Jump to content

Irrational Fear Of Atheists


Markkasan
 Share

Recommended Posts

I remember when I was a Christian that I had the tendency to fear and become hostile towards atheists. When I found out a person I admired was an atheist (like Isaac Asimov or Kurt Vonnegut), my opinion of that person lessened considerably. When I discovered that one of my friends was agnostic, or had left the church, I felt what can be described as disappointment or even aversion towards that person. I'm ashamed of that impulse now, but I am puzzled as to exactly why I felt that way. I've concluded that the fear of atheists is based on two characteristics that most Christians would admit to being the reasons they are in their religion: security and sense of community. The Atheist is frightening because he is a living example of how a person can live happily and morally without God and, secondly, because he is an outsider in the most fundamental sense of the word.

 

Think back to when you were Christian. Back then, you felt secure that there was a big man in the sky watching over you and who would ferry you to Paradise when you died. You prayed to him when things went wrong. You praised him when things went well, if only to flatter him so he'd shower his blessings upon you later. When you get down to it, Christians are Christians in order to feel secure about their purpose in life (to serve God), their morals (as dictated in the Bible), and their status in the afterlife (heaven). Due to this intense desire for security, they are willing to suspend logic and common sense. They are warm and cozy in their bed of delusion, and they sure as hell aren't willing to let anything disturb them.

 

Now you come along, a dreaded non-believer. Christian propaganda has it that all atheists/nonbelievers are unhappy, amoral, borderline psychopathic wretches who secretly long for the light of Jebus but are too arrogant to admit it. Yet you are (presumably) none of these things. Aside from your non-belief in God, you are pretty much like everyone else. You hold a job, you have morals, and you "live and let live." This is where the shit hits the fan in the mind of the Christian. Since birth he has been taught that God is the source of morality and of life itself. To him, the Atheist is like a puppet who moves about freely without the marionette's strings. Thus, the Atheist is a living rebuke to all of the Christian's most innate beliefs and ideas. The Atheist shows what it is like to be outside of the nest of delusions and still be moral and secure. What's more, the Atheist is happy! Confronted with this mental clusterfuck, the Christian develops an irrational and almost primal fear of the Atheist and all he stands for. The Atheist induces insecurity in the mind of the Christian. Because of this, the Christian fears him.

 

The second reason for the fear of atheists is a bit simpler. Christians like to mouth off about how they form "the Body of Christ." They like to say they belong to a community that transcends national borders, race, and economic background. This is why so many of them like going to church so much. It is as much social as it is spiritual. When Christians meet, even if they each are otherwise completely different, there is a subconscious bond between them. They believe in God, and that makes them comfortable around each other. The Atheist is an outsider in a very fundamental sense. He does not subscribe to the dogma of Mother Church, and so he is an outsider spiritually as well as, to a lesser extent, socially. Fear of those who are different, which is at the root of racism and xenophobia, is present here. The simple matter is that most Christians haven't the foggiest idea why atheists are the way they are. The more zealous may mutter things like "arrogance," "pride," and even "ignorance," but the Christian does not know much about atheistic thought. This contributes to the xenophobia for atheists. Humans have a tendency to fear people who are not of their social group (nations, race, gender). Fear of atheists is only an extension of this.

 

 

 

Do you think there are other reasons for such an irrational fear of atheists? Have you run into situations where someone was afraid or hostile towards you for your atheism?

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Note: All Regularly Contributing Patrons enjoy Ex-Christian.net advertisement free.

I still remember when I first heard of what an atheist was. I was, in 4th or 5th grade and I remember walking around before Luthern Pioneers (like cub-scouts, but extra-religious) and thinking with creduality that was unbelieveable. However, I don't remember hating those poor, bright and correct people though.

 

Luckly, my school had a pretty good science and literature department and I read sci-fi all the time. I learned something about fantastic stories, basic critical thought, and what the suspension of disbelief was in regards to fiction.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest MonkeySee

I remember not understanding why everyone didn't believe in Jesus. To me, it was as if they couldn't understand 2+2, so I pitied them. I was the fool.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think you pretty much nailed it, Markkasan.

 

It's very like the attitude of AA zealots toward those who've overcome alcohol addiction without the meetings, steps and Big Book. Zealots of any stripe must feel shaken to their foundation when they sense that Their Way might not, just maybe might not, be The Only Way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I was a younger Christian I had friends or knew people who weren't religious but it didn't bother me, in fact we rarely talked about religion (because it was boring). Although as I got older if I met someone and found out they were atheist, for some reason I immediately didn't trust that person. Not because they weren't Christian, but I think because I had no idea what their value system was (I used to associate god belief with "good" values). I guess I assumed that an atheist would always have their own best interests in mind and would screw anyone over at any time if it benefitted them. Now I know values come from within, they don't come from some external deities dictating what's right and what's wrong.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is so true, I remember hearing athesist's they where sons and daughters of Satan himself. They want to misguide us from God but I never looked into WHY people became atheist's it completly went over my head. But then I started reading deconversion stories of people leaving the church, I became shocked and was not in denial actually. They made me feel angry, embarrssed into what the religion I truly am in is. I realized something is terribly wrong in this belief system and I don't know what later I went and listened to church...it makes me feel bitter of the hatred that is taught and its all political now.

 

I never heard of people leaving religion all together, maybe switching religions but then 2 years ago everything changed and now I am here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I never heard of people leaving religion all together, maybe switching religions but then 2 years ago everything changed and now I am here.

 

And we're glad you are, Ramen.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Guidelines.