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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

How can I be an atheist?

I get asked all the time how I can not believe in a god. This is a response I used to explain my viewpoint. It does not convey every reason for my disbelief, but it does provide some of the reasonings I use.

As you have no idea what I have read over the course of my life, your assertion that I ignore anything that might change my opinion is groundless. I read many books and articles that provide a differing point of view. I find that reading an opposing point of view is the best way to determine if a belief is valid or not. Just this week, I watched a debate that Despeville brought to my attention. I wrote my response to it. So far, no one has commented on my post. Not saying they won't, but I find that it is easier for many Christians to issue a challenge than to actually debate the topics. When they do try to engage, they post a few times and then say something to the effect of, “of course an atheist cannot understand my brilliance”

You may find it hard to believe that one can be an atheist, yet over a billion atheists, worldwide,  would disagree with you. The percentage of atheists in the sciences is much higher than the rest of society. Interestingly, people who study the sciences as their job, find the concepts of a god to be unnecessary.

Even if there is a god, the purpose of science is to explain the universe we live in. Stating god did it is not an explanation. How did god do it? For thousands of years, people have believed that gods cause earthquakes, lightning, rain, floods, sickness as well as any other topic they did not understand. Each year, science finds natural reasons for the issues that previously was thought to be caused by gods. At one point we did not know what fueled the sun. But we learned. At one point, we could not build a spaceship or replace an organ, but we learned. Not from reading the bible, but by using the scientific method. Does science know or explain everything? Of course not. That is what keeps us looking for new information. What fun would be left if there was nothing new to discover?

You may be content to live your life blindly accepting ancient myths as truths from tribal savages. But do not ever think that viewpoint places any limitations on the rest of us.

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