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Nice ad, CFI

The one bit that bugged me, though, was that “Life goes on.” Sometimes it doesn’t. Inevitably, it will end. But maybe that’s a message for the grownups who have fully recognized reality … baby steps! Ease ‘em in!

Comments

  1. consciousness razor says

    The one bit that bugged me, though, was that “Life goes on.”

    Is that all?
    I’m not “savoring every moment,” and I don’t know anyone who can “stretch the boundaries of the possible” either. Am I “thrilled to be here”? I don’t know what that’s supposed to mean. If I could’ve been in some other places, what are those like? Would I have been thrilled to be there, assuming “I” wouldn’t have also been someone else? I guess I might be able to deal with all of it being so sickly sweet, if it didn’t seem incoherent.

  2. says

    I like it.

    I even liked the “Life keeps going” line because I think that it points to the big picture view of all living things being part of the larger cosmos – sort of like “we are starstuff” – we are here, now, but we are made of material that was here before us and which will hopefully provide some of the stuff for other life forms after we die. At least that is how I interpreted it and I kind of like that.

  3. Mark Hunter says

    But life does go on. It just probably won’t be human unless we smarten up. Four billion years from now when the sun swells up to a red giant, they’ll be life on this planet. Possibly only bacteria, but that’s up to us.

  4. consciousness razor says

    Mark Hunter:

    But life does go on. It just probably won’t be human unless we smarten up. Four billion years from now when the sun swells up to a red giant, they’ll be life on this planet. Possibly only bacteria, but that’s up to us.

    And what about after that? Is anyone seriously claiming it “goes on” indefinitely? Must it be the case that it doesn’t end? I mean, the limited claim that life continues for some finite time after your own death is okay in its own right, but it doesn’t get us any closer to something infinite. That is what is on people’s minds when they’re concerned about their own mortality or the existence of an afterlife. They seem to want the things which matter to them to not end. Not at all. Never. Whether it’s actually the case that what matters is “life” is another issue. Is there supposed to be some kind of consolation in knowing a bacterium might continue to exist and be alive for some length of time after I’ve died? It makes me think this kind of thing has very little use (if any) in the conversation. Or we’re not having the same conversation.

  5. ryancunningham says

    Am I the only one who cringes when they hear this super-trebly-with-a-hot-mic NPR-style EQ? It feels like the narrator is trying to lick my ear.

  6. says

    CR:

    I’m not “savoring every moment,” and I don’t know anyone who can “stretch the boundaries of the possible” either. Am I “thrilled to be here”? I don’t know what that’s supposed to mean. If I could’ve been in some other places, what are those like? Would I have been thrilled to be there, assuming “I” wouldn’t have also been someone else? I guess I might be able to deal with all of it being so sickly sweet, if it didn’t seem incoherent.

    Perhaps you just enjoy being a sourpuss. As for “stretch the boundaries of the possible”, that can be taken in a personal, subjective manner, but I expect you know that. I’ll let you get back to your grousing now.

  7. consciousness razor says

    ryancunningham:

    Am I the only one who cringes when they hear this super-trebly-with-a-hot-mic NPR-style EQ? It feels like the narrator is trying to lick my ear.

    You’re not the only one.

    Caine:

    Perhaps you just enjoy being a sourpuss.

    Saying I don’t like every moment of my experiences or the mere fact that I exist isn’t being a sourpuss. It’s being honest about how I feel. That’s the way my experiences and values seem to me. Sometimes I’m in pain, and sometimes my life sucks in various other ways. Obviously I don’t think I’m special in that regard. So I don’t think they’re painting an accurate picture of what an atheist’s views and experiences are like (or must be like or ought to be like). It’s a rosy picture, but that doesn’t make it a good one.

    As for “stretch the boundaries of the possible”, that can be taken in a personal, subjective manner, but I expect you know that.

    If that’s what it means, then it doesn’t mean “the possible.” We can’t take a subjective view on that, while criticizing the religious when they do it to twist arguments in their favor. I understand that it’s an overblown, shorthand way of making some other claim, but that’s what makes it manipulative. It distorts the picture of what science and technology do and what they’re for.

    And beyond that, why is science and technology presented as having such a central role to an atheist’s views on life, the universe and everything? Isn’t there more? Are we all scientists now, and do scientists only ever think and talk about science? If not, then how is this ad doing any justice to our views and what we’re like? Or is it just meant to be propaganda and make it seem like everything’s great?

    I’ll let you get back to your grousing now.

    What’s the problem? You don’t have any reason to criticize it yourself?

    When they’re talking about how “we” are or how “we” live our lives, I’d expect atheists like me (or those not like me who differ in other ways) not to be excluded from that. PZ made a similar claim about the “message for the grownups,” however fair that characterization is. It’s not going to speak to everyone. That’s okay, but as soon as we admit that, we have a reason for thinking of how to make our messages speak to more people.

  8. ewilde1968 says

    As a message of hope or joy, it works well. That is enough for a single ad, no?

    I liked the fact that many images evoking pious glory, such as a golden sun behind billowing clouds, were used. The absence of any god does not diminish the glory around us.

  9. doublereed says

    I liked the content of the ad and everything… but it kind of has the creepy corporate vibe to it. Like I feel that the scientologists probably have an ad with the same music and imagery…

  10. Acolyte of Sagan says

    Oh yeah, life goes on
    Long after the thrill
    Of living has gone.

    Shit, I’m feeling old tonight.

  11. hillaryrettig says

    CR #2 – suggest you don’t consider advertising as a new career.

    I thought it was fantastic; I will share it – which I hope everyone does. I particularly love that the vertical list of virtues begins with honesty.

  12. slatham says

    I really liked it! It acknowledges that we die. But it says “Life keeps going”. This is connected to the premise that we aim to make the world a better place. That still is the right thing to do, and meaningful despite death, because there is no other world, and our actions can improve the lives of others after we’re gone.

  13. Tony! The Immorally Inferior Queer Shoop! says

    I liked the ad.
    For many believers, the thought of living without their deity is unimaginable. We have seen it over and over in their comments to nonbelievers–“you believe in nothing”, “you have no morality”, “without god, you lead humorless, joyless lives” and more.

    This is refutes that. The awe and wonder we can find in nature, the connections we build, the goals we seek…all that and more attest to the very real, fulfilling lives of many people who live without god. Shattering misconceptions can often occur when people interact and get to know one another. The ad did not go quite that far (for very understandable reasons), but it follows the same idea. It is more than “We are here”. It says “we are here, this what we are doing, these are things we want, we are not that different than you”.

    I think the one thing this ad does best is show that life without religion is fulfilling and enriching. I have to wonder if it was aimed at those believers experiencing significant doubt in their lives. Greta Christina has spoken about the need to provide somewhere for believers to land when departing religion. The answer: secular humanism.

    ****
    consciousness razor @8.
    This ad wasn’t atbout atheists.
    It was about secular humanists living without god.
    That was perhaps a smart move for a few reasons.
    ‘Atheist’ has baggage for many. I can imagine the use of the word would have immediately turned off some believers.
    Had the ad been about atheists, just imagine the whinging of the Dictionary Atheists.
    The ad also avoids the inane ‘atheism is just a religion’ myth that needs to die.

    Oh, and I think the rosy picture being painted was necessary. The ad was trying to sell secular humanism.