Thursday, December 22, 2011

Atheist Unapologetics

I never liked the term “apologetics.” Christian apologists never apologize, they only justify their stance, or make excuses. They should be called justifiers, or excuse makers.

[Yes, I know that an “apology” is a defense… please don’t think you’re correcting me by pointing this out.]

I think atheists should be unapologetic, in both senses of the word. There’s no reason for atheists to feel sorry for their views, but more than that, atheists don’t need to make an apology [or defense] in favor of atheism. If you don’t understand what I mean, I will say this: I have never felt like I was defending atheism. Atheism doesn’t need defending, religion does.

More than an atheist, I am a cynic. Not in the modern sense of the word, but in the original use. I am a dog… okay, not that original. I question everything. Atheism is a small concept. It could be folded up and put in your pocket. There isn’t much to it. Cynicism is a way of life, and is closer to a religion than atheism could ever be (though neither is).

While there are atheists who seek out positive “proofs” or evidence for atheism, that never interested me. I’m glad they do it, and I hope they keep doing it, but it’s just not my style. I prefer to actively seek out religious ideology and religious people with the sole purpose being that I want to find something I haven’t seen or heard before.

I’m not looking to defend atheism or attack religion, but religion is the one making all the claims and it’s my job as a cynic to think critically about what they say. I envision myself as a stationary rock at the center of my universe, and at times, there are people and ideas which move me, but I don’t roll in any particular direction on my own will. Thus far, religion has utterly failed to move me.

So why not invite religion into my world, or even seek it out? I guess it’s probably for the same reason that some nights, after my wife has gone to bed, as I am flipping through the channels, I may put on some sports. I don’t pay attention to any particular sport anymore, but I’ve played basketball, baseball, hockey and football, and I’ve watched even more, including boxing, mixed martial arts, and of course anything during the Olympics.

I don’t feel compelled to play myself, or even to watch religiously. I mostly just tune in every once in a while, nod my head, and think, “Well, the names have changed, but it’s all basically still the same.” Before long, I move on again. It’s enough to just get a taste of something to confirm that I still find it disagreeable; I don’t need to order a whole meal of it every day for weeks to be find out.

1 comment:

  1. Likewise, I like to learn people's stories to find out why they believe what they believe and behave the way they do.

    I have a relationship with the Father, Son & Holy Spirit and I don't feel the need to defend a relationship. I guess I'm not a very good Christian apologetic.

    Merry Christmas, or Happy Festivus to the rest of us!


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