What Do Atheists Worship?

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From: Positive Atheism <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: PA-via_Positive_Atheism_Index
Date: Wednesday, June 23, 1999 4:53 PM

To say that we "do not believe in God" is to presuppose the existence of a god or gods. Can you demonstrate to us that such a being exists? If so, then it would be in our best interest (and in the best interest of truthfulness) for us to believe that such a being exists -- especially if that being would damn people to an eternity in the agony of hell-fire simply for the crime of being unable to detect his or her existence. It is easy to see that the sun exists, but the same is not true for gods, leprechauns, the Easter Bunny, and other unseen things that some people believe exist.

We do not believe that any gods exist. In many cases, we do not understand what people mean when they say the words "god" or "goddess." The claims that people have made for the existence of gods either do not hold water or do not make sense. For example, the Hindu description of their ultimate deity defies understanding. The whole point of that description is to make it clear that we cannot and will not understand. This being the case, why even talk about it? On the other hand, the descriptions of the Christian deity makes sense, but the arguments for the existence of that deity border on the ridiculous. Most of the apologetics for the Christian deity are a mish-mash of emotionally charged threats, falsehood, and faulty logic. Christian apologists have to do much better than they have done in order to get me to believe that what they say is true. The Christian claims, as far as I can see, are pure falsehood.

As for worshipping, what is there to worship if there are no gods? And even if some of the gods actually existed (Allah of Islam; Yahweh of Judaism; Jesus of Christianity), it is doubtful that they would be worthy of worship. Allah was a self-indulgent tyrant. Jehovah or Yahweh was a short-tempered bungler. Jesus was inconsistent and invented the most damaging doctrine that has graced the minds of men: eternal torture in hell-fire. Even if hell existed, I would not worship a being who would send any human there for even five minutes. If worship is how one avoids hell-fire, then the being demanding worship through this ploy is entirely unworthy of worship.

To use the word "worship" in any sense other than the religious sense is to abuse the meaning of the word and to diminish the religious sense of the word. To say that since I believe evolution is accurate, I therefore worship Charles Darwin is an example of the abuse I am describing. The same is true of the charge that I worship my self.

No. I don't worship anything. I do not worship myself; I do not worship humanity; I do not worship reason; I do not worship any "life force." And I do not worship any gods: such beings are the figments of people's imaginations.

I simply live my life and do the best I can to be a good person. I do this because it is the right thing to do, not out of any reward I might receive.

Cliff Walker
"Positive Atheism" Magazine

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