« on: August 23, 2010, 06:47:26 pm »Message ID: 225084
Why do Christians hate atheists?
Why should Christians hate atheists for not believing in their god? Perhaps "hate" is too strong a word in some cases (though appropriate in others), but the simple fact is that Christians do look with considerable animosity toward people who do not subscribe to the idea that there is a god looking down upon Earth, he sent himself as a human to die for mankind's sins, and the only way to heaven is to accept him as a savior.
This kind of animosity surfaces as anything from avoidance & distrust to outright hatred toward the nonbeliever. Yet, why is this necessary? I for one don't believe in Bigfoot or ESP, yet I've never encountered hatred or animosity from those who do. But when it comes to a religion such as Christianity, its adherents will cling to it and defend it against anyone or anything they perceive to be a threat to it. They definitely perceive atheism as a threat to Christianity, and so the hate ensues.
Yet, why should atheism be such a threat toward Christianity? Christians have many reasons for believing in and following their religion, and most have very strong faith. So strong, in fact, that they will believe that every word in the bible is 100% literal truth, including a talking snake, worldwide flood, and people rising from the dead. Things without evidence that if you claimed happened in this day & age, they would demand to see proof. But are they really so steadfast in their belief? And is their belief based on what they know to be factual evidence? If so, it's doubtful that you would see any kind of hatred toward nonbelievers.
For example, it's not hard to believe that the sun exists. It is there in our sky every day, warming our planet and giving life to every living thing. Yet, you never hear anyone say that they don't believe in the sun. Why is this? Simple, that there is ample evidence to show that it exists. It rises every day in the east and sets in the west (actually our planet rotates making it appear so). It has been there for the past several million years, and there's no evidence that it's going away soon. If you stand outside all day pondering whether or not the sun is really there, you can suffer a bad sunburn. Yes, we have evidence the sun exists, so nobody believes it doesn't.
Yet, if there were people who claimed that it didn't exist, they would be looked upon as insane. Their mental state would be called into question and they would be dismissed as kooks. But, they would not be hated for their odd belief.
If there was solid evidence for God's existence, there would be no atheists. Everyone would believe. If God was seen in the sky every day, anyone who claimed not to believe in him would be looked upon the same as those who would claim the sun didn't exist.
So this is the basic problem with Christianity, or any other religion for that matter, is that they rely solely on belief and not evidence. Since there is no evidence of God's existence, people who don't believe are not in the same category as those who wouldn't believe in the sun. There are plenty of logical reasons to not believe in God, but the sun has ample evidence of its existence.
This appears to be one of the reasons for all the animosity Christians have toward nonbelievers. It's not just the "if you're not with us, you must be against us" attitude, but perhaps because deep down Christians know that they don't have ample evidence for God's existence. What do they have? A thousands-year-old book filled with stories of talking snakes, global floods, and dead people coming back to life that was written by superstitious sheep herders who didn't have the benefit of modern science with which to understand the world. They also have faith. Faith based on this ancient book, and nothing else. This is a very tenuous position to say the least.
It very well could be that Christians, deep down, are afraid that atheists may be right. Yet they are too frightened to even entertain the possibility. Ever try to have an honest conversation with a Christian about doubts of God's existence? They tend to avoid the question altogether as taboo, or threaten you with eternal damnation for even bringing up the idea. But why is this so taboo with Christians? Skepticism is healthy, and everything should be questioned. This is how knowledge works. Yet when it comes to the question of God's existence, this is one thing they avoid completely.
Going back to the sun analogy, have you ever heard anyone afraid to question whether or not the sun exists? If someone told me they doubted the sun exists, I would take them outside and show it to them, and explain how our solar system works. I would not be afraid to touch the question. If they continued with their disbelief, I would write them off as a nut, but wouldn't feel animosity toward them. Yet when you bring up the question of whether God really exists to Christians, they get all spooked out about it. It really makes them feel uncomfortable. Usually the answer to the question is "God exists, that's it!" with no further discussion allowed.
If God really did exist, there should not be any problem with questioning his existence. He never shows himself to anyone these days, though he did in the Old Testament numerous times. In fact, the only time you ever see a sign from God these days is if a picture of the Virgin Mary shows up on a tortilla or water stain. What kind of message this is supposed to be is left up to the reader. But unfortunately for believers, such "signs" can be shown to just be water stains, or odd patterns which mean something only in the mind of the believer.
So if Christians weren't clinging to such a tenous belief system, there would be no reason for the animosity shown toward atheists. We would simply be looked upon as harmless kooks in the face of overwhelming evidence. But this is not the case, and ample evidence exists which shows that religions and gods were made up by man, not the other way around. Yet it must frustrate Christians so that there is so little hard evidence to show not only that their God exists, but Christianity is the one true religion.
So many Christians believe that all atheists are trying to disprove religion, or turn all religious people into nonbelievers. It should be asked that if there is ample evidence for God's existence, would this really be a problem? If one went out trying to convince people that the sun didn't exist, he would gain few followers. It's not true that all atheists want all Christians to become nonbelievers, but it may be true that most atheists want everyone on the planet to use logical and critical thinking, which would be a threat to Christianity or any other religion. Perhaps this is another reason for Christian hatred of atheists, and one reason a lot of Christians have a disdain toward science in favor of biblical belief.
It should be stated that there are many reasons that people of one group will dislike people of another group, and the idea of Christians' beliefs being threatened is just a hypothesis. But it is as logical as any other reason for the knee-jerk gut reaction that many Christians have toward atheism, and the main reason they are even afraid to bring up the question of whether or not God really does exist.