There is no being eloquent for atheism. In that exhausted receiver the mind cannot use its wings, - the clearest proof that it is out of its element. Augustus Hare
Read more at: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/atheism.html
There is no being eloquent for atheism. In that exhausted receiver the mind cannot use its wings, - the clearest proof that it is out of its element. Augustus Hare
Read more at: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/atheism.html

There is no being eloquent for atheism.
In that exhausted receiver
the mind cannot use its wings;
the clearest proof that
it is out of its element.

~August Hare

There is no being eloquent for atheism.
Read more at: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/augustusha395436.html?src=t_atheism
There is no being eloquent for atheism. In that exhausted receiver the mind cannot use its wings, - the clearest proof that it is out of its element. Augustus Hare
Read more at: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/augustusha395436.html?src=t_atheism

          Every year, they do what they can to banish Christmas. And crosses, and churches, and prayers before dinner or ball games in the never ending war to banish God from the public square, from the military, from Congress and the Supreme Court. How long before they want to replace the crosses marking graves on the sacred grounds of Arlington? Or demand St. Louis and Los Angeles change their names? And if they can’t banish God and his earthly messengers, they would convince  you they were all detestable villains.


            I suspect there are two basic routes by which atheists may arrive at their own belief in non-belief. One is “I believe in Science not superstition.” Those who follow this path often display a supercilious attitude toward believers, who they believe are naive superstitious fools who put their faith in unsophisticated fairy tales.

            Okay. Fine. They’re entitled to their own beliefs. But why be so mean spirited about it? The other route to atheism are the meanies who have super-sensitive personalities. They may have been schooled in or by some religious institution at an early age, and somehow deeply hurt by some bad experience along the way. Unable to go back in time and right whatever wrongs they believe they endured, they now turn their anger toward religion and by inference all those of faith. Their anger is mostly directed toward a God they now reject.
            But however an atheist arrives at his disbelief, one thing seems clear: there is a strong strain within atheism which seems to require its adherents become adamant, annoying missionaries of non-belief, preachers of the religion of non-belief.
            Pity the poor atheist who tries in vain to prove a negative. He believes in Science. How does he find scientific evidence  there is no God? After all, Stephen Hawking said “One cannot prove that God doesn’t exist, but science makes God unnecessary.” That’s what we call a non sequitur, Stephen. Of course you only mean that in the context of God as Creator. But even in that context, Science has not actually nailed down Aristotle’s First Cause. And since when does one, even God, need to be “necessary” to exist?
          The atheist gives his heart completely to the goddess Science, whose cosmogony consists of asking various computer programs to run the movie of creation in reverse, inevitably arriving at some theory along the lines of The Big Bang. The atheist questions not what the Catechism of Science tells him. Perhaps because many of the scientists he believes in are themselves atheists. On the other side of the debate, the religious man goes about his own business, thinking, well if there was a Big Bang, it was the Creator who made it go bang! The atheist is left to sputter and curse God.

            What the atheist seems not to grasp is that belief in God is just that: a belief. Not a logical, rational transaction. Although it’s not a rare occasion when great men of Science reach the end of their creative periods, and suddenly find themselves thinking more kindly toward the idea of a God. Recall how Einstein, in his advancing years, was unwilling to blindly accept such “new ideas” as the Copenhagen Interpretation, and Werner Heisenberg’s bizarre hypothesis dealing with the collapse of the wave function. Heisenberg then revealed the shocking Uncertainty Principle (essentially that because science cannot know both the simultaneous position and velocity in time... and by extension the future). Then by extension, the future cannot strictly speaking be predicted by science. There is an element of randomness, even chaos, in the unfolding of the physical future). In response, Einstein felt compelled to comment that “God does not play dice” with the Universe. But the future is not a matter of rolling dice.

            Throughout history, philosophers have attempted to prove there must be a God, or a First Cause. St. Thomas Aquinas comes to mind. And Aristotle. Their logical approach required no computer simulations. They posited that everything which happens, or has ever happened, has a direct physical cause – fluctuations in the vacuum and gravity brought about massive clumps of the primordial super-heated quantum elements in space. As they broadcast their energies and cooled, atoms were formed, then gasses, greater clumps of gasses condensed, more cooling, angular momentum increased. In more localized areas, gravitational forces took over bringing the atoms tighter and tighter to compress inside the clumps. This caused the temperature of gasses to again rise to the point where nuclear fusion was ignited. The birth of a star! The leftover material circling the new star eventually coalesces and brings about planets. On at least one planet, somehow, inanimate molecules suddenly spring to life. And so here we are. Now, said Aristotle and Aquinas, if we follow these causes backward through time, we must eventually arrive at the First cause.

            If Science believes that first event was the inflation of space, of the quantum seed, then the Big Bang, and the universe continued its expansion and evolution... religious believers ask what caused the inflation, and what caused the bang? In other words, what sparked the whole thing? Random fluctuations in the vacuum state? What caused the fluctuations? Aristotle and Aquinas knew nothing about big bangs but they reasoned that at some point in the distant past there had to be a time when nothing existed but the First Cause, and to their way of thinking, that First Cause was simply another name for The Creator. Science is science, and God is God. They don’t have much to do with one another, except at the moment of Creation, when the two become One.

            Now to get to the heart of the matter, for believers, the question is: if there is a Creator God, does He involve Himself in human affairs? Does He know I exist? Does He care about me? Does He hear my prayers?

            Obviously the atheist either has no sense that a power greater than himself affects his life, or he thinks that some power greater than himself has hurt him deeply. Cut him so deep that he seeks revenge. But the only revenge against an omnipotent, invisible God available to anyone is to reject Him.
            Okay. Fine. Reject God. It’s your right. But why go public with your private feelings?

            Does the atheist not grasp that there is not one believer, including popes I’m sure, who, at some point in his life, faces his moment of doubt? When he experiences some terrible loss or ordeal, does the believer not wonder why this suffering has befallen him? When a parent is told his child has a terminal illness, and there is no hope, who in his desperation can he turn to? If he falls to his knees and prays to God but his prayers are not answered, does he not feel his God has abandoned him, or worse; that God does not exist? Does he come to the dreadful conclusion that there is a God, but that this God does not care about us as individuals; does not answer prayers? If God answered prayers in that way, there would be no suffering in this world. Painful as it may be, the faithful have no choice but to accept the will of God, as the atheist must accept the Uncertainty Principle. Each must accept there is some reason, beyond their understanding, that the universe unfolds the way that it does.            

           Why should an atheist care if another man believes in God? What skin is it off his nose? Do the faithful who have been through all this really care that the atheist claims he is “offended by religious symbols?” Don’t look; shield your sensitive eyes. Or that he is insulted when Christians say they will pray for his soul? Don’t listen; shield your sensitive ears.            What is the atheist saying? That he has no soul – a soulless human? This presents a quandary for him. If he protests and claims he has a soul, from where did this soul come? Science hasn’t delved much into the question of the existence of the soul except in tangential ways. The soul is an abstract concept so far giving Science nothing which can be quantified. And if Science cannot measure it, according to Science, it must not exist.
             Henry Ford attempted to capture his friend Thomas Edison’s last breath in a jar. What did Hank think was in the jar? Did he believe Tom’s last breath contained his immortal soul, trying to leave his body to find its way back to from wherever it came? Hank was no scientist, neither was he a fool.

            For more than 6,000 years, mankind has believed in gods. The first true human civilization came into being about 4,000 BC, on the northern shores of the Persian Gulf, in Earth’s first city, Eridu, from which our planet takes its name. Its dwellers, the Sumerians, were the first civilized people. No-one knows exactly where they came from or how they suddenly became civilized. Before this, our ancient ancestors were nomadic, or cave dwellers – hunter-gatherers. Then something remarkable and unexplainable happened; virtually overnight in terms of history, a full-blown civilization came into being! It boasted the first written language, schools, scribes, medical arts, a court system with humane laws, lawyers, halls of records, libraries, agriculture, magnificent architecture, navigation and deep-water shipping – virtually all the facets of civilization we now enjoy. And at center stage, always, was religion.

            The gods Sumerians worshiped inspired them to spread their civilization ever northward between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, reaching the zenith of that first era in Babylon. From there civilization spread around the Mediterranean, to Egypt, India, Europe and elsewhere. And everywhere civilization grew, gods were the inspiration and central theme of the belief systems. Greece, India, Rome – all had pantheons of twelve major gods. Always twelve. In the name of these gods, or under their tutelage, mankind flourished.

           Our atheist cannot, or will not see this. He only knows his need to know better than 6,000 years of human history. He only knows his need to destroy the very belief systems which came eventually to afford him his freedom to believe or not believe. But he is unwilling to peacefully grant that same right to believers.

            I am a deist. I believe, as Aquinas did, as the Father of Our Country did, in The Great Architect of the Universe. The Creator. The First Cause. But if the atheist wishes not to believe, I say knock yourself out. What do I care what you do or don’t believe? In the history of mankind, both you and I are nothing more than assemblages of atoms batted about in the tides of time. I believe, based on nothing more than a leap of faith, with no tangible evidence, with nothing more than an instinct built into my genetic code, an intuition, a feeling, that my soul exists outside the framework of mortal flesh; that it somehow transcends this mortal coil because it is of the Creator.
            I have no proof. There is no proof that God exists or doesn’t exist. On either the micro-scale or macro-scale the reasons why what happens happens are mysterious; open to interpretation by Science and preachers and fools. There must be some greater, unknowable force beyond random fluctuations which drives Man’s destiny. The atheist does not believe. He insists there is no intelligence behind the unfolding of the Cosmos.
            He may look down on me. But I pity him because he doesn't feel anything beyond the mundane. He doesn't hear the call of the divine.

           Symphonic music has the power to awaken a sense of the divine more than mere words can ever convey. Perhaps if the atheist would listen to a bit more Beethoven or Mahler, or Richard Strauss’ “Death and Transfiguration”. . .

           Atheists, who believe Science is their bullet-proof vest against those who insist on the existence of God, might want to think about another admonition by Hawking regarding the Uncertainty Principle, “...The future of the Universe is not completely determined by the laws of science, as Laplace thought.” If so, then why should the distant past be determinable? God only knows what the First Cause was.