Some famous atheists and doubters in history:
Diogenes - ancient Greek philosopher
Epicurus -another ancient Greek philosopher, he wrestled with the concept of the incompatibility of an omnipresent god with the existence of evil. Also believed in hedonism as a way of life, but held intellectual pleasure higher, and preferred the permanent pleasures to momentary ones.
Xenophanes - Another ancient Greek philosopher, he was quoted as saying : "we make god in our own image." Many atheists today also believe this is so.
Anaxagoras - This Greek has the distinction of being the earliest person known to have been indicted for atheism, in 467 B.C.
Aristotle - He argued that the world could not have been created, although he apparently believed in his god nevertheless.
Freud - a father of psychoanalysis, taught us about the id, ego and superego, as well as repression. Quoting Freud: "A Religion is an illusion, and it derives its strength from its readiness to fit in with our instinctual wishful impulses." Also, "Religion is an illusion, and it derives its strength from its readiness to fit in with our instinctual wishful impulses."
Schopenhauer - The essential or absolute reality is a blind and restless will to live; life is an evil, to be cured by overcoming will to live.
Nietzsche - German philosopher, advocated overcoming the slave mentality and nihilism that he thought were exemplified in historical Christianity.
David Hume - He made scathing critiques of the traditional arguments for the existence of god. He also held that god was the product of the human mind.
Voltaire- Railed against the Catholic Church, and called its methods of ensuring adherence to its teachings "the logic of the sword."
Sebastian Castellio - who in a letter, from the security of another country to which he had fled, verbally attacked Calvin for signing his name to the execution of a man for alleged heresy.
Socrates - Greek philosopher
Thomas Edison - the great inventor
The Book of Ecclesiastes, wherein it says "all is vanity and man should therefore eat and drink and enjoy the good of his labor."
Ayn Rand - author of Atlas Shrugged, started the Objectivism movement, contended that absolute knowledge and final truths are attainable. Believed in absolute morality.
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - the great Russian writer, spent 6 years in a penal colony for "conspiring against the orthodox church and the Russian government."
Click here for an extensive list of other famous/celebrity atheists!
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Some Rants – er , we mean Opinions – about recent extreme acts involving religious beliefs. By their nature we think they deserve extreme commentary. If Rush Limbaugh and Howard Stern can do it, so can we.
Religious zealots strike with another dishonorable act.
As most people know by now, on 7-7-05, in the name of their extreme Islamist faction, Jihadists once again behaved true to form, i.e, as unprincipled barbaric vermin, trying to destroy what they envy or fear or don't agree with, which is in general everything that advanced and bettered the condition of the world=s people since the time of their prophet Mohammed. They placed three bombs on cars in the London Underground, and one by default on a double-decker London bus (it was intended for an Underground line that was out of service due to repair work), all set off during the height of rush hour, killing and injuring innocent people in a country that took them in and might not have coddled and bowed and scraped to them as they'd like (fanatics usually have a frustrated belief in their own 'unrecognized' importance), but it certainly provided them with opportunities to better themselves, and didn't treat them badly either.
Their goal was to intimidate and tear down by sowing fear. There's a great deal of hard pleasure in with the sadness among ordinary decent folk around the world, because this time, terrorists didn't get the payoff they sought. Instead of mass panic the measured but purposeful response seen in Londoners after these craven attacks provided a brilliant lesson on how to respond. They basically gave those terrorists the one finger salute, and instead of falling apart, came together to affirm their own decency and unity.
When interviewed, some in Muslim countries have actually said they disapprove of killing innocents but venture that they "understand why [the bombers] did it." What's to understand? Saying such a thing displays ignorance and prejudice. We've also heard some people (e.g., Bill Maher) grudgingly grant certain terrorists (like the 9-11 variety) the compliment that they showed courage in dying with their bombs, we don't agree. We think they were cowards who preferred not to stay around to face the music, too numbed by their own self-importance (and false belief they are actually going to make any difference except to arouse contempt and hatred for them in their targets) to care about the pain and suffering they inflicted on others, including their own families. Easier to go out in a bang believing you=re going to some wonderful reward, we suppose, than to have to deal with the results of your outrageous behavior. Plus for the people who put you up to it, it makes a tidy wrapup, you aren't around to finger them (what suckers you are! Notice the ones who put you up to it aren't so dumb as to be the ones blowing themselves to smithereens).
cont'd on pg 2...
We don't need to take these people seriously!
"On The Radar"... A section for short thoughts on current topics of debate (such as intelligent design in court cases, stupid comments by government officials, etc)
The True Believer
by Eric Hoffer
First published in 1951
Written with a slap your face honesty and clarity of reasoning, you'll be astounded by how relevant this book remains.
The Science of Good and Evil,
How we Believe,
both by Michael Shermer.
Michael Shermer can often be heard on NPR, and writes solidly informational books full of useful research and facts.
The End of Faith
Religion, Terror and the Future of Reason
by Sam Harris
Harris objects to all brands of the religious product, and is un-abashedly frank and precise in his criticisms.
Tower of Babel - The Evidence against the New Creationism
by Robert T. Pennock
Sets out an exposition of Creationists' objectives and strategies.
by Daniel C. Dennett
Mr. Dennett sees evolution at work in our moral behavior; our higher brain functioning allows us freedom of choice but we choose moral behavior at least partly because of its survival value.
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