetious, this is mind boggling to me.

To me, to an outsider here, who isn't sure about any of this, when I listen to Atheists claiming that they are sure that there is no God, and have all sorts reasons as to why, sounds very much like a belief system.  And to say that Atheism don't have 'baggage' that other 'religions' have is bull pucky.  Walk up to an Atheist and ask them politely about why they agree with it and really listen to what they say, rather than how, and you will see that it is as full as personal life experiences and choices and beliefs as any properly worshipped religion.

Atheism is as much a religion as Christianity to me.  Which, in my eyes, as long as it's respectful, is worthy of my ear and respect.  Whether or not I personally agree with it.

I'm addressing this first because it struck me dumb for a minute there.

Let's look at belief:

be·lief  [bih-leef]
noun
1.
something believed; an opinion or conviction: a belief that the earth is flat.
2.
confidence in the truth or existence of something not immediately susceptible to rigorous proof: a statement unworthy of belief.
3.
confidence; faith; trust: a child's belief in his parents.
4.
a religious tenet or tenets; religious creed or faith: the Christian belief.

Only one of those has spiritual or religious overtones. The rest are all completely secular, you do not have to equate belief with religion/spirituality. Anymore than you do with the word 'faith.' I believe that people are good, I believe that my loved ones will be there for me, I believe that I will do whatever I can for them as well. This has nothing to do with any spiritual overtones, none. I detest that so many, including some of my fellow atheists, feel the need to avoid this word for that reason.

Yes, life experiences bring someone to atheism, just as it brings someone to a political or behavioral standpoint. Yet the logic remains true, there is no conclusive, concrete (or anything resembling it) evidence of a higher power. This, again, is the one and only real statement of atheism, that there is no proof of a higher power. Only the most cocksure and in my opinion, arrogant and incorrect atheists will stand right up and say, "there is definitely no god." Most fall into agnostic-atheism, that there is no proof.

Personally, I don't get atheism.  To not believe in anything... to solidly believe that when we die, we just blink out into nothingness, well just thinking about that possibility depresses the hell out of me.  If that's true, it means that life is meaningless and nothing we do matters. 

I can't believe that.

Now this.

Many people slip into that when the idea comes to them, we're raised in a world where almost everyone around us believe our consciousness goes on. It's a common human need to believe that we're important, important enough that not even death can stop us. We have to be important enough to go on afterwards right?

For the record, meaningless? Of course it's meaningless, inherently. Yet, we have minds don't we? The ability to discern and decide, to reason and to choose. So why not choose to give your life meaning? Why does there have to be some higher power to give your life meaning? My life has meaning because I have given it meaning, I strive to give it meaning everyday of my life and will not stop with that. Atheism is not the end of meaning, it is not pointless existence swirling around in a void of cold nothingness until all sinks into decay. (That's pure Nihilism)

You make your own life, you make this one life your paradise, or your perdition and you shape the world around you by your actions. You shape your own life, and those around you. I don't know about you, but I don't need an afterlife or a god to make my life meaningful, to feel love and a need to be a good person. I choose to be a good person, and I have all the love I could need and then some, from those around me, they are all I need. Not some sky deity, not a holy book, nothing will ever, ever compare to the people in my life, the people whom I love, cherish and hold above all else.

Offline Kythia

  • Noooo-one Fights like Kythia no-one bites like Kythia
  • Dame
  • Enchanter
  • *
  • Join Date: Oct 2012
  • Gender: Female
  • No one chain smokes Marlboro lights like Kythia
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 1
Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #210 on: December 05, 2012, 07:24:05 AM »
Quote from: Kythia
I don't feel Stattick's point about atheists having nothing in common other than a disbelief in God holds water.  They are a recognisable demograph - more likely to be right wing, more likely to be male and so forth.


If either of those links said anything of the sort, I missed it. The first was a story talking about how religious people in Britain tended to be more left wing. The second link was to an image file of a poll.

Errrm, I'm little confused.  Suspect I've misunderstood you.  Yes, granted, the story (and the poll in fact though that was less clear) were UK specific which I didn't think of before posting so sure, other countries may have different spreads.  But it seems fairly cut and dried that if religious people are more likely to be left wing then areligious are more likely to be right, its just phrasing it the opposite way.  And the stats at the top of the poll show the "more likely to be male" thing pretty clearly, I felt.

Meh, its not massively important.  But in looking for other sources apparently Wikipedia has a page on the demographics of atheism with US specific information if you'd prefer that. 

Offline LunarSageTopic starter

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #211 on: December 05, 2012, 07:37:31 AM »
Awesome for you.  I don't work that way, though.  Life without an afterlife has absolutely no meaning to me.

Now this.

Many people slip into that when the idea comes to them, we're raised in a world where almost everyone around us believe our consciousness goes on. It's a common human need to believe that we're important, important enough that not even death can stop us. We have to be important enough to go on afterwards right?

For the record, meaningless? Of course it's meaningless, inherently. Yet, we have minds don't we? The ability to discern and decide, to reason and to choose. So why not choose to give your life meaning? Why does there have to be some higher power to give your life meaning? My life has meaning because I have given it meaning, I strive to give it meaning everyday of my life and will not stop with that. Atheism is not the end of meaning, it is not pointless existence swirling around in a void of cold nothingness until all sinks into decay. (That's pure Nihilism)

You make your own life, you make this one life your paradise, or your perdition and you shape the world around you by your actions. You shape your own life, and those around you. I don't know about you, but I don't need an afterlife or a god to make my life meaningful, to feel love and a need to be a good person. I choose to be a good person, and I have all the love I could need and then some, from those around me, they are all I need. Not some sky deity, not a holy book, nothing will ever, ever compare to the people in my life, the people whom I love, cherish and hold above all else.

Offline Valerian

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #212 on: December 05, 2012, 08:16:49 AM »
But, but... 'Belief'?  I thought atheists don't believe at all.  But to deny the existence of a deity figure(s) according to you requires belief.  But atheists deny that it's a belief...

This is not facetious, this is mind boggling to me.

To me, to an outsider here, who isn't sure about any of this, when I listen to Atheists claiming that they are sure that there is no God, and have all sorts reasons as to why, sounds very much like a belief system.  And to say that Atheism don't have 'baggage' that other 'religions' have is bull pucky.  Walk up to an Atheist and ask them politely about why they agree with it and really listen to what they say, rather than how, and you will see that it is as full as personal life experiences and choices and beliefs as any properly worshipped religion.

Atheism is as much a religion as Christianity to me.  Which, in my eyes, as long as it's respectful, is worthy of my ear and respect.  Whether or not I personally agree with it.
Braioch already covered the belief part -- it's a very common misconception, it seems, to equate 'belief' with spirituality when the word really isn't that limited.

I'm certainly not absolutely sure there's no god of any sort.  But if you were to ask me what life experiences shaped that opinion, I wouldn't even know what to say.  There aren't any.  No one ever brought me to church when I was a child.  Except for weddings and funerals, I've never set foot in any Christian church as far as I can recall.  No epiphany has ever led me to believe in a higher power, just as no epiphany ever convinced me not to believe in a higher power.  So it would be most accurate to say that a lack of a certain type of life experience is what shaped that particular view of the world.

Let me also add that I'm not holding this up as a representative experience of a 'real atheist'.  I don't think of myself as a typical case, mainly because I doubt there is a typical case.  Exposure to religious doctrine, and / or others who have religious faith seems to me to be a prerequisite for theism, but there's no comparable, widespread prerequisite for atheism that I can think of.

I also don't walk around thinking of myself as an atheist.   That's a very, very small part of who I am overall.  On the other hand -- and please do correct me if I'm wrong -- those who are religious seem to me to think about their faith quite often.  That's going to create at least the impression that a particular group of religious people have more in common, in general, than a particular group of atheists, even if they all happen to get together every Tuesday night.  Correct or not, that's how it's going to look most of the time.

Also, I am amused at the possibility that I'm bucking the trend by being a liberal female who lacks religious belief.  Yet another way in which I'm just not very feminine, I guess.   ::)

Offline Braioch

  • Devil. Mad Scientist. King of Debauchery. Brat Prince. Duke of Snark. Warlock of Orgies.
  • Knight
  • Enchanter
  • *
  • Join Date: Nov 2009
  • Location: Michigan
  • Gender: Male
  • Imfinewhydoyouask? Canyoutastetime?Ican
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 1
Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #213 on: December 05, 2012, 08:36:53 AM »
Awesome for you.  I don't work that way, though.  Life without an afterlife has absolutely no meaning to me.

That seems rather sad to me.

Also, I am amused at the possibility that I'm bucking the trend by being a liberal female who lacks religious belief.  Yet another way in which I'm just not very feminine, I guess.   ::)

I'm bucking half of it, as I'm thoroughly liberal, if that helps any. :P

Offline LunarSageTopic starter

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #214 on: December 05, 2012, 08:50:35 AM »
That seems rather sad to me.

*shrugs*

You're certainly welcome to that belief.  I think not believing in a higher power is sad.

Offline Sabby

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #215 on: December 05, 2012, 09:04:22 AM »
Okay, let's say there are two possible outcomes here. Let's ignore that we have no idea if an afterlife is even a good thing. Haunting until you fade to nothing sounds kind of horrible.

Option 1. There is no afterlife. Your mortal life is meaningless to you.

Option 2. There is an afterlife. Your mortal life is an eyes blink before eternity.

Both sound like a very sad and empty lives. I honestly see no motivation to continue living. There's either nothing for you in the material world and it has to end for you to gain your afterlife, or there's nothing period.

Offline LunarSageTopic starter

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #216 on: December 05, 2012, 09:05:47 AM »
Yep, pretty much.

Offline Sabby

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #217 on: December 05, 2012, 09:15:48 AM »
So why are you here? Honest question, meant in no way to offend or antagonize. I am seriously curious and perplexed, and I will ask bluntly.

Why don't you kill yourself? Why continue this life?

If you don't feel comfortable answering, I understand. But this is the logical conclusion of this discussion, and this question will be askee at some point. Choose not to answer, and we've reached the limit of what we can discuss.

Offline LunarSageTopic starter

Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #218 on: December 05, 2012, 09:19:00 AM »
So why are you here? Honest question, meant in no way to offend or antagonize. I am seriously curious and perplexed, and I will ask bluntly.

Why don't you kill yourself? Why continue this life?

Well right now I certainly feel like killing myself.

I've struggled with suicidal tenancies since I was 12.  I'm not a person who is overly fond of himself in the first place. 

I think I need to take a xanax or something to calm down.
« Last Edit: December 05, 2012, 09:24:55 AM by LunarSage »

Offline Josietta

  • ♥ The Sweet Lil Heartbreaker of E™ ◦ Princessa ◦ BabyCakes ◦ | Minx | SisterKitten | ~ MC Wifey ~ ✨ Ely's Bestie Babe ✨ ♥ Jewel ♥ ֍ Babygirl ֍
  • Dame
  • Carnite
  • *
  • Join Date: Aug 2008
  • Location: ♥ HawkGirl -- GO SEAHAWKS!! ♥
  • Gender: Female
  • ~ His Kitten ~
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 0
Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #219 on: December 05, 2012, 09:25:02 AM »


Asking someone who has made it known on E multiple times that the have issues, why don't they kill themselves, whether its serious, in jest or otherwise is not cool.

The problem here is people continue to hammer the nails ino an already sealed box. You have your opinion and others have theirs. Lunar has made it clear that he is glad you have your beliefs and he has his but you keep badgering and pushing on what should have already been a closed matter.

For personal preservation I ask that this thread be locked NOW.

Offline Mithlomwen

  • ~ E's resident kilt inspector ~ ~ Atropos ~
  • Goddess
  • Carnite
  • *
  • Join Date: Oct 2008
  • Location: Somewhere between the dark and the light...
  • Gender: Female
  • ~ Thunder only happens when it's raining.... ~
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 0
Re: Christians vs Atheists in California Nativity Debacle
« Reply #220 on: December 05, 2012, 09:30:39 AM »
So why are you here? Honest question, meant in no way to offend or antagonize. I am seriously curious and perplexed, and I will ask bluntly.

Why don't you kill yourself? Why continue this life?

If you don't feel comfortable answering, I understand. But this is the logical conclusion of this discussion, and this question will be askee at some point. Choose not to answer, and we've reached the limit of what we can discuss.

Sabby.....really?  You know better than that. 

Since it seems this thread is spiraling downhill, it's time to lock it.