Human beings are a queer lot! Every human society appears to be dividing itself like an amoeba! Religions, nations, political parties, any kind of human association seems to be running towarsd a split. Athists are increasing numbers, so we say and think. They are spread all over the world. Sanskrit language has a very apt description of human mind. It says " Pinde pinde matirbhinnah, kunde kunde navam payah!" Every pond ahs diffferent water and every man has a different mind. Atheists are a particularly difficult lot. No atheist will accept anything because someone tells him to. Domination by numbers will simply be rejected.
How are we going to maintain our unity? We must lay some ground rules to maintain our unity. We can not allow ourselves to stand divided. Any ideas how it can be done?
If what I mean by unity is not clear to you, I will explain again. I mean to say that the wide cultural differences between atheists in different parts of the world should not cause rift between us. If we create a common code of conduct to deal with such differences,it would enormously help atheists to interact with other.
So I'm curious. Madhukar, have you found "rifts" between atheists of different cultures personally? Like I said earlier, that's what I've found pleasant about atheists. We may have differing opinions (although sometimes vehemently), I haven't found any problems "culturally". Most cultural differences I see, are problems with religion. Of course, that's just my own experience and I may be wrong...
Madhukar - you are going to find culture shock on here if you are not used to American cultural ways - or if you are responding in a way that is very different to American culture. Culture shock is well documented and reading it may help you in understanding what's going on - if this is what you have :)
Alice I am happy to say that you have got my point rightly. I will try to read about cultural shock when I find time in future, but if we know that a cultural shock awaits all of us, then why not think and do something about it? It is not only Indians that will eeceive a cultural shock but Americans too may receive it, if we start interacting with each other. All I am saying is that knowing that a cultural shock is likely, why not start preparing for it so that the shock can be dealt with for a happy ending.
Madhukar - there are stages to culture shock and it's only when you are immersed in another culture that it changes you.....
I think it goes pretty similar to grief - shock, denial, rejection, aversion, anger, frustration, loss, sadness, acceptance, embracing, understanding, knowledge, wisdom or something like that
you are probably gone through shock, denial, rejection, aversion, and hitting on anger and frustration and loss - next stop acceptance, embracing, understanding etc....
American's in this site as they are with mostly other American's might only hit on shock and denial and then choose to have a conversation with someone else.... :)
But the older and more experienced you are with other cultures the more likely you are to be able to engage with people of difference..... Your strange ways don't bother me - because I first went to India when I was 6 years old and have been many times - the last time was 1997..... so I am very familiar with your style of communication.
here is something a bit more in depth and technical for you - on culture shock....
I have not noticed any rifts but I have not seen any interaction too. I have a stromg feeling that more inteeraction will bring more differences due to wide cultural differences. To say that it will not happen in future because it has not happened till now is to stretch optimism too much. In any case, even if my question is hypothetial, let us discuss it seriously and see what helpful comes out of it.
that's what we are doing right here right now.... :)
Again, I wish for that "Like" button. Yes, Alice, I agree and like, "that's what we are doing right here right now.... :)"
A common code of conduct is impossible; human behavior varies too much and too rapidly.
We human beings are too creative to allow anyone to write such a code.
You wrote "...a common code of conduct to deal with such differences, ...."
Please describe a couple of the differences that concern you, and describe how the code enforcers would deal with those differences.
Greg, you appear to have read MK's words for their intellectual content, and either ignored or didn't see their emotional content.
The federal code and treaties you mention have enforcers who will fine or imprison violators.
The common code MK wants will have no enforcers and therefore no penalties.
If you dislike metaphor, read my "impossible" as "futile and a waste of time".
Tom, You are absolutely right when you say that I do not visualise enforcers. We cross this bridge when we come to the bridge. My present concern is simply to eveolve a code, not a law, to deal with genuine cultural differences.
I also think that you should widen your vision. A time is going to come, and this is not too far, when half of America will be atheist and the other half not, half of Europe will be atheist and half not, half of India will be atheist and half not. All the atheists, all over the world, will need to deal with their counerparts in their own countries as well as in other cultures.