Wingnut: God Doesn’t Believe in Atheists

Don Boys is a former member of the Indiana state legislature and a permanent member of the wingnut brigade, as evidence by this profoundly ridiculous column at BarbWire about why atheists don’t exist. Funny, I’m pretty sure I do exist. And the rhetoric is so idiotic that it will just leave you shaking your head.

Angry, audacious, asinine atheists profess loudly to all who will listen–even to those who won’t–that God does not exist. They are especially overbearing and offensive even obnoxious during the Christmas season. Atheists also do not believe in Santa Clause, the Tooth Fairy, Easter Bunny, and Peter Pan but they do not try to convince others of their non-existence. However, I don’t believe in atheists and neither does God. The Bible clearly teaches that God loves the world and wants everyone to place faith in Him to guarantee forgiveness of sins and a place in Heaven. Atheists don’t exist because God will not permit it.

That’s a lot of alliteration from an active asshole with an axe to grind. The rest of this would be viewed as gibberish by a mildly intelligent 9 year old.

It seems the writings of prominent philosophers such as Socrates, Plato, Seneca, etc., indicate they knew much more of the Divine nature than they thought safe or prudent to reveal to others. They were also aware of the Hebrew nation and their Scriptures and rejected them. Those judicious men, aware of their cultural and political circumstances, refused to honor God and turned to the most absurd idolatries and superstitions. Consequently, they degraded themselves by the most vile, vain, and vulgar deeds.

Most people of the ancient world and into the first century refused to profit by the light they had and chose darkness rather than the light. Because they refused to live up to the knowledge they possessed, they died in darkness.

However, men may argue that they know whether or not they believe in God; after all, they are the final authority as to what they believe. But they are not. Men have a deceptive heart and cannot know it according to Jer. 17:9. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Plus they have a rebellious nature so they cannot be trusted to declare what they believe. And people must understand that saying it a thousand times does not change the fact that they do believe in God. We were created with a need for God and a desire for Him even though sin gets in the way.

Gibbon remarked, that “the philosophers regarded all the popular superstitions [religions] as equally false; the common people as equally true; and the politicians as equally useful.” This was probably a correct account of the prevalent feelings among the ancients. Cicero, a few years before Christ, showed that they had the knowledge of one God: “There is something in the nature of things which the mind of man, which reason, which human power cannot effect; and certainly that which produces this must be better than man. What can this be called but God?” Again, he wrote, “What can be so plain and manifest, when we look at heaven, and contemplate heavenly things, as that there is some Divinity of most excellent mind, by which these things are governed?”

No, Cicero didn’t “show” anything. He made an assertion, just like Boys is making assertions. And quoting the Bible does not provide any support for that assertion.

There is no doubt that the ancient Greek and Roman philosophers were convinced of God’s existence but thought it was the better part of wisdom to keep it from the hoi polloi. All for the stability of the state.

Seriously? The opposite is true, of course. Religion almost always provides a strong support for the stability of the state. We didn’t have the divine right of kings for centuries by accident.

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  • http://howlandbolton.com richardelguru

    I thought I was feeling a bit thin, wispy even…

  • cptdoom

    In addition to quoting a bible (whether it’s the bible depends on which version of religion to which one subscribes) as his only proof, Boys also provides this bit of lunacy:

    Additionally, there is an external revelation of God in nature. God made it obvious in nature that He existed as recorded in Psalm 19:1, “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.”

    Yet these are the same people who deny the existence of LGBT people, not to mention intersex people, despite copious scientific evidence of our existence. They also deny the structure, size, age and, quite frankly, the grandeur of the known universe by demanding their book of stories be held as a scientific tome.

  • dugglebogey

    This is consistent. They don’t believe in global warming so that doesn’t exist. They don’t believe in racism so that doesn’t exist.

    This used to be known as “Protestant Sleeping Sickness.” Just stick your head in the sand and then the world is an ideal place.

  • Johnny Vector

    Let us turn now to the sayings of The Harvard Lampoon, Chico Marx, and my high school grammar teacher with a ruler.

    Angry, audacious, asinine atheists…

    “Aiiiiieeeee,” cried Legolam. “A thesaurus!”

    Atheists also do not believe in Santa Clause

    “Heh. You can’t fool-a me. There ain’t no sanity clause.”

    There is something in the nature of things which the mind of man, which reason, which human power cannot effect

    SMACK!

    (Note: None of my actual grammar teachers smacked anyone for homonym errors (or any other errors). I bet they would have liked to smack this guy, though.)

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    Atheists also do not believe in Santa Clause…

    Sheesh. It’s The Santa Clause.

  • Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    Atheists also do not believe in Santa Clause

    Now that’s just going too far. Of course I believe that Santa Clause exists — I’ve seen its entry at imdb.com.

  • D. C. Sessions

    At least there’s some evidence for the existence of the Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy, and Santa Claus.

  • http://festeringscabofrealityblogspot.com fifthdentist

    “However, men may argue that they know whether or not they believe in God; after all, they are the final authority as to what they believe. But they are not. The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”

    I always thought they were thinking with some other part of the body than the one in their heads. I just thought it was a bit lower down on their bodies from where the heart is positioned.

  • eric

    men may argue that they know whether or not they believe in God; after all, they are the final authority as to what they believe. But they are not. Men have a deceptive heart and cannot know it according to Jer. 17:9. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”

    And for that reason, I’m pretty sure Boys is muslim. He might say otherwise, but clearly he doesn’t know his own heart.

    Aside: his quoting of Cicero is cherry picking at best. The man wrote an entire book titled De Natura Deorum, ‘The Nature of the Gods,’ with ‘gods’ being plural. AIUI he was an equal opportunity commenter on monotheism and polytheism, skeptical of both, and representing him as a monotheist is just wrong.

  • lldayo

    If God doesn’t believe I exist maybe he should come down and tell me.

    …don’t worry, I’ll wait. I’ve got an entire lifetime.

  • http://www.facebook.com/thewilliamg williamgeorge

    Atheists also do not believe in Santa Clause…

    “Claus”, you idiot. “Santa Clause” was the name of a shitty movie.

  • Sastra

    However, men may argue that they know whether or not they believe in God; after all, they are the final authority as to what they believe. But they are not. Men have a deceptive heart and cannot know it according to Jer. 17:9. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Plus they have a rebellious nature so they cannot be trusted to declare what they believe. And people must understand that saying it a thousand times does not change the fact that they do believe in God. We were created with a need for God and a desire for Him even though sin gets in the way.

    This is presuppositionalism and it’s a means of taking control. It’s an anti-rational power move because it shuts down even the possibility of honest dissent.

    I recently got into an email ‘debate’ with someone who used this argument — or, rather, someone who believed this argument but did everything they could to evade owning up to it or getting ‘confrontational.’ They weren’t a Christian, they were a New Ager. And the Truth that I knew and all people know and deny to themselves out of fear and ego is that we all come from a Universal Mind which is Love. We were each created with a desire for ecumenical wishy-washy positive-thinking Spirituality even though a ‘need to be in control’ gets in the way (o ironies of ironies.)

    It’s an ugly, mean argument and people must understand that saying it a thousand times — or telling it privately to yourself two thousand times — does not change the fact that being this pig sure of yourself doesn’t mean that God exists.

  • davefitz

    “However, I don’t believe in atheists”

    Then why go through all this effort for something that does not exist? Just follow the atheist’s example and stop worrying about it. Duh.

  • anubisprime

    I don’t believe in atheists and neither does God.

    Boo fuckin’ hoo!…I am devastated!

    Don’t you be tripping over that IQ Donny…tis hanging dangerously low there…jus’ sayin!

  • U Frood

    They HAVE to believe that everyone really believes in God. Otherwise they’ll never be able to live with the idea that people can go to hell for the horrible crime of not believing in a God they never even heard of.

  • http://www.pandasthumb.org Area Man

    Atheists also do not believe in Santa Clause, the Tooth Fairy, Easter Bunny, and Peter Pan but they do not try to convince others of their non-existence.

    It’s nice of him to properly categorize where god-belief belongs.

  • Synfandel

    Wingnut: God Doesn’t Believe in Atheists

    Of course God doesn’t believe in atheists. One would have to exist in order to believe anything.

  • Dave Maier

    It seems the writings of prominent philosophers such as Socrates, Plato, Seneca, etc., indicate they knew much more of the Divine nature than they thought safe or prudent to reveal to others. They were also aware of the Hebrew nation and their Scriptures and rejected them. Those judicious men, aware of their cultural and political circumstances, refused to honor God and turned to the most absurd idolatries and superstitions. Consequently, they degraded themselves by the most vile, vain, and vulgar deeds.

    Ow, my poor head. The “writings of Socrates.” And we all know how gullible he was, and how he valued his own safety over all else! (Sorry, taught ancient philosophy for a semester so this sh*t really bugs me.) Oh, and the comments there are just as bad. (Note to self: pause before clicking.)

  • http://artk.typepad.com ArtK

    As I commented elsewhere, Boys’ claim that “Atheists don’t exist because God will not permit it” is pretty good evidence that God doesn’t exist. Atheists can be observed all the time; God, not so much. Occam’s Razor and all that.

  • DonDueed

    Right, ArtK. If God doesn’t believe in atheists, then it’s not omniscient; hence, no god at all.

  • grumpyoldfart

    God, Jesus, Moses, Paul, the gospel authors and the old testament prophets all believe in atheists and have quite a lot to say about them:

    The god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers (2 Corinthians 4:4)

    And he marveled because of their unbelief. (Mark 6:6)

    If any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he should not divorce her. (1 Corinthians 7:12)

    And the Lord said to Moses, “How long will this people despise me? And how long will they not believe in me (Numbers 14:11)

    Whoever does not believe is condemned already (John 3:18)

    The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds, there is none who does good. (Psalm 14:1)

    Have mercy on those who doubt (Jude 1:22)

    If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me (John 10:37)

    Whoever does not believe will be condemned. (Mark 16:16)

    Whoever is not with me is against me (Matthew 12:30)

    In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him; all his thoughts are, “There is no God.” (Psalm 10:4)

    If any woman has a husband who is an unbeliever, and he consents to live with her, she should not divorce him. (1 Corinthians 7:13)

    The exulting of the wicked is short, and the joy of the godless but for a moment (Job 20:5)

    Everyone who goes on ahead and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God. (John1:9)

    he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. (1 Timothy 5:8)

    Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. (2 Corinthians 6:14)

    What portion does a believer share with an unbeliever? (2 Corinthians 6:15)

    Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart (Hebrews 3:12)

  • dingojack

    The Cicero quote is almost certainly a fake. It is attributed to Cicero on the internet, but the only definite citation I can find refers to section 22 of book 3 of De Respublica which is lost. Cicero certainly mentions ‘the gods’ many times (23 times or so in the fragments we have) but not once in a way that resembles Boys’ ‘quote’.

    Dingo

  • Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    @Johnny Vector:

    Withhold that smack; the error is yours. He meant this:

    ef·fect (ĭ-fĕkt)

    tr.v. ef·fect·ed, ef·fect·ing, ef·fects

    To bring about; make happen; cause or accomplish: effect a cure for a disease; effect a change in policy.

    The whole point is that humans lack the capacity to “effect” (i.e., bring about) this mystic something, so that which can “produce” it (i.e., bring it about) must be superhuman.

  • dingojack

    “quod vos cum facere non potestis, tamquam in aram confugitis ad deum.

    Et Chrysippus tibi acute dicere videbatur, homo sine dubio versutus et callidus (versutos eos appello quorum celeriter mens versatur, callidos autem quorum tamquam manus opere sic animus usu concalluit); is igitur “Si aliquid est” inquit “quod homo efficere non possit, qui id efficit melior est homine; homo autem haec quae in mundo sunt efficere non potest; qui potuit igitur is praestat homini; homini autem praestare quis possit nisi deus; est igitur deus”. Haec omnia in eodem quo illa Zenonis errore versantur. ” de Natura Deorum. Book 3. Section 25

    If a human couldn’t make it; goddidit!

    Until the early 19th Century no one knew how to make ‘Egyptian Blue’ therefore god did it. Then someone mixed ground silica and Malachite, baked it for a day at 1000 degrees Celsius and bingo – god didn’t do it!

    Once we had no idea how to make cement (god did it), then we did know (oops, god didn’t do it).

    @@ Dingo

  • Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    The quote from Cicero is legitimate, if incomplete, and comes from Book II, section 6 of De Natura Deorum:

    “Si enim” inquit “est aliquid in rerum natura quod hominis mens, quod ratio, quod vis, quod potestas humana efficere non possit, est certe id, quod illud efficit, homine melius; atqui res caelestes omnesque eae, quarum est ordo sempiternus, ab homine confici non possunt; est igitur id, quo illa conficiuntur, homine melius. id autem quid potius dixeris quam deum?”

    Or, in C.J. Yonge’s translation:

    “If,” says he, “there is anything in the universe which no human reason, ability, or power can make, the being who produced it must certainly be preferable to man. Now, celestial bodies, and all those things which proceed in any eternal order, cannot be made by man; the being who made them is therefore preferable to man. What, then, is that being but a God?”

    It’s used dishonestly, though, because Cicero is not speaking for himself here, but rather quoting an argument by the Stoic philosopher Chrysippus – which he goes on to dispute later in the same book (in section 10):

    These arguments are founded on the same erroneous principles as Zeno’s, for he does not define what is meant by being better or more excellent, or distinguish between an intelligent cause and a natural cause. Chrysippus adds, “If there are no Gods, there is nothing better than man; but we cannot, without the highest arrogance, have this idea of ourselves.” Let us grant that it is arrogance in man to think himself better than the world; but to comprehend that he has understanding and reason, and that in Orion and Canicula there is neither, is no arrogance, but an indication of good sense. “Since we suppose,” continues he, “when we see a beautiful house, that it was built for the master, and not for mice, we should likewise judge that the world is the mansion of the Gods.” Yes, if I believed that the Gods built the world; but not if, as I believe, and intend to prove, it is the work of nature.

    So Cicero actually believed the opposite of what Boys attributes to him.

  • dingojack

    Hercules Grytpype-Thynne – Cicero brings up Chrysippus’ argument several times, disputing it in several different ways. (As in my post above).

    Dingo

    ——–

    Actually: de Natura Deorum. Book Two, section 16. As edited by O. Plasberg. Leipzig. Teubner. 1917.

    Chrysippus quidem, quamquam est acerrimo ingenio, tamen ea dicit ut ab ipsa natura didicisse, non ut ipse repperisse videatur. “Si enim” inquit “est aliquid in rerum natura quod hominis mens quod ratio quod vis quod potestas humana efficere non possit, est certe id quod illud efficit homine melius; atqui res caelestes omnesque eae quarum est ordo sempiternus ab homine confici non possunt; est igitur id quo illa conficiuntur homine melius. id autem quid potius dixeris quam deum? Etenim si di non sunt, quid esse potest in rerum natura homine melius; in eo enim solo est ratio, qua nihil potest esse praestantius; esse autem hominem qui nihil in omni mundo melius esse quam se putet desipientis adrogantiae est; ergo est aliquid melius. est igitur profecto deus.

  • Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    Actually I should correct a few things. None of these quotes is Cicero speaking in his own voice; he’s reporting a conversation among philosophers from various schools. The first quote (“’If,’ says he …”) is from the Stoic Quintus Lucilius Balbus, quoting fellow Stoic Chrysippus approvingly. The second (“These arguments are founded …”), which is actually from Book III, not Book II, is the Academic philosopher Gaius Cotta disputing Balbus’s (and Chrysippus’s) argument. The third participant, the Epicurean Gaius Velleius, judges Cotta’s argument to be better. Cicero himself, also an Academic, might be expected to agree with Cotta, but strangely at the end he judges that Balbus’s argument mihi … ad veritatis similitudinem videretur esse propensior (“seemed to me to have the greater probability”).

  • Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    BTW the section numbers vary from version to version. What is Book III, section 10 in the Yonge translation (at Project Gutenberg) is Book III, section 25 in the Latin version at thelatinlibrary.com.

  • dingojack

    “BTW the section numbers vary from version to version”. Which is why I cited the edition of the translation as well as the work. Not circero’s voice: hence “Chrysippus indeed is very ingenious…”

    Dingo

  • Anton Mates

    Atheists also do not believe in Santa Clause, the Tooth Fairy, Easter Bunny, and Peter Pan but they do not try to convince others of their non-existence.

    Well of course not. Nobody picks a fight with a militant Petropannite unless they want to wake up inside a crocodile. It takes a special breed of fanatic to worship a fictional character from a Victorian children’s book, you know.

  • dono

    #4–Seeing a “Bored of the Rings” quote made my morning!

  • Doug Little

    They are especially overbearing and offensive even obnoxious during the Christmas season.

    Brian Fischer would be proud.

  • anubisprime

    This dipshit is not espousing philosophy as support for his brain farts….he is displaying the classic signs of hysterical fear in the face of the greatest challenge his delusion has had to ever face.

    So to appear up to the challenge he denigrates his enemies in the most vilest terms he can conjure up and throws in spurious appeals to a ancient philosopher that folk might have heard of and proceeds to embellish the ‘wisdom’ to suit.

    Absolutely traditional Christian values and tactics employed in fighting for xtian privalege, ends up by declaring the enemy don’t exist…oh but if only that was true Donny…if only…then you would not come across as a demented Comical Ali.

  • noe1951

    He’s getting a little apoplectic for something he doesn’t believe in, isn’t he. If he expends that much energy for everything he doesn’t believe in, he’s going to wear his poor little self right out. lol

  • raven

    he is displaying the classic signs of hysterical fear in the face of the greatest challenge his delusion …

    You are probably vastly overestimating Don Boys’ intelligence and self awareness.

    He is just spouting off some Reptilian hindbrain hate. It has a lot of similarities to the barking of a dog and serves a similar purpose. It’s all very fundie xian.