Author Claims Fatherlessness Leads to Atheism … and Rejection of God Turns Women Into Lesbians

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How do you promote your book when its ideas are flawed and easily refutable? Simple. You put out a press release, let Google Alerts do their magic, and sit back and relax until everyone wants to know more about how anyone could *seriously* believe what you’re saying.

How do you promote your book when its ideas are flawed and easily refutable? Simple. You put out a press release, let Google Alerts do their magic, and sit back and relax until everyone wants to know more about how anyone could *seriously* believe what you’re saying.

A biographical survey of influential atheists of the past four centuries — Freud, Friedrich Nietzche, Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Christopher Hitchens and Richard Dawkins, among many others — shows that this “defective father hypothesis” provides a consistent explanation of the “intense atheism” of these thinkers. A survey of the leading defenders of Christianity over the same period — G.K. Chesterton, Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Edmund Burke, among others — confirms the hypothesis, finding few defective fathers. Vitz concludes with an intriguing comparison of male and female atheists and a consideration of other psychological factors that can contribute to atheism.

His book — and I’ve been skimming through an electronic copy of it — is not much more expansive or elaborate than that. Vitz cherry-picks atheists whose biographies attest to fathers who were delinquent or absent throughout their lives… and then points to Christians whose dads were around (he calls them the “control group”).

And that’s about it.

Written By: Hemant Mehta
continue to source article at patheos.com

32 COMMENTS

  1. Yeah? And, Jenny McCarthy “claims” that vaccines cause autism. when pressed she stomps her feet and says “but I really really really think I am right.”….

    This “author” can shove his “idea” up his ass. PROVE something or shut up. BTW, was Joseph, Jesus’ father? Wasn’t Jesus “fatherless”???? Fucking dope.

  2. My father died fairly young at 61 but I’d already been an atheist for about 20 years- so maybe I became an atheist because I just somehow knew it was going to happen. Either that or these liars for jebus stay up nights figuring out new ways to shear the flock- and in that game, no points are deducted for inanity.

  3. Nope. My father has always been present throughout my life, and my family are perfectly functional, thanks. My father also happens to be a Christian, as I used to be. So no, nothing to see here.

    Next silly argument.

  4. My father is largely responsible for converting me to atheism. His second assertion that disbelief in god leads to lesbianism has more resonance with me, I do rather fancy women, I must be a lesbian. I am of course also a man.

    • In reply to #5 by Reckless Monkey:

      My father is largely responsible for converting me to atheism. His second assertion that disbelief in god leads to lesbianism has more resonance with me, I do rather fancy women, I must be a lesbian. I am of course also a man.

      That gave me a good chuckle. If I was a woman, I’d definitely be a lesbian.

  5. It’s not spelled right, but “Vitz” in English sounds just like “Witz” in German. That means he’s a joke. My dad wasn’t ever absent. As a matter of fact, he dragged us to church every Sunday. That got me down on religion.

  6. Paul Vitz has been flogging this horse for as long as I can remember, since before RD net. In all that time he still hasn’t come up with anything at all convincing.

    It really is time he found a better hypothesis for atheism, like it being a rational outcome of study of the world. The really big cause of disbelief in this world Dr Vitz, is the problem of evil.

    Whats more, it’s clear from ancient Greece and Rome that there have always been atheists. Give up your callous and intrusive hatred Dr Vitz.

  7. Oh the irony! My father was a vicar when I was a child and we couldn’t have been more distant. As we both got older, first I then he became atheist and got much closer. When he died it affected me deeply and he stayed a staunch atheist until the end. I am proud to this day that he saw the dark before he died, escaping the clutches of religion.

    Did all the paedophile priests have fathers? This is so much codswallop but I am sure he will sell a lot of books. The deluded are easy marks.

  8. If children are not beaten to believe Christian claptrap, then yes they have a better chance at avoiding it. It is more mothers than fathers who do the indoctrination. They tend to spend more time with the kids.

    Many atheists are created when family members die in a dramatic way, despite urgent prayers to save them. It is more logical and psychologically comforting to think there is no god rather than an all-loving god who for some reason hates them.

    • In reply to #15 by Roedy:

      If children are not beaten to believe Christian claptrap, then yes they have a better chance at avoiding it. It is more mothers than fathers who do the indoctrination. They tend to spend more time with the kids.

      Many atheists are created when family members die in a dramatic way, despite urgent pra…

      Isn’t that giving credence to the “your just an atheist because you’re mad at God” brigade.

  9. A biographical survey of influential atheists of the past four centuries — Freud, Friedrich Nietzche, Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Christopher Hitchens and Richard Dawkins, among many others — shows that this “defective father hypothesis” provides a consistent explanation of the “intense atheism” of these thinkers. A survey of the leading defenders of Christianity over the same period — G.K. Chesterton, Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Edmund Burke, among others — confirms the hypothesis, finding few defective fathers.

    His psychological projection, has obviously led to cherry picking the wrong people. The Catholic church is full of authoritarian defective “fathers” – who are promoted as role models for the young, and are allowed preaching and access to young minds and other parts.

    Scepticism about their superstitious woo, false claims about science, ridiculous miracle-claims, and disreputable conduct, has has undoubtedly created many atheists.

  10. To answer these questions honestly he would need a large group, with workers categorising atheism independently of fatherlessness.

    It would be difficult if you used famous people. Workers already know too much.

    All he did was speculate then find a few anecdotes to illustrate.

    Then how do you know that atheism does not cause fatherlessness? It could be god’s wrath.

    You also have to track which came first, the atheism or the fatherlessness. Loss of a father is bound to shake faith in god.

  11. There may indeed be a bidirectional cause and effect relationship between monotheism and an oppressively patriarchal society. Comparatively atheist societies are truly more equal and less sexist. Early conditioning is indeed hugely significant in establishing a person’s later mindset.

    The thesis here may have a grain of truth. Its interpretation and use is quite another thing. Whatever, we see a tiny part of the picture, researched and presented with zero rigor. This is valueless as is, but if completed may turn out to be a devastating critique of monotheistic religion.

  12. Here we go again, accusing that good catholic boy Adolph of being an atheist (although I must give him the credit of converting my father to atheism).

    As for Uncle Joe, maybe his atheism was caused by his training for the priesthood.

  13. Interestingly, I myself fit into the author’s broad assertion. Perhaps that my father became a buddhist monk abroad after leaving his wife and kids further demanded my destination: atheism. Seriously however, I detest cherry picked, generalised ‘evidence’ as much as the next user. When Mancino said in post 9 that “using your brain” leads to atheism he/she successfully corrected, or replaced the article with three words. It did provoke further thought for me though.
    Using ones own brain. Perhaps we describe this as the independent following of ideas and not being indoctrinated or dictated to a course. Of action or opinion. As an adolescent where no domineering rule-making type led the household, certain freedoms of this kind abound somewhat more. Again these are just ideas. I often visited households with fathers present, and spectated quizzically the halting of plans, sentences, rants or suggestions by the fathers of my adolescent friends. I doubt the author deserves advocatus diaboli here, but I hope my input is an innocent enough break up of the general theme of commentary on the however ordinary book.

  14. This is just laughable. Anybody can (and does) write a book nowadays. There used to be a time when one had to have something substantial to say in order to get published. But since the “liberalization” of the written media, library shelves are now filled to the brim with such garbage.

    Unless you’re one of those inexplicable speed-readers, reading takes a substantial amount of time from one’s schedule. Therefore, one must choose wisely what to read and to leave behind. Life is simply too short.

  15. The most obviously wrong thing with these kinds of theories is that they are clearly ad hoc and not testable. An “absent father” can be defined so broadly that it’s a meaningless phrase. It can mean a father who was emotionally distant for example. It comes down to saying atheists usually have issues with their fathers. I’ve never met anyone who didn’t have some issues with both parents in one way or another.

    The other thing is how simplistic these ideas are. Psychology is a science that is in its infancy but if we know anything about human behavior we know that it’s complex and finding some direct causal link between fathers and a belief in atheism, socialism, or anything else is highly unlikely and not consistent with what we do know about how the mind works.

  16. I know this is a site dedicated to science and reason. However if I could just pass a highly unscientific observation quickly ?

    The author’s claim has about as much merit as the claim that masturbation leads to blindness.

  17. Funnily enough, some shrinks have told me that losing my mother is the reason that I’m gay.

    I wonder if that’s also the reason I’m an atheist and a communist … or is that the fault of my father, who is both, and who – happily – is still very much alive and kicking?

  18. I´m reading a book “Young Stalin” at the moment. Everyone who thinks, that he became a mass murderer thanks to reading Darwin and becoming an atheist while he was studying in a religious school (he wanted to become a priest), where he was constantly persecuted and spied and punished by teachers/monks for reading banned literature, should read the “Young Stalin”. As a young kid, his alcoholist father beat him systematically, also his mother beat him, though she loved him. The City of Gori (his hometown), was one of the most violent towns in Georgia. This boy was raised in a society where murder and acts of violence were normal… So what do you expect? Fact that Stalin´s regime killed up to 60 000 000 people is already a good proof of the non-existence of god… or if there is one, he is one of the most sadistic creatures you ever heard of :D

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