Atheism Must Become Anti-Theism

Although good folks can disagree, some matters are of too great a sociological and political importance, and one of those matters is theism. This is not some innocuous, vaguely beneficial pastime for the vast majority of the world’s thinkers – theism, and its religious incarnation, is inherited from the primitive practice of haruspicy, the studying of chicken entrails for specious symbolism. From that irrational, utterly vacuous start, has come all of the faith traditions of the allegedly civilized world. And along with this follow-the-leader nonsense, the social toleration of arrant projection and staggering illogic, comes the other side’s accommodationism – the look-the-other-way, find-the-good-in-people, the unsaid avoidance, the uncommunicative smile while the believer goes off into gasbag pomposity.

And of course, it so much mor ethan this – religion becomes tribalism so “ewish” people imagine themselves fundamentally different and opposed to “Arab” people, “Christians” estranged from he common humanity of  “Muslims,” in complete rejection of the science that establishes our species-wide  transcendent unity of action and purpose.

Yet late-stage modernity, a fractious band of individualistic consumer-antagoniats, has no real sense of epic survival, so it persists in allowing irrationality home in its families, in its marriages, in its institutions. Rather than initiate potentially ungovernable social problems, we let so much nonsense, inanity, unsupportable claptrap go unchallenged – from our parents, in our prison-like schools, in our kindergarten-like workplaces, from our insane preachers and “thought-leaders.” With the advent of climate change, and the dissolution of political progress, and the rampaging effects of the greed Gold Rush from the world’s rich, the time for meek and protective unconcern is over – social reality is going to shudder and list as the doleful effects of so much irrationalism-inspired misrule. Life will become much more serious, and there will be much more consequence for getting matters right, as right as our rational faculties will allow, not for chicken-entrail blithering and heedless patting-of-them on the head. No French Revolution-style violence need eventuate – ahti-theist social shaming should do the trick.

8 Comments

  1. Hey thanks for commenting on my blog.

    Okay…so you wrote:

    “Although good folks can disagree, some matters are of too great a sociological and political importance, and one of those matters is theism. This is not some innocuous, vaguely beneficial pastime for the vast majority of the world’s thinkers – theism, and its religious incarnation, is inherited from the primitive practice of haruspicy, the studying of chicken entrails for specious symbolism. From that irrational, utterly vacuous start, has come all of the faith traditions of the allegedly civilized world.”

    Explain to me how pagan entrail omen reading is the basis for theism? I mean if you think theism just means whatever is not materialist atheism then in some ways this could make sense but the worldviews that held that sort of superstitious omen reading in high regard were essentially eviscerated of their fundamental content (in the west at least) and filled with Christian theistic (or at least Classical theism) content which is what has made science, etc possible. And in their original forms most non Abrahamic faiths would not characterize themselves as theists (at least not the way the word is used today, I mean the Romans called Jews and Christians atheists since they were against the gods). Christians have always worked against things like entrail omen reading because the scriptures teach that the world is fundamentally rational and knowable since Yahwehmade it orderly & lawful and made us in his image to interact with the world in a rational way. This is the basis of the western intellectual tradition, not the enlightenment (most of the historical sociological evidence suggests that without the scriptural worldview western civilization would have been impossible, the idea that it’s due to Greek & Roman philosophy or the enlightenment can pretty much be shown to be a myth on par with the myth that people used to believe the world was flat). So I just don’t see the connection here, unless you’re just using theism carelessly. I mean your writing & thinking style is clearly very careless, your posts are mostly emotive screeds. There’s certainly a place for that and I think you’re doing it self consciously as a means of bombastic rhetoric, which is find it’s just not truth conducive (which I’m pretty sure you know). But you really do seem to think that something like theism is based in superstition rather than rationality so I think it’s likely that you don’t really have a good working definition of theism because in several places on this blog you refer to the “god” of theistic belief as if he were either part of the material order or contained within it. And to be fair that’s just fallacious straw manning (unless you’re referring to the incarnation, but it didn’t seem to me as if you were) because classical or Christian theists have never claimed God was physical (except in the incarnation but christological logic is pretty far afield from this particular problem). So it seems to me that you need to provide some kind of historical argument showing that the scriptures taught entrail reading was the fundamental basis of the Abrahamic religions (since you claimed that was the basis of all Theism) or that your use of the word theism is not actually a convenient straw man. The first one isn’t possible so it would be good to see you admit you were wrong or merely being “hyperbolic” and there really isn’t any way to do the second one either…so I’ll be interested in your response because I don’t see how you can get out of this without just admitting you are intentionally abfuscating the facts or really didn’t understand “theism” and just admit you were wrong.

    The only thing I can think of that would come close to omen reading in the scriptures is either casting lots or the Urim & Thummim but those were nothing like entrail reading, more like all things being equal flip a coin or roll a die to make a decision. In fact stories like Gideon laying out a fleece to discern God’s will are quite clearly anti omen reading if read in their narrative context. Sadly my Christian tradition is not great at narrative reading so that particular story was usually used inappropriately.

    Thanks again for interacting.

    1. Thanks for the lengthy response – actually, all of the writing at Fun Social Nihilism is “truth conducive.”
      Etiolgy is always a tricky business – done badly almost all of the time.
      Entrail-reading was the precursor to the irrational theism of the Christianity cult, and is thus deeply embedded within its current absurd practices – reading “prayer” as divine intercession, reading death as an exit to divine ascendance, all this spurious reading of material reality as suggestive of supernatural governance.
      Wow, it must be exhausting to be a Christian into this ancient nonsense. If you need a historical argument, consult the excellent atheist sources like Robert Price, the John Loftus edited “the Christian Delusion,” or the current and back issues of “Free Inquiry.” Unfortunately, this degreeof historical command bespeaks a functioning adult life lost to the stupefying vagaries of pre-Enlightenment irrational cultism, and there is so much better to be done outside of these confines, and for that, consult Fun Social Nihilism – as much as possible.

      1. You wrote:

        “Thanks for the lengthy response – actually, all of the writing at Fun Social Nihilism is “truth conducive.””

        This just seems false to me. I thought you were being careless on purpose, thank you for clarifying.

        You wrote:

        “Etiolgy is always a tricky business – done badly almost all of the time.”

        Yes. But because of the way you’re using that term it just proves that your writing isn’t truth conducive for at least two reasons:

        1. Question begging that Theism is a disease
        2. And you’ve committed the genetic fallacy…sort of by begging the question that Theism is caused by a disease I guess, this is exactly what I was taking about: uncareful thinking

        You wrote:

        “Entrail-reading was the precursor to the irrational theism of the Christianity cult, and is thus deeply embedded within its current absurd practices – reading “prayer” as divine intercession, reading death as an exit to divine ascendance, all this spurious reading of material reality as suggestive of supernatural governance.”

        You are correct that entrail reading occurred before the development of Christianity. It occurred during the last 2 thousand years…it occurs today. You haven’t shown a connection, I mean cite a source or something I can read. By that logic I can easily prove that all scientific knowledge was a direct product of Christianity…or farting, since farting has gone on before science, during science, and after science. Give evidence don’t assert things that are easily disproven and illogical.

        Saying theism is irrational doesn’t make it irrational. Make an argument. This is just screed.

        Christianity and Judaism were markedly different from the religions that surrounded them, there were numerous similarities as well but not in regards to reading omens. That sort of thing was punishable by death under the Laws of ancient Israel. Most Protestants are under the assumption that the Catholic cult of the saints was produced by Roman syncretism but Peter Brown proved in his excellent “The Cult of the Saints” there was little syncretism involved, in fact many of the factors that produced this aspect of Christianity were markedly counter cultural and deeply based in specifically Christian theology.

        Divine intercession is radically different from omen reading. This is pretty easy to show, just compare the two.

        The point about death is interesting because most Christians have terrible eschatology. What you described really is more platonic/gnostic/Hindu. If you’re interested I can point you to some resources.

        The final thing there is just more uncareful question begging.

        You wrote:

        “Wow, it must be exhausting to be a Christian into this ancient nonsense.”

        Irrelevant.

        You wrote:

        “If you need a historical argument, consult the excellent atheist sources like Robert Price, the John Loftus edited “the Christian Delusion,” or the current and back issues of “Free Inquiry””

        The Christ Myth theory huh? Read these books:

        http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1894667719/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=1894667719&linkCode=as2&tag=drmicsheihom-20&linkId=JMF3VQKUU4D7XIH6

        https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/0802863906/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1477258885&sr=8-1&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=richard+bauckham&dpPl=1&dpID=51%2B4U1bmHOL&ref=plSrch

        Check out these links:

        http://rightreason.org/2012/does-richard-carrier-exist/

        I can give more if you want more. Price’s work is so remarkably bad I’m confused as to how anyone is convinced by it. But I’m willing to do a public debate with you. Proving Jesus existed and also proving that the resurrection is a historical event is relatively easy, there’s at least 7 different independent sources for it. Most historical events have 1 source in the ancient world, 2 is considered excellent. That all aside I know Price doesn’t even believe that entrail reading is a formative part of Christianity. I’ll email him and see what he says, but that idea seems like fringe of the fringe to me.

        You wrote:

        “Unfortunately, this degreeof historical command bespeaks a functioning adult life lost to the stupefying vagaries of pre-Enlightenment irrational cultism, and there is so much better to be done outside of these confines, and for that, consult Fun Social Nihilism – as much as possible.”

        I don’t really understand what you’re saying here, I mean it’s obvious you’re calling me an idiot again but that’s all I’m getting from it. In any case let me know if you want to do a public debate. I don’t know where you live but I’m sure we can figure out a way to do it through YouTube or something.

        Thanks for the interchange.

  2. You wrote:

    “Thanks for the lengthy response – actually, all of the writing at Fun Social Nihilism is “truth conducive.””

    This just seems false to me. I thought you were being careless on purpose, thank you for clarifying.

    You wrote:

    “Etiolgy is always a tricky business – done badly almost all of the time.”

    Yes. But because of the way you’re using that term it just proves that your writing isn’t truth conducive for at least two reasons:

    1. Question begging that Theism is a disease
    2. And you’ve committed the genetic fallacy…sort of by begging the question that Theism is caused by a disease I guess, this is exactly what I was taking about: uncareful thinking

    You wrote:

    “Entrail-reading was the precursor to the irrational theism of the Christianity cult, and is thus deeply embedded within its current absurd practices – reading “prayer” as divine intercession, reading death as an exit to divine ascendance, all this spurious reading of material reality as suggestive of supernatural governance.”

    You are correct that entrail reading occurred before the development of Christianity. It occurred during the last 2 thousand years…it occurs today. You haven’t shown a connection, I mean cite a source or something I can read. By that logic I can easily prove that all scientific knowledge was a direct product of Christianity…or farting, since farting has gone on before science, during science, and after science. Give evidence don’t assert things that are easily disproven and illogical.

    Saying theism is irrational doesn’t make it irrational. Make an argument. This is just screed.

    Christianity and Judaism were markedly different from the religions that surrounded them, there were numerous similarities as well but not in regards to reading omens. That sort of thing was punishable by death under the Laws of ancient Israel. Most Protestants are under the assumption that the Catholic cult of the saints was produced by Roman syncretism but Peter Brown proved in his excellent “The Cult of the Saints” there was little syncretism involved, in fact many of the factors that produced this aspect of Christianity were markedly counter cultural and deeply based in specifically Christian theology.

    Divine intercession is radically different from omen reading. This is pretty easy to show, just compare the two.

    The point about death is interesting because most Christians have terrible eschatology. What you described really is more platonic/gnostic/Hindu. If you’re interested I can point you to some resources.

    The final thing there is just more uncareful question begging.

    You wrote:

    “Wow, it must be exhausting to be a Christian into this ancient nonsense.”

    Irrelevant.

    You wrote:

    “If you need a historical argument, consult the excellent atheist sources like Robert Price, the John Loftus edited “the Christian Delusion,” or the current and back issues of “Free Inquiry””

    The Christ Myth theory huh? Read these books:

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1894667719/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=1894667719&linkCode=as2&tag=drmicsheihom-20&linkId=JMF3VQKUU4D7XIH6

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/0802863906/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1477258885&sr=8-1&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=richard+bauckham&dpPl=1&dpID=51%2B4U1bmHOL&ref=plSrch

    Check out these links:

    http://rightreason.org/2012/does-richard-carrier-exist/

    I can give more if you want more. Price’s work is so remarkably bad I’m confused as to how anyone is convinced by it. But I’m willing to do a public debate with you. Proving Jesus existed and also proving that the resurrection is a historical event is relatively easy, there’s at least 7 different independent sources for it. Most historical events have 1 source in the ancient world, 2 is considered excellent. That all aside I know Price doesn’t even believe that entrail reading is a formative part of Christianity. I’ll email him and see what he says, but that idea seems like fringe of the fringe to me.

    You wrote:

    “Unfortunately, this degreeof historical command bespeaks a functioning adult life lost to the stupefying vagaries of pre-Enlightenment irrational cultism, and there is so much better to be done outside of these confines, and for that, consult Fun Social Nihilism – as much as possible.”

    I don’t really understand what you’re saying here, I mean it’s obvious you’re calling me an idiot again but that’s all I’m getting from it. In any case let me know if you want to do a public debate. I don’t know where you live but I’m sure we can figure out a way to do it through YouTube or something.

    Thanks for the interchange.

  3. Sorry for posting that twice, I thought I made a mistake the first time. Seriously though let me know if you’d like to do a debate, I think it could be really fun and beneficial.

  4. Great idea, wrong person – we are social nihilists here, after all, and a debate cannot be had by one side repeatedly just shaking its head, going “No, no, there’s no evidence for that,” or “No, no, that’s just preposterous – what need is there to talk any further about that?”
    There was a debate once with some Cardinal Archbishop or something, from Australia I believe, with the befrocked moron was issuing some blithering inanity about evolution to Richard Dawkins, and the only sensible thing for Dawkins to do, beside the evident disgust he had with being on the same stage with such a hopeless fool, would to have gone over, taken off the man’s silly hat, and start cuffing him severely around the ears.
    No one should be permitted to think such foolishness is worthy of “debate.” Dawkins has issued intervening statements questioning his own need to get on the stage with dismal believerists, and he is right to wonder what happens when you ally your good name with folks who are qualified adepts in their own ill-chosen field, but who have no claim on public rationality.
    A debate must have a mutual language, and a common focus, but there would be very little to talk about, as you can see from the hard-hitting language that social nihilists employ.
    Perhaps you’ll get a debate partner, and then can you lay down your mystical chords, and who knows what’ll eventuate?

  5. Hehe, i figured you’d say something like that…well actually I thought it would be longer and even more vitriolic, I almost feel disappointed.

    That’s a convenient response, since you haven’t been able to respond to any of the arguments or evidence I’ve provided so I’m not surprised that you don’t want to debate. Especially given your reference to Dick Dawkins, the man so confident in his atheism that he won’t debate Double Dr. William Lane Craig.

    Actually I am surprised you don’t want to debate…do you remember a few days ago when you left this comment on my blog:

    “If you tag your post with “Atheism” and seem to want to argue with “skeptics,” you should know that you sound like a complete idiot. You are fully lost in your own incompetent ramblings.
    You should only try to talk to other idiots who might try to engage with you, so consider a) never posting again, or b) never posting with the tag “atheism.””

    That seems like considerable evidence to the contrary! Maybe you shouldn’t comment on people’s blogs if you aren’t interested in debate. I will say this for you: you are fun! You’re making this so easy! Lol

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