home
RSS
August 22nd, 2014
07:00 AM ET

Why liberals are more tolerant of atheists

Opinion by Chris Stedman, special to CNN

(CNN) Conservative atheist and television pundit S.E. Cupp has come out swinging against progressive atheists.

In a clip (see above) for CNN’s “Crossfire,” she argues that conservative atheists are “better” than liberal nonbelievers. What’s more, Cupp says, those on the right respect and tolerate atheists more than liberals do.

She’s wrong, and here are three reasons why.

Fact: Atheists are still political outcasts.

“It seems like there’s this idea perpetuated by atheists that atheists are somehow disenfranchised or left out of the political process,” Cupp says. “I just don’t find that to be the case.”

Survey data contradict Cupp.

For instance, a 2014 Pew Research study found that Americans are less likely to vote for an atheist presidential candidate than any other survey category—even if they share that candidate’s political views.

Faring better than atheists: candidates who have engaged in extramarital affairs and those with zero political experience.

And unless she recently had a change of heart, Cupp herself falls in line with the majority of Americans. In 2012 she said, “I would never vote for an atheist president. Ever.”

While atheists are making political inroads, we’re also still on the margins in a number of ways. Cupp concludes the clip by saying, “I think our atheists are better than yours.”

Apparently they’re still not good enough to be president.

Fact: Conservatives are hostile toward atheists.

“There’s another myth: that conservatism is somehow hostile to atheism,” Cupp says. “I’m a conservative atheist (and) I’ve felt very welcomed.”

But Cupp goes beyond arguing that conservatives broadly welcome nontheists—she also argues that liberals are less accepting of atheists.

“I’d go so far as to say conservatism is far more intellectually honest and respectful of atheism than liberalism has been,” she says.

Again, Pew’s surveys suggest otherwise.

While the number of people who say they wouldn't vote for an atheist candidate sits at 70% among Republicans, that number drops to 42% among Democrats. (“Progressive,” “liberal,” and “Democrat” certainly aren’t synonyms, but there is overlap.)

Of course, conservative hostility toward atheists goes beyond voting for a presidential candidate.

Earlier this year, the group American Atheists announced plans to sponsor a table at CPAC, the country’s largest annual gathering of conservatives. But within hours, after a number of conservatives spoke out against their inclusion, they were promptly uninvited.

Many of the most prominent anti-atheist voices—including Sarah Palin, Erick Erickson, Mike Huckabee and Newt Gingrich—are conservative politicians and commentators, and I have yet to hear many other conservatives (Cupp included) condemn their anti-atheist remarks.

On the other hand, a number of political moderates and liberals have welcomed nontheists.

In 2009, for example, President Barack Obama became the first commander in chief to reference nonbelievers in an inaugural address. The next year, his administration became the first to meet with representatives from the atheist community.

Overall, a much larger percentage of the religiously unaffiliated (a category that includes many atheists) identify as liberal than conservative.

In 2012, Pew reported that 61 percent of nonreligious Americans are either Democrat or lean Democrat, while just 27 percent identify as or lean Republican.

If it truly were the case that conservatives are much more “respectful of atheism,” I would expect to see more Republican atheists.

Fact: Most liberals respect religious diversity.

“Conservatives appreciate an intellectual diversity,” Cupp says. “In contrast, on the left it seems as though there is this knee-jerk embrace of what is more like a militant hostility to faith.”

If you’ve been paying attention to Cupp’s arguments so far, this one should be a bit confusing. Which is it? Are liberals hostile toward atheists—or the religious? (Or are liberals just hostile toward everyone?)

But religious diversity is actually significantly greater among Democrats—for example, Pew reported in 2011 that just 11% of Muslims affiliate with Republicans, while 60% identify as or lean Democrat.

By contrast, as much as 74% of GOP voters identify as Christian, according to recent surveys and polls.

Finally, Cupp lifts up self-identified progressive Bill Maher—who has said, among other things, that religious believers have a “neurological disorder”—as an example of liberal intolerance.

I should give credit where it’s due: Cupp is partially right here. Maher’s take on religion is problematic and should be condemned.

But his views certainly aren’t representative of most of the progressive atheists I know. Suggesting that Maher speaks for atheism is like saying Pat Robertson represents all of Christianity.

In the end, I’m not arguing that progressives are perfect. We have plenty of our own issues and aren’t as welcoming of atheists or some believers as we could be.

But to say that we’re less tolerant of religious and nonreligious diversity than conservatives? Well, that’s just hard to believe.

Chris Stedman is Executive Director of the Yale Humanist Community, author of "Faitheist," and atheist columnist for Religion News Service. Follow him on Twitter @ChrisDStedman. The views expressed in this column belong to Stedman. 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Atheism • Culture wars • Discrimination • Nones • Opinion • Politics • Prejudice

soundoff (3,322 Responses)
  1. austin929

    24Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy. 25Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. 26And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. 27And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.

    August 23, 2014 at 4:36 pm |
    • austin929

      Daniel 9:25-------–the Messiah will be cut off?

      What?

      August 23, 2014 at 4:37 pm |
      • tallulah131

        Perhaps you should have answered your own question before you posted.

        August 23, 2014 at 5:20 pm |
        • austin929

          my longing is for messiah spirit to be restored in the fullness of love within your life. only if this is pure truth can He accomplish this life awakening. you deserve the best.

          August 23, 2014 at 6:06 pm |
        • tallulah131

          Nice non-sequitur.

          August 23, 2014 at 7:54 pm |
  2. thesamyaza

    the KKK is a Christian Conservative organization...

    nuff said.

    August 23, 2014 at 2:09 pm |
    • Dalahäst

      I think the KKK hates some Christians just as much as you do.

      "I do the very best I can to look upon life with optimism and hope and looking forward to a better day, but I don't think there is anything such as complete happiness. It pains me that there is still a lot of Klan activity and racism. I think when you say you're happy, you have everything that you need and everything that you want, and nothing more to wish for. I haven't reached that stage yet. "

      Rosa Parks (also a Christian)

      August 23, 2014 at 3:25 pm |
      • G to the T

        I think that only reinforces his case. Their religious conservatism is so extreme as to exclude even other members of the belief system.

        August 23, 2014 at 4:27 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          They certainly are not extremely loving their neighbors. They seem to be doing the exact opposite of what Jesus Christ commands, yet calling themselves Christians? It would be interesting to see if he calls atheists who do questionable things as a good example of an atheist.

          August 23, 2014 at 7:21 pm |
        • G to the T

          "They certainly are not extremely loving their neighbors."

          Actually, I would be willing to bet they are quite loving to those that they consider "neighbors". If you don't believe that all humans are equal, it's easier to write them off as something other than "human". Just look at how the jews treated the neighboring tribes – it wasn't unethical for them to do so because the others didn't really count as "people" in their theology.

          August 24, 2014 at 6:26 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          I think Jesus kind of flipped that idea upside down with his answer when somebody asked him "but, who is my neighbor?".

          August 24, 2014 at 6:38 pm |
        • G to the T

          "I think Jesus kind of flipped that idea upside down with his answer when somebody asked him "but, who is my neighbor?"."

          Indeed – the theology that grew out of his teaching contains an attempt to broaden that definition of "neighbor/human". My theory is that this (in part) relates to the experience of the early Christians. As they were accused of being immoral and subversive, they molded their belief to make ethical behavior a core principle.

          This period of human development saw the expansion of the moral circle (those we consider "human") throughout Asia (via Buddhism) and Asia minor/Europe (via Greek philosophy, Zoroastrianism and yes – the teaches of the early Christians). But even with all this, some would point to "the curse of Ham" as a valid excuse for not including blacks in their moral circle or the death of Jesus to not include the Jews.

          I'm not saying it's right or even in the spirit of Jesus/Buddha, etc. but in their own minds, I'm sure they feel completely justified in their beliefs.

          August 25, 2014 at 12:21 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        "I think the KKK hates some Christians."
        ---------------------
        Well certainly black Protestants. And Catholics.

        "Over the U.S.A. the fiery cross we display":
        http://www.pbs.org/opb/historydetectives/investigation/fiery-cross/

        Based on the Pew survey below, white Evangelical Protestants have about the same level of opprobrium for atheists as atheists do for white Evangelical Protestants.

        August 23, 2014 at 6:33 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          It is probably because they are so closely related!

          August 23, 2014 at 7:22 pm |
      • kudlak

        Dalahäst
        Is it OK to hate the KKK enough to wish they'd just disappear as an organization?

        Also, it's pretty common amongst conservative protestants to openly call Catholics "idol worshippers", mainstream protestants as coming from "dead churches", and such. Intolerance of other Christians seems to run pretty think amongst Conservatives, right?

        August 23, 2014 at 7:08 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          I have no support for the KKK. Virtually every single Christian denomination in the US has denounced them.

          It's pretty common on this blog for atheists to openly call me mentally retarded, delusional, schizophrenic and/or a liar. I think intolerance may be more of an American or message board poster example, than something inherently Christian.

          I know some Christians are horrible to non-believers. But some atheists are given them a run for their money when it comes to how they treat believers.

          August 23, 2014 at 7:27 pm |
    • Salero21

      Yours is the stuff of what charlatans are made of. Which is one more piece of Evidence of what I've been saying all along: Atheists are compulsive, pathological liars and extreme hypocrites. NUFF SAID!

      August 23, 2014 at 4:13 pm |
      • thesamyaza

        i'm not an ashiest.

        i have more gods then you.

        August 23, 2014 at 10:05 pm |
        • Salero21

          Then you're an Idolater which is the next NONSENSE thing to be and do. Therefore the difference between an atheists and an idolater is merely cosmetic and a matter of Semantics. In the other place that IS NOT Heaven you'll all be together. All the while the godly, the just, the faithful will be in Heaven.

          August 24, 2014 at 12:26 am |
        • neverbeenhappieratheist

          "Then you're an Idolater which is the next NONSENSE thing to be and do. "

          Well where would anyone be if not for Salero to set them straight! He really knows whats what! At least thats what his Mommy always told him...

          August 24, 2014 at 4:54 am |
        • thesamyaza

          hay seloro Jesus was an idol, and the cross is an engrave image.

          August 24, 2014 at 1:18 pm |
    • austin929

      YAZA

      are you serious................? the devil is a Christain?

      CORRECT. ANTICHRIST DECEIVER

      August 23, 2014 at 4:39 pm |
      • thesamyaza

        the "devil" is a christian concept, i for one only see one Deity; who wants to destroy the world, corrupt peoples hearts to better be stained in his aura, and send you to a hellish dimension forced to praise him for all eternity, a realm void of compassion and joy. thats Yahweh

        August 23, 2014 at 10:09 pm |
        • austin929

          YAZA..............the thing I have experiencing is that God is lighting up a fallen place with love and Joy. now the place you refer to is real............and it's obvious that there is hell on earth here in a way............

          But it is NOT from God. and the true love can be lit up within you when you find the presence of the Word......He can speak the truth sovereignly.

          what you are sensing in this place of doom is a sense that can take you to the next hope.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:17 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          austin nintweenin
          "Anecdotal."

          revelations 8
          1 The Lamb then broke the seventh seal, and there was silence in heaven for about half an hour.

          2 Next I saw seven trumpets being given to the seven angels who stand in the presence of God.

          3 Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. A large quantity of incense was given to him to offer with the prayers of all the saints on the golden altar that stood in front of the throne;

          4 and so from the angel's hand the smoke of the incense went up in the presence of God and with it the prayers of the saints.

          5 Then the angel took the censer and filled it from the fire of the altar, which he then hurled down onto the earth; immediately there came peals of thunder and flashes of lightning, and the earth shook.

          6 The seven angels that had the seven trumpets now made ready to sound them.

          7 The first blew his trumpet and, with that, hail and fire, mixed with blood, were hurled on the earth: a third of the earth was burnt up, and a third of all trees, and every blade of grass was burnt.

          8 The second angel blew his trumpet, and it was as though a great mountain blazing with fire was hurled into the sea: a third of the sea turned into blood,

          9 a third of all the living things in the sea were killed, and a third of all ships were destroyed.

          10 The third angel blew his trumpet, and a huge star fell from the sky, burning like a ball of fire, and it fell on a third of all rivers and on the springs of water;

          11 this was the star called Wormwood, and a third of all water turned to wormwood, so that many people died; the water had become so bitter.

          12 The fourth angel blew his trumpet, and a third of the sun and a third of the moon and a third of the stars were blasted, so that the light went out of a third of them and the day lost a third of its illumination, and likewise the night.

          13 In my vision, I heard an eagle, calling aloud as it flew high overhead, 'Disaster, disaster, disaster, on all the people on earth at the sound of the other three trumpets which the three angels have yet to blow!'

          your gods plane for the destruction of the universe.

          heaven is described by many theologians as a place void of any physical want or desire, a place were you sing the praises of god for eternity, to me that's hell.

          also god did not create free will, that we had no understanding of right or wrong thus no freewill until eve eat the apple

          fact Yahweh want the world destroyed, fact heaven to me sound like hell, Christianity, Judaism, and Islam was the reason for the enslavement of Africans, Christianity is the primary cause of the current ecological disaster we are facing, and Christianity promotes sectarian ideals that lead to hate and discrimination.. there is your devil.

          i can provide evidence for any of my other claims but i have posted them several times.

          August 23, 2014 at 11:12 pm |
        • austin929

          yaza

          I remember the days when I thought about God in heaven, where we would praise Him all the time. and I felt exactly like you do. that that sounds like slavery. and I think you are a rational intelligent thinker with very empathetic reasons for being who you are. You need those qualities to be concrete and to hold to those my friend.

          the salvation that I am referring to though isn't like the natural way of thinking. I cant help but remember the ways that all the painful situations that I went through and all the negative emotions I had toward for God..........that they are reasons that I am more aware of God's true love and forgiveness..............and that is the way I was saved from my natural view point of "that God being so mean and cruel"

          and the sad thing is ............those natural emotions are deceitful........and we deceive ourselves. and we are deceived by a world that has imitated the ways of the destroyer;

          August 24, 2014 at 12:51 am |
        • thesamyaza

          and i'm saying your god is the destroyer, and he has deceived you

          August 24, 2014 at 2:42 am |
    • jknbt

      try to remember that the civil rights movement was led by a conservative Baptist evangelical and biblical literalist named Martin L. King.

      you have selective memory syndrome.

      August 23, 2014 at 4:45 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        "try to remember that the civil rights movement was led by a conservative Baptist evangelical and biblical literalist named Martin L. King.
        --------------------
        We are using the term "Conservative" in a political context in this discussion. If you did any homework at all you would know that Dr. King was careful not to endorse either political wing in public.

        Privately however he voted Democratic, including voting for JFK.

        "King supported the ideals of democratic socialism, although he was reluctant to speak directly of this support due to the anti-communist sentiment being projected throughout America at the time, and the association of socialism with communism. King believed that capitalism could not adequately provide the basic necessities of many American people, particularly the African American community. (wikipedia)

        He was hardly a political conservative!

        August 23, 2014 at 6:25 pm |
      • kudlak

        Don't also forget that the man responsible for organizing the 1963 March on Washington which led to the famous “I Had a Dream” speech was A. Philip Randolph, and he was an atheist.

        Furthermore, the Civil Rights movement owed more to the example of Gandhi than Jesus.

        Prior to reading Gandhi, I had about concluded that the ethics of Jesus were only effective in individual relationships. The “turn the other cheek” philosophy and the “love your enemies” philosophy were only valid, I felt, when individuals were in conflict with other individuals; when racial groups and nations were in conflict a more realistic approach seemed necessary. But after reading Gandhi, I saw how utterly mistaken I was. MLK

        August 23, 2014 at 7:16 pm |
      • Dalahäst

        "When Martin Luther King Jr. was urged by the respectable Christian clergy of Birmingham, Alabama, to stop his protests on the grounds that good people would be intimidated, even turned off, by tactics that, the white clergy argued, were essentially un-Christian, King replied:

        In your statement you asserted that our actions, even though peaceful, must be condemned because they precipitate violence. Isn't this like condemning the robbed man because his possession of money precipitated the evil act of robbery? . . . Isn't this like condemning Jesus because his unique God-consciousness and never-ceasing devotion to God's will precipitated the evil act of the Crucifixion?"

        Peter Gomes

        August 23, 2014 at 7:34 pm |
      • thesamyaza

        Martin L. King brought forth new ideas and change to a system, and expand the scope of the government to help minority facing oppression. that in it self is is liberal

        conservative = less government, and or sticking with a traditional way of life
        Liberal= more government and changing a system for a ideological better

        i'm an Anarchist a type conservative that believes in living a tribal way of life with no government over-site.

        i can barely write English but how come i know this stuff better then you.

        August 23, 2014 at 10:16 pm |
        • austin929

          YAZA that bigger government knows no bounds of corruption though. in a way no inst.itution does.........and this is why I thank God for the providence that He gave through people like Moses......David.............Christ......and for the Holy light that dwells within.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:21 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          i'm not disagreeing with that we should definitely have less gov, but Moses did not exist.

          oh and I'm not saying MLK was not a republican he was back before they became social conservatives. they were actually against the Church in many cases like the founder of the party Jefferson

          teddy Roosevelt who I'm still regester to his party,yup I'm a Bull Moose was a republican called a progressive republican

          conservative and republicanism are not synonymous.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:31 pm |
        • austin929

          yaza.............saying Moses did not exist is no smarter than saying there are no Jews . that Jews are fake.

          what man could ever seriously say that Moses did not exist?

          There is no man who can step anywhere near anything with any type of serious information..................other than the information available from the Historical book of genealogies. Abraham.. had Isaac and Ishmael..........

          There are billions of people who are proof of this.

          Isaac.........Jacob...........Levi..........Kerath..........Amram............Moses

          dude.....................you can not seriously go beyond hoping that it isn't true.

          it is undoubtedly true and fact.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:40 pm |
        • austin929

          I agree about conservative and republican being not synonomous.

          Chuck Hagel, John Bruning, Mike Johanns..............all switched parties during their career.

          weird huh?

          August 23, 2014 at 10:42 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          http://www.beliefnet.com/Faiths/Judaism/2004/12/Did-The-Exodus-Really-Happen.aspx

          [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SeqAvjJ3z7U&w=640&h=390]

          not to mention the Exodus is offensive to Egyptians who's gods admittedly was against slavery. in fact the workers who built the pyramids were not slaves they were not even Semitic. the book is just more propagandist hate directed at polytheist.

          August 24, 2014 at 1:28 pm |
        • thesamyaza

          we can no more prove Moses or Abraham then i can prove Macha and Aoife. both of which are vary important people in my linage

          Macha Morrigan is my matriarch
          and
          Aoife Morrigan brought us the written language (not to be confused with the Aoife doughter Airdgeimm, or the demi god sister of scathatch both of which do have archeological evidence)

          still i digress their is no evidence for Moses

          August 24, 2014 at 1:38 pm |
    • Vic

      The KKK is a cult based on what's believed to be 'White Supremacy' and the 'Right to Self Preservation,' whether its people are Christians or not. Human doctrines and/or actions are self.

      What Matters

      In Christianity —Belief/Faith— :

      Galatians 3:28
      "28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus." (NASB)

      Acts 17:26
      "26 and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation," (NASB)

      From the Pledge of Allegiance:

      "...with liberty and justice for all."

      I believe that says it all.

      August 23, 2014 at 8:39 pm |
  3. Reality

    References used to update the Apostles' Creed (see below for the Creed):

    o 1. Historical Jesus Theories, earlychristianwritings.com/theories.html – the names of many of the contemporary historical Jesus scholars and the ti-tles of their over 100 books on the subject.

    2. Early Christian Writings, earlychristianwritings.com/
    – a list of early Christian doc-uments to include the year of publication–

    30-60 CE Passion Narrative
    40-80 Lost Sayings Gospel Q
    50-60 1 Thessalonians
    50-60 Philippians
    50-60 Galatians
    50-60 1 Corinthians
    50-60 2 Corinthians
    50-60 Romans
    50-60 Philemon
    50-80 Colossians
    50-90 Signs Gospel
    50-95 Book of Hebrews
    50-120 Didache
    50-140 Gospel of Thomas
    50-140 Oxyrhynchus 1224 Gospel
    50-200 Sophia of Jesus Christ
    65-80 Gospel of Mark
    70-100 Epistle of James
    70-120 Egerton Gospel
    70-160 Gospel of Peter
    70-160 Secret Mark
    70-200 Fayyum Fragment
    70-200 Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs
    73-200 Mara Bar Serapion
    80-100 2 Thessalonians
    80-100 Ephesians
    80-100 Gospel of Matthew
    80-110 1 Peter
    80-120 Epistle of Barnabas
    80-130 Gospel of Luke
    80-130 Acts of the Apostles
    80-140 1 Clement
    80-150 Gospel of the Egyptians
    80-150 Gospel of the Hebrews
    80-250 Christian Sibyllines
    90-95 Apocalypse of John
    90-120 Gospel of John
    90-120 1 John
    90-120 2 John
    90-120 3 John
    90-120 Epistle of Jude
    93 Flavius Josephus
    100-150 1 Timothy
    100-150 2 Timothy
    100-150 T-itus
    100-150 Apocalypse of Peter
    100-150 Secret Book of James
    100-150 Preaching of Peter
    100-160 Gospel of the Ebionites
    100-160 Gospel of the Nazoreans
    100-160 Shepherd of Hermas
    100-160 2 Peter

     4. Jesus Database, http://www.faithfutures.o-rg/JDB/intro.html –"The JESUS DATABASE is an online a-nnotated inventory of the traditions concerning the life and teachings of Jesus that have survived from the first three centuries of the Common Era. It includes both canonical and extra-canonical materials, and is not limited to the traditions found within the Christian New Testament."
    5. Josephus on Jesus mtio.com/articles/bis-sar24.htm
    6. The Jesus Seminar, http://en.wikipedia.o-rg/wiki/Jesus_Seminar
    7. http://www.biblicalartifacts.com/items/785509/item785509biblicalartifacts.html – books on the health and illness during the time of the NT
    8. Economics in First Century Palestine, K.C. Hanson and D. E. Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus, Fortress Press, 1998.
    9.The Gn-ostic Jesus
    (Part One in a Two-Part Series on A-ncient and Modern G-nosticism)
    by Douglas Gro-othuis: http://www.equip.o-rg/articles/g-nosticism-and-the-g-nostic-jesus/
    10. The interpretation of the Bible in the Church, Pontifical Biblical Commission
    Presented on March 18, 1994
    ewtn.com/library/CURIA/PBCINTER.HTM#2
    11. The Jesus Database- newer site:
    wiki.faithfutures.o-rg/index.php?t-itle=Jesus_Database
    12. Jesus Database with the example of S-u-pper and Eucharist:
    faithfutures.o-rg/JDB/jdb016.html
    13. Josephus on Jesus by Paul Maier:
    mtio.com/articles/bis-sar24.htm
    13. http://www.textweek.com/mtlk/jesus.htmm- Historical Jesus Studies
    14. The Greek New Testament: laparola.net/greco/
    15. D-iseases in the Bible:
    http://books.google.com/books/about/The_d-iseases_of_the_Bible.html?id=C1YZAAAAYAAJ

    16. Religion on- Line (6000 a-rt-ic-les on the hi-story of religion, churches, theologies,
    theologians, eth-ics, etc. religion-online.o–rg/
    17. The New Testament Gateway – Internet NT n-tgate-way.com/
    18 Writing the New Testament- e-xi-sting copies, o–r–al tradition etc.
    n-tgat-eway.com/
    19. JD Crossan's c-onclusions about the a-uthencity of most of the NT based on the above plus the c-onclusions of other NT e-xege-tes in the last 200 years:
    http://wiki.faithfutures.o-rg/index.p-hp?t-itle=Crossan_Inventory
    20. Early Jewish Writings- Josephus and his books by t-itle with the complete translated work in English :earlyjewishwritings.com/josephus.html
    21. Luke and Josephus- was there a c-onnection?
    in-fidels.o-rg/library/modern/richard_carrier/lukeandjosephus.html
    22. NT and beyond time line:
    pbs.o-rg/empires/pe-terandpaul/history/timeline/
    23. St. Paul's Time line with discussion of important events:
    harvardhouse.com/prophetictech/new/pauls_life.htm
    24. See http://www.amazon.com for a list of JD Crossan's books and those of the other Jesus Seminarians: Reviews of said books are included and selected pages can now be viewed on Amazon. Some books can be found on-line at Google Books.
    25. Father Edward Schillebeeckx's words of wisdom as found in his books.
    27. The books of the following : Professors Gerd Ludemann, Marcus Borg, Paula Fredriksen, Elaine Pagels, Karen Armstrong and Bishop NT Wright.
    28. Father Raymond Brown's An Introduction to the New Testament, Doubleday, NY, 1977, 878 pages, with Nihil obstat and Imprimatur.
    29. Luke Timothy Johnson's book The Real Jesus

    August 23, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
  4. new-man

    dandintac: "Robert, seems to me you are suggesting that there could be natural explanations for the phenomena that believers claim to be of supernatural origin. "

    There is, it all has to do with the dimension one is operating out of. There are 4 seen dimensions and 7 unseen dimensions.
    How is it that "scientists, [and pretty much all people] are comfortable with some parts of the unseen world as one of the 7 unseen dimensions is said to be electromagnetism. Job: "Then a spirit passed before my face; the hair of my flesh stood up: Scientists admit that they do not know much about the unseen, curled up dimensions. But, if they can accept electromagnetism as one of these dimensions – why all the hesitation about the possibility that the other 6 are also unseen dimensions of the spiritual realm?

    This from "HowStuffWorks" is also a great explanation.
    The things in our daily life have height, width and length. But for someone who's only known life in two dimensions, 3-D would be impossible to comprehend. And that, according to many researchers, is the reason we can't see the fourth dimension, or any other dimension beyond that. Physicists work under the assumption that there are at least 10 dimensions, but the majority of us will never "see" them. Because we only know life in 3-D, our brains don't understand how to look for anything more.

    August 23, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
    • new-man

      I forgot to note that the info. is taken from Carl Armstrong's book – The Articles of Configuration, The Genesis Project, What Happened before Genesis Began?

      August 23, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        The Genesis Project enabled Mr. Spock to be reborn.

        August 23, 2014 at 6:26 pm |
      • igaftr

        hello newman

        "What Happened before Genesis Began?"

        A bunch of men got together and decided to write some stories down, the first of these writings would come to be called Genesis.
        That is what happened before Genesis.

        August 24, 2014 at 8:48 am |
    • dandintac

      "But, if they can accept electromagnetism as one of these dimensions – why all the hesitation about the possibility that the other 6 are also unseen dimensions of the spiritual realm?"

      Because electro-magneticism can be DETECTED. While it cannot be observed directly, it's direct effects can be observed, and measured. Predictions can be made about its behavior. It can be TESTED and reliably verified. We can do experiments that show how the electro-magnetic force works, and hypotheses can be accepted or rejected.

      If you cannot observe something in any way, cannot detect, cannot experiment, measure, calculate, test–how can you make the claim that it objectively exists?

      For all we know, you could claim you have an invisible, incorporeal dragon in your garage from the 7th dimension. Should we just accept this as an objective fact? How do we know you're not just talking out your as.s? If someone made a fantastic claim to you, and there was no hard evidence like there is with electro-magnetism, wouldn't the obvious conclusion be that they are most likely full of sh!t?

      August 23, 2014 at 5:10 pm |
      • new-man

        dandintac: "If you cannot observe something in any way, cannot detect, cannot experiment, measure, calculate, test–how can you make the claim that it objectively exists? "

        So string theory and M-theory are a farce in your estimation and those theoretical physicists "for all we know, could claim an invisible, incorporeal dragon in their garage from the 7th dimension. Should we just accept this string theory & m-theory as an objective fact? How do we know these theoretical physicists aren't just talking out their as.s?
        '
        Ahhhh, let's see, before there was "hard evidence" for electro-magnetism, would you say those physicists were full of what-ever, and therefore the "obvious conclusion be that they are most likely full of sh!t?"

        August 23, 2014 at 6:46 pm |
        • dandintac

          But New-man, I do NOT accept String Theory and M Theory as hard objective facts–yet. And they do have some evidence to suppor them. They do have observed data that supports them–although not yet enough to confirm them. So they are not in the same class as the God claim, where they are specifically formulated so as to be untestable. Sorry–fail.

          August 24, 2014 at 1:28 am |
        • austin929

          proof for God............in the age of the church............is untestable from one man to the next...........but not PERSONALLY.

          youre greatest responsibility in life is to allow God to tabernacle within.........and receive the personal proof. if you did experience that .....you would not want to be the burden of proof for another man. Because you aren't the God we are referring to.

          You are a proof receptor.

          August 24, 2014 at 1:32 am |
    • Vic

      There is much I can say about electromagnetism, technically speaking, but I refrain.

      In witnessing to God, I believe electromagnetism can be used as a good analogy in certain ways but not literally, for the simple fact, which I strictly follow, that the created and the Creator are never equal, conceptually and actually. The Creator and the created are of two different realms.

      BTW, while electromagnetism is taken for granted anymore, what science knows about it is considered relatively basic, that's why it is still one of the highly debated fields in Classical Physics. As a matter of fact, it is one of the hottest cold cases in Classical Physics that even the infamous Maxwell Equations are called into question from time to time.

      August 23, 2014 at 5:43 pm |
      • new-man

        Vic,
        I am not equating the unseen dimensions of the spirit world with the creator of said dimensions. My goal was that there are in deed natural explanations for what occur in the spirit world or unseen realm and hence the reason for mentioning the 7 dimensions of the unseen realm and why it is that someone explaining 3-d to someone who only exists in 2-d it would be a near impossibility for that 2-d person to comprehend.

        It's the same reason that we explain the things of the spirit of God and it is foolishness to many because they're not seeing in the spirit realm but rather is only confined to the physical world of 4-d and those who don't want to look foolish will also add the unseen world of electromagnetism. My other point was – as was Carl's, why accept 1 and not the other 6.

        August 23, 2014 at 6:53 pm |
        • Vic

          I should've included "I know you yourself don't but the debaters do equate the Creator and the created in concept" in my statement.

          High Regards.

          August 23, 2014 at 7:14 pm |
        • new-man

          Rich blessings & great favor, my brother.
          Thanks.

          August 23, 2014 at 8:37 pm |
  5. Salero21

    All there is to know about atheists is: They're compulsive liars and extremely hypocritical.

    August 23, 2014 at 12:47 pm |
    • bostontola

      Sally,
      Coming from you, that really hurts.

      August 23, 2014 at 12:55 pm |
    • harlow13

      It is interesting to ponder the payoff a person might get from regularly posting inanities.

      August 23, 2014 at 1:01 pm |
      • Salero21

        You post inanities?

        August 23, 2014 at 2:08 pm |
    • tallulah131

      Obvious troll is obvious.

      August 23, 2014 at 1:11 pm |
      • Salero21

        You're a troll?

        August 23, 2014 at 2:09 pm |
        • tallulah131

          And you're not even a good troll.

          August 23, 2014 at 5:19 pm |
  6. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    God is the model and inspiration for tolerance. Atheists don't have everlasting torment hanging over them compelling them to love one another.

    August 23, 2014 at 12:24 pm |
    • rogerthat2014

      It's easy to be a serial killer as a Christian. God forgives, and eternity is all that matters.

      August 23, 2014 at 1:07 pm |
      • TruthPrevails1

        Just ask Austin why it is that he can commit a criminal offense (driving his car drunk and crashing it in to a building) and get to this supposed place called heaven but yet a person who has never put another's life at risk and disbelieves in his god won't...' true hypocrisy at its best...the fre ass thing is rather arrogant.

        August 23, 2014 at 6:32 pm |
        • austin929

          I understand how you feel. T.P. I was naked and crying when I did that. and I was rejecting the hypocrisy that you are.

          I think you should take every chance to understand the offence that I am guilty of.

          but I would say that I can not get myself where you are talking about. but I was simply offered redemption.

          This is the reason..................because those who are last will become first. and those who are the least will become the greatest.

          there is no one...........who can be separated from God's love, because Christ died for you..............and then when He was raised He took His blood to heaven and sprinkled it........as High Priest............on the mercy seat in heaven..........and His blood speaks and testifies to the Holy Place that you have been declared righteous.

          Christ is God and Lord............and He has prepared the way for you. He is risen and so will you be raised up out of bondage. We are born into the bondage. But we are born again into eternal life.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:32 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Understand the offense of impaired driving? How hard could that be to comprehend?
          The rest of you post is filled with crap that pertains to your god, a god that regardless of your arrogance and bias does not have pertinence in everyone's life-something you can't seem to respect.
          You're such a hypocrite!

          August 24, 2014 at 5:37 am |
        • neverbeenhappieratheist

          "your arrogance and bias does not have pertinence in everyone's life-something you can't seem to respect."

          But, but, MY God made you so you owe me!

          August 24, 2014 at 6:28 am |
    • rogerthat2014

      Atheists know that this life is it. You only get one chance. There is nothing else.

      August 23, 2014 at 1:12 pm |
    • doobzz

      God wasn't too tolerant of the infants, fetuses, animals, and mentally handicapped when he drowned them all.

      August 23, 2014 at 2:52 pm |
    • dandintac

      Tom,

      It is supremely ironic that you say this in one sentence: "God is the model and inspiration for tolerance."

      And in the very next sentence you invoke the everlasting torment of Hell!!!!! And what does God send people to Hell for? Not believing in him! All else is forgiven. Yep–that's real tolerance!!

      "Atheists don't have everlasting torment hanging over them compelling them to love one another." But based on the Christian doctrine of Grace, you only need to believe in Jesus, accept him into your heart, and repent, and then your sins are "washed away" and you get to go to Heaven–regardless of your sins on Earth–and all sins are equal, so this applies to Adolf Hitler as well.

      The truth is, people do not need this sort threat hanging over them anyway in order to love one another. We atheists have no problem loving people. Moral Goodness is when you do the right thing when there's no one watching ready to reward us for doing so, or punish us for not doing so. A very adult notion.

      August 23, 2014 at 5:15 pm |
  7. colin31714

    I sometimes cringe at some of the activities of the American Atheists. An example. A high ranking member of the organization gave a speech at the annual convention in Salt Lake City. She related a story about how she went to a bank to have a form notarized. When the notary found out it was a form for the American Atheists, she did not want to notarize it because she was a Christian who suffered from one of their common superst.itions (she believed the Judeo-Christian god was somehow observing her at work and would be peeved if she notarized the form – go figure).

    Rather than just let the poor simpleton be, they complained about her to the bank's management and tried to get her fired. They even went so far as pushing through some legal reform in the relevant state (Delaware from memory, but I might be wrong) that prohibited notaries from refusing their services based on religious differences.

    August 23, 2014 at 12:00 pm |
    • bostontola

      colin,
      Did you go on your trip to Burgess Shale yet? There was a CNN video yesterday on Burgess Shale (although I had trouble with it).

      August 23, 2014 at 12:08 pm |
      • colin31714

        Not yet. We leave Friday. Where can I find the link?

        August 23, 2014 at 6:41 pm |
        • bostontola

          Colin, here's a link to the original CBC story (much better).

          http://mobilevideo.cbc.ca/u/pass~fn/1/ls/~g-16×9~http:,,mobilevideo.cbc.ca,/1/ts/~s~__ABR__/1/f/~video_mp4~__LSV__/1/m/9/u/i/g/qbt6/cbc01/video.m3u8

          August 24, 2014 at 11:08 am |
    • tallulah131

      But then ask yourself: Had she refused to help people because they were gay or because they were muslim or wiccan, should that behavior be tolerated? When asking politely for your rights doesn't work, sometimes you have move to the next step. I can see complaining to the bank manager, and even complaining to the bank's national offices, but I do agree that trying to get her fired was a bit much.

      August 23, 2014 at 12:28 pm |
    • dandintac

      Colin,

      Imagine if the shoe was on the other foot. What if the bank employee had been an atheist, and refused service to someone who was a Christian. Does anyone doubt for one second that the atheist bank employee would have been fired faster than the speed of sound?

      August 24, 2014 at 1:33 am |
  8. Science Works

    Hey Vic or fred (creationists)

    Isotope – Carbon-12 ?

    August 23, 2014 at 10:57 am |
  9. neverbeenhappieratheist

    Sarah Elizabeth Cupp got this wrong because of one primary factor, she thought wearing glasses would actually maker her smart instead of just making her look smart...

    August 23, 2014 at 10:12 am |
    • bostontola

      Maybe she is taking Larry David's advice, it worked for Leon.

      August 23, 2014 at 10:27 am |
    • rogerthat2014

      It's also not working for Rick Perry.

      August 23, 2014 at 1:18 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        Rick Perry stopped wearing his cowboy boots too to make himself more 'marketable' to non-Texans.

        He claims his doctor told him to do it.

        August 23, 2014 at 6:36 pm |
  10. bostontola

    I wonder why so many believers in God(s) feel more aligned with people who believe in false God(s) than with people who simply don't believe in a God or just don't know. Agnostics and atheists don't have a competing God or set of rituals.

    The people from other religions don't believe in your God. Agnostics/atheists don't believe in your God. That's as far as they go. People in other religions go further. They have another God that they believe is real while yours is false.

    Yet believers in God of the big religions are warmer to each other than to atheists (Pew poll). I wonder if this fraternity is based on a common fear that they are wrong. At least 2/3 of the humans on earth worship false God(s).

    Why else would they have such a bias against the tiny group of people that don't believe in God(s)?

    August 23, 2014 at 9:54 am |
    • Reality

      tiny group?

      Irreligious, agnostics and atheists are actually a very large group:

      http://www.adherents.com/Religions_By_Adherents.html

      Religion………………………… Adherents

      Christianity ……………………..2.1 billion

      Islam…………………………… 1.5 billion (1.2 billion Sunnis who despise 300 million Shiites and vice versa)

      Irreligious/agnostic/atheism…… 1.1 billion

      Hinduism 900 million
      Chinese traditional religion 394 million
      Buddhism 376 million
      Animist religions 300 million
      African traditional/diasporic religions 100 million
      Sikhism 23 million
      Juche 19 million
      Spiritism 15 million

      Judaism…………………………………….. 14 million

      Baha'i 7 million
      Jainism 4.2 million
      Shinto 4 million
      Cao Dai 4 million
      Zoroastrianism 2.6 million
      Tenrikyo 2 million
      Neo-Paganism 1 million
      Unitarian Universalism 800,000
      Rastafari Movement 600,000

      August 23, 2014 at 10:17 am |
      • bostontola

        Irreligious doesn't mean they don't believe in some higher power/supernatural being.

        August 23, 2014 at 10:28 am |
      • thesamyaza

        last i checked we Shintoist were at approximately 7 million

        August 23, 2014 at 2:04 pm |
        • Reality

          Reputable supporting reference?

          August 23, 2014 at 11:43 pm |
    • dandintac

      boston,

      That is a very good question. I believe there are a number of factors that come into play.

      First of all, there are fewer degrees of separation between one branch of Christianity and another, and between Christianity generally and other religions, than there are with atheists. It's a much greater separation. We are truly "The Other".

      Second, I think we represent a threat. After all, there are immortal souls at stake here! I've seen theists on the CNN Belief Blog say that we are endangering immortal souls. They realize that our very presence, and the observed fact that we are not immoral psychos or lunatics, may make atheism a viable alternative for Christians who are experiencing a lot of doubt about the religion they were indoctrinated into.

      Third, I think we represent a direct psychological threat as well. I am convinced that there are huge numbers of closet atheists, who go through life convincing themselves they are Christian, and get all self-righteous, threaten non-believers with Hell, and so on. But deep down, they don't believe either. Why do I think this?

      If you truly believed that a God exists, and that his followers will go to Heaven after they die, including you and beloved fellow Christians like your children, parents, siblings, friends–then why would it be a sad tragedy when they die? They are going to Heaven!! Eternal Paradise! It should be considered the greatest moment in their lives–the moment they are flattened by that truck. And why all the Christians seeking medical care for life-threatening ailments like cancer? It's not like they're breaking the suicide taboo–they didn't give themselves cancer–God did. Why should they be questioning an act of God? Why should they be striving so hard to delay his judgement and perfect justice? And why should they miss their friends and family? They'll be joining the crowd soon enough. A few decades is nothing compared to eternity. It would probably pass in the blink of an eye. So why go through the chemotherapy?

      So I'm convinced that a great many Christians–deep down–do not truly believe. They go through the motions. The existence of atheists is a direct threat to their facade and self-deceptions. And there is NOTHING–that makes people angrier.

      August 23, 2014 at 5:30 pm |
      • Robert Brown

        “If you truly believed that a God exists, and that his followers will go to Heaven after they die, including you and beloved fellow Christians like your children, parents, siblings, friends–then why would it be a sad tragedy when they die? They are going to Heaven!! Eternal Paradise! It should be considered the greatest moment in their lives–the moment they are flattened by that truck.”

        It does give us comfort if a loved one has left a testimony that they are a Christian. Death is always sad for those left behind, it is separation. I can’t help but wonder when someone makes a callous statement about death, whether they have ever lost someone close and experienced the separation and grief. We have an eternal hope, but there are a lot of unknowns. We are told so very little about heaven in the bible; we just know that since God is there, all will be well.

        “And why all the Christians seeking medical care for life-threatening ailments like cancer? It's not like they're breaking the suicide taboo–they didn't give themselves cancer–God did. Why should they be questioning an act of God? Why should they be striving so hard to delay his judgement and perfect justice? And why should they miss their friends and family? They'll be joining the crowd soon enough. A few decades is nothing compared to eternity. It would probably pass in the blink of an eye. So why go through the chemotherapy?”

        People seek treatment for life threatening diseases because they want to live. Whether Christian, or not, this flesh wants to live. It is true that in the spirit a Christian can be ready to go, but the flesh is seldom ready.

        August 23, 2014 at 8:25 pm |
        • ragansteve1

          Perhaps Paul said it best, or at least most concisely–to live is Christ, to die is gain.

          August 23, 2014 at 8:51 pm |
        • dandintac

          Robert,

          It was not my intent to seem callous, and if one is truly a believer, and truly convinced that someone is going to an eternal paradise, and would be waiting for us when we died, then I still do not see why it should be cause for grief. There are people out there who do not, because their belief is strong.

          I lost my father 22 years ago. It was one of many events in my life that have taken me to atheism. By this time I was describing myself as an "agnostic". I realized then that my father was gone–gone for good–and that he was not coming back, and that he was not awaiting me in some sort of eternal utopia. I realized then that it was a fantasy. So yeah, it was a hard blow for me, and so this is not a callous question for me at all.

          As far as the survival instinct, I'll certainly by that with regards to reflexive actions to save ourselves–to dodge the blow, but I don't buy it with regards to longer-term medical treatment. Take Christian Scientists for example. While I find their witholding of medical care for their innocent children to be repugnant, I have to at least give them credit for walking the talk.

          So I don't buy the notion that the survival impulse must necessarily drive us to accept medical care for life-threatening conditions like cancer. Even if it did–do not Christians constantly tell us that we are supposed to repress the desires of the flesh?

          August 24, 2014 at 2:13 am |
    • austin929

      for me I have to be loyal to Israel because Christ will restore them to the Covenant............and the same point in time , as the blood of Israel is noticed...........or the faith..........I have to as well stay loyal in love to Kedar and Nebaioth...........who ever they are as people and as a mislead people.

      and the truth of being mislead is within us all.

      Isaiah 60:7

      Isaiah 60:7 ►

      Parallel Verses

      All Kedar's flocks will be gathered to you, the rams of Nebaioth will serve you; they will be accepted as offerings on my altar, and I will adorn my glorious temple.

      Kedar and Nebaith are Ishmaelits with a Christ kingdom promise.

      The problem is obvious.............idolatry.
      In the end idolatry is the devotion to error..................and I don't exclude atheists either. Jesus died for all.

      August 23, 2014 at 9:31 pm |
  11. Salero21

    All you need to know about atheism is that it is Absolute, Complete and Total NONSENSE.

    August 23, 2014 at 1:43 am |
    • Reality

      From my scrapbook of essential theology and history of religion:

      The Apostles' Creed 2014 (updated by yours truly based on the studies of NT historians and theologians of the past 200 years)

      Should I believe in a god whose existence cannot be proven
      and said god if he/she/it exists resides in an unproven,
      human-created, spirit state of bliss called heaven?????

      I believe there was a 1st century CE, Jewish, simple,
      preacher-man who was conceived by a Jewish carpenter
      named Joseph living in Nazareth and born of a young Jewish
      girl named Mary. (Some say he was a mamzer.)

      Jesus was summarily crucified for being a temple rabble-rouser by
      the Roman troops in Jerusalem serving under Pontius Pilate,

      He was buried in an unmarked grave and still lies
      a-mouldering in the ground somewhere outside of
      Jerusalem.

      Said Jesus' story was embellished and "mythicized" by
      many semi-fiction writers. A bodily resurrection and
      ascension stories were promulgated to compete with the
      Caesar myths. Said stories were so popular that they
      grew into a religion known today as Catholicism/Christianity
      and featuring dark-age, daily wine to blood and bread to body rituals
      called the eucharistic sacrifice of the non-atoning Jesus.

      Amen
      (References used are available upon request.)

      August 23, 2014 at 7:50 am |
      • Salero21

        Absolutely, completely and totally Absurd a NONSENSE. Which BTW proves my point beyond any reasonable doubt.

        August 23, 2014 at 12:49 pm |
        • tallulah131

          Obvious troll is obvious.

          August 23, 2014 at 1:09 pm |
        • otoh2

          One sharp-eyed poster a while ago noted that "Salero" anagrams to "A Loser".

          August 23, 2014 at 1:22 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Sally Sally Sally...you silly child...do the nurses know you're out of your room?

          August 23, 2014 at 1:33 pm |
    • harlow13

      Brilliant. So succinct. So simple that I bet you didn't even think about it.

      August 23, 2014 at 8:22 am |
    • TruthPrevails1

      Funny how Sally and awanderingdolt use the same catch phrases...either one person or conjoined dimwits.

      August 23, 2014 at 10:23 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      To make no claims about the supernatural and to observe that claims people do make always seem to be baseless – that's avoiding nonsense.

      August 23, 2014 at 11:11 am |
  12. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    I've just never encountered anything that seemed like it came from God or a god -unless it was a very minor sort of god , one that is not discernably supernatural. Stories about gods are never believable. Would conservatism change any of that?

    August 23, 2014 at 12:59 am |
  13. awanderingscot

    She seems to be much more of a realist than him. Imagine if the country were 80% atheist, 10% agnostic, and 10% religious; would one expect to have the religious person elected president? Hardly. Could the religious person expect to have a seat at an atheist political convention? Of course not.

    August 22, 2014 at 9:11 pm |
    • realbuckyball

      Presumptuous guess. For the last few years a Calvinist theist has been the beloved administrator of The Thinking Atheist. Of course if they are as obtusely ignorant and delusional as you, you are right.

      August 22, 2014 at 9:17 pm |
      • awanderingscot

        http://gawker.com/5818993/richard-dawkins-torn-limb-from-limbby-atheists

        – i think the case might just as well be made that liberals ARE NOT any more tolerant of women judging by this comment by Dawkins.
        – ah yes, more tolerant of women (and more in touch with their feelings too). gotta love this guy
        – Austin Powers is a more rational thinker perhaps?

        August 22, 2014 at 9:43 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          – oosp, this was actually meant to be a response to GOP's comment that liberal's are more tolerant of women, which is of course an absurdity.

          August 22, 2014 at 9:51 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          You do realize that disbelief in God does not require us to worship Richard Dawkins don't you?

          August 22, 2014 at 9:52 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          "... comment that liberals are more tolerant of women, which is of course an absurdity"
          -----------------------
          It is patently true. How many women vote Democrat versus Republican, even the religious ones?

          August 22, 2014 at 9:54 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          @GOP
          "It is patently true. How many women vote Democrat versus Republican, even the religious ones?"

          – Logic fail. What is the ration of Democrat politicians to all the Democrats in the country?

          August 22, 2014 at 9:58 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          ** ratio

          August 22, 2014 at 9:59 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          Objections to HPV vaccines – famously Michelle Bachmann (R) and 'retardation'
          Rep. Todd Akin (R): "Legitimate r-ape" where women's bodies somehow blocked unwanted pregnancy
          Inidana State Treasurer Richard Mourdock (R): "even when life begins in that horrible situation of r-ape, that is something that God intended to happen”

          The list goes on and on.

          August 22, 2014 at 10:06 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          "What is the ratio of Democrat politicians to all the Democrats in the country?"
          ---------------------
          Is utterly irrelevant and is probably about the same as the ratio of Republican politicians to all Republicans.

          "President Barack Obama won the two-party vote among female voters in the 2012 election by 12 points, 56% to 44%, over Republican challenger Mitt Romney"
          See: http://www.gallup.com/poll/158588/gender-gap-2012-vote-largest-gallup-history.aspx

          August 22, 2014 at 10:14 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          In the 113th Congress there are 79 female Representatives, or 18.2% (60 Democrats, 19 Republicans). In addition, there are three female delegates, representing Guam, the Virgin Islands, and Washington DC.

          (Google)

          August 22, 2014 at 10:16 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          Once again you're talking politics, has nothing to do with men's att-itudes towards women overall. You're making an entirely subjective presumption.

          August 22, 2014 at 10:22 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          When you talk about "Liberals" you are talking about politics – by definition.

          August 22, 2014 at 10:23 pm |
        • neverbeenhappieratheist

          Conservatives do love their women, they just love them in the kitchen and they love them doing the laundry and carrying men's offspring. They just don't let them think for themselves, make their own decisions or have control over their own bodies.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:01 am |
      • awanderingscot

        LOL .... Calvinist theist in charge of atheists, hahaha good one Bucky. Thanks, I can always count on you for a laugh. Some town is missing their fool and here you are blogging on CNN Belief blog, better hurry back.

        August 22, 2014 at 9:55 pm |
        • observer

          awanderingscot,

          Read a Bible SOMEDAY and see what Jesus said about calling people "fool".

          Oooooops as usual.

          August 22, 2014 at 11:27 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          @Observer
          I explained this to you before and i'll explain it again to you. Christ was speaking of anger in that passage. In any event, it should be apparent to even the casual observer that i was not angry and certainly not thinking about murder.

          "You have heard that it was said to those of old, 'YOU SHALL NOT MURDER, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.' But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his brother, 'Raca!' shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says, 'You fool!' shall be in danger of hell fire. – Matthew 5:21-22, NKJV

          – As you can see, in the previous verse Christ is speaking about murder, and then in the verse you tried quoting He equates being "angry without cause" with evil intent, meaning that harboring murder in one's heart which can and does at times lead to the actual act of murder is a great sin and subject to judgment.

          – i also have a verse i would like for you to contemplate.

          Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, "Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down. – Revelation 12:10, NKJV

          August 23, 2014 at 12:07 am |
        • observer

          awanderingscot

          "Christ was speaking of anger in that passage. In any event, it should be apparent to even the casual observer that i was not angry"

          Of course, even though MOST of your responses are FILLED with insults and name-calling, you aren't angry.

          Of course.

          August 23, 2014 at 2:29 am |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      It is my hope that one day 'political conventions' will not discriminate on the basis of religion. The Democratic party is much further along in this course than the GOP, whatever Ms. Cupp might say.

      Politics and religion should be separate, just like state and church.

      August 22, 2014 at 9:21 pm |
    • tallulah131

      We all know that a troll could never be President, scotty, so I guess you'll have to give up that dream.

      August 22, 2014 at 11:33 pm |
    • dandintac

      Scot

      This is indeed presumptuous, and probably untrue as well. As an atheist, I've voted for theists time and time again. You know what? I've never asked for the religious affiliation. I vote based mainly on their position on the issues, to some degree on their qualifications, and it's also a plus if they're a minority or female. I've never looked on a voter pamphlet to find their religious identi-ty.

      You are trying to justify your own prejudice and discrimination by projecting it on to the people you are discriminating against. A common tactic of the bigoted.

      August 22, 2014 at 11:54 pm |
      • awanderingscot

        Logic fail: Have you ever had an atheist to vote for? then shut up. lol

        August 23, 2014 at 12:12 am |
        • neverbeenhappieratheist

          That is the sort of reply I would expect from the religious... and from 5 year olds...

          August 23, 2014 at 10:06 am |
        • tallulah131

          It's exactly the response one would expect from a troll.

          August 23, 2014 at 12:32 pm |
        • dandintac

          Have I ever had an atheist to vote for? I don't know, and I wouldn't know. In my state religion is not made a big fuss of. Candidates rarely ever talk about religion, and most people around here don't vote on that basis, and It has never even occurred to me to even ask a candidate about their religion. I would only do so if they bring it up themselves. For all I know, I've voted for hundreds of atheists.

          You see, it's obvious to me that you are not capable of dong the same. Most highly religious people are not. You cannot conceive of voting for an atheist–regardless of their stand on the issues, qualifications, etc.

          Religion, as shown here, is a divider and separator. There is us, the good guys, and the Others–the bad guys. That is in the very nature of religion.

          August 23, 2014 at 4:59 pm |
    • TruthPrevails1

      Imagine a government where the beliefs of those running it weren't known and everyone worked on equal ground. A government that followed the constitution and allowed everyone the same rights regardless of who they love or what they believe.
      (btw: impressive that you learned a new topic)

      August 23, 2014 at 6:03 am |
    • johnbiggscr

      'Could the religious person expect to have a seat at an atheist political convention? Of course not.'

      Since when are political conventions 'religious'?

      August 25, 2014 at 12:14 pm |
  14. bostontola

    No one else thinks its weird that atheists need to be tolerated?

    What did atheists as a group do to liberals or conservatives?

    I bet people wouldn't feel comfortable if the headline was; "Why Liberals are More Tolerant of Women"

    August 22, 2014 at 8:54 pm |
    • Dalahäst

      Why Atheists Have a Serious Problem with Women?

      http://mic.com/articles/59277/why-atheists-have-a-serious-problem-with-women

      August 22, 2014 at 9:03 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        I have a problem with Ms. Cupp, but not because she is a woman.

        August 22, 2014 at 9:11 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          Yep. Good point.

          August 22, 2014 at 9:15 pm |
      • bostontola

        The Pew research poll shows little difference in how men and women view atheists.

        August 22, 2014 at 9:23 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      "Why Liberals are More Tolerant of Women"
      -------------------
      Which is just as accurate.

      August 22, 2014 at 9:17 pm |
    • LaBella

      It is a rather odd headline re-write.

      August 22, 2014 at 9:25 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        The original headline essentially questioned but re-stated Ms. Cupp's assertion that conservative atheists are 'better' than liberal atheists. The premise of the article is to debunk that assertion.

        August 22, 2014 at 9:32 pm |
        • LaBella

          Yes, which is why I wonder why it was re-written. It was fine as it was, and made more sense to me. This one seems to be more hyperbolic, but more click-bait worthy, I suppose.

          August 23, 2014 at 12:41 pm |
    • Dalahäst

      http://videos.mediaite.com/video/Jon-Stewart-Lashes-Out-At-Anti

      August 22, 2014 at 9:26 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        That segment is hilarious. My favorite bit apart was "Atheists, damn you to ... (?) Atheists!".

        Anyone making fun of David Silverman is welcome.

        "As President of the American Atheists Organization, I promise to make sure that everyone, even those who are indifferent to our cause, will f'ing hate us." which is pretty much what David Silverman does.

        August 22, 2014 at 9:39 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          It is a good example of atheists as a group being less than spectacular, that is for sure.

          August 22, 2014 at 9:42 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          The problem is activism, not disbelief.

          August 22, 2014 at 9:49 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        Stephen Colbert's version of this story had me in sti.tches. (It was funnier.)

        http://thecolbertreport.cc.com/videos/a6f94j/cross-controversy-at-9-11-museum

        "Yes, those I-beams that were found in the wreckage can only be a Christian cross. What other possible explanation could there be for a building made of right angles to leave something like that behind."

        Note that they (Jon and Stephen) each picked different versions of the story on Fox. Makes you wonder how many times Fox ran the story on the evil, upstart atheists trying to destroy America.

        August 22, 2014 at 9:48 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          Fox News loves that stuff.

          August 22, 2014 at 9:50 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          Stephen Colbert debating Steve Carrell.

          [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uX-Aldx-LM0&w=640&h=390]

          August 22, 2014 at 10:04 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          Yes, "Even Ste(ph/v)en" was a great segment.

          I miss Stephen's (pre-Report) "This week in God" segment on the Daily Show.

          August 22, 2014 at 10:11 pm |
  15. Vic

    I referred to the following Pew Survey back in July in a previous Blog post comment:

    [http://www.pewforum.org/2014/07/16/how-americans-feel-about-religious-groups/]

    Early on:
    http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2014/08/22/are-conservative-atheists-really-better/comment-page-1/#comment-3063061

    August 22, 2014 at 7:59 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      What's your point Vic? The communist observation was silly earlier and it's just as silly now.

      August 22, 2014 at 8:15 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      The Pew findings pretty much validate everything that is said in the article, which is unsurprising since the article refers to a Pew 2014 survey.

      August 22, 2014 at 8:18 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      Vic, I have to say I appreciate you posting the Pew link. There is one thing that the Pew data clearly demonstrates:

      – Democrats treat people of all faiths mostly the same (middling scores ranging from 62 – 44)
      – Republicans are trimodal, they love Evangelicals, Jews, and Catholics (scores of 71, 67 and 66) but hate atheists and Muslims (scores of 34 and 33).

      Ms. S.E. Cupp's opinion that Conservatives are more welcoming of atheists than Liberals is demonstrably wrong – based on the Pew data.

      August 22, 2014 at 8:51 pm |
  16. Robert Brown

    1.
    open to new behavior or opinions and willing to discard traditional values.

    Ok, makes sense. Anything goes.

    August 22, 2014 at 6:50 pm |
    • tallulah131

      If you don't like the liberties guaranteed by the Constitution, feel free to leave this country, bob.

      August 22, 2014 at 11:37 pm |
      • LaBella

        Apparently, "liberties" doesn't cut both ways.

        August 23, 2014 at 11:05 am |
  17. colin31714

    I have posted this before, so apologies if you have seen it before ,but I don’t believe in God for the following reasons:

    The concept of an immortal being makes no sense to me.

    The concept of an all-powerful being makes no sense to me.

    The concept of an all-knowing being makes no sense to me.

    Throwing the three together into one being effectively cubes its already dispositive implausibility.

    I have a basic working knowledge of the age, size and history of the Universe. The idea that a being could create the entire thing – with 400,000,000,000 galaxies, EACH with 100, 000,000,000 starts and even more planets strains credibility well beyond the breaking point. Not only that, but it then sits back and waits 13,720,000,000 years (time since the Big Bang) for human beings to evolve on one planet so he can “love them” and send his son to Earth to talk to a nomadic group of Jews in Greco Roman Palestine about sheep and goats (while ignoring the rest of the 200 million people then alive on Earth).

    While down here, this “Son of God” makes no mention of anything not already known in Greco-Roman Palestine. All he had to do was mention, for example, the existence of the American continents, of Australia or Antarctica, or of any of the three other planets not known at the time. He could have mentioned germs and how they cause disease or have given us some basic chemistry or physics not known at the time, such as the periodic table or the universal gravitational constant. ANYTHING unknown at the time, so as to demonstrate he was something more that a (perhaps very gifted) Greco Roman Jewish teacher/prophet.

    This creator of the Universe also left us with a book, the Bible, which has nothing of any worth to us. It is concentrated 100% on the Jews, their history, internal conflicts, fights with neighboring tribes and their laws and regulations. One wonders why the creator of the Universe and all human beings would be so obsessed with late Bronze Age Jews. It is obvious beyond any sane doubt that the Jews made God in their image and not vice-versa.

    The common argument, “well, what caused the Big Bang?” with the implication that, because we have only theories and no iron clad explanation for the Big Bang yet, the Judeo-Christian god must have caused it – does not make sense to me. The Universe may well be infinitely old and without a "cause," there may be an infinite number of universes or time itself may have begun in the Big Bang. We simply do not know. BUT “we don’t know” does not equal a god, much less the Judeo-Christian god. I feel the answers to such a question are much more likely to be found in Einstein’s equations, quantum physics, large particle accelerators and radio telescopes than in Genesis Chapters 1 through 20. I’m crazy aren’t I?

    Similarly, “you can’t prove God doesn’t exist” is not a convincing argument to me, or even a relevant point, because an inability to disprove something is a far cry from it being true. I cannot prove that the Hindu gods Shiva or Vishnu do not exist either, nor Santa Claus for that matter, but that is hardly a reason to believe in them. This onus reversal is not even evidence for their existence. It is impossible to prove a negative in this context.

    The answers usually proffered for what I see as basic logical flaws in Christianity – “you have been blinded by your lack of faith” “God moves in mysterious ways” “God is outside the Universe” or “our minds are too small to understand the greatness of God” are never satisfying to me. I see a retreat to mysticism as the first refuge of the cornered fool.

    I do not see miracles in things like tornadoes missing a certain trailer in a trailer park, cancer going into remission or other examples of day to day good luck. Seeing God in these circu.mstances is a fallacious as praying for a four to come up each of 600 times you role a die and then claiming that God answered your prayers “about a hundred times.”

    I understand that Christianity is one of many, many religions in the World, and I don’t think that I was lucky enough to have been born in the one part of the World that “got it right”. Likewise, I know how all faiths evolve, morph and change over time and do not think I was lucky enough to have been born in the one generation that “got it right.”

    I have a basic knowledge of history and know that there is nothing magical or special about the supposed history of the Jews, the canonical gospels, epistles, apocalyptic writing (Revelations) and other materials that found their way into the Bible, in that they are largely indistinguishable from the other mythology and religious writings of the Greco-Roman Mediterranean. For example, many of the myths about Jesus, including his birth around the Winter Solstice, his being betrayed and executed, his virgin birth and his rising from the dead after three days are straight out of earlier myths about Horus and Apollonius of Tyana.

    Human beings are terrified of their own deaths and I see the various religious beliefs that try to “wish it away,” such as reincarnation, living happily ever after in Heaven with Jesus, having your own Mormon planet etc. as nothing more than childish stories for the more naïve, timid minds among us.

    I do not see morality as predicated upon a belief in the supernatural. I accept that one can be moral without believing in the supernatural and that doing so is no guaranty that one will conform to the norms of society that people call “morality”. I sure as hell will not be cowered into accepting absurd beliefs out of some silly notion that it is “wrong” to question or doubt cherished or deeply held religious beliefs. That just gives them a place to hide and avoid scrutiny.

    When one looks at the various Christian beliefs that were once firmly believed – Adam and Eve, Noah’s flood, people living to be 700 or 900 years old, the Red Sea splitting, water turning into wine, a talking snake, a man living in a whale’s belly, people rising from the dead, Jesus driving demons out of people and into pigs – but which are now acknowledged by most thinking people to be mere mythology, it is pretty hard to give a lot of credibility to the remaining supernatural and miraculous claims that are left – Jesus rising from the dead, for example.

    It is hard not to consider Christianity as based on circular reasoning. Most Christians believe in God because the Bible says so, then turn around and say they believe the Bible because it is the word of God. To draw an analogy, “I believe Mao Zedong was a great man because The Little Red Book says so, and the reason I believe The Little Red Book is that it was written by Mao Zedong, who was a great man.” I will bet you that 99% of Christians do not even have the slightest idea of how the Bible was written and compiled over the centuries or who decided what to include and what to exclude and on what grounds. I doubt they can even name one of hundred plus authors who contributed to it, nor any of the many people who decided what got in and what didn’t.

    To be bluntly honest, the more one comes to understand mother nature, the less reason there is to believe in a god and the more one understands human nature, the more one sees why so many of us still do.

    So, to any believer, I would respectfully say this. Before you next confidently proclaim that you know the secrets to life, death, life after death, the origins of life on Earth and the origins of the Universe (THE biggest questions in the history of humanity) simply because you were taught some comforting stories from Greco-Roman Palestine as a child, you might like to reflect upon the overwhelming enormity of the claims you are about to make and the complete paucity of evidence that underwrites those claims.

    Colin

    August 22, 2014 at 6:50 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Ok, God makes no sense to you. Could you believe in a really old, strong, and smart being?

      Do you think that microbes were what were called evil spirits in the bible?

      What do you think people who say they experienced the Holy Spirit, really experienced? A different kind of microbe?

      August 22, 2014 at 7:08 pm |
      • dandintac

        Robert, seems to me you are suggesting that there could be natural explanations for the phenomena that believers claim to be of supernatural origin. So yes, and this is the very point that atheists note over and over again. You are starting to get it!

        August 23, 2014 at 12:25 am |
        • Robert Brown

          It is obvious to me that God uses his creation to accomplish his will. We can at times assign a natural cause to things, take the evil spirits for example. Colin says we now know what makes people sick. We have identified viruses and such as the cause and while there are multiple reasons some get sick, some don’t, some recover, some don’t. There just isn’t something we can say, with complete certainty, as the cause for these outcomes. Colin suggests that it is a roll of the dice, personally, I don’t think that this is always the case.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:01 am |
        • G to the T

          " while there are multiple reasons some get sick, some don’t, some recover, some don’t. There just isn’t something we can say, with complete certainty, as the cause for these outcomes. Colin suggests that it is a roll of the dice, personally, I don’t think that this is always the case."

          Congrats – you've identified the existence of genetic diversity in a population.

          August 23, 2014 at 11:09 am |
        • Robert Brown

          Yes G, genetics is one of the many reasons given, but there isn't any certainty that this is always the reason.

          August 23, 2014 at 6:52 pm |
        • G to the T

          " but there isn't any certainty that this is always the reason"

          True – but I don't believe there's certainty anywhere. All we have is what best fits the evidence available. For me, genetic diversity is a much more probable explanation and any supernatural cause, so that's what I go with.

          August 25, 2014 at 12:23 pm |
      • alonsoquixote

        > Ok, God makes no sense to you. Could you believe in a really old, strong, and smart being?

        Like Zeus, Odin, Brahma, or one of the thousands of other gods invented by men to explain the world around them? People living thousands of years ago imagined that the forces of nature they observed were the acts of beings much like themselves, though far more powerful. So for them lightning was Teshub, Thor, Zeus, Yahweh, or some other god throwing thunderbolts. Many people still today fill in gaps in their knowledge of the causes of events they observe with a god. Whatever they can't explain they attribute to a god.

        >Do you think that microbes were what were called evil spirits in the bible?

        Just as people today want explanations for the phenomena they observe, so did ancient peoples. Lacking the technological and scientific advances that we benefit from they relied on their imaginations to explain the world around them and so imagined evil spirits or demons were the cause of physical and mental illnesses. And they believed that spells or charms could war off or expel those evil spirits. Or that certain people who possessed magical powers could expel them from the bodies of the sick or mentally disturbed, though lacking knowledge of psychology gained over subsequent centuries, they believed such people to be demon-possessed rather than mentally disturbed.

        >What do you think people who say they experienced the Holy Spirit, really experienced? A different kind of microbe?

        I grew up in a denomination where glossolalia, i.e. "speaking in tongues", which is viewed by some Christian denominations as a gift from the Holy Spirit, was practiced. Research has shown glossolalia to be learned behavior, e.g., see Pentecostal Glossolalia Toward A Functional Interpretation by Virginia H. Hine, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion Vol. 8, No. 2 (Autumn, 1969). People in a church see others exhibiting the behavior and imitate them. I.e., there is a psychological explanation that does not require any supernatural being to be involved.

        Neuroscience and brain imaging technology reveal the natural phenomena occurring in the brains of believers who make claims regarding experiencing the Holy Spirit, etc. E.g., the thalamus, which relays sensory signals to the cerebral cortex, and parietal region become much more active accompanied by a sharp decrease in frontal lobe function, the area of the brain that enables reason and self-control. No involvement by a supernatural being is needed to explain the activity occurring in the believers' brains only an understanding of mental states and the mechanisms by which the brain functions.

        August 23, 2014 at 11:03 am |
        • Robert Brown

          Old, strong, and smart was kind of a joke.

          August 23, 2014 at 6:54 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          This activity or lack of activity in the brain, is it proven to be the cause or the effect?

          August 23, 2014 at 6:58 pm |
    • sanddudian

      There is one thing both Christians and Atheists agree on...one of us is right and the other is wrong. That is a fact. A Christian's belief is on really bad evidence as you have outlined above. The chances of that Christian story being correct is as close to zero as you can get. Reason and logic says no Judeo-Christian god or any god(s). It is so obvious. Great summary Colin!

      August 22, 2014 at 7:26 pm |
      • believerfred

        No, the post is fail from the beginning........
        Your comment is a fail because all the scientific evidence to date concludes that science does not and cannot address God. Please ask any real scientist and will confirm that fact for you.
        Anyone can toss about scientific findings but if the findings are not germane to the object they are of no value.
        Bottom line is that colin has zero evidence for his non belief while the Pope and others have a real personal experience which colin has never had nor does he understand.

        August 22, 2014 at 8:09 pm |
        • rogerthat2014

          Having a gosh darn good feeling that you're right doesn't make it so. It's not evidence. It doesn't matter if you are the pope or a homeless person on the sidewalk. It's proves nothing.

          August 22, 2014 at 8:30 pm |
        • believerfred

          rodgerthat2014
          I am always amazed that my actual experiences that confirm the words of Jesus and conform with the Bible are considered worthless by someone who has not experienced God.

          August 22, 2014 at 8:38 pm |
        • believerfred

          rogerthat2014
          I did not simply have a feeling that was right it was a transforming experience. We can argue that Paul never had an experience of God but Saul of Tarsus was one transformed killer of Christians into the spark that set off the World View dominate to this day. No one will agree upon the form or substance of God but the concept of God itself is expressed throughout reality. God is alive in His people can you at least see that?

          August 22, 2014 at 8:42 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          What if declaring you are right gives you a warm feeling? And you boast about it?

          August 22, 2014 at 8:48 pm |
        • believerfred

          Dalahast
          I have a feeling that a prideful atheist and a prideful Christian will end in the same place.

          August 22, 2014 at 8:53 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          They both think they are right. And will tell you all about it. Pretty much in the same manner.

          August 22, 2014 at 9:07 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          "my actual experiences that confirm the words of Jesus and conform with the Bible are considered worthless by someone who has not experienced God."

          First off, your personal experience is pertinent to you only...so no it doesn't have to be accepted as fact when the only one who can back it is you.
          Second, Who are you to judge anyone on what they know of god? Many Atheists are Recovering Christians and know a great deal of the god you speak of. Judging people according to your book is sinful...guess that makes you a BAD Christian or at least a very poor rep of them.

          August 22, 2014 at 9:09 pm |
        • tallulah131

          All evidence indicates that both the prideful atheist and the prideful Christian will eventually die and their body will decompose or be cremated. With the passing of time, they will both be forgotten, unless they do something truly remarkable in life.

          August 22, 2014 at 11:39 pm |
        • evolveddna

          Fred.. science does not spend its time looking for, or trying to dismiss, any god any more than its looking for Unicorns ,Faeries..
          or magic fire breathing dragons. It is true that what is in your mind cannot be dismissed as being god, but unless you can develop telekinetic abilities then your god is trapped in that space unmeasured and unimportant to others. Can you point to any physical event on earth that can only be attributed to the supernatural?

          August 23, 2014 at 12:09 am |
        • dandintac

          Fred,

          This is not true–or at least it depends on how you define god. Believers consistently make very specific claims about their gods, and some of them CAN be tested, but so far these various hypotheses have failed when tested, which strong suggests that the claim is wrong, or at the very least it is unjustified and therefore should not be deemed credible. Let me give you one example. That god listens to and answers prayers.

          There has been study after study after study performed to determine the efficacy of intercessory prayer, and every time, within the margin of error, in double-blind studies prayer has failed to yield outcomes any different from the control group which did not utilize prayer. In other words, prayer makes no measurable difference.

          When I found that out and researched it more–it's an event that helped me to become an atheist. At that time, I was still in the "believe in a higher power" stage where I thought their might be some sort of god that watches and sometimes helps us. This was actual scientific proof that this type of god does not exist. If a benevolent theistic god who listens to prayers and intervenes were to exist, these studies WOULD show some advantage to those who pray.

          If a God exists, he does not intervene on the basis of prayer. This has been TESTED, over and over again, and scientifically shown to have failed the testing.

          August 23, 2014 at 12:34 am |
        • believerfred

          TruthPrevails1
          First off, your personal experience is pertinent to you only...so no it doesn't have to be accepted as fact when the only one who can back it is you.
          =>sorry but the experience is not unique to me as the same and happens 100% of the time when one finally realizes they are a sinner and need a Savior.

          "Second, Who are you to judge anyone on what they know of god? "
          =>you still do not understand judgement as it is God who will judge not me. I understand your fear as you have expressed it repeatedly and pretending you are above judgment or there is no God or sin is simply denial.

          "Many Atheists are Recovering Christians and know a great deal of the god you speak of."
          =>correct many people know a great deal about God from an academic stand point. However, if they knew God they could not be atheist.

          "Judging people according to your book is sinful...guess that makes you a BAD Christian or at least a very poor rep of them."
          =>again, you do not know the difference between what the Bible calls judging people. To judge another is to cast dispersion upon them or marginalize them or think you are better than they are. The Bible makes it clear that rejecting God is the worst possible sin and the one you can rest assured will find you tethered to death in the physical. It is not bad but most discerning when a Christen understands right from wrong and does what is right before the Lord.
          Rejecting God is wrong before the Lord, it is wrong according the Bible and it will bring you eternal damnation (what ever that means). This is simple cause and effect. You reject God and embrace godlessness. No judgement there from me simply a statement of fact.

          August 23, 2014 at 12:55 am |
        • believerfred

          tallulah13
          " unless they do something truly remarkable in life."
          =>as Jesus did for example.

          August 23, 2014 at 12:57 am |
        • believerfred

          evolveddna
          " science does not spend its time looking for, or trying to dismiss, any god any more than its looking for Unicorns"
          =>Science has turned over every possible rock known or knowable to man yet there is no natural explanation for existence. Even Stephen Hawking who is bent on proving that no god needed has failed until now with his last gasp being the discovery of a unified theory because the wheels are off the wagon as our very existence is only possible if there are in fact an infinite number of universes. In the scientific community we cannot say supernatural or assume the natural is not yet knowable.

          "Can you point to any physical event on earth that can only be attributed to the supernatural?"
          Worship of God. Belief by 3 billion people that a man named Jesus walked on water (yes belief is a physical event when expressed) which is an impossible feat.

          August 23, 2014 at 1:08 am |
        • believerfred

          dandintact
          "If a benevolent theistic god who listens to prayers and intervenes were to exist, these studies WOULD show some advantage to those who pray."
          =>it is impossible for any kind of scientific study to be valid as to effectiveness of prayer. Prayer is bringing your soul in alignment with the will of God as the outcome. There is absolutely no way a researcher could know the will of God in a particular case nor what the inclination of the soul of the person praying.
          =>The biggest harm done to belief is the idea that God is some form of cosmic Santa when it comes to meeting our needs. Those with faith are tested to the limits of their faith which expands their faith and their love of God. Answering prayer on demands of man is contrary to scripture as God is no respecter of man.

          August 23, 2014 at 1:29 am |
        • Vic

          If I may add, the Lord God cannot be tested†.

          It is God's Sovereign Divine Will, Wisdom and Command what and how to do whatever, including prayers. If man tests God in anything, including prayer, whether the oneself or an observer, it is but futile.

          † Matthew 4:7 & Luke 4:12

          August 23, 2014 at 8:23 am |
        • evolveddna

          Fred.. Can you point to any physical event on earth that can only be attributed to the supernatural?"
          Worship of God. Belief by 3 billion people that a man named Jesus walked on water (yes belief is a physical event when expressed) which is an impossible feat." belief is not supernatural.. and walking on water.. no evidence that happened not even a sketch or drawing nothing..wonder why??.. and Eskimos were doing that long before jesus! anyway. You have nothing to prove gods influence on planet earth..he conveniently hides ( is he male why would he have a gender) and only appears to act with the same certainty as coincidence.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:41 am |
        • TruthPrevails1

          =>sorry but the experience is not unique to me as the same and happens 100% of the time when one finally realizes they are a sinner and need a Savior.

          So numerous people have thought they have been visited by aliens, should we take them at their word also? Your personal experiences are not valid as evidence.
          Sin is an imaginary disease made up to fool the gullible, it has no pertinence outside of your belief system regardless of what you say.

          =>you still do not understand judgement as it is God who will judge not me. I understand your fear as you have expressed it repeatedly and pretending you are above judgment or there is no God or sin is simply denial.

          Apparently dictionaries mean nothing to you! I have never pretended to be above judgment but given that your god CAN'T be shown to exist, there is NO justification for worrying about it.

          =>correct many people know a great deal about God from an academic stand point. However, if they knew God they could not be atheist.

          What's to know? That man created a god (many to be exact) and none can be proven with EVIDENCE to exist?

          =>again, you do not know the difference between what the Bible calls judging people. To judge another is to cast dispersion upon them or marginalize them or think you are better than they are. The Bible makes it clear that rejecting God is the worst possible sin and the one you can rest assured will find you tethered to death in the physical. It is not bad but most discerning when a Christen understands right from wrong and does what is right before the Lord.

          I think you have this twisted. Christianity causes diversion, not disbelief...we at least care that everyone is treated equally and that everyone be given the same rights.
          If you need a book to help you discern right from wrong, you lack empathy.
          I'm not the one playing the Holier Than Thou card here, that would be you. You CLAIM to know exactly what this god wants and does and yet there's ZERO evidence to support your claims...talk about being ARROGANT.
          Stop judging people and learn that biblical definitions mean nothing in the REAL world, they only pertain to your belief system. If you want respect give it. I'm not worried about your god nor should I need to be.
          Rejecting God is wrong before the Lord, it is wrong according the Bible and it will bring you eternal damnation (what ever that means). This is simple cause and effect. You reject God and embrace godlessness. No judgement there from me simply a statement of fact.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:46 am |
        • TruthPrevails1

          oops seems I posted too quickly and didn't respond to this:
          "Rejecting God is wrong before the Lord, it is wrong according the Bible and it will bring you eternal damnation (what ever that means). This is simple cause and effect. You reject God and embrace godlessness. No judgement there from me simply a statement of fact"

          It is you judging, stop trying to pass the buck here. You don't speak for your god and the bible is merely a book written by men...no evidence of divine intervention-just mans word that there was...so no you're not stating any facts, just opinion and thankfully that is all it is.
          Sin is non-existent and I'm sorry you were never taught to respect others...what a sad miserable, narrow-minded world you reside in! What a true waste of the only life you are guaranteed of...you live to die and yet there's zero evidence that supports anything more after this life.
          You are not a good person, you're arrogant and judgmental...a blemish on humanity.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:52 am |
        • tallulah131

          believerfred

          " unless they do something truly remarkable in life."
          =>as Jesus did for example.

          Or Gilgamesh.

          August 23, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • believerfred

          TruthPrevails1
          "It is you judging, stop trying to pass the buck here. You don't speak for your god and the bible is merely a book written by men...no evidence of divine intervention-just mans word that there was...so no you're not stating any facts"
          =>No, it is a fact that the Bible says those who reject God face an eternal consequence. You claim you reject God not me, you condemn yourself not me. I am not in a position nor am I supposed to condemn anyone that is sin.

          August 23, 2014 at 4:16 pm |
        • believerfred

          tallulah131
          Exactly what great thing is it Gilgamesh has done?

          August 23, 2014 at 4:18 pm |
        • dandintac

          Fred,

          "Prayer is bringing your soul in alignment with the will of God as the outcome."

          This is another example of moving the goalposts. Can anyone think of any other domain of discourse or area of inquiry where this would be acceptable? When a claim is demonstrated false, you just redefine it in a way that it cannot be disproven.

          August 23, 2014 at 5:46 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Fred: You can't seriously be that clueless, can you? It Is you judging...you're merely hiding behind the guise of your bible to do so. Your bible does not apply to everyone...what is so hard for you to comprehend about that? It is merely a belief, not based on anything substantial...I know you don't see that. Remain ignorant and disrespectful of other if you wish but don't drag others to your level...we're not so weak.
          If hell exists, you'll be granted a special spot.

          August 23, 2014 at 6:38 pm |
        • tallulah131

          Read the Epic of Gilgamesh if you wish to know his exploits. He is remembered just as Jesus is, despite being a much older legend.

          August 23, 2014 at 7:58 pm |
    • believerfred

      colin
      Bad opening. If your concept of an immortal being has zero probability, and the probability of an all-powerful being is zero and the probability of an all-knowing being is zero then the probability of all 3 events occurring is still ZERO not CUBED. Fix you opening and perhaps your credibility will be greater than ZERO for the rest of the post.

      August 22, 2014 at 7:59 pm |
      • Dalahäst

        The conclusion is hilarious! I really do love his posts. I like it when he pulls some out of his files I hadn't seen before. I thought I had read them all.

        August 22, 2014 at 8:11 pm |
        • believerfred

          One of colin's tired posts but he put a new beginning on it without doing the math.

          August 22, 2014 at 8:43 pm |
        • Science Works

          Hey fred was this around the Flintstone era ?

          http://www.cnn.com/video/data/2.0/video/bestoftv/2014/08/22/dnt-fossils-unknown-species-discovered.cbc.html

          August 22, 2014 at 8:52 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          A few years ago I would have digged it. Now it just seems to miss the point. At least on how I believe. Maybe that is what and how he used to believe. Or maybe his parents brought him up in an environment like that, and he assumes that is what all belief is like.

          August 22, 2014 at 10:01 pm |
        • colin31714

          The math appears to be fundamentally sound. What are the chances of throwing, say a 3 on a die. 1 in 6. To do so twice is 6 squared and to do so three times is 6 cubed. The likelihood of a being existing with a highly, highly unlikely characteristic such as omnipotence is very low. To then claim he also has the highly, highly unlikely trait of immortality effectively squares the improbability of such a being existing, at least in the abstract. Add a third, highly unlikely trait (omniscience) and were are essentially cubing the unlikelihood.

          Not that it matters, any one of the three traits is unlikely enough to make your god beneath serious adult consideration. Omniscience and omnipotence are also oxymoronic. Such a being would lack the power to change its mind as it would always know where it was eventually going to come out on an issue. This is just one of a number of simple logical conundrums that make your god notion a childish delusion.

          August 23, 2014 at 11:46 am |
      • colin31714

        Fred, zero cubed equals zero. Fourth grade math.

        August 23, 2014 at 12:50 am |
        • believerfred

          colin
          "effectively cubes its already dispositive implausibility."
          =>english is not your second language so you would have said "any one dispositive attribute is sufficient to establish implausibility ".

          August 23, 2014 at 1:49 am |
        • colin31714

          Ok, I'll go with that. Zero chance your god exists. Wow, you showed me!

          August 23, 2014 at 7:11 am |
        • TruthPrevails1

          I highly doubt fred made it out of grade 1...so expecting him to comprehend basic math is setting the bar high for him.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:54 am |
    • jhg45

      John 21:25 says "there are, in fact, many other things also which Jesus did, which, if ever they were written in full detail, I suppose, the world itself could not contain the scrolls written." do you suppose to save papyrus we were told the lessons, prophecies and all other stories for our benefit, necessity and hope for the future. perhaps then, during the 1000 year reign of Jesus we will learn all the other important lessons we need. why not try to be there?

      August 22, 2014 at 8:36 pm |
      • G to the T

        An interesting take on Pascal's wager I'll grant. The problem is there are many, MANY different claims as to what the afterlife might be. Are you taking steps to ensure you have a chance at being a part of their's as well?

        August 23, 2014 at 11:36 am |
        • jhg45

          G–T ; if you find this place again like I did why not check out where I have been looking to find those answers. to learn what the Bible really teaches go to jw.org and learn free of charge what makes more sense than anything I have found anywhere else, especially here, j

          August 24, 2014 at 1:28 pm |
        • ausphor

          jhg
          Read your nonsense, have you read the Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, you should you know.

          August 24, 2014 at 1:32 pm |
        • jhg45

          who asked you ?

          August 24, 2014 at 8:15 pm |
    • harlow13

      Colin, my man, for heaven's sake, stop making sense.

      August 22, 2014 at 8:44 pm |
    • Peaceadvocate2014

      Colin,

      Impalpable claims we have no way of knowing and continue the journey to seach evidence to disprove events we were absent.

      In my humble opinion, a moral perfect being is more of an aspiration than a being to be judge for implausibility. A human evolution as we see in our history. God or no God.

      August 22, 2014 at 9:10 pm |
    • Vic

      I see a common problem among non-believers in the matter of God, that is reducing everything to and viewing it all with the finite realm of this existence, hence a tunnel-vision and a severe uncritical-thinking of simple-to-complex transpiration. It is but a superior and critical-thinking to discern that this natural existence —creation— is but a product of a Supernatural Existence —Creator— that is of an outside realm.

      The question always remains, where did matter and life come from? Any feat of Empirical Science is but a study of a finished product as opposed to the "Origin." If you don't know the "Origin" empirically, it is but unintelligent to dismiss a metaphysical one.

      If this complex existence, a "Prima Facie" evidence of a Superior Intellect, is not enough evidence of a Superior Origin, I don't know what is!

      August 22, 2014 at 9:33 pm |
      • evolveddna

        Vic.. Life has always existed it did not need a creator.. why do you think it did? Life is every where in the universe. Life, through you, gave birth to the concept of gods.. Life creates a mirage in which god appears to be real but as you get closer its just nature. I feel evolution coursing through my body and i see no greater reason than that for it to be real.

        August 22, 2014 at 11:37 pm |
        • Vic

          This existence could have not been out here/there for all eternity since it had a beginning, let alone finite, hence, an eternal infinite uncaused self-existence is necessary as the cause.

          August 23, 2014 at 8:37 am |
        • G to the T

          "This existence could have not been out here/there for all eternity since it had a beginning, let alone finite, hence, an eternal infinite uncaused self-existence is necessary as the cause."

          Your view of time is flawed in my opinion Vic. As I understand it, time is relative to the observer and is a property of what is known as the space/time continuum. There is nothing to prevent there having been time before the singularity that most likely initiated the Big Bang. Like sand that has passed through the pinch in an hour glass we can no longer see/experience the "sand" in the top bulb.

          August 23, 2014 at 11:42 am |
      • dandintac

        Vic,

        I disagree. We view things in terms of this existence simply because it's the only existence that has been demonstrated to exist. Any other existence is pure speculation, so it's inappropriate to make pronouncements about other existences when we really know nothing at about these other existences, or know that they indeed exist. So yes, there is a certain tunnel-vision aspect to realism. Now, it's okay to speculate, but you should not be passing speculations off as certain knowledge and making sweeping statements about that which may turn out to be nothing more than fantasy. Now if you can come back with some evidence–good, hard, testable, evidence that can be reliably verified, then we can talk.

        Now a word about complexity. Christians have turned "complexity" into a big mystery, and a necessary mark of intelligence. The problem is–both "complexity" and "intelligence" are both totally relative terms. How much "complexity must exist before we declare "intelligence" was necessary? And how much of this intelligence was needed, and how do we demonstrate that? So far, this is purely an assertion with no backing.

        This is a dried up stream bed on Mars. I think we can agree that it is simple–just one meandering channel, and that it was caused naturally.

        Now look at these more complex ones:

        or these:

        Can we agree that the second and third pictures are far more complex than the first? Can we also agree that the same amount of intelligence was required for all three? None?

        There is nothing inherent in "complexity" that requires intelligence. What we call, arbitrarily, "complex", is really just a lot of "simple". They are subjective terms that are not clearly defined, and there is no logical connection between intelligence and complexity.

        Look at the picture of agricultural fields. A circle is the simplest geometric figure there is, except for a straight line. Yet we know these are intelligently created, and we know why–to make them easier to irrigate. So simple is often a sign of intelligence:

        On the other hand, look at these highly complex Barchan dunes:

        We know the dunes are created through natural processes–namely, the wind acting upon the sand, and we can observe how they are formed and make predictions.

        So complexity absolutely fails as an argument for god and religion.

        Thanks

        August 23, 2014 at 12:59 am |
        • Vic

          The existence of a cause-effect system alone is evidence of intelligence, and when we apply said system, that definitely necessitates a "First Cause" for this existence—effect. Existence in itself, whether simple or complex, is evidence of a Superior Origin.

          August 23, 2014 at 8:28 am |
        • dandintac

          Vic–why? On what basis do you make this assertion? I can give you many, many examples of causes that clearly have no intelligence behind them. A boom of thunder jars loose a rock, precariously balanced on a mountain. It starts rolling downhill, knocking loose other rocks, growing into a landslide. This one example alone proves that causes do not need to be intelligent.

          The First Cause Argument has been around at least as long as Aristotle, but it is an argument from ignorance (among other weaknesses). For one thing, although we know that cause-effect seems to hold true on the macro level in this universe, we know nothing at all about conditions before the universe existed, if it even makes sense to say "before the universe". We do not know if a first cause was indeed required. The universe is stranger than we can imagine, and there is so much we don't know. Assuming we know–and know all about this first cause, is intellectually dishonest.

          August 24, 2014 at 2:25 am |
    • awanderingscot

      Do you also dream of little green army men and little purple dinosaurs that spring up from the dirt spontaneously?

      August 22, 2014 at 10:15 pm |
      • awanderingscot

        These are the miracles that belong to God that atheists want to appropriate to nature and their god of evolution.

        August 22, 2014 at 10:32 pm |
        • evolveddna

          Scot. If you have evidence that creation is a fact present it . There are folks on this forum who would love to work with you to obtain a Noble prize i am sure. Some of those folks are well versed in the nuances of evolution and would listen to real evidence if you had it.. Just dissing evolution is not proving creation as fact. You may well be right but so far there is nothing that backs it up.. Even the Catholic Church accepts it and they surely would have, as you claim some connections to. the "Creator'.

          August 22, 2014 at 11:27 pm |
      • evolveddna

        Scot given enough scotch you bet!

        August 23, 2014 at 12:11 am |
        • evolveddna

          Scot sorry meant for the first post you made..

          August 23, 2014 at 12:12 am |
    • himpdahak

      I always had fun trying to figure out what an omniscient and omnipotent being would be like when I was younger. It is supposedly all powerful, yet it is completely impotent to change its own future. It knows EVERYTHING. Including what it will do in the future. Anything it does, it does knowing it will do it long before, so is it truly all-powerful or is just another natural force without the ability to choose anything? If it was all powerful it should be able to do something different from what it predicted, yet that would mean it could no longer be all-knowing as something happened that was not known to it beforehand. The two powers cannot exist simultaneously. It is like the irresistible force and the immovable object; only one can be true.

      September 2, 2014 at 3:36 pm |
  18. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    Neither Cupp nor Stedman speak for me. They can both piss off.

    August 22, 2014 at 6:32 pm |
  19. Dalahäst

    There are good atheists, like the previous ti.tle of this article asked. And "...libertarian atheists, Marxist atheists, scientific determinist atheists, existentialist atheists, humanist atheists, Nietzschean atheists, etc., etc."

    "...when we meet an atheist, we should ask, “what kind of atheist are you?” Or, “what god do you not believe in?” We Christians might not believe in that kind of god either. In fact, the Romans persecuted Christians on the grounds that they were “atheists”; that is, they did not believe in the gods of the cultural pantheon."

    quotes from:
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/geneveith/2013/03/different-kinds-of-atheists/

    August 22, 2014 at 5:44 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      So you concur that Ms. Cupp's assertions are nonsense?

      August 22, 2014 at 7:02 pm |
      • Dalahäst

        I agree atheists are still political outcasts. I feel like a political outcast at times, so I can sympathize with that position.

        I agree that Conservatives are hostile toward atheists. I've seen it. I've been the recipient of it.

        I find most liberals respect religious diversity. And while most atheist I encounter on here are downright hostile toward me, I find most in the "real world" are pretty respectful over our disagreements. I'm grateful for that! I hope to not treat atheists like some of the Conservatives do. I also hope to not treat Conservatives like how some of the atheists on here treat me. We don't need that.

        August 22, 2014 at 7:11 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          Yes, I'm with you on everything you said.

          August 22, 2014 at 7:52 pm |
        • neverbeenhappieratheist

          "downright hostile toward me"

          I think what you mistake for hostility are atheists attempting to make you examine your own words. When you make a claim and say "I have proof" "my faith is based on evidence" or "Christ died for our sins" but you don't provide any proof, validation or evidence atheists tear you down and tell you that you are stupid because you didn't preface it with "My opinion is..." and then admit you don't have actual proof for anyone else but have a self verifying opinion that you firmly believe. If you would all just admit that we wouldn't have to rip into you so hard but if we didn't it would be like a math teacher standing there not saying anything when Timmy tells the class that 2+2 = 22.

          August 23, 2014 at 10:19 am |
        • Dalahäst

          Or some atheists are just jerks and try to shove their beliefs down my throat.

          It is ok if some atheists are not good examples. You should focus on yourself before you try fixing me.

          August 23, 2014 at 3:11 pm |
        • tallulah131

          I always respond in kind to the treatment I receive. If I have been rude to you, then perhaps you should examine your own words.

          August 23, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          You should practice what you preach.

          August 23, 2014 at 3:13 pm |
        • tallulah131

          As I said, I respond in kind to how others write. I try not to instigate but I will not be silent when others are rude. I will stand up for myself and my opinion. I have noticed that you have become increasingly hostile the longer you are on this blog. When you first started came to this blog, you offered thoughtful, if naive comments.

          Since then, you have become quite rude, to the point where I sometimes think that someone else has stolen the name from the original person. But I guess you are the same, because the naivety has stayed.

          August 23, 2014 at 3:59 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          You are bragging about yourself. And preaching to me about something you have failed to demonstrate on this blog. I can't be silent while you are extremely rude to other people. I made a comment that some atheists are extremely hostile to me. It happens. Some atheists are jerks. Most aren't.

          August 23, 2014 at 7:15 pm |
        • tallulah131

          (now in the correct place)

          No, I'm not bragging. I'm simply letting you know that your own behavior influences how you are treated. When you treat someone poorly, do not be surprised when they return the favor.

          August 23, 2014 at 8:02 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          But why is it only some atheists that make those kinds of claims? And it is usually the ones that don't provide a very good example, as in they shouldn't be preaching to others on how to behave?

          Why have some atheists, the ones that seem the most reasonable, come to my defense before? And ask the few athiests to knock it off?

          August 23, 2014 at 8:07 pm |
    • MidwestKen

      "“what god do you not believe in?” We Christians might not believe in that kind of god either."

      While there may be different kinds of atheists, this question is ridiculous as atheists lack a belief in any god(s). It would be like asking a physicist which species of fairy they don't believe in.

      August 23, 2014 at 4:17 pm |
      • Dalahäst

        Think of it this way:

        I sometimes have people tell me I'm mentally retarded for believing in a God who reads my mind and changes the world to suit my needs.

        I can safely say I don't believe in that God either.

        Of course, that atheists will usually follow up with calling me a coward and declaring I'm a liar.

        While a physicist very likely might believe in God, and explain comparing God to a fairy is ridiculous.

        August 23, 2014 at 7:10 pm |
        • neverbeenhappieratheist

          "comparing God to a fairy is ridiculous."

          Why? What powers can you claim your God has that I can't assign to a fairy?

          August 24, 2014 at 4:59 am |
        • Dalahäst

          The power to have respected, credible and courageous men and women in history who have testified to knowing God. These include people our society generally holds in high esteem: like doctors, civil rights leaders, scientists and soldiers. People you would trust putting your life in their hands.

          You can say whatever you want. And assign to me and others whatever you want.

          When I look at what is defined as a fairy, and what people who believe in fairies describe – it doesn't sound like God. To me it sounds ridiculous.

          August 24, 2014 at 9:45 am |
        • himpdahak

          "The power to have respected, credible and courageous men and women in history who have testified to knowing God. These include people our society generally holds in high esteem: like doctors, civil rights leaders, scientists and soldiers. People you would trust putting your life in their hands."

          The problem with that 'power' is that it is so often wrong. Just because great people have died for something doesn't make it true or 'good', and many people we consider great had their own beliefs that we find quite questionable today. Gandhi (respectable) was a racist. Newton (credible) was an alchemist. Several of the founders of the US (courageous) were slave owners and fervently believed that blacks were inferior and property of their 'betters'. It is also good to remember that how we define those words is based on our culture and beliefs at the moment and these qualities are not somehow intrinsic to the individuals in question nor universal to humanity. Only courage really comes close to being universal, and even then you can argue a point either way; Gandhi would be considered a coward by the Romans, yet he is considered honorable by us. A man like Alexander of Macedon was revered as a great man because he took whatever he wanted and no one could stop him. The old world revered glory and power and their heroes were exemplars of such. We have differing beliefs and our heroes reflect them just as much.

          September 2, 2014 at 4:05 pm |
      • MidwestKen

        Dalahasat,
        The intended comparison was to types of things when one doesn't believe in any of the things in the first place.

        If I don't believe in Russians, do you think it matters if you say 'well, I don't believe in Moscovites either.'

        August 23, 2014 at 7:31 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          It would be like asking a physicist who doesn't believe in fairies: why do you keep talking about these fairies you don't believe in so much? Instead of talking about physics, why do you keep talking about how much you hate fairies?

          August 23, 2014 at 7:39 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Dalahast,
          As I said the intended comparison was not between gods and fairies but between types of things when the thing itself is not believed. My first thought was doctors and Humours, but Humours are supposedly related to actual bodily fluids.

          I rarely, if ever, make the god to fairy comparison, although logical the analogy does make sense, even if you don't like it.

          August 23, 2014 at 7:47 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          So you could have just said it would be like asking a crack-head which species of fairy they don't believe in, too?

          My point was that some atheists talk about God. A lot. And seek out believers.

          August 23, 2014 at 8:02 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Dalahast,
          Yes, a crack-head would have been valid. How does that relate to atheists talking about god a lot?

          August 23, 2014 at 8:11 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          Some atheists tell me about the God they don't believe in.

          And I can only agree with them. I don't believe in the God they are describing either.

          They aren't telling me about fairies they don't believe in.

          August 23, 2014 at 11:01 pm |
  20. johnbiggscr

    "There’s another myth: that conservatism is somehow hostile to atheism,” Cupp says. “I’m a conservative atheist (and) I’ve felt very welcomed.”
    ...“I’d go so far as to say conservatism is far more intellectually honest and respectful of atheism than liberalism has been,” she says.

    What a load of nonsense. There has only been one party that has actually put out political ads accusing their opponent of being atheist or supporting atheist groups, and it isn’t the democrats. There is only one party who regularly talk about the 'godless' and it isn’t the democrats.

    Remind me again Ms Cupp. Which party does Elizabeth Dole belong to? Remember the ads she released tying Kay Hagan to 'godless Americans'?

    August 22, 2014 at 5:30 pm |
    • awanderingscot

      Do i sense a religious war heating up?

      August 22, 2014 at 10:07 pm |
      • tallulah131

        There's always one in the Middle East. Followers of Abrahamic religions just can't seem to stop killing each other.

        August 22, 2014 at 11:34 pm |
      • G to the T

        A political one possibly cloaked in the guise of religious certainty. The polarization of our country since Bush seems to be increasing at a frightening rate. I'm not even sure a moderate candidate (whatever their professed faith) could even get elected these days.

        August 23, 2014 at 11:58 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
Advertisement
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.