Talk:Atheism/Archive2

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Link to American Sociology Associate Study[edit]

The link to the study of the ASA about atheists being most distrusted does not work. I would correct it, but don't know how. Here's a working link: http://www.asanet.org/cs/root/topnav/press/atheists_are_distrusted. Thanks Jimaginator 11:33, 8 September 2008 (EDT)

Disaffected with religion[edit]

This doesn't seem to really belong here. An atheist does not believe in god, and therefore usually (a few of us are exceptions) does not have any religion to be disaffected in. The two are not related. It's like a vegetarian page saying "How to keep from burning your hamburger". Interesting stuff, but not relative to vegetarianism.--Sun mowse.pngEn attendant Godot"«I don't think in any language. I think in images. V.Nabokov» 12:27, 24 September 2008 (EDT)

Well, I do think it is part of how some people become atheists - much as a vegetarian may have rather "gone off" meat after, say, reading The Jungle, or listening to Meat is Murder, or seeing first hand how most meat for consumption is raised and handled. In fact, to really stretch the analogy, an atheist might be more comparable to a vegan - the vegetarian is an agnostic (I won't eat them, but it's ok to wear them), the vegan is an atheist (no animals shall be put under the yoke for my benefit)... but my first comment is my comment on that section. Perhaps it could be peeled off into "why some people become atheists"? ħumanUser talk:Human 14:52, 24 September 2008 (EDT)
Actually, vegetarians in general do not wear animal hides. The difference between vegetarians and vegans is not what they wear but what they eat (eggs, milk, etc). DickTurpis 09:55, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
So... that would make Dawkins, Hitches and Myers et al. the equivalent of PETA?
(Sorry.) --AKjeldsenCum dissensie 15:19, 24 September 2008 (EDT)
Hehe, yeah, something like that. While they try, and sometimes succeed, to do a lot of good, sometimes they make embarrassments out of themselves and those of a similar mindset cringe lest they be found "guilty by association". ħumanUser talk:Human 16:06, 24 September 2008 (EDT)
I think that a more appropriate title would be "Why people become atheists", or something of that nature. But it does seem to be somehow subtlety misplaced. Perhaps it should be moved to the religion article?--Bobbing up 15:24, 24 September 2008 (EDT)
Um, no; it shouldn't. And why should we worry about subtlety at all, much less misplaced subtlety? It's an article about atheism, for God's sake. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 16:08, 24 September 2008 (EDT)

<undent>I'm concerned about the ordering of the list. We currently have

  • The hypocrisy of professed believers and religious leaders, who exhort their followers to help the poor, love their neighbors and behave morally but become wealthy through donations to the church and carry love for certain neighbors to an immoral extreme.
  • The contradiction between talk of a loving god and a world in which children starve to death and innocent people are tortured.
  • The enmity among different religions, and even among sects within the same religion.
  • The insistence by fundamentalists that their holy texts are literally true, leading to attempts to undermine education by censoring scientific knowledge that seems to contradict their beliefs.
  • The fact that most world religions posit that all other faiths are wrong, which suggests the possibility that no religion is right, and further suggests that, because the vast majority of believers in any faith are born into it, being a member of the "correct" group or "the elect" is a mere accident of birth.
  • The evidence provided by daily experience suggesting that there are no events that cannot be explained by common sense and scientific study.
  • A rejection of the absurd idea that a supreme all-knowing deity would have the narcissistic need to be worshiped, and would punish anyone for worshiping a different god (or none at all).
  • Historical evidence that organized religion, while professing a peaceful moral code, is often the basis for exclusion and war as well as a method to motivate people in political conflicts.
  • Lack of conviction in the existence of a divine being, or a gut feeling that there isn't one.
  • A conclusion derived from rational thought.
  • Questions about the contradictions in Holy Books that religious leaders refuse to address.

which puts a distaste of US evangelists right at the top. maybe it's because I'm a Brit, maybe it's because of my personal reasons for becoming an atheist but I would put the order something more like

  1. A conclusion derived from rational thought.
  2. The contradiction between talk of a loving god and a world in which children starve to death and innocent people are tortured.
  3. The enmity among different religions, and even among sects within the same religion.
  4. Questions about the contradictions in Holy Books that religious leaders refuse to address.
  5. The fact that most world religions posit that all other faiths are wrong, which suggests the possibility that no religion is right, and further suggests that, because the vast majority of believers in any faith are born into it, being a member of the "correct" group or "the elect" is a mere accident of birth.
  6. The evidence provided by daily experience suggesting that there are no events that cannot be explained by common sense and scientific study.
  7. A rejection of the absurd idea that a supreme all-knowing deity would have the narcissistic need to be worshiped, and would punish anyone for worshiping a different god (or none at all).
  8. Historical evidence that organized religion, while professing a peaceful moral code, is often the basis for exclusion and war as well as a method to motivate people in political conflicts.
  9. Lack of conviction in the existence of a divine being, or a gut feeling that there isn't one.
  10. The insistence by fundamentalists that their holy texts are literally true, leading to attempts to undermine education by censoring scientific knowledge that seems to contradict their beliefs.
  11. The hypocrisy of professed believers and religious leaders, who exhort their followers to help the poor, love their neighbors and behave morally but become wealthy through donations to the church and carry love for certain neighbors to an immoral extreme.

However, I don't want to get into an edit war so I won't make any changes without posting here for a while first. We could of course have another poll (Oh, no, not another f*****g poll groans the entire readership of RW). Silver Sloth 09:46, 26 September 2008 (EDT)

We could have an "atheists only" poll where they vote for their top five (?) reasons and use that to put them in order?--Bobbing up 09:50, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
Ok, I've numbered my version of the list - which effectively gives my top 5. Silver Sloth 09:54, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
Is there a reason: "It's all a load of rubbish"? (de-vulgarised for public consumption) SusanG  ContribsTalk 09:55, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
That can be our new motto. Plus, you should replace "A conclusion derived from rational thought" with "being right"</weary sarcasm> New3.pngPink(Astronomy Domine) 09:57, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
Actually, do we need a new page for this? Or could we use one of Trent's voting systems? For example your two and four would not be high on my list.--Bobbing up 10:01, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
Meanwhile, to be fair, perhaps our theist co-editors could start their own poll on most important reasons why they believe God exists? To be honest I'd quite like to see it.--Bobbing up 10:06, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
One thing I'd like to stress (and I added an introductory sentence to the section for that reason): these are reasons given by atheists, not absolute truths. For example "A conclusion derived from rational thought" is fine with me, if it is clear that it is that particular atheist's own (right or wrong) conclusion. It is not an absolute truth (nor Rationalwiki's official view) that rational thought brings to an atheistic conclusion. The same applies to most of the other reasons too. I'm fine with words like "hypocrisy", "absurd" or Susan's "rubbish", as long as it is clear it's their own conclusions, not a truth. Would someone make it clearer in the article? Editor at CPOh, Finland! Why? 10:09, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
"A conclusion derived from rational thought" sounds so weaselly to me because it clearly implies that any other conclusion is not rational. New3.pngPink(Astronomy Domine) 10:14, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
Having put it at number one I actually agree with you - it also say nothing about what the 'rational thought' was about. Silver Sloth 10:22, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
The article says: These are some of the reasons given by atheists: I would submit that this no more than the literal truth - these are indeed, some of the reasons given by atheists. I don't like all of them. You may like them or dislike them as you wish.--Bobbing up 10:23, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
The article says, because I added. And I explained my addition above. If you find a better way to say it, I'd be happy. Editor at CPOh, Finland! Why? 12:26, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
No, it's fine by me. It's the literal truth.--Bobbing up 13:40, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
Aside from biblical doctrine, it is possible to derive rational thoughts about the identity of Tom Bombadil from Tolkein's works as well. But it remains fiction. Teresita 10:27, 26 September 2008 (EDT)

Theoretical atheism[edit]

Under theoretical atheism we say: Most theoretical atheists would disagree with Pragmatic atheists about the inability to disprove the existence of God. While God (or fairies) cannot be absolutely proven not to exist, their existence could be provisionally described as extremely improbable.. But isn't this the same argument as that made by Pragmatic atheists? Or have I missed something?--Bobbing up 15:19, 24 September 2008 (EDT)

Does it still have excess capitalization of words like "pragmatic"? And "god(s)"? ħumanUser talk:Human 20:21, 26 September 2008 (EDT)

These are the voyages...[edit]

Stop the debate. We've lost. My fellow atheists and agnostics, we can't win. Jesus has recruited a faction that we can't possibly hope to overcome. --Edgerunner76Save me Jebus! 10:36, 26 September 2008 (EDT)

oh Noes!--Bobbing up 10:51, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
Never surrender! Perhaps today is a good day to die! Wazza (Not Wazzock, Wazza)Approach the Presence 11:03, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
We must look to the Romulans for support!--Bobbing up 11:16, 26 September 2008 (EDT)
Don't worry about it. When you're assimilated, all their distinctiveness will be added to your own. We'll all be Hinmusjewaintianeists. Or something. --JeevesMkII 13:45, 26 September 2008 (EDT)

New section by bunchanumbers[edit]

I WAS on the atheist side of the fence. Completely convicted. I'm gay, dad's Catholic, mom's an atheist - divorced (when I was six) - and I've always lived with her. She's amazing. Charming, funny, intelligent, possibly the smartest person I know. She married again to a Christian man. He was pretty reserved in his beliefs, not even a churchgoer, so their relationship ended on terms other than religion. My mom was crushed. At the time, and for about 2 years before this - the divorce occuring in 2006, when I was 15 - I started what my mom called "a new me." It was in the sense that I was completely shy and introverted, and suddenly I was sneaking out at night, making "friends" quickly, becoming very social .... I came out of the closet - this was 2004, I was 13 - and had my first boyfriend. He was a Wiccan. Needless to say, I thought he was a bit on the woo-woo side. He claimed faeries talked to him through his keyboard. Astral-projection. All that hoohah. I love him to death ... as a friend. This was during vacation visiting my dad, the Catholic. He loves me for all that I am - pride and joy ... just, in his beliefs, thinks if I get too into the homosexual bit, I'll sin and not seek repetance, and therefore be damned. Weird way of caring about my wellbeing. But, I always took it that way, and argued like no tomorrow about the "what if"s. Shortly after this shift into the "new me," I got very depressed. My mom, having a background in psychology - her parents being a psychiatrist and a social worker - took me to the doctor as soon as I asked. I insisted something was wrong. For years, I kept insisting something was wrong. Missing.

I've been on Paxil, Seroquel, Neurontin, Wellbutrin, Abilify, Zoloft, Lamictal, Topamax, Propranolol, Klonopin - you name it, I've tried it. Varying combinations, dosages, going against doctors' orders to experiment on my own because these chemicals are going into my body. I do believe, without a doubt, that pharmaceuticals can do amazing things. It took until just a year ago for the doctors and I to shift from "tentative" to "diagnosed" about anything. I'm on a regimen that I resisted and experimented with for awhile, but found it to work.

Throughout the time of 2004-2007, my grades dropped from straight A's to literal absence from school for an entire year. 2006 was spent "hospital-homebound." I've been a mental "case," under the watchful eyes of my mom, my doctors, my own constant psychoanalysis (given all the free time I had), people that I randomly chose to call "friend," teachers who had to see me fall apart, fellow patients. Things improved and have improved ... revolutionized ... so much in my head. I've had opportunities and seen sides of myself and human nature that some people - and I'd never wish the experience upon them, but the knowledge gained would be beneficial - may never see or have. In following with my period of tentativeness, as early as 13 when still forming my identity, I began to shift away from atheism. Honestly, I found it a necessary shift. Agnosticism seemed necessary simply because of the inherrant uncertainty of existance. I still view that as a sound standpoint. I came from a place of no identity and no beliefs, and shifted into a place of uncertainty and felt that it should follow that my beliefs so shift - but not solidify one way or the other (at least not at that moment). My mom backed me on this. My dad wished "more" for me.

I started back up in school again in 2007. Moved around all my life, but I've been going to the same high school since then, so I have a sense of "roots," however superficial they've felt at times. Having roots in my location, having stability in my head, having direction in my mind, I stopped thinking inwardly and started thinking out. Despite all these provisions, I still had the same basic problems of motivation to get to school. My grades still sucked to the point they were at before I dropped school completely. But, I just didn't feel depressed - or manic, 'cause this is Bipolar Disorder I've been talking about - and I began blaming everything else for my problems. Outward instead of inward. Drove my mom absolutely insane. I'd go on these tyraids about what needed to change in order for me to be happy. They raised the dosage on my Obsessive Compulsive Disorder-related medications. I stayed faithful to this regimen over the course of this past summer, and that type of obsessive thinking has subsided. For the first time since the beginning of my treks to the doctors, I have no more reasons to go other than to have prescriptions filled. Being completely undistracted for the first time since I've developed an identity, I really started looking at why I felt so empty. Happy. Loved life.

Always analyzed it that way for awhile: I love life, just not MY lfe.

I started thinking everyone in my house is like that: stuck. Mom is stuck doing the same thing. Brother is virtually stuck, 19 and still playing the exact same video game he played at 15, at which time he had dropped out of school. Still doing everything the same. Hasn't changed at all. Nobody's changing. Everything is stoic and empty here. So, I started getting angry about that. Started trying to preach some change. Pissed my mom off. We were fighting constantly. She thought I needed my medication adjusted. I was back and forth between thinking she's depressed or just needs to see a doctor in general.

Basically, we were arguing over which one of us needed to get our head checked. I'd call my dad, and he'd have the exact same things to say about my mom that I was gonna complain about before I even said them to him. Why their relationship was so ... cold and empty. I feel the same way, kinda like I wanna divorce my mom to end this cold and empty feeling. Very sad. I tried so many different things to shake her up. Stir something from within. She does not budge. I appeals to logic, emotion ... examined previous arguments, pulled out some things I had written in therapy from years past to validate the continuity of my thought processes, proving that I wasn't going on anything novel, or pulling anything out of thin air.

If you wanted to write a book on profound silence-starters, you missed your chances because I've stopped arguing those points. I only plead with her to "pretend" she is what she isn't. She scoffs at the "PTA mothers" of the world. A bit extreme and oversimplified, but she doesn't see involvement in the community as a vital part of her life or mine. Completely introverted and content with it. I'm NOT. She has two children wasting away and she takes no responsibility. I don't even argue to pass the buck, but simply to see if she's even cognizant of her role in the house, only to find that she believes that I'm crazy for thinking that human beings should react to other human beings in such a way that "the way our house is should affect you."

Upon looking even further outward than the bounds of my home, I found the most inviting, loving people to be those in theatre/the arts ... stereotypically. My dad always said they're throwing their identities out the window for small amounts of time, just to get away from it all, because we're all insecure. I've always believed that. I've found within the past few months that anyone who lived for something other than themself is usually a more loving, inviting, caring, full person. It followed suit that religious people had some of these characteristics.

It also follows with religious rationale that some of these characteristics can be completely suppressed in its followers by overly-dogmatic principles. There, you find bullshit and assholes. So, a lot of my friends in theatre/the arts did enjoy youth groups.

I entered into one about two months ago. I'm still on guard with my beliefs on religious power of persuasion. I would still fall in the category of agnostic just because of my wavering faith.

But ... the biggest shift in my life is that I have faith in a higher power, and it came before I went to a church, and became the reason why I went to a church youth group. I was selective in which one I would join because some just wouldn't be adaptable. Some wouldn't be in my age demographic, some weren't logistically possible ... and I found that I can make the best compromise with the Methodist Church.

Unfortunately, as of recently, their conference has had a laboring debate and taken into appeal the issue of how they, as an organization, will define their stance on homosexuality. But, it simply didn't happen the way that I would have liked. But, it turned out that pastor from my church was one of the ones who voted for a change for a more homo-friendly definition.

You'll find that most people who go to Methodist Churches are pretty "meh" about a lot of things compared to the other Protestants. And, as far as Catholics go, I will say that - under my Christian identity - I support Catholicism as the official religion of the followers of Jesus, just because of my views on how legit it is compared to the splintered Protestant church.

Of course, I won't integrate into the Catholic Church.

The biggest point I want to make is that, even though I'm not the poster-boy for Christianity, from the standpoint of pure ARGUMENTATION, the views expressed on this website tend to be more fallacious and "ad hominem" than what may be intended.

Going by my experiences which I can easily argue are not colored by an overwhelming amount of influence from either side, and can also establish a lack of bias more clearly represented than what I've seen expressed by the contributers to this wiki, I will say that my life has been less stressful - and that "empty" feeling mentioned above less frequently experienced - since I started invloving myself in activities that are "bigger than myself." "Bigger" meaning stepping outside myself, anything from abandoning myself completely in the literal sense by playing a different character in a stageplay, or simply living in a state of what is commonly described to me as "grace." I don't affirm or deny that the "full" feeling I get is "God's presence" or not.

I do affirm the existence of a higher power, and am willing to see where this goes.

I also am noticing that people who do not have such outlets to feel "full" tend to be either sad or complain that their life is "the same thing over and over again" or perhaps they even have a substance abuse problem.

I have Christian friends who tend to suit my needs better than my atheist friends.

I have atheist friends that do suit my needs, but they tend to be into the arts.

I am constantly reminded of what emptiness feels like everytime I step into my house, and I can only fathom the cause. Thus, I only fathom, never draw a conclusion. I live on faith.

I can say with faith that there is a God, there are people with abilities beyond the norm - perhaps prophetic - and that people with faith are happier.

I must also define faith as something separate from logic. Something that must be separate from logic by necessity, thus the separation of church and state.

Faith is a thing of passion free from logic. It's the largest logical leap you feel comfortable making.

Some of you seem miserable to me. That's an opinion.

I have faith that it's because you're too wrapped up in hatred.

Stop it and move on.

Get boyfriends.

God knows I need one. — Unsigned, by: 70.127.43.155 / talk

Putting this where you did, made it look like people were replying to you, which they weren't. So I made your comment a new section. ħumanUser talk:Human 00:33, 13 October 2008 (EDT) PS, best of luck with finding a boyfriend! ħumanUser talk:Human 00:34, 13 October 2008 (EDT)
I am happy your life has turned out well, or at least better. But that doesn't mean there is a god.--Bobbing up 02:24, 13 October 2008 (EDT)
Wow, this is almost big enough for a subpage. But, I'm converted on the spot by this, what about you guys? (I was thinking this was just a copy/paste job but google's bringing up very little and it does seem specific, although just to a wiki site, not necessarily this one.) ArmondikoVnarchist 03:57, 13 October 2008 (EDT)

What god is being denied addition[edit]

Pulled this paragraph. It doesn't really fit where it was put. should we build a new section "what is the point of arguing with theists?" In any event, atheists don't need to make a case for atheism, because (to parallel case law) they are "innocent until proven guilty" and it is up to the "prosecution" to prove they are wrong with a preponderance of evidence. This must be the default position until evidence for God comes in, otherwise atheists would also be held accountable to make a case for being a Zeus atheist, or an Apollo atheist, or a Baal atheist, or any number of other gods. --Sun mowse.pngEn attendant Godot"«I don't think in any language. I think in images. V.Nabokov» 17:58, 8 April 2009 (EDT)

Some delightful shite from BON 24.177.248.56[edit]

""Atheism is great, everybody who is not dumb is an atheist" You morons are so typical. Despite being a population of basement dwelling losers who waste their lives trying to convert people to atheism you think you should be ruling the world. What a bunch of tools. Well I know I am going to get banned from your shitty little site for this but you guys are a bunch of atheistic, communist, degenerate, morons who would destroy humanity if you were in power. Thank God that despite your propaganda the general population sees you as the nutjobs you really are. Despite the fantasy you live atheism is irrational, destructive bullshit. Nor does atheism = science which some of you morons seem to think. Hell Conservapedia is about 100% more accurate than this garbage and I will admit that Conservapedia is not a great source (besides for their article on atheism which hits the nail right on the head) Hell EncyclopediaDramatica is more accurate than the pro-liberal, pro-atheist, pro-socialist, pro-"gay pride", anti-Christian, anti-theist, anti-conservative, and immoral nonsense you have on this website."

Yeah, whatever. ħumanUser talk:Human 00:23, 10 April 2009 (EDT)

Goodie I feel so loved! --Sun mowse.pngEn attendant Godot"«I don't think in any language. I think in images. V.Nabokov» 00:52, 10 April 2009 (EDT)
Comedy gold. Jinx FTW. DogP 00:53, 10 April 2009 (EDT)
That's why I saved it, Gentlemen at a rather liberal webshite. I am am glad it amused you. Signed, A Lady at such a site. ħumanUser talk:Human 01:00, 10 April 2009 (EDT)
Shame we don't get more of these. We could set up a special place for them - "irrational rants", "hate mail" or something of that nature.--Bobbing up 04:28, 10 April 2009 (EDT)
RationalWiki:Unsolicited testimonials perhaps? Totnesmartin 05:01, 10 April 2009 (EDT)
The tragedy is that nowadays such a comment would not be allowed, because this place has become a fascist hell hole where free speech is no longer sacrosanct. 86.45.199.155 (talk) 11:41, 10 June 2010 (UTC)

children & atheism[edit]

I would challenge the statement about kids and gods. What sociologists have found is that children do indeed make things they do not understand into gods. Including lightening, thunder, etc. It seems to be a natural human instinct to ascribe sacred/majic super powers to that which we do not understand.--Sun mowse.pngEn attendant Godot"«I don't think in any language. I think in images. V.Nabokov» 23:19, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

Yeah, I rolled back BON's edit saying: "Atheism is also factually the initial state of new humans: children have not been observed to spontaneously adopt theism." It really doesn't improve the "default state" claim made above it, and of course, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence... and what WfG said. ħumanUser talk:Human 23:41, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

George Washington "Quote"[edit]

Its not funny, its not a real quote, and therefor it shouldn't be in the article. Armondikov said it was better than the quote above it, so why not get rid of both of them? Another reason he gave was that it demonstrates quote mining, so add it to the Quote Mining article, not this one. Its unprofessional and immature, even for this unprofessional and immature wiki. Web (talk) 23:19, 26 July 2009 (UTC)

I think it's pretty funny. It's ok to have a joke about quote mining in an article that isn't called "quote mining", surely? Also, while it may not be based on a specific "real" quote, it's almost certain he said or wrote those rather common words, in that order, over the course of his life. ħumanUser talk:Human 01:00, 27 July 2009 (UTC)
Its like the humor in Family Guy. Its random, its makes no sense in the context of the article, and it lowers the standards of something that is supposed to have somewhat decent standards. Oh well, if people read that little joke and as a result take none of the serious stuff on the wiki seriously, its not my fault. Web (talk) 04:35, 27 July 2009 (UTC)
It is clearly footnoted. - π 04:39, 27 July 2009 (UTC)
Family Guy is so funny it's almost painful. The Brian character alone is worthy of multiple Emmys, Tonys, Oscars, and Hugos. ħumanUser talk:Human 05:01, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

Percentages, again[edit]

What is equally disturbing about the responses in this table is that it shows that almost 30% of Americans seem to be racists.

The table shows that 7% dislike one group, 7% dislike another, 7% a third, 4% a fourth and 2% a fifth. That does add up to almost 30% -- but only if you assume those five groups don't overlap which is an extremely questionable assumption.— Unsigned, by: 91.107.181.241 / talk / contribs

I fixed it, thanks. ħumanUser talk:Human 01:05, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

Atheism as a Religion[edit]

I consider myself halfway between an agnostic and an atheist, but I really do believe that atheism has a value system and a communal spirit which is uncannily similar to a hierarchal religious organisation. (Its probably most similar to a general Calvinist belief system, where all the churches are scattered but there is a general historical hierarchy of major theologians and preachers)

Atheism has its sacred cows, or dogma, if you will: ('An absence of belief is necessary for personal development', 'Religion breeds intolerance', 'Religion encourages illogical thought processes', 'religion is reactionary', 'religion is discriminatory', 'religion is only a heartbeat away from fundamentalism' etc.) These dogmatic sentiments are rarely challenged and taken to heart by many.

It has its contemporary high priests (The perfectly boorish and anti social Dawkins and the grotesque Hitchens) and its classical high priests and historical tradition (Historical atheists who seem to be revered just because they were atheist - or in some cases, the Enlightenment deists are held up as an example of 'pre athiest' thought)

It has a value system, which undeniably is rather hard to pin down. But it seems to revolve around a denigration of religious belief and the parcelling off of real people into small boxes. In other words it tends to lead more lesser minded individuals (IE, those who struggle to think for themselves yet become atheists anyway out of laziness) to brand the entirety of society with a nice catchall 'term' to describe groups of people. In this sense it is anti individualistic.

I could say more, but I'm tired, and I fear some cretin like Theemperor will ban me before I have the chance to post this, so I'll leave it at that. Lunacy 15:15, 23 September 2009 (UTC)

I did have a response to this before the net connection went down, I'll try to see if it works quickly. (I'm sure the last one was better worded but I've forgotten it all...)
I don't think atheism is a religion at all. The similarities, while true and certainly present, are superficial at best. Atheism, per se, doesn't hold any dogma or teachings at all - like you said, the value system is hard to pin down. The reason that these differences (mostly superficial, IMHO) exist is because of the ubiquity and prominence that society gives religion. I think this is the cornerstone of the "atheism is a religion" argument. When you see someone like Dawkins, you want to describe him in familiar - namely, religious - language, i.e., "high priest" or "preacher" etc. In fact, if religion wasn't socially prominent, I don't think atheism would have a name let alone prominent writers and campaigners; as a result, your atheistic "high priests" are only appear to be acting "high priest like" because they're just writing about (you could say even "rebelling against") a status quo. You wouldn't have "pro-atheism" campaigns like the Atheist Bus if it weren't for the general distrust of this lack-of-belief sown by the religious mainstream. In short, I agree with the points you raise, they're certainly important things to bear in mind as this so-called "new atheism" thing evolves - you don't want Dawkinites and Hitchenites being two different sects of atheism that turn out like Protestants vs Catholics for instance. But I think these similarities are too superficial just actively call atheism a religion. Scarlet A.pngtheist 20:31, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
Of course, this entire thing rests of the semantic point of "what do you define religion as?" And this can tip it either way. If a religion is a philosophical belief about what lies outside the material world, then atheism is a religion, it's just the null version where the answer is "nothing, what you see is what you get". But defining a religion as a positive belief in something untestable in the material and naturalistic world that requires you to do something, then atheism isn't a religion because it doesn't ask anything of it's "adherents". Scarlet A.pngtheist 20:48, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
I disagree--for one thing, because I as an atheist don't personally agree with many of the things you hold as "sacred cows": for instance, I don't think it's true at all that absence of belief is necessary for personal development. Most of the other ones apply to some religions, but I would not generalize them to all.
Also, one of the core characteristics of a religion is the communal way in which such ideas are spread. Atheists generally don't organize (with the exception of political groups like the FFRF, which are all about equal treatment), so I don't see how such ideas could spread. It seems that most atheists get their ideas either on their own or by reading published books, but even in the latter case they certainly are not held as sacred. Wehpudicabok 21:03, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
(Edit Conflict)I had the same kind of debate with PJR at ask. His definition of religion is so wide that any philosophical belief is a religion. (He also stated that not believing in Lord Shiva was a religion). But let's say that you claim that you are not an atheist or a theist or an apathiest. By the definitions used at ASK and (I suspect) by Lunacy then you'd still have a religion. The problem is that such a definition is not the commonly accepted one and secondly defining "religion" so broadly robs the term of meaning.--BobNot Jim 21:05, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
I have always felt that calling atheism a type of religion is like calling darkness a type of light. Ace McWickedCurrently Lurking..... 21:13, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
And baldness is a hair colour, although I did meet someone once who said that was perfectly acceptable. But Bob brings up the best point regarding defining "religion"; namely if it's wide enough to include atheism then it's wide enough to include anything and frankly, that makes it useless as a term. I wondering if you can conceive of something where you can't have an absence of it. Because if you include atheism as a religion, what is no religion? (Of course, some do engage in a bit of Dawkins-worship, but that's not the group we're discussing). Scarlet A.pngtheist 22:15, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
PJR equates "religion" with "worldview" if I remember aright. Shum mishtake shurley. I am eating Toast& honeychat 22:19, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
I never said I considered atheism a religion, I said I found it uncannily similar to one. I think there are a certain number of atheists, particularly those ones who post on the Richard Dawkins forum and a couple who used to be around here (Theresa, I think she was, and Toast/Susan) see atheism through the eyes of a child, much the same way a child brought up in a Catholic household would view the eucharist. They don't understand the finer parts of the theology (Or in the atheists case, the philosophy) and so fall back on the worship of 'great men' - men who make persuasive arguments about the impossibility of the existence of a God. Hence they are following the words of another, and their position is not found through particularly challenging or deep introspection. In a very real sense, it is a bit like the unfounded respect some bishops of the Catholic faith seem to have - they are respected deeply for being bishops or even for writing the odd cyclical, but their opinions or beliefs are rarely challenged by their adherents. This, I think, is what makes a certain number of atheists part of a belief/value system. Lunacy 10:22, 24 September 2009 (UTC)

Who can make pictures?[edit]

Is there anyone with any skill with graphics who can make some Venn diagrams to illustrate the differences and intersections between practical atheism, strong atheism, weak atheism, explicit atheism, and so on?--Tom Moorefiat justitia 23:29, 2 November 2009 (UTC)

Yes, it's quite easy to do it in word (although it took me a while to figure out how best to export them, they don't copy/paste as easily as you think). Although Venn Diagrams get difficult for more than a few variables, what were you having in mind? I'm not sure if I can particularly see it in a Venn kind of way... Scarlet A.pngtheist 23:33, 2 November 2009 (UTC)
If just strong and weak atheism were diagrammed with implicit and explicit, that would be good, I think, and not too many variables.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 23:37, 2 November 2009 (UTC)
right
  alpha
  beta
  gamma

How's that. Generic: allows multiple variations using one diagram. Toast& marmitechat 01:17, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

Yeah, but your wiki-fu really failed at presenting it well and honoring the talk page indentation. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:32, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
'Twas mainly my lack of inkscape-fu that buggered it up. Acknowedge the Left - dunno why I did that. Toast& marmitechat 16:18, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
Much better now, could come in handy - think we should template it? ħumanUser talk:Human 20:52, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

It's easy to do, as long as one knows what one is supposed to be illustrating. Can you describe it in English, so it can be translated to Venn? Drawing circles is, pretty trivial. ħumanUser talk:Human 01:28, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

One circle would be for weak atheism, within which would be contained implicit atheism and practical atheism, and which would also touch another circle for explicit atheism. Entirely within the explicit circle but outside of the weak circle would be strong atheism. Within the strong atheism box would be yet another very small circle for antitheism. And within that circle would be a very small circle labeled "Toast."--Tom Moorefiat justitia 02:37, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
AtheismVenn.svg

Try this one. (One can be a weak antitheist; hence I have antitheism intersecting strong atheism rather than being a subset of it.) Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 06:29, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

While pretty, I'm not convinced it simplifies anything at all. Scarlet A.pngtheist 13:24, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
It is probably the simplest one we can get while showing those categories. The diagram at Wikipedia is clearer, but does not include antitheism. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 16:13, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
I see, well, I've put it into the article, do people think it helps at all? Scarlet A.pngtheist 16:19, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
Hmmm... the article doesn't deal with antitheism at all (except the linky), and doesn't distinguish between explicit and strong atheism much (but the Venn diagram seems to?). Sterile aviator 18:00, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
That means the article needs to be changed. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 18:09, 3 November 2009 (UTC) I have made a start of it. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 18:25, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
New diagram is very nice! ħumanUser talk:Human 20:52, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
Strong atheism is a subset of Weak atheism? Toast& marmitechat 21:12, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
I tried to string "weak atheism" across the entire weak part of the diagram. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 21:19, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

That diagram is massively confusing. And it makes atheists look like drug addicts.-- Antifly Merged with Infinity 22:09, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

This diagram was a terrible idea and I am a terrible person for requesting it.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 18:38, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Nah, it wasn't a bad idea, I just think it doesn't work out in practice. Scarlet A.pngtheist 19:17, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

No Need to Defend the Evils of Communism[edit]

Under the section "Misconceptions About Atheists" this line appears: "The evils of Communism are not inextricably fused with the values of atheism. In reality, the evil actions of Stalin and others had more to do with the power struggles of the time than with the political or religious beliefs of these tyrants."

This is a loaded statement because it downplays the fact that Stalin's behavior was rooted in his political beliefs: communism. Any decent scholar can see that "the evil actions of Stalin" came directly from his political beliefs. For example, go to Bryan Caplan's online museum of communism. (Bryan Caplan is a professor of economics--and an atheist, for what it's worth.)

If we must bring up the Stalin example (and I agree that we probably should), then at least provide a contrasting example that is more to the point at hand. I suggest changing the line to read: "Atheism and communism are not logically intertwined. It is true that Stalin, the Russian dictator, was an atheist. But so was American author Ayn Rand, a staunch advocate of laissez-faire capitalism."

There is a direct link between strict oligarchy and advocacy of a classless society. Yes that is true. -- =w= 14:56, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
I fail to see how that sentence actually defends communism at all. Anyway, the reason that it is there is because "Hitler/Stalin were atheists" is a very common (and fallacious) argument, so adding Rand is unnecessary. Scarlet A.pngtheist 15:46, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
It implicitly defends communism because it attributes the worst results of communism to "power struggles of the time" instead of to their actual source. I don't care if you add Rand or not. The point is to add an example of a well-known atheist who is the opposite of communist. As stated in the current line, the issue is whether there is a link between atheism and communism. That's why the point of bringing up Stalin is just to say that his communism did not come from his atheism. That's also why a good reinforcement would be to show that other atheists are not communists. If you don't like Rand, choose whoever you like.MarlinFlake 16:11, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
The Reds were not atheists based on any scientific philosophy; they were atheists because St. Marx railed against religion as the opiate of the masses. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 16:38, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
Linking athiesm and Communism because Stalin was both has about as much logic as linking fascism and vegetarianism because Hitler was both.--BobNot Jim 18:06, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
It is not so completely irrelevant as that; communist philosophy is at odds with organized religion. However, to turn that around and say that atheists are required to be communists, or somthing similar, is affirming the consequent. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 18:10, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
ListenerX and BobNotJim, I think you're both correct, but I'm not sure what your statements have to do with this thread.MarlinFlake 18:16, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
It looks awesome now.MarlinFlake 18:16, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
I'm not so sure about that Listener. Are all communists athiests? Wikipedia seems to claim that there are Shock! Christian Communists!--BobNot Jim 19:58, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
In the sense it is being used here, they mean Marxists, but that should be clarified. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 20:03, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
(EC)Probably because there's nothing about communism that says it's against religion, one aspect of Marxism is, and people are free to follow Marx and ignore that one point. Indeed, early Christianity had some communist principles to it. Of course, this was miles away from Soviet Russia or China under communism but that just goes to show that religious and political philosophies are far more malleable than any amount of shit-for-brains black and white thinking would imply. Scarlet A.pngtheist 20:05, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
Communism and religion are both part of the same problem: collectivism. Collectivists fail to realise that any group only derives its strengths from individual members with selfish goals. They are too weak to realise that their own goals in contributing to said group are purely selfish in nature. If they accepted their own selfishness as benign then they would ultimately come to realise their own worth as individuals. A lack of self-esteem is the essence of collectivism. Something I would really like to see die out is the concept of the ordinary man. Ridiculous. There is no such thing as an ordinary man. We are all of us remarkable, the problem is that some people don't believe in themselves enough to realise their full potential. One of the great tragedies in Atlas Shrugged is that Jim Taggart fails to realise his own worth as a person. If he did, he would have been one of the first on John Galt's side because he has no shortage of talent, just a shortage of self-esteem. The problem with society today is that people project their own self-hatred onto others which is how racism comes about. It is perhaps no coincidence that Adolf Hitler was himself one sixteenth Jewish and being dark haired and of average height failed to conform to his own perverted view of Aryan superiority (forgive my Godwin's). What characterises the left-wing more than anything is a disregard for human life because leftists place no value on the individual which is why they support abominations such as birth-control. --Let Them Eat Cake (talk) 04:24, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Communism and religion are both part of a problem, but it's unquestionable ideology. As Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn wrote:

Ideology – that is what gives evildoing its long-sought justification and gives the evildoer the necessary steadfastness and determination. That is the social theory which helps to make his acts seem good instead of bad in his own and other’s eyes, so that he won’t hear reproaches and curses but will receive praise and honors.
Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 04:32, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
(EC) Communism and religion are not "part of the same problem;" they are the same thing. People have unfortunately let the largely irrelevant detail of whether God is believed in or not blind them to these massive commonalities.
I am an individualist by creed, but I recognize that when it comes to collectivism, it is not so much the bona fide collectivists, the ones who really believe in selfless cooperation, that most people are against; it is the hypocrites who game collectivism for personal benefit.
(Oh, and exactly where in Atlas Shrugged did James Taggart show any talent?) Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:40, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
(EC) I never knew cooperation was rooted in liberals' "disregard for human life". Thanks, Cake, I'm glad you revived this unrelated topic. 99.50.96.218 (talk) 04:48, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Pardon me, but Let Them Eat Cake did not say "liberals;" he said "leftists." Liberals, I think, have the highest regard for human life among the various political groupings; but I do not ascribe to the Reds any extraordinary regard for human life, and as for pinkos, one often finds that their holier-than-thou moral outrage at "crimes against humanity" vanishes as soon as the Big Nasty Capitalists cannot in some wise be blamed for them. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:57, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Fair enough, I'm just used to assuming "leftist" and "liberal" are meant as synonyms. I'd prefer not to think either would disregard life more or less than other affiliations, though. 99.50.96.218 (talk) 05:06, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

Atheism as Religion[edit]

I really wanted to add a section on Atheism as a religion (start flaming now) but when i went to look up the idea, it has been done... only its been done by some pretty crazy folks with very strange ideas. So, I decided not to as I just didn't want to be branded one of them (it would be just too shameful to bear).

Also the definition of religion is all over the place and some would support the hypothesis and some would not. So, I leave it to someone who has time to make a valid argument about what it means to believe that god(s) do not exist. Hmm... now that I think about it, better look up the word believe as well, because it sounds like Atheists aren't sure they are correct, but then again the definition of Atheism is all over the place as well. — Unsigned, by: 99.231.167.114 / talk / contribs

Atheism not religion. No rules, no dogma, so supernatural claims; etc. But your post is appreciated. ħumanUser talk:Human 08:23, 10 June 2010 (UTC)
This article should answer most of your points. If you think the ideas are "crazy" then please feel free to bring up your suggestions on the talk page where they will be considered. However you should bear in mind that this article has been pretty well reviewed by many members of this site and your arguments will have to be pretty persuasive before any changes are made. Jack Hughes (talk) 09:40, 10 June 2010 (UTC)
The idea is certainly worth a mention, but is difficult to summarise in a way that could easily slot into this mean article. A separate article is best to cover the topic since it is such a prevalent argument. Scarlet A.pngtheist 11:34, 10 June 2010 (UTC)

Great website[edit]

Really shows how much brainwashing you have undergone. Culture and its conditionings can really do a number on people. Hence, "Rational"Wiki. Ooh, so pretentious. I love it!

I suggest just one, ONE college-level course in theology. It will do you wonders.

Later kids. — Unsigned, by: 76.127.181.168 / talk / contribs July 15 2010

Yeah, go and get yourself indoctrinated by professionals 04:37, 15 July 2010 (UTC) SusanG Toast
Glad you like the site so much!--BobSpring is sprung! 11:09, 15 July 2010 (UTC)
No Susie, not a community college. And if you knew anything about college you'd realize that the only ones indoctrinating are the pretentious, religiously scientific, arrogant, irrational, ignorant-from-no-fault-of-their-own, pseudo-intellectuals...kind of like the ones that are responsible for this site.
One last thing (the reason for my revisit), how is the claim that the intelligent tend to be atheist an argument FOR atheism? Equating intelligence with the scientific is the turd in the punchbowl. And Mensa...oh boy...let's reference an elitist IQ-society to support a point. If you equate IQ with one's philosophical knowledge you might as well DDOS this website into nonexistence.
"Glad you like the site so much!" = really a wasted statement. Truly rational, I might add.
Now for sure this time, later kids!
Thanks for contributing. It's fun for Susan and me to be called kids.  :-) --BobSpring is sprung! 20:32, 15 July 2010 (UTC)
So if this kid (trying to insult people by calling them kids is cool, right??) argues that culture brainwashed people, how come most atheists were raised in a christian environment? And that hardly no christian was not raised by christians? Oh right, sorry, he didn't actually have the intellectual integrity to have a discussion, he just wanted to post insults and run off. We sure got told by that level of maturity! GTac (talk) 15:35, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

Quotation Marks[edit]

In many parts of this article, periods and commas have been placed outside of quotation marks. Per my understanding of punctuation, I corrected this. Within minutes my changes were reverted by someone called "Cell Ladablar." See what I did there? Rather than get into a revert war, I thought this could be hashed out here. If CL would explain him/herself or someone else would jump in here...? — Unsigned, by: ShorinBJ / talk / contribs

If the punctuation is part of a quote, it belongs "inside". If the quote marks are just setting off a phrase, then the sentence ends (say), the punctuation belongs outside. No hard and fast rules work well here. But the one I reverted - the first one you did - was obviously an example of the former. Cell Ladablar (talk) 07:25, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Also, Please sign talk page entries using four tildes like this: ~~~~ or by clicking on the sign button: SigButt.png, on the toolbar above the edit panel. Thank you.
You might like to check into the US v Commonwealth treatment of quotes too. There's a lot of Brits, Aussies, South Effricans and NZers on here. Him (talk) 07:58, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
What CL said. RW article style is basically a "whatever makes sense" approach to grammar. IIRC, Americaniszed English is a little more strict on always putting quote marks outside the punctuation, but generally English is flexible and depends on whether the punctuation is part of the quote. I'd take that approach. Scarlet A.pngtheist 15:06, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

A few questions about the article.[edit]

Hello, everyone. As the title of this topic suggests, I have a few questions regarding the present state of this article that I have not been able to find within the rest of the talk page. If these questions are present and I simply missed them, I apologize.
These questions are:

  • There are parts of this article which seem to conflate atheism and rationalism. As atheism is simply a lack of belief in God(s), doesn't that mean one could hold irrational beliefs that do not include gods? Jainism comes to mind, as it does not, to my understanding, have a 'god' in any sense I am familiar with, but I would not call it rational by any stretch. Of course, part of the difficulty is the what exactly the term 'god' means, but I feel the question still stands; Should the article be reworded for the purpose of clarity?
  • Under the "Types of arguments for atheism, Moral" section, we find the question "Can you think of an evil act that can only be done by a believer in the name of a religion?". While the answer is technically 'yes', it does not ultimately amount to anything unless you believe in some supernatural force that makes an act somehow special in the context of religion. I suppose I could see an atheist making this (weak) argument, but should it really be included? If it should be, should it be labeled as such? Unless the argument is not actually weak, but it simply does not hold up to logic in my opinion.

-Gameboy (talk) 03:39, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

With regard to your first point we constantly conflate atheism and rationalism. While, in my opinion, atheism is an inevitable consequence of rationalism (as that word is used here), it is not the only way in which a person could become an atheist. Secondly atheism doesn't really say very much - only "X doesn't exist". I wrote about this at greater length at Essay:Rational and irrational atheists. --BobSpring is sprung! 07:25, 18 March 2011 (UTC)
I always wondered how extreme atheism works - how much further can you go than God doesn't exist? Redchuck.gif ГенгисIs the Pope a Catholic? 07:53, 18 March 2011 (UTC)
With that point, people often seem to treat it as "all religion is bad and should be destroyed" is equivalent of extreme, or often fundamentalist, atheism. But that is not the case. This would be antitheism, which is different and isn't necessarily exclusive to atheism (as you can still believe in God and hate him for it). While I agree that there may be some conflation of atheism and rationalism that should be avoided, it is certainly the case that rationalism leads to atheism, or possibly some sort of abstract deism. Specific beliefs based on holy scripture and revelation by priests or figures aren't compatible with the rationalist method (or at least the rational empiricist method). However, the specific example of Jainism seems to confuse the idea "all rationalists are atheists" with "all atheists are rationalist" - we know that's certainly not the case (when you're seeing a problem of 'defining' what 'god' means, see Ignosticism). Scarlet A.pngtheist 15:03, 18 March 2011 (UTC)
I agree completely that rationalism logically leads to atheism. The question, "What is the evidence?" leads ultimately to atheism. So we can say all rationalists are athiests (ok probably a bit of an over-generalisation, but not too far off the mark). But we certainly can't say that all atheists are rationalists.
But when we talk about "atheist ideas" we tend to conflate these with rationalist ideas, and we are mistaken. --BobSpring is sprung! 22:05, 18 March 2011 (UTC)
Could you clarify "atheist ideas" there? Do you mean like secularism (not necessarily an atheist idea, as you can be very religious and secular) or perhaps anti-theism? However, when you say "what's the evidence?" sure that answer leads us to some form of agnosticism. It's when you analyse the absence of evidence as evidence of absence (which is a dubious method if you want to be truly open minded, but it's a practical solution at least) you err on the side of atheism. Scarlet A.pngtheist 22:20, 18 March 2011 (UTC)
Frankly I don't think there is such a thing as an "atheist idea", that's my point really. Atheism may be a consequence of various lines of thought but it is not a philosophy in itself any more than not believing in Santa is a philosophy. --BobSpring is sprung! 09:44, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
Okay, I see. Agreed. However, given the context of the ubiquity of religion, wouldn't you say that "atheist ideas" include things like morality derived from secular principles rather than scripture? Agreeing that blind faith is bad? Numerous things that we would consider part of an "atheist philosophy" of some kind. It's an indirect relationship, though, as such things come more from the existence of religion than the "existence" of atheism (bunny-quotes because of atheism being a lack of something, so can't really exist, so to speak). Though I have a feeling that is your point, that we label things "atheist" when, really, they're not. They relate and derive from something else, e.g., the existence of religion, the use of reason and rationalism etc. But that said, does this completely invalidate using the label "atheist" for such things as secularism, New Atheism (which I use as synonymous with "activism" these days)? I'd say not, as for practical purposes such things really are under the banner of "atheism" as in "without religion" or "without God". So long as we don't mistake the map for the territory and say that such things are atheism. Scarlet A.pngtheist 14:29, 19 March 2011 (UTC)
I think it does invalidate the label to a very large extent. It seems to me that everything that comes under the label atheist thought is either really humanism, rationalism, skepticism or based on the scientific method. But because we are ( broadly) athiests who (broadly) support these philosophies and methodologies we assume that all athiests hold these views.
But consider somebody who was born into an atheist family, an atheist who believes in homoeopathy, consider Stalin, etc etc. Somebody who is an atheist might have views which differ radically from ours and still be an atheist.--BobSpring is sprung! 09:49, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
But there are cases on this page (and the rest of the wiki, for that matter), that do say atheism is (inherently) rational. Now, even I view hunting down every last inaccuracy on every last page on a constantly changing wiki to be an insane proposition, but I think that at the very least, a page so central to the purpose of this wiki should be as clear and accurate as is possible. - Gameboy (talk) 02:40, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
I agree with you.--BobSpring is sprung! 09:49, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Persistent, but hopefully not annoying[edit]

I would just like to know if anything is to be done? If the general consensus is that the Atheism article doesn't need to be changed, I suppose I can accept that, but I would like to have an actual answer in some form. - Gameboy (talk) 18:25, 4 May 2011 (UTC)

Edit Point[edit]

"I always wondered how extreme atheism works - how much further can you go than God doesn't exist?" Consider the following analogy. You can break a bone, and it can be relatively mild or quite extreme. But what is the extreme case of not having a broken bone. It's certainly not "having strong bones that don't break", or "hating broken bones" or "being mindful to never break a bone". To further the point, I remember a part in Twilight (highlighted in the Reasoning With Vampires blog, I don't actually read it) where Bella sees that lots of people are ignoring her, especially Edward. But as the RwV blog correctly points out, someone can't especially not do something more than anyone else doesn't do something (okay, so it implies that Bella notices it more, but Meyer's writing is so convoluted and crap she is actually saying that Edward is not paying her attention more than others are not paying attention to her, which is semantically impossible). I'm not especially not going around axe-murdering people any more than anyone else who is reading RW right now (I hope...). There is no extreme case of a negative so atheism is atheism, everything else are the degrees regarding you positive attitudes towards atheism. E.g., Richard Dawkins is more vocal about it than Stephen Hawking, but he's not more of an atheist. Scarlet A.pngtheist 15:14, 18 March 2011 (UTC)
Now I need new plans for this afternoon. Thanks a million.</snark> 1,000,000,000X0 is still 0. ТyTalk. 15:23, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

Obesity[edit]

There is a clear correlation between atheism and obesity and that should be mentioned here. --Atheist Hunter (talk) 07:38, 23 April 2011 (UTC)

[citation needed] ~ Kupochama[1][2] 07:49, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
  • First of all, Gallup poll finds, "Very Religious Smoke Less, Exercise More, and Eat Healthier". Means religious people are less likely to be obese. Right?
  • Secondly, PZ Myers, Nate Phelps, Beth Ditto. How more examples do you want? Tell one leading Christian figure who looks like them? --Atheist Hunter (talk) 10:06, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
There is no corrolation whatsoever between atheism and obesity. Look at Richard Dawkins: he's practically malnourished. I'm an atheist and I'm eight-stone and most of that is owing to my erm, height. I can claim to knowing multiple obese Christians and can name several in the public eye: Henry VIII (remember him), Marlon Brando, Elvis Presley and Glenn Beck. Do you want to continue? --Let Them Eat Cake (talk) 13:28, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
Also, the US has practically the highest religiosity of any western/industrialized country and also has the biggest lard-arse of them all too. ADK...I'll deceive your computer! 13:36, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
That too. --Let Them Eat Cake (talk) 15:57, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
Check out the beer belly on Ken Ham or the portly Duane Gish, or how about well-known baptist Mike Huckabee and his family? Maybe contemporary Christian music artiste Katie Giguere is more your idea of Christian slim? What about these guys? Or well-known UK religious politician Ann Widdecombe.  Lily Inspirate me. 17:15, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
Don't forget Churchill, Nixon or Gordon Brown. --Let Them Eat Cake (talk) 18:41, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
cough-anecdotal-evidence-cough. But generally, I don't think there's any real correlation at all. ADK...I'll liberate your beach ball! 17:27, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
The entire "atheism and obesity" theory is based on anecdotal evidence. There is nothing to suggest that religious people work out more than atheists or for that matter drink or smoke less. Jesus was by all accounts an alcoholic (though he seemed to keep in pretty good shape besides). --Let Them Eat Cake (talk) 18:41, 23 April 2011 (UTC)

HaHaHa[edit]

Amusing Uncyclopedia article regarding the subject we were just discussing.

http://uncyclopedia.wikia.com/wiki/Atheism_and_obesity

I'd love Conservapedia to see that! --Let Them Eat Cake (talk) 23:49, 26 May 2011 (UTC)