Honestly, Internet atheists are like this

 I made a boo-boo.

Some atheists told me that atheism is good for society and that the world’s most atheistic societies are also the healthiest. And that they get their views from a guy by the surname of Zuckerman. I saw right out that the Zuckerman numbers simply cannot be used to support what they say, and I assumed Zuckerman was very wrong.

And I made two blog post showing that what these atheists claim simply cannot be supported from the numbers, even those Zuckerman use. My boo-boo was to believe that Zuckerman indeed say everything that atheist/humanist blog commenters claim he does.

Today a commenter on this blog, Ianam, presumably an atheist or humanist, convinced me that Zuckerman’s views are more nuanced than I give him credit for. (Ianam also implied some slanderous nonsense on another topic – what Good News Clubs teach- that I know not to be true. I have the official certificate and experience to prove my knowledge of Good News clubs, but that is another story.) This led me to make blog changes and send him this e-mail, so Ianam know that I am trying to improve on my mistakes:

Hi, Ianam

You posted on my blog today.

You will notice that I set my two Zuckerman posts from published to draft, so readers here can no longer see them. You convinced me that I misrepresented Zuckerman. You see, I always heard of him from atheists who indeed made the claims represented here.

But if those claims are not Zuckerman’s, but only that of his fans, then my posts are indeed up for major revision. The numerous misrepresentations of Internet atheists who quote Zuckerman need to be showed to be wrong, but I have no right to blame Zuckerman for what his fans say.

This happens time and again when I trust Internet atheists- they end up lying, and then I lie when I believe and quote them.


PS: I hope you were honest about your e-mail address, and this e-mail goes through.

Guess what? The e-mail did not go through…

Should this remind me about anything regarding Internet unbelievers?


About Retha Faurie

Attempting to question everything, reject the bad and hold fast to the good.
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2 Responses to Honestly, Internet atheists are like this

  1. Retha says:

    Some of my readers probably think that this post is unjustly critical, seeing only the worst in people. That is the experience I want Ianam and those like him to have at the moment of reading this. (Teaching through experience)

    You see, Ianam in his comments (unpublished right now ’cause the blog post they are on is pending review) was very ready to believe the worst of Christians and apologists in general, using words like “liars.” He was being treated according to the tone he set.

    The point is that anyone can be critical and see only the worst, most dishonest in this case, in others. It is easy. In real life, I believe Ianam commented under a wrong e-mail adress because his way of thinking made him (rightly or wrongly) distrustful. And he twisted what he think he know of Good News clubs, (saw encouragement to witness, for example, as kids being told to berate other kids) because of the mistaken paradigms in his mind.

    Ianam, like you, we Christians sometimes do something because we are under a wrong impression. I’ve dealt – on my mother tongue blog- with many unbelievers, and like you and I both did in this discussion, they certainly all had misconceptions. But it is no use assuming dishonesty before considering the possibility that someone (yourself, too!) can be honestly mistaken.

  2. Michael says:

    Hi there,

    Just wanted to share some information about Phil Zucherman with you. I have been studying this atheism in Denmark and Sweeden for a bit and I would like to offer you a few things:

    1. Do a google search for “Denmark – A Deviant Case”. Here you will find a committee that wishes to establishes conferances to study religion in Denmark. Because, “characteristically that there has been relatively little research of religion in Denmark within the social sciences.” This group hopes to change this. Phil Zucherman’s work is interesting but cannot stand alone as authoritative. He would probably say the that himself.

    2. Hard core atheism is not related to education or parental influence but to socialization. Many atheists use P. Zucherman to support that argument. In “Bogus Atheist Social Sciences: An Overview:Zuckerman and Paul’s Alleged “Studies.”

    3. The Danish people do not have an understanding of spirituality and religious life as in America. They are vastly different! Many would not call themselves atheists but would actually “balk” at the notion according to Zuckerman. In this culture there is “Folk” religion; where were people identify themselves culturally as a Christian and celebrate the traditions of their culture through Christian symbols. Thus, they only attend church at certain times of the year. This is different from “Free” churches like in America where you have to participate, donate to the church and must attend the services in order to be a member.

    This dialogue “begins” around the 5:37 mark of the podcast download. Here you can listen to a professor of systematic theology educate you on the religious culture of the Danes.

    Finally, I wish you well on the developing war that seems to be occuring between the New Atheists and Christians. I am sorry to say I have experienced little reasoning ability with them – so I don’t bother.

    I hope this helps…
    Merry Christmas.

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