The upside of atheism
My goodness Paul! So you love nothing about life? I believe death is a big soft comfy bed and there are no alarm clocks. I am well loved by many (don't ask Farkel about that). And I love. Maybe what you really should be looking into is how you can appreciate the life you have.
Also, the only thing that I enjoy about life is connection. Those brief moments when I feel connected to someone that cares about me and that I care about. Also those moments that when I contemplate that there may really be a God that loves us and has something better in store than this torture I experience now. If it's all not true, if love doesn't exist and is just a "neuro-chemical part of our survival mechanism" what's the point of living? Why not just die now? I don't understand.
Paul I am really sorry to hear you feel that way right now. It is easy for some of us who went through this adjustment a long time ago to be flippant about how transient life is. We may forget times of despair and angst coming to terms with the huge psychological leap from a view of eternity to acceptance of our own mortality.
I have been there, where you are now. I know the sense of panic at a life half lived that I thought would never end. It will pass and as Flipper said so wisely there is so much purpose and meaning to be had in life. Nihilism is not the inevitable alternative to faith. When life is no longer viewed as a rehearsal many find that life becomes more real.
Of course love is real, your experiences of love and relationships are all that matters, I never waste time worrying about whether there is a sound philosophical foundation for it, just live it.
It is of course comforting to hope that there may be more, as long as it does not cause you to opt out of finding purpose and joy in this life there is likely no harm in that. Don't bully you heart into following your head, it may catch up in its own time, I always find there is a considerable gap in time between what I know and what I feel, there is no hurry. - Bill
Paul, that second to last sentence in your post is very disturbing to me.
I am an atheist too and I have no reason to "want to die". Do you not have family and friends that you love? Or do they not love you? Atheists don't want to die. They live life like theists but without the need for rituals, prayers and worship to an unseen deity. We have a reason to live but the reason isn't any god.
PAUL - Love DOES exist.
Hi Flipper, I do believe that too. Without it, there is no meaning to life (for me).
Of course love exists. And relationships. And all the good things that we enjoy and hold dear. Life is worth living, and living to the full. I will agree that the thought of there being no afterlife, paradise, heaven - anything - was initially disturbing and frightening. But life can be and is enjoyed to the full by people of virtually every background, creed, faith, belief, and non-belief. Life is good and fulfilling.
I look around me at family, friends, my children, satisfying work, food, drink, love, laughter, this beautiful earth, and I think, isn't this ENOUGH? I think that it is!
I think of life as a long day, death as bedtime.
I do feel loved by many people but the thought of eternal death fills me with terror. The fact that we can die at any moment is terrifying to me. When I hear about things like the Haiti earthquake I feel terror. This world terrifies me. If I didn't have any hope for something better I don't think I'd make it through. That's why I'm trying to understand the mindset of an atheist. How can you be an atheist and still be at peace? Even though I believe in God, there are always those times of doubt. If I could be okay with atheism too, I'd have everything covered.
I've realized that hope and faith don't equal truth. Knowing this I can't bring myself to the delusion that there is a heaven, hell or a god.
The theory of evolution is fascinating to me. It's much more fascinating than being created from dust.
I've realized that hope and faith don't equal truth.
I know, and again, I'm not questioning the validity of my position. I'm not asking if it's "true". I'm just asking, if there really is no God, no hope, why does that make you happy? What's so good about it? How does it bring you peace knowing this "truth"?
Knowing it can end at any moment makes every moment you have all the more precious, don't you think?
What you feel will pass in time. As has been said, life is good. But you have to see it as such. Choice my friend is completely yours and you're free to make it.