The Condemnation of Religion by Atheists

I'd like to start by saying that I am an atheist, however, that does not mean that I am against the concept of religion - I simply do not believe that there is a God in any form. Personally, I have many reasons as to why I don't believe in God, but that is certainly not what this hub is about.

Anyone who has visited any website, forum or discussion board on the internet that is based around religion will most probably have encountered some form of hateful post condemning people for their religious beliefs. Unfortunately such people do exist, and yet again the actions of a few have reflected badly on the majority; as with almost every religious group, atheism too has its extremists and occasionally they too commit violent acts (albeit a miniscule number and on a very rare basis), although, it would seem that atheists are far more vocal about it over the internet.

Why do they do it?

The reason why this select group of outspoken atheists is so vocal about what they think is indeed a tricky question. Some are just of an argumentative nature, some are perfectly normal people who happen to disbelieve in God and try to start a civilised discussion on religion only to have someone misinterpret their intentions and launch a counter argument that enthuses the former to reply in a slightly more hostile way. This being said, many can simply not take the fact that people are convinced of what they believe to be completely incorrect, and feel the need to disprove them.

On the flip side it could be claimed that, in the same way an atheist saying the god doesn't exist is contrary to what theists believe, theists saying there is a god is contrary to what atheists believe and could be considered equally offensive. This is, however, a very flawed logic - on the surface it seems plausible, but in reality when a theist attempts to persuade an atheist to believe in god, generally they - confident in the existence of a god - are making a genuine attempt to do something they think would improve that person's life and help them get to heaven, Nirvana, Shangdi, Paradise etc. or simply to lead a more meaningful and enjoyable life. On the other hand, atheists merely try to dissuade theists from believing in what often forms a substantial part of their life while not offering any form of self improvement as a result of this conversion. That is not to say that some theists don't attempt to forcefully convert people despite a clear disbelief in God - for they do, and it too is also a common cause of religious debate and can incite hostilities.

Another large cause of arguments over religion, and what is often the foundation upon which ideas such as the abolishment of religion are based, is the damage that it has caused to society. It is an undeniable fact that many wars have been started under the pretence of defending one's religion and countless numbers have died as a result of it. Throughout history, from the persecution of Christians by the Romans to the current actions of Al-Qaeda, this has been the case and it is unlikely to change any time soon. However, while this may be the case, mankind itself is, by nature, a violent species and war has and will continue to feature in our history.

Religion is, contrary to popular belief amongst atheists, not always the actual reason behind many wars fought in its name - it is instead used as more of an excuse. The crusades, for instance, were supposedly conducted to reclaim Christian control over the Holy Lands. What few take into consideration is that nations back then were controlled by their religious leaders - the Christian ones by the Vatican. And so, by creating 'soldiers of the church', what was actually happening was that the Vatican was seeking to extend its sphere of influence in the world - and what better way to do it than in the name of God? (Note: this is not to say that religion didn't come into the reasons behind them at all.)

Without religion wars would continue, terrorism would continue, and suffering would continue. Religion offers hope and meaning to millions of people's lives; religious texts have laid out a set of morals and examples which have been ingrained inside each and every country and culture's history - and were used to create the fundamental laws and constitutions under which we all live. There is no telling what form of anarchy people might turn to without religion as sometimes it provides the restraint that they themselves could not.

Whether you like it or not, religion is a part of modern society - its destruction could only be detrimental.

- Sasha

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Comments 11 comments

Vizey profile image

Vizey 7 years ago

Christians need to tell and justify their beliefs to the whole world. There is a need for understanding religions of others as well.

ellie1142545 7 years ago

Vizey...I believe actions speak louder then words, and yes I'm a Christian...

Sasha...MY Grandson is also Athiest, and I still love him very much...He knows he can talk to me, and not have to worry about my getting angry, That would be so wrong, becuase I would be judging, if I did get angry....

Sasha S profile image

Sasha S 7 years ago from United Kingdom Author

You sound like a great grandmother! My granfather, on the other hand, is not so leniant - he's a Scottish Calvanist and is very old fashioned in his ways so any atheistic views would probably be met with a rather harsh response. Fortunately though, that's the only 'negative' aspect of him - and you could do worse than to have your only 'downside' being great faith in what you believe!

EdG. profile image

EdG. 7 years ago

I had a discussion with a theist once on the subject of war under religious pretense. He claimed that war is fought by governments for economic purposes, not religious. He was not wrong in this. However, the people go to war over religion, or at least think they do. How much more likely is a man to go to war when he believes he has God on his side?

In essence, you are correct in saying that religion is the "excuse" but it is much more than that to the religious masses that actually do the fighting.

I do agree with you in part though about religious morals giving people restraint. I remember hearing on an atheist talk-show a christian asking what would stop people from "murdering their neighbors" without religious values to stop them. The host replied by asking that if the man wasn't christian, would he murder his neighbors? The christian (somewhat unconvincingly) replied back that he would. In this case, the theist in question was likely just trying to prove his point but it is a scary thought that there are such ignorant and misguided people out there.

Kenny 7 years ago

I am atheist, and I find religion to be quite boring personally. That's why I stopped, not to mention the fact that I see more violence in the Bible than anything else (Yes, I have read it.) My campaign against religion is directly related to those theists who feel it is their duty to either convert everyone, or condemn non-believers for not believing.

I will also actively campaign against any religious based activity or influence on public/government policy or property. It's bad enough that religious entities do not pay taxes in the U.S. As long as religion is kept completely separate from government, I am fine with what others wish to believe.

geojock 7 years ago

Sasha-"On the other hand, atheists merely try to dissuade theists from believing in what often forms a substantial part of their life while not offering any form of self improvement as a result of this conversion." Your statement presupposes that there IS improvement. I was raised in a fundamentalist household, one where intelligent talk regarding nature (i.e. evolution) was actively suppressed, politics was out-of-bounds, and questioning authority forbidden. While it is more DIFFICULT to find a satisfying purpose in your life when one must seek it out oneself instead of being spoon fed simplistic answers about morality and the universe, I found it a great deal more satisfying. I do miss the community of church, however; I think that's why you find so may atheists in (at least Democratic) political rallys - everyone wants to feel part of a group. And another thing about the supposed beneficial or at least innocuous nature of religion: in the west we're subjected to, at the worst, a "gentler" form of fanaticism, moderated by centuries of Hellenistic influence. But when one's particular imaginary friend tells his followers it's OK to kill someone, nay, it's GOD'S WILL! and he will be rewarded in the afterlife with either virgins or reincarnation, the case for religion's beneficial effects is severely weakened.

sheila 5 years ago

I just cannot believe with all the science/darwinism that there are still "lambs" completely scared to explore out of hte box that it may actually be safe to question and/or wonder about our "father". Come on people. open your minds and stop being such a part of the flock.

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