Well said Dr. Clark....I agree...Unfortunately it took me a lot longer to realize it....Better late than never right?
I am an atheist despite a rather religious upbringing. After rejecting ALL of the other gods I found that it wasn't such a large leap to reject one more. Thank you, Richard Dawkins.
I am an atheist because I see no good reason in all the world or the known universe to believe in any God. Who knows ? Maybe there is a non-intervening deist-type God, but if there were it wouldn't make any difference, such a God might as well not exist.
You keep saying things like that and you won't get the big cookie after you kick the bucket.
I honestly believe religion began because people in ancient times were devoid of all the knowledge we have today and just could not explain what was happening around them...Believing in an all knowing diety must have been comforting for them....Alas religion is now way outdated and not needed thanks to Science which has answered so many of the questions the Ancients had...
I was brought into religion as a young teen, but was aware of god and religion since early childhood. Everybody knew that there was a god and that he had an "instruction manual" for us, and that you had to follow this book (in my case the bible) to be in "god's will." It never dawned on any of us that whatever "holy book" you followed would be determined by the part of the world you lived in.
I studied early on for the ministry but later let god (and my parents) down by not following through, but I continued to study the bible and other holy books most of my life. Most of the worlds religions claim a "proof of god" within their holy books. I.E. Christians will always tell you "but the bible says. . . ." It seems the holy book is the proof of god.
Study enough and you find that the people of the bible were polytheistic early on, and that only later did they believe in one god. Even so, they muck this up by "one god in three persons" which proves that old beliefs die hard. In early writings we have "J" documents and "P" documents, and even proof that god had a wife called Asherah. As we come closer and closer to a belief in one god only, many of these ideas are all re-written to support the current view. The tradition of it all was first fireside tales, and later these many writings being done over again and again. There is much controversy in the Abrahamic religions.
About 323 AD we hear that Constantine the Great decided that he would conquer in the sign of the cross, and he had the many "holy books" put together. The end result of this is what today we call our "bible." Many of the books of that day were not included for reasons unknown to us in modern times. The councils of that day and time left out many gospels, beginnings, and endings of something that today we think of as always being "one book." How could it possibly be one book, and how could it possibly tell one story? Just like the days of the early Semetic tribesmen, these writings are altered and manipulated. They made it say what they wanted it to say and only in a modern age with computers to look up instant knowledge do we see all the flaws.
The only proof of a god as creator and wanting you to worship him and follow him, living your life for him, trusting him for every decission in your life, etc. is found in your holy book. "The bible says" is not evidence or logic in proving anything about any god(s.) There has to be evidence and there simply is none. Therefore, I am atheist today.
Many people think along these lines but also tell you "yes, but I believe in something." The only problem with this is that without a holy book to rely on you cannot even point to the "something" that you say you believe in!
That is why it is all made up bullshit.
Having been raised in a religious family, the idea of a god never made any sense to me. All I did was listen to my parents and say to myself.."there is no way my parents can be wrong about god. I'm just a kid and can't possibly be smarter or wiser than them.." So the moment i was able to call myself an atheist was the moment I understood that the only thing holding me back was fear. Fear of being wrong,. Fear of having to endure the consequences of not believing in a god that is potentially able to affect my existence. Once I understood that the only thing holding me back was my fear, I understood that I was an atheist all along.
And to answer your question
I'm an atheist for the same reason a christian doesn't believe in any other deity + I think the story I was told as a kid makes no sense at all and is a load of b.s . people have been playing along with so they fit in to their communities. And as for the people who sincerely believe in the their religions god , the only thing i can say is .. start answering the questions that matter.
I agree, Milton. On the "fear" subject let me add that I was once what I consider to be a true believer, but I never did have fear about hell. That wasn't logical to me. I do understand that this is a very big fear for a lot of folks and keeps some theists cemented into religion.
I cant say i feared hell. My fear had to with knowing that someone might be watching me and affecting my life either positively or negatively depending on whether i was what he considered to be an ideal human.
Because I can't muster up enough hate to be a good christian. haha.
Never really believed the stuff. Finally came to realization that the main reason people believe it is because they can't comprehend that their self-awareness will cease. They believe their soul/mind, whatever, will go on. We know it won't. Besides, who wants to sit on a cloud and strum a harp all day?
I am one, after realising how little religions seem to understand humans. I mean humans are individualistic, there will never be anyone else like me again, religions force us to give up some of our individuality be it physically in the way of the hijab etc. in Islam or the restrictions on facial hair etc. in orthodox Judaism.
What about the homophobia, its pretty obvious that some people (well a huge number) of us are not heterosexual, we fall on a spectrum, some are straight, some are bi, some are gay we are never black and white. However religion means that those who do not fit into the religion's specifications through no fault of their own feel like they are outsiders, sub-human even worthy of death .
Then you have the so called "sacred texts" none of them are from divine hands, they are full of errors, vague language, crazy logic etc. that no perfect being would do.
And not forgetting how a supposedly all power and all knowing being allows people to twist his own words! You know if Allah were to hit people like Anjem Choudary, Bin Laden etc. with a freak lightning bolt all at the same time then I would become a Muslim right now!