1. The first My Hero Academia Banner Contest is here! We are pleased to invite you to participate.

    Dismiss Notice
  2. Hello Guest,

    Voting for the first Konoha Country Club Poetry Competition is live!

    Please check out the Entries here.

    Place your votes in the 1st Choice Vote thread here and the 2nd Choice Vote thread here.

    -- NarutoForums Staff

    Dismiss Notice
  3. Welcome to the forums! Take a second to look at our Beginner's Guide. It contains the information necessary for you to have an easier experience here.

    Thanks and have fun. -NF staff
    Dismiss Notice
  4. Stop Scrolling!
    Attention - When discussing new chapters of an anime or manga, please use a source from the official list of approved sources. If you would like to contribute to the list, please do so in the suggestions section.
    Dismiss Notice
  5. If you write blogs about the current anime season (for linking) or like to add descriptions / impressions on certain series and like to add them to our wiki, then send us a ticket.
    Dismiss Notice

  6. Give NF the love she deserves! Join the NF-chan drawing contest and draw NF as NF-chan now!
    Earn some prizes... and maybe hugs and kisses from the forum herself?!
    CLICK HERE
    Dismiss Notice
  7. [​IMG]

    House of Uzumaki has a new banner contest! Please, check here for details and place your vote.

    Dismiss Notice

Top 10 Conversation Killers for Atheists: How Religious Theists Can Hurt Their Cause

Discussion in 'Philosophical Forum' started by Giovanni Rild, May 29, 2007.

  1. Giovanni Rild The mods are my enemy

    Messages:
    12,739
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Reputation:
    Top 10 Conversation Killers for Atheists: How Religious Theists Can Hurt Their Cause

    Atheists and theists frequently get into debates over the existence of gods, over the nature of religion, over whether religions do more harm than good, etc. Although every atheist and theist are different, it still works out that a lot of these conversations keep hitting the same topics and keep running into the same problems. Both sides can be at fault for this, but there are number of common errors which theists make that can kill any chance there might have been at having a productive, interesting, and substantive discussion. These errors can be avoided if theists know about them in advance and care.

    1) Presume to Instruct Us that We're "Really" Agnostics, Not Atheists
    Many conversations between atheists and theists are killed at the very beginning when a theist lectures an atheist about what the "real" definition of atheism is, who "real" atheists are, and that people who call themselves atheists are "really" agnostics. More often than not this religious theist has no idea what they are talking about: they read some false claims in an apologetics books and are now repeating them as if they were gospel truth. Instead, they should take some time to learn how atheists and dictionaries define atheism and agnosticism, not presume to impose their own on us. Atheism vs. Agnosticism...

    2) Presume to Preach and Proselytize, As If We Needed It
    Far too often, religious theists enter conversations with atheists not to learn something and not to merely communicate their perspective, but instead to simply proselytize and preach. That's not a conversation because a real conversation is a two-way street where both contribute and both are interested in taking something away. Preaching or proselytization is a one-way street where one person does all the talking but none of the listening and none of the learning. Atheists don't need this and are almost never at all interested in it. If you feel the need to preach, ask if the person wants to listen.

    3) Commit Obvious and Egregious Logical Fallacies
    No one is perfect and few learn how to construct logical arguments, much less how to identify and avoid logical fallacies. Even so, few things are more annoying than to see someone commit the most obvious and egregious fallacies, even those which should have been noticed without specific education. If you commit such fallacies, and especially if you commit many of them, many won't even bother trying to explain it all to you. If your position isn't worth your spending time to identify and eliminate basic errors in how you explain it, how can it be worth others' time listening to or rebutting it? Logical Fallacies

    4) Try to "Prove" Something By Quoting the Bible
    Christians regard their Bible significant in their lives, but for most atheists it is little more than literature at best ? ancient literature mixed with a bit of mythologized history. For atheists, quoting passages from the Bible proves nothing about any gods whatsoever. At most, it may prove that the person doing the quoting doesn't have anything better to offer. That the Christian doing the quoting considers this the best possible sort of evidence to offer reinforces the tragedy of this miscommunication. Avoid this by remembering that you can't prove anything to atheists by simply quoting the Bible.

    5) Threaten Us With Damnation or Say Atheism is a "Bad Bet"
    Many religious theists believe there is a punishment for bad people in an afterlife. In certain religions, like Christianity, this punishment plays a central role in their mythology. They always live under the threat of punishment if they don't behave and believe correctly, so it may seem reasonable to pass the threat along to nonbelievers ? but that will likely have the opposite effect. Many people react negatively to threats and telling atheists that they will go to hell if they don't convert, or that atheism is a "bad bet" with bad consequences, will likely push them away. Atheists Have No Reason to Fear Hell...

    6) Pretend that You Don't Have the Burden of Proof
    People making a positive claim have a burden of proof; this means that they voluntarily assume an obligation to support their claim. All theists claiming that their god exists have such a burden of proof. Atheists only have such a burden when they make a specific claim. Some theists pretend that they don't have any obligation to support what they say, like for example arguing that such a burden lies with those who hold a minority position (atheists), regardless of whether they make any claims or not. Atheists shouldn't fall for such tricks and won't take the attempt very well. Why Atheists Ask for Proof of God...

    7) Cut & Paste Arguments From Others That You Can't Defend
    Theological arguments can get very difficult and very complicated. Many people, atheists and theists, can quickly get in over their heads and have no good answers or arguments to offer. There's no shame in this, but occasionally a person will simply take a short cut by copying arguments from someplace else and pasting them into their own conversation. Even worse, they don't understand the argument well enough to adequately defend it. Quoting others is fine, but only in support of arguments you are making on your own. If you can't make your own arguments, then it's better to admit this and bow out.

    8) Ignore What We Say and Pretend that We Didn't Just Object to that Argument
    A large number of debates, no matter what the subject, can end up with all parties just talking past each other: each is more interested in what they have to say than in listening to what others have to say. Everyone does this, but when it comes to discussions with atheists many theists do something in particular: they offer arguments for the existence of their god and then ignore the various objections and rebuttals offered by atheists. It's one thing not to agree with those rebuttals, but quite another to go on repeating the argument as if no objections had been raised at all. Please don't do that, it's annoying.

    9) Offer That Same Argument Again That We've Refuted a Million Times
    There are only so many arguments for the existence of gods, so we can't expect theists to offer something completely new and original every time. This doesn't excuse offering the most simplistic forms of these same arguments, nor does it excuse a failure to do some research to learn what the most common objections and rebuttals are. If you do this, atheists will often assume that you really don't know much about the argument or even about how to argue this subject in general. If you want to kill your chance at a substantive conversation with an atheist, demonstrate that you didn't do any research ahead of time.

    10) Announce That You'll Be Praying for Us
    One of the most condescending things a theist can do to an atheist is to make a point of announcing that they'll be praying for us. Atheists don't believe in the power of prayer, but even theists can't think that prayer will be more effective for having announced. So what's the purpose? Some say that it's to express well-wishes, but people say that they'll pray for someone when the person is sick or having trouble. One way or another, the theist appears to be expressing superiority over atheists in a passive-aggressive manner. That suggests they weren't interested in serious conversation to begin with.​
     
    Tags:
  2. Masaki Mugiwara Kaizoku

    Messages:
    11,152
    Likes Received:
    20
    Trophy Points:
    743
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2004
    Reputation:
    Ah, yes, I completely know what you mean. I'm an atheist, and all of my friends are religious Christians. I've heard them spew out all ten of those at least once in the past year.
     
  3. Verdius Professional Chad

    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    311
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Flag:
    United States
    Reputation:
    You've certainly been on a thread making binge lately haven't you Rild? Just about everywhere I look I see your shining face ^^.

    Mmm... this reminds me of a site I found at one time about how to annoy atheists in a debate. It's all satire but still amusing... let me see if I can dig it up.

    Ok here we go.
    Claymore ED

    I've heard literally every one of those lines, if not to me then in reference of someone else when I was still christain/in christain groups.
     
  4. Giovanni Rild The mods are my enemy

    Messages:
    12,739
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Reputation:

    I think it's useful info. And I love 4) Invite their children to go to church with you.

    You would be a hypocrite if you refused. Let the kiddies choose.
    :jir_thumb
     
  5. Steven Pinhead Active Member

    Messages:
    1,612
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Reputation:
    Rild, everything in this statement in 100% accurate.

    You must have taken a long time writing this out.
     
  6. Giovanni Rild The mods are my enemy

    Messages:
    12,739
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Reputation:

    Copy pasta
     
  7. MartialHorror The Convicted Cinephile!

    Messages:
    21,529
    Likes Received:
    185
    Trophy Points:
    1,132
    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    Reputation:
    Er, some comments on each

    1) This though varies. It seems to me most Atheists are atheists for more personal reasons(How can a loving God allow so much death, ect). When they say "If God can be proved, we'd change" it shows they made the decision even before any valid argument can be presented. Hence, Atheism is more of personal experience. Agnosticism is simply because there is not any proof.

    2) lol, agreed. When I use the Bible to debate, I simply use it to make a point on a subject. Preaching against people who don't intend to lose is useless. Preaching only works on people who are interested.

    3) Atheists fall into this one as well, mind you.

    4) agreed.....unless its about christian theology. Trying to disprove Evolution using the Bible is laughable though.....

    5) Agreed.

    6) Agreed, saying "disprove it" never works in an argument.

    7) Agreed for the most part, if I wanted to try to disprove Evolution though(I accept it as probably true, for the record) I'd simply try to find someone reliable and let the person I'm debating try it out. I myself am not knowledgable on the subject....but then again, I shouldn't be debating it if I don't know enough. So good point.

    8) Whoa now, maybe because you are possibly an Atheist, but I see this in almost every Atheist I've debated. I'm sure I, and religious people, do it as well but MOST debates period are simply people ignoring and repeating themselves. Have you seen any of DarkAdonis's arguments? I use him because he's been the worst, but even the most respectable and intelligent Atheists do this.....

    9) Being its impossible to refute God/gods(their existence, that is) I'm presuming you mean people like the flood, ect. If Christian "A" debates Atheist "A" and the flood is refuted....then yes, that Christian can't use the same argument. If another Christian uses the same argument, then the Atheist needs to refute him. I mean hell, I don't bother going through all threads debating this. I do agree with the point, but this is something thats completely subjective.

    10) Ever hear of the saying "Love your enemies, it will drive them crazy"? If we choose to pray for Atheists or not, its our choice and we are free to do so. Atheists should be touched, whether we are really praying to nothing(meaning God doesn't exist) or not should not matter.....it shows we care. So I laugh when they get offended........if any Atheist really gets offended by this, then it shows they cannot accept kindness.....hence, they probably don't give it very much either.
     
  8. Verdius Professional Chad

    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    311
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Flag:
    United States
    Reputation:

    Hahah, yeah that one especially made me laugh. But no if my kid wanted to I wouldn't care, even if they wanted to be religious. Unless of course I planned on being a hypocrite, but I'd still raise them with a good education. At least this way they'll know what the hell they're talking about unlike most of the theists I come across.

    Don't take that the wrong way though, that doesn't mean I look down on them or anything just it tends to get annoying and retard any debates or discussions when people don't have the facts you know? Even I continually study, trying at least.
     
  9. Marl Now with added S? Engine!

    Messages:
    738
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2005
    Reputation:
    So this doesn't count as "Rild's longest post ever", then?

    Even if it is just a straight copy pasta, it makes some great points. Do we have a similar thread aimed at atheists? *trundles off*
     
  10. Giovanni Rild The mods are my enemy

    Messages:
    12,739
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Reputation:

    It hasn't got a single post yet.

    Previous owner says she/he is too busy.
     
  11. Elyon CP9 Liason

    Messages:
    643
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2007
    Reputation:
    You know what Rild, you have my eternal respect for making so many of these threads.
     
  12. Giovanni Rild The mods are my enemy

    Messages:
    12,739
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Reputation:
    As a reflex I take Cafe post as sarcasm, because usually they are.
     
  13. The Internet Banned

    Messages:
    3,833
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2006
    Reputation:
    I know, I mean when someone condesends us by basically saying "I pity you so much, I will pray for you", how DARE us get offended! Jesus christ, we're such horrible people for being offended when someone pity's us for not beliving in god!

    It's fucking disrespectful, and frankly, annoys me more than most of what Christians say. We can accept kindness, but when you do it in a form of pity, and someone gets pissed for it, the only ones that are at fault are you.
     
  14. Grandmaster Kane Banned

    Messages:
    10,015
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2005
    Reputation:
    im a Christian and i think you are 100% right why? Because it is logical
     
  15. Verdius Professional Chad

    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    311
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Flag:
    United States
    Reputation:
    Correction, this is the list that is literally true for me. Though the other one is funny stuff.

    I forgot I had two of them, thought something was off.
     
  16. MartialHorror The Convicted Cinephile!

    Messages:
    21,529
    Likes Received:
    185
    Trophy Points:
    1,132
    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    Reputation:
    lol, its not pity. Praying for non-believers is simply hoping the best for them. Don't see how its necessarily pity.
     
  17. Amaretti No strong feelings whatsoever

    Messages:
    6,869
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    May 28, 2006
    Reputation:
    For once completely agree with a post made by Rild. That you didn't actually write it... ok, whatever...

    MH, on the other hand...

    This logic of yours doesn't really make sense. If atheists are atheist for personal reasons, why would they be so willing to change if the facts changed? Surely if they were atheistic for personal reasons they would be disinclined to change their position so easily? That an atheist would be more willing to change their position if the existence of God was indicates quite an impersonal decision built on reason, and the fact that it is more logical to suspend belief in something that cannot be proven or confirmed until otherwise.

    Also, you be generalising atheists again by assuming their motivation for being an atheist is the same. We've had this conversation before, and you know you shouldn't do that because generalisation is invariable inaccurate.

    Well that point just went flying right over your head, didn't it? Read point ten again. Announcing you will pray for someone is not an act of kindness, it's an underhanded remark of a superior asshole whose deliberately patronising his opponent. You pray for sick people, not people who think differently from you. Praying for someone implies that they need help, and if an atheist implied that you needed help simply for the way you think, I'm sure it would annoy you. "I'll call a psychiatrist for you and hope they cure you of your delusion." Is that a remark of kindness? Or is it, quite rightly, the remark of a patronising asshole?

    Announcing a prayer has nothing to do with kindness. It's an insult. And getting offended when insulted has nothing to do with whether or not you are a kind person. So presuming atheists aren't kind people because they naturally get offended when people patronise them is one of the most asinine comments I have seen on this site.
     
  18. Pilaf The Man in the Rain

    Messages:
    25,267
    Likes Received:
    922
    Trophy Points:
    1,832
    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2007
    Reputation:
    I'm not any more offended by people telling me they're praying for me than they are when I reply "and I'll be fantasizing about violently sodomizing you with a baseball bat wrapped in barbed wire."

    It's all good, clean fun.
     
  19. DremolitoX roody-poo

    Messages:
    2,945
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    Reputation:
    Hmm I "debated" you on that, and completely crushed you. Yet, I still see the same crap coming out of you. What is wrong with you?
     
  20. Mintaka Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    34,701
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    943
    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Reputation:
    Ah yes your that idiot who thinks he crushes people.

    To bad you didn't and just dodged all my questions.
     
  21. AlphaRooster Cock-a-Doodle-do Bitches!

    Messages:
    1,327
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Reputation:
    This thread is pure fail. All you are doing is pointing out how people of faith have no argument with atheist. One thing you must understand, and I eventually learned this: Is that People of faith and Atheist will never see eye to eye on religion. They cannot debate. It always comes down to trying to convince each other that God exists or not. An Atheist will not believe in god and a "theist" will not disbelieve in God. Debating is pointless. What needs to be done is acceptness. Accept the fact that all people have the right to believe in what they want. Making threads to debate and prove your ideals is stupid and pointless. As an Atheist you are a minority in the world. Accept that. The world is constantly against you, If you are going to be an atheist you must accept that fact and move on. You will go mad trying to always debate and explain your cause. It is pointless, all it does is flame.
     
  22. Marl Now with added S? Engine!

    Messages:
    738
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2005
    Reputation:
    Replace the word "Atheist" with "Black".

    See what I did there?
     
  23. AbnormallyNormal 1 + 2 + 3 = 1 * 2 * 3

    Messages:
    20,134
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Reputation:
    the problem with all theism is that is not logic based its faith based in other words there is no basis whatsoever. if someone was using logic to make judgements from the get go they would never come up with any theism at all. so there is no reason to debate this topic ever, since debate uses logic and only one side of the debate even cares about logic.
     
  24. Amaretti No strong feelings whatsoever

    Messages:
    6,869
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    May 28, 2006
    Reputation:
    It's not really... :sag

    Are you saying that atheists shouldn't make threads about their beliefs because they're the minority? Being in a minority does not make your opinion worthless, and since when has the majority ever been right about anything? It wasn't that long ago that the majority believed staunchly that the sun orbited the earth and they persecuted anyone who said differently. If the minority didn't stand up and make their points heard, we'd still be thinking we were the centre of the universe.
     
  25. AbnormallyNormal 1 + 2 + 3 = 1 * 2 * 3

    Messages:
    20,134
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Reputation:
    another thing is that the proportion of people who are atheist is ever-increasing...
     
  26. MartialHorror The Convicted Cinephile!

    Messages:
    21,529
    Likes Received:
    185
    Trophy Points:
    1,132
    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    Reputation:
    Amaretti

    1) It's not a generalization as much as it is definition. Personal reasons can be very different, from "The priest molested me" to simply being "A true God would not allow suffering, ect". Nevertheless, Atheism is scientifically a premature decision based on lack evidence all around. Doesn't mean you're wrong, but if an early Evolutionist simply said "Because I have hair on my arms, I must have evolved from an ape" and simply believed in that would that be very logical or scientific? No, he would have to get some damn proof before believing in that. Hence, agnosticism is the most reasonable out of Atheism/Theism, because they acknowledge until there is some proof either way, we will never know. So in a way, Atheism does have the burden of proof as well. They are making a statement without any proof to back them up.

    2) Except if you are delusional, the fact I did call a psychiatrist should be considered an act of kindness. First off, aren't you generalizing now? You are rounding up all Christians and stating "this is why, or what we pray for". So I still don't see how its an insult. No wonder Atheists get so irritated at this, they completely miss our intention, lol.
     
  27. The Internet Banned

    Messages:
    3,833
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2006
    Reputation:
    Tell me oh genius; How does one prove the nonexistence of something?

    1. Saying how there is a lack of evidence to show the belief in god

    2. ??????

    3. ?????????


    Please, fill in 2 and 3.

    No, I understand that it's meant to sound like a conceaded prick, it's rather quite obvious in fact.
     
  28. AlphaRooster Cock-a-Doodle-do Bitches!

    Messages:
    1,327
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Reputation:
    Are you saying that atheists shouldn't make threads about their beliefs because they're the minority? Being in a minority does not make your opinion worthless, and since when has the majority ever been right about anything? It wasn't that long ago that the majority believed staunchly that the sun orbited the earth and they persecuted anyone who said differently. If the minority didn't stand up and make their points heard, we'd still be thinking we were the centre of the universe.

    Amaretti, No. Making threads discussing your ideals and beliefs and comparing them with others is great. This thread doesn't do that. It's telling Atheist how to counter general rationalizations that people of faith bring up. One should never be on the defensive end of their faith. I know it happens all the time, but that is the problem with ideals in the first place. You should not have to argue or defend your beliefs. Be the better person and accept the fact that as a minority ideal, that the world will always disagree with you. No matter what you can't change that. This thread tells me how to make my belief acceptable to those of faith. Fuck that! I believe what I want and you believe what you want. It should end there. Anyway got to go. PM me if you need a better explanation.
     
  29. TiGel2. Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    453
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    268
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2006
    Reputation:
    Maybe in the west, but overall the amount of atheists in the world is vastly less then it was during the cold war.
     
  30. Masaki Mugiwara Kaizoku

    Messages:
    11,152
    Likes Received:
    20
    Trophy Points:
    743
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2004
    Reputation:
    Oh please. Nothing ever happened to me to just decide one day that there's no god. I just was never told that there was one, and as I got older and began taking science and psychology classes, that fact became more clear to me.

    Things that we once considered to be strange phenomena, like "talking tongues" being a sign of the devil, are now being shown to be mental disorders that are caused in part by a lack of serotonin or dopamine in the brain. In fact, these same disorders can even explain "prophecies" that some famous religious figures may have had.

    Christianity, and perhaps other religions as well, originally focused around the concept of the Earth being the center of the universe. But when it was shown that Earth is not only not the center of the universe, it wasn't even the center of its own solar system, how can we claim that so many things in the Bible hold true if something so major was disproven?

    And an argument that I can't help but wonder why no theist ever stops to think about. If there have been perhaps dozens of religions in this world, Hinduism, ancient Greek religion, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, multiple forms of Christianity, how can one single religion justify that they are right? Especially when some have thousands of gods while others only have one. Christianity in particular, because they were not the first ones to worship their god (since they came from Judaism), and they weren't the last religion of their kind (since Mohamed supposedly had a prophecy and started Islam). How can Christianity, the "middle child religion" so to speak, be right under these circumstances, even if, hypothetically, god exists.
     
Loading...