Eventually there comes a time when we as rational adults have to give up some things in the face of logic.
Religion is probably the biggest hurdle.
Besides giving up the belief in a nostalgic paradise after death, there are a ton of other modes of thought we have to let go of.
Here is a list of the things I miss believing in:

Karma- The world isn't fair. Bad things happen to good people, and vice versa. The idea that the dickheads of existence would eventually get what's coming to them had always been a comfort to me. Call it hell, karma, justice or whatever, the fact of the matter is that humans are imperfect, so is our system of fairness. Our laws and punishments don't work 100% of the time. Nature itself is only fair in such a broad way, it does little to appease the individual situations that I am forced to witness. I want people to be held accountable, damnit! Letting go of that notion was hard for me.

Ghosts/ESP/Astrology/Whatever- Right, not so much the astrology for me personally, but I have always been in love with the supernatural. In fact, I do still cling on to this notion more than any self respecting atheist should. Evidence points to the conclusion that there is no "beyond the veil" but I just like to think that there are energies/dimensions/again, whatever out there that science hasn't discovered the technology to explore yet, let alone explain. As I said. I LIKE to think that. I'm not saying I do (anywhere but in the secret fantasies of my own overly imaginative brain.) All technology is magic to anyone sufficiently ignorant to it's workings. Hell, my iphone could be a wizard's wand for all I know....right? Anyway. I mourn the ghost stories of my childhood. I have to realize that frightening coincidences are just that. Coincidence.

Friends and Family- While this isn't a system of belief so much as it is a real, physical loss, I have to realize that there are some people out there that cannot accept my lack of faith. These people have systematically cut me from their lives. It was probably the most humane thing to do, in all honesty. I know there are certain right-wing god-fearing women out there that I love but can no longer stand the presence of due to the drastic differences in our ideology. :(

Someone looking out for me- Religion teaches you that there is always someone that loves you, and there is always some master plan. Even if things are bad now, they will be better soon, and all problems will be magically resolved as long as you keep the faith. As much bullshit as it is, the feeling that I don't have too much responsibilities for my failures was always a nice one. Especially now when I'm underemployed. Oh what I'd give to be able to sleep at night knowing that god doesn't close a window without opening a door.

Ultimate enlightenment- Even as a child, the concept of heaven sounded flimsy to me. It was.. well.. boring. But learning all the answers to the questions I accumulated was the one thing that made it ok to die. Oh... that and pet heaven. I am far too curious to sit on a fluffy cloud and play the harp, but I would like to know EVERYTHING that has always bugged me.

So that's my list. I'm sure I'll think of more later on.
You guys tell me about the things you miss now!

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That's why I like ghost stories, it's a rush to be scared. I guess that's why people ride roller coasters and bungee jump!
Funny, I saw a ghostly face when I was very young, floating in my darkened bedroom. I have never forgotten that, but I seriously doubt what I remember was real.
And the other shoe drops. :(
I agree that karma and a sense of orderly cosmic justice are some of the hardest things to let go of. The mantras of "things have a way of working out if you just let them," "everything happens for a reason," and "good always triumphs over evil" were mental security blankets. Now I see it as nothing more than imposing retrospective order upon a random series of events. Oh wait, I just arrived at that conclusion about restrospection using retrospection; is my conclusion flawed because I used the very methodology that I consequently condemned? A loophole! I can blissfully snuggle back under my fuzzy little karmic blanket.

(Sorry for the repeat, but it was a phantom post; I think I may have stopped loading the page before I posted. Hey, a slow internet connection at work calls for desperate measures, am I right?)
Karma, reincarnation (to an extent), and there being a parental figure who actually gives a damn were somewhat fuzzy blankets. I still fancy the possibility, a la quantum mechanics, of multiple and parallel universes. And what about consciousness being transferable from our brains to other media?
I agree, there are always some intriguing possibilities to consider. And the possible (or probable) integration of technology and consciousness is absolutely fascinating. Terrifying, but fascinating at the same time.
.....is almost invariabley the healthy, the lucky, usually the young who like that word...

but, it WOULD be cool, if "something" in the universe rewarded the kind people with good health, or money or something, wouldn't it. but, the whole idea, coming from the handicapped family i came from, about insults me.


Maybe I was not clear in my statement, or perhaps we have different ideas of what "karma" means. I never viewed karma in the sense that I was entitled to the elements of my good fortune; I did not take my health nor my youth as deserved rewards of some mystical good karma that I had accrued. Nor did I ever view those who struggled with health problems or misfortunes to be deserving of their problems because of negative karma.

Instead, my idea of "karma" used to be some sort of cosmic justice, that people who did bad things would eventually feel the repercussions of their actions, and that people who did good would be rewarded. I used to cling to the idea that people who hurt other people would be punished somehow in the grand scheme of the universe, or that people who got hurt would somehow be cosmically compensated. Of course, this is incredibly philosophically naive; really, it's just an diluted reference to divine retribution clothed in new age rhetoric. It was only a temporary phase in my continually evolving worldview.

Youth does not preclude suffering. My boyfriend, who is also in his twenties, has a rare degenerative neuromuscular condition for which there is no cure and only mildly effective treatments. For three years, I have watched as the unrelenting progression of the disease has continued to further rob him of his mobility, energy, and overall health. When we were first together, I still lived in a little karmic fantasy world; I clung to the notion that in his next life, perhaps, he could be rewarded with all the things that this life has denied him. Eventually, I recognized this as nothing more than a religious belief and faced up to the painful reality that there will be no reward for his needless, senseless, and undeserved suffering. This is the fuzzy karmic blanket that I miss: the idea that someday he will be given compensation for all the fucked up shit that this life has dumped upon him. It was never about justifying my own good health and youth.
I didn't call it "karma" in my head, and tried to pass it off as "what goes around comes around" for a very long time - it has much less religious connotations that I felt I could get by with. I think the desire for good people who get hurt and bad people who get good things to be somehow rewarded or punished in some cosmic way is part of human nature and part of the reason modern religion developed to begin with.

It does kind of make me sad that the court system and charities or more or less the best we can do with somehow making it a reality.
I think the desire for good people who get hurt and bad people who get good things to be somehow rewarded or punished in some cosmic way is part of human nature and part of the reason modern religion developed to begin with.

Exactly, I think that it was some desire for there to be an underlying "fairness" to the whole thing. Maybe it kind of ends up as a deluded optimism.
I subscribed to Karma for awhile, although I did not actually believe in it. Mostly, I felt that as long as I kept my nose clean, the less trouble seemed to find me. This may have been confirmation bias or maybe a real result from avoiding trouble, but it seemed like a good philosophy to use as a way station until I figured life out more.
I think you want to be a critical thinker and not and Atheist. A critical thinker can neither confirm nor deny the existence of the supernatural since it is unfalsifiable. As such it is believed on faith or not at all.

Atheism is a religion since it believes that the supernatural does not exist without falsification.
1) I am atheist BECAUSE I'm a critical thinker. They go hand in hand for me.
2)
Atheism is a religion since it believes that the supernatural does not exist without falsification.

You don't have a dictionary, do you? Here.. let me help you:
a·the·ism (th-zm)
n.
1. Disbelief in or denial of the existence of God or gods.

re·li·gion (r-ljn)
n.
1.
a. Belief in and reverence for a supernatural power or powers regarded as creator and governor of the universe.
b. A personal or institutionalized system grounded in such belief and worship.



See how these are NOT compatible?

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