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Why I Don't Believe...

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Posted by Mario Dovalina on June 22, 2001 04:36:27 UTC

First off, I want to quickly restate something I usually say before arguments like this, but typically never get considered in upcoming counterarguments: I do not debate the usefulness of religion. The only, absolutely only, thing I am concerned about is the validity religious beliefs have with regard to external reality. Okay, here we go:

"a) tradition
in my long line of family heritage ( as Scot-Irish )"

"b) It allows me to indulge and humble
myself totally before something in order to
focuse myself and the good I am capable of."

"c) And finally, I practice the " faith " because
I feel it collaborates with contemporary life ,
including the institution and repition of morals,
character, inter-dependance and cooperation of other people in a society where its imperative that at least a small group of people become close."

These are common reasons for faith, but not good ones. Your first reason is absolutely the most common reason for faith (you were raised that way) but that has absolutely no bearing on truth. Could your parents have been wrong, potentially?

Your second reason is fine, but again it still focuses on the EFFECTS of belief and not the foundation of the CAUSES. If I believe a lie that has beneficial effects to my life, it doens't matter. I'm still being lied to. Just this morning, I was reading a Times article on how scientists think the universe will end: it will continue to expand ad infinitum until the only things are lonely, isolated atoms flying aimlessly about. I advised someone I know to read it. Her response was to the effect of "I don't want to know about it. If there isn't anything I can do about it, why get worried about it?" I replied that that was selective reality, only accepting good news and not bad. She gave me the "now you've got it" smile and said "Exactly!"

So, Jack, I'll give you a simple question to see if you fall into the selective reality crowd: If it could be proven, without a shadow of a doubt, that God does not exist and our existence is meaningless, would you want to know, or would you prefer hollow beliefs? Do you care about the truthfulness of faith at all or just how nice it makes you feel? And what does that tell you about the true nature of faith?

"That's what humans do , don't they storm? Compromise till it
fits the picture they are most attracted to?"

Nah, not as far as I'm concerned, at least. I don't find atheism pleasant or attractive at all. But as far as can be told, God probably does not exist, at least in the way we typically envision God. So I prefer depression and accuracy over bliss and ignorance.

And you?

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