The Good Atheist 012

The Good Atheist has been bad… I haven’t been keeping up my podcasts, and for that, I apologize. Things have finally normalized, and to celebrate, we’re bringing you a new podcast. This week, my special guest Jeff and I will discuss ‘The Rapture’, the Christian belief in the events surrounding the supposed return of their messiah. We’ll also try and answer the question: does religion make you more violent?

Comments (8)

  • avatar

    Ben

    Great podcast Jacob. A couple comments though (as always ๐Ÿ™‚ )

    If religion is just the tool to man uses to forward his violent behavior, isn’t that just admitting that it’s really man that is violent as I stated before? Ie, if you took away the tool, isn’t man just going to find another tool?

    Secondly, what’s your beef with Christianity? It seems like you have some kind of vendetta against us Christians… What’s up with that? It’s been said, “When you engage in mudslinging, you usually just get your hands dirty and lose a lot of ground.” Why not use your atheist podcast to, I don’t know, promote atheism? Or, if you wan to keep discussing Christianity, maybe a segment showing the other side of the coin. Sure, there’s a lot of misguided people putting out weird material (the video you posted, and yeah, the Left Behind movies are sub-par ๐Ÿ™‚ ), but what about all the GOOD things religion has done? For instance, a married couple who I’m good friends with sold all their possessions last year in order to go to Peru to serve poor children. Why? Because they felt that God was calling them there. Why not a podcast about that? What about the good things that atheism has done? Where’s the ‘comfort and sense of community’ you’re looking to bring your fellow atheists? So far it just seems like a podcast that points out every time a Christian misses the mark. You must think very highly of us to want to point out how much we’re like everyone else ๐Ÿ™‚

    Maybe just a new website name would suffice. Something like “The Angry Atheist” or maybe “The Good Anti-Christian” would be more appropriate.

    I like the podcast, nonetheless ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Ben

  • avatar

    Rapax

    I’m pretty sure Christianity takes the brunt of the ‘attack of reason’ for mainly two reasons:
    It’s currently the most widespread sect worldwide, and it’s the predominant one in the area where most of the people who read the blog are. I’m pretty sure all the other religions (Islam, Zorostrianism, Scientology, Paganism, etc.) would get equal attention if they were in that role today.

  • avatar

    Jacob Fortin

    If I decide to answer a question of “does religion make you more violent”, than yeah, I’ll be mentioning Christianity. You might feel as though I’m not giving it a fair shake, or I’m displaying some terrible biased towards your religion. Christianity is obviously the most prevalent one of the lot, although I think I’ve said my fair share for Islam as well. Everyone has their area of expertise, or course, so coverage can’t be always 100% all over the board.

    I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again: I don’t care what people believe privately. I’m not going to go door to door bashing everyone’s head in with the Origin of Species until they believe what I believe. That’s ridiculous. But when people start to claim that their “revealed” opinions represent objective reality, than I step in, and put in my 2 cents. The world is a marketplace of ideas, and as such, opinions must continually be debated. I don’t think anyone that listens to the podcast would consider me an angry guy. Passionate, sure. But I’m not bitter or resentful of religious people. I just feel that for all the good it may do to some, it doesn’t offset the fact that it simply does not describe objective reality. No matter how comforting something might be, it never affects how true it is.

  • avatar

    Pewari

    Oi, I may be wrong, but I think you forgot to say have a good atheist day at the end! (goes to play it again, to make sure) Bah, if I have a bad day, I’m blaming you ;P

    Incidentally, wanted to give you feedback on the length of the show – I actually prefer it at around 30 mins as it’s easy to find time to sit and listen to it in one go. I am subscribed to a few shows that are around an hour long and while they’re good I always end up being interrupted and have to listen to them in fragments. It’s a bit of a pain.

  • avatar

    Jeffrey J

    This is a response to Ben.

    The topic was ‘does religion make people more violent?’ , Meaning that examples of religions being violent will be brought up. The reason why Christianity was specifically brought up was because Christianity was responsible for violent acts. You can’t Data Mine history if you want to remain objective (or at least as objective as possible) and hurt feelings do not change facts.

    I would also like to point out that nobody is saying that Christianity is an exclusively violent religion, in fact I am astonishingly certain that I specified this was not the case. It’s not the tool, but rather how it’s used that makes it good or bad, but the fact that if you use Religion as a tool for violent behaviour there seems to be an implied sense of immunity. Personally, I think Religion does not MAKE people more violent, but it is a violence enabler. The fact that you think it’s okay to gloss over the bad parts and just focus on how good (your) religion is actually proves my point quite well.

    The podcast is to promote Atheism, not defend Christianity. I’m sure there are podcasts that do that very well that you can subscribe to, and if not you are more then welcome to start your own. It is not the opposition’s job to defend your position. Besides, It’s very tricky to promote something without comparing it to ‘the leading brand’. If you think we are in the wrong, you have a forum here to express your views and opinions (and I encourage you to use it) , but if you don’t like the fact that the aegis of religion doesn’t work here, then you need to come up with a better argument. I happen to think you can support more on the pillars of reason than on pillars of salt. (and yes, I am being glib with that last line.)

    You said: “For instance, a married couple who Iรขโ‚ฌโ„ขm good friends with sold all their possessions last year in order to go to Peru to serve poor children. Why? Because they felt that God was calling them there.”

    Let me first say (without sarcasm) – kudos to your friends. That is a very noble thing to do, but it is not something that only a religious person does, but the difference is a non-religious person won’t use it as an opportunity to proselytize. If you can honestly say that they won’t have food in one hand and a bible in the other, I will be very surprised.

    As far as your claim that the show should be called the angry atheist, I don’t have a problem with being called an angry atheist. We have quite a bit to be angry about.

  • avatar

    Joe Botelho

    What the Hell?”the podcasts are late because i have a life”, What a lame excuse for lateness jacob. We all have lives but part of yours is putting out a podcast. If your so busy then make them Monthly and longer too. And that Ryan guy is not funny weres the orignal guy? Ha Ha i stuck him in my trunk. Dude that racism againist Itailans. And what was his name any way i forget because your podcast take so long and Sucko Ryan has been the co host.

  • avatar

    diasFlec

    I’ve had this discussion with Jeffrey before, in response to Ben – I agree that religion is one of the ways that man uses as an outlet for violence, without it, it would replace it with something else and as as such, religion is not inheritly violent – man is. I do however believe that fundamentalism (be it religion, PETA or anything else that narrows it’s view to the point that other ideas are ignored) is one of these outlets, and religion has a lot of fundmentalism to it – so it’s an easier outlet for agression than others while still believing that you are ‘moral’ (The Freudian in me can’t help but notice the projection of mans aggression in the bible IE: Love thy neighbours, but God hates homosexuals, Thou shalt not kill, but God will send people to Hell…. God is a great way to get the hostile impulses out that society deems immoral). Religion may be doing good for some, but it’s an excuse for violence for others. (It is hard to ignore the witchcraft trials & crusades). Believe what you want, but be aware that others claiming themselves to be of the same faith, may not believe the same things you do. Maybe it is unfair to attack christianity based on that alone, but it’s impossible to ignore.

  • avatar

    Ben

    Hey guys, great discussion.

    The point I was trying to make was that the podcast seemed to be more interested in attacking Christians than Christianity. I’m all up for debating the merits of christianity, atheism, whatever. But all I’m seeing here is: “Look at what this christian did, isn’t that silly? hahahaha have a nice atheist day.” Is that what atheism is all about? It just seems pointless. Why not talk about actual issues? We’ve got a nice one going on violence, but it seems few and far between.

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