Alright, so a couple of days ago I was talking to a friend of mine in class. And we began to talk about religion. Now I'm far from the kind of person that likes to showcase my views on things, But I told him I was an Atheist. He Actually didn't believe me at first, and said that people have to take a oath to become an atheist. We literally argued about this for 5 whole minutes before I finally said lets go to an computer and get google the definition. after I showed him what atheism actually is, He still retained doubt. I just said forget it, and ended the conversation on it there.
What I'm asking is how long will people remain that ignorant on atheism. It's not like he's dumb when it comes to other topics. He says He's a christian and he never even read the bible. And when I told him and another friend I read it They Laughed. Oh yeah and I forgot to mention one of the guys laughing has a tattoo that says "blessed" on his chest. And he never read the bible. That's just stupid to me, But I kinda want to know what other people think about this.
I think people will begin to understand Atheism as soon as they start using their brains about their own faith. Martin Luther, the guy who started Protestantism said that "reason is the enemy of faith", and churches teach that thinking is bad, and faith is good.
Until humanity can overcome the aversion to thinking, they will just absorb and regurgitate whatever their priests tell them. However, I think that by encouraging each other, we may be able to speed up the process.
I think nobody will really start to recognize atheism because of the fact that being Catholic is the normal in America. God forbid if you aren't a Christian -_-
People can't fathom not being normal and uniform like all of the other brain-washed Christians, so they just say that we are going to hell and ignore us.
When will they understand? You ask... and the answer is "Probably, never".
As long as there is a weak person at the mercy of stronger forces, someone will make them believe that things are so for 'a higher reason'. Religion is there to make people obedient. If they do not agree with what the 'stronger forces' (natural disasters, government, the school yard bully, the rich employer... you name it) do to them, they always have refuge in the post-mortem justice that religion promises them. The lure is too strong.
I know this sounds utterly pessimistic. It is nevertheless the way our society works and the only way it is capable of working for the time being. The urges and wants of individuals have to be kept in check if societies of more than, say, a few dozen individuals are to function. The notion that any extravagant behavior will have consequences even in the afterlife is far stronger than any man-only made set of rules of ethics.
But I did say "probably never". So I do believe that there is a chance of ridding ourselves of that yoke. I'd say that strong, stable democracies are a good starting point. If I can mock or ridicule my leaders without having to suffer for it (jail, inquisition,...etc) things are looking OK. If scientists can freely declare that Earth is not the center of the Universe, things begin to get even better. And when people start being nice to each other for reasons other than fear of their immortal souls being sent to hell... then we start talking ;-)
You should tell him to read the bible.. maybe then he'll join the darkside :)
Ugh...yeah, I have a similar conversation every time I see my dad. I'm sure it would really have blown his mind if you mentioned that had he been born in a Muslim country he would likely be Muslim. What amazes me is the same people that profess to believe the Bible haven't read it, and many of those are the one's who claim THEY are the "true Christians", while the other 37,999 sects of Christianity aren't "true Christians".
You are basically up against people who believe something because they were taught to believe it. I have never been able to reason with someone like that.
Whenever I tell people I am an atheist, especially other Christians, they look at me either with an OMG look or confusion! They just don't understand, I guess.
He Actually didn't believe me at first, and said that people have to take a oath to become an atheist.
"Raise your right hand, and place your left on this copy of The God Delusion." Where does your classmate get his information, anyway?
And who would my "divine witness" be, and what does "solemn" mean in this context?
I think it is how people were raised. My wife is very upset that I am Atheist but she will not listen to me when I try to explain what it means. I have a friend that views me in a totally different way since I told him I was Atheist. He said "I thought you were a good person". I think we will be viewed like this until we make people aware of what it means to be an Atheist.
"people have to take a oath to become an atheist"
Too funny. My daily facepalm!
The ignorance surrounding atheism is due to the stigma attached to atheism. Declaring oneself as 'atheist' is akin to a white person running into an African-American majority neighborhood and spewing racist nonsense. Once you are outted as an atheist, you are no longer taken seriously with any thoughts to what you are saying. I think once people open their minds, whether they agree with it or not, and not toss atheism into a dustbin will people begin to understand atheism. It's up to us atheists to polish the image of atheism and offer it up as a truly healthy alternative to religion. It begins with us, not the non-atheists.
People will only understand those things they are willing to learn. It's still going to take time, though. I've heard that the atheism movement is much like the LGBT movement 20-30 years ago, when people were starting to be more comfortable coming out. Even now, people are struggling with their sexuality despite decades of awareness, but it is getting better.
For me, I make it known, and have no issue with telling people, that I am an atheist. Some responses are surprise, many people are nonreactive. I think the stigma now is that many people think atheists are just angry bitter former believers that are angry at god; I like to think that I destroy that stereotype. The more atheists are outspoken and confident of their non-belief, the more people will become aware of what atheism is. I just hope it isn't going to take decades to get there.