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Atheism as religion: Atheist cemetery opens in Sweden

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From Caroline Mortimer at Independent:

Founder insists believers are welcome as well as long as they don’t have religious symbols on their headstones

Apparently, the Church of Sweden will maintain the graveyard.

Josef Erdem, a teacher from Borlänge in central Sweden, first proposed the idea because he wanted people to “decide for themselves what their graves should look like”. More.

If one can’t be buried in the cemetery with the symbols of any “religion,” that suggests that atheism is itself functioning as a religion. Obviously, the atheists will be in charge of what they will allow, just as the Catholic Archdiocese is in charge of what is permitted at the Hope Cemetery in Ottawa.

But anyway, the Americans are way ahead of Erdem:

SALUDA, S.C.—One man’s funeral is the talk of the town in Saluda. 90-year-old Lonnie Holloway was buried in the front seat of his car along with his most prized possessions.

Hundreds showed up from all over to see Lonnie Holloway and his 1973 Pontiac Catalina.

“This day will be burned in our memories for years and years to come because ‘us’ ain’t never seen nothing like this before,” said the pastor at the burial.

Hundreds showed up to Rock Hill Baptist Church to witness his last wish, to be buried in his 1973 Pontiac Catalina.

A recent Gallup study found that “76 percent of Swedish respondents said they were either “not religious” or a “convinced atheists,” highest percentage in world but for China where it might be unwise to express a different opinion.

Curiously, the demographics of Sweden suggest that it will be Muslim some decades from now. Wonder what they’ll make of the atheists…

See also: Atheists blocked Not Ashamed trailer from YouTube for eleven months

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16 Replies to “Atheism as religion: Atheist cemetery opens in Sweden

  1. 1
    Pindi says:

    Why does being buried without a religious symbol mean atheism is a religion? Surely the opposite is true.

    And where on that link does it say Sweden will be Muslim some decades from now? Couldn’t find that prediction.

  2. 2
    AhmedKiaan says:

    “Curiously, the demographics of Sweden suggest that it will be Muslim some decades from now. Wonder what they’ll make of the atheists…”

    Sweden is about 95% white people with an annual population growth of eight tenths of 1%. I personally resent the foreigner fear-mongering. I thought this website was supposed to be about Intelligent Design, but most of what is here is just American religious politics, and not the good side. This site needs to be clearly about something again. I don’t know what the owner is hoping to accomplish here.

  3. 3
    rvb8 says:

    I’m sorry, but this is perhaps the most ill informed post from a poster with a really long track record of such posts.

    Pindi is right, if you deny religion, God, and God symbols, isn’t that the very definition of not having theistic beliefs? Or rather, being an atheist?

    AhmedKiaan is also right, ‘this site needs to be clearly about something again.’

    My interpretation of AK’s comment is that all your posts News, appear to be about the faults, wrongness, poor research, or wrong conclusions of evolution. And all the percieved ills you assume goes with this science, and nothing actually new or positive for ID.

    Also, I take issue with the Gallop poll, I’m almost certain NZ is more atheistic than Sweden, we have that admirable distinction (I hope), the rest of the bumpkin filled world needs to catch up.

  4. 4
    Querius says:

    If you ever did a little research, you might have found this:

    http://www.livescience.com/199.....anked.html

    So, if a starving atheist in New Zealand finds an aborted fetus and there’s a barbecue grill right there, all ready to go . . . is there anything immoral for the atheist doing what’s obviously necessary to stay alive?

    -Q

  5. 5
    Pindi says:

    News, I’m still waiting for you to address the point I and AK made. On what basis have you made the statement:

    “Curiously, the demographics of Sweden suggest that it will be Muslim some decades from now. Wonder what they’ll make of the atheists…”

    I can’t find that in the link you included. I hope you ae not just making stuff up.

  6. 6
    Dionisio says:

    News,

    Wow! Your click-bait headline technique definitely works!

    No doubt about it:

    80% of the first 5 comments reacting to your OP were posted by your politely dissenting interlocutors!

    That’s hot, hot, hot, compared to the “cold” discussion thread “Mystery at the heart of life”, which you started almost two years ago and has received a little over 4,000 visits that did not leave any comments, and has seen relatively few comments apart from the paper reference posts.

    The thread “A third way of evolution?” which you started two and a half years ago hasn’t done much better: over 3,600 non-commenting posts in addition to the slightly over 1000 mostly paper reference comments.

    Why aren’t your politely dissenting interlocutors attracted to the more scientific threads in this site?

    Any clues to why they seem to stay away from the more scientific discussions?

    Are they trying to avoid gpuccio because his arguments get too technical?

    Other reasons?

    Could it be that they haven’t recovered from the pain of seeing a biology professor from the university of Toronto quitting a discussion after failing to answer simple biology questions?

    Any thoughts on this?

  7. 7
    Pindi says:

    Still waiting News.

  8. 8
    Vy says:

    Why does being buried without a religious symbol mean atheism is a religion? Surely the opposite is true.

    Surely you must be joking.

    And where on that link does it say Sweden will be Muslim some decades from now? Couldn’t find that prediction.

    Perhaps because no one suggested it was IN the link?

    Curiously, the demographics of Sweden suggest that it will be Muslim some decades from now. Wonder what they’ll make of the atheists…

    I hope you ae not just making stuff up.

    From the article:

    Since May 2012, Sweden’s population has increased by around 0.85%. Immigration has been a major source for growth in population throughout Sweden’s history, and since 2012, the number of immigrants to Sweden has increased while the number of emigrants have decreased. Today, about one-fifth of Sweden’s population has an immigrant background.

    Most of the increase in population growth can be attributed to the increasing number of immigrants and live births in the country.

    Is that clear enough or do you need shiny diagrams?

  9. 9
    Vy says:

    I see Ahmed is still trolling hard for attention.

  10. 10
    Pindi says:

    Vy,

    Sorry, you are going to have to explain why being buried without a religious symbol makes atheism a religion.

    The link is the words “it will be muslim”. The obvious implication is that this statement will be borne out by going to the linked site. Otherwise why make those words a link?

    And yes please, a diagram would be good. There is nothing in that article that supports the statement that Sweden will be muslim in a few decades.

  11. 11
    Vy says:

    Sorry, you are going to have to explain why being buried without a religious symbol makes atheism a religion.

    If one can’t be buried in the cemetery with the symbols of any “religion,” that suggests that atheism is itself functioning as a religion. Obviously, the atheists will be in charge of what they will allow, just as the Catholic Archdiocese is in charge of what is permitted at the Hope Cemetery in Ottawa.

    With or without this cemetery Atheism is a religion.

    The link is the words “it will be muslim”. The obvious implication is that this statement will be borne out by going to the linked site.

    Are you serious? So you ignore everything that precedes the link because “The link is the words “it will be muslim””?

    And yes please, a diagram would be good.

    *facepalm*

    There is nothing in that article that supports the statement that Sweden will be muslim in a few decades.

    I quoted the article highlighting the relevant sections. It’s up to you to use your eyes. I can’t force the Darwinian blindness away.

    “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.”

  12. 12
    Pindi says:

    Vy

    “With or without this cemetery Atheism is a religion”

    Ok, so you concede that being buried in a cemetery without a religious symbol does not make atheism a religion. Kind of obvious, right, but for some reason making you concede this is like pulling teeth.

    Now, let’s look at your quote from the article. (And I have to say, maths is not your strong suit is it). If one-fifth of the population is of an immigrant background, and we know (from elsewhere in the article) that the current population is around 9.8 million and the annual population growth is .85%, even if we assume all those with an immigrant background are Muslim (which of course they’re not), and if we generously assume that half of the annual increase are Muslims, how many years until there is a majority of Muslims in Sweden?

  13. 13
    Vy says:

    Ok, so you concede that being buried in a cemetery without a religious symbol does not make atheism a religion.

    Really?

    Kind of obvious, right, but for some reason making you concede this is like pulling teeth.

    You really shouldn’t be talking about what’s obvious beyond your blindness.

    Now, let’s look at your quote from the article.

    Oh so you see it the quote now?

    (And I have to say, maths is not your strong suit is it).

    Willful blindness certainly is yours.

  14. 14
    timothya says:

    “Curiously, the demographics of Sweden suggest that it will be Muslim some decades from now. Wonder what they’ll make of the atheists…”

    Some facts might help:

    1. The proportion of Muslims in Sweden is approximately 3.5 per cent (defined by any of religious faith, ethnicity, birth or having a common Muslim name (!))
    2. The fertility rate for Muslims in Sweden is, on average, 0.8 of a child per family higher than for non-Muslims
    3. Total Swedish population is approximately 9.9 million

    Do the maths on normal population models. Your claim is wrong.

    In any case, the claim makes the assumption that all Swedish Muslims will retain their faith over generations – which is not in evidence in any other secular democracy. Particularly given that all those secular Swedes came from solid Christian stock a couple of generations ago. Must be catching.

  15. 15
    Pindi says:

    News, you need to retract your claim and apologise. That would be the Christian thing to do.

  16. 16
    Visnu says:

    “If one can’t be buried in the cemetery with the symbols of any “religion,” that suggests that atheism is itself functioning as a religion”

    This would make many religious, including Christian religious, like Adventists, JWs ect… that don’t use any symbols in their worship or on their tombstones, what?

    Atheism is based on belief that God (gods) don’t exist.

    Theism is based on belief that God (gods) do exit.

    In any case some kind of faith is needed.

    Both often strongly believe that they are right and are often willing to defend their beliefs “to death”.

    What makes atheists different from theists ?

    I think atheistic religion is disadvantaged in comparison to theistic.

    Atheistic beliefs are based on blind faith, such as the belief in accidental origin of life.

    Theistic beliefs are based on more solid grounds, such as the evidence for ID in the order of the universe, nature and in the amazing complexity of life itself.

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