When the Religious accuse Atheists of Being Religious

a.k.a. Where Shinashi Goes Crazy With Gifs

So there seems to be this odd trend that a believer of some such religion… Who am I foolin’? It’s Christianity. Not to say that there aren’t Jewish or Muslim people running around on a leash tied to a tree, but hey… In any case, there’s this trend where they say that atheism is the same as a religion.

simon-confusedNo, wait, hear me out for a bit, because I have to work on some German– oh, no I don’t! Or, if you believe this, just keep nodding your head.

The most common retort is that we believe some things without evidence, like how we believe that a doctor could help us without ever knowing that doctor before, or that a computer would work when you turn it on. You see, that’s like having faith in God. Except when a doctor fails or a computer doesn’t work, you complain about the doctor just wanting your money and not caring about people, or that technology is super unreliable. For some reason, that doesn’t work with god. You have this untouchable faith that somehow it works out in god’s favor, and when that happens, it also works for yours. Which is really sweet, actually… But not like ‘having faith’ in a doctor or computer. Can we worship those then? Can we attribute theistic characteristics to a doctor or computer? Ah… I think that would be idolizing them…

Ryan confused

Or how we believe that something came from nothing in the Big Bang Theory, just like Christians believe that God made the universe from nothing on a whim apparently because what else is he to do? What was he doing before he made the universe? Did he make multiple universes? Was there a first universe? What was he doing before that first universe?

And anyway, it’s not that there was nothing before the Big Bang happened. Do they really think that ‘poof’ the universe was made? No! There was some things before all that happened! Of course there was! Wikipedia, google, all those things!

Cant remember name is confused

I wanted this to be a snippet! It’s going to be a snippet, damn it! No, it’s not.

The most recent bit was yours truly’s Moment of Inspiration. Starting from a  Why Evolution is True post  about an anti-atheist billboard in New York…. I was especially drawn to this post because the word ‘anti-atheist’ strikes at the semantic part of me like anti-abortion (when talking about ‘pro-life’ people) or anti-life (when talking about ‘pro-choice’- They’re both in quotes because of specific reasons that I will talk about later perhaps). In any case, it was anti-atheist. I figure anti as being ‘antagonistic’ or, at least, ‘against’. So, yea, that billboard was anti-atheist. Hey, I don’t care that Answers in Genesis is anti-atheist. But I did care about their message.

So I went to their Thank God You’re Wrong site page.

So I go through a couple paragraphs that are true. Those Bible passages do say that. And most skeptics do think we’re in the right (not necessarily that we’ve all won anything) when a believer can’t tell us where god is but, apparently, they can tell us where god was, once, according to your particular sect- or even religion.

Then I got to this little gem:

What people often do not realize is that even if God appeared on the earth (which He has, in the person of Jesus Christ), we did not exist in eternity past and do not know the future, so we cannot prove by any human standard that He is eternal.

Santana confusedThere are these things called maps and stars and rivers… They have been renamed over time (well, maybe not the stars) but we are pretty certain that they were there in Biblical times, in almost the same positions as they are now. I’m just thinking that maybe, perhaps, quite possibly…. No, this is a snippet! But I’m just thinking, couldn’t Jesus just have lived forever? And not in some dubious seat-in-heaven? Perhaps, I don’t know, he could come back every once in a while, and not just once in the thousands of years of  Biblical fantasy? Hell, not just once- for just about 30 years he appeared and now he’s gone. Methuselah, whatever the hell he did, apparently lived to his 900s… Really, god has multiple ways of making himself obvious- putting “I am real” in clouds over the Earth, forever. Why are the only ways he’s making himself ‘apparent’ is through which that could be explained easily by something else, or that which can be disproved?

Only an eternal, all-powerful, all-knowing being could prove the existence of the God described in the Bible

I just can’t even begin to understand this! He could easily, easily, EASILY do it. He’s all-powerful and all-knowing, yet he can’t figure out how to prove it, or  are there things he can’t do, there are some things supposedly not possible for him to do? There are so many ways, for all eternity, that he could prove his existence. SO MANY!!! If he existed, the only reason he wouldn’t do it is because he doesn’t WANT to, And I can get that. He seems to get mad at some things, so I can understand that he wouldn’t want to go through all that trouble, or whatever is going on in his spirit.

When we start from the Bible, we can see evidences that powerfully confirm what God has already said.

spongebob waitingI actually misread this sentence the first time, thinking they meant that we should assume that the Bible is true, so everything God had said in it is true. Even though Answers in Genesis obviously believe that, I do now believe they meant that we should literally start with the Bible.

We don’t believe God exists and is true only because He says so.

True… But even if everything else was untrue, since part of the reason of believing god exist is because he says he does (I would put a gif, but I’m just… Gah!), AND there’s not much else you need to follow a religion than an all-knowing and all-powerful god saying you would suffer for all eternity if you don’t believe in him- well… You’ll probably still believe in him. Anyway!

I’mma take on two sentences at once:

Unfortunately, skeptics seldom take time to confirm the detailed fulfilled prophecies of the Bible. Given our inability to prove the eternal God by our own human standard, ignoring these is a serious error indeed. For example, God Himself identifies accurate foretelling of the future to be what separates Him from all false ideas of God.

WHAT? WHAT?! Are you freakin’ serious? You can go on multiple binges of googling and find discussions of both sides of this prophetic dilemma Maybe this site is old? I went a’googling, and some time ago I watched multiple videos of such fulfilled prophecies, which I thought was super interesting, and was like, “Ah! So that is a good case!” Of course, the fulfilled prophecies aren’t really fulfilled. The two that I want to put of first (because Answers in Genesis put them forward) are the above and the prophecies of Daniel. On the site, there are several Bible verses after that last quoted sentence. They won’t transfer over for some reason, but go on and read them.

Finished? Alright.

WHAT? Those were just Bible verses that say that God says that he himself is true, which helps nothing because I don’t believe in the Bible literally anyway, and I will not go on that merry-go-round, good sir!

And then I clicked on the link about more ‘fulfilled prophecies’. I saw Daniel’s up front, and was like, “Well, that sounds about right.” And then I did, like, five minutes of research.  First I read why it’s true (Daniel prophesied fallen empires and the first coming of Christ- according to some religions- and his resurrection- according to some sects, etc.), and then why it’s not true (Daniel didn’t write Daniel, and the authors wrote after Daniel may have existed and, more importantly, wrote them after the whole fallen empires and Christ had come, died, and perhaps resurrected and beyond that: some characters in Daniel are completely fabricated and important kills were done by other people and coups done by yet even more people).

So I went back to ol’ Fulfilled Prophecies to check this back out and see what they say. First:

Critics of the Bible, for instance, have squirmed over the prophetic insights of Daniel, the sixth-century BC Jewish prophet in Babylon. 

Squirmed, really? Well we are all a bit condescending when we think we are right. Every last one of us. But I read this and the semantic logician in me blinked about a dozen times at this:

Desperate to counter the implications of this prophetic phenomenon, nineteenth-century skeptics concocted dating schemes that placed the time of Daniel’s writing after the events. Careful research by modern textual scholars, however, has validated the early origin of this prophecy, establishing Daniel as the authentic author.

First, so… There are critics of the Bible who have tackled these prophetic insights. From the 19th freakin’ century (and, as I researched, people even before then! And afterwards, of course). So I read up on a multitude of these dating schemes (of which there are many, many, many) and the modern textual scholars. This one was the only scholar that I could lean on, because all the other websites were referring to the Bible which said Daniel was true (and this one! My bad!). I read the prophesies myself- They seem fairly accurate at first look because I don’t know any better, and the contention (as we all may know) comes from whether or not the Book of Daniel was written after the what happened in the prophesies already came true. At the very least, we all know they were written about a guy named Daniel. I would be more invested on figuring out the whole truth of the matter if both sides didn’t reduce the other as believers and nonbelievers. If I go to non-biased sites, (like Wikipedia), they all say that the Book of Daniel was written after the prophesies ‘came true’, but little of the Christian contentions with it. I would like to read a genuine back and forth between the two.

In any case, there are blatant lies from this site. People have, and continue to tackle, at least, Daniel’s prophecies, and few ‘modern textual scholars’ have websites. Perhaps I should read books? (I looked. Not exactly teeming. Now books on INTERPRETATION of the Book of Daniel, take ya pick) And those ‘dating schemes’? Yea, a bit more than a little Gargamel antics. The biggest one I remember is that many of Daniel’s prophesies didn’t come true (and some of the ones that did, didn’t come true the way he said it would. Wouldn’t that mean they didn’t come true?

If you give the proof of the Bible in Daniel’s prophetic visions, then his inaccuracies would be proof against the Bible, right?

He is nope

Of course not. But, apparently, I believe that such a sensible conclusion can be made because of the last Religious accusing Atheists of being Religious point I found most contentious:

We engage in circular logic. Here’s a good place where we have examples of atheistic circular reasoning, and here’s another, and lastly, here.

Let’s start with Here #1: Most atheists I know start with number seven of example 1, or number five or seven of example two. I know no one who starts with number one.

#2. The author takes on a hypothetical conversation with an atheist. The butt of which is that the atheist starts with not believing in god, and therefore doesn’t believe in peoples’ interactions with god, but who only disbelieves that because he doesn’t believe in god in the first place…. …. …. Really? Now, I don’t know everything for certain, of course, but all the interactions I’ve heard have been false or explainable by something else. So we don’t disbelieve because god first doesn’t exist; it is because the interactions have been proven untrue and/or unreliable.

To put it on a personal template, Younger Brother #1 sees spirits. Most of my family believes they are spirits, anyway. (Older Brother and I don’t believe it is so… And the fact that Younger Brother #1 has astigmatism and the family has a history of mental disorders, pushes me to a more naturalistic conclusion).

One day, Younger Brother #1 and Younger Brother #2 are in the living room. YB1, as he tells it, was watching a spirit by the window. Eventually, it leaps out the window. Just as it leaps out the window, the blinds shake. YB1 sees the blind shakes, and YB2 confirms it. As far as I know, everyone else believes them.

I told all o’ ’em I didn’t. I told them I don’t believe it was a spirit, and that, if the blinds moved, something else must of happened to them (and they say that the window wasn’t open).

Mama was the one to say that the only reason I thought that was because I don’t believe in the supernatural in the first place. I had been momentarily at a loss because the only reason anyone else would believe it is if 1) they were supernaturally inclined and 2) probably if they were Christian. I don’t see someone from another religion (a religion that precludes contact with spirits, for example) believing my brothers either.

But on this vein, I had to think, was I engaged in circular reasoning (those words weren’t used exactly)? Then I thought… No, there’s nothing that helps me believe it more other than it’s my brothers saying it. There is that for my disbelief: my brothers could be lying, accidentally or otherwise, or the movement of the blinds was caused by something else.

I told Mama something along those lines, and she asked me, why would my brothers lie? The most common reason people lie with wild tales is so they can embellish a story. We’ve all done it, I’ve done it, your great-great-grandmother done it. And what’s this embellishment in the eyes of a great many believers? Truth Not untrue. To the nonbelievers? A lie. A bit unbelievable.

Unless my brothers say otherwise, I will never know the ultimate truth. But the story above being truth hinges on your beliefs and whether my brothers are reliable in this context. Do you believe? Why or why not?

To tackle #3’s insight on atheist circular reasoning from Conservapedia is especially hilarious: They say that Muslims (as well as atheists) engage circular reasoning:

They argue that the Qur’an is true because it is the Word of Allah, that it is the Word of Allah because it says so, and that we can rely on it because it is true.

suppresed 1suppresed 2suppresed 3

Okay, I’ll stop. But that is absolutely knee-slapping for anyone. But this makes it even better:

Person 1:”He is very ugly.”

Person 2: Why do you say that?”

Person 1: “Because he is so unattractive.”

Yea, that’s circular logic, but NO ONE DOES THAT. If you have someone saying someone else is unattractive nine times out of nine they can give you a list of reasons. “Because he is” is quickly dismissed. I know it’s just an example but of what goes on in circular reasoning, but it was terrible.

All in all, that was only a few ways the religious accuse atheists of being religious. Well, let me make clear, some religious folks accuse some atheists of being religious. Also, in defending their beliefs, I don’t know any atheists who simply start of with god is nonexistent (but instead start with the Bible is inaccurate, contradictory, and untrue), but also I don’t know many believers who simply start with God exists (but that the Bible is mostly accurate and true, or completely accurate and true if you view it as a combination of metaphor, human error, and literal prose; or certain supposedly supernatural events can be explained by the god and spirits of the Bible working in the natural world).

Also, Answers in Genesis is a terrible website. I could write years on that place alone, but the whole Atheists are just like Believers bit was getting on my nerves. If we are so alike, how could anyone say atheists are wrong?

 

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3 thoughts on “When the Religious accuse Atheists of Being Religious”

  1. I visited one of the sites and I saw this

    There is no God.
    Miracles are the supernatural work of God.
    Therefore, miracles are impossible.
    The Bible contains reports of miracles.
    Therefore, the Bible contains legendary material or historical misrepresentations.
    Therefore, the Bible cannot be trusted.
    Therefore, there is no evidence for God.
    Therefore, there is no God.

    and to the best of my knowledge, I don’t think any atheist would reason in such a manner. No one starts an argument by a conclusion in the premises. The fellow set out to say atheists are involved in circular reasoning and ends by creating a strawman. Am not saying atheists may not indulge in circular reasoning, it’s a problem of reasoning that befalls our species, am saying his example is a bad one.

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