Talk:Atheism/archive15

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Atheism and Immorality

To make this article more neutral, it seems important to point out both sides of the "Atheism and immorality" debate. I found an article in Psychology Today, a reputable academic journal, saying the following.

Suppose "good" just meant "commanded by God"; it would follow that "God is good" means only that God does what he commands," which is faint praise.
Belief in a benevolent God is substantive only if one believes that God acts in accordance with some independent moral standard. On this view,
even theists should accept that morality is independent of religion. [1]

Additionally, Research suggests that the independence of morality and religion is actually widely recognized outside of academic philosophy, even among staunch theists.
For example, developmental psychologist Larry Nucci interviewed highly religious children from a wide range of backgrounds
(including Catholics, Mennonites, and Orthodox Jews), and he found that they were overwhelmingly likely to judge that stealing
would be wrong even if God were to say that stealing is permissible (see his Education in the Moral Domain). The aforementioned Pew
study also reveals that fewer than a third of Americans cite religion as the major source of their moral values, and more than half claim that practical experience and common sense are the major source.' [2]


Why isn't this page open for direct editing?

Psychological profile of atheists, further study

Further study needed (see previous resources on this matter on talk page via archives): Psychological profile of atheists: http://thecountryshrink.com/tag/atheism/ conservative 21:35, 28 June 2009 (EDT)

Biet-Hallahmi, author of “Atheism, A Psychological Profile”, in “The Cambridge Companion to Atheism”, wrote, “…what these individuals [the most elite] had, in addition to their creativity and high intelligence, was a strong wish to create distance between themselves and their parents.” - Caplovitz and Sherrow 1977; Quoted in “Cambridge Companion to Atheism”: “Atheists: a Psychological Profile”, Cambridge University Press, p307. conservative 23:30, 18 January 2009 (EST)
Atheists: A Groundbreaking Study of America's Nonbelievers (Paperback)[3] conservative 23:37, 18 January 2009 (EST)

Pol Pot

It would be interesting if we could get a little bit about Pol-Pot in the Atheism and Communism section as he was undoubtedly one of the most murderous against religion along with Hohxa. Though It appears that this article is locked for editing. --Matthew2208 16:11, 6 November 2009 (EST)

Create a section on Pol Pot and atheism in the Pol Pot article and I can stick it in the atheism article. conservative 01:24, 27 November 2009 (EST)

He, and Mao, etc. operated out of the same objectively baseless moral foundation which atheism is based upon, that of one's own "golden compass," which history proves can easily point south. This basis for morality is that every man does that which is right in his own eyes - with no moral standard higher than him - and which is explicitly contrary to Dt. 12:8. Thus men like Mao could easily justify their atrocities. This is not to say that atheists cannot be relatively good persons, or that much evil has not been in done the name of religion, or as part of it, but atheists can offer no assurance, outside past character, that they will do good, as who immutably defines good? Some persons honestly believe it would be best for the world to eliminate the Jews, or to take children away from creationist parents. Even deceit is valued as a virtue among some people. But the Bible in its totality is a transcend moral authority which is proven to be beneficial, and actually disallows such things as the Crusades, and Inquisitions, let alone Hitler being or acting as a Christian which atheists strive ti implicate Christianity in, yet in contrast, the world would prosper if it yielded to the Spirit of Christ. And may I do far better therein.Daniel1212 18:26, 15 December 2009 (EST)

I am going to be adding Pol Pot. Thanks for the input. conservative 15:09, 8 April 2010 (EDT)

"Satire" image

File:Atheism.png

I'm uncomfortable with this. This is inappropriate for an encyclopedia to have.

If this is completely necessary, I should think the one for Christianity should be on the Christianity page. I'd insert an image but it's telling me to do a CAPTCHA that I can't even see.

Also, you should know that the imageboard 4chan is responsible for both of these images. Happyface 16:38, 9 December 2009 (EST)


I happen to agree with Happyface. I understand that this is a conservative website, however this image is rather unbecoming of an encyclopedia. Furthermore, if the goal of this website is to attempt to change the views of others, then this image should be removed. In my opinion it will only cause more contempt and bigotry from both sides, rather then causing more non-theists to reconsider their views.

Satire images are certainly put on encylclopedias. I don't see anyone complaining about this satire put on the evolution page. Secondly, have you demonstrated that there is bigotry in the satire? The satire certainly points out the folly of atheism but where is the hatred of atheists that is supposedly being spewed out or being created? conservative 14:16, 10 February 2010 (EST)

The merriam-webster definition of Atheism

a : a disbelief in the existence of deity b : the doctrine that there is no deity

[4]


If you want to define atheism, simply take the bible and replace every word God with the phrase "creepy old man who is invisible and watching me all the time". Then you can get the sense of an atheist's mind I think. They don't debate theists because for them "crazy old man" is an absurdity.

Example: John 3:16, For the creepy old man who is invisible and watching me all the time so loved this world that he gave his only son so that whoever believes in him wont die , and will enter eternal life.--JeffD 21:03, 22 December 2009 (EST)

Pardon me if I'm not editing this correctly. This is my first contribution to conservapedia. JeffD wrote, "If you want to define atheism, .. Then you can get the sense of an atheist's mind I think." Mr. JeffD, atheists are not all of one belief on this. They did not go to 'atheist school' to learn how to believe. You are picking out one kind of atheist, one character, and imagining that all other atheists are the same.

More to my general point here, though. The definition of 'atheism' here is also artificially limited, regardless of what the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy or the Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy says. Atheism, in its broadest sense, merely requires the absence of belief in God, or in a god if we expand the audience to those theists who believe in gods other than the Christian/Islamic/Judiac deity. The definition here should be expanded to indicate such: Atheism is the absence of belief in God -- or the denial of the existence of God.

This can be seen in both the plausibilities of belief and in the word itself. People who profess no belief one way or the other may often be classified as 'agnostic', but this is just shifting the issue. Agnostics simply say we can't know. Let's look at the word itself to see the issue clearly illustrated. (A)theism would be the lack of theism -- the broader definition I've alluded to above. (Athe)ism would be the belief in no good existing -- the narrower definition currently on conservapedia. Unless there is reason to narrow the definition, it should be made as wide and flexible as possible. Otherwise something of a strw man is being set up. Many (a)theists would claim that (athe)ists maintain an unjustified belief. You cannot try to criticize (a)theists with a line of reasoning intended for (athe)ists and think you are making progress.

Don't be afraid of the light.

shonangreg

Name an atheistic proposition that doesn't see "God" as an absurdity, a non entity, I'm no trying to make some broad philosophical statement, just demonstrating why the run of the mill atheist appears to either not be interested in debate or "running" away from debate. Stress on the word "appears" and on "run of the mill". There's no attempt here to paint anyone with "one brush", although on the other hand a simple dictionary definition of "abscence of belief" doesn't catch the full character and dimension of "atheist thought".--JeffD 09:39, 26 December 2009 (EST)
I see no proof and/or evidence was give above that atheism is accurate/correct. conservative 10:58, 27 December 2009 (EST)
I see no proof and/or evidence anywhere that theism is correct. Jab5000
Jab, I don't believe you are looking that hard and are also ignoring the evidence you do have. Jab, how many Christian apologetic books have you read? "Maybe the atheist cannot find God for the same reason a thief cannot find a policeman." - Francis Thompsonconservative 02:30, 5 February 2010 (EST)
shonangreg, Re: Merriam webster dictionary: I suggest you look at the difference between the words disbelief and unbelief. Secondly, Conservapedia did not cherry pick Encyclopedias of Philosophy as far as the definition of atheism. I suggest you look at the footnoted material in the sections of the atheism article focused on the definition of the word "atheism". conservative 12:03, 11 February 2010 (ESt)

The irony here is it is harder to define "An Athiest" than "A Christian" because we have read many different books while researching our beliefs and opinions. We are not stuck with one, rather dated textbook translated so many times that the original meanings, if any, have been obscured. All relegions suffer this problem to some degree. Please also bear in mind that almost all athiests will disagree with one another over the exact definition of "Atheism" because we tend to be argumentative free thinkers.

Your comment helps confirm the view that atheism is really simply anti-Christianity. Atheism is unified by only one belief: an opposition to Christ.--Andy Schlafly 21:12, 29 April 2010 (EDT)
You misspelled atheist and religions. What kind of schooling did you obtain? Was it homeschooling, private schooling, or public schooling? conservative 23:05, 29 April 2010 (EDT)

Most religiously free countries have Christian backgrounds

A comprehensive new study on religious liberty around the world shows that countries with Christian backgrounds generally have the highest levels of religious freedom. The study, directed by esteemed expert on religious persecution Paul Marshall, also found that officially atheist or Islamic countries tend to have the least religious freedom. Christian nations more free, report says, Jul 25, 2007 [5]

Atheists counter by touting a different study proporting that religion is bad for society, which George H. Gallup, Jr. refutes,Dogma Bites Man as well as Scott Gilbreath Gregory Paul shot down again


Besides freedom, there are other factors that are linked to the well-being of a nation, and the all effects are not immediately seen as linked to the cause. In addition, God blesses obedience to His precepts and principals to the degree that they do so, regardless of the persons. To the degree that a nation obeys the light God gave it, such as regards upholding wise and honest leadership and just jurisprudence, honoring parents and preserving the family, and promoting national integrity, hard work, capitalism, etc., it will be blessed.*

Besides spiritual blessings, or because of them, obedience results in temporal benefits as well, but such are usually realized after long term obedience, and others, like as children inheriting the fruit of their father's hard word, can even realize them more. "I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labour: other men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours." (John 4:38) Likewise, the full realization of negative effects of national disobedience to God's precepts does not happen overnight, and those that inherit and perpetuate such often realize it more, in this life. America has much entered into blessings procured by the obedience by others to God's precepts and principals, but has increasingly forsaken the right way and gone after carnal lusts, and is reaping the corruption thereof.

  • Rm. 2 teaches that a pious pagan who obeys the light that he has, which the Bible affirms men are given by conscience and creation, is superior to a learned believer in the one true God who practices unrighteousness.

But to obey the light one has means he will be attracted to The Light, and thus pious pagans, as Cornelious and co. were (Acts 10), opened their hearts to Christ, as "he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God." (John 3:21)Daniel1212 19:21, 15 December 2009 (EST)

Problems with the basic definition

A number of discussions get sidetracked when contending sides use definitions of "atheism", and they wind up talking past each other.

For most people, "atheism" is the denial of God's existence. It is a specific, deliberate position; your mind is made up; you've thought the matter over and made a decision about what to believe.

For many others, "atheism" is a lack of belief in God. This is really two positions in one: it includes both an active, definite denial with what most people call agnosticism, i.e., the position of neither accepting or rejecting God's existence.

Our solution, at Conservapedia, should be to pick one definition and stick to it. We should not handicap our readers with shifting ground arguments. Rather, if there are any significant arguments which employ the shifting ground fallacy to trick people, we should expose them.

When we started this article, one of the first problems we encountered was a refusal of some contributors to use regularly defined terms. This caused some confusion and wasted some time.

So I think we will be wise to impose some editorial standards, as follows:

  1. The word atheism means denying that God exists. This can include denying that any "gods" exist, but this is very minor point, and refers only to polytheistic religions. (NOTE: For the purposes of this article, Trinitarian Christian theology is considered monotheistic.)
  2. The word agnostic means being unsure whether God exists or not. This may include a claim that there is no way to know one way or another, as well as a personal uncertainty or hesitation to make a decision on the matter.

This means that when we encounter a statement that lumps atheists and agnostics together, we may need to stop for a moment to define our terms - especially if the other writer is using the word atheist differently. Well, the term "unbeliever" is always useful in this context. --Ed Poor Talk 08:12, 31 January 2010 (EST)

I sent you an email about this matter. conservative 02:29, 5 February 2010 (EST)
Actually, there is a very clear distinction between the terms 'Agnosticism' and 'Atheism'. The two are not mutually exclusive. One can be both, one, or neither of the two. Agnosticism, or its opposite, gnosticism, are epistemological claims regarding whether or not one has 'knowledge' of something. Theism or atheism are claims regarding belief. An 'agnostic' is one who claims that, regarding their belief or disbelief in God, they do not think that they 'know'. Or, to put it simply, they aren't sure. A 'gnostic' is somebody who does claim to 'know' whether or not God exists.
So, one could be one of four things: 1. Agnostic Theist - One who believes in God but isn't 'sure' that God exists. 2. Gnostic Theist - One who believes in God and knows that God exists. 3. Agnostic Atheist - One who does not believe in God, but is not 'sure' that God does not exist. or 4. Gnostic Theist - One who 'knows' that God does not exist.
These definitions should be acknowledged in the article.JacobP 15:24, 31 July 2010 (EDT)