Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Admiration for Atheists

I have great admiration for the many vocal atheists I know.  I want to send them this letter:

Dear Atheist Friend,

I am writing to express my great appreciation for your positions.  As a follower of the Christ, I could never live up to your philosophy.

I admire that you, unlike me, believe that you came about by NOTHING but random chance and natural selection.  Despite your belief that there is absolutely NO TRUE PURPOSE for your own being, you still get up every day and do something that has no purpose beyond its impact, good or bad, on those around you.

I am sincerely impressed that, with absolutely NO MORAL PURPOSE, you, for the most part, are good citizens, friends, spouses, and parents. Despite your denial of anything being truly "right" or "wrong", you do the right thing mostly.  Even though you deny claims of supernatural moral truth, preferring moral relativism, most of you, my atheist friends, still manage to believe in “natural morality” and argue that we should all ascribe to it, because… you know… “it’s natural”. .

You might not be able to define "Good" in any rational, philosophically consistent way, yet you tend to be generally good people.

Of course the things you consider to be good and bad have almost no justifiable basis in nature. You insist, understandably, that murder and rape are bad, even though murder and rape are extremely common in most species including ours.  You even manage to overlook that there are very few restrictions that could be supported by the concept of a universal natural morality, but let's ignore that for now.  Yet, you live quite happily, and surprisingly morally, with incoherence!

Some of you appeal to the Darwinian concepts of natural selection and cultural group selection to explain your good behavior.  Evolution requires that life have no goals, but results in the “most successful” organisms becoming more common.  Natural selection requires that we each look to our own interests first.  Helping family, cooperating with others, being a “good person” all evolved because they help our genes become more common.  We (humans) should cooperate because it is in our own interest to cooperate.  Indeed, no other species cooperate on the scale that we do except for some ants, bees, wasps, and termites.  Thus, being a (kinda) good person (or seemingly good) is actually an optimal behavior for a self-interested human.  You use the idea that we are evolved to be "good" to justify your “natural morality”, ignoring the “bad” behaviors that we are also evolved to do, such as cheating, lying, stealing, murdering, raping, and engaging in warfare.  In this way, you can manage to use a bit of biology and a healthy dose of willfully ignoring biology to explain atheists' generally kind, considerate, and generous behavior.  But again, generally you are surprisingly good people, even based on your own inconsistent arguments.

Wow, just wow!

Ultimately, you believe that one day, not many years hence, you will pass from existence without any hope for anything further, no ultimate destiny at all.  Yet, you stare your ultimate obliteration in the eye, without so much as a blink.  Your irrational bravery is truly impressive.

As a Christian, I have to admit, that IF I believed as you do, I would not be nearly so kind, compassionate, loyal and honest as you.  If I shared your philosophy, I'd "Go for the gusto"!  I'd be all about serving my own desires.  I'd cheat and steal to the limits of my ability.  If I were an atheist, I can't imagine being loyal to anyone or any cause.  I'd devote my life to "Looking out for Number ONE"!  Yet, you guys are good people in many ways.

Amazing.

Keep up the good work!

Amazing.

(With Thanks to Andrew B for his help on this.)

No comments:

Post a Comment