The Ten Commandments for Atheists; A Deconstruction
The following Ten Commandments for Atheists has been popping up on the Internet for the past couple of days, and since I’m stuck waiting on a rendering video, I figured I’d give them a quick deconstruction.
Before I begin, my stance on the whole New Atheist movement: it can be summed up as “So you figured out there’s no god? Good for you. Have a cookie.” I typically refer to the hardline adherents as ‘Atheistkult’, as I find them to be naive and arrogant, no better than the ignorant hordes thumping “Muh Bible!” This isn’t a sweeping condemnation of all Atheists (or Southern Baptists, for that matter), just the noisiest and most poorly read of the group.
Disclaimer done; let’s begin.
Be open-minded and be willing to alter your beliefs with new evidence.
Mangan covered this well in his post:
Most atheists are completely unwilling to alter their beliefs in the face of new evidence. (To be fair, hardly anyone is, but atheists shouldn’t think they’re better than others this way.)
The irony just drips off of this commandment.
In Christianity and Judaism, the Ten Commandments are directed at the followers of said religions; in Atheistkult, this commandment is directed at everyone outside of the movement. “Open-minded” means open-minded to their particular set of beliefs, both metaphysical and natural – “alter” means switching over to their herd.
I honestly wish Atheists had the self-awareness to apply this commandment to themselves. In my experience, they’re utterly close-minded to anything that doesn’t fit their pre-existing assumptions. Just look at what’s happening to Dr. James Watson, one of the co-discoverers of DNA, and an un-person due to his stance on politically-incorrect science – he’s been reduced to selling his Nobel Prize thanks to the viciousness of the modern Left! Lately the Atheist/Pro-Science Left has been celebrating Nikola Tesla, a genius ignored during his time – where are their voices when it comes to a modern day corollary, who doesn’t fit in to the accepted political mould?
The vast majority of Atheistkult are more interested in finding the Science!™ logo on their products and political beliefs than examining anything rationally, or admitting uncomfortable conclusions. They fail to follow their First Commandment.
Strive to understand what is most likely to be true, not to believe what you wish to be true.
This is simply a variation of the first commandment, adding a positive prescription to actively seek out the truth. Yet again, I sense an attitude of Atheists patting themselves on the back with this one, as they ridicule the rest of the world for being ‘primitive’, rather than internalizing its message.
Yes, there are exceptions, but the close-minded bigots who Fucking Love Science! are not amongst them.
The scientific method is the most reliable way of understanding the natural world.
This is not a commandment, but a metaphysical claim. Furthermore, it is a claim presented without proof or argument, listed as if it an article of faith, a demand upon the True Believer. I suspect the original phrasing was something like “Believe in the Scientific Method, for it is the Truth and the Way”, but the author noticed that they were creeping up on faith-based territory during the editing process, so they changed it to be less obvious.
You see why I call them Atheistkult?
For the record, I agree with this assertion, but I don’t view it as a fundamental article of faith which defines my existence; it’s a derived value, synthetic rather than analytic. Be convinced of the scientific method doesn’t gain me membership in any particular group or grant me salvation, any more than my opinion on different motor oils does.
Every person has the right to control over their body.
Again, this isn’t a commandment, it’s an article of faith!
When the Founding Fathers laid out the basis of the American Experiment in the Declaration of Independence they acknowledged that all of them were articles of faith, founded upon Christian/Deistic principles and background:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,
The Atheists are likewise appealing to God here, but failing to acknowledge it. This is downright embarrassing. But what makes it even worse is the motivation behind this commandment: this is nothing but a cynical political stance masquerading as existential truth.
This commandment is affirming a particular side of the Abortion Debate, placing pro-choice as an article of faith. This wouldn’t have been included if this list were being written in, say, 1870 – it’s purely contemporary politics. Furthermore, it states that you must agree with the Democrat stance on Abortion, or else you’re failing to be a True Atheist; there is no room for debate, you must conform!
God is not necessary to be a good person or to live a full and meaningful life.
Again, this is more of an affirmation than a commandment – it would have been more genuine to say “Live a good life, even without God” – but at least this one fits the format, sort-of, for a commandment that an Atheist should follow.
Be mindful of the consequences of all your actions and recognize that you must take responsibility for them.
Not bad – though, as with all of these, it begs the question as to why you should do these things.
Treat others as you would want them to treat you, and can reasonably expect them to want to be treated. Think about their perspective.
Now they’re stealing quotes from the Bible – almost as if there were a reason that books been kicking around for so long.
Matthew 7:12 “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.“
We have the responsibility to consider others, including future generations.
I’d prefer it if it were more KJV: “Be mindful of others, including the unborn.” – but I guess that would contradict the Fourth Commandment.
There is no one right way to live.
“These are the commandments of how thou must live; but also, you can live however you want.”
The commandments of Atheistkult literally tell you to ignore their own commandments. This is what happens when you’re philosophically illiterate, I suppose.
Seriously, do we have an Electrical Engineer in the house? Maybe he can explain the Philosophy of Logic to you, since you just short-circuited your logic board.
Leave the world a better place than you found it.
Define what that means!
Atheistkult is full of people of middling intelligence who want to lecture others as if they were College Professors (‘Professor’ as in ‘profess’ as in ‘professing God’s Truth’); they latch on to a few memes, share some photographs of stars, and start chortling and hooting like a bunch of teenage baboons who just discovered sex. The echo the words of charismatic ‘scientists’ (most of whom are callow and unaccomplished) so that they can wear the pretense of being ‘smart’.
Atheistkult is more about the outfits than the ideas.
The students of both physics and metaphysics who advance the human race approach the topics with humbleness, awe, and even a little fear. The immensity and beauty of this universe is overwhelming, and cannot be captured in pretty pictures or smug lectures. Atheistkult could use a bit of humility – and rather than publishing this nonsensical list on the Winter Solstice, maybe they could sit down and ponder what it is about religion that brings people together in the objective world, and allows for celebrations like Christmas.
Meh, probably won’t happen.
Merry Christmas, everyone!