I’ve been spending a lot of time on Google+ lately. I mentioned in a previous post that there is a really good occult community, but I also enjoy hanging out in some work related communities and an atheist community. I’ve considered myself to be an atheist for most of my life, with only brief moments of theism fluttering through. Even in my Chaos I don’t tend to use, or even recognize, any god-forms.
I have found it interesting lately that many atheists have very different definitions of the word ‘atheist’. A theist is one who believes in the existence of a deity(s). It’s very simple. The ‘a’ that goes in from makes it ‘not’ or ‘without’. So ‘atheist’ just means someone that does not believe in a deity(s).
This has created a slight problem for me. I have respect for those that have belief in deities. Faith is what makes the world go around. The only problem I ever have with it is when it is shoved in my face with some promise of eternal damnation if not followed. This makes me have to hold my tongue a bit in the atheist community as many of them are extremely militant towards anything that science hasn’t already proven. It seems a bit ironic to me that many of the things they believe are ‘proven’ still aren’t by their own definition, but that’s a different discussion.
Many atheists try and wrap the ‘paranormal of any kind’ into the definition of non-belief. That’s where I start to get pissy. Atheist doesn’t mean anything but a lack of belief in a deity. That’s it. Nothing else. Are there other things out there? In my opinion: Yes. Based on the definition, that doesn’t exclude anyone from being an atheist hat believes in them either.
It’s sad, but it seems like even non-belief based communities have zealots and groups who see themselves as superior.
The other problem is that I’m not always an atheist. It’s one of the things about Chaos that makes it great: I can do/borrow/use/steal from any belief system I want at any time. I can also make things up on the fly and drop them at my whim. Craig, the God of the Park Bench, can be my Lord and savior for an hour if I want, then I can laugh him off and never think of him again. It’s part of how I roll.
So where does that truly place me? I’m an atheist…mostly. I don’t believe in god(s)…unless it’s handy. So, how in the heck does a guy put a label on that? I know we really don’t need to label ourselves to be defined, but sometimes it’s a handy place to start. I consider myself to be an ‘Atheistic True-Will Atmannist Chaote’. I guess I may need to change it to something like nigh-atheist or something.
It’s a confusing spot to be in. Chaos just doesn’t seem to fit well into anything. It gives me the freedom I need to seek out what I want, but without any restrictions on how I do it. I don’t see anything wrong with trying on other peoples’ shoes for a while. In fact, some of the best things I’ve learned have come from doing that.
It’s just been bugging me the past few days that people are so restricted in their definitions. I thought that was something I would encounter less of as I walked farther away from mainstream belief, but it only seems to be getting worse.
At least I’m armed with enough knowledge to play a good ‘devil’s advocate’ for them. I am awesome at Christian apologetics, so I can just run rampant in there if I want to. I behave though. For the mots part it’s a good community.
Besides, if I can be a theist any time I want to, I can be an atheist as it suits me too.