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Should Atheism be Militant or Not?
Militant Atheism vs Militant Christianity
In recent years atheism has become more and more militant. Where once, if religious people mentioned their faith, an atheist would listen politely and not mention their viewpoint for fear of offending the speaker, the pendulum has now swung in the opposite direction. There is vitriol on both sides. So marked has this vitriol become between atheists and those who aspire to believe in god, that those who do not aspire to be militant about their lack of belief in a god prefer to label themselves agnostic. In reality, both agnostics and atheists mention a lack of evidence in a personal god for their position.
The Enlightenment, science, and god.
Why Atheism should not take a militant stance
People believe in gods/religions because it solves a problem. Belief systems of this nature bring comfort when there is loss, provide hope when there is struggle, reassure when there is fear, and give an answer to unanswerable questions. When people are dependent on a religion to fulfil these needs and there is nothing else to fulfil those needs, then it becomes unkind to attempt to remove those belief systems from them. In certain instances, it can be downright cruel. People have belief systems in magical beings because without that belief they cannot face life. If they cannot face life without a crutch, it without that crutch, they will fall.
It becomes problematic when believers are persistent. They have been taught that their salvation depends on them ‘witnessing’ to others. Prosyletism becomes a way of life, a vital aspect of their relationship with their god. So they will not stop, despite it being extremely rude on their part to persist in talking about something that is irritating to atheists.
Until very recently, atheists remained quiet and polite when being ‘witnessed to.’ The worm has turned, however, and for various reasons, the relationship between Christians and atheists has become tense.
Militant Christianity street preacher
A little history between the conflict between atheism and Christianity
As Christians have become more militant in their belief system that the world must be converted to Christianity, they have also started demanding that the laws of the country must be changed in order to suit the precepts of Christianity. This endangers the modern world which was built on the principles of the Enlightenment, a movement that occurred. Wiki explains the Enlightenment as ‘The Age of Enlightenment or simply the Enlightenment or Age of Reason is an era from the 1630s to the 1780s in which cultural and intellectual forces in Western Europe emphasized reason, analysis, and individualism rather than traditional lines of authority.’
As a result of the Enlightenment, science began to made headway. Disease was no longer the hand of god but the result of bacteria, viral infection, bad diet, etc. Women were given the vote because they were no longer seen as second class citizens. Planes were invented because the idea that if mankind tried to reach for the sky (as per the Tower of Babel story in the bible), they would be struck down was discounted. The idea that mankind should be free to practice whichever religion or non-religion s/he preferred is also a tenet of the Enlightenment. (Christianity, itself, persecuted anyone who deviated from Catholicism. It also attempted many times to purge the world of Jews, plus it invaded Jerusalem and murdered Muslims and anyone else who stood in their way.) The world of invention and scientific discovery is a direct result of the tenets of Christianity no longer preventing the advancement of mankind.
As religion is a direct threat to the world of science, invention, freedom of religion and speech, women’s rights, civil rights, human rights, and the reason and analysis that provided for all these modern concepts, a return to a world led and dominated by religion will result in mankind returning to the Middle Ages.
Christianity already challenges gene therapy, the separation of church and state, and the idea that women are responsible for their own bodies and are the ones to make a decision as to whether they wish abortion and contraception (or not). It has tried at various time to blame the absence of rain (drought) on the mini skirt and the financial chaos of the modern world on the pill (Planned Parenthood).
Democracy, the right of all people to participate in government, is a direct result of the Age of Reason (Enlightenment). Religion puts the power in the hands of the king (ancien regime), the pope, the priest, the pastor, the caliph, and the shaman.
Reason and analysis, therefore, are in direct conflict with many religion, Christianity in particular. That’s because the age of reason and analysis arose in the world of Christianity and was the first to be threatened by it. Reason and analysis show the holes in the bible and as a result of the demand for evidence, there is declining belief in the religion. This is an enormous threat to the church as a whole and is probably the reason for the increase in Militant Christianity and the subsequent message of the church that Christians must convert others. It is also possibly the reason for Christians’ insistence that we revert to the tenets of the Dark Ages – no more scientific advancement.
Do you believe that
Why atheism should take a militant position
There is a direct threat to our technological world, our freedom of speech and religion/non-religion, and our accurate understanding of how our world/universe works (science) if religion is to be permitted its version of reality. It cannot be allowed to happen. While the reason to allow militant Christianity to say what it wishes and change all the laws is wants is based simply on tolerance and good manners, the reason to fight back with militant atheism is one to save civilization from reverting back to savagery and the Dark Ages.
It’s a no-brainer.
© 2015 Tessa Schlesinger