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I don't care how you grew up. Whether you were force fed religion or grew up with none. Whether you grew to hate religion all together or you love the idea of it, but you think it isn't for you. Whether you respect it and would never take it away from someone, but you would also never attend religious related events. Anyone and everyone, in MY OPINION should be, at the very least, agnostic.

Why? Well, for the simple reason of admitting to the fact YOU DON'T KN OW EVERYTHING. From the moment of birth to the second you die you are constantly learning. You are always finding things out that you once did not know existed.

Everyone needs to accept the reality of life. There are things out there that we do not yet understand, and some things we may never understand. For example, I can't grasp the fact that there are people so willingly dumb in this world. I know it exists, but I just don't know how. So, until you KNOW because you have the PROOF that will end the religious debate forever, you DO NOT KNOW FOR SURE. It is PURELY only YOUR opinion on the matter. And, honestly I have no issue with other peoples opinions. I respect them, they let me learn new things, or realize just how much smarter I am compared to you. But, still, despite the fact that it is YOUR OPINION, WHY do you talk about the subject as if you KNOW?

Sure, confidence is a key trait in people that some people would kill to have. But you don't realize just how arrogant you sound when you act like you know something that you can't even begin to grasp mentally. The fact you are willing to say that God, or some deity, does not exist shows to the world that you have no real grasp on religion or the fundamental values they bring to those that don't abuse it. If you are unable to grasp religion mentally, why do you talk as if you know for a fact that there is no higher being? It makes no sense to me.

For that reason, I hate Atheists. Not because they don't believe in my religion, but because they are so arrogant to believe that they KNOW for a FACT despite having NO REAL EVIDENCE or PROOF that it doesn't exist. And, when I say I hate Atheists, I don't mean I hate them in terms of a person, but I hate them in terms of a belief system. I don't hate the people, I hate their mentality. I hate their arrogance. I hate their stubbornness. I hate their refusal to believe in something, or at least be open minded.

But, I guess it makes sense. If a person is unable to have faith in something, they would be a bad candidate for any religion, as religion is based off faith. If they can't believe in something in life, how could they ever believe in a religion and what they have to offer?

Now, as I ranted enough at the moment about Atheists, I want to talk about Agnostic folk. I love you guys. You are like the more mature Atheists. Instead of refusing to believe what every one says about religion, you stay open minded. You are willing to believe. You are willing to have faith. You don't mock others beliefs, because you are able to see the value in religion. You know there is a possibility that there IS some higher being because, as a human, we do not know everything.

Furthermore on this subject, who are you people to say it doesn't exist? Didn't realize you were born with infinite knowledge and that you know this. Didn't realize you checked and in fact saw there was no God in heaven. Didn't realize a person could be so stubborn. You have no real clue do you? You have no real solid evidence, do you? You are only going by what your faulty, obviously screwed up brain, is thinking, aren't you? You got no proof, so not one of you Atheists know for sure. Not one of you Atheists can even begin to know for sure. Finding an answer to whether there is a higher being is far out of your reach, as it takes understanding and a willing to learn, which you do not have.
:iconthewanderernears:

Atheists and Agnostic by TheWandererNears

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Atheists and agnostic folk are discussed here.
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:iconmauevig:
MauEvig Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Agreed. I'm an agnostic, because I feel there is insufficient evidence one way or another.
Someone told me I had to be an agnostic athiest because there isn't a middle ground, but there is. I'm that middle ground. I neither believe nor disbelieve in God, because I don't know what to believe. I don't hate athiests, but I do get tired of atheism.
In my opinions both theists and atheists can be pushy, although not all people on either side are bad.
I try to keep an open mind. My life is always in the pursuit of knowledge, and why we are here, what our purpose is. If there is no purpose, then I create a purpose for myself to exist. I admit I tend to argue the opposing side on either account.
I liked this speech though. I respect people on both sides, but I consider myself neither one.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Well, friend, i know a website that you may enjoy. Not pushing a single side your way, but you seem to be one that would appreciate facts and hard physical evidence.

To further show im not pushing a side, i wont link unless you are up for.

But either way, I'm glad you enjoyed the reading :3
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:iconshiftehh:
Shiftehh Featured By Owner Nov 18, 2011
Okay, I do with you somewhat about Atheistic mentality. But you are indeed a hypocrite. You condemn Atheists for their arrogance but are so obviously full of it yourself "I respect them, they let me learn new things, or realize just how much smarter I am compared to you". And then you went on to condone Agnostics for not mocking others beliefs when you were yourself completely raving against the Atheistic beliefs.

Yes, there is no solid scientific proof for Atheists in saying that a God does not exist, but I'm afraid there none that exists for the other side of the argument either.. That is why the debate exists, its a philosophical argument. I can kinda see why you are so ranty against them, but you should learn to be more diplomatic with your approach otherwise you will find yourself treading the same tracks as they do. You said no one has all the answers, then don't speak as if you do.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
What you said would have been entirely correct if you didn't pass something over. Atheists don't have a belief, hence why they are atheists. So therefore I did not rave against atheists beliefs, because they have none.

So with that said, you can start apologizing
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:iconshiftehh:
Shiftehh Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2011
That's clutching at straws to be honest. You were condemning their world view at the very least which can be paralleled with beliefs, whether they be secular or spiritual. Atheists do have beliefs as much as they will want to disagree; they have utter faith and devotion to science for instance, they think all of lives answers have to proven via scientific method. And I have no need to apologize, I was offering only offering some constructive criticism or if you want, a second opinion from someone who also dislikes the Atheistic attitude.
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:iconxingli:
xingli Featured By Owner Oct 20, 2011
I realize I'm extremely late to this party, but this is my first time back on deviantart in a very long time, and this was one of the first things I read, so here goes. Upfront, I am an atheist, here to defend myself. I know you've probably heard a lot of this, but I'm trying to put my spin on it.

I know it may not be the vernacular or the common understanding of the words, but most who identify as atheists do not view the spectrum of belief as you have described. As an atheist, I say that theism and atheism are beliefs about existence. They are ontological beliefs. Agnosticism and gnosticism (I use gnosticism as simply the opposite of agnosticism, not the Christian sect) are beliefs concerning knowledge. They are epistemological beliefs. So in this delineation, agnosticism and atheism are not mutually exclusive. I think the confusion stems from the idea that these particular brands of agnosticism and gnosticism, in their more general definitions of belief over whether a claim is knowable, are concerned with existence itself, which makes them seem ontological in nature.

The effect of this structure is that there is a 2x2 grid formed in terms of belief, with epistemological beliefs at one axis and ontological beliefs at the other. I think of myself as an agnostic atheist. I think this structure isn't paid attention to in believer circles because epistemological beliefs aren't as apparent for theism. I consider myself an agnostic atheist. I agree with you, who appears to be an agnostic theist, that knowledge of the existence of God does not seem to be knowable. But I don't believe in God. That is it. The Atheists that you hate, strictly classified as gnostic atheists, are a great minority among the atheist community, but they seem to get more attention because they are also very much more likely to be assholes. The atheist you rail against seems to have said "God doesn't exist" because of some arrogant claim to knowledge from his life that has no substance. I hate those guys too, they're obnoxious. But it's not the atheist that you hate. 90% of it is just the asshole.
And I definitely agree with you that agnosticism is the way to go. Whether agnostic atheist or agnostic theist, it's simply much less arrogant to believe that knowledge of God's existence is knowable.

I'm trying to get you on my side here, but let's move on.

"...who are you people to say it doesn't exist? Didn't realize you were born with infinite knowledge and that you know this."

See, that's the thing, we don't know this. There's no solid evidence toward the existence of God (at least in atheists' eyes), and evidence of nonexistence in nonsensical. So we're left in this state of not knowing. But why is it then irrational to not believe in this case? To risk pulling out a cliche, if I told you right now that there is an invisible, intangible, and altogether undetectable unicorn behind you, do you believe me? You have no inclination to, and to an atheist, God is as ridiculous as the unicorn, and if you wanna play the "logically impossible" card, an atheist can come back just as well.

Now, we're not sure about it, just as you're not sure about the unicorn. If you heard good evidence for the unicorn, you might be more inclined to believe, just as we would be. That being said, I can churn out a few issues with a few select gods, if you like, that justify my lack of belief.

But the main thing I want to fix is your vitriol for atheists. Don't pretend like it's not there. You called me arrogant. You called me immature. You called me stubborn and closed minded. And you didn't even identify me correctly. Not all atheists are assholes that want the word "God" out of the Pledge of Allegiance or the money, I don't even care about that. Not all atheists are aggressive and trying to strike out at Christians. I don't know if your perception of atheists is based off of bias or just talking with malformed atheists. But stop generalizing, it hurts.
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:iconkaiju-popsicle:
Kaiju-popsicle Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2011  Student General Artist
So, how do you know Atheists are not willing to learn? Theists are not allowed to question. We Atheists question most everything. Why? How? What is that? Why do you think that? What is your motive for doing such a thing? It is because we question that we have reached such a stance. It seems to me you're getting angry at us for no reason, calling us such things. It's silly really. I see it like this. Man=faulty. Man wrote bible. Bible=faulty.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
I just want to point out to you "Man=faulty. Man wrote bible. Bible=faulty." really tickled my senses. People usually get mad when I say that. So, respect to you on that one. I mean, I don't automatically say the Bible is faulty, but I bring up the possibility that any one of the writers could have added anything they wanted in.

But:
a : a disbelief in the existence of deity
b : the doctrine that there is no deity
[link]

1. atheist - someone who denies the existence of god
[link]

atheism Disbelief in, or denial of, the existence of a god.

disbelieve 1. trans. Not to believe or credit; to refuse credence to: a. a statement or (alleged) fact: To reject the truth or reality of.
[link]

"The broader, and more common, understanding of atheism among atheists is quite simply "not believing in any gods." No claims or denials are made — an atheist is just a person who does not happen to be a theist. Sometimes this broader understanding is called "weak" or "implicit" atheism. Most good, complete dictionaries readily support this.

There also exists a narrower sort of atheism, sometimes called "strong" or "explicit" atheism. With this type, the atheist explicitly denies the existence of any gods — making a strong claim which will deserve support at some point. Some atheists do this and others may do this with regards to certain specific gods but not with others. Thus, a person may lack belief in one god, but deny the existence of another god."
[link]

Atheism is, in a broad sense, the rejection of belief in the existence of deities. In a narrower sense, atheism is specifically the position that there are no deities. Most inclusively, atheism is simply the absence of belief that any deities exist.[3] Atheism is contrasted with theism, which in its most general form is the belief that at least one deity exists.
[link]

^^^^^^^^^^^^^ The definition of Atheists is exactly why I say you aren't willing to learn. If these DEFINITIONS don't DEFINE you, then you are not a Atheist, you just thought you were. Always questioning but accepting factual answers when they come to you is being Agnostic. Which is believing there is a chance, that we don't know everything so if the facts come to you, you will accept the facts for being facts.

Catch my drift, good sir? Or ma'am even.
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:iconkaiju-popsicle:
Kaiju-popsicle Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2011  Student General Artist
The bible was also transmitted orally. It could have once been something rather ordinary, blown into the unbelievable thing it is today. Like the game telephone, or a disease that changed as it went from person to person.

I see it like this: gods are created by humans to explain phenomena that they do not understand, and are sometimes used like a security blanket. The Christian god is called a "safe refuge". I see their god as a coping mechanism. They need an all-powerfull daddy figure to back them up and give them confidence, or to explain where the hell all this stuff came from. I am fine not knowing everything. BUT. You cannot use definitions of words to define people. We're all different. Not every religious person will fit the definition of their religion. Stupid humans. All DIVERSE and stuff.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
That's one opinion at looking at it, but if there is a definition to a word, and one claims they are that word, then they gotta fit the definition. Otherwise they aren't that word. It's why the definition exists and is placed in such dictionary like areas. So people know what the word actually means. I'm sure you know the importance of definitions in our world today. So whether or not people are diverse, it barely matters when it comes to definitions.

You may just want to believe that definitions to words mean nothing when it comes to classifications, but they do matter. Otherwise they wouldn't exist. Sounds to me saying otherwise is just a way to try to escape from being called something else when in the past you prided over being able to call yourself an Atheist, and you found out that is no longer the case.

Added to that, sounds to me that believing people make Gods up just as a refuge of some sort sounds more to me that those that think that way simply don't want to believe there is a chance there is an afterlife, and don't want to deal with their worldy mistakes in the proposed Hell. So they feel as long as they deny it, maybe it won't be true. But the real truth here is once we die we will find out just who is right, and for the sake of those that don't want to believe, you better pray there is no after life, because the first chance I get to say 'I told you so' once we are dead and the said people are rotting away in Hell, I will take that chance and tell you. Even if I am down there with these people, I would waste no time saying I told you so, and that you could have done better after having a chat with me.

So, looks to me believing in nothing is being cowardly and just trying to hide behind saying there is nothing, just so you don't have to take responsibility for what you have done in your life. I see people with faith, ANY faith at that, as people that have more morals, know how to appreciate things in life better and at least know how to have faith in something. I would sooner date and be more willing to date someone that has ANY faith as opposed to one that doesn't. Because then I would see that this person is capable of knowing they did wrong if they were to cheat. I would know that going into it that this person would be one that would be able to have faith in me as a boyfriend or husband, but also be FAITHFUL in the said relationship.

And I believe many more feel that way as well. To all I said. So, by all means think that God is man made, but you better hope that is the case, because there is no room in Heaven for those that deny God.
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:iconkaiju-popsicle:
Kaiju-popsicle Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2011  Student General Artist
You ranted about being closed-minded and here you are, being closed-minded.

I think I know what you're trying to tell me. You want me to become agnostic. I refuse to believe in fairy tales told by people who, and this is a direct quote from when I used to go to church. "can't do anything without God!"

So Atheists can't be faithful? Atheists are somehow less moral than others? Atheists can't have faith in people? People exist. It is easy to have faith in people when you like them. And who says Atheists don't know that we did wrong? That's just stupid.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Wrong, multiple times over. I'm not telling you to become Agnostic, but if the definition of Atheists doesn't fit you, then you aren't an Atheist. As simple as that. The English language being used correctly. And wrong, it isn't stupid. Maybe to someone with a less working mind, but it's common sense. Show that you can be faithful and people are more likely to see you as someone that can be faithful. That's common sense, not stupid. Duh.
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:iconkaiju-popsicle:
Kaiju-popsicle Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2011  Student General Artist
You know what? This is retarded. To me your opinion is wrong, and vice versa. We're both too damned stubborn to give.

But, i'll say this: if most other humans your age almost instinctively turned on you because you're different, you'd be pretty willing to attempt to have a little faith in anyone at first.
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:iconlukasenricbs:
LukasEnricBS Featured By Owner Sep 28, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
The first paragraph already made me mad. "Anyone and everyone, in MY OPINION should be, at the very least, agnostic." You know where the difference between that and "Anyone and everyone, in MY OPINION should be, at the very least, white." is? There is none. Going on...

I completely agree to the 2nd paragraph :thumbsup:

Third paragraph, last line-> I don't. If I don't know about a subject I try to say as few things about it as I can so I don't look like a monkey flinging feces at everyone

Hey, quick question. Would you be offended if I said "For that reason, I hate Christians. Not because they don't believe in the same things I do, but because they are so arrogant to believe that they KNOW for a FACT despite having NO REAL EVIDENCE or PROOF that god exists."?

And finding out if a higher being exists is out of -anyone's- reach. Including yours.

So, my views on religion. I don't believe in it, it doesn't make sense to me. But I know it does to some people, as it used to for me too. And hey, guess what? I don't tell them what to believe. They can't prove god exist, neither can I prove that he doesn't. So instead of bashing anyone for their believes, I do something that might sound incredible to a lot of people on this planet. I -tolerate- them.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Sep 28, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
I have no problem with if you were to make something like that, but you would be writing it without 'doing your homework' so to speak, as there is tons of evidence that supports the Bible today. From other countries having similar history documents that show events that are mentioned in the Bible, to artifacts, tombs, locations and other such things. From the walls of jerico (probably spelled that wrong) to the chariot Ramses used to the landing site of the ark and much much more. So, how can one say something doesn't exist (or didn't happen) when we have TONS of physical EVIDENCE today? Unlike the THEORY of evolution (not saying that is what you believe, just comparing it to that) we actually have consistent and an awful lot of EVIDENCE that support the Bible and all the things that took place within it.

So, by all means, write anything you want, but please do your homework before you do. It will do you some good, and will give people less things to troll on.
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:iconlukasenricbs:
LukasEnricBS Featured By Owner Sep 28, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Lovin' how you ignored everything before that.

You know what oral tradition is? I did just translate that straight from catalan, so the actual term might be very different. Anyways, humans have told stories about the creation of the world since they could. It's a necessity we have, and was the reason philosophy and science were born in the first place. Obviously those stories would carry on before anyone could write. The bible doesn't out of concidence have similar elements with other books of creation like, say, the Enuma Elish. That's actually a pretty good example. The flood, the ark, etc appear in the enuma elish; as they do in the bible.
That is not, however, a complete proof of god's existance. It can just as well mean that, you know, people actually carried that story on (Europe's culture pretty much started with babylonian culture. If I'm not wrong the bible was written in europe).

Don't say there's no evidence for the theory of evolution and then throw books and stories at me.

Again, I'll try to get through that wall of bibles you have around yourself and say this. I am not saying god does not exist. I never did say that in the first comment either. I don't know that, and I won't know before I die. After that, I'll see for myself. Repeating myself yet again-> I don't know it, neither does -anyone- on this world.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Sep 28, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
I pick and chose what I want to reply to, considering I'M the one replying. Also saves me from dealing with reading a stories length worth of a reply that I seem to get from a lot more people than I would like.

You are very much correct about the stories, they can indeed just be 'hand-me-downs' but that only explains off (if even that) the stories. Doesn't explain the other things though. Just as two examples, the walls of Jericho, heavily fortified, thought to have been unbreakable at that time, and yet they were found collapsed without any signs of a siege, just as it was told in the Bible that the walls fell apart from the blare of trumpets/horns.

Then you got the chariot of Ramses, which was found on the bottom of (dangit, forgot the name of it, dead sea/red sea or something like that) some body of water which was parted when moses lead the jews from egypt. Unless after they left they decided to go back, steal his chariot after getting past the amount of guards, and then steal a boat (which they did not have at the time) just to dump his chariot into the middle of the body of water, which all of that I highly doubt, it can't be explained any other way than the way it was described in the Bible.

But, you are correct, 'no one knows' so go with the evidence you are given. If even ONE story is impossible to be explained away that is backed up with modern day evidence, that should be enough.
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:iconlukasenricbs:
LukasEnricBS Featured By Owner Sep 28, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Hah, true

It's 8am, so I won't look into those two examples you mentioned right now; but I shall do that later.
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:iconredeyeragnarok:
RedEyeRagnarok Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Just a short thought:

Isn't also rather immature saying atheists are 'false' (with their explicit non-belief) while 'believers' which insist on an existence of something?

In my opinion, saying: "I don't know." is the only reasonable option.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
That's one way to look at it. Another would be to admit it might be possible. All depends on the amount of pride the person has and how open minded they are, I suppose.
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:iconredeyeragnarok:
RedEyeRagnarok Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
I don't disagree to this point - I by myself believe in 'something' - but rather extreme believers should also see this point. Both sides don't have any rational arguments, do they? What's with Taliban or Pius Brothers? Why don't you mention them? Their believe system is also rather closed minded.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
My deviation wasn't about them, which is why I didn't mention them, but don't worry, good sir(or ma'am) I agree with you. Any and all sides are worth mentioning, and in due time that will happen. :)
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:iconbatmanwithbunnyears:
BatmanWithBunnyEars Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2011   General Artist
Nobody I know is foolish enough to claim to know everything. But one of the things that can be known, as certainly as logic is reliable, is that categorical impossibilities such as the biblical God are impossible. Furthermore, supposing a more general designing agent of the universe is still grossly illogical, even if it isn't or can't be disproven outright. I recently wrote about this at length, if you're interested.
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:icona-nameless-one:
a-nameless-one Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011
Sorry for intruding, but what does "grossly illogical" actually means?
It is certainly not a logical statement.

Even though I dislike arguments from authority, I think some humility and respect are in order. I know mathematicians and physicists much smarter than me (I don't how smart you are) who don't find the idea of god grossly illogical. To dismiss their beliefs with a wave of your hand without even giving an argument is not respectful.

I would like to see you demonstrate to Saul Kripke or Kurt Godel (if he was still alive) who both believed in a monotheistic and personal god, how the existence of a biblical god is categorically impossible or whether a great designer is a grossly illogical assumption.

I'll quote Saul Kripke: "I don’t have the prejudices many have today, I don’t believe in a naturalist world view. I don’t base my thinking on prejudices or a world view and do not believe in materialism.”. This is one of the greatest logicians alive today.
(just a thought)
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:iconbatmanwithbunnyears:
BatmanWithBunnyEars Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011   General Artist
I suppose the adverb "grossly" was disrespectful and unnecessary, but I stand by my statement. It should be noted that I did provide an argument by saying that I recently wrote about the subject, referring to my most recent upload, which is linked in my signature. In it I address the most prevalent intelligent design arguments I've found, as well as many other Christian arguments.
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:icona-nameless-one:
a-nameless-one Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011
I'll check it out.

But what do you mean by "grossly illogical"? I still don't follow. You can't be stating a logical theorem because you already conceded to the fact that the existence of a designer is not refutable.

Personally, I think that this entire prove/disprove god's existence debate is a waste of time. I just don't think he exists. I know I can't prove it, but it doesn't change my mind about the subject.
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:iconbatmanwithbunnyears:
BatmanWithBunnyEars Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011   General Artist
"Illogical" doesn't mean "logically impossible"; it just means "using erroneous reasoning".

Given the evidence that our universe wasn't intelligently designed, the lack of evidence for design, and the more plausible alternate explanations for aspects of our universe that appear designed, it doesn't make sense to believe that the universe had any intelligent designing agent.

I used to think the debate was a waste of time, until I looked into it and noticed the extent to which religion can be invalidated with diligent reasoning. People do generally seem set in their ways with respect to religion, but other more secular countries have shown that progress can be made. Those countries also show us the benefits of exorcizing their religion by their generally higher quality of life. [link] [link]

It makes sense of you think about it. Somebody who has to keep telling themselves that an all-powerful being loves them and will award them eternal paradise after death, even though deep down they almost certainly know better, puts themselves at a marked disadvantage.
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:icona-nameless-one:
a-nameless-one Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011
You explained that "illogical" is not "logically impossible", so what does "illogical" mean? It is not enough to say what it is not. We are right back were we started, so what is "erroneous reasoning"? It sounds like an awfully subjective measure.

Again I will tackle you with what do you mean by "plausible"? If you mean that the probability that non-religious explanations are correct is higher then the probability that religious explanations are correct, it is an argument that is quite easily picked apart because it is at best based on Bayesian reasoning.

As for the two links you gave, I haven't actually looked up either research on 'google scholar', but from how they are presented by the articles they can be criticized rather easily:

First of all, and this is true for all scientific research, correlation is not causation.

If you'd look at the result of the countries with higher standard of living (the second link), it will also be yielded with similar if not higher correlation by choosing the parameter to be 'Christian monarchies' which include: The U.K,Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Sweden, Spain, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Monaco etc.

The second research (first link) seems to also be yielded by choosing the parameter 'absolute number of Muslims in the population' or perhaps "percentage of Muslims as part of the general population". This will yield countries like: Indonesia, Bangladesh, Egypt, Libya, Syria, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Somalia etc.

I don't disagree with you, I simply hold the position that your position is not any more provable than theistic positions.
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:iconbatmanwithbunnyears:
BatmanWithBunnyEars Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011   General Artist
What is "erroneous reasoning"? It sounds like an awfully subjective measure.

In my work, The Best Case for God: Refuted, I explain the most prevalent and commonly held religious reasoning and exactly what is erroneous about it. I hope you didn't expect me to summarize my 50+ page analysis in a few sentences, since I can't really do my case justice that way. Still, I'll highlight a few points...

Again I will tackle you with what do you mean by "plausible"?

The intelligent design hypothesis doesn't include enough details to be meaningful, and when specifics are given, they're full of logic errors. Perhaps most importantly, there's no supporting evidence. But there are MANY counterexamples to intelligent design that I don't think any sort of god would allow, such as vestigial organs, deep water fish with non-functioning eyes, wasted matter in space that could have been life-supporting with a few ID tweaks, and so forth. ID doesn't make sense. And if you look at it from a biblical perspective (which is what almost all proponents of so-called "intelligent design" are really getting at, in all honesty [link]), then things get REALLY crazy...

Correlation is not causation.

I'm aware of that. But such a reliable inverse correlation with such a large sample size is telling. Plus it proves, conclusively, that religion doesn't necessarily build a superior nation, and that atheism doesn't prevent it. Then when you consider how faith terminates rational discourse, creates heated conflict, shuts off the natural human faculties for reason and morality, holds back scientific progress (like stem cell research and teaching evolution in science class), wastes billions of dollars [link] and then you look at absurdity of the belief system itself, it becomes clear just how corrosive religion is. All those studies did was verify the obvious.
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:icona-nameless-one:
a-nameless-one Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011
You keep attacking intelligent design, as if it were the only argument for god's existence. I never brought intelligent design up, and many thinkers who believe in god do not use the teleological argument (which I agree is inherently flawed and inconsistent) to justify their position.

But more importantly, my contention is simple: I claim that you have no evidence that god does not exist. I also hold that the same is true for the opposite side, that is there is no evidence that god exists.

You may have arguments, deductions, intuitions, but in the end of the day you have no evidence that support your position. Since I haven't read your essay, my guess is that you probably appeal to some sort of parsimony argument that holds the assumption of god to be redundant.

"Then when you consider how faith terminates rational discourse, creates heated conflict, shuts off the natural human faculties for reason and morality,"

Of course the only heated conflicts the world has ever known were religious: WWI, WWII, Korea war, Vietnam, Stalin's Purges, Maoist China, Che Guevara, the Khmer Rouge, North Korea.

Sure there were religious wars and there still are. As an atheist who lives in Israel you have no idea how frustrating it is to be in the middle of a religious war that has nothing to do with me (in principle). But to jump from the bloody history of religion to your quote is a bit too much in my opinion. And the secular world hasn't yielded far better results in my opinion, but that's just me.

Power is power is power and wherever it is found violence tends to follow, what disguise it assumes seems irrelevant to me.

Let us list some religious people with faculties for reason: Adam Smith, Spinoza, Descartes, Rousseau, Berkeley, Voltaire, Leibniz, Einstein, Godel, Kripke, Aquinas, Eliyahu Rips, Robert Aumann, Alvin Plantinga, John Locke, William of Ockham, Anselm of Canterbury, Georg Cantor, Cauchy, Wolfgang Pauli, Max Planck, Werner Heisenberg, Newton, Benjamin Franklin, Maimonides... The list goes on and on, shall we continue? Thus, I fail to see where exactly does rational discourse terminates when most the greatest mathematicians and physicists in history believed in god or a greater power.

I won't even respect your remark about religion and morality with an answer because I have many religious friends who are very moral by my standards.

It seems to me that your mind is set when it comes to this subject, I used to have a very similar opinion to yours, but then I understood the fact that some metaphysical subjects are impossible to justify epistemologically no matter what your position is.
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(1 Reply)
:icona-nameless-one:
a-nameless-one Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2011
I'm an atheist myself and a pretty staunch one at that. But unlike some very annoying atheists, I don't claim to know whether god exists. I believe that god doesn't exist and I'm honest enough to admit that it reflects my personal beliefs and not actual knowledge.

But under real scrutiny you'll see that there is nothing that we know. We only have beliefs. The question then becomes what is 'justified belief'. My disbelief in god simply reflects the fact that this notion is either more consistent with my personal philosophy or simply seems more likely to me, according to my subjective assessment.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Very respectable way of putting it. I generally don't have issues with Atheists or others of the sort, only when they start to claim they 'know'. But you are very much right, we only have beliefs, both Atheists and anyone with a religion. In the end we will find out just who is right, but until then, it's nice to have a belief system, no matter what it may be.
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:icona-nameless-one:
a-nameless-one Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2011
I would say that it is necessary to have a belief system.

Everyone has a belief system, the real shame is that some delude themselves into thinking that they do not. From my personal experience this denial has a strong correlation to the belief that one knows absolute truths.

But that said, I still believe that in many cases there are good criteria that would be acceptable by most as to what makes a specific belief justifiable (god is not such a case in my opinion).
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:iconripplestar4:
Ripplestar4 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Student Writer
Well, let's just say that I know that I have so much more to learn in the world for I am still young and completely inexperienced, and that even people that are only a few years older than me can teach me some of life's most important ideals, exspecially in the Religion and Philosophy department. But, this passage gave me an interesting thought. I think that God saves the best secrets until we reach Heaven so that we may enjoy this new-found knowledge when we join Him in Paradise ^_^
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
I agree. Some things we aren't meant to know- until later.
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:iconripplestar4:
Ripplestar4 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Student Writer
Exactly!
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:iconchurch38:
Church38 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Interesting arguments, definitely. I can't say for sure whether I'm 100% atheist or agnostic, because frankly I don't see the point in putting that much time into it, but I digress. Regardless of what I am, I am for various reasons. The largest of which being simply...History.

I'm not sure how familiar you are with religion through history, but there is one that stands out to me amount the rest. A oddly similar religion to one we might know today, it was called "Zoroastrianism". It's foundation was around a man who was horribly sinful his whole life, and then had a vision/appearance by an "angel", and was blinded by the light. Sound familiar? It's almost verbatim what happened to Paul (or Saul?), only about 1000 years before he was born. In fact, the whole scripture is faintly familiar to that of Christianity's. I mean..If there were a religion so similar to Christianity, yet about 800-1000 years before hand, why is one of the alive now and the other dead? What is to say that Zoroastrianism wasn't the "right" religion.

I guess that really just supports the infinite amount of doubt I harbor in my mind, which is, who is to say which religion is right? Being that Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are almost one in the same, why are they seperate? Why are 2 of those groups going to "hell" and the followers of the third going to "heaven"? It isn't logical (to me) in the least, and never will it be. I also find a pretty big problem with the fact that it's a fact that humans needs a certain..something. Something to believe in. The Egyptians needed a god to worship to help with crops, river flow, etc. And everyone wants to have comfort in death, which religion seamlessly provides. Besides everything else, religion to me seems so much like a human crutch that I can't possibly take it seriously.

For me, as a non-believer, It comes down to the fact that history comes and goes every day. The Earth has seen the birth and death of literally hundreds and thousands of religions. How can anyone possibly justify one of them being right or wrong?
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Very good set of questions. I always loved learning about new religions, never heard of Zoroastrianism. Now I am gonna have to read into that one. I always get a weird thrill when I start to learn about other religions. But that was a question I always had in the back of my mind. What if, like everyone else, I just think mine is the 'right' one when in reality it may not be. Problem is, we just don't know which is the 'right' one, if there even is a 'right' one. It's questions like these that bug the crap outta me.
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:iconchurch38:
Church38 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Exactly. After taking some courses in world history and philosophy last year at college, it's literally become impossible for me to accept religion as it is today. I know it's kind of dumb, but here's one more question for you to think about it.

Could God microwave a burrito so hot he couldn't eat it?
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
I sure was not expecting a question like that.. lol
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:iconchurch38:
Church38 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Try and answer it though haha
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Okay, I will answer with another question. Why would he want a burrito? xP
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:iconchurch38:
Church38 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Haha, touche'
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
xP
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:iconccrystal14:
CCrystal14 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
No, I don't know everything, but neither do you. And yes, I agree that everyone needs to accept reality for what it is. The problem here is that it is hard to disprove the idea of a being that cannot be proven to begin with. So the moment the religious folk of the world can prove that there is a god without any discernible doubt, something that has a pattern of repeating itself and has an intelligent mind behind it, then I will believe in that particular god. And no, I probably would not worship it. But this is simply how I feel.

Now this honestly sounds like you are very angry, and I'm sorry you feel that way, but please don't generalize all atheists as being one way. We're human, and as you stated, we do not know everything. You do not know every atheist or why they chose what they chose, just like I don't know every theist. And I'm rather unhappy that you probably hate me for not following what I personally thought never logically made sense, but I respect your opinion.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
No I made it pretty clear, quite a few times, as well as to quite a few people that I respect the view point of Atheists and such. I don't really like the mentality of them WHEN they say that they know there is no God. Which is why I like the Agnostic mentality better in that case, where they say there is a possibility, although they don't believe it, they are willing to accept the idea.

Heck, I have quite a few Atheist friends. The ones that are open minded. Some of which that are willing to defend my view point just as I would defend theirs, but there is no room in my life for close minded people. Heck, I even have wiccan friends, ones that I learn their religion from because I thirst for knowledge from people that don't 'know' they are right, ones that are willing to admit they don't know everything and won't bash someone else because of their personal opinions when stated as such.

I just don't like it when people come to a page built on opinion, philosophy and theological topics, and act like they know something that they clearly do not know. I am aware that I too do not know these things for certain, I am not the one that needs to be reminded of that, as I state many many times its opinion and my personal belief, not meant to change peoples ideas, but to give them a new view point which they normally, or probably, couldn't come to themselves. It's the people that talk like they 'know' that needs to be reminded. It's the people that use off topic subjects in hopes to gain ground that need to be reminded. It's the people that are so shut off from the rest of the world and other peoples view points that needs to be reminded. Not the one that states it's a matter of opinion in almost every topic I personally write.

Understand where some of my frustration comes from now? Now that you know where I come from on this, hopefully you can begin to understand why I don't like it when people say, in a nutshell, "No, you're wrong." Because I never said from the start I was right. I simply state my point of view. And if anyone that reads these things and has problems with it would have just read my journal where I state this, it would have been avoided altogether. Because as I state, I WANT other peoples points of views on the subject. I DON'T want people to try correcting my belief system. I WANT people to explain WHY they believe what they do so I can use that to touch up on my beliefs if I feel it should. I DON'T want people to come to me and say, "No, your opinion makes no sense to me being what religion I am so I am going to say you are completely wrong in hopes I might cause an internet problem."

P.S. I only describe Atheists and the Agnostic folk as what the word's definitions are. If you don't fit the definition, I do believe you can't consider yourself one. Otherwise, if you fit what I explain about them when I do, then you can say that yes, that is you.
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:iconccrystal14:
CCrystal14 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Oh I see what you mean. But you realize you DO sound a little hypocritical. You claim that you are open minded, yet you're bashing people left and right for giving their opinion. At least, this is what I see. To you, it may sound like someone is being closed minded. That is perfectly fine. But remember that what you perceive isn't always what's real. Humans can draw assumptions from things very quickly, like I did with your deviation. (And by the way, I'm sorry for that. I acted based on what I perceived.)

So what gets me is that this is directed at atheists and agnostics only. Haven't you ever come across someone who believes in a different religion and acts like they're right and you're wrong? Couldn't this be better served to EVERYONE and not just atheists, because it sounds like you're angry at atheists only. Other religions can easily try to stop you from believing what you believe, you know.

Also, what definition of atheist are you following?
a·the·ist   
–noun
a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings.

That's all what i got off of dictionary.com. Personally, I'm an atheist to all the gods humans have created thus far (going under the assumption that the gods people tend to follow were created by them to begin with). The only being that I believe MAY exist is a god that does not partake in the mundane affairs of humans. Perhaps this being only created the universe and went on its merry way. But in that respect, I am an agnostic. There is no way to know a being that does not interact with the world you know.

Notice how I deal in absolutes? I could very easily be wrong, but I wouldn't know. I never dared to think that Yahweh didn't exist until I was told a very logical argument. Humans always seem to deal in absolutes, otherwise there comes the question: 'How do you know what you know?' I believe in no human-created gods because I see no trend in our world that would prove that one exists. However, I believe that humans deal in absolutes because it makes the most sense and I heard someone say it once. I once believed in god because I was told that god existed.
You see what I mean?

I hope I've made some measure of sense. I rewrote my argument quite a few times before sending because I wanted to make sure it made logical sense.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
No, I am open minded, but their approach was unsuitable. If I allow people to talk to me like that on my opinions on my page then anyone will do it. If someone wants to inform me of their opinion, that is epic and I would LOVE to hear it. But I will not stand to hear someone tell me I am wrong.
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:iconccrystal14:
CCrystal14 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
But that is all what an argument is about. People have different opinions, so they talk about it to try to get the truth to come out.

What if the idea of you being wrong was an opinion of theirs? And you realize that the second you put your ideas out there, you will be subject to people telling you that you're wrong. Getting angry at them won't change a thing. Instead of getting angry at someone telling you that you're wrong and calling them closed minded, don't you think it'd be better to ask why they think you're wrong? Getting upset off the cuff like that will only make you look immature. If the person sticks to their guns and says "YOU'RE WRONG" over and over again like a child, then you have every right to ignore them completely and move on with your life.

Now to gravitate back to the reason why I came here, this deviation does nothing of the sort. You're bashing atheists for having the arrogance to say that you're wrong. This deviation is less about rude vs polite (as screaming 'you're wrong' at someone isn't very polite) and more about 'atheists, stop acting like you know god and go away'. Again, this is just how I see it. You've created a work of literature that demonstrates your closed mindedness.
Your last line is this: Finding an answer to whether there is a higher being is far out of your reach, as it takes understanding and a willing to learn, which you do not have.
And this is farther inside your writing: And, honestly I have no issue with other peoples opinions. I respect them, they let me learn new things, or realize just how much smarter I am compared to you. But, still, despite the fact that it is YOUR OPINION, WHY do you talk about the subject as if you KNOW?
Do you NOT see the hypocrisy here? You're acting like you KNOW what it takes to discern whether there is a higher being. And you act like you KNOW if it's far outside my reach or not. You don't know all atheists, so you have no right to judge whether or not I or any other atheist you haven't met is capable of coming up with a reason as to why a god does not exist.

I'm not out to offend you, so please don't get angry. I am giving you my opinion, is all, just as you gave your opinion in your deviation.
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:iconthewanderernears:
TheWandererNears Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
I don't mind. If I was mad I would have blocked you by now :P I appreciate the things you are saying, as you are opening new thoughts for me to consider. I still don't understand how a persons personal opinion can be wrong, as it is their opinion, but I will keep that in mind when people say unsavory things.
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