I was just reading a page on the site Rational Wiki, which I'm fond of, replying to an attack on atheism. Under "reasonable explanations for atheism" is a claim that I've come across before, namely "poor relationship with father." It seems an "ex-atheist" by the name of Dr. Paul Vitz wrote an entire book with this claim, with the same title: Faith of the Fatherless. Here is the page: http://http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Conservapedia:Atheism#Reasonabl...

 

Now, I'm the son of a single mother who's only met his biological father once, and we have no relationship, so this idea is something that would apply to me, hence the interest. Even without people knowing my personal background, I've been accused of being stuck in a "youthful rebellion" due to my atheism, along with certain political beliefs I hold (but that's another topic).

 

Of course this would be more a smear tactic in those cases, but the allegation is more serious. Note that Vitz for his part claimed this not only if one had no father, but a weak or abusive one too, casting a wider net. Obviously we can point to believers who also had this situation. However, it seems to me there is a connection being made here which is simple-a lack of relationship with your father here, means lack of one with your Father up there, as it were.

 

Personally, I'm certain that if my parents had been together, whatever problems I've faced, it would have been far worse. Indeed, this hardly would have made me theist, since my biological father is emphatically not a believer. However, that might have had the opposite effect-my mom raised me with a vague, liberal Christian upbringing easy to get out from. If they were together, my "youthful rebellion" in such a case might have been to become more ardently religious with a father who had contempt for religion, who knows? All right, self-psychoanalysis done. Tell me what you think.

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All I know is, I'm definitely a Daddy's Girl, and I'm an atheist. So the 'fatherless' arguments holds no weight with me. Although, now that I think about it, he did travel quite a bit in a my teenage years...

That said, I do NOT get along with my mom, and she was very strict regarding religion. My atheism, to her, is rebellion.
I assume it could apply to either parent really, but Vitz seemed to center on male atheists and supposed poor relationship with their fathers. Women are not mentioned...very typical.
guess i should have expected that one. LOL.
The vast majority of popular religion after all is an homage to patriarchy.

Awesome. I contribute to rationalwiki. I utterly love the SPV they have (snarky point of view). Their critique of pseudoscience is legendary and their resources for critical thinking and the fallacies are great. Also their Whats Going On In The World (WIGO) is a great source for articles on topics that interest us.

The book you are talking about, reminds me pretty much of the majority of really bad appologetics and atheist criticism. Seems like they have a very lite tone and gentle critique. Perhaps that makes readers more open to the text, but it's still a pile of crappy arguments. My parents were both atheists and I certainly never ended up eating babies or living on the edge of youthful rebellion or hurting people for my selfish goals.

Wow, looking at this again I'm surprised how long ago it was posted. Anyway, those who make this critique seem to assume people become atheists, rather than having never been theists at all. Of course, even assuming that their supposed explanation were true this wouldn't make atheism itself false. Even the guy that claimed this noted atheists were intelligent, and on average this seems to be born out with a higher IQ. Whether or not they had some Freudian reason to going away from religion, it doesn't bode well for theists here.

Find 1 near perfect reason to explain the reason you decide everyday to label yourself, "Atheist".

Mine is the fundamental truth of Existence.
Everything in life expresses Existence.
What does everything in life have in common?
Everything must Spiral.
God is not necessary to understand this fact. Everything begins at 1 then it must Spiral to continue.

I think a better correlation might be the age at which one rejected Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny.

Also, statistically, I think the number of atheists who had 2 parents is higher than the proportion who had only one parent.

:D

Ever heard the old saying, "Two deaths to make One Life."?

Old Taoist saying about parentage and children, but that is just the minimum. We all know two people can create many new lives. The point is, two people must come together to create something new. They must work together, as we all must work together to make the world a better place.

Obviously, it takes a long time between 1->2 (asexual reproduction) then 2->1 (sexual ").

There were billions of years to get to sexual reproduction...that's true.

:D

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