Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Condemned to be free

OK, so I'm a faithless person. I'm not even sure what that means. I guess I'm an atheist since I don't believe in the existence of (a) god(s). Even writing this makes me embarrassed to the core, like saying I don't believe hobbits exist.

I don't often discuss this though. I respect other people's beliefs to the extent that they believe it. I don't think it's in my place to tell other adults what they should or shouldn't believe in. This is plain rude, and I hope my manners, while I can definitely be direct, are slightly better than that.

Plus, I really have no energy for such a discussion with its inevitable conclusion. I don't feel the need to justify myself, nor persuade anyone.

Some may already feel that saying the above was rude enough, but hopefully most will take it in stride, just like I do when listening to their explanations about their faith, whatever it may be.

I can totally understand therefore much of what Charlotte Allen at the LA Times says when she thinks that "What primarily seems to motivate atheists isn't rationalism but anger." I can relate to her sentiment regarding Dawkins and others. As an -- fine I'll agree to be called by that name for the sake of being clear -- atheist, I don't understand why they have to talk so much about god. Really, many of them talk about god more than religious people.

Still, I also think Allen's position is defensive in a way, and it shouldn't. Granted, most faithless sorts sound condescending, myself included probably. But really, if people have such strong faith, they really shouldn't give people like me a second thought.

But most, I don't even understand why get into such arguments. In a way, I guess treat religious beliefs like I do sex. It's personal and no one's business.