Originally Posted by BR
Very very very few atheists actually go on to believe that. Many will strongly say there is no (JudeoChristian) God, and that's fine, because the God of the bible is a complete farce. It's really no different than saying unicorns or leprechauns don't exist.
I agree with the second part of this but not the first: many atheists do state such things, Hitchens for example. Dawkins also.
He dismantles the Biblical God but uses soft targets to do it and then goes on to extrapolate in general about a more amorphous belief in God.
I see it kind of like advertising and sales (or maybe politics) they don't actually make the statement that is demonstrably untrue or they'd be sued but they imply it from every angle all the the time so people start to believe it and if anyone challenges it then they back down.
It kind of like that beer that was "probably the best lager in the world"
I can feel pretty safe saying such things, but I also will happily revise my beliefs if (your favorite word ever) compelling evidence can actually be presented to support their existence.
I agree - but it's good to have the initial question framed. Atheists don't tend to do this in my experience. I prefer "There is no evidence for a bearded man sitting on a cloud getting annoyed because people are having gay sex" to "God does not exist".
Actually I think that is the only way to eradicate the sort of wooly thinking that is the problem. Many religious superstitions are easy to disprove - it's the getting the adherents to accept the proof that's the problem.
It can't be a burnt piece of toast that looks sort of like Jesus, though. Incredible claims require incredible evidence.
I disagree with this - I don't think that the concept of God IS an incredible claim.
I think it is a normal human belief that may be hard-wired into us. Aspects of theology may be incredible claims - and we all know which ones - but again, they don't require any evidence at all.....nor does the flat-earth or cold sun. They're just mad ideas or folklore. Why take it seriously?
Don't pigeonhole atheists as being so closed-minded.
Some are though. Not all. It's just like religious people - some are, some aren't. On both sides it is the ones that are close-minded that are generalizing about their opposite numbers. Probably the proportions are just about the same in either group.
By definition, we aren't.
There you lose me. I see no difference between that statement and a fundie who tells me that because the Bible is correct 'by definition' as it is the word of God.
You may be right, you may even be open-minded but you are never either by definition
We've had to examine and reject the attempted early childhood brainwashing, just as you did. And I certainly do mean brainwashing when I say it...I was listening to one of those Fellowship Ministries radio stations here in LA for shits and giggles one day and the discussion was about home schooling. There were three people on this panel urging all parents to homeschool their children. One of the people on the panel said that children should not be sent to public schools even with the intention of ministering to others because the statistics show that more children get converted away from Christianity than to it in those public school situations. She went on to say that those children aren't ready to face the world yet because their beliefs haven't been fully solidified yet, so it's important to shield them from public schools until they are good, unshakable Christians. The others on the panel agreed that you have to make sure to start teaching them very early and keep them from outside influences.
That's bad - but to be fair, I think this is a particularly US issue. In Europe homeschooling is pretty much a Leftie thing.
You're right though - rejecting conditioning is the thing. It is necessary. No conditioning should ever happen anywhere. It is robbing and destroying people's independence and I am right with atheists on that.....
Are you fucking kidding me? That's exactly the definition of early childhood brainwashing. So it takes a REAL open mind to be able to reject that level of manipulation. Please, please stop speaking as if atheists are incredibly illogical, closed-minded folks. We really aren't. By definition, we aren't.
What is? Can't see which bit of my post you are referencing so can't comment much now. Maybe come back to this.
I don't agree though re REAL open minds to resist brainwashing. Imo you just need honesty. If you pray to God and there is nothing there then admit it. Sure, there's fear and it may take years to address but you know deep down the truth I think. Logic and reason are the best way.
Btw - this 'by definition' thing is starting to sound like some sort of ritualistic dogma or mantra.
I have read numerous atheists and if these are the leaders of the 'movement' (we must assume there is some sort of community of you claim a 'we' as a generality) then very many of them are illogical - one in particular I think is very, very closed-minded and possibly racist. Certainly the person I have in mind is extreme right-wing and that - as we know - is never good and always a sign of stupidity.