Friday, May 05, 2006

Atheism

Okay, so I'm an atheist.

I didn't really plan it out that way, but that's the way it transpired. Atheism is not my religion, like it is with a lot of atheists. Some atheists are, like, communists--it's as though they can't believe in God and communism at the same time but have to believe one or the other. Communism and God are always in competition, it seems; which is funny, because there are a lot of similarities between communism and many religions.

I figure that humans are probably hard-wired for religion. That's why so-called atheists often believe in crazy statist economic schemes, pseudo-science, or other crazy shit: Nature abhors a vacuum. Leave a hole in your brain that is meant for a specific thing, and it fills up with whatever happens by.

Unlike many atheists, I don't feel the need to mock people who believe in God. In some ways, I wish I was one of them. It actually takes quite a lot of courage to be an atheist--to face life knowing that it all ends so soon, and there's nothing else after it--it just ends. I had a period of time when I did believe in God, and I remember how happy I was knowing I had a place in the universe, and that everything fit in. There I was: part of God's plan. I'd love to feel that way again, but I can't. I know it's not real. No more real than Santa Claus.

But I would never say that to a Christian friend of mine. I wouldn't even tell him I was an Atheist. I wouldn't want it on my head that he stopped believing in God. I'm only writing this on my blog because I'm feeling desperately lonely and don't know what else to do. No one in my life knows this about me--except my childhood sweetheart/best friend/girl I married.

One time, when I still believed in God, I had to fly somewhere. Now, I've gotta tell you, I hate flying. It scares the hell out of me. But on the return trip, I sat next to a Christian lady and her little boy. She was obviously afraid as well. Shortly before the plane took off, she looked at me and earnestly asked: "Will you pray with us?" I did, and I'm sure I looked braver than I was. In any case, she felt better, and so did I. If a similar thing happened now, I would do the exact same thing. It would be the kind and decent thing to do. I certainly wouldn't give the poor woman a lecture about "silly superstitions."

My message to atheists everywhere: Stop acting like such fucking pigs!!! Religions aren't just silly superstitions. I believe there exists enough evidence to suggest that we are hard-wired for them, so, true or not, there's a part of our brain that accepts and/or constructs them, and it takes quite a lot of effort to overcome something like that. And, when and if you do, what have you got? A pretty scary situation, really. Nothing to be all that thrilled about.

It takes more than a little integrity and courage to be an atheist. In truth, I'm not sure I have what it takes. I'm just not sure. Anyway, I would never tease, mock, denigrate or criticize someone for believing in God. Because in some ways, I wish I could go back. I really do.

But I can't.

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