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Wed Jun 24, 2015, 12:00 AM

Why Did God Create Atheists?

"There is a famous story told in Chassidic literature that addresses this very question. The Master teaches the student that God created everything in the world to be appreciated, since everything is here to teach us a lesson.

One clever student asks “What lesson can we learn from atheists? Why did God create them?”

The Master responds “God created atheists to teach us the most important lesson of them all — the lesson of true compassion. You see, when an atheist performs and act of charity, visits someone who is sick, helps someone in need, and cares for the world, he is not doing so because of some religious teaching. He does not believe that god commanded him to perform this act. In fact, he does not believe in God at all, so his acts are based on an inner sense of morality. And look at the kindness he can bestow upon others simply because he feels it to be right.”

“This means,” the Master continued “that when someone reaches out to you for help, you should never say ‘I pray that God will help you.’ Instead for the moment, you should become an atheist, imagine that there is no God who can help, and say ‘I will help you.’”

Tales of Hasidim Vol. 2 by Mar

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 12:17 AM

1. So long as disciples of this "God" don't smite me for disbelieving!

I don't really care, that much, about what reasons those disciples give for their "God" somehow creating me.

I figure I would've gotten here somehow by natural forces anyway, and I "do good" anyway, regardless of irrelevant blather.

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 02:31 AM

2. I think doing good just to win brownie points with God

so He'll let you go to heaven is about as selfish as anything I can think of. What, if you couldn't get credit for it, you wouldn't do something nice for another person? What the hell is that?

The one that really gets me is people saying they're going to Heaven because they've accepted Christ as their personal savior _no matter what kinda ugly they do_. As if Jesus gives out "Get Out of Hell free" cards and, once you have one, you don't have to care about anybody else. Was that what He intended?

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Response to tblue (Reply #2)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 03:09 AM

4. That's what often bothers me about the whole "I'm forgiven!" thing.

Yeah, I was taught that in Catholic school. I try to embrace it in my own feeble way. But that gets me, too, tblue -

"The one that really gets me is people saying they're going to Heaven because they've accepted Christ as their personal savior _no matter what kinda ugly they do_. As if Jesus gives out "Get Out of Hell free" cards and, once you have one, you don't have to care about anybody else."

I remember hearing george w. dry-drunk saying that on one occasion. "I'm fergiven!" And I remember thinking - "okay, so that gives you a free pass to lie us into war and other schmuckery? But it's okay because "Yer Fergiven!"???

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Response to calimary (Reply #4)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 03:43 AM

5. Just like the recent Duggar scumbag bullshit -

 

yes, he sexually assaulted his sisters but it's OK now because he's been "forgiven". Jail? Goodness no, the policeman knew how vital his work fighting against teh Gay was to Gawd and, as I said, he's been "forgiven". And his sisters forgave him too, cos he's a man and they're only women.

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Response to tblue (Reply #2)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 09:53 AM

11. "Get our of hell free" cards!



That is so damned appropriate!

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 02:58 AM

3. Yet another dumb example

 

of how God, or the belief in him, magically explains everything. If it's good, God's responsible. If it's bad, God is likewise responsible. You can pray to him to make something good happen, and if he doesn't grant your wish, then apparently you didn't pray hard enough.

In a disaster, such as a plane crash or an earthquake, God saves believers and unbelievers alike. Just as he kills both groups.

A belief in God "explains" everything and nothing.

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 04:01 AM

6. To test your faith.

Everything that calls your belief in doubt is a clever trap designed by God to test you.

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Response to DetlefK (Reply #6)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 08:41 AM

10. Unless it's a clever trap designed by Satan. nt

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 04:20 AM

7. Perhaps he got bored listening to sycophants?

 

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 07:30 AM

8. "...imagine that there is no God to help..."



Good one, Master!!!

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 08:19 AM

9. That closely parallels Emanuel Kant's definition of a virtuous person. nt

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 10:04 AM

12. Why Did God Create Atheists?

 

Since god didn't create anything.... even himself.... this is a pretty snarky question. I love how the "answer" the Master gives makes atheists actually "better" people than ones asking the question.

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 10:38 AM

13. The story does rather suggest that without their god

 

telling them that they should be "moral" people then they'd be lost. As opposed to atheists who think about what's the "right" thing to do.

Nothing new here, then, it would seem.

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 11:15 AM

14. An interesting imaginary question

the real question is why did people create God?
It is a complex question and more important to understanding ourselves.

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Response to edhopper (Reply #14)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 11:35 AM

15. Tend to agree. What does the use of the symbolism and the diverse stories tell us, about ourselves?

Though that may be more suited for a different discussion / thread.

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Response to pinto (Reply #15)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 11:43 AM

16. Or why we even have a need for a God.

but yes, don't mean to hijack this.

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Response to edhopper (Reply #14)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 01:09 PM

17. We tell ourselves stories to facilitate

 

communal action among people who are otherwise strangers. Those stories can be religious, nationalistic, ideological, etc. It is one of the ways we are able to organize beyond small related groups.

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 24, 2015, 01:28 PM

18. So if this story is taken as true

God created atheists to teach Jews compassion, and and yet the people who are the exemplars of compassion will not be rewarded. This "lovely" story relegates atheists to non people status.

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