The New Atheism
Posted: 07 January 2018 05:24 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I’m an agnostic as you know if you read my new arrival post. I have nothing against atheists in general. However I am becoming increasing concerned about this so called New Atheism or the followers of the so called Atheism “plus”. It seems to follow the same fallacies of many organized religions, like that religion the greatest evil in the world and everything will be better without. Similar to how evangelicals say that their faith would cure all of the world’s ills. 

This movement also seems to be a hotbed for ultra-nationalists and the scientific racism crowd. Which seems to be getting stronger everyday.  What do you all think?

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Posted: 08 January 2018 07:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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To me it’s a question of semantics.  I tried telling people I was an agnostic once, but their attitude tended to be—“Agnostic means you don’t KNOW.  In that case, you’d better just listen to me when I tell you that God does exist.  End of discussion.”  I don’t have anything against people who insist upon “agnostic”, but my feeling is that I may not know for sure whether God really exists or not, but I do know that I’m not convinced that he does.  It’s a question of what I believe.  I live my life without any reference to God, so I’m an atheist.  But like so many atheists, I rarely use the word.  When I’m talking with other people, I usually say that I’m a Secular Humanist, putting emphasis on what I DO believe in.

I do tend to agree with you that the general perception of “New Atheists” is that it’s anti-religion.  I personally think that most people get a lot of benefit from religious belief, and for the most part it’s beneficial.

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Posted: 08 January 2018 08:19 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Rhea70 - 07 January 2018 05:24 PM

I’m an agnostic as you know if you read my new arrival post. I have nothing against atheists in general. However I am becoming increasing concerned about this so called New Atheism or the followers of the so called Atheism “plus”. It seems to follow the same fallacies of many organized religions, like that religion the greatest evil in the world and everything will be better without. Similar to how evangelicals say that their faith would cure all of the world’s ills. 

This movement also seems to be a hotbed for ultra-nationalists and the scientific racism crowd. Which seems to be getting stronger everyday.  What do you all think?

I think the word you seek is Anti-theism. Christopher Hitchens characterized himself using this term, and he was quite specific in this manner. He (unlike me) read whole Bible, and was quite clear in stating that figure of God did not acted like a perfect being as it should be. His views slightly melted together with views of Richard Dawkins as they both share the view that religion cannot cause anything good for mankind.

There are examples how religion was directly responsible for social repression at best, and co-participating on warcrimes at worst. (I have a topic about history of Slovakia and its fascist president, catholic priest Jozef Tiso).

Yet i am aware of the citation which mr. Hitchens cleared up - the one that religion is the opium of the mankind. It was originally meant in a different manner as a “outcry of the opressed”. In the 19th century when this citation was formulated, it was much true. Yet even the simplified and incorrect citation is quite correct, yet the other side of its meaning is overlooked. Religions of any kind are in my opinion similar to opium. It might be viewed as a dangerous drug which destroys many lives, or as a way how to soothe the pain. Idea of Heaven serves this purpose. Idea of limbo does not.

In my country i am aware about people who were unable to find their link to society via laws - as they were unable to understand their meaning. Yet they were able to found morals and link to the rest of the society via religion and this led them to became better people in the end. Therefore I cannot completely agree on statement that religion cannot do anything good for the life of the people.

The battle between science and religion(s) is cannot be simplified only to battle between scientists and clergymen. Not just scientists argue reason, and people who are not religious at all argue conspiracy theories or other hoaxes - such as David Icke. And dont get mistaken - any theory about superiority (on religious, cultural, racist or other basis ) are in their core mix of hoaxes, conspiracy theories and as a such are based on belief, not reason.

Agnosticism is from my personal view the most neutral and most correct view of the “life and death” question. There is simply no way we could know answers on these question.

Yet i went one step ahead and i describe myself as an atheist. Does the world look like made by one god, or like many people created many gods? Believing in concept of god would not make it real. But I made this statement not because I would have an answer about what happens after death. I made it because I am aware how are myths and belief systems created. It does not give me proof that there is no almighty omnipresent being. Atheism simply describes “i do not happen to believe in any of this”.

People are prone to believe to something. Anything… And where religion is not enough, there is enough political ideologies or conspiracy theories. Those usually lack the moral code completely, they just serve to various purpose in personal life.

“Are you poor and undeducated? No worries, you are member of a superior race and things will turn up better eventually.” And problem with low self esteem is solved.
“Are you lonely? Join us and get feeling of fraternity.” And dont be mistaken, organized atheist/agnostic groups are prone to this as well.
“World is a grim and scary place? Join us and we tell you the “real” truth.” Anything for you to feel special.

History of communism in my country shows, how the feeling of superiority granted by atheism bound to this ideology led to persecution of religious people. And be aware to call believer a stupid person, they are not.

Edit: Just one info. People who claim they dont believe in god, or law or society are either anarchists or nihilists.

[ Edited: 08 January 2018 08:59 AM by Offler ]
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Posted: 08 January 2018 08:43 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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The two terms are compatible
https://www.allaboutphilosophy.org/agnostic-atheist-faq.htm

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Posted: 08 January 2018 02:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Rhea70 - 07 January 2018 05:24 PM

I’m an agnostic as you know if you read my new arrival post. I have nothing against atheists in general. However I am becoming increasing concerned about this so called New Atheism or the followers of the so called Atheism “plus”. It seems to follow the same fallacies of many organized religions, like that religion the greatest evil in the world and everything will be better without. Similar to how evangelicals say that their faith would cure all of the world’s ills. 

This movement also seems to be a hotbed for ultra-nationalists and the scientific racism crowd. Which seems to be getting stronger everyday.  What do you all think?

Atheism Plus pretty much fizzed out a few years ago. It seemed to be very anti-religion but the foundation of it was progressive politics rather than atheism or science; that is probably why it didn’t go anywhere.

As for this

This movement also seems to be a hotbed for ultra-nationalists and the scientific racism crowd.

There must be some confusion here. As I said above, they were centered around progressive politics—because they thought that was lacking in the atheism movement.

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Posted: 08 January 2018 07:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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I do in fact support a strong stance for atheism/agnosticism. But I’m also pragmatic and worry that if we push back too hard the sleeping angry monster of believers will come and try to oppress us. Banning talk of evolution in schools by law and trying to erode separation of church and state.

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Posted: 09 January 2018 07:43 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Rhea70 - 08 January 2018 07:36 PM

I do in fact support a strong stance for atheism/agnosticism. But I’m also pragmatic and worry that if we push back too hard the sleeping angry monster of believers will come and try to oppress us. Banning talk of evolution in schools by law and trying to erode separation of church and state.

Well, they try to do that every so often anyway.  If they haven’t banned evolution already, it’s not from lack of trying.  I’m not saying it couldn’t happen; I think a lot of them voted for Trump for that reason.  But the harder they tried to the yank the reins in, the more unbelievers they would create.

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Posted: 09 January 2018 07:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Rhea70 - 08 January 2018 07:36 PM

I do in fact support a strong stance for atheism/agnosticism. But I’m also pragmatic and worry that if we push back too hard the sleeping angry monster of believers will come and try to oppress us. Banning talk of evolution in schools by law and trying to erode separation of church and state.

Such events are actually taking place from time to time.

In some cases the believers claim they were offended by something - such as fact their kids are getting exactly same education, which may contain teaching about evolution (not true according the Bible).

Discussing the matter of the religion or evolution is the point of education.

Edit: and to give point to Advocatus, i publicly declared myself an atheist after Christian Democratic Party in Slovakia attempted to ban metal concert.

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