• 0
Aaron81

Am I An Atheist now?

Question

I could use some advice from atheists specifically here.

 

I recently deconverted in July of this year. 19 year fundamentalist -born again type. Since that time, I have been trying to figure out what exactly I believe in now. It started out as some form of personal deism. While that may be possible and even logical, I can’t prove that. And my form of diesm definelty didn’t include worship. When it comes to Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism etc, I’m atheist.   All the way atheist. Feels good to say that. Any man made god is highly suspect and I just don’t believe in it. However, the idea of something ‘out there’ which is the source of life or the universe, I’m open to. I have a hard time believing we are the smartest thing out there we know of.  I’m not open to worshiping anything nor do I think I am required to beleive in a god. But in my mind, I have a hard time going full atheist on saying I don’t beleive. I actually just don’t know. It seems logical to observe that I am a conscious intelligent being therefore there is probably something in the universe or outside of the known universe that is smarter than me. For me it goes back to origins of the Big Bang and what initiated the explosion of energy. Everything after that is whatever. Sure. Evolution is a scientific fact and I accept that. Again I’m not talking about a god as we know it. It could be. It could be Elvis Presley for all I give a damn. The point is I see some form of intention which I don’t have an explanation for. 

 

The thought of life and its existence is at times, overwhelming for me. The odds of it all don’t add up.

 

Would believing in the universe as being conscious constitute belief in a god? It seems to me that I am atheist but since I still have those thoughts it makes me wonder. This has really been annoying because I ask these questions with all the honesty I know to possess yet I can’t answer them myself. I’m open to ideas that we are a science experiment, simulation etc. But that’s all they are; ideas. Not sure if my rambling makes any sense but any help would be appreciated. I’d like to just call myself an atheist and be done with it but these nagging thoughts will always be with me I suppose. At any rate, I suppose I’m in the atheist camp at a minimum.  

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

19 answers to this question

Recommended Posts

  • 0
1 hour ago, Aaron81 said:

I could use some advice from atheists specifically here.

 

I recently deconverted in July of this year. 19 year fundamentalist -born again type. Since that time, I have been trying to figure out what exactly I believe in now. It started out as some form of personal deism. While that may be possible and even logical, I can’t prove that. And my form of diesm definelty didn’t include worship. When it comes to Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism etc, I’m atheist.   All the way atheist. Feels good to say that. Any man made god is highly suspect and I just don’t believe in it. However, the idea of something ‘out there’ which is the source of life or the universe, I’m open to. I have a hard time believing we are the smartest thing out there we know of.  I’m not open to worshiping anything nor do I think I am required to beleive in a god. But in my mind, I have a hard time going full atheist on saying I don’t beleive. I actually just don’t know. It seems logical to observe that I am a conscious intelligent being therefore there is probably something in the universe or outside of the known universe that is smarter than me. For me it goes back to origins of the Big Bang and what initiated the explosion of energy. Everything after that is whatever. Sure. Evolution is a scientific fact and I accept that. Again I’m not talking about a god as we know it. It could be. It could be Elvis Presley for all I give a damn. The point is I see some form of intention which I don’t have an explanation for. 

 

The thought of life and its existence is at times, overwhelming for me. The odds of it all don’t add up.

 

Would believing in the universe as being conscious constitute belief in a god? It seems to me that I am atheist but since I still have those thoughts it makes me wonder. This has really been annoying because I ask these questions with all the honesty I know to possess yet I can’t answer them myself. I’m open to ideas that we are a science experiment, simulation etc. But that’s all they are; ideas. Not sure if my rambling makes any sense but any help would be appreciated. I’d like to just call myself an atheist and be done with it but these nagging thoughts will always be with me I suppose. At any rate, I suppose I’m in the atheist camp at a minimum.  

 

 

Yeah. You're an atheist -- or in other words, a rationalist. 

 

Because we're primitive animals, we think we need to worship something, so we invent silly, primitive stories about gods. For thousands of years, people thought plagues were caused by God as punishment. But once secularism replaced supernaturalism in science, we realized that plagues are naturally occurring phenomenon. And once we realized that, we figured out how to stop plagues. Millions of lives have been saved. Religion was the major impediment to that happening. It still is an impediment. 

 

I don't think the universe itself is conscious, but I could be wrong. The universe is too bizarre to understand very well. 

 

  • Like 4
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


PLEASE EXCUSE THE ANNOYING COMMERCIAL BREAKS IN THE CONVERSATION:

As with everything these days, the cost of keeping the Ex-C forum up and running has been rising. Inflation? In part, but the primary reason is this: As participation in the forums grows, costs increase. The Ex-C forums will remain free of charge to everyone, but if you believe this little corner of the Internet provides value to you or others, and you feel inclined to help keep us online, please consider making a one-time donation or becoming a regular contributor. Contribution options appear under the "Upgrade" link above, and can be accessed by clicking here.

Oh, and as an incentive (no, you won't be given any bogus promises of eternal bliss), if you do become a regular contributor by signing up for any monthly or yearly patron package, this annoying ADVO will disappear.

And now, back to the regularly scheduled conversation...



  • 0

What you're feeling sounds pretty normal to me. Many, if not most folks that leave their religion have similar experiences. I examined Progressive Christiamity and then Deism before I accepted that I was an atheists. Looking for a substitute for God seems like a normal part of the deconversion process. 

 

This too, shall pass. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
4 hours ago, Aaron81 said:

But in my mind, I have a hard time going full atheist on saying I don’t beleive. I actually just don’t know. It seems logical to observe that I am a conscious intelligent being therefore there is probably something in the universe or outside of the known universe that is smarter than me.

 

Maybe, maybe not. We just don't know. That's good footing. A lot of people end up agnostic atheist. Basically from thinking the way you are right now and understanding that in ultimate terms, we just don't know. We don't lie to ourselves and pretend to know. We don't know. But, do we believe in some abstract unknown god anyways, that's where the atheism comes in. If no, than it's some type of agnostic atheism. 

 

If yes, then it's something different altogether. It could be agnostic theism, not knowing but believing anyways despite not knowing. These are some ideas to explore. See if any of it seems to fit. 

 

4 hours ago, Aaron81 said:

For me it goes back to origins of the Big Bang and what initiated the explosion of energy. Everything after that is whatever. Sure. Evolution is a scientific fact and I accept that. Again I’m not talking about a god as we know it. It could be. It could be Elvis Presley for all I give a damn. The point is I see some form of intention which I don’t have an explanation for. 

 

Maybe, maybe not. The intention thing is complicated. Because I could see arguments for it and against it. I've looked at naturalistic ideas that would involve some intention being ingrained into nature. These haven't brought me into any theistic conclusions, though. If you want to go off into one of these directions and read and watch videos, I'll leave you a link below: 

 

 

4 hours ago, Aaron81 said:

The thought of life and its existence is at times, overwhelming for me. The odds of it all don’t add up.

 

Don't be shy to read and jump into one of these conversations about consciousness with your own thoughts. I'm sure several people would appreciate you joining in and participating in the discussions. Not enough people do. And it's very interesting to consider.  It's a shame so few participate in exploring these more speculative areas. 

 

4 hours ago, Aaron81 said:

Would believing in the universe as being conscious constitute belief in a god? It seems to me that I am atheist but since I still have those thoughts it makes me wonder. This has really been annoying because I ask these questions with all the honesty I know to possess yet I can’t answer them myself. I’m open to ideas that we are a science experiment, simulation etc. But that’s all they are; ideas. Not sure if my rambling makes any sense but any help would be appreciated. I’d like to just call myself an atheist and be done with it but these nagging thoughts will always be with me I suppose. At any rate, I suppose I’m in the atheist camp at a minimum.  

 

Put it this way, I'm an agnostic atheist but I still wonder about the things you're wondering about. I don't see how it makes me any less agnostic atheist. I don't necessarily see a conscious universe as a god, more like the possibility of nature itself being an awareness in it's own right, as a whole. It's speculative, but it could be the case. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
4 hours ago, Aaron81 said:

I could use some advice from atheists specifically here.

 

I recently deconverted in July of this year. 19 year fundamentalist -born again type. Since that time, I have been trying to figure out what exactly I believe in now. It started out as some form of personal deism. While that may be possible and even logical, I can’t prove that. And my form of diesm definelty didn’t include worship. When it comes to Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism etc, I’m atheist.   All the way atheist. Feels good to say that. Any man made god is highly suspect and I just don’t believe in it. However, the idea of something ‘out there’ which is the source of life or the universe, I’m open to. I have a hard time believing we are the smartest thing out there we know of.  I’m not open to worshiping anything nor do I think I am required to beleive in a god.

 

It might be helpful to realise that we don't 'have' to believe in anything. You are right when you say below that you don't know. If you don't know you don't know. At that point you don't need to jump to any explanation that is not supported and believe that because you have to believe in something.

 

Quote

 

But in my mind, I have a hard time going full atheist on saying I don’t beleive. I actually just don’t know.

 

You might be confusing two different but interrelated subjects here: Belief and knowledge. From a certain standpoint we can't know anything for 100% certainty, so one might be tempted to say we can't know anything. However I think this is a false position to hold. IN our reality as we observe it there are things we can know with a high level of certainty. For example if you pick up a ball and let it go it will fall. 100% of the time. Thus we can say that we both believe the ball will fall and we know it will. On the other hand I believe some natural process started off life, but I don't know that, nor do I know what the process was.

 

Like JP I am an agnostic atheist - I don't know no gods exist, but I don't believe any do. To find out if you believe any gods exist just ask yourself that. If your answer is no, congrats, you are an atheist. You might be like JP and I - agnostic atheists, or maybe you might be a gnostic atheists - that you know there are no gods. Hmm I don't think so, and that's a difficult position to backup.

 

Quote

It seems logical to observe that I am a conscious intelligent being therefore there is probably something in the universe or outside of the known universe that is smarter than me.

 

A true observation, and probable inference. I agree.

 

Quote

For me it goes back to origins of the Big Bang and what initiated the explosion of energy. Everything after that is whatever. Sure. Evolution is a scientific fact and I accept that. Again I’m not talking about a god as we know it. It could be. It could be Elvis Presley for all I give a damn. The point is I see some form of intention which I don’t have an explanation for.

 

At this point you are inferring intention to something for which I'd argue there are no grounds for inferring. It's like a puddle of water in a hole. Did the hole intend to be filled by the water so perfectly - or did the hole just happen to come about and the water that fell filled it due to entirely natural processes? Here I and some of our other members might start differing.

 

Quote

The thought of life and its existence is at times, overwhelming for me. The odds of it all don’t add up.

 

The odds of life are exactly 1 as we know it. Why are the odds 1? because we define life, we include ourselves as life, and we are here discussing the odds of us discussing the odds of.... yeah.

 

Quote

Would believing in the universe as being conscious constitute belief in a god? It seems to me that I am atheist but since I still have those thoughts it makes me wonder. This has really been annoying because I ask these questions with all the honesty I know to possess yet I can’t answer them myself. I’m open to ideas that we are a science experiment, simulation etc. But that’s all they are; ideas. Not sure if my rambling makes any sense but any help would be appreciated. I’d like to just call myself an atheist and be done with it but these nagging thoughts will always be with me I suppose. At any rate, I suppose I’m in the atheist camp at a minimum.  

 

That sounds like pantheism I think. Our spiritual members are better here if you wish to explore it.

 

For me, my personal philosophy is not to try and explain hard to answer questions with 'magic' but just say I don't know, and I try and only believe that for which there is evidence to substantiate the claim. Also of help might be getting used to not knowing, because believe me what we don't know personally is far more than what we do know, and that's just for this planet, let alone the universe.

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Hi, I don't want to duplicate the great responses the others have given, I will just say that giving human characteristics to natural occurrences (to anthropomorphize a thing) is very common.  Things that we don't understand we automatically assign human qualities to.  Where does rain/lightning/babies/wind/tides/life etc come from?  If we don't know then god or at least a superior intelligence is surely the answer.  Its god of a gaps for natural phenomenon and it retracts each time our knowledge increases to show the natural cause.  Lightning could be Zeus or it could be particle physics in the clouds.  The tides could be Neptune or it could be the effects of gravity on water.

The gaps for god to fill have reduced to just the most distant and hard to answer questions such as where did the universe come from?  With a 100% track record of god never being the correct answer, I would suggest that there was a natural process for that too.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Thank you all for taking the time to respond. I really enjoyed reading the insight you all brought to the table. More importantly, they helped me to think more critically about my beliefs. Maybe ‘objectively’ would be a better way to describe how I’m thinking. 

After believing in a god for so many years, you realize it’s ingrained in you. It’s hard to separate what you’ve been taught from your natural beliefs. Based on evidence alone, all I have for the existence of a higher intelligence/god is circumstantial. My ‘logical’ conclusions aren’t logical to everyone and I realize that now. However strong I may ‘feel’ the circumstantial evidence is, it will never confirm the existence of a god on that alone. I’ll never have a murder weapon. Or at least I don’t think one will emerge in my lifetime. On the case for god being the designer or initiator of the Universe, based on the evidence we currently have, I reluctantly say not guilty.

 

Now back to the question and you can see where my thoughts are:

 

When I ask myself if there is a god, the immediate answer without having to try and think is “I don’t know.” So, do I beleive in a god? How can I answer that? I already admit I don’t know if there is a god.  If I say no it means I know there is no god. If I answer yes it means I know there is a god. To ask if I believe in one is already absurd to me.

 

I know Santa isn’t real. I don’t believe in Santa.

 

I don’t know if a god exists. Based on evidence, I don’t currently believe in a particular god. 

 

See how how I dance around this shit? 

 

I should be able to answer what I believe in. Saying I don’t know doesn’t make sense. But that’s what I want to say. 

 

Does a god exist? I don’t know. 

 

Do you believe in a god? No because I don’t know if one exists (I guess that’s the right answer)

 

ugh. Someone destroy me because I feel pretty stupid right now. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
16 minutes ago, Aaron81 said:

ugh. Someone destroy me because I feel pretty stupid right now. 

Oh Pushaw!

 

We've all been there.

 

We think therefore we are confused sometimes. 

 

17 minutes ago, Aaron81 said:

Do you believe in a god? No because I don’t know if one exists (I guess that’s the right answer)

 

So, do we KNOW that pink unicorns do not exist? Well not for 100% certain. But we know to such an extent of their non-existence that a reasonable person would say that they don't exist. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
53 minutes ago, MOHO said:

So, do we KNOW that pink unicorns do not exist? Well not for 100% certain. But we know to such an extent of their non-existence that a reasonable person would say that they don't exist. 

 

Excuse me, you are offending my belief in the great invisible pink unicorn! It's my God. Blasphemy. Apologise.

  • Haha 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
1 hour ago, Aaron81 said:

I don’t know if a god exists. Based on evidence, I don’t currently believe in a particular god. 

 

This could be a stopping point. Or a temporary stopping point on the way to something else.

 

1 hour ago, Aaron81 said:

See how how I dance around this shit? 

 

Is dancing around shit a bad thing? If so, why?

 

1 hour ago, Aaron81 said:

 

I should be able to answer what I believe in. Saying I don’t know doesn’t make sense. But that’s what I want to say.

 

If you are unable to answer what you believe in , nothing bad is going to happen.

 

1 hour ago, Aaron81 said:

 

Does a god exist? I don’t know.

 

I don't know either. Maybe he could post a message and let us know. Otherwise, if he's not going to directly communicate then he may as well not exist.

 

1 hour ago, Aaron81 said:

 

Do you believe in a god? No because I don’t know if one exists (I guess that’s the right answer)

 

That's a good answer.

 

1 hour ago, Aaron81 said:

 

ugh. Someone destroy me because I feel pretty stupid right now. 

 

You might feel stupid because you were fed a load of BS for 19 years. Part of that BS was the false notion that you had to have a strong conviction about believing in something that never communicates nor appears nor makes itself known to any of the senses.

 

Really truly , it's ok to not have an answer ... or to not know.

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Well...shit.

 

Guess I’m atheist. Wow. 

 

As a Christian and even before I was a Christian, I don’t think I could have ever envisioned utteirng those words. I’ve been struggling with this since July! I think I never had a true understanding of what atheism meant until today when I got my thoughts down on paper so to speak. Anything is possible now. For me to go from what I beleived in to what I am now...holy shit. 

 

Oddly enough, being atheist (or agnostic atheist) doesn’t take away my sense of awe and wonder about life like I thought it would. It just means I don’t have a fucking clue why life exists and I don’t have to assume god anymore. 

 

 

Thank you all again. I’ll continue to read through further answers and comments. Whether or not I’ve disagreed with people here or has tantrums, I’m so appreciative of this community. 

 

 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

I recognize that anything is technically possible, but we have to work with what is probable. Do fairies exist? Well, I suppose it's possible but the probability is nil. Or solopsism; is my mind the only thing I can know to exist? There's no way to logically refute that assertion as unlikely as it seems. Same with gods in my view. Not everything is knowable, at least for now. We must carry on using what works in the real world we inhabit. And can you prove Santa doesn't/couldn't exist? I doubt it.

 

Oh, and don't get hung up on labels and the expectations attached to them. Our thoughts on various "big" questions change from time to time whether in the context of religion or not.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

I believe I qualify as an "atheist", and I agree that there could be "something ‘out there’ which is the source of life or the universe", but I think that the chances of that are about 1 in 1 x 10666, so I will continue on in my "atheism" until I hear that there is some actual evidence to support it.  Actually, I don't really like the label "atheist".  What that tells you is what i don't believe, not what I do believe.  I believe in a rational, investigative approach (i.e. science) to understanding the world and the universe around us.  Therefore, I would describe myself as a "scientist", not indicating my vocation, but rather the belief system that I go by.  I would encourage you to not worry about whether you are truly an atheist or not.  I doubt that anyone here or at any other atheist site or group is going to challenge you on it. If you want to call yourself atheist, okay. If you want to call yourself agnostic, okay.  But use a positive label to refer to yourself that tells people what you do believe, not a negative one that tells people what you don't believe.  And enjoy all the atheist, agnostic, scientific or whatever else websites or groups you feel comfortable in associating with.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
14 minutes ago, wadori said:

but I think that the chances of that are about 1 in 1 x 10666

 

:lmao: Give the man a drink!

 

14 minutes ago, wadori said:

But use a positive label to refer to yourself that tells people what you do believe, not a negative one that tells people what you don't believe.  And enjoy all the atheist, agnostic, scientific or whatever else websites or groups you feel comfortable in associating with.

 

Good point, and this gets to what I mean when I say I am atheist, but not I am an atheist. It describes a lack of belief position not an identity or description. If I describe myself it's probably that I'm a methodological naturalist, at least until such a time as good evidence is presented for anything that would disqualify that position.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
4 hours ago, Aaron81 said:

Well...shit.

 

Guess I’m atheist. Wow. 

 

As a Christian and even before I was a Christian, I don’t think I could have ever envisioned utteirng those words.

Yeah that's because you were brainwashed into having certain conceptions about what atheists are like.

4 hours ago, Aaron81 said:

Oddly enough, being atheist (or agnostic atheist) doesn’t take away my sense of awe and wonder about life like I thought it would.

Going atheist has increased all that for me, not lessened it.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
16 hours ago, Aaron81 said:

 

Guess I’m atheist. Wow. 

 

As a Christian and even before I was a Christian, I don’t think I could have ever envisioned utteirng those words. I’ve been struggling with this since July! I think I never had a true understanding of what atheism meant until today when I got my thoughts down on paper so to speak. Anything is possible now. For me to go from what I beleived in to what I am now...holy shit. 

 

Oddly enough, being atheist (or agnostic atheist) doesn’t take away my sense of awe and wonder about life like I thought it would. It just means I don’t have a fucking clue why life exists and I don’t have to assume god anymore. 

 

 

The word “atheist” carries a lot of baggage with it, a lot of ideas about what atheists are like.  It says only one thing about you though: your lack of belief in a deity.  I can and do use various labels to describe myself: man, American, Irish, engineer, military veteran, atheist.  No one of these labels defines who I am, and even together they paint an incomplete picture.  So it is for you, Aaron.  In one sense your deconversion has changed you profoundly, in other ways you have not changed at all.  

 

Others may jump to conclusions about what kind of person you are based on your atheism, but you don’t have to conform to any stereotype.  You are free to form your own opinions on political, cultural and social issues.  You are free to chart your own course on moral questions without having to shoe-horn your conscience into an ancient theology.  You are free to change your position on any issue as you travel this amazing journey that is human life.  Aaron, I hope you’re experiencing this sense of exhilaration that many of us have felt.  

 

Letting go of theology reminds me of what it must have been like for citizens of the Eastern European countries when Communism collapsed: old certainties and securities had been lost; people had freedoms they were not used to - freedoms to succeed or fail.  Along with the freedoms came greater responsibility for their own destinies. Scary to many, but for those with some courage it was an exhilarating experience.

 

Feel free to use the atheist label when and where it’s helpful.  Avoid it when it’s not.  In any case I hope you’ll continue to be an active member of our community.  It’s satisfying to see you grow into your deconversion and you’ll be able to see the same in others and maybe give them a helping hand along the way, to offer words of encouragement to fellow-travelers.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
6 hours ago, ThereAndBackAgain said:

 

The word “atheist” carries a lot of baggage with it, a lot of ideas about what atheists are like.  It says only one thing about you though: your lack of belief in a deity.  I can and do use various labels to describe myself: man, American, Irish, engineer, military veteran, atheist.  No one of these labels defines who I am, and even together they paint an incomplete picture.  

 

Others may jump to conclusions about what kind of person you are based on your atheism, but you don’t have to conform to any stereotype.  You are free to form your own opinions on political, cultural and social issues.  You are free to chart your own course on moral questions without having to shoe-horn your conscience into an ancient theology.  You are free to change your position on any issue as you travel this amazing journey that is human life.  Aaron, I hope you’re experiencing this sense of exhilaration that many of us have felt.  

I agree wholeheartedly. I’m simply a non religious person and leave it at that when it comes to speaking with other people. Knowing that I am probably atheist (or agnostic atheist) is more for me just to identify with where I stand in the big picture. I place myself in the atheist camp because it is the main resistance to religion but I do agree that the word carries negative connotation. I don’t think life long atheists realize that sometimes but we are all individuals when it comes to atheism. I’m not a 1 in 10 to the whatever power in belief in god. I just leave it at I don’t know and at this point I don’t give a shit. My heart is for those deceived. Once out, they have the freedom to choose. I’d be sad if they chose another religion (bullshit lies) but that would be their choice. I encourage myself and anyone who will listen to be a free thinker above all else. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
On 11/7/2018 at 1:13 PM, Aaron81 said:

I know Santa isn’t real. I don’t believe in Santa.

 

 Technically you can't know that. It seems simple enough, but do to philosophical constraints Santa could be hiding, maybe you just missed him, etc. So technically Santa is treated like god in that way, as in the agnostic position. 

 

But setting philosophy aside, we're as sure as we can be that Santa doesn't exist. We can't know it 100%, but we know enough not to believe it's true. So we can be agnostic atheists about Santa. 

 

On 11/7/2018 at 1:13 PM, Aaron81 said:

I don’t know if a god exists. Based on evidence, I don’t currently believe in a particular god. 

 

On 11/7/2018 at 1:13 PM, Aaron81 said:

Does a god exist? I don’t know. 

 

Do you believe in a god? No because I don’t know if one exists (I guess that’s the right answer)

 

ugh. Someone destroy me because I feel pretty stupid right now. 

 

That's it. It's that simple. If you don't know if a god exists, why would you believe that a god exists? What would be the reason for believing it?

 

If you did know that it exists, well then there'd be a good reason to believe it. But there's no indication that any of these personal god concepts are real. As in the mythological gods with names and attributes, personified and all of that. 

 

There's no good reason to believe in a deistic god either, by this reasoning. What for? Usually it's for the sake of thinking that some supernatural being outside of the universe must be responsible for the universe. But that's completely unnecessary as the universe can exist perfectly fine through natural explanations. So why infer supernatural explanations if they aren't required or even necessary in the first place? 

 

Impersonal gods, aren't even really gods when you get down to it. Something like Brahman, in India, is pure consciousness and impersonal. The god is something more to the tune of a symbolic representation of a natural conscious universe and greater transcendent existence beyond that. That's ancient pantheism. And it's not really belief in a god in the way that westerner's think of god. It's just the fabric and structure of reality itself. And it's you, and me, and everyone else by that measure. All of reality. The light, the darkeness, all of it. So there's no sense of a god and then all of this other stuff that is not god. No contrast between god and not god sort changes the very thing god believers depend on - dualistic categories of thinking. 

 

In all of my searching through idealist philosophy and esoteric traditions and beliefs, I've never found anything compelling enough to take up god belief again. It's actually worked in the opposite direction. So I don't have thoughts or feeling about what if there really is a god, it's just become a non issue for me. And that's pure form, 'lack of belief' in gods. 

 

Atheism only means, "not god belief." 

 

It doesn't require that you know gods don't exist or any of that. It only requires that for whatever your reasons, you 'lack belief' in the existence of gods. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
On 11/8/2018 at 1:13 PM, Aaron81 said:

My heart is for those deceived. Once out, they have the freedom to choose. I’d be sad if they chose another religion (bullshit lies) but that would be their choice. I encourage myself and anyone who will listen to be a free thinker above all else. 

 

 

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Excellent thread! Christianity, perhaps more than other religions, conditions people to think of belief as a great and wonderful thing, a magical key to getting into heaven (a big prize!!! Oooh, Aaaah!). Belief is simply a substitute for knowing something. But the default answer for not knowing something is rightly "I don't know". This is why Christians feverishly evangelize with stories of love, miracles, magic, and a big payout for believing something ludicrous, because they desperately want to move people from "I don't know" to TrueBeliever because they make money off of them to the tune of billions of dollars, and because they themselves were conditioned by others to think that there is a big magical payout at the end if they just believe. Disney likes the same kind of story because it seems to put magic within reach of everyone, especially children who can believe in wishing on a star.

 

So you have possibility, probability, and knowledge based on evidence. The best default answer for not knowing is "I don't know". Religion mocks that by confidently pretending to know, and that can make some of us wish we simply knew all the answers to everything. No one does. In truth, they should be ashamed of such boasting, but religion is a scam that plays off of people's desires to know, to have magic, to have an imaginary friend who will get them out of problems, and to have an eternal life of bliss as a big prize at the end. Oooh Aaaah!!

 

You don't need a label to define yourself. You are a human with some knowledge, and looking at evidence for other things you don't yet know.

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now