Why Can't We All Just Get Along?

by AK - Jeff 39 Replies latest jw experiences

  • bohm

    I was being ironic -- i think the article make a really good point and its a pity some put it through the semantic schredder. It is unfortunate secularism is being associated with non-theism by some, since it is really the neutral position.

  • bohm

    In the spirit of inter-faith coorporation, I wonder if there are some christians here who will join me in on being intensely hostile to Krishna which none of us believe in?

    Since the concept of being unfriendly for something i dont think exist is somewhat new on me, i could use some instructions -- do I blame krishna for not existing, or blame krishna for not having done the bad things I believe he has not done, or blame krishna for being made up by followers which I disagree with or do I dislike krishna for not bestowing the favors onto me that I do not believe he bestow onto his followers?

    Or do I simply hate krishna for the things I do not believe he will do to me?


    Can i blame santa for not giving me an X-Box?

  • AK - Jeff
    AK - Jeff

    Funny shit, bohm. Good illustration. I suppose it is hard for believers to fathom the idea that atheists have nothing against God [or Krishna], in fact I would welcome proof of his existence, but it is never offered to me.

    Sorry I did not catch the satire in your first post - sometimes TiC comes across poorly on the forum, for obvious reasons.

    Hope you get the XBox. [Please Krishna bring him one]


  • PSacramento

    We do get along, most of the time, LOL !

    I have a few atheist friends and we get along great, bacially because non eof us decide to "pigeon hole" the other with OUR views of what we THINK they are.

    They respect abd admire my beliefs as I do theirs.

    We argue, we debate, we reason and we laugh, we are friends and I love them.

    As I do my "friends" here on this forum.

    You guys challenge my beliefs and make me a better person because of it, you make we reason and make me question and opne my eyes and I hope that I do the same for you.

    We make each other better people.

    For that I love you guys and have nothing but respect for you :)

  • AGuest

    Greetings (and good morning), dear AK-Jeff... and, again, peace to you! I realize that this might one of those "atheists are the only ones with some sense and so the only ones who really need to respond" threads, but given (1) that you seem to be trying to make an attempt for "believers" and "non believers" to... well, I'm not sure, but it seems like "agree to disagree" (?)... which I think is wonderful (although recent threads took issue with that result, as well)... and (2) as dear Poppers (peace to you) pointed out, you DID invite comment... and (3) this is a "discussion" board and I, too, personally like to discuss matters from time to time... I'm going to continue, if I may, in an attempt, maybe, to help YOU "see" where I'm coming from, as a believer. Maybe... maybe not. We'll have to see.

    First, though, my apologies for giving you credit for the comments. I did realize that the comments were from "Wendy" but I assumed you agreed with them (hence, the inclusion), so I attributed them to your "position", as I stated. I then forgot that they were actually "Wendy's" and should have directed my comments to her "position." I didn't, so I apologize. Okay, then.

    I feel compelled to state that normally, I wouldn't be bothered to get into anything other than a cursory discussion with an atheist (or some believers, for that matter). I do not say that with any modicum of sarcasm, but only truth. I realize that there is such a chasm between what we do and do not believe that often there isn't much point in discussing things. Usually, someone ultimately gets frustrated because their "position" isn't shared (often more than because it isn't understood). It's rarely me because, and again, I truly do NOT mean sarcasm or chiding, but only truth... I don't really care. Please don't take that the wrong way - my not caring is tantamount to your not caring about, say, Mormons, generally. Just not usually on the radar. I know some think making a statement like that is... "wrong"... but I have learned that saying what's "right" isn't always the truth... and sometimes, truth is best. But that's all - absolutely no offense intended, so I hope you take none.

    I agree with the author (and perhaps you), here, that there really is no reason why the two can't get along. Note, I believe that. Me, a believer. I realize also, however, that MOST who consider themselves to be believers don't believe that. But nor do many atheists. Both tend to consider themselves at opposite ends of the poles and so, like positive and negative, tend to repel each other. Atheists believe there is no god. "Believers" believe that their particular brand of religion is the only "way." While I do believe Christ is the only way for his BODY, I do not believe that is the same for ALL of mankind, which I have posted on many, many occasions. I believe that others of mankind will also benefit, but not because they have faith in Christ, per se.

    Where I, a believer, get confused as to atheists comes when statements like the following are made:

    Believers act just like that - but how upset would they be if atheists were doing so, if atheists were in the majority and acted that way?

    Like the author of your article, you... and many atheists... and certainly most here on JWN... tend to generalize. You don't look at the individual and his/her beliefs, but at the group you call "believers." It would seem to me, however, that the atheist intellect would say that it is actually folly to do that. True, most follow group thinking. But not all. I certainly wouldn't be upset... any more than I am upset with "believers" to may act that way. But for the reason that such actions aren't really on my radar. I choose to close my mind and heart to it because it truly doesn't have any bearing on what I believe. Other than my belief "to each his own."

    When you close your mind to that truth, however, that not all believers act that way... or would be upset if atheists act that way... it seems to ME that you're doing exactly what you accuse "believers" of doing. And all while you yourselves are part of group thinking. If I could say there is any reason for me NOT to think as an atheist, therefore... besides my belief that there indeed a God... it would be the hypocrisy. Because I have found that WHEREVER there is even a modicum of hypocrisy... there is also a lot more falsehood. Somewhere. To some extent/degree. That whole, "a little leaven ferments the entire lump" thing. I realize I have not lived as long as some, but I have lived long enough to know that hypocrisy is nothing more than a cover for lies and falsehood. Truth is pure... and without hypocrisy.

    So, for this "believer" is it such hypocrisy that not only tells me to run... but literally pushes me away. IMHO, it is "unclean"... and no different than the "dirt" of the "believers" you all are concerned with. Neither are attractive to me any longer.

    I suppose it is hard for believers to fathom the idea that atheists have nothing against God [or Krishna],

    Again, a generalization. The truth is that is isn't hard for me, at least as to those atheists who truly walk that talk. Here on JWN that isn't always the case. Surely, you cannot make such a blanket statement, giving all of the chiding, ridiculing, misspelling/pronouncing of "God's" name, wrathful challenges to "Him", nasty remarks, harassing, and other "activity"... all "against" God... that goes on here. It would seem to ME that one who has nothing "against" another would find no reason to do such things. But in watching the conduct of some atheists, I am more reminded of the mentally of the WTBTS than by any other means. Truly. I understand that not all atheists here do such things, but you have to admit, several do. Many do. Like JWs, however, they don't "see" it. And so, just like the differing "beliefs" between "believers" about "God" confuses you all... the differing... ummmm... statements, challenges, and conduct coming from "nonbelievers" confuses me.

    I think, though, that just as with SOME "believers," SOME atheists are very contentious and actually like the "fight." It's what gets them up in the morning. But, IMHO, if your belief... or lack of belief... causes you to treat others poorly, and on a regular basis, I personally see no difference. I personally don't want to be a part of either group. Now, some might say that pointing out fallacies is not "treating others poorly." I would agree. I would also say, however, that HOW those fallacies are pointed out can very well be construed as treating others poorly. And if not poorly, then I would say with great puerility, which is off-putting.

    So I would say that I believe it is upon atheists... as well as "believers"... to try and get along. But not only as groups; as individuals, as well. We all have to live on this planet together... and will do either until what believers believe will occur... or what science may say will. Personally, my position is that if you don't know how to treat people (i.e., as you wish to be treated)... including how you talk to/with/about them... I don't really care what your beliefs are... or aren't. I don't want to be part of them. Indeed, if someone came to me this very day, told me that they had received holy spirit... and then walked on water to prove it... while at the same time treating others ill, unkind, and unmerciful... I would tell that one, "You know, good for you. GREAT for you, actually. But it's not for ME." And walk away. I truly would. Whatever it is they "have"... I don't really "want."

    As a believer, I personally don't have a problem getting along with atheists. Or anyone, for that matter. My friends run the gamut. I know people of virtually every religion and I love and like them all. I know people of no religion and I love/like them, too. On the other hand, I know people who heavily ensconced in religion that I don't like at all (although I try to have love for) and the same with some who don't have a religion or belief in [a] God. I mean, so long as they at least make an attempt to get along with ME... it's all good, IMHO. I have absolutely nothing "against" such ones. I truly do not need anyone to agree with me. My convictions are not based on corroboration by others. If, however, they continually show themselves to be my... well, I guess the only way to say it is personal "enemy"... mine and not just my beliefs... then I can't see how we COULD get along. Because that says, to ME, that THEY don't want to. And far it be it from ME to try and make anyone believe... or do... what they don't want to.

    I know this is a lot but it is truly born of my attempt to "get along." Because I don't want it said, when it all shakes out, that I didn't try. I did. Many times. This is yet another. But, unless the mutual respect is natural... which it doesn't seem to be between [some] atheists and [some] believers, at least on this Board, getting along may have to start with some kind of mutual understanding, tolerance, and acceptance, just based on the fact that we are fellow human beings and regardless of what we believe... or don't believe.

    I bid you peace!

    A believing slave of Christ,


  • tec
    Believers act just like that - but how upset would they be if atheists were doing so, if atheists were in the majority and acted that way?

    Okay, I know you made the comment that certain believers attributed the article to you (I did not think I did, by the way, but rather discussed the content), but I don't think it matters. Because by this statement above, you show that you do agree with what I talked about, which was the generalization. As a believer, I don't act the way that the atheists in that video were parodying believers. So I couldn't comment on the video, because it just seemed silly to me - no offense to those who enjoyed it. I understand that there are believers who are like that. There are also atheists who aren't humanists at all, or for peace, and who are very angry for whatever other reason... but that doesn't mean that all atheists are that way.

    Neither are all believers the way that video pokes fun. To believe otherwise (on either side) tends to invite us all to not get along.


  • tec
    I suppose it is hard for believers to fathom the idea that atheists have nothing against God

    Sorry, just reading page two now. Thought I would answer this with: "No, it is not hard to fathom. How can you be angry with something you do not believe exists? However, there are a few who might claim to be atheists, might even think that they are, but who are angry at God. But definitely not all."



    Why Can't We All Just Get Along?

    The Christians on this forum have always treated me with kindness, to a point where I began to feel remorse for being objectionable, just to entertain myself. This has compromised the gladiator in me and compelled me to stop seeking conflict for its own sake. Of course if everyone were to go soft in the middle, many important issues would not be debated and thrashed out in front of the cheering crowd.

    Getting along could become boring. That would spoil all the fun and the forum would become like a Roman arena with no gladiators, just pussycats. Personally I think that controversial matters should be debated by those that feel the need to. This helps to clarify viewpoints and can be part of a healing process for many here. No-one makes us take part, we can be spectators whenever we choose.

    Each of us needs to ask our-self what our motive for posting a comment is. What are we seeking to achieve or gain? Of course our reasons can change in time as we grow and develop. We need to be aware of what may really be causing our anger or outrage. Showing empathy and respect for others can help to neutralise negative feelings that we may suffer from.

  • AK - Jeff
    AK - Jeff

    "No, it is not hard to fathom. How can you be angry with something you do not believe exists? However, there are a few who might claim to be atheists, might even think that they are, but who are angry at God. But definitely not all."


    Here is what I think is part of that overall problem: When one is moving toward rational atheism, but is not there entirely, he may in fact sense anger toward the god-concept to a point, since he finds no other target upon which to vent his frustration with having been deceived for so long. I speak here from personal experience. The process of rejecting 'faith' in favor of 'rational skepticism' is dynamic rather than static. As one moves through the continuum he does not hit [or at least I did not] a single moment that defines a move from having faith to being an atheist. In other words, I did not leave faith one day, and adopt atheism the next. It was a long process. One that at times is filled with competing emotional ups and downs, denial, frustrations, over-thinking, under-thinking, subjective processing.

    I vacilated, intermittently, between all sorts of 'terms' to describe where I was headed. Even now, having landed in a comfortable place for the moment, many terms can be applied to the hat[s] I wear in life. Sometimes 'skeptic' fits. Sometimes 'agnostic'. Sometimes 'secular humanist'. Most of the time I have resolved to simply label myself 'atheist'.

    I do think that many believers are able to grasp this transition in it's varied colors. That is what I meant - not that believers cannot understand at all - but that they see our transitory anger and frustration as pointed at God, when in fact it is [or was for me] more directed toward the institutions and culture who hype the opiate from which we have escaped addiction. Hence, they sometimes take it personally, for to them it is affrontal to their deity, when it is likely not so directed intentionally by the new atheist.


  • BizzyBee
    I was being ironic -- i think the article make a really good point and its a pity some put it through the semantic schredder.

    Just have to say: if ever there was a discussion that warrants a close examination of the semantics involved, this is it.

    Carry on.

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