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Do Athiest Need Morals?

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Do athiest need morals, in the great scheme of things. If so....

 

1 What defines them?

2 Who dictates them? Isit soley an indivdual perogative or should it be a collective responsiblity? Or choose another angle if u so wish...

3 And should they be abolsute or relative, or a bit of both? But dictates this?

 

 

If you feel no, then why?

 

( i know this is very open ended and all that.. but try to stick to the jist of the above questions, and no iam not implying the west is full of athiest! :D )

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PropellerAds

Peace Abdul,

 

I'm not a proper atheist, in that I don't deny the possibility of God existing. (i.e. Agnostic) I think it adds up to much the same thing though in order the answer your question :D

 

Do athiest need morals, in the great scheme of things. If so....

 

I don't believe there are many people without morals as I believe more or less everbody has them naturally.

 

1 What defines them?

 

I believe these morals come from emotive responses to issues. For example hearing of somebody being robbed would make me feel sorry for the victim and angry at the perpetrator. I therefore believe robbery is wrong etc.

 

I believe these emotive responses are formed partially genetically, and partially through what happens to us throughout our lives.

 

2 Who dictates them? Isit soley an indivdual perogative or should it be a collective responsiblity? Or choose another angle if u so wish...

 

I think because morality is formed partially from the society one lives in that no one person/source dictates them but similarities will inevitably develop between those exposed to a similar environment.

 

3 And should they be abolsute or relative, or a bit of both? But dictates this?

 

Moral relativity is a very complicated topic, but I do believe the state should permit everybody to believe what they want ethically as long as it causes no direct harm to another non-consentual individual. An atheist doesn't believe in God and therefore doesn't have a source for an absolute morality. I'm closer towards that end of the spectrum than the moral absolutists.

 

Why do you ask? :D

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Don't have time to deal with it at length now, so I'll do so later, but as an atheist i don't think religious morality is morality at all: it's simply a set of arbitrary orders to be obeyed without thought or reason.

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Morality is human.

 

Religon is commandments.

 

hence atheist more moral that any1 else.

 

AbdulMajid, wot type of question is this anyway "Do athiest need morals"????

 

wot do you think atheists are exactly?

 

When has an atheists ever killed any1 in the name of atheistism?

 

And u ask if atheists need morals!!!!!

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I think you would find the most moral people in the world are atheist,

 

i would ask, are religious people moral? in my opinion the most immoral people on the planet are religious folks, who seem to justify all their immorality using ancient "holly" texts.

 

morality wasnt invented by Islam.christian,judaism and all the rest of the religions, morality has nothing to do with religion.

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Guest Sulemaan
Morality is human.

 

Religon is commandments.

 

hence atheist more moral that any1 else.

 

AbdulMajid, wot type of question is this anyway "Do athiest need morals"????

 

wot do you think atheists are exactly?

 

When has an atheists ever killed any1 in the name of atheistism?

 

And u ask if atheists need morals!!!!!

 

 

I think its Atheism Berf, not Aheistism (if that was not a typo). Anyway, there is basic human goodness, we all know, so its a very silly question to ask.

 

However, now that it has been asked, could you tell me where this basic goodness came from? Are you telling you were born with it? How did this 'humanness come to humans? Don't give me the evolution theories now; if we had evolved then how come we still end up being nothing but animals without guidance and training? Let's suppose we leave a group of children (aged 3-4) in the jungle and if somehow they survive, would they be "human" when they grow up? Will they care for morals; the good and bad then? Did you read The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling? The story of Mowgli was made famous by a Walt Disney cartoon, but what you don't know was that there were not one but two real mowglis discovered in the jungles in India. There were near adolescence when they were discovered. There were all but animals. They eventually died not being able to adapt to their human surroundings.

 

This would happen to all of us were it not for our parents and their parents and theirs, and it all goes up to Adam; who taught Adam?

 

And He taught Adam all the names...

Holy Quran (2:31)

 

And in another chapter, Allah says -

 

Read: In the name of thy Lord who createth,

Created man out of a (mere) clot of congealed blood:

Read: And thy Lord is the Most Bounteous

He Who taught (the use of) the Pen

Taught man that which he knew not.

Nay, but verily man is rebellious

In that he looketh upon himself as self-sufficient.

Verily to thy Lord is the return (of all)

Holy Quran (96:1-8)

 

So the goodness which are so proud about; you owe it to religion and God. So no religion, no morals. We are coming to that stage as you can see more and more people turning away from religion and towards immorality.

 

Regards

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Morality is human.

 

Religon is commandments.

 

hence atheist more moral that any1 else.

 

:D I see some faulty thinking here, we are all humans, not only atheists and no religion is not only commandments. Though it must noted that I don’t think we even agree what is morality.

 

I think you would find the most moral people in the world are atheist,

 

Hmmm well many people asked about that would say otherwise.

 

i would ask, are religious people moral? in my opinion the most immoral people on the planet are religious folks, who seem to justify all their immorality using ancient "holly" texts.

 

You know if you are indeed a moral person you would not attack other people's beliefs. You want to be an atheist go ahead you won’t cause any hurt except to yourself. I think it is ungrateful not believe in God, He gives humans so much only in return they call His prophets and messengers false and attack what He has sent down to us. Sure :D you are more moral than religious people. So do tell how did morals come along? Did when you developed from a single-cell, monkey whatever…man said oh! I need morals but why do I need them? morals restrict freedom don’t they? If it is human nature to be moral, people won’t have the tendency to steal, kill, etc.

 

morality wasnt invented by Islam.christian,judaism and all the rest of the religions, morality has nothing to do with religion.

 

How would you know? Did you visit the beginning of time and decided it was so?

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However, now that it has been asked, could you tell me where this basic goodness came from? Are you telling you were born with it? How did this 'humanness come to humans? Don't give me the evolution theories now; if we had evolved then how come we still end up being nothing but animals without guidance and training?
Certainly much of human morality is hereditary. The people that didn't set out to kill other people unnecessarily survived; the people that co-operated with one another survived; the people that were a danger to the others were killed by the others and so didn't breed. Humans are animals, but they are social animals which evoved so that they could learn to respond to a changing environment.
Let's suppose we leave a group of children (aged 3-4) in the jungle and if somehow they survive, would they be "human" when they grow up? Will they care for morals; the good and bad then?
no. they will not have been brought up by human beings so they will not have learned to be human. Psychologists have done horrible experimants with monkeys which show that being brought up in an unnatural environment- and what you describe is an unnatural environment for humans- has a very bad effect.

 

This would happen to all of us were it not for our parents and their parents and theirs, and it all goes up to Adam; who taught Adam?
Well now, if morality wsas "built in" to Adam- as you seem to think- then it is hereditary and the children you imagine in the pargraph above would behave morally. The point where our ancestors were so different that they became apes rather than human is arbitrary: but many animals are taught by their parents and if they do not learn to live from their parents they die. Humans remain dependent on their parents and learn from their parents for longer than any other animal.
So the goodness which are so proud about; you owe it to religion and God. So no religion, no morals. We are coming to that stage as you can see more and more people turning away from religion and towards immorality.
On the contrary: what is religious morality but unthinking obedience to orders? "Do this. Don't do that." If we ask why the answer is "BEcause god says so and you will go to hell if you disobey." Religious people make up rationalisations for this, but they obey the orders whether they are reasonable or not. Often there may have been sound immediate reasons for those orders, but religious people do not consider whether the reasons any longer apply. "I was only obeying orders." as the permanent excuse.

Some aspects of morality are common, almost universal: most people respect and treat their parents and children well, but then, many animals do so too: the behaviour has become moral because nearly all of us do it; it isn't the case that we do it because it's moral. The very few societies that don't do this- the esquimaux, say, whose old people walked out into the snow when they are no longer able to help the family survive- were people on the very margins of survival throughout their existence, so the rules automatically changed.

The way we behave will differ from place to place: an englishman will put his elderly parents in a "granny flat" where they can be independent; a Chinese man will keep them in his house. The acts are different but the motive is the same. We are here because even in times of famine our ancestors' ancestors did not eat them. People still do that in times of desperation, but- again- the tendency was literally bred out of humans because people with a hereditary tendency to do that did not survive and breed. Humans are naturally very unaggressive to one another compared with other animals. There are the rare abnormal or unlucky cases- murderers- but people have to be persuaded to kill other people very carefully. It is difficult to persuade people to kill one another. It is one of the natural human qualities- sociability- that is misused to do it. People are persuaded that they and the other people they identify with are threatened by a set of murderous foreigners or people the wrong colour or infidels or unbelievers or enemies of our way of life who can only be dealt with by being killed.

To take one of the most obvious examples where there is a big difference between religious morality and nonreligious morality, let's look at sxual behaviour. Some religions forbid homosexuality and adultery and punish them very severely. It doesn't matter- from a nonreligious view- why they do this. Most nonreligious morality is founded on utilitarianism of one kind or other: either an act is justified because it brings the greatest good to the greatest number of people or because it does the least harm to the smallest number of people. From that point of view sexual activity is a very different matter: if it does not involve coercion or the exercise of power then whatever people do with other consenting adults is no concern of anyone else. As far as religious people are concerned sexual behaviour is a matter of morality: to nonreligious people it's a matter of taste.

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Sulemaan I dont know why y u quote the quran at me, it dosent mean a thing 2 me. So it can hardly be considered proof either.

 

"I see some faulty thinking here, we are all humans, not only atheists and no religion is not only commandments. Though it must noted that I don’t think we even agree what is morality."

 

Ok then :-

 

U are told how 2 live and how 2 pray how to eat etc or u will go to hell, now if that aint commandments then i dunno wot is.

 

Wot would u say morality is?

 

Or should i say wot do the imans or scholars or the quran tell u morality is?

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:D I see some faulty thinking here, we are all humans, not only atheists and no religion is not only commandments.
What we have in common derives from our common humanity.
Though it must noted that I don’t think we even agree what is morality.
No. We don't. A religious believer's idea of morality derives from what they believe god said. Often this includes factors that a nonbeliever regards as irrelevant.
Hmmm well many people asked about that [that the most moral peolpe in the world are atheist] would say otherwise.
Certainly. Everybody thinks they are moral because they try to follow their own moral system and that they are more more than other people because other people don't. What they believe or don't believe is irrelevant to this. Equally, a moral muslim believes that trying and executing an apostate under sharia law is moral. I think it's immoral- whose morality is "true"? A generally accepted rule is not to kill other people, unless there is very good reason to do so. Religious people include disagreeing with what other people think as a very good reason to kill them.
You know if you are indeed a moral person you would not attack other people's beliefs.
Hold hard! Aren't you obliged to persuade nonmuslims that their beliefs are "corrupted" or false? There is acertain hypocrisy in someone whose duty it is to bring dawah saying this.
You want to be an atheist go ahead you won’t cause any hurt except to yourself.I think it is ungrateful not believe in God, He gives humans so much only in return they call His prophets and messengers false and attack what He has sent down to us.
There is- as far as I can tell- no reason to think there is a god; if there is a god there is no reason to think it is interested in the human race in general or thee and me in particular. Even if such a being exists, why should we be grateful to it? we are supposedly engaged in a sort of test. We weren't asked if we wanted to do it ; the conditions under which we do it are imposed and arbitrary and the rewards and punishments for success or failure are grotesquely and unjustly excessive compared to the test itself. In addition, god knows the results before we do it anyway. As to the supposed prophets, there's even less reason to believe they receive word from god or that what they say is true.
Sure :D you are more moral than religious people. So do tell how did morals come along?
See my post above.
Did when you developed from a single-cell, monkey whatever…man said oh!
Monkeys are not single-celled; nor are human beings descended from monkeys. Several million years ago humans and monkeys shared common ancestors.
I need morals but why do I need them? morals restrict freedom don’t they? If it is human nature to be moral, people won’t have the tendency to steal, kill, etc.

How would you know?

The very fact that not many human beings do this is pretty good evidence. It is human nature to be moral because morality is a systematic codification of behaviour which humans have practised for a very long time. This behaviour is partly hereditary and partly learned and varies accrding to circumstances. It is the behaviur which has enabled our ancestors to survive.
Did you visit the beginning of time and decided it was so?
No. did you?

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Guest Sulemaan
...

...

 

On the contrary: what is religious morality but unthinking obedience to orders? "Do this. Don't do that." If we ask why the answer is "BEcause god says so and you will go to hell if you disobey." Religious people make up rationalisations for this, but they obey the orders whether they are reasonable or not. Often there may have been sound immediate reasons for those orders, but religious people do not consider whether the reasons any longer apply. "I was only obeying orders." as the permanent excuse.

 

I don't know which religion you have in mind while writing this, but in Islam, reason is given a special place. Human understanding is repeatedly appealed. We are asked to beileve in God not just by blind faith, but rather by observing and understanding, and ultimately realizing. For this purpose the Quran showed man many signs, the secrets of creation which were mentioned 1400 years ago when Man never heard or concieved such ideas. However, it is not just through scientific revelations that the word of God manifests itself, but through all aspects of human nature, like fear and greed. Two of the most potent motivating forces. A large part of the commandments of the Quran are well laid out and the reasons given clearly. There will always be some commandments of which very few of us are capable of understanding, but by that time you will come to realize like all other commandments, these have their own purpose. We must understand that Allah created us, and He who created us knows us better than ourselves. If you constructed a Robot, you will know more about it than itself. You will know what are its limitations, what is harmful to it and what is not and you will program it's AI accordingly. Similarly, Allah has given us through His prophets a program of leading our lives; however, unlike a robot, we have the right to choose and that is our test.

 

Some aspects of morality are common, almost universal:

 

These are common and universal because they come from one origin. From the rest of the post, I gather we are different people with different backgrounds, different this and different that etc. We are basically humans, even if some of us go and start a colony on the moon, they will not be moonlings, but remain humans. As our qualities remain the same. The one thing is not the same is our understanding. Two people may agree on an issue, while a third doesn't. For this purpose we rely on the majority opinion.

 

There is no standard here by which to measure. You are like sailors sailing into an unending ocean, directionless, not knowing your destination. Changing your directions as and when you decide or letting the winds carry you wherever it may. Without a destination, without a guide, you will eventually differ on every aspect; divide yourself and ultimatly fight for domination. That is what happened and continues to happen in the absense of true religion in the world. If only we knew where we are going, if only we had a higher authority who knows how to get us there.

 

There has to be uniformity, there has to be authority, and for this we today have governemnts, constitutions, laws and heads of governments, that too, we have only one decision maker, the prime minister or a president. What if we had nothing of this? Can you imagine the utter lawlessness that would prevail? That will be the consequences of religion is forsaken by all, because religion gives you accountability. You always fear that you will be asked of all the actions you commit. Like a person who refrains from committing a murder out of the fear of the Law. This person doesn't care if it is wrong or not, in fact he wants to commit it, but he is held back by his fears. Does this man has reasoning? He is human, but he doesn't think that taking a life is wrong. Does that mean we are all murderers? Most of us don't do it, not because of the law, but because it is wrong, we realize that it is wrong. Unfortunately, this man doesn't have that realization, but for the law that stops him, this man would have already committed his crime.

 

Allah wants people to have this realization; unfortunately, not everybody have this realization; hence they are forced by Allah's commandments. However, in the Quran, Allah calls on people to use their reasoning in understanding and recognizing the Truth by a sense of realization -

 

Will they not then ponder on the Qur'an? If it had been from other than Allah they would have found therein much incongruity.

Holy Quran (4:82)

 

And again, it asks to think (and not blindly follow what is written here) -

 

(This is) a Scripture that We have revealed unto thee, full of blessing, that they may ponder its revelations, and that men of understanding may reflect.

Holy Quran (38:29)

 

So you see, Islam is not blind following of commandments as you percieve. There are those who follow it that way, but it is better than not following at all, like a potential murderer, it stops them from committing their crimes.

 

Regards

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What we have in common derives from our common humanity.

 

Such as? You mean morality? No, not all people have it in common some people don’t think stealing is bad, they tell you why is it bad, they find all kinds of excuses. If they didn’t learn it was bad then they will not regard it as such. When we are born we don’t have morals, we are taught morals, hence it is not innately human.

 

Certainly. Everybody thinks they are moral because they try to follow their own moral system and that they are more more than other people because other people don't. What they believe or don't believe is irrelevant to this. Equally, a moral muslim believes that trying and executing an apostate under sharia law is moral. I think it's immoral- whose morality is "true"?

 

I believe what God sent is morally true, if you don’t want to believe in it then it is up to you. Since The Creator knows what He created then his morals would be true over anything the created being comes up with.

 

Religious people include disagreeing with what other people think as a very good reason to kill them.

 

:D what religious people? Nope, if I disagree with a Christian what he/she believes in nI do on something but never would I want to kill him/her for that. It is against Islam to do that.

 

Hold hard! Aren't you obliged to persuade nonmuslims that their beliefs are "corrupted" or false? There is acertain hypocrisy in someone whose duty it is to bring dawah saying this.

 

Lol proving or convincing someone they are wrong is not attacking what they believe in like for example atheists do. They don’t try to convince you they go ahead in slanderous and hateful remarks, this is in general. My religion asks me to argue and have a respectful discussion with you.

 

There is- as far as I can tell- no reason to think there is a god; if there is a god there is no reason to think it is interested in the human race in general or thee and me in particular.

 

But there is a countless number of reasons to think there is a god, if that wasn’t the case then not many people would believe in one or try to create their own. He is not interested in you and I didn’t say that, I said it is of your interest to believe in Him. God can simply just like that wipe the Earth of it inhabitants and put better people on it, but we are also told that He doesn’t wish that to happen due to Divine Wisdom.

 

Actually, believing in chance and human made theories that can’t be proven is not a reason to think God doesn’t exist.

 

Even if such a being exists, why should we be grateful to it?

 

Because He gave you the your body, hands, legs, feet, the ability to think, talk, write, be creative, food, water, beauty, nature, to be wealthy, free will, etc. many countless things.

 

we are supposedly engaged in a sort of test. We weren't asked if we wanted to do it ; the conditions under which we do it are imposed and arbitrary and the rewards and punishments for success or failure are grotesquely and unjustly excessive compared to the test itself.

 

I don’t think a mere human should have a right to talk what His Creator can and can't Do. Anyhow, this is your view. All humans and other creatures were created to worship God, the ability we are given to choose if we wish to or not is our choice. Depending on your choice you have to accept the consequences. I think Heaven and Hell are most justifiable. It is most depressing if I think the tyrants and criminals of this world won’t be punished and there is no one who can do anything about it or bring justice and we then go to oblivion :D . Also if I’m patience and do suffer some injustices or not engaging in insignificant short pleasures of this life within the limits I was provided then Heaven is my reward.

 

In addition, god knows the results before we do it anyway. As to the supposed prophets, there's even less reason to believe they receive word from god or that what they say is true.

 

What? Prophet’s are humans they don’t know the future and if they do make prophecies they are Divinely Revealed of course.

 

Monkeys are not single-celled; nor are human beings descended from monkeys.

 

I know that and I didn’t say they were, I said some believe we came form a single celled organism that evolved.

 

Several million years ago humans and monkeys shared common ancestors.

 

No one can prove that theory, that’s why it is a theory made by humans.

 

The very fact that not many human beings do this is pretty good evidence.

 

Not many :D no there are many I disagree.

 

It is human nature to be moral because morality is a systematic codification of behaviour which humans have practised for a very long time. This behaviour is partly hereditary and partly learned and varies accrding to circumstances. It is the behaviur which has enabled our ancestors to survive.

 

Nope, it is learned and morals are not hereditary. If it was such there wouldn't be moral development as psychologists have observed.

 

No. did you?

 

Nope but I’m not the one claiming that theory am I? :D

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When has an atheists ever killed any1 in the name of atheistism?

Hahaha! I suggest you check out the 'League of Militant Atheists' who were basically an armed unit in Russia in Communist times, if I remember correctly they killed a few thousand Russian Priests and Clergy, all in the name of the Godless hell that is Atheism. As a Socialist I see Atheism for what it is - Intellectual Elitism at it's height. Ever spoken to an Atheist and discussed theology without being looked down upon? Nope, neither have I. And plus the fact most Atheists are Libertarians proves the fact that they have no need for and certainly dislike the idea of morality in a traditional sense.

 

And Atheism is structured like Theism, the 'strong' (i.e. stupid) Atheists claim to dislike the idea of organized religion yet they organize themselves into Communities that function just like Theistic Communities, just do a "google"]Google[/url] search on Atheism. There have even been attempts to set up 'Sceptics Churches' in America (or so I heard). So much for the disdain of 'organized religion'.

 

Atheists are just as dogmatic in their beliefs (or lack of) as Theists are and can be quite unpleasent people on the whole.

 

Atheism is held together not by a binding lack of belief in what others believe, nor even a belief in no belief, but rather by simple Anti-Theism. You see it all the time - "When did God ever help me win the lottery?", "When doesn't God give me a mansion" e.t.c and so on. Atheism is not Atheism and in my opinion it should be referred to simply as 'Anti-Theism' from now on as that is it's binding belief. Without it it would cease to exist.

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:D

 

In one sentence, "religion is a moral responsibility given to us humans by the God Almighty. "

 

(note: that doesn't mean that people who don't follow any religion have no morals.)

 

:D

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If I was an atheist, I would find this topic to be pretty insulting. But you know, there aren't nearly as many atheists out there as many people here seem to think. I'm agnostic. I don't know if there is a god and I don't really care. I suppose that distinction might be difficult for some to understand.

 

In order for humans to function as a society, we need morals. Religion doesn't give you morals. I'm sure many would like to argue this, but the US is a moral nation, for the most part. You may not agree with the morals, but there are behaviors that are accepted and behaviors that are frowned upon. It's what makes a society prosperous. I would even go as far as to say, the most prosperous nations are also the most moral. Keep in mind, I never said you would agree with those morals. :D

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Hahaha! I suggest you check out the 'League of Militant Atheists' who were basically an armed unit in Russia in Communist times, if I remember correctly they killed a few thousand Russian Priests and Clergy, all in the name of the Godless hell that is Atheism. As a Socialist I see Atheism for what it is - Intellectual Elitism at it's height. Ever spoken to an Atheist and discussed theology without being looked down upon? Nope, neither have I. And plus the fact most Atheists are Libertarians proves the fact that they have no need for and certainly dislike the idea of morality in a traditional sense.

 

And Atheism is structured like Theism, the 'strong' (i.e. stupid) Atheists claim to dislike the idea of organized religion yet they organize themselves into Communities that function just like Theistic Communities, just do a Google search on Atheism. There have even been attempts to set up 'Sceptics Churches' in America (or so I heard). So much for the disdain of 'organized religion'.

 

Atheists are just as dogmatic in their beliefs (or lack of) as Theists are and can be quite unpleasent people on the whole.

 

Atheism is held together not by a binding lack of belief in what others believe, nor even a belief in no belief, but rather by simple Anti-Theism. You see it all the time - "When did God ever help me win the lottery?", "When doesn't God give me a mansion" e.t.c and so on. Atheism is not Atheism and in my opinion it should be referred to simply as 'Anti-Theism' from now on as that is it's binding belief. Without it it would cease to exist.

 

Great post Greek! I completely forgot about the atrocities of the Soviets in the name of atheism. Thanks for the reminder! :D

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Guest Sulemaan

Hello Lateralus,

 

Long time no see! Where have you been? Well, sorry if this topic is insulting; actually, morals and religion are closely related, hence for a person who believes in God; it is difficult to understand what defines morals for atheist. However, I think the replies to the questions were rather over-reactive and quite aggressive. Greek-Cypriot explained it very well.

 

As you said, if left to us, each person will have his own perspective of morals; there will be no uniformity. Like constituation laws that govern a country, our society is also governed by certain social laws, which are nothing be recognized morals in a society. A vast number of Americans, in fact a majority of Americans are Christians and they teach their children what is right and what is wrong in the light of their religion, and that is how the society moves on, even in the face of such vehement opposition from immoral entities in that country.

 

Regards

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Salaam to everybody,

 

A person can have morals, religious or not, but how can one be sure they are the correct morals? What you consider proper may be considered barbaric in a another nation or culture. We need a direct definition of what is right and wrong, an atheist can have morals but how does he know that they are right, for all you know, over and a course of time, he/she may change thesir mind. TO cerify right and wrong you need to go to the source of one who know this answer, if you believe in god and that he created you and knows you inside and out, who else are you going to trust. A person who is limited and capable of error or someone who is free of error?

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Peace SolidSnake,

 

A person can have morals, religious or not, but how can one be sure they are the correct morals?

 

That assumes there is such thing as 'correct morality'. By definition an atheist doesn't believe in a deity that has given us such a 'correct' view of morality. That suggests that there is no such thing as an absolutely correct moral code, one just has to accept that everybody should be permitted to do what they want as long as it harms nobody else. (Though technically I suppose the harm principle is in itself a form of morality.)

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That suggests that there is no such thing as an absolutely correct moral code, one just has to accept that everybody should be permitted to do what they want as long as it harms nobody else. (Though technically I suppose the harm principle is in itself a form of morality.)

 

Peace to you to Eoin,

 

From this I am getting the assumption that your proposing the idea of no such thing as a direct right and wrong. But then again I guess this is a hard thing to disscuss with if a person does not believe in a god to begin . There are people who believe in god and believe there should no relationship between the creator and creation (Deist I think they are called), not that I am supporting the idea.

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Peace to everyone.

 

It is fascinating for me to read the accusations and arguments of both sides, believers and non-believers. Since I was born a believer in a religion, at 15 I left my catholic church and I was close to non believer for 15 years, in which I only believed there was some kind of God, but I could not believe nothing else because of all the incredible variety of beliefs which seemed confusing and impossible to understand, and now I am a believer in all religions, (but in a different way) perhaps I could help both sides if I tell my experience.

 

As a catholic child in a small village in a catholic country like Spain in the nineteen fifties, my mind setting was probably closer to the middle ages than to 2005. I thought we catholics were higher in behaviour and wisdom, then came the other Christians, protestants, etc., then the non Christians, all ignorant and supersticious, and then the atheists, the lowest and most evil people.

 

I compare my situation as a catholic, and the situation of many religion believers to a person who is blindfolded and taken into a house, and can see the street from the inside of the house, but cannot see the outside of the house, and can see from inside the house people outside looking at the house and laughing, but cannot understand why. Only when the person gets out of the house and sees the house from the outside and sees funny sentences written on the outer walls, may that person understand.

 

Similarly, people born in a family and country with a certain religion tend to see it from the inside, with a completely different mind setting as those who see it from the outside. I found remarks made by atheists insulting when I was a catholic, but when I saw it from the outside afterwards, I also found many beliefs funny and ridiculous. Only those born of parents with different religions, or born in countries with multireligious cultures may get out of the “inside� view easier. What everybody believes when you grow up has a deep, hipnotizing impression. How can everybody NEAR ME or everybody I KNOW be wrong? What others believe farway is not so important.

 

If we compare the knowledge of the people who made the interpretations of the bible nearly 2000 years ago with ours it is similar to comparing a child’s knowledge with ours. The knowledge this people had of life, nature, the body, the universe, etc. was not much better than today’s children. That is why their interpretations seem sometimes childlike and sometimes childish, funny and ridiculous to a non believer. What would a present Christian or Muslim think if he heard a Christian say that the earth does not turn around the sun but is the center of the universe because the bible says that? You would probably laugh, wouldn't you?

 

Even though I am a believer I feel closer to atheists and agnostics in many things. Mainly in the kind of God they have rejected. I also reject a God that condemns a person to eternal suffering for having a lustful thought, like Catholics and many other Christians think. This is ridiculous to me now. And about the rules of the bible and Quran, some are logical, do not do to others what you do not like they do to you. Atheists do not need any scripture to understand that. And the 10 commandments, or at least 9, are universal ethics, shared by almost all. But many rules given in both books, which were given to different cultures thousands of years ago, are absurd and ridiculous or funny now, and it is logical atheists find them so. If believers do not find them so absurd or funny it is simply because they prefer their inherited, brainwashing beliefs rather than common sense, and they cannot select or separate logical things from absurd ones in scripture, as they have to take it all or leave it all. I left it all.

 

On the other hand, I would also like to mention that the idea that believers have higher morals than non believers has been contradicted by history. Europe in the 16th century was a bloodbath due to believers. And it was mainly thanks to non believers that we got out of it, and despite believers' opposition, in the four following centuries until now. Each progress of secularism to end political tyranny and extend human rights had to be made with the opposition of believers. So believers should be more humble and stop thinking they are superior in any way. Their high concept of themselves as higher than atheists is similar to the German nazis who believed themselves superior to the rest only by belonging to the superior race. Their behaviour proved otherwise. Same as believers.

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Peace to everyone.

 

It is fascinating for me to read the accusations and arguments of both sides, believers and non-believers. Since I was born a believer in a religion, at 15 I left my catholic church and I was close to non believer for 15 years, in which I only believed there was some kind of God, but I could not believe nothing else because of all the incredible variety of beliefs which seemed confusing and impossible to understand, and now I am a believer in all religions, (but in a different way) perhaps I could help both sides if I tell my experience.

 

As a catholic child in a small village in a catholic country like Spain in the nineteen fifties, my mind setting was probably closer to the middle ages than to 2005. I thought we catholics were higher in behaviour and wisdom, then came the other Christians, protestants, etc., then the non Christians, all ignorant and supersticious, and then the atheists, the lowest and most evil people.

 

I compare my situation as a catholic, and the situation of many religion believers to a person who is blindfolded and taken into a house, and can see the street from the inside of the house, but cannot see the outside of the house, and can see from inside the house people outside looking at the house and laughing, but cannot understand why. Only when the person gets out of the house and sees the house from the outside and sees funny sentences written on the outer walls, may that person understand.

 

Similarly, people born in a family and country with a certain religion tend to see it from the inside, with a completely different mind setting as those who see it from the outside. I found remarks made by atheists insulting when I was a catholic, but when I saw it from the outside afterwards, I also found many beliefs funny and ridiculous. Only those born of parents with different religions, or born in countries with multireligious cultures may get out of the “inside� view easier. What everybody believes when you grow up has a deep, hipnotizing impression. How can everybody NEAR ME or everybody I KNOW be wrong? What others believe farway is not so important.

 

If we compare the knowledge of the people who made the interpretations of the bible nearly 2000 years ago with ours it is similar to comparing a child’s knowledge with ours. The knowledge this people had of life, nature, the body, the universe, etc. was not much better than today’s children. That is why their interpretations seem sometimes childlike and sometimes childish, funny and ridiculous to a non believer. What would a present Christian or Muslim think if he heard a Christian say that the earth does not turn around the sun but is the center of the universe because the bible says that? You would probably laugh, wouldn't you?

 

Even though I am a believer I feel closer to atheists and agnostics in many things. Mainly in the kind of God they have rejected. I also reject a God that condemns a person to eternal suffering for having a lustful thought, like Catholics and many other Christians think. This is ridiculous to me now. And about the rules of the bible and Quran, some are logical, do not do to others what you do not like they do to you. Atheists do not need any scripture to understand that. And the 10 commandments, or at least 9, are universal ethics, shared by almost all. But many rules given in both books, which were given to different cultures thousands of years ago, are absurd and ridiculous or funny now, and it is logical atheists find them so. If believers do not find them so absurd or funny it is simply because they prefer their inherited, brainwashing beliefs rather than common sense, and they cannot select or separate logical things from absurd ones in scripture, as they have to take it all or leave it all. I left it all.

 

On the other hand, I would also like to mention that the idea that believers have higher morals than non believers has been contradicted by history. Europe in the 16th century was a bloodbath due to believers. And it was mainly thanks to non believers that we got out of it, and despite believers' opposition, in the four following centuries until now. Each progress of secularism to end political tyranny and extend human rights had to be made with the opposition of believers. So believers should be more humble and stop thinking they are superior in any way. Their high concept of themselves as higher than atheists is similar to the German nazis who believed themselves superior to the rest only by belonging to the superior race. Their behaviour proved otherwise. Same as believers.

 

 

Good post, Asking. There's nothing quite like an arrogant, self righteous, religious zealot. They're the cause of more bloodshed than anyone can possibly imagine. There have been a few instances where atheists have become belligerant. But that's not the norm. It would be amusing, if it wasn't so frightening, that those who claim to be the most "moral" are also the most dangerous.

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On the other hand, I would also like to mention that the idea that believers have higher morals than non believers has been contradicted by history. Europe in the 16th century was a bloodbath due to believers. And it was mainly thanks to non believers that we got out of it, and despite believers' opposition, in the four following centuries until now. Each progress of secularism to end political tyranny and extend human rights had to be made with the opposition of believers. So believers should be more humble and stop thinking they are superior in any way. Their high concept of themselves as higher than atheists is similar to the German nazis who believed themselves superior to the rest only by belonging to the superior race. Their behaviour proved otherwise. Same as believers

 

Come one give us a break, comparing it to what the Nazis think? I find it odd that this comparison happens in most cases as if there was not someone who is worst than the Nazis in thinking anyhow, it does not matter and don’t want to divert the topic into this issue. Whether atheists wish to believe or not is up to them and no one is taking a superior role to them and you are wrong Lateralus there was not a few instances of atheists attacking others beliefs there are many even though you can’t see it.

 

So non believers stopped the blood shed? Hmmm right, and they started something else instead the degradation of not all morals but some and curbing the rights of the believers in the name of secularism.

 

Nonetheless as I said before having a conversation about what one beliefs is different than attacking them or saying we are superior to them.

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Salam, brothers,

 

Yes Zeinab

 

curbing the rights of the believers in the name of secularism.

 

Yes Zeinab. Curbing the right believers still claim to absolute power, on the basis of following an absolute God. There have been too many powermaniacs helped by religion and often within religion. That is what the Protestant Reforms, the French Revolution and the American constitution stopped. Thank God.

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Come one give us a break, comparing it to what the Nazis think? I find it odd that this comparison happens in most cases as if there was not someone who is worst than the Nazis in thinking anyhow, it does not matter and don’t want to divert the topic into this issue. Whether atheists wish to believe or not is up to them and no one is taking a superior role to them and you are wrong Lateralus there was not a few instances of atheists attacking others beliefs there are many even though you can’t see it.

 

So non believers stopped the blood shed? Hmmm right, and they started something else instead the degradation of not all morals but some and curbing the rights of the believers in the name of secularism.

 

Nonetheless as I said before having a conversation about what one beliefs is different than attacking them or saying we are superior to them.

 

Calling someone immoral is an attack. As far as an organization of atheists becoming aggressive, how many can you name? The Nazis and communism? As cruel as you think the Nazis were, the Spanish Inquisition was no less cruel. Puritians in colonial America were no less cruel. But this is getting off topic now. Morals define social norms, therefore, every culture needs and has morals.

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