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Atheism, Religion

Evangelical Atheism… Again.

Reza Asian is the latest in the line of theists accusing atheists of being just as dogmatic, fundamentalist, and evangelical as everyone else.  It’s just the same old shit, but it’s important to keep exposing it as shit, so here goes:

There is, as has often been noted, something peculiarly evangelistic about what has been termed the new atheist movement. The new atheists have their own special interest groups and ad campaigns. They even have their own holiday (International Blasphemy Day). It is no exaggeration to describe the movement popularized by the likes of Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, Sam Harris, and Christopher Hitchens as a new and particularly zealous form of fundamentalism–an atheist fundamentalism.

Ok, Reza.  You’re right.  It’s not an exaggeration.  It’s just an outright lie.  There would have to be some truth to it for it to be an exaggeration.  Let’s start with fundamentalism.  That’s the belief in the absolute truth of a set of principles.  And it is precisely opposite to the position of science.  And when we talk about “New Atheists,” we’re talking about people who rely on science to determine that there is no evidence whatsoever for a god’s existence.

Science is the method of determining truth, and for it to work, every conclusion must be viewed as subject to falsification. And yes, that goes for the scientific method itself.  If someone can prove that we’ve been wrong all along, and that the scientific method doesn’t work, we’ll start looking for a method that does work.  (Of course, how are you going to prove that the scientific method doesn’t work without using the scientific method?  That’s the problem, you see.  There is simply no alternative to using science.)

I understand how people like Reza think.  They don’t get that we aren’t doggedly sticking to science out of some misguided “fundamentalism.”  They are only familiar with their own way of thinking, which requires a certain amount of fundamentalism because it defies science.  Since they perceive their world as sensible, and they are dogmatic, they genuinely can’t grasp the epistemological necessity of science.  It sounds contrary to them when we say that we can’t imagine an alternative to science, but we’re willing to accept any falsifiable proof that there is one.

Ok… enough about that.  We’ve been down this road before.  On to billboard ads and so forth.  DUH! Yes.  We believe that we are right, and we think the world would be a better place if more people were like us.  So we’re trying to let other people know that we’re here, and we’re trying to convince them that we’re right.  Just like everyone else with a vested interest in making the world a better place.

Beyond that, we’re also an oppressed minority, and we’d like it if people didn’t treat us badly.  We’re not immoral.  We’re not hopeless.  We’re not missing out on anything.  We’re just like everyone else, but we’re vilified and marginalized.  In some parts of the world, we’re killed.  We’d like it if that wasn’t the case, so we’re trying to change things.

Unlike Reza, we believe that every idea needs to be heard, and tested against reality.  We don’t want the religious to stop talking.  We want them to examine their beliefs critically and give them up when they don’t line up with reality.  We want to talk about religion.  But in labeling us as zealots, fundamentalists, and evangelists, he’s ironically using those words as pejoratives to try to get us to stop!  But Reza… THAT’S WHY WE’RE DOING THIS!  We don’t like fundamentalism or zealotry.  The philosophy we live by is the antithesis to dogmatism, zealotry, and fundamentalism.

The parallels with religious fundamentalism are obvious and startling: the conviction that they are in sole possession of truth (scientific or otherwise), the troubling lack of tolerance for the views of their critics (Dawkins has compared creationists to Holocaust deniers), the insistence on a literalist reading of scripture (more literalist, in fact, than one finds among most religious fundamentalists), the simplistic reductionism of the religious phenomenon…

The conviction that we are in sole possession of truth:  No.  We happily admit that any conclusion may be proven wrong in the future.  Including the existence of God.  We reject claims that don’t hold up to reality, but that doesn’t mean we believe we’re right about everything.  It means just what it says.  We believe things for which there is proof, and disbelieve things for which there is no proof.  That’s it.

Lack of tolerance:  No, Reza.  There is a difference between tolerance and acceptance.  None of the “New Atheists” is suggesting that we outlaw religion or try to force anyone into atheism.  That’s absurd.  We tolerate your views in the same way that we tolerate the KKK’s rights.  We find them abhorrent, and wish you didn’t have them, but we recognize that you have the right to believe abhorrent things.

Insistence on literalist readings:  No again, Reza.  We can and do dismantle scripture on both a literal and metaphorical level.  Enough said.

Reductionism:  Really?  You’ve obviously not been keeping up on the journals.  We’re busy at work in lots of universities trying to get grants to understand religious belief at all levels.  We’ve only had a few decades in which we could hope to do such research, and there’s still a lot we don’t know, but there are dozens, maybe hundreds of research projects ongoing at any given moment.  Now, if you mean that we say things like:  “All theism requires faith,” well that’s not reductionism.  It’s just true.

and, perhaps most bizarrely, their overwhelming sense of siege: the belief that they have been oppressed and marginalized by Western societies and are just not going to take it anymore.This is not the philosophical atheism of Feuerbach or Marx, Schopenhauer or Nietzsche (I am not the first to think that the new atheists give atheism a bad name). Neither is it the scientific agnosticism of Thomas Huxley or Herbert Spencer. This is, rather, a caricature of atheism: shallow scholarship mixed with evangelical fervor.

You pompous ass!  This is so contemptible that I’m having a hard time knowing where to begin.  How many openly atheist congressmen are there?  One.  How many people like you, Reza, have written about how horrible we are?  Seriously, you twit!  You’re doing it right now!

The principle error of the new atheists lies in their inability to understand religion outside of its simplistic, exoteric, and absolutist connotations.

Ok.  Then you come onto this blog and explain to everybody exactly how we’re supposed to understand religion.  Explain it to us in as much nuance as you want and help us make sense of it.  We’ve seen the debates and read the books by your “sophisticated” theologians, and you know what?  It doesn’t make sense.  It’s still non-scientific, and it still doesn’t hold up to the burden of proof.

Indeed, the most prominent characteristic of the new atheism–and what most differentiates it from traditional atheism–is its utter lack of literacy in the subject (religion) it is so desperate to refute.

LIES!  Horrible, easily refutable lies! Many of us, perhaps most of us, grew up religious.  I’ve read the Bible through cover to cover, and I honestly don’t know any Christians who can say that.  I’ve been Catholic, Baptist, Presbyterian, Methodist, and several denominations I can’t even recall now.  I’ve taken… let’s see… four classes on world religion in college.  I’ve read all the “great” apologists.  I could probably explain C.S. Lewis’ arguments better than you could.

Every “new atheist” I know could teach Bible School, and could probably run circles around the average Christian when it comes to knowledge of not only Christianity, but other religions.  We are atheists precisely because we have a thorough understanding of religion.

After all, religion is as much a discipline to be studied as it is an expression of faith. (I do not write books about, say, biology because I am not a biologist.)

Ahem.  But religion is a claim about the nature of reality.  That’s science, bub.  And all those scientists who write about atheism… they’re square in the center of their fields.

Religion, however it is defined, is occupied with transcendence–by which I mean that which lies beyond the manifest world and towards which consciousness is oriented–and transcendence necessarily encompasses certain theological connotations with which one ought to be familiar to properly critique belief in a god.

Yep.  Here it is, folks.  Confuse and conquer.  What the fuck does any of this gobblety-gook mean?  Transcendence from what to what?  What lies beyond the “manifest world?”  How do you know?  Which theological connotations?

One should, for example, be cognizant of how the human experience of transcendence has been expressed in the material world through historically dependent symbols and metaphors.

Yeah… like… one should have read Joseph Campbell, right?  Been there, done that.  Great writer.  Great books.

Or, do you mean that we should examine the physical experiences classified as “transcendence” by religious believers?  That’s what we have fMRI’s for.  And guess what… We’re on it.

One should be able to recognize the diverse ways in which the universal recognition of human contingency, finitude, and material existence has become formalized through ecclesiastical institutions and dogmatic formulae.

Well, yeah.  We have scientists for that, too.  They’re called anthropologists.

One should become acquainted with the unmistakable patterns–call them modalities (Rudolph Otto), paradigmatic gestures (Mircea Eliade), spiritual dimensions (Ninian Smart), or archetypes (Carl Jung)–that recur in the myths and rituals of nearly all religious traditions and throughout all of recorded history.

Do I need to go on?  We’ve got scientists for that, too.  Seriously, do you see what he’s doing here?  He’s just rattling off a whole list of perspectives on religion which admittedly would be impossible for any one person to have.  So whenever we point to an atheist, he can say, “Yeah, but they don’t know about X, so they’re not qualified.”

Well guess what, bub.  By that standard, nobody is qualified.  The thing is, on our side of the fence, we recognize that the beauty of science is that we do not need to be masters of every discipline.  Because the method works, we can trust the findings of scientists in fields which we do not comprehend.  I am terrified of astronomy, but I can trust cosmologists when they say the universe is approximately 14 billion years old, because they use the same system of observation, experiment, and peer review as every other scientist.

You’re implying that the only people qualified to discuss religion are those who understand every single aspect of religion.  But that’s fallacious.  I’ve read journal articles by neurologists, anthropologists, psychologists, sociologists, chemists, biologists, zoologists, and a dozen other varieties of scientists.  Isn’t that awesome?  Instead of spending my entire life in college in a vain attempt to know everything about everything, I can trust peer-reviewed literature enough to have a layman’s understanding of broad swaths of the universe.

What if one viewed the recurring patterns of religious phenomena that so many diverse cultures and civilizations–separated by immeasurable time and distance–seem to have shared as evidence of an active, engaging, transcendent presence that underlies creation, that, in fact, impels creation? Is such a possibility any more hypothetical than say, superstring theory or the notion of the multiverse?

Well, yes.  It is more hypothetical, in that there is not a single scrap of evidence supporting the hypothesis, while string and multiverse theories are at least founded on real math.

Then again, maybe the patterns of religious phenomenon signify nothing. Maybe they indicate little more than a common desire among all peoples to answer similar questions of “Ultimate Concern,” to use the Protestant theologian, Paul Tillich’s famous phrase. The point is that, like any researcher or critic, like any scientist, I’m open to possibilities.

Good.  Then stop telling us to shut up and let us present our hypothesis alongside the religious hypothesis.  Let’s examine them in open, honest discussion.  Let’s trust the evidence and follow wherever it leads, even if it makes us uncomfortable.  We’re all down with that program.  But you’re telling us we’re not.  What’s that noise?

The new atheists will say that religion is not just wrong but evil, as if religion has a monopoly on radicalism and violence; if one is to blame religion for acts of violence carried out in religion’s name then one must also blame nationalism for fascism, socialism for Nazism, communism for Stalinism, even science for eugenics.

Generally speaking, atheists don’t believe evil exists, so no.  But yes, lots of us do claim that religious belief (or in my case, faith-based belief) is a negative influence on human culture.  That’s a hypothesis, and it’s subject to falsifiability.  We’re doing the research.  We’ve also been willing to back down when a particular part of our claim is invalidated.  For instance, it’s now commonly accepted that religious belief is not the primary causal factor in suicide bombing.  We thought it was.  But it’s not.  So we accepted that.  See?

The new atheists claim that people of faith are not just misguided but stupid

Horse-shit.  Maybe some adolescent bloggers, but not the science writers.  I, and most of the atheists I know, view believers as victims of indoctrination and environmental factors beyond their control.  That has nothing to do with general intelligence or “stupidity.”

Some argue that the religious impulse is merely the result of chemicals in the brain, as though understanding the mechanism by which the body experiences transcendence delegitimizes the experience (every experience is the result of chemical reactions).

You have a real problem with linear thinking, Reza.  Yes, every experience is the result of chemical reactions, and yes, every religious experience can be reduced to chemicals, but we do not make the argument, “Every experience is chemical, therefore there is no god.”  That’s stupid.  (Yes, I just called you stupid, but not because you’re a theist.  Because what you just said is stupid, and I can’t believe the Washington Post made time for this kind of twaddle.)

What the new atheists do not do, and what makes them so much like the religious fundamentalists they abhor, is admit that all metaphysical claims–be they about the possibility of a transcendent presence in the universe or the birth of the incarnate God on earth–are ultimately unknowable and, perhaps, beyond the purview of science. That may not be a slogan easily pasted on the side of a bus. But it is the hallmark of the scientific intellect.

But Reza, how would you ever prove that anything is beyond scientific inquiry?  At any point, your understanding may take a leap forward because of some new discovery.  By claiming that anything is unknowable, you’re just throwing your hands up in the air and accepting whatever explanation makes sense.  Don’t you see the irony?  You’re accepting an explanation for a thing that you just said is unknowable!!  Think about that for half a second, please?!

The hallmark of a scientific intellect is NOT accepting that some things are unknowable.  You don’t know enough about science to have an article in a major newspaper.

Gads.  I need a beer.

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Discussion

23 thoughts on “Evangelical Atheism… Again.

  1. In my draft entry of my blog is something along the lines of saying I don’t like it generalizations of atheists, including from other atheists.

    Which is why I don’t like the meme that atheists are somehow scientifically inclined, and disregards dogma though I don’t like the term evangelical atheist [as evangelical is a religious term] .

    What we [atheists] need to do is actually is to stop saying atheists want or don’t want this or that or that we aren’t as dogmatic as theists.

    Atheists are too diverse for us to do this. There are some atheists that want to outlaw religion, some don’t. There are some who believe things without proof and some don’t. Some cut the crust of their peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, some don’t. All atheist means is somebody who doesn’t believe in God, not somebody who wants to stomp out religion, or somebody free of dogma.

    I see this from both theists and atheists and I don’t like it because they are speaking for me where I would rather speak for myself.

    Posted by cptpineapple | July 17, 2010, 7:52 pm
  2. Alison, I often say that I am speaking for atheists who share my viewpoint. I don’t claim to speak for “all atheists.” Never have. I speak for my group of atheists. And my group are the ones who do hold science as the foundation of knowledge. So what’s your gripe?

    Posted by hambydammit | July 17, 2010, 7:54 pm
  3. awesome response to a bunch of drivel published! Thanks for taking the time to do this.

    Posted by EllenBeth Wachs | July 17, 2010, 11:05 pm
  4. “The hallmark of a scientific intellect is NOT accepting that some things are unknowable.”

    But I can prove that some things are unknowable. I’m thinking Gödel incompleteness but there are other examples. In any case I’m being a nit ‘cuz I think I know what you mean I just think you were too fired up to say it well. Talking about being a nit I think that part of the argument I have with both atheists and theists is that they focus on grand principles when it pleases them and details when it doesn’t. That kind of overall systems thinking isn’t explicitly covered in the scientific method. Theists tend to be worse though. As an example Christians have two creation myths in the old testament. The 10 commandments are really more and also have multiple places they are stated. And “thou shall not kill”. Well. That is unless they don’t believe like you and then you can rape and murder.

    Posted by Miles Anderson | July 17, 2010, 11:13 pm
  5. cptpineapple, on July 17, 2010 at 7:52 pm Said:

    In my draft entry of my blog is something along the lines of saying I don’t like it generalizations of atheists, including from other atheists.

    Which is why I don’t like the meme that atheists are somehow scientifically inclined, and disregards dogma though I don’t like the term evangelical atheist [as evangelical is a religious term] .

    What we [atheists] need to do is actually is to stop saying atheists want or don’t want this or that or that we aren’t as dogmatic as theists.

    Atheists are too diverse for us to do this. There are some atheists that want to outlaw religion, some don’t. There are some who believe things without proof and some don’t. Some cut the crust of their peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, some don’t. All atheist means is somebody who doesn’t believe in God, not somebody who wants to stomp out religion, or somebody free of dogma.

    I see this from both theists and atheists and I don’t like it because they are speaking for me where I would rather speak for myself

    PG Say’s
    “Bravo, This theist appauds you and I can now respect your belief! “

    Posted by PG | July 18, 2010, 11:48 am
  6. Hamby,

    I believe the world would be a better place without the radical religious and Atheists zealots!

    That being said, you briefly mention that science is self correcting and cite:
    “That’s a hypothesis, and it’s subject to falsifiability. We’re doing the research. We’ve also been willing to back down when a particular part of our claim is invalidated. For instance, it’s now commonly accepted that religious belief is not the primary causal factor in suicide bombing. We thought it was. But it’s not. So we accepted that. See?

    What I “See” is that Atheists such as yourself who rely on science to form their world view,…

    …are constantly having to change that view!

    If its subject to constant change, then its subject to credulity!

    .

    Posted by PG | July 18, 2010, 12:56 pm
  7. “Bravo, This theist appauds you and I can now respect your belief! “

    What belief?

    Posted by cptpineapple | July 18, 2010, 1:20 pm
  8. PG, what are you talking about? Most of the time, your babble is at least coherent enough to refute, but I can’t even decipher a point in all of this.

    Posted by hambydammit | July 18, 2010, 2:05 pm
  9. Sorry CTP,

    I should clarify and say that I applaud your post.

    In addition, I respect your belief that Atheism is really about not believing in a God and that it is simply too diverse to be defined.

    Hamby can learn from you!

    .

    Posted by PG | July 18, 2010, 2:53 pm
  10. Hamby,

    Let me just cut to the chase. Regarding your opposition to evangelical atheism. The US Court of appeals has already ruled Atheism is a religion!

    All of your posturing is irrelevent!

    Case closed!

    .

    Posted by PG | July 18, 2010, 3:49 pm
  11. How am I supposed to speak-in-tongues Evangelical Atheist style?

    Posted by Jon | July 19, 2010, 8:38 am
  12. That is honestly the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard anyone say, PG. Congratulations.

    I suppose I should make some sort of response to it, though… so how about this: The U.S. Government also ruled for many decades that blacks were property and had no rights. So that’s the way it is. Case closed.

    Posted by hambydammit | July 19, 2010, 1:44 pm
  13. Yawn,

    Hamby, Atheism is a religion according to the U.S Federal Court! The fact that you think its dumb is irrelevent

    BTW, I consider you to be very passionate evangelical Atheist!

    .

    Posted by PG | July 19, 2010, 3:47 pm
  14. PG, the fact that you think a court has anything to do with epistemology is dumb. Pitifully, hopelessly stupid. You are a pitifully hopelessly stupid person. You’re the only person reading this who doesn’t get it. And that is really sad.

    Posted by hambydammit | July 20, 2010, 12:29 pm
  15. The fact that you resorted to personal attacks reflects the bankruptcy of your position and your jihad evangelical Atheism. Its breathtaking!

    Posted by PG | July 20, 2010, 2:31 pm
  16. That wasn’t an attack, PG. It was basic logic. Only a stupid person would conflate legislative decisions with epistemology. It’s so startlingly obvious that the two are different, if for no other reason than the existence of multiple governments with dichotomous decrees on the same topic. So…

    1. A person who does not understand the difference between epistemology and legislation is stupid.
    2. You do not understand the difference between epistemology and legislation.
    Therefore: You are stupid.

    Posted by hambydammit | July 20, 2010, 2:51 pm
  17. Hamby,

    Atheism has been ruled a religion by the federal courts. Your “New Atheism” is still a religion regardless of its emphasis on science and the lenght of your rant.

    I am starting to see just how much of a disciple you really are in your Atheism religion.

    Brainwashed is more like it!

    .

    Posted by PG | July 20, 2010, 3:43 pm
  18. PG, your reliance on repetition instead of reasoning is another motivation for me to encourage you to keep posting. Every sentence you write is another “own goal” for theism. Every post you make is another example of the breathtaking inanity and intellectual dishonesty of the overwhelming majority of theists and theistic arguments – or, in your case, non-arguments.

    But I’m bored, so I’m going to try to spell out some basic law and logic for you, in small words so you might just get it through your evidently very thick skull.

    What several court rulings have established, not just in the United States but also in Canada and several other Western democracies, is NOT that atheism simply IS a religion, period. Rather, multiple courts in multiple decisions in multiple countries have ruled that that atheism should be counted as a religious position for the specific purpose of being protected by laws which protect freedom of religion. Such rulings are NOT philosophical conclusions or sociological declarations or legal rulings that atheism is a religion. Rather, they are sensible legal rulings which say that, since atheism is a idea/position/stance that people can have towards or about religion – and clearly the belief that no gods exist is as much about religion as the belief that god does exist – atheists have the same rights to legal protection for holding and expressing their opinions about religion as religious people themselves do. Under any other interpretation, laws intended to protect religious freedom would be twisted to deny citizens their right to be atheists and express atheist beliefs, which would directly oppose the very idea of freedom.

    Specifically in the United States, our First Amendment declares that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” The rulings to which you repeatedly and continually refer simply establish what is clearly implied by this wording – that the state has no more authority to pass laws that encourage, establish, prohibit, or generally speaking interfere with citizens’ choice NOT to have religious beliefs, NOT to belong to religious organizations, or NOT to engage in any religious practices than it has authority to pass laws that encourage, establish, prohibit, or generally speaking interfere with citizens’ choice TO have religious beliefs, etc.

    In other words, these rulings all established the only coherent interpretation of laws guaranteeing religious freedom: There can be no genuine religious freedom unless people are also free to choose not to be religious at all. Hence, in the eyes of the law, atheism is a religion with respect to the freedom of citizens to have and express whatever religious opinions they choose. That is an extraordinarily limited, qualified sense in which atheism can sometimes be counted as a religion for certain legal purposes, NOT a declaration that atheism = religion.

    So, PG, for all that I appreciate you giving theists a bad name by being an asshat and getting this very simple idea completely wrong over and over (and over, and over, and over), could you at least move on to some other stupid theistic declaration or misunderstanding? We’re all bored with this one.

    Posted by G Felis | July 20, 2010, 6:46 pm
  19. The repetition is because you and Hamby refuse to accept that Atheism is a religion!

    You state the following:
    “Such rulings are NOT…legal rulings that atheism is a religion.”

    That is incorrect!

    A district court initialy ruled that Atheism was NOT a religion. The Court of Appeals overuled the lower court ruling.

    “Kaufman v. McCaughtry, 419 F.3d 678 (7th Cir. 2005) (Kaufman I), finding that Kaufman’s proposed group qualified as “religious” for Establishment Clause purposes, and thus that it was entitled to be treated the same as other religious groups in the prison. Id. at 684

    Read more: http://vlex.com/vid/kaufman-james-j-v-mccaughtry-23546718#ixzz0uI2DxRKG

    It must be comforting for atheists to know that if they go to prison they can establish a Atheist non-bible stufy group!

    hahahahahahahahahahaha

    .

    .

    Posted by PG | July 21, 2010, 1:03 am
  20. BTW, any outsider reading these recent posts would very quickly conclude that Reza Asian is correct. Readers need not go further than this website for examples of over zealous Atheist evangelists screaming for jihad.

    Posted by PG | July 21, 2010, 1:08 am
  21. Wow. PG even quoted a legal ruling with the clause “for Establishment Clause purposes” right there in the passage he quoted, and he STILL doesn’t see the profound and obvious difference between “atheism is a position on religious matters and so should be counted as a religion for the purpose of interpreting and enforcing laws that protect citizens’ freedom of religion” and “atheism is a religion.” Amazing. The only phrase I can think of to describe PG’s trolling comes from another legal ruling: breathtaking inanity.

    Posted by thephilosophicalprimate | July 22, 2010, 3:00 am
  22. Is it Ron White who does the “No Cure for Stupid” routine? That’s the problem with people who are this “breathtakingly” stupid. If they knew how stupid they are, they wouldn’t make it quite so public.

    PG’s “own-goal” style of rhetoric reminds me a little of that woman who presented at an ID conference and managed to demonstrate a speciation event without even knowing it. Profoundly stupid.

    Posted by hambydammit | July 22, 2010, 1:06 pm
  23. Hamby and your circle jerk primate friend.

    It is mindboggling that their are still straggler Atheists who cannot accept Atheism is a religion. Thats OK, Like muslim radicals, these atheist are brainwashed and will never progress. Is their a cure for their dumbshit stupidity? No!

    Will they retract their statements? No, intillectual dishonesty is their hallmark! They will continue to insist that Atheism is not a religion inspite of the evidence. Sad really.

    However, perhaps we can provide empirical evidence so one day these radical jihad atheist may progress, but this faith based ideology of Atheism is very powerful and deeply entrenched into their willing mind.

    Lets begin,

    Empirical Evidence: Atheist Churches

    “In the United States there are several groups which count themselves as religious but either don’t require belief in any gods or actually discourage belief in the traditional god of orthodox Christianity. These groups include Ethical Culture, the Unitarian-Universalist Church, and a variety of Religious Humanist organizations. Many, many atheists are members of these groups and regularly attend meetings or services on Sunday mornings (or at some other time during the week). ”
    http://atheism.about.com/od/whoareatheists/a/AtheistsChurch.htm

    * Now Hamby, Lets evidence an actual Atheist church “The First Church of Atheism” which boosts that it has as ordained 2826 ministers.
    Maybe you will become the 2827 minister if they also have alter boys?

    The first Church of Atheism:
    How we got started.
    •The First Church of Atheism was born out of necessity. Created by Paul and Jacki McMaster, the FCA is the first society of its kind. Dedicated solely to ordaining atheists so that they too may perform ceremonies previously performed by religious men. When Paul and Jacki were wed, they hired a non-denominational minister to perform the ceremony. They requested that the ceremony be entirely faith neutral, as they were both devout atheists. To their dismay, the ceremony that the minister submitted for their approval was littered with references to, and direct statements about, god. They pulled out a red pen and started editing, paring down the ceremony into a 2 minute long affair.
    For the next year, they would laugh about that story, telling their friends about the “non-denominational” minister who read them their vows in a Friar Tuck shirt, complete with collar. While funny, this also says something tragic about the state of our society when it comes to atheists. Non-denominational means generally Christian. For atheists, this is impossible to accept.

    So the couple decided to form a society to provide others with what they did not get for their wedding.

    What we believe.
    •The First Church of Atheism is formed around the belief that the mysteries of life can be explained through science and reason. We aim to provide a place for atheists to become ordained, for free, as well as a hub for atheists to find ministers to perform their ceremonies. This is our doctrine:
    “Nothing exists besides natural phenomena. Thought is merely a function of that natural phenomena. Death is complete, and irreversible. We have faith solely in humankind, nature, and the facts of science.”
    http://firstchurchofatheism.com/index.php/about/

    “We have faith solely in humankind, nature, and the facts of science.”

    Hmmmm, So its a organized faith based Atheist church complete with the ordination of 2826 ministers, choirs, fundraisers, wedding, funeral, and sunday services. Wow hamby, that means you and your dumbshit blog has had it wrong all these years.

    In the future, the next time you trash religions, dont forget to distinguish them as seperate from yours!

    Stupid Atheists like you set back Atheism 100 years…Good job!

    Non-God bless you Hamby,

    PG

    Posted by PG | July 23, 2010, 3:34 am

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