I Don’t Believe

I’ve decided to dedicate my latest blog to Religion and it’s untruths.  For many years I doubted the existence of God but was fearful to say so out loud.  Coming from a family of believers, as we almost all are,  to state unequivocally  that you don’t believe in God is a difficult thing to come to grips with and ultimately admit.  From childhood I was taught that there was this invisible Being who no matter where I hid was watching over me.  That this Being heard all things and saw all things and here is the main teaching…punished all things.   As I got older I tried to believe.  I went to church, took communion, I read the incoherent and nasty stories in The Bible, I studied the various teachings of religious men but to no avail, I could not feel anything but a void.  The dark void that Mother Teresa confesses she herself felt when praying to this invisible Being.  How she could continue to foolishly believe in something that she knew not to be there is beyond folly.

My personal revelation came when a friend took me to see a lecture by of all people, Deepak Chopra.  In this lecture he spoke about the big bang, the seemingly chaotic force of nature that created all around us.  His focus is mainly to explain God in a much different way from the Judeo Christian view of a father figure presiding over humanity & the world.  His idea is that nature itself is God.  I was still at that point claiming to be a believer and I came away from that lecture a little upset that he could claim that God was chaotic in nature.  How is it possible that a God that created a perfect rose can be chaotic?  What about our own bodies and the perfect symmetry that is our eyes, ears and nose, placed in exactly the right place on our faces.   Wait…I then began to think it’s perfect only because we don’t know any other design for our faces.  If man had evolved with a nose on top of his head we’d think that was perfect as well.  A rose is perfect only because we as humans find it aesthetically so.  Complexity & beauty in nature is not due to a designer but in the evolutionary process.   Slowly I began to think that maybe Chopra had a point.  In fact going further then he maybe the chaos in nature really has no thought, nor rhyme or reason.  Mind you these thoughts and revelations didn’t come to me over night or in a matter of days.  This took some time to simmer in my mind.  My clumsy writing here can’t describe the many nights I spent trying to think this through.

One morning I was showering and thinking about religion and The Bible and the story of Abraham and how God spoke to him.  I wondered, why didn’t God speak to someone in China?  How about India? Why the Middle East and how did he come to choose these people and make them his own?  Skeptic that I am it came to me that this was all one big con job.  Oppressed people discover the one true God and not only does he choose them to speak to but he makes them his people.  This idea can be misconstrued to be Anti-Semitic but I’d like for you to think of it more as anti-religion.  You can think of me what you will but I believe all of religion is one big con.  Like Christoper Hitchens, I believe it has poisoned everything it touches.  It’s evolved into a way of controlling people, situations and bending nations to the whims of a few men.  It’s all one big lie.

There is more I want to say but this is where I will stop today.  I post some videos and links below that I find interesting regarding this subject by people who are far more eloquent then I am in discussing it.  Enjoy!

The Best of Christopher Hitchens

The Humanist Society: http://www.humanist-society.org

American Atheists: http://www.atheists.org

Atheist Media Blog: http://www.atheistmedia.com

God is Imaginary: http://godisimaginary.com

The Thinking Atheist: http://www.thethinkingatheist.com

The Richard Dawkins Foundation: http://richarddawkins.net

Skeptic: http://www.skeptic.com

I am an atheist, out and out. It took me a long time to say it. I’ve been an atheist for years and years, but somehow I felt it was intellectually unrespectable to say one was an atheist, because it assumed knowledge that one didn’t have. Somehow, it was better to say one was a humanist or an agnostic. I finally decided that I’m a creature of emotion as well as of reason. Emotionally, I am an atheist. I don’t have the evidence to prove that God doesn’t exist, but I so strongly suspect he doesn’t that I don’t want to waste my time. ~ Isaac Asimov, Free Inquiry 1982

What can be asserted without proof can be dismissed without proof. ~ Christopher Hitchens

George Carlin: Religion is Bullshit!

God – John Lennon, Atheist

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    • Emily Koskey
    • October 6th, 2010

    I couldn’t agree more.

    I was also raised a Christian, albeit a pretty liberal one. My father was certainly a Christian in the more classical sense, while my mother was more of a “Jesus was a good man who had a lot of good ideas, and we should all treat each other the way we would like to be treated” type. I went along with it for most of my life, but looking back now, I realize that I never really believed in any of it. I can remember being a very small girl, maybe 7 or 8 years old, and asking my father how we knew that the Christians were right and everybody else was wrong. He didn’t have a good answer for me, and that sort of planted the seed. I officially realized I was an atheist after taking my first Philosophy class in college. When I realized that the so-called “proofs” for God were extremely flimsy, I sort of had an awakening. Since then, I’ve been self-educating about science, evolution, comparative religion, the history of Christianity and the Bible, Creationism, etc. I highly recommend that people read “The God Delusion” by Richard Dawkins. It’s sort of an “Atheism for Beginners Primer.”

    My husband is also a very staunch atheist and he has really educated me so much about it. We actually met on a website that was dedicated to religious debate. Especially after all I’ve been through, it would be a very nice thought that there is some all-loving, all-knowing being that is looking out for us, and that when we die we get to be with all the people we’ve lost again. But I just simply don’t believe that’s the case. I think this is all we get… and that makes my life that much more precious to me. The way I look at it is… when we die, the things that we are made up of… the tiny particles, atoms, molecules, etc. go back into the universe and become something else. And those same particles have been here since the universe began and will be here until it ends. So in a certain way, we all live forever, just not in our current form.

    Many of the world’s greatest thinkers have been religious. The thing is… it’s possible to be smart and religious, but it’s not possible to be religious for smart reasons. My feeling is that most people cling to religion for emotional reasons… fear of death, fear of being alone in the universe, fear of what their families might think. Religion brings people comfort, and that’s OK with me. However, I think that whatever good religion has done for the world is heavily outweighed by the bad it has done. Look at the situation this country is in now with these ridiculous Teabaggers… fundamentalist Muslims… Christians who would teach Creationism as science… The Crusades, The Inquisition, the Catholic Church teaching that birth control is evil, the witch burnings… It’s scary. I fear that with these ridiculous Teabaggers and other scary folks in this country (Christine O’Donnel) we are headed in a very terrifying direction. I think that critical thinking and comparative religion classes should be taught to children starting in Kindergarten. The world would be a better place for it.

  1. Damn I wish I had written all that instead of what I did write. HA! I read The God Delusion by Dawkins as well and I agree with everything you wrote. You don’t need a fairy tale to be moral either. I think I’m more of a humanist now then I was when I believed in all that nonsense. I know I’m much more accepting of people now.

      • Emily Koskey
      • October 6th, 2010

      I think that morality is an evolved trait. Those things that humans have labeled “good” are those behaviors that encourage the propagation and continuation of our species. Those behaviors that we have labeled as “bad” have the opposite effect. In order to live in a peaceful society, it’s best that we all treat each other fairly… it just works better that way. Morality is subjective, whether than makes people uncomfortable or not. And you’re absolutely right, we don’t need fairy tales written by Stone Age desert nomads to tell us what to do. The “morality” of the Bible is pretty shabby anyway. The God of the Old Testament made a habit of killing women and children on a whim. Torture was a hobby of his. There are only a couple of the 10 Commandments that are even viable… “don’t steal” and “don’t kill.” The rest of them are gobbeldygook.

      • Ok I think you have to start writing your own blog. I agree with all your points.

    • Mel Nieves
    • October 6th, 2010

    I trust that you will continue with this line of thought. It’s quite interesting. I myself have never given serious thought to the existence of God or A God or serveral Gods. I always take it like the Greeks (yes, that sounds like an odd sentence), they (the Greeks) had all these Gods with different powers or like the native Americans with their spirit Gods. I think that there is a God (if you want to use that term) and it’s your own inner voice, your own inner being – it’s the true you inside that you turn to in times of despair. I don’t believe in prayer for someone else to guide you, I think prayer is more for finding the strength insifde of yourself, that inner true survivors voice that keeps us moving forward and seeking.

    • I don’t believe in any gods. They’re all made up by scared men contemplating their death or trying to control people to bend to their whims. Yes I do believe in myself and in humanity. This is all we get, this is all there is. Make the best of your time here. I don’t pray either, it’s all nonsense to me. I think like Carlin says above…it’s all 50-50 so why bother. It’s all chance.

    • Sharina
    • October 6th, 2010

    “Religion, [my dear friend] is the opium of the masses.”

    Religious beliefs and the traditions and costumes attached to it, the same as gender roles, are a learned behavior. One does/follows/”believes” it by inercia rather than by convictions. And this is precisely where the problem stems: religion is not a matter of choices (at least when growing up) it’s a habit, it’s what majority of those surrounding us do and we feel as if we were deviant by not following the herd… That is why the void reamins, the big question mark haunts us and the guilt learned through the Opium becomes our motor, our reason to see ourselves as part of a group that is different to others, at times superior, at times priviledged when we are in public settings. However, when the door closes and we face our own convictions, it does nothing but make us feel untruthful, alienated… The mask falls and our identity has fled with it; we are sons and daughters of faceless people with a borrowed soul…

    • Very good, I agree.

      Karl Marx’s complete quote is “Religious distress is at the same time the expression of real distress and the protest against real distress. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. It is the opium of the people. The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions.”

      It’s something to contemplate!

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