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 Post subject: Re: Why ExMos's turn atheist!
PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 5:34 pm 
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Maksutov wrote:
It's fascinating to me that there's such a large, vibrant, noisy ex- group for Mormons. A similar sized church group, the Seventh Day Adventists, doesn't have such a large and articulate ex- community.

Does Mormonism produce an unusual number of former members? Does it produce an unusual number of schismatic groups? If so, why?


My postulation is that it deals in certainty. That is hard to give up as an ideology even though the religious certainty of Mormonism is discovered to be flawed and non-existent, we still want certainty. It was why I started jumping into mathematics so hard for a few years, only to discover it isn't there either. In fact, science itself has shown that it is not about certainty that life's meaning is found, but about knowing our own uncertainty and then discovering ways to lesser that. It is the journey, not a false knowledge of having certainty that reality consists of. Thus for me, science has continued to make better sense as a model of life and living and learning than religion ever could again. Not because all answers are found and given, but for precisely the opposite reason. And it helps that science has the evidences of its even more outlandish claims that religion tries to pawn over onto us as more or less woo woo thinking and answers that are unfalsifiable.

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 Post subject: Re: Why ExMos's turn atheist!
PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 5:44 pm 
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Res Ipsa wrote:
Jersey Girl wrote:

With regard to atheism in general. I can't know the mind of every atheist, however, but I don't see atheism as a choice. I see it as a progressive falling away of god belief in general until there is no God belief left at all. Atheism is a lack of belief in God. I don't see that as choosing a soft place to land. I see it as God disappearing from the world view and mind of the disbeliever.


Get outta this atheist's head! :mrgreen:


Bite me godless bureaucrat.

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 Post subject: Re: Why ExMos's turn atheist!
PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 5:50 pm 
Holy Ghost

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Meadowchik wrote:
As someone leaning toward atheism a year after leaving Mormonism, it is because of authority. It's not just that men are fallible and make mistakes, it's the sheer spiritual violence of one person telling another that they stand between them and god. It is ridiculous. Most rational people would not allow this, if not for the time, tradition, and culture that has aggregated over generations, mythologizing the person and their claims.

If a stranger walks up to you and says, "Come with me, I have a message for you from god. If you don't do what I say you will die," how would you respond?


Good thoughts Meadow.

My next bumper sticker is gonna read "Stomp out Spiritual Violence."


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 Post subject: Re: Why ExMos's turn atheist!
PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 6:01 pm 
Holy Ghost

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deacon blues wrote:
Meadowchik wrote:
As someone leaning toward atheism a year after leaving Mormonism, it is because of authority. It's not just that men are fallible and make mistakes, it's the sheer spiritual violence of one person telling another that they stand between them and god. It is ridiculous. Most rational people would not allow this, if not for the time, tradition, and culture that has aggregated over generations, mythologizing the person and their claims.

If a stranger walks up to you and says, "Come with me, I have a message for you from god. If you don't do what I say you will die," how would you respond?


Good thoughts Meadow.

My next bumper sticker is gonna read "Stomp out Spiritual Violence."


Yes! I want one, too!


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 Post subject: Re: Why ExMos's turn atheist!
PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 6:57 pm 
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Jersey Girl wrote:
So are these folks heading over to the Catholic Church to sign up?


To the Grand and Baby Boomer generations the Catholic Church is the "Whore of the Earth" (even thought Bruce R. McConkie had to retract it publically we all know it to be so).

As for your generic Protestant type religions, we know Satan has employed their preachers (temple teaching, well used to be).

Since the apostate, rather they pick another religion or not, will not be making Exaltation in the Celstrial Kingdom (like all other TBM family members), it is of no relief to family members if one moves to another religion.


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 Post subject: Re: Why ExMos's turn atheist!
PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:11 pm 
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EAllusion wrote:

Atheism is rejection of belief in gods. It doesn't require one to claim they know gods do not exist.


That is true to an extent, but beyond mere clinical definition the word has a social life of its own, like it or not. For example, take Mak's comment:

Quote:
Everyone reading this post knows that there are gods they *don't* believe in, therefore they're an atheist to those believers. So is it arrogant to dismiss Vishnu or Thor? Or more arrogant to believe in them?


That is certainly true but it's rarely what people mean when they use the word "atheist" of themselves or others. Most people think that atheism is something rather more assertive than simply rejection and also more specific as to which god is not believed in. For that reason, I hesitate to say that I am atheist or even to think of myself as one because of the cultural implications of the word, not all of which are negative but few of which I feel apply to me. I prefer to say I'm not religious.

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 Post subject: Re: Why ExMos's turn atheist!
PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 8:14 pm 
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Symmachus wrote:
That is true to an extent, but beyond mere clinical definition the word has a social life of its own, like it or not. For example, take Mak's comment


I favor defining atheism as how self-described atheists and atheist philosophers prefer to use it with a little deference given to etymology. Happily, that consistently is something to the effect of "lack of belief in gods." I can only think of one major atheist philosopher, William Rowe, who defends the definition of atheism in terms of belief that God does not exist. (Agnosticism, by contrast, is usually defined by atheists as a position on the possibility of knowledge of God, which corresponds with its historical use.)

I try to emphasize the notion of rejection rather than mere unbelief because I think atheism is an attitude about the idea of a god. This requires one to have heard of the concept of "god" and positively not accept it. I do not, for example, think newborn infants are atheists just because I think they probably do not have belief in deities at that point. When I make this point to fellow atheists, they always agree in my experience. Atheism isn't just nontheism. It's a stance on the idea of theism.

There is a popular idea about atheists, heavily reinforced by polemics against atheists, that contends atheism is belief that God does not exist. Often I see it described as unassaiable certainty that God does not exist. But I don't see why they should get to define the term. This is usually a rhetorical strategy that describes the atheist position as one they think is easier to refute or portray as unreasonable. Agnosticism is usually defined by the very same people as a wishy-washy uncertainty. Atheists who think they have compelling reasons to reject theistic justification are just defined right off the map.


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 Post subject: Re: Why ExMos's turn atheist!
PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:36 pm 
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EAllusion wrote:
Symmachus wrote:
That is true to an extent, but beyond mere clinical definition the word has a social life of its own, like it or not. For example, take Mak's comment


I favor defining atheism as how self-described atheists and atheist philosophers prefer to use it with a little deference given to etymology. Happily, that consistently is something to the effect of "lack of belief in gods." I can only thing of one major atheist philosopher, William Rowe, who defends the definition of atheism in terms of belief that God does not exist. (Agnosticism, by contrast, is usually defined by atheists as a position on the possibility of knowledge of God, which corresponds with its historical use.)

I try to emphasize the notion of rejection rather than mere unbelief because I think atheism is an attitude about the idea of a god. This requires one to have heard of the concept of "god" and positively not accept it. I do not, for example, think newborn infants are atheists just because I think they probably do not have belief in deities at that point. When I make this point to fellow atheists, they always agree in my experience. Atheism isn't just nontheism. It's a stance on the idea of theism.

There is a popular idea about atheists, heavily reinforced by polemics against atheists, that contends atheism is belief that God does not exist. Often I see it described as unassaiable certainty that God does not exist. But I don't see why they should get to define the term. This is usually a rhetorical strategy that describes the atheist position as one they think is easier to refute or portray as unreasonable. Agnosticism is usually defined by the very same people as a wishy-washy uncertainty. Atheists who think they have compelling reasons to reject theistic justification are just defined right off the map.


I agree with most of that, but precisely because it can become entangled in a rhetorical game I avoid it. I find "not religious" to be more useful because people usually leave me alone when they hear it. When I say "atheist" they usually want to know why, but I usually don't want to tell them, because I don't really have a good reason or even a philosophically informed one for being an atheist. I'm not even sure "reject" is the right word, because it implies a certain degree of engagement which I've never given it. I freely admit that the apologists and Church people have got me right to a tee: I never really believed and I quit the Church because I just wanted to sin (i.e. live a normal life with sex, coffee, and Sundays).

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