Why be an atheist? Is there some social or political reason to reject a belief in God? Of course there isn’t and those of us who have rejected belief over reason are often regarded as immoral, unethical people. We are perceived as those that want to destroy society as we know it in favor of some godless society in which any and everything is permissible.
No single atheist may speak for another, but as an atheist, I reject that depiction. I’m not out to do harm to society, but actually want the best for those I live with everyday. I want every person to be treated equally and have an opportunity to succeed in life despite any hardships that have been encountered.
I want people to not forget the past, but learn from it, and accept that we, as humans are fallible. No one is perfect, no matter their belief or unbelief, and we should never judge anyone based on anything other than what they are.
Some people refer to this as “humanism”, I refer to it as just being a rational human being. We atheists are more to blame than we would ever consider. We’ve left the realm of rationality for the easier, less troublesome, sphere of emotional reaction to everything we see or hear.
It’s no wonder that believers have so little respect for us today. In some ways we are no different than they, holding on to something unprovable but which makes us feel good about ourselves.
Of course, we’ve set ourselves up for this, being derided by those whose beliefs we claim to reject. Our appearance is not that of those that reject superstition, but those that, in another way, embrace it.
But we’re all human aren’t we? Yes, and that’s the point. Atheists are no better, and no worse, than anyone else. We should begin to recognize this fact and communicate that to others that may not see us that way.
I don’t always agree with everyone I come into contact with, atheist or not. I don’t follow the herd, as we’re seen by many to do. We ned to change the perception. How we do that is not as a group, or some “community” but as individuals, relaying to those that may have an adverse opinion of atheism, as to what we really think.
2 thoughts on “Removing the Stigma of Atheism”
Quoting you: “Of course, we’ve set ourselves up for this, being derided by those whose beliefs we claim to reject. Our appearance is not that of those that reject superstition, but those that, in another way, embrace it.”
Brilliant! The way we embrace it: Opposition to religion can be/is deadly and so atheists learned to “accept” the reality and just pee on their shoes. Atheists are the ones turning their cheeks. The believers are the narcissists, we are the masochists, it seems. We need to hit them where it hurts, right in the crotch of the resurrection. GROG
Having spent decades attempting to “humanize” atheism, I can report back that with a few exceptions, it has been a failure. Even those I would count as good friends still expect only bad from atheists…just not me.
Why try to remove the stigma? Atheists have always gone against the mainstream of societal norm, which is to have a deity belief and take part in the religious rituals that support it.
We is what we is. The best we can do when revealing our lack of deity belief is to have established ourselves first as decent human beings, who are much like everyone else in the community, except that we don’t believe in God, Allah, Vishnu or any other deities.
Maybe in a few decades this will change or maybe atheists will go back into the closet for safety’s sake.