Facing up to the reality of the world

by purrpurr 23 Replies latest jw friends

  • Finkelstein

    How do any of you fellow atheists cope with it?

    Being an atheist it avails one to analyze and evaluate why things are happening as they are, for example the recent terrible atrocities in the Middle East .

    Having an open mined perspective in finding the real truth to occurrences good or bad.

    JWs don't have to evaluate or deeply think about things, they just say well its Satan's old system of things.

    Jehovah is coming to the rescue soon, while folding ones arms in a position of apathy.

  • Giordano

    How do any of you fellow atheists cope with it?

    By expanding beyond our inclination to just be defined as an Atheist.

    For example......... long before I became a non believer I was a humanist. I believed in a God until I didn't.

    But what came first in my life was and is still the following:

    • we can gain knowledge through scientific research and looking at the natural world - what is real, what we can see and touch
    • this one life is all we Know we have
    • our morality (our sense of right and wrong) comes from our human nature and culture
    • what is right is what promotes human welfare and fulfillment
    • we can and should create meaning and purpose in life

    • That Humanism is older than all the religions
    • However if a person wants to hold on to the possibility that there is an after life many do so without believing in a religion.
    • Within this framework I have and continue to live a life that I have enjoyed and am proud that I have contributed to a world that has constantly been improving for most people.
  • DesirousOfChange

    Yes the old publishing religion gave a sense of security which was a false comfort

    That reminded me of an old illustration:

    The Truth(TM) is like a condom. It gives you a false sense of security while you're being screwed [in life]..


  • Vidiot

    Whether an atheist or an agnostic, leaving religious belief behind frees one up to use logic and reason to come to a conclusion - any conclusion - without being hamstrung by ideology.

    I can't stress how much relief one feels after realizing this.

  • DesirousOfChange

    Though I have not claimed to the position of "atheist" yet (agnostic still seems better), I did find this video which was suggested elsewhere on this site very interesting:



    Anyone who is a believer in "God"........whichever God.......is already an UN-believer to the gods of all other believers -- or it could be said, that person is already an "atheist" to all other gods (except the one they chose to believe in).

    So to become an "atheist" is to just decide today that you no longer believe in one more god than yesterday.


  • Saintbertholdt

    How do any of you fellow atheists cope with it?

    I don't consciously think about atheism that often any more. Its just automatically integrated into my thinking. I would say since becoming an atheist I consider things (news, science, evolution) much more. I also try to make my life worthwhile. Not hedonistically worthwhile, but that it in the end it may actually mean something to my fellow human beings. You know, legacy.

  • freemindfade


    You are at a phase. I found when I really let go and let it sink in, I had more peace than I ever did as a Jdub.

    I find it horrifying to watch things like ISIS burning a man alive, but my confusion, sickness and disgust is much more troubling to think there is a higher power allowing this. There is no great good vs evil, just evil people, evil, actions, evil ideas.

    You need to settle with the unknown, and the uncontrollable. That you are some what powerless to an indifferent universe, but incredibly powerful as a force for good around you.

  • umbertoecho


    You may have left religion behind or even a belief in god. That doesn't mean you are no more a spiritual person. I think that is the thing to remember. Being spiritual and having an ethic toward this world is it'self a wonderful thing. It comes without all the cruelty domination, subjection to bullies either political or religious.............

    This earth has been around so long and there has always been struggle for survival, or of one kingdom over another, one culture over another. There was a time not so far back, when our knowledge of what went on in the world was limited to those few who travelled and were able to recount their experiences. We relied upon our news outlets and that invariably gave a slanted view. If you ever wonder at moguls of the news world, you would be fascinated to find "how low" these media moguls stooped, to get a story. It had to be bad, dramatic, scary.

    And now, we are constantly fed "news". The sort of news that will stir up anxiety or slant our views politically. If not for this constant stream of information we would all be living in our own little world........still.

    I have taken the view that it is best to concentrate on what I can fix in sphere of influence and to distance myself from what is hopeless and out of my control. I have been a student of history at university and found that throughout history, the cruelty and the greatness of men is not so different from today. You were religious once weren't you? Perhaps one of the greatest weapons to our well being, brought about by religions is the tool of "dread" that they use to good effect in making us anxious about our future. Religion "needs" disaster and fear to survive and seem credible. I know it was my daily fare through out my childhood and young teenage years.

    I hope you can start to choose, really choose, what you will subject your heart and thoughts too. Take some time to decide what you will allow into your mind. I'm not saying don't care, but it may be a good idea to find some interest or cause that you can help with. I'm an old sort of woman now compared to many who are probably on this site. But I have found that age is not a problem with an age group when a person such as yourself is concerned with global matters. Take it easy purrpurr and be very gentle with your heart and mind.

  • ron rawson
    ron rawson

    I have not become an atheist yet, but am certainly well on my way to being agnostic. Either way, having no hope for the future is more realistic and much less disconcerting for me, than having hope in a lie...which, once you realize it, is having no hope at all. What ever will be, will be. Local saying where I live: "If can, can. If no can, no can".

    A positive outlook on life over rides dreadful expectations. Don't worry, be happy....be responsible, but be happy!

  • StrongHaiku

    done4good - This is a normal response to existential fear(s).

    Very true and you hit the point better than I could have (especially using the "drug" analogy). The existential crisis is a very common and normal and well-studied phenomenon found in atheists (and theists). Unfortunately, we have been conditioned to think that religion/God is the ONLY cure to the discomfort it brings. Had we been taught otherwise, we would be able to cope with the discomfort better, or not even have it at all. I think that the main reason we feel the discomfort is because we were taught/indoctrinated/acculturated to have only religion/God as a coping mechanism to a very common human brain-state. The more we want to live as close to reality as possible, the more we need good tools and coping mechanisms that are based on reality.

    For what is worth, when I am in an existential crisis, I try to go "back-to-basics". I try to look inward and remember the basic and simple things that make me happy. I love hard work. I love learning something new. I love ice cream. I love good and crappy movies. I love my girlfriend. It's all good. Sometimes, when the world gets too big, all you can do is try to focus on the small things that make life worthwhile.

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