I’ve seriously had that response from some people. Simply because I’m an atheist. How someone that doesn’t know me at all and then claim to be a member of a religion that loves everyone, will then condemn me, simply because I refuse to recognize their specific god. How many do you recognize? Certainly you understand that there are more people on this planet that do not believe what you believe than those that do believe. Right?
It’s always been strange to me. How can people that claim to love everyone, seem to project hate to those that do not believe what they believe. I mean, I see it everyday on Social Media. No, I don’t believe in what you purport to believe. How does that make me an object of hate and doesn’t that, alone, defy what at least one of your gods instructed you? I’ve actually witnessed this in person from a form a extremist islam that dictates everyone that disagrees with them an enemy that must be either subjugated or wiped out. Think you know believers? These people are believers. There’s nothing, individually, they wouldn’t do to further their religion. Of course there’s more than a billion others that practice a similar religious belief that have no thought of killing others simply because of their non-belief.
There’s a region much closer to home for many of us in the west that has similar history. What? Yes, Christianity has done much of the same to their enemies as those od radical Islam. We don’t have to go back a thousand years to the Crusades as many would like to remind d us, just to themid-to-late 1990’s when christians and muslims were massacring each other in the Balkans. Heck, just a couple of decades earlier when Christians were at war with each other in Ireland (Catholic versus Protestant) as well as England. The fight over religious belief is fairly new in the history of humanity. In earlier times wars were fought over land, thst land being fertile for crops a thus taxes for the government.
I’ve visited the Balkans and spent more time than I’d like to remember in the Middle East and so I think I know of what I speak. Ancient grievances versus a grab for fertile, crop bearing, land. Many consider the middle east as little more than sand and rock but there’s what’s known as the Fertile Crecent that is a crop bonanza for whomever occupies it. From Lebanon to Syria, into Iraq and finally Iran, there are large lush areas, a veritable Garden of Eden able to feed and supply millions of people.
The Balkans, what we used to call Yugoslavia, is as well, a beautiful part of the world, but scarred by generations of hate between two religions. That is what caused the war there in the 1990’s and cause a million, or more, deaths. No one knows for certain. Today, it’s a land of ghosts; not in reality but memories of family that no longer exist. Why? Religion. I may be wrong, but it seems that wherever, and whenever i’ve seen depravity in my lifetime? It has something to do with religion. I could go on, and on, about the horrors I’ve seen committed because of some religious belief. My nightmares shouldn’t be yours.
How many atheists are out there massacring people? Sure, we atheists hear about Hitler, Stalin, Mao – all of these mass murderers, and all atheists. Hitler never desctibed himself as an atheist, in fact, the opposite may, or may not be true. It’s hard to find information mainly because some of the research seems to be agenda driven. For instance, Hitler was raised Catholic but it’s hard to find any articles, from Catholic writers, that say anything other than he rejected his religious belief. Flip a coin. Whatever you come up with is probably right at the time.
I’m fed up with discussing ancient history with believers. Atheist’s are bad! Hitler, et al were atheists! What about recent history. How about late seventies, into the eighties where Lebanon, specifically Beirut, went from being The Paris of the Middle East, to a city demolished by Christians and Muslims, fighting one another. Or what about the battles in Northern Ireland between Catholics and Protestants? Look up Bloody Sunday.
A lot of the deaths in the Middle East come from ancient grievances between Sunni and Shiite Muslims. Thousands, just in recent years, have died. Not armed militias fighting, but bombing civilians. That’s real terror when you don’t know if it’s safe to go outside your home to shop, or go to religious services. Atheists contribute to this, how?
Atheists aren’t perfect, but we’re hardly the cause of all the world’s ills. In fact, it seems to me that it has been, and is, religion that is the cause of so much misery.
5 thoughts on “You’re an Atheist? I Hate You”
most theists are terrified of atheists. We dare to not need them or their nonsense and we are perfectly fine without it. Of course they hate that which shows them to be nothing special at all.
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There is the concept of “being an atheist” and then there is the reality of “being a person who happens to be an atheist.” The concept is frightening and incomprehensible to theists. The reality is only perplexing. That a person the theist knows could not believe in their deity rarely, in my opinion, makes them respond with “I hate you” but more than likely allows them to respond with questions and maybe counter arguments seeking to shake the atheist’s “faith” that the deity they believe in does not exist.
They may have been told to despise the atheist and to remove themselves away from the atheist and that the atheist has nothing good in him or her…but not if they know the atheist. Something different happens then and is probably a form of witnessing. Well…maybe if the theist is a child they might respond with “I hate you” or “I was told to hate you” or some variation of something they must do or say. I can’t say that I or my kids when they were in public school, ever experienced the outright verbalization of hate.
In other words, one can easily say “I hate atheists” but it is far more difficult to say “I hate you because you are an atheist.” Does that make sense?
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That makes a lot of sense. I think I said in the piece that originally, I never referred to myself as an atheist. Not because of backlash, but because I was just a non-believer. It was later when I heard about people like Dawkins and Hitchens (I met him in Iraq), that I first thought and began to refer to my non-belief as atheism.
I have lost friends, especially one, that Ive known for half a century, because of being an atheist. That’s okay because if our friendship is based on what I believe, or not believe, it’s pretty shallow, isn’t it?
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Lucky you, to have met Hitchens!
i agree with all!