"Ethical Atheist?", by David G. McDivitt
When I say I'm an atheist for ethical reasons, it's because I feel it is literally impossible to have any form of religion, without some degree of hypocrisy. That's what theology is for - perpetually resolving the difference between perfectionism and the real world. Much of being an atheist is choosing not to submit any longer to the religious aspects of culture, because it is realized this is merely after form, and not substance.
Have you ever been on a bandwagon? The more people you can convince your ride is appropriate, the better you feel about the ride yourself. Religion is a social thing. Why do you think Baptists give testimony so much? When one person comes along who doesn't agree, the whole of your belief comes to point. If that person makes logical arguments, you must rationalize moving on without that person's agreement, and it hurts. This is because belief in god and mysticism are inherently irrational. Very few have actually seen anything. It is just taken for granted. Even for those who have seen something, it could be explained in rational terms, should they choose to entreat that. For the most part however, religion is comprised of people who have not even seen spiritual manifestations by mistake. They merely follow a form, living on the stories of what other people say is spiritual, thinking they can create spirituality through their own EFFORT.
Rational thought has a certain ethic to it. Choosing not to submit to anything unless proven, based on fact and cause and effect, is wholly ethical, if reason is to have any meaning at all.
David G. McDivitt
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