A REQUEST TO ALL (A)THEISTS. PLEASE…

STOP WRITING WITHOUT RESPECT!

Most atheists know what it is to be theists, we had no choice but to be brought up in religious societies. This was the world around us. As we grew older, and were able to make our own choices, we chose to leave those religions. But that does not mean we forgot what lIfe as a believer was like.

On the other hand, few believers were brought up as non-believers. There are some, of course, but generally that was a family decision, not a societal one. There are very few truely atheist societies in our world. Choosing to leave behind family beliefs and take on societal beliefs is much easier than the other way around. One is joining the larger group, the other is choosing to be a group of one. There is no such thing as a group atheistic belief system. People develop their own beliefs prior to finding others who believe similarly to them. Not the same as them, just similarly. No two atheists believe exactly the same, because no one tells us how to become an atheist. It is a personal journey.

So what I am requesting is for theists to stop writing about who you think atheists are, write about yourselves. Whatever religion you profess, and there are many to choose from, write what you know. That way you seem wise. Write about what you do not know, and you open yourself up to looking like a fool.

As for atheists, please let us keep the peace. If a religious writer is writing about their own religion, please give them the freedom to do so. This is a matter of respect. Give them respect, and maybe they will return it. In time, the maybe will disappear. However, if a religious writer does persist in writing about atheists, and openly showing they do not understand who atheists are, then it is your choice to challenge the fallacies they try to promote. They are saying they do not respect us enough to find out if what they are writing is true, or just a continuation of what they want to believe is true. Correcting their errors, if they persist in spreading them, gives us the right to challenge them.

This is all a matter of respect. Offer them respect, and if they accept it, and return it, please leave them be. If however they choose disrespect, and keep on writing their falsehoods, it is your choice to correct them if you so desire. Please, though, do it with respect. As for theists, please challenge those atheist writers who offer no respect to you.

These are my thoughts, take them for what they are worth to you.

Thank you for reading my request.

 

Advertisements

Author: rawgod

Still a Hippie, and proud of it. Have my BSW, now retired. Would have preferred to be a Dr. of Philosophy, but the university I went to wouldn't let me study my own philosophy. Your gain, their loss. I live on the edge of society with my partner, five cats, a broodmare, and a three year-old filly who might make her racing debut this coming summer or fall. Remember the name, Tricksy T Clanton.

70 thoughts on “A REQUEST TO ALL (A)THEISTS. PLEASE…”

  1. The only time I engage is when they tag atheism and spreading their half truths. I do try to be respectful because I understand where they are coming from. However, it was a jolt of frankness that made me ponder outside religious leanings. It gets old tiptoeing around their feelings because they can’t stand on their own merits. Hence, laws to protect a feeling are enacted to the benefit of the delusion.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laws made by religious folk, yes. And I cannot ignore the need to prosthelytize, which is also a lack of respect for a person’s beliefs previous to the prosthelytizer coming along. For the most part religious people have no respect for anyone’s beliefs unlike their own. But yet, I think there has to be a ground somewhere that we can meet with respect, and if there isn’t one, we need to create it. We know they won’t.
      It is a very fine line to draw, and not an easy one–but a necessary one, I think.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I tend to agree with most of what you wrote. No “battles” are going to be won — on either side — by calling people names or insulting their intelligence.

    Let’s say a believer offers her/his thoughts on the bible. However, because these “thoughts” have been presented a gazillion times before to the non-believer, s/he “reacts” with anger/frustration/annoyance/etc. instead of simply offering reasons — and sources — for disagreeing.

    I do understand that (as Jim says) tip-toeing around the issue may not accomplish much. But every person is different and it’s important that we take that into consideration.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes it is, but I think sometimes we respond with more emotion than is necessary, even I do that. But in the end it just causes the division to get wider.
      There can never be a meeting of the twain between belief and non-belief, that is a place for agnostics.

      Like

    2. Oops, wasn’t finished that thought. Sorry.
      …if gods had never been invented, there would be no need for non-belief. But gods were invented, and that necessitates non-belief, or conformity to belief. Most of us cannot walk that path, we have tried it9 and found it untenable. All that truly leaves is atheism, if you want to take a stand. We: you, I, most of the people we know, need to take that stand. But we are still humans, still living beings. As long as we are the minority, it is incumbent upon us, in my mind, to fight peacefully and respectfully.
      Maybe I’m taking this too far, but if the divide gets too great, peace becomes impossible. We are going to overcome belief in the final chapters, and in the next installation, but only if we remain neutral today. Only if we can get past today. In our present world that is no longer a sure thing…
      These are my thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Like everything, it is about respecting others, live and let live. One thing you said is very wise, and is something I had not thought about in this way before: “No two atheists believe exactly the same, because no one tells us how to become an atheist. It is a personal journey.” That is quite true … those of us who suspend belief each do so for our own reasons and in our own way. Our journey is made alone.

    This issue is like many others. Of abortion, I say that if you believe abortion is wrong, then don’t have one … nobody is forcing you. But don’t tell me that I can’t, simply because you think it’s wrong. Same with religion. If you believe all the hullaballoo in the bible, the quran or the torah, fine, but understand that I do not. To me, it isn’t much different than the story of Cinderella, and that is my right.

    Good post.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you, Jill,
      You are right that my words talk to any issue that divides, and that includes politics. Defending our own beliefs is often necessary, but to force our beliefs on others is wrong in every way. There is no reason we cannot deal with any other with respect. If if one side refuses to respect the other does not give the other side reason to use force.

      Liked by 2 people

            1. Did I not answer this question for you Jill? My apologies. So do I feel we will ever be able to share this planet peaceably. Two years ago I would have answered an unequivocal yes. I believed that with every fibre of my being. Now, between Trump and climate disasters, I can no longer say that. We probably do not have time enough for peace. If Trump does not succeed in starting a nuclear war, climate disasters may. And if the disasters are big enough, nuclear war might not be necessary to bring the end of humanity.
              But hopefully life itself will survive and start anew. Then there may be peace of another kind. I can hope…

              Liked by 1 person

    1. Exactly, though it is not easy to do. I really cannot stand to come across posts where the writer does not understand atheism, but instead, possibly uwittingly, tells falsehoods about who we are. So I comment on their blogs, telling them that, but rather than asking what a real atheist is like, they insist they are describing real atheists, then quoting the bible as if atheists now have not changed in 2000 years. Believers have not changed in 2000 years, so why would anyone else?
      I know it is seldom possible to make anyone understand what they are more than happy to misunderstand, but I try. I try to do it with respect, but according to them respect only goes one way. We have to respect believers, but there is no reason for them to respect us. After all, they are chosen of their god.
      This comment is to blow off steam, but I’ll see if it creates more steam than was blown off…

      Liked by 1 person

    1. If I understand what you are trying to say, you are claiming to have an open mind. Yet you end every statement with a quote. As I just intimated, I am not impressed by quotes, I am impressed by thinking for oneself–saying for yourself what you want to say. Right now I am guessing, and I can just as easily be misunderstanding you as understanding you. It is a feeling I personally do not like.

      Like

      1. Well, 1. I do not end every statement with quote and when I do it is usually to assist, much like many people uses references.. I can assure you that I do not need words of others to express my thoughts
        2. I am not here to impress you but merely to share my views with a friend… once spoken I will move on with my life… it seems, however, that you have taken a issue with my views or me and are concentrating on that instead of the subject matter… I will stop short of using the word “troll”… 🙂
        3. if you are having trouble understanding, perhaps you should move on also, as I have done because I do not know how much longer I will be in this mortal world and I will not waste a great deal of that that time trying to talk to someone who will not listen… 🙂 I will not end this conversation using a quote, by the way.. 🙂

        Like

        1. Well, we certainly do not seem to understand each other. And it was nice to hear your thoughts. The thing is, I cannot take issue with either you or your views because I do not know what they are. What is your subject matter? If I understood that I might know how to respond. Moving on just because I do not understand is not an option for me. However, if it is for you I will respect your wish.For all I know, we are on the same side, and being as we read some of the same bloggers I expect that is true. But the truth is I truly don’t know, but that does not make you useless to me. It makes me want to understand.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. Just read this. I think everyone’s personal journey through life will have a ‘belief’ quotient alongside it. As you say, rg, it will be different for everyone.
    Respect for belief systems other than one’s own, is fundamental to finding joyful common goals that support each other. Picking apart belief systems creates a division that results in fear and loathing.
    I have no religion of any kind any more. They were chains around my neck. 😊

    Like

  5. It’s always been a turnoff to me when I’ve seen atheists who seem to take delight in being as offensive as possible in ridiculing religion and those who believe in it. It shuts down discourse and just seems to confirm, in the mind of the believer, that the atheist is the enemy of God. Maybe some are reached that way, but I think the majority of the religious are reached by meeting them where they’re at and helping them.

    Like

    1. I might be out of place here, but are atheists really out to change theists into atheists, or are they just wanting to be understood? What most people want is to be understood, but when you continually read things about yourself that are decidedly untruths, they get to you. Most of us have been theists at some point in our lives, and we have some inkling of what we were like. Very few theists have ever been atheists, and so have no understanding of what we are like. Yet they presume to tell us who we are. Why cannot they just forget we exist and talk about their religion amongst themselves. Ignore us, and most of us will ignore them. Lie about us, and we cannot allow the lies to go unchallenged.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. All too often, I just see insults with seemingly no aim but to try to get a laugh out of someone else who agrees already or a negative reaction from the believer. I’m active in an atheist Meetup group, and the vast majority either never believed or stopped believing when they were children, so I don’t really see that most atheists have an understanding of what a believer’s life is like. Granted, my experience is limited so it’s not necessarily representative of what most atheists think, feel or behave like, but that’s been the same experience when visiting atheist bulletin boards online. I have a lot of trouble finding anyone who was a believer in adulthood.

        Like

        1. Try Jim, the Common Atheist, or Nan of Nan’s Notebook. Both were believers in their adult years. So, I’m sure, were others. There is no set time or age to become an atheist, it happens when you are ready to accept that gods make no sense. As long as gods make sense to someone, I don’t expect them to change completely. Agnosticism is a place where you can go in either direction.

          Liked by 2 people

        2. While indoctrination tends to start very early in life, this doesn’t mean every individual will accept the teachings and “automatically” become a Christian. Many (like myself) didn’t put on the rose-colored glasses until I was in my 20’s. Thank goodness I took them off several years later!

          While adult conversions are probably not as common (primarily due to the indoctrination mentioned above), it does happen. And believe me, we DO understand the “believer’s” life.

          Like

          1. I wasn’t insulted by your comments at all, but thank you. The Meetup I visit is one for skeptics of any sort. Most of the people who attend are atheists, but we discuss skepticism about other things like “law of attraction,” acupuncture, etc.

            Like

          2. The fact that you refer to having religion as wearing “rose-colored glasses” tells me you haven’t a clue about my experience. It was never a positive thing. You don’t know me, my life, and my upbringing, so it’s preposterous for you to think you–and even more so, you and others–understand “the believer’s life.” You understand YOUR experience with religion. Period.

            Like

            1. Calmly, please, SW. No one is attacking you, or anyone else. Nan is just someone who became a believer as an adult, then returned to being a non-believer. You said you had not met many such people.
              I also suggested having a look at The Common Atheist’s blog. He was brought up religious and lasted that way till his 50s before he opted out!
              You are right no one knows your experience, nor do you know anyone else’s. That’s just life.

              Liked by 1 person

        3. Dear Stoic Wannabe,
          I am just re-reading this old post, and the comments it inspired. I think I owe you an apology (though I do not know if you were insulted by any of my words). I too detest when “atheists delight in being as offensive as possible in ridiculing religion and those who believe in it.” They make all atheists look bad, just as those theists who hate loudly make all theists look bad. That is exactly what I was trying to address in my post. Thank you for writing.
          What is the atheists Meetup group?

          Liked by 1 person

  6. If someone is presented with evidence that flatly refutes the basis for their theological ideology and still insists in proselytizing the same rubbish, and especially where it involves the abuse and indoctrination of kids, the subjugation of individuals, and has a direct impact on society then such people are due no respect at all, I’m afraid, and need to be called out for exactly what they are.
    Pussy-footing around is tantamount to tacitly given such people the ‘Okay’ to continue.

    Like

    1. While this is true to us, they afe unable to see it that way. There is no way to prove to them what we see clearly ourselves. To take away their beluefs by force will not work, it will only make them resist all the harder. We have more jope to change them by being good role models. Using force puts us at their level. IMO we have to show them we can beat them at their own game. We know how to love our neighbours. They do not! They can win the battles; we must win the war.

      Like

      1. I never suggested to ” take away their beli(u) efs by force ” .

        I consider I am a good role model. I am moral and I don’t think I am (that much of) a hypocrite,

        ”Using force puts us at their level.”
        There you go again. I never once suggested using force. What a ridiculous thing to say.

        You cannot beat them at their own game because the game they play is profoundly different ad very often immoral
        Furthermore, based on the tales from deconverts, most if not all come to realise their position is untenable on their own, and it cannot be forced upon them.
        By calling them out one can hope that some of those listening or reading along will take the time to begin to ask the right questions and do some research on their own.

        Like

        1. What is force, Ark? I’m not talking guns and violence, I’m just talking telling people they are wrong, “calling them out” as you put it.
          Keep being a good role model, that is more inportant than anything else, IMO.

          Like

            1. As I said originally, it causes them to build up their defences. I do not want to argue with you, Ark, I am just giving my viewpoint on what I see going on in this world. We are on the same side, just with different visions of how to make a dent in how other people see the world. Your act is overt, mine is subversive. You want giant bites, I want nibbles.
              I look to Stephen Biko, who nibbled away at apartheid in South Africa. The white authorities didn’t realize what he was doing until it was too late. In less than ten years before he was assassinated he changed his world. This is what I am about. The situation is totally different, but the efficavity of his methods speak to me in ways no other form of rebellion/revolution does. The number of deaths were minimal, all caused by the whites. Still the blacks and other coloureds won. That was impressive!

              Like

              1. Of course most double down. I am fully aware of this. It is to the ones in the background reading along that one can hope to reach, or at least ignite a tiny spark.

                Apartheid would have disintegrated with or without Biko or Mandela.
                As Agent Smith once remarked.
                ”It is the sound of inevitability”

                Like

                1. How long is “inevitability”? It is inevitable that religions will fall too. But what makes things fall is people, people who have vision, a vision that the world can be better.
                  Right now the world is getting worse. How long do we have to wait for the inevitable? I take the long view, as Biko did. Change the world one person at a time, without the person even realizing they are being changed. The long view can be millennia, or it can be 10 years. We don’t have millennia, but we still have 10 years, hopefully.

                  Like

                  1. I donpt believe the world is getting worse.
                    Some ares yes, but overall no.
                    Humans live longer for a start and that in itself should tell you heaps!

                    Apartheid died because it was a political inevitability, much like slavery.
                    And yes, religions ( as we know them) will eventually fall as well. All part of human growth.

                    I don’t side with the doom and gloom camp.
                    However , you are more than welcome to wallow in this somewhat miasmic negativity if it makes you feel good.

                    Like

                    1. Never saw Hair.
                      I think progress is being made as every comment leads one to a new thought.

                      For example, why do you think the world is getting worse?
                      And worse than what?
                      Are you prepared to give examples?

                      Like

                    2. Starting through the 50s and extending through the 60s civil rights stumbled forward so that people of different colours or genders improved their ability to get along peacably and respectfully. Many of those advances have now turned around, and racism and bigotry are becoming loud and pervasive again.
                      Roe vs Wade be, ame possible. The environment became a major concern. Before those advancements it was ok for the KKK to kill people of colour. Women had no control of their breeding choices. Exploitation of natural resources was the norm. Now its cops killing people of colour. State governments are taking away women’s choices. Carbon is being released into the air at unbelievable rates. This world may not be dying, but life is. And that includes humanity. The Earth could become a giant desert devoid of all life. If you don’t think this is a possibility that is up to you. As of our present time I think it is a probability, even though I won’t be around to see it happen.

                      Like

                    3. Yes, these things are a reality in some countries, but there are many countries where these things are not major factors.

                      Again, you are buying into a totally negative perspective and this only fuels more negativity.
                      This is bad for one’s mental and physical health.

                      There are plenty of things worthy of celebration which does not involve sticking one’s head in the sand.
                      Humans are a species that will survive.
                      Survive, evolve and come out the other end better.

                      Like

                    4. Why bother, Ark? Be real! If you have something to say, say it. I tried to get you to stop talking when our conversation was going nowhere, but you insisted, so against my better judgment i obliged. It has not gone anywhere yet. Your vision is meaningless to me, my vision is meaningless to you. Why not agree to disagree?

                      Like

                    5. Why so tetchy?
                      Nan is referring to certain religious fundamentalists that we regularly engage with.
                      I am sure you have at least some idea who she is referring to?
                      If not ask Nan, and I’m sure she will drop a hint or two.

                      Like

                    6. IMO, in most cases the “guilty” know who they are without “naming names.” Remember that old saying? “If the shoe fits … “

                      Like

                    7. All depends. was s/he talking about me, since we could not agree on anything today, or was she talking about “others,” as she said. Doesn’t mean much to me either way, We are 359 degrees apart, I did not want to be in a conversation with her, and she would not let go. Remember, shoes fit anyone who have similar feet, as long as the feet are slightly smaller than the shoes. I have nothing to be guilty for, my viewpoint is my viewpoint…

                      Like

                    8. All depends. was s/he talking about me, ….

                      Of course I wasn’t talking about <em<you, for the gods’ sake!

                      Just to put your mind at rest and your somewhat fragile ego back in the box: Do the names John Branyon and Colorstorm ring any bells?
                      There, now you can feel better once again, all right?

                      Like

                    9. It was a spot of humour.
                      It seems you were hiding behind the door when the Creator of the Universe was handing out the ”Chuckle Tokens”.

                      Tell me, are your Top Ten favorite films all disaster, and dystopian movies?

                      Like

                    10. I would have to say your head is in the sand, not mine, but your reality is not my reality. I don’t depend on inevitability except as a theory. Given enough time everything and anything is inevitable. But if we don ‘t deal with reality, we will never have time for anything to be inevitable. We will run out of time. We will run out of life.Your rose-coloured glasses are nice, but I prefer to use my uncovered eyes.
                      This is how serious about what I am hearing from you, and is not intended as an insult. You might as well depend on God as inevitability, they are one and the same. This world is constructed on chaos. Accidents happen. Good people die, and their ideas disappear with them.
                      It was only 3 years ago I thought a new spirituality was inevitable. I firmly belueved that humanity would come around, four of five thousand years max, much less if we were lucky. That vision went out the window after a year of Trump!

                      Like

                    11. Ah … so much of this doom and gloom hinges around an arse-hat like Trump.
                      Well, a generation ago people were quaking in their boots about the threat of nuclear war between the US and Soviet Russia.

                      Almost every year/decade there is another threat and yet we are still here.

                      Before long oil will be in short supply or simply too expensive to drill.
                      Do you think industry will grind to a halt?
                      Of course not.
                      Do you not believe cures for all killer diseases will be found?
                      Of course they will be.
                      We are a dynamic species. We adapt, we evolve, and yes, part of this evolving is destructive – horrendously so at times. But we are built to survive and we overcome setbacks. We always have.
                      If this were not the case we would have gone extinct already.
                      We may be fragile, but we are tenacious and we will out do ourselves in every arena.
                      Spirituality is a meaningless term and holds too many connections to religious nonsense – higher powers, soul, transcendence and other silly terms.
                      And Trump will be voted out of power just like every President before him.

                      Perhaps you ought to stop and smell the roses on occasion?
                      Would do you good.
                      .

                      Like

                    12. The roses smell quite good, but they aren’t as strong as the carbon monoxide you can’t smell.
                      Trump is not a phenomenon all on his own, he has given white supremicists and evangelicals the freedom to be themselves without caring if they hurt others.
                      Republicans have gerrymandered electoral ridings so that they are going to have to piss a lot of people off in order to lose.
                      Just because we survived everything so far does not mean we are going to survive everything. The dinosaurs survived for millions of years (fortunate for them humans weren’t around yet), we have survived just over 100,000 years. You take a lot of things on faith.
                      Spirituality does not have anything to do with gods or souls or other things that cannot be seen to exist. It is about the connections that exist between all living things.
                      Trump is capable of suspending all elections. He has already cooked the Supreme Court to be his tool, the electoral college as well.He is a megalomaniac. Do you really think he will be as easy to get rid as Elizabeth May?
                      I can smell your roses. But I can also smell the shit that is covering our Earth inch by inch. You think all I can see is doom and gloom? You know nothing.
                      Keep smelling your roses, Ark. They’ll be dying in another month.

                      Like

                    13. Just because we survived everything so far does not mean we are going to survive everything.

                      Of course not. We might get hit by a bloody great asteroid or get fried when the sun runs out of fuel.

                      But I’m sure Jesus will come and save us before that happens.

                      You take a lot of things on faith.

                      Sorry, I’m not in the least religious so I take nothing on faith.

                      Yep, Trump will be gone within five years.

                      Spirituality does not have anything to do with gods or souls or other things that cannot be seen to exist. It is about the connections that exist between all living things.

                      You mean like the Force?
                      Where’s Yoda when you need him, right?

                      Actually the weather is warming up nicely down here and my roses are just beginning to show signs of budding.

                      Like

                    14. BTW, listen to the Hair soundtrack on YouTube. It is as relevent today as it was in the 60s. Parts are dated, but ignore those. Listen to the underlying messages…

                      Like

                    15. Hair had a huge impact in the late 60s. At least four were number 1 hits when covered by other musicians. No singles were ever released by the Original Broadway Cast of Hair. Meanwhile a lot of songs from the 60s are only memories today for us who were there, but that does not mean they are not relevent today, just unknown to later generations.

                      Like

                    16. And what exactly do you consider the lasting impact Hair had?
                      Aside from the song Age of Aquarius I can’t think of much else that had any sort of genuine impact. And when I say impact I mean in terms of the song’s longevity.
                      It was a the end of the Hippy Movement.
                      From a social point of view Elvis and the Beatles had a more profound impact.

                      Like

                    17. You certainly ask a lot of questions, trying to keep me on the defensive. It’s about time for you to become offensive, since you seem to be so good at it.

                      Like

                    18. I’m not sure I would consider humans ‘living’ longer to be a positive thing, given their propensity for destruction. I have to agree with rg here … the world IS getting worse, at least by my own definition of better vs worse. There is more hate and anger, far less tolerance and compassion among people. But, given the fact that the masses are largely ignoring the warnings about the effects of climate change, the human race is on the path to extinction, most likely by the end of this century. Hopefully other, more honourable species, will survive.

                      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s