Tuesday, January 20, 2015

A nonbeliever but not an Atheist!

Many people believe that if you don’t believe in any kind of god then you are automatically an ‘atheist.’ However, I don’t believe in god but I don’t label myself as an atheist. Many atheists, though not all, don’t believe in god not because there’s absolutely no god but because they don’t have any proof that god exists. I don’t know whether they’d believe in god should someone prove beyond any reasonable doubt that god does indeed exist or if god all of a sudden comes and proves by himself/herself that he/she does indeed exist.
I don’t see myself as an atheist because my nonbelief isn’t based on the existence or the nonexistence of god. Whether or not god exists, I still wouldn’t believe in god. I don’t see any role god plays in my life whether or not he/she exists. The tenets of life which I apply to value every human beings are internal to me not imposed from without. So I don’t see any reason why some ‘heavenly’ being would be interested in my praising him and condemning myself in order to win favors.

A powerful god would make me what he/she wants me to be anyway if he/she is the one who created me; so showering him/her with praises to win favors sounds like what many Africans do to their dictators. What’s the difference between an African dictator and a god who fancies being praised? The aim is to win favors in the government and national resources from the African leaders and to win afterlife in the case of god. I know this sounds simplistic but this is the state of affairs with the god thing. Prayers belittle gods and are superfluous for us.
So the onus is on god to tell me why I should believe in him.

While I don’t believe in god, I don’t go around denigrating religious people. Human beings are fallacious and weak entities and we thrive on fancies and imagination. To try to destroy that is complete utopia. People prefer to feel good rather than be right. We lie so many times to make our friends feel good even when we know we are lying. That’s the essence of our human-ness.
I understand atheists have the best of intentions. They don’t discriminate anyone on any basis and they’d want people to use logic, reason and science to be the basis of our life. But that sounds like the very same utopia of heavenly afterlife religious people have drummed onto our eardrums for centuries if not millennia!

To try to institutionalize atheism as an antagonistic organization against institutionalized religions is as fallacious and as wrong as the utopia church leaders have tried for centuries.
The beauty of not believing in god is the personalized understanding of oneself and what one wants in life and the moral standing one forges for oneself and exercises towards fellow human beings. Nonbelief could exist as clubs and professional associations but not as a proselytizing institution.

Religions is not bad as a concept in itself. What makes it unpalatable is its being as an institution. Institutionalization of atheism in a church-manner is a mockery of logic and reason.



As someone who grew up in war conditions and lived as a refugee for a long time, I'm sometimes considered by many people in the 'west' to be prone to (or have) low self-esteem, be poor or illiterate. Living as refugees or displaced persons, who depended on the good will of others put people in a situation where they don't think much about themselves. But that's not everyone though.

As I stood by our front desk at my place work talking about Race and Identity in relation to my book, Is 'Black' Really Beautiful?, the issue of why many African peoples in North America become so over-sensitive when racial issues come up! For many rational people, this owes its origin to slavery and racial segregation.

But one of my coworkers, a person of European descent, was surprised to realize that her 'black' friend, a very intelligent woman, easily becomes irritated by simple things she [friend] considers racist. The friend considers any mention of a watermelon racist; and complains a lot about 'white privilege.' This means that discrimination is considered something 'whites' don't face because of 'white privilege.' In any discussion between 'blacks' and 'whites', 'white privilege' issue comes up!