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I Am Not Angry At Your God

November 3, 2008

There seems to be some consensus among some Christians that all atheists are really Christians in their heart and that we are just mad at their god for some reason or another. This post is for you. Atheists have no need to read beyond this point unless they want to extend upon what I’m saying.

Christians, I am not angry at your god. I simply do not have a belief in any god. Notice I did not say that I believe there are no gods. Allah, Jehovah, Vishnu, Cthulhu, and Jesus; I do not believe they exist. I think it is likely that no god exists but I can’t rule it out because of the nature of the matter. We make no assertion about gods, we just don’t accept YOUR assertion. That is what an atheist is.

There is a very strong difference between an atheist like Richard Dawkins and a teenager who is angry at god over a loss of someone/thing and saying they “don’t believe in” a god. I know this because I’ve been both and I’ve known people on both sides of the fence. When I was eight my grandfather died very painfully due to a form of leukemia, causing me to question how loving the Christian god really was. The first time I said “I don’t believe in God.” was in private where only God could hear me, and the intent was to hurt his feelings if he did exist. In truth, I was still a Christian, I was just made at God and wanted to make him feel my loss. However, my grandfather’s death and the subsequent questions about faith eventually led me to real atheism, brought on through critical thought and not emotion.

There are a lot of people out there (most are young, I’d imagine) that were like my eight year-old self. Angry at a god and trying to take it out on him by saying they don’t believe in it. I would argue that in this instance, “I don’t believe in God” is being used in the context of “I have no confidence in you” or “I think you exist but I don’t love you”. That is not atheism. Those people can easily be brought back into the herd with a little prodding and emotional pleas. Honestly, they haven’t even left the herd, they are just having trouble coping with something in their lives. Those people would still be Christians, just Christians angry at their god.

I am not one of those people. I have looked at the evidence and applied logic. I have evaluated the situation with critical thought and decided that the Christian god is not real, as well as any other god that has been presented to me thus far. Pleas to my emotions will get you nowhere. Poking holes in prominent scientific theories is not the same as presenting your own theory. I need evidence of something, not against something else, to be swayed.

I am an angry atheist, but not because of your god. I am pissed off because of his followers. You* elect pious men in an attempt to subvert my Constitution, and you’ve done fairly well so far in that department. You* try to make what two consenting adults do in the privacy of their own home a part of public policy. You* send me three page emails about how it’s my fault 9/11 happened when you damn well know those men were praying when those planes hit the twin towers (this is very specific but it did actually happen). You try to subvert the education of our nation to further your religious agenda by appointing creationists onto state education boards. You cause the death of millions by forcing abstinence-only sex education. Worst of all, you use me as a swear word to further your political agenda and keep atheists on the lowest tier of untouchables, so that we will never be represented by our elected officials.

That being said, if your god did exist (Jehovah/Yahweh), I would not put my confidence in him. I would not love him. Nor would I praise him or go to church on Sundays. Your god is immoral. Your god has commanded atrocities that I could never support. Your god has committed genocide, to include infanticide. He is oppressive to women, gays, and minorities. He supports slavery. As well as having the temper of a two year old. I would rather burn in hell than worship your god.

Comments/Questions are welcome as long as they are productive.

 

* Not all Christians are this way, just enough to make it a problem. Please don’t comment only to defend yourself from my non-specific accusations.

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26 Comments
  1. notreallyalice permalink
    November 3, 2008 7:32 pm

    Oh come on… you know you just want to be able to sin without feeling guilty, and you know in your heart that Jesus will make you stop being an ebil atheist so that’s why you hate god!

    Therefore, God exists.

  2. November 3, 2008 7:56 pm

    Of course that’s it! I knew it all along.. Jesus loves me!!!11one

  3. November 3, 2008 11:19 pm

    Heh. YES!!!! Someone else gets it.

    “I’m not bothered by your imaginary friend: I’m bothered by you.”

  4. November 3, 2008 11:44 pm

    Exactly, God himself has done nothing to me, he can’t in fact. It’s only the religious that are persecuting us, not trans dimensional universe creating pixies..

  5. ApokalypseNow permalink
    November 4, 2008 10:58 am

    Xtians talk all the time about “immoral atheists” and how they “just want to sin without consequence”, but they are forgetting something very important – there are consequences for your actions without involving supernatural mumbo-jumbo. In modern societies, these consequences are due to laws and law enforcement. By that metric, atheists are actually far *more* moral than theists, as atheists are disproportionately underrepresented in the US prison population as opposed to the general population.

  6. David permalink
    November 4, 2008 11:50 am

    I am a Christian and as a Christian I would just like to take this time and say that even though you are an atheist and you don’t believe you are still a “child of God” and he still loves you,and it is my hope that one day you will change your mind and come to know God. I realize that day may never come but you know I have to try.

  7. November 4, 2008 11:54 am

    David, I understand that for you that statement was something nice, so I appreciate the good will. However, as long as your god commits or condones genocide, infanticide, gay-bashing, and irrational hatred for mixing cloth types I will never be able to take him seriously. Let me know when you guys decide to rewrite the bible in a more serious and mature light and I’ll gladly take another look. I highly suggest retconing Leviticus as a whole..

  8. Andrew Reiners permalink
    November 4, 2008 8:36 pm

    The men who prayed as they flew planes into buildings on 9/11 were not Christians.

  9. November 4, 2008 9:07 pm

    What about the men who have bombed abortion clinics, including the man who drove a car filled with explosives into an abortion clinic?

  10. November 4, 2008 10:51 pm

    Sisyphus,

    The dudes who flew planes into buildings on 9/11 were Muslims, not Christians. Stop associating 9/11 with Christians!

    People who kill other people and are unrepentant and broken over that are not Christians. How can you judge who is a Christian when you yourself are not one?

    In your post, you wrote: “The first time I said “I don’t believe in God.” was in private where only God could hear me, and the intent was to hurt his feelings if he did exist. In truth, I was still a Christian, I was just made at God and wanted to make him feel my loss.” So you used to talk to God? But he doesn’t exist? So now you are a loon who talk to someone who doesn’t exist. Hmmmm….

    Sisyphus, you are angry at God’s followers. You probably hate most of them. Does that make you any better than them? You are just as bad! But you are worse because you don’t realize your hypocrisy. C’mon bro…admit it!

    By the way, David, sorry bro. Love you as a Christian brother, but anyone who doesn’t love God as Father is not his child. We are all made in God’s image, and God desires everyone everywhere to repent, but if you aren’t a Christian, you aren’t God’s child. Plain and simple.

  11. Ally permalink
    November 5, 2008 12:48 am

    Muslims, Jews, and Christians all pray to the same nonexistent sky figure, making the question of religious flavor a moot one. It does not appear Sisyphus is a hateful person… he just doesn’t like people poking around in his business, using their fairytale to dictate what he should be permitted to do in the privacy of his home. Sort of like me. Along with most other atheists. Actually, most other people in general, really. Stop assuming that everyone who disagrees with you and tells you about it hates you.

    As far as the question of belief followed by disbelief… did you believe in Santa Claus as a child? I would assume you now do not believe in Santa Claus? Okay, then that settles that.

  12. November 5, 2008 10:42 am

    James,

    The men who flew into the twin towers were praying to the god of Abraham. I not only associate Christians with 9/11 I will happily associated Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Mormons, and Scientologists. Religious faith is dangerous and deadly. You know full and well that Christians bomb abortion clinics and drag gays behind their trucks. Religious terrorism is religious terrorism. Not all theists commit these atrocities, but something must be done, and you won’t fix your own problems. So we have to do it for you. We have to drag you, kicking and screaming, into the future. So that you realize you’re backward and illogical.

    How can you judge who is a racist if you are not one? How can you judge who is an atheist if you are not one?

    When I was young I did I think I was talking to a god. Obviously, I no longer believe that. How could I talk to something that does not exist?

    James, I do not hate the followers of Christ, I pity them. From birth you have been duped into thinking something is real that is not. Your mind has been poisoned and you are too ignorant to accept the cure.
    My girlfriend, and future fiance, is a Catholic. I love her more than any other person on this Earth, including myself. I know that I will likely have to make compromises with her on how we raise our children, and I’m fine with that. They may even grow up to be Christians themselves (I highly doubt it) I will love them no less for it.

    If this is extent of your logical abilities then I understand why you are a theologian and not a biologist.

  13. quicklime permalink
    November 5, 2008 3:08 pm

    I think you might ought to read up a little more on buddhism, but don’t get your information from another religious website. Go to a buddhist site. You may be suprised. Also, why knock these people if their beliefs make them happy? I know as well as you that their mission is to shove their beliefs down the worlds throat but so what. Ignore them and they go away. Intentional animosity only causes more stress.

  14. November 5, 2008 3:14 pm

    Quicklime,

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/buddhism/buddhistethics/war.shtml

    Buddhism and violence
    But Buddhism, like the other great faiths, has not always lived up to its principles – there are numerous examples of Buddhists engaging in violence and even war.

    *in the 14th century Buddhist fighters led the uprising that evicted the Mongols from China
    *in Japan, Buddhist monks trained Samurai warriors in meditation that made them better fighters
    *In the twentieth century Japanese Zen masters wrote in support of Japan’s wars of aggression. For example, Sawaki Kodo (1880–1965) wrote this in 1942:

    It is just to punish those who disturb the public order. Whether one kills or does not kill, the precept forbidding killing [is preserved]. It is the precept forbidding killing that wields the sword. It is the precept that throws the bomb.
    Sawaki Kodo
    In Sri Lanka the 20th century civil war between the mostly Buddhist Sinhalese majority and the Hindu Tamil minority has cost 50,000 lives.

    That being said, as long as people are being murdered over religion, I will stand up to fight it. As long as reason is being discarded and affected public policy, which affects ME. I do not want my future children to be taught that the Earth is 6000 years old.

  15. quicklime permalink
    November 5, 2008 3:28 pm

    As long as there are human beings there will be personal agendas. I’m not going to argue about anything because it’s pointless. We’ll keep these little power games going until we become socially mature. We’ll either become some type of post-human or we’ll go extinct.

  16. November 5, 2008 7:14 pm

    “Religious faith is dangerous and deadly.”

    That was the only true statement you wrote in that last comment. It is dangerous and deadly to follow Jesus. He was homeless and he was murdered…that’s about as well as I’m expecting it to go for me as well. You can pity me all you want. In fact, if Jesus is not alive today–if he did not rise from the dead–then I’m the most to be pitied.

    However, it’s interesting that men who hated Jesus (i.e. Paul) converted to follow him. It’s interesting that people who were not Christians (i.e. Josephus) confirmed that Jesus lived, died, and rose from the dead. It’s interesting that millions of people since have laid their lives down (in a non-violent way) for this Jesus. Jesus’ mother and brothers worshiped him (that’s nothing short of a miracle). Jesus didn’t die before going to the cross (that’s almost as big of a miracle as rising from the dead). For you to disagree with the person and work of Jesus in the Bible, you’d have to come up with a better story than what it tells. When you do, I’ll believe you. For you to be right, you’d have to say that everything that happened either didn’t happen or is a coincidence(s). That would be absolutely incredible…if you could prove it, I would worship you.

    Furthermore, if you only have hope in this life, then what is the point of you living? If I only have hope in this life, I’m spending my time at a strip club, with alcohol, and lots and lots of drugs. But, I have a hope greater than this life. Jesus. He makes me want to be better. If he doesn’t exist (or didn’t rise from the dead), there is no point to life. What is your point, Sisyphus? Is there a point to be nice or kind or loving or generous or compassionate or gentle or self-controlled? No! No! No! No! No! There is no point.

    Sisyphus, you don’t believe in God because you are smarter than me or because you read books with footnotes. You don’t believe in God because of sin. You don’t believe in God because you don’t want to have to answer to someone. You want to do what you want, when you want, how you want, and where you want. You don’t want a God to rule your life and judge your actions, thoughts, words, attitudes, intentions, and motives. It’s about sin, Sisyphus. Not about academia or logic. Pure and simple.

    By the way, interesting about your fiancee. Does she believe in Jesus or in the Catholic way of doing things? There is a big difference. I would figure someone like you, who values atheism so much, would find someone with a similar worldview. Good luck with that relationship. Let me know how that works out for you.

    I don’t want to sound harsh, but this is perhaps the most loving thing I can say to you. Sisyphus, you are ridiculous. And so am I. We both need a savior. Right now, yours is a vague thought process about how the world works. Mine is based on a real person who did and said things that no one has done before or since. Right now, you are your own savior. Right now, my savior is Jesus. I’m banking on Jesus instead of me. I hope you’ll consider doing the same.

    much love bro,
    james

  17. Schevus permalink
    November 5, 2008 8:12 pm

    James,

    I am very sad that the only purpose you have for leading a good life is that God might reward you for it. I am agnostic, yet I have many reasons for being compassionate, kind, and loving. Most importantly, it simply makes the world a better place. Compassion creates a synergy that only results in further good. No one benefits from selfish, destructive behavior and I am troubled and sad for you that you would live that kind of life if you did not believe that God will reward you for doing otherwise.

    I am amused that you think people are atheist / agnostic only because they seek to avoid retribution for sin. By any measure, I would make an excellent Christian. If I but “let Jesus into my heart,” I would walk among you and you would never suspect I had been agnostic. What troubles me the most is that I would make a better Christian than most of them I know. I guess they don’t have their eye on the prize of that heavenly reward. Many just go through the motions because society and family expects it of them.

    Best wishes,
    Schevus

  18. Andrew Reiners permalink
    November 5, 2008 11:46 pm

    Schevus,

    I agree with you that many people who call themselves Christians do just “have their eye on the prize” and do go through the motions.

    I am a Christian and I strongly believe that being a Christian is far more than looking for the rewards from God. Its about enjoying God and expecting that he is that reward. Its sad, but I believe there are many out there who would be satisfied with heaven even if Jesus isn’t there. If I were to say that I would eternally enjoy heaven in the absence of Jesus, then I would not be a Christian, but merely a free-loader looking to stay away from the fire of hell.

    The point James is making is that we as Christians live to enjoy Christ and to make him known (in non-violent ways Sisyphus) throughout the world as commanded in scripture. If my sinless, loving savior hadn’t been born and died for my sins, and there is absolutely no life after death, then why not satisfy the desires of the flesh and do whatever we wanted to do. The earth and everything in it is passing away, one minute we are here, the next we are gone.

    Thankfully, because of the divine presence of the holy spirit in me, I have something greater to live for, a savior to enjoy and be satisfied in, and a heart to reach people with the truth of the gospel in a loving, non-shove it down your throat kinda way…. so that they may experience the joy and purpose in life and be assured through scripture and faith that one day they will be with their creator, redeemer, savior, and eternal hope in Jesus Christ. Thats what its about! Though I believe you are wrong, I respect your own belief and can only hope that the light of the Jesus, not religion will make its way into your life.

    take care,
    Andrew

  19. The Girlfriend permalink
    November 5, 2008 11:55 pm

    Seeing that I’ve been mentioned in a few comments I believe that it’s only right that I clarify my position in all of this. I’m not interested in any arguments; I would simply like to let you know where I stand and to prevent anyone speaking on my behalf.

    I do believe in Jesus and I am a Catholic. I was raised in a Catholic home, attended Catholic masses every Sunday at 9 a.m, and I attended an all girls Catholic High School. I’ll go ahead and admit that as a child or a young girl a lot of the Catholic teachings I “accepted”. That’s the way I was brought up , those were the ways I was shown. But in growing up I opened myself to a lot of other religions. I grew up on a Caribbean island and was privileged enough to have Buddhist friends and Protestant friends and Seventh Day Adventist friends and Muslim friends who were always ready and willing to answer any questions.

    I do not live my life based on my religion. I have a good heart, I’m very forgiving, caring, selfless and an overall good person. On many occasions I have been told that I’m a good Christian. I think the best Christians are those who do not have to try to be. You do good for doing good sake.

    You’re not the first to point out our very obvious difference. Well, we’ve managed to make it over two years. We’ve had many disagreements on our views of religion but we have a lot of respect for each other. I love him just the way he is; atheist and all. Our relationship would most likely go a lot smoother if we were of the same religion but I wouldn’t change it even if I could. In two years I haven’t tried to convert him and I never will.

  20. Peaceruler permalink
    November 6, 2008 4:45 pm

    I find this these conversations very interesting and though I am not an atheist, I also do not hold myself to any religion. I have to agree with Sisyphus… Religion in all its forms has been and may always be the #1 reason for war in the world. Through my studies
    I have come to the conclusion that all major religions stem from the need for law and order, its a form of control established by the
    people who had the most power when modern man could first
    conceptualize what is right and what is wrong. All religions are just
    rules on how you should live your lives, so everyone can get along.
    But as with all stories time takes over and the ideas change and people evolve and the values change. And this is when the wars start, because people start saying “No your supposed to pray this way, or this is how god ment it to be.” People have change end up having different views and ideas and want to impose those views and ideas at any cost to be the right ones.

    So yes Sisyphus, religion is dangerous. So that being said let me share with you my view, I thought long and hard about this and I’m 30 years old and have been thinking about it since as far back as I can remember.

    There is some type of god, whether it is a conscious superior being or Just a enormous cloud of gas that floats around creating universes I don’t know nobody does and my never know. But I believe there is a god of some sort and the proof of this is the very fact that we and everything around us exist.

    So thats my two cents and on a final note if we are to move on as a society we should all be respectful and accepting of all peoples beliefs so long as its not causing genocide and destroying ourselves. When someone share their belief with you the conversation should end with “Thats very interesting and thank you for sharing.”

  21. November 6, 2008 8:56 pm

    The Revolutionary War, Civil War, WWI, and WWII, Vietnam, Korea, Persian Gulf, and Iraq War–none of them had to do with religion. It’s a dangerous thing to say that religion is the main cause of war in this world. The Afghan War is the only recent war the US has been in that was started by religion (9/11).

    To the girlfriend: You said you have a good heart. Read Romans 3 and get back to me on that one.

  22. Andrew permalink
    November 6, 2008 9:06 pm

    You are exactly correct peaceruler. Religion IS rules and regulations and very dangerous. Christianity is labeled a religion, but Christianity is about Jesus, and Jesus is not a religion. I recommend reading Galatians.

  23. November 6, 2008 10:19 pm

    @James, Keep your negativity pointed at me please. Leave the lady out your hellfire and brimstone.

    @Andrew, Christianity is a religion, you worship Jesus, that is religion to a “T”. Also, the book for the religion does not get to decide whether it’s a religion or not.

  24. Peaceruler permalink
    November 7, 2008 1:00 pm

    Ok James, then its the cause for most wars but even still you can trace any war back to where people believed it was their “God given right…” to fight for what ever it was they wanted. Agreed that there were alot of other factors that lead to each of those wars, but what better way to rally people up to your cause then to tell them your committing genocide and murder because its what “God wants”, a lot of people would believe that and start picking people off.

    I don’t think God, intelligent or not, wants anything, I think it just is. Its man who’s using this idea of an intelligent superior being as a tool for its own selfish needs, an excuse to do something terrible and say it was “God’s will” and scare the heck out of everyone else. If WWII’s holocaust wasn’t an act of religious genocide then I don’t know what is. Granted they wanted to kill off everyone who was different, but they were doing that because of that Arian race stuff which counts as a belief system you can call a form of religion they had.

    And yes Christianity is a form of religion based on the teachings of Jesus, and Jesus was just a man with great ideas that the people of the day looked up to for leadership. He was just a man ahead of his time, and after a while people revered him as a deity. which has always been confusing to me because wasn’t one of the ten commandments not to worship any other idols? If you ask me thats what your doing if your saying Jesus is god.

    Now let me just make it clear that I’m not suggesting we do away with all religion, no. I think everyone should believe what ever it is they want to believe but keep it to them selves and if some one else shares a different belief with you don’t flat out reject them because maybe it sounds weird or because most of there views go against your belief system. And don’t try to convert them or force your beliefs on someone either that just annoying and uncomfortable for everyone. Except diversity in all its aspects, its the only way we’ll grow as a race.

  25. quicklime permalink
    November 10, 2008 12:38 pm

    I think that fundamentalist beliefs will fade over time. They’ll go gently into that good night, not with a bang as has happened in Europe. Also, in a couple of generations I think the more fanatical factions will die out leaving ?

  26. November 18, 2008 6:33 pm

    Long-time lurker, first-time poster.

    I run into this constantly, as I’m openly Atheist in a light-infantry unit. The evangelism really kicks in when you’re overseas. I don’t hate God any more than I hate Zeus or the Easter Bunny. I don’t hate God’s followers, either. As many Christians like to say, “hate the sin, not the sinner”. This current mess in Iraq absolutely has a strong undercurrent of the holy war mentality running through it. This Organization openly operates in the Pentagon and many key leaders have been criticized for casting the Iraq conflict in religious terms, publicly, in uniform (which is unethical in addition to being against military regulation). See General Boykin as a good example.

    Getting back to my point, I have no problem with what people want to do with their own lives, but I don’t need my unit chaplain asking me why I hate God when I refuse to bow my head for the invocation at the start of every military formation we had in the last fifteen months… true story.

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