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Originally posted by kaustubhmathur

Atheism is not a negation of anything. You don’t have to negate what no one can prove exists. No, atheism is a very positive affirmation of man’s ability to think for himself, to do for himself, to find answers to his own problems.

- Madalyn Murray O’Hair

We all must be aware of the indubitable co-relation and interdependence between God and religion. If we look at religion in the Utopian, the ideal way of it, then it is merely the path to spiritual enlightenment and liberation in the manifestation of faith with Nirvana as one of the destinations. Now, when we look at religion this way, nothing seems wrong, right?

Maybe religion was a concept, a design, a humble notion, a working model that was devised to make people believe in their own faith. That’s all it seems, in broader terms. People want some kind of faith to cling on to. They need it, rather.

 So the guys back then must have thought that,

“Hell yeah, they want a way to express their faith? Let’s give ‘em that. We’ll create this levelheaded thing called Religion which will be like totally cool and all. The lads will not only find a way to express and hang on but will also like, learn about life, you know, in an allegorical way.”

“All we’ll provide them with is the figurative path, in the form of short stories or poems which will like, guide them and all and give them a way to differentiate between the good and evil.”

But those guys weren’t completely right. Apparently, after centuries, religion is serious stuff. You can’t express your opinion without hurting a pocketful of over sensitive peeps. People think that their religion is the ‘best’ and all other should perish. Religion surely wasn’t created to cater to your ego? Surely the purpose was not to create a divide between people following a different religion?

All religions are connected to the identical Ultimate Reality and lead people towards a common goal. This is true even though the various religions make exclusive claims about themselves, sometimes asserting the uniqueness and incomparability of their God or ultimate principle.

Only egos, beliefs and faiths separate us.
The basis of any religion is that you must believe something someone else tells you is true, even though your mind tells you it is a lie and it makes no sense. There is name for that: fideism. Without fideism, the concept of religion would not exist.

I am not here to proclaim that the belief in your God is baseless. In my question, I just want to know why people believe so blindly? Without knowledge of other texts or ideas, how can people make informed decisions? Believing what you want is fine but I think believing while being ignorant of other matters pertaining to what you believe is ridiculous. In all likelihood, life isn’t fair. Religion and God give us the chance to not lose hope.

The difference between science and religion is that the former is always willing to reconsider any of its theories, laws and rules.
For me atleast, the religious texts are in a way like fairy tales. The characters are imaginary, the story is fictitious and at the end of it, it teaches us morality and principles. But when we start taking things way too seriously and as a matter of fact, way too literally, we tend to defeat the purpose of it all. It is like searching for the shoe that Cinderella lost or looking for the mirror which the queen used in Snow White.

People don’t take these stories literally. That is because they know it is not true and nothing like that happened. They are metaphors and analogies, after all. How we look at it is the bigger picture. To teach a point, allegorism is used.

QUESTION: How can the reader know which scriptures are literal and which are to be taken symbolically? Context and logic would be the key to this.
Consider doing all the things you have ever done to please your God.  Does it really make a difference? Do you think that only when you effectively please him, does he ‘grant’ you your desire? Or is it just another reassurance you give yourself?

You are only scared of God because you don’t know him. That is not a fear of God.  That is technically a fear of the unknown.

God is not a wishing well. God is you. God is what you want him to be.  God is that faith. We need something to look up to when all is lost. That doesn’t make it real. That’s like saying Batman is real. Maybe he is. After all, we can only try and contemplate to think rationally.

So, for you it may be Jesus, and for me it may be another. If you are unable to accept me for my beliefs then your religion has failed to do its job, which is to create peace. The only difference is that you need a monument to reassert your faith and I don’t.

You can choose to consider or not consider the extra ‘NOT’ in the parenthesis of the title. You have a choice here but not necessarily in religion.

Originally posted to Secular Party of America on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 07:50 AM PDT.

Also republished by Progressive Atheists.

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Comment Preferences

  •  How can you explain my 100% failure rate then? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AaronInSanDiego

    It's statistically impossible for me to be a loser 100% of the time, at everything I try to do, without there being an outside source consciously affecting the results. Whether you call this source 'God' or by another name, it has the power and the will to use me as a meat puppet for its own entertainment, so in effect it is 'God'.

    Once I felt sorry for myself because I had no shoes. But then I met a man who had no feet. So I pointed at him and laughed and felt a lot better. - GOP parable

    by Fordmandalay on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 08:03:52 AM PDT

  •  Are you pissed at God? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    karmsy, swansong50

    Why do you feel the need to preach atheism?  I think people at DailyKos can or have made up there minds about their Gods or lack of Gods, and I doubt you'll have much influence.

    •  i do hope (8+ / 0-)

      you make similar comments in the religion diaries, then.

      peace

      Please don't dominate the rap, Jack, if you got nothin' new to say - Grateful Dead

      by Cedwyn on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 08:11:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You can count on it! (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wilderness voice, Wisper, Cedwyn

        I don't like people preaching Religion or Atheism. When Religion tries to creep into public policy, I'll blast it hard.  And when atheism turns into nothing more than an anti-religion crusade, I'll be blasting it also.

        and peace to you.

      •  I see VERY few diaries that 'preach' a certain (5+ / 0-)

        religion.

        I ask you to show me some diaries that say "Judaism is the right way to go about thing' or 'Buddhism is correct' or 'Convert to Christianity'

        The religion diaries I see don't say 'You are wrong and believing a lie', or some such.  When they DO appear (which is seldom because they know they'll be piled upon, they are usually discussions of why they feel or act a certain way--or, as I said--diaries in defense of the concept.

    •  I dislike preaching in general (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kevskos

      But I don't think anyone would be "preaching" atheism if it wasn't for the attempts by organized religion to get their rules to affect the freedom and the lives of people who don't share their beliefs.

      People don't usually give much thought to things they don't believe in.  Seen many protests against Apollo lately trying to get him to move his sun chariot a bit further away to mitigate global warming?  No, because people don't believe in Apollo.  But if there were believers in Apollo stopping climate change legislation because they think it is Apollo's will for the planet to get warmer, then yeah I think atheists might speak up.

  •  Boy, there's a lot of "he" and "him" in your post. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    karmsy, OregonWetDog

    Wonder if you thought about all the women who'd be reading this. I'm guessing not.

  •  Formless Substance (0+ / 0-)
    There is a thinking stuff from whcih all things are made, and which, in its orignial state, permeates, penetrates and fills the interspaces of the universe.

    A thought, in this substance, produces the thing that is imaged by the thought.

    Man can form things in his thought, and, by impressing his thought upon formless substance, can cause the thing he thinks about to be created.

    --WDW

    Notice: This Comment © 2013 ROGNM

    by ROGNM on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 08:07:03 AM PDT

  •  Not sure why diarist bothered. n/t (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pollwatcher, Wisper, erush1345

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 08:15:28 AM PDT

  •  Ever notice that "I am what I am" (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pollwatcher, Joieau, Kevskos, thomask

    Was said by both God and Popeye?

    Warren/3-D Print of Warren in 2016!

    by dov12348 on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 08:15:58 AM PDT

  •  My problem with some atheists is this describes (4+ / 0-)

    them too:

    But those guys weren’t completely right. Apparently, after centuries, religion is serious stuff. You can’t express your opinion without hurting a pocketful of over sensitive peeps. People think that their religion is the ‘best’ and all other should perish. Religion surely wasn’t created to cater to your ego? Surely the purpose was not to create a divide between people following a different religion?
    I live in Santa Monica. Every year we had a number of scenes from the bible in Palisades park during Christmas time. The atheists sued to get the park open for all, perfectly fine, but then used their spaces to insult religious people. They called them idiots and worse for believing.

    I am agnostic leaning atheist and I too am tired of hearing that the non believers can't be moral people without religion. But I also acknowledge that religion can be a force for good.

    So rather than saying that the religious are idiots I think that it would have been a far more powerful message to show that the non religious have done great things too.

    Most of the people taking a hard line against us are firmly convinced that they are the last defenders of civilization... The last stronghold of mother, God, home and apple pie and they're full of shit! David Crosby, Journey Thru the Past.

    by Mike S on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 08:19:42 AM PDT

  •  Logical fallacy- (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bevenro, erush1345

    Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

    •  if there is a lack of evidence (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kevskos

      where it would be expected if the proposition were true, that can be regarded as evidence of absence.

      Gondwana has always been at war with Laurasia.

      by AaronInSanDiego on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 11:35:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Depends on the variety of evidence (0+ / 0-)

        you would accept. Subjective experience is as empirical (experiential knowledge) as any other kind of experience. But those who hear the testimony can always choose whether or not to believe it, depending on their own level of subjective experience and how it's been interpreted to the social mileau.

        Asserting that the lack of subjective empirical experience - or the rejection of subjective empirical experience by definition - constitutes evidence that subjective empirical experience does not exist is... downright illogical.

        these are beliefs-about the nature of reality and what our experience of reality means.

        •  I don't think the truth or falsity of my statement (0+ / 0-)

          depends on the nature of the evidence.

          Gondwana has always been at war with Laurasia.

          by AaronInSanDiego on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 01:44:47 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sure it does. (0+ / 0-)

            Let's say I have direct experience of, say, a miraculous event. total remission of advanced end stage cancer, literally overnight (called "spontaneous remission" in the days before there were medical treatments beyond tumor removal). Let's say I attribute said miraculous event to the intervention of whatever deific being/belief system I subscribe to.

            "God cured me" for whatever reason, often times none. Just happened, it gets attributed.

            Now, you could claim that the miracle wasn't a miracle even though there's no medical or scientific explanation for it. You surely couldn't expect ME to believe that, though. It would be simply dueling assertions between us, anybody listening would choose their favorite or shrug and go amuse themselves elsewhere.

            All that can be considered objective evidence - that I suffered advanced cancer, that it disappeared literally overnight, that I'm now healthy as a horse - doesn't say a damned thing about cause, proximate or final. Nothing, zip, zilch. If the occurrence of the miracle is established but the explanation is up for grabs, people will decide for themselves based on their own experiences and beliefs what they will believe about it.

            Dueling metaphysics is the biggest waste of time ever invented.

            •  I guess I don't see how that example relates (0+ / 0-)

              to my claim. What evidence would be expected to be found, but isn't found?

              Gondwana has always been at war with Laurasia.

              by AaronInSanDiego on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 03:53:26 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Evidence that said deific being (0+ / 0-)

                caused and/or granted the miracle, of course. Which in my example would be my positive assertion if I were convinced my prayers had been answered.

                All you could do is shake your head and say not so, but you'd have even less evidence to support such assertion than I have to support mine (that a healing miracle occurred). You thus could not claim that because I don't have a video of an angel casting healing light at me on my deathbed somehow "proves" that my deific being doesn't exist.

                Absence of objective evidence of a god/godling or angel in this example would in no way be considered evidence that god/godling or angel do not exist.

  •  more broadly (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    allergywoman
    indubitable co-relation and interdependence between God and religion
    for Western religions only.  Buddhism is non-deistic . Hindus have many gods.
    The basis of any religion is that you must believe something someone else tells you is true, even though your mind tells you it is a lie and it makes no sense. There is name for that: fideism. Without fideism, the concept of religion would not exist.
    again, Western religions only. Buddhism says to test its teachings and adopt them only if they prove beneficial for you.
  •  I find this diary confusing. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    swansong50

    Not even sure where to begin.

    "The next time everyone will pay for it equally, and there won't be any more Chosen Nations, or any Others. Poor bastards all." ~The Boomer Bible

    by just another vet on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 08:34:34 AM PDT

  •  Buddha was an atheist (0+ / 0-)

    So what happened?

  •  Oh ffs.... really? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    onanthebarbarian, erush1345

    I am an atheist and still think this is fucking ridiculous.

    Atheist proselytizing on DKos? Really?  REALLY????

    We're gonna have a debate about whether GOD EXISTS on a blog?  

    Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

    by Wisper on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 09:41:29 AM PDT

  •  It's important to (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    erush1345, AaronInSanDiego

    find your own spiritual answers in life, and then to remember that others have found their own also, and respect theirs just as they respect yours.

    That's in the ideal, at least.

    In reality, it usually comes down to denying people civil rights, hate/vitriol, and lots of times murder.

    Don't dislike people for their spiritual beliefs. Dislike people for being dicks about their spiritual beliefs.

  •  I would posit (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    erush1345

    that religion springs from a common trait that came bundled with our evolutionarily oversized brain - the percept of "other" present in our self-consciousness. Whether or not the percept is evidence of the actual existence of said "other," religions sprouted forth from the reported experiences with "other" of rare humans whose behaviors and actions seemed exemplary to their peers - thus gaining a 'following'.

    As Aldous Huxley and many others have purported over the course of centuries, the 'Mystic Vision' is common to all religious traditions. It's just expressed and formalized according to societal norms of the cultures in which they arise.

    People who take religious precepts and dogmas literally are people who are prone to taking things literally. A choice between a "love them all" or a "hate them all" literalism is also a free choice of socio-political alignment by nature, simply translated to religion. People are born with innate natures in the way they view the world around them, expansively or exclusively - conservative or liberal. their religious beliefs follow the same pattern, and the major religions encompass sects designed to appeal directly to those natural proclivities.

    You assume a lot in this diary. You assume all religious people are stupid, that they've never encountered or examined belief systems other than the one they were born into or currently hold, and have no empirical experience of the "other" that comes in nature along with our brains. I'd suggest that the audience here at DKos does not resemble your bigoted notions, and will not appreciate being maligned by your obviously prejudicial belief system any more than you like to be maligned by any random religio out there in the broader world.

  •  I find faith to be a pretty private thing (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    erush1345, Joieau

    Between themselves and the deity of their choice. Not sure poking your finger in the eye of believers of every stripe is a good way of representing atheism, anymore than Evangelicals when they tell folks they're going to hell.

    Believe what you want, let your neighbor believe what they want.

    I've seen some hardboiled eggs in my time, but you're about twenty minutes

    by harrylimelives on Fri Jul 19, 2013 at 12:37:23 PM PDT

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