A Different Kind of Blog

news and things sacred and irreverent put together by opinionated people.

Quotable comment

Posted by 1minionsopinion on November 10, 2009

It happens to be my own, but it’s one of the better rundowns of “how an atheist thinks” that I’ve managed to assemble. And on so little sleep, too. Amazing.

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As an atheist view, I’ll just state that I like to remind believers that there are other ways to think and live and be that don’t require daily devotions to a deity.

These other ways are not “wrong” so much as they are different. Different doesn’t have to be wrong. Different can be enlightening and educational.

There are ways to think and live that shouldn’t be encouraged or supported, obviously. We should all want to stand up against ideologies that promote mistreatment (and/or torture) of children, women, and any number of groups that are just different enough to be feared or killed by the more powerful group in those societies.

The assumption that atheists are ill equipped to deal with morality and ethics and goodness and just behaviour because we don’t follow a god is a silly one. We gauge appropriate behaviour based on the culture we live in, same as everyone else does.

Some of those appropriate behaviours are in the bible. Early thinkers promoted many of the same rules and laws we agree to abide by now and we’ve kept them them because they help keep societies from imploding.

But the bible doesn’t have enough wiggle room to account for all the ways to live and think today. I think we’ve learned enough about history and biology and all manner of disciplines to balk at the thought of restricting ourselves to severely outdated documents. We’ve already given up on phrenology and humours, so why can’t everyone give up on the notion of a 6000 year old earth, for example?

We’ve certainly learned enough about nature and the universe to look at the bible with different eyes and see how many things they believed were true because there was no alternative explanation available. I’m sure they did the best they could at the time, though, to make sure people had rules to live by and something greater than they were to believe in and be a part of. I can’t fault them for wanting that.

And I can’t fault the people who still wish to believe the same. It’s their choice. But there is still the choice to live another way and be worthwhile members of society. Not all of us need to shut up or be shut out of important discourse, yet those always seem to be the choices we’re given.

I’m going to shrug here and sign off on my early morning ramblings. Thanks for asking for input. Cheers.

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Pastor Jeff has admitted a bias and graciously made space on his blog for other points of view.

I would love to hear your complaints, accusations or objections to Christianity. I want to hear from “real” people outside the church about what they think of the church. If you would like to take it a step further I would even be willing to entertain some of your questions about the Bible or the church. Who knows–it could be fun.

I hope everyone who takes the opportunity to respond will have fun, too.

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8 Responses to “Quotable comment”

  1. Enkill_Eridos said

    Nice post, I would also like to point out that even though American Society seems kind of loose we are still considered as prudes by our European Brethren. The Janet Jackson “wardrobe malfunction” comes to mind. Europeans that I was around at the time did not understand the big deal, but they show nudity and language we consider as foul on their broadcast stations. Don’t believe me? Download a BBC show on-line then watch the same show on BBC America. You will see a difference. Also we are a country against breast-feeding in public when it is the most natural thing and should not be regarded as obscene.. This was seen all the time in the 80’s and 90’s. A baby gets hungry no matter where you are. I really don’t understand our aversion to nudity, the human body in all its forms is a beautiful thing. Both male and female, it should be celebrated but it’s not. What are your opinions?

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  2. 1minionsopinion said

    Yeah, I just watched “My Life as a Dog” recently and balked for a second when the tomboy girl shows the boy she likes how much her tits have grown and if she can still hide them enough to play football with the rest of the boys. Aw, those Swedes. Gotta love ’em. I think that was the country that had a very hilarious TV ad for a radio station at one point that involved a guy wandering around a grocery store in his birthday suit with a radio in the cart playing some kind of music. The tag for the ad: “BLAH Radio. All you need on.”

    It still gives me fits of hilarity. It was awesome.

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  3. 1minionsopinion said

    But what I really meant to put in the comments was another post I just came across called “Ragtime Jesus & Atheist Faith” that was really interesting.

    http://triangulations.wordpress.com/2009/11/09/ragtime-jesus-atheist-faith/


    I feel that atheists should avoid focusing on the word “Faith” when debating with a theist. Instead, the contention point should focus on the degree of certainty and the willingness to doubt. Thus, though I too suspect the critical dates are much more accurate than conservative estimations and illustrate well the contrived nature of the Gospels, I realize that I use a measure of faith to hold these beliefs. But I am always excited to be shown I am wrong about my faith.

    That’s something I’ll watch for. It isn’t enough to point at the years between book one and Revelations and say, “You guys are loons to believe these dudes!” Better arguments would approach issues on an individual basis rather than full frontal faith attacks. We’ve seen more than enough evidence to prove those don’t work. Isn’t that a well quoted definition of insanity or something – doing the same thing over and over again yet expecting different results?

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  4. Enkill_Eridos said

    Oh I went to that Pastor Jeff website. I hope I didn’t scare him too badly.

    Like

  5. dorian said

    M – i think the insanity quote was einstein’s? anyway, that definition of insanity reminds me of the tea party movement mentality here. the pitchforks and torches are gone but the hand made posters and placards give the same message: eliminate and burn the heretics that are challenging our way of life! e.g “bury obamacare with kennedy!” or “hands off my medicare!”

    Like

  6. Enkill_Eridos said

    LOl blue pill sheeple that will believe any with a suit

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  7. Princessxxx said

    wow, you guys, pastor jeff is getting an earful now. haha.

    Like

  8. 1minionsopinion said

    That’s a seven course meal right there, for sure, yep.

    Although I wrote in the “intent” post about not being politically minded, I just meant in terms of reds and blues and who’s who and that business. I think many issues should be of importance across the world, not just in terms of one little state or province. Homelessness, job loss, living wage, adequate health care, whatever. I tend to side with whoever’s trying to look toward the people and improve their lives.

    Failing that, I vote for the party that has no hopes ever of getting into power, just so I can tell people I never voted for “those guys.”

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