Beginners guide for atheist

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Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 07:32 am
I always wonder if there was ever a Beginners's Guide for atheism what would be in it! Very Happy hmmmmmmmmm:rolleyes:
You guys have any idea! Very Happy
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 10:22 am
@ltdaleadergt,
I've never been a fan of Dawkins and his breed of atheist - they tend to take the most extreme caricature of religion, attack it brutally, and then claim a great victory of the ignorant believers. They are weak.

What I love about Nietzsche is that he isn't afraid to take on the more mature religious notions. In fact, it seems that he prefers to do this. And Russell's work is always wonderful; while the below title probably won't contain much you haven't though of if you are critical of religion, the book is still valuable, and worth reading for anyone interested in religious criticism.

The Antichrist - Nietzsche
Why I am not a Christian - B. Russell

Other than these two texts, I recommend atheists read religious material. I'm not trying to convert the atheists, I just think that, if you are going to criticize something, you better have a strong knowledge of that something.
 
boagie
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 10:56 am
@ltdaleadergt,
<daleader> wrote:
I always wonder if there was ever a Beginners's Guide for atheism what would be in it! Very Happy hmmmmmmmmm:rolleyes:
You guys have any idea! Very Happy


daleader,Smile

Critical thinking, plain and simple and perhaps, a study in world mythologies. Also an understanding that the reason religious beliefs require no evidence is because of its emotional foundaton. It requires no reason to form the intent/will to believe.


"Just think of it! We have come forth from this Earth of ours. And the Earth itself came of a galaxy, which, in turn, was a condensation of atoms gathered in from 'space'. The Earth may be regarded as a precipitation of 'space'. Is it a wonder, then, that the 'laws of that space' are ingrained in our minds? The philosopher Alan Watts once said, "The Earth is peopling, as apple tree's 'apple'. People are produced from the earth as apples from apple tree's." We are the 'sensing organs' of the Earth. We are the 'senses' of the 'universe'. We have it all right here 'within us'. And the 'deities' that we once thought were 'out there', we now know, were projected out of 'ourselves'. " - Joseph Campbell Smile
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 11:03 am
@ltdaleadergt,
Oh, please, boagie. Critical thinking?

Yes, critical thinking is good regardless of circumstance. Critical thinking is especially helpful for evaluating extreme claims - from both the religious and atheist.
 
boagie
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 11:12 am
@Didymos Thomas,
Didymos Thomas wrote:
Oh, please, boagie. Critical thinking?

Yes, critical thinking is good regardless of circumstance. Critical thinking is especially helpful for evaluating extreme claims - from both the religious and atheist.


Didymos,Smile

We are in agreement then Thomas! The atheist though does not have extreme claims, he just says, he does not believe yours. The burden of proof lies with the claimant of those extreme proposition/s.
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 11:19 am
@ltdaleadergt,
We agree more than we disagree... hard to believe sometimes, but I'm convinced of it.

And I think atheists do have extreme claims. You've probably heard me say this all before.
There are two sorts of atheism. Hard atheism claims that there is no god. The hard atheist claims to know that there is no god, and that god cannot exist. Soft atheism claims that there is no reason to believe in God - there might be a God, but soft atheism points to a lack of evidence to justify disbelief.

The hard atheist has gone too far. How can anyone possible prove that there is no God? They cannot. The soft atheist, however, has a reasonable claim that I do not object to.

We can break theists down into similar categories - hard theism which claims there is a God and tries to prove that God exists, and soft theism which claims there is a God, but does not attempt to prove the existence of God to others.

There is absolutely no evidence for God that I can show you, and there is absolutely nothing you can show me that disproves the existence of God. So the hard atheist and hard theist have gone too far. Soft atheist/soft theist claims are reasonable.
 
boagie
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 11:30 am
@Didymos Thomas,
:)Agreed Thomas, absolute statements are irrational on the part of both the atheist and theist. So, what then of an institution built to that absolute belief in god, is that then not, irrational? They say they know what he says, they know what he wants--your thought?


"Just think of it! We have come forth from this Earth of ours. And the Earth itself came of a galaxy, which, in turn, was a condensation of atoms gathered in from 'space'. The Earth may be regarded as a precipitation of 'space'. Is it a wonder, then, that the 'laws of that space' are ingrained in our minds? The philosopher Alan Watts once said, "The Earth is peopling, as apple tree's 'apple'. People are produced from the earth as apples from apple tree's." We are the 'sensing organs' of the Earth. We are the 'senses' of the 'universe'. We have it all right here 'within us'. And the 'deities' that we once thought were 'out there', we now know, were projected out of 'ourselves'. " - Joseph Campbell Smile
 
Arjen
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 11:33 am
@ltdaleadergt,
I'd say you should start with David Hume's "An enquiry into human understanding". Trust me.
Smile
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 11:38 am
@ltdaleadergt,
Quote:
Agreed Thomas, absolute statements are irrational on the part of both the atheist and theist. So, what then of an institution built to that absolute belief in god, is that then not, irrational? They say they know what he says, they know what he wants--your thought?
Are talking about hypotheticals, or are we talking about actual institutions?

The institutions I have encountered which demand absolute belief in anything tend to be far too extreme for me to embrace. However, I can conceive of an institution that does not suffer from extremism, which is comprised of individuals who believe in God such that belief in God is characteristic of the institution.

It's my view that the soft atheist and the soft theist have an equally strong case. Having belief in God should be a personal thing - if you do, great; if you don't, great.

Arjen - great recommendation. I'll definitely second that advice.
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 11:57 am
@Didymos Thomas,
Step One: Convince Yourself That ONLY Physical Stimulus That Is Reviewable By Peers Is Real.
 
boagie
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 12:09 pm
@Didymos Thomas,
Didymos Thomas wrote:
Are talking about hypotheticals, or are we talking about actual institutions?

The institutions I have encountered which demand absolute belief in anything tend to be far too extreme for me to embrace. However, I can conceive of an institution that does not suffer from extremism, which is comprised of individuals who believe in God such that belief in God is characteristic of the institution.

It's my view that the soft atheist and the soft theist have an equally strong case. Having belief in God should be a personal thing - if you do, great; if you don't, great.

Arjen - great recommendation. I'll definitely second that advice.


Thomas, Arjen,Smile

Don't just stand around patting each other on the back, and give me homework, if there is a point to be made here present it.
 
boagie
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 12:12 pm
@GoshisDead,
GoshisDead wrote:
Step One: Convince Yourself That ONLY Physical Stimulus That Is Reviewable By Peers Is Real.


GoshisDead,Smile

Sorry but I really do not understand this statement, no offense intended, I sincerely do not understand.
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 12:24 pm
@ltdaleadergt,
Quote:
Don't just stand around patting each other on the back, and give me homework, if there is a point to be made here present it.
Heheh - Hume is brilliant! Arjen can probably correct me with the particulars, but from what I recall, Hume was accused of atheism for his arguments even though he doesn't make a direct argument against belief in God.

GoshisDead - Why?

If I am sitting alone in my room, and my dog licks my face, should I think my dog licking my face to be illusory because I do not have a friend to witness the event?

And even then, what if I have a splitting headache - no one can confirm this, only I can confirm that my head hurts.
 
Arjen
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 12:29 pm
@boagie,
boagie wrote:
Thomas, Arjen,Smile

Don't just stand around patting each other on the back, and give me homework, if there is a point to be made here present it.
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 12:33 pm
@ltdaleadergt,
Quote:
particularly if one realises that Hume is one of the three great British Empirists.


Not just that, but maybe one of the three greatest western philosophers ever.
 
Arjen
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 12:44 pm
@Didymos Thomas,
Didymos Thomas wrote:
Not just that, but maybe one of the three greatest western philosophers ever.

Who are the other two?
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 01:04 pm
@ltdaleadergt,
iT was just a joke that fell flat
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 02:05 pm
@ltdaleadergt,
Quote:
Who are the other two?


We could argue all day about who the three are; I was saying he is certainly a prime candidate for being in such a list.
 
ltdaleadergt
 
Reply Tue 6 May, 2008 08:20 pm
@GoshisDead,
many nice comments thx u guys. Dont get me wrong I am not an atheist, YET haha! But I wondered what would the chapters of this book be if we had such a book!
I myself thought long and hard, I am so called an Antagonist! But I convinced myself that there needs to be a God but I dont really need him!

Critical thinking is nice and I do believe that it is an important tool but it can be used in both ways!
I read Russlles paper, even though I like many work of Russell but I dont really enjoy reading his work maybe because I am really jealous of him!

The reason that I like Nietzsche is because of his honesty and search for the truth and his attempt for understanding human and human mind!
I read David Hume's work, specially that paper but I still forgot it! David Hume tried to destroy metaphysics! BUT thank god for KANT! David hume was a party loving rich son of a gun! Very Happy SO i am not sure when he was writing thus papers whether he was fully aware and sober ! Very Happy
 
Vasska
 
Reply Wed 14 May, 2008 02:31 pm
@Didymos Thomas,
Didymos Thomas wrote:
I've never been a fan of Dawkins and his breed of atheist - they tend to take the most extreme caricature of religion, attack it brutally, and then claim a great victory of the ignorant believers. They are weak.

What I love about Nietzsche is that he isn't afraid to take on the more mature religious notions. In fact, it seems that he prefers to do this. And Russell's work is always wonderful; while the below title probably won't contain much you haven't though of if you are critical of religion, the book is still valuable, and worth reading for anyone interested in religious criticism.

The Antichrist - Nietzsche
Why I am not a Christian - B. Russell

Other than these two texts, I recommend atheists read religious material. I'm not trying to convert the atheists, I just think that, if you are going to criticize something, you better have a strong knowledge of that something.


Dawkins is not the soft kind of atheist if you read his "The God Delusion" he really hates the soft Agnostic people who do not want to chose and stay neutral. Maybe you like Pat Condell better (Search his name on Youtube and his video's will show up) who has a somewhat stronger voice.

You later define atheism in two subgroups; hard and soft, one saying god does not exist, one that there is no reason to believe in god. You said you dislike the hard one's and like the soft one's better. However you previously stated that you don't like the soft one's like Dawkins. Please make up your mind.

For me it's simple; there is no reason to believe in our definition of God, and there is no God as we intend him to be. If you look at the universe and even our simple small planet I cannot and refuse to believe there is a God.
A bundling of cosmic forces that might influence us and other planets is something else, but i won't call it God. But use the God term in the more scientific way like the God-particle and others.
 
 

 
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