Happiness Beats God.

February 22, 2010
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The Oxford dictionary is wrong: atheism is not the belief that God does not exist; it is the lack of belief in God. For me I am an atheist the same way I am an a-fairyist and an a-Santa-Clausist. I shouldn’t even have to say it. The fact that I do have to tell people at all is strange. I’m the one with the non-belief, why is it always me who has to explain myself to your belief?

You don’t have to understand it. You could think I’m wrong, though 95 percent of the time the arguments Christians present me with are erroneous and show a complete lack of understanding about evolution, the big bang theory, or even religion itself. (And trying to argue creationism makes me barf a little in my mouth, to be honest.) But here’s the big question: why are you arguing with me at all? I’m atheist. Big whoopdeedoo. I’m not going around bashing Christianity (unless one is chiefly talking about Church corruption and not belief), and I don’t even try to argue my side unless you intentionally provoke me with a nonsensical debate I can’t help debunking. I respect your belief, so why can’t you respect my non-belief? Please. Don’t pray for me. Don’t ‘understand’ me and then condescendingly tell me I’m going to hell, which I don’t believe in either.

For me, religion, or even the lack of religion, is not a big deal. I can survive. I can be moral. I can be happy, and yes, I can be fulfilled. If you need God, if you believe in Jesus – by all means, go ahead. I’m not stopping you, nor am I trying to stop you. But the patronising way many Christians regard atheists is unbearable. If you’re not one of them, I love you. Think I’m wrong all you like. Just don’t say it to my face and don’t try to convert me. I can be your neighbour, I can help you, I can love you without believing in what is for me a fairytale. (And, quite frankly, if you believe I’m an ignorant fool who doesn’t know anything about religion, then I am atheist all the more. How can I believe in something without understanding it? I don’t understand it and couldn’t understand it anymore than you can understand why I’m atheist. Besides, more than likely you hardly understand anything about it either, and was just brought up to believe. Which is fine, just don’t try to preach your ignorance at me in a condescending way, it kills me.)

I am not confused. It is true, I cannot prove to you God does not exist anymore than you can prove to me he does. You can try, if you like. But you won’t succeed anymore than I would in doing the opposite. Hell, (By Jove, cheesy pun intended!) it doesn’t even matter to me if God really, really, really exists or not. I have never felt a higher divine being somewhere up there. I have never felt I needed someone to talk to, to rely on, to believe in. I have never needed God, and I never will. I always felt stupid when my mother told me to pray, because I never truly believed anyone was listening. My logic tells me I couldn’t believe in God even if I wanted to. As for what created the universe, there are many theories, but I don’t care. I’m just trying to live. Without God.

Why? Because all that is necessary for me is my self-belief. I work hard and trust in my own abilities. I don’t need help from God, and I get myself through hard times by relying on myself, my family and my friends, all of whom are 100 percent real, tangible people. I create my own future, and my own past. I set myself my own challenges, or life does. And I get through it because I’m strong. Sometimes it is lonely. Sometimes it is hard. This is life, people. Life is not easy, but I am determined to make something of it with my own hands, because it is precious and only comes once. What more, I make my own accountability. I suffer the consequences of what I do, but it’s alright because everything is my own choice, my own decision. I do all this without the need to believe. For me, God is not truth. Happiness is. I can be happy without God, and that is true.

If you need to, if you want to, if you were brought up to believe, if you were converted: then believe. It is your choice. Just like atheism is mine, though to be honest it is more a natural state of mind than a conscious choice. Don’t hate me for it; it won’t do you any favours in the literal or divine sense. Why be so defensive if you ‘know’ you’re right? Class me as a loony bin, I’m a pretty happy one, thanks. I prefer to spend my life enjoying the physical, tangible world we call life than chasing phantoms neither you nor I can prove is real. Even inexhaustible philosophical questions like “Who am I” are more interesting to me than the question of God. At least I know that the metaphysical human identity exists for sure, whatever it is.

Life is beautiful, and so is love. This is something everyone can agree on and believe in. Life is sometimes simpler than you think. Instead of the pursuit of God, I choose to make my path the pursuit of happiness. This is what I believe.

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houston said...
Dec. 22, 2014 at 6:15 am
I loved how truthful you were, and didn't give a care about what you said, i am a agnostic and i'm definitely confused at this minute, about God and all... one thing is that i also feel angry at Him, my own reasons... but sometimes i feel like if i don't believe in God, something bad will happen... i loved it! :)
Pargaran said...
Oct. 26, 2013 at 12:02 am
One thing I wanted to point out: how can you say you're not going around bashing Christianity when you just said creationism makes you 'barf a little in your mouth'? That's not exactly respectful. I'm not gonna say that evolution makes me want to throw up just because I don't believe it.
The_Earl_of_Zerces said...
Nov. 2, 2012 at 4:19 pm
I think the problem most Atheists have with "I'll pray for you", is that even though it's supposed to come off as caring, it still implies that you find something WRONG about the Atheist, and that they need to be somehow fixed. So, I guess it's like killing them with kindness, in a way.
The_Earl_of_Zerces said...
Nov. 2, 2012 at 4:16 pm
Be kind!?! YOU DON'T SAY! Why, I had no IDEA that all Christians were perfect little angels that were never condescending or rude or downright persecutive towards atheists like the author of this article!!! Just because you're kind towards Atheists, that doesn't mean that all Christians are like you. And just like any person who is pushed to the limit, this person most likely has just had enough with all the crap they've had to put up with because of their beliefs. Telling them t... (more »)
The_Earl_of_Zerces said...
Nov. 2, 2012 at 4:09 pm
Sorry for butting in like this, but I assume Genya knows Love is real for the exact same reason you know it's real. It's a feeling which seeps throughout your whole being, and regardless of whether it comes from God or not makes absolutely no difference when it comes to Love's potency or power. Am I right, Genya, or was that making assumptions?
StarryRoss said...
Sept. 12, 2012 at 12:27 am
I'm Catholic, so obviously i sort of disagree, but i must say, you're the first atheist on this site that I have respect for. You have valid points, stated in a matter-of-fact, logical way and THANK GOD (or happiness, haha) you can spell and you sound very smart writing this, sorry to say, other atheist writers (you should take notes on this dude). I also think creationism is... funny :) As much as we can't understand it, let's try to see another view and at least give it respect.
NicholasJ.Mazza said...
Jul. 7, 2012 at 1:44 am
it was a good read. Well written and good points too.
Taphephobia This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Nov. 16, 2011 at 6:31 am
This is well-written. I can see why it got top voted especially because it's so controversial. Anyway, thought I'd mention something. You said it didn't matter to you if God really was real, but think about it. That means Jesus really did die. He really did get flogged, spit on, shoved to the ground, had a crown of thorns shoved into his head, was humiliated, painstakingly made his way up a hill carrying his death sentence on his back, hung on a big wooden cross, nails piercing his wrist as his ... (more »)
Genya This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 16, 2011 at 5:30 pm

If a dead soldier's funeral is picketed, and the people doing it are Christian, is it still justified?

I don't think Jesus died so that Christians everywhere could give atheists a guilt trip...

And officially, he was convicted of treason, okay?

Taphephobia This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 17, 2011 at 6:25 am

1. I'm not sure I consider those Christians following God's will.

2. Neither do I. But I do think He wanted everyone to get the chance to know the truth.

3. If you read the bible, the officials and people of the government saw that he did nothing wrong (except the pharisees) It was only the people who accused him of claiming to be the Messiah. It isn't treason and could only be considered a crime if untrue which it is true so he really didn't commit any kind of crime.

Genya This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 17, 2011 at 3:01 pm

1. Okay, I know I was a bit upset there...

2. And thank you for you thoughts.


3. I was making a historical reference, not a biblical one.

I mean, maybe it was that way in history too, but if you want to win an argument against an atheist, using the bible isn't helping.


Taphephobia This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 17, 2011 at 4:50 pm
True, but the officials still saw nothing wrong with him.
Genya This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 17, 2011 at 4:54 pm
What an injustice then...
BlueRain replied...
Dec. 30, 2011 at 6:49 pm
Why does it matter whether Jesus's sacrifice actually did what he thought it would? Does that make it a waste? Does that make it any less special? A person can make a beautiful painting as a gift, and it would still be just as beautiful even if the person didn't want it or it never ended up being given. In a sense I don't believe that Jesus's sacrifice saved anyone from sin in the magical sense that it was made out to be. I don't think that just because he sacrificed himself that the gates of h... (more »)
Genya This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Dec. 30, 2011 at 8:52 pm
Of course, that's kind of what I mean. He did nothing wrong, and he died anyway. Even if it didn't reach everyone, it was still significant.
CollinF replied...
Jan. 22, 2012 at 4:12 pm
The Bible is an historically reliable source. Why would you doubt its reliability? It's perfectly credible. And there's really no reason to say Jesus was just a moral teacher. The gospels are the only reliable biography we have of Him, and they obviously tell a different story. It's like saying Alexander the Great just claimed to be his aunt's chimney-sweep. But of course, the Alexander example would be more likely than the Jesus one, considering his biographies aren't nearly as reliable as Jesu... (more »)
Genya This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jan. 22, 2012 at 4:18 pm
I doubt that, only because "history is written by the victors" so it's probably more biased than your average history text book. And some of the information I think only came from dreams. And, human error can get in the way of anything, even the divine.
CollinF replied...
Jan. 22, 2012 at 8:00 pm
What? How is that even relevant? The entire New Testament was compiled while Christians were still being roasted alive in the Emperor's garden and fed to hungry lions in the Colosseum. And none of the gospel info was transmitted via dreams. Two were written by eye-witnesses, one by an eye-witness's secretary, and the fourth by a first century journalist who interviewed eye-witnesses. And yes, it can. That's why the NT has such early and plentiful manuscript evidence that validates its claims.
dancegirl13 replied...
Mar. 27, 2012 at 8:00 pm
How do you know that the "eye-witnesses" who wrote the New Testament weren't making everything up? Do you really believe that every detail in the Bible is true?
Taphephobia This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Mar. 27, 2012 at 9:39 pm
Even the people who were against this new religion (the Jews, Pharisees, and High Priests) wrote the same accounts and confirmed the claims of the disciples.
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