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Meditation 548


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In a discussion of the Ted Haggard scandal on a newspaper website,[1] one person wrote:[2]

As the world continues on its downward spiral, the solution becomes clearer. Atheists among us would like to eliminate all beliefs but they can't explain why they believe they don't need beliefs. This is gibberish.

Gibberish indeed! Or what is gibberish, is the writer's understanding of what non-believers stand for. (I assume he was lumping in agnostics with atheists.)

The statement contains several misunderstandings, shared by many believers,

Is the world on a downward spiral? In spite of all the problems we read about on a daily basis, in spite of the questionable behaviours of religious an political leaders, in spite of the crises in the Middle East, North-East Africa, Afghanistan, and North Korea, the world has less poverty, less war, less hunger than it did a decade ago, than it did a century ago, than it did a millenium ago.

Would non-believers like to eliminate all beliefs? Certainly some would would like to eliminate all belief in the supernatural. But the majority of non-believers don't really care what supernatural beliefs others have - all they want is that the implications of those beliefs in the supernatural not be imposed on them. The real problem is that many believers resent any limitation on their forcing of their beliefs and their religion-specific morality on others - they consider that an imposition.

Can non-believers explain why they don't believe in the supernatural? Of course they can! The supernatural is not necessary to explain anything. When the supernatural is used to explain something, it raises more questions than it answers. The supernatural is a needless complication.


  1. Globe and Mail
  2. I'm not sure why the writer brought up his view on atheism with respect to this particular subject. Perhaps he implicitly blames atheists for Haggard's inability to control his homosexual inclinations.