To people who don't understand atheism, this post if for you. I get asked all the time, if there is no god, then what is the purpose of your life? Since you don't believe in god, you don't believe in anything. Since you don't believe in sin, you think you can do anything you want without consequences.
I'll start off by sharing what I don't believe.
I don't believe that I should have to take anything on faith. Faith, by definition, is the belief in something which has no evidence. Maybe faith works for you, but not for me. I can't believe in something just because an ancient book said so.
Without god, life has no purpose. Really? Why? Why does there have to be a purpose? Even if it is all just a big cosmic mistake that we all happen to be here, why does it matter? You are alive. You are a person with feelings and desires. Enjoy that life. Even if your life is a mistake, enjoy it while you have it.
Let's just imagine that I'm right for a second. Just bear with me. When you die, that's it. You're dead. No afterlife. No heaven. No god. But all of your life, you lived with the belief in an afterlife. Now you're dead and there's nothing. Your life had purpose while you lived it. Your life had purpose, even if that purpose was to believe in a false god. Why does belief in a god have to be the only purpose? It doesn't. A rock is not alive, so what is its purpose? That rock exists, so it must have a purpose, right? So everything that exists, must have a purpose. Why? What about a giant floating meteor out in space 300 million light years away from earth? What is its purpose? My point is that just because something exists, doesn't mean that it has to have a purpose. Your life is no different. Your life has whatever purpose you give it.
Since you don't believe in god, you don't believe in anything. A very common assumption. True, I don't believe in god. But why does the lack of a belief in god mean that I believe in nothing? I believe in mankind, science, love, beauty, family, integrity, education, honesty, laughing, fun, work, life, friends, service, etc. I believe in many things, just not fairytales.
Since you don't believe in god, you don't believe in sin, and therefore can do anything you want without consequences. Strangely enough, that is true. However, just because I can steal something, doesn't mean that I will. You see, above I just listed a bunch of things that I do believe in. I can know a certain action is wrong without a belief in god. No, I don't believe its a sin to kill, BUT I do believe that it is wrong. Not because I'll be punished if I do it but because it's just wrong. It's wrong to take other peoples stuff. It's wrong to hurt people. It's wrong to say mean things to someone. These things are wrong just because they are wrong, not because god said that they are. Are you trying to tell me that without god in your life, you would have no self control at all? Now that is sad. I can be good to other people without god being involved because I just know what is right and what is wrong. You do too. It is an inherent human instinct.
This has to be true because I know and have heard many stories of believers who have done terrible things to other people. If belief in god makes you good, then why do some believers do bad things? Why do not all atheists go out on crime sprees? It is because the knowledge of right and wrong is not from god, but is from within yourself.
I am no different than you. I have a job, a family, a home. I have bills to pay. I have doctor visits. I have a lawn to mow and weeds to pull. I have a car that breaks down sometimes. I deal with life and all its issues just like you do.
Since an atheist doesn't believe in god, he must believe in the devil. Wrong! Since you don't believe in Peter Pan, then you must believe in Captain Hook! Stupid, right? I don't believe in god, therefore I don't believe in his enemy. To assume that all atheists are devil worshippers is just wrong. If I don't believe in your imaginary god, then why would I believe in his imaginary arch enemy? Don't make the mistake of thinking that all atheists are devil worshippers. Fact is, they don't believe in the devil either.
Another misconception is that I threw god out of my life on a temper tantrum because god wouldn't give me everything I asked for. I'm hoping that if I ignore god, then he will feel sorry for me and give me everything I want.
No, that's wrong too. I don't believe in god beacuse he isn't real, not because I want to "punish" him for not kissing my ass. It is true that I prayed for certain things and did not receive them. You think I left god because he didn't give me what I wanted. I actually left god because I realized that he isn't even there to give me or not give me what I pray for.
People see what they are looking for. If you are looking for god, you will see god in everything. I'm not looking for god, I'm just looking. And what I see is life. I see a beautiful planet. I see beautiful people. I see good people doing good things. I see bad people doing bad things. But I don't see god. I see a book called the Bible and I see that it is full of funny stories. I see real life and I realize that just because a funny book exists, doesn't mean that it is true, because lots of books exist with funny stories but that doens't make them all true. I just look and I see what there is to see.
It's simple. It's beautiful. Why complicate things by throwing in an imaginary friend? Be yourself. Be good because you know it's the right thing to do.