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~Zeta~
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PostSubject: Religion Question #1   August 21st 2010, 1:30 am

http://atheism.about.com/od/atheistbigotryprejudice/a/AtheitsHated.htm


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Surveys, such as a study by the University of Minnesota published in American Sociological Review in April 2006, have ranked atheists as the most disliked and distrusted minority group in the country, ranking below recent immigrants, Muslims, and gays and lesbians.


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"Just as America's Jews, Hindus, and Muslims would feel excluded, marginalized, and offended if they were told by their government on a daily basis that the United States is one nation "under Jesus", so do the Atheists feel about their government affirming to them on a daily basis that their country is "under God"




Discuss.



No harm of foul is meant to be towards anyone's religion. Respect it, please.

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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 21st 2010, 2:34 am

I'm a Christian but unlike most of the stereotypical Christians out there, I don't believe in going around saying "FOLLOW THE BIBLE AND BELIEVE IN GOD, OR BURN IN HELL, HEATHEN!" *shakes holy water on you*

To me, you believe what you believe. I believe what believe. You accept it, and I'll accept it. I won't shove my views down your throat --although I will voice opinions, as I'm doing right now--; all I ask is you do the same for me.

TAKE THAT, STEREOTYPE! XD
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Lorika

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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 21st 2010, 6:30 am

If there is a shared trait among atheists it has to be that we don't feel a sense of communion among ourselves. IMO, though it can be labeled as such, atheism's less of a religion, of which a commonly accepted "point" is to gather like-minded people, and is rather a lack of incentive to do so, because ultimately the only reason to "believe" is to avoid the consequences.

So except for those people that like to think about the injustice of contrast between the alien majority and familiar minority, I don't think anyone cares. Atheists don't need to feel defensive because there is nothing to feel defensive about. (As for the apparent hatred toward them among some groups, what can I say? Life's a bitch.)
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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 21st 2010, 11:51 am

aren't the ones forcing that 'law' agnostic though?

atheists could give a rats ass they dont believe in god its not that they want other people not to believe.

but considering our country was found on the basis of religious freedom people should be able to choose whether or not they will say it. not make it so no one can say it.


as for "one nation under jesus" we dont say that because of that reason. Every religion has 'a' god. (atheism and agnostic arent religions because they dont have a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny). It cant be offensive to every religion if we say 'under god'
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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 21st 2010, 1:26 pm

If you let your head wander too far on any given night, and let yourself start thinking about what is and why things are the way they are, the further you go, the less sense it seems to make. There are a lot of things that we just dont understand. Everyone has offered their solutions to why we're here, why the Earth came to be, because people like answers better than questions. The goal in life seems to be to get the answers to the questions that nag you most. People have just come up with those answers because it seems we'll never know in this lifetime. I myself am a believer of god, but im also open minded. I mean, say I believe in god, in the christian form and I get up there and Zeus is standing before me. Im not gonna argue with it. Im just gonna be like, 'Huh. Isn't that something.' And go with it. I think the possibility of there being something greater out there is good, whether its a good or just a race of people who build planets (yay Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) and to be completely honest. I like Hitchhiker's explanation a wayyy lot better than anything I've heard before....
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Lorika

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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 21st 2010, 3:35 pm

There's one thing that article suggests that bothers me. Atheists aren't disliked in America as a consequence of their governmental preferences; they are disliked because the majority (theists) have negatively associated the nonreligious via personal experience and the cultural media. Yes, I would say an outstanding majority of atheists will at some point in their lives directly question a theist friend's beliefs. As long as there are differences between people there will always be prejudice, and discrimination.

Most religious people are insufficiently grounded in their beliefs to be remotely zealous (a number of those that are zealous are likely stubbornly so). They were raised in communities of varying sizes where those beliefs were instilled into them, not because they found God, and God made a lot of sense. Public attitudes toward atheists are bad because the public lacks perspective.

If affronted with a question on what I think of the American government declaring their nation "under God," of course I'd disapprove; but that declaration is a political move to earn the public's trust. It's a fact of real-world interpersonal mechanics - people do things to suit their own purposes - no rant necessary.
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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 21st 2010, 7:09 pm

kmay wrote:
as for "one nation under jesus" we dont say that because of that reason. Every religion has 'a' god. (atheism and agnostic arent religions because they dont have a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny). It cant be offensive to every religion if we say 'under god'

Alright, here's something for you to think about. And of course you probably already know this but I'm not trying to bash anyone, just instill some thinking here. Smile

The Pledge, originally written in 1892, did not include "under god". It went as follows: "I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."

In 1954, the words "under god" were added to the federal version of the Pledge of Allegiance in an effort to distinguish America from The Soviet Union, which was communist at the time. However, the Soviet Union crumbled in 1991, so the need to distinguish America in this way from communists no longer exists. So why are the words "under god" still in the Pledge when there's no longer a need for it? Public interests like promoting patriotism, love and respect for country, and civic responsibility were achieved effectively with the nonreligious Pledge (look above to read it) which was used until 1954.

So I ask all of you: Why do you think the Pledge still includes "under god" when there's no longer a need for it? The Soviet Union is gone, and it publicly rejects the religious views of atheists and having their patriotism brought into question. Atheists, like stated in the OP, are even more hated and distrusted than Muslims (which are supposedly America's "terrorists") according to a study in 2006.

Also, one final note: The Pledge of Allegiance may not be a big deal to you. In fact, it's not that much of a big deal to me either - but it's a relevant point to bring up since it discriminates against the views of Atheists. With a nonreligious and inclusive Pledge, nobody would be offended or feel excluded.
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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 22nd 2010, 12:57 am

Well, as stated previously already, people are always looking for answers, and creating some sort of divine entity to explain the creation of everything that we have ever experienced would be something I could see early man falling prey to. Like people have said in the past: "Look at the human eye, do you think that ANYTHING other than something of a GOD could have created?" Since so little of man's huge questions could be answered by anything of this world, I would suppose that many people must have began to look outward to find a solution for our existence, which is most likely where religion's origins began.

Quote :
Surveys, such as a study by the University of Minnesota published in American Sociological Review in April 2006, have ranked atheists as the most disliked and distrusted minority group in the country, ranking below recent immigrants, Muslims, and gays and lesbians.

I could definitely see this as a reality. Imagine if for 1,000's of years the world held something so dearly, they felt they could not live without it...and then all of a sudden there are people who completely disregard this something as if it were moronic and worthless. The religious majority generally holds their religion this dearly to them (You shall not make for yourself an idol, nor put anything above god - commandment number 2) so when there are people who do not accept these beliefs, the religious party begins to hate them, become insecure around them, form distrust etc. It isn't to just Atheists or anything, when you believe strongly in a religion, you feel that EVERY OTHER RELIGION is not only wrong, but betrays your god. This is what has fueled many wars, and has caused many problems in our society, one of the reasons I originally decided to become an Athiest myself quite a few years back.

Quote :
"Just as America's Jews, Hindus, and Muslims would feel excluded, marginalized, and offended if they were told by their government on a daily basis that the United States is one nation "under Jesus", so do the Atheists feel about their government affirming to them on a daily basis that their country is "under God"
Personally as an Athiest I could care less that in America our national pledge contains this message. Hearing from Dossar that it was appended in the 1950's revokes my thoughts that it has always been there and it should be kept for historical grounds, BUT the majority of America still does believe in a god one way or another, and in a democracy, majority should rule. If they care so much about the pledge that they can't go without having those two religious words within it's scripture, then that's fine by me. As long as I'm not getting scolded by religious nuts that I am a godless heathen and all of that bull crap, then I'm satisfied.

I honestly haven't been in any way been put down by anyone for being an Atheist yet, and ironically the majority of my friends are actually Atheist (not intentionally). I honestly believe that soon enough, the Athiest community will grow quite exponentially as the generations pass, and religion will probably become something of either a minority, or possibly another war will be waged. Who knows...I honestly doubt that the majority of human society will have gained enough intelligence to realize that people should have the right to believe whatever they want, regardless if it goes against their own beliefs.
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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 22nd 2010, 11:14 am

what pisses me off is that for 8 years of my life i had to go to CCD and pray and repent my sins and all that. then i hit high school and no one is saying the pledge or even standing up to say it. I ask them why and they say 'cuz it says under god'. I said "wow your stupid and should stop listening to your left-winged parents" they shut up. Kids just go with whatever they hear because they have no idea to think for themselves, if they see their friend not pledging they wont pledge and eventually it just goes around the school. the funny thing is half of them were Jewish people, one of the more strict religions by me.

the only reason this is a big deal is because of how easily influence people are. I don't "believe in god" but i was raised to. I know that there is a possibility that we evolved from animals (which i strongly believe because i am a person that uses hard facts and evidence to draw conclusions from.

and you guys are all still wrong. Atheists could give a rats ass. Agnostics are the ones forcing this. Atheists are less extreme. they don't believe but they don't care if other people do. Agnostics are the pricks that want to take out "one nation under god" on the currency and from the pledge. They think just because they don't believe that they shouldn't have to see it.

Even if they prove, cold hard facts, fossils and all, that we evolved from primates, people won't stop believing in god and religion. It just something that gives people a feeling of faith and hope. A feeling that if you ask for it and deserve it things will get better. Why would you want to rip that away from people?
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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 22nd 2010, 1:38 pm

Funny how you say that kmay, because you're absolutely right, too many parents use "because I said so and I'm older and I'm your parent blah blah blah" as an explanation as to why they're 'right'. This means that they're teaching their children to not question anything that comes from an authority (this includes teachers, the parents themselves, government, etc.). I don't do the pledge in school not because my classmates ignore it, but because I'm not forced to do it and I personally just find it useless saying something I don't care about. If I was forced to do the pledge, it would be violating my right as a U.S. citizen to the first amendment which states freedom of religion, and also forces me to publicly deny my views on religion as an atheist by saying "under god". I can say the pledge with no problem and not feel offended at all even as an atheist, but if I'm FORCED to do it, then you bet I'm going to be mad because that can imply that you want me to convert.

And another thing about your post, kmay - how do you know that religion is what people really want? Is sucking up to god for your entire life just to go to heaven really a feeling of "faith and hope", or is it just fear of going to hell because God only lays out two choices for you?
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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 22nd 2010, 3:35 pm

lol nononon thats not what i meant. my family has been going through hard times for just about my whole life. and when we pray and go to church we just voice our problems and just gets us through the week. Not for heaven and hell

i dont believe in god, but i dont 'not' believe either. is that makes sense. theres no proof for either theory, but i grew up with it and i know what it does to people, good or bad.
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PostSubject: Re: Religion Question #1   August 24th 2010, 1:52 am

Quote :
It's not just that atheists are hated, though, but also that atheists seem to represent everything about modernity which Americans dislike or fear.

Right here is an excellent specification. People are really afraid to hear and/or see the truth about the present. Offset of everything that has happened in this entire country's past, it is given off as irrelevant because we, who are the people of "today," don't see to appreciate those in which gave their lives for this beautiful country. AND with that being said, most Americans are too stuck in their ways to realize what they have in front of them. So instead of facing it head on, we run in fear. Everyone eventually runs away from a situation. I don't care who you are. You may walk away from a fight so on and so forth. Either which way you look at it, it's all the same. This also is a VERY distinct point in why people are deliberately "against" Atheists.

Quote :
Lead researcher Penny Edgell said that she was surprised by this: "We thought that in the wake of 9/11, people would target Muslims. Frankly, we expected atheists to be a throwaway group." Nevertheless, the numbers are so extreme that she was led to conclude that they are "a glaring exception to the rule of increasing tolerance over the last 30 years." It's not that bigotry and discrimination against Muslims is appropriate, but at least it's not hard to understand where such attitudes would come from.

Can I just ask why it has to be referred to as Muslims that we target? I mean, you see all the time in TV shows, movies, etc. etc. that people target Muslims for the 9/11 attack. In all actuality wasn't it Al Qaeda that bombed us? So what if they were Muslim. Just because of ONE groups mistakes doesn't mean you have to completely throw hands at a RELIGION. I went to school to where the majority of kids were Muslim, believe it or not, and when 9/11 hit, not ONE of them were running around cheering. Most of my friends were actually in shock, awe, and/or crying. Sorry to bring this up, but really it was bugging the shit out of me.

Quote :
Some respondents associated atheism with illegal behavior, like drug use and prostitution: "that is, with immoral people who threaten respectable community from the lower end of the social hierarchy."

Are you fucking serious???? Okay, now I understand that people have their own beliefs and opinions, but this is just ridiculous. Who the hell are you to say that something is illegal when it come to religion, in this case that is. I mean I know if you went to murder someone and said it's because of your faith why you did it, it is clearly bullshit and against the law. But, saying it's illegal to believe in a religion is just outrageous. Not to mention, they bring up a "social hierarchy," which, NO ONE has any ground to speak about that. The social hierarchy has been misinterpreted and misused for YEARS now. To me, that's kind of dead. AND HOW THE HELL CAN YOU COMPARE BELIEVING IN A FAITH TO TAKING DRUGS!?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?! With all due respect, they are two totally different things. This portion of the article really pissed me off. Just saying.

Quote :
Why are atheists being singled out for special hatred and distrust? "What matters for public acceptance of atheists - and figures strongly into private acceptance as well - are beliefs about the appropriate relationship between church and state and about religion's role in underpinning society's moral order, as measured by our item on whether society's standards of right and wrong should be based on God's laws."

...wut? Okay, for a while now, I've wanted to ask this question. Who made the laws of the USA? Oh, that's right, The Constitution: George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe, and James Madison. The Fathers of The Constitution. As time has went on, we have made new laws and regulations to sustain order in our community in which we call the United States of America. Can I ask something? UNITED States.... We are all "united under god" as it says in the Pledge, BUT, why is there murder? Why is there theft? Why is there a complete ordeal of unwanted actions happening against our country WITHIN our country itself if we were all United? Not to mention, WE HAD A CIVIL WAR AFTER THE CONSTITUTION WAS WRITTEN!!! Doesn't that say enough? The laws are law, I get it, but in all seriousness, Atheists/Christians/Catholics/Wiccans/ Protestants/etc. etc. all believe in their OWN faith, their OWN law. That is withing their church or mosque or whatever it is they go to to "pray or worship." That is law to them. So what is more precedented? Sigh...



Okay now on topic... Atheists are Atheists. No one can change who they are. They believe what they believe and that is that. I don't see a problem with them not believing in God, as I don't myself. I am Wiccan. We pray to a Wizard or Witch. Sorcerer or Sorceress. We have different elements we are, etc. etc. I chose this faith because not only was I exposed to it by friends and certain family members, but it intrigued me along with reading about it and understanding it much more than any other religion. I used to be Atheist. I used to get so angry at "God" for taking my mother, grandfather, and grandmother away. I blamed him EVERY single day for it. But, then I came to the realization that things happen for a reason. I do NOT believe in fate, simply because I do not like the idea that my life is not in my own hands. I believe in Destiny. I MAKE my own destiny. Atheists are the exact same way. I am so annoyed at the fact that they were singled out in that article. Why don't they talk about the Catholics/Christians or anyone else that involves reading the Bible? Does anyone know the amount of flaws in that book? Look online and read all about it. You'll see why. It's the same thing with the Torah and Koran, everything has flaws. One major reason why we call it flaws is because it is unexplained and not so much resourceful. We get our history from carvings on walls. Or fossils we find, but does that make it the supreme truth? You could find a cat and a mug on a Pyramid and think, "Oh look, the cat is hungry. Maybe the felines all died because of dehydration." OR, for some CRAZY reason, maybe the people who drew that were like the kids in the toilet stalls writing "call 555-123-4567 for a good time." How do we TRUTHFULLY know that which has led us to believe is the truth? There are so many questions that are unanswered and I honestly don't believe we'll ever truly know the answers to all of them. We have our own beliefs and that's just that. OUR OWN beliefs.

With the Pledge of Allegiance stuff, honestly, I don't think were under anyone. Somewhere in this thread, someone said when this country was founded under some religion. Hold on let me find it:

kmay wrote:
aren't the ones forcing that 'law' agnostic though?

atheists could give a rats ass they dont believe in god its not that they want other people not to believe.

but considering our country was found on the basis of religious freedom people should be able to choose whether or not they will say it. not make it so no one can say it.


as for "one nation under jesus" we dont say that because of that reason. Every religion has 'a' god. (atheism and agnostic arent religions because they dont have a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny). It cant be offensive to every religion if we say 'under god'

Where did you get this information from? Isn't it quite clear that we were NOT the first people to discover the U.S.A.? The Indians were here LONG before us. Do we know what their religion or faith was? No. They had a chief who made all the decisions for them. Not each and every single one of them said, "OMG GOD SAID TO DO THIS." No. So, in all reality, how is this "nation" under anything? "One Nation," how is this only one nation anymore? How many immigrants do we have here in the U.S.A.? Too many? Our ancestors, for crying out loud? Oh, I get it, it means everyone that lives here NOW and who will be here over the years and years to come. Two thumbs up. I got it. No, this nation, as the pledge calls it, is in complete and utter turmoil. So much for the pleasant ending here eh?


With all due respect, there is TOO MUCH I can announce here about my beliefs and religion, but I don't. I think people need to stick to their own business and not worry about other peoples beliefs. I remember going to CCD and Mass every sunday when I went to Catholic school. No where in the mass or class did they say any of the other religions are fake or said anything harmful against it. That is what I was taught and that is where it stays with me. People need to leave other peoples religion alone, unless it comes to a certain degree of offensive behavior.












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