There is a view that is widely held in the atheist community that atheists are critical thinkers, freethinkers, scientifically minded, sensible people who are both liberated from taboo and practical, down-to-earth pragmatists.



This is complete and utter horseshit. It can be true. In my experience though, many atheists are just
people with one less stupid idea than theists. I admit that when I came across
the Atheist Nexus I was quietly hopeful that the thinking here would be that
bit clearer and more sensible. In some cases it certainly is, there are so good
thinkers here, but in general, the level of illogical, defensive, muddled
thinking is not much above average. I knew intellectually that atheism in no
way even suggests that this should not be the case but I still held out a
little hope.

The worst thing about irrational, ill-considered bullshit or rhetoric from an
atheist is that they are often labouring under the opinion that they are
"freethinkers", rational and logical. For the most part, the only
thing I can say that seems collective to me about atheists is that they are
almost (almost, not entirely) all contrarians. The only consensus that is ever
reached is about how superior atheists are to theists. An axe that needs
grinding has come to the right place. (And yes I do get the irony of this
gripe)

The amount of times that arguments here are down to reading comprehension as
much as actual points being made is bordering on shocking. I am definitely
guilty of the presumption that the IQ range would be generally above average amongst
atheists.

Note: There are some exceptional thinkers on here, I am not suggesting that
everyone here matches the description above, it is just depressingly prevalent

I have been wondering for a while now (several years) if atheism might not just be the
rebellion du jour amongst young contrarians? Anyone else
think this might be case? Or not?





Views: 8

Tags: Atheism, IQ, contrarian, logic, thinking

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Comment by Jim DePaulo on August 16, 2010 at 2:51pm
it's foolish to believe that all self described Atheists are paragons of logic and critical thinking. Many of them suffer from the same delusions as any religious or conspiracy theorist does. Simply put, if they can't understand something it must be god's will or a conspiracy of dark and secretive powers. If one can't understand and are to lazy or stupid to investigate - obfuscate.
Comment by Gavin Doyle on August 13, 2010 at 11:22am
Mostly likely. You have the weekend to find something to entertain me Monday morning.
Comment by Gary Connolly on August 13, 2010 at 9:38am
Gav,

I expect I will see many comments from you between the hours of 9 and 5 ( or maybe more like 11 and 6ish) :)
Comment by Gavin Doyle on August 13, 2010 at 9:33am
The importance and influence of popular culture is underestimated or unacknowledged among the Atheist community obsessed with branding themselves as 'freethinkers'. Atheism was literally a niche among educated people until the culture changed and religion suffered a fate worse than falsification, that of becoming unfashionable.

I think religion will continue to decline as a political force providing the common culture continues to undermine religious values and I think we will continue to see a rise in fashionable atheists who believe all manner of silly things.
Comment by Gary Connolly on August 13, 2010 at 9:25am
Фелч Гроган,

I must confess to being considerably inconsiderate when it comes to reading of FAQ and site guidelines etc. Due to the sheer number of sites to which I have at one time or another posted I just ignore these things now. I do attempt to put things where they belong as much as possible though. I don't really have a problem with duplicate posting. I think people like to express their things in their own words rather than just nodding to something someone else has said.
Site rules are bit like terms of service agreements. Anyone read those anymore? :)

I admit though, that I tend not hang around any particular site too long. So I may just not be aware of how irritating the sorts of things you are mention get after a while!
Comment by Фелч Гроган on August 12, 2010 at 11:42pm
Gary Connolly: The amount of times that arguments here are down to reading comprehension as much as actual points being made is bordering on shocking. I am definitely guilty of the presumption that the IQ range would be generally above average amongst atheists.

The cardinal sin that all of the godless fall prey too, unless they are relentlessly vigilant, is that of "confirmation bias". It is fuelled largely by articles such as this. Thankfully, there are also those amongst us that are diligent enough to add the grain of salt. The author, Satoshi Kanazawa, has made something of a career out of "confirmation bias".

But the claim that we are somehow more intelligent vapourises right here: there were probably 20 individual posts, all oblivious to each other, made on this site about the article. Not one person bothered to follow the very basic etiquette of at least attempting to do a site search for duplicate content, either due to stupidity or lack of consideration (most likely both). The same pattern is repeated with every major new story. This site is without a doubt amongst the very worst I have seen when it comes to basic user etiquette: guidelines are ignored, as are FAQs; irrelevant content is posted to inapropriate areas; brainless, narcissistic link spam is everywhere; one peabrain even thinks her latest in depth Disney Pixar movie reviews are critical things the ENTIRE SITE has to see - and it is all exacerbated by everyone being too fucking polite to demand posters display consideration for others. So yes, rumours of our intellectual loftiness are greatly exaggerated.

I have been wondering for a while now (several years) if atheism might not just be the rebellion du jour amongst young contrarians? Anyone else think this might be case? Or not?

Sadly, I think it is. Atheism via monkey-see-monkey-do prevails over atheism that is arrived at after personal introspection. The former is better than nothing, but it does further deflate the "atheist superiority" balloon. This is reflected in the desire for fancy lables, eg. "brights" and the endless nitpicking about what the word "atheism" means and attempts to inject it with all manner of ideological baggage. Monkey-see-monkey-do atheism is of course contrarian - like all rebellion it is attention seeking first, everything else second. That's just the way our species works.
Comment by Gary Connolly on August 12, 2010 at 2:49pm
You're judging the majority of the atheist community based off internet forum interaction... Is this your first time online?

I am judging them on their online contributions in all forms. This is not my first time online. :)
I am judging the quality of their arguments (not the ones they just parrot). In that regard, you often come accross an atheist who makes perfect sense on one topic and then contradicts their own judgement and positions on another.

I am entirely familiar with the limitations of the written word. I have fallen afoul of the same one more than one occassion. As to taking something the wrong way, that is often possible when you are dealing with emotive statements but logic should be robost in any form.

As I say though, I am not suggesting that every atheist online is like this. I was more just pointing out my own foolish assumption that atheists would exhibit a higher standard. I knew I shouldn't expect any such thing but couldn't help having a secret hope :)
The more widespread atheism becomes the lower the standard is getting too, thats what makes me think there is a certain amount of band wagoning going on.

All aboard the atheist train! Choo Choo!!
Comment by Guy Fawkes on August 12, 2010 at 2:33pm
You're judging the majority of the atheist community based off internet forum interaction... Is this your first time online? Visit any online forum or social website. It doesn't matter what topic is being discussed text can never convey emotion, tone, expression and all the little things that come with real life face-to-face interaction. There are so many other factors... This is after all the "world wide web". Given the almost complete anonymity, anyone can be anywhere in the world acting out any persona they choose.

I do not doubt that many enjoy the rebellious aspect, but did you really choose to be an atheist? Most probably not... I did not choose to not believe in god, I simply can not believe in god.

You may be reading this comment and taking it all the wrong way .... I shall close with a double smiley :) :) and to insure confusion ;)...
Comment by dr kellie on August 12, 2010 at 11:04am
I think you are correct. I have met a few young gays who claim to be atheists, but they are rather apathetic about it. It is as if they haven't given it much thought and just don't really care to.
Comment by Gary Connolly on August 12, 2010 at 10:08am
Well said PRG!

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