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There’s a modern brand of militant atheist that can appear horribly smug and superior.
Posted: 23 August 2007 04:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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Aspiration doesn’t come into it; you’re either “not theist” (i.e. atheist for any etymologists out there) or you are - you don’t choose or aspire.  Over that you can also be humanist or ahumanist (so can religious people).  The millitant atheists are people who appeal to reason whereas other groups and individuals of a secular bent appeal to ethics (often by trumpeting their own, something the millitant atheists manage to avoid by just quietly getting on with it), and still others just keep their gobs shut and don’t believe in supernatural stuff.  All three, I think are valuable in their own different ways.

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Posted: 23 August 2007 04:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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It just occurred to me, maybe modern atheists are smug because they ARE superior.  LOL

Occam

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Posted: 23 August 2007 04:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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Awww, thanks Occam.

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Posted: 23 August 2007 04:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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Note that I was being very consciously humble by using the pronoun, “they” instead of “we”.  LOL

Occam

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Posted: 23 August 2007 04:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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Occam - 23 August 2007 04:04 PM

It just occurred to me, maybe modern atheists are smug because they ARE superior.  LOL

Occam

superior, in that WE are right in our decision not to believe in invisible play friends.

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Posted: 23 August 2007 04:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
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Defying our steretype of being smug and superior - I like that!

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Posted: 24 August 2007 11:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
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.

[ Edited: 20 October 2007 03:14 PM by zarcus ]
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Posted: 24 August 2007 03:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]
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I think that, for many, religious belief is like language.  As an infant discovers the world, that information is filed as reality and not at all easily available to reason.  When a small child is inculcated with that drivel, s/he is almost always stuck with those beliefs throughout his/her life.  It’s a rare person who can shake them off, and I think it’s those who gave rise to the silly statement that there are no atheists in foxholes.  Under extreme stress, one tends to revert to earlier behavior and ideas.

Occam

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Posted: 24 August 2007 04:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]
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Tell me about it - I had to go to mass every week as a child and I just used to sit there laughing at it.  I remember my brother daring me: “When the priest says ‘The body of Christ, I dare you to say ‘Yeah! and I’m the bishop of Barchester.’ or ‘See dad, he was white’” (my dad had the peculiar notion that Jesus was a swarthy gentleman of middle-eastern appearance).

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Posted: 24 August 2007 08:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]
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Oh try going to your uncle’s church when you and parents visited him and his family.  Mine was an FM holy rolling holy than thou who had forever long hellfire and damnation alter calls (I assume every single service because he did when we went) that I wanted to run out of the church and never return.  Unfortunately, I was a child and knew I couldn’t do that without getting my butt whipped.  :(  I never met a scarier person than when he was preaching and demanding you go to his alter and be SAVED, or go to hell and burn!  rolleyes  Humm… Sounds like I’d be warm during the winters, so tell me how that is a punishment?  LOL

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“Sometimes in order to see the light, you have to risk the dark.” ~ Iris Hineman (Lois Smith) The Minority Report

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Posted: 27 August 2007 10:08 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]
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Alon - 22 August 2007 12:18 PM

If new atheists can’t speak without pissing off the 60% in the middle, it’s their damn fault.

Yes, but the author of the editorial I was talking about (Tom Krattenmaker) himself was guilty of exaggeration.  He gave the impression that atheists can’t talk for 30 seconds without calling Christians “morons, imbeciles” and so forth.  Furthermore, he agreed that there are some kinds of religion that ARE bad news, and atheists are correct in calling attention to it.  So what’s his problem?  He just doesn’t want US pointing out the problems with religion.

He claimed he didn’t what to “demonize” atheists and secularists, but in the course of his little essay, he couldn’t resist referring to Pol Pot, Stalin and Hitler as if they represented typical atheists!  What—can’t HE talk about atheism for 30 seconds without calling us names?

My point is that by and large, we DO try as hard as we can to engage reasonable people of every religious or philosophical stance.  If he couldn’t see that, he’s just concentrating of the very few “new atheists” that he doesn’t like.

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Posted: 27 August 2007 12:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]
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narwhol - 23 August 2007 04:02 PM

Aspiration doesn’t come into it; you’re either “not theist” (i.e. atheist for any etymologists out there) or you are - you don’t choose or aspire. 

An atheist is not theist but atheist doesn’t mean “not theist”.

Atheist Noun 1. Someone who denies the existence of god.

It’s more like   ((A theo) ist)

The A negates the god then the is says its a person that does that.

Agnostic   Noun 1. A person who doubts truth of religion.

And agnostic   ((A gnosis) tic) 

The A negates knowledge of god, I presume the tic suffix makes it a person.

An agnostic is not a theist but that doesn’t make him an atheist.

I really don’t regard playing such silly semantic games as intelligent.  Just a boring waste of time.

psik

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Posted: 27 August 2007 01:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]
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no no, that just doesn’t make him an atheoist.  It certainly does make him an atheist.  the reason we call it atheist is because it not a theist stance, no other reason.  I expect whatever source you got this etymology from came up with this idea after darwin’s friend coined the term agnostic.  You have to be doubly careful of letting others change the definition of atheist because some dictionary writers have placed some very slanted definitions of the term in the past (particularly Webster).

Incidentally, this could form part of our bridge building with religious people - we could all agree to drop terms such as muslim, sunny, shia, humanist, atheist, catholic, presbyterian, etc. and substitute in the term agnostic for all of them (but it might be a bit confusing for people when choosing which agnostic church, temple or mosque to attend)

[ Edited: 27 August 2007 01:12 PM by narwhol ]
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Posted: 27 August 2007 02:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 29 ]
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psikeyhackr - 27 August 2007 12:09 PM

I really don’t regard playing such silly semantic games as intelligent.  Just a boring waste of time.

Then don’t play.


The purpose of a fish trap is to catch fish, and when the fish are caught, the trap is forgotten.

The purpose of a rabbit snare is to catch rabbits. When the rabbits are caught, the snare is forgotten.

The purpose of words is to convey ideas. When the ideas are grasped, the words are forgotten.
Where can I find a man who has forgotten words? He is the one I would like to talk to.

—Chuang-tzu

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Posted: 27 August 2007 07:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 30 ]
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he wouldn’t reply to you - he’s forgotten words.

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