Monday, November 27, 2006

Is it really about "god"?

"Why...are the enlightened so conspicuously up in arms these days, reiterating every possible argument against the existence of God? Why are they indulging in books — Daniel Dennett’s “Breaking the Spell,” Sam Harris’s “Letter to a Christian Nation,” and Richard Dawkins’s “God Delusion” — in which authors lampoon religion or rail against the devout under the banner of a crusading atheism?"

Entire article from Richard Shweder, NY-Times
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I do understand that the battle against religion that is being waged by many atheists these days is a bit more than just about the "god" issue. In order to actually believe there is no god, one must be more than slightly educated. It doesn't take much education for one to find truth in bible stories, and most of us want to believe in them. But turning those stories on their head is science, and science isn't something that's as easy to understand, and it doesn't provide us with easy rewards. This adds to the feeling that many deists have that atheists talk down to them.

I was reading some-one's rant on vegetarians, and it made me think that maybe it's not so different with Atheists. There is a general smugness felt from vegetarians, whether they give it off, or it's just assumed because I know they're kinda right, is hard to say. They have to do more work for their food, but I really do feel if we all ate the way they ate, the world could be a better place. It's healthier, it takes less energy to feed a vegetarian than to feed a cow to feed a herbivore like myself, there's that issue of how animals are treated.... And the more one educates themselves about how their food gets from the farm to their plate, the more likely one wouldn't want to eat some of that food.

I'm not a vegetarian myself, but I think about it a lot. Somehow to me, the idea of god never tasted as good as a thick juicy steak, though I'm sure I could live a healthier life without either.

2 Comments:

Blogger Aviaa said...

God as steak, eh? I manage without both, though I just reject steak (and other meats) while I don't acually believe in god.

I think there is a difference between believing that you are correct (which I often believe) and believing that because you are correct, you are somehow a better person than the other (I don't believe this). This second is where the truly obnoxious forms of smugness come into play-- I'm not a huge fan of smug atheists, theists, or vegetarians. I think some of my ideas (such as that we should use reason to evaluate the world) are better than other ideas (that the Bible is the inerrant word of god), but I don't think this makes me a somehow more worthy person.

2:34 PM  
Blogger new.atheist said...

True, steak actually exists, so we can reject it. While if I said I didn't believe in cows, then I'd just be crazy...

I'm not saying all atheists, or vegetarians, are smug... but I think there's an assumption of smugness from those who aren't.

There are plenty of smug Christians out there as well who think they're better cuz they think they're goin to heaven when they die.

It's just something I know I personally have to try to remember; to try to not come off too smug for believing I am right.

12:14 PM  

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