Atheism is a faith like anyone else

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Sheldon's picture
Brilliant, fair play.

Brilliant, fair play.

Cognostic's picture
As a graduate with two

As a graduate with two degrees I am happy to say that I have learned to recognize absolute bullshit from Reality. When I can not make the distinction, I have learned to move to reliable sources and evaluate their opinions against claims to help me make a final decision. But the most important thing I have learned with all my degrees is that when I have a dipshit biased, unsubstantiated moronic opinion, and someone demonstrates the error I am making by holding such a dipshit opinion. I can thank them for pointing it out and modify or change my position so that it aligns more correctly with reality. I am so happy that I can do this and not embarrass myself with ignorance by spouting utter nonsense like some of the people I see struggling through life trying to be important and relying on spiritual nonsense and false claims to make them that way.

ferguson1951's picture
Nietzsche, possibly the most

Nietzsche, possibly the most influential philosopher of modern times, was anti-rational. It could not have been otherwise, considering that he was a highly intelligent man. Rationalism blunts your mind. Graduates have turned this world into some sort of hell. I was born 1951 and I can testify that in those days the world was a much better place.

But today I want to discuss a little religion:

Someone before rightly objected that religion should not be studied because it should be available to illiterate people too. The answer is complicated but I will try to answer.
This is not a cause-effect situation.
In ancient past, scholars put forward heresies and attracted many people. The Church had to put things right. But often heresies were about the Holy Spirit, the divinity of Jesus and things like that, where illiterate people had very little to say. They just followed.
During the 2.000 years of Christianity, the Catholic Church issued possibly millions of pieces of literature that an illiterate Third World farmer would not understand.
For many centuries the Bible was only in latin, a language illiterate people would not know.
I agree that religion should be available to the less educated.
In fact, the apostles were very ignorant people who, until the Spirit was given to them, would never understand Jesus. He just kept rebuking them for thir hard head.
Plus, in order to protect people from pagan philosophies, the Church “invented” theology anb a dare anyone to understand that.
My view is that so far so many encyclicae and letters from the Vatican have been issued that the ordinary faithful do not know anymore where they stand.
On the contrary, Saint Francis made life easy for himself. He had gone to school because he was the son of a well-to-do family. In those days schooling was based of the latin Bible only, so he knew that well.
But he decided to follow the Gospel literally and did away with all the rest.
As often happens, Church people attacked him for that and Francis had doubts about himself. So he decided to go and see the Pope in order to have his opinion. They nearly prevented him from entering the vatican but after he did and expleined to the Pope what he wanted to do the Pope said: “This man is a giant”.
Nevertheless, christians are not called to follow Francis’ example.
In spiritual advancement there are several degrees.
I doubt God, on Judgement Day, will demand the illiterate Thrtid World farmer to show that he followed Francis’ path.
They Gospel irself says that to some God gives 30, to some 60 andto some 90.
Each one will have to answer proportionally to his capacity to understand and practice what he understands. If he practices religion properly, he will have the aid of the Spirit.

To be sure, one can achieve salvation by practicing very few rules.

Luke 7
Jesus Anointed by a Sinful Woman
36 When one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. 37 A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume. 38 As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.
39 When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is—that she is a sinner.”
40 Jesus answered him, “Simon, I have something to tell you.”
“Tell me, teacher,” he said.
41 “Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii,[c] and the other fifty. 42 Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both. Now which of them will love him more?”
43 Simon replied, “I suppose the one who had the bigger debt forgiven.”
“You have judged correctly,” Jesus said.
44 Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You did not give me a kiss, but this woman, from the time I entered, has not stopped kissing my feet. 46 You did not put oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet. 47 Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.”
48 Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”

Luke 18

The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector
9 To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray,one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’
13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’
14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

Mark 12

The Greatest Commandment
28 One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.[e] 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’[f] 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[g] There is no commandment greater than these.”
32 “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 33 To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
34 When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.

Tin-Man's picture
@Ferguson Re: "Plus, in

@Ferguson Re: "Plus, in order to protect people from pagan philosophies, the Church “invented” theology..."

Protection from Pagan philosophy, huh?... Hmmmm.... Funny that.... I happen to be pretty good friends with quite a few Pagan folks. And, quite honestly, they happen to be a better class of people than most "Christians" I grew up with and some I know now. Hell, for that matter, my WIFE is Pagan. And a most incredible and intelligent woman, I must say. That aside, though, here is the interesting part. I grew up being taught that Paganism was evil and "of the devil", and that Pagans should be avoided because they were "not of God" and deserved to burn in hell forever. Matter of fact, I even knew a few of the more "outspoken" Christians who would have happily gone out and literally killed any pagans they could find if they knew they could get away with it. On the flip side, however, out of all the Pagans I currently know and have regularly associated with, I have never heard any of them make any comments such as, "All Christians/Muslims/Jews/etc. deserve to burn in hell." Come to think of it, most of the Pagans I know don't even believe in a hell. Oh, and I have definitely never heard any of them make any comments such as, "We need to go wipe out that group of people because they do not believe like I do." Basically, Pagans simply do not care which god/gods you worship as long as you are not causing harm to others. Case in point, I am an atheist, and they accept me as a friend without question or judgement. Period. (And, yes, they know I am an atheist.) While at the same time, if I were to proclaim my atheism to even some of my closest family, I would likely be shunned by them for life. Yet the Christians need protection from the Pagans???... *scratching head in confusion*... Alrighty then... *chuckle*...

Edit to add: Oh, and I almost forgot. Since the Christians are so terribly anti-Pagan, it would be awfully nice of them to give back the holidays they stole from the Pagans. Just sayin'... *shrugging shoulders*...

toto974's picture


How were the world (or just american society) better in that time? Why would the so-called decay only be put on "graduates" actions?

Sheldon's picture
Ferguson "Graduates have

Ferguson "Graduates have turned this world into some sort of hell. I was born 1951 and I can testify that in those days the world was a much better place"

I'd like to see you demonstrate a shred of objective evidence for that absurd claim, beyond your usual anecdotal rhetoric.

Something tells me I'm going to be disappointed yet again.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Ferguson 1951

@ Ferguson 1951

I was born 1951 and I can testify that in those days the world was a much better place.

Really? If you had contracted polio then you would, at least have been very, very ill if not dead. The vaccine was not released until 1955.
The 'smelly 50's" (known because of their lack of personal hygiene) were certainly not better healthwise or societally. Racism was rife everywhere, segregation in the US, apartheid in Africa.

Also if you were born in 1951 I would not take your word about testifying to anything until at least 1962.....memory plays such tricks.

I have come across the "Grumpy Old Git Society, Everything Was Better Back Then" I will see if I can get an invite to their next function. It will be 50's catering of your attitude, very difficult to stomach.

Cognostic's picture
@ferguson1951: Love Thy

@ferguson1951: Love Thy Neighbor? Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha...

Tim Minchin Wrote a song about that. "I Love Jesus" ENJOY!

toto974's picture


There is a Huge difference between you and the people here. You are anti-intellectual, anti-rational, pompous, self-righteous and likely have en enormous ego.

Us, in the contrary, while not perfect, acknowledge that we do not know everything.

ferguson1951's picture
Two saints that I like a lot

Two saints that I like a lot are the Curate of Ars and Saint Francis of Assisi.
Saint Francis lived in 1200, so one could argue that his biography could have been flawed. But the Curate of Ars lived in late 1800, when there where writers, journalists and the like. Crowds of people met him and we would not be so sure that we can dispute his biography.

But today I want to tell you something about Saint Francis, given that you want to demolish religion evan after having carefully kept away from it.

Francis was the son of a successful cloth merchant. His father wanted him to be a successful man too, but Francis had other ideas. In his youth, Francis probably behaved like any other youngster of his age, chasing women. Later he joined an army and went into battle and got severely hurt, so he had to go back home. He had time to rest and think about his future. He sat beneath a tree with a Bible in his hands. He had been fortunate enough to be able to go to school and schools in those days based their teachings on the Latin Bible, the only Bible you could get.
He went through the Bible and decided that that was exactly what he wanted to do: follow the Gospel literally.
Obviously his father was very angry and disinherited Francis, but Francis was adamant.
He got rid of his posh garments and started wearing rags. A few of his friends joined him in this adventure.
To start with, he decided to rebuild the Church of San Damiano, which had been lying in ruins. The story goes that inside that church Francis heard a voice asking him to “rebuild His Church”, a Church that – as often happens - was far from being an example of true Christianity.
He visited the lepers and helped them.
This was the start of his spiritual life which eventually would have led him to become a world-famous figure, the Patron Saint of Italy and, according to the Church, an alter Christus: possibly the saint who resembled Jesus more closely.
He would not get anywhere near money, begged for his food, ate whatever was given and never wanted to see a doctor. He had decided he was going to accept suffering in sympathy with what Jesus had gone through.
But priests around his area found his spiritual path too weird and wanted to have nothing to do with him. People would shout to him to go and get a job and Francis started having doubts: he decided he was going to go to Rome and see what the pope had to say about him.He arrived in Rome dressed in his usual rags and had trouble getting inside the Vatican, but once he managed to kneel before the Pope and explained what he intended to do the Pope, before all the prelates who crowded the place, exclaimed: “This man is a giant!”
Francis was a very humble man: when he visited someone and was treated well he would just leave the place. He did not want to be revered.
He preached to birds and birds would stay put listening to him.
Once he was called to a place where a wolf was causing ravages. He went there, met the wolf, told him to behave himself and the wolf stopped giving people trouble.
Little by little he found himself at the head of thousands of brethren. His fame crossed borders.
Once he was walking along a path with one of his brethren. Suddenly they see a bag on the side of the road. The brother looks inside and sees that the bag was full of money. Francis immediately orders him to leave the bag alone. The brother objected that with that money they could have helped many poor people, but Francis insisted. Eventually the brother, stubborn, went to get the money but found that the bag was full of snakes.
Of course, Francis would practice virtues to a heroic degree.
Towards the end of his life he was rejected by his brethren. Francis went through a deep crisis. The brethren wanted to study but Francis never wanted them to carry anything but the Bible.
He died at the age of 44, of various diseases.
Before he died, he left his last will: he wanted to be buried in the criminals cemetery: he did not consider himself worthy of anything better.

All this just to show that christians and rational atheists live on two completely different planes.
When I have to repair a computer I have to use logic, but when it comes to life (much more important than repairing a computer), life often does not follow logic. It is as simple as that.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Fergie

@ Fergie

He died at the age of 44, of various diseases.

Don't that say it all.....

Randomhero1982's picture
Old Man, I'd wager syphilis

Old Man, I'd wager syphilis was in that cocktail of diseases....

He was so pious, godly etc... his maker riddled him lol.

ferguson1951's picture
Of course, Francis would

Of course, Francis would practice virtues to a heroic degree.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Fergie

@ Fergie

Religious mania (a recognised disorder) can often take that path.
Often coupled with other obsessive behaviours.

In times gone by people with such disorders would either be vilified, burnt or venerated. Looks like Francis got lucky.
Even nowadays in religious societies such as the Philippines and some parts of Africa the mentally disordered meet the same fate. It is not peculiar to the christian sects but can be found in most religions.

Now we just make them Presidents or Prime Ministers....torture in itself I guess.

ferguson1951's picture
Syphilis came from America

Syphilis came from America and in 1200 America had not been discovered yet.
I dont need a degree to know that.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Fergie

@ Fergie

You should invest in an education, syphilis was first recorded in 1495 among French troops. It likely came from Africa through Spain.
America didnt need 'discovering' in 1200 CE it had a sizeable population by then.

IF you had stuck to your books you wouldn't makes such a tit of yourself.

Nyarlathotep's picture
ferguson1951 - 1200

ferguson1951 - 1200 America had not been discovered yet...

That is a pretty ridiculous statement (as Old man shouts) pointed out.

Maybe we should have a "Doozie of the Week" contest. This would make a great first candidate.

Sheldon's picture
ferguson 1951 "Syphilis came

ferguson 1951 "Syphilis came from America and in 1200 America had not been discovered yet.
I dont need a degree to know that."

Wrong again..."The first well-recorded European outbreak of what is now known as syphilis occurred in 1495 among French troops besieging Naples, Italy. It may have been transmitted to the French via Spanish mercenaries serving King Charles of France in that siege."

ferguson1951's picture
Hi folks! Today is my last

Hi folks! Today is my last message. I want to tell you about something that happened to me.
1997 I was in London, renting a room in the home of an old-age Irish Catholic couple. Catholic inasmuch as they just went to mass on Sundays, as most Catholics only do for their faith.
To cut a long story short, the woman hated me because I would not screw the girls that happened to pass through the house. I do not let a woman use me. And also because I often mentioned religious subjects,
It was summer and I started having a cough. I did not give it much importance. But one morning I go to the kitchen for breakfast and the woman asks me how are you. "Fine" I said. And she said something that made me wonder: "Yes but you have to admit that you have a cough".
That sounded very strange to me. It was not the ordinary way of treating my cough. I left the house thinking that maybe I had a cough because the old lady was very old, could not clean the kitchen utensils properly and I had cought some bacteria.
I crossed the road to the nearby telephone booth because I wanted to ring my friend in Italy and discuss the odd event with her.
My friend and I talked and then something happened: a young boy was crossing the street, there was no traffic. When he got to the middle of the road he turned towards me. He was dressed in white t-shirt and jeans. On his t-shirt I could read this: "The trouble is in the drink".
I found an excuse to stop having breakfast at the old lady's and the cough immediately disappeared.

In 1986 I was working with a French architect. He wanted me to sand a huge steel arch that was in his property but I did not want to do that job because it was too dangerous. The scaffolding would not have had adequate protection and I did not want to fall off and die.
I did not say anything to him, but I prayed the Virgin: "Madonnina, I do not want to do that job."
It started to pour cats and dogs uninterruptedly for three days, so much so that the architect told me to go back home to Italy, that we would have done that job later.

The trouble with you rational atheists is that you do not link up to your soul, given that you believe there isn't one.
You only link up to your mind, even if - like everybody's mind, the mind produces a few good things and a lot of garbage thinking.
Most people use their minds and most people think differently on various subjects, which proves that the mind is not reliable.

You defend science, but are very wary of discussing Quantum Physics, which has taken much certainty away from scientific axioms.
You are on the wrong track, but you are happy that way. You dispute everything, except what the university taught you.
You believe in relativity, for example, but you have not tested the thesis, you just trust what was said to you (appeal to authority).
Science and religion are two completely different things: a retarded monkey should be able to understand that.
Please yourselves.

Tin-Man's picture
@Ferguson Re: "Please

@Ferguson Re: "Please yourselves."

Thanks, but I already please myself quite regularly... *sudden look of realization*.... Oh, uh, my bad. I think you may have meant that differently than what I was thinking. Ummm, just disregard that first sentence.

Tin-Man's picture
@Ferguson Re: "Hi folks!

@Ferguson Re: "Hi folks! Today is my last message."


Attach Image/Video?: 

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Fergie

@ Fergie

You only link up to your mind, even if - like everybody's mind, the mind produces a few good things and a lot of garbage thinking.

Oh lordy... does nobody tell these fantasists to watch out for hot irony? It burns my precious, it burns......

Tin-Man's picture
@Old Man

@Old Man

Ya know, after extensive consideration, I'm beginning to think maybe ditching my rational and logical thinking may not be such a bad idea. I mean, if I start going back to church, I could become a non-thinking irrational zombie and never again have to accept responsibility for my actions or for anything that goes bad in my life. Seems like it would be soooo much less stress never having to be personally accountable for what I do to others. I'll just say, "God told me to do it," and nobody is allowed to question it. Or if I happen to screw somebody over, I'll just say, "I'm sorry, and I asked God to forgive me," and I'm totally off the hook. Helluva deal, if you ask me.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ TM

@ TM

I'm beginning to think maybe ditching my rational and logical thinking may not be such a bad idea.

Not to mention you can get messages from your god on random strangers' T shirts, or your own toast, muffins, near misses by trucks, aeroplanes and sheep....

Sounds like paradise...oh and you can then start to lie about happenings that just never did, newspapers you never ever read and give credence to your uneducated, ill founded, emotional response over decades of scientific research.

OH OH...and don't forget you can rewrite history, misquote historians and scientists, cherry pick you own translation of any "holy book" make up evidence and believe exactly what you want whether it really happened or no! IT'S PARADISE I TELLS YA!

Next best thing is to become a 'Psychic" ...and contact some rich dude's deceased uncle....and inherit everything! By Money transfer of course....

Tin-Man's picture
@Old Man

@Old Man

Hey, you forgot about seeing Jesus on a dog's asshole.

Cognostic's picture
I'm frigging enthralled.

I'm frigging enthralled. Coughing at the breakfast table. IT MUST BE AN OMEN.
HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA .... Too bad the shirt didn't say "The Trouble is Having Breakfast At the Old Woman's House!" Now that would have been prophetic. (That's it? The cough went away? HOLEY FUCK - IT'S A MIRACLE:)

A French Artist wants you to sand an arch on shaky scaffolding without protection. SamSung does the same thing to Philippine workers in its shipyards but they have to do it because they are starving. Looking forward to the rest of this. So it then rains for three days and that is the conclusion of your story? That's it, Was it an unnatural blue rain? Did the clouds write out the words "Don't Do It."? While it was raining did your train fare magically appear in a puddle? Did the Madonna magically appear, take your hand, and walk you to the train station? I am really missing the point on this one. "IT RAINED AND YOU LOST THE JOB." THE END That's like saying, "AND THEN NOTHING HAPPENED/"

The problem with atheists is that they do not link up to their souls? Really? Can you demonstrate any evidence at all for a soul? If I have one, where is it and what does it look like? If you can't show me mine why not show me yours. If you send it to me in a jar, I will look at it and then send it back to you. I never said there wasn't one. I just asked where is it?

Ummm... I believe in relativity? Hmmmm. Did I believe in relativity before I believed in Special Relativity?? You are confused. Relativity or Special Relativity are not things, they are observations. They are observations of the way the world around us behaves. Do you have any such objective empirical observations for the existence of your god?

Science and religion are two different things. Absolutely, we are finally in agreement. Science is based on observation, measurement, predictability and respectability while religion is allocated to the realm of "feel good WooWoo, magical goings on, and attributing anything you do not understand to a magical flying non-corporal existent beyond time and space deity who influences this world through prayer or sometimes magically constructed weather events.


Sheldon's picture
@ferguson 1951

@ferguson 1951

I've said before, and I'll say it again, you're off your tits, seek professional help, seriously. "The cough went away," clearly a fucking miracle then, as coughs never ever just go away, christ almighty what moronic nonsense you post.

"You believe in relativity, for example, but you have not tested the thesis, you just trust what was said to you (appeal to authority)."

This is another tired old religious canard, scientific facts are established by a weight of objective evidence, thus they are not remotely based on an appeal to authority, which by definition has no evidence to support it. And of course the real hilarity is this lie is touted by morons who cite their religious tome as immutably true.

"You only link up to your mind,"

A problem your posts indicate you will never have.

Randomhero1982's picture
I think the cheese has slid

I think the cheese has slid off his cracker...

ferguson1951's picture
According to you: it took

According to you: it took people who never existed to invent a long demented story (the Bible) the gist of which is that you have to practice fraternal charity (love) and to love your neighbor. Of course, with minds like yours this would never had happened.
And you call that logic!!! (hahaha)

Tin-Man's picture
@Ferguson Re: "...(the Bible

@Ferguson Re: "...(the Bible) the gist of which is that you have to practice fraternal charity (love) and to love your neighbor."

And God said, "Love thy neighbor..... except for that group in the valley next to yours. They do not love and worship me, so I want you to take an army over there and slaughter every single one of those heathen fuckers and claim their land as your own. Oh! Wait-wait-wait! Almost forgot! Spare the virgin females and have your way with them. (You all know how much I like virgins... *wink*...)"

And God said, "Thou shalt not kill!... Well, unless, of course, I order you to do so. In that case, it is perfectly okay. Even if it is your own child. Sure, I could easily handle the problem myself. (Omnipotent and all, ya know.) But I simply MUST test your faith sometimes, even though I already know exactly what you will or will not do. (Omniscient and all, ya know.)"

And God said, "You are all my children, and I love you unconditionally because I made you in my own perfect image. That is, unless you refuse to worship me, in which case you MUST BE severely defective. (Even though I am PERFECT and NEVER make mistakes.) And that is why I created a place of horrendously brutal torture, pain, and agony to send you retarded dysfunctional idiots who refuse to acknowledge my perfection, even though I created you in my perfect image. But, hey, I love you just the same."

And God said, "I have created Man in my perfect image. Yes, every single last intricate detail and function of the human body was my own perfect plan and design. However, I'm afraid I'm gonna have to have the males cut off that unsightly little piece of foreskin from their penis. Uh, yeah, I really hate those things. They offend me terribly. Not sure why the fuck I even made foreskins in the first place. They're ridiculous. So, uh, yeah, just do me a favor and lop those nasty things off for me, guys. Oh, sure, it may hurt for a bit. But which is worse... A little bit of pain now, or a whooooole shit-load of eternal torture later? Hey, your choice... *shrugging shoulders*..."


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