I write a lot of these posts before I go to bed at night so if they seem disjointed it's because I'm sleepy and working on a beer buzz. Just up front about that.
My mother is in a nursing home. She came close to dying this past week, and may still die, but right now she's alert enough to make her own decisions so I'm out of the loop as far as deciding for her. She still needs to be in a assisted care facility but it doesn't look much like I have much input into the placement.
My question for the night isn't about life and death. Those 'big discussions' never seem to apply to the intimacy of my personal relationships and though they might be fun to toss around they really aren't applicable to the real world.
My question is: How do you really do it?
How do you wake up in the morning and live your day and go to sleep at night as an atheist?
It's an obvious question and whether you are used to talking about it or not, everyone has a different answer.
How does atheism affect your day to day life? How do you relate to the people you work for and with? Do they know what you believe? Or is it one of those myriad of subjects that are just not 'appropriate' for the workplace?
Does it bother you when the majority of your co-workers are Christian?
Does it bother you when you can't talk to your family or friends about you beliefs?
Do you ever want to just scream at the top of you lungs:
even though you know you'd lose your job and any hopes of a career if you did?
How do you get through the day biting your tongue?
I remember a billboard I saw one that said:
"You have the right to live wherever you can afford to."
I was crazy that day, when I tried to work. The outright, government sponsored prejudice was too much for me. It's against the law to discriminate on an increasing list of subjects...but Civil Liberties aren't supposed to be about what special interest group you belong to.
Any other prejudice is disavowed except the prejudice of the rich against the poor.
So I go to work and bite my tongue.
I'm tired of biting my tongue.
I have seen this country grow from prejudice against blacks to a sweeping prejudice against the Poor Class in general and no one has raised a voice in protest.
What does this have to do with atheism?
Atheism just isn't a theological position, it is a turning away from the standards or bourgeois society altogether.
The history of our peculiar way of thinking is a twisted and tormented subject only decipherable by the most committed and willing thinker.
Atheism is not just about theology and the rejection of the concept of God.
Atheism is about the rejection of the whole class structure of our society. To carry atheism to it's ultimate conclusion one must be ready to reject all forms of our normal assumptions of reality and to begin constructing a whole new vision of the world and how it works and what we can to do guide the path of history in a direction we find more comfortable.
Atheism is about putting yourself out on the very edge of modern philosophy and theology and then pushing the envelope one step forward than even the most comfortable Liberals would take it.
Atheism is declaring war against society.
If you want to be a dabbler and a wannabee that's just fine.
But Atheism requires a deeper commitment, a rejection of all that is polite and normal, a willingness to die over the difference that other people...more practical people...would consider foolish.