Yeah I know. I really should stick to blogging about unimportant stuff like my opinions regarding television shows and movies. I might get back to that. However, this is weighing heavy on me and this is where I leave bits of brain so I can find them later, if I ever want them again. This piece of brain is getting pretty big. It's probably a metaphorical tumor. Paging Dr. House.
Again I state for the record, and I simply cannot emphasize this enough, I am an atheist now not by choice but by default. I have been born again again. Or maybe I'm dead again. I'm not sure how that metaphor worked the first time around. Anyway, I saw the light and it turned out to be a trick of the light, and was never there.
Not long ago a (now fellow I suppose) atheist said he was surprised to learn I was taking this so badly. When he found out there was no god it was like a weight had been lifted, and he was very happy about it. I'm reacting to it the same way I reacted when I learned there was no Santa Claus. I was pretty pissed off back then too. My own parents deceived me. Hell, THE WHOLE WORLD IS IN ON THAT LIE. There's a Father Christmas of some sort in practically every country on the planet. We still lie to children about that even today. If you're reading this and you have kids, you probably help perpetuate that lie, and you don't think there's any harm in it. You're probably right, but even if it's a little white lie - IT'S A LITTLE WHITE LIE THAT THE WHOLE OF HUMANITY HELPS TO PERPETUATE. which is a pretty big little white lie.
And now I learn there's no god. Never was. It's a lie. A lie that the vast majority of humanity still accepts as a given, like assuming magicians can pull rabbits out of hats or take quarters out of ears, or assuming a rain dancer can make it rain.
If I could choose to go back and take the blue pill, like Cipher in the Matrix thought he could do, I would. I really don't want to care if I'm in the Matrix. I liked it before. But I can't go back. I can't. The genie won't go back in the bottle. Once the kid realizes Santa Claus can't work in every shopping mall on the planet simultaneously, there's no going back.
There's simply no proof that there is a god. Up until now I've assumed the burden of proof is on the nonbeliever but it's not. If someone tells the police that their house was robbed, the cops are gonna wanna check the house for stolen goods, forced entry, fingerprints, etc. They're not just gonna assume the guy's telling the truth. They could, because why would someone bother to lie about having been robbed?
...see what I just did there?
We can take for granted that the guy wouldn't steal from his own home, but there are reasons why someone would make that up. Insurance for example. Or even if he didn't steal from his own house, he doesn't know who did, so the cops have to investigate and gain knowledge into the crime so they can suss out who did. Detectives don't solve crimes by taking presumptions for granted. If they did, they'd be called Presumptionists. They're detectives. They DETECT.
All 'evidence' that there is, was, or might be someday a deity is simply anecdotal or inconclusive. Deductive reasoning demands such inconclusive evidence be corroborated with solid facts. Knowledge IS power, and religion feeds on ignorance.
Now that I see this truth for what it is, I'm frankly stymied that religion still holds such a firm grip on humanity. I mean, I'm really not that bright, and if I can figure it out, why hasn't the rest of the planet? But they haven't. Humanity has been on this kick about believing in things that aren't there for millenia, with no end in sight. Why? Cuz if you look at history, every few hundred years or so the people who do believe band together with weapons and KILL ANYONE WHO DISAGREES WITH THEM. And sometimes they kill each other over discrepancies in each other's figments. And let's face it, they're overdue for a genocide. Haven't had one on a Spanish Inquisition kind of scale in awhile.
When I was taking The Christian God for granted and assuming he was there cuz everyone and my mom said he was, it didn't look remotely scary, cuz when the next Crusade was gonna go down, I felt relatively safe that they wouldn't be pointing pointy sticks in my direction. Now, I'm not so sure about that. I'm a heretic. I'm a blasphemer. I'm a nonbeliever. And as any diehard zealot will tell you, if you're not with God, you must be working for The Other Guy.
Of course the irony of this is if I can't believe in God anymore, it means there's no Satan either, and never was. John Lennon once asked me to imagine there's no heaven, and assured me it was easy if I just tried. I scoffed at that back when I was a kid. Now I wish he'd take it back, because it IS easy if you try. Too damned easy, if you ask me. It also means there's no hell below us as John was quick to point out, and above us is only sky. I made the tactical error that no believer should ever make if they want to continue believing: I looked up.
So if there's no God, Devil, Heaven or Hell, then there's no sin either. There's choices people make and every action has consequences. So do inactions for that matter. In fact, every exhalaton of breath affects the world around you, even if in ways you can't easily measure with just your senses. The bacteria crawling around on your skin are more real than a grey haired old coot in robes on a throne of clouds, but you can't see them any more than you can see him. So how do we know they're there? Science. Get me a microscope and I can prove to you there's animals crawling on your skin. Thus far, science hasn't found a microscope that susses out gods.
And there's a lot of scientists who are also still believers, so believe me there's still a lot of people out there actively trying to figure out a way to prove that there is a god. It's just that we haven't found anything yet, and the more we look the less places we have to check. Maybe he's on one of those planets out there. I'm no longer holding my breath on that one.
But the point is there ARE scientists out there, people far smarter than me, who still believe. Beyond all common sense or reason, they still think there's a god. They still go to church. They still pray. They still tithe. They still read the Good Book. And I'm not necessarily knocking the book, I mean it's full of holes and contradictions but what great work of fictitious literature doesn't? So very smart people still assume God exists. Now, either all of them are wrong, or I am. That's kinda creepy.
Cuz it's not just scientists. It's politicians, and sanitation workers, and bus drivers and coworkers and friends and family members and grocery clerks and waitresses and doctors and lawyers and firemen and dog walkers and complete strangers at bus stops - literally billions of people on this planet, despite the overwhelming evidence that there is not a god AND the overwhelming lack of evidence that there is, still insist there's a god. These billions of people disagree with one another over just who what where when why and how god is, but they do all agree on a monotheistic deity that likes them personally and roots for their respective favorite sports teams.
Except of course for those who don't. The polytheistic believers for example, or the many variant forms of nonbelievers such as myself, but comparatively speaking we're outnumbered worldwide by the Catholics alone. So let's focus on the real threat.
Let's say you and I are standing in front of an object, and we both utilize all our senses to determine what it is. I look at it. I touch it. I listen for sound and hear nothing. I may even put the tip of my tongue to it or take a whiff inches away from it. I come to the conclusion that it is a fire hydrant. You do the same. Utilizing your masterful talent at conquering your own senses, you observe the object before us and come to a similar conclusion. It is a fire hydrant. On that, we both agree.
Now we compare notes about what kind of fire hydrant. I observe that it is painted grey. You observe that it is painted red. We argue over this briefly and each come to the rational determination that the other person must be crazy. It doesn't occur to me that perhaps I am suddenly color blind. It doesn't occur to you that perhaps you are wearing rose colored glasses. I simply see a grey fire hydrant and you see a red one. We eventually realize we must agree to disagree.
Now it also doesn't occur to either of us to check to see if this object that appears to be a fire hydrant actually has the capacity to put out a fire. Neither of us are firemen. We don't have the necessary tools to open her up and let her rip. For all we know, this fire hydrant has no water inside it, but we both just take for granted that if a fire ever erupted on this spot, firemen would come along open her up and let her rip. We call it a fire hydrant because that's what it looks like, and when I say fire hydrant and when you say fire hydrant, we both assume the other person knows what that phrase means.
What if it can't put out a fire? What if for some reason it doesn't work? Maybe the plumbing in this area is damaged. Maybe the object was made to look like a fire hydrant but is really just there for decoration, or as a prank to piss off firemen. We have no way of knowing. We're taking a lot of stuff for granted here, predominantly cuz it's just a silly fire hydrant and I don't know why we even care about it still.
This is how I'm seeing this whole god thing. No one is bothering to check to see if there's a god, except for people like me who do and find out he doesn't exist. Then we go back and tell other people and they look at us like we're mad. Well did you look everywhere? Maybe you missed a spot. Well okay you go check with me, or find out for yourself then report back. Oh I don't need to do that. I already know there is a god. I don't have to go looking for him. Well actually, you do. It's kinda stupid not to. You're assuming there's a god without any proof.
What is faith? It's the belief in something without proof. It's accepting as a given something that isn't true, because you don't know if it is true and you don't know if it isn't, and you decide to assume it is true just to be on the safe side, cuz what if you think it's not true and it is? Then you'd be in a pickle wouldn't you?
Every now and then at a bus stop downtown there's this sweet lady who walks around with big signs hanging off her shoulders and her back. They don't say The End Is Near. Worse. They say something to the effect that God wants to free people from sin and let Jesus save them. She walks around with a big smile on her face handing out little booklets, and people who already agree with her take these little booklets from her hand and with big smiles on their faces go on about their day with this silly booklet in their hand telling them what they already know about what they already believe. I never actually see any of them read this booklet. They just thank her and take it and walk away and go on about their lives with this really big smile on their faces. It's eerie.
If someone believes in fairies, or monsters, or zombies, or thinks he's Napoleon, we lock them away. Yet billions of people on this planet are under a delusion that there's a man in the sky who knows all and sees all and has a personal plan just for you but he's not letting you in on it and if you do any number of things wrong he's laid out your life like a mine field and will blow you up if you do wrong, but he loves you.
All around me are delusional people, and if I were to point out their delusion, they'd look at me like I was the one that's crazy. BILLIONS of people. ALL OVER the planet. Making decisions that sometimes affect me, with this illusion that they got a little cherub w/wings floating over their shoulder pointing the way for them.
This time last year I may still have been one of the deluded. Now, all the sudden, I feel like I'm Ben in Night of the Living Dead. I'm surrounded, there's no escape, and I think they're coming for me, Barbra.
You Broke Me A Little Bit
3 years ago