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Quote# 82476

I was raised in a secular home, and surrounded by atheistic propaganda from an early age, whether it be from school or the media. Unsurprisingly, I became an atheist at the age of 12.

As the years passed and I truly tried to understand the world around me, I discovered a horrifying truth that had been hidden from me, hidden from everyone[...]

Atheists often say that they can truly live a happy, fulfilling life. Yet this is a lie, a deception which damns millions of souls to darkness.

While you revealed much in your articles, you have not destroyed the root.

Simply put, atheism destroys the possibility of personal identity, choice, and objective and subjective meaning.

Atheism inescapably leads to naturalism, and from naturalism follows atheism’s great skeleton which its followers try to keep hidden; determinism.

Determinism is inescapable if one is a naturalist, as all that exists is material and has come about by purely natural processes.

This means then, that the mind of man, our greatest treasure, is reducible to material bound by physical laws; namely, our thoughts, feelings, and actions are reducible to reactions of chemicals in the brain.

Few people realize, then, that this destroys all that makes us human. Namely; if our thoughts, feelings, and actions are simply chemical reactions in the brain, those reactions are simply the by-products of prior reactions forming an unbreakable chain which leads to the very beginning of the universe.

This means then, that whatever we do, we do because we have to. We cannot do anything other than what we do, it simply isn’t possible.

All actions are the result of prior actions in an unbreakable chain. We are no different than a cog in a watch or a falling domino.

There is no difference between the embrace of a loving husband and the violence of a vicious rapist, the actions of a doctor trying to save a life and the mass murderer who kills at whim, the actions of our greatest leaders and the inaction of a lazy sluggard.

Both are totally the same in atheism.

creation.com, "Suicidal atheist converts to Christianity" 112 Comments [7/9/2011 4:35:06 AM]
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Nathan

"There is no difference between the embrace of a loving husband and the violence of a vicious rapist, the actions of a doctor trying to save a life and the mass murderer who kills at whim, the actions of our greatest leaders and the inaction of a lazy sluggard.

Both are totally the same in atheism."

WTF? I mean, WTF?

Sigh...

7/9/2011 4:44:22 AM

Towey

serial killing doctors and loving but rapist husbands.

7/9/2011 4:45:59 AM

derpmaster

Hrmm yes a slightly more frilly, literate version of "atheists have no morals because they have no God and thus life is meaningless to them and why don't they just go around rapin' and murderin' and blah blah blah".

I also highly doubt Mr. ex-atheist here was "surrounded by atheist propaganda" at school before age 12.

7/9/2011 5:01:48 AM

Jezebel's Evil Sister

That's NOT how atheism works!

7/9/2011 5:04:24 AM

Brain_In_A_Jar

All actions are the result of prior actions in an unbreakable chain. We are no different than a cog in a watch or a falling domino.

The point is, though it seems entirely plausible that we are just cogs in a determinate machine, we still don't feel like cogs. If we did, you'd never have written this apparent assertion that you are not one. Free will is very probably an illusion but, if so, it is a perfect illusion; it is indistinguishable from "the real thing," and there are some who would argue that that might even mean that the illusion is the real thing.

There is no difference between the embrace of a loving husband and the violence of a vicious rapist, the actions of a doctor trying to save a life and the mass murderer who kills at whim, the actions of our greatest leaders and the inaction of a lazy sluggard.

Both are totally the same in atheism.


Aww, you were actually doing quite well until you wrote this shite. None of this follows at all from anything you wrote before it. There is a moral difference between a rapist and a non-rapist, and you can evidently perceive it, otherwise you wouldn't have used them as an example; all the determinacy argument says is that the deterministic mechanism of your brain, based on its extant configuration, could have produced no other thought, under the same conditions, than the one that it obviously did, i.e. "one of these things is bad and the other is good."

If it rains today, and you decide, of your own volition, not to go out because you don't feel like getting wet right now, determinism just means that it was always going to rain today, and you were always going to not feel like getting wet right now and so decide not to go out. That doesn't mean you somehow didn't really make the decision, or that the feeling of an aversion to rain doesn't exist.

Some people seem to think of determinacy as meaning everything was fixed independently of everything else, as if they would still have decided not to go outside because it was raining today, even if it wasn't raining, or even if there wasn't an outside! It doesn't work like that. The rain still has to be there, you still have to be there, the outside still has to be there, in that exact configuration, for you to make that predetermined action. If it were not, you could have decided something else, and you would have done.

7/9/2011 5:06:42 AM

Selkie

Word salad with a side of light blue cheese. Hold the croutons.

7/9/2011 5:12:08 AM

Mapar

"Unsurprisingly, I became an atheist at the age of 12"

Aaannnddddd.... [citation needed]

7/9/2011 5:21:37 AM

Reverend Jeremiah

For someone who claims to have been raised atheist, your idea of atheism sure isnt atheism.

7/9/2011 5:31:04 AM

Psycho Tits

Wait 'til this poor bastard runs aground of the Calvinists. They believe in absolute determinism as dictated by God.

Determinism isn't necessarily the result of atheism. An atheist can still see happenstance and conscious actions as forming a tree or web rather than the more linear links in a chain, so that cause can precede any number of possible effects rather than merely one specific and unalterable effect.

7/9/2011 5:31:23 AM

Doctor Whom

If you're not lying for the Lord (and that's a big "if"), then either you didn't understand that "atheistic propaganda," or it was of extremely low quality.

7/9/2011 5:46:30 AM

Canadiest

Y'know, if you spend a lot of time trying to shoehorn bad values or illogical mindsets into Atheism, then you were never an Atheist.

No God, no religious dogma, no adherance to a church. How hard is that? Not one point you made needs to occur under Atheism or would occur because of it.

7/9/2011 5:57:20 AM



"There is no difference between the embrace of a loving husband and the violence of a vicious rapist."

This self-evidently stupid remark stands out from the rest of the guy's more or less reasonable argument, so why did the wheels come off at this point? I'm guessing he's been faced by some crisis with which his atheism was not robust enough to cope, and that he fled for refuge to the born-agains. Who gave him a story that made sense of whatever it was he'd been through - which is what religion is essentially for.

But the particular story he's been told is false; we can tell, because it makes him lie. The world is full of happy atheists whose moral compass is in perfect working order. It's a pity he has to deny these things, because when he writes

the mind of man, our greatest treasure, is reducible to material bound by physical laws; namely, our thoughts, feelings, and actions are reducible to reactions of chemicals in the brain

he touches on something important. If we are simply bags of chemicals, then our claims to "know" anything are simply the outworkings of a neurological programme which gives us the feeling that we know stuff, and we have no way of telling whether those experiences correspond to what is actually out there (whatever that means). In theism God provides the guarantee that our knowledge is real; take God away and all we can talk about is the content of our own subjectivity. I am not sure what an atheist response to this problem might look like.

7/9/2011 5:57:36 AM

Shadow Phoenix

I may not be an atheist, but I've heard more people leave Christianity because it promotes determinism. Notice how God is responsible for every good thing that ever happens to you?

7/9/2011 5:58:08 AM

Brandy Bogard

@Shadow Phoenix

God is pretty much a gary stu at this point.

7/9/2011 6:13:33 AM

Often Partisan

You can worry about determinism all you like, but that just means your worrying about determinism is determined...

7/9/2011 6:27:18 AM

Noneofyourbusiness

Thoughts and emotions *are* chemical reactions in the brain. What are you going to do, deny reality? This is in no way leads to determinism.

7/9/2011 6:34:40 AM



Atheism. Its not nihilism.

7/9/2011 6:34:53 AM

Berny

"This means then, that whatever we do, we do because we have to. We cannot do anything other than what we do, it simply isn’t possible."

Contrast that with the Christian belief that God has a plan and everyone has a part in it. How much freedom does that offer? In the Christian myth, free will is a red herring. If God has a plan there can be no free will.
The rest of your argument is equally hog slop.

7/9/2011 6:47:38 AM

WWWWolf

> Unsurprisingly, I became an atheist at the age of 12.

Fascinating. What were you before then?

7/9/2011 6:49:14 AM

Doubting Thomas

Atheism is simply non belief in any gods. I think you're putting way too much pseudo-philosophy into it.

I call BS on your claims of being an atheist, especially all the claims of atheistic propaganda. As if that's worse than all the religious brainwashing that goes on in religious homes and in our media.

And if you think that a husband hugging his wife is no different from a violent rapist, then you don't understand atheism at all and are just totally trying to demonize it.

7/9/2011 6:50:12 AM

Brendan Rizzo

Yet another person who does not understand the ramifications of their own religion. One could very easily argue that determinism is required of Christianity, since an omniscient God would know everything that ever happens even before it happens and thus would know the future, making the future unable to be changed. The only reason Christians believe in free will is because they need to believe in free will, otherwise they have no justification for other people being sentenced to eternal damnation in hell. There is no logical way to have both an omniscient God and free will, but fundies believe in free will anyway just because belief in hell is more important to them than logic.

Ironically, if he actually understood the laws of nature, he would understand that naturalism does not imply determinism. That would only be the case if information could never be lost, and it most likely can, due to black holes. There is lots of speculation as to whether or not that information is eventually recoverable, but as of right now there is no reason not to believe in free will. If it turns out otherwise, then just remember that you don't have free will even if God exists. You're screwed over either way.

I still do not understand why thoughts and emotions being chemical reactions makes them unreal or invalid. Would this person stick their hand into a fire on the grounds that pain is just a chemical reaction and is not real? Of course not. Besides, even if there is a God, one's mental processes are still chemical reactions, as the brain exists and has to have some purpose, and neuroscience has already determined this to be true. If God exists, then clearly He is operating via the laws of reality. (On another note, I am honestly surprised that no fundie has gone after memetics yet, as not only would it seriously undermine all religion if it is true, but if it is true then you really can't trust your thoughts, as the memes which reproduce themselves the most quickly are the ones that get accepted, with no regard to whether or not they are true, and in fact memetics seems to favor irrationality over rationality. Of course, since this applies to all thoughts, then how can even skeptics or rationalists know that anything they think is true? How can we know that the principles of logic and the scientific method aren't totally false and are only believed because they propagate themselves well? This genuinely worries me at times, so I am surprised that fundies haven't gone for this very easy target yet.)

7/9/2011 6:55:02 AM

Tolpuddle Martyr


7/9/2011 7:10:50 AM

Mister Spak

"There is no difference between the embrace of a loving husband and the violence of a vicious rapist, the actions of a doctor trying to save a life and the mass murderer who kills at whim,"

No, the doctor does what he does because he is an atheist and therefore has moral standards. The mass murderer does what he does because god told him to, and because he's a christian with no moral standards, he obeys.

7/9/2011 7:29:27 AM

Mrs. Antichrist

So, in order words, you were never actually any atheist, you're merely some asshole posing as a straw man thereof.

7/9/2011 7:38:19 AM

whatever

Actually I identify with a lot of the thoughts and feelings of this person, although their logic has led them to some poor conclusions. I feel that there is more to this Universe than chemicals and "domino" procedural chains, but the nature and identity of the "more" remains enigmatic to those who focus too much on maths and physics. I am agnostic but leaning towards spirituality and even dare I say "spiritualism", but it's a pity this person's questions and doubts have led them to Christianity. The comparisons at the end are tragic. Just my thoughts / word-salad.

7/9/2011 7:49:49 AM
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