Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Do Atheists Worship?

This is a common trope among some believers, often served in the form of "Atheists are religious too" or some other such delivery.

If challenged on this point, what usually follows is a watering down of the word "worship". As just happened in a discussion on the original thread, a person responded to me:
"...I view worship as whatever we deem worthy of our time, attention, adoration, money, and resources. Not all worship is bad, for believers “it” shouldn’t be worshipped more/higher than God. I do sincerely believe for example, modern sports obsession “for some” is a form of worship. From decals to literal idol statues, blankets, hours of focus, clothes, people will spend their time money and focus to a point of obsession... almost like we are hardwired that way..."
So they are now putting on par that what they think and feel about Jesus with what I think and feel about disc golf. Is that really the digression that believers like Keller want to make?

I don't think it is. I think their elevation of the word worship is much higher in usual circumstances... but for some reason, it bothers them that unbelievers don't "worship" anything. So, when this topic comes up, they broaden the definition of the word. Lots of believers I know partake in this linguistic sleight of hand. I think these believers need to do a little introspection into what drives them to such an approach.

Friday, April 10, 2020

National Day of Prayer

If your definition of prayer is as a reflective and contemplative practice... I have no quarrel. But if you mean it as some way of conjuring magic, or entreating or binding a supernatural force to perform a task for you... then I think you are wrong. Prayer doesn't change reality.

No photo description available.However, having been religious for decades myself, I recognize it does change how people behave. Praying often makes people think they have cover they do not have. Prayer can make people feel they do not need to take reasonable precautions. Instead, they trust that their favored status with a deity will provide what they need.

Beyond that, prayer often blames the victim. I heard a popular pastor state this morning that if a Christian catches the virus, it is their fault. If they had sufficient faith, sickness could not touch them. I cannot write him off as just a quack... I know many folks who give to his "ministry".

This is my personal testimony: I spent most of my life as a believer. I took my faith very seriously. I prayed.

I have been an Atheist for about the past 8 years. Haven't prayed in ages.

There has been no difference in the amount of fortune "that just couldn't be a coincidence". Just as much good and bad "luck" fall my way now as ever did.

Reality is as consistent as ever. The only thing that changed was how I approached it.
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