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Godlessness has doomed Britain - Comments

jaytee_555's Avatar Comment 1 by jaytee_555

Good Grief!

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:08:01 UTC | #846425

Mogles's Avatar Comment 2 by Mogles

What an utter cretin - the comments should be good on this one...

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:09:38 UTC | #846426

theOperative's Avatar Comment 3 by theOperative

"Draw a circle round the one God loves the most" link

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:10:18 UTC | #846427

Schrodinger's Cat's Avatar Comment 4 by Schrodinger's Cat

Men are insemination machines incapable of ever being truly faithful

Huh ? I keep missing these atheist orgies. Can someone please let me know when the next one is.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:25:29 UTC | #846433

Caivs's Avatar Comment 5 by Caivs

Purpose in life... I´ll tell you the purpose of an atheist life, Shmuley. It is the same for all human beings. We all want to be immortal, living the best way possible and having enough time to get the most out of our minds. But that wont happen if we die within a century. It will only happen if we conquer nature, with knowledge, science and live for millenia. Scientists not pastors or rabbis will give us that. Aubrey de Gray, not Jesus, is working on that for us. We should support people like him to revolutionize the way we live and the purpose we seek for our lifes.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:25:51 UTC | #846434

MadEd's Avatar Comment 6 by MadEd

I don't know whether to feel insulted or condescendingly amused, I'll try a combination of the two.

...

No, doesn't work, I'll just feel insulted then.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:27:18 UTC | #846435

MilitantNonStampCollector's Avatar Comment 7 by MilitantNonStampCollector

I remember watching this cretin debate Hitchens, who thoroughly dissected every piece or his nauseating garbage.

Nothing to see here.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:27:42 UTC | #846436

NewEnglandBob's Avatar Comment 8 by NewEnglandBob

This knuckle dragging author trots out all the old, refuted lies about atheism. He belongs in the bronze age.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:33:33 UTC | #846437

sanban's Avatar Comment 9 by sanban

Purpose in life... I´ll tell you the purpose of an atheist life, Shmuley. It is the same for all human beings. We all want to be immortal, living the best way possible and having enough time to get the most out of our minds. But that wont happen if we die within a century. It will only happen if we conquer nature, with knowledge, science and live for millenia. Scientists not pastors or rabbis will give us that. Aubrey de Gray, not Jesus, is working on that for us. We should support people like him to revolutionize the way we live and the purpose we seek for our lifes.

Speak for yourself! I have no desire to live forever - I know death is the way of all life, a necessity for evolution. I consider it my moral duty to make way for the next generation.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:34:05 UTC | #846438

Nunbeliever's Avatar Comment 10 by Nunbeliever

The religious are really desperate. It seems all these columns are almost identical. They have no new arguments and no new objections to atheism. The same debunked non-sequiturs that they have been spreading for centuries. It is just amazing. And even more amazing that newspapers choose to publish these same articles over and over again. Seems like some people never get enough of atheist bashing. It does not matter that they have read the same article twenty times before. They need to be reminded of exactly how evil atheists are... why? Well, because when they look at real atheists they see perfectly nice and normal people. If you actually meet real atheists the only conclusion you could come to is that they aren't really bad people, and they don't all suffer from chronic depression but lead perfectly happy lives.

Regarding Shmuley Boteach. Isn't this article the height of narcissism. Who does he think he is? There is not a single word of originality in that whole article. He is just repeating the same old bs we have heard countless times before. Obviously he is so damn full of himself that he thinks every word he utters is a sign of ingenuity and that we should all be thankful to be in the presence of such greatness. I am ready to vomit now... His mere appearence makes me sick. This is a twisted fuck who I despise more than anything right now. Fuck him!

Just take this example of his utter hypocricy and bigotry:

True, America has many of these same problems, and a great deal more of its own. But the spiritual underpinnings of the American republic ensure that values are constantly debated, and that soul-searching is a never-ending element of the national discourse.

Oh, so values are never discussed in UK? Really? I mean, REALLY! Yes USA definately have more than a great deal of its own problem. I mean, is this man on drugs or something. Is this man really this fucking ignorant and full of himself? It is just amazing. Please Mr. Botox, don't embarrass yourself any further. You are so ignorant of the real world that it hurts to read your opinions. Yes, it really hurts. Go back to your thousand year old religious books and don't make statements about the present age. Bronze age bullshit is your "expertise". Face it! You don't know anything about anything so shut the fuck up. I hope I'll never see you in person because I honestly don't know if I could resist the urge to shove a five foot metal pipe up your fucking ass. Amen,

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:34:23 UTC | #846440

jhuxley's Avatar Comment 11 by jhuxley

"...to the faith-based values of the country’s founders"

Excuse me? If that was true the founders would have been appalled at the idea of a constitutionally secular nation, surely. (Not withstanding the overwhelming evidence that the most lauded founders were deeply critical of religion). Why are people of faith so predictably dishonest?

"Atheism is a philosophy of nihilism"

I think this is what psychologists called "projection".

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:35:54 UTC | #846441

theOperative's Avatar Comment 12 by theOperative

re: Comment 5 by Caivs

Assuming everyone gets to live for over a thousand years, what effect would this have on procreation and human cultural in general. As in societies evolve because old ideas die off and new ones come along to replace them ..

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:37:51 UTC | #846443

Dr. monster's Avatar Comment 13 by Dr. monster

this fuck-wit thoroughly irritates me. no evidence all opinion, and toxic garbage opinion at that. as an English man i am feeling thoroughly insulted.

post hoc, ergo propter hoc. this guy needs to take lessons on coincidence and causality.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:38:46 UTC | #846444

God fearing Atheist's Avatar Comment 14 by God fearing Atheist

First Mary Midgley accused Richard Dawkins of being responsible for Margaret Thatcher, and now some numpty accuses him of being responsible for the fall of the British Empire! ... and apparently he has been up to no good with tens of thousands of teenage girls ... Who'd thought it!

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:40:36 UTC | #846445

Rosbif's Avatar Comment 15 by Rosbif

What an utter tosh!

"Religion lives and dies in America like a commercial enterprise, "

Religion IS a commercial enteprise robbing the credulous and is fighting reality to keep its subscriber base.

Rarely have I read such a simplistic view of things from someone over the age of 5.

America is powerful because of religious ferver (nothing to do with the immense resources) and Britian has hoologans becasue fewer people believe in a thug skydaddy. Doh! Not to mention that Britain had a far worse hooligan problem in the 80's where the CoE had far more subscribers than today.

I was in a good mood until I read this.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:41:12 UTC | #846446

thatgingerscouser's Avatar Comment 16 by thatgingerscouser

Utter tosh - and worse, insulting tosh. Every word this cretin writes is so loaded with bias and bullshit I don't know where to be begin. Let's start here shall we: "Atheism is a philosophy of nihilism" - can I then get away with the rather misleading statement that "Religion is a by-product of mental incompetence". Cos you know what? It generally is...

And what the HELL is this...?

But a century later, Britain is better known for football hooliganism, the gratuitous degradation of women in its most-circulated publications, and one of the highest out-of-wedlock birthrates in the world.

Maybe in Israel, mate, but not in any other country I've ever visited.... Footy? Try having "Liverpool" down as your place of birth, all I've ever had is hugs and handshakes (even though I'm a blue)... "the gratuitous degradation of women"???? WHAT. THE. FUCK? Yeah, that's why every pornstar I can think of is American, why every stoning I can think of takes place in a highly religious country, why the WORST PLACES to be a woman are Afghanistan, Congo, Pakistan, India and Somalia: all incredibly RELIGIOUS countries. And 'one of the highest out-of-wedlock birthrates'? Is that how we're measuring social progress now? On the importance of standing up in front of your friends and family, lying through your teeth and being blessed by a paedo in a comedy frock before getting your girlfriend up the duff??

Oh, and Big Brother is DUTCH. It's a fucking DUTCH TV SHOW. Do some research, you lazy, mealy-mouthed, sycophantic, intellectually-redundant, goat-diddling, lobster-faced GOBSHITE.

Actually, now that I've got that off my chest, I would like to say HURRAH! We're winning!! Up yours, Boteach ya loooooooooooooooooooooooser!

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:41:48 UTC | #846447

Caivs's Avatar Comment 17 by Caivs

I just can´t see the correlation between screaming pentecostals and Bill Gates or Steve Jobs... Between faith and facebook. Between the royal couple and an godless society. Shmuley, that was crap.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:43:24 UTC | #846448

gordon's Avatar Comment 18 by gordon

He almost went on to say 'they deserve to go to hell because we are all sinners'. One can't listen to any of the evangelicals in the US without wanting to giggle or laugh out loud. He was right in the sense of the US movement being commercial. It is, usually for said pastor who is fleecing the gullible. Usually the faiths despise each other but one thing that can unite them is folk losing faith. Then suddenly the Jews like the Evangelicals and the Catholics are ‘at one’ with the Protestants.

We do have a football hooligan problem but there are mindless idiots abroad worse than our own, think Muslim football hooligans in Turkey for instance. Here, our worse examples in football are faith/sectarian driven, Celtic/Rangers. I’ve yet to see football hooligans mount a pogrom yet although I admit it can be the same mind set. That aside, we fell off a cliff like many empires have done before, not least because we were punching above our weight and taking by force much of the worlds wealth and commodities. The last or our resources were expended in two desperate World Wars, financed very profitably by the US. Likewise, the US has done the same resource grabbing throughout the twentieth century. Maybe they too will fall off a cliff now that others are waking to resource scarcities. Oh no, I forgot, they have God on their side.

I am also not a nihilist. I am an atheist artist and poet. I like to walk through wild flower meadows and feel the sun on my face on a warm summer’s day. I like wine, good food and my wife and kids (new grandchild arrived yesterday) and these things give me a buzz, a feeling of joy and uplift in my spirit. Sitting in a pew listening to some pastor/vicar/priest talk drivel is like listening to Thought for the Day on radio 4, time to do something else more useful. I either feel an internal shiver of embarrassment for the fool doing the talking (if I think they believe the stuff they’re saying), or anger if I sense they know they’re talking bullshit and carry on anyway.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:44:23 UTC | #846449

Caivs's Avatar Comment 19 by Caivs

Sure, and making you way to the next generation is analogous to live forever (on the gene level). Well, if one can "make his way" to his offspring in a greater spam of life, I can´t see how that is negative. Our ancestors lived for 30, 40 years at most, now we live 80. What if we could live 160? 500? Better, huh?

Comment 9 by sanban :

Purpose in life... I´ll tell you the purpose of an atheist life, Shmuley. It is the same for all human beings. We all want to be immortal, living the best way possible and having enough time to get the most out of our minds. But that wont happen if we die within a century. It will only happen if we conquer nature, with knowledge, science and live for millenia. Scientists not pastors or rabbis will give us that. Aubrey de Gray, not Jesus, is working on that for us. We should support people like him to revolutionize the way we live and the purpose we seek for our lifes.

Speak for yourself! I have no desire to live forever - I know death is the way of all life, a necessity for evolution. I consider it my moral duty to make way for the next generation.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:46:16 UTC | #846450

SomersetJohn's Avatar Comment 20 by SomersetJohn

Britain today has become one of the most godless societies on Earth.

Nice to know we're doing something right!

Religion lives and dies in America like a commercial enterprise

It very often is a commercial enterprise, for the sole purpose of separating the rubes from their coins.

I beg to differ. In his 1997 book A History of the American People, historian Paul Johnson makes the case that the remarkable growth of the US, from pioneering backwoodsmen to the most powerful and innovative nation on Earth, was fueled largely by religious fervor. From the piety of the Pilgrims to the faith-based values of the country’s founders, to the belief in manifest destiny and even the marketing of Coca-Cola as “the real thing,” Americans tamed the wilderness with the faith that their nation is a new promised land, destined to illuminate the Earth with the torch of freedom and the light of human dignity.

If the first sentence is true, how come the U.S. had to create a remedial education program at the start of WWll to overcome the devastation inflicted on the education system by religious fanatics. The rest of the paragraph completely ignores the established and proven fact that it was the secular values of the new republic which was largely responsible for U.S. progress.

British influence in the world, in contrast, has gone off a cliff over the past century. I would argue that the new, militant atheism that is becoming characteristic of Britain is a key reason. Atheism is a philosophy of nihilism in which nothing is sacred and all is an accidental.

Britain lost it's empire long before the rise of secularism.

While it has some brief, flashy moments, life is purposeless and meaningless. There is no soul to illuminate and no spirit to enliven – just decadent flesh. Human love is a prank played by our genes to ensure the propagation of the species, and poetry and faith are shallow distractions masking the inevitability of death . Men are insemination machines incapable of ever being truly faithful, and women are genetically programmed to seek out billionaire hedge-fund managers, the better to support their offspring.

Are you saying that if you lost your belief in your invisible friend you would immediately go out and rob, rape and pillage to your hearts content! What a sick little man you must be.

This decline of faith and optimism may account for why Britain – once the most advanced nation on earth, which gave the world parliamentary democracy and inimitable centers of higher learning – is today more famous for exporting reality shows like Big Brother and Project Catwalk. For while religion affirms the infinite dignity of the human person, its absence robs life of its sanctity. Universal exploitation and humiliation for fame and fortune are the inevitable outgrowth.

Have you seen some of the dross which flows out of that centre of christian excellence on the other side of the Atlantic?

Britain abolished the slave trade in 1807, ending it completely three decades before the US, with Christian abolitionists like William Wilberforce taking the lead against that abomination.>

You forgot to mention that the opposition to abolition came largely from christians and moslems. Though I must confess I am not aware of any jewish opposition to the trade, offhand.

It just goes to show how important it is to “keep the faith.” Were Britain to rediscover its own, it might find a lost sense of mission and a once-glorious sense of purpose.>

Really, to impose it's values and beliefs on more primitive societies, like Indians, Pakistanis, Lebanese, Iranians, Iraquis, Bangladeshis, shall I go on?

The real question is, what do we call SHMULEY BOTEACH. Can't be a liar for jesus, how about a liar for Yahweh, eejit, twat of the first water. Other designations happily accepted.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:46:33 UTC | #846451

Caivs's Avatar Comment 21 by Caivs

Well, we will have to figure that out. But people can change their minds, I suppose. It is easier to kill your opponent than to win a debate, but we should give humans a chance to speak longer.

Comment 12 by theOperative :

re: Comment 5 by Caivs Assuming everyone gets to live for over a thousand years, what effect would this have on procreation and human cultural in general. As in societies evolve because old ideas die off and new ones come along to replace them ..

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:48:56 UTC | #846452

hitchens_jnr's Avatar Comment 22 by hitchens_jnr

Wow. This article has only succeeded in rekindling a flicker of my long-dormant national pride as a Briton.

The fact that he thinks that William and Kate excite the youth over here shows how little he understands our culture!

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:49:12 UTC | #846454

Sean_W's Avatar Comment 23 by Sean_W

I haven't checked the British influence index lately, is it really doing that badly against other influences?

I actually liked a lot of what he said here, mostly the bits about US religion being a commercial enterprise.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:50:33 UTC | #846457

Tacomakid's Avatar Comment 24 by Tacomakid

Shmuley, do you know what my purpose in life is? Knowledge. Do you know why Atheism is spreading and gathering force, because Religion is spread by corrupted man. They speak like their religion alone is the truth. There is no way any man can have that kind of knowledge . No man on earth should approve of faith. Faith is an enemy of knowledge. Faith is accepting something as fact without being able to support the claim. Without the unending search for the truth, mankind would be stuck in the stone age. If there is a God, surely he cannot fault us for not believing in him. He clearly does not make himself known and doesn't offer one bit of help to all the people that suffer and die from war, disease, genocide, hunger and so on. What does he do to help? NOTHING! He sits up in the clouds in his big giant recliner and just watches as people all around the globe suffer. What a loser.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:52:09 UTC | #846459

danconquer's Avatar Comment 25 by danconquer

I particularly enjoyed the irony of the bit where he appeared to condemn rise of celebrity-fixated reality TV drivel. A bit rich, coming as it does, from someone who has his own crappy reality TV show and was Michael Jacksons 'spiritual advisor'. And who, you may like to know, soon after MJ's death, quickly went and sold taped recordings he had made of their conversations... And this guy talks about nihilism?! In any case, Big Brother was a Dutch not a British export.

This silly, trivial article appears to argue that fervent and widespread religious delusion somehow equals economic, political and cultural might. Which is an interesting idea given that if there really is any correlation at all, it turns out that the most religious nations are actually some of the most corrupt, poor and lacking in influence in the world: http://www.gallup.com/poll/114211/Alabamians-Iranians-Common.aspx

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:57:09 UTC | #846461

locka's Avatar Comment 26 by locka

Blue fairy! Red fairy! Blue fairy! Red fairy! Blammm!

If the UK is getting religion out of its system then maybe one day it can stand on the sidelines as these ridiculous little wars play out.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:58:39 UTC | #846462

William33's Avatar Comment 27 by William33

Hmm... let's look at history. How many empires, local, regional or otherwise have came and went?

There has been no empire that has remained constant in our history. They come and go like some type of fasion statement. Britain was one of many and certainly not the last.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 15:58:58 UTC | #846463

silverspirit2001's Avatar Comment 28 by silverspirit2001

WOW.

When I first read this, I thought, what a maroon. But, I thought about the matter in some more detail, to understand his position, and came to some conclusions.

He is still a Maroon.

But he has identified some real problems, but failed to identify them fully, and come to the appropriate explanation.

And yes, it comes down to the numinous and transcendent.

First of all, their needs to be some distinctions. Put simply, religions "tend" (but not always) to encourage people to explore the numinous and transcendent. Atheism does not.

But that does not mean atheists are not numinous and transcendent, in fact most ACTIVE atheists I know are highly interested in these matters. But then you get the NON theists, (or the INACTIVE ATHEISTS), who just do not care. Where as in the past, peer pressure would have forced them to attend church, in which they were exposed to the transcendent and numinous, and would have had to engage in its ideas. And the sense of numinous and transcendent is important in encouraging science and the debate of ideas. So what we can now see, it is the battle between religion and science which drives progress, which is the battle between ideas. The problem is, religion has been defeated in the UK, and Science defeated in Saudi Arabia (for example).

The debate here is , hows as atheists, can we engage the majority to examine the numinous and transcendent, or as most of the Active Atheists see it - science. We cannot force people to a science or philosophy lecture every Sunday morning, or force them to listen to Bach's Concerto for 2 violins in d minor, so lose the opportunity to engage ideas and make people think, or experience wonder.

SO it is a question, how do we get non interested people to experience the numinous? To gain that sense of wonder?

Really, it comes down to how we teach our children, how to experience the world. (ie science in schools must reach out better to invoke the wow factor).

For too long, this has been through tension between science and religion, we need a better way to invoke transcendent thought.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 16:06:49 UTC | #846471

bendigeidfran's Avatar Comment 29 by bendigeidfran

His 'friend' CH said he was a dummy. Lets watch the dummy non-rabbi-of-oxford chatting to his pal CH:- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnMYL8sF7bQ

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 16:16:21 UTC | #846473

Matt B's Avatar Comment 30 by Matt B

SO it is a question, how do we get non interested people to experience the numinous? To gain that sense of wonder?

Teach them to appreciate knowledge of our world. At least, that's what worked for me.

Tue, 05 Jul 2011 16:18:25 UTC | #846475