A call for concerns

For this week’s post, I want to do something a little different. I have had many of you ask me thought-provoking questions in the comments section of each of my posts (which I encourage everyone to go back and read if you haven’t), so I thought it could be a good idea to make this post a call for more questions.

As I’ve said before, my main objective with this blog is to discourage the shame people feel – or are made to feel – for not believing in God. I aim to reach out to those that are experiencing doubt about their faith and to let them know that there is absolutely nothing wrong with religious doubt, even if it leads to a complete loss of faith. But I know there are many questions that may seem difficult and insurmountable in that journey. I’ve heard it many times before: “I doubted my religious beliefs for a while, but I just couldn’t believe that we sprung out of nothing randomly” or “I had doubts, but the fact that the earth is in a perfect ‘habitable zone’ for human life convinced me that there must have been a supernatural designer”. These are all valid concerns. Concerns that every atheist has had, and has been able to reconcile to some extent. These two are the most popular, so I will definitely address them, but I would like to hear more.

This is not to say that I will be able to give a satisfactory answer for every question that could arise in trying to understand a world without God; but I am curious to hear these concerns and, given the long journey that has led me to not believe, I imagine I have probably considered most concerns and have come to some level of satisfactory understanding, if only for myself.

So, I would really like to hear: what are some of the most difficult challenges or concerns to overcome when trying to think about a world without God?

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6 thoughts on “A call for concerns

  1. Larry says:

    If there is a supreme being who is omniscient and omnipotent, could he not have created the universe without revealing himself?

  2. E says:

    How do you cope with the role of chance in your life?

    Specifically, if there’s no deity, then it’s just luck that put you in this place, at this time, with the family and upbringing and opportunities that you’ve had, rather than sometime or somewhere else, where your life would have been nasty, brutish, and/or short.

  3. Lauren says:

    Hi Santiago,

    I clicked over here, after reading your comment on Facebook about Santa Claus and children’s morality.

    Ironically, I decisively stopped believing in God when I stopped believing in Santa Claus. To sum up my child logic, I was so awed that adults all over the world worked so hard to make one morning special for that many children, there was no need for supernatural elements for me to make sense of my world.

    Actually to be honest, even though there are dozens of cynical responses to that understanding, it continues to be one of the most important reasons why I am content–living in the Bible Belt–to not believe in a literal god. However, I always worried that my friends who held strong beliefs had some important influence that I was denied, so I do quite a bit of reading about religion and Christianity, especially when the source of my moral compass (or GPS?) is questioned.

    Today, I would consider myself a “cultural Catholic.” I would never use religion to justify a decision, but when I attend Mass or read Catholic philosophy, I am consistently amazed by how neatly the messages parallel my own worldview.

    But “losing” faith as an adult or adolescent is probably a much different experience than what I have had. It might involve rejecting your perceived source of moral/ethical guidance, often without an immediately obvious substitute, which is daunting. We’ve all known the super-religious person who appears to do a hard 180 way into Atheism, before coming back to a more balanced, appreciative view of things. Clearly, that person fought some internal demons for some time.

    “So, if I don’t believe in God, can I still refer to these sources for guidance? Does rejecting the supernatural whole have to mean rejecting the earthbound parts?”

    Cheers,
    Lauren Reinmann

    • sarchila says:

      Hi Lauren,
      Great story. I did not know you are a fellow non-believer. It’s nice to have this avenue for me and others to open up and talk about this stuff openly because I know that it’s pretty taboo in social settings to talk like this… so thanks for your comment!

      I will address yours and all the other questions in my next post… so hate to leave you hanging, but stay tuned! 🙂

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