Re: Re:Atheism is no more rational and theism.
"I have morality, passed onto me from my parents (who of course were religious), but appear to have successfully instilled that morality in my children without the need to refer to any religious doctrine."
Other than the bleating of the religiously privileged, I don't think most people presume that morality must by nature descend from religion. Plenty of agnostics and atheists out there who develop fine morals without religion. Plenty of religious folks who develop fine morals too.
And plenty of really ****ed up people who develop ****ed up morality (or no discernible morality) whilst being religious, agnostic or atheist.
I think that's a really important point to bring up. The separation of morality from the belief in a god/gods/lack thereof/waiting-on-evidence-either-way/etc. The questions of faith and morality really don't have anything to do with one another. Which is something that everyone who gets emotionally invested in these sorts of debates seems to forget.
Also: worth noting...
Belief in a deity or belief that a deity cannot exist is not really related to a need for a deity. I don't really believe in a deity (at least not in any way that any modern religion would recognize.) I believe one could exist, but this has no real world influence on my life.
Given the strength that faith (either in a deity existing or in one absolutely for sure not existing) has given some, I feel that i could use some faith, one way or another. I'm just too skeptical to believe in either possibility.
Similarly, I know plenty of people who believe in a deity who don't seem to need one. They just accept the existence of a deity like they do the existence of air or gravity. It has no effect or impact on them.
There's too much baggage in the theological packaging of deism. Most of us can't unpick one element from another because we, as humans, like to categorize and make everything into these nice neat little packages. If A, then B, C, D, E and F. Not always so. Or even mostly so.
But the most predominant portrayals get the mindshare.