Tuesday, August 21, 2012
If there were a God, we’d have to kill it.
Readers of The Atheist Camel Rants Again! will be familiar with the chapter on “Faithicide,” a term I use to describe the gradual destruction of superstitious religious belief by reason and rationality in the scientific age. In that chapter I dismissed “deicide,” the act of god killing, because it makes no sense since you can’t kill what does not exist.
But what if a god/God did exist and proved itself to be real? How would we react?
I’ll proffer that it depends on the god’s persona. If it is a hands (or trunk, or tentacles) off god, who created us and lets us live out our lives as independent beings unfettered by its irrational threats and demands; perhaps a fun loving kind of being that finds our behavior amusing or disgusting, but nevertheless nonjudgmental- perhaps asking only for an occasional acknowledgement and thank you now and then I’d have no problem with it. Acknowledge and move on.
But if the supreme being in question was the Judeo-Christian God, and its persona is accurately portrayed in the Bible, both Old and New Testaments - what then? That’s something else altogether.
Then we would know this God’s personality in its entire minutia. Its jealousy, its rage, its unpredictable nature, its sadistic side, its propensity for genocide ... mass extinction even. We’d know about the lies it has told, the cruelty of tests of allegiance, the punishments for supposed wrongs that it knew we would commit.. We’d have hundreds of examples of inconsistent behavior and contradictions. Indeed the thing killed its own child to make some convoluted point of some sort and to placate itself.
If that wasn’t reason enough to feel disgust and revulsion for it, worst of all is the threat of an eternal punishment so horrific that it exceeds all human experience... eternal torture by fire. Oh, not necessarily for the worst among us, for those people have an escape clause readily available to them. No, they can opt out before they expire and live for an eternity among the righteous and God loving, or those who confuse fear and terror for love.
No, this irrational God would punish the best among us, the most intelligent and productive: the peace makers; those who have made our lives better and longer; people of conscience and rational ethics; even those who have opted to abide by this God’s earliest edicts, from five-thousand years ago and not his updated ones. All of them are in for a never ending world of hurt.
If it were true as written in the god thing’s second edition that all those who do not love this God of vengeance and horrors; all those who see it as a tyrant and an oppressor of unimaginable power, with a psychosis that would make humanity’s worst mass murderers seem petty by comparison will face eternal excruciating unrelenting pain - then we would have only two choices: Acquiesce to its tyranny, or fight it to the death.
Where scientists never before bothered to contemplate the supernatural, many of them, and our freethinking brethren, would now kowtow to this God’s demands. But many more would turn their attention toward one objective...find a way to destroy it. An underground movement, an army of partisans, dedicated to freedom of thought, rationality, fairness and conscience battling not only for the freedom to live life free from omnipotent oppression and irrationality, but for the freedom and right to die and fade into oblivion without pain and fear.
If there were a proven God of the Bible in all its horrendous glory man would be compelled to stop killing each other. The thinking among us would turn our undivided attention to find a way to kill this God monster ... once and for all. I’d volunteer to come up with the secret hand shake and motto. Maybe “Death to the God Thing: Live Free and Die Like a Human.”
Posted by Dromedary Hump at 8:34 PM
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We are our own deity. No need for another.
You touched on the largest problem briefly. I think, from what I see of my fellow Americans, the bulk of them would want to worship whatever this thing turned out to be. A few would see the earning potential and power in it just as they do now...the rest would want to shunt their fears and lack of self confidence onto the critter...just like they do now. So no matter what in actuality this entity turns out to be, if we cannot absolutely, in the eyes of everyone, disabuse this entity of any supernatural abilties it will have to be eliminated. Even if it is just a cute babe seal we would have to club it with the bat of reason. Otherwise we go right back into the dark ages courtesy of the ever present ignorant masses among us.
Yes I would rather live free than be controlled by a tyrant that wants to rule your every move. So could it be that religious conservatives have had some sort of temporal lobe seizure that caused them to think there is a imaginary sky daddy watching them at all time? Which could mean a permanent lapse of reason.
Hump, do you have a modus operandi to carry out this hit on Mr. Big? How could it be done? Mr. Big apparently has a lot of 'omni' tools at his disposal to thwart our feeble efforts. First off, we'd have to actually find him.... so we do have some time to think about what to do next :)
Denis... the greatest scientific minds would lead the vanguard on how to get to the monster. When the going gets tough, science gets going ;)
Jim...if God were a cute baby seal, we'd not only have to club it to death, we should render it's blubber, skin it, and turn its hide into a thong for Jennifer Aniston.
Perhaps we can kill it with a cold virus...
Another well stated argument for our side, this god thing must be taken to the garbage dump of history.
This is an interesting rant, and it actually confirms a theory I've had about atheists. Most deny that this theory is valid, but you've seemed to embrace it.
I think atheists are so because they want to live life as they see fit, not as God has designed and purposed life for them. And the final judgement is too much to bear.
So, they deny God's existence and therefore (at least for this life) get to pretend that living any way they so choose has no eternal consequences.
I've pointed out what in your post here leads me to that conclusion here, if you're interested.
Oh, and one additional point:
"No, this irrational God would punish the best among us, the most intelligent and productive: the peace makers; those who have made our lives better and longer; people of conscience and rational ethics; even those who have opted to abide by this God’s earliest edicts, from five-thousand years ago and not his updated ones. All of them are in for a never ending world of hurt."
Are you suggesting that ONLY non-Christians have made the world a better place? That's as bigoted anything I've ever heard.
Cory, work on your reading comprehension. You have none. Your spew is nonsense, every sentence.
No Cory..your theory is a defunct and hackneyed one, used inperpetuity by slaves to religious mindlessness. Pay attention:
Atheists are atheists because they see no more evidence for a "God" than they see for Bigfoot, or that you see for the thousands of other gods, sprites, faeries, monsters, ghosts, vampires, werewolves, et al that man has invented over thousands of years .
This isn't rocket science, Cory. You don't have to strain your brain cells to understand it.
It's only confusing to you because you haven't the ability to weight rationally how it is that your rejection of all other invented mythical beings owes to the absence of objective evidence while you accept that only one mythical being does exist without any objective evidence.
It's not your fault that this is lost on you. The religion meme runs deep. Many people can over come it; some are too weak and lack the intellectual honesty and aptitude to want to challenge and investigate that which has been pounded into their head since childhood. You are the latter.
As for the child religionist concept of atheists are atheists "so they can do anything they want." : Ethics evolve. They are a product of man's need for a stable civilized society in order to prosper and live. Where slavery was once accepted as the norm, it has been all but eliminated and soundly rejected...not by biblical directive, or divine mind change...but by the evolution of man's ethics and sense of morality. Where stoning an unruly child to death was the Hebrew norm, most people don't do that as it is barbaric and counter to human instinct to protect and nurture. No god required.
Unlike mindless religionsts who attribute their behavior to some threat from a non-existent being... atheists embrace civility and humanity because it is the right thing to do, no threats or edicts from a make believe boogie man required, thank you.
We all can "do anything we want." One makes choices to either contribute to society or to denigrate it. Some of us use rationality and respect for civility..others use an imaginary magical sky daddy's threat of punishment. One of those is rational. What makes religionists unique is that they can often use "God's will" or the bile to justify the most heinous, immoral, and unethical behaviors...and still do today. And heck, why not? After all, won't they be forgiven their trespasses because of their believe in Jebus? Won't they "et their post death reward no matter who they cheat, who they rape, who they kill? Just as long as they telepathically apologize to their god thing and reaffirm their belief?
Nope... never suggested ONLY atheists / non-Xtians made the world better. That you interpret it that way owes, once again, to your stunted ability to absorb rationality. But when it comes to bigotry, the Xtian doctrine of only believers in an imaginary dead man-god Jew get to avoid eternal torture, irrespective of ones contributions to humanity, there are few religious doctrine that come close to the obscenity of that dogma.
Now, Cory, try and digest this. It won't be easy because your upbringing will want you to dismiss it outright without a moments reflection. Fact is, I doubt you even got this far in my response.
Reason is the enemy of faith. To be a good Xtian one must pluck out the eye of reason. Martin Luther said it..and you and your ilk personify it.
On Cory's blog: "How do people become atheists?", Corey was told by another atheist that he had committed a logical fallacy by making a generalization about atheists. This is my response:
The other point you’re missing, Cory, is that the rant by the Atheist Camel was not about wanting to live any way he wants. The point was to use a literary device to point out how atheists cannot understand how Christians are willing to worship a god that is described as jealous, vengeful, murderous, genocidal, infanticidal, misogynistic, and ignorant of some very basic scientific truths in the book written about him. The Camel asked atheists to IMAGINE that god did exist. He asked us to imagine the existence of this horrible being BECAUSE we don’t believe he does. Consequently, we don’t worry about what God is thinking or how he might judge us. That is YOUR obsession, not ours. I don’t IMAGINE that you worry about being naughty or nice for fear that Santa Claus will know, and you will miss out on some Christmas presents. Did you stop believing in Santa Claus because you wanted to live any way you wanted? See how that works? Your mistake wasn’t generalizing. Your mistake is projecting your fears and obsessions onto people you don’t understand at all. If you really want to understand atheists, try using your imagination too. Imagine truly letting go of your religious beliefs. Until you do that with an open mind, you will continue to prove how little you understand about atheists. And by the way, the Atheist Camel earned a Bronze Star serving in Vietnam. He has had a long and happy marriage, raised two successful children, a successful business career, loves and advocates for animals and children, and he votes too. Atheists are not a monolithic group at all, but the ones I know personally are honest, moral, sucessful, charitable, upstanding citizens. So if that is the definition of living the way we want, maybe more people should try it.
One more thing. Even if all atheists were the worst people in the world, known as murderers and common criminals (which they are not, check imprisonment rates, see Bill Gates), and all Christians were paragons of virtue, honesty, and charity (which they are not, check imprisonment rates, see Jimmy Swaggart, Ted Haggard, Peter Popoff), that would still not be evidence that there is a god.
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