Monday, October 08, 2007

The Consequences of Atheism

Heathens, take note! This is what happens to a society when it abandons God:

Depending on the definition of atheism, Norway thus has between 26 percent and 71 percent atheists. The Norwegian Humanist Association is the world's largest humanist association per capita.

And what has secularism done to Norway? The Global Peace Index rates Norway the most peaceful country in the world. The Human Development Index, a comparative measure of life expectancy, literacy, education and standard of living, has ranked Norway No. 1 every year for the last five years.

Norway has the second highest GDP per capita in the world, an unemployment rate below 2 percent, and average hourly wages among the world's highest.

14 comments:

BlackSun said...

Great points, nice to see you posting again!

wade419 said...

hm. didn't know any of that about Norway...interesting.

I just heard about an interesting discussion about whether the US is or should be a "Christian nation" or a "nation of Christians". A new question that has come to my mind is on which side of the separation of church and state issue does God call us to really be? Just because we have Christian metaphors and symbols in parts of our country's history, and Christianity is the most popular religion in the country, does that mean that our country is best labeled as a "Christian nation"? What does that even mean, and are the effects of such an orientation something that we as Christians should even strive for?

sorry for rambling, you stirred my interest.

~Wade

breakerslion said...

I don't think atheism tells the whole story of Norway. It's a very expensive place to live. I think that counts toward the low unemployment.

wade419: How about we identify ourselves as a nation of free people, free to practice any religion, or not. There are such gross ambiguities surrounding the concepts of "Christian", "Jewish", "Muslim", or even "Buddhist" for that matter, that they are only collective phrases when it is convenient. The rest of the time, all of the sects within are squabbling about who are the "true Scotsmen". If someone tried to declare that this was a "White Nation" there would be all manner of outrage.
To attempt to label us either a "Christian nation", or a "nation of Christians" is equally insensitive. There were whole nations of people here with their own religions, before the European transplants beat it out of them. Likewise for the Africans that were brought here in chains and whipped into praising Jesus. The Chinese who built the railroads in the West had their own religions. Despite the White Man's best efforts to make this a burden, these beliefs still survive. I happen to think they're all interchangably loony, but they're important to the people who believe them.

Jonathan said...

I would guess that the idea that the well-being of this country is entirely due to atheism, is a gross oversimplification... but regardless, just take a trip up here to Canada and meet some of the most peaceful people you've ever met: mennonites. But you'll probably be in for a shock... they're religious...

Also, did you guys get my last post on the article below?

-Jonathan

Aaron Kinney said...

Thanks Blacksun!

Ive been absent from the blog lately due to work obligations. I was glad to have a chance to post today finally :)

Wade419,

I would prefer a "nation of "(mostly) Christians" to a "Christian nation," but since Im an anarchist, my first choice would be no nations at all.

Jonathan,

Ill check out your other comment and respond soon as I get a chance.

wade419 said...

breakerslion: good point. I guess my choice between two Christian-related labels isn't exactly prudent - I think I'd lean toward a free label, too.

While a nation can have its constitution and laws highlight similar values as those taught by a religion, that doesn't justify a religious label. Neither does the fact that the US has always been "mostly Christian", as Aaron put it.

hm - what is the rationale for wanting a religious label in the first place? It can't be biblically based.

~Wade

Carol said...

Jonathan said..."I would guess that the idea that the well-being of this country is entirely due to atheism, is a gross oversimplification..."

That isn't the point. The point is that many theists contend that morality is impossible without religion, and that secularism is the road to "damnation." This article and posting prove otherwise.

Our morality is not derived from religions, or we'd still be stoning to death women who are not virgins on their wedding day, children to disobey their parents, etc. Morality evolved, and not just in humans, but in other animals, as well. Religions simply like to take credit for such things.

Why Christians Must Steal From Secular Morality:
http://www.caseagainstfaith.com/submissions/steal_morality.htm

Aaron Kinney said...

Carol,

Excellent response. I couldnt have said it better myself. And the link looks really good. Im gonna check it out! Thanx!

Anonymous said...

http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/story/0,22049,22722786-5001021,00.html

Anonymous said...

I live in this country and I can testify Norway is a great country.
Ofcourse its not only because of ahteism, but Im so fucking happy religion isn't big here.
Though "new agey" shit is a fashion now a days..

Anonymous said...

I like your logic Carol but for the record most theist assign Morality to God or a creator, not religion. So if Morality is innate due to a creator then an atheist would still have a sense of Morality. I am not saying this is the case for Divine Morality, just merely stating what most theist believe from discussions I have had with them.

Jacob said...

Well, in response to what Carol said, I'm pretty sure that religion changed before morality "evolved." When Jesus came (whether you believe in him or not) he set in place the new covenant (promise) between God and people. And with this change came a different perspective on God's law. Where does the new covenant say that non-virgins before their wedding day should be stoned? Instead we're supposed to love.

Aaron Kinney said...

So Jacob, if the covenant between God and people says that we are supposed to love, then why does the most peaceful and loving country have the highest amount of atheists?

Ill tell you why. Cause when you love God, you love people less. Its a heirarchy of values, and if you believe in God, you put HIM at the top of that list, as opposed to an atheist who puts HUMANS at the top of that love list.

I love humans more than a theist does, because I dont have any God to compete with humans for my love.

Jacob said...

You are partially right. Matthew 22:37-40 says "Jesus replied, 'You must love the lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: 'Love your neighbor as yourself. All the other commandments and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments." Even if we we're supposed to love God more then people, the way you love God is by obeying his commands. And his commands include principles that are loving towards people. Such as "Do not Murder." And "Do unto others what you would like them to do for you." So if you love God, you should be loving people more no secondary...

As for the most peaceful and loving country of Atheists...It shows me that Atheists must be respectable... I still need to look into it.