Atheism, Religion and Morality

I’m an atheist, and I’m fed up with religious people – mostly american christians and british muslims – telling me I must be a bad person.

Why must I be? That’s simple. Without a god constantly watching me, what’s to stop me being a murderer, thief or rapist? There is the simple fact that I’m not a thief, murderer or rapist. I treat people well. So where have they gone wrong?

I think this says far more about the people saying it than me. In the last week I’ve been told that “Atheists can rape with a clear conscience” and “Where’s your rule book to stop you“.

I’ll tell you. It’s called a conscience. I don’t commit crimes or hurt people because I think it’d be wrong to do it. I treat people the way I hope they’d treat me if our circumstances were reversed. Christians will tell you that’s what Jesus meant when he said “Do unto others as you’d have done unto you“.

But why did Jesus need to tell people that? Isn’t decency instinctive?

These people seem to be saying that the only thing stopping them from being thieves, rapists and murderers is the belief that god will see them and send them to Hell when they die. Considering I behave well despite not having that fear, doesn’t that make me a good person and them simply bad people? How are they better than me because they need to be constantly watched just to make sure they behave well?

What’s more, I think it makes these people fundamentally amoral.

Morality is about doing the right thing because it’s the right thing to do. That’s me. That’s what I do.

But if you’re only doing the right thing because you’re being watched, and you expect a reward if you do well or a punishment if you do badly, that’s not morality. That’s pragmatism. You’re really doing it for you, not for the stranger you’re helping (or choosing not to rob, rape or kill).

So I humbly submit that not only are atheists not bad people, we are more moral than than those whose good behaviour is religiously inspired.

Perhaps this is why across the western world religious people are proportionately over represented in prisons, and atheists vastly under represented compared to their national demographic.

You decide.

Doctor Who – Who’s Who?

A rare weekend post from me, because we’re about to find out who’s Who!

7pm BBC1 Sunday the 4th.

I thought I’d put in my two preferences again. I don’t think either will have been cast, but I think they’d both be great choices.

Paul Bettany has two movies scheduled for release next year, but they might already be in post-production, but unless he’s slated for anything else he’d certainly be available to film Doctor Who. Also, crucially, he’s not unknown to US viewers, but hasn’t really firmed himself up in a particular role. He’s a fast talker, the right age, eye candy for the girls. A perfect choice.

Andrew Lincoln. He’s known in the US market thanks to The Walking Dead, but in IMDB isn’t down for any work after the end of the last series. Again, an ideal choice and he’s available.

Any one else? There’s a few others that I’d be pretty happy to see in the part:

Jack Davenport and Ben Miles have both worked with Steven Moffat before. Alan Rickman would be an ‘out of the box’ choice, and a good ‘dark Doctor’. Also from the HP franchise (which doesn’t engender much affection from me) is Matthew Lewis but I think he’d be too young.

Importantly, they’re all English. They’re all men. So long as those two criteria are met, I’ll give the show the benefit of the doubt and assume they know what they’re doing. At least for a year. Unless they bring back that awful Amy Pond instead of the lovely Clara.

Doctor Who

Coming Up Next Week

This week has been great. Both here on the blog and personally.

I know, you’re wondering what you’ve missed. Here’s a quick recap…

The most popular of these? Whores Of The Soul – A Note About Ad Reviews  A lesson in eyecatching titles, I think!

Next week, along with a few reviews (sweeties, Ads and Whisky) I’ll be posting Rule 4.3 – Know Your Short Term Goals

See you then, have a great weekend.

Sweetie Review: Rowntree’s Fizzy Bottles

What do you get if you cross a fruit pastille with a cola bottle?

As I looked at the Rowntree’s Fizzy Bottles, 25% fruit juice and on special offer for £1 a pack, that was the thought that went through my mind. Even if they didn’t live up to expectations, they’d be enjoyable. Wouldn’t they?

Just barely, is the answer. The Natural Confectionary Company can use real fruit juice and still make sweeties that offer resistance to your teeth as you chop and chew them. Why can’t anyone else?

These sweeties from Rowntree’s tasted fine, had a hint of the promised fizziness, but were so insubstantial I thought perhaps the sweeties had died and I was, in fact, eating only the ghost of sweeties past.

In hindsight I missed a big clue, from Rowntree’s themselves. On the back of the packet was this sticker…

Rowntrees Fizzy Bottles 2

… Right there it gives directions for using the sticker to reseal the packet so you can “Save some for later!”

So firstly, these sweeties’ target market is not the discerning confectionary connoisseur like you and me, but people so stupid they need instructions on how to use a sticker to reseal a bag.
Secondly, even the manufacturer thinks the sweeties fail to be so delicious that you can’t resist scoffing the lot in one go.

Lesson learned.

Rowntrees Fizzy Bottles

 

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Ad and Whisky Review: The Famous Grouse

An unusual whisky review from me. Famous Grouse is a blend. It’s perfectly possible to drink blends, of course, just not particularly preferable.

I’m really mentioning Famous Grouse for a couple of reasons:

Oddly, they’re running ads in July, and usually they keep their advertising for the run up to Christmas. I’ve always rather liked FG’s advertising, with the grouse prancing around with far too much pomp for its standing.

I wondered why they might be advertising now. Then was disappointed when I discovered they’ve just released a new ‘Ginger Grouse’, ginger beer. I mean, lovely for ginger beer drinkers. Crabbies are certainly doing well out of it, and I’m all for diversification.

No, I was disappointed because I was looking forward to August 12th: The Glorious 12th, the start of the game season.

There was a small part of me that was hoping the Grouse ads on the day would involve a Winchester, lead shot and an explosion of feathers.

Just me? Oh.

whisky review.grouse

 

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