Why can't atheist and Christians agree to disagree?
Will atheist and Christians ever just agree to disagree?
Because while one of those parties claim to have strong disbelief of all except reality, they too have built up a belief that is as strong, stubborn, and challenging as the other. But, such things never need to turn into arguments, it is immaturity that sparks fiery debates in which neither side will accept the others beliefs or opinions for what they are and move on with their own lives. Whatever helps people sleep at night and feel fulfilled is an individuals own choice in life, and should not be condemned by any man/woman.
They can't. Unlike Christians and other Religions, where the argument is simply variations on a theme, with Atheists, it's one of fundamental principal.
The existence of God is a binary state; either He does, or does not exists. Therefore the argument between Atheists and Christians is a zero-sum game, if one side is right, the other must be wrong.
I think if we all just admitted to the fact that we all have a little bit of 'bad boy' inside of us (some more than others) it would go far in explaining the confrontational tone taken by both sides.
We argue because it feels good. Sometimes I need a good argument, don't you? Getting into it with someone you know won't back down is big fun.
Negative emotions are as valid as positive ones.
For Christians, anyone who isn't a believer is in immediate danger of eternal damnation. Kinda hard to be blase about that.
For Athiests, they are perpetually surrounded by a society that largely believes in something they find completely illogical. To them, they are the little boy in "The Emperors New Clothes," and find it nearly impossible to not say something.
It's not quite a zero-sum game as a previous commenter said however. Agnostics would say that both sides cannot claim any sort of definitive evidence, and should go through life with a bit more doubt to keep their more zealous tendancies in check.
Some can. I personally don't care what other people believe as long as they don't try to force it on society.
I can, so can a lot of other people. They just aren't the ones making all the noise.
They can, as long as each is respectful of the other's path.
I'm a Christian, and two of my better friends are atheists. It's not a problem with one of them (she has very nice manners).
My other friend is usually respectful, but occasionally has an attack of "more sarcastic than thou" where he'll make sweeping negative comments about all Christians, which are not universally accurate, and are rude and hurtful besides.
He forgets or overlooks that there are a lot of different behaviors amongst the various folks who call themselves followers of Christ, and overgeneralizes in a kinda nasty way
What's worse is that, when I clear my throat or say "You know that all Christians aren't like that" he'll get cranky and say "You know that I wasn't talking about you."
But if he just says Christians, I'm included in that. And saying he didn't mean me time after time is kinda like saying "I'm a good Christian who knows my place..."
He's kinda hard to like or respect at that point
If he was like this all of the time, I don't know if we'd stay friends. Fortunately, he only has an occasional attack of schmarmy...
If atheists say nasty things about Christians or Christians about atheists, it makes it harder to agree to disagree.
I am a Christian and I would be more than happy to agree to disagree with any atheist. From what I have learned in my biblical learning, everyone is given free will and it is left up to the individual to choose to believe or not to believe. I would respect their decision and I would not believe it is my place to judge them on their belief. I would only speak out against them (or anyone) if they were a threat to my right to worship in my own way.
As for Christians and atheist in general, they will never get along as there are bad apples in every group. I believe we are all born with a sinful desire therefore mankind in general has a nature to destroy. Judging one another is part of this destructive downward spiral.
Where is the fun in agreeing to disagree then simply moving on?
Admittedly, arguments between Christians and Atheists do too often become personal and immature, whilst completely ignoring the actual point of the debate. That is something that I think needs to stop, however, I find that debating keeps the mind active and is just plain fun for me. Christianity vs Atheism is such a popular topic partially because lots of people genuinely do feel quite strongly about it and partially because it doesn't matter where you are or what time it is, if you are in the mood for a nice heated debate as I sometimes find myself, then this topic will never fail to get a reaction.
So long as it stays verbal, I don't see the problem with conflict. It's one of the things that keeps life interesting.
I've actually been in lengthy discussions with more than a few Christians where at the end we've walked away agreeing to disagree. Now as two groups looked at overall it will never happen, there's just too many differences of opinion and misconceptions about the other side on both sides.
Its the physical world against the spiritual world. For someone who believes in God, I will not be mean or rude to an atheist but I also will not go out of my way to be best friends with one. Actually, "fake" Christians are worse to be around!
Christians can't agree with one another.
I was walking across a bridge one day, and I saw a man standing on the edge, about to jump off. I immediately ran over and said "Stop! Don't do it!"
"Why shouldn't I?" he said.
I said, "Well, there's so much to live for!"
"Well ... are you religious or atheist?"
"Me too! Are you Christian or Jewish?"
"Me too! Are you Catholic or Protestant?"
"Me too! Are you Episcopalian or Baptist?"
"Wow! Me too! Are you Baptist Church of God or Baptist Church of the Lord?"
"Baptist Church of God."
"Me too! Are you Original Baptist Church of God, or are you Reformed Baptist Church of God?"
"Reformed Baptist Church of God."
"Me too! Are you Reformed Baptist Church of God, reformation of 1879, or Reformed Baptist Church of God, reformation of 1915?"
"Reformed Baptist Church of God, reformation of 1915!"
To which I said, "Die, heretic scum!" and pushed him off.
I wish they would and the rest of us would get a welcome respite from the never ending pointless arguments!
part of the problem is the very nature of the argument here in america: god-believers have defined atheists as people who KNOW there's no god when in reality there are very few people who are so arrogant that they can profess to know the truth about something that is ultimately intangible. for me, it's simply applying Occam's Razor - the most parsimonious explanation of the world around me doesn't require the existence of a god, so adding one the mix isn't useful
instead, most atheists and agnostics merely see that there is no evidence for a god, and when understood this way, there is no antagonism needed with those who have a different belief - this tolerance and acceptance of diversity works in most of the rest of the world. it's only in places where fundamentalists stir the pot that there's antagonism
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