Making Atheism Stand for something more than just a lack of belief?

Yes, the classical definition simply means that you don't believe in a god.

 

Here's what I would like to see for the future, though:

-activism. A striving for equality and understanding.

I grew up surrounded by racism, class-ism, ableism, sexism, sizism, homophobia and a whole lot of other -ism's that are negative, and detrimental to society, by splitting it up into "us" and "them", and a lot of these are in religion, some are outside of it, but much of it, is passed down alongside religious teachings.

Church and many religions are just rife with these shortcomings, religion obviously has been used to justify violence and prejudice against almost any minority group, from women to homosexuals, to people with different melanin content in their skin, to people who are poor or of another religion.

However, what if Atheism stands for a shedding of these ideas, a discard or all that prejudice that's been handed down through the generations alongside the family Bible, or Koran or Torah. What if we stand up, among the minority groups and say "this is a choice, a choice that represents human equality, a choice that doesn't objectify women or use them as second-class citizens, a choice that won't exclude you because you look different, a choice that won't put you down because you're not rich and white and cisgendered and heterosexual and male and thin and attractive and healthy."

What if Atheism stood for this?

Do you think it would be good thing?

Do you think it would help push the fact that Atheism doesn't have a backlog of tenets, many of which outright disdain so much of humanity?

Do you think, perhaps, that it would help people who are oppressed and discriminated against, see why religion isn't a good choice?

What do you think?

Do you agree?

Views: 9

Tags: activism, atheism, class, equality, fat, gender, issues, lgbt, orientation, race, More…religion, sexual

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Comment by Glen Rosenberg on February 9, 2011 at 6:06pm

All things, thinkers and qualities are not alike. The theists' and the atheists' cocksure, indignant opposition to the other's value system is not equivalent. The former is based on superstition and dogma and has an oppressive impact; while the latter is based on rationalism and seeks to unburden and empower.

Any methodology or set of ethics frozen in time is inferior and an obstacle to progress of civilization. It makes no sense to be defeatist and accept the paramount force of religion when the adherents are losing their faith & numbers.

As for the matrix count me in. As long as I can wager on horse races I am in. Form reversals will be outlawed there, yeah!

Comment by John Camilli on February 9, 2011 at 3:04am
I will say that I think there's a way around the whole mess though, and ryan mentioned it. Transhumanism. More specifically, if we can create virtual realities and digitize ourselves matrix-style, then we can filter the harms of others out of our own realities while still being able to interract, and probably in much deeper and more fulfilling ways than a human could ever dream. W e will all have our own personal harm-filters on our virtual reality, so that if we don't like the words someone uses...deleted. If we don't like the way someone looks.....virtual makeover. If we don't like practicioners of a certain religion....converted. We can make all the changes we want within our own world, while being unable to affect anyone else's world. THAT is the future I'm waiting for.
Comment by John Camilli on February 9, 2011 at 2:56am

What do you think a theist would say about their own value sytem? Do you think they would describe it as oppressive and close-minded? Of course not. They would say they support justice and fairness and love and peace and aaaaaaaalll the shit we say we're supporting, but they will go about supporting it by different methods. Their methods will disagree with our methods, and they will call us godless heathens while we call them idiot skydaddy worshippers. We all judge each other because others don't think exactly like we do, and we think that if they just thought like we do, that everyone would be peaceful and gay! But people don't want or need the same things out of life, so to purport that there is some "right" way to do things and some "wrong" way to do things; some "harmful" and some "beneficial" way of doing things, is exactly the folly that keeps us at each others throats.

 

Just let it be. Let people be whoever they want to be, defend yourself where you feel compeled to, but don't fool yourself into thinking that you felt harmed and needed to defend yourself because THEY were wrong and you were right. They were doing their "right" just as you were doing yours, and because we're frail humans, in a contentious environment, we are simply GOING to harm each other no matter what our system of morals, or our neighbor's.

Comment by Glen Rosenberg on February 8, 2011 at 11:07pm

Hey John, if you know someone is concocting a whopper and asserting it is infallible and controlling the whopper duped ignorant masses, do you call yourself an atheist or an agnostic? Be truthful. Whether you characterize it as a lack of belief in the whopper or a belief that the whopper is a whopper, you are as certain as you can be that it is nonexistent. So call yourself an atheist.

As for the values produced by the whoppermakerupercontrolandgivemethepower low life good for nothing, yeah you are judging. You are differentiating your own views with those of the duped. In general atheists are not righteous and arrogant. They prefer equality, egalitarianism and rationalism. And yes these values are superior to Sharia law.

Comment by John Camilli on February 8, 2011 at 8:57pm

When you say that all those -isms are negative and detrimental to society, you are "splitting it up into "us" and "them"." You are saying that what they believe is wrong and that you are right, which is exactly what they are doing. Atheism is not just a lack of belief in God, it is a belief that there is no God. Try agnosticism; try saying "I just don't know" and you won't sound like a hypocrite.

 

I'm sorry to be so harsh about this, but so many athiests are caught up in being just as righteous and arrogant as theists are, and you don't even see it. You are only trying to replace your belief with theirs; to assert your "right" by calling theirs "wrong." Please, please, pleeeeease realize this and just let people believe what they want to believe. We all have to believe something after all, or we can't have any opinions or make any decisions. Unless you're claiming to be omniscient, that is.

Comment by ryan cameron on February 6, 2011 at 9:27pm
I like humanism or transhumanism for that.  Atheism is a negative assertion, but humanism is the positive assertion, and probably the most meaningful one for a human to take.  No "god" or monster is going to do anything about our condition, a humanist takes responsibility for it and moves on.  I consider myself a humanist with transhumanist goals and desires.  I want to be able to stand on the surface of the moon or the sun, and exist for infinity so I can witness the end of the universe and what lies beyond.  Is it possible? Who knows.  Its a desire to become more than the sum of my parts, and be a part of the collective wisdom of my fellow humans.  That's a flag I'll happily wrap myself in.
Comment by Glen Rosenberg on February 6, 2011 at 8:50am

You are pointed in the right direction. I agree that atheists are making a mistake playing around with theology instead of focusing on the direct consequences of religion which are myriad and ugly.

Atheism can negate, educate, and produce a rational set of ethics.

Comment by Chris G on February 6, 2011 at 2:36am
Isn't that what it's all about?

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