When talking about diversity last week, I told you that I am an atheist. And this week, I thought to ponder upon and explain some aspects of this faith.
Yes. I believe atheism is a faith. It's a faith in a person that there is no God. Most say that all Buddhists are fundamentally atheists, but I personally disagree on this. More on this later.
There are a couple of aspects or derivatives of atheism. Atheists don't believe in God. Agnostics can't prove the existence of God. Agnostic atheists don't believe in the existence of god, because they can't prove it, and atheistic agnostics say that the existence of God can't be proven because God doesn't exist. Those are the main schools of thought when it comes to technicalities.
I said earlier that all Buddhists are fundamentally thought to be atheists by most. My reason for disagreeing with this is because the religion speaks of Gods, or Godly beings, and if you practice Buddhism and believe in it as a religion, then you adhere to this belief, thus making you a theist, or a believer.
I want to focus on people like me. People who are atheists, and who don't practice a religion, according to set out norms.
The biggest criticism atheists face, is the allegation that we don't have moral values. But to understand how the morality compass in an atheist works, you need to look at how morality is made up, and why morality exists. The function of "morality" as a concept is, and should be, the unhindered continuation of your personal life.
My personal belief is that anything that happens between two or more informed and consenting adults, the implications and consequences of which are understood by all parties concerned, is all right. And this is the moral principal that guides me in my life. I don't judge others on what they do with themselves, but I do judge people on how their actions affect me, or the people around me.
Because of the whole informed-and-consenting-adult thing, I won't judge a person who is a habitual drug user, or one who is attracted to the same sex, or one who lives on the streets. However, I would judge the people who tend to judge them, and go against it. Holier-than-thou? Not really. Think of it as me being selfish.
Remember, those who judge others, will someday judge you. And as much as all of us have the right to believe in what we want to, we don't have a right to shove our beliefs down someone else's throat. If you do my friend, in the words of the great Stephen Colbert "I will catch you in the headlights of my justice." And it won't be fun.