An atheist explains the real consequences of adopting an atheistic worldview

If you love to listen to the Please Convince Me podcast, as I do, then you know that in a recent episode, J. Warner Wallace mentioned a blog post on an atheistic blog that clearly delineated the implications of an atheistic worldview. He promised he was going to write about it and link to the post, and he has now done so.

Here is the whole the whole thing that the atheist posted:

“[To] all my Atheist friends.

Let us stop sugar coating it. I know, it’s hard to come out and be blunt with the friendly Theists who frequent sites like this. However in your efforts to “play nice” and “be civil” you actually do them a great disservice.

We are Atheists. We believe that the Universe is a great uncaused, random accident. All life in the Universe past and future are the results of random chance acting on itself. While we acknowledge concepts like morality, politeness, civility seem to exist, we know they do not. Our highly evolved brains imagine that these things have a cause or a use, and they have in the past, they’ve allowed life to continue on this planet for a short blip of time. But make no mistake: all our dreams, loves, opinions, and desires are figments of our primordial imagination. They are fleeting electrical signals that fire across our synapses for a moment in time. They served some purpose in the past. They got us here. That’s it. All human achievement and plans for the future are the result of some ancient, evolved brain and accompanying chemical reactions that once served a survival purpose. Ex: I’ll marry and nurture children because my genes demand reproduction, I’ll create because creativity served a survival advantage to my ancient ape ancestors, I’ll build cities and laws because this allowed my ape grandfather time and peace to reproduce and protect his genes. My only directive is to obey my genes. Eat, sleep, reproduce, die. That is our bible.

We deride the Theists for having created myths and holy books. We imagine ourselves superior. But we too imagine there are reasons to obey laws, be polite, protect the weak etc. Rubbish. We are nurturing a new religion, one where we imagine that such conventions have any basis in reality. Have they allowed life to exist? Absolutely. But who cares? Outside of my greedy little gene’s need to reproduce, there is nothing in my world that stops me from killing you and reproducing with your wife. Only the fear that I might be incarcerated and thus be deprived of the opportunity to do the same with the next guy’s wife stops me. Some of my Atheist friends have fooled themselves into acting like the general population. They live in suburban homes, drive Toyota Camrys, attend school plays. But underneath they know the truth. They are a bag of DNA whose only purpose is to make more of themselves. So be nice if you want. Be involved, have polite conversations, be a model citizen. Just be aware that while technically an Atheist, you are an inferior one. You’re just a little bit less evolved, that’s all. When you are ready to join me, let me know, I’ll be reproducing with your wife.

I know it’s not PC to speak so bluntly about the ramifications of our beliefs, but in our discussions with Theists we sometimes tip toe around what we really know to be factual. Maybe it’s time we Atheists were a little more truthful and let the chips fall where they may. At least that’s what my genes are telling me to say.”

In his post, Wallace comments on the statement above, but for more, you should listen to the podcast.

This fellow is essentially expanding on what Richard Dawkins has said about atheism:

In a universe of blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won’t find any rhyme or reason in it, or any justice. The universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference… DNA neither knows nor cares. DNA just is. And we dance to its music. (Richard Dawkins, River Out of Eden: A Darwinian View of Life (1995))

And Cornell University atheist William Provine agrees: (this is taken from his debate with Phillip E. Johnson)

Let me summarize my views on what modern evolutionary biology tells us loud and clear — and these are basically Darwin’s views. There are no gods, no purposes, and no goal-directed forces of any kind. There is no life after death. When I die, I am absolutely certain that I am going to be dead. That’s the end of me. There is no ultimate foundation for ethics, no ultimate meaning in life, and no free will for humans, either.

And what about Florida State University atheist Michael Ruse:

“The position of the modern evolutionist is that humans have an awareness of morality because such an awareness of biological worth. Morality is a biological adaptation no less than are hands and feet and teeth. Considered as a rationally justifiable set of claims about an objective something, ethics is illusory. I appreciate when someone says, ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself,’ they think they are referring above and beyond themselves. Nevertheless, such reference is truly without foundation. Morality is just an aid to survival and reproduction, . . . and any deeper meaning is illusory.” (Michael Ruse, “Evolutionary Theory and Christian Ethics,” in The Darwinian Paradigm (London: Routledge, 1989), pp. 262-269).

I see a lot of atheists these days thinking that they can help themselves to a robust notion of consciousness, to real libertarian free will, to objective moral values and duties, to objective human rights, and to objective meaning in life, without giving credit to theism. It’s not rational to do this. As Frank Turek said on the latest episode of “Cross Examined”, atheists have to sit in God’s lap to slap his face. We should be calling them out on it. I think it’s particularly important not to let atheists utter a word of moral judgment on any topic, since they cannot ground an objective standard that allows them to make statements of morality. Further, I think that they should have every immorality ever committed presented to them, and then they should be told “your worldview does not allow you to condemn this as wrong”. They can’t praise anything as right, either. This is not to say that we should go all presuppositional on them, but if the opportunity arises to point out how they are borrowing from theism in order to attack it, we should do that in addition to presenting good scientific and historical evidence.

Positive arguments for Christian theism

54 thoughts on “An atheist explains the real consequences of adopting an atheistic worldview”

  1. I have to commend that atheist for his intellectual honesty in posting this. I struggled with this when I was an atheist (anti-Christian). For some reason, I felt like I should be “good,” but I knew there was no reason for doing so under my worldview. It frightened me immensely to admit to myself that “survival of the fittest” was my highest moral ground.

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  2. That atheist guy has real problems – evil AND stupid at the same time. My own period of atheism as a teenager (thank you Richard Dawkins) quickly turned into agnosticism. I’d like to think that I was always open to God and searching for him. A lot of the atheists I meet are just shut off to Him. Very sad.

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  3. I’m glad he was candid about his core beliefs. That is useful in exposing atheism. But even when they are trying to be honest they are still inconsistent:

    “So be nice if you want. Be involved, have polite conversations, be a model citizen. Just be aware that while technically an Atheist, you are an inferior one.”

    But he just got through saying there is no standard and glibly states he is just obeying his DNA. How can he say someone else’s atheism is inferior?

    “You’re just a little bit less evolved, that’s all.”

    Again, there’s that standard implying that more evolution is better than less.

    “I know it’s not PC to speak so bluntly about the ramifications of our beliefs, but in our discussions with Theists we sometimes tip toe around what we really know to be factual. Maybe it’s time we Atheists were a little more truthful and let the chips fall where they may.”

    Again, why be more truthful if there is no merit in it? And why persuade anyone to do anything if we are all just obeying our DNA anyway?

    Here’s why: Because their worldview is foolish rebellion.

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    1. Well… this guy’s worldview sounds like rebellion. And I get the sense that a lot of Christians who “used to be atheists” in their “misspent youth” were just rebelling and didn’t have rational, philosophical grounding for their atheism. But it is quite possible to have compassionate (humanist) moral beliefs and also be an atheist. There are lots of us out there, if you look past the people who are just trying to get a reaction out of their parents’ generation.

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      1. What we are looking for from atheists is not an irrational compassion. We all know that atheists can behave how they like. The point here is the point that Richard Dawkins made – there is no objective foundation for good and evil on atheism. Atheists can act arbitrarily good or evil, as their genes dictate, but they can’t make moral judgments about their own actions, or anyone else’s. As Dawkins said, there is no evil and no good on atheism. And as Provine says, there is no free will and no meaning either. Do Oxford and Cornell atheists know less than you about atheism, NFQ?

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        1. I’d like to recommend the debate between William Lane Craig and Shelly Kagan, available on YouTube. In it, Shelly Kagan argues the atheist position very well, in particular as it relates to morality. Essentially, atheists would deny that there exists some “ultimate” moral authority, separate and distinct from humans.

          However, the lack of an ultimate authority doesn’t in any way diminish the importance of the moral code we live by today, or the fact that it is binding on all humans, irrespective of religious belief.

          Humans know that it’s not OK to murder. We don’t need an ultimate authority to tell us that. Why? Because we have evolved to be social beings, with empathy towards our fellow humans.

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      2. NFQ, I wanted to add a thought about your statement: “And I get the sense that a lot of Christians who “used to be atheists” in their “misspent youth” were just rebelling and didn’t have rational, philosophical grounding for their atheism.”

        I am just speaking for myself here, not for any other former atheists. I was an atheist in my “misspent youth” but also in my “well-spent adulthood.” I earned 4 technical degrees in engineering and mathematics between the ages of 21 and 29, all while an atheist. I considered myself highly rational, and my accomplishments seem to confirm that. (BTW, my parents were far-Left non-theists, so I don’t think I was rebelling against them – at least not in the selection of worldview. Communism good, capitalism bad. I learned my lessons growing up. :-))

        Yet, I will agree with you that I “didn’t have a rational, philosophical grounding for” my atheism. That is because I never FOUND a “rational, philosophical grounding for” atheism – despite worshipping the sorts of Bertrand Russell and Carl Sagan. I didn’t give up my atheism until 42, when I eventually stopped searching for something that I seriously suspected was not there. Dawkins could have saved me some time. :-)

        But, if you can give me a recipe for grounding moral values in a non-theistic world, then I promise to not use this apologetic again. I think that you will find that if the great atheistic thinkers, like Dawkins, have stopped looking, it might be a little bit harder to find than you think. But, I am open to your ideas for such a grounding. It doesn’t have to be a formal proof, like in my Ph.D. dissertation. I am a practical engineer: an algorithm or recipe will do just fine.

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    2. eMatters, this is really good what you posted. I did not catch his self-refutations – good show! Even when he was trying to be intellectually honest, he still fell into the ultimate failure of his worldview – a permanent inability to ground. Thanks for posting!

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    3. “…their worldview…” he does not speak for all of us. No two atheists are alike. You mean “his worldview*”

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    1. As an atheist myself, I actually suspect that this guy is not. I know zero atheists who capitalize the word every time they write it (it’s not a proper noun!) and I have never heard anyone seriously say they believe they must “obey their genes.” The loud and clear message I communicate, and that I have heard from my fellow atheists, is that we must philosophically justify our morals, and that “my instincts made me do it” is never an excuse for being a moral monster.

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      1. | we must philosophically justify our morals

        And how do you do that given the fact that morals are merely social constructs?

        | “my instincts made me do it” is never an excuse for being a moral monster.

        And yet it seems to be the going theory these days that since one was “born this way” they can do whatever they please.

        Also, please define “moral monster” without using an objective standard.

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      2. An atheist doesn’t need an excuse to be a moral monster, whether your killing jews by the millions or caring for the destitute in calcutta, by your worldview there is no moral dimension to ANYTHING, no ‘ought’ and ‘ought not’, your simply a protein computer running your software. Thats the entire point. Moral behavior of any kind is absolutely illusory on a materialistic worldview and you’ll always struggle logically with that and get picked apart in debate. The fact remains that atheists simply cannot survive as if morality isn’t objective, they live there lives (well, most do) alot like the Theist who believes that right and wrong, good and evil, are anchored on something beyond us which elevates evil to something higher than our subjective opinion. Both the atheist and the Chrstian share behavior patterns but only the Christians behavior flows rationally from his/her worldview. As a Christian I live my life by these clear guidelines, I even sometimes disagree with God’s moral law, but I can always say ” this isn’t open to interpretation, it’s higher than me and my opinion”, but can you say the same? Can you condemn rape, racisim or cold blooded murder? By what authority? By what standard do you measure these actions? I’m a trained killer, if I were to become an atheist and decided I was going to live my life by the rule of the jungle, whats to stop me from doing as I please? I’m clever so I probably won’t be caught, i’m faster than most, stronger than most, and I’m a loner so I don’t care if I’m hated and cast out….so how would you muzzle someone like me?

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        1. Whenever I try to get atheists to understand this, I try to use an example from the a country that has rejected God, like North Korea. If you ran afoul of one of the leaders in North Korea and found yourself pleading for your life with an atheist, to what would you appeal? You are facing a person who believes that the universe and all life are accidents, and it is not in their best interest to let you live. If was Christians who hid Jews during the Holocaust, and Christians who took in abandoned infants in Roman times, and Christians who are leading the fight for the unborn today. Atheists just don’t go against the flow for “morality” when it goes against their self-interest, because they know, as Dawkins, Ruse and Provine showed, that there is no such thing as morality on their worldview.

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          1. Well, Wintery Knight —
            when you mention “countr[ies] that ha[ve] rejected God”, you willful seem to overlook the highly secular countries in Northern Europe.
            Although in these societies there still are a lot of “christians” by nomination there is a –steadily rising– high percentage of people who deny a belief in a god of any sort. Nevertheless the non believing population in these VOLUNTARY non-believing societies displays a higher moral stance than nearly all societies with a population of religious individuals: they have the lowest corruption rates on earth, the lowest criminal rates (the police force is nearly invisible), but the highest rates of literacy, the best welfare, social security and health charity, high rates of government sponsorship for cultural projects — and those people are leading the world happiness index.

            Recommended reading might be “Society without God” by sociologist Phil Zuckerman.

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  4. Even if there is not an absolutely libertarian free will, I can still call people for acting violently or deliberately harming people as this will force the assailant to A: either have shame for his actions, which will make him avert these actions B: if he has no shame, call for his imprisonment on the grounds that he is dangerous to society and the wellbeing of other humans. There is nothing in atheistic worldview that forces you to give up your values. On the contrary, because humans are not “fallen” or do not have any similar excuse and because there is no afterlife where we will be “compensated” it is all the more important to have virtues in this reality. This silly nihilistic interpretation of atheism and it’s adherents act like Immanuel Kant never happened.

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    1. On the contrary, because humans are not “fallen” or do not have any similar excuse and because there is no afterlife where we will be “compensated” it is all the more important to have virtues in this reality.

      Very well-put!

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      1. And completely irrational. It’s like saying “because we are on a sinking ship, all the more important that we play chess well”. Not at all. If there is no objective meaning to life, then effort and virtue are irrelevant, you will still end in the ground, and all of civilization will perish in the heat death of the universe.

        “That man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms; that no fire, no heroism, no intensity of thought and feeling, can preserve an individual life beyond the grave; that all the labors of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast death of the solar system, and that the whole temple of man’s achievement must inevitably be buried beneath the debris of a universe in ruins — all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s salvation henceforth be safely built.”
        (Bertrand Russell: “A Free Man’s Worship”)

        You can do whatever crazy thing you feel like, but a rationally grounded notion of virtue is off limits to you. All you get on atheism is dancing to your DNA, and there is no standard there that days how you ought to dance. There is no moral difference between the dance of a Christian like William Wilberforce and an atheist like Joseph Stalin. They were both dancing to their DNA, and there is no evil and no good to their dancing, as Richard Dawkins says.

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    2. Erkki –

      Yes, you can still accuse people of being violent or harming people – but what you can’t do is say that a person who is violent is any more or less moral than you. You can not say that being violent is “evil” or “wrong”. All you can do is say it’s not your preference. To which the violent person will rightfully respond, “Great… so what?”

      From there, you go on to assume an objective moral standard without grounding it… why should a violent person feel shame? Because they don’t share your preference? Why does the wellbeing of other people matter? Why is it incumbent on anyone to care about that? If I’m just a particular arrangement of chemicals and atoms, trying to assign moral value is like saying this rock is more evil than that rock. Me, a rock, a car… It’s all matter that just happens to be arranged differently.

      And you are correct, there is nothing in the atheistic worldview that forces you to give up your values… but the point that this particular atheist poster makes is that the atheistic worldview does require you to recognize that your values are not better or worse than anyone else’s. Arguing anything contrary is a direct contradiction to the logical implications of atheism. You can say you don’t like someone else’s behavior, but you have no basis upon which to say they “shouldn’t” act that way or that what they’re doing is definitively wrong.

      Your final point is an interesting topic for discussion, but it’s not relevant to the topic at hand. You’re talking about people’s motivation to behave morally, and that’s not what the moral argument concerns itself with. It’s not about one’s motivation to act “good”, but about whether there can truly be such a thing as “good” at all. So bringing things like fear of punishment or an afterlife into it is beside the point.

      But again, you undercut your own argument by stating that “it’s all the more important to have virtues in this reality”. Why is it important? The more logical way to phrase that as an atheist would be “My chemical makeup steers me toward preferring having virtues in this reality”. As soon as you start making proclamations about what other people should feel or do or find important, you’ve started contradicting the atheistic worldview. I realize that feels completely contradictory and backwards and incorrect, and that’s because it is… I have no doubt that you’re a very moral person. But this is one of many reasons people reject atheism. It forces you into an explanation of reality that you know deep down inside isn’t correct, so you’re forced to either admit it’s true against all of your common sense, or to reject it in contradiction to your chosen worldview. Not a great choice, and one of many reasons I’m not an atheist.

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      1. Cheshire –

        I appreciate your well-formed and fair question about the grounding of morality. I think the issue here lies within the fact that, while you are correct that yes, everything is strictly speaking a “preference”, it does not follow that all “preferences” are equal or should be treated equally. This can be demonstrated by simple analogy: suppose you want to eat healthy food and your choices are potato chips and apples. Both are strictly speaking, a “preference” of one or another. However, only one these choices brings you closer the desired objective: eating healthily. The choice can then be made by simple objective demonstration: eating apples is generally speaking more healthy then eating potato chips. So not all choices are “equal” when it comes to desired objective.

        Now the question that of course becomes from this is that we first have to establish what exactly is the desired objective of moral behavior or moral standards: Happiness? Freedom? Avoidance of conflict? We can demonstrate that while there are individual preferences, there are also general patterns for what are human desires: that is, freedom from slavery, freedom from want, freedom from violence, general bodily and mental well-being, self-actualization, and desire for community. From these goals we can objectively measure: what are the values that we need to fulfill these desires? What kind of society best brings mankind towards these goals?

        Now the theist may of course object that there are always going to be people whom do not value any of these things, and there are always going to be nihilists who “just want to watch the world burn” to paraphrase the popular quote. My answer would be: so what? No matter what ethical system you develop, no matter how or what you ground your morality in, they will still exist. Existence of God or free will can not change this. Punishment can not change this. So what do I care what is the answer to nihilism? The whole point of nihilism is that it does not search or care for answers: they have already a priori concluded that values do not exist. So the theist faces a similar dilemma: there are always going to be people who do not believe or honor God. Does this mean the theist has no choice but to give up his values?

        Your second objection is that if we are matter arranged in some fashion, and matter can not have values or they are not “real”. But why would this be? Why can not matter have values or desires? If mind can not exist without matter, then logically it follows that there is nothing more “real” then matter so objecting that we need something “more real” does not make any sense: we are already as “real” as it is possible to be. Note that I don’t necessarily think or believe that we are only matter: personally I think that is a very open-ended question, but I also think the actual substance of mind is fairly trivial from a moral realist viewpoint.

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        1. Health is not the same as morality on atheism. Morality is subjective on atheism, but health is objective. You can measure health using numbers and doctors can do that for you. But morality is not like health on atheism. There is no objective reality undergirding morality on atheism, there is just matter in motion – as Dawkins stated.

          The desire for objective morality has nothing to do with the ontological grounding of morality any more than the desire for chemistry has anything to do with chemistry. What you have on atheism is matter in motion. And you cannot get moral oughts and moral value from matter in motion. That’s not my opinion, that’s fact, and Richard Dawkins agrees with me. No evil, and no good, he says. And Provine says no free will, no meaning in life.

          On atheism, there is no rational argument for preferring humanism to nihilism. The choice (assuming we spot you free will) is arbitrary. It’s personal preference for you to invent moral values and duties – in your reality, as Dawkins says, there is no evil and no good. Those are the facts, your feelings don’t change that.

          On atheism, as Provine says, there is no mind. Atheist Alex Rosenberg explained in his debate with Craig that consciousness is not real on atheism. He said that free will is not real on atheism. And that morality and moral choices are not real on atheism. You are countering this by expressing your opinions and preferences, but atheistic reality does not ground your subjective preferences in any objective reality.

          You have to deal with the words of Dawkins, Provine, Ruse, Rosenberg and other atheists. There is no free will, no conscious thought, no meaning to life, no purpose to life, no moral values, no moral duties, and no human rights on atheism. All you have are your feelings and your preferences. Morality is not something that can be rationally discussed or appealed to on an atheistic worldview. It’s off limits to atheists.

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          1. Wintery Knight:

            The problem here is that you are just name-dropping famous atheists and their positions without any effort to connect them to my argument. I haven’t heard much about rest of these people, but if we go with Richard Dawkins positions on his TV show “Sex, Death and the Meaning of Life” then he seemed to advocate for some sort of existentialism and moral realism, essentially saying while the universe itself it does not have any real categories of “good” and “evil”, there is no reason why humans should not find their own values and meaning for existence. Personally I would mostly agree to this, and would advocate for values that maximize personal freedom with strong regard for protection from needless suffering, which is why I am strongly libertarian especially in social issues.

            The idea that there is no conscious thought does not make any sense and seems to be some sort of really ridiculous materialist reductionism. While I am more or less committed to materialism, reductionism is quite ridiculous. Mind is by definition real, otherwise we would not be having any discussion. What mind is is irrelevant to it’s function. Cars can be made from aluminum, plastic or metal: they affect its properties but do not change it’s function. Libertarian free will only matters for the purpose of retributive justice and “deserved suffering”, both ideas which I reject.

            The objective fact is that human values deal mostly with the following categories: freedom from want, freedom from fear, freedom from suffering, community and self-actualization. I do not see any reason why I should not ground ethics to these categories. Adding God or gods the mix seems superfluous. Of course this “just” my opinion. But so is everything else, so I don’t see any reason why atheist or agnostic (to be honest, I am more of the latter category) should have no chair on the morality table or has to simply accept nihilism.

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        2. “I think the issue here lies within the fact that, while you are correct that yes, everything is strictly speaking a “preference”, it does not follow that all “preferences” are equal or should be treated equally. This can be demonstrated by simple analogy: suppose you want to eat healthy food and your choices are potato chips and apples. Both are strictly speaking, a “preference” of one or another. However, only one these choices brings you closer the desired objective: eating healthily.”

          I can see the analogy between healthy eating and morality, but it favors the Christian position, not the atheistic one. In the case of healthy eating, you have assumed that as a goal without stating WHY one should prefer healthy eating over unhealthy eating. Similarly, you have not explained why one should prefer morality to immorality in an atheistic worldview. That is the whole point. On atheism, there is no SHOULD with regard to morality.

          With healthy eating, there is a should. You should eat healthy food because eating healthy is in keeping with the way your body works and what it needs to function well. The constraints of your body’s chemistry dictate what you should and should not eat. An apple is better in keeping with what is objectively good for your body than potato chips are. There is an objective standard of “healthy” and “unhealthy” that comes from the physical makeup of your body. It becomes a meaningless statement to say that apples are healthier unless you refer to the physical needs of the human body. Without that objective reference point (your health), there is no basis for saying that an apple is better for you than potato chips.

          Similarly, there is an objective morality based on the nature of God, the Creator. Things that are in keeping with His nature are objectively right and things opposed to God’s nature are objectively wrong. Without that objective reference point (God), there is no basis for saying that any behavior is morally superior to any other. Any statement that a behavior is “right” or “wrong” becomes totally meaningless.

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      2. Chesire, well put! Distinguishing between having values and being able to ground them is an excellent apologetic. Thank you for posting!

        “But this is one of many reasons people reject atheism. It forces you into an explanation of reality that you know deep down inside isn’t correct, so you’re forced to either admit it’s true against all of your common sense, or to reject it in contradiction to your chosen worldview. Not a great choice, and one of many reasons I’m not an atheist.” Took me 42 years to figure this out. Nice philosophical expression of what my heart finally recognized. You’ve either been there or are very close to someone who has.

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    3. You can “call people” based on your personal preferences and opinions, but there is no objective standard that you can appeal to, in order to persuade them. That’s the point that Dawkins made. On atheism, he said, there is no evil and no good. You can disagree with people the same way you disagree with Brussel sprouts – because you personally don’t like it. But there is no meaning objectively that is shared by anyone else. Shame is a feeling. It’s not objective, it’s subjective. That is the best you can do on atheism. “Yuck, broccoli” and “Yuck, murder”. Yuck is not the same as having an objective moral standard and an objective moral duty to comply with that standard independent of feelings and opinions.

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      1. Straight into the Hall of Quotes with “Yuck, broccoli, Yuck, murder!” Needs to go on a billboard. :-)

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          1. But he never said “Yuck”, did he? That is the key to your quote. Otherwise, I shall put you down for plagiarism and remove this from the venerable Hall. :-)

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  5. As an atheist who has had many conversations with fellow atheists and theists one thing stands out, the world view of “John” seems to conform to what theists imagine atheists believe.
    “While we acknowledge concepts like morality, politeness, civility seem to exist, we know they do no”
    Many atheists myself included consider themselves humanists and morality,politeness and civility are valued assets for all people.
    “We are nurturing a new religion”
    Many theist arguments state that atheism is a religion or a belief system, atheism is not a religion or belief system it is the disbelief in gods and that alone. Atheism has no hierarchy or dogma in any sense of the word is it a religion.
    “My ancient ape ancestors, I’ll build cities and laws because this allowed my ape grandfather”
    Creationists believe evolution says humans came from apes but evolution proposes that humans share a common ancestor with apes, we evolve along side apes not from them.

    The whole blog reads like a theists ignorant ideas of what a atheist thinks. If this is a true blog then don’t think he is anything like a typical atheist he is not, he’s a sad character with problems.

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    1. Does the worldview of Richard Dawkins and William Provine also conform to what theists imagine atheists believe? Or do you think that Dawkins and Provine are secretly Christians, as well?

      What about Michael Ruse?

      “The position of the modern evolutionist is that humans have an awareness of morality because such an awareness of biological worth. Morality is a biological adaptation no less than are hands and feet and teeth. Considered as a rationally justifiable set of claims about an objective something, ethics is illusory. I appreciate when someone says, ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself,’ they think they are referring above and beyond themselves. Nevertheless, such reference is truly without foundation. Morality is just an aid to survival and reproduction, . . . and any deeper meaning is illusory.” (Michael Ruse, “Evolutionary Theory and Christian Ethics,” in The Darwinian Paradigm (London: Routledge, 1989), pp. 262-269).

      Is he a Christian plant as well?

      You need to face the facts. Nihilism is what atheists can ground rationally. John is accurately describing the consequences of adopting an an atheistic worldview. It’s bye-bye meaning, bye-bye mind, bye-bye free will and bye-bye morality. Those things are nonsense on atheism, and atheists scholars are clear on that.

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      1. Slow down, WK – as proprietor of the Official WK Hall of Quotes, I cannot keep up! “Or do you think that Dawkins and Provine are secretly Christians, as well?” LOL :-)

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        1. It’s just that this John person is just reflecting mainstream atheism in academia. At the popular level, atheists think they can keep morality, free will, consciousness, purpose, etc. But if you read someone like Alex Rosenberg, you realize that you have to give up all that and more – you even have to give up the meaningfulness of written text, for goodness’ sake (because your brain cannot have thoughts about anything, since “aboutness” is not a physical property).

          More here:
          https://winteryknight.wordpress.com/2013/07/28/does-a-commitment-to-naturalism-undermine-rational-thought-and-textual-meaning/

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    2. “atheism is not a religion or belief system it is the disbelief in gods ” – which is in fact, a belief.

      It is a belief system. A positive number or a negative number is still a number.

      A belief that God exists, a belief that God does not exist, is a belief.

      (I know, this was 12 months ago, but I only found this post).

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  6. And there we have it to almost prove the point that theists don’t understand atheist views the word nihilism is invoked.
    A nihilist believes in nothing, has no loyalties to anything or anyone and has no purpose other than general destruction of anything which could be considered normal. An atheist on the other hand would normally embrace life as it is the only one that we get. Personally I love my wife and children who have made my life hugely rewarding and I get great pleasure and companionship from my dog. When my time comes to go I will know that I have done my very best for those around me and hopefully educated my children so that they can live life to the full. You may not like it but life is good without gods.
    As I have also stated previously atheism has no formal structure or hierarchy so when high profile people such Dawkins make a comment they are making it on their own behalf and if it is pertinent or not is up to the individual atheist to decide.

    As you like Michael Ruse so much enjoy this.

    “Does this mean that you can just go out and rape and pillage, behave like an ancient Roman grabbing Sabine women? Not at all. I said that there are no grounds for being good. It doesn’t follow that you should be bad. Indeed, there are those – and I am one – who argue that only by recognising the death of God can we possibly do that which we should, and behave properly to our fellow humans and perhaps save the planet that we all share. We can give up all of that nonsense about women and gay people being inferior, about fertilised ova being human beings, and about the earth being ours to exploit and destroy.”

    Michael Ruse
    theguardian.com, Monday 15 March 2010

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    1. It’s very important to understand that the motive for any behavior on atheism is not rational, but emotional. Everything Michael Ruse urges people to do his is arbitrary opinion, and the opposite views are as warranted since morality is down to personal preferences. The issue is not what an atheist CAN do. It is what is RATIONAL for them to do. And on their worldview, doing good is NOT RATIONALLY GROUNDED. Nor can judgments against evil be RATIONALLY GROUNDED. It is all arbitrary. On your view slavery, rape, infanticide, adultery, etc. Are all equally valid choices, and that is the problem with atheism.

      I’ve written a post explaining the real horror of atheism when it comes to moral issues:
      https://winteryknight.wordpress.com/2014/01/09/do-atheists-believe-that-slavery-is-wrong-can-atheists-condemn-slavery-as-immoral/

      Everything an atheist believes about morality is just like their beliefs about what they like to dress in or eat. It’s just personal preferences. They may ape their neighbors in order to be liked, but that’s all that’s going on there. The dimension of moral oughts is completely unknown to them from within their worldview. There is just personal preferences and patterns of behaviors in their people groups. An atheist that travels to india and sees suttee (sati) being practiced doesn’t try to stop it, as a Christian would. He just says “that’s your flavor of ice cream and it’s morally right for you”.

      A recent survey of atheists found that 97% support abortion (linked in the post above), which means that atheists believe in killing unborn 8-month old babies because they are the WRONG SEX. Is that moral?

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    2. Michael Ruse refutes himself in this quote, Tyke: “I said that there are no grounds for being good. It doesn’t follow that you should be bad.” Yet, this posting, Dawkins’ position, and all of the replies have proven that, under atheism, there is no way to rationally ground objective ‘good’ or ‘bad.’ Good and bad are preferences under atheism – your good is my bad and vice versa.

      Please, I beg of the atheists, give me the prescription or algorithm or anything that allows me to rationally ground OBJECTIVE morals under atheism, so that I might stop using this as an apologetic. Until then, please keep living your worldview and fighting for the torture and murder of innocent defenseless babies in the womb – and in many cases, up to the age of 2. Because, with 97% of you agreeing that this is a ‘good’ thing, this is as close to an objective, or at least consensus, moral as you will find under atheism: the powerful can prey on the weak for their pleasure or convenience.

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  7. “Maybe it’s time we atheists were more truthful….”
    Why? What value is being truthful to your genetic advancement? Wouldn’t the lack of transparency serve to allow you to breed with other men’s wives? Why even call them “wives”?

    The entire atheist premise commits intellectual suicide

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  8. Pingback: Links Quest
    1. yeah, I see these types of holes constantly…. one could argue that we’re somehow LESS evolved than all the other animals in that respect. Sure, there isn’t a dog on the planet that could tell you what 1+1 is or even have a true sense of self as humans do, but they don’t go against their evolutionary impulses and they don’t live their lives under delusions

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  9. So that’s it? One person’s opinion, and now you’re all experts on how atheists think and ready to dismiss any other opinions that might be different? How would you like it if I took everything Fred Phelps said and applied it to all Christians? We’re all unique individuals and have different worldviews. If you’re open-minded enough, then you’ll listen to mine with the same level of credence as you did Wallace’s. I don’t pretend to know how anybody else thinks, so I will speak only for myself.
    Morality is a natural trait, and humans aren’t the only species who share it. It stems from the need to survive. Imagine two societies: one where every person fends for himself, fighting each other over food, stealing what they can get, and always looking over their own shoulders when they sleep. In the other society, everybody works together to achieve common goals. Food is collectively hunted/gathered and shared evenly among the people. Which society do you think would prosper? Helping others is in everybody’s best interest, and I don’t need to believe in God to see that for myself.
    There’s no objective purpose in life that dictates how everybody lives, but there’s no objective need for one, either. Life is what we make of it, and to objectify that is to tell anybody who thinks differently that they’re wrong. I, for example, want to create buildings. So now I’m in college studying architecture. In one of my classes, I learned about the harmful effects the building industry has on the environment. I know that harming the environment, in turn, harms us, and even if not me directly, I know that there are many others just like me who will suffer. I have empathy. So now, I’m studying sustainability. I want to be able to house large populations with minimal effect on the environment. Perhaps even give back to the environment.
    In summary, it’s the sum of my life experiences that affect my goals, and in turn, my concept of morality. To me, life is both for enjoyment and improvement so that others may enjoy life, too. You can either accept my opinion as my own, or dismiss it as a “sugar coated” lie because one man with an internet podcast told you so. Either way, I will continue to live my life this way and you will continue to live yours in your own way.
    Peace.

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