Atheism and War

I’ve been reading a lot of both religious and atheistic blogs and tweets lately.  I follow the Progressive Secular Humanist Facebook page, and subscribe to the American Humanist Association.  Both Atheistic based sites.  The American Humanist group hopes for peace and a belief that all people are equal, and that not all people need religion, and the religion is responsible for many of the worlds ill.  The Progressive Secular group is very similar, but a bit more radical in its approach toward religion.  From what I can tell the Progressives want to ensure a separation between church and state, and slowly make people realize what a drug religion can be.

I don’t hate Christians, any more than I hate Jews or Muslims.  They are all equal (in my eyes) in the state of ignorance they choose to live their lives.  But that’s ok with me.  You can be a Mormon for all I care, I have no preference.  Yet, these are the groups that spawn racial hatred, paint “the other guys” with a much different brush.  Jews are different than Christians, the Christians scream.  The Jews say, they’re right, but we’re going to keep doing what we’re doing and making a good living at it.

The Muslims have taken a bad rap lately.  Unfairly, I think.  More hatred, fear, and distrust seems to be spread about this religion than any other.  Just because a group of radicals took down the World Trade Center, there has been hatred of the Muslim people growing.  Because of a radical sect!   Jonestown was a radical sect.  Look what happened to them.  Not all Muslims are bad, just like not all Christians are bad, the same as not all people are bad.  The entire population should not be judged on the actions of so few.  That’s all I’m saying here.  Even if President Obama was Muslim (which he says he is not) he is obviously not of the Al Qaeda mindset.

And look at the related gospels of each of the major religions.  They all teach us that it is wrong to steal, or commit murder, or covet thy neighbor’s goods.  They teach us to honor our parents and to avoid temptation.  They extoll us to live a good life, doing the right thing.  The central teaching (as I understand) of Jesus Christ was one of tolerance and forgiveness.  The Christian Right isn’t tolerant, or forgiving.  They are holding entire populations at fault for the acts of just a few.  Americans are sent to die when they are sent off to kill the “insurgents” and “terrorists.”  Innocent people are killed, injured and homeless, hospitals destroyed, freeways and roads decimated.  All done in the name of Patriotism when it was really about greed and oil and profiteering.  Religion allowed us to do this.  Not science.  Would we have any wars if everyone believed in science.  The Al Qeada felt the US was too powerful and so decided they had a statement to make.  Should we invade a country to help them throw out their trash?  Let Iran, Iraq, Egypt, Palestine kill their own people with their chaos, distrust, and hatred.  Outside of humanitarian help, we should not send our soldiers to free other countries from their own tyrants.

I’m sick of people telling me the men and women over in Afghanistan and Iraq are/were fighting for my freedom.  They are not fighting for me or my freedom.  Our soldiers are over there fighting for the freedom of the Iraqi and Afghan people–and that’s not a bad thing.  In fact that is more noble to fight for someone else’s freedom.  But I want it clear, Soldiers fighting in foreign places are not fighting to keep me free, but to free another country from a tyrant.

If we want world peace we need to get rid of religion. We can’t force someone to give up their religion, so I guess we will have to live with war always in our future.

14 thoughts on “Atheism and War

  1. It is wrong on every level to believe all Muslims are terrorists just as it is to assume any group,religion, or people are all of one mind….People are individuals and as such make choices….good and bad…Diane

  2. I have a funny feeling that the way humans are…even if we all simply believed in science there would end up being the same fractioning and arguments and wars….humans are territorial by nature and will always fight over space, ideas, belongings…it’s sad but true. Other than that I totally agree! lol xx

  3. I concur with the majority of what you’re saying and consummately agree with the notion that you cannot judge people by their religion. Stereotyping is possibly the worst things that can get into peoples’ heads and from there it just grows. It’s actually disgusting the way that other people talk about those “women hating Muslims”, “self-righteous Catholics” and “arrogant, greedy Jews”. People are people and we’re all the same, the world over. You did a wonderful job of describing this. I do not believe, though, that the world needs to get rid of Religion. I just feel that some people need the belief that there is a higher power out there. It’s almost like a comfort to some people. I know if things have been REALLY awful for me, I find that saying a prayer really help to calm me down and look at the big picture. Whether someone is actually listening or not, that’s anybody’s guess. So, we’ll have to agree to disagree on that point. You did a great job of writing this, though. I’m glad you actually backed up your points with tangible evidence because, as you mentioned in a comment, some people do argue for the sake of arguing. You are not, which is nice to see. What a well put together post! Have you ever thought of writing for a magazine? Or expanding on these ideas and publishing an essay of sorts? You execute, quite well, the structure of a hard-hitting argument that a political/philosophical essay entails!

    1. I’ve written essays about atheism but never thought about submitting anything to a magazine. But thanks for the encouragement!

      Even after being atheist for some 35 years, I find myself in prayer/meditation when things are really tough.

      I do feel that there would be fewer wars if there was less religion in the world. Yet I would never advocate abolishing religion by force. To each their own, as long as one doesn’t force their beliefs on others.

      1. I agree somewhat. Looking back, even thousands of years, it seems that many wars were caused by religion. This is a little ironic, to say the least.

      2. Yeah, ironic. I saw a photo online today, it said, “If you don’t believe in God, you don’t belong in politics.” How do you get through to people like that?

        Thanks fro dropping by. I appreciate the input.

  4. Honoring parents isn’t quite a universal principle. Take Matthew 23:9 in the Christian Bible:

    “And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven.”

    Many interpret this as a promotion of anarchism, the idea of peaceful coexistence and cooperation of free-thinking individuals, where no one is inferior to anyone else. Having a conscience and being able to choose right and wrong using your own intelligence is more worthwhile than simply blindly doing it because your parents told you so. I was raised this way, and free thought is what eventually led me from Christianity to atheism, so this principle is important in getting people to be open minded.

    I reject the assumption that all religions agree on some common set of “good” or “right” principles that we should all just swallow because there is more than one of them saying it. That’s just another form of religion. I have a mind, and I intend to use it. Give me a more complex reason to do something than it being written in an old book or shouted by a priest.

    1. I stick to my point that religions (for the most part) agree (in principal) of the basic tenets for a happy life; not stealing, not killing, not being envious of others, and most of all, to live peacefully.

      I do tend to over simplify, and I am probably guilty of that in this case. I haven’t read all the world’s religious texts or studied theology. It has been my experience though, that religions appear to support something akin to the Christian 10 Commandments.

      I’m just stating my point of view and what I have gleaned over the years about various religions I have encountered.

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