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I'm interested in the opinions of people as to their viewpoint of Atheism and how it effects the society in which we live. When I say Atheism, I mean the belief that there is no God, Creator or "Higher Power" in this world or one who has domain over our world.

-What consequences in personal life and society evolve from this belief?

-Would belief in a God, even one which is not of the "mainstream" religions, be better than no belief at all? This excludes exotic, "taboo" type religions which seem to have an agenda such as drug use, animal abuse/sacrifice, child "love", etc as these "beliefs" do not seem to be truly based on a devotion or love to a "God".

-From where does the lack of belief in a God stem?

-Could the belief in Atheism stem from the individual's lack of ability or simple ignorance of what "God" is, does and where "it" came from or originated?


While I can prove nothing as to the material existence of God, I have realized it is very simple to demonstrate "god's" abilities, how he sees us and such, through a computer and in a Virtual World. There are so many similarities with the way the world works, through governments and financial institutions, to how a computer network functions. Computers are great metaphors or similies to how a world and "god" could/may work. Heck, there are "demons" (actually spelled "daemons" but pronounced demons) on all computers, which are used to control various aspects of the machine.

Either way, if there is a way to show how "our God" COULD/MAY operate and reveal what "he" could do, is it something of value or could it be useful?

I'm still at a loss as to how to describe which mainstream religion is representative to a computer, lol.:xeye:
 

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Shuriken snowflake
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Interesting. I'll just answer one of the questions, might return and bug you more.

From where does the lack of belief in a God stem?
I think it has to do with self awareness. Animals are aware, but not to a high degree, self aware. We have a more complex brain, so we can orient better in time and space, we can look at ourselves from the outside so to speak. And also see the past and the future. We know that in the future we will die. Since we are the strongest and have a strong will to live (generally speaking), evolution screens out people with a weak will, we will not wish to die since that conflicts with what we are. So in fact it will be hard to live with that knowledge. If we believe there is life after death, life gets easier, and we will probably be healthier, therefore people with a belief spread those genes. I know this explanation seems rather dull and repulsive, but it makes sense.
 

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Most atheists are a result of a growing hatred of organized religion. People see wacko fundamentalists like Fred Phelps on t.v. or read about atrocities committed by christians and think that all of christianity wants to force there beliefs upon them. They hate organized religion so they automatically come to the conclusion that there is no god. Its a bit silly to come to those conclusions. You can believe in a god and hate christianity (plenty of people do).
 

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i always thought it was a lack of responsibilty. no god no rules to live by.no ecpectations to meet. i cant live that way i stub my toe alot
Why does it take God to define how we treat each other? Have we not evolved to the point that being decent to each other is independent of religion?
 

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Gravity is a Theory.
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I'm an agnostic,

Let me expand on that. I think there is some sort of higher understanding (call it power if you wish) that the human race as a whole has yet to reach. I think science and philosophy will get us there eventually so I guess you could call that my religion (science and philosophy). That being said I feel the mainstream religions of today and those of the past are man made bureaucracies between man and "God" (whatever that really means).

The belief that God created us in his image and that we must praise and love only him seems arrogant and childish. (the emotions of men, not gods). Religion is a system of control in my opinion.

That being said the "big 3" religions are beautiful philosophies that when studied and applied to your life can lead you to be a truly good person. However as we see with Muslim terrorists, Israelis gunning down and oppressing Palestinians, and Christians attacking gays, protesting American soldiers funerals, priests molesting children, etc. Bad human beings will be bad human beings no matter what faith they follow. The good and the bad will always find a balance, and all the Sunday mornings in all of eternity wont stop that.

I hope I haven't offended you but rather offered you a view into my lifestyle. I wasn't raised in a religious household. I grew up in middle class Michigan, went to college, have no criminal record, now have a steady good paying job, I don't believe in violence, I don't cheat on my girlfriend. I know my neighbors by their first name, etc, etc. I did all this without religion.

Am I an exception? :rolleyes:

-Goosed
 

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i always thought it was a lack of responsibilty. no god no rules to live by.no ecpectations to meet. i cant live that way i stub my toe alot
Wow, such assumptions. Just because I am not religious does not mean I have no rules to live by. I do not need the threat of eternal hellfire to make me behave in an ethical manner.

There is also the matter of the law, and being in jail will not make my life any better. Nor will having to pay lots of fines that I really cannot afford. I do believe in following the laws of my country, and if they are unjust, to protest in a peaceful manner.

Also, many people who do not believe in the Christian deity live by the Golden Rule anyway, myself included. Just because we do not believe in what we consider superstition does not mean that we are somehow horrible, bad, awful, terrible, lawless people. I am really frankly tired of such assumptions.

Also, I do not hate religious people, one of my best online friends is religious. And liberal. (Sigh.) But I'm working on the liberal part.

Also I grew up up an ultra-conservative church school, in which I was constantly brow beaten for being a. not perfect enough and b. being an intelligent female who had reading skills beyond the level that I was supposed to. My lack of being religious has more to do with having to maintain my own sanity than anything else.

I do meditate from time to time, but that is as religious as I get nowadays.
 

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Atheism is actually better. You choose your own rules and have your own conscience. Atheists are good people because they "choose" to be, not because they fear some higher power or going to hell. There was a study done, I read it a year or so ago so I can't find the source, but Christian Democratic dominated areas had a crime rate of around 14 percent, Christian Republican areas had a crime rate around 4 or 5 percent and Atheist dominated areas had a crime rate of under 3 percent. I believe for the most part that Atheists live by the motto of "do unto others." So in my opinion choosing to be a good person instead of fearing repercussions in the afterlife can make you a better person. Does it always, the answer is no, but you should have nothing to fear from Atheism.
 

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I have a close family member who is a avowed atheist. Organized religion is what they say they hate. But if someone want's to go there, they are an adult. They don't just not like god but have a what i take as a venomous hate, when talking about it they drip with it. To them all christian's are fool's and moron's. They have an IQ of over 160 and if you can't prove it with science it's not real. All who believe are stupid lower creature's. They went ballistic over the creation museum, ranting how they were twisting the fact,s right in front of everyone. They do worry me for they are the poster child for the new world order but they are the only one in the family who takes prepping serious. I got a little sense in them anyway. They live 700 mile's away in a large city. Gated housing where you have to ask to paint your house and get the color approved, jezz what a bunch of bullshat. Why pay 200,000 for a house and have a bunch of uptight azzholes tell ya if you can paint it. Not as smart as they think they are. I can't understand the venomous hate for god, makes no sense to me. So much in this world that cannot be explained period, all i know is that a dam monkey ain't my uncle and anything exploding, can't make crap but a mess. Still can't understand the hate.
 

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Gravity is a Theory.
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I have a close family member who is a avowed atheist. Organized religion is what they say they hate. But if someone want's to go there, they are an adult. They don't just not like god but have a what i take as a venomous hate, when talking about it they drip with it. To them all christian's are fool's and moron's. They have an IQ of over 160 and if you can't prove it with science it's not real. All who believe are stupid lower creature's. They went ballistic over the creation museum, ranting how they were twisting the fact,s right in front of everyone. They do worry me for they are the poster child for the new world order but they are the only one in the family who takes prepping serious. I got a little sense in them anyway. They live 700 mile's away in a large city. Gated housing where you have to ask to paint your house and get the color approved, jezz what a bunch of bullshat. Why pay 200,000 for a house and have a bunch of uptight azzholes tell ya if you can paint it. Not as smart as they think they are. I can't understand the venomous hate for god, makes no sense to me. So much in this world that cannot be explained period, all i know is that a dam monkey ain't my uncle and anything exploding, can't make crap but a mess. Still can't understand the hate.
Generalizations like this lead to more hate and misunderstanding, there are extremists on both sides, lets not forget that.

I could easily say that Christians believe all non-believers are fools and morons and turn their nose up at us (atheists). I know thats not true, and hopefully you do too, otherwise you are guilty of severe hypocrisy.

-Goosed
 

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i always thought it was a lack of responsibilty. no god no rules to live by.no ecpectations to meet. i cant live that way i stub my toe alot
WHAT A CROCK OF BALONEY!!!!!!!!!!!!! I raised 4 sons as a single Mom. I've got some pretty awesome adult sons. I even have a VOLUNTEER (did you read that word right?) Fireman and a Volunteer EMT who is living with his PARAMEDIC girlfriend.

Yep... you're right. They have no morals, value, character or Integrity. They just save lives when YOUR butt needs it the most.;)
 

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WHAT A CROCK OF BALONEY!!!!!!!!!!!!! I raised 4 sons as a single Mom. I've got some pretty awesome adult sons. I even have a VOLUNTEER (did you read that word right?) Fireman and a Volunteer EMT who is living with his PARAMEDIC girlfriend.

Yep... you're right. They have no morals, value, character or Integrity. They just save lives when YOUR butt needs it the most.;)
then i stand corrected
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I have a close family member who is a avowed atheist. Organized religion is what they say they hate. But if someone want's to go there, they are an adult. They don't just not like god but have a what i take as a venomous hate, when talking about it they drip with it. To them all christian's are fool's and moron's. They have an IQ of over 160 and if you can't prove it with science it's not real. All who believe are stupid lower creature's. They went ballistic over the creation museum, ranting how they were twisting the fact,s right in front of everyone. They do worry me for they are the poster child for the new world order but they are the only one in the family who takes prepping serious. I got a little sense in them anyway. They live 700 mile's away in a large city. Gated housing where you have to ask to paint your house and get the color approved, jezz what a bunch of bullshat. Why pay 200,000 for a house and have a bunch of uptight azzholes tell ya if you can paint it. Not as smart as they think they are. I can't understand the venomous hate for god, makes no sense to me. So much in this world that cannot be explained period, all i know is that a dam monkey ain't my uncle and anything exploding, can't make crap but a mess. Still can't understand the hate.
It has become clear to me in the last few years that there are a few different types of intelligence, the most discussed and recognized is the "book smarts" which is worshiped in academia. Having a large ego due to being book smart is, I believe, a disability in itself as it basically reduces the areas of exploration of alternative views or hypothesis.

I can really understand how you feel about the above person, but I think you have to realize that whatever happened to him as he matured created the person he is today, good or bad. You may have been exactly like him had you developed under the same stimuli. Anyway..

I have found that a very minor "revelation" in the whole "god" and religion search can have dramatic and wide spread effects. It's like having all the pieces of a puzzle but no picture of which to assemble the puzzle. I feel that with a demonstration of computer/networking hierarchy one could demonstrate how the world works, thus possibly giving the person the "picture" which they had been lacking.

I guess my main question is this. Is it worth it to try to share another viewpoint on understanding how god may work, what god may encompass, etc?
Just as a quick example, think about the user profile on your computer. There are many different levels of access from standard/restricted to full administrator of that computer, the network, the LAN, on up to the Internet Admin (I'd like that job :D:). Maybe you can think of the restricted user as a child and once they are "of age" they move up to a Power User where they can make their own decisions and such, after being "of age / Power User" you graduate to Administrator when you become a parent as you then have "domain" over the activities of your children/standard user.

The above example is just on of probably thousands which could be explored without even getting into computer programming and how a programmer is a "creator" or "god" within the world which is programmed.

Do you think this line of thinking is ridiculous or could it possibly be helpful. I know that this type of explanation would have greatly helped me in my youth to understand how "God" could/may work. Would it have changed my actions? I think so as I wouldn't have spent so much time thinking about this topic.

So, I guess I'm looking for opinions on whether expanding upon these metaphors of how "God" could work is something worthwhile. I don't know of anything which is so similar as to how our world works and that can be fit into an understandable and viewable explanation.
 

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WHAT A CROCK OF BALONEY!!!!!!!!!!!!! I raised 4 sons as a single Mom. I've got some pretty awesome adult sons. I even have a VOLUNTEER (did you read that word right?) Fireman and a Volunteer EMT who is living with his PARAMEDIC girlfriend.

Yep... you're right. They have no morals, value, character or Integrity. They just save lives when YOUR butt needs it the most.;)
I like your response! Stant's response is what I seemed to have experienced as a youth growing up in a very religious/Christian school. The tone they took, that of Stant's, is exactly what made me not want to have anything to do with their "religion". The biggest kicker of it all, was the "most devout" and our team "chaplin" to boot, deemed it his personal responsibility to make sure that I knew that I was an Atheist and that others knew too. The funny thing is that I was never Atheist but Agnostic, but to this guy it is all the same if I don't worship Christ. I was in honors classes with him and even played football and baseball with this guy, we even sat next to each other at lunch at times!

The greatest part is that he could never prove anything and he would always just fall back to "because I know" like he had a hotline to the big man. When I would question him, his response was to call me the anti-christ or satan or devil boy or the like, followed with statements that I was going to burn in Hell or whatever was the flavor of the month.

I wonder what this type of "abuse" does to a person who's only crime was that of thought and question. To me, this type of person is no better than a Muslim Jihadist or fundamentalist. He is just more of a coward.

On a side note, I want to make it very clear that I don't associate all Christians with this guy, that would be just as ridiculous as he.
 

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I am an Atheist, I am also a Buddhist (Buddha was just a man who learned enlightenment).
Anyways, I can say without a doubt that I have stronger morals than many of the Sunday Christians I have met in my life.
I was raised Christian, and went to church a few days a week for the first half of my life, and lost any faith I ever had that there is a higher power. Instead I am a strong supporter of do unto others as you would have them do unto you, or pay it forward, or even Karma (although I don't think of Karma as some magical power, just the simple fact that if you do enough good, good will come back to you).
I have found that Good people are good, no matter what religion or lack there of that they follow, and bad people are bad no matter what religion or lack there of that they follow.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Interesting. I'll just answer one of the questions, might return and bug you more.

I think it has to do with self awareness. Animals are aware, but not to a high degree, self aware. We have a more complex brain, so we can orient better in time and space, we can look at ourselves from the outside so to speak. And also see the past and the future. We know that in the future we will die. Since we are the strongest and have a strong will to live (generally speaking), evolution screens out people with a weak will, we will not wish to die since that conflicts with what we are. So in fact it will be hard to live with that knowledge. If we believe there is life after death, life gets easier, and we will probably be healthier, therefore people with a belief spread those genes. I know this explanation seems rather dull and repulsive, but it makes sense.
I used to think very much the way you do but have started looking at the world differently and it has opened a lot of doors and some "windows" lol:D:.

I think much of what is explained through science is simply for us to create a stable reality in which to survive. Science is the process of observing and comparing observations over time. There is a fundemental fault within science which no one ever seems to mention because it would nullify all of science. This is the existence of God.


I think humans have put themselves in a box with science. It is a very large, comfortable box, but it is still a box.

In the above quote, you mention animal's brains and their ability to look at past present and future. When we look at these animals we are looking at them through a distorted lens as it is from the human perspective. How can we tell that they can't look in the past or ahead? These are assumptions made by a long series of experiments which have faulty logic from the very beginning, or the main component is not defined in the experiments. This component is "You can not understand what you know, when you don't know what is not known". While this seems painfully obvious once pointed out, I could say that that sentence defines our existence. We are creatures living in perpetually changing view of reality which is largely, if not totally, controlled by those forces which are either known and unexplainable or not even known to be in existence.

When quantum particles are observed there is a very strange thing that happens. The simple fact of observing them changes their behavior. Think of this as kids acting differently when the parents are watching. How do we know that the simple act of observing, or even looking (such as searching for an answer, not scientific observation in an experiment) does not change the outcome of that which we are seeking to observe. The old saying "seek and ye shall find" may mean more than what some think. If there is more than one reality, the "Seek and find" may have an even more interesting consequences.

An example of the "Seek and Find" could be a boy friend who thinks his girlfriend is cheating. Maybe he catches her in a "lie" about where she was and who she was with. He doesn't know what to do but finally decided to follow her and find out. Does this act of "seeking" lead to the consequences of her cheating? Had he trusted her and not looked, would she have cheated? Many would say that this is impossible but that is with the scientific viewpoint of time. There are people who think that everything is happening at once but we can not see the other "times" within our own dimension. (Tankman swerves sharply and gets of tangent)

Sorry I got so far off track...
 

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Interesting. I'll just answer one of the questions, might return and bug you more.



I think it has to do with self awareness. Animals are aware, but not to a high degree, self aware. We have a more complex brain, so we can orient better in time and space, we can look at ourselves from the outside so to speak. And also see the past and the future. We know that in the future we will die. Since we are the strongest and have a strong will to live (generally speaking), evolution screens out people with a weak will, we will not wish to die since that conflicts with what we are. So in fact it will be hard to live with that knowledge. If we believe there is life after death, life gets easier, and we will probably be healthier, therefore people with a belief spread those genes. I know this explanation seems rather dull and repulsive, but it makes sense.
Not only is it dull and repulsive but it is non-sensical....to prove my point I offer the fact that Madaline Murray O'Hare (the biggest most vocal American Atheist of all time) could not convince her children to be Atheists....Both are devought Christians and publiclly apologise for their mother's Atheism and what she did to promote Atheism.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I think it has to do with self awareness. Animals are aware, but not to a high degree, self aware. We have a more complex brain, so we can orient better in time and space, we can look at ourselves from the outside so to speak. And also see the past and the future.
This all assumes that the observations we have made are correct in relationship to science/biology. We have determined that the brain and glands control much of our body because we see them work. I also saw a magician in Vegas make an elephant disappear in front of my eyes, and can do this OVER and OVER and OVER..

I also could have a $250,000 Cray supercomputer that is running an emulated version of Windows 3.11 (1992). If I didn't know to look into the computer and see that it was emulated than I would have no idea that this machine could run 100,000 instances of this computer all at the same time. This Cray is also 1/50th the size of the computer my dad's business computer had in the late 70's.

Our mistake is in believing too much in our own perception as a simple mistake can make an absolute change in all we believe or see.

It is hard to put into a short post, but I think we really box ourselves in with our perception of reality. We cripple ourselves by thinking that we need to have an explanation for everything which makes us create "science" to explain the things in our everyday life. It is a big leap to start looking at things this way, but it is the only true and honest way to look at the world.
 
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