Atheists and images of God

 

A few things about atheism:

When atheists argue against religions and religious institutions, they often have some very good points. There are unhealthy aspects to many religious institutions, including different forms of power abuse. Many atrocities have been committed in the name of religion, often using religion as a cover for political or economic motivations. The three Abrahamic religions are based on bronze age/pre-modern mythology, and while the essence may be as valid today as back then, the packaging is often not.

On the other hand, when atheists argue against God, they are really arguing against their own images of God. At best, these images tend to be narrow, often limited to theistic religions. At worst, they are obvious caricatures and distortions of the images found in Christianity and other theistic religions.

Finally, to the extent they believe their own stories about reality, they make their own views into a religion. They mirror the religious people they argue against.

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Atheist mystics

 

I was a die-hard atheist before the initial awakening, and became one on my own in elementary school. God doesn’t care.

After – or within – an awakening, we tend to operate from the same general worldview as we had before the awakening, only modified some to fit our new reality. We used to be Christian, and still are afterwords. Or Muslim. Jew. Buddhist. Taoist. And so on.

And the same goes for atheism. The worldview I am most comfortable with is in many ways the worldview of an atheist, only modified to fit my new reality. I still have a more-than-average interest in science, and now also in stories about science that bridge science and spirituality such as integral views and the Universe Story. And it also means I am free to explore pointers and teachings from any tradition, and value and find appreciation for them.

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Going further

 

I am watching a documentary on the history of atheism.

Their aim is excellent: to question beliefs, and specifically religious beliefs.

And if it is taken further, it works even better.

The next step is to question atheism itself, and any beliefs about religions, God, nature and so on. What happens when I attach to these stories as true? Who would I be without the beliefs? What are the grain of truths in their reversals?

What happens when I attach to atheism – or current stories from science – as true? Do they become my new religion? Am I acting differently from believers of other religions?

And why stop there? Why not question any story I attach to as true, even – or maybe especially – those that seems most obviously true?

What happens when I take any story as true? Does it become my new religion?

I need beliefs to function in the world. Stories can be true. I know. Existence is something I can imagine. I am something I can imagine.

Is it true? Can I know it is true? What happens when I take those stories as true? Who would I be without it? What is the grain of truth in their turnarounds?

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