Atheism Culture Naturalism

Are atheists less tolerant than others?

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File:Atheism.svg Make what you will of studies but this just in:

A study of 788 people in the UK, France and Spain concluded that atheists and agnostics think of themselves as more open-minded than those with faith, but are are actually less tolerant to differing opinions and ideas.

Religious believers “seem to better perceive and integrate diverging perspectives”, according to psychology researchers at the private Catholic University of Louvain (UCL), Belgium’s largest French-speaking university.

Dr Uzarevic said: ““The idea started through noticing that, in public discourse, despite both the conservative/religious groups and liberal/secular groups showing strong animosity towards the opposite ideological side, somehow it was mostly the former who were often labeled as ‘closed-minded’. Greg Wilford, “Atheists are less open-minded than religious people, study claims” at Independent

One problem for atheists is that they are often assumed to be open-minded which means that they do not have to ask themselves questions or cultivate the quality, and often therefore don’t. People like Gunter Bechly may well have some stories about that.

Hat tip: Ken Francis

See also: Britain appoints first Humanist as head chaplain People who say they “have no faith or religion” are not “non-religious.” They give different, non-traditional answers to philosophical questions to which people used to give traditional answers (usually supplied by religion). Which brings us to another point. Insisting that the universe cannot show evidence of design because there is no God is a religious statement. It is not a statement about evidence.

One Reply to “Are atheists less tolerant than others?

  1. 1
    Tom Robbins says:

    This is not the only study of its kind with the same conclusion. To me if contradicts the huge misperceptions out there, primarily propagated by the Media, social and mainstream, using the worst examples like Westboro Baptist Church as the image they hold of those of belief – ignorant, hateful, and judgemental.

    All “everyday” Christians that I know revile these sorts of institutions as they use a message of hate, condemnation, and, worst of all, claim to represent those who follow the message of Christ, when in fact they follow the antithesis of his teaching. We are never called upon to “like” behaviors and lifestyles that we do not agree with, HOWEVER, and this is a big HOWEVER, our job is to focus on our own relationship with God, and to still show love and respect toward every human being.

    A misconception I think, is that we should somehow not hold opinions of what is right for our children and families, especially when we see the impacts of such lifestyles on the family, the individual, and society as a whole. BUT WE are to be introspective first, before even dreaming about helping others see the errors in their ways.

    I think it is clear that sin is best defined, as anything that moves your focus away from your best attempt to reflect the gift of Grace and mercy that we ourselves have received over and over again through Christ. And anything that distracts you from having this guiding relationship.

    However, I think Atheists are so eager to support their faith (and it certainly is faith in that it is a belief system that forms the basis of their actions) not just that God does not exist, but that he cannot exist, usually as he has not met their burden of proof, and are easily led to use these groups, or a fallen evangelist, as some kind of sign, not that belief in God is more for those who want to feel superior and/or their need to believe in God as they fear death.

    In other words the Atheist is much more close minded, as they take a very limited view of reality, You can immediately see this when they pick out certain passages in the Bible which they have never read, only overheard, that to them somehow show that the God of the Bible is bad, hateful, and therefore unnecessary. And/Or that it is a fairy tale for weak minds.

    True Atheism, in a very real sense, intellectually lazy, and often used to hypocritically justify moral relevance, which only applies to themselves, never to those who claim belief.

    A great example to me is the founder of planned parenthood, Margaret Sanger, who vocally and in writing expressed the need to extinguish, through birth control, the African American Race, she was a true eugenesists by all historical accounts. In her case they allow for this ugly reality as just an outdated view, and as a result, still give out awards in her name, as a champion of women’s health!

    And yet if our founding fathers owned a slave, over 100 years before her toxic influence, they are immediately judged as “racists” in our now supposidly “enlightened” view of things – but see the problem here, this moral relevance is not applied equally.

    As an example of a person that calls themselves a Christian, but publically falls, either due to temptation, or the fact they were never a follower of Christ to begin with get no such pass. In this way they claim a false sense of moral and intellectual superiority, but ironically do not apply standards relativistically, but ONLY if you are also an atheist.

    Another sign that Atheism is very closed minded, is many militant atheists, who constitute most atheists (we are not talking agnostic after all, which to me is a much more honest admonition), is they spend much of their life, trying to discredit something they say they do not believe in.

    This is similar to a person of supposed faith, spending most of their time pointing fingers at atheists, it is certainly not what we are called to do, and is equally as ridiculous. Note this is different, than not approving of certain lifestyles or behaviors, that many of us believe eat away at the foundations of a civil and caring society. We still can disagree with these behaviors as they impact our lives, but we are certainly not called to embroil ourselves in worldly matters so much, that we don’t look at our on relationship with God, and work on our own business first, our own hearts should be moving toward tolerance and forgiveness, or their is something wrong with our “conversion”.

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