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(Yahoo)   Rise of Atheism in America: Why many are leaving religion, commenting about it on Fark   (news.yahoo.com) divider line 655
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11794 clicks; posted to Main » on 13 Apr 2012 at 11:20 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-04-13 11:56:14 PM
www.thesatirist.com

"You are the first generation raised without religion"

"Is feeling nothing the inevitable result of believing in nothing? And then I got to feeling frightened - thinking that there might not actually be anything to believe in, in particular. I thought it would be such a sick joke to have to remain alive for decades and not believe in or feel anything."

"Now -- here is my secret:
I tell it to you with an openness of heart I doubt I shall ever achieve again, so I pray that you are in a quiet room as you hear these words. My secret is that I need God - that I am sick and can no longer make it alone. I need God to help me give, because I no longer seem capable of giving; to help me to be kind, as I no longer seem capable of kindness; to help me love, as I seem beyond able to love."

It's a loose collection of personal stories, some are very short vignettes only a few sentences. It's hardly even a book really, and I wouldn't play it up because you might expect this big narrative story and go "WTF is this?"
 
2012-04-13 11:56:16 PM
I was a true blue mormon who walked away a dozen years ago after spending 6 weeks intensely studying the history of the religion. It was an abrupt change that altered my life. Easily the best decision I ever made.
 
2012-04-13 11:56:40 PM

Bevets: Many Americans raised in the Judeo-Christian tradition are convinced that atheists can have no moral compass.

If a person doesn't think there is a God to be accountable to, then -- then what's the point of trying to modify your behavior to keep it within acceptable ranges? That's how I thought anyway. I always believed the theory of evolution as truth, that we all just came from the slime. When we, when we died, you know, that was it, there is nothing ~ Jeffrey Dahmer


If the best spokesman you can come up with for your religious belief is a serial murdering cannibal then you really don't have much in the way of an argument for faith do you?
 
2012-04-13 11:56:43 PM

jso2897: In reality, of course, they speak only for themselves.


Just like everyone else.
 
2012-04-13 11:57:30 PM

Nadie_AZ: I was a true blue mormon who walked away a dozen years ago after spending 6 weeks intensely studying the history of the religion. It was an abrupt change that altered my life. Easily the best decision I ever made.


Knowledge can set you free.
 
2012-04-13 11:57:37 PM

MaudlinMutantMollusk: I don't know... it kinda works


(I know, but then I was afraid I would start a real "tipping thread" thread hijack and had to disclaim the whole thing....)
 
2012-04-13 11:59:07 PM

Bevets: Bevets:

If a person doesn't think there is a God to be accountable to, then -- then what's the point of trying to modify your behavior to keep it within acceptable ranges? That's how I thought anyway. I always believed the theory of evolution as truth, that we all just came from the slime. When we, when we died, you know, that was it, there is nothing ~ Jeffrey Dahmer

hubiestubert:

You cannot preach to folks to love thy neighbor, and then turn around and tell folks terrible they are

If a Doctor thinks you have cancer, would it be 'loving' to keep his opinions to himself?

revrendjim:

How many schizophrenics have murdered because God told them to?

none


In example one, judgement is being passed, potentially without the person asking for it.
In example two, an observation of a condition is being made, quite likely at the request of the patient.
 
2012-04-13 11:59:14 PM

Maximer: Knowledge can set you free.


Then you remember you have to pay your mortgage.
 
2012-04-13 11:59:52 PM

AdolfOliverPanties: Two reasons: The rise, influence and visibility of total farking lunatics who are openly religious, and the fact that when looked at logically with any semblance of sanity, religion seems like the stupidest harmful fairy tale bullshiat in the world.


More than likely they are just trying to be part of the new "hip" movement to disassociate yourself from accepted norms, personally I would choose agnostic over atheism but people then accuse you of not making a choice, it the words of that great band of philosophers Rush, I did make a choice by choosing not too decide.

Then again most are atheists because they feel they are trying to be punk when they are 45-50.
 
2012-04-14 12:00:26 AM

s2s2s2: Maximer: Knowledge can set you free.

Then you remember you have to pay your mortgage.


fark.
 
2012-04-14 12:01:38 AM

Maximer: Nadie_AZ: I was a true blue mormon who walked away a dozen years ago after spending 6 weeks intensely studying the history of the religion. It was an abrupt change that altered my life. Easily the best decision I ever made.

Knowledge can set you free.


Yeah but out of all religions, mormonism is one of the nuttiest, except for maybe scientology it is the stupidest scenario out there, the south park bit they did on them was classic and 100% true on what they believe.
 
2012-04-14 12:02:59 AM

jim32rr: Maximer: Bevets: How many schizophrenics have murdered because God told them to?

none

You are correct on this. There were no schizophrenics who murdered anyone because God told them to because there is no God to tell them to. Any conceptualization of God is only that; a conceptualization.

You sound all knowing.


Welcome to Fark.
 
2012-04-14 12:03:40 AM
With a corresponding rise in the phrase "No, but I'm spiritual." A phrase which I find oddly instinctively cringe-worthy considering my general support for people rejecting religious dogmatism and absolutism.

All previous religions were wrong and incomplete but we're the pinnacle of thought on human religiosity which can never be improved upon or progressed past.

/CRYSTALS!
 
2012-04-14 12:04:07 AM

s2s2s2: evasion


Since "multiple definitions come about by the change in perception of a word, based on usage," I was hoping we could clarify which definition you were using. After all, when adults talk to each other, they do not deliberately and surreptitiously shift definitions of words from one sentence to the next. Unless, of course they are deceitful trolls who have no intention of rational discourse. Again, can you clarify the definition of religion you are using by holding the definition constant and explaining which of the groups I listed would qualify under your definition?

Yankees fans: Religion, or not?
GOP: Religion, or not?
PETA: Religion, or not?
Fondness for apples: Religion, or not?
Fondness for Apple: Religion, or not?
Red hair: Religion, or not?
American Academy of Pediatrics: Religion, or not?
Existentialism: Religion, or not?
Methodological Naturalism: Religion, or not?
Evolution deniers (such as yourself): Religion, or not?

As to the bolded quote. You are wrong
Hardly. You call it "intelligent design." We see through your dishonest reframing.
"The so-called religious organizations which now lead the war against the teaching of evolution are nothing more, at bottom, than conspiracies of the inferior man against his betters" -HLM
Nice use of "religious" here, no?
 
2012-04-14 12:04:07 AM

s2s2s2: theorellior: Like how it's annoying having to build a pyre to burn those pesky atheists, or you just have to get your axe out to chop their heads off, or scourging them and running them out of town takes up time that could be better used for plowing?

You know there is more than just annoying, and non-annoying, right?


You can't know until you open the box.
 
2012-04-14 12:05:38 AM

steamingpile: Knowledge can set you free.

Yeah but out of all religions, mormonism is one of the nuttiest, except for maybe scientology it is the stupidest scenario out there, the south park bit they did on them was classic and 100% true on what they believe.


Quite possibly. I've always been humored/saddened/shocked/interested by the possibility that all those people in the churches/mosques/temples are simply there for no ethereal reason at all.

However, even if there is no God the belief in God has caused many people to do great good in the world that they may have never of done otherwise. So, even with their nuttiness and occasional evilness they do manage the potential for great good... just like humans.
 
2012-04-14 12:06:07 AM
Why are so many people leaving religion?

When the government becomes your god you have no further need for it.
 
2012-04-14 12:06:16 AM

jso2897: jim32rr: Maximer: Bevets: How many schizophrenics have murdered because God told them to?

none

You are correct on this. There were no schizophrenics who murdered anyone because God told them to because there is no God to tell them to. Any conceptualization of God is only that; a conceptualization.

You sound all knowing.

Welcome to Fark.


God told me everything.
 
2012-04-14 12:08:11 AM

crazyeddie: Hardly. You call it "intelligent design." We see through your dishonest reframing


You are still wrong. But at least you have faith in what you believe.

As to what adults do when talking with each other. I think that is another myth you use in an attempt to hide your authoritarian tendencies, because it is absolutely and positively incorrect.

Welcome to Fark.
 
2012-04-14 12:08:33 AM

jso2897: jim32rr: Maximer: Bevets: How many schizophrenics have murdered because God told them to?

none

You are correct on this. There were no schizophrenics who murdered anyone because God told them to because there is no God to tell them to. Any conceptualization of God is only that; a conceptualization.

You sound all knowing.

Welcome to Fark.


I detect, like me, you're endowed with the gift of gab.
 
2012-04-14 12:08:52 AM

AlwaysRightBoy: /non believer, but I don't think I'm so pious as to dictate how others should live their lives


and that is the scariest part of so many true believers.
that we should live our lives as they think we should.
farkem
 
2012-04-14 12:09:07 AM

doglover: Britney Spear's Speculum: Why are so many people leaving religion?
1) Many aspects of religion have been disproven
2) The internet
3) Radical fundamentalism pervading many mainstream religions
4) Child molestation (That explains people ditching Catholicism)
5) Birth Control/womens' liberation

What did I miss?

Everything non-Abrahmic, mostly.

Buddhism is none of the above.


To the western mind, unfamiliar with the tenets of Buddhism, it is just another religion, to be rejected with the rest.

This is not a fair assessment, but it is an easy assumption to make from ignorance on the subject.
 
2012-04-14 12:09:42 AM

jso2897: You can't know until you open the box.


media.giantbomb.com
 
2012-04-14 12:09:44 AM

s2s2s2: Evasion.


That's what I thought. Dishonest troll. Goodbye.
 
2012-04-14 12:10:05 AM

Bevets: If a person doesn't think there is a God to be accountable to, then -- then what's the point of trying to modify your behavior to keep it within acceptable ranges?


You are literally a psychopath when you get down to it, Bevets. Only the fear of Gawd prevents you from being a Jeffrey Dahmer?

You need to be committed. I'm serious. You are a danger to society.
 
2012-04-14 12:10:08 AM

simsite9: Why do non-atheists keep capitalizing the "a" in "atheism?" It's not a belief that needs to be a proper noun. it's a lack of belief, especially in needless aggrandizement.


Why do people in general not pronounce the word a-theism? After all, one can be a-sexual. And we recognize a-sexual procreation.
 
2012-04-14 12:10:46 AM

Maximer: jso2897: jim32rr: Maximer: Bevets: How many schizophrenics have murdered because God told them to?

none

You are correct on this. There were no schizophrenics who murdered anyone because God told them to because there is no God to tell them to. Any conceptualization of God is only that; a conceptualization.

You sound all knowing.

Welcome to Fark.

God told me everything.


Cool. Here's your accordion.
 
2012-04-14 12:11:24 AM
I don't believe in atheists.
 
2012-04-14 12:12:04 AM

Quasar: Azim Shariff, a University of Oregon psychologist who studies religious thinking, sums up how believers view nonbelievers: "They don't fear God, so we should distrust them. They do not have the same moral obligations as others."

If the only thing keeping you from murdering the guy standing next to you or driving your SUV into a playground is your fear of God, not only do I feel sorry for you, but I don't really feel all that safe being around you.


You know what really bothers me about this? Religion can be used to justify absolutely anything. Kill your favored son because God says so, or at any rate prove your willingness to do so? That's fine, three major religions will call you their spiritual forefather. Blow yourself up to kill a couple dozen civilians on a bus? You get 72 virgins at the right hand of Allah. Murder an abortion doctor while he's praying in church? Good, he kills babies, the Lord will reward your good deed in the hereafter. There is no way I, as an atheist, would do any of these things, there is no way for me to justify it, and I am therefore a less moral person.

Wut.
 
2012-04-14 12:12:24 AM

crazyeddie: Goodbye


Later, Ignorant

/Believes in Evolution
/Isn't religious*

*Your definition
 
2012-04-14 12:12:25 AM

PlatypusPuke: I don't believe in atheists.


Faith. You need faith.
 
2012-04-14 12:12:31 AM

Bevets: hubiestubert:

You cannot preach to folks to love thy neighbor, and then turn around and tell folks terrible they are

If a Doctor thinks you have cancer, would it be 'loving' to keep his opinions to himself?


Couldn't bring yourself to quote the whole sentence even? This is perhaps the problem, is that in order to understand things, you have to actually take them in context. Which is perhaps why so many folks miss a lot of the compassion portion of the show in Christianity, and tend to see only single passages.

You sort of have to put them all together. I know that language is sometimes a hard thing, but it helps if you focus on more than just one sutra or sentence at a time. Otherwise you wind up taking a little trip...

lh3.googleusercontent.com
 
2012-04-14 12:12:35 AM

Britney Spear's Speculum: Why are so many people leaving religion?
1) Many aspects of religion have been disproven
2) The internet
3) Radical fundamentalism pervading many mainstream religions
4) Child molestation (That explains people ditching Catholicism)
5) Birth Control/womens' liberation

What did I miss?


The hate. It's #1 for many. For me it's their constant attack on the Constitution. They want the first amendment repealed, and are working at it vigorously. Many of us consider that treasonous.
 
2012-04-14 12:12:38 AM
I still wish someone would educate them, so they realize atheism is limited to the disbelief in the concept of one all powerful deity, and not some crusade against every belief system on earth.
 
2012-04-14 12:12:58 AM
I stopped believign in religion for the same reason I stopped believing in the GOP. They've let the nuts and extremists take over.

Want to hate me? I'll hate you right back.
 
2012-04-14 12:14:38 AM

s2s2s2: jso2897: You can't know until you open the box.

[media.giantbomb.com image 500x281]


I was going to take the red snapper.
 
2012-04-14 12:14:52 AM
Because my mother-in-law is a right-wing super-conservative, and her (and others' in my church like her) interpretations of the bible embarrass me. I've become decidedly less conservative and religious since I got married.

It's primarily a backlash against the religious Right.

Oh. The article had it nailed right away.

/still a Christian
 
2012-04-14 12:15:42 AM

J. Frank Parnell: I still wish someone would educate them, so they realize atheism is limited to the disbelief in the concept of one all powerful deity, and not some crusade against every belief system on earth.


Well, they also disbelieve in pantheons of deities. Atheists don't discriminate against monotheists. They disbelieve in all gods equally.
 
2012-04-14 12:16:47 AM

theorellior: He asked if I went to church, and when I said no, he said, "You know, all that stuff is bullshiat, I find that atheists are already halfway there because they know all that stuff in church is bullshiat." I was a bit surprised at that statement.


He wasn't a JW, he was a SuperAtheistTM

They're like regular atheists, but they get to sit in on Illuminati meetings and they know where to find the best blood sacrifices


/I've said too much
 
2012-04-14 12:16:56 AM

Old enough to know better: I stopped believign in religion for the same reason I stopped believing in the GOP. They've let the nuts and extremists take over.

Want to hate me? I'll hate you right back.


Fear is the path to the Dark Side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.

Be careful, Padawan...
 
2012-04-14 12:17:07 AM

s2s2s2: Do people use the term religion to describe anything other than belief in a deity?
The answer to that question is the answer to all your questions. Religion is only religion to its adherents.


deities do not exist.
they are as real as santa, the easter bunny and the great pumpkin.
of wait, you were talking about the definition of religion.

yah, the general usage of religion contains the belief in a deity.
but when does the belief in an idea reach the same level, delusion or insanity as that of a deity?
vegans, elvisites, econuts, petans,, all these true believers have the same type of delusion as xians and any other religious ...
so is veganism turning into a "religion"?

/dont get me started on red sox fans ...
 
2012-04-14 12:17:22 AM

Maximer: Bevets: How many schizophrenics have murdered because God told them to?

none

You are correct on this. There were no schizophrenics who murdered anyone because God told them to because there is no God to tell them to. Any conceptualization of God is only that; a conceptualization.


Nah, you got it backwards. If God tells someone to kill people that means they can't be schizophrenic because God is real.


s2s2s2: I get called on equivocating when I say Atheism is a religion, but the multiple definitions come about by the change in perception of a word, based on usage.

Atheism is a religion, and atheists are determined to make the word fit.


*control+F* "stamp collecting" - 0 of 0
*control+F* "bald" - 0 of 0

Dammit, do I really have to do it?
 
2012-04-14 12:18:19 AM
I sometimes believe that this is not all there is to the Life, The Universe, and Everything.

But then I look around at people who actually buy the whole religion thing.

And then I think utter nothingness at the end of it all is the correct answer.
 
2012-04-14 12:18:41 AM
news.bbcimg.co.uk

I like this image.

It is in the nature of religion that you sign over a certain amount of your intellect to someone else.

Yet Americans seem to love this mental slavery.

Big-A atheists can suck my dick as well.

Anyone who wants to belong to a group is doing something wrong with their life.

/Think for yourself, reader.
 
2012-04-14 12:19:02 AM

Dreadskull: J. Frank Parnell: I still wish someone would educate them, so they realize atheism is limited to the disbelief in the concept of one all powerful deity, and not some crusade against every belief system on earth.

Well, they also disbelieve in pantheons of deities. Atheists don't discriminate against monotheists. They disbelieve in all gods equally.


But they may worship idols. For example, I decided to try out the pepperoni pizza they sell at Costco. Damn delicious. I'm pretty sure I worship that pizza now. I've been thinking about it all the time since I first consumed that delicious tapestry of flavors and ingredients. I'm sure It is pleased with my dedication.
 
2012-04-14 12:21:01 AM

LOTN: To the western mind, unfamiliar with the tenets of Buddhism, it is just another religion, to be rejected with the rest.

This is not a fair assessment, but it is an easy assumption to make from ignorance on the subject.


all religions should be rejected.
but dont get me started on communists/socialists/anarchists.
While the western world might not be perfect, it is certainly better than all the other things we have tried.

/wasn't religion originally created as an early form of government/social control ??
:D
 
2012-04-14 12:22:02 AM

namatad: namatad: Britney Spear's Speculum: Why are so many people leaving religion?
1) ...

What did I miss?

6) ...

10) education - more people are getting college and advanced degrees
11) better mental health treatments (therapy and meds)


If a degree from any accredited institution of "higher learning" is somehow motivation to deconstruct any system of belief structured on logical fallacy and fear mongering, then perhaps I should be glad I never bothered to go. As for the MH, I'm not going to attempt to debate on the effectiveness of current psychiatric medical practice proper/canon. Obviously though, if you give someone enough sedative, they will stop exibiting such drastic symptoms, as they'll be too tired and/or complacent to.
 
2012-04-14 12:23:04 AM

bubo_sibiricus: I sometimes believe that this is not all there is to the Life, The Universe, and Everything.

But then I look around at people who actually buy the whole religion thing.

And then I think utter nothingness at the end of it all is the correct answer.


Missed it by four words.

/42
 
2012-04-14 12:23:24 AM

namatad: so is veganism turning into a "religion"?


Oddly enough, more than likely it is for the people who start it thinking it is going to immediately improve their life in some amazing way, then when it doesn't, they quit.

crazyeddie is just mad I didn't fall for his attempt to troll me by making claims about me that he had no basis to make with any certainty. I still stand by my responses.

religion |riˈlijən|
noun
the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, esp. a personal God or gods: ideas about the relationship between science and religion.
• a particular system of faith and worship: the world's great religions.
a pursuit or interest to which someone ascribes supreme importance: consumerism is the new religion.

This is a more recent definition, and we have atheism to thank for its gaining traction. This is why atheism will more and more resemble a religion.
By that, I mean that people will claim it as a way to excuse their behaviour, rather than a means to their own enlightenment.

If I understand Christianity correctly, God wants us to become Gods. Just like with parents, eventually you stop needing them, and eventually, they don't exist.
 
2012-04-14 12:24:44 AM
I wonder though why this process is taking much longer in the US than in Europe? Usually a rise of secularism goes hand in hand with economic development. In the past century the US surpassed Europe in wealth and economic developed, but still managed to remain very religious, while in western Europe religion has been on the decline ever since the 60's.

In countries like the Netherlands, Sweden and even France, around 70% of the people have no belief in God.In the US that might not even be 10%
 
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