first .. I'm not even atheist, I am agnostic. (but I'm still going to hell.)

There are some situations in which I feel the need to defend religion and its followers from hateful atheists.

Everyone has the right to believe what they want to believe, and to worship what they want to worship. There is no rule in any lawbook that says otherwise. You can be Jewish, Buddhist, you can worship the ground, nature, space, or goats. It doesn't matter, you have that right as a citizen. (Now, keep in mind I'm talking about America because I am not sure about other places.)

There are Christians who openly bash and persecute peoples of different religions and cultures. There are Jewish, Muslim, and Buddhist people who do the same thing. Pagans and Wiccans, Satanists, and Atheists.

And unfortunately..

There are some atheist people out there who are unforgiving and unrelenting in their bashing and hatefulness towards peoples of any religion.

The one thing I was taught in life were morals and ethics. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Christians preach love for all, and there is a bible verse in which it says (roughly, don't know word for word)"He who gets slapped in one cheek, turn the other and ask no questions, for it is your duty to forgive." I took this to mean that you should let people walk on you. Of course, they don't, and neither does an atheist. Unless that's your personality.

So occasionally, I will meet an atheist whose purpose in life is to be hateful towards Christian people. I feel ashamed of these people. I am, as agnostic, a part of this "disbelieving blasphemous group" and people like those who actively seek to be hateful offend me. Their screams of "GOD ISN'T REAL, YOU'RE A STUPID MORON AND YOU NEED TO JUST KILL YOURSELF AND GO TO YOUR HEAVEN SO THE REST OF US CAN LIVE PEACEFULLY" and etc are offensive to me.

They are the types of atheists that religious people think of when they think of atheists. It is human nature to take a little bit of good and a mouthful of bad, and then complain and bitch and moan about the bad, while ignoring that tiny piece of goodness.
These are the same atheists that scream respect from religious people and tell the religious people they are not following their God's wishes by being angry and spiteful in return.

This comes back to, "do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

Religious people can be just as hateful, but I am not talking about that group, I am talking about OUR group. They should be ashamed of themselves just as much as hateful atheists should be ashamed of theirs.

Sorry this was so long and I hope I don't lose any friends over it. It's just something I was thinking about.

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Every group has some jerks in it. Atheists are no exception.

On a side note, I've always thought that "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" had a basic flaw to it. Basically, it assumes that other people want to be treated the same way that you want to be treated, and this is not always the case. A better phrase would be "Do unto others as they wish you to do unto them", although I admit it is not as catchy and does require you to make some inquiries as to how they want to be treated.
lol I suppose
I *just* took an Intro to Religion class this past semester at Boston University and ERR now I'm forgetting which of the Eastern Religious traditions it was, but it was EXACTLY that, it's just like the golden rule, only it's specifically "treat others as they want to be treated". I mean I know my professor brought it up but looking online now I totally can't find it.

This article on wikipedia is really interesting though:

And apparently:

Many people have criticized the golden rule; George Bernard Shaw once said that "The golden rule is that there are no golden rules". Shaw also criticized the golden rule, "Do not do unto others as you would expect they should do unto you. Their tastes may not be the same." (Maxims for Revolutionists). "The golden rule is a good standard which is further improved by doing unto others, wherever reasonable, as they want to be done by." Karl Popper (The Open Society and Its Enemies, Vol. 2) This concept has recently been called "The Platinum Rule"...

And there's a lot more of that on wikipedia... so you might find that interesting. :D

Every Religion has some version of "The Golden Rule", but many atheists are also humanists. I mean a lot of atheists like the philosophy of humanism. And Humanism has that "golden rule" too: In fact I might argue that most atheists are humanists, because according the wikipedia (which I know is not necessarily a credible source but in this case I do trust it),

Humanism is a perspective common to a wide range of ethical stances that attaches importance to human dignity, concerns, and capabilities, particularly rationality. Although the word has many senses, its meaning comes into focus when contrasted to the supernatural or to appeals to authority....The term covers organized non-theistic religions, secular humanism, and a humanistic life stance.

So seriously, consider that, Desirai.

I think a lot of us might express some annoyance and frustration at religion in general when discussing it amongst ourselves as atheists because there are times when Religion itself is a huge problem in our lives - and we're not telling people, "YOU'RE A STUPID MORON AND YOU NEED TO JUST KILL YOURSELF AND GO TO YOUR HEAVEN SO THE REST OF US CAN LIVE PEACEFULLY" like you put as an example in this post. We're so totally not. I highly doubt that most of us would ever tell someone to "go kill themselves".

But in general, a lot of religious people show NO RESPECT at all for atheists and their choice to not follow a religion nor believe in any god. And therefore it's really impossible to respect them in return. Most of us will definitely try to respect those Christians and otherwise religious people who do respect us though. We certainly do have a certain sense of constantly thinking "they're wrong" because our own belief system - that God is a fantasy - is completely opposite to their Christian belief system. But if atheists try to fight their natural urge to be prejudiced, etc. then usually atheists are pretty calm, polite, respectful human beings - much more so than any missionary or evangelical Christian.
I prefer the 'negative' version of the golden rule that says "Do not do to others what you would not like them to do to you."

People are varied a lot as to what they like, but are pretty universal about not wanting to suffer, not wanting their beloved friends and possessions taken away, etc.
There are exceptions to the rule. But it's still a good "rule of thumb" in most circumstances.
I do not go door to door or try to intice anyone from their religion I just live a good life, helping others and do as I feel is the right thing to do; not for someone to tell me what to do just because I have read somewhere telling me what I can do, eat, live my life according to others.
It's not about specifics. It's not "I like a shot of whiskey in my coffee, so I should put whiskey in everyone's coffee" or anything like that. It's more the general scope of "I like people to know what I like and put a little effort into making me happy, so I should do the same for them."

The Golden Rule is about mutual respect.
I like whiskey in my coffee, too.....
Well *I* don't, so there! *pfffth*
I've never had Coffee NOR Whiskey before LOL. Neither one.
I prefer to leave out the coffee.


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