I thought I ought to put the videos first but it isnt compulsory to watch them, they are like 2 hours all together.
Its 2215 right here. My parents are asleep and I'm sipping a mug of milo. I believe that today, I have initiated an important chain of events possibly leading to me getting out of closet about my atheism but I want to do it slowly, gradually and in a way that does not lead to misunderstanding and misinterpretation. I happened to be watching a debate between The Rational Response Squad versus the Way of The Master (Ministries). They had a televised debate on ABC Nightline, some american tv show. And my Dad popped by and watched most of it with me. The best part is that he seemed to mostly agree with what "the atheists" were saying throughout the debate although when it went in the evolution/creationism, christian god/other gods and similar arguments, he popped "Why don't they have a Hindu on the show?".
If we were to replace WOTM with a Hindu Panel.
A fair question and something I have definitely thought about when I was a theistic hindu. (I still consider myself Hindu, more about that in another blog post). I thought that atheists or specifically anti-theists were mainly against Christianity because of its "structure" and "nature". Perhaps what I did not consider was the fact that people, or atheists or philosophers, are not as familiar with Hinduism. Another reason is that the Bible is the deFacto representation of Christianity. Hindus donot have the same standard applicable across the board. As much as people may accept the Bhagawad Geeta, it is not the main scripture for some and almost every sect can perceive the Bhagwad Geeta's compatibility with their worldviews. This is in contrast to WOTMs precisely formulated ideas (regardless of its truth value). This compounds the fact that RRS may not know the nitty-gritties of hinduism to be able to have an enriching discussion.
When I went through apologetic literature the trick which some people like Robert Morey use all the bad things they can find about Hinduism and paint a horrid picture. Conversely, I forsee that when Hindus might debate against atheists, they might take all the convenient bits of Hinduism to for a convincing picture which might not be accurate eg. "All gods are manifestations of the one truth" and that the "one truth is actually just the self". Honestly, that example doesnt prove my point as accurately as I want either but I cannot think of a better one.
One of the others things that struck me was that my dad was specifically refering to Vedanta. Although I do have a decent idea of how it works, whenever I get into discussions about it, we tend to go around in circles and sometimes run into dead ends like "we can only truly know when we reach that state of self realisation" but the fact that there is a fair over lap between vedanta and my current worldview os materialistic atheism I think it warrants a deeper study.
The response from my previous post has been overwhelming so if you like this one as well, I d appreciate if you shared the link and perhaps pout some feedback in the comment section below.