The atheist is the most fortunate person


Friends, I have come across a post that for lack of a better word portrays the atheist in so unfortunate a light that it is only fair that we be heard. I will not claim to speak for every atheist, but myself. However, before I respond to the three posts which can be found here, here and here, I want to start by saying that atheism answers only one question. The question is do you believe in the existence of god[s]? To which the answer is no! Beyond that, it says nothing about whether I am vegetarian, stamps collector, nada nada, nothing. With this out of the way, I can now proceed to answer to the claims of the above three posts.

The first accusation is the atheist lacks faith which is touted as the greatest good on earth. Our accuser commits a fallacy of equivocation. The word faith here is used in a narrow meaning forgetting that it has other meanings. I will demonstrate. I have faith my car will start in the morning. This faith is informed by the fact that I drove my car home the previous evening, it showed no sign of mechanical failure and last I started it, it worked. It could fail to start, though. It is therefore important that we are told what faith are we deprived of, if it is faith in an afterlife or fairies, that isn’t useful to me and as such I don’t need it.

We are asked to believe the atheist is devoid of human love. I don’t think this claim needs a response. My ability to love other sentient beings has nothing whatsoever to do with whether fairies exist or not. This said, however, I can understand where this comes from. I have often times asked my friends to tell me what they mean when they talk about love and I will tell you that many if not all have very interesting responses. I have sometimes said love is an ambiguous term, and if this is the basis of this accusation, then so be it, but it doesn’t diminish the fact that whatever it means to love, the atheist is as capable of having it just as the theist.

There is a beauty in looking at plant life, animal life or even at contemplating the night sky. There is sublime beauty in knowing we are stardust without positing a divine creator. All around us, both for the believer and unbeliever we are surrounded by natural processes and there is every mystery in looking at the working of nature. Therefore to write

The eye of the atheist sees in creation nothing other than the operation of natural processes. The brilliance and magnificent beauty of the Divine Creator’s image remain hidden and undetectable to him. As he glances aimlessly at creation, nowhere does he discover the beauty of God’s wisdom, nowhere does he see God’s omnipotence, nowhere does he observe God’s goodness and providence, nowhere does he discern the Creator’s righteousness and love for creation

is blatantly false and a collection of hodgepodge. It is what my good friend Tidleb would call deepity those statements that look profound but tell us nothing. And while here, as I have written always, what god? And why would life and the universe need a creator? And where is this love? Is he implying that his god in act of love created the antelope to be killed by the lion for food or the male preying mantis gets to be killed during intercourse, tough love it must be!

The atheist has reason informed by experience as his guide. He walks with his head held high knowing that he too, like all things, in nature die and rot and go back to what they were before in the endless cycle of natural processes. He sees his kin die and knows that he too shall die. If this truth is uncomfortable for some, too bad, but I think to say

The atheist lives in a dispirited state; listlessness has taken hold of his soul. He wanders astray in the lightless and expansive night of this present life without even one ray of light to illumine his crooked paths

is not only mean but borders on condescension. It is a statement borne of ignorance, loaded with hate and malice and is far removed from reality as anything could possibly be.

I am grateful to my friends, they know because I express my appreciation to them. I love a lot of things and so many people. To claim

Feelings of love and gratitude remain unknown mysteries for the atheist

is based just as the others are, on ignorance of atheists. I can only say the author of this piece must live in a place where there is no atheist or he hasn’t met my friends.

It is said of the atheist that

 having appointed matter as his principal governor, limited man’s true happiness within the narrow confines of temporary pleasures.

Be that as it may, please tell me one permanent pleasure that ain’t borne of wishful thinking. All things in nature are transient. This is not wishful thinking. This is fact. You can either embrace it, knowing that nothing is permanent or you can pretend it is not the case and be surprised when things happen not as you had expected them to be.

If as he writes

God, however, has fled from the heart of the atheist. The human heart has infinite desires because it was created to embrace the infinite God. However, since the atheist’s heart is not filled with the infinite God, it can never be filled or satisfied with anything—even though it perpetually groans, seeks, and desires to do so.

The fault is with god and not the atheist. The theist then must ask his god to fill the atheist’s heart with whatever it is that should fill hearts but please leave enough space to allow the heart pump blood :-P. I don’t want to die of heart failure!

I know of no other pleasures. This statement

The pleasures of the world are incapable of filling the heart’s emptiness

then joins the list of those many meaningless things people are oft to say in the hope they have said something substantial. The atheist/ naturalist says we have one life here and we have a duty to make each other’s journey through it as beautiful and easy as it can possibly be. We are earthbound, we make no promise of a future bliss. If we can’t have bliss here, there is no guarantee it can be anywhere else. And I say, since, we needed no training before our birth on how to live here, if there be another place, we should be able to learn to live there as well. While still on this part, I must say, the theist must show me why his god would choose such a torturous route to get us to heaven and hell. Why not just populate the two places at one go?

If happiness is dependent in believing there is a god, and that this god loves you, one wonders why there are countless unhappy believers. No, we are happy when our desires are met, our health is sound, those around us aren’t distressed, we all have a roof over our heads and food in the stomach. Anyone struggling to live can’t be happy.  And am not saying having so much makes you happy, nope, but knowing that you are safe, have food and is loved is enough to make all of us happy.  No god is required.

This statement

The atheist is unaware that man’s happiness is found not within the enjoyment of earthly pleasures but in the love of God

is therefore superfluous and irrelevant to human happiness.

The theist is slave of a tyrant, not the atheist. The theist believes his god desires worship, watches his every deed and will likely condemn him to an eternal fire for finite crimes. Reason can’t be a tyrant. There is no place on the earth where a life has been lost because people were reasonable, but many a number have been lost and continue to be lost in the name of god. So again, this statement

The atheist has become a unfortunate slave subjugated to a harsh tyrant!

is blatantly false and ridiculous. It can hold no water. It can’t stand.

The natural world fills the naturalist with joy and gladness. If you want to believe this, look at the wonderful photos by my good friend Sonel or Sally and if you aren’t dissuaded from this thought

The natural world seems to him sterile and barren. It neither provides him with joy nor generates within him feelings of delight

then you are definitely beyond help. It is you, not the atheist, who needs help. Wake up, look at the beauty around you and be filled with gladness that you are apart of a magnificent thing. That nature has so combined atoms to come up with a being such as you that can appreciate her beauty. You don’t need gods to see that the world and the universe is beautiful.

We are then told

Unmerciful and uncompassionate despair, in turn, violently and harshly severs the thread of his pitiful life, and hurls him into the depths of perdition and darkness, from where he will resurface only when the voice of his divine Creator—Whom he denied—calls him to give an account of his disbelief, at which point he will be condemned and sent to the eternal fire.

to which, in conclusion, I respond, don’t despair for me. If you are not going to be my attorney, let me be. Live your life praising your god and while at it, pray so hard that you are worshiping the right god and if that isn’t the case, that the right god be merciful to you for worshiping a wrong one. If any atheist is called to account, they will do so on their own, stop your threats, they are meaningless to us. They don’t scare us. And in closing, our lives are full of light not darkness, we know we shall die someday and when that day comes we will be no more and are the happy for it.

May your god help you, but please leave the atheist to live his life. The time to live is now.

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About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

31 thoughts on “The atheist is the most fortunate person

  1. I actually feel quite sorry for those who have such a need to believe in a bliss to come rather than enjoying all the beauty and bliss there is to be found in our everyday lives but, boy, do they make me mad when they think we live such little lives because we do not rely on an imaginary friend!
    Thanks for the mention here. 🙂

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  2. Mordanicus says:

    My love for all living beings on this planet and those who might exist on other planets as well, is totally independent from my believe that a personal god probably does not exist.

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  3. john zande says:

    “The eye of the atheist sees in creation nothing other than the operation of natural processes. The brilliance and magnificent beauty of the Divine Creator’s image remain hidden and undetectable to him. “

    I would simply refer this blogger to Sir David Attenborough:

    ”I think of a little child in east Africa with a worm burrowing through his eyeball. The worm cannot live in any other way, except by burrowing through eyeballs. I find that hard to reconcile with the notion of a divine and benevolent creator.”

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  4. exrelayman says:

    The last paragraph you quoted is the real heart of the matter. Like the question, “What if you’re wrong?” is supposed to make me stain my pants out of fear. Ah, fear. There you have it. Let fear guide you to the marvelous and merciful God of Love. Or something like that 🙂

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  5. ubi dubium says:

    Love your response. The only thing that I might phrase differently is about having faith that my car will start. I would not describe that as “faith” because I am working from evidence. I’d call it “confidence” that there is a high probability that my car will start, based on actual past performance on previous days. No “faith” required.

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  6. Sonel says:

    Well said Mak. Just because you do not believe what others believe doesn’t make you a bad or evil person and that is what I have against most of the religious folks – they walk around preaching to everyone to be like this or like that but they are the first to throw stones and call you evil or satanistic if you do not stand by their beliefs. What makes me angry at people like that is that they use their ‘God’ to break others down and that is total BS! Where you see the beauty in nature and have love for everyone around you, they walk around with negativity in their hearts (black as coal) because they can’t be like you. Maybe it’s because some of them to realise the truth in what you are saying and it scares them. Believe what you want to believe and keep on being the lovely and kind person you are. 😀

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    • makagutu says:

      Indeed Sonel, if they think god is waiting to judge us, and I hear none of them volunteering to be our attorneys, they should let us be. Live and let live, is a mantra that I think works.
      Thanks for visiting!

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      • Sonel says:

        What they don’t know is that they are only judging themselves and i totally agree with you. Love that mantra and you’re welcome. 😀

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  7. amazing that the outright lies that this Christian must tell themselves to make themselves feel superior.

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    • I was pleased to post this on this Christian’s blog. Of course, the chance that the Christian will allow any post showing that they are wrong through are minimal.

      “”Feelings of love and gratitude remain unknown mysteries for the atheist.”
      ‘t’s amazing that Christian will go out of their way to tell intentional lies about others and they evidently feel they must tell themselves such nonsense to make themselves feel superior to everyone else. I’m also guessing that this will never pass moderation. It does help to remain in a bubble, when you are caught lying isn’t it?
      I’m sorry, my poor blog author, but I am quite able to feel love and gratitude. I’ve been married to a wonderful man for 20+ years, I have a great family, a pleasant workplace where people help me and others, etc. Let me guess, you’ll excuse your nonsense by claiming that what I feel isn’t “really” love or gratitude.
      I wonder about someone who claims to worship a god that repeatedly says it hates lies and liars in its supposedly holy book. Your actions bely your claims of belief and fear of this god. Since you obviously aren’t afraid of what your god has supposedly said, why should I be?”

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      • makagutu says:

        I don’t know where the idea that we are devoid of feeling, wonder and hope comes from but it is one of the outrageous claims made by any religious mind.

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        • I think it’s a desperate attempt to devalue any human that doesn’t agree with this type of Christian. We must be inhuman animals and therefore the Christian doesn’t have to even acknowledge the few good things in their bible.

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    • makagutu says:

      Someone has to work hard to come up with these lines. One feels the author is so removed from reality it would be impossible to bring them back.

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  8. […] The atheist is the most fortunate person. […]

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  9. Brisancian says:

    Wow. There is an old fashioned word for folks like St. Nektarios: bigot.

    I am reminded of how people once talked about “the lesser races”. There was a great deal of fanciful downward talking there as well.

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  10. ryan59479 says:

    I’ve always found the argument that the universe is more beautiful or meaningful if there is a Creator to be an odd one. Looking at a sunrise hardly seem special if God just snapped his fingers and willed everything into existence. The complexity of a black hole seems arbitrary if it was just blinked into existence.

    On the other hand, if you take the atheist perspective, doesn’t everything seem more precious if it’s random and improbable? Doesn’t rarity determine value, and wouldn’t the existence of a creator totally mitigate rarity, and therefore value?

    Theists are an odd bunch…

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    • makagutu says:

      I agree with you. Contemplating this mystery has more value knowing that it is a rare event compared to one where a creator can create another by saying a few let there be.
      Theists need to spend their free time doing a little thinking, maybe they wouldn’t say so odd things!

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  11. aguywithoutboxersRoger Poladopoulos says:

    Excellent! Superlative! And as one more note, my Nairobi brother, we’re free from all the guilt belief systems seem to burden onto their followers. Much love!

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  12. graceinca says:

    It’s been said that there is no poetry in science and atheism. Your beautiful post shows that poetry is in everything in our universe quite outside any beliefs in god(s), and the complete joy at seeing this world that we are in and not ignoring it because we’re waiting for something better.
    One of the saddest things ever heard is: “Hell is right here on earth.” It always, always comes from people with the deepest belief in a creator, and is the most hopeless statement imaginable.
    I, for one, don’t need god to make me appreciate this life and the wonder that is a part of it.

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    • makagutu says:

      Hey mate and thanks for your comment. The theist is blind to the beauty in the world, and doesn’t seem to understand the universe is beautiful without positing gods, phantoms or fairies.

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  13. shelldigger says:

    It’s funny how these people assume so much, with nary a well reasoned conclusion to offer. To assume that I, or you, or anyone who has reached the point where dogs are meaningless, are incapable of loving our children or appreciating the beauty of life around us is absurd.

    Personally, I often take the time to point things out to my family, the deer in the backyard, the odd cloud formation, the spider web backlit by the sun, the sunset, the praying mantis, an eagle at the river, or perhaps many of the wonders of our own galaxy through a 12.5 inch telescope. I see and share, appreciate, and enjoy these moments. I truly love my kids and wife, and good friends which are few.

    For these people to assume otherwise, it is just another lie they have to tell themselves. One of the many rationalizations they have to resort to, to keep their smug assed turtleshell of faith cobbled together. I have to wonder how devout the faith, when you have to resort to this kind of misrepresentation? To say they are habitual liars is similar to saying the sun will rise tomorrow.

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    • makagutu says:

      you say it well. It is absurd for a person to think we who have abandoned childish ways no longer find beauty in the world around us or that we can no longer love! Such a person needs to walk a mile in an atheist shoes to see how beautiful the world is without phantoms.

      Like

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