Gods You Don’t Believe In (poster)

by Luke Muehlhauser on September 5, 2009 in Resources

I’ve made a wall poster from my list of 2,800+ gods that nobody believes in, and it’s available for sale at Zazzle.com. (Make sure to buy only the HUGE 47″ by 35″ size or larger, or else the names of the gods will be too small to read.)

(Also see oneringshort’s possibly superior version of the poster, here.)

This is not a money-making endeavor; 100% of the profits from this poster will be donated to kiva.org.

Also, you can download the original design, remix it however you want, and put your own version up for sale. Put it on a canvas banner, add some spiffy design elements to it, trim down the list and put it on a T-shirt; whatever. Unlike everything else on this site, you do have my permission to make a profit with your remixes of this poster, just remember to credit CommonSenseAtheism.com. Also, if you make a profit, remove the “all profits go to kiva” line. Or, keep things simple and donate all your profits to kiva.org, too.

Click here to download a ZIP file containing the original Adobe InDesign document, the full list of gods in a Word document, and a full-res PNG of the poster. (Note that the InDesign file uses the famous Minion Pro font, so it won’t look quite the same if you don’t have that font on your system.)

Zoom and pan the full poster image below:

And here are a few more previews:

closeup: top center

closeup: top center

closeup: bottom right

closeup: bottom right

closeup: upper left

closeup: top left

full view

full view

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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Haukur September 5, 2009 at 9:15 am

Why, I’ve participated in worship of several of these gods :)
 
There’s a typo in ‘Forseti’.

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lukeprog September 5, 2009 at 11:15 am

Ah yes, I typed “Forsetti.” Oh well.

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josef johann September 5, 2009 at 11:43 am

When Richard Dawkins was on the Colbert Report, and used his “you an an  atheist with respect to zeus” line, Colbert came back with “I’m a Christian with respect to Zeus.” Which is the only objection I’ve ever really heard to this kind of argument.
 
But it makes sense, at a certain level (ok, that’s a qualifier that might be a bit heavy handed) doesn’t it? Of course I disbelieve in those gods and yet believe in my god, because my god is real.
 
There are lots of people who don’t manage the St. Louis Cardinals, but that disbelief doesn’t extend to Tony LaRussa. In fact, it might only be my belief that Tony LaRussa manages the Cardinals that is making me agree with you that everyone else doesn’t manage them in the first place. If I come to think he doesn’t manage them, I might very well go back to that list of people I’ve just excluded, prepared to believe in one of them.

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Ben September 5, 2009 at 4:48 pm

C’mon, Luke.  There’s so many.  How can they ALL not exist?!?!  Now I just need to print out that poster and go get my darts so I can figure out which ones.

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Lorkas September 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm

josef johann: When Richard Dawkins was on the Colbert Report, and used his “you an an atheist with respect to zeus” line, Colbert came back with “I’m a Christian with respect to Zeus.” Which is the only objection I’ve ever really heard to this kind of argument.

The video you’re thinking of was Sam Harris on the Report. Here’s the video, if anyone’s interested. I like Sam Harris a lot, but I must say that he’s outdone by Colbert in this interview.
 
Here’s Richard Dawkin’s interview with Colbert for those who are interested.

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Matthew G September 6, 2009 at 4:04 am

I see nothing wrong with Colbert’s answer.
I do see something wrong with calling this an argument. Is there anyone who believes that the correct account of abiogenesis was directed panspermia?
Wikipedia has a list of other models and if you have an opinion here, you will most likely reject all except one.
Or how about this:
I invent 6 million+ transitional fossils and then say “Creationists just reject the existence of a few more”.
Or how about this:
Let’s make this the problem of other minds. You reject the existence of all those postulated minds, the solipsist just denies a few more.
Or what if I don’t believe in atoms? You most likely believe in some model and reject the older one’s that have been discredited. I just reject one more.
Or turn it against scientific realism in general:
There have been more discredited scientific theories than prevailing ones. The strong anti-realist just rejects a few more.
 
That this argument is used by people like Dawkins/Harris should already tell you how idiotic it is.
I do however like the large poster. I wish it was exhaustive and would give more details (pictures, dates, etc.).
 

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Lorkas September 6, 2009 at 7:36 am

Matthew G: I do however like the large poster. I wish it was exhaustive and would give more details (pictures, dates, etc.).

That would be fuckin’ huge, but I like it.

Matthew G: Or what if I don’t believe in atoms? You most likely believe in some model and reject the older one’s that have been discredited. I just reject one more.

The only problem with this counter is that we can give good reasons for rejecting other models, based on evidence from the real world. You don’t see people going around just adopting the views of their parents on matter (unless, of course, their parents’ religion says something about the nature of matter). Imagine how odd it would be if the distribution of matter theories looked like a map of the distribution of religions?
 
We don’t accept or reject scientific theories based on where we’re born, or based on a feeling we got one time when we were praying, or based on frozen waterfalls. We do so based on the evidence, and there isn’t any evidence for Yahweh that couldn’t equally be evidence for Allah or Vishnu. Statistically, the decision is mostly based on the religion that a person’s parents adhere to, so the analogy with scientific theories breaks down rather quickly.
 
This isn’t the point that Harris/Dawkins are making, but it should be. You’re right that the point as they make it is weak–of course someone who believes in the God of the Bible doesn’t believe in other gods, because the Bible tells you he’s top God–but it isn’t a point that should be abandoned altogether.

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one more clay figurine October 13, 2009 at 4:42 pm

The only problem with this counter is that we can give good reasons for rejecting other models, based on evidence from the real world.

If you’ve ever looked into apologetics and theology before, you would see that there are better reasons to follow one religion over another. Zeus didn’t live on Mount Olympus, and so that was debunked, for example.

Different religions and different gods are all different understandings people have of God. Some are more accurate than others. The Flying Spaghetti Monster fails, for instance, because the FSM is a material being. You might change your mind and say that he is immaterial, but then he’s starting to sound like the god Judaism, Christianity and Islam worship. You would also have to explain how you know what he looks like (something Christianity and others don’t lay a claim to), and how he operates in the universe (creationism? sounding like our God again).

Of course, the whole Flying Spaghetti Monster theory of God is a joke, because it’s really just the God of Christianity except looks like pasta (funny!). It’s looking like the Christian God has far better grounds of being the correct model, as it suggests an immaterial being creating the material world.

So you see, we have better grounds to believe the ideas of one religion over another. And saying “you just believe that because you were born there” is a massive genetic fallacy. You just believe in atheism because you were raised with fanatic fundamentalist Christians who made God look like a stupid idea. Surely you have other reasons, right?

Cut the thinking-theist some slack.

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kimota.sage October 24, 2009 at 10:42 am

I was raised in a reformed Jewish household. I was never pressured into practicing Judaism, and throughout my life I struggled with religion and spirituality. I for a time practice Judaism, I for a time dabbled in Christianity, I also looked into other religions, Buddhism, Hindu, Tao, even Zoroastrianism for a time. I after a time thought I should find my own religion, and I did, but that’s not important.
The reason I was a christian, was because I was afraid. I was young when I through various sources heard about the concept of eternal damnation and hell fire. Most of all at that time I was afraid of being separated from my mother. I didn’t want to die, and I didn’t want to go to hell. Shortly after my conversion into Christendom, I found myself empty. I had opened up my heart to Jesus, and God. All I found was fear, and loneliness. Needless to say, I am no longer a christian.
I’m an atheist now, but I accept the idea that some people can find “God”. I have my reasons for that.
At the same time, I have to say that having been raised in an open environment, and having dedicated a significant amount of time to the study of world religions. If I were to be a theistic individual, Christianity would be far from the top of my list.

My experience is of course anecdotal, and so holds no credence either way. But then again, isn’t that the entire foundation of faith?

If Jesus, and God are all loving and everywhere and all that. Isn’t my personal experience, just as valid as any of the writers of the gospel?

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Mark November 30, 2009 at 3:17 pm

“Shortly after my conversion into Christendom, I found myself empty. I had opened up my heart to Jesus, and God. All I found was fear, and loneliness.”

You found YOURSELF empty.

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wwwe January 7, 2010 at 6:25 pm

The Flying Spaghetti Monster fails, for instance, because the FSM is a material being.

god is very material in the old testament. he walks around the garden with adam and eve and shuts the door of noahs ark etc. then you have jesus in the new testament.

and tons of other gods are material beings as well.

so i dont really get your point.

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Bob January 11, 2010 at 8:34 am

I think adding the various Chinese Gods of this and that, Hindu, and Shinto Gods, and the Jains, assumes there are no current followers of these religions. Problem is that there are, so this isn’t a poster of Gods nobody believes in.

A lot of the old Gods everyone assumes nobody believes in too. Baal for instance was a figurehead in some of the witchcraft mythology I messed with as a teenager. Does this mean he’s still believed in? Hard to say.

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Bob January 11, 2010 at 8:54 am

Or turn it against scientific realism in general:
There have been more discredited scientific theories than prevailing ones. The strong anti-realist just rejects a few more.

Can anyone think of any? I can’t think of any scientific theories that have been “discredited” or even shown to be false.

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lukeprog January 11, 2010 at 10:01 am

Bob,

You can’t think of any scientific theories that have been discredited? Here’s a start.

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Elpidio Valdes February 28, 2010 at 8:27 pm

Lorkas:
Imagine how odd it would be if the distribution of matter theories looked like a map of the distribution of religions?
 
We don’t accept or reject scientific theories based on where we’re born, or based on a feeling we got one time when we were praying, or based on frozen waterfalls. We do so based on the evidence, and there isn’t any evidence for Yahweh that couldn’t equally be evidence for Allah or Vishnu. Statistically, the decision is mostly based on the religion that a person’s parents adhere to, so the analogy with scientific theories breaks down rather quickly.

Exactly! I look at a map of the distribution of religions and denominations across the world or the U.S. and it does not look like people choose their religions rationally or independently when they reach maturity. It clearly looks like something that gets passed on from your parents when people are too young to known any better. Can you imagine belief about about gravity or electromagnetism showing those patterns?

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lukeprog March 6, 2010 at 8:40 am

I’ve spent a long time trying to rearrange the thing in InDesign to make the title bigger and the god names closer together (vertically), but I can’t do it. If some InDesign wizard wants to give it a short, I’ll be very appreciative.

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Chucky May 1, 2010 at 11:21 am

Good luck raising money for kiva.

I’m not going to be buying one though. Here is my response: http://thoughtfulfaith.wordpress.com/2010/05/01/allah-thor-possiedon-and-zeus/

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yitzmo June 16, 2010 at 6:53 am

if it can’t be proved without contradiction and with logic, including evidence – direct or indirect – then how can it be verifiable enough to base ones life on it.
sounds like y’all haven’t done your research, just throwing out a bunch of fancy ideas without asking enough serious questions to those within the religions who actually understand them.
i think you’d find, (in fact i know you will), that almost all religions are inherently flawed.
but i’ve got news for you, there is ONE that passes the test, all of them, with flying colours. and if all the evidence and logic points to yes, and you can’t find a no, then what will you do?

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Ben (atheist) July 29, 2010 at 9:45 pm

Can anyone think of any? I can’t think of any scientific theories that have been “discredited” or even shown to be false.

The world is flat. All the planets revolve around Earth. Just a few that come to mind.

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Bunnyfulwanderer October 7, 2010 at 5:02 pm

I understand and even partially agree with the premise, however… apparently Pagans, Buddhists and Hindu’s don’t exist?

yes Islam and Christianity make up for what figures to be over 1/2 of the worlds population (“nonreligious” is third, but to be fair at least 1/2 of this group is theistic) But this poster is just plain dumb. What you meant to say God’s you “may not believe in” or gods Monotheists/Abrahamic faiths don’t beleive in. I happen to know many people who believe in the gods listed on this poster. all the same. the money goes to charity, so I’m less inclined to hold it against you, even if the money is earned (and made) exploiting ignorance (including the designer his/herself) rather then educating people.

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