Last time I wrote a blog I wrote about the life experiences that led me to being an atheist. Now about philosophical reason why I became an atheist.

Some of us had life experiences that led us to where we are, but I think all of you had a long thought about the veracity of your claim  that there is no supernatural. Some of you didn't. I was one of those people who did believe a little because my parents were agnostic. So I became by simple influence an agnostic. My parents believed in aliens in space, they believed in reincarnation and so on. A lot of things taken from different religions. I believed in even smaller subgroup of all this beliefs. So I started to think.

First I started to read what other people said about the 'nature of things' and this rabbit hole led me deeper and deeper until I crashed into the wall of ontology and epistemology. Now a short intro on this subjects:

Ontology - one of those things that bugged people with lot of free time on their hands. We like to call them philosophers. And this philosophers were puzzled by nature of being, existence and reality. It sounds abstract but it actually talks about what is abstract and what is not.

Epistemology - aka the theory of knowledge

Why are this two things so important?

Simple. First you need epistemology because you want to know that you are right when you say something. Now how to measure if your right? The question still stands because, people are not perfect, they never were or will be. Perfection is an empty ideal. So how can we be right? And if we are right then can we answer the big questions: Why do we exist and how do we exist?

There were few answers:

First given by Bacon (funny name)

He said that you have to make an experiment and try to find out if there is some unknown rule behind things and he was right. This was the birth of modern science based on empiric experiments. But still at that time people started to believe that with scientific experiment absolute truths can be uncovered. That is the reason why (maybe?) Francis Bacon was a part of Rosecrucian cult, because they believed that they can uncover god/absolute truth with simple experiment. It is actually in human nature, the will to survive the be better than others, that is why they wanted to be the first ones to find god and then become powerful, I can understand their delusions.

Then Hume huffed and puffed

He was the first modern sceptic and he said that we can't know anything (I'm simplifying, but this post would be much longer if I didn't). What it boils down to is that absolute truths and infinite knowledge can not be achieved by any means. But this sounded very depressive and a lot of people started to turn to dogmatism or idealism.

Idealist was Kant

He sought the answer ancient greeks did, but they were to dogmatic about it, still he was going into a wrong direction as all of them did (this is of course my opinion, you don't have to bow down to it). The thing he said in a nut shell is that there is an idea, an abstract idea outside of mind and when a person looks at an object for the first time this idea enters the mind this way man attains knowledge, this way man can be right, absolutely right about things, because this ideas come from wonderful transcendental world of absolute truths, again I'm simplifying because I don't want to go into the whole "a priori vs. a posteriori" types of knowledge.

Then came a critic called Shopenhauer

At this point my head starts to hurt because I'm trying to shove information gathered by many people during their whole lifespans in a minute. But the moral was 'Kant wasn't right' or 'there were critics'. At the end Hegel tried to explain everything with his egomanical persona.

Finally there was Satre

But here I was already asleep.

So I'll just explain what it's all about and what in the name of evolution does it have to do with my atheism

The thing is. Some philosophers believed that mind (thoughts) is separated from the body (brain), this is called dualism, Kant liked this idea but before dualism there came idealism.

Now idealism actually says that there is no material world, only mind and transcendent world of thoughts exist, and everything else is an illusion.

Finally there are materialists, they believe that conciousness is a product of neurons working and that is that. We can't see the world exactly as it is because we are limited by our imperfectness and sky is blue because we defined it as blue in fact every language sees colours in a different way, russian language has two names for blue colours which to them are completely different.

What is important is that I found that just this materialism makes sense to me and there is no room for superstition in materialism.

But this didn't make me depressed or limited or inferior, it freed me. Because I knew that there is no wicked destiny that is holding me back if I'm not doing well, there is no crazy god out there to get me if I do something wrong. There are only humans, they judge, they write laws, they uphold morals, they punish and they decide what do with their lives. So I finally had my life in my hands and there was no implication from some 'higher world of ideal thoughts and absolute truth' that christians call god.

I am free



Views: 34

Comment by Cathy Cooper on February 4, 2011 at 2:31pm
I am a pragmatic materialist.  We experience everything through, what JS Mill posited as a Permanent Possibility of Sensations"  Our brains are not separated from our bodies, but we do have different ways of interpreting things, (these too can be influenced by past experience) which is why there are so many different opinions on such matters as religion, or even what color of blue the sky actually is.  It's all a matter of interpretation, but if we use logic, reason, and the dialectical process, we can usually come to better conclusions, than saying for example that "goddidit!'--if you know what I mean...;)
Comment by Gregor Basić on February 4, 2011 at 6:13pm
Agreed, Mill was and still is on my reading list, but I'm now more oriented towards theory of atheism and geopolitics.


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