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Old 06-03-2013, 10:50 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
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I doubt that there is any special relationship between being mean and being an atheist. I lean more toward pathology of personality explanations. Whether someone is going to be a mean adult may well be established by the age of five. That person may or may not go on to be an atheist, and that decision might not take place until early adulthood or later.

I also don't think anyone decides to be a mean person, some combination of nature and nurture conspire to produce that result, but it was never a rational or deliberate goal. Atheism on the other hand is a rational process. No one gets hit by a beam of light and has a come-to-Einstein emotional conversion.

 
Old 06-03-2013, 11:48 PM
 
40,046 posts, read 26,730,521 times
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Default Why are some atheists so mean?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelDragon View Post
There are mean people in every sphere of life. There is nothing inherently mean about not believing in a deity.
THIS ^^^^^! There also is nothing inherently mean about believing in a deity.
 
Old 06-04-2013, 01:24 AM
 
39,035 posts, read 10,825,389 times
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Of course the blanket accusation in the OP is as unfair as an accusation that all Christians (or indeed muslims) are this ..or that..

People are all different and some really nice people can begin to look 'mean' when some areas of disagreements come up.

And of course, even if atheists tended to be more 'mean' than your average Christian fundamentalist, that would not do a darn thing to show that it was invalid.
 
Old 06-04-2013, 02:36 AM
 
7,802 posts, read 5,278,810 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vizio View Post
They are the ones who want to know if a person is intelligent, before they even want to know the person.
You think this is limited to atheism? It is not. Intellectual snobbery is not the purview of atheists.

In fact your thread has nothing to do with atheism at all. You are just trying to force it to be. Many people are fickle. Many people have criteria they want people to meet before they get to know that person. Some people want looks. Some people want money. Some people want conformity to fashion. Some people want big cars. Some people want people who can hold obscene amounts of alcohol. Some people want you to follow a certain football club. Some people want your skin to be a certain color or for you to be of a certain race.

Congratulations, you have entered the real world and realized human beings are often fickle and judgmental.

Limited to atheists or atheism however it is not.

I could go to the Christianity forum and start a thread "Why are some Christians pedophile child rapists and pederasts" too. It would be disingenuous and dishonest to do so. The answer is obvious. It is because some PEOPLE are pedophile child rapists and pederasts" and since Christians are people... some of them are going to fit the bill.

So why are SOME atheists mean? Because SOME people are mean and atheists are people too.... despite some prominent Christians suggesting that atheists are less than human.
 
Old 06-04-2013, 03:20 AM
 
Location: South Africa
5,563 posts, read 6,318,716 times
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On internet forums, we lack other stimuli and thus are limited to text on the screen. What some may post may emanate from more than just a thought, there is perhaps a whole history behind that thought we will not be aware of.

What I have noticed is that non believers tend to try hard to justify their positions, long posts and links and then the theists dismiss this in a reply seconds afterwards. Well if one is not going to consider the other persons attempt of presenting supporting data, then it quickly gets down to mud slinging.

A RL conversation probably would not even cover topics like religion and w/o your bible site ready or the counter sites data, the topic will be short discussed.

I recall one of my clients was talking and we got onto religion and she asked me where I go to church. I said I am an atheist. I could have just have well said you are a delusional fool or I am an agent of satan considering her response to that simple sentence.

Atheists are threat to believers as most of us have been on the other side of the fence. Perhaps there is an inherent fear that theists will lose their faith if they read too much of what we post, we do tend to come over more logical and have better arguments which is simply dismissed as intellectualism as if that is a bad thing.

We atheists see you folk trapped in a mindset that is not healthy. Sometimes the words we choose may be not the best we can choose but to prove my point, we shall see what type of response this 10 minute post will illicit...
 
Old 06-04-2013, 05:52 AM
 
39,035 posts, read 10,825,389 times
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" Perhaps there is an inherent fear that theists will lose their faith if they read too much of what we post,"

I am used to it now, but when I was first challenged to 'really read The Bible' and I produced a review or summary -in fact quite a thesis - I was astonished at the response. The response was to skim over what I had sent without actually stopping to read it and just picking up a few keywords that reminded the other chap of some Gospel passage which he then used as a pretty irrelevant mini -sermon as a response. It gobsmacked me a bit at the time.

Of course they will stoutly deny that they will never lose their faith. About half our number said the same thing, once. You and I know what is making them tick; me because I have seen it and you because you have been it.
 
Old 06-04-2013, 06:05 AM
 
Location: Sitting on a bar stool. Guinness in hand.
4,429 posts, read 5,668,960 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vizio View Post
In my life I have known Atheists I love to be around, and others I would avoid. The ones I avoid, the best way I would describe is trying to be smarter than everyone. They are the ones who want to know if a person is intelligent, before they even want to know the person.

What do you think?
I speak for myself.

Meanness level pre-coffee:

Baystater > Genghis Khan

Post coffee:

Baystater = Average New Englander

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelDragon View Post
I work for a woman who has her own church, has various missionaries and shelters, and has authored (some low-selling) books about the power of god in her life and her ability to overcome drug addiction.
I don't think I have ever met a more cold, calculating, racist, sexist, and vindictive person in all of my life! She is either a sociopath or a psychpath, I don't know the difference between the two. I have often wondered: What kind of monster would she be, if she didn't believe in god? Answer: She would be the same person!
There are mean people in every sphere of life. There is nothing inherently mean about not believing in a deity.
The Sociopath Next Door by Martha Stout - Reviews, Discussion, Bookclubs, Lists

Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us by Robert D. Hare - Reviews, Discussion, Bookclubs, Lists

I actually have recently taken an layman's interest in Psychopathy. Listened (audio book form) to these books. And from what I got. The terms Psychopath and Sociopath are often used interchangeable. But in general Psychopaths seem to be born with out the ability to feel empathy for others (regardless of environment they are brought up in.) The science in the books are a little dated with the latest book being published in 2005. And neither mentions the amygdala as a possible source of the condition.

Criminal Minds Are Different From Yours, Brain Scans Reveal | Neuroscience & Psychology of Criminal Minds & Psychopaths | LiveScience

Sociopaths on the other hand seem to be more created by their environment.

Granted let me just say I'm dumbing this down a bit. because there are other personality disorder etc. out there that look similar to these two psychological conditions. In any event I like both books very much and suggest I read (or listen) if one has the opportunity to do so.

Oh yes. Btw. If what they say in the books are correct.....then 1 in 25 people are born as Psychopaths. And most are not in jail. In fact they look and try to act like you and me. And some are actually very successful. Especially on wall street.

Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work - Paul Babiak, Robert D. Hare - Google Books

Quote:
Originally Posted by manderly6 View Post
Vegetarians aren't that mean. Now vegans, that is another story.
Da Truth.
 
Old 06-04-2013, 06:15 AM
 
Location: Middle of nowhere
20,332 posts, read 10,442,079 times
Reputation: 7964
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vizio View Post
In my life I have known Atheists I love to be around, and others I would avoid. The ones I avoid, the best way I would describe is trying to be smarter than everyone. They are the ones who want to know if a person is intelligent, before they even want to know the person.

What do you think?
Remind you of anyone?
 
Old 06-04-2013, 08:11 AM
 
Location: Northeastern US
14,191 posts, read 9,079,084 times
Reputation: 6079
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vizio View Post
In my life I have known Atheists I love to be around, and others I would avoid. The ones I avoid, the best way I would describe is trying to be smarter than everyone. They are the ones who want to know if a person is intelligent, before they even want to know the person.

What do you think?
I think that while there are genuinely nasty atheists, there's a strong tendency, particularly by literalist / fundamentalist believers, to mistake directness and matter of factness as rudeness and disagreement as personal attack.
 
Old 06-04-2013, 08:18 AM
 
39,035 posts, read 10,825,389 times
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I think it's even simpler than that. The apologists first tries to out- argue the atheist and gets roundly thumped - not because they are more intelligent, but simply because the evidence supports the atheist view - but the apologists supposes they are just misusing their intelligence in cunning arguments to twist the Truth.
The only recourse is to attack the suppose Intelligence as implying arrogance, superiority complex, thinking they are smarter than everyone else.

If the goddless are misled into such a supposition, it is only because most theist apologetics is so poor.
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