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Can atheists be happy?
Posted: 16 May 2012 07:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 61 ]
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Write4U - 15 May 2012 01:04 AM
Pambania - 10 May 2012 11:59 AM
Thevillageatheist - 10 May 2012 04:34 AM

Now, let’s not get into any slit-hear distinctions, we’re all humanists at bottom and that’s all that really counts.

Are you referencing “splitting hairs”? I’m stoical too with a little Epicurian thrown in, but that doesn’t make you a complete hedonist BTW. I do beleive that you should get the best out of your life by enjoying your own and helping others enjoy theirs as best as you are able.


Cap’t Jack

Sorry for the typo, didn’t even notice it until now.

So you are a hedonist of sorts, too. Well, I guess our various outlooks are a pot-pourri of many different philosophical strains. By the way, I too am a liberal after a fashion. As far as the organisation of society go, I think a satisfactory state of affairs would be one where allowance is made for individual initiative.

Well, that rules out religion.

It certainly does. Any given society built on a non-secular basis eventually ossifies as a natural consequence of the stiffling atmosphere that its dogmatism generates.

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Posted: 20 December 2012 09:54 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 62 ]
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asanta - 17 April 2012 08:41 PM

No wonder they get confused!  cheese

My parents used to threaten us with ‘The Sandman’. None of my friends ever heard of him. My parents used to tell us that if we didn’t go to sleep, the Sandman was going to come and sprinkle sand on us to put us to sleep. That never made sense to me, even as a 4 or 5 year old. It made far more sense to stay awake in case he tried to sneak in to get us!

You guys don’t know who the sandman is?  C’mon.  The sandman comes and sprinkles sand in your eyes so you’ll get all blinkey and tired and fall asleep.  He ain’t a bad dude or anything.  You guys really don’t know who the sandman is?  Jeesh.

Chris

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Posted: 21 December 2012 06:35 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 63 ]
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Chrisan - 20 December 2012 09:54 PM

It made far more sense to stay awake in case he tried to sneak in to get us!

LOL

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Posted: 21 December 2012 07:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 64 ]
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You guys don’t know who the sandman is?  C’mon.  The sandman comes and sprinkles sand in your eyes so you’ll get all blinkey and tired and fall asleep.  He ain’t a bad dude or anything.  You guys really don’t know who the sandman is?  Jeesh.


That’s the Hans Christian Anderson version, the kindly elf who helps the kiddies sleep but there is a darker, more sinister (and older) character who throws sand in their face so that their eyes will fall out. He then collects them and returns to his iron nest on the moon to feed the eyes to his kids. Man, those Germans have some twisted folktakes.

 

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Posted: 15 March 2013 05:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 65 ]
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Quite the opposite for me. I became much more happy when I left the Christian faith and religion completely. The constant thought and possiblity of an eternity of torment was very depressing and anxiety provoking to me. Also, the seemingly cruel god, who at the same time supposedly loves us. It just doesn’t make sense and all the super-natural aspects are just not plausible.

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Posted: 15 March 2013 10:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 66 ]
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I just realized where this thread came from -  the old saying, “Ignorance is bliss” which describes the theists.  LOL

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Posted: 19 March 2013 08:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 67 ]
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FinallyDecided - 15 March 2013 05:33 AM

Quite the opposite for me. I became much more happy when I left the Christian faith and religion completely. The constant thought and possiblity of an eternity of torment was very depressing and anxiety provoking to me. Also, the seemingly cruel god, who at the same time supposedly loves us. It just doesn’t make sense and all the super-natural aspects are just not plausible.

Ditto.  I have enough problems with depression and self-esteem.  The extra worrying over why a superpowered god that supposedly loves me wouldn’t help me like myself or get some friends or even just give me a damn pick me up so I’d actually want to wake up in the morning just made it all much, much worse.

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Posted: 19 March 2013 11:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 68 ]
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George - 13 April 2012 08:24 AM

Here we go again, confusing correlation for causation. Growing up in the Czech R. I am well aware of the fact that atheists can be a bunch of grumps, but I don’t think it is atheism that causes one to be less happy or religion to be happier.

Being realistic and rational doesn’t make people “happy.” The world is a dangerous place and we are surrounded by dangerous people.  It’s ridiculous to be “happy” under such circumstances.  But, I, for one would rather be realistic, rational and aware of whats going on around me than happily ignorant.  Nobody with a grain of sense can avoid being grumpy a lot of the time.

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Posted: 19 March 2013 11:08 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 69 ]
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Nah, I’m happy almost all the time.  I just accept the fact that most of the world and many of the people are screwed up and behave as if they were bad (sometimes decent) jokes.  As an optimist, I rejoice in the fact that there’s probably no way but up.  LOL

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Posted: 19 March 2013 02:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 70 ]
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Lois - 19 March 2013 11:03 AM
George - 13 April 2012 08:24 AM

Here we go again, confusing correlation for causation. Growing up in the Czech R. I am well aware of the fact that atheists can be a bunch of grumps, but I don’t think it is atheism that causes one to be less happy or religion to be happier.

Being realistic and rational doesn’t make people “happy.” The world is a dangerous place and we are surrounded by dangerous people.  It’s ridiculous to be “happy” under such circumstances.  But, I, for one would rather be realistic, rational and aware of whats going on around me than happily ignorant.  Nobody with a grain of sense can avoid being grumpy a lot of the time.

Lois, you hate life too much. tongue wink

I see where you’re coming from, but happy dispositions are mainly genetic. Regardless of whatever misery is going on around them, happy individuals still are more happy than not.

Unless I’m describing a different meaning of happiness from yours?

[ Edited: 19 March 2013 02:28 PM by mid atlantic ]
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Posted: 20 March 2013 05:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 71 ]
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Being realistic and rational doesn’t make people “happy.” The world is a dangerous place and we are surrounded by dangerous people.  It’s ridiculous to be “happy” under such circumstances.  But, I, for one would rather be realistic, rational and aware of whats going on around me than happily ignorant.  Nobody with a grain of sense can avoid being grumpy a lot of the time.


I totally disagree and I believe you are equating “happiness” with being blissfully ignorant. Being rational and realistic can’t make one happy unless that’s what you have been striving for in order for life to make sense. Bad things can certainly happen to the intelligent and the ignorant, friends die prematurely, people divorce, children are killed by accident or design yet still the World turns. In this case it’s a matter of facing the inevitable disasters in life and moving on. And BTW, no one wants to bear a grumpy curmudgeon in their lives. That leads to chasing imaginary kids out of your yard and watching the Price is Right with your pal grumpy cat. You can still be intelligent, aware and happy all at the same time even if you didn’t inherit the “happy gene”.

 

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Posted: 20 March 2013 06:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 72 ]
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There’s also a difference between situational happiness/unhappiness and conceptual happiness/unhappiness.  For example, my wife died last year after a very long illness and that caused me a great deal of situational unhappiness.  However, my general outlook on life is positive so I maintain conceptual happiness.  I think the latter is the more important.

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Posted: 20 March 2013 08:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 73 ]
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Chrisan - 20 December 2012 09:54 PM

You guys don’t know who the sandman is?  C’mon.  The sandman comes and sprinkles sand in your eyes so you’ll get all blinkey and tired and fall asleep.  He ain’t a bad dude or anything.  You guys really don’t know who the sandman is?  Jeesh.

Chris

You’re the only other person I know of, who knows who the ‘sandman’ is. I wonder if it is a regional thing. Your description is exactly the same as the one I grew up with in the 50s. It made me terrified of going to sleep. I never understood why parents thought it was such a great threat to convince you to sleep. LOL

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Posted: 21 March 2013 04:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 74 ]
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You’re the only other person I know of, who knows who the ‘sandman’ is. I wonder if it is a regional thing. Your description is exactly the same as the one I grew up with in the 50s. It made me terrified of going to sleep. I never understood why parents thought it was such a great threat to convince you to sleep.

I think all of us who grew up in the 50’s remember the sandman, the tooth fairy, the Easter Bunny, and Santa Claus, just to mention a few as well as those imaginary people we conversed with like Jesus before going to bed. But we, well some of us, eventually outgrew the need to believe. I guess now instead of being frightened into sleep we fight for it!


Cap’t Jack

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Posted: 21 March 2013 08:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 75 ]
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Actually when I was a kid we were told about two differnt sandmen.

The first is the one most people know , that puts you to sleep according to the great mythologist, Walt Disney (if I remeber right.)
The second was the monster that would get you if you went into the water without permission at the local beach.  According to my parents and the neighbor parents, that one would fill your swimming suit with sand so that you would drown.  That one is probably ‘local lore’.

LOL

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