Growing up in a Christian family makes me think that Christianity is superior to other religions, which is irrational to an atheist and followers of other faith. Similarly, an atheist holds the belief that religion equals superstition, which, in the eyes of believers, is purely blasphemous.
Reading a well-written piece by Alom Shaha is like staring at myself in the mirror...
Too often we are blinded by what we believe in, to the extend that some of us regularly spit ludicrous comments about what others are believing in. Many atheists and "skeptics" seem to have a habit of implying, if not directly stating, that people who believe in god/homeopathy/psychics are stupid. They think that tackling such beliefs is a question of dispelling ignorance, of educating people in the "right" way of thinking.
Sadly, it's not that simple. Such atheists and skeptics would do well to remember that we are all capable of holding irrational beliefs and that there are myriad social, economic, cultural and educational factors that determine what and how people think.
Take me, for example, growing up in a Christian family makes me think that Christianity is superior to other religions, which is irrational to an atheist and followers of other faith. Similarly, an atheist holds the belief that religion equals superstition, which, in the eyes of believers, is purely blasphemous.
Atheists and skeptics can feel incredibly frustrated by the beliefs of others and feel that they have responsibility to "correct" them, and in doing so they can be labelled as condescending, patronising and aggressive. It's not always accidental. Several prominent atheists and skeptics have been accused of deliberately behaving like "dicks"; let's face it, calling believers "deluded" is not exactly diplomatic.
The backlash against this kind of behaviour is not just coming from believers but also from within the atheist and skeptic communities – there are various corners of the internet where atheists and skeptics are engaged in heated discussions about whether or not to be a "dick".
"You're a dick", "No, you're a dick for calling me a dick".
We should not forget that believers are also feeling the need to "correct" us atheist. They get frustrated by our "ignorance" about heaven and hell and they normally end up cursing us before blessing us and say "God loves you". Paranoid?
Honestly, I have been confronted by a friend who got offended by a previous post on the topic of Evolution(guess he's not following my blog now). He was, from what I could see, kinda upset at some of the points I suggested which I thought were just casual quotation from various scientific sources. Of course, I didn't know he could be offended over such casual argument, but I guess the way I conveyed my message didn't get his favor.
Of course, there are some "dicks" who really need some lecture over some science issues, and I am more than happy to go about spoiling their day. But upsetting a religious friend(to add on; he's a young believer) stopped me on my track and I have since made endeavors to control myself in order not to spark another moment of tension. As Alom Shaha said: "Fanatical atheism can be as ugly as religious fanaticism."
We're not fanatics~ we're just killing in God's name~
It should be obvious that how we say things is often as important, if not more so, than what we say.
Nevertheless, I'm still holding on to my atheism, and by respecting others I hope they too will respect my decision, though I'm not entirely happy with what they are campaigning; "Believe in God or you'll go to hell." It is said that what people believe determines how people act. Well, I do not entirely agree. Take Sibu for example, the town with the most churches. You may think that this town is really blessed for having so many churches. But underlying that glorious pinnacle is a deep valley; Sibu tops the chart of serious gangster problem in Malaysia. Ironic?
So I'll continue on spoiling your day, though I do not call out "moron" at you. Seriously I do not wish to offend any of my friends, and I certainly do not think that they are remotely stupid, though my tone might suggest otherwise. But apology is inappropriate here, so try meet me in person, and I'll see what I can do =P