Einstein Refutes Atheism:
It's Time to Convert
Habib Jbeily

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Despite our clearly worded and conspicuously posted requests that all who write to us send only original material, written exclusively for Positive Atheism's use, our Inbox nevertheless takes in an inordinate amount of unsolicited, prefabricated e-mail designed either to convince us of the truthfulness of the Christian god-claim or simply to humiliate us for not "recognizing" the "fact" that the Christian god-claim is worthy of our attention. Some come off as if we've never even heard the Christian god-claim -- as if it's even possible for someone living and functioning in the United States to avoid the Christian god-claim!!

It isn't bad enough that such people disregard our clearly stated request to our readers (and yet, by their behavior, insist that we respect them nonetheless). And neither is it bad enough that such people single out our social class to be the speical recipients of their attempts to "enlighten" us, to "set us straight," if you will. And it isn't bad enough to be dehumanized with an e-mail message that is every bit as impersonal as a Bulk Folder full of spam. These people seem to have to go further than all that!

Here's an example of precisely what we mean, this being the rule rather than the exception:

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Does evil exist?

The university professor challenged his students with this question. Did God create everything that exists? A student bravely replied, "Yes, he did!"

"God created everything? The professor asked.

"Yes sir", the student replied.

The professor answered, "If God created everything, then God created evil since evil exists, and according to the principal that our works define who we are then God is evil". The student became quiet before such an answer. The professor was quite pleased with himself and boasted to the students that he had proven once more that the Christian faith was a myth.

Another student raised his hand and said, "Can I ask you a question professor?"

"Of course", replied the professor.

The student stood up and asked, "Professor, does cold exist?"

"What kind of question is this? Of course it exists. Have you never been cold?" The students snickered at the young man's question.

The young man replied, "In fact sir, cold does not exist. According to the laws of physics, what we consider cold is in reality the absence of heat. Every body or object is susceptible to study when it has or transmits energy, and heat is what makes a body or matter have or transmit energy. Absolute zero (-460 degrees F) is the total absence of heat; all matter becomes inert and incapable of reaction at that temperature. Cold does not exist. We have created this word to describe how we feel if we have no heat."

The student continued, "Professor, does darkness exist?"

The professor responded, "Of course it does."

The student replied, "Once again you are wrong sir, darkness does not exist either. Darkness is in reality the absence of light. Light we can study, but not darkness. In fact we can use Newton's prism to break white light into many colors and study the various wavelengths of each color. You cannot measure darkness. A simple ray of light can break into a world of darkness and illuminate it. How can you know how dark a certain space is? You measure the amount of light present. Isn't this correct? Darkness is a term used by man to describe what happens when there is no light present."

Finally the young man asked the professor, "Sir, does evil exist?"

Now uncertain, the professor responded, "Of course as I have already said. We see it every day. It is in the daily example of man's inhumanity to man. It is in the multitude of crime and violence everywhere in the world. These manifestations are nothing else but evil."

To this the student replied, "Evil does not exist sir, or at least it does not exist unto itself. Evil is simply the absence of God. It is just like darkness and cold, a word that man has created to describe the absence of God. God did not create evil. Evil is not like faith, or love that exist just as does light and heat. Evil is the result of what happens when man does not have God's love present in his heart. It's like the cold that comes when there is no heat or the darkness that comes when there is no light."

The professor sat down.

The young man's name -- Albert Einstein.

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From: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
To: "Habib Jbeily"
Subject: Re: A thought to consider...!
Date: November 04, 2004 20:44

About every other day or so we receive one of those "Send-this-to-all-your-friends" e-mails or one of those smarmy little anecdotal stories that's so amazing in its irony or its sense of the coincidentia that it makes the hair on the back of your neck stand on end in appreciation of the fact that the Cosmos really is in Good Hands after all, ad naus. Whenever we get one of these little things, we browse over to our friends at the Urban Legends Reference Pages (Snopes.com) and see what they have to say about it. If there are any reasons whatsoever for thinking that a particular mass-mailed tall-tale is anything other than simple urban legend or Christian propaganda, the folks at Snopes will provide us with more than ample reason to believe that we've stumbled on to an exception in this respect.

Here's what we came up with this time:

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Urban Legends
Reference Pages

Malice of Absence

Claim: While a student, Albert Einstein humiliated an atheist professor by using the "Evil is the absence of God" argument on him.

Status: False.

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Unfortunately, the only adversarial e-mails that we find to be true tend to be those directly contesting something that we've posted, something that we ourselves failed to thoroughly research. Of course: sometimes you've just got to trust that your sources are competent or you won't get anything done. Besides, our sources have been right on the money, most of the time.

Again, most of the unsolicited little tales sent to us for the purpose of humiliating or converting atheists have turned out to be utter hawgwarsh, as my relatives and associates in the Deep South like to say.

Why is this?

Why do such a large number of religionists appear to be so eager to recruit or humiliate atheists that they use sheer falsehood in their sales pitches for religion?

Furthermore, why would an atheist (or anybody, for that matter) want to join (or even endorse) a group of dishonest people who would practice or encourage such behavior?

Cliff Walker
"Positive Atheism" Magazine
Entering our 10th year of service
    to people with no reason to believe

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