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Update: 16th October 2018 – this Atheism UK (Mingle) forum will close on some Wednesdays between 9am-11.30am for tests to introduce a bbPress forum. Chris Street, President, Atheism UK.

Welcome to the Atheism UK Forum, which is for the discussion of topics related to atheism and for the use of atheists who have registered on our web site as a Supporter of Atheism UK. Before you register as a Supporter, please note the following points:

Atheism UK is an organisation for convinced atheists. This web site serves as the public face of the organisation, as a resource for our members, and to communicate news, events and campaigns relevant to the advancement of atheism. Atheism UK is not an organisation for religious or ‘spiritual’ people. By becoming a Supporter of Atheism UK, you are declaring that you are an atheist and agree with our key Principles. The views expressed in this Forum are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, Atheism UK.

Update 3rd December 2014 – Reminder: Our forum is for Atheists ONLY. Members should report theists on our forum to: contact@atheismuk.com. Theists will probably be banned without notice. 

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Author Topic: Welcome to AtheismUK


crabsallov-
er
Administrator
Posts: 76
Welcome to AtheismUK
on: October 24, 2016, 07:34

Introduce yourself and tell us about what you'd like from AtheismUK.

Chris Street
President, AtheismUK



stuart-
redford
Boron
Posts: 8
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: March 7, 2017, 13:25

Hello godless heathens. To introduce myself a little.. I live in the centre of England and did not realise i was an atheist until a few years ago, i was happy to be a NotBotheredAboutReligionAtAll-ist, untill an ex girlfriend attempted to 'save my soul' as she did not want to go to heaven without her friends. At that point i did a little research into some of the more confusing aspects of the bible, only to find out it's more confusing than i thought. To make a long story short...the two attempts at indoctrination did not go so well at the church hall. Unfortunately my soul will now be lost in darkness and she sees no point in speaking to someone on such a temporary basis....oh hum. During this period i learned substantially more about religion and what it can do to people than they could imagine.

In the interest of full disclosure, i do have relatives living in Salt Lake City, Utah and i am related to Brigham Young. Fortunately i have not had any hallucinations of angels, acquired multiple wives or gained any inspiration from sticking my face in a hat full of rocks (untried). I understand the name Brigham Young may not impress anyone here, but it does a great job of scaring the crap out of Mormon missionaries.
Anyhoo....Greetings folks.



crabsallov-
er
Administrator
Posts: 76
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: March 8, 2017, 07:39

Welcome! Perhaps you could tell us more about the attempts to indoctrinate you?

Chris Street
President, AtheismUK



Alcuin
Administrator
Posts: 911
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: March 8, 2017, 16:37

Welcome Stuart.
Inspiration eh? I must try sticking my face in a hat full of rocks!! 🙂

Quote from stuart redford on March 7, 2017, 13:25
... did not realise i was an atheist until a few years ago, i was happy to be a NotBotheredAboutReligionAtAll-ist...

Me too. I was a 'Christian' in the 2001 Census.



stuart-
redford
Boron
Posts: 8
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: March 8, 2017, 23:58

I would not recommend the rocks-in-hat trick. You will be shot if you go to Illinois.
My perception of indoctrination may not be the same as others. While i was made very welcome, i obviously did not understand the literature given to me, and the pressure/re-education came only from three people. If i knew then, what i know now. I may have stayed there longer. To give a mental picture..think TV evangelical god channel, with a Sheffield accent, in a small room with 30 people. Hardly a mega-church.
Unfortunately i can't find out more. The last time i spoke to my 'insider' she was still concerned about my soul, but now is a Christian for Israel (or something) supporter, and thanked me for the insight from our previous conversation ....How she got from my comment. 'Jesus was a jew, so why do we still have Judaism, they would have instantly realised if he was the son of god, and christianity would have not been invented'......To her interpretation....The second coming will be in Israel so get chummy with a few Jewish folks, is beyond me.
The Iron Dome is far more useful than prayers from a woman in Yorkshire.

Question.......What is the policy on street preachers ? We have one. (youtube. Grace Chapel Chesterfield uk) if you need cheering up.



tolfaramir
Boron
Posts: 7
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: March 9, 2017, 13:04

This sounds like you had a blast Stuart! Religious people live in an alternate reality built on delusions, I think Richard Dawkins went as far to say they're hallucinating, so it's no surprise what your ex-girlfriend did.

I once challenged a street preacher and within a matter of seconds realised she couldn't (or wouldn't) answer my questions so faced the other way. I don't see the point in going out of your way to do these things if you're unwilling to accept the challenges put on you.

I'm Andy, I'm 32 and from a small town next to the other small town of Blackburn, Lancashire.



sidwolves
Hydrogen
Posts: 2
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: April 20, 2017, 20:29

Hi there, I just found this site so thanks for confirming that I'm not alone in scratching my head on a daily basis trying to comprehend why so many seemingly intelligent and rational beings want me to believe in things that just make no sense. I attended a church of English school in my younger days where I was forced to pray daily in assembly and taught fiction as fact in weekly RE classes. I was given detention most weeks in RE class for daring to question what was being taught as fact and eventually my parents were asked to attend school to explain why I dared to state that I didn't actually believe in god. the strange thing was that I actually enjoyed RE classes as the stories were actually quite good! Since that time I have read about religion a fair bit and am now comfortable in coming out as an atheist. I grew so frustrated that somehow I was seen as less moral as an atheist when all around me so called religious folk were behaving so irresponsibly towards others.
I am now struggling with a family dilemma regarding funerals and how to discuss such matters within a family that has differing views on god and religion. I recently attended a catholic service and burial and no joke, it went on for 3 hours with priests in strange clothes reciting verses that bore no relation to the life of the man that had just died. His poor family were paraded at the front, reciting passages from religious texts when all I could think about was why isn't someone talking about the life of the man that is no more and the wonderful life he led and those he loved. I came away feeling really sad that this opportunity had been hijacked and then started to worry about what happens when my loved ones die and the pressure to have such a service! My dad is not a religious man but I'm fearful when his time comes there will be an assumption made by others that he must have such a service and if asked now he wont want to offend anyone. So my dilemma is this, do I just accept this likely outcome as its not about me or do I open a can of worms?
On a lighter note, I did manage to defuse a potentially difficult situation recently regarding a near miss accident in my car when the other driver started shouting and getting agitated with me by saying 'forgive me' after noting an 'I love Jesus' sticker on his back window!



Alcuin
Administrator
Posts: 911
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: April 20, 2017, 21:23

Hi and welcome to AtheismUK. I don’t know if you are the musician Sid wolf. Few people explain their monikers and nobody needs to, of course.

I went to a RC school but even we weren’t forced to pray, although no sign of disrespect would have been tolerated. Your detention seems unwarranted and possibly illegal. From “Behaviour and Discipline in Schools” (UKGov):
15. A punishment must be proportionate. In determining whether a punishment is reasonable, section 91 of the Education and Inspections Act 2006 says the penalty must be reasonable in all the circumstances and that account must be taken of the pupil’s age, any special educational needs or disability they may have, and any religious requirements affecting them.
https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/488034/Behaviour_and_Discipline_in_Schools_-_A_guide_for_headteachers_and_School_Staff.pdf

Humanist ceremonies are very popular these days…
https://humanism.org.uk/
and most people find them far more relevant and comforting than religious services. I heard from one celebrant that a cleric had agreed to say no prayers at a service for a member of his congregation at the request of their non-religious relative. That may have been very sensitive and thoughtful of him but a cynic might note that funerals are an important income stream for clerics with shrinking congregations.

I have donated my body to science and would like any parts to be used by any who need them when I die. Crucially, my wishes are widely known. I suppose funerals aren’t about one individual but should facilitate the grieving process of loved ones. They aren’t a suitable occasion to settle disagreements and that is why it is important to know and follow the wishes of the deceased – and be seen to do so. I don’t have much experience so I suggest you contact a humanist celebrant for advice:
https://humanism.org.uk/ceremonies/find-a-celebrant/
(Find a Humanist celebrant and they will help).



Atheism UK-
President
Administrator
Posts: 29
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: April 21, 2017, 09:39

Quote from sidwolves on April 20, 2017, 20:29
I am now struggling with a family dilemma regarding funerals and how to discuss such matters within a family that has differing views on god and religion. ... I came away feeling really sad that this opportunity had been hijacked and then started to worry about what happens when my loved ones die and the pressure to have such a service! My dad is not a religious man but I'm fearful when his time comes there will be an assumption made by others that he must have such a service and if asked now he wont want to offend anyone. So my dilemma is this, do I just accept this likely outcome as its not about me or do I open a can of worms?

Hi,
the BHA organise non-religious funerals https://humanism.org.uk/ceremonies/non-religious-funerals/



sidwolves
Hydrogen
Posts: 2
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: May 25, 2017, 20:43

Hi there and thanks for the helpful links and vastly underrated common sense approach to working this through, I'm now working up to having some honest conversations with some loved ones regarding their true wishes and desires for when the time comes. Its interesting as death is such a taboo subject to discuss yet there are but two certainties as far as I can tell, we are all born and we all die and what happens in between is what we make of it, life.

Warm wishes
Sid



Markpro
Hydrogen
Posts: 3
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: March 17, 2018, 18:39

Hi a bit about me. I am from the English county formerly known as Monmouthshire, which is now part of Wales, called Gwent. I am hoping to meet other Aetheists in my area to meet regularly to discuss activism, especially to challenge Religeous activity such as street preahing etc. and possibly to challenge the religous in debates etc, so that Church recruitment is brought to a stop, I believe we must stop the Church recruiting, especially children, as it is damaging to their education, as well as being harmful psychologically. If any aetheists who live in Gwent area want to meet up for such activities - get back to me.



Alcuin
Administrator
Posts: 911
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: March 18, 2018, 08:50

Welcome Markpro.

You might want to contact Humanists UK (ex British Humanist Assoc), the Brights and Skeptics-in-the-Pub. They may already have a group near to you. Good luck.

"Give me a boy under 7..." is how religious superstition often works.

https://humanism.org.uk/community/local-groups/

http://cardiff.skepticsinthepub.org/



DavidR
Boron
Posts: 7
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: April 25, 2018, 21:11

Hello there. I have just subscribed to AtheismUK as a supporter. I am a reasonably young at heart 63-year old retired Engineer. I am third generation English born in 1954 to a second generation English Irish Catholic mother and Protestant father. A mixed marriage was seemingly quite a thing back then and it was a pre-condition that children of a mixed marriage were brought up in Roman Catholicism. Irish Roman Catholicism is the worst kind and Roman Catholic primary education in late 1950's and the early 1960's was pretty brutal, being brainwashed with the Catholic 'Penny' Catechism and six of the best for failing to recite the correct answers to the preposterous questions contained therein. At the age of ten I rejected my religion and refused to go into Roman Catholic secondary education. My rejection of the Catholic faith resulted in many visits from the interfering (not physically in this case - a rarity it would now seem) Parish Priest in my teens but fortunately I was articulate enough to parry the 'secondary indoctrination attempts' (but my articulation went on the back burner as I once threatened the Parish Priest with physical violence he became that much of a menace). My later Engineering background taught me to be pragmatic and logical through advanced mathematics etc.

Whilst I have been an avowed Atheist for 53-years - I would class myself as 6.999 recurring on the 'Dawkins Scale' which leaves me a little, but only a little, room for latitude in the event someone should present me with sound peer reviewed evidence of the existence of a God(s) - I now find myself becoming more of an Anti-Theist Atheist, being drawn to a position of active opposition to the proposition of God(s) and find myself undertaking a phenomenal amount of research into what I find now to be a more than fascinating subject. I find Richard Carrier in particular presents some captivating material in both literary and video form.

Whilst I am no intellectual (only an Engineering HND, albeit I was told I would get an Engineering first if I didn't walk away from higher education) I am quit adept at handling a debate on the subject of Theism/Atheism and so hope I can make a positive contribution to AtheismUK.



Alcuin
Administrator
Posts: 911
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: April 25, 2018, 22:07

Welcome David and thanks for contributing to the forum.
Much of my background is similar to yours. My father was Irish so I suppose that makes me first generation.
I'll have to investigate Richard Carrier....
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Richard-Carrier/e/B001K8LYEM
The History of Jesus is on Kindle, £17.09

On the subject of books, a favourite of mine is by a Scottish author and humanist....
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ezGXr2h8og
It's truly beautiful how he shows the chronological progress of so much human knowledge.



Atheism UK-
President
Administrator
Posts: 29
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: May 1, 2018, 10:02

Quote from DavidR on April 25, 2018, 21:11
Hello there. I...My later Engineering background taught me to be pragmatic and logical through advanced mathematics etc.

Whilst I have been an avowed Atheist for 53-years - I would class myself as 6.999 recurring on the 'Dawkins Scale' which leaves me a little, but only a little, room for latitude in the event someone should present me with sound peer reviewed evidence of the existence of a God(s) - I now find myself becoming more of an Anti-Theist Atheist, being drawn to a position of active opposition to the proposition of God(s) and find myself undertaking a phenomenal amount of research into what I find now to be a more than fascinating subject. I find Richard Carrier in particular presents some captivating material in both literary and video form.

... I am quite adept at handling a debate on the subject of Theism/Atheism and so hope I can make a positive contribution to AtheismUK.

Welcome to Atheism UK. The Council is always seeking atheist activists to be Council Members - we meet monthly by Skype and 4 times a year in London (normally Conway Hall WC1). PM me if you are interested.



Pitar
Hydrogen
Posts: 1
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: July 15, 2018, 01:44

It's July 14, 2018, and I've decided to join this site and mingle with people who I share views with. I'm not a citizen of the UK, however. I reside in central Florida, USA. I'm 63 and while I am an atheist by my own rationale I've lost the militancy I used to harbor for it.

These days I'm largely happy just to embrace my mortality and let others do what they do. I have no ax to grind for atheism or against anyone who opposes such a stance. The way I figure it, none of it is of any consequence that mankind has not managed to abide across the ages, and no form of persuasion has changed, or will have any profound changes upon that.

Going forward I do believe that mankind's acquisition and grasp of knowledge will ultimately afford him the confidence to dispense with his metaphysical conjuring and coalesce his mortality. Until then he will cloak his doubts with hope for life eternal while cobbling together the courage to otherwise carry on.

A curious species, all men harbor doubts. Doubts are their undying prompts for truth and they will remain thorns in their collective psyche until answered. Some of us have removed those thorns, most have not, but there isn't any need to tend to those who have not. They will do that themselves in good time.

That's my current outlook on all people, god fearing or not.



Alcuin
Administrator
Posts: 911
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: July 16, 2018, 11:16

Hi Pitar (Spanish?). Welcome to AtheismUK. I'm slightly younger than you. I've had some happy holidays in Florida. Wish I was there!

I agree that religious superstitions will eventually die out but I think they're dying fast, a process not an event. In terms of human lifetimes it’s a slow process, especially in the USA, but in historical terms it will probably be seen as 'quick'.

I would say that people should not be attacked. Ideas, misinformation, prejudice, religious lexicons about 'atheists' and 'apostates'; superstitions; all that needs to be challenged in a healthy society. Beliefs are just opinions and should be challenged and examined, not protected or held sacred. Reality, truth and reason are not the prerogatives of religionists or non-believers but are equally important for all. Organised religions can lead to ignorance, child genital mutilation, sectarianism and faith schools with their own 'ethos' and superstitions. Even religionists support animal rights, but not if they interfere with "beliefs in" holy cows or ritual slaughter.

So, respect for all persons but not their beliefs, sacred or otherwise. And there's nothing "militant" about any of that. Religionists in the USA often seem to accuse people of “militancy”, “hate” and all sorts of nonsense when superstitions are simply contradicted.

Each non-believer has a slightly different perspective. Yes, doubts may underly prompts for truth. Leave absolute beliefs to religious believers.

I hope your post encourages further comments here. I think there needs to be a critical mass of contributors here to stimulate discussions. Thanks for your comments.



Godless
Calcium
Posts: 20
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: July 28, 2018, 21:26

Hi all,

I joined today. I’m a 52 year old man (ok I’m nearer 53 actually) from England. I’ve been an Atheist for most of my life but, like many , I was a ‘never really thought about it’ type for a long time. Then as I started to pay more attention to the claims of the religious and I saw that they were making so many patently impossible claims I asked the question that so many have “why has this obvious nonsense survived for so long and why should we be expected to live our lives based on this drivel without questioning it?”
I then did some reading and my opinions became more solid as I found that millions agreed (including many that are far more knowledgeable than I am on subjects like science, theology, philosophy, politics etc. I joined HumanistsUK.
I joined this Forum because I thought tat it would be good to talk to people who believe as I do (perhaps not agreeing on every single point) and that it’s always good to learn from others experiences and individual knowledge.
I’m currently a Carer for my father who has Emphysema so if I’m ever slow responding it’s just due to ‘life’ and not ignorance or bad manners.

I’m glad to be hear and I’ll try to log in at least once a day.



Alcuin
Administrator
Posts: 911
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: July 28, 2018, 22:30

Welcome Godless and thanks for your support. How very encouraging for me as the forum has been so quiet for so long. I think Brexit and other priorities have obscured issues like circumcision of babies, faith schools, religious courts, Islamism, Zionism and other concerns.

"..people who believe as I do (perhaps not agreeing on every single point)".
Yes, it is important to remember that the aim is to be inclusive of everyone and the only things non-believers have in common is rejection of superstition and the wish to encourage people to care about what is true and real. Reason, truth and education are 'spiritually good'. Some non-believers are not even 'anti-religion'. Some take the attitude that it is alright "in its place". Some believers share many of our aims, such as an end to segregation of children by religion and ending ritual animal slaughter.

I would like to give the lead to other contributors but will try to offer some topical subjects for debate or analysis.

Learning and information are important too. There's much going on in the realms of science and technology that may be of interest, without getting too technical.



Godless
Calcium
Posts: 20
Re: Welcome to AtheismUK
on: July 28, 2018, 22:54

Thanks for the welcome Alcuin.

The subject is such a huge and all encompassing one and one that increases in relevance every day. We only have to open a newspaper to see the negative effects of religion on the religious and non-religious alike. I walked through a local town today and in the space of around 10 minutes I had 2 older ladies offering to pray for me, a man with a microphone telling me that we were all heading for the furnace and 2 Muslims at a stall with placards telling me that Islam is the religion of peace.

More than ever I think it’s important to let people know that religion doesn’t have to be there default position. I look forward to chatting on the threads.

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