We Read, We Think & Sometimes Tell The Truth

Category: Religion

Not My Fault

The fact you get comfort, solace and inspiration from your religion doesn’t serve as proof of its reality just as it shouldn’t serve as a source of ridicule for a non-believer. It’s a personal choice that gives meaning to your existence. At the same time, the fact it brings you solace doesn’t make my non-belief shallow or narcissistic. Where you get solace and comfort, I get claustrophobia and restriction. I’m not bothered by homosexuality or birth control or women’s right to choose. In fact, I am perplexed by those who are. So what is it exactly I am getting from religious belief other than conflicting signals? Do I think the 10 commandments are a good set of rules? Sure (although after listening to George Carlin, not all that sure). Do Jesus’ proverbs make sense? Actually, yes, they do. But in my mind, after those few examples, there really isn’t too much else to talk about or get worked up about. The Apostles creed is a mess; the pope looks like a cheap prop at a costume party, the concept of a bachelor priest is an outdated caricature of misogyny shattered by sexual scandal.

My problem with religion really isn’t focused on its overall value in the world (i.e.; does the good it provide outweigh the bad) but is entirely personal. Religion, for me, makes the world more confusing, not less. For example, I get confused by the idea of an all knowing God that may or may not know our future or may or may not have a hand in everyday events.

If god is a creator of the universe and he gave us Free Will, it’s something he could just as easily take away. It’s an artifice just like any rule in sports. What is the point of giving people free will if the rate of success in using it is so abysmal? Maybe He should just get rid of it. To me, belief in God makes life less interesting, not more. And if that’s wrong, if my thinking is flawed, then that’s not my fault. It was the faulty wiring I was born and bestowed with by God, the Great Creator. If I’m a dumb, shallow creature and there is no God, then I’m fine with that. But if there is? Now I have a problem. He could have made things different so I didn’t go around fucking things up with my really dumb, shallow ideas.

An Argument for Nothing

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.

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