Over the course of the last several months my views and knowledge and information has evolved and changed...I am now ready to be put under fire....again, lol...
I'm ready to be scrutinized, analyzed, degraded, taunted, laughed at, shamed, or whatever. I'm ready to be asked the hard questions and answer them against myself. I'm ready to find out that I'm wrong (again.) I'm ready to end up back where I started and realize that I was completely misguided. I'm ready for whatever happens as I put this out there. I'm ready for what I consider to be the ultimate test...
I am going to admit first and foremost that I may end up being wrong. I'm cool with that. But...I gotta test myself against myself and there is no better way for me to do that than to try it out here. This is after all a safe place for me...so...Here it goes...
I don't know if I am a "real" Atheist. I think that I DO believe in God. I say "I think" because I'm not entirely sure....but....
I have to say up front that I am not exactly excited about this. I don't really want to believe in God again. It shakes up everything I thought I knew. It challenges me to re-think everything AGAIN!!!
So this is a start. I didn't come to this conclusion easily.
So there you have it....
"Being uncertain is a difficult but very enlightened state of mind."
+1. I think that sometimes, "I don't know" is the wisest thing you can say.
@Simon Paynton: In order to be useful, it first has to be true.
Not at all. Religion is the PRIME example of a world view that is useful but untrue. Religion promotes social cohesion (intra-community), fosters inter-tribe competition, provides a handle for the awe, and provides answers to questions we have evolved to ask (among other things).
It seems to me that religion, in its widest sense - expressed as theism or your deism, is the only reason we have to express this "higher power" nonsense. Erase religion and, not only does the higher power disappear, your "atheist spirituality" follows it down the drain.
But I'd probably need access to some of your meds or DMT or whatever to feel absolutely sure. In my opinion "universal love" is a cocktail of brain chemicals.
@Pope Beanie: The word "spirituality" won't stop irritating atheists until it somehow loses its root, "spirit" - a conscious but nonexistent being.
@ MikeLong....pull up a chair, I got these beers in. (miracles never cease I hear you say!!)
But when we find out that those things are not true, they are no longer useful. When something is true, and useful, it stays useful.
The judgemental aspect of God was invented when we started living in large groups, in order to enforce group-wide cooperation, morality and ethics.
The unconditional aspect of God is true, and it can only be the case that this gives credibility and power to the judgemental aspect. You don't need to believe in God to say this. I know this is some kind of paradox but I request that people wrinkle their brows in order to get their head round this.
The unconditional aspect of God is a fundamental property of nature - the universal pressure for all organisms to flourish [and survive - pretty closely linked].
It is universal because it is an active force within every living being. So it is at once universal and individual - transcendent and personal. It can be called a consciousness because it does things and has a direction.
As well as being active in the present time, it is also a result of evolution, which is another reason for calling it transcendent and universal.
I think the definition of "truth" can vary too much from one person to the next. When a placebo works, does that make it "true"?
Yes, it makes it true to them.
But not objectively true.
That's why it's very important to always second guess your lifes positions and emotions.