jump to last post 1-24 of 24 discussions (106 posts)

A Question for Anti-Theists

  1. Don W profile image82
    Don Wposted 7 years ago

    How do you propose to eradicate theism if "re-education" and ridicule don't work?

    1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      It is self-destructing without any help from the outside.  The situation is more comedy than tragedy.

    2. Mark Knowles profile image60
      Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      How do you know education and ridicule is not working? Dropping memberships in most churches and religions is happening all over the world. As I keep saying - I am not really speaking to the religionists I am speaking to - I am speaking to the undecided.

      The real danger is that the religions will return to their usual way of combating non believers and increasing membership. Us atheists are unlikely to start burning Baptists at the stake, or ostracizing theists from society any time soon. sad

      I say ridicule and education is far kinder than a crusade......

      You still have yet to offer an alternative, or dealt with the fact that the word of god is non-negotiable. The moment it becomes negotiable is the moment one accepts that it is just an opinion - not the word of god.

      1. Nick17Pierce19 profile image37
        Nick17Pierce19posted 7 years agoin reply to this

        Nice, this is some pretty good analysis and I wish I could give you like +10 for saying what I would have said, before I could say it!

      2. Don W profile image82
        Don Wposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        I agree that discourse is kinder than crusade, but you didn't answer the question.

        You say "Us atheists are unlikely to start burning Baptists at the stake, or ostracizing theists from society any time soon. " (why do you indicate sadness here?) but you don't say how you propose anti-theists eradicate theism if "ridicule and education" don't work?

        If you are absolutely certain those things will work, then I have to ask, why are you so certain? If not then I reiterate the original question, what do you propose anti-theists do if re-education and ridicule don't work?

        1. Mark Knowles profile image60
          Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

          Nothing sweetie pie. If the theists are absolutely determined to take us down the "ARMEGEDDON" path, there is little anyone can do about it. If we are to go forth and multiply until there is nowhere left to multiply to - well - I am sure the earth will take care of herself.

          What do you suggest exactly? Other then semantic BS along with all the other apologists? MY GOD SAYS THIS.. is a tad difficult to have a reasonable conversation with.

          But still - you are assuming that education and ridicule will not work. I am not making that assumption. I don't know if they will work, but they seem to me to be a more reasonable alternative than genocide. If I started suggesting we murder them willy nilly - I would become just as bad as they have been.

          And I do not want that. Humor usually works for me. Let's try it and see........

    3. Valerie F profile image60
      Valerie Fposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      "Reeducation" and ridicule, like violence, don't work.

      1. earnestshub profile image88
        earnestshubposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        Yes, I wonder what would work. When I was a religionist, I could not be persuaded to see outside my belief at all.
        Fortunately, being so indoctrinated I was able to keep learning until I saw how amazingly egotistical and self centred relgion is and learnt my way out the other end.
        Looking back on those times I can now see the megalomania in being "saved" and live a happy life that is not based on hate that is sold as love. smile
        Education worked for me I guess, even if it was religious education that got me back on track.

        1. qwark profile image60
          qwarkposted 7 years agoin reply to this

          Earn:
          After 2 1/2 yrs in baptist seminary where my classmates were inundated in biblical scripture without questioning, it was "curiosity" that ended my journey into the dead-ended subject concerning a non-entity: "god."
          Delving into the history of the evolution of man's bent for beliefs in the "supernatural," opened up a world I wasn't aware existed. The world of "science!"
          Fortunately for me, questions began to appear that my zealous instructors had no answers for!
          I began to realize just how limited they were in terms of understanding "reality!" That, in itself, inspired me to "dig" deeper and deeper into areas that the religious "bigot" would not tread.
          The more I studied the greater became my understanding of the abysmal depth of my "ignorance!"
          The more sophistication I developed, the more questions I had to ask!
          I think that limitless curiosity is a characteristic of more highly evolved human creatures!
          My drive to understand as much as my natural aptitude would allow, as egotistical as it may sound, made me feel superior to my seminary fellows...including the instructors.
          When I was asked to leave, I was Freed!
          I am still learning!
          They and all who believe in the metaphysical as being existential, are travelling on a dead-end journey powered by abject ignorance.
          I travel as a joyous, natural "free" man unencumberd by the fetters of religious psychopothy! I will travel thus, until I "pass."
          Education IS the "savior!"

  2. profile image0
    JeanMeriamposted 7 years ago

    Anti-theists don’t need re-education or ridicule. All the atheists, agnostics, etc., that I know were made that way by the religion itself. All the ways it doesn’t work. The prayers that go unanswered. The words of holy books that are completely useless and/or criminal in the human world. Doubts seep in. Then doubt builds. Then they begin to look for better answers.

    1. tobey100 profile image59
      tobey100posted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Believing in nothing is a better answer?  I choose to believe in something, even if it's just the fact that by believing I can perceive my life as something more than just a certain number of years then nothing.  I can say this for a fact; if I lived my life believing in God and living accordingly, then upon death find out there is no God, I still lived a better life and was a more loving human being than otherwise.

      1. Mark Knowles profile image60
        Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        Good for you sweetie pie. I especially liked the threats of eternal torment that makes you a loving human being. LOL

        Still - only you know if you would be even worse if you were not scared of Jesus' retribution when you are dead. LOL

        Why is it you theists have such a high opinion of yourselves when you come across to other people as something entirely not the same thing. Loving? Can you define that word for me please? Perhaps it means something different to you. wink

        1. tobey100 profile image59
          tobey100posted 7 years agoin reply to this

          Who said anything about being scared???  No ones asking you to believe.  I wouldn't waste my time.  And, if you want to continue calling me sweetie pie, you can kiss my ass.  Ignorance must be bliss

          1. Mark Knowles profile image60
            Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

            It is a term of endearment, sweetie pie. It means I love you.That is some powerful lovin' right there. lol

            But - just so we are clear - it is OK for you to tell me I am going to burn in hell - as you have done. Right? Just checking that is OK. lol lol

            1. tobey100 profile image59
              tobey100posted 7 years agoin reply to this

              Now you've got the picture.  I'm right and you're wrong.  Isn't that they these types of arguments are supposed to work? tongue

              In all seriousness, I really hate the Sweetie Pie business.  I also don't happen to begrudge anyone their beliefs.  What you or anyone choose to believe is absolutely none of my business.  I do like to argue though.  I don't seriously think you'll burn in hell.  You may get singed alittle but that's all.  tongue

              1. Mark Knowles profile image60
                Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                I, know sweetie pie. You made it perfectly clear that the sweetie pie thing was getting to you. I have two brothers and needed no further invitation. lol

                Tell you what - you stop telling people they will burn in hell for not believing the rubbish you believe - I will stop calling you sweetie pie. Deal? big_smile

      2. profile image0
        JeanMeriamposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        No, I don’t think believing in nothing is a better answer. I was just saying that’s how I’ve seen it  happen. And most don’t turn to believing in nothing. Many turn to other religions or agnosticism.

        People seem to tend to think they know the whole story either way they choose to go and I think  that’s wrong. We can’t know everything. We only use 10% ? of our brain. If you decide completely there is nothing, or if you decide you know everything about divinity because you read a book, you miss out on the wonder of everything.

        I went through my atheist phase when I was younger. I got over it. No one else made me believe either way. One day I just realized it wasn’t about me at all. Then I started searching the other way  for a better religion and ended up full circle to where I started, but with a much better understanding.

        1. Nick17Pierce19 profile image37
          Nick17Pierce19posted 7 years agoin reply to this

          Jean, you make belief sound like an irrational choice. Humans have beliefs for a variety of reasons, self motivated and otherwise. If I take a step back and look at the situation from an objective view, it's difficult for me to believe something exists where there is little evidence to support it. If you were to tell me that there's an elephant outside my building right now I wouldn't believe you, but I might try to deduce whether or not you were telling the truth by going outside. How is one to tackle this part of the equation when it comes to religion? If we don't make decisions in our lives based on our ability to effectively evaluate situations, then we might all think that there's an elephant outside the building trying to get us.

          1. Pandoras Box profile image68
            Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

            Exactly! While education and knowledge are obviously useful, it is the ability to effectively evaluate situations that is key, the ability to utilize thinking skills at a higher level and to accurately process information.

            1. profile image0
              JeanMeriamposted 7 years agoin reply to this

              Yes but we are evaluating from our own limited perspective and the amount of knowledge that is available to us. That’s the best we can do. The things that are possible in the world now would never have occurred to our ancestors because their perspective was limited to the knowledge they had at that time.

              I don’t think we have even begun to come close to knowing what we need to know to evaluate much of anything.

              1. Pandoras Box profile image68
                Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                Then find out more.

                I agree with what you're saying to a point. But I don't think it makes sense to go on believing what our ancestors believed out of a misled sense of our own ignorance.

                We can evaluate the situation based on what we know. We can continue to adjust our evaluations based on new information, but there is no reason to accept as ultimate truth in our own lives the claimed "revelations" of long dead men, or living ones for that matter.

                1. earnestshub profile image88
                  earnestshubposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                  Well said! smile

          2. profile image0
            JeanMeriamposted 7 years agoin reply to this

            I don’t think belief is irrational. Saying you know, when you don’t is irrational.  We know very little about anything. When you decide that you absolutely know you stop growing.

            And the elephant question. I can answer that in a couple of ways that probably won’t satisfy you, but I’ll try and see. How far would you go out of your limited space to see that elephant?

            When one of my daughters was little I was working from a school book with her because the teachers said she was very delayed. I opened the book and said where’s the flower? She looked blank. I said it again “Where’s the flower?” Nothing. I got frustrated and pointed to it myself. She said “That’s not a flower, that’s a picture” So all the school’s evaluating was for nothing. Apparently she was not delayed at all, just an abstract thinker who has become an incredible artist.

            How do you tackle this equation with religion? By knowing we don’t know everything and being open to learning more. Why would we just stop in religion and say that’s all there is I know everything. We don’t do that with any other area of our life.

            1. Jerami profile image72
              Jeramiposted 7 years agoin reply to this

              Very good point..  Why stop learning. There is always something more to learn no matter the path that we are on.

            2. Pandoras Box profile image68
              Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

              But the religious asks us to do just that.

              1. profile image0
                JeanMeriamposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                No. Evangelicals do. That is a very small, but in the States, loud minority.
                Only the evangelicals take the Bible literally that I know of.

  3. profile image0
    Pani Midnyte Odinposted 7 years ago

    Although I consider myself a spiritual person, I have learned a long time ago to just allow others to be the way they want to be. If someone asks me a question about my religion, I will gladly answer them and I will try to correct stereotypical remarks made about my religion, but I also know that the path I have chosen may not be for everyone. Instead of trying to re-educate and ridicule the world, we should be accepting of the differences in it.

    "There's a right way to do everything and a wrong way to do everything. The wrong way is to try to get everybody else to do things the right way." M*A*S*H, Colonel Potter

    1. Sally's Trove profile image84
      Sally's Troveposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      I think you said it all.  All other debate is superfluous. To each his own, as each accepts that others are different.

  4. Beelzedad profile image56
    Beelzedadposted 7 years ago

    I've read many posts here that consider religious doctrine to be hate speech, racist, bigoted and homophobic to name a few. In that regard, the ACLU has adopted free speech as one of it's agendas. They are adamant that hate speech is combated with more speech.

    More speech. That would be the answer, imo. smile

    1. Pandoras Box profile image68
      Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Yes, I agree. The free and unhindered exchange of ideas goes a long way.

  5. Flightkeeper profile image73
    Flightkeeperposted 7 years ago

    Don, it won't work, hence the frustration.  I think you should just sit back and be entertained.

    1. Mark Knowles profile image60
      Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Of course it will sweetie pie. eventually people will be educated enough not to believe that nonsense.

      That is not to say the religions will not put up a fight. Of course they will - they have too much to lose. Hence the attacks on atheism.

  6. Flightkeeper profile image73
    Flightkeeperposted 7 years ago

    lol

  7. profile image0
    Twenty One Daysposted 7 years ago

    are you assuming 'education' is therefore the answer? that seems a little far fetched. since it was education of some form that brought about both believe & disbelief in any and every thing humans have engaged, conceived, attempted, discovered, etc.

    educating people in an anti-religion, anti-god or no-god philosophy is just the same cult/cultural practice of those you are attempting to snuff out.

    History records many times this exact instance came full circle.

    The most recent: a half-hebrew, artist, college drop out turned politician who, some years back, claimed a single race of people w/ no belief system should exist, even put it into practice.
    it resulted in a world war...

    people should be extremely cautious when considering things. Often times, it causes the fall of civilizations both educated or not...

    1. Mark Knowles profile image60
      Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      No sweetie pie.

      Education in knowledge - not the kind of education religions provide which is actually indoctrination. Educate people and allow them to make their own mind up whether people like you know what you are talking about.......  LOLOL

      Please do not put words in my mouth to make it seem as though I said something I did not. I know that is how you are taught to do it by god, but still.

    2. Flightkeeper profile image73
      Flightkeeperposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Agreed 21 days, there have been plenty of very educated people who put forth some really horrifying stuff, the field of psychology and sociology has tons of really weird theories.

      1. Mark Knowles profile image60
        Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        Quite right. Education is to be avoided like the plague if you are intending to keep a belief in an invisible super being going. I agree 100% wink

        1. profile image0
          Twenty One Daysposted 7 years agoin reply to this

          no twisting. those were your exact words.

          ps, i am no theist -i thought we discussed this earlier.
          i am neither theist or atheist, scientist or religion-ist.


          ps, who says each person doesn't make up their own mind when deciding to believe or disbelieve any thing? all the people i have ever met have 100% free will, consciousness of doing any thing.

          how does 'education' pro or con make a substantial difference?

          ALL education is indoctrination -for education is a doctrine itself.
          Be it doctrine of space, pole dancing, chocolate malt recipes.
          There is no difference between any of them. They all serve only one purpose -perspective/ambition or ambiguity, depending on the person/group/ideology framing that doctrine.

          1. Mark Knowles profile image60
            Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

            No - they do not. It is possible to garner knowledge and education without those - but - you need to be taught how to do that. wink

            And how can you claim not to be atheist when you talk of god? Not only that but complain that the lol "New Agers" have stolen your belief system and perverted it.

            You are inconsistent and still using semantics....

            Give me a 7 year old for 10 years and I could persuade him to believe almost anything. And that he chose to do so of his own free will.

            1. profile image0
              Twenty One Daysposted 7 years agoin reply to this

              I never said my belief system -but i did say our history- better still, our ancestors history ( Name one law who's fundamental root is not based on Mosaic or Abram principle, just one).

              By garner do you mean selective knowledge/doctrine?
              and how do propose to do that since the word suggests an individual approach to knowledge/education. Where and with what would a person build a knowledge from?
              Present information, Books, Ideologies?
              If you mean self-exploration, then by all means do so.
              However, before you do, remove ALL elements of both science & religion. "Clear the highway" as the saying goes.
              Anything else would be subjective/suggestive by existing knowledge bases.

              As for the new ager's, perhaps you are missing my point:
              ALL religion/science is useless, as useless as knowledge without purpose. Even to this: purpose w/out preconceived ideas or suggestions/recommendations by human standard knowledge (be it Webster's dictionary, NASA's handbook on spaceflight or the bible for dummies).

              knowledge is futile. the two lovers futile. and their offspring (new age thinking) futile.

              1. Mark Knowles profile image60
                Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                Too much semantics to make much sense of, but I will say you are wrong.

                Is the 7th step between 6 and 8 futile?

              2. Pandoras Box profile image68
                Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                There are many, but that should be obvious.

                However, as for the laws you refer to, almost every society had and or has similar laws. It doesn't take a belief in Mosaic religion to tell people that murder is wrong. In fact, many non-mosaic societies developed better laws.

                1. profile image0
                  Twenty One Daysposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                  I am not disputing that, Pandora.

                  But the 'root' of them comes from one of the two. And true Abram principle has no religion, actually neither did Mosaic. Judaism was not a religion, it was a lifestyle with certain practices attached because of influence. Its origin has no religious base. Tor`ah or as the others say Old Testament, is a collection of HISTORY not theology. If people actually understood that, they would see things very differently and take the ritual systems out of way and perhaps end this conflict between theist and anti-theist/atheist, ya know?

                  1. Pandoras Box profile image68
                    Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                    Then you are disputing it. I do not believe humanity evolved all over the world directly through the hebrew lines.

      2. Don W profile image82
        Don Wposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        A lot about education, but the opening question asks how anti-theists propose eradicating theism if "re-education and ridicule" fails. What then? Maintain the status quo?

  8. Flightkeeper profile image73
    Flightkeeperposted 7 years ago

    @ 21 Days: in fact I think being educated has nothing to do with having or not having religious conviction.  But I do think that having education shows a mind that can easily reduce a situation to facts and theory but not whether it can be practically applied.  It's easier for that mind to compartmentalize, it seems.

    1. profile image0
      Twenty One Daysposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      of course. the 'easy' way out or absolution of any thing, indeed.
      still, without some form of knowing/education even the simplest of belief systems would not exist.

      agreed, practical application of -dare i say- Purity, would remove the need to know and eliminate all such systems; remove the parallels of question-answer and enable human beings to 'be'.

  9. skyfire profile image75
    skyfireposted 7 years ago

    Being educated = religious? then re-education mean "skepticism" ?

    1. Pandoras Box profile image68
      Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      I would say that being religous = being indoctrinated, and being well-educated = having the ability to correctly process information. The former can happen with no real effort on the receiving end, but the latter requires a genuine thirst for understanding, I think.

      1. profile image0
        Twenty One Daysposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        indoctrination = education.
        doctrine: any system of teaching of information religious or otherwise.

        both are futile.

        1. Pandoras Box profile image68
          Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

          There's a difference between being merely educated and being educated to effectively process information. The former teaches knowledge, the latter gives a person a bigger, clearer picture of that knowledge.

          1. profile image0
            Twenty One Daysposted 7 years agoin reply to this

            still, either or. knowledge is knowledge.

            example: if a person takes all present scientific knowledge and applies a set of ritual practices to it (star gazing on Monday @ 3am while sipping ice tea and playing soft piano music) what do you have: a religion.

            so the application of knowledge grand or small is manipulative.
            one set of knowledge can supersede another for a time, until another set of knowledge comes along. Ultimately, they are the same parallels. Prime example above: what was a collection of history, genealogy, events and places was manipulated into a set of rituals which became a massive culture, temples, animal sacrifices, etc.
            Which resulted in a set of rules.

  10. profile image0
    Twenty One Daysposted 7 years ago

    what then is knowledge? ideologies put into practice.
    knowledge of any thing does not make any one person or the collective 'better'. Knowledge to some is enlightenment, to others history, to others absolution.

    this is why i have continually stressed the point of the Need To Know being a parallel. It is an finite loop humanity seems to use -in any form or fashion- to suit its own personal desire, ambition.

    one can use knowledge to built great societies, structures even mechanics to travel beyond the farthest star. It doesn't make it 'good' or 'better' or 'valuable', it simply makes it just another culture (cult).

    example: mark is stating -from these postings- that knowledge would remove the belief of an 'invisible super being'. so that perspective of knowledge can build a cult (should others accept his 'belief' or ideology). But, there is no substantial difference between his perspective and those of the Egyptians who believed in Ra or the need by Western society to enslave millions as work horses for the building of skyscrapers, machines, star ships, etc.

    it simply means knowledge is futile.

    1. Flightkeeper profile image73
      Flightkeeperposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      But ideologies put into practice by itself is very clinical and doesn't indicate whether it will be a good or bad experience for people.  For example, communism  as a practice put in place in russia vs republic in the US. I would prefer to live in the US.  There has to be something more than knowledge.

      1. Pandoras Box profile image68
        Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        Knowledge is nothing more than what people think they know. Intelligence -advanced thinking skills- is something different. It doesn't guarantee immunity from bullcrap, but when combined with integrity it goes a long way.

    2. Mark Knowles profile image60
      Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      No - what I actually said was " Education in knowledge - not the kind of education religions provide which is actually indoctrination. Educate people and allow them to make their own mind up whether people like you know what you are talking about."

      Twisting twisting twisting.

      Like any good theist - your use of semantics and mis-quoting to twist what was actually said is very, very good.

  11. profile image0
    Twenty One Daysposted 7 years ago

    Well said Flightkeeper, very well said.
    this has been my argument for years. there HAS to be something more than knowledge. Because knowledge came from something other than humans.

    Seeing through the eyes of both the anti-theist and theist causes one to really 'believe' in something far beyond both.
    Logic can only go so far, rituals only practiced so long, before both become cumbersome, exhausting and pointless.

  12. profile image0
    Twenty One Daysposted 7 years ago

    ps, just by the small observation of your participation in primarily religious forums, though claiming to be atheist, Mark, you contradict your own beliefs. Even if you say it is for the good of others to express that knowledge/belief or simply to poke fun at. What's more, by even remotely condemning the beliefs of others all the more proves just how futile that perspective is.

    Millions are leaving the religious sphere, not for lack of belief in the Creator, just the opposite. Most are leaving because they believe in the Creator -i happen to be one of them.
    we have left behind the old doctrines/knowledge bases of ritual and experimentation to seek out Purity.

    Maybe you don't see the irony in it, but i certainly do. and i quite enjoy it.

    1. Mark Knowles profile image60
      Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Not understanding is not the same as irony. wink And - as I have explained many times - I am not really speaking to the ones I am addressing my remarks to. Too difficult to understand?

      Read my book "Spiritual understanding with no work in just 12 days." lol

  13. profile image0
    Twenty One Daysposted 7 years ago

    hey man, mock all you like.
    to engage is to address, by proxy or otherwise. call a spade a spade, man. I am not judging either way.
    However, it most certainly reinforces my own belief about both.

  14. qwark profile image60
    qwarkposted 7 years ago

    Monotheism is but a "fad" like "rap" that can be cured with an inoculation of "universal education."
    Problem is that ya gotta "inoculate" before the "fad" becomes overwhelming.
    If that happens, like with any "plague" the "fad" will kill the host.
    Gotta recognize the "fad" early and organize! The "cure" will be slow but effective.

    1. getitrite profile image80
      getitriteposted 7 years agoin reply to this



      Yeah, it will be slow.  Like re-potty training an adult!

  15. tobey100 profile image59
    tobey100posted 7 years ago

    Huh?  Someones belief in God is a fad?  A plague?  I know you guys are trying to state your case and I appreciate that.  However, if you think you're going to get anyone that doesn't agree with you to change their minds or even listen when you term their belief system a 'plague' or 'fad' you've wasted your time.  Not only does it come across as condescending but insulting as well.

    1. profile image0
      Twenty One Daysposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      so right tobey,

      hence the question of this thread.

    2. qwark profile image60
      qwarkposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Tobey:
      If the "shoe" fits......
      Monotheism is a "plague" that is responsible for more human death, destruction and torture than any concept "modern" man has conceived except for the invention of the automobile. It has destroyed more human life than the "Black Plague" of the 1300's and all other "plagues that have, historically, infected man. It continues on today!
      I understand that the minds of "primitive," unevolved thinkers can't understand the "concepts:" logic and reason, so it is not my intent to try to bring intellectual "salvation" to those not capable of "considering" progressive change.
      I just express "it" as I view it.

      1. Pandoras Box profile image68
        Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        lmao..


        While I may not fully endorse qwark's delivery (but would be lying to suggest I don't sometimes lose patience with people myself) he's right. Monotheism is a 3 to 4 thousand year old fad. Before that came the fertility goddess fad and the sungod fad. Prior to the political embracing of christianity, the greeks popularized the pantheon fad.

        Religion is nothing more than a popular way of easily explaining the world to the ignorant masses. It changes with the sentiments of the society, but one thing remains. The ignorant masses need to have an easy explanation that does not require too much critical thinking on their part.

        The only way to change that is to teach the ignorant masses how to think, and to provide them with the resources to do so.

        1. qwark profile image60
          qwarkposted 7 years agoin reply to this

          Pandora:
          Ty..:-)

      2. Don W profile image82
        Don Wposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        qwark, as you describe Monotheism as a plague (polytheism is okay then?) is it your intention to imply that theists are plague carriers?

        As you also describe theists as "primitive" and "unevolved", is it your intention to characterise theists as sub-human?

        If not then what was your intention? If so, are you aware of the ramifications? Either way how do you propose anti-theists eradicate theism if "re-education" and ridicule don't work?

        1. qwark profile image60
          qwarkposted 7 years agoin reply to this

          Don:
          if you know the difference 'twixt polytheism and monotheism and you have studied your history, I hope you have, it should be obvious that there are many more people on this planet than there were in the days of Zeus.
          You are correct tho, in the days when polytheism reigned, warriors went into battle with a battle cry: MAY THE GODS BE WITH US!
          But during the last 3 millenia, 3 major monotheisms arose: judaism, islam and christianity.
          The population of humans on the planet blossomed and has grown into a force of humananity so fragmented by differing interpretations regarding their beliefs that they will still "kill" for their religious idiocy screaming "god is great!"
          The abstract concept god has become a virile pestilence which has, from the days of polytheism to today's monotheistic god, been responsible for untold death and destruction...and as human population grows, deprivation, starvation, and human atrocities will geometrically increase.
          Like the bubonic plague it will encompass and control all those who suffer and plea for help.
          Monotheism promises the downtrodden a better life after life!
          Imagine how attractive this can be to those who have been inculcated with fairytales of supernatural caring entities, taught as truth.
          I believe it is too late for a cure for this monotheistic malady.
          The suffering, religious fanatic will cause the alledged "rapture' to become a reality in the very near future.
          How can man be sub-human? He IS a human animal.
          Theists carry and spread the deadly plague of monotheism!

          1. Don W profile image82
            Don Wposted 7 years agoin reply to this

            What's frightening about this qwark is that you seem utterly convinced of what you are saying, particularly that theism is going to bring about the end of the world.

            The reason that's scary is because you are essentially blaming a group of people with certain beliefs for the destruction of the world. As scape-goating goes that's a fairly clear example.

            Can you see how your argument could form justification for harmful acts against a person or group of people because of what they believe?

            You mention history. Well can you not see from history the dangers of laying the blame for the worlds "ills" at the feet of one group, or one religion, or one type of belief? Can you not see from history the dangers of characterising a group of people as "diseased", "primitive", "unevolved"?

            Frankly I can't distinguish the message you are disseminating here, from the type if messages throughout history that have formed the justification for genocide.

            What's more you imply you are, as a non theist, healthier, more advanced and at a higher level of evolution than the "downtrodden" masses who will succumb to theism; While at the same time engaging in what is effectively hate speech. Can you see any similarities between your comments and the comments made by some theist fundamentalists?

  16. Pandoras Box profile image68
    Pandoras Boxposted 7 years ago

    Education does not equal intelligence.

  17. Pandoras Box profile image68
    Pandoras Boxposted 7 years ago

    By the way, I should point out since I am participating in this thread, that I do not seek the eradication of religion or religous believers. I wish merely to have it put in its proper place.

    1. Don W profile image82
      Don Wposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      What is theism's "proper place" and how do you propose to put it there should "re-education" and ridicule fail?

      1. earnestshub profile image88
        earnestshubposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        Well a "proper place" may start with not making threats to all who are not religionists, that would be some improvement at least! smile

        1. Don W profile image82
          Don Wposted 7 years agoin reply to this

          Surely those threats are only threats if you hold the same world-view. If you don't then they are meaningless. Why feel threatened by something which is (for you) meaningless?

          1. Pandoras Box profile image68
            Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

            I don't personally feel threatened by a god. Spiritually I am quite comfortable. The danger comes from the power of the collective. The power of the collective is anything but meaningless. Ask any politician.

            1. Don W profile image82
              Don Wposted 7 years agoin reply to this

              I think allowing people freedom to maintain their own world view, while at the same time ensuring people behave in a way that does not adversely affect those who don't share that world view would be helpful. Being careful about the "power of the collective" in the process of group decision making (politics) is an important part of that. But that cuts both ways.

              Does your concern about the power of the collective extend to that of an anti-theist collective influence? Regardless of whether I subscribe to any religion or not, I'd be horrified if people's freedom of thought was restricted, or if people were discriminated against in some way because of an anti-theist collective influence.

              Some non-theists (you don't seem to be one) don't realise it's better to balance the scales out rather than tip them over to the opposite extreme.

              1. Mark Knowles profile image60
                Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                But we already restrict theists. We do not let them burn atheists at the stake any more, and we restrict (theoretically) their ability to write the laws of the land based on what god told them.

                I assume you are OK with these restrictions?

                1. Don W profile image82
                  Don Wposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                  I said I'd be horrified "if people's freedom of thought was restricted", not if their behaviour was restricted.

                  Restrictions on behaviour are a part of living in a society with common values.

                  1. Mark Knowles profile image60
                    Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                    Right.

                    But - is it acceptable that they keep their children away from school to teach them that evolution is a lie? Is it acceptable that they claim tax free status? etc etc.

                    I do not see how it is possible to forcibly restrict anyone's freedom of thought in any case and I am not suggesting that.

                    But it certainly is possible to manipulate it.

      2. Pandoras Box profile image68
        Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        Mythology.

        I have no wish to eradicate them which exist or will come to exist, just to help expose them and their beliefs for what they are. By doing so, I hope to decrease the number of people who would foolishly lend them support, increasing their power in society.

        I do not have much faith in reeducation of the "convicted". However, I believe that hearing both sides and being made aware of the possibilities helps decrease the numbers of new convicts. Most "believers" are not "convicted". Most "believers" pose little to no threat to society. It is the "convicted" and the pretend "convicted" who are dangerous.

      3. profile image56
        (Q)posted 7 years agoin reply to this

        It has been pointed out already the proper place for theism is mythology, which is exactly where it currently resides.

        The fact that some feel their own belief system is not a mythology, yet they wholeheartedly admit the others are mythologies would tend to indicate another root problem altogether, that of indoctrination. It is this process of accepting uncritically their parents beliefs in a god that is the main driver for the belief system and its capacity to propagate from one generation to another.

        If this system is exposed for what it is and what it achieves, perhaps more people will break free of its effects.

  18. profile image0
    Twenty One Daysposted 7 years ago

    see Mark, still jumping the gun.
    oh wait you are not 'speaking' directly, right. (wink, wink)

    BTW, Pandora, I found the term: mtDNA

    both genetics & archaeology are working together on it.
    like I said, i don't know how substantial the claim is, but they have some proof.

    1. Mark Knowles profile image60
      Mark Knowlesposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Oh - you meant substantial proof. In that case...... lol

      But you are sure they have "substantial" proof. Is that better than Gnostic Knowledge that children have?

      Wow - Genetics and Archeology. Do you have a friend in Archeology as well who can substantiate the substantial proof? lol lol

      Deary me.....

      1. profile image0
        Twenty One Daysposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        new flash, my son is none of your concern, sir.
        second, he has more sense than most adults i know.


        ps, don't you have some theists to bother or new age "hiccup" (hippie-yuppie) meeting to start online? jeje

        how to be a new age narcissist in just one blog. lol

    2. Pandoras Box profile image68
      Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Okay look. I've been trying to explain this for quite a bit now, but I've decided that I am not the best person to try and explain scientific matters. The long and short of it is that it is impossible that the mitochondrial eve theory is correct. Also the mitochondrial eve mt descended from an african race, not a hebrew one.

  19. earnestshub profile image88
    earnestshubposted 7 years ago

    One way would be to give theists MMDA, then when their minds have access to the source of their sub-conscious religiosity they will see it was all just their inner fear of death and out of control megalomania! lol

  20. earnestshub profile image88
    earnestshubposted 7 years ago

    Many of the religionist I knew spent some time in jail eventually because little things like honesty apparently did not apply to them!

    1. qwark profile image60
      qwarkposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Earn:
      Amen!

  21. profile image0
    Twenty One Daysposted 7 years ago

    anyone find it odd that former theists/seminarians who once believed in with complete free will absolution would make such claims against?
    Quite interesting/fascinating...

    can one believe the words of a 'former' theist to support non-theism? can one support the speech of a former politician as non-political...

  22. Pandoras Box profile image68
    Pandoras Boxposted 7 years ago

    Now we're getting to the crux of the matter. The collective in the U.S. is currently christianity-minded. While as Jean pointed out only a minority are fundamental gung-ho wing-nuts, the less deluded religious tend to support them. Indeed our treasured philosophy of freedom of religion supports them. The large majority christian collective would not dream of stifling the rights of the religious.

    Their rights include -it seems- being able to pervert the education of all american children, having nearly unlimited political influence on their congregations, influence over the pursuit of scientific advances, the stifling of the rights of others, spreading an atmosphere of unworthiness to all nonbelievers, passing judgment on anyone who believes differently from them, causing confusions, depressions, and suicides by their incomprehensible doctrines and threats, who knows what all inner destructions might lay at the feet of the collective self-righteous.

    No doubt some will say I am exagerating. But I have seen it, I have witnessed it. When a person lives in a society where a belief in a personal relationship with a saving god is so predominant, and yet unattainable for so many, it creates an atmosphere of self damnation and hopelessness.

    Do you know what it's like to be gay in america? It's getting better for homosexuals, but ONLY BECAUSE PEOPLE KEEP ARGUING! If we shut up about it, christians would rule america, I promise you that.

    And it is a mess, an unbelievable herculean task to get to the bottom of it. It's designed to be that way. And it's not like the american public is the most educated people in the world. No really, it isn't. You'd think it would be, but we're not because we waste our collective energy, finances and spirit on this bullshit.

    No, of course Don we do not wish to imprison people or send them to re-education camps, or commit a type of genocide on them or any such thing. Peoples' hearts and minds cannot be legislated or regulated. I am certain that most nonbelievers would still fight hard to protect the rights of the religious WERE THEIR RIGHTS AND FREEDOMS EVER THREATENED. BUT THEY AREN'T!!!!!!!!

    Can they say the same towards us? Or towards any group of people they don't agree with such as homosexuals? Would they fight for the rights of homosexuals? Hell no, they won't even let them live their private lives in peace. Why? Because the bible says so.

    We bend over backwards to accomodate and placate the religious, and all we ask in return is the same rights and freedoms to express ourselves and argue our viewpoints the same as they argue their's.

    In time we hope that this will lead to a more balanced society, where everyone enjoys the same rights and freedoms, where science, education and knowledge isn't spurned, and where the pat answer to every soul in need isn't "they need jesus".

    When the rights of religious people in America are threatened, let me know. I'll be there. In the meantime, please stop claiming or suggesting that we are persecuting them merely because we state our views.

    Yes, sometimes some of us -myself included- can speak harshly, big deal. Grow up or go cry to yer mama. There is in our ridicule never any suggestion that we are chosen and they aren't, that we are righteous and they are willful rejectors of goodness and love, that we are bound for glory and they are damned to an eternity of punishment and torture in a bottomless pit of fire.

    Religions like christianity are innately hateful, it matters not what they say or do. Because at the core of their belief system is the belief that some people are good or saved, and everyone else is evil and damned and that is just the way it is.

    Thank goodness that was one of the things that I could never accept about christianity, and I kept compromising and weakening it, and trying to work around those parts of the bible altogether until finally I realized I wasn't a christian at all. When the mass of 'christians' out there have finally attained the knowledge that they aren't either, then things will be better.

    But in the meantime you have idiots who don't even know what the heck they're talking about flying about saying dumb butt things like "I don't think everyone goes to hell, but I do believe in jesus!" and lending their support unwittingly to an outdated system that harms society out of loyalty to their parents and heritage, a sick sentimentality over an anglicized picture of a long dead man, or out of basic fear using "I believe in Jesus!" as a talisman against the threat of eternal damnation.

    It's dumb! Okay, it's dumb! There's no nice way around it, it's just plain dumb!

    Now ya got me all riled up. I gotta go stir my spaghetti sauce and do some laundry. Let me know when they start busting into churches and hauling believers off to re-education camps. I'll put just as much passion into fighting against that -if even the threat of it ever occurs.

    In the meantime, I think you're the one who is exagerating!

    That said, I read your other thread for theists, and appreciate the common ground you are attempting to find. But I have to reject your premise that by arguing against religious beliefs we are engaging in a persecution.

    1. earnestshub profile image88
      earnestshubposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      One of the best most accurate posts I have seen. Well said! smile

      1. Pandoras Box profile image68
        Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        Sorry for my long, meandering ramble. I wish I could learn the art of conciseness.

    2. qwark profile image60
      qwarkposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Pandora:
      I give both you and Bill Mahr a standing ovation.
      I couldn't have expressed better myself!
      Now lets get down to the nitty gritty.
      What kind'a spaghetti sauce ya making?
      I'm like one of pavlov's dogs....drooling hungrily at the thought of spaghetti and meatballs..and...warm garlic bread.. arf arf!!!   :-)

      1. Pandoras Box profile image68
        Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        Yeah I do like Bill Maher.

        Meat sauce with sausage pieces, lots of mushrooms, garlic and onions. It's basically the same sauce my dad always made, only minus all the grease. But I wouldn't dream of skipping the garlic bread!

    3. Don W profile image82
      Don Wposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      I too think people should be able to express disagreement and challenge other's beliefs. I don't think that expression is being denied in any way. The issue is how people do it. At the moment it's being done by characterising a certain group of people as "sick", "ill", "diseased", "primitive", "un-evolved", "delusional", "irrational", "abnormal", "ignorant" and "mentally ill". That's not atheism. It's anti-theism.

      Can you really not see the issue with categorising a whole swathe of people from all walks of life, all different backgrounds, as inferior to you, by virtue of the fact that they believe something you disagree with? Can you really not see any potential problems with that position?

      If the issue is that theism as a world view dominates the group decision making process in the society you live in, and adversely affects those who don't subscribe to that view, then reform the political process so groups with a particular world view don't have undue influence in that process; Ensure there is clearer separation in that process between private, personal values and the commonly held values and interests of society as a whole etc, but don't get militant and hateful about it. Surely that defeats the object.

      It's all about how theism and non theism sit together in societies. About how groups make decisions together, about how philosophical differences impact upon decision making which in turn impact upon people's lives. In short this aspect of your complaint is about politics.

      So is anyone organising a new political party on an atheist platform? If not, why not? If so great, do you support it? That's positive, constructive, progressive action. In contrast demeaning people's beliefs is negative, destructive, regressive action.

      And that's where I differ from anti-theists. I think the solution lies in building bridges not burning them. Making connections, not destroying them. Positive action, not negative action. Constructive action, not destructive action.

      I acknowledge the issues you raise regarding theism, but anti-theism is destructive and not the answer. Indeed if anti-theism is the answer we've arrived at, then I think we've seriously misunderstood the question.

      1. Pandoras Box profile image68
        Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        Well, now, it is primitive, un-evolved, delusional, irrational and ignorant, and often sick, and possibly mentally ill and diseased.

        Okay, okay. I try not to use most of those terms. I agree that when you say these types of things it makes communication difficult. But then you know, it is extremely difficult anyway to have conversations with religious people. Some people aren't really trying to reach the people they're responding to, myself included most of the time because we have learned that it can be pretty futile. But there are lurkers, seekers.

        You have a point, and I acknowledge it. If we're going to engage in discussion with someone, we ought to attempt civility. But if somebody says something dumb-butt like "I'll pray for you" or attacks the atheist viewpoint, then I feel they deserve it.



        Yes, and I try not to do that, even though that is what they do to us. I have strived to understand these people for years, as I am sure have most other atheists. I do not think them inferior. Everyone makes mistakes. It is curious though, still curious no matter how much I can understand their inability to break away from their religion. It bothers me how easily they can accept the damnation of their fellow humans. 



        Because in most parts of America an atheist politician wouldn't stand a chance! Atheist organizations can't even get a hearing. A recent president said he didn't even consider atheists citizens. What atheist or agnostic politicians we do have know full well, even as many of our original founding fathers did, that they better talk the talk if they don't want to be politically lynched.



        Excellent point. Hate the sin, not the sinner. It is of course very difficult what you suggest. To reason with believers and find common ground. But I understand and appreciate what you're saying. Believe me, I'll give it serious thought and try to see how I can put what you say into application for myself.

        I will admit to you that I have not really been satisfied with the atheist organizations I've encountered or read about. But they're young yet, really, and hopefully will grow into having a more useful role in society.

  23. profile image0
    Twenty One Daysposted 7 years ago

    .

    options:

    1. supersede the necessity of banter between theism and its opposition.
    2. create a non-theist based belief that exceeds thought/consciousness.
    3. dismiss any notion that theism applies or is applicable to the well being of all humanity while providing a complete, cohesive - non-coercive/persuasive- alternative to nor elemental premise of that belief system in it.

  24. profile image0
    JeanMeriamposted 7 years ago

    This is ridiculous. The US is so far behind most of the westernized world in education and you choose to believe the cause is religion? Sorry it’s not religion. Religion is everywhere. Only one country is trying to teach anything but real science in school. Well maybe a few other countries, but they’re not part of the western world.

    Not to keep this post going forever, but I’m confused.

    What is taught in US schools and churches?

    I went to Catholic school.Yes, religious school, and was taught evolution as fact.In the front of the Bible I had at school, it states that the Bible is a book of mythological stories. I still have that Bible. From the introduction to the book of Genesis from my Grade 7 Bible “The interpreter of Genesis will recognize at once the distinct object that sets chapters 1-11 apart:the recounting of the origin of the world and of man (primeval history). ...... to For this reason the truths themselves must be clearly distinguished from their literary garb.”

    “While we do not view the the account of the patriarchs as history in the strict sense.....”

    It goes on to explain who wrote what and why. What the political role was of the writings, etc.
    the types of writings (metaphorical,poetic,etc.)

    Jesus was the anti-thesis to the religion of the day which was one of sacrifice,damnation,classism,sexism,racism, etc. If you drank out of the cup without wiping it you were on your way to hell and so on.


    Yes it is a combination of the Jewish belief in a coming Messiah and the even more ancient mystery religions. And we are taught this in church primary schools, so it seems a little silly you all are handing this knowledge out like you found something new. We know. Surprise! Fooled you!

    The actual premise of Abramic religion which follows into Christianity is listening to that call to walk away from the religious/political stupidity. Abraham risked everything to go to what he believed was truth and leave behind the fears and superstitions of his time i.e. the belief at the time of sacrificing one’s child to Baal for material gain. At one point he became confused and thought to go backwards and sacrifice his son, but was presented with a lamb to fulfill that urge and then on to Jesus as the end of sacrifice. It’s a story about moving into the new and not listening to those who say they hold the truth and know when the call inside says different. “ I desire mercy,not sacrifice” and “The whole of the law is to love your neighbour as yourself, and love God with all your heart”

    Abraham means father of many nations. It is not the literal name of a man. It is the symbol of the end of a superstitious era where idols were worshipped, humans were sacrificed, people lived in fear of the elements. Abraham was an evolution of man. When you understand things for what they are the meaning changes.

    You do understand the Old Testament is a combination of myth and history right? It says so in my Bible. It’s obvious if you read it.  It is the oral tradition of how the Judaic nations came to be and their perception of that, and the notice that when they went against the will of God their nation fell into ruins.

    Do you seriously think you are educating anyone by restating the teachings I was given in elementary school?

    I get on the internet with Americans and am told I am an uneducated idiot and don’t believe in evolution. Among many other interesting things I supposedly believe because I believe in God, which you equate to a super being much like a tooth fairy. I don’t know whether to laugh or move further north. I find it really baffling what your concept of religion is. 

    The US is having these problems, not the rest of the western world, which is why I think that makes this a political problem, not a religious problem. Obviously if 50% of the country does not understand biological evolution there is a problem with the education system.

    And outside your borders, there is very little support for your fundamentalists. Sorry Christianity as a whole does not support them. They weren’t even allowed into the Vatican to discuss evolution. The Archbishop of Canterbury said their ideology is a mistake and basically to keep their nonsense out of the education system. I would say in Amish terms the back has been turned.

    As you said== “learn more” When you think you know, you stop seeking further and you miss everything.

    1. Pandoras Box profile image68
      Pandoras Boxposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Catholicism isn't exactly free from fault. But it's a gorgeous day outside...

 
working