My primary reason for not considering myself an atheist is its self- imposed limitations. Not limitations on possibility, necessarily; but limitations on an appreciation for what demands human beings have placed upon themselves to acquire and develop such things as morality and loyalty and faith and understanding. I mean, by defining myself as an atheist means being against something, but what is it I’m against? That human beings have an insatiable need to understand the world they live in and imbue it with meaning? That we want, whether that want is capable of being met or not, to confirm a spiritual essence? That we desire immortality?
Atheism focuses on what’s wrong with religion, on the absurdity of religion, without taking time to appreciate the monumental accomplishment of conceiving and executing the idea of religion. Not to mention that atheism belittles the fact that religion directly confronts the absolutely mind blowing concept that we exist in this world at all, that we are created- by what, by whom? Atheism may, in fact, be completely correct that god does not exist, but the atheist makes the very arrogant and stupid assumption that a) religion is for fools and b) man could have done any better or acted any different in its quest to understand the world in the absence of religion. I mean, atheism constantly berates religion for the cruelty it inflicts on non- believers; that it imposes limitations on man’s freedom to think without constraint; that religion is violent in its antipathy toward anything that conflicts with its dogma. My question is, in the absence of religion, would intolerance and cruelty somehow be absent from the world? Does anyone believe for one moment that man’s co-existence with his fellow man would be more divine in his relationship with others if we forgo the concept of divinity? I think it’s much more honest to admit that human beings have an extraordinary capacity to inflict cruelty upon one another and that religion is another unfortunate vehicle for that trait.
Look, I love the song Imagine and I get where Lennon is going when he sings “and no religion too” but in all honesty, removal of religion from the history of humanity would not have removed one bit of suffering from this world.