THANK YOU!!… for statin’ the bleedin’ obvious.

This should be the FIRST lesson in ‘Witnessing 101’.

Why has it taken 2000 years for someone to write what is – to all atheists at least – fairly obvious, as plain as the nose on our face perhaps – we just ‘over-look’ it, it seems.

Thanks again Joe! 🙂

… and thanks also to ‘Ethel‘ (a Who in the What now?) for the re-jiggered link 🙂

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16 thoughts on “THANK YOU!!… for statin’ the bleedin’ obvious.

  1. Absolutely fabulous!

    Spot-on deadly accurate!

    I wish I wrote it!

    It does beg the question though… If an atheist DOES live the same way a good Christian does, being a charitable honest member of humanity and is content with his world view… what is the point of Christianity?

    R.

    PS my step-daughter is currently ‘down-under’. In Perth to be exact….visiting her paternal great-grand mother. I told her to look up and see some stars we don’t get to see up here in the North!

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  2. Robert – Glad you and i agree on a few things at least!

    If she looked up last night she would have seen a magnificent Thunder and Lightning display – no stars out tonight either, more’s the pity, Milky Way is beautiful if you can get away from the city light pollution.

    I live in Perth – Yokine (slightly North of City) – where is your S-D staying?

    As for the point… I suspect the real point was to wipe out the many ‘opposition Religions’ in Ancient Rome and to control the populace – Originally. Call me heretical if you will 😉

    I don’t believe an Atheist does live according to the same rules as True Christians though, since a TC would defer always his own Will to that of The Supreme ‘Being’ which exists both within and outside of themselves – whereas a ‘Christian-living’ Atheist could never consider the possibility of a ‘higher’ Authority than their own self to whom they would subjugate their own will in EVERY situation imaginable. Self preservation cuts in at some point. We are controlled by our ego – Christ overcame that fallibility we all have today.

    The Catch 22 is, of course, (as you can, i’m sure, no doubt guess) that there is currently no such thing as a True Christian who does this either 🙂 (to the best of my current knowledge)

    Kind of a pity, that! 🙂

    Not that in any way negates the Theory behind what i believe, any more than the fact no human ever witnessed the Big Bang negates Big Bang Theory or that any human will ever witness a ‘string’ (way too small) negates String Theory!

    I live in the Hope that one day someone will (live as a True Christian) and that that one may just be me! 🙂

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  3. Good Q Robert.

    Then what separates you and a Christian is the acceptance and awareness of God. That’s all. BUT it’s the biggest aspect.

    What good is it if living with my husband i received all the things he offers but never acknowledged him. empty. pointless. sad. IMO

    And R, are you still sending your daughter to that private school?

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  4. If I take your point… you suggest that all one can do is approach living as a True Christian and never REALLY become a TRUE CHRISTIAN…

    Yet another universal asymptote! “What is the limit of 1/X as X approaches zero, Mr. Lombardi?”

    I don’t deny the possibility of a supreme being what I am denying is that those who would profess to be Christians or Christ-followers as the case may be, are somehow possessed of some special knowledge or revelation of the will of said being by virtue of some intangible special relationship that is not distinguishable from some sort of garden variety psychosis. How could you be sure what you experienced is(was) His will?

    I think you and I would agree to the political motivations of those who founded Christianity 2000 years ago! 😉 It’s not heresy, I think it’s well supported by historical fact!

    As for where my daughter is staying…I don’t have a clue at the moment. She’s with her paternal grandfather visiting his mom, which is Libby’s great grandmother…all I know is this womans name is Geraldine Taylor…if that means anything to you. Libby is supposed to be there till next
    Friday.

    I forgot how much I like bantering with you!

    R.

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  5. @Tam

    Yes we are sending Lib to a Roman Catholic high school which has a very good reputation.

    Our reasoning for going along with this is due to the rigorous curriculum Libby will be afforded. Libby is a straight “A” student and we think challenging her a bit more will be good for her.

    Yes she will have religious classes but I look at that as a good thing. She needs to learn the basis of Christian faith as I did. If after doing so she chooses to become a Christian, well that’s her choice. I will most likely disagree with her conclusions, but I will respect her choice if not her beliefs. 😉

    R.

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  6. Tam said:

    “What good is it if living with my husband i received all the things he offers but never acknowledged him. empty. pointless. sad. IMO”

    Robert says:

    Fair enough.

    But…

    Wouldn’t my living an honorable and charitable life be more of an acknowledgment of the generosity of the Creator?

    Of what possible use is my prostrating myself to
    Him? It’s a one-sided conversation at best.

    As I’ve said I don’t deny the possibility of God if He does exist and is responsible for the laws that govern the physical world as we are beginning to understand it, to my mind He is not concerned about whether or not I am thanking him on a daily basis some much as He’s concerned about how I conduct myself in my daily life, because THAT has a bigger effect on the Universe in which I live.

    My want to do Good does not stem from what I think He might want….It comes from my desire to make the world a better place for my having lived.

    R.

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  7. G’Day R, The feeling is mutual 🙂 You challenge me to better understand my own relationship with God (or my own Psychosis!) 😉

    You did not quite ‘take’ my point correctly (but i do apreciate you using the Math analogy which is ‘accurate’ as far as it goes). We are not to become as God (Infinite – 1/X for X approaching Zero: God being all and nothing, and everything in between including you and me). 🙂 We are to ‘eliminate’ the negative part of our humanity by ‘substituting’ x’ (x prime – a derivative of x)
    for J(esus).

    J is not (for me) a physical entitiy – He is a Spiritual one, albeit also a pre-existing physical manifestation of same, and it is this that allows me as an ‘atheist’ the ability to believe in the possibility of my own ‘perfection’ in my lifetime. It is not an unattainable ‘limit’ – i have all the ‘proof’ i need to satisfy my Faith – i can see the logic and can apply the ‘math’ to my own situation in a way that just trying to do my best for humanity is not capable of raisning me to the same level of belief.

    Tam put is quite nicely – do you really want Anna Nichole Smith as your God?

    Stop smirking, Mister! It’s the same thing! 🙂

    Getting all the goodies and not acknowledging the ‘man’ who gave them to you – with anything but your ‘lips’ – or fooling yourself that He is in your Heart (for the right reasons) when you only ‘love’ him for what he can get you is a travesty of what Marriage is meant to be!

    I don’t believe that ANYONE on this planet only believes in the things they can see and prove to others for themselves.

    If you believe in things that are unprovable (does that make you psychotic like me and Tam?) then what is it exactly that is preventing you from following Jesus more ‘directly’??

    P.S. there are 100 ‘G Taylor’s in my phone book – assuming she is not listed under her husband’s name or has an unlisted number 🙂

    I don’t think we’ll be catching up today! (Friday here now) Tell her to look me up next time! 🙂

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  8. I am not sure how differently an atheist and a Christian live in the world. We do look at the world differently.

    I look for guidance in books, just not the bible. I don’t pray, I do meditate. When I meditate I am asking my self questions, not a third party, God. How much of a difference does this make in how we work and live with our neighbors?

    Some differences I can think of:

    1)I think a believer is more likely to have a pessimistic view of the future, that Armageddon is coming.

    A non-believer is more likely to think that advances in science and technology will make the future a better place.

    2)In terms of choosing a profession a scientist is far more likely to be an Atheist than a Christian. If I remember correctly I have seen surveys where 90+% of scientist don’t believe in God.

    Most of the charity groups I read about are mostly religious. I can’t say for a fact this holds true for charity workers in general.

    3) I think that in a religious organization the leaders are more likely to be men. Women are less likley to be involved in making important decisions.

    4). It’s also my perception that religious parents are more concerned about trying to control their children’s environment. A stay at home mother is far more likely to be a Christian than an Atheist. Parents who home school their children are almost all Christians, at least all the ones I have read about.

    5) Religious people are more likely to live in segregated communities. I can think of several religious groups, like the Amish, who try to isolate themselves from the rest of society. I can’t think of any communities of Atheist who live this way. Religious parents in general want to see their children marry within their religion.

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  9. Ed – A very warm welcome if i have not previously extended one to you.

    I find most of your comments on other people’s blogs amusing and full of wisdom, so i am a tad surprised at the one you left on mine??

    Re: point 1. I find this baised in the extreme – do you have ANY factual basis what-so-ever for such wildly prejudiced perceptions? Although it is hardly a representative sample – can you seriously tell me that any of the Christians you blog with display a greater sense of pessimism than any of the non-believers here, because i have noticed quite the reverse, if anything? (with a very few notable exceptions in both camps). I suspect this tells more about your own bias than any ‘truth’ concerning Religion.

    Re: Point 3. This is entirely equally true for Your Government, Armed Forces and major corporate executives, indeed virtually any group of significant influence in Western Society (and a fair number of Eastern ones too) – so your point here being???

    Re: Point 4. Are you actually saying that Atheist parents are not equally as concerned for their Children’s safety as Christian Parent’s are??? or are you trying eroneously to suggest that Atheist parents do not make similar attempts to control their Child’s environment by attempting to: stop them using drugs; engaging in teenage unprotected sex; living on the Streets; dropping out of school/college; etc etc etc.

    Was this point meant to highlight a negative, positive or indifferent ‘difference’ that you seem to perceive between Atheists and Christians in one quite unique area of their Children’s lives?

    Point 5: Rich parents want to see their Children marry into their own ‘class’; All parents want their children to grow up as little versions of themselves (only without the mistakes we had to make to get where we are today); rednecks want their children to marry into their own family! 🙂

    I agree that many religions attempt to make their communities more homogenous by reason of the perception that dischord and disharmony is more prevalent when people of mixed ideas, background and belief are made to live in close proximity to each other.

    Xenophobia however, is by no means limited to Theists.

    I do not recall anyone making the suggestion that Christians lived differently to Atheists – i did make the assertion that Atheists and Christians have a bit in common actually but that the biggest difference i saw was in their ‘motivations’ for their actions.

    Atheists are, by nature, ‘materialists’ with perhaps a ‘humanitarian’ bent to do good in the world for the betterment of all (as long as ‘i’ am one of the ‘all’), while Christians (those who ACTUALLY try to follow Christ and not some seriously warped perception of Him) are by nature Spiritualists who have a desire not to do their own will but that of God, in the belief that the Greater Good is obtained by serving it’s benefit and not our own while we live on this planet.

    Recognising that we all have our own will and that it is ultimately selfish in nature is important for all humanity, i believe – Christ gave the example to follow to overcome this inherent ‘design flaw’.

    Sadly, shortly after His voluntary sacrifice, the whole message became seriously blurred by people who really did not GET Him in the slightest and we are left with what we have today – a fairly sad history of 2000 years of under-achievement of His Promise.

    But that is NOT His fault. 🙂

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  10. I will try to explain my self better. It isn’t my intention say one lifestyle is better or worse, just to discuss differences. These are just my perceptions. The starting point for discussion. I also apologize for not taking the time to research the “facts” and supporting documentation. The beach calls. 🙂

    I’ll just address only one point for now.

    1) Being optimistic or pessimistic about the future of man in this world we live in.

    I am talking about my perceptions of the differences in how an Atheist and a Christian view the world and it’s future. Not necessarily how we live in the world. I am not talking about being happy or sad, or about having a positive or negative attitude.

    It is my perception that a believer is more likely to see the world as becoming a worse place to live in. That man is turning away from God and salvation(?). That we need return to the traditions of the past. That the world God first created was a better place. We need to look to the bible to learn how we should live in the world.

    Man is fallen, weak, a sinner. It is only with the help of God is there any hope for the future.

    That is the message I am getting when I listen to religious leaders and in the majority of Christian blogs I read.

    An atheist is very likely to believe in evolution. That we are evolving a better brain. That we will continue to evolve better societies. The future world that we create with new ideas and new models of societies will be improvements on the old models of the past.

    The basis of a believers optimism is knowing that not matter how difficult life may be they will join God in Heaven when they die.

    The basis for am Atheist’s optimism is that we are evolving better minds and bodies. That we will build better societies in the future.

    These are just my own perceptions. Feel free to correct any misconceptions I have.

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  11. Since someone has chosen to use my car for parking practice, with a resulting dent in said vehicle, I will be sending today with insurance forms, and I guess that laundry that has been piling up, instead of the beach. 😦

    This gives me the opportunity to make an important point, which actually does address the point of your original blog post. The Christian message to Atheist to convert and find God.

    In the blogs, and comments, of my Christian friends the messege I get is that they want me to share in the love and joy they feel. They want me to join them in Heaven when I die. This is a positive message.

    The message I get from the comments I read from most religious leaders is that I am a sinner, weak, fallen. I “must” convert to become a better person. I am being judged. That is a negative message.

    I will also add that I think most Atheist have done a poor job of communicating with believers. When I see comments about religion in the Atheist and skeptic blogs I read I just negative attacks against religion. I don’t see much of an attempt at dialogue with Christian, just that religion is bad and stupid, blah, blah, blah.

    We Atheist need to speak more about what we are for, not just what we are against. It may be correct to say I am an Atheist, but that is not how I define my system of belief. My system of belief is based on evolution.

    Atheist and Chrisitan are not going to be able to convert each other to their own system of beliefs. We can ask questions and take part in discussion about our faith to try and understand each other better. It is best to do with a postive tone, not a negative tone. Which I apparently failed to do in my first comment in this thread. 🙂

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  12. Most people vomit their testimony out so quick that it’s very offensive to others….so I definitely think the tactics in witnessing, that Joe mentioned, are excellent. Walk the walk is important rules to live by and show faith by acts not words…but I think he sure left a lot out about Christ. I know atheists don’t believe in a God or Christ, but it’s okay to admit that we do believe in him, without throwing up all over someone in our witness testimony.

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  13. Thank you for the further clarification Ed, and i am sorry to hear about the car – Truly. Aussies love their cars more than just about anyone so i can relate! 😦

    I know reformed smokers are amongst the worst for their views on people who still smoke so, being a former Atheist perhps i need to moderate my views a little? 🙂

    I can assure you i do understand very well indeed where you are coming from and I also am an Evolutionist while finding nothing in it that prevents me from being a Christian or having a belief in a Universal ‘Creator’ God.

    I don’t limit this Being to just being a ‘man figure’ with human-like qualities (or should it be that we humans have god-like qualities??) 🙂

    My idea of God is an all-encompassing thing – far more than any human could ever have hope of understanding fully. Able to encompass all our individual ideas of ‘Him’.) Just One God – ‘fits’ many beliefs/religions!

    The reason i have never chosen to follow any major established Religion (although i quite like Buddhist principles) is for the reasons you made clear above – very negative thinkers… as expressed to the ‘masses’ and especially unbelievers, at any rate.

    I do think though that this is often a factor of the listener as much as it is the message-bringer!

    WE humans are EXTREMELY good at filtering out anything that does not suit our own biases and filtering in those things that do fit them.

    As for pessimism and optimism amongst Christians.
    I am thinking of Tam, Brent, Mandy, Alece, Christian, Darla, Deb, Ric, Brandy, Kim, Terry, (as well as myself, (although i am more interested in following Christ than any Christian Religion) etc and i truly do not see them as Pessimistic in the least! Their Faith gives them hope in times of difficulty and Joy in times of plenty.

    I listen a lot to talkback radio over here and i can assusre you , that amongst the ‘masses’ there are just as many pessimists about the world today in the ranks of Atheists as there are in those of religion – perhaps more-so! Many athesits do not share in the ‘grand vision’ you have of science, technology and man’s perhaps (yet to be proven – a ‘plateau’ and fall may soon be approaching) ever-expanding brain.

    Many people are blaming science and human greed for their problems today and they are by no means all ‘true believers’.

    You may have a better educated circle of freinds than most people i see hear and read about (i only have a very small circle of friends so do not use them as the basis for my understandings and perceptions of the Human Race per se) which may give rise to your ‘optimism’ (one which i truly do not share for the future of mankind – mainly because i know that for the last century or so (and most likely very much longer than that) it is not the scientists who run this planet – it is our Governments and they are controlled by big business and the elite rich. I do not trust these people to find solutions that will ever see us reach any kind of technological Utopia – merely to provide the masses with more and more reasons to be seperated from God – and to bring strufe between peoples – for the benfit of a self-serving plutocracy, Something that does concern me greatly.

    I have a glimmer of Hope in that Physicists are finally beginning to re-converge their knowledge into an understanding of ‘God’ – they are recognising the various possibilities that all is NOT ‘science’, that things held dear as ‘gospel’ for so long are breaking down into the unknowable and unexplainable (to them) but which has been ‘known’ to those of faith for Millenia.

    That what is at the true core of Humans ( which science is unable to study) and also our Universe is inextricably linked.

    This link is what i think of as ‘God’.

    I hope we have both communicated a bit better here? 🙂

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  14. Kim – we should never deny our Faith in Christ or our desire to follow the Will of God before our own will.

    We also need to recognise the right of others to have their own Faith and the fact that if theirs is not compatible with our own they are unlikely to feel good about listening to ours – any more than we would about them trying to ‘convert’ us to theirs.

    I feel True Christians should LIVE Christ – show Him to others that way (as He Did) – not ‘preach Him’.

    Let Love be your Praise! – and testimony.

    Actions speak so much louder to others than words as you say. 🙂

    Once others come unto voluntarily because of what they SEE in us, Hear in us, Feel in us, we can share our knowledge of Christ and what He came ‘for’ – if we truly understand.

    I think we have to be AS Him before we are qualified to speak Him to others.

    If we are still subject to our own will and not the Will of the Father – we cannot truly do Christ ‘justice’ – we appear as nothing but Hypocrites (as Pope Benedict is finally recognising the Truth of by apologising for the sins of those priests meant to lead us away from sin!)

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  15. Love, you are right about the optimistic tone of the blogs you mentioned, Tam’s, Mandy’s, etc, including your own. This is the reason I read them. These blogs are all about love, joy and laughter.

    We seem to get along so well when we talk and live as neighbors one to one. It’s when we divide ourselves into different races, nationalities and religions that we have problems working together.

    This is why I have so much hope for the Internet. It gets people communicating with each other over the barriers we put up between ourselves and our neighbors in “real” life.

    If we want to influence others it is much better to speak of what is good about our own approach to life instead of what is wrong with their’s. One method can lead to a discussion, the other to a fight.

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  16. From an aethiest prospective I thought the article was well written. If the rest of the world could live with such tolerance I imagine we would not be engaged in these modern crusades.

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