Thursday, September 06, 2007

DOGMATIC ATHEISTS

There is an interesting short article here which points out how dogmatic many atheists are -- probably more dogmatic than most Christians.

I myself have always wondered at that strange tendency among atheists. Many atheists sound very much like the fieriest of evangelical preachers. So rather than opposing dogma they are just putting up one dogma against another -- something religious people have been doing for centuries, of course.

I myself am as thoroughgoing an atheist as you will find but I have never seen any need to condemn religion or religious people. Most religions (though not all: Islam comes to mind) seem to be of great help to their believers and I am delighted that that is so. I just don't seem to have in me the hate that clearly drives many outspoken atheists to their paroxysms of abuse.

One small point that I would make about the article I have referenced concerns the idea that atheists characteristically subscribe to moral relativism. I think that is broadly true and it does make nonsense of the condemnations uttered by such atheists. How can they say religion is wrong while at the same time saying that there is no such thing as right and wrong?

I would stress, however, that there is no NECESSARY relationship between atheism and one's metaethics. I myself have set out at some length an account of right and wrong which rejects both mystical views of right and wrong and moral relativism. And I doubt that I am the only atheist who thinks that right and wrong exists and is important. Though you certainly don't hear much of such atheists -- which is why I am writing this. Someone has to speak up.

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The new antisemitism - same as the old antisemitism

Post below lifted from Right Truth. See the original for links

There's a new anti-semitism according to Denis MacShane in the Washington Post who says, "Hatred of Jews has reached new heights in Europe and many points south and east of the old continent." I agree with that. Here's the situation:
Our report showed a pattern of fear among a small number of British citizens -- there are around 300,000 Jews in Britain, of whom about a third are observant -- that is not acceptable in a modern democracy. Synagogues attacked. Jewish schoolboys jostled on public transportation. Rabbis punched and knifed. British Jews feeling compelled to raise millions to provide private security for their weddings and community events. On campuses, militant anti-Jewish students fueled by Islamist or far-left hate seeking to prevent Jewish students from expressing their opinions.

More worrisome was what we described as anti-Jewish discourse, a mood and tone whenever Jews are discussed, whether in the media, at universities, among the liberal media elite or at dinner parties of modish London. To express any support for Israel or any feeling for the right of a Jewish state to exist produces denunciation, even contempt.

Nothing about that really sounds new or different. Jews have always been persecuted, hated, and yes, murdered. But here is the difference as Mr. MacShane sees it:
The old anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism have morphed into something more dangerous. Anti-Semitism today is officially sanctioned state ideology and is being turned into a mobilizing and organizing force to recruit thousands in a new crusade -- the word is chosen deliberately -- to eradicate Jewishness from the region whence it came and to weaken and undermine all the humanist values of rule of law, tolerance and respect for core rights such as free expression that Jews have fought for over time.

Is that really new? Is it? I'm asking, because I personally don't see it as something new and different. People are simply bolder, more outspoken about their racism and hatred these days. With internet, mass media, and other forms of communication -- news travels quickly. For example, Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad can say Israel should be wiped off the map, and within seconds anyone in the world with a television or internet connection hears his comments. Hatred of Israel is simply out of the closet and in the high speed world we live in.

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ELSEWHERE

"The Guardian" really is disgusting. They have here an absolute hymn of praise to the murderous thug Che Guevara.

I like this: "Journalist (Piers Morgan) Who Mocked Bush As "Idiot" For Falling Of Segway Falls Off Segway, Breaking Three Ribs"

The Israel-Bashing Club: "Israel is an apartheid state," was the most often-heard charge, closely followed by calls for a boycott. The West should cut its economic ties with the Jewish state, the speakers urged, and engage the "democratically elected" Islamists now running Gaza. No, this was not a Hamas rally somewhere in the Palestinian territories. This was Brussels, where the European Parliament last week played host to the "United Nations International Conference of Civil Society in Support of Israeli-Palestinian Peace." If the conference title's inversion of the truth is reminiscent of Communist-style propaganda, this is no coincidence. The meeting was organized by the U.N. Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, a Soviet-era body founded around the time of the 1975 U.N. "Zionism is racism" resolution."

Israeli economy booms louder than intifada: "The Israeli economy is ablaze. The very hotels, malls, restaurants, theaters, travel agencies, car dealerships and construction sites that earlier this decade stood eerily empty while terror raged in the streets are now brimming with customers, turnovers and profits. Data released last week by the Central Bureau of Statistics indicates that GDP soared 6.6 percent during the first half of the year; since 2002, unemployment has dropped from 10.9% to 7.5%; household spending on durable goods skyrocketed 36%; inflation stood at 1.1%; interest rates sank below the US Federal Reserve's level; and the shekel's dollar value swelled 20% this decade."

German Left make the American Left look honest: "The Chairwoman of the German branch of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW) - Angelika Claussen - was recently interviewed on "Kulturzeit" a program on the German state-sponsored television channel "3sat". When asked to comment on the danger of nuclear terrorism, Claussen characterized the 9/11 terror attacks on the World Trade Center as mere "airplane accidents" and "airplane crashes." To compound the problem, the interviewer - Dieter Moor - did nothing to challenge Ms. Claussen's outrageous statements. [If you watch the video, she looks as nutty as she sounds, doctor though she may be]

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN.

List of backup or "mirror" sites here or here -- for readers in China or for everyone when blogspot is "down" or failing to update. Email me here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here or here or here

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"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here and here.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party".

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1 comment:

Dana said...

On the religious nature of the attitude of certain atheists:

I think it was Hegel's student and Marx/Engels most ardent contemporary foe Max Stirner who best set out the notion that most "atheists" were in fact religious zealots who merely replaced "God" with ideas, like "The Spirit of Man" or "Brotherhood", and then proceeded to act as religious fanatics adhering to their new god accordingly.

The common "atheist" is, in my view, actually just a mystic who not rejects SOLELY the Judeo-Christian god--usually in favor of 10 other brands of mystical and ideological bs (like Yoga and Communism), but is in fact ANGRY at "God" for something in his childhood. Angry-at-God atheists don't seem to be able to forgive the God they were raised on for denying them solace, physical wants, consistency, world peace--whatever they felt he lacked as they lost their faith in him.

Because atheism attends high IQ and very often so does oversocialization and high conscientiousness, these atheists also can't forgive THEMSELVES for having desires the God they were raised on abhorred or for being angry at him for failing. They are like the children of narcissistic parents finally growing up to discover those parents have feet of clay.

If you truly reject ALL mysticism, whether ideological or religious, you are unlikely to become exercised by expressions of religious belief, or to see them as a threat to your tenuous, angry , childish worldview.

Eric Hoffer expressed it well when he said "The opposite of the religious fanatic is not the fanatical atheist but the gentle cynic who cares not whether there is a god or not."