Q:Why isn't atheism another form of religion? People claim god's fake or real, but we cannot be 100% sure.
Well for one thing the word Atheism, if you break it down, becomes A- (meaning “not” or “without”) and -theism (meaning religion). The word literally means “not religion” or “without religion.”
Here is the word “religion,” defined on Dictionary.com:
We can quickly prove that atheism is not a religion by using the first definition:
- Atheism is not a set of beliefs. People would argue that atheism means to believe that god doesn’t exist, however it actually means to not believe in god or gods. This is very different. One is a belief in no god(s) and the other is no belief in god(s).
- Atheism makes no claim to explain the nature of the universe, its origin, evolution or any other subject. The only requirement to being an atheist is to not believe in any gods. People commonly fuse science and atheism together, when actually they are entirely separate things. Many atheists (hopefully) are scientifically literate and thus are quick to describe scientific theories and laws, but that doesn’t mean they’re a part of their “beliefs” (the debate as to whether a belief in science is actually a thing is a discussion for another time).
- Atheism has no “devotional and ritual observances.”
- Atheism contains no “moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.” Many atheists like to say that they’re more moral than theists, but since morality is independent from religion (again, a discussion for another time), religious beliefs have very little to do with how a person acts. There is no “Atheist Ten Commandments,” or any sort of “Unholy Text” that atheists follow that tells them how to run their blog or how to not go to church or whatever it is they do.
As to your second statement, “People claim god’s fake or real, but we cannot be 100% sure.” Boy have I heard that one a lot. Ok for the sake of example, let’s pretend that I said I had a pet dragon living in my dorm room that is invisible to anyone but me. You would very likely say that that assertion is ridiculous and you’d be very right. However, could you prove that I don’t have a selectively-invisible pet dragon? Of course you couldn’t. There’s no definitive proof that I don’t. You don’t know me, you can’t come to my room and check for dragon poop. So how do you know this is a false claim? Well for one thing, there’s no way I could fit a dragon in my room. Secondly, it would burn down the whole building. Most importantly, though, you (should) know for a fact that dragons do not exist. How do you know that? Well because there’s never been any proof of one, that’s why! Would you believe in dragons if you saw one in front of you? Probably, I wager.
Now let’s apply this same sort of argument to religion. We know that it’s not likely that a god exists, since many of the tasks that the religious typically credit to their deities can be described easily by scientific means. A phenomenal example is the whole Bill O’Reilly speil, “Sun goes up, sun goes down, tides come in, tides go out.” O’Reilly (who himself claims is “not the smartest guy in town”) claims that there is no scientific proof for these processes and that his God is responsible for performing these phenomenon. In fact, you can watch the famous video here. Now, any elementary school student can tell you that the reason the sun comes up in the morning and sets in the evening is because the earth is spinning on its axis. Tides are also a result of the gravity of the moon distorting the shape of the Earth beneath the oceans. These processes are very easy to explain, yet O’Reilly still believes that they are the work of God. If you learn a lot more about physics, chemistry, biology and any other science, you’ll learn that all these natural phenomenon basically run themselves without any sort of influence.
There is also no scientific evidence of any sort of creator. Many people say “we don’t know where the universe came from, so some sort of supernatural being must have made it.” Personally, I don’t think this is a logical conclusion. There are plenty of theories out there about the origins of the universe, and who knows which one will be right until we have more evidence. The current model (which you’ve probably heard of) is the Big Bang model. This says that (in accordance with Hubble’s Law) the universe is always expanding (which is also true. The 2011 Nobel Prize for physics went to two US scientists and one Australian scientist for proving that the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate), and thus is smaller and smaller the further back in time you go, to a point about 13 billion years ago when the entire universe was contained in a single point, called the singularity, and thus expanded rapidly and cooled to form our universe.
People can argue about this all day, if you let them. You can argue that God or Odin or Amun-Ra caused the Big Bang, but it all comes back to the question of “where’s your proof?” And the answer is there isn’t any.
A common, yet irritating, phrase that people throw around is “absence of proof is not proof of absence.” However, if we’re discussing a divine creator that made the universe and supposedly pulls the strings on every natural process ever, wouldn’t there be some sort of proof of that? To me, it seems like it should be pretty obvious if such a grandiose claim were true.
Also, never in recorded history has there been a verifiable instance of any god appearing or speaking to people. Sure, people may claim that, but really anyone could claim that Jesus speaks to them, however nowadays you’d probably get a nice visit to a psychiatrist if you went around saying that.
So that really begs the question: if gods are supposed to be everywhere and have their hands in everything, where are they? Where’s the proof?
And until such verifiable proof can be presented, it’s just another case of the invisible dragon.
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