As a Believer, I valued the After-life more than this one!
As a Non-Believer, I value this one life I know I have far more than ever before!
As a Believer, preparing for death was most important!
As a Non-Believer, there is no death to prepare for, only Life!
So I value anything & everything which maintains & enhances quality of life, including our dear, beloved Mother Earth!
Live Life Exuberantly!
All I can say is, “As a Believer ‘I Knew I Knew!” And had a certainty of God!
Now I can say with even more certainty “I Know I don’t Know!” And I’m happier about it than ever before!
“Doubt is not the opposite of faith, certainty is!” ~ Paul Townsend
“Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones.” ~ Marcus Aurelius
In this instance I’m using Marcus Aurelius’ quote to explain an agnostic position in relation to knowledge about God & any future life beyond this life.
I believe it is impossible to know the truth in such matters myself.
I suspend judgment, saying there is insufficient evidence either for affirmation or for denial. I hold that the existence of God, though not impossible, is very improbable; so improbable that it is not worth considering in relation to decisions in this life.
As such I hold that it is far more important how we live as individuals & how we interact with one another as a worldwide human family, than that we give adoration to an unknown God.
As I no longer believe that there is an ultimate Plan of Salvation overseen by an omnipotent God, I therefore regard the responsibility, in large part, for the eventual outcome of our planet to be ours, humans!
I no longer believe that God will come to the rescue of our planet.
Rightly or wrongly I used to believe that, although we as humans would be held accountable as stewards for how we treated the planet, that at the end of the day, the earth would be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory as the Celestial Kingdom of God.
Which meant, in reality, that I mostly put my trust in God’s power & mercy to save this planet.
I now think that there will not be any supernatural power which can save & transform our world, but rather the natural power of the many like-minded, compassionate, altruistic human beings who, united in purpose, can bring about peace on earth & a wonderful, beautiful environment for us & our posterity.
As a Believer in God my time & effort was very much occupied serving & worshipping Him, often to the detriment of other more worthy causes like my immediate family & my world ‘family’.
Since becoming a Non-Believer I have had a massive re-prioritising & think that if there is a God, He would rather we focus our efforts on sorting out the planet’s problems by using all of our sense of reasoning, intellect & physical strength, than worry about who created it in the first place & waste our efforts giving Him our time, talents & money to build our faith so He can fix it.
None of this even occurred to me as a Believer, & certainly didn’t motivate me to change my beliefs.
It’s just that one’s priorities change once one sees the world from a different perspective.
This is my personal perspective and I’m not trying to convince anyone else of its superiority as a intellectual concept, but rather that humanism is a valid point of view, which can unite a world divided by cultural, political & religious differences.
I think that secular humanism, rather than being the great evil as it is so often portrayed by religious leaders, including Mormon Apostles upto & including the present will, in fact, eventually be the great unifying force for good in the world.
It, alone, has the capacity to unite people from all persuasions. To unite under a common purpose, with intrinsic human moral values for the good of our planet & the human race.
If I take death into my life, acknowledge it, and face it squarely, I will free myself from the anxiety of death and the pettiness of life – and only then will I be free to become myself — Martin Heidegger (September 26, 1889 – May 26, 1976) was a German philosopher known for his existential and phenomenological explorations of the “question of Being”.
“Owners of dogs will have noticed that, if you provide them with food and water and shelter and affection, they will think you are god. Whereas owners of cats are compelled to realize that, if you provide them with food and water and shelter and affection, they draw the conclusion that they are gods.” – Christopher Hitchens