Why should I listen to you about God?
Recently I have been having some philosophical discussions with someone I work with. He’s a very ardent and enthusiastic Christian. Upon learning about my lack of faith in any deity he took an interest in getting to know me better. Maybe he wants to convert me. He’s never been too pushy, though, so I can overlook his lack of intellectual enlightenment over the pointless zealousness of his religious preference.
The best part of my conversations have been where he has refuted my claim that the Bible is riddled with inconsistencies and inaccuracies. He tenaciously clung to the argument that there was not a single contradiction within the entire Bible. Normally this is the point where I throw up my arms, shake my head in utter disgust at the intellectual progress our species is making, and walk away but I humored him and continued to listen to his rant about how there is absolute proof of a god.
His claims were nothing new to me. He kept feeding the same lines of garbage that I heard my entire life as a believer and it was very hard not to interrupt him every few seconds to point out each particular misconception he alluded to truth:
- God is omnipotent
- Can he make a rock big enough he can’t lift it?
- God states homosexuality is a sin
- Why is it only men and not women?
- How can you justify it because of the word sodomite when that word was used to refer to a citizen of sodom?
- Why didn’t Jesus give ONE SPEECH on homosexuality if it’s really such a big fucking deal? (literally)
- Why do the original Greek and Hebrew words not translate into homosexual but instead effiminate or weak? How do you justify that? Should we condone the ostracization of men that aren’t macho even if they are straight?
- God answers prayer
- Why the fuck does he give a shit about finding your car keys before feeding starving kids in Africa? (Why doesn’t he drop bread from the sky now like he did for the Israelites?)
- Why do people that pray die violent deaths?
I could ramble about that forever but it’s not the point of this entry…
Why should you listen to me?
I later attended a little “Bible study” in the field a few weeks after the initial conversation. The aforementioned individual was the man leading the study session and I was quite pleased to hear that he had altered his views of Biblical inaccuracy. He no longer referred to it as inerrant but rather as inspired. Cognitive dissonance?
While this study session was taking place another group of individuals I work with came and sat near us, raising a ruckus, and generally being disruptive in the middle of a prayer. Not being one who is inclined to pray I walked over and politely told them to “shut the hell up.”
He approached me later and asked me why I had attended a Bible study if I was an atheist. I explained that I hope people will listen to me when I try to present facts, empirical data, history, science, and philosophy as my reasoning for not believing so I’ll give you the same courtesy even though I have heard your non-peer reviewed intelligent design theory more times than you will ever hear mine.
Now, here’s the kicker: He asked me why I worshiped Satan!!!
This is one of those RUFKM!! moments. I am beginning to realize just how little theists truly know about atheists. This man wasn’t joking around or messing with me. He was absolutely serious. I guess when the choice given to you growing up is between one mythological good being and one mythological bad being I can kind of see that line of thinking…kind of.
Well, not only do we not worship Satan (whom we know doesn’t exist) we also don’t eat babies. Now at this point I have to turn to a lot of people and say “I know, I know. They’re high in protein, low in fat, and make a great burger but NO we do NOT eat babies.”
That is a common misconception that has been perpetuated throughout this eternal war that is being waged between the Flying Spaghetti Monster and the Invisible Pink Unicorn. Both these invisible celestial beings have joined together in an attempt to destroy us, the non-believers, through propaganda.
It is absolute garbage like that coming from the Pastafarians and the Invisible Pink Unicorn that has sullied the fine reputation of atheists worldwide. Wait a second… What was I talking about?
Rationality eludes religion
The incoherent ramblings of men creating mythological beings who watch over every minute detail of our lives (including our masturbatory schedule) to determine whether or not we are worthy to live is an absurd concept. Even more absurd is the thought that people who do not believe in that are suddenly willingly subservient to the “evil” mythological deity that is the antagonist in that work of fiction.
Where is the reasoned thought and the rationality behind that? I was quite literally blown away that someone thought I was a satan worshiper because I was an atheist. Even during my extensive time as a “born-again” believer I never accepted that concept. Perhaps that openness is what led to me to the beliefs (or lack thereof) that I now hold.
Somehow I still find that I have a strong enough core to stomach the same pseudo-intellectual opinions believers throw in my direction time and time again. All I’m asking for is an equal response of attentiveness when I respond with something that actually makes sense.
Anyone has the right to be ignorant. No one has the right to enforce ignorance upon me.