Arrogance is not a trait reserved for the religous!

@katran (585)
United States
December 15, 2008 8:05pm CST
Okay, when did it become okay to tell someone that they are stupid, naive, ignorant, idiotic, immature, brainwashed, ridiculous, crazy, childish, immature...(the list goes on and on), simply because they have faith? Usually it is the number one complaint of atheists, agnostics, and other religiously-disinclined people that religious people are arrogant because they think their beliefs are the truth and everyone else is wrong. And yet, the anti-religious get away with saying things like this! It drives me absolutely nuts. Personally, I don't know when it became arrogant to think that your beliefs are right. If you think EVERYONE'S beliefs are right, then what is the point of believing anything at all? Also, I think you can think your beliefs are right and even tell other people that you think they are wrong without being arrogant! I may think that someone is wrong in their beliefs, but that does not mean that I don't respect their right to believe it. It does not mean that I think they are deficient in any way, and it does not mean I will respect them any less. I have very close friends who are of different religions that me. I have had long term relationships with atheists! I never ONCE called anyone ignorant or naive for their beliefs! I think the anti-religious rhetoric needs to stop. It is becoming more and more accepted, and for all the wrong reasons. Arrogance is not having strong beliefs. Arrogance is looking down on people for their beliefs. Take a long look at yourself before you call someone a hypocrite.
4 people like this
10 responses
@Ravenladyj (22919)
• United States
16 Dec 08
If you think EVERYONE'S beliefs are right, then what is the point of believing anything at all? I believe all ways are right...just not right for everyone. My personal path is right FOR ME..yours is right FOR YOU...We arent carbon copies of each other or cookie cutter ppl so all beliefs can and are right but no one is right for everybody...Make sense? Okay, when did it become okay to tell someone that they are stupid, naive, ignorant, idiotic, immature, brainwashed, ridiculous, crazy, childish, immature...(the list goes on and on), simply because they have faith? I've used many of those words but it has nothing to do with the person having faith...It has EVERYTHING to do with their slams, rudeness, arrogance and how they dog anyone who isnt like them or doesnt believe as them..Ive come across some seriously vile mouthed religious fanatics who definately earned being labeled arrogant, immature, brainwashed, idiotic, ignorant and so on....
2 people like this
@mommyboo (13191)
• United States
16 Dec 08
Yep. It has nothing to do with a person having faith. I have a very dear friend who is Mormon. I am not Mormon. She is a wonderful lady and a would call her a testament to her religion. She lives her life in such a way that she is able to both be true to herself yet support her friends and family who may not agree with her beliefs. She has never, NOT ONCE, ever tried to convert me, make me feel guilty, slam my 'non-beliefs'. I wish everybody was like her. I would never have a problem with religion if everyone were that accepting that I don't believe the same way they do. She still believes what she does and supports the causes she believes in, but she is not nasty about it. She and I can even talk freely about why we both feel how we do when we differ 180 on some issues. In my opinion, religious differences should not hinder a friendship. They should not be such a huge bone of contention with people. They should not start arguments, fights, or pit anybody against each other. A little tolerance goes a long long way.
@Ravenladyj (22919)
• United States
16 Dec 08
A little tolerance goes a long long way. THAT is so true and beautifully said I have to tell you!! Too bad more ppl can't put that into action in their lives..Could you just imagine how different the world would be if EVERYONE followed that?!
@katran (585)
• United States
16 Dec 08
Anyone who is "vile mouthed" or a "fanatic" is not an accurate representation of the average religious person, and I think you know that. In fact, I think you know better than to imply that they are even a respectable portion of the overall population. Yes, some religious people are legitimately ignorant and probably brainwashed, but they are NOT the norm in my experience. The problem is that non-religious people see one or two people like that and ASSUME they are the norm, and then they start treating every religious person like they treated those other people - rudely. You are right. Everyone is different and people are not made by cookie cutters. That means that you need to give every person a chance. You cannot make blanket statements like "they dog anyone who isn't like them or doesn't believe as them." This is the kind of thing I am talking about.
• United States
16 Dec 08
Respect for one another's ideas and ideals must enter this picture. Those who think their way is the only way are likely to get into the name-calling. We all need to stop the sniping at anyone unlike us and coexist in peace. This "My God's better than your God," is one of the most ridiculous things anyone has ever argued. How about more like, "My God is your God, we just have a little different perspective?" Examine the concept of Namaste,please, myLotters, and honor one another.
@Ravenladyj (22919)
• United States
16 Dec 08
Examine the concept of Namaste,please, myLotters, and honor one another. oh absolutely!! I agree....More ppl should look into the meaning of Namaste and put it into practice..
1 person likes this
• United States
17 Dec 08
A woman I co-taught with many years ago was one of the meanest, rudest and most foul-mouthed people I've ever met. She said it was OK because she was forgiven ever since she became born again. Sometimes I just don't get the way people think!
@Ravenladyj (22919)
• United States
17 Dec 08
Sometimes I just don't get the way people think! LOL I hear that...I gave up trying to figure the masses out years ago...It was giving me migraines
1 person likes this
@Frederick42 (2018)
• Canada
16 Dec 08
Arrogance enters the human mind when there is no spirituality. A spiritual person would never be arrogant towards anybody. It is only the non-spiritual who are arrogant. Spirituality is far beyond religion. It is wrong to label anybody as brain-washed. In my opinion, neither the theist nor the atheist is spiritual. Spirituality is a different realm altogether. When you enter the spiritual realm, you will not even feel anything if anybody calls you arrogant or brainwashed. Spirituality means becoming one with God, with the divine consciousness.
1 person likes this
@katran (585)
• United States
16 Dec 08
Actually, I would say the statements you just made are pretty arrogant. You do not have the right to say who is and isn't spiritual and what traits indicate spirituality. I think both religious and non-religious people are equally capable or arrogance. I just think that the arrogance of the non-religious is too often overlooked, because people seem to think it is justified.
@mommyboo (13191)
• United States
16 Dec 08
No, arrogance is not having strong beliefs. Arrogance is INDEED deciding arbitrarily that YOURS are RIGHT and THE ONLY and someone else is totally wrong and you're going to preach at them as a result, or try to make them feel bad, guilty, etc for not sharing your viewpoint or listening to you. When I talk about my beliefs or non beliefs, I NEVER say 'they are right and yours are wrong'. What I say is that mine are what I believe because they suit ME. I don't ask other people to agree and I certainly don't tell other people theirs are WRONG. I do say that I don't agree with some peoples' and I would never invite those views into how I operate my own life, but that is much much different than telling you that yours are wrong. Nobody wants to hear that. There is an 'understood' statement in a comment like that INFERRING that yours or you are wrong and therefore 'deficient in some way' just on principle of that statement! Don't you see that? As far as saying someone is stupid, naive, ignorant, immature, brainwashed, ridiculous etc - I think THIS viewpoint comes from someone's MOTIVATION for what they may believe. If you believe something because you know nothing else, then a person who does not even know you but realizes you have been exposed to nothing else may consider you ignorant, brainwashed, or naive because you have nothing to compare it to. If someone says you are ridiculous, well it could have to do with some things you accept in your beliefs that truly appear ridiculous to those not involved in the belief. Now if you honestly believe something because you have been through the wringer and back, seen all sides, and chosen a side when you know what is out there, then no, I would not consider you any of those things, but you have tested your belief in fire and experience and it still works for you. Cool. I really think that's the best and only way to know you've chosen correctly for yourself. Unfortunately, people who are this upstanding and thorough are few and far between, MOST do fall into that naive and ignorant and brainwashed group. There is a reason so many people discount religion or beliefs, and it is based on the rotten (and loud and consistent) actions of a few. I guess something ought to be done about them in order to not have that spill into everything. Another thing, I am not sure why you have such an issue with 'anti-religion' rhetoric. If you (and others) are allowed freedom of religion, people who don't want religion in our lives are also allowed freedom FROM it. If you don't think so, then why should I in good conscience accept religion? I don't necessarily have a problem with beliefs either, as long as nobody is trying to convince me to believe anything. What I believe or not is my choice, and my choice ONLY. I'm even appalled over that whole atheist signage thing going on right now. I think that whatever religious ties people have or don't have to a particular holiday or time or year should all exist in the open, peaceably. I am tired of people destroying the joy of life arguing over who is right. Nobody is right. It's all perception and I'd just like my holiday traditions left alone, my tree, my lights, nativity scene, Christmas carols - yes I said CHRISTMAS. People who aren't necessarily religious DO still celebrate CHRISTMAS. Just to be perfectly clear here - when I complain about someone being a hypocrite, it is because they believe because they are right for themselves, they are ALSO right for me. That is not true, that is never true unless *I* decide that whatever it is is also right for me. Everybody needs to remember this on a grand scale and quit trying to tell others what to do, what is right, what is wrong, and so on and so forth. Believing that you are the final authority on anything and therefore charged with telling others your version is arrogant, it is rude, and it is definitely being a hypocrite. The best way to operate is to treat others the way you would want to be treated - in the best, most tolerant, gentle way. If you don't do this with others, then you deserve the backlash you get for claiming you are right and someone else isn't.
@katran (585)
• United States
16 Dec 08
I think you, and other, are completely missing the point of my discussion. I realize that there are some pushy religious people, and I am as angry about them as you are, I assure you. I have done my share of b*tching out people for being rude, pushy, and blind about their religion. We have a group that regularly comes onto our campus and spouts fire and brimstone and tells everyone they are going to hell, and last year a friend literally had to drag me away from them before I started screaming at them. All people like that are doing is perpetuating this COMPLETELY BOGUS stereotype that all Christians (and other religious people) are pushy, rude, and arrogant. It's not true. Most of us aren't. I realize that on a case by case basis it is different. If someone is rude to you, then yes. They probably deserve whatever names they are called. What I am talking about though is the fact that many religious people are called names simply because they are religious. I have had CLOSE FRIENDS who I trusted and respected ask me if I also believe in Santa Clause (since I'm immature enough to believe in God). Christians and people of other religions are regularly treated like this simply because atheists and even some spiritualists think we are ignorant. That is NOT okay. It is hurtful and rude and it never has had anything to do with the way I acted. People are allowed freedom of religion. There is no such thing as freedom FROM religion. If you want freedom from religion, you will have to go someplace where religious people do not exist. As much as it might chafe you, most religions do have a doctrine that tells them to tell other people about their faith. For example, Christians are specifically commanded by Jesus to "Go and make disciples of all nations." That being said, he did not mean "Go and beat everyone over the head with your Bible." It is possible to spread your faith simply by doing good things and letting other people see your joy and maybe they will ask about it! You don't even have to SAY anything. The curious people will usually show up. People do go about it the wrong way. That does not mean that when you come across a Christian you automatically start preemptive name calling. And that is what seems to happen a lot.
2 people like this
@mommyboo (13191)
• United States
18 Dec 08
What a well thought response, Katran. I didn't think I was missing the point although from what you said I may have been preaching to the choir lol. I realize that excellent Christians or those of other religions are probably as irritated and dumbfounded at the actions of those 'fire and brimstone screamers' as non-believers because of the face they paint of religion. However, as you see, it does alienate many people and cause a lot of misplaced judgement and hatred. Even though it is not fair, you can see where it comes from. I do not necessarily always believe anybody religious is ignorant. That is of course on a case by case basis, again bringing into it the motivations and REASONS for how and why they come to believe what they do. Someone who just believes because they have always believed, it's what they were taught, they are young, and they would get in trouble if they didn't - THOSE people I might call ignorant just based on the fact that they know nothing else and have not had a chance to learn about anything else, they may have even been PREVENTED from learning about anything else because parents or other adults won't allow it. I'm not saying they are immature NOR stupid though, just circumstances are preventing them from actually having I guess a 'global' knowledge of different religions and belief systems so they can choose what they believe in an informed manner. I also don't think there's anything ignorant, immature, nor stupid about believing in God. I am not an atheist, I am an agnostic. It's not that I believe there's NO God, I just don't belong to any group of people who follows any path of enlightenment nor worships any deity, ie God. I don't believe in all the trappings of that or that 'God' as such hates me or plans to do anything good or bad for me. It doesn't matter to me either way. I won't ridicule someone for believing in God or following a path they want, I just don't want them to ridicule ME for not wanting anything to do with their personal belief. Why is there no such thing as freedom FROM religion? If you are allowed and granted by the constitution your 'freedom of religion' meaning that you can believe whatever you do and engage in worship or traditional things of that religion, gathering with other common believers etc, then why can't people who DON'T subscribe to your belief be left alone? That is all I mean by freedom from it - my inalienable right to screen from my life influence from people who want to convert me. If I say no dice, not interested, leave me alone, I think I have a RIGHT to have it stop right there, without any more harrassment, discussion, etc. That is respectful and decent. I do not tell ANYBODY not to believe! I don't think I should have to 'go somewhere where no religious people exist'. Religious people should just lead their lives the way they choose to without interfering harshly or otherwise with people who don't agree with them. I KNOW that most religious doctrines include a charge that their believers are supposed to share the wonders of their religion and beliefs with others. This doesn't mean - as you said - that they should be attacking and beating people with the bible or a holy book or whatever. Even if the religion states they should share with others, I still believe that when someone says 'no thank you' or otherwise expresses disinterest, they shouldn't continue to heckle, harrass, or convert the person, either purposely or passively. No means no. I DO believe that a better way to witness if you're going to is simply to lead by example of your own life - like my friend does. Like I said, she is an excellent testimony to her religion. It doesn't mean I am interested in her religion, although I do ask her questions from time to time. I find religions in themselves interesting vehicles, doesn't mean that I am interested in taking part in any of them. I love her because she is my friend, not because of or despite her religion. I do not feel that I preemptive name call at all, I do let the other person stuff their own foot in their mouth first before I say anything.
@barehugs (8984)
• Canada
16 Dec 08
I was once a Choir boy,and a Sunday school teacher,who was raised in a Christian family. I gave it all up as a young man because I couldn't believe it any longer. I often respond to religious Posts, because this aspect of life interests me. However I have never told anyone their beliefs were wrong, or that my beliefs are the truth. Actually I do believe that everyone's beliefs are Right,(for them).I do not use anti-religious rhetoric. I have found an exciting alternate Path to God, and am willing to share with anyone who is interested. Now whats so arrogant about that?
@katran (585)
• United States
16 Dec 08
Nothing is arrogant about that. Your attitude is exactly the attitude that I wish everyone would have. You do not look down on anyone for their beliefs, and you seem to be very accepting. Even if your beliefs are different from mine, I respect you for your attitude, and I hope that people will learn from you.
@suspenseful (40312)
• Canada
16 Dec 08
I believe there is only One God, that HIS SON Came to earth as Jesus, and in the Holy Trinity and Jesus Christ saved us from our sins, but I know that there are those who God has not called, that there are those who believe in Allah, Buddha, who believe in Thor, Woden, Jupiter, and Zeus, and many gods and spirits. So even though they believe in these many gods or different ways, I do not believe it is right for someone who believes only in himself and that man just appear magically and man is in charge of everything, to think that people who believe in God, Jehovah, or whatever belief are lacking in intelligence and they alone are the most wonderful and most intelligent of all creatures. Yet these atheists and agnostics, especially that one whose nickname starts with gn - think that all people of faith are a bunch if ignorant dolts.
@katran (585)
• United States
16 Dec 08
Lol, I know exactly which person you are talking about. And he is the person who partially inspired this discussion, actually. It is just so hurtful to constantly be ridiculed simply because I believe SOMETHING. I never did anything to him or to ANY of the people who called me names, but somehow it is okay for them to bash on me and my religion and no one seems to care. At least not as much as they care when religious people start to speak out about their faith.
@Zezloler (497)
• United Arab Emirates
16 Dec 08
I completely agree with you. I find that it's usually people that don't have faith (I'm not accusing them of anything here, just speaking from experience and what I've seen happen in the past) that point fingers at religious people for believing in something. I've seen people called arrogant and being accused of "not facing the facts properly" just because they're religious and believe that there is a God. =/ It's offensive when anyone's opinions are bashed so easily. Even if you're not religious, I expect you to respect my beliefs just as I expect yours. It can be particularly offensive when religious people are the ones being accused of something because the subject of religion *is* a very delicate one with most people and I know many that would take even the slightest remark to heart. It's not right to accuse anyone of anything at all, whether they're atheist, agnostic, or theist. Everyone has different opinions and calling another arrogant is you being a hypocrite because you're the one not making the slightest effort to understand them. Good discussion.
@katran (585)
• United States
16 Dec 08
"Calling another arrogant is you being a hypocrite because you're the one not making the slightest effort to understand them." Well said, Zezloler! I have never thought about it that way, but it is very true. How can you call someone else arrogant when you are refusing to even take them seriously? Everyone deserves respect, regardless of what they believe.
@Khayam (346)
• Romania
16 Dec 08
It is the proselytism that collides with the other people's system of values, not certain beliefs of a person. The problems occur when this person is trying to impose his/her beliefs and values to other in a process of passive/active conversion to his/her religion. Either we like it or not, proselytical discourse is bundled with expansive intentions (which could only take the form of an over-exposure of a person's religious beliefs), and these expansive intentions do create the proper conceptual climate for others to be subjective.
@katran (585)
• United States
16 Dec 08
Khayam, I cannot help but feel that you are missing her point. I have never tried to impose my beliefs on someone, am I to be lumped with those who have? To be honest, I have never seen katran try to impose her beliefs on someone, either. She is filled with passion, but also respect for those that are different. She's just tired of being called all kinds of things just for being Christian, and so am I (she just knew how to say it better than I did). I had people say that they were surprised to discover I was a "Jesus freak" in spite of being in engineering (because engineering is so science intensive, you know what I'm getting at). People are making some pretty blatant assumptions, and that's the problem at hand here. I am being respectful towards those that are not Christian, I just want some respect back from them.
@aakay4u (799)
• India
16 Dec 08
Yes i agree with you completely.Its not only the atheists who call the beleivers of a religion like that but also people from a particular religion call the same things if anybode else follows other religion.Arrogance is no knowledge or halef baked knowledge of anything.If we cant respect others it has got to do with only one thing our upbringing and what we have learnt from various sources.If i am a beleiver of some principles or faith its my right but nobody else has a right to call me names.Happy mylotting.
@katran (585)
• United States
16 Dec 08
You are exactly right. Everyone has the right to believe what they want, and it is not something that should be looked down upon. Thank you for your response. :)
• Malaysia
16 Dec 08
hi katran .. Got not words here ... hi your words Arrogance is looking down on people for their belief .... cheers