For Those Who Claim To Be Atheists

5EDABF2B-68F5-4282-AF25-80E11407602FThere is a blogger whose posts I occasionally read, even though he and I couldn’t be more different in our philosophies and ideologies. But sometimes I get a kick out of the mostly nonsensical (in my opinion) things he posts on his blog. For example, in this post, titled “If You Don’t Believe In God, They (sic) Why Are You Afraid,” he claims that atheists seem to fear death.

I’d like to examine what he said in that post and respond to his questions/comments about atheists, God, and death.

First he asks, “[F]or those who claim to be atheists, what are they so afraid of on the other side of life?” Just to be clear I don’t “claim to be” an atheist, I am one. I do not believe in the existence of some sort of mythological, mystic, supernatural, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent being. I believe that God didn’t create man, but that man created God.

Second, as an atheist, I don’t believe there is an “other side of life.” When you’re dead, you’re dead. Your life ceases. Since I don’t believe in an afterlife, I’m not afraid of it.

But the blogger is correct when he says that, “If [atheists] don’t believe in God, then they don’t believe in a final judgment. He claims that, “The Godly seem to fear the temptation of life that they will answer for come their judgment.” Sorry to burst anyone’s bubble, but atheists don’t live their lives in the hope of being found worthy of getting admitted to heaven for eternity by the magical judge in the sky. We live our lives to the fullest extent possible because there is nothing to “live for” after death.

Then he writes, “Atheists claim to be free and enlightened, yet they don’t seem to exhibit that which they claim.” I have no idea what he means by that. What is it that he believes atheists claim that we don’t exhibit, I wonder.

And finally he claims that “The atheists seem to fear death.” I don’t fear death and none of the atheists I know personally do either. I love life, and I want to live it as long as I can. But I know that death is inevitable and that once I die, it’s all over. It’s not something I’m afraid of. What I do fear is a slow, painful death, so when I die, I hope it will be fast and peaceful, preferably in my sleep.

By the way, don’t you love it when someone who is not something claims to have a special knowledge about, or insight into, something he’s not?

Share You World — Of Guns, Respect, Ego, and Death

Share Your World

As Melanie, at Sparks From a Combustible Mind, pointed out, it’s almost the end of fourth month of 2020, and what an “interesting” year it’s been so far. Here’s Melanie’s Share Your World prompt for this week.

Do guns protect people or kill people? Or both?

Both. But first, let’s be real. Guns are designed to kill. Sure, they can also be used to protect and/or defend people. But in the United States there are more guns than there are men, women, and children. More gun deaths, including suicides, than any other nation (close to 40,000 a year) and more mass shootings than any other nation. And then there are the types of guns available to citizens in America: high capacity, military-style, semiautomatic weapons. These types of weapons aren’t used for protection. So, my bottom line is that guns do kill people…far more than they protect people.

Is it more important to be respected or liked?

It would be nice to be both liked and respected, but if I had to choose one, it would be to be respected.

Is having a big ego a negative or positive trait?

Ego is essentially a sense of self, a person’s self-esteem, self-opinion, and self-confidence. We all have egos, and there’s nothing wrong with having a positive sense of self. But when someone’s ego is oversized or blown out of proportion to the point of narcissism, it becomes a negative trait.

Depending on your point of view, is death a new beginning?

Death is the end, not a beginning, new or otherwise.

Share Your World — Age, Mystery, Power, and the Great Outdoors

Share Your WorldIt’s already the last Monday of the first month of the new decade. Sheesh, where does the time go? But that aside, it’s Monday, and that means it’s time once again for Melanie’s Share Your World prompt.

What age would you like to live to?

At my age I’m grateful for every year I’m still around, but I’d like to live another 10 years, at least, so that maybe my grandson, who is due to be born in late May, will be old enough when I die to remember who I am.

What mystery do you wish you knew the answer to?

Who killed Cock Robin? Was it really the sparrow or was he covering up for one of the other creatures? And what was the motive? Everyone loved Cock Robin.

Does absolute power corrupt absolutely?

Duh!

What outdoor activity haven’t you tried, but would like to?

Oh, I’ve pretty much done all of the outdoor activities I ever wanted to try. There are some outdoor activities, like bungee jumping or skydiving, that I haven’t tried, but that’s because I don’t have a desire to severely injure myself or to die a horrible, painful death.

Sunday Photo Fiction — Where’s the Murder?

21888A13-762B-4E7D-B67E-9F04E5B56C7D“Look at that big crow, Dad,” Brian said, pointing to the large black bird on the sidewalk.

Daniel looked around. “I wonder where the murder is,” he said.

Brian gave his father a quizzical look. “Did you say ‘murder,’ Dad?”

“Crows, Brian, usually hang out in groups and a group of crows is called a ‘murder.’”

“Why? Are crows dangerous?” Brian asked.

“Not at all. Back in the day, son, groupings of many animals had colorful and poetic names. A lot of them were based on old folklore and superstitions,” Daniel explained. “For example, one folktale says that crows would rgather to decide the fate of another crow.”

“Wow, like a jury of its peers,” Brian said. “That’s so cool.”

“Yes, and in the past,” Daniel added, “many viewed the appearance of crows as an omen of death because they are scavengers and are generally associated with dead bodies, battlefields, and cemeteries. They are thought to circle in large numbers above sites where animals or people are expected to soon die.”

“Is anyone going to die around here, Dad?”

“Don’t worry, Brian,” Daniel smiled. “Even if a murder of crows show up, no one is going to actually be murdered.”

(200 words)


Written for today’s Sunday Photo Fiction prompt from Donna McNicol. Photo credit: dbmcnicol at Pixabay.

Share Your World — Grim World Edition

Monday means Melanie’s Share Your World prompt, and, as usual, she has given us some provocative questions for us to expose our inner selves to all of you. She did give us a warning, though, that in view of recent events, this week’s Share Your World is rather grim. Let’s see if we can turn some lemons into lemonade. Here we go.

Does life have a reason (meaning)?

I’m going to answer this question with a post I wrote in July 2017, which featured this screenshot from my iPhone.81AC1071-CD21-42C7-BC83-7B15DB976F97

Will the world come to an end by human hands (man’s actions)?

Yes, but not so much due to man’s actions, but more as a result of man’s inaction on climate change.

Will stricter laws make a better world?  Would less strict law make it better?

It’s not a matter of more or less strict laws. It’s about better laws that are more equally enforced, without regard to race, religion, national origin, gender, or financial status.

If death is inevitable, why bother doing anything?

Yes, death is inevitable, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t live the best life we can during the finite time we are alive. 

Are thoughts and prayers useful or a sop for people who wish to pay respect but interact through a virtual venue? Yea or nay – please explain your viewpoint (without rancor) if you would.

I’m sorry for reverting again within the same Share Your World response to a post I previously published, but this recent post of mine pretty much answers this question. And as a visual representation, here’s an image from Rob Israel that sums up my feelings about thought and prayers.8F2CB876-4DCF-4A3D-8EBF-AA62288C76A4