Bardiness

"..a bardy view!"

Why I Don’t Believe in Atheists….

If I was God I wouldn't believe in atheists. But I'm not. HE however has no choice.

Atheists believe there is nothing more divine or greater than themselves. Unlike Humanists who believe in the divine power of reason. Reason – that  ignis fatuus in the mind as espoused by John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester, in his Satire Against Mankind.

But this is about atheists. Are Humanists atheists? I don't know – I'm not that smart. I have difficulty believing in people who don't believe in anything. If they believe in anything at all it's that they think they are morally superior to everyone else, and far more intelligent.

You'll see them often, especially commenting on articles about religion or metaphysics which abound in online newspapers and magazines. They like to deride the clergy, the church, the flock, and promote the science of man, whilst at the same time implying "look at me, I'm so clever and you are so stupid".

The pretentious spout inanity about religion being the root of all evil, that all the troubles of the world stem from it, and so on, blah blah, etc etc, ad nausea.

They look down with condescension and pity those who have a faith. They regard Christianity and Islam as a throwback to less enlightened times, and cannot understand why in the 21st Century (Anno Domini) that religion plays such an important part in the lives of countless millions worldwide. Ignorance and oppression is their mantra – wake up and get with it they shout!

Certain Brits appear most vocal on this. Suffocated by materialism, emancipated by freedom of speech, poorly educated but loudly opinionated, beneficiaries of the manna of money, and rejecting values which held the cohesion of their forebears, and a belief that it's not the church, mosque, or temple which hold the alter of worship, but the shopping mall.

Queues which formed recently at the opening of the super-size Westfield shopping centre in the Olympic Venue of East London is a case in point. The desire to be there, to tweet, to state proudly on facebook, with their smart-phones, and to broadcast to all their "friends"  – "look at me – I'm here".

Yes, they were a mass of consumerist idolatry, and when the doors opened, in they rushed to spend their money, for goods which they probably didn't even need.

Indeed, many didn't even spend, they just wanted the thrill of "being there". That's what worship is all about – it's collective, to be enjoyed, to be surrounded by like minded people. Praise Be!

I'm reminded of a story  about a pupil who was banned from attending her school's Christmas Party. When the mother complained, she was told that it was because she had excluded her child from the Religious Education lessons and they therefore assumed she wouldn't want to celebrate Christmas. "What's religion got to do with Christmas?" she retorted!

No doubt the same parent would buy her child loads of Easter eggs without a single thought of the meaning of the event, or ungraciously accept that Good Friday was a day off work thanks to some guy who got crucified, and no doubt grateful that Monday meant a long weekend off because it followed the Sunday when he got conveniently resurrected.

She will not be an isolated case. She is typical of the atheists which I refer to. The ignorant who are too lazy to think, but find it convenient to believe in nothing but expect everything.

A lack of faith can manifest itself in many ways.  Bereavement, suffering, tragedy, genocide, war and even bad luck. But today in a shallow consumerist world, with so many distractions and desires, a world of celebrity and instant gratification, of attention and wanton excess, there is little room for self-reflection, contemplation, frugality and compassion. Such concepts are construed as signs of weakness, yet all are aspects of faith and humility.

That's why I don't like atheists. They are weak and ignorant. They like to condemn and they are pretentious, arrogant and selfish. One should not disbelieve in something just because there is a lack of evidence, and equally one should not believe in something carte blanche by it's absence either. But never the twain shall meet.

I believe in people who have faith, not in those who have none. I suspect that those who have it are far more human and humane than those who are totally bereft of it. Call me a cynic, but I know who I'll pin my mast to, and I don't adhere to Pascal's Wager which I suspect is the gambling atheists each way bet!

No, I don't believe in atheists. Then again they probably don't believe in me, but that's their problem, not mine!

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September 25, 2011 - Posted by | Culture, Education, General, History, Religion | , , , , ,

12 Comments »

  1. Brilliant. I can think of no higher praise and I’m not an overly religious man, honestly. However, one has to have the ability to think? I well remember having an argument about this with my late Dad and he said to me at the end,’doesn’t matter what you say, it’s lasted a long time’. It sure has and perchance we are all better for it? Now I must go and post a tweet, being, ‘don’t get your knickers in a knot’. Tee, he, ha, ha.

    Like

    Comment by Spook Moor | September 26, 2011 | Reply

  2. Thanks Spook. I particularly enjoyed writing this one.

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    Comment by Bar De Ness | September 26, 2011 | Reply

  3. I’m sure you did and I particularly enjoyed reading it. So much so that I came back for another look. That piece by John Wilmot was excellent as well and the best of luck with all this.

    Like

    Comment by Spook Moor | September 26, 2011 | Reply

  4. I came back for another read and I’m just as suitably impressed with your elegance as I was before. Food for thought here alright.

    Like

    Comment by spookmoor | March 17, 2014 | Reply

  5. It’s a great article demonstrating how people can idolise and worship all and sundry, Bar. My own statement has always been, that to be an Atheist – one has thus to believe that God does exist, or why oppose it? Although I believe in God – and strongly so, several issues work against the Global issue of faith. Many Christians or Believers are the first to condemn with fire and brimstone…carry an entirely condemning attitude… much is brought to the fore in latter years re the fraud (alone) within churches and communities alike. Religion is to blame for many wars, is my humble knowledge. However, God makes provision for all, “where one or two are gathered in my name…”. It’s been proven that people who have a faith in a God of religion are healthier psychologically – this makes sense in toto. Since having learned of this, I have asked myself the simple question – how can it be so true? which Faith Is.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by Michelle Ferreira | February 7, 2015 | Reply

    • Thank you very much for your comment Michelle, and I apologise for not acknowledging it sooner. I must have missed the notification. You make some very interesting observations and I do believe (generally) as you say that people who have a faith are healthier psychologically.

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      Comment by Bar de Ness | March 25, 2015 | Reply

  6. I’m an atheist and I’m neither weak nor ignorant. I don’t like to condemn. I’m probably pretentious, but that isn’t because I’m an atheist. I am arrogant in the sense that I have high standards, but not because I think I am better or smarter than believers. I don’t really mind it if people believe, in fact I often think its great because it give them something to depend on, fall back upon. I can’t say I’m selfless, but I do try to see other’s point of view, and do try to help people in need. This has nothing to do with religion, rather a feeling for my fellow man.
    I certainly don’t deride the clergy, the church, or the flock, and I promote no religion. I am very aware that I am not the same as others and don’t expect them to be the same as me. I respect people have the right to a point of view.
    I most certainly don’t pity those who have a faith. I think its wonderful, Id love to have faith, I just can never hold it. I could pretend that I did, but really and truly looking deep within myself, I would be forced to accept that I am lying to myself.

    I’m not sure your assertion that “Atheists believe there is nothing more divine or greater than themselves” is correct. I certainly don’t think that. I just don’t believe there is a God. I believe that nature is wondrous, amazing. I will stop at a flower or watch a bee and be fascinated by its beauty, symmetry. Nature is more divine than me in its entirety, but man, as part of nature and not above it, is also beautiful.

    I don’t understand what you mean by “I don’t believe in atheists.” Do you mean you don’t believe they exist?

    Your paragraph, “A lack of faith can manifest itself in many ways. Bereavement, suffering, tragedy, genocide, war and even bad luck. But today in a shallow consumerist world, with so many distractions and desires, a world of celebrity and instant gratification, of attention and wanton excess, there is little room for self-reflection, contemplation, frugality and compassion. Such concepts are construed as signs of weakness, yet all are aspects of faith and humility” is unintelligible to me. Do you mean that bereavement, suffering etc is caused by a lack of faith?

    I’m not sure that I judge people’s reliability by whether they have faith or not, rather by their actions. I certainly don’t condemn people out of turn, because of their choice.

    I hope I have not offended you with this comment on your blog, it was not my intention to.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by frankiekay | March 25, 2015 | Reply

    • Well, what can I say? Thank you very much for your input FrankieKay – it is a valuable and welcome contribution. I certainly understand and respect what you are saying. You have not caused me any offence, in fact, re-reading my post, I accept that some of my terminology could be construed as provocative and it may well have offended you – for which I am sorry. With regard to the paragraph quoted, my point is that it is these very incidents and events that can easily sway and question an individuals faith, and in today’s modern busy consumerist world, there is little room for reflection, meditation or spiritual contemplation. Once again – thanks for your comment.

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      Comment by Bar de Ness | March 25, 2015 | Reply

      • Firstly I’m hardly ever offended – I’m far too confident in what I think. If I get upset, its usually because when I look back, at the statement or criticism, I realise the person is right and I’m wrong!
        I agree that our consumer world is taking our time away from contemplation and mediation and having the time for human decency and kindness, but again, its got nothing to do with atheists. Atheists don’t create the consumerism, its money that does.

        I could have produced a post such as yours above, in which I discuss Christians who feel that by virtue of their religion, they are:
        …able to be horrid, crooked in business, rude during the week and be absolved on Sunday
        …be allowed to crook people who do not follow their church, or attend their services
        …look down on others because they don’t believe
        …not be charitable in thought and deed to people who don’t follow what they do
        …but I won’t, because I know some fantastic people who also happen to be Christians. This doesn’t take away from their humility, their humanity. They don’t judge me or others and do their best to participate in this world of ours. I couldn’t possibly generalise.

        Just one thing from my original comment. I asked you this question:

        I don’t understand what you mean by “I don’t believe in atheists.” Do you mean you don’t believe they exist?

        The reason I asked this question, is because often I’m told “No, you really do believe in God – you just don’t know you do. Or you won’t face it. Or something along these lines. Is this what you mean?

        Liked by 1 person

        Comment by frankiekay | March 25, 2015

      • You have demonstrated your confidence admirably, and I suspect you will regard that statement as patronising, even though it’s not meant to be.

        My term “I don’t believe in atheists” was followed by a caveat…”If I was God I wouldn’t believe in atheists. But I’m not. HE however has no choice.”
        I have a choice to believe or not in atheists even though I know they exist. Just like I don’t believe in Venture Capitalists – I know they exist!

        As a Christian (a moderate and rational one) I nevertheless believe that God created you and therefore He cannot deny your existence. You have the choice to deny His existence, and that is your choice. You are an Atheist because you do not believe in the existence of God. Yet you don’t know for sure that he does not exist, and as I said in my post – “One should not disbelieve in something just because there is a lack of evidence, and equally one should not believe in something carte blanche by it’s absence either. But never the twain shall meet.”

        My take is very simple – the path of life is paved with fortune and misfortune, happiness and tragedy, and throughout this journey we will be tested. Some will keep faith, some will lose faith, and those who have never had faith will discover it. So I am left with my penultimate sentence which hopefully addressed your question: “Call me a cynic, but I know who I’ll pin my mast to, and I don’t adhere to Pascal’s Wager which I suspect is the gambling atheists each way bet!”

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        Comment by Bar de Ness | March 25, 2015

  7. As an outspoken follower of Jesus I find this written piece fascinating as I cannot for the life of me think how a person survives in this world without believing or having faith in God. I have had much experience in my life to back this up. What you might though find amazing is that Frankie Kay who has just posted that she is an atheist and I who never even knew one another have becoming very close. The reason I believe is because we are who we are and we respect one another as people. We also trust one another and that has nothing to do with religion. That is being real. I very seldom become involved in religious discussions as I have regard for people’s opinions. What I can in all truth say is that I feel sorry for people who believe in nothing but then I pray for them. I am happy that I believe in God but I cannot condemn or judge someone who doesn’t. That would be false. I agree with the point argued about being human and humane and maybe if more people had been more human and understanding more people will realize that there is God.

    Liked by 2 people

    Comment by Elna Mok | March 25, 2015 | Reply

    • Thank you very much for your comment Elna Mok – it’s very much appreciated.

      Like

      Comment by Bar de Ness | March 25, 2015 | Reply


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