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A Case for Athiesim....

  1. #76
    "Plymouth's Fastest" BrianC's Avatar
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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....


    Quote Originally Posted by gadget View Post


    Really?!!??!
    Yes. Really!
    Quote Originally Posted by SV650N View Post
    And yet I believe that the entire reason that man created god is to try to justify why there is pain and suffering in the world, and as a coping mechanism. I think it served a very important purpose, and without organized religion our society would have come together very differently (if at all). What bothers me, however, is the implication that I can't live a good life without "accepting jesus" (my father converted to a Mormon a few years ago, I never hear the end of it). I don't need a higher power to convince me to do the right thing. I also don't need the fear of hell or some horrible punishment in the supposed afterlife to keep me from doing bad things. I think that as a modern society, we need to each do our own thing to contribute and make the world a better place for those that live in it. I'm not going around selfishly doing good things just to get a better spot in heaven, but rather because it makes the people around me happy. I am fully capable of being a good person just for the sake of being good.

    That being said, there is still a certain benefit to raising kids in a somewhat religious environment, as long as it isn't taken too far. Kids always need a reason why, and just saying be good for the sake of being good isn't always going to cut it.

    My father asking me to say grace at the christmas dinner, when he knows I'm not religious at all, really kind of bothered me though. I don't ever say anything bad to him about his choice in what to believe, but to put me on the spot like that and to make me feel uncomfortable at a family dinner (with a family that I'm only sort of a part of, but that's another story) just completely goes against what Christmas means to me (it's a time to get together with friends and family, have fun, and remember the year gone by, I don't give a damn about presents or the religious side of it). Especially when they always talk about honesty and all that. He wants me to lie to the kids and to myself to say some prayer that I don't believe in? Seems a touch hypocritical.
    Once again, this is kind of confusing God and Religion. You can believe in God and not believe the different religous views about heaven or hell, punishment, reward, etc... . I rely on God everyday, but I surely don't do it out of fear that I'll go to hell if I don't. If the argument was that religions give God a bad name, I might agree somewhat.

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianC View Post
    You're right, there are a lot of atheists or agnostics who come to AA. There's a whole chapter in the Big Book dedicated to them. It basically says that w/out some higher power, recovery will not happen. There is an old division in AA over the role of God, but the people who do the program and the 12 steps know that without God they couldn't have recovered. The others develop their own style complete with sayings and concepts like the "5 basics", which have nothing to do with the 12 steps or the program of AA. Those misbeliefs are the dangerousness in AA. That could kill a person because you tell them they don't need God, and to just "Don't Drink"! Some of the silliest things come out of those people and most everyone knows they don't have true sobriety. They should never try to sponsor a newcomer because their false beliefs and poor instructions makes sure that a newcomer will leave AA thinking it doesn't work. The only thing that works is the steps, which is based on God. Sorry for using AA as an example, that is an entire "controversial topic" discussion in itself. I'd rather stay away from that one! Bottom line is that I would help anyone whether they believed in God, didn't believe in anything, or believed in Satan. It would just take more time with the latter two!
    It's kind of insulting to say that you NEED god in order to get sober, when really a lot of people need to believe that there is someone else there to guide them and support them, when in reality it all comes from within (in my opinion of course). We do have the strength to get sober, but it's easy to get derailed and to lose hope. Some people don't need to use god as a crutch to discover their true inner strength (I know that sounds condescending, but it really wasn't meant to).

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianC View Post
    Once again, this is kind of confusing God and Religion. You can believe in God and not believe the different religous views about heaven or hell, punishment, reward, etc... . I rely on God everyday, but I surely don't do it out of fear that I'll go to hell if I don't. If the argument was that religions give God a bad name, I might agree somewhat.
    I know for me religion has definitely given god a bad name, having grown up catholic and now seeing what mormonism has done to my father.

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by SV650N View Post
    It's kind of insulting to say that you NEED god in order to get sober, when really a lot of people need to believe that there is someone else there to guide them and support them, when in reality it all comes from within (in my opinion of course). We do have the strength to get sober, but it's easy to get derailed and to lose hope. Some people don't need to use god as a crutch to discover their true inner strength (I know that sounds condescending, but it really wasn't meant to).
    Millions of people try every year to use their own will to quit an addiction and they almost all fail. Try telling a heroin addict to just use their inner strength to get sober. This is one thing that I'll call a fact, and never be convinced otherwise: In order to survive a fatal addiction, one needs God's help. No man, program, medicine, or any other substitute has or will work, period. This again can be confusing because many people think they have a problem and then they just stop. They weren't truly suffering form addiction. The very nature of true addiction is that you can't stop no matter how hard you try. How can relying on God be offensive?

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    Last edited by DucDave; 12-29-10 at 02:27 PM.
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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianC View Post
    Millions of people try every year to use their own will to quit an addiction and they almost all fail. Try telling a heroin addict to just use their inner strength to get sober. This is one thing that I'll call a fact, and never be convinced otherwise: In order to survive a fatal addiction, one needs God's help. No man, program, medicine, or any other substitute has or will work, period. This again can be confusing because many people think they have a problem and then they just stop. They weren't truly suffering form addiction. The very nature of true addiction is that you can't stop no matter how hard you try. How can relying on God be offensive?
    You are so arrogant and pompous it borders on the ludicrous.
    Show me your proof that an addict can’t quit without believing in God. Give me the results of a study. Back up your claims with anything more than: “I believe, therefore it is true.”

    Saying that, if an addict can quit without believing in God, he isn’t really an addict, is one of the most offensive things I have heard in a long time.

    by the way, this is the definition of addiction: the state of being enslaved to a habit or practice or to something that is psychologically or physically habit-forming, as narcotics, to such an extent that its cessation causes severe trauma.

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    Last edited by gadget; 12-29-10 at 02:32 PM.
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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianC View Post
    Millions of people try every year to use their own will to quit an addiction and they almost all fail. Try telling a heroin addict to just use their inner strength to get sober. This is one thing that I'll call a fact, and never be convinced otherwise: In order to survive a fatal addiction, one needs God's help. No man, program, medicine, or any other substitute has or will work, period. This again can be confusing because many people think they have a problem and then they just stop. They weren't truly suffering form addiction. The very nature of true addiction is that you can't stop no matter how hard you try. How can relying on God be offensive?
    Ok, offensive was too strong of a word. But try to see it from my point of view. People obviously can get sober, and without my belief in god that means that the strength to do so must have come from within. To me, it seems that the real problem is unlocking that inner potential, and while it seems true that most people can't do that without needing god, that doesn't make it impossible. I'm not trying to argue semantics though, and I understand what you are trying to say, just trying to present an alternate view point.

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by gadget View Post
    You are so arrogant and pompous it borders on the ludicrous.
    Show me your proof that an addict can’t quit without believing in God. Give me the results of a study. Back up your claims with anything more than: “I believe, therefore it is true.”

    Saying that, if an addict can quit without believing in God, he isn’t really an addict, is one of the most offensive things I have heard in a long time.

    by the way, this is the definition of addiction: the state of being enslaved to a habit or practice or to something that is psychologically or physically habit-forming, as narcotics, to such an extent that its cessation causes severe trauma.
    I would be arrogant and pompous if I was taking credit for ceasing addictions, but I give all the credit to God. Show me 1 person who claims they overcame a fatal addiction on their own, and I'll call them a liar to their face! I know alot of those types of people. They stop drinking for a while and tell you they're sober while they're smoking a joint.

    The definition of addiction? According to who? I referred to the nature of addiction being when you can't stop, no matter how hard you try. Are you telling me it's addiction, but you can stop whenever you want?

    Btw, it's funny how easily offended the atheists get. Notice that I take no offense if you don't believe in God. It only hurts you! It doesn't hurt me that you don't believe... just another benefit to being a believer I guess!

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianC View Post
    Show me 1 person who claims they overcame a fatal addiction on their own, and I'll call them a liar to their face! I know alot of those types of people. They stop drinking for a while and tell you they're sober while they're smoking a joint.

    The definition of addiction? According to who? I referred to the nature of addiction being when you can't stop, no matter how hard you try. Are you telling me it's addiction, but you can stop whenever you want?

    Btw, it's funny how easily offended the atheists get. Notice that I take no offense if you don't believe in God. It only hurts you! It doesn't hurt me that you don't believe... just another benefit to being a believer I guess!
    Well now you're getting back closer to offensive territory. So if somebody is addicted and quits and claims that god helped them, then they've been cured. But if they quit and say they did it on their own they are a liar or were never addicted? You seem to show a complete lack of faith in the resiliency of humans. Addiction most certainly can be overcome, you just have to want to break the dependency. That's not saying you can stop whenever you want, but it says that if you try really hard, and are willing to change your life, then it can be done, and it can be done with or without god.

    The atheists are getting offended because you are calling them liars and downplaying addiction, <sarcasm> unless you believe in god in which case the addiction is totally real </sarcasm>

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianC View Post
    I would be arrogant and pompous if I was taking credit for ceasing addictions, but I give all the credit to God. Show me 1 person who claims they overcame a fatal addiction on their own, and I'll call them a liar to their face! I know alot of those types of people. They stop drinking for a while and tell you they're sober while they're smoking a joint.

    The definition of addiction? According to who? I referred to the nature of addiction being when you can't stop, no matter how hard you try. Are you telling me it's addiction, but you can stop whenever you want?

    Btw, it's funny how easily offended the atheists get. Notice that I take no offense if you don't believe in God. It only hurts you! It doesn't hurt me that you don't believe... just another benefit to being a believer I guess!
    Ok Call me a liar if you want, but you need to shut the fuck up now....

    you obviously feel pretty good about your assumption that only God (higher power) can fully recover a true drug addict but you truly have no idea what you are talking about....

    It takes strength of will and character, it takes a total separation of everything you know and love, it takes something that someone who replaces one addiction with another usually doesn't have...

    One thing i will give you the ones who do "find" God in their recovery process do better on one reason. they substitute all the time a devotion they put into the greatest love they had in the world (their addiction) and put it towards something that literally replaced it....

    now is there more too it than that, maybe, but AA and NA are usually good for a couple things and those are the reasons i know i avoided them all together. I wasnt looking for new drug buddies, or where to get more drugs, and i wasnt looking to have faith crammed down my throat as a replacement....

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    I will call this a fact, because I believe it; people who believe in God are torturers, murderers and rapists.

    Look at all the Priests that have raped young altar boys in our country alone. Look at all the convicts in prison that "believe".
    Look at all the wars, crusades, witch hunts, clinic bombings, mass suicides etc

    Throughout history the "believers" have used God to justify stealing, slavery, stoning, imperialism, racism, racial purges and every other atrocity that you can imagine and now they are claiming that you can't recover from an addiction unless you believe.

    Offended? You are "goddamn" right, that I am offended. (see what I did there )
    Athiests do not go around threatening to torture and kill you, if you "Believe!"

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    Last edited by gadget; 12-29-10 at 03:12 PM.
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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by R1 View Post
    Ok Call me a liar if you want, but you need to shut the fuck up now....

    you obviously feel pretty good about your assumption that only God (higher power) can fully recover a true drug addict but you truly have no idea what you are talking about....

    It takes strength of will and character, it takes a total separation of everything you know and love, it takes something that someone who replaces one addiction with another usually doesn't have...

    One thing i will give you the ones who do "find" God in their recovery process do better on one reason. they substitute all the time a devotion they put into the greatest love they had in the world (their addiction) and put it towards something that literally replaced it....

    now is there more too it than that, maybe, but AA and NA are usually good for a couple things and those are the reasons i know i avoided them all together. I wasnt looking for new drug buddies, or where to get more drugs, and i wasnt looking to have faith crammed down my throat as a replacement....
    I'm sorry you haven't had a good experience with AA or NA. I would encourage you to hook up with some good, sober people who have the program. They aren't all drug buddies, and they certainly won't try to force anything on you other than good recovery. If you go on believing that strength of will and character is all that you need, you'll struggle. It's called a dry drunk or dry druggie, and it's no fun. I tried both ways, so I do know what I'm talking about dude. This isn't about offending anyone. You wouldn't be offended if you were totally recovered, and you sure as hell wouldn't get angry over someone giving God credit where credit is due.

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by gadget View Post
    I will call this a fact, because I believe it; people who believe in God are torturers, murderers and rapists.

    Look at all the Priests that have raped young altar boys in our country alone. Look at all the convicts in prison that "believe".
    Look at all the wars, crusades, witch hunts, clinic bombings, mass suicides etc

    Throughout history the "believers" have used God to justify stealing, slavery, stoning, imperialism, racism, racial purges and every other atrocity that you can imagine and now they are claiming that you can't recover from an addiction unless you believe.

    Offended? You are "goddamn" right, that I am offended.
    Athiests do not go around threatening to torture and kill you if you do not "Believe!"
    Those examples are all religious examples. If someone rapes or tortures they are sick. Spiritually and mentally sick people, who are blocked off from God. They are doing their own will not God's. Another thing to remember is that humans are not saints. We believers in God strive for Spiritual progress, not perfection. We all slip, and all humans are subject to getting spiritually sick at sometime in their life. That is why it is a hard road to follow, the spiritual one. A person must constantly be aware of their spiritual state, and ask for help so that they do not fall into spiritual sickness. It is a daily thing to do a moral inventory, and it takes rigorous honesty with the self to be able to clear away the blockages. That is why I said it is not a lazy way to live, and we don't just rely on God as a crutch. All that is just nonsense.

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Brian - how much time do you actually have in recovery? This person I know VERY well who has over 18 years. His sponsor has 35 years. They're both athiests. They are both very active in AA and have helped countless others to recover. They both have awesome sobriety and great lives. They both understand the concept of a higher power. They both know that higher power isn't them. They both accept that AA and the people in AA are their higher power. They both recognize that for many, belief in God is effective and support that approach. They also recognize that jamming 'God' down the throat of a newcomer is a good way to drive someone out of the halls.

    I know several other people - Keith being one - who have found other paths to being clean and sober.

    I'm not offended...only worried. People like you do more harm in recovery than good. Preachers and Big Book Thumpers are indeed arrogant. And often too wrapped up in idiotic dogmatism to offer any meaningful help to those who stuggle.

    You would be truly funny if you weren't so potentially harmful...

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by DucDave View Post
    Brian - how much time do you actually have in recovery? This person I know VERY well who has over 18 years. His sponsor has 35 years. They're both athiests. They are both very active in AA and have helped countless others to recover. They both have awesome sobriety and great lives. They both understand the concept of a higher power. They both know that higher power isn't them. They both accept that AA and the people in AA are their higher power. They both recognize that for many, belief in God is effective and support that approach. They also recognize that jamming 'God' down the throat of a newcomer is a good way to drive someone out of the halls.

    I know several other people - Keith being one - who have found other paths to being clean and sober.

    I'm not offended...only worried. People like you do more harm in recovery than good. Preachers and Big Book Thumpers are indeed arrogant. And often too wrapped up in idiotic dogmatism to offer any meaningful help to those who stuggle.

    You would be truly funny if you weren't so potentially harmful...
    Well it sounds like your buddies are on the right path then. Believing in a higher power is all I'm talking about. I choose to call that higher power "God". I would never force my views on anyone, especially not a newcomer in AA. I believe we have the same concerns.

    I am not adding to this thread to force anyone to believe what I believe, just to keep the debate a 2-sided one. I take the stance that w/out a higher power, which I call God, a person cannot get sober. The only reason I used that example is because I think it makes a strong case for the existence of God. So, you offer that someone calls their higher power the group, and that works for them. That has worked for many, and it is a start because it shows they are willing to believe in something greater than themselves. It really is all about spiritual progress, and it starts at that level and it either develops into a full-on belief in God, or it stays at where that particular person is comfortable with. Nothing wrong with either way, but w/out any higher power, forget about it.

    As far as stating how long I've been sober... I'd say it is definitely the quality, not the quantity that matters!

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Back to back days, added up over time, are what count. Sober experience is what counts. A day at a time....

    There's a reason they used to tell new comers to take the cotton out of their ears and stick it in their mouth.

    ...at least, that's what the guy I know says....

    (BTW, he'd be happy to meet you at a meeting sometime. So you can call him a liar to his face and maybe get a sense of how AA really works...!)

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    Last edited by DucDave; 12-29-10 at 03:51 PM.
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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    And, SV650 - your Dad converted to Mormanism? Wow...

    If you'd like to read an outstanding book, Under The Banner of Heaven by Jon Krakauer. Same guy who wrote Into Thin Air. All about Mormanism and it's history. Seriously dude, the stuff this comes from makes Scientololgy seem sane!

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by DucDave View Post
    And, SV650 - your Dad converted to Mormanism? Wow...

    If you'd like to read an outstanding book, Under The Banner of Heaven by Jon Krakauer. Same guy who wrote Into Thin Air. All about Mormanism and it's history. Seriously dude, the stuff this comes from makes Scientololgy seem sane!
    My step mother grew up mormon, and he latched onto it (he was a "spiritual" pot head before that, so I guess pick your poison). At least she is really nice, and he is the one that pushed her to get back into it.

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by DucDave View Post
    (Actually, I'm surprised no one has tried to make the case that Athiesm is a Religion....)
    Shouldn't it be? It's equally arrogant and incorrect to tell someone you know there is no "God" as it is to tell them you know "God" exists...both require a substantial amount of faith to get past the lack of proof.

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Wow Brian, thank you for taking away from all the hard work of numerous addicts out there who have in fact kicked their habit(s) and all without finding your god.

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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by gixxer72 View Post
    Shouldn't it be? It's equally arrogant and incorrect to tell someone you know there is no "God" as it is to tell them you know "God" exists...both require a substantial amount of faith to get past the lack of proof.
    Finally!

    Yes, you could argue that Athiesm is a religion. Let me be clear. The reason it could qualify as a religion is because athiests BELIEVE there is no God. We don't know. And when the religious can admit that they too Believe, then we have a place in the middle to start. Problem is, the most dangerous of the zealots claim to KNOW...which is horseshit.

    My belief is based on science, subject to change based on observation and test. It's hardly arrogant. In fact, I would argue it's actually a very humble approach...

    What's yours based on? Which set of dogma? The Bible? The Quran? The Torah?

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    Last edited by DucDave; 12-29-10 at 05:45 PM.
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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by DucDave View Post
    you wear the high road well...


    I think your choice of language has me confused. When you say 'righteous' it creates images of Christian Evangelists in my mind. And that path is rigid and exclusionary. Further, this paragraph seems to be self contradictory:



    Aside from the contradictions, the concept of personel perfection is baffling to me...

    Your explanantion sounds sort of 'Buddhist' to me. Perhaps you are suggesting a personal spiritual quest that is yours and yours alone? If that's what you mean I subscribe to that completely.


    I am on a personal spiritual quest that is mine alone. Mine includes the belief that there is no God and that we need to be positive and good. It includes the belief that man will be best served when we all abandon the institutions of religion and the need to believe in a being that created all that is. It includes the belief that our spirits evolve socially and that, in time, we may find a way to love cooperatively without the nonsense of the concepts of multiple, conflicting, supreme beings.

    So, I may confused, but I don't think I ridicule your belief.

    Here's something to think about however...

    YouTube - Organised Religion Is A Clown Costume.

    (Note - I don't laugh really. It's mostly too frightening to find funny....)
    not sure what that means (wearing the high road well) or moreso how it is intended.. but i'll just say thank you and leave it at that.

    as for the rest, i'll address it tomorrow when i have some free time and a clear mind. now i plan to have a couple drinks and relax.
    life is too short to spend it being so serious ALL the time.

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  22. #97
    Rider. Just a rider... DucDave's Avatar
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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Take it at face value. You took the high road. It was refreshing....!

    I plan to have a couple of drinks and relax too! Seltzer water...!!!
    ____________________________

    Paul...thanks for weighing in...!

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    "A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.”
    Muhammad Ali.

  23. #98
    Lifer gixxer72's Avatar
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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by DucDave View Post
    Finally!

    Yes, you could argue that Athiesm is a religion. Let be be clear. The reason it could qualify as a religion is because athiests BELIEVE there is no God. We don't know. And when the religious can admit that they too Believe, then we have a place in the middle to start. Problem is, the most dangerous of the zealots claim to KNOW...which is horseshit.

    My belief is based on science, subject to change based on observation and test. It's hardly arrogant. In fact, I would argue it's actually a very humble approach...

    What's yours based on? Which set of dogma? The Bible? The Quran? The Torah?
    Yes, I was waiting for someone else to take the bait but could no longer resist...
    Based on your scientific base and your open viewpoint I would say that's more agnostic than atheist. My definition of a true athiest is one who believes without any doubt that there is no God. And that is an arrogant point of view given the lack of supporting evidence.

    My belief? I'm an engineering dork so it's science based, but I have church experience as well. Agnostic all the way until I learn something more that pulls me to one side or the other...

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  24. #99
    Rider. Just a rider... DucDave's Avatar
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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Quote Originally Posted by gixxer72 View Post
    Yes, I was waiting for someone else to take the bait but could no longer resist...
    Based on your scientific base and your open viewpoint I would say that's more agnostic than atheist. My definition of a true athiest is one who believes without any doubt that there is no God. And that is an arrogant point of view given the lack of supporting evidence.

    My belief? I'm an engineering dork so it's science based, but I have church experience as well. Agnostic all the way until I learn something more that pulls me to one side or the other...
    Everyone is agnostic...by definition. Even those who claim to 'Know' really only believe.

    I am a true athiest. I BELIEVE, without a doubt, that there is no God. But, obviously, I still don't KNOW. However, there is nothing in what I do know that would lead me to believe there is a God. And plenty of reason to believe there isn't. I'm open to proof however...but it can't start with, "The Bible Says" or "In the Quran"!!!

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    Muhammad Ali.

  25. #100
    BMW track whore e30addict's Avatar
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    Re: A Case for Athiesim....

    Couldn't resist



    Organized religion is a business. Too bad they get to play by a different set of rules than everyone else.

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    Last edited by e30addict; 12-29-10 at 06:26 PM.
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