Why Do Atheists Hate God?

The video below, part of The Atheist Voice series, answers the question: Why do atheists hate God?

We’d love to hear your thoughts on the project — more videos will be posted soon — and we’d also appreciate your suggestions as to which questions we ought to tackle next!

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • reyecorneja

    How can I possibly hate to an entity that I know it does not
    exist to begin with?

    • http://abb3w.livejournal.com/ abb3w

      Joffrey Baratheon, Delores Umbridge, Hank Rearden, Bill Sikes, Jar Jar Binks…?

      Even a fictional character can be hated if they iconify attributes considered morally reprehensible; even more so if they have a non-fictional fan club who considers the character’s reprehensible aspects to constitute moral exemplars and seek to imitate them.

      • reyecorneja

        But it does not prove the main arguments why theists accusing us of hating god which is according to Hemant Mehta: …”some people of faith, Christians included, assume that “we must have some deep-seeded hatred against God, or God must have done something nasty to us and now we want payback”.” They assumed that we know there are gods to begin with. It just that we deny its existence because of “God must have done something nasty to us and now we want payback” lead us to hate him.

        • http://abb3w.livejournal.com/ abb3w

          Indeed. As I recall, some of the studies of the irreligious have turned up people with such motivations behind turning away from religion, but the religious tend to mis-assess the frequency of this motive.

          Contrariwise, some atheists tend to try to rebut the implied dismissal via alleging motivated reasoning by claiming the notion as of “god-hating atheist” as more logically inconsistent than it actually is.

  • cryofly

    I have been asked that question and I just tell them that there is no god and therefore there is no question of a love-hate relationship with god. But do I hate the phenomenon called god that humans have created? I do. But that is due to the repercussions this phenomenon has had on humans for centuries. There is not a single good thing to say about it .

    • Itsrealfunnythat

      Well said.

  • Goape

    Why do I hate god? Because as far as fictional characters go, god is less entertaining than most.

  • Jan Kafka

    Apparently I hate God because prominent atheist leaders such as Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, and Barrack O’Bama tell me to hate God. Other than that, I never really thought about it.

    • Guest

      “… I never really thought about it”

      That much is obvious.

      • Jan Kafka

        What is obvious is that some people are apparently blind to irony, cynicism, and sarcasm.

        I guess I’ll have to include a ‘ ;) ‘ or ‘LOL’ in everything I post from now on!

        LOL! ;)

    • baal

      because I’m the type of person who does what authority tells me?
      [if you knew me, you'd be laughing as hard as I am]

      • Jan Kafka

        Between worshiping myself and blindly obeying my atheist masters, I don’t have much time for thought…Or laughter for that matter.

        LOL! ;)

  • Bitter Lizard

    Let’s examine the assertion that atheists hate God:

    Atheists hate God.

    Ergo, atheists believe in God.

    Ergo, atheists are theists.

    Ergo, theists hate God.

    Theists are saying they hate God. Good to know.

  • corps_suk

    I hate god for not existing!

    The same way I hate Santa, or the Easter Bunny, or the tooth fairy….wait I dont hate them, I simply pity the 15 year olds who still believe in them.

    I would hate it if some kid tried legislating prayer time to Santa…

  • BobaFuct

    Well, “hate” in the sense that that you “hate” the villain in any story. The difference is that good writers develop their villains in a way that make them likeable and/or sympathetic, something the bible’s writers failed at spectacularly.

  • Itsrealfunnythat

    I hate him like I hate the tooth fairy.

    • islandbrewer

      That ass owes me $3.50!

      • Fentwin

        $3.50!?
        That wasn’t no tooth fairy, that was the Loch Ness monster!

    • http://lady-die.deviantart.com/ LizzyJessie

      Not one of Dwayne Johnson’s better films, was it.

  • blasphemous_kansan

    I don’t hate God (which one?).
    I hate it when otherwise good people become enticed by delusions, then insist on forcing it down other’s throats using the rule of law and the influence of those affected by a similar delusion.

    I also hate any cult that teaches it’s followers to value after-life more than life. I also hate that people who believe that life and this world are simply a lobby to get into the real party have access to the most powerful weapons our species has ever devised.

    Honest mistake.

  • Art_Vandelay

    Because he refuses to make his believers quit trying to drag humanity back to the dark ages.

  • C Peterson

    If it actually existed, of course, any rational, moral person would hate the Abrahamic god.

  • Kodie

    Why don’t theists hate god?

    • ShoeUnited

      Because he’ll throw you into a pit with pointy cushions. *

      *Wait for it…

  • islandbrewer

    I really hate Dolores Umbrage. I can think of no worse villain in any book.

    The reason is that, setting aside the magic and obvious fiction, she’s pretty believable. I’ve run into several Dolores Umbrages in my life – truly horrible people who smile and slither their way through social niceties and the establishment.

    The abrahamic god is mustache-twirling cackling tyrant, clenching his fist high in the air shouting “Now shalt thou feel my wrath!” before destroying all life on earth.

  • Soren

    If I hate God, I hate him the same way I hate Draco Malfoy from Harry Potter.

  • Pofarmer

    I don’t hate God, but, I certainly do hate some of the institutions his followers have created. I hate the effect they have on normally sane people. I hate that people will turn off their empathy and compassion at a command from the “God Experts”.

  • MyScienceCanBeatUpYourGod

    Do you hate Zeus? How about Shiva? Allah? Buddha? No? Of course you don’t “hate” those gods, they’re not real!!!

    Guess what everyone who isn’t Christian thinks about your god…

  • ShoeUnited

    Why do I hate God?

    Well, it all started with one time I was in church doing my Act of Contrition, when suddenly the roof opened before my eyes.

    There was a blinding light and I felt the warmth and love of all creation pouring into me. As I wept I gazed up into the light and saw the most gorgeous figure ever to exist. And it spoke unto me:

    “Do not weep. I come peacefully with love to be cherished by all. I will end all plagues, droughts, death, and suffering. In return, I ask only of one thing.”

    And as that overflowing of peace enveloped me, I knew I would do anything for what lay before me. And so with earnest I looked to Him and asked “What do you need, O Lord?”

    And He bent down, taking me directly into his loving eyes and said “I-I need about tree-fiddy.”

    “Tree-fiddy?”

    “Tree-fiddy.”

    Well, it was about that time I noticed this god was about eight stories tall and a plesiosaur from the Cretaceous Period! And I said “Damn it Monster! Get out my church! I ain’t giving you no tree fiddy!”

    And he said “Well, how about just two fiddy?”

    And I said, “Oh so now it’s just two fiddy? Is there a sale on Loch Ness Monsters or something?!”

    http://www.southparkstudios.com/clips/103567/chefs-parents

  • Peter K

    “If there is a God, he is a malign thug.”

    “Our Bible reveals to us the character of our god with minute and remorseless exactness… It is perhaps the most damnatory biography that exists in print anywhere. It makes Nero an angel of light and leading by contrast”

    - Mark Twain

    If god existed, hating him/her would be reasonable. As s/he doesn’t, hatred is a waste of time and energy.

  • Matt D

    It’s pretty obvious to me who the villains of Christian fables are, however any “feelings” inspired at their villainy or heroics, is *intentional*….it’s a part of the authors plan, not a reflection of truth.

    So I do not waste time dwelling on the reason I dislike fictional characters, unless I plan on writing some myself.

  • Tainda

    Because he’s a boil on the ass of humanity.

    There.

  • Sk3ptec

    The problem with this concept is… I don’t see masses of people spending tons of precious time, money, and energy trying to prove there is no Voldemort. Why? Because there’s no question it’s a made-up character.

    I think if Atheist were truly and completely convinced there was no God, they wouldn’t waste even one more second on the subject. They would instead be out on their boat (or corvette), soaking up every last minute of their comparatively short existence.

    It really is insanity to spend any time arguing that something doesn’t exist.

    • http://lady-die.deviantart.com/ LizzyJessie

      I haven’t really seen much effort trying to prove that there’s no god. Quite the opposite in fact.

      The effort put out by the non-religious is to keep a theocratic doctrine from stripping away rights and livelihoods. Or in more extreme cases, to protect their very existence as living human beings.

      Also ‘atheist’ is not a proper noun in this context. It is generally only capitalized when at the beginning of a sentence. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to drive my Mustang to the lake.

      • Sk3ptec

        Nice one. Convertible?

        Actually, yours is an interesting comment. Regarding rights, freedom, and existence, I can *possibly* see your point IF you are lumping all religions, globally, together in one big pile (as is typically done on this particular site).

        However, I fail to see, in America at least, where theocratic doctrine is, or ever has attempted to strip away rights, livelihoods, or life from anyone. That’s the Government’s job isn’t it? (a little side humor there). Rights are being stripped, economy is tanking, and people are dying, no doubt about it. But to blame that on religion, at least in the USA, is not realistic.

        Maybe you could site a current American example…

        Yes, I try to always lowercase atheists. That one obviously slipped through.

        • David Kopp

          Proposition 8 succeeded because of the government and not religious meddling, forcing the courts to rule that the religious right had pushed a law through that was unconstitutional? News to me.

        • baal

          Have you missed the entire topic of abortion since the 1973? The states that have effectively stopped all safe medical abortions (and the ones near them) have increasing rates of women dying from the black market equivalent – just like they did pre-roe. So yeah, theocratic doctrine brings death.

          Also, it’s the theocratic republicans who keep slashing away food aide to hungry children. Yep, the religious are actively working to keep food from the mouths of babes.

          • Sk3ptec

            3500 abortions are currently done DAILY. I don’t think you can honestly say religion has stopped the abortion trade.

            And “theocratic republicans”… seriously? I won’t even dignify

            that garbage with a comment.

            • http://lady-die.deviantart.com/ LizzyJessie

              The others who’ve replied pretty much stated the big issues in America. GLBT Rights (prop 8 was a prime example) is right there at the top. Women’s healthcare is another. Not just access to abortion services. Sadly I wasn’t able to find a non-biased source for the numbers performed since medical information is private. Plus a lot of Pro-Life/Anti-Choice organizations have a loose and misleading definition of the term.

              Blue Laws across the country continue to impact local residents and businesses in a way that dictate when people may operate a business to even limiting what can be sold on what days of the week. Or to the point of what sorts of decorations may be placed on someone’s private property – even those that rival the strictness of many Homeowner Associations!

              Other than that what I can think of off hand are the Anti-science politics that are championed by those who believe scientific efforts go against their religiously held views.

              As for Theocratic Republicans, there are a number of them. The last two Presidential Elections brought some out of the woodwork and right into the limelight. But if you’d like a short list, here’s a few:

              Texas Gov. Rick Perry
              Former Mn. Gov. Tim Pawlenty
              Former Mn. Rep. Michele Bachmann
              Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin
              Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan
              Former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney
              North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory
              South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint
              (Jim DeMint is also Prez of The Heritage Foundation)
              Louisiana State Rep. Valarie Hodges
              Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee
              Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback
              Former Hawaii Lt. Gov. James Aiona

              Those are a few I could find with a quick search. What they all have in common are ties to Seven Mountains movement and/or are Dominionists, regardless of their Christian denomination, who wish to see the United States transformed into a Christian theocracy.

              • Sk3ptec

                That 3500 number was directly from the CDC website.

    • David Kopp

      That’s about the stupidest thing I’ve ever read. Nobody tries to support Voldemort worship with taxes, or limit people’s rights because they really like JK Rowling’s writings.

      When that stops? I’ll be perfectly happy to not spend any time arguing against it.

      • Sk3ptec

        First, I highly doubt that is the stupidest thing you’ve ever read.

        Second, the whole “limiting people’s rights” argument is just dumb and false. I hear that often and just roll my eyes. And finally, I’m sure ‘wasting taxes on religion’ is the issue that keeps you coming back to this site, isn’t it? I doubt it. Speaking of which though, I would like to know what you mean by “worship with taxes”.

        Quick question: Would you be in support of the government taking away the ‘freedom of religion’ right? Or does it have any value in our society anymore?

        • David Kopp

          You’re right. Second stupidest now.

          Churches get tax exemptions, necessarily taking the tax money out of my (and your) pocket to support the churches. Therefore, not something I can really ignore. I’m actively having to subsidize other people’s fantasies.

          As for limiting people’s rights, religion is the ONLY reason anyone argues against allowing homosexual marriage. Every other “logical” argument holds no actual water and is simply some attempt at secondary justification of their primary motivation of “Because my imaginary friend said so! My pastor confirmed it!”

          I’m not against people worshiping whatever they want. All for freedom of religion, up until it starts trying to dictate everyone else’s freedoms, and taking away money from me. Then I have a problem, and will argue against god and religion and all the ills it brings with it.

          As for why I come back here… it’s because people here have interesting and insightful things to say.

          • Sk3ptec

            “actively having to subsidize other people’s fantasies” Yeah, this sums up the entire governmental process doesn’t it.

            Churches being tax exempt is something that society as a whole agrees to be beneficial. Churches help the stability of society. That is proven over and over again in every study ever done. To that end, I would definitely support tax-exempt atheist organizations too if they petitioned for it. Of all the truly stupid things being funded by tax money, churches are by far one of the best societal investments.

            Regarding marriage. Marriage is not a ‘right’ (for anybody) period. Religion isn’t trying to take the (non-existent) ‘right’ away. And frankly, any newly legislated ‘right’ for homosexual marriage would by default mean forcing the rest of society to forfeit an element of their own rights to compensate. It doesn’t happen in a vacuum. And some people are fine with that. Personally, I am not fine with it – mainly because our rights are already being eroded around us like water over sand.

            • Bitter Lizard

              And frankly, any newly legislated ‘right’ for homosexual marriage would by default mean forcing the rest of society to forfeit an element of their own rights to compensate.

              And what rights would those be?

              • Sk3ptec

                Freedom of religion and freedom of speech to name just two. Neither in total, but significant bites out of both. We’re already seeing it happen. Have you been following the Oregon bakery? Courts are currently ruling against religion in the exact scenario we’re talking about. And this it only the beginning.

                • Bitter Lizard

                  Wrong on both counts. “Freedom of religion” does not mean you get to do things that adversely affect others who don’t share your beliefs, otherwise religious terrorism would be a “right”. The notion that Christians can’t practice Christianity all they want, as long as they don’t directly hurt anybody, just because gay people can marry is delusional. And allowing gay people to marry in no way necessitates the government preventing anyone from saying anything.

                  The owners of the cake shop in Oregon were still allowed to say all the homophobic and racist shit they wanted, the only thing in question was their right to discriminate against customers. Discrimination laws have been on the books for decades before gay marriage, and may only recently have been expanded to include gay people, but they are obviously an issue that is not in any way contingent on whether gay people can marry, any more than laws against businesses discriminating against black people are contingent on whether interracial marriage is allowed. Private citizens deciding to boycott businesses they find objectionable is also obviously not a violation of anybody’s free speech, and the notion that we are violating someone’s rights by choosing which businesses we subsidize is about as stupid as a notion can be.

                  Facebook message from your cake buddies attached. Looks like their free speech is doing just fine.

                • ShoeUnited

                  Your church can still refuse to marry homosexual couples even when they get federally recognized right to marry. No marriage is legal until the state/federal issued papers are signed by an authorized rep. and rubber stamped with a notary witness.

                  You can go out to a dozen churches today and marry a dozen different people, and if you don’t sign the chit telling the State you’re married; none of them are a legal marriage.

                  Their right to marry impedes neither religion nor speech. You can still blurt out “God hates fags” every week in the pew and nobody will do anything to stop you. Cut the bullshit.

            • David Kopp

              Third stupidest.

              The Vatican is a benefit to society, and not a net drain? The 700 Club ministries? Do tell. I’m not saying churches don’t do any good, but since we can’t look at the books, there’s no information whatsoever that they do more good than bad, or that any significant portion of their proceeds go to help.

              Marriage is most certainly a right as long as it’s a government regulated contract. Rights are not a zero-sum game as you postulate… two guys getting married does NOTHING to your right to get married to whomever you choose that’s of legal age to enter into the contract.

        • Bitter Lizard

          Second, the whole “limiting people’s rights” argument is just dumb and false.

          You have to be a brain-dead sociopath to believe that. People have been enslaved, marginalized and killed since the beginning of recorded history in the name of God and still are today. Any library is filled with volumes of examples. I find it impressive that someone who apparently has never learned a single fact about history or current events can survive out in the world. How have you not choked on a crayon yet?

    • baal

      I see churches to the ahbrahamic god everywhere I go. There are 3 with in walking distance from my house and 15 in 5 minutes car ride radius. When the voldemort worship club gets that big and omnipresent, I’ll be there to comment on the blogs.

    • getz

      “I think if Atheist were truly and completely convinced there was no God, they wouldn’t waste even one more second on the subject. They would instead be out on their boat (or corvette), soaking up every last minute of their comparatively short existence.”

      Of course they would, after all they:

      http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2012/12/10/the-seven-countries-where-the-state-can-execute-you-for-being-atheist/

      hmm… okay, well, I guess they could get in their corvette(or boat) and drive away from those seven countries to a place where they can enjoy the rest of their existence being themselves and…

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blasphemy_law

      okay, I guess they can find some other places to go as long as they don’t mind paying fines or jailtime for saying anything critical of religion, while the religious are generally free to… well, put people who disagree with them in jail and openly fantasize about how those people deserve all kinds of punishments their gods will deal out.

      No big deal though, the atheists can take their corvettes and find countries like the US of A where they’re free to be themselves without the government breathing down their necks, and

      http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/religion/story/2011-12-10/religion-atheism/51777612/1

      http://www.pewforum.org/2008/12/11/being-good-for-goodness-sake/

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creation_and_evolution_in_public_education_in_the_United_States

      … be equated with rapists, assumed to be incapable of moral behavior, and have religious education potentially forced on their children while those kids are instructed to pledge their allegiance to a nation under god.

      But! If they’re willing to ignore all that: the pressure to accept religious claims, the poor education, the negative stereotypes, the criminalization of the open expression of their views, sometimes to the point that people are killed for it(including religious people, as competing religions often represent their favorite targets) , as well as all of the other issues that went unstated( http://www.whatstheharm.net covers some, with examples, but you can’t fit them all into a single post like this), then I guess they can focus the rest of their short lives on really living it up by… driving a car around.

      And who is it suggesting that the reasonable response to those circumstances is to ignore them and have fun driving? Why it’s people like yourself, expressing their frustration that actual atheists don’t seem to match their amoral stereotypes.

  • busterggi

    I hate god because he is a poorly developed fictional character with blatant inconsistancies, irrationalities and way too much retro-con and fan fiction.

  • John

    I don’t hate God, I just hate his fan club.

  • Guest

    I don’t feel any emotions about the character of God at all. I kind of like Jesus, he seems like a nice guy, though I always preferred Peter in the New Testament stories because he was easier to relate to. He’s a bumbling screw-up but he tries his best. Jesus is a bit of a gary stu.
    However, I do hate Mohammed. He’s a dick.

  • jradxit

    I hate that people act as if they believe that the God they made up is real.

  • Rob Welborn

    Damnit, Hemant, you stole my “I hate Yahweh the same way I hate Voldimort idea!” Hell, guess great minds think alike.

  • ZenDruid

    Hate and love are both strong emotional reactions.

    How about indifference?

  • http://quinesqueue.blogspot.com/ Q. Quine

    Just wait, the theology of today becomes the mythology of tomorrow.

  • Really The Truth

    I really do hate God because he is so Very Evil for punishing us innocent people that just wanted to have a Normal Life like he gave so many others.


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