A Catholic with atheistic leanings

I love your site. I have to be honest, I read it (dare i use the word?) religiously. I am a firm beliver in tolerance and, although I am a “catholic” I hold some Atheist belifs. (Is that even possible. If the universe starts to unwind, pleas let me know.)

I read various far right and far left (I consider this the apittomy of the far left) websites and papers, and I try to comment honsetly on them all. Although, i tend to ignore people (Ann Coulter) who just yell. Your site, however, is a great take on life, from a very different standpoint.

I have one i question for you: What is your take on fundamentalism. I have had some difficulty finding anything on it (on your site, except for the hate mail, one of the primary reasons i read the site.) I find it disgusting. Waste your time on somthing else, instead of promoting wars, or screaming at the top of your lungs how jesus loves you all, people!

I critisize religion occasionally, for this reason: Man invented god (gasp), so therfore, man is more powerful than god (Gasp!), because man created religion to teach people how to live a moral life (uber gasp!) The people who jump up and down and say that moses parted the red sea, need to wake up and realize that that is a fable, just like Odysseus or Jason, and it is ment to be a story with a purpose.

The fundamentalist catholics (sending you vile hate mail) belive that Jesus was the son of god (ever notice how he is only mentioned in the bible) and that faith is a “uniquely christian concept.” (no, i did not make that up.) They dont scare me. They terrify me. They are like the people we fight in Iraq, but with a different god… and they dont blow up people.

I think you should checkout this site.

http://www.conservapedia.com/

It scares me. You want to see a group of right wing conservatives? They visit the homosexuality page more than the main page! Read the sysops pages…those are scary.

I thank you for putting up with my ramblings (at least someone will) and i think i will go have my midnight snack now.

Glad to have you aboard! I’d like to hear more about how one can be a Catholic with atheistic leanings! Personally, I call myself a moral atheist, meaning a person who has a moral philosophy that led to atheism. Since the moral philosophy came first, a person could certainly agree with much of what I believe without being an atheist.

Fundamentalism: If by fundamentalism you mean absolute unexamined belief in a religious system, then I think it’s one of the most dangerous things in existence. And when I say this, I am keeping in mind that there are fundamentalist atheists out there. Fundamentalists often have a sense of righteousness that leads them to look down on those who disagree with them or who even dare question them. Such a thing is far too close to fascism for my comfort.

I hasten to point out that one can be an evangelical Christian without being a fundamentalist. I often recommend the Stand to Reason podcast to those interested in thoughtful Christianity, and the host is a good example of a non-fundamentalist evangelical.

On another topic, I disagree with you when you say that humanity created religion to teach people how to live a moral life. I think it is more likely that the first religions were attempts to explain nature, and that moral laws arose more to keep populations in control or justify a specific point of view than specifically to spread morality. This is debatable, however.

I also disagree when you describe Moses parting the Red Sea as a fable. So far as I can see, the story was always intended to be taken literally.

I have had much less difficulty with fundamentalist Catholics than fundamentalist Protestants. Catholicism explicitly recognizes a possibility of going to heaven through works, which means that one can be “saved” even if one never hears about Jesus. This makes it inherently much more accepting and less potentially exclusionist than Protestantism.

As for the Web site you pointed to — I have visited it in the past, and I agree it’s scary. But it’s also a good example of why clear thought is worth fighting for.

Posted on March 28, 2008 at 10:24 am by ideclare · Permalink
In: Theology

4 Responses

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  1. Written by Scott Talbot
    on March 28, 2008 at 10:34 pm
    Reply · Permalink

    Just needed to drop a note in here about a pet peeve of mine: the muddying of our tongue: to wit the word fundamentalist.

    The word defines a person or group that insists upon a specific interpretation of their Holy Book and implies the following characteristics to those people:

    1. Rabid adherence to and faith in a rigid dogma
    2. Inflexibility
    3. Intolerance
    4. Illogic
    5. Anti-intellectualism

    Because Atheists have no Holy Book nor Dogma (note that I disagree with detractors that no book by R. Dawkins, C Hitchens, S. Harris et al are in any sense Holy, nor do they prescribe any particular dogma that any atheist must respect) therefore it is inappropriate (and confusing) to use this word to describe atheists.

    Of those characteristics, I personally have not witnessed an Atheist being Anti-Intellectual in fact the majority seem to be extremely well read ind intelligent themselves and generally encourage others to increase their knowledge (as you also have!)

    Also I have never read or spoken to an atheist whose logic I could fault, Though I am sure it is possible that some atheist somewhere might be. In truth we may all be suffering from some fancy delirium that we cannot detect(but I for one doubt it

    Inflexibility and or intolerance? Yeah who isn’t

    But I digress! When someone uses the term fundamentalist it would be helpful to better define how the person is acting if you could identify if a better adjective is used – Intolerant, militant, aggressive, belligerent etc.

  2. Written by ron
    on July 6, 2008 at 4:24 pm
    Reply · Permalink

    There is no way one can truly have clear thought if one’s mind is muddled and confused with the lies, promises, scare tactics, and all the other associated bullshit, of any religion, myth or superstition.

    I have never felt so free as when i finally threw off the childhood brainwashing regarding god and chrisianity. T hat is horrible stuff to pound into a child’s brain.

    There is no god, no demons, no heaven nor hell. The “saints” and “prophets” were and are delusional idiots, hungry for power and control over other people.

    Ron

  3. Written by Christine
    on July 8, 2008 at 11:42 am
    Reply · Permalink

    I would like to make a small correction to your comment about Catholic salvation through works. The Catholic faith does not include salvation through works alone, but through a combination of faith and works (as opposed to Protestants, who believe in salvation through faith alone). Baptism, in one of three forms, is required for salvation in the Catholic faith. The most typical of these is baptism by water, but they also acknowledge baptism by blood (martyrdom in the name of the Christian faith) and baptism by desire (an ardent wish to receive baptism) if the individual dies before they can be baptized in the normal fashion.

    Though I now consider myself an atheistic agnostic, I studied WAY too much detail on Catholic theology growing up… :)

  4. Written by Charity Woosley
    on July 18, 2008 at 11:38 am
    Reply · Permalink

    This person is the worst Catholic on the face of the planet. How could one possibly claim to be a Catholic and yet believe that man created God?

    Awesome. I love this site.

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