I want to start out by saying it isn't my intent to bash atheists at all and I hope that this doesn't turn into that.
I just have a few questions for atheists that I was wondering if someone could answer for me. My questions are these: How is it that an atheist can believe in good/ethical/right behavior or action? and How can you believe in the performance of magick or mystical anything?
To clarify I was wondering because if you believe in good/ethical/right behavior or action what makes it so? Doesn't its existence mean that there is something greater out there? I have heard people who believed that the only true atheists are moral skeptics and I wanted to know an atheist's view on this. I don't want to argue I just want to understand. Then with the second one doesn't believing in magick or the mystical arts mean that you believe on a force or power that is beyond man? I am kind of sick of non-atheists telling me why humanism and atheism doesn't make sense. I am not atheist but that doesn't mean I don't want to understand atheists better.
Good? What is good? This is highly subjective, what you consider good, I may consider bad and vice versa. I follow an internal moral compass, which requires no belief in deity. Ethics and morality does not come from deity, it comes from human nature.
That makes sense.
On what specifically? That we are moral skeptics?
By moral skeptic I meant one that believed that there is no such thing as good or moral action and that all is just action. With your previous answer it seems clear that you believe in a personal moral compass which really answers my question since if you believe in some form of morality(including personal) you wouldn't be a moral skeptic in my mind. You explained quite well how someone could be atheist without being a moral skeptic.
Just because it doesn't make sense to other people, doesn't mean you can't make sense of it. If it doesn't suit you, that's fine - but I believe that understanding the human condition may assist you in understanding my beliefs, as well as your own.
I will be honest here. This is the one answer you gave that doesn't make any sense to me in context. I said that I wanted to understand atheists and other people and then you lecture me about how I should want to understand other's beliefs? Were you agreeing with my feelings or...?
Thank you. Good response.
I will state that I don't base my feelings of right or wrong on fear or guilt. I feel guilt and fear and they do influence my actions but I don't base right and wrong on such feelings.
I generally feel good, but I go with the view to do things (when it comes to moral decisions) because it is right and not to concern myself with the results. I have little control of the results but I have power over my own actions. I generally find though that the things that make me happy are the things I view as right.
Fair enough of a question (I have no problem clarifying as I have asked others the same thing). I must first clarify that not all of the things that I view as right make me happy sometimes they don't really effect my emotional state and sometimes I feel duty (or simply a need to do something) that I don't really want to do and am not happy about doing but feel the need to do. Sometimes when I have acted against what I view as right there are consequences and or negative emotions. I don't dwell on those though. A wise man once told me that feeling bad was good for about 30 seconds because that is about how long it takes you to figure out that you need to do things differently. I would say though that the things that make me sad aren't necessarily wrong from a moral standpoint but just might not be right(as in fit or correct and not in the moral sense for me. Morality is very complicated.
Hello, atheist here! I believe morals are socially learned (not exclusively). Whether you have a "higher" power or not, we know right from wrong from a very early age and continue to learn throughout life. As far as majik, it's all about energy and words of suggestion, doll. We are awesome vessels of energy and should give ourselves credit for the amazing things we can do with it alone or together. Peace, love and hair grease.
Hi P/S resident skeptical atheist, humanist pagan here, how are you doing, your first question is a very common one, most people assume that without some type of external force we can not be moral, to begin with there is no real correlation between belief in any deity and morality, in fact most studies have shown that in many cases the more a person believes they are doing their deities' will the more likely they are to be immoral. Very simply, I choose to be a moral person based on several criteria, first i have seen my share of suffering and misery and see no reason to perpetuate it, i have been a victom of theft and violence in my life and knowing how I felt when I experienced it has given me the understanding of how others may feel,I also I have studied various ethical systems and they all break down to the most basic concept of how you would wish to be treated then treat others that way. It is essentially social reciprocity, I will be kind and caring because if I am this way towards others then hopefully others will be this way towards me. finally how do I wish to be remembered when I am a pile of worm delight, or i may be cremated, won't be the first time I made an ash out of myself. either way I would like to be remembered fondly, so I must live a life worthy of that memory, and in truth the only immortallity we can truly be sure of is how we are remembered. As for the gods,yes they do exist the same way a painting, a story or the characters in a play exist. Thy (the gods) are many things, the forces of nature made human, that culture's ideals and morals wrapped in a visible and understandable form and a way to explain existence of the universe and our part in it, but they are our creations, just as monsters and devils are what that society fears. Now the second part of your question, not all ancient pagans believed in Magic and divination, the poet cicero was one, he wrote a treatise debunking devination. Though he once took a position as a state Auger justfor the prestige of it. Thank you for asking I hope i was of service.