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Atheism's Best Friend?

By freak80 following x   2012 Mar 12, 7:43am 10,912 views   47 comments   watch   nsfw   quote     share    


As we all know, Protestant Liberalism has done a lot of work refuting historic Christianity. Shouldn't atheists support Protestant Liberalism, then? After all, what better way to get rid of historic Christianity than to undermine it from within?

What do I mean by "Protestant Liberalism" and "historic Christianity"? I mean in the same sense that J. Gresham Machen used the terms in his book "Christianity and Liberalism."

Thoughts?

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8   freak80   ignore (4)   2012 Mar 13, 4:17am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Maybe I don't have my facts straight, but aren't the Liberal Protestants fairly close to the Unitarian Universalists?

9   leo707   ignore (1)   2012 Mar 13, 4:37am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

wthrfrk80 says

Maybe I don't have my facts straight, but aren't the Liberal Protestants fairly close to the Unitarian Universalists?

I don't know a whole lot about the liberal protestants, but I think that they are fairly close. However, there are some big differences.

The primary one being that the liberal protestants are still "christian". Unitarian universalists -- while most are christian -- don't promote any one god; infact god/jesus/etc. is not mentioned in their sermons. You could be a believer in Thor, Set, Gaia, or Banjo the Clown -- or none of the above -- and still be welcomed into a universalists congregation.

10   freak80   ignore (4)   2012 Mar 13, 4:54am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

leoj707 says

Unitarian universalists -- while most are christian -- don't promote any one god; infact god/jesus/etc.

I wonder why they would want to be called "Christians" if they don't mention God/Christ in their sermons. Seems bizarre to me. Maybe because the term "Christian" has come to mean "nice guy/gal" and not "someone who believes Jesus is the Son of God and rose from the dead, and is coming again to judge the world, etc."

Seems there are a lot of dishonest people that would say,"yeah, I'm a Christian, but I don't believe all that weird stuff about Jesus, sin, atonement, the Resurrection, etc."

I've got a lot more respect for an atheist who just says "Christianity is bullshit" outright, rather than pretending to believe something they really don't.

11   leo707   ignore (1)   2012 Mar 13, 5:04am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

wthrfrk80 says

I wonder why they would want to be called "Christians" if they don't mention God/Christ in their sermons. Seems bizarre to me.

They don't mention god/christ/bible in their sermons because not everyone in the congregation is a christian and believes those things.

Some unitarians are christians because they do believe...
wthrfrk80 says

"...Jesus is the Son of God and rose from the dead, and is coming again to judge the world, etc."

When any christian reads the bible they pick-and-choose what to take literally and what to take as metaphor/symbolism. Unitarian-christians -- while believing the teachings of christ -- lean heavily in the metaphor/symbolism side of the scale.

wthrfrk80 says

I've got a lot more respect for an atheist who just says "Christianity is bullshit" outright, rather than pretending to believe something they really don't.

Unitarians worship in an environment where nothing is gained by pretending. Other religions require you to pretend if you want to remain as part of the community.

12   freak80   ignore (4)   2012 Mar 13, 5:18am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

leoj707 says

They don't mention god/christ/bible in their sermons because not everyone in the congregation is a christian and believes those things.
Some unitarians are christians because they do believe...

Seems fair enough.

leoj707 says

Unitarians worship in an environment where nothing is gained by pretending. Other religions require you to pretend if you want to remain as part of the community.

Yep. I'm willing to bet there's a lot of pretending that goes on. It's like that story of the "Emperor's New Clothes."

13   leo707   ignore (1)   2012 Mar 13, 5:30am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

wthrfrk80 says

Yep. I'm willing to bet there's a lot of pretending that goes on. It's like that story of the "Emperor's New Clothes."

But, why? What is the motivation to pretend?

People pretend to follow various religions to stay in good standing with the community; their entire support network may be their church. Politics is another reason that I think people will pretend to believe; getting elected in the US is very difficult if you are not christian. People may also pretend in the workplace to avoid being treated unfairly because of their "true" beliefs.

While there may be some unitarians who pretend to believe in a god I am not sure why they would do it. Atheists will go to unitarian churches just to be a part of the community.

14   freak80   ignore (4)   2012 Mar 13, 5:39am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

leoj707 says

getting elected in the US is very difficult if you are not christian

True. You have to at least claim the Christian label. I wonder how many presidents were just claiming the title. George Bush the first and Obama attended liberal protestant churches, for example.

15   leo707   ignore (1)   2012 Mar 13, 5:49am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

wthrfrk80 says

leoj707 says

getting elected in the US is very difficult if you are not christian

True. You have to at least claim the Christian label. I wonder how many presidents were just claiming the title. George Bush the first and Obama attended liberal protestant churches, for example.

Yeah, we will never know. I tend to suspect the guys like Santorum; they seem a little too eager to prove their christian cred.

16   freak80   ignore (4)   2012 Mar 13, 6:18am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

leoj707 says

I tend to suspect the guys like Santorum; they seem a little too eager to prove their christian cred.

Santorum's one quality: He isn't a Pentecostal wacko like Palin, Bachmann, and Perry. He's less likely to hear marching orders from God in his head.

But he's still an asshole who's pandering to right wing extremists. I'm originally from PA (Pennsylvania, not Palo Alto) and he did this constantly as a senator. And he eventually lost.

I wouldn't worry about Santorum getting the nomination. He's not electable. And even if he get's the nomination, he's too controversial and extreme to win. But I guess that's a whole different topic.

17   Kevin   ignore (2)   2012 Mar 14, 12:44pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

I really hope Santorum gets the nomination. It'll result in people turning their backs on ultraconservative nutjobs for years.

18   freak80   ignore (4)   2012 Mar 15, 12:14am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

I don't think Santorum will get the nomination. The party elites and Big Business interests won't let it happen. Romney is their guy, and if they have to sabatoge the more populist Santorum they will.

I think Dubya was the "high water mark" of the Religious Reich. The delusion of that ideology was on display for the whole world to see. It resulted in two botched wars. I don't think the next generation will go along with it.

19   Roidy   ignore (1)   2012 Mar 17, 12:21am   ↑ like (5)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

Gentle Readers,
Being an atheist myself, the Religious Right would burn me at the stake if they thought they could get away with it.

They are some scary SOBs. 'W''s little antics did nothing to cause a general disavowal of them by the American public-at-large.

Regards,
Roidy

P.S. I hope it is ok that I am not posting from my usual perch in Patrick's Jail.

20   Dan8267   ignore (3)   2012 Mar 17, 3:17pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (2)   quote   flag        

Roidy says

Being an atheist myself, the Religious Right would burn me at the stake if they thought they could get away with it.

So true. Secularism must constantly keep religion in check.

21   mmmarvel   ignore (0)   2017 Jun 4, 5:57pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

leo707 says

The closest religion to atheism, I believe, is the unitarian universalists.

Oh you mean those people who start their prayers with, "Oh God, if there is a God."

22   Dan8267   ignore (3)   2017 Jun 4, 6:20pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

anonymous says

Why Do More Intelligent People Tend To Be Atheist?

It's quite simple. I disbelieve in an entity that is all powerful and all knowing for the exact same reason I disbelieve in any even prime number greater than two, logic unequivocally shows that no such entity exists. Any person who is intelligent, by definition, will accept a priori proofs. One who rejects them, by definition, lacks intelligence.

If you are intelligent, it's not about what you want to believe but rather what reason and evidence compelled you to believe. I could no more believe in a monotheist's god than I could believe in an even prime greater than two. Being intelligent, there is no way I can force myself to accept a contradiction or to ignore an obvious one.

The intelligent and rational will always be atheists because intelligence and rationality demands disbelief in self-contradicting hypothesizes. Put simply, any attempt to manipulate people based on a mythology of lies will result in many contradictions that can only be ignored by the stupid. For example, if you actually believed that baptized babies go to heaven if they die, then it would be a moral imperative to slaughter babies right after baptizing them in order to guarantee their immortal souls go to paradise rather an an eternity of torture..

You see, the assholes who told all the lies about the afterlife did so to convince people to behave in the way they told the people to behave. However, the logical consequence of the Christian afterlife myth would be behavior that is opposite of the desired behavior. So the clerics have to compound lie upon lie to address these contradictions until the whole system just collapses.

23   P N Dr Lo R   ignore (0)   2017 Jun 4, 7:09pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Dan8267 says

Secularism must constantly keep religion in check

It worked for the Soviet Union.

24   Dan8267   ignore (3)   2017 Jun 4, 10:36pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

Things have gotten worse in Russia since the fall of the Soviet Union and the reintroduction of religion, especially for homosexuals.

25   junkmail   ignore (0)   2017 Jun 5, 10:04am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Atheists don't begin their core belief inside a religion and move away to a 'new' non belief. So as soon as a word (Protestant) appears with religious roots, I think you loose the ear of most atheists. Trying to equate atheism with a reformation of a reformation doesn't get you to atheism. It's just a 'new' version of a mind control. You can intellectualize it all you want but there is no stepping stone from belief to non-belief.

Religions have nothing to fear from atheism, historical or otherwise. What religions SHOULD fear is...? You guessed it other religions!

26   HonkpilledMaster   ignore (5)   2017 Jun 5, 10:08am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Dan8267 says

Things have gotten worse in Russia since the fall of the Soviet Union and the reintroduction of religion, especially for homosexuals.

Article 121. Homosexuality was criminalized in 1933. The last years of Glasnost, almost 1000 gays were prosecuted annually. This is why I find Commie SJW Gays and Genderqueer whatevers so hilarious.

It was believed that Homosexuality was a hallmark of effete old Right-wingers (see also most Oliver Stone films, esp. JFK and Nixon).

27   anonymous   ignore (null)   2017 Jun 5, 10:33am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

“The link between intelligence and religion can be explained if religion is considered an instinct, and intelligence the ability to rise above one’s instincts.”

------------

Well put

28   Dan8267   ignore (3)   2017 Jun 5, 10:33am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

TwoScoopsMcGee says

Homosexuality was criminalized in 1933

And decriminalized in 1993 while Russia was still almost completely atheist. After the religious resurgence, homosexuality was recriminalized. Putin, a devote Christian, has a long history of violating basic human rights of homosexuals. Thus, we can tell that reintroduction of Christianity caused homophobic laws to be reinstated.

29   HonkpilledMaster   ignore (5)   2017 Jun 5, 10:34am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Dan8267 says

And decriminalized in 1993 while Russia was still almost completely atheist. After the religious resurgence, homosexuality was recriminalized. Putin, a devote Christian, has a long history of violating basic human rights of homosexuals. Thus, we can tell that reintroduction of Christianity caused homophobic laws to be reinstated.

Homosexuality was not recriminalized. The only thing criminalized was LGBTQABC123 marketing to minors.

You're much safer holding hands as a Gay in St. Petersburg than in Lodz, Poland. Those who attack gays get put in prison. In Poland, the cops kinda never catch Gay Bashers for some reason.

30   HonkpilledMaster   ignore (5)   2017 Jun 5, 10:38am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Found this interesting, don't know what the metrics are behind it:

"GAYS DON'T EAT POTATOES LIKE NORMAL PEOPLE!" - Baltic States

31   Dan8267   ignore (3)   2017 Jun 5, 10:38am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

TwoScoopsMcGee says

The only thing criminalized was LGBTQABC123 marketing to minors.

A catch-all that made being gay in public a criminal offense. This is the old adage "will somebody please think of the children", the battle-cry of all oppressors.

Yes, things have gotten far worse for gays in Russia since Christianity made a comeback.

32   HonkpilledMaster   ignore (5)   2017 Jun 5, 10:40am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Do you think they'll suspend Latvia from the EU or NATO?

33   HonkpilledMaster   ignore (5)   2017 Jun 5, 10:54am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Dan8267 says

A catch-all that made being gay in public a criminal offense. This is the old adage "will somebody please think of the children", the battle-cry of all oppressors.

No, it makes handing out gay, genderqueer, transsexual, etc. materials to minors illegal. Homosexuality itself is perfectly legal.

34   Dan8267   ignore (3)   2017 Jun 5, 10:58am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

TwoScoopsMcGee says

Do you think they'll suspend Latvia from the EU or NATO?

This homophobia is also caused by religion, not atheism.

If you want to make the point that the bad things that go on in Russia also go on in Europe and the U.S., then you are breaching to the choir. I was refuting P N Dr Lo R 's assertion that the lack of religion is what made the Soviet Union bad, and religion therefore makes post-Soviet Russia good. That's a load of crap.

35   Dan8267   ignore (3)   2017 Jun 5, 11:08am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

TwoScoopsMcGee says

No, it makes handing out gay, genderqueer, transsexual, etc. materials to minors illegal. Homosexuality itself is perfectly legal.

Chechnya Police Arrest 100 Suspected Gays, 3 Killed: Russian Report

A respected Russian newspaper says it has uncovered information that police in the southern Russian republic of Chechnya have rounded up more than 100 men suspected of homosexuality and that at least three have been killed.

The report was denied by Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov's spokesman, who suggested there are no homosexuals in the Muslim-majority region. Ali Karimov said, according to the state news agency RIA Novosti, "it's impossible to persecute those who are not in the republic."

The Kremlin-backed Kadyrov is widely accused of extensive human rights violations. He has brought Islam to the fore of Chechnya's daily life, including opening what is called Europe's biggest mosque.

Reports of ‘concentration camps’ and torture for gay men in Russia

Around 100 men have been apprehended in the region and put in the first camps for LGBT people since the Holocaust. Some are believed to have been killed.

Gay Chechen men tell of torture, mass arrests

Amid reports of a brutal crackdown on gay men in the Russian republic of Chechnya, a number of witnesses and victims are now bolstering allegations of mass arrests and torture.

Speaking to CNN on condition of anonymity, one man who recently fled Chechnya after being arrested said hundreds of gay men like him are being rounded up by the authorities and held in appalling conditions in least three detention centers.

Gay couple arrested in Russia after expressing solidarity with Orlando shooting victims

“Thing is, policemen there tried not to let people use any LGBT symbolics and when the guys came to the embassy and put down their banner they were immediately arrested and brought to Prenenskiy police station,” he added.

Gay rights demonstrations are banned in Russia, where homosexuality was a criminal offence until 1993 and it was categorised as a mental illness until 1999.

In May, an estimated 20 people from St.Petersburg’s LGBT community were arrested for taking part in the city’s annual May Day parade without permission.

The Fear of Being Gay in Russia

Putin's state has allowed violence against the Russian LGBT community to spike.

In most of the West, gay rights has seen startling breakthroughs in the last decade. Russia has not just been left behind, but has become demonstrably worse and more dangerous, according to more than two dozen individuals we spoke with in five Russian cities over six weeks of reporting. On the local and national level, a series of so-called anti-gay propaganda laws were passed that made it illegal to discuss LGBT themes with minors or to distribute such information to them, even if it dealt with health issues.

I could go on and on, but I think I've made my point. Russia is not the good guy in this situation.

36   Ernie   ignore (0)   2017 Jun 5, 11:13am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

TwoScoopsMcGee says

Do you think they'll suspend Latvia from the EU or NATO?

Demonstrating for/against something is perfectly legal and no one will be kicked out of NATO/EU for that. The general feeling in E. Europe against gays comes from (1) religion - Catholics and Eastern Orthodox believers are usually the most intolerant, and (2) residual propaganda from Soviet times, when being gay was punishable.

37   curious2   ignore (0)   2017 Jun 5, 11:21am   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Also, President Putin has aligned himself with the Russian Orthodox Church, to increase his own power, while the most visible gay rights organizers have tended to align themselves with opposition to President Putin. In America, the successful effort to win marriage equality was non-partisan, and included prominent representation from both major parties. I think a non-partisan effort in Russia would have better prospects than an effort that creates the appearance of being anti-Putin or foreign.

Dan, you make good points, but the worst of your links are about Muslim Chechnya, not Christian Russia.

"In 2013, Russia enacted laws banning "propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations" and blocking same-sex couples from adopting children. A 2014 Human Rights Watch report documented an uptick in anti-gay violence and harassment in Russia since the laws were passed.

In the clip above, an outtake from 60 Minutes' two-part interview with the Russian president, Putin says he supports equal rights. "The problem of sexual minorities in Russia had been deliberately exaggerated from the outside for political reasons, I believe, without any good basis," he tells Charlie Rose.

In the U.S., Putin points out, some states still have laws on the books against same-sex relations. (This is partly true; all such laws were invalidated in 2003 by the Supreme Court ruling in Lawrence v. Texas.)

In Russia, Putin adds, "We have no persecution at all. People of non-traditional sexual orientation work, they live in peace, they get promoted, they get state awards for their achievements in science and arts or other areas. I personally have awarded them medals.""

Additionally from the transcript on the Kremlin website, via SOTT:

"I think that a person cannot be criminally or otherwise prosecuted, his or her rights cannot be infringed upon the grounds of nationality, ethnicity or sexual orientation in the modern world. It is absolutely unacceptable. And it is not the case in Russia. If I am not mistaken there was Article 120 in the Penal Code of the former RSFSR that prosecuted homosexuality. We have abolished this provision; people aren't prosecuted for it anymore. Homosexuals in Russia live in peace, work, are promoted, receive national awards for their achievements in science, art or any other sphere. Medals are awarded to them, I have awarded them myself."

38   FortWayne   ignore (4)   2017 Jun 5, 11:32am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Being anti religion isn't same as simply not believing.

39   HonkpilledMaster   ignore (5)   2017 Jun 5, 11:50am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Dan, none of the links have anything to do with homosexuals being punished for practicing homosexuality, except in Chechnya which is Muslim.

I'd remind folks that US Prosecutors were charging people and getting convictions or guilty pleas for Sodomy at least in the 90s if not later. Marv Alpert, anyone?

40   HonkpilledMaster   ignore (5)   2017 Jun 5, 11:54am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

drBu says

Demonstrating for/against something is perfectly legal and no one will be kicked out of NATO/EU for that. The general feeling in E. Europe against gays comes from (1) religion - Catholics and Eastern Orthodox believers are usually the most intolerant, and (2) residual propaganda from Soviet times, when being gay was punishable.

In Latvia, Same-sex couple child adoption & same-sex marriage is banned - the latter in a new law passed in 2006 that clarified marriage like Hillary's preferred stance, only between a man and a woman. It's legal to discriminate Gays except for employment. Gays can be refused Service, entry to a business, inc. restaurants and bars, all can freely not serve the HomoGay.

41   Ernie   ignore (0)   2017 Jun 5, 12:40pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

TwoScoopsMcGee says

same-sex marriage is banned

Same in Germany, Austria

42   BayArea   ignore (1)   2017 Jun 5, 12:40pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

TwoScoopsMcGee says

Dan, none of the links have anything to do with homosexuals being punished for practicing homosexuality, except in Chechnya which is Muslim.

I'd remind folks that US Prosecutors were charging people and getting convictions or guilty pleas for Sodomy at least in the 90s if not later. Marv Alpert, anyone?

"...After tests proved that the bite marks were his, he pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault and battery charges, while the sodomy charge was dropped.[19][24] Albert was given a 12-month suspended sentence"

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marv_Albert

43   HonkpilledMaster   ignore (5)   2017 Jun 5, 12:53pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Yes, but Marv WAS charged with Sodomy, which was dropped when he pleaded guilty to a lesser charge.

There were Sodomy prosecutions in the 80s and 90s.

Sodomy as a crime in the USA wasn't invalidated until 2003.

44   Dan8267   ignore (3)   2017 Jun 5, 2:15pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

curious2 says

Dan, you make good points, but the worst of your links are about Muslim Chechnya, not Christian Russia.

Yes, because the most grievous attrocities are committed by Chechnya President Ramzan Kadyrov, who was hand picked by Putin to control Chechnya.

In any case, there are examples of gays being political prisoners in Russia itself, but either way, it goes right back to Putin and his cabinet.

45   junkmail   ignore (0)   2017 Jun 5, 4:08pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Ok, sorry to disappoint but the anti-gay rally photos are a retouch job. I know they are selling it on Shutterstock... I'm a graphics expert and the warping of the type to conform to the perspective of the original card held up is a one-button-click pitfall of photoshop. The original rally may have been anti-gay but the original signs have been wiped and more precise, readable, coherent messages have replaced them. Come to think of it why would you make english signs in Latvia? Notice the bibles are not called The Bible, but written in Slavic HOBbIÑ 3ABET (New Testament)

See? This is where free thinking comes in handy.

46   Ernie   ignore (0)   2017 Jun 5, 4:24pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

junkmail says

but written in Slavic HOBbIÑ 3ABET (New Testament)

About 1/3 of Latvian population is Slavic which explains the Russian version of Bible, and they are by no means the most "tolerant" part of society.

But I agree that the first sign looks like it is photoshopped on.

Edit: an article in Russian with non-photoshopped pictures: http://www.russkiymir.ru/media/magazines/article/183675/

47   junkmail   ignore (0)   2017 Jun 5, 4:30pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

I agree, doesn't look very pro when bibles are involved. I just get suspicious when people photoshop signs in general.

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