Friday, March 4, 2011
Okay magx01, why are you an atheist?
Well, the answer is quite simple, really. All of the arguments put forth thus far, and all of the evidence I have examined, has been entirely unconvincing. This, combined with the fact that the classical philosophical arguments (such as the cosmological argument and the teleological argument/argument from design) put forth have been refuted, and the various scriptures shown to contain scientific and historical innacuracies, as well as the simple fact that second hand recorded and non/barely externally validated oral history does not meet the burden of proof to establish supernatural events. The whole thing is just filled with logical inconsistencies, and there are too many questions that are met with insufficient answers for my liking.
Essentially, what it boils down to is this: if something as grandiose as a theistic worldview cannot be based on empirically validated data and observation, then I see no reason to adopt one. Therefore, the only reasonable position to take, as far as I see it, is one of the non believer. And I will remain as such until either I die, or something is able to definitevely prove the theistic point of view. I'll stop there, since I'd need a lot more time to really explain it all. I think you get the idea.
Tell us about the people around you, and their reactions to you being a heath- er...., an atheist
.......I caught that.
Anyways I was raised by catholic parents, and as such, was put into catholic schools and forced to go to church. I had doubts most of the way through. Bascially, I do not reacall ever having shared the beliefs of the people around me, and this only grew as I aged and came to better understand the ideas being taught to me.
I stated that I was an atheist between the ages of 12-13. My parents still forced me to take the sacrament of confirmation, even though doing it under duress negates the entire thing. I told them as much but well...that got me nowhere. I was forced to go to catholic high school after that (had attended catholic elementary school prior to High School) despite my protestations. I wanted to go to a public school, but ''only bad kids'' go there.....*sigh* Not like my catholic school was full of angels, including myself :)
When I told my parents I did not believe in god, my mother told me I was silly and being stupid, and my father threatened to kick me out of the house. He looked VERY angry; barely restraining himself from physical violence. Damn hypocrites. They don't even go to church and know very little about their religion. And of course, they exhibit very few of the qualities supposedly espoused by their religion. Yet these christmas catholics felt as though I needed to proclaim myself a catholic in order to, I don't know, be a ''normal'' person? They never really made it clear to me. I don't think they truly knew themselves.
Oh....wow. I'm sorry. Well, how's your relationship with them now, at the age of 29?
There isn't one. We don't speak. It's not related to this issue though, There are longstanding issues. Essentially, it boils down to the fact that my mother is a terrible person, my father has no spine, and they both disagreed with my choice in woman (non italian). No great loss there. We can't even really hold a conversation due to the generation gap, huge education gap, and much, much differentiation in viewpoints, on basically every issue imaginable. Plus, they were physcially and mentally abusive.
So, in short, fuck 'em.
Yikes. I'm sorry to hear that. Maybe one day.......?
Most likely no.
Oh. Well, moving on. What about the other people in your life?
As for the rest of my family....my brother is an atheist as well, but he's a ''believe in belief'' kind of guy and doesn't think much at all about these things.
My wife was a Catholic for as long as I knew her, until a couple of years ago, when the question of baptism (our then in utero daughter) arose, and I had to really vocalize my thoughts (religion basically never came up, although she knew I was an atheist and was fine with it). Once that happened, she found herself feeling a twinge. She hadn't really thought her beliefs through, and when she heard my arguments, she was compelled to investigate further, although she did not reveal this at first. We had a series of discussions over many weeks, and then she talked to her church choir friends, and, to her surprise, found out that one was secretly atheist, one had major doubts, and only one was still a true believer.
About a week later I came home from work to find her reading my copy of The God Delusion. Three days later, she told me, in so many words, that she was a deist. She ended up baptising our daughter just the same, because her mother cried at the prospect of us not doing it (due to fear of limbo, even though that was basically abandoned by the Vatican...which she didn't beleive happened, even when we showed her news stories). Fast forward a bit, and now, she seems to rebound back and forth between being a deist and an atheist but refuses to vocalize it in those terms. Really, I don't exactly know where she stands. It's rather unclear. She's still figuring things out, but she 100% no longer believes in catholicism nor a personal, intervening god.
My granparents are pretty religous, as are my aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. I had to tell my grandparents, since I was not going to be attending Hannnah's (my daughter) baptism, and it went surprisingly....okay...for the most part. My grandfather insisted I had to believe, but my grandmother told him it was ok, and get this, ''I saw it on tv, lots of people are like this now!'' (she's so cute). Now, my whole family knows. I don't think it's a terribly popular viewpoint.
My best friend is an atheist as well, and, like me, he also holds antitheistic views. He's the one person in my life who's thoughts on this subject line up very well with mine.
Two of my other friends are also atheists. One of my best friends for many years is/was a christian, but he and I no longer speak (not because of religion....not at all; he turned out to be a liar and a selfish asshole). He and I used to have some pretty good discussions, and I miss that. He was always cool with my probing, and was also quick to strike right back. The only aggrivating thing was, he had a tendency to sort of shrug off anythig that he couldn't answer, and tended to regress to the ''it's a faith thing'' argument when this happened. I always hated that, and stated as much.
Well, I'm sorry about the family situation. Anything else to add?
Nope, that's all for now. Thanks for reading. Now get out!