atheist- one who does not believe in god(s)
theism- belief in a deity
I’ve been told over and over that atheism is a religion of its own. Let’s explore that assertion.
Religion- an organized collection of beliefs, cultural systems, and world views that relate humanity to the supernatural, and to spirituality.
Hold on just a second! If atheists do not believe that these things exist, how can they be a part of or in any way involved with a religion? Quite simply, they can’t. The truth is, religious people become angry because others do not share their worldview. They retaliate by accusing said people of doing the same thing they are, even though it’s not true.
Hypocrisy runs amok within the religious communities. My family is very religious and while they make mistakes, say horrible and hurtful things to others and pose themselves as better than everyone else, they comment on the stupidity of others who make mistakes, make it known that others hurtful words are wrong and claim that others should swallow their pride and be more humble. I have been biting my tongue for years, but there is only so much a person can take. Either these people believe the things they say to others and should be practicing what they preach, or they do not believe it and they need to leave everyone else alone…one or the other.
I came to my lack of belief through years of struggle and study. This was not some adolescent rebellion gone awry. After living with a drug addicted mother with a lot of emotional issues for the better part of my childhood, I moved to the town where my father lived after her death. Trust me when I say, my childhood was not fun. My mother’s mood swings often led to physical abuse or several nights on the street. Moving on, I had picked up a stalker and my life was really going downhill. My father made the comment to me that my life was crappy because I had turned my back on God. This confused me because I hadn’t even considered the concept of God since before my parents divorced. I tried to rectify the situation by reading the bible and going to church. I went to several, in fact, finding that each one I went to was wrought with corruption. I read several translations of the bible, front to back, and started to delve into the real meanings of the passages. I started to realize that there were some discrepancies in the bible–within each translation, as well as between the translations. Many of the discrepancies appeared among the lineages that nobody wants to sit down and read, because it’s boring. I went back and compared what I found in the bible to some lineage information that I had found in some old Egyptian history books to find that much of it was similar, but not exact, and it was slightly out of order. I started to realize that the information was not original. Of course, back then, information was much harder to get and much less reliable.
From there I looked into the historical claims that the bible makes. The most notable and verifiable one is the flood. If you do the research, you’ll find that even if all of the ice on the planet were to melt, there still wouldn’t be enough water to cover the entire planet. (That’s right, folks, Waterworld could never happen.) The polar icecaps are already submerged, so that water is displaced. That ice cannot cause the oceans to rise. There is ice in Greenland and Antarctica that is on land, but there isn’t enough to cause global flooding. (see the Mr. Wizard video below on displacement) Since none of the water on the planet leaves the atmosphere, that puts a damper on the worldwide flood thing. Incidentally, there is evidence of a massive flood in the Mediterranean Basin roughly 6000-8000 b.c.e. Perhaps this is the flood the bible is referring to? It wasn’t the entire planet, but it covered the entire “world” to the people who wrote the book.
What tipped the scales for me was my research into the “soul.” Many religious people maintain that a soul exists because of the sudden weight loss at the time of death. Since it has been proven that electricity does, indeed, have atomic weight, and that humans tend to have more neurological activity than other animals, it stands to reason that humans will lose more weight at the time of death than other animals. Then you have the fact that people have to go to such great lengths as Descartes’ dualism hypothesis to try to explain the existence of souls. The fact that everything that people want to use to explain souls can be explained be ordinary occurrences, and to be able to insist that a soul exists people have to come up with extraordinary concepts such as parallel universes, invisible links to said universe and unknown origins, that simply is too much. The simplest answer is almost always the correct one. Here, the simplest answer is that there is no soul, there is no God, there is a universe governed by physical laws. There is no God because without a soul, there is no afterlife. Every religion speaks of an afterlife, so without an afterlife, there is no God.