I’m not sure if you need an account to read this comment someone left in response to one of mine from some time ago, but just in case, I’ll quote it here. It exhibits multiple layers of wrong-headedness including atheism is a religion, which includes deceptively stretching a definition and then doing a bait and switch like we’ve seen done with faith, Christian nation, and religion necessary for morality. I have to say, it gets old and I grow more tired and frustrated than angry anymore when I see these kinds of things, which is partly why I don’t post as frequently these days.
A religion is defined as “something one believes in and follows devotedly; a point or matter of ethics or conscience”. Technically speaking, this could apply to a diet , book club, or excercise program. I don’t see how Atheism is magically immune. That’s not to say that all Atheists are RELIGIOUS Atheists, just that the possibility exists.
I don’t see how ‘hitching your party to a religion’ is detrimental. Eighty percent of Americans claim some kind of religious belief. If a political party could get ahold of even a part of that majority, they’d be a force to be reckoned with.
You can’t divorce the government from religion completely; it’s impractical. Most of our morals and ethics can be traced back to religions. Why is murder wrong ? Because the Bible, Torah, Koran, and many other religious documents say so. To remove the religious context from our laws may mean anarchy. If murder and theft are only bad because religion says so, what happens when you take everything related to religion out of the equation? Murder and theft, of course, because it’s no longer wrong.
The founders wrote in the federalist papers that political parties should be outlawed, or at least highly discouraged. If every seperation they wanted went into law , the world would be a different place.
Relating to the article, I’ve found that most ‘non-religious conservatives ‘ are actually Libertarians when they stop to compare their ideals. That’s what happened to me, anyway.- nyahplay
First, that broad definition of religion then makes most activities a religion which makes the word almost meaningless; however, the word isn’t meaningless, is it? The meaning people have for the word religion is most definitely one of a spiritual nature involving faith and almost exclusively, a deity. So what you’re essentially doing is a bait and switch, where you’re using one definition to label something a religion in order to then use the other definition. That’s at best an error on your part, at worst, an attempt at deception.
Second, even with your broad definition, atheism doesn’t necessarily apply. For most atheists, it’s not a belief, but rather a response to claim.
Believer: There’s a god!
Atheist: Really? Where’s your evidence?
Atheist: I see no reason to accept your claim.
If there’s anything to believe in, it’s the need for evidence to make a decision (ie – looking both ways before crossing the street) like whether or not to accept a claim (ie – Nigerian email scam). I suppose you could call requiring evidence something one could “follow devotedly”, but then that would be the religion, and atheism would be a result of that, so you’d be wrong again labeling atheism a religion.
In response to your claim that you can’t divorce the government from religion completely, our government is secular and was founded as such. There is not to be ANY mingling of religion and government. Our Founders realized the inherent tyranny in having such a marriage, as evidenced by the nations of the time, and the divisiveness of religion due to how passionately various believers hold to their differing beliefs which are often at irreconcilable odds with one another. There is no god in our Constitution, and where religion appears, there’s a no before it.
As for your claim about murder, one doesn’t need religion to understand that murder is wrong, but religion certainly has a way of making one believe it’s right. Also, the Sumerians had a code of laws in which murder was a capital crime. Virtually every culture had murder laws which didn’t involve deities, although the government might have invoked a deity as a way to legitimize its right to impose such laws. This is actually what nations such as England did at the time of our Revolution, and why Jefferson invoked a god in the Declaration, to undermine the King’s claim of having the right to tyrannize the colonies and all British subjects. Again, this is why no god appears in the Constitution, for there was no longer any need.