Friday, August 1, 2008

The great morality of 'men of god', and a challenge

So I found this article yesterday about a preacher in Alabama, USA, who killed his wife and stuffed her body in a freezer. He kept her there for "several years". Why did he kill her? Possibly it was because she caught him sexually abusing their daughter. Read the full article here.

So I got thinking..... there are a lot of stories about religious people, including priests and preachers, committing some terrible acts. Another example would be the abuse of children by Catholic priests, as well as the subsequent cover-up by the organisation itself.

Despite this, there are still many, many religious believers who bitch and bitch and bitch about how atheists can't be moral without god, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Blah!

So I'm going to issue a challenge to any religious people who might be reading this site (we actually do seem to have a few readers now, but hopefully will get more later). Can you support, by providing evidence (preferably not 'religious evidence', whatever that is), that religious people are any more moral than atheists? If you have something, please send it on to me by using the 'Contact Me' form.

I'd also like any atheists reading this page to send me information suggesting the opposite, that atheists are just as moral, or more moral, than religious believers. Or hey, if the atheists want to support that believers are more moral, or the believers want to show that atheists are just as moral, that's great and "good on ya mate" for being objective.

I don't know what the outcome of this will be, whether you can or can't demonstrate anything, but I am interested.

Morality can be a tricky issue to define, but I think that things like murder, rape, theft, hard-drug use (not marijuana or alcohol), sexual abuse of children, fraud, infidelity in marriage and divorce, etc. are not moral. 'Sins' such as blasphemy, false idols, or working on any particular day of the week, cannot be considered to be immoral for our purposes here, because they require the axiom that there is a god in order to be considered immoral. I do not accept the existence of god as an axiom.

And please, nothing about Hitler or communists. The Hitler thing is tired and likely not even true, and if you tell me about the communists I will only be inclined to look up atrocities of religion, such as Crusades, Inquisitions, witch hunts, warmongering in Iraq, suicide bombers, terrorism, etc. Let's keep this on an individual personal lifestyle basis.

I look forward to receiving submissions.


Anonymous said...

I don't have any examples near to hand that illustrate the superior morality of atheists, but I would like to point out that morality is basically positive regard for persons and things other than oneself put into action, and the Christian acting morally so-called is really only trying to earn his way into heaven with works or to avoid punishment, which is to say he is acting out of selfish motives. When an atheist does a good deed, he does so firmly believing that there is no reward waiting for him other than the results of the deed itself.
So who is more moral?

Anonymous said...

I'm Christian and I don't think being religious has anything to with morality because they let themselves sin since they get saved for sinning by confessing or asking for forgiveness (which to me is abuse of religion). Having a personal relationship with God is another story though. Many people are religious without being true to God or even themselves. This is where people like the pastor in Alabama come from, I believe. If he was doing something wrong and that's ultimately why he killed his wife, then his relationship with God did not truly coincide with his religion in the first place. Being true in your heart has many different avenues. To me it's Christ, to an atheist it's what you choose. The point is to be true.