19th May 2010

“The problem with belief in our culture is that it takes far more conviction to be an atheist than to be a believer. Believing in the existence of God is simply the air we breathe, therefore it requires far more attentiveness to reject such belief than to go along with it.”

Tripp York

25 Responses to “19th May 2010”

  1. Holysmokes Says:

    I disagree completely. I have no conviction about being a nonbeliever. It’s a simple logical matter of evidence, or in the case of religion, a complete lack thereof. One need dig no deeper then that.

  2. GoodWithoutGod Says:

    I have to agree with HS on this one. It’s far, far more difficult to be a believer than it is to be an atheist.

    The mental gymnastics you need to perform in order to ignore all sense and logic must be tiring. Imagine the effort it takes to try to defend bronze-aged thinking in the 21st century. That must exhaust you.

    Non-belief in a deity is the default position – we’re born that way. It takes no effort at all.

  3. ThatsaCrock Says:

    I agree with the above quote from holysmokes its impossible to dig yourselves deeper, your already that far under you will never come out. good without god what really tiring is the atheists lament.

  4. the messenger Says:

    Repent and be baptised everyone of you while there is still time.

  5. CaptainZero1969 Says:

    I know this is unrelated but I think my fellow rationalists will enjoy it:


  6. CaptainZero1969 Says:

    Not conviction, courage. Believers look at death and the wish thinking sets right in. Atheists look at death and think “well, here I go again”.

  7. Devout Atheist Says:

    Holysmokes has it right. Atheist just look at things and use logic. No convincing needed. So-called theists fall into two categories. Laissez faire believer who live their lives as if there is no god other than going to church twice a year. Then you have the fundamental wackos which come in various flavours. Bible thumping, suicide bombing, snake charming, and god selling and strong arm evangelists.

  8. solomon Says:

    The Atheists say they use logic and depends on evidence. They are lying as well as fooling. Why don’t they accept all the evidence or proofs around them that are signs of an existence of an intelligent powerful deity. Why they seems to always ignore this fact. Because they are damn Hippocrates!

  9. JoNa Says:

    I’m back.I’m using my friends computer. I plan on leaving church , even leaving home if I have to. After coming to this site I can’t go back to believing like before.WE have been fighting at home for the last two days.

  10. PEB Says:

    I also disagree with the quote. It suggests being an atheist is hard work and that atheists spend a lot of time rejecting god. I don’t think we do. The hardest bit for some is getting over the “there is no god” hurdle. Once that obstacle is cleared then the rest is fairly simple. It’s not a lifestyle choice afterall!

    Being religious means you spend your days being a Muslim, Christian or Buddhist etc and having the hang-ups associated with them. Being an atheist means you spend your days just being you. It doesn’t make you a selfish or bad person. You will be exactly the same person as before except you don’t believe in god. That doesn’t sound so bad?

    JoNa. Your parents should respect your decision but I would urge you to not leave home and try to talk it out with them.

  11. Holysmokes Says:

    FYI PEB,

    JoNa is nothing more than Tech playing games. He seems to have no problem violating one of his own ten commandments. “Though shall not bare false witness.” You know, lying. It’s funny how they seem to have no problem breaking their own rules when it suits them.

  12. Admin Says:

    tech is now on the moderation list…

  13. Margaret Says:

    Thank you CZ for the link, I enjoyed it very much. My sister has autism, diagnosed at a time before it received much media attention. I have heard some of the controversy about vaccines, but never did fully understand the background story until I read your link. It was very good.

    I think the link is relevant to today’s quote because it illustrates that people basically believe what they want to believe. Suspicion of other people’s motives can lead to conspiracy theories. But suspicion can be a good thing because, unfortunately, many people act with dark motives, and it is a good thing to look deeper. I find believers never question their dogma, it bypasses all logical circuits in the brain, and that is how religion survives. Staying alert and logical requires some effort, but it is much better than being taken advantage of by professional liars–the clergy.

  14. PEB Says:

    Thanks HS and Admin. What a very strange, sad game to play?

  15. robb Says:

    kudos to everyone but solomon…..who i think is a plant, anyway.

    this is ALWAYS true: belief is always effortless…and unfortunatley it’s

    the REAL effort comes, at least when you’re young, in reaching within yourself and asking HOW COULD THIS POSSIBLY BE ???? then you grow up, and begin to realize that all around you are folks who WILL NEVER
    let go of these silly ideas…………..NEVER !

    the bright and expanding light of discovery means nothing to these folks.

    we have reached deeply into the universe…and have DISCOVERED that
    it is far older and bigger and more complex than we can , at present
    correctly measure. but, WE KNOW THIS !!!

    we KNOW because we have DISCOVERED this, that matter and energy
    are divisible into TINY TINY fractions. we have essentially established the
    tiny QUANTUM universe… and we have also established the veracity
    of randomness and chaos in that universe.

    the TAO which has absolutely NOTHING to do with dieties simply suggests
    these gigantic and tiny forces may be understood as THE WAY…..wisely
    leaving the door open to growing understanding……………..NOT THE ANSWER…mind you….

    and the universe in its most massive, and tiniest expressions HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH ETHICS OR MORALITY. NOTHING.

    people with religious beliefs want nothing more than to have the universe
    express THEIR ethics ……their morality
    ………..good luck !

  16. John Says:

    Had not the preachers, churches and politicians not gripped the Human species with foolish dogmas; imagine what the World would have been like had Science and Logic been able to flourish instead of the Dark Blight of religion.

  17. Jamie Says:

    I think everyone is missing the point of the quote. All he is saying is that because this culture is so unabashedly religious, it requires us to at least stop and think long enough to reject it, rather than accept it. I think it is far easier for people to simply assume that which their parents, and this society as a whole, teaches. He is just saying that atheists and agnostics have taken the time (or, at least some of them), to decline to believe what many assume to be common knowledge. It is not a matter of it being ‘harder’ to be an atheist, he is just saying that for many believers (not all, but many), they just accept the claims of their parents as they once did with Santa or the Easter bunny, as this is an easier thing to do.

  18. John Says:

    Jamie, I see your point. Is that why many on the religious side often send their kids off to bible Sunday school or babble camp even when they themselves are disillusioned and no longer following or attending; just because it couldn’t hurt and because that is what the Grandparents want?

  19. PEB Says:

    Jamie, I also see your point but given that this quote isn’t meant as a compliment to atheists then I’m not sure I agree. Saying ‘Believing in the existence of God is simply the air we breathe’ implies we are born with faith when we are not.
    It is much more difficult to ignore common sense and accept absurdities than it is to accept there is no god.

  20. CaptainZero1969 Says:

    Rob – when you said “Sol is a plant” my very first thought was in the very literal sense, which gave me a good chuckle.

  21. CaptainZero1969 Says:

    P.S. – I wonder if Santa would share the adult female portion of the naughty list with me.

  22. Rozmarija Grauds Says:

    Funny how when I was growing up, I wasn’t taken to Church services — so I looked upon all those churches seen at every turn as just scenery, like the many Bars I walked passed and never entered either. The other stuff, like images of a beaming Jesus standing on a cloud with arms outstreched, I “believe” to the same degree as I believe in Tinker Bell, Sherlock Holmes, and Dr Spock. Our brains suck in a lot of images but the neurons “know” to file them under FANTASY. However, as a lifelong atheist, I probably use the exclamation “God!” in some form or other several times each day, it’s such a part of speech.

  23. The Heretic Says:

    It takes effort to be an atheist. Well, not to be one, but to stand up and say that you are one. In the Mid-Western states (Bible Belt?) discrimination is allowed against atheists. Wasn’t it George HW Bush that said:

    “No, I don’t know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered as patriots. This is one nation under God.”

    That type of discriminitory and wrongful mindset is pervasive in many
    communities, especially the smaller ones. Although things are getting better (it has only taken a few millenia), we have a long way to go to be counted as equals across the western countries, much less the world. We are quite outnumbered.

  24. Bornagain A. Theist Says:

    I wish, very much, that I had been raised in an atheist household. I was not, however. Furthermore, the mundane denomination in which I was raised (The Christian Church) was a close to “simply the air we breathe” as any church could be. It was virtually no pressure, no effort. Once away from my parents, I very often left religion out of my life. In 1982, for some inexplicable reason, I became totally involved / immersed in The Church Of Christ. It was a great deal of effort… huge effort; for I believed every jot and tittle of the New Testament – contradictions, lies, impossibilities and all. After 6 years and many thousands of wasted hours, words and dollars, I drifted back to the state that I was born into. It is the smooth, easy and frankly correct way of a simple atheist.

    Like someone else has indicated, I too am unsure of whether the quote writer means by “God is simply the air we breathe”. After all, the bible itself admonishes unbelievers in Romans I:

    1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
    1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; that they are without excuse:
    1:21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
    1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools

    This passage is often used by apologists to “show” that everyone should believe because, well, look at all the stuff around you – who do you think made all that. It’s probably where Silly Solly picks up some of his nonsense.


  25. Edmond Says:

    Solomon – All those “evidence or proofs around” that you think atheists need to see, those are just evidence that the universe exists, and that’s all. To see a tree only proves that the tree is there, it does not tell you where the tree came from or how it came to be.

    This is the “evidence” and “proof” that I see: Humans made up the god Zeus. Humans made up the god Ra. Humans made up the god Rama… see where I’m going with this? Humans are good at speculating what supernatural being might have made the Earth & the universe, but speculation does not equal “truth”. Real truth comes from having something demonstrated to you (and to others in the same way), not from going all sparkly-eyed just because you can’t make a tree yourself. You should leave yourself open to REAL answers as they come, rather than just accept what other humans speculated in an old, unproven book.