Can Atheists Have a Code of Sexual Morality?

Jul 25, 2010 Full story: www.psychologytoday.com 1,939
Grownup atheists don't need to fear some metaphysical being in order to prefer doing what's right-all clear-thinking adults prefer doing what's right. And grownup atheists don't need a one-size-fits-all menu of sexual acts. They know that doing only the sexual acts on God's Preferred List is no guarantee of moral decision-making or ethical behavior. And they have experienced the deep satisfaction of ethical decision-making while rockin' the house with taboo sexual acts that would make seraphim and cherubim blush. Full Story

“Liberal and proud of it.”

Since: Jun 08

Location hidden

#22 Jul 27, 2010
Its Tim wrote:
<quoted text> Agreed and well said.
I would actually be more inclined to respect an Atheist for his/her moral code than I would someone of a religious faith, based on the serious prospect of where that person's sense of morality is stemming from: a sense of genuine desire to do right vs. a fear of spiritual consequences.
For the record, I'm not stating that the moral code of all religious peoples applies here; merely making a general observation. I have known more hypocrites among self-proclaimed "Christians" than any other group, however.
I have known hypocrites among the self-proclaimed of Christian, Jewish, and Muslim varieties, and even some very unethical folks who told me they were atheist. I have also met some very ethical and kind hearted Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, and loads of Buddhist folks. And most of the people I've met who call themselves atheist are very careful about their moral and ethical codes.

My point is that while I agree with you in that I too respect the genuine desire to do right as opposed to the fear of consequences in the "afterlife," individuals of all stripes will behave ... individually.
flyboy

Richmond, VA

#23 Jul 27, 2010
Yes, atheists have a code of sexual morality and morality in general, and their views are generally more enlightened, educated and rational because they aren't thinking with a clouded mind, but thinking without any religious bullshit directing their mentalities. They think clearly and honestly and are able to challenge themselves, analyze right and wrong in their own minds and souls, and make decisions based on that. Fundamentalists tend to use the Bible, which they don't comprehend or read, as a crutch for their attitudes, which they don't understand.

“Liberal and proud of it.”

Since: Jun 08

Location hidden

#25 Jul 27, 2010
Its Tim wrote:
<quoted text> I DO have to question your own understanding of what Atheism is. From my perspective and understanding, Atheists actually do make positive claim to their belief that there is no supreme higher being.
Agnostics, however, do not. Agnosticism stems from the Greek meaning "ignorant." An agnostic proclaims that man is ignorant and unknowing of the actual existence of a higher being, and incapable of knowing for certain. Essentially, an Agnostics creed could be simply: "Maybe. Its possible. I don't know."
An Atheist would simply tell you "There is no God."
The word "atheist" comes from Greek as well.
"a" meaning without
"theist" comes from "theos" meaning "a god"

Atheist means that you are without the belief in a god.
rider

Marquette, MI

#26 Jul 27, 2010
Famous Kidnapping Case Implicates Top Political Figures in Child ...Aug 19, 2003 ... Alicia Owen also stuck to her story. She's the girl that the Omaha police chief ... If you do, my life is in danger and yours might be, too....
educate-yourself.org/tg/goschcradiointerview1... - Cached - Similar

“ecrasez l'infame”

Since: May 08

Atlanta, Georgia

#27 Jul 27, 2010
Its Tim wrote:
<quoted text> I DO have to question your own understanding of what Atheism is. From my perspective and understanding, Atheists actually do make positive claim to their belief that there is no supreme higher being.
Agnostics, however, do not. Agnosticism stems from the Greek meaning "ignorant." An agnostic proclaims that man is ignorant and unknowing of the actual existence of a higher being, and incapable of knowing for certain. Essentially, an Agnostics creed could be simply: "Maybe. Its possible. I don't know."
An Atheist would simply tell you "There is no God."
Nope. You're not quite accurate here.

Gnostic = literally, knowledge

A-Gnostic (agnostic)= without knowledge

Theistic = belief in the existence of a god or gods

A-Theistic (atheistic)= without belief in the existence of a god or gods

(It is important to note that 'without belief' is NOT a positive claim of non-existence, it is simply what it says,'without belief'.)

Since gnosticism deals with knowledge and not with belief, these concepts are NOT mutually exclusive.

Truth is NOBODY KNOWS, hence, we are all really agnostic.

So then the question becomes, do you admit you don't know but choose to believe anyway? Or do you admit we don't know, but see no point in believing without some kind of evidence for belief.
ScienceRules

Malvern, PA

#28 Jul 27, 2010
Its Tim wrote:
<quoted text> I DO have to question your own understanding of what Atheism is. From my perspective and understanding, Atheists actually do make positive claim to their belief that there is no supreme higher being.
Agnostics, however, do not. Agnosticism stems from the Greek meaning "ignorant." An agnostic proclaims that man is ignorant and unknowing of the actual existence of a higher being, and incapable of knowing for certain. Essentially, an Agnostics creed could be simply: "Maybe. Its possible. I don't know."
An Atheist would simply tell you "There is no God."
Sorry, this is simply wrong. There are agnostic atheists and agnostic theists (those few who admit there is no evidence to support their beliefs). Atheists are generally agnostic since most understand the logical impossibility of disproving a negative. The claim that a particular god does not exist (e.g., the literal god of the bible) is a different issue and has little to do with atheism. In fact virtually every believer claims god does not exist. I'll bet you claim that Zeus, Apollo, Quetzalcoatl, and Thor don't exist, right? It is only YOUR god that you claim as existing.

“No Bishop,No King,No Nobility”

Since: May 08

The Underworld

#30 Jul 27, 2010
Pamela in red wrote:
Just because a person doesn't believe in a higher being that created us and will doom us to hell if we don't behave doesn't mean they don't have morals.
There are consequences to behavior here on earth that warrants having sexual boundaries.
Pretty much, but I prefer the word "empathy" to words like morals, ethics, and values.

Why? It's quite specific. It's the root of ethics, but simple in it's purity...

Empathy is looking at a situation and asking yourself: "how would I feel in that situation?"

Everything else falls into place from there if we share other peoples feelings and treat them how we would like to be treated, taking into consideration how we would feel if those actions were turned on ourselves.

“Credulity is not a virtue”

Since: Apr 09

San Francisco

#31 Jul 27, 2010
Its Tim wrote:
<quoted text> I DO have to question your own understanding of what Atheism is. From my perspective and understanding, Atheists actually do make positive claim to their belief that there is no supreme higher being.
Nope. It's exactly as I described it. Atheists are skeptics, and if presented with evidence of a god that was:

1.) Testable (repeatedly)
2.) Falsifiable
3.) Objectively verifiable

Then we would not be atheists. Atheism is not a belief system unto itself.
Agnostics, however, do not. Agnosticism stems from the Greek meaning "ignorant." An agnostic proclaims that man is ignorant and unknowing of the actual existence of a higher being, and incapable of knowing for certain. Essentially, an Agnostics creed could be simply: "Maybe. Its possible. I don't know."
An Atheist would simply tell you "There is no God."
An agnostic says that there is no way yo know if there are gods or not. An atheist says that gods, if they did exist, should be provable. that is the main difference.

For example, I am an atheist. Gods, as conceived by human cultures, should be provable, but never have been all throughout millenia. Therefore, I conclude that there are none. I could be wrong, there is always the possibility, however remote, that there are gods, and if empirical evidence is brought forward then I might conclude that one or more exist. However, again, given that none has ever been forthcoming, it's safe to assume there aren't' any. Just as one cannot prove a negative, i.e. no one can prove the Easter Bunny doesn't exist, no one can prove gods don't exist, and so one cannot honestly state that definitely no gods exist. But it is highly improbably, to put it mildly.
redneck

Cave Junction, OR

#32 Jul 27, 2010
Hedonist wrote:
<quoted text>
Nope. You're not quite accurate here.
Gnostic = literally, knowledge
A-Gnostic (agnostic)= without knowledge
Theistic = belief in the existence of a god or gods
A-Theistic (atheistic)= without belief in the existence of a god or gods
(It is important to note that 'without belief' is NOT a positive claim of non-existence, it is simply what it says,'without belief'.)
Since gnosticism deals with knowledge and not with belief, these concepts are NOT mutually exclusive.
Truth is NOBODY KNOWS, hence, we are all really agnostic.
So then the question becomes, do you admit you don't know but choose to believe anyway? Or do you admit we don't know, but see no point in believing without some kind of evidence for belief.
Refering to'NOBODY KNOWS' would make atheism a belief concept. I disagree with that. Perhaps an atheist 'knows' but cannot prove. Similar to belief in god. There must be another catagory that needs developing.

“ecrasez l'infame”

Since: May 08

Atlanta, Georgia

#33 Jul 27, 2010
redneck wrote:
<quoted text>Refering to'NOBODY KNOWS' would make atheism a belief concept. I disagree with that. Perhaps an atheist 'knows' but cannot prove. Similar to belief in god. There must be another catagory that needs developing.
I have never in 30+ years of being a self-declared atheist and attending various humanist, atheist, freethough meetings and conferences; NEVER met an atheist that would claim to KNOW. But I've met plenty that would readily state that without evidence, there is nothing to consider.
Earonrail

Houston, TX

#34 Jul 27, 2010
I think deep down atheists want to believe in God, but they don't want to be burdened with the guilt that they are sinful creatures like the rest of us.
Their belief that everything must be scientifically proven is just an excuse to escape their moral/religious responsiblities.

“Bring Back the Bush!”

Since: Jul 10

Ventura

#35 Jul 27, 2010
Jen Hussein wrote:
<quoted text>
I have known hypocrites among the self-proclaimed of Christian, Jewish, and Muslim varieties, and even some very unethical folks who told me they were atheist. I have also met some very ethical and kind hearted Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, and loads of Buddhist folks. And most of the people I've met who call themselves atheist are very careful about their moral and ethical codes.
My point is that while I agree with you in that I too respect the genuine desire to do right as opposed to the fear of consequences in the "afterlife," individuals of all stripes will behave ... individually.
Yeah, that was pretty much what I was saying...

“Bring Back the Bush!”

Since: Jul 10

Ventura

#36 Jul 27, 2010
Jen Hussein wrote:
<quoted text>
The word "atheist" comes from Greek as well.
"a" meaning without
"theist" comes from "theos" meaning "a god"
Atheist means that you are without the belief in a god.
And yeah, I was saying that too, just without the specific translation/history. Thanks for adding that in for me.

“Credulity is not a virtue”

Since: Apr 09

San Francisco

#37 Jul 27, 2010
Earonrail wrote:
I think deep down atheists want to believe in God, but they don't want to be burdened with the guilt that they are sinful creatures like the rest of us.
Their belief that everything must be scientifically proven is just an excuse to escape their moral/religious responsiblities.
Thanks for sharing. We think you post tripe like this because you don't get enough attention at home.

“Bring Back the Bush!”

Since: Jul 10

Ventura

#38 Jul 27, 2010
Hedonist wrote:
<quoted text>
Nope. You're not quite accurate here.
Gnostic = literally, knowledge
A-Gnostic (agnostic)= without knowledge
Theistic = belief in the existence of a god or gods
A-Theistic (atheistic)= without belief in the existence of a god or gods
(It is important to note that 'without belief' is NOT a positive claim of non-existence, it is simply what it says,'without belief'.)
Since gnosticism deals with knowledge and not with belief, these concepts are NOT mutually exclusive.
Truth is NOBODY KNOWS, hence, we are all really agnostic.
So then the question becomes, do you admit you don't know but choose to believe anyway? Or do you admit we don't know, but see no point in believing without some kind of evidence for belief.
Hmmm... Usually, people dispute me when they're disputing me. Usually.
Semantics aside, "without knowledge" means ignorant, so an Agnostic is openly embracing their lack of knowledge in the existence of a god.
An Atheist, who does not have a belief in a god, will most commonly tell you that there is no god, just as a person of faith will tell you there is one. Many people cannot differentiate their beliefs from fact. The fact is we don't know one way or another, but we can believe whatever we choose.

“Bring Back the Bush!”

Since: Jul 10

Ventura

#39 Jul 27, 2010
ScienceRules wrote:
<quoted text>
Sorry, this is simply wrong. There are agnostic atheists and agnostic theists (those few who admit there is no evidence to support their beliefs). Atheists are generally agnostic since most understand the logical impossibility of disproving a negative. The claim that a particular god does not exist (e.g., the literal god of the bible) is a different issue and has little to do with atheism. In fact virtually every believer claims god does not exist. I'll bet you claim that Zeus, Apollo, Quetzalcoatl, and Thor don't exist, right? It is only YOUR god that you claim as existing.
I'm afraid that I have never run into any of the individuals in which you speak of. The Agnostics I've met state clearly that they do not know. The Atheists I've met state clearly that there is no god. I can image though, those who would state that they do not BELIEVE there is a god, although I'm willing to bet those numbers are small. Individuals typically create their realities from their own beliefs. Believers convince themselves they are right and a god exists, while it is reasonable to suggest most disbelievers are convince that a god does not exist. I can't think of either a person of faith or without faith who has openly said "I believe, but I may be mistaken."
As for myself, I am Agnostic. I do not know. I neither believe in the existence of a god, whether it be Christian, Muslim, Greek, Egyptian, or ancient Sumarian, nor make claims that there is or is not one in existence. I don't know; could be!
Earonrail

Houston, TX

#40 Jul 27, 2010
wilderide wrote:
<quoted text>
Thanks for sharing. We think you post tripe like this because you don't get enough attention at home.
Not at home, at work. My job bores me so I get online and try to help people see the errors of their ways.

“Bring Back the Bush!”

Since: Jul 10

Ventura

#41 Jul 27, 2010
Path wrote:
<quoted text>Pretty much, but I prefer the word "empathy" to words like morals, ethics, and values.
Why? It's quite specific. It's the root of ethics, but simple in it's purity...
Empathy is looking at a situation and asking yourself: "how would I feel in that situation?"
Everything else falls into place from there if we share other peoples feelings and treat them how we would like to be treated, taking into consideration how we would feel if those actions were turned on ourselves.
That's well said!

“ecrasez l'infame”

Since: May 08

Atlanta, Georgia

#42 Jul 27, 2010
Earonrail wrote:
I think deep down atheists want to believe in God, but they don't want to be burdened with the guilt that they are sinful creatures like the rest of us.
Their belief that everything must be scientifically proven is just an excuse to escape their moral/religious responsiblities.
I think deep down the only reason you go to church is so that you don't have to grow up and start being responsible for your actions. You can be as immoral as you want on Saturday night, pretend to repent every Sunday, and go back to being immoral on Monday.
redneck

Cave Junction, OR

#43 Jul 27, 2010
Hedonist wrote:
<quoted text>
I have never in 30+ years of being a self-declared atheist and attending various humanist, atheist, freethough meetings and conferences; NEVER met an atheist that would claim to KNOW. But I've met plenty that would readily state that without evidence, there is nothing to consider.
I do no KNOW, nor does anyone. I must argue that there is no god because to say 'I don't know' is conceeding in the eyes of a believer. Believers cannot say 'there is a god', only that they 'believe' there is a god.

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