Life as it seems...

Daemonicous's picture

"It seems rather impossible, to believe in nothing Zack, do you not care about anyone else but yourself?"

Ok... As my first blog, I would like to evolve on this idea. To begin with, how does believing in nothing ever create the idea that one is self centered? Simply because I do not allow myself to fall into the greatest superstition of all time, Christianity. Now don't get me wrong, I have many friends who are Christians as most of you do. However, whenever the aspect of religion arises, my opinion counts for nothing, as they believe that belief in nothing is not only unethical, but totally obscene.

AgnosticAtheist1's picture

Er... believe in nothing?

Er... believe in nothing? You mean in respect to deities, correct?(just making sure)

Egann's picture

First of all, one cannot

First of all, one cannot believe in nothing. You at least believe in naturalism (that all that ever was and will ever be was the natural, observable world.) Otherwise you would contradict your own belief the moment you got out of bed.

Being a naturalist does not make one directly self-centered. Understanding how it does requires some uncerstanding of the history of thought.

If there is no god (little or big g) to have authority over man, there are two sources that man can derrive authority from:

1. Himself as an individual
2. Mankind as a collective or some collective whole

Both of these lines of thought have been explored by atheistic thinking.

The first modern line came from Jean Jock Reaseau in the French Revolution. He held that the individual should be free from all bonds, or that the individual is the source of authority.

As that the French revolution quickly degenerated into the political one man rule of Napolean, this was seen by most Western thinkers as an indication that this line of thinking was not only incorrect, but also unstable.

It wasn't until Darwin proposed natural selection that Atheism gained a revival in a collective viewpoint manner-Marxism or Communism (note: the fundamental constituents of communism contradict the principals of advancement in evolution, so the two when combined are, while not truely inconsistant, are nt consistant either. There is a sudden lurch in conceptual style between origins and societal function for no real reason.)

Communism was forced upon the newly revolted Russian people in 1917. The Bolshevics dispersed their opposition by force, despite only making up 1/4th of the original assembly.

Brutal opression assumed power and the promised temprary leadership turned out to be the permanent control by the small eliet.

When the USSR fell, this was interpreted as a sign that collective atheism was not correct either. From the mid-1990's to date, the pendulum of atheistic thought has been swinging back to individualism, illustrated by the new found popularity of individualism promoting matterial such as The Anarchist's Cookbook.

All this, despite the failure of the French Revolution....

So Atheism does not directly assume selfishness, hedonism, or solipcism, but the history of Atheistic thought suggests that the individual is the source of authority (hence modern relativism "true for you, not for me" thought.)

The problem is not that this is not a result of atheism, but that many theists are aware of the existance of the argument, but not how it works.

AgnosticAtheist1's picture

Or, you can go the third

Or, you can go the third way, and have a few axiomatic precepts.

Those other two governments failed, not because they were atheistic, because they had at their head, elements of irrational thought. They were making the same mistakes that atheism see in religion: not looking at things critically.

Or of course, the fourth way, admitting that morality doesn't 'exist', and is simply something we adopt as the best possible system(supplemented by law). However, these types of arguments 'Without God, there can be no morality', are stupid, because there is no reason to believe that a wholly independend ethos just exists. It's basically like saying without God, there would be no morality, and I wouldn't like that, so it can't be true.

The problem with your third

The problem with your third option is that it assumes there is inherent truth and morality. If there is, then there must be something outside and greater than nature, or man, providing that truth that would go against self preservation. (I am aware of the arguments for the preservation of the species, however the make little sense to me.)

Your forth option also fails to grasp the same concept as the third.

The problem with an "independent ethos" is that there must be something that gave rise to it. Yes, cultures can have an ethos, and peoples can agree on ethos. However, what happens when those people disagree? If there is no third party (i.e. a god) to define what is right and wrong, there can be no right and wrong since then each person is in effect their own god and therefore ethos/morality/law definer.