Author Topic: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?  (Read 1653 times)

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Online skeptic54768

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #87 on: July 14, 2014, 11:55:09 PM »
Oh my goodness.  I disappear from the forums for a few months, and come back and find the threads as exciting and stimulating as ever.

@OP - Hate theists?  Most certainly not.  I love the theists in my family, and the sweet 85 year old lady across the hall, and I have gobs of respect for the refugees and torture survivors who used their faith as a form of self-hypnosis to survive what I don't know if I would have the strength to survive.  And I certainly don't hate the Christian and Jewish and Muslim and Hindu and Sikh moms and dads who are raising their kids in the same traditions in which they were raised.  And I don't hate the folks who really want to find a magical truth, and so they abandon their parents' religion in favor of some "new" magical truth that better suits their personal style.  I might think they are a little silly sometimes.  But hate?  Most certainly not. 

I hate the systems that have been created in the name of religion.  I hate the bombings the Palestinians are enduring this week.  I hate the oppression of the Jews that lead up to the creation of the Israeli state, which displaced the Palestinians.  I hate the way that many US churches are embracing value systems that encourage the marginalization of members of their communities - sometimes to the point of suicide. I hate it when Christians talk about how much they hate Muslims.  I hate it when I hear folks arguing that "faith" trumps reality. 

But no.  I don't hate theists.  Not at all.

But I do find myself feeling overwhelmed with warm gushie sentiments for you secular heathens when I read threads like this.  Atheists will always hold a special place in my heart.

____________________________________________________________________________

Oh, Skeptic, Skeptic, Skeptic

Butt sex is wrong, regardless of straight or gay.
 

Really?  Really?  Butt sex? 

When you sit around Thanksgiving dinner with your Great Uncle Bob and Great Aunt Susan, do you spend any amount of time thinking about the specific sexual practices they engage in?  I understand that you are really offended by "butt sex" and it is certainly within your right to not engage in it.  But then why spend so much time thinking about it?  Do you think that maybe Great Uncle Bob and Great Aunt Susan might have done a little bit of that sort of stuff in between their pious procreation activities?  Or do you ever ponder whether they might have engaged in some other sexual practices that not only did not lead to procreation, but which also you find personally offensive?

Do you think about this stuff all the time?

Or just when you are thinking about gay male couples?

I think you need to do a little personal soul searching on this whole "butt sex" obsession you've got going here.  I spend very little time thinking about what my friends and family do between the sheets, (or on the kitchen counter, or whatever) and I really rarely find myself pondering who might be engaging in sexual acts that don't appeal to me personally.

Why do you think you find yourself thinking so much about this stuff?

Why don't you pray about it.  And get back to us when God explains why He is putting all of those images in your head.

I never said that I hate butt sex because I find it repulsive. I myself have engaged in it (me going into a woman, so you guys can stop the jokes) in my younger pre-Christian days. It was actually quite a good feeling. So, it is certainly not because I hate it.

It is simply because it is a sin and people shouldn't be doing it.
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline 12 Monkeys

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #88 on: July 15, 2014, 12:24:12 AM »
Skep, what about all the other sins you find you enjoy,why do you still do them? If you enjoy butt sex butt don't engage because its a sin,what about all the other sins you CHOOSE to commit? What fails to stop all other sins?
There's no right there's no wrong,there's just popular opinion (Brad Pitt as Jeffery Goines in 12 monkeys)

Online skeptic54768

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #89 on: July 15, 2014, 01:17:00 AM »
Skep, what about all the other sins you find you enjoy,why do you still do them? If you enjoy butt sex butt don't engage because its a sin,what about all the other sins you CHOOSE to commit? What fails to stop all other sins?

Excellent question!

I try to keep my sinning to accidental. If I get angry or yell at someone, that is more heat of the moment and accidental.

You can't "accidentally" have butt sex with someone.
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline Timo

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #90 on: July 15, 2014, 03:44:38 AM »
If you had lived in the Aztec Empire in 1400 and started talking about a Middle Eastern god named Jehovah, you would have been treated as a mentally ill person. Today, if you say you worship an invisible feathered serpent, you might risk being thought crazy.

I don't know, Quetzalcoatl is pretty hard, but Tialoc is for the children.
Nah son...

Offline Ron Jeremy

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #91 on: July 15, 2014, 03:48:27 AM »
You can't "accidentally" have butt sex with someone.

I hope my wife doesn't see that...
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - An example of a clearly demonstrably false biblical 'prophesy'.

The biblical myth of a 6000 year old Earth is proven false by the Gaia satellite directly measuring star age.

Offline YRM_DM

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #92 on: July 15, 2014, 09:05:04 AM »
You can't "accidentally" have butt sex with someone.

I hope my wife doesn't see that...

That was funny!    Yay!  Funny!

Skeptic, fyi... the same books of the bible that have rules on butt seks have rules about everything else including nocturnal emissions and oral which is also considered sodomy.

I'm pretty sure you can't pleasure yourself either unless you do so without managing to think about any other woman except your wife.

Good luck with that... if you even try your best and glance at some woman lustfully, you just fornicated!   You disobeyed god and Jesus!   Why don't you do better job with your free will?   Don't you know god's commands but you stared at some co-workers hot bottom just today!  ;-)

I'm half teasing but you know you've done this.
---

Another question.  Do you think any of us hate you?   I honestly hope you see that most people don't hate you and are at least somewhat glad you're here to debate with.  Most christians would have walked off in a huff by now.   Thanks for the effort.
You can't spell BELIEVE without LIE...  and a few other letters.  B and E and V and I think E.

Offline nogodsforme

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #93 on: July 15, 2014, 11:00:55 AM »
If you had lived in the Aztec Empire in 1400 and started talking about a Middle Eastern god named Jehovah, you would have been treated as a mentally ill person. Today, if you say you worship an invisible feathered serpent, you might risk being thought crazy.

I don't know, Quetzalcoatl is pretty hard, but Tialoc is for the children.

Yay! Timo is back! Missed you, dude. :D
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline Quesi

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #94 on: July 15, 2014, 01:20:28 PM »
I never said that I hate butt sex because I find it repulsive. I myself have engaged in it (me going into a woman, so you guys can stop the jokes) in my younger pre-Christian days. It was actually quite a good feeling. So, it is certainly not because I hate it.

It is simply because it is a sin and people shouldn't be doing it.

Ok.  So just to clarify, gay men are going to hell because butt sex is just wrong - no matter who is engaging in it?  Even if they feel as repentant about it as you do?

Is there a specific biblical passage I should be aware of here? 

I KNOW it is not one of the BIG TEN bad sins - like worshipping idols or coveting thy neighbor's stuff. 

Is it one of the abominations?  Like wearing a cotton/polyester blend? 

There are so many sins to keep track of. 

/waves fondly at nogodsforme and feels excitement about seeing Timo back too  :)

Offline YRM_DM

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #95 on: July 15, 2014, 01:57:02 PM »
I'm no longer an atheist... as you can see in my other post, I've converted to a belief in Santa Claus.   I hope to see you all in church next Tuesday.
You can't spell BELIEVE without LIE...  and a few other letters.  B and E and V and I think E.

Offline Defiance

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #96 on: July 15, 2014, 02:56:59 PM »
I'm no longer an atheist... as you can see in my other post, I've converted to a belief in Santa Claus.   I hope to see you all in church next Tuesday.
You're dead to me.

:'(
"God is just and fair"
*God kills 2.5 million of people he KNEW would turn out like this in the flood*
*Humanity turns bad again, when God knew it would*
We should feel guilty for this.

Offline Timo

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #97 on: July 15, 2014, 11:23:10 PM »
Yay! Timo is back! Missed you, dude. :D

/waves fondly at nogodsforme and feels excitement about seeing Timo back too  :)

Been a minute.
Nah son...

Offline nogodsforme

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #98 on: July 16, 2014, 01:05:32 AM »
So gay men who are celibate or who just hold hands and kiss, or who just do oral or who just think about butts are A-Okay with god?

Yeah, I didn't think so.

I am still trying to understand the idea that people hate gays so much that they don't want their children to see two men kiss in public.[1]Some Muslims are upset by the sight of anybody kissing in public. I think conservative Republicans kissing in public is kinda gross, myself. Guess we all just gotta deal with our issues, huh? Live and let kiss.

When I was a kid, my relatives were grossed out by the idea of people in wheelchairs or missing limbs interacting with  "normal" people. People actually said things like, "Cripples should stay out of sight and stick with their own kind." They were all pretty hardcore Christian, too.  :-\

 1. Some of these same people are probably fine with their kids seeing movies where Jesus is graphically tortured to death. Go figure.
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Online skeptic54768

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #99 on: July 16, 2014, 01:23:23 AM »


When I was a kid, my relatives were grossed out by the idea of people in wheelchairs or missing limbs interacting with  "normal" people. People actually said things like, "Cripples should stay out of sight and stick with their own kind." They were all pretty hardcore Christian, too.  :-\

How can they be hardcore Christians with that attitude about cripples?
Be honest. Doesn't that sound like something a demon would say?
The less you see of cripples, the less time you think about your own mortality, which makes you take life for granted, which gets you away from God.
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline Timo

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #100 on: July 16, 2014, 02:32:45 AM »
With that being the case, why do you think of the fact that in the Hebrew Bible, God explicitly barred people with defects from entering the sanctuary? (Leviticus 21:16-24)  Is it unChristian of God to impart to Moses that such people's presence in that holy place would profane it?
Nah son...

Offline Airyaman

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #101 on: July 16, 2014, 06:15:22 AM »
With that being the case, why do you think of the fact that in the Hebrew Bible, God explicitly barred people with defects from entering the sanctuary? (Leviticus 21:16-24)  Is it unChristian of God to impart to Moses that such people's presence in that holy place would profane it?

Simple: God wasn't a Christian  ;).
If you are following God why can I still see you?

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #102 on: July 16, 2014, 07:42:25 AM »
I'm not the one who believes in the supernatural.  I don't think that unnatural things exist.  That's your business.

Still, even by those standards, man-on-man loving hardly qualifies as anything beyond the naturalistic.

If you mean to say something specific, try to say it outright, instead of dancing around it.  If you mean something else by "natural" then just say it.  Not by giving crappy examples, but by just honestly stating it outright.  Jesus will forgive you for being honest just this once.

Do you believe erectile dysfunction pills are natural?
Rogaine?
Birth control?


What is your hang up with natural?  One could make the argument that sleeping around is natural. But the list of un-natural acts that christian's accept is enormous in a modern society.

Driving a car at 60 MPH
Open heart surgery (let god handle healing)
Antibiotics (if god wants to take your kids hearing or life it is up to him)
Central Air
Scuba (if god wanted humans to dive to 100 feet and remain there for an hour we would have gills)
Cooking food
Humans eating wheat. (it is almost inedible when uncooked.)
Celibacy (some priests exercise this un-natural behavior.  Dang that mother Theresa and her un-natural behavior.)
Wearing shoes
Wearing clothes (perhaps we should all live in tropical regions and not wear clothes.  (had god wanted us to live in Nebraska he would have given us fur)..............
Couples who decide not to have children


As for the natural status of homosexual behavior.
Rats, chimps,  brown bear, fox, elephant, dog...  The list goes on and on and on.  Homosexuality is most certainly natural as is evidenced in much of the animal kingdom.  I would think since it is found in nature everwhere that one could conclude that it is natural. 

So two questions:

Why is un-natural a bad thing?

What makes the act of human homosexuality un-natural considering its prevalence in nature?

Don't say species preservation,  Homosexuality happens in a small percentage of the population.  At best it is a natural population control.  Brown rats see increased homosexuality during times of over population.  Perhaps the perceived upswing in homosexuality is a human DNA coded biological attempt at population control.

You also mentioned a couple of pioneer studies of the status of homosexuality. Freud was a pioneer much of his work to understand the mind of humans  has proven incorrect.  We owe him alot in that he got the ball rolling for modern psychology, but, he made many wrong observations.  As for the change of status of homosexuality from a dissease to just another human behavior, look at the studies and note, homosexuality is found in nature, it is virtually incurable, there is no inherent negative side-effect on the person beyond guilt generated by societies lack of acceptance.   




Offline nogodsforme

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #103 on: July 16, 2014, 11:58:51 AM »
Yeah the ideas about what is supposedly natural and therefore godly and good (heterosexual procreative sex) vs what is natural and therefore animalistic and bad (anything sexual other than heterosexual procreative sex) make for a rather strange outlook on the world.

Then there are the vast categories of the unnatural, yet allowed by god and therefore good (air travel, central heat, dental work, glasses, hearing aids, umbrellas, deodorant, bras, suitcases, power tools, restaurants, private health care insurance, makeup on women, filing cabinets, paper towels, country music, glass windows, diapers, wedding rings for hetero couples, wedding cakes for hetero couples, on-line bibles, t-shirts with bible verses, shoe polish, hunting rifles, etc, etc, etc.)

Finally we have the fun, fun, fun category of the unnatural, and apparently not liked at all by god: contraception, books that are not religious, online pron, democracy, makeup on men, hip hop music, government health care insurance, thong underwear, t-shirts with curse words, wedding rings for gay couples, wedding cakes for gay couples, etc, etc, etc)

Is long hair natural or not? Is tobacco natural or not? Is miscarriage natural or not? How about incest? Cannibalism? They all occur in nature.  &)

And why does a designation of "natural" matter as a category anyway? How about function: useful, harmless, harmful, or useless, depending on how it is used?
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline YRM_DM

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #104 on: July 17, 2014, 10:19:57 AM »
Yeah the ideas about what is supposedly natural and therefore godly and good (heterosexual procreative sex) vs what is natural and therefore animalistic and bad (anything sexual other than heterosexual procreative sex) make for a rather strange outlook on the world.

Then there are the vast categories of the unnatural, yet allowed by god and therefore good (air travel, central heat, dental work, glasses, hearing aids, umbrellas, deodorant, bras, suitcases, power tools, restaurants, private health care insurance, makeup on women, filing cabinets, paper towels, country music, glass windows, diapers, wedding rings for hetero couples, wedding cakes for hetero couples, on-line bibles, t-shirts with bible verses, shoe polish, hunting rifles, etc, etc, etc.)

Finally we have the fun, fun, fun category of the unnatural, and apparently not liked at all by god: contraception, books that are not religious, online pron, democracy, makeup on men, hip hop music, government health care insurance, thong underwear, t-shirts with curse words, wedding rings for gay couples, wedding cakes for gay couples, etc, etc, etc)

Is long hair natural or not? Is tobacco natural or not? Is miscarriage natural or not? How about incest? Cannibalism? They all occur in nature.  &)

And why does a designation of "natural" matter as a category anyway? How about function: useful, harmless, harmful, or useless, depending on how it is used?

Stop it... you're making too much sense... stop it... la la la la la... fingers in ears.

Seriously love that bit about categories though.
You can't spell BELIEVE without LIE...  and a few other letters.  B and E and V and I think E.

Offline Eddie Schultz

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #105 on: July 25, 2014, 10:20:15 PM »
I would like to see what reply you are talking about, which no Christian has tried to defend it.

skeptic, I already sent this reply to you a while ago, can you answer it? It's post 81.

http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,27064.58.html?PHPSESSID=86656e50e71d31b4b2b36f746d8b16d7

Offline Eddie Schultz

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #106 on: July 29, 2014, 01:18:58 AM »
Skeptic, now answer replies in this thread, now that I see you're here.

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #107 on: July 29, 2014, 08:46:41 AM »
Indeed, this "soul" bears no resemblance to anything we think of as our self-identity, does it?

Imagine switching bodies with someone. You will still be you, but in a different body. That is the soul. Very simple to picture.

The thing about the soul that I always mention, is that you can't see it when you look in a mirror. You can see yourself in the mirror, but you can not see the "you" that makes you "you" inside of you.

we have been down this road before.  Perhaps you missed it.  With drugs, and or physical manipulation of the structures of the brain (I.E. an operation) I can change what makes you, you.  I can make any good person (even god fearing believer) a foul mouthed drinker who is mean and violent.  Why can I do this with earthly methods.  The soul appears to be nothing more than an assembly of experiences as stored in a physical media.  one would thin that a magical soul could not be changed by simply injuring the brain or applying chemicals.

Offline Add Homonym

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #108 on: July 29, 2014, 09:19:38 AM »
I was at a funeral for a youth pastor who was killed on his way home from a bible study in a failed robbery.   Do you know what I was thinking?  Sure, I felt horrible for the wife and kids... but I was thinking things like, "I wonder why God felt the need to call him home now?"   I was thinking, "I wonder what good will come of this as part of God's plan... maybe someone at this funeral will be the next great evangelist because of this event."

At least part of my thinking was spent, not empathizing with the widow or children, but wondering how this had to be a good part of God's plan.

I also wondered if maybe God allowed it to happen as punishment for some secret failing!

I am dumbfounded. I thought you were an atheist? And you're wondering about this stuff???

These are the kinds of things that we believers wonder about. But, an atheist wondering these things? Surely this gives credence to my argument that some atheists, deep down, really do believe....

We are really pounded by this theology, in practically everything we watch. It's like humans have a capacity to make fantasy real, by immersion and repetition. It's basically like brainwashing.

It's a bit hard to think of any other analogies outside religion, but humans have also believed ridiculous scientific things in the past, that they refused to let go of, even though idiotic. Bloodletting is an example. For 2000 years, morons bled patients on death's door ... until they died.. unable to see a connection.

Then we refused to embrace germ theory, because it did not fit our religion of blaming the victim. After we realized germs existed, scientists couldn't fathom the cause of pellagra, because they believed that everything was caused by germs.

I would fall short of calling humans astounding fucking idiots, because some quite brilliant ones have existed. What it shows more than anything, is that humans have the propensity to get trapped in idiotic fantasy. Our worst curse is not bothering to properly check the facts, before we believe stuff.

So, demons, angels, "God", afterlife, "luck", karma, is all part of our fantasy brainwashing heritage, and will not go away, until it's been more or less erased from the whole group.



George Washington asked to be bled heavily after he developed a throat infection from weather exposure. Within a ten hour period, a total of 124-126 ounces (3.75 liters) of blood was withdrawn prior to his death from a throat infection in 1799.

---

Galen created a complex system of how much blood should be removed based on the patient's age, constitution, the season, the weather and the place. "Do-it yourself" bleeding instructions following these systems were developed.[12] Symptoms of plethora were believed to include fever, apoplexy, and headache. The blood to be let was of a specific nature determined by the disease: either arterial or venous, and distant or close to the area of the body affected. He linked different blood vessels with different organs, according to their supposed drainage. For example, the vein in the right hand would be let for liver problems and the vein in the left hand for problems with the spleen. The more severe the disease, the more blood would be let. Fevers required copious amounts of bloodletting.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bloodletting
« Last Edit: July 29, 2014, 09:49:24 AM by Add Homonym »
Humans, in general, don't waste any opportunity to be unfathomably stupid - Dr Cynical.

Offline YRM_DM

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #109 on: July 29, 2014, 10:16:52 AM »
Agreed.   It was very hard to shed the delusions.

I still find myself having a hard time believing that how I wear my hat or whether I am watching TV or not doesn't affect the outcome of a sports game.  =-)
You can't spell BELIEVE without LIE...  and a few other letters.  B and E and V and I think E.

Offline nogodsforme

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #110 on: July 29, 2014, 05:23:18 PM »
It helps to read some books on cognition research-- how our brains work. I am reading some really cool stuff[1] that explains why we hold onto ancient mythical beliefs, even when the facts show us the opposite. Most of it has to do with basic evolutionary survival.

Like, prehistoric humans who imagined that the rustling in the grass was a predator, and ran away, lived to reproduce another day. The nerdy, unimaginative Spock-like primate investigator who poked into the bushes with a stick to see what was actually there sometimes got eaten. Running away from an imaginary threat always led to a better outcome than investigating, even if the rustling was just the wind.

We are the descendants of the ones with the vivid imaginations who saw a gigantic lion in the patterns of shadows and leaves, and ran back to the hut so relieved at having escaped certain death that they just had to fvck like bunnies. The scientific minded ones who, before deciding to run away had to see the actual lion, got eaten and did not get to fvck like bunnies. They did not leave any descendants!

Is it any wonder that most of us find scientific explanations harder to wrap our minds around than magical forces and imaginary beings?
 1. as background for the rational thinking section of my atheist book
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline dloubet

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #111 on: July 30, 2014, 04:27:10 AM »

I think that the long and the short of it is that conservative Christians in safe, Christian majority countries like to pretend that they are some kind of hated minority that's constantly being threatened with persecution.  But what's actually going on is that people, including other Christians, are just growing less and less patient with their hatred of various minority groups--mostly, the gays.

How many time does it need to be explained?

We don't hate the gays. We love them. We just want them to repent of their lifestyle so they can go to Heaven. If we didn't care about them, we would just leave them alone and let them go to Hell in a handbasket.

This nonsense that we "hate" them is pure propaganda and quite frankly, I'm getting sick of it.

 It's like saying that people who try to get drug addicts to quit hate the drug addicts because they won't let them keep doing drugs.

Do you agree with your god that if they don't repent, then they deserve to go to hell?

If you do, then you hate them.
Denis Loubet

Offline Defiance

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #112 on: July 30, 2014, 05:23:38 AM »
The fact that you equate homosexuality with drug abuse...is quite sickening.
"God is just and fair"
*God kills 2.5 million of people he KNEW would turn out like this in the flood*
*Humanity turns bad again, when God knew it would*
We should feel guilty for this.

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #113 on: August 01, 2014, 02:11:30 PM »
There is no way that they can go to hell. There is no hell. none none none.
Most people think they know what they know. The problem starts by not knowing what you don't know. You know?  (Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence)   (Albert Einstein)One fool can ask more questions in a minute than twelve wise men can answer in an hour.
--Nikolai Lenin

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #114 on: August 01, 2014, 05:40:09 PM »
It helps to read some books on cognition research-- how our brains work. I am reading some really cool stuff[1] that explains why we hold onto ancient mythical beliefs, even when the facts show us the opposite. Most of it has to do with basic evolutionary survival.

Like, prehistoric humans who imagined that the rustling in the grass was a predator, and ran away, lived to reproduce another day. The nerdy, unimaginative Spock-like primate investigator who poked into the bushes with a stick to see what was actually there sometimes got eaten. Running away from an imaginary threat always led to a better outcome than investigating, even if the rustling was just the wind.

We are the descendants of the ones with the vivid imaginations who saw a gigantic lion in the patterns of shadows and leaves, and ran back to the hut so relieved at having escaped certain death that they just had to fvck like bunnies. The scientific minded ones who, before deciding to run away had to see the actual lion, got eaten and did not get to fvck like bunnies. They did not leave any descendants!

Is it any wonder that most of us find scientific explanations harder to wrap our minds around than magical forces and imaginary beings?
 1. as background for the rational thinking section of my atheist book

Yes. In addition to that, humans who cooperate with one another are more likely to survive than those who don't. While the mechanisms with which humans evolved to become cooperative are debatable, whether it be via group selection or something else, the end result is not. In places with scarce resources, humans had to work together. Nothing unifies people better than having some kind of idea to rally and identify those in the group versus those outside the group. Hence a lot of religions, especially in inhospitable regions such as the middle east, frequently extol the virtues of smiting the believers of rival gods. By identifying an "other", a religious doctrine of xenophobia motivates those in a group to fanatical levels of cooperation. Thus, clans, tribes, and ultimately civilizations with these beliefs will succeed over those that do not. Hence the appeal of religion even today.

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Re: Atheists - Do you hate individual Theists just because they are?
« Reply #115 on: August 02, 2014, 01:35:31 PM »
^^^Yeppo. The rugged individual surviving on his (usually his) wits all alone is an invention of modern libertarianism. Loners did not survive in primitive conditions, and still don't. Joiners, conformists and helpers did survive, and still do. Families, clans, tribes sharing resources and knowledge out-reproduced the freethinking lone rangers. Religious belief may be one among many adaptive evolutionary traits that encouraged and enforced group membership and conformity. Religious belief could, and does, still serve some positive community functions.

However, just because a belief or impulse has an evolutionary explanation does not mean it is based on empirical facts, or is always or even mostly good. The urge to reproduce is one of the most powerful there is. That does not mean that sexual attraction is always good. That does not mean that feeling attracted to someone is the same as love or commitment. That does not mean it is beneficial to society or to individuals to have sex with anyone, anywhere at anytime.

Same thing with supernatural beliefs. They helped people survive in the past, and bind people together today. But we understand the world better now, and can explain things in better, more healthy and factual ways.
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.