Positive Atheism Forum
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Why Do Atheists
Attack Only Christianity?

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From: Positive Atheism <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Sent: Tuesday 12 January 1999 2:13
To: Undisclosed.Recipients
Subject: PosAth -- Another Question for Youse

Here's a question I got several weeks ago. I'll let you have at it without prior comment from me. If you think any of this person's observations are false or unfair, I'll want to know what you think atheists can do to change the public perception of atheism.

Cliff Walker

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From: Wayne Aiken
Sent: Tuesday 12 January 1999 4:01
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Another Question for Youse

It is logical to expect that in any particular society, the bulk of any allowed criticism will be directed toward the religions in that society that are causing the most trouble, either through dominance or activism.

An examination of the body of atheist and freethought criticism, however, reveals that much material has indeed been written on various minority beliefs as well as religious belief in general. They are hardly "virtually ignored," but most material focuses on Christianity because it is the dominant and most troublesome belief system in this society.

Other societies do have their equivalents. Rationalist societies in India, for example, actively debunk gurus and witch-doctors in large public exhibitions. They also actively criticise Hindu and Islamic fundamentalists who create repressive government policies.

Its simply a fact of human nature that people are most concerned about what affects them most directly. People know more about the situations that immediately surround them. This shouldn't, however, be taken to mean that Western atheists are any less opposed to any other geographical flavor of superstition.

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From: ma pickle
Sent: Tuesday 12 January 1999 4:06
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Another Question for Youse

The question is posed: "Is there any reason why Christianity seems to be the biggest target of opposition while systems of belief such as Islam, Buddhism, Wiccan, and others are virtually ignored by Atheist opposition?"

Wiccans mind their own business and don't worry about your beliefs. Christianity is like Alcoholics Anonymous, always looking for recruits. Therefore they go after atheists since non-believers are a threat. They go after wiccans too. I do my best to stay away from Christians. Come to think of it I try to stay away from steppers too!.

Ingrid

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From: Nigel
Sent: Tuesday 12 January 1999 7:33
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Another Question for Youse

Cliff,

I probably wouldn't be much help. When I encounter someone who tells me I am depraved and going to hell because I don't believe in "their" god, I usually give them but a single chance to get away from me. My standard line is something like, "I'm not interested. Leave me alone or you are going to get hurt." A punch in the mouth, or twisting of an extremity has been known to follow if they insist on preaching. I've pretty much given up on reasoning with the idiots. It wasn't until I started participating on message boards that I fully realized how hopeless many of them are. Sometimes I think I can have a reasonable exchange with a Christian, only to find out that all he or she wants to do is either save a soul or toot their horn, and I find myself wishing I could reach out and slap them around.

On the other hand, maybe that's what they all need.

Sometimes you gotta grab 'em by the shoulders and shake the hell out of them before they realize that other people have the right not to be like them.

Nigel

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From: Jyoti Shankar
Sent: Tuesday 12 January 1999 12:41
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Another Question for Youse

Your quotes page looks nice. I like the fact that you have provided for no frames which is my favorite as well as separate anonymous and legal rulings.

Regarding the question about attacks on Christianity, I once had a policy [in India] that I would publish an attack on Islam if the writer was born to Moslems and an attack on Christianity if the writer was born to Christians. The majority attacked Hinduism. This was in India.

Atheists in Israel should attack Judaism. Atheists in Bangala Desh should attack Islam. In America, England and many European countries Chritianity is the State religion because of the majority behavior. If I attacked Hindusm here, most readers would think it irrelevant.

Obiously the questioner has not been to India where all the atheist organizations attack Hinduism mainly. I have lived 37 years in India and 22 years in US. I think India has more freedom of religion and freedom from religion than here.

Our approach will change when Christianity becomes a minority religion. Since all religions are equally superstitious, attacking the major religion will diminish the superstitious content of the nation wherever you are.

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From: Gorur Srinivasan
Sent: Tuesday 12 January 1999 16:34
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Atheism in India

I always wonder why the so called atheists target only the Hindu Religeon. They hardly comment on the nasty practices like female circumcision, Large scale(in millions) animal sacrifice for a (non-existant) God at Holy places prevelent in other religions. Is it because other reliogions are militant, the atheists are afraid to comment on them? If so, then it shows the hipocracy and the impotence of the so called atheists. This is particularly true of Indian atheists.

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From: LC and Larry Whittle
Sent: Tuesday 12 January 1999 18:13
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Another Question for Youse

I think Christianity is the biggest target for atheists because it's the biggest religious group. Western civilization is mainly Judeo-Christian, so it isn't surprising that most argument would revolve around what we know.

I don't think Wiccans make good targets for discussion, because so many of them have tolerant attitudes towards the beliefs of others. Christians and Muslims, the worst of them, tend to be very rigid, very black and white, very us and them - easy targets for anyone willing to stand there and pick holes in them.

Buddhists aren't really theists at all. Their philosophy doesn't really encompass a god. And maybe we (Americans?) are too ignorant about Buddhists to participate in a debate about it.

My Japanese grandfather was a Christian in a time when Christians were a definite minority in Japan. My mother was raised an Episcopalian, in Imperial Japan. She told me once there was never a problem with it, as far as discrimination, but most of their Japanese neighbors just thought them a little odd. That doesn't sound like a problem, but remember, Japan is a culture that values conforming.

Interesting to note here that Mom died as Buddhist. At least here in America she had that choice.

I think you also have to look at a culture's values concerning conflict, debate, dissention and the individual vs society. That might explain why in some places you see lots of conflict, and in others places you see very little. Is the lack of debate because there is tolerance? Or is the lack of debate because of apathy? Or is the lack of debate because it is seen as very bad manners?

LC Whittle

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From: James Call
Sent: Tuesday 12 January 1999 20:51
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Another Question for Youse

When believers and non-believers argue it is the believer who advances the argument. Non-believers, having no position of their own, of necessity merely point out inconsistencies in the believer's argument. So the character of the argument is shaped entirely by the believer, whether he be Christian, Hindu, etc. If American/European atheists are louder, or if atheistic barbs seem aimed more toward Christianity than to other religions, it may have something to do with the especially proselytizing nature of Christianity.

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From: John W. Olver
Sent: Wednesday 13 January 1999 0:19
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Another Question for Youse

Cliff,

I have never had faith in any religion. In my youth I realized that religion was a lot like money, both had been independently developed and come to serve very useful functions in most societies but although both were very important to human culture neither was a part of the natural world. For me, a person who felt more kinship with the natural universe than the culture of man, there would have to be something other than religion to explain my deep feelings of spirituality.

During most of the 40 years of my search for philosophical truth I have referred to myself as an atheist, a label which tells what I don't believe but says nothing about what I do believe. This troubled me, so in an effort to give form and substance to a material world philosophy, I made it my purpose during the past two years to try and find the heart of what I do believe and why these beliefs give me a strong moral grounding as well as a sense of self worth even though I am just another clump of matter. The following is a distillation of my thoughts and might help to explain an atheistic spiritualism.

What's the point of life?

The universe is eternal. Perhaps it will expand forever and grow cold and dark, perhaps collide with the spore of other big bangs, perhaps coalesce to form another singularity and a subsequent big bang. Regardless of what it does, something will still be here, either floating cold in the midst of nothingness, or proceeding with another cycle of material interactions. We have done marvelous things on this planet, we dominate it like an unstoppable plague, but no matter what we do, no matter how long we put off our extinction, we remain no more than a spark in the infinite life and times of the universe.

(So what's the point of life?)

Our observations seem to indicate that there is an end to the matter of this universe. What surrounds it? Are there other "universes" or does empty space just go on forever? It seems that space, be it filled with explosions on the scale of our universe or just emptiness, must be infinite. Our world is no more than a mote of dust amidst this enormity. It would be easy to conclude that there is no purpose to our existence. In my opinion that conclusion would be wrong.

(So what's the point of life?)

With the energy of the sun and the matter of the universe, Earth's incredibly complex biological system has built itself. Life has diversified into billions of forms and filled every available niche in the environment. Evolution has produced vicious predators and fish that pick nourishment from the teeth of those predators, a fungus that spreads for miles in the soil and animals like us, apes that can discern the mechanisms by which the universe functions.

(So What's the point of life?)

By our standards evolution is a very slow process. Tens of thousands, even millions of years might pass before conditions come about for a new species to branch from the old. Instructions for an organism's growth and development are stored in a set of molecules that occur in each cell of a living entity. Reproduction requires that these instructions be copied so that the next generation develops into the same type of organism as its parents. The copying mechanism is not always accurate. Most erroneous copies produce non-viable offspring, but every once in a very great while a minor error occurs that results in an organism that is slightly different from its parents and the difference proves to be advantageous. To get from the earliest forms of bacterial life to the tremendous complexity of life today has taken about 3.5 billion years. The process has produced eels, eagles, flies, fungi, and everything else that has ever lived on this planet. Of all these hundreds of millions of species only ours, as far as we know, can contemplate the workings and wonder of the universe.

(So what's the point of life?)

From cataclysmic collisions of galaxies to the cat on my lap there is no apparent end to the wonders of the universe. And we are one of the wonders. We are an expression of the universe through which it can look back upon itself. We weigh it and measure it and pick apart the reason of its workings. We deduce its past and conjecture its future, but even if we did none of these things, even if all we did was to observe and admire, our lives would have meaning, for we are each an instant of consciousness during which this infinite and eternal process of material interaction that is the universe can observe itself. Of all that has ever lived, of all the matter in the universe, only the small bit of matter that is our species can observe and reason. It is a rare opportunity and it is sacred. To waste this instant would be sinful.

John W. Olver

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From: Jonas S. Green
Sent: Wednessday 13 January 1999 3:09
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Another Question for Youse

I think it was John Stuart Mill who was quoted as saying "Finding no religion was based on fact and can not there for be true, I began to wonder about humanity trained to believe in error." (My emphasis, and I don't have the exact quote)

You have to remember that Christianity in several of its forms is an evangelical religion. Believing Christians think their God exists as a seperate superior being, and this personal God has a plan for each of us humans. Several other religions mentioned such as Wicca, and Buddhism are not evangelical. To take a specific example the Covenant of UU Pagans mearly recognizes itself as one among many spiritual paths.

However Atheists at least try to have an extra healthy dose of skeptism, when it comes to religious claims. While some can view Wicca, or paganism as recognizing qualities within human nature and referencing those qualities as "The God" and "The Goddess", I would hope atheists and rationalists see a lack of support for the "superstitious" claims of religions like Wicca. Wiccan spell casting should have a similar success rate to Christian prayer.

Lastly certain Christians are of the belief that they alone will be rewarded, and all others are destined to Hell. These Christians do not mearly want to convert atheists, but Jews and other religious folks to their belief, all to "save your soul." Again human logic, human reason and the five human senses show no evidence of any religion's supernatural side. If Orthodox Jews were as adamant to insist that I eat a kosher diet, because the Jewish God Jehovah insists upon it, I would rebel as strongly. However Orthodox Jews (at least in America) do not insist on that, and choose to be Orthodox out of a sense of tradition. (Yes I believe there are some Jews in Isreal who feel they are the only "Real Jews")

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From Cliff:

I got this today from someone who is not on our list. Completely unrelated to our most recent question about atheists attacking only Christians?

From Gorur:

You are welcome to respond to this as part of the current question.

Cliff Walker

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From: Dwayne Walker
Sent: Wednesday 13 January 1999 5:09
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Question for Youse -- Part Twose!

That's interesting. I'm assuming the poster of this message is from India. Anyway, in America we get the same question accept it's related to Christianity. Why do you harp so much on Christianity?

The answer is we criticize the religions which have the most effect on our individual lives. If I lived in Utah, I'd be criticizing the Mormons. If my parents were Scientologists or Hindus, I'd probably be spending a lot of time criticizing that religion. As it stands, my background is fundamentalist Baptist, so I spend a great deal of time on a particular sect of Christianity that, while it has ties to the Christian Coalition, is so backward even the Christian Coalition tries to distance itself from these people!

Who can doubt Christianity is the dominant religion in America? We make attempts at pluralism, but the gospel and the ten commandments keep rearing their heads in our public discourse. So, most American Atheists criticize Christianity.

I guess if I lived in India I'd be criticizing Hindus.

Dwayne Walker

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From: Jyoti Shankar
Sent: Wednesday 13 January 1999 5:29
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Fw: PosAth -- Question for Youse -- Part Twose! typos corrected

Dear Gorur, Thank you for your concern about mitigating religious idiocy in the world.

Don't just wonder. Write all the details with source etc., I will publish. Read about pundits like you questioning action heroes in my web page at http://www.avana.net/~jshankar/bub02993.htm If you have problem understanding why we cannot cover 10000 superstitions and 5000 idiotic groups called religions let me give the last few paragraphs here:

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From: Jyoti Shankar
Sent: Wednesday 13 January 1999 5:35
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Question for Youse -- Part Twose!

More ideas for Gorur:

If you are an Atheist you should join them and improve their capacity to attack things you think have not been attacked. Show that that you are a true atheist and not like those so-called atheists.

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From: Roberta "Bobbi" Needham
Sent: Wednesday 13 January 1999 6:14
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Questions

Hi Cliff,

As to the first portion of the current "question", the author is asking the reader to accept the premise that he/she has either read, spoken to or heard from "most atheists". How many is "most atheists" ? How well or ill read is the author of the question ? He/she has obviously not spoken to me. Had he/she done so, it would be obvious that I (an affirmed atheist), stand in opposition to no religion. In fact, I would be in the front lines to fight to defend his/her right to believe in any tommyrot that he/she chooses. It is a right that many, (and yes, even a few atheists) have devoted their lives to protecting. The atheists I have personal knowledge of are as interested in maintaining freedom of religion, as they are freedom from religion.

It is my personal opinion that a human being would have to be delusional to be able to accept the tenets of any religion, but then I, unlike the author of the question, recognize that this is simply my opinion. I do not confuse my opinion with fact.

As to the second part of the "question", the fool enjoys the same right to freedom of speech as the sage. Nonetheless, the old saying still holds true-Better to be silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and erase all doubt.

Bobbi

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From: James Call
Sent: Wednessday 13 January 1999 12:18
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Question for Youse -- Part Twose!

Whoa! This guy must be psychic. He not only nailed me for merely calling myself an atheist but also my cowardly reluctance to criticize barbaric practices such as female circumcision, animal sacrafice and suttee. Or wait a minute, suttee IS a Hindu practice. Oops. There I go again, attacking the Hindus. But they're so easy - and they're non-militant. This guy has me pegged! How he knew about my impotence I can never guess. I was trying to keep it a secret. What really floored me tho, was how did he know I believe in government by hippos?

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From: LC and Larry Whittle
Sent: Wednesday 13 January 1999 12:30
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Question for Youse -- Part Twose!

Definitely part of the current question! Especially if we could find out where Gorur lives, and his home culture.

Ah, well, there's also the possibility he's just another troll.

I wonder what he knows about Hindus. As far as I know (and my knowledge is a little rusty), they have a pantheon, not just one "(non-existant) God". And I don't think female circumcision is a Hindu practice. I'll check today.

Hmm, on second thought, Gorur looks more like a disguised Christian TROLL.

Cliff? What kinds of other comments are you getting.

LC Whittle

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From: Nicole Kempler
Sent: Thursday 14 January 1999 0:45
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Another Question for Youse

That is because most people are more familiar with Christianity than other religions.
 

I have European origins and have no idea what Wiccan is.
 

Probably...

Same freedom of speech, but way more atheists in Europe that in the U.S.

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From:
Sent: Thursday 14 January 1999 19:42
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Question for Youse -- Part Twose!

I really don't understand why people don't mind their own business. I don't think Atheists hurt anyone with their beliefs. I don't find myself dogging other people's religions and beliefs. True, sometimes I admit that they don't make sense but that is about it. I don't know what this guy is talking about with the Hindu and stuff like that. As long as know one is hurting anyone with their beliefs I think they shouldn't bother us with ignorant statements and we won't bother them.

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From: jack
Sent: Thursday 14 January 1999 23:18
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Question for Youse -- Part Twose!

Personally I don't feel the need to attack religions, as you always come off as a wise-ass atheist and it does little to garner support for our cause. I also feel that you can't just attack a piticular religion for it's individual practices and that if you attack any religion you should attack all religious beliefs

jack

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From: LC and Larry Whittle
Sent: Friday 15 January 1999 17:27
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: re: Gorur's email

Cliff,

I did some research on female circumcision and it appears to be practiced primarily in Africa and Middle Eastern countries. The primary religious affiliation is Islam (what a surprise). I didn't come across a single instance of it being done by Hindus, which doesn't mean it isn't, but I think it is highly unlikely.

LC Whittle

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From: Debi Anderson-Wilde
Sent: donderdag 28 januari 1999 17:35
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PosAth -- Question for Youse -- Part Twose!

Interesting. I have never even thought to target Hindus. As I am surrounded by Christians, I target them. Were I surrounded by Hindus, I am certain I would target them. I think it is all relative to where you live and what the dominant religion is. I don`t consider any religion more or less valid than any other. The outstanding fact is that they are all faith-based and wrong. They keep people as slaves, bound to empty promises and false expectations. Well, now that I think about it, having a god who`s blue probably would, in fact, make you a pretty easy target, but that`s beside the point.

Debi Anderson-Wilde

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From: "Susan Roundtree"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Why Do Atheists Only Attack Christianity
Date: Tuesday, August 22, 2000 6:41 PM

One thing that I learned, and that is the most important thing is the person and not their belief.

Many are turned off mostly because many take it upon themselves to do just what you said, tell others if you do not convert you are going to hell. That perhaps is the biggest single most spoken that has turned many against Christians. They are quick to slap others with "repent or else", with out another word and expect results and, when it is not gotten then they can get down right harsh, which is not what it is all about. I guess this is why barriers exist.

Being able to communicate freely with understanding for one another with out offensiveness but openness goes for a long way and friendship can exist, no matter what anyone believes. It is a willingness to be friends overlooking the things that end up being barriers.

Susan

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From: "Dr. Newton Joseph"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Why Do Atheists Only Attack Christianity
Date: Sunday, February 11, 2001 9:46 PM

Historically Christianity has been a stumbling block towards progress and the chief cause of divisiveness in America.

Another very good reason is Rome's Syllabus of Condemned Opinions. Truly anti-intellectual and anti-democratic that we as atheists have to fight against.

I wrote this in response to Alan Dershowitz's comments about the swearing in ceremonies of George Bush, that I thought apropos:

MEMBERS ONLY

George Bush senior said that "atheists should not be considered good citizens." By the same token his son is saying if you are not a Christian and believe that Jesus Christ is our lord and master you should not be considered as good citizens.

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Added: April 15, 2001

From: "Lonex"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Why Do Atheists Only Attack Christianity
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001 5:07 PM

Why do we attack Christianity? I was indifferent to religions most of my life. People with weird beliefs performed their rituals at home or in church. There was no intrusion. Atheists kept their beliefs to themselves, while christians imposed public prayer in the schools, banned some books from school libraries, attacked science curriculum in education, and gathered to screech at women who availed themselves of abortion clinics. The christians gained political strength while Atheists remained quiet -- showing "respect" for the right of christians to "practice" their religion and impose it on others.

Christians are suddenly dismayed to hear that Atheists also have rights. We have the right NOT to sit quietly during their public incantations and rituals. We also have the right to object to creationism being taught as a quasi-scientific 'theory' to our children.

When christians stop trying to impose their beliefs on the rest of us, I'll stop speaking against them.

Ellen

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From: "Dave A."
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Why Do Atheists Only Attack Christianity
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001 9:15 PM

I don't think the problem is that atheism 'condones' all religions EXCEPT Christianity, I think the problem lies in the incessant proselytizing of the Christian Right. (Which is itself an oxymoron.)

Christian money and control of a significant portion of the media PREVENTS minority religions from 'advertising' themselves, for one thing; and as far as I have been able to ascertain, minority religions accept conversions WHEN ASKED, not when pounded upon with propaganda. That brings me to the question of inconsistencies in the Christian Bible. Belief is the prime ingredient, not rational thinking. While it may be quite true that other religious documents contain similar inconsistencies, it is well known that Islam, Confucianism, Buddhist, and minority religions treat their document as a guide to living much more so than a guide to dying. In addition, ALL religions are an invention of their founders, with Judaism, Hinduism, and Buddhism being much older than Paul's Christianity. Yet hard-nosed Christians would have you believe that their system is the ONE AND ONLY. That kind of statement clearly requires rebuttal by knowledgeable people. Hence atheists attack Christian STATEMENTS, and freethinkers of renown provide factual support to counter false Christian dogma.

Dave A.

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From: "Dave A."
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Why Do Atheists Only Attack Christianity
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001 9:42 PM

L.C. Whittle. To answer all your questions...YES! Tolerance on the part of non-believers who don't need to be concerned with what others believe, apathy on the part of other Christians who know they're being treated as 'second rate', and censorship of those who control the medium. See my reply to Nigel.

Dave A.

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From: "Dave A."
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Why Do Atheists Only Attack Christianity
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001 9:33 PM

Nigel, if you are of an age to use Senior Net, I'd advise you to NOT do that! As a freethinker/atheist, several of us have been BLOCKED from use of the ENTIRE Senior Net because of our views. Softly at first, then individual posts deleted, then an individual denied access! Nearly all the posts of those rejected contained factual references to reality after the Christians posted garbage logic. Sponsors have been notified, but I doubt that will reinstate those denied access. So it's a 'private organization'. Adults with knowledge and experience are treated like little kids with their hand in the cookie jar? I think not!

Dave A.

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Added: December 20, 2001

From: "Ronald LeBlanc"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Why Do Atheists Attack Only Christianity
Date: November 26, 2001 12:33 AM

All systems of thought claim to support diversity of opinion and thought ( even atheism) but in practice, I don't think that there is a lot of room for positive discourse because most of us believe that we are on the right path and do not like to be pulled out of our comfort zone. As a Christian, I have the feeling that most of our thinking today about Religion in general does not come from personal investigation because systems of thought keep us from stepping outside the box.

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From:
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Why Do Atheists Attack Only Christianity
Date: December 02, 2001 2:26 AM

I am not atheist but I think I know why they attack Christianity. The reason is Christianity is so arrogantly introduced and only thing Christianity is concerned is humans.

Christianity has no concern for innocent voiceless creatures of God. Most Christians are eating factory farmed farm animals who were tortured in factory farms life long and ended their lives in most horrible bloody death (in large slaughterhouses, cows are butchered alive and chickens who miss atutomated razor are thrown in boiling water and boiled alive!!!) but do they care??

No they don't.

Their favorite argument is "we have dominion over the animals."

Original meaning is not dominion but stewardship.

How arrogant of them to view animals as something to eat, wear, experiment on!!!

I am Christian myself but I view animals as our friends to love and respect them.

It is so shame some people twist teaching of Jesus and preach to fit their selfish desire.

Many people stay away from Christianity because insensitive attitude of Christians towards innocent defenseless animals and I cannot blame on them at all.

Any decent person would respect creatures of God.

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From:
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Sent: December 19, 2001 8:20 PM
Subject: Why Do Atheists Only Attack Christianity

Please ask the sender of the e-mail if he knows about a person called Bal Thackeray who happens to be the leader of a religious-political sect called the Shiv Sena and its militant branch called the Bajrang Dal and who openly preaches nontolerance and violence towards the minority religions in India. Also ask him why he thinks Hinduism is nonviolent -- does he not remember the anti Sikh riots after Indira Gandhi's assassination?

Does he not remember what Hindu fundamentalists did to the Babri Masjid and to the Australian preacher who was burnt alive along with his kids? And he still thinks that Hindus are nonviolent?

Ask him if his religion is so weak that today's ruling political party (the BJP that is primarily pro-Hindu) thinks that the fact that ancient Indians consumed beef that they have decided to strike the relevant paragraphs from the school history books -- what are they afraid of?

I have lived all my life in India and know almost all there is to know about Hinduism and Sikhism (not much about Islam though) -- this guy talks about hypocrisy -- well ask him if it is not hypocritical to regard the female as "devi" (goddess) and at the same time treat her like trash -- female fœticide and sati comes to the mind immediately as well as the fact that women are generally treated as second class citizens in India.

I could go on and on but I think that the primary reason that India is still a third world country is because of its religious beliefs -- these pundits are so backward that it's a miracle we have been able to put our own satellites in space.

In reference to the e-mail that started this discussion, here's a simple fact -- the reason you don't see too many people criticizing Hinduism is simply because only about two percent of the population of the world's most populous country is Internet savvy and has a dial-up Internet connection that gives pathetic speeds at its best. How many of them do you think would be atheists? Zilch.

And we really don't have many properly funded and staffed organizations that promote atheism and fight against superstition worth talking about. The few that the world gets to know about are the ones who are lucky enough to get media coverage.

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From: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
To:
Subject: Re: Why Do Atheists Only Attack Christianity
December 20, 2001 6:45 AM

The person who wrote the question was a Christian, thinking we were being unfair against Christians. The Christian sought to discredit atheists by pointing to this appearance of unfairness. That's what the letter was all about. When someone seeks to discredit another but does not have a real case to make, you can expect that person to grasp at anything that might sound reasonable and use it in the argument.

This Christian seemed almost deliberately oblivious to the fact that here in America (where most of the Internet activity on our web site comes from), all we ever encounter are Christians. Over here, it's always the Christians who are trying to change laws to their own advantage, it's always the Christians that want US to pay for the promotion of their proselytizing efforts. Over here, it's always the Christians who are "in your face" whereas over there, it's most likely Hindus (and to a smaller extent the others) who are "in your face," etc.

Cliff Walker
Positive Atheism Magazine
Six years of service to
     people with no reason to believe

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