First, a digression. Many theists who feel their beliefs are being threatened have this nasty little tendency to make things up. It’s a memetic defense mechanism, but it’s true. It’s called, “Lying for Jesus“. Even though most Christians (OK, I’m picking on Christians here because they are the worst offenders) believe that lying is a sin, and a violation of one of the Ten Commandments (they call it bearing false witness), apparently, there is an unwritten rule that, if you lie in furtherance of the glory of god, or his son, then it’s OK to do so. You won’t find it in the Bible, (I said it was unwritten) but you also won’t find many Christians disclaiming it. In fact, many of the more outspoken ones (like Pat Robertson, Oral Roberts and the acorn from his tree, or the late Jerry Falwell) partake of this activity regularly.
The Big Lie here is placing the term atheism above the rest of the statement, as if what will follow will be a definition of atheism (or at least a particular subjective definition, to be fair). However, what follows has absolutely nothing to do with atheism. It’s not hard to see that what the writer is equating with atheism is the scientific theory of the Big Bang, coupled later with a very passing reference to the scientific theory of Evolution. Atheism has nothing to do with either of these two theories, although if they are true, they can support one’s atheism, mine included. Atheism is a lack of belief in gods:
- Disbelief in or denial of the existence of God or gods.
- The doctrine that there is no God or gods.
[French athéisme, from athée, atheist, from Greek atheos, godless : a-, without; see a–1 + theos, god.]
or even more specifically, a lack of belief in anything supernatural. Nothing more than that. One can be religious, and still believe that the Big Bang and Evolution are perfectly valid explanations for the phenomena they explain.
The next part of the lie is to then misstate or misrepresent both of those theories. A very simple understanding of both the Big Bang and Evolutionary theories would indicate that the simplistic nonsense in the above (from nothing, nothing happened to nothing to create everything) is just that – nonsense – although for someone with a firm belief that God created the earth, and the rest of the universe, over a period of 6 days 6000 years ago, I can understand how it might sound like a real intellectual refutation.
Then, the “debunking” of evolution (everything magically rearranged itself into dinosaurs) really shows the complete and utter ignorance of the writer. Most readers of this blog do not need an education in either the basic concept of Big Bang, or Evolution, so I won’t insult your intelligence. However, the author of this particular lie equates atheism with something it’s not equatable to, while at the same time misrepresenting the science.
This is classic propaganda, designed and written for one purpose – to influence the opinions and beliefs of others, not to impart accurate information. It does what the best propaganda does – it simplistically and simply explains a concept in the way a simple mind might understand it, attempting to evoke an emotional or visceral response. A true intellectual response is reflected in the title to this post, followed by the post itself. What should be supremely insulting to most Christians is that the writer of this lie assumed that they would understand and agree with this, that they would feel no need to question it. That assumption doesn’t say much for the perceived intellectual capacity of Christians.
So where’s the irony? It’s in the use of the term “magical” to explain the way the universe came together, and to further explain how dinosaurs evolved. I guess the writer saw no irony in claiming magic on the part of atheism, while at the same time believing in the literal creation myth of Genesis, the virgin birth or the resurrection. No magic there.
One of the commenters on the original site had this to say about it:
And what ethical rules do you atheists live by? The current laws of the land right bitches? (sic) Well thank God you atheists weren’t around when American was first being created or else we’d all be cannibals eating each other, clubbing each other to mush, and chaos erupting everywhere
And a commenter to Hemant’s post put it rather succinctly:
Atheists might not burn in hell or anything, but they’re just dumb. Its not compulsory to follow a religion, some times religions make no sense. But to brag about the universe germinating from no-where, without any super-natural (read God.) force behind it is just stupid.
Makes perfect sense.