Comment by David Smith on December 29, 2013 at 1:37pm

What a man he was, his death was the biggest loss to the cause of rational thinking I can think of.

I really wish I had half his charisma and use of diction, because I completely share his passion for stopping the injustice caused by the sick and twisted actions of organised religion.

Comment by Dr. Bob on December 29, 2013 at 2:11pm

I'm not sure how rational it is to personify a belief system.  

Or for that matter, to lump a whole mess of very different philosophies and ethical systems into one caricatured persona and pretend that any such criticism is meaningful.

The man was mostly a demagogue.  There are always people who are attracted to demagogues, but it is largely an emotional response,  not a rational one.

Comment by Reg The Fronkey Farmer on December 29, 2013 at 2:32pm

If anyone is a demagogue it is the religious leader who appeals to the emotions of the believer. They promise eternity for believing what they preach. How is it rational for an adult to believe he/she is to become immortal when they die?

I have in the past been threaten by emotional theists for saying the same thing…that Christians cannot skim over their past when they put unbelievers to the sword or burnt women to death as witches.

Do you agree with any of what Hitchens says above?

Comment by Dr. Bob on December 29, 2013 at 3:45pm

If anyone is a demagogue it is the religious leader who appeals to the emotions of the believer.

Sure.  But is this really any different? 

As either theist or atheist, we can't promote rationality by celebrating demagoguery in any form.

Do you agree with any of what Hitchens says above?

People make meaning by building stories.  Hitchens is engaged in that.  Like any demagogue, he's building up a mythology to get people to believe in.  In this case, the ignorance and evils of a personified "religion."  

Personified "religion" should be recognized as just as irrational as a "promise of eternity" by thoughtful atheists, I would think.  Just another myth.

Comment by Reg The Fronkey Farmer on December 29, 2013 at 4:53pm

What story is Hitchens engaging in, in the quote above? What mythology is he building up?

All thoughtful Atheists do see the promise of eternal life as irrational. Bob, do you not believe that you will become immortal when you die? I thought that was one of the cornerstones that your faith was built upon – that you have the promise of eternal life for believing what you profess to believe as a Catholic?

“….I believe in one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. I confess one baptism for the forgiveness of sins and I look forward to the resurrection and the dead and the life of the world to come.”

Is that not “the promise of eternity” that you are calling “just another myth”? It is not something Hitchens mentioned in the caption.

Comment by MikeLong on December 29, 2013 at 6:34pm

"I'm not sure how rational it is to personify a belief system."

Bob, Personification is simply a literary device. Need we go through your posts and "disallow" any literary devices you may have used?

ALL religions have, as the basis of their belief system, the acceptance of one or more supernatural beings. Seldom do we find a better candidate for "lumping" together than the minds of religious people.

Comment by David Smith on December 30, 2013 at 10:11am

Bob, for once I agree on a point you made, though am at a complete loss by how you got to it.  If I understand you correctly, (which I'm beginning to think is hard to do by design) you are saying that my comment about the great man who was Hitchens is an emotional one.

You got me there, when this free thinker died it was a great loss to us all. Granted I didn't agree with his every point, but I felt he did more to promote free though than most of us could ever hope to.  Yes, its an emotional response, but wasn't one aimed at swaying opinion.  I liked the guy, am I now not allowed to be emotional about the death of someone I liked?

Bob, I respect your arguments, but I think you are pushing the boundaries a little here. by attacking a comment which was meant only as a personal statement of respect in a place that the only people who may dis agree with it would only find it if they were looking for something to dis agree with.

Comment by Aiken Drums Sister on December 30, 2013 at 11:08am

"Or for that matter, to lump a whole mess of very different philosophies and ethical systems into one caricatured persona and pretend that any such criticism is meaningful."  - Dr. Bob

What philosophies and ethical systems, other than "There is no god", did he espouse?

Comment by David Smith on December 30, 2013 at 11:18am

well, he had thoughts on war, education, health care etc, just like any other person.  and was never afraid to speak his mind.  But his views on religion was why I appreciated his work.  I don't think you have to completely agree or dis agree with all of someone's vies to understand they did a great job.  If this was the case, a Christian person would have a lot to answer for in supporting some of the works of their god in the old testament.  some pretty nasty stuff there no doubt.

Comment by Aiken Drums Sister on December 30, 2013 at 11:29am

Nevertheless, "there is no god" doesn't incorporate any other philosophies or ethics.  He had opinions like everyone, and his were informed by his atheism, like other peoples' opinions are informed by their religion.  He was great because he first said "there is no god", then he said "and that means..."  The meaning of No God is what really freaks out the believers.

Comment

You need to be a member of Think Atheist to add comments!

Join Think Atheist

Blog Posts

Life Condensed

Posted by Cato Rigas on October 19, 2014 at 8:30pm 2 Comments

Cool Vehicle Inspection!

Posted by Ed on October 18, 2014 at 9:03am 2 Comments

Services we love!

We are in love with our Amazon

Book Store!

Gadget Nerd? Check out Giz Gad!

Advertise with ThinkAtheist.com

In need a of a professional web site? Check out the good folks at Clear Space Media

© 2014   Created by umar.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service