Well, this doesn’t happen often.
It also turns out that atheists — or the many from whom I heard, anyway — care just as much as we Christians do about loving and doing right by others.
Curse the atheists! Why couldn’t they be the craven sensory-hounds they’re supposed to be? Must they reject God, and be intelligent and sensitive?
Anyway, they got me thinking. (Another reason not to like them.)
Man, he’s sounding like P.Z. in Bizarro World.
It’s amazing how he explains the typical atheist mindset so clearly:
We Christians want the atheists to come over to our side of the fence — to join us, to become one of us. They would much prefer it if we would quit wanting that, and leave them be. They would naturally prefer it if we could actually respect them for, say, their intellectual (not to mention moral) integrity — but they aren’t exactly holding their breath waiting for that to happen. Because they know that Christians believe atheists to be at best lost, and at worst damned.
And let’s face it: If you know the best someone can think about you is that you’re lost, you’re hardly inclined to, say, invite that person to your birthday party. Ever.
One more excerpt:
We need to listen to the atheists because … well, because we never do. We try to listen to them, but we fail. And we fail because while we’re listening to them, we’re secretly thinking how they really, really need to become Christian.
So I say: Let’s every once in a while put aside our Christian Agenda (none of us are thinking that we don’t have one too, right?), and just listen to atheists. Let’s just hear what they’re saying, and what they’re thinking, and why they’re saying and thinking whatever they are.
Let’s actually respect them. Why not? How could such a thing possibly hurt us?
Who knows? If we listen to the atheists long enough, isn’t it just possible that we might actually learn something from them?
Shore loses me in one place, though:
I could no sooner imagine what it would be like inhabiting a consciousness devoid of the constant awareness of God than I could what it would be like to be a … Venusian cannibal.
Right? I have no idea what it’s like to be a cannibal from Venus.
Be pretty lonely, I’d guess. Or pretty full.
Point is: Mystery. Can’t imagine it. Just like I can’t imagine what it would be like to be an atheist. Even before I was a Christian — for just about every second of my waking life, in fact — I was intensely aware of what to me was the fact of God. It’s never even occurred to me there isn’t a God.
Atheists, of course (and insofar as such generalizations have merit), can’t imagine that there is a God. (Well, of course they can imagine there’s a God. They just can’t imagine why anyone would give themselves over to what to them is so obviously a fantasy.)
I actually agree with that last bit (and dismiss his sarcasm); atheists can imagine life with God. Most of us believed in one before the spell broke.
But Shore really doesn’t know what it’s like to be an atheist? He’s kidding, right? It’s such an easy thing to respond to… Of course he knows what it’s like to be an atheist. He is an atheist when it comes to Zeus or the Flying Spaghetti Monster. He just can’t imagine life without his God. Atheists just dismiss the God(s) others believe in and move on with their lives.
Anyway, if you like the article, let him know! It’d be nice to see more Christians saying such things.
(Thanks to Ben for the link!)
[tags]atheist, atheism, Crosswalk, Jesus, Christian[/tags]