History UsefulNotes / Atheism

21st Jul '17 5:06:18 PM AndIntroducingALeg
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* Trying to convert an atheist to "save his soul" will usually lead to annoyance or ridicule. Save yourself the trouble.

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* Trying to convert an atheist to "save his soul" will usually lead to annoyance or ridicule. Save yourself the trouble.
trouble. Similarly, promising that "I'll pray for your soul" will at best get a reply along the lines of "If you must".
21st Jul '17 12:46:01 PM AndIntroducingALeg
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** Even if this does happen sometimes, it's highly debatable what it tells us about anything. If somebody makes a desperate move when in mortal peril, does that say anything about the validity of the considered opinion they formed in complete safety?
25th Jun '17 10:47:03 AM nombretomado
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** The person who coined the term ''{{Absurdism}}'', Creator/AlbertCamus, did a significant body of work writing about this idea. The term "absurdism" comes from the idea that the conflict between the impermanence of life and human actions is a paradox and, well, absurd. To quote TheOtherWiki on this: ''We value our lives and existence so greatly, but at the same time we know we will eventually die, and ultimately our endeavors are meaningless. While we can live with a dualism (I can accept periods of unhappiness, because I know I will also experience happiness to come), we cannot live with the paradox (I think my life is of great importance, but I also think it is meaningless).'' Camus' writings were based around the theme that the paradox, the absurd, showed that the universe was meaningless-but that human endeavors could still create meaning. Basically, that we live in a CosmicHorrorStory, where the StrawNihilist is right…but that we still, despite that, create meaning.

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** The person who coined the term ''{{Absurdism}}'', Creator/AlbertCamus, did a significant body of work writing about this idea. The term "absurdism" comes from the idea that the conflict between the impermanence of life and human actions is a paradox and, well, absurd. To quote TheOtherWiki Wiki/TheOtherWiki on this: ''We value our lives and existence so greatly, but at the same time we know we will eventually die, and ultimately our endeavors are meaningless. While we can live with a dualism (I can accept periods of unhappiness, because I know I will also experience happiness to come), we cannot live with the paradox (I think my life is of great importance, but I also think it is meaningless).'' Camus' writings were based around the theme that the paradox, the absurd, showed that the universe was meaningless-but that human endeavors could still create meaning. Basically, that we live in a CosmicHorrorStory, where the StrawNihilist is right…but that we still, despite that, create meaning.



* In London, an Atheist Bus Campaign decided to raise £11,000 to counter the evangelizing of religious groups, and Lo and Behold, atheists put aside their differences and stumped up the cash. Richard Dawkins offered to match the first £5,500 worth of donations. The target was reached within a few hours of the website going live and the money kept coming. After 4 or so days the final amount raised was about £150,000. TheOtherWiki has more information [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atheist_Bus_Campaign here]].

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* In London, an Atheist Bus Campaign decided to raise £11,000 to counter the evangelizing of religious groups, and Lo and Behold, atheists put aside their differences and stumped up the cash. Richard Dawkins offered to match the first £5,500 worth of donations. The target was reached within a few hours of the website going live and the money kept coming. After 4 or so days the final amount raised was about £150,000. TheOtherWiki Wiki/TheOtherWiki has more information [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atheist_Bus_Campaign here]].
2nd Jun '17 6:11:23 PM BillyDeeWilliams
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** They also point out that it's liberals in religious circles who are trying to keep pace with the modern world, either by inter-faith dialogues, acknowledging criticism of the Bible's text, considering ordination of women as priests, open acceptance of homosexuality and so on. Even if they become really liberal, pro-science and solve their conservative issues, the fundamental problem of a real meaningful role for religion in a modern society remains a main issue. It's important to note that this existential question has also been embraced by religious writers such as former nun Karen Armstrong, who argue that atheist and secular critiques are important for religious organizations to confront if they want to play a real meaningful role in the future.

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** They also point out that it's liberals in religious circles who are trying to keep pace with the modern world, either by inter-faith dialogues, acknowledging criticism of the Bible's text, considering ordination of women as priests, open acceptance of homosexuality and so on. Even if they become really liberal, pro-science and solve their conservative issues, the fundamental problem of a real meaningful role for religion in a modern society remains a main issue. It's important to note that this existential question has also been embraced by religious writers such as former nun Karen Armstrong, who argue that atheist and secular critiques are important for religious organizations to confront if they want to play a real meaningful role in the future.
2nd Jun '17 9:12:46 AM thekeyofe
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[[folder:Atheism Myths]]

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[[folder:Atheism Myths]]
[[folder:Myths About Atheism]]
16th May '17 3:36:03 PM nombretomado
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** Technically, hatred of God is called [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Misotheism misotheism]], and [[GodIsEvil the belief that God actually exists, but is evil]] is called dystheism or maltheism. In TVTropes we call that [[NayTheist Nay Theism]]. In contrast, the distaste some atheists have for God ''as a fictional character'' is not related in any way to God's ''existence''. It's called "hypothetical misotheism" specifically.

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** Technically, hatred of God is called [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Misotheism misotheism]], and [[GodIsEvil the belief that God actually exists, but is evil]] is called dystheism or maltheism. In TVTropes Wiki/TVTropes we call that [[NayTheist Nay Theism]]. In contrast, the distaste some atheists have for God ''as a fictional character'' is not related in any way to God's ''existence''. It's called "hypothetical misotheism" specifically.
17th Apr '17 11:54:32 AM JulianLapostat
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In terms of atheism as it means today—''i.e.'', a system of ethics and philosophy drawn from science and empiricism which is non-supernatural—the Greek Sophists and Atomists were more important. They were the ones who started criticizing Greek myths as merely elaborate fabrications of Kings and Emperors raised to Gods. They also started describing the natural world using language stripped of metaphors. To them, Greek myths and its multiple gods were merely anthropomorphized representations of natural phenomena and fancy metaphors. The philosopher Theodoros of Cyrene even exposed the Elusinian MysteryCult and criticized religion as largely a money-making scam in terms that are fairly modern. This more skeptical worldview can also be seen in the plays of Creator/{{Euripides}}, roughly contemporary to these changes. He was often accused by critics of lacking in piety; in his plays, gods and Greek heroes are often depicted in down-to-earth fashion, speaking everyday language, as opposed to the more religious plays of Aeschylus and Sophocles. Epicurus, who was inspired by these writers, charted out the first coherent materialist ideology. Although Epicurus acknowledged the existence of gods, by describing the problem of evil, he stated that if the Gods existed, then it was unlikely that human suffering mattered to such beings, and that it made little sense organizing life and ethics [[BlueAndOrangeMorality based on a morality]] alien to humanity. He also denied the existence of an afterlife and stressed the importance and vitality of the visible world.

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In terms of atheism as it means today—''i.e.'', a system of ethics and philosophy drawn from science and empiricism which is non-supernatural—the Greek Sophists and Atomists were more important. They were the ones who started criticizing Greek myths as merely elaborate fabrications of Kings and Emperors raised to Gods. They also started describing the natural world using language stripped of metaphors. To them, Greek myths and its multiple gods were merely anthropomorphized representations of natural phenomena and fancy metaphors. The philosopher Theodoros of Cyrene even exposed the Elusinian MysteryCult and criticized religion as largely a money-making scam in terms that are fairly modern. This more skeptical worldview can also be seen in the plays of Creator/{{Euripides}}, roughly contemporary to these changes. He was often accused by critics of lacking in piety; in his plays, gods and Greek heroes are often depicted in down-to-earth fashion, speaking everyday language, as opposed to the more religious plays of Aeschylus and Sophocles. Epicurus, who was inspired by these writers, charted out [[UsefulNotes/{{Epicureanism}} the first coherent materialist ideology.ideology]]. Although Epicurus acknowledged the existence of gods, by describing the problem of evil, he stated that if the Gods existed, then it was unlikely that human suffering mattered to such beings, and that it made little sense organizing life and ethics [[BlueAndOrangeMorality based on a morality]] alien to humanity. He also denied the existence of an afterlife and stressed the importance and vitality of the visible world.
26th Mar '17 5:21:20 AM Fallingwater
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Added DiffLines:

** In a similar vein, most atheists will not make a conscious effort to avoid religious exclamations that have long been a cultural norm, such as "oh my god!", "hell no", et cetera.
26th Mar '17 5:15:16 AM Fallingwater
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* Actual bona-fide miracles occurring (e.g. raising the dead, "impossible" healing of sickness or injury, etc.) would not be automatic proof that the Christian god is "real" in the Biblical sense. Assuming for the moment that such miracles occur, it's also possible that they are unusual yet natural happenings in our universe propelled by a mechanism we do not yet understand, or that the beings that style themselves as gods are another kind of life form that chooses to interact with us by posing as gods for some reason. There are also all those thousands of ''other gods'' people worship or have worshiped to consider.

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* Actual bona-fide miracles occurring (e.g. raising the dead, "impossible" healing of sickness or injury, etc.) would not be automatic proof that the Christian god is "real" in the Biblical sense. Assuming for the moment that such miracles occur, it's also possible that they are unusual yet natural happenings in our universe propelled by a mechanism we do not yet understand, or that the beings that style themselves as gods are another kind of life form that chooses to interact with us by posing as gods for some reason. There are also all those thousands of ''other gods'' people worship or have worshiped worshipped to consider.



** And some also assert that proving any kind of god wouldn't mean automatic conversion, as there are still the questions like: "Is this god worthy of worship?" Is (s)he [[GodIsGood good]], or [[GodIsEvil some of]] the [[TheGodsMustBeLazy other alternatives]]? "Does (s)he even [[StopWorshippingMe want]] to be worshiped?" etc.

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** And some also assert that proving any kind of god wouldn't mean automatic conversion, as there are still the questions like: "Is this god worthy of worship?" Is (s)he [[GodIsGood good]], or [[GodIsEvil some of]] the [[TheGodsMustBeLazy other alternatives]]? "Does (s)he even [[StopWorshippingMe want]] to be worshiped?" worshipped?" etc.
26th Mar '17 5:01:28 AM Fallingwater
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** People with problems in modern society, even ones who call themselves believers, will necessarily consult therapists or psychologists, family and friends, form communities based on shared interests. Charitable works and political causes, as well as human rights problems, are the domain of government watch-dogs, rights group, UN and [=NGOs=]. Art and architecture are no longer patronized by the Church. This argument essentially sees religion in need of solving existential questions to justify its function, rather than atheists having to do so. Its become possible in developed European nations to go through life without really thinking deeply or meaningful about religion, to the point that citizens don't even feel the need to call themselves "atheist" since the word only has force in a context of inter-faith disputes, which have little value when the believers are so few.

to:

** People with problems in modern society, even ones who call themselves believers, will necessarily consult therapists or psychologists, family and friends, form communities based on shared interests. Charitable works and political causes, as well as human rights problems, are the domain of government watch-dogs, rights group, UN and [=NGOs=]. Art and architecture are no longer patronized by the Church. This argument essentially sees religion in need of solving existential questions to justify its function, rather than atheists having to do so. Its It has become possible in developed European nations to go through life without really thinking deeply or meaningful meaningfully about religion, to the point that citizens some don't even feel the need to call define themselves "atheist" as atheists since the word only has force in a context of inter-faith disputes, which have little value when the believers are so few.
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