After watching this, how can one not see atheism as a religious system that requires a conversion? It isn’t neutral as it seems to assume (as if empirical observations of the natural order are neutral — which they aren’t) and it does have a “regulatory” function for belief of disbelief about God: an unspoken individualism. If atheism is rightly understood in this video, it is just more bad “religion”:


4 thoughts on “Debaptism?

  1. Pingback: Debaptism? | Inhabitatio Dei

  2. ‘Debaptism’ is not a tenet of atheism, because atheism in not a religion. The only thing that atheists agree on, is the high probability that God does not exist based on the lack of evidence coupled with much scientific advancement and logical fallacies in religious doctrine. Debaptism is not a requirement of atheism, but is being used by some atheists who were baptised as infants to publicly declare
    a) the distaste of being included in a religious rite of passage before they were of age capable to make this decision for themselves
    b) they are atheists, they are not ashamed of it and
    c) to correct the inflated numbers of recorded infant baptism which is used by religious bodies to assert the strength of Christianity in numbers
    Debaptism is not a religious choice, it’s a political and social statement.

    • I don’t deny that it is a political and social statement. This is a public renouncing after all, however, that does not vacate the action of its own negative theo-political religious action (negative here should be read as determining something about a subject by saying what it isn’t). The conversion away from something, into another life, maintains a religious aspect because it says something about the religious sphere. Even in the strong no of the religious sphere is still a religious statement that uses both reason and faith to say there is nothing that exists (even though it attempts to use empirical measurement for the metaphysical… that should strike you as odd and quite a leap of faith actually, if not a category mistake). Thus this can be seen as a political, social, and religious statement all in one.

      As for the solidness of scientific assertions, I highly suggest a look at Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Just to clarify, as far as I know, he isn’t a Christian, in fact, he wrote the book as a scientist philosophically and historically reflecting on science and its method. This is the book where the now much abused term “paradigm shift” comes from. Kuhn has been able to show how utterly conditioned science is by our own view points. But this is nothing all that new, Einstein within the theory of relativity made note of such a concept as well, it just took years for scientists to begin grasping what that means.

      But the question that is not being addressed adequately here is: “What is a correct understanding of baptism?” Rightly understood in the Christian sense, it is the entrance into and acceptance by a community (all the sacramental nuancing aside). This is set up for the child (contrary to Anabaptists, btw to which I am more sympathetic than Anglicans or Catholics) for a number of reasons. It isn’t meant to be a violent coercion, it is first the welcoming of life — affirming the life within the family and in the church. It is the family that brings the child to the church, wanting people to accept the child and the family — for the church to give its blessing and support to a helpless life so that the life may flourish. Baptism is supposed to be an affirmation. Want to reject that? Okay. But don’t blame the church for something the parents initiated because they thought it would be good for their kids. The idea of baptism has been around much longer than Christendom and plays for power by hoarding demographics.

      And if you want to talk about coercion — not being able to make our own choice from the beginning — then you’ve got a lot to deal with when it comes to American citizenship within imperial power and capitalism as well. We didn’t choose that. Or what of complicity in a racist society? The point here is that coercion needs to be re-understood. Simply accusing the church is really narrow, especially if you’re searching for justice.

  3. Pingback: Linkworthy - 4/12/09 |

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