I just responded to some theist claiming that Hitler, Stalin, and Pol Pot were "atheists". It occurred to me, no, they were actually theists.

What is God to his followers? An unquestionable, all knowing, undebatable perfect being who is all powerful...correct?

What was Hitler to his followers? An unquestionable, all knowing, undebatable, perfect being who was all powerful.

The punishment for being skeptical of God in most mainstream religions is death (or some afterlife punishment...or inability to be "enlightened")

The punishment for being skeptical of Hitler in the Nazi regime was death.

So basically Hitler, Stalin, and Pol Pot were theists, only the gods actually existed, and they were embodied by those men. The basic problem is that whenever you have a dogma (or person) that is unquestionable, that person or dogma can get their followers to commit atrocities.

By this line of thinking, its easy to prove that theism in all forms is a mental and social disorder, because if you include self deification in the definition of what makes theism, then all wars, all genocides, and all despotic regimes were theistic in nature.

The pillars of atheism (if there are such things) are by its nature skepticism, doubt, open and honest debate, the scientific method, etc.

The pillars of theism by contrast are some central dogma and the protection of that dogma against the rigors of doubt, debate, skepticism, science, etc.

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Comment by ryan cameron on July 13, 2010 at 8:57pm
@SecularBob My point here is none of those men were atheists. They were theists, only they had put themselves in the "god" seat.

here is what I mean. The problem with theism is it insulates itself from debate, or logic, or any kind of scrutiny. Usually with some kind of threat, or a bribe. Hitler, Stalin, and Pol Pot, and any other dictator do the exact same thing. Theism is a dictatorship, an unquestionable authority. That is its inherent nature.

Atheism, on the other hand is the exact opposite. Its nothing, no leadership, no dogma. It is pure skepticism, pure doubt. Simply that. None of those leaders had any doubt about their own infallibility, at least, practically speaking. Who knows what "demons" tortured them internally, but one could say the same for religious leaders who realize they are spinning fabrications but their livelihoods depend on maintaining the lies.

That is why theism is a mental, or further a societal disorder and should be regarded as such by a rational society.
Comment by Rich Lane on July 13, 2010 at 8:12pm
Hitler had a mustache. Stalin had a mustache. By theistic reasoning, all mustachioed men are evil.
Comment by SecularBob on July 13, 2010 at 7:52pm
The argument that all three were atheist means jack squat. Being a theist or not does not define a crime. Hitler was also a vegetarian but we don't bash vegetarians for being like hitler. ( I think Hitchens came up with that). Needless to say inhumane actions can be done by any person no matter what faith so the argument is irrelevant.
Comment by david hartley on July 13, 2010 at 5:43pm
Yes!

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