What You Don’t Know About Atheists

Most people think atheists are simply people who do not believe in God.

They are not people who don’t believe in one god or another, as most people in one religion look down upon the gods in other religions… sort of a “our god is better than your god” attitude.

No, atheists no not believe in any deity whatsoever. They believe that the world is nothing more than the mechanical, physical existence we see around us. To them, there is no more. What they see is what they got.

But, as in any other sort of theism, there are shades and degrees of atheists.

No foolin’!

My father called himself an atheist for years, then changed it to “agnostic”, and finally called himself a Buddhist before he left this Earthly realm.

I wavered between agnostic and atheist for years. My eldest son went from Gnostic to atheist to pagan to shamanic back to atheist. My youngest son wavers between deist and atheist.

A recent study was done and found that “atheists” knew more about the Bible than Christians. The radio host who announced this little tidbit added that it was because the atheists knew more so they could argue the points with the Christians.

Ah, if the answer we only that simple, that self-gratifying to the Christian thinkers. Unfortunately, as usual, it is not all about them.

The reality is that it is so much easier for some people, seeking truth on a level they can understand, to simply announce themselves as “atheists” so they cannot be corralled into a single way of thinking. They are still looking for the answer. That is why so many are well versed in the Bible: they are still searching.

Christians are already comfortable with what they have found and feel no need to study the Bible. Some read it, as a matter of course, but most are familiar with the stories and tales they get from Sunday School or the weekly sermon. They already “get” it and do not have to try and understand the scriptures… or the lines between the lines of scripture.

The majority of atheists I have met are in this transient phase of atheism. Many will stay there perhaps for the rest of their lives, still seeking an answer. Many more will find an answer that satisfies and will move from the ranks of the godless.

So, when you encounter someone who calls themselves an “atheist”, please remember that for most it is a temporary address only. Allow them the time to find God in their own way, in a manner that answers their own particular needs.

Trying to sell your particular brand of faith is not something they will be able to respond to very well. As with most searchers, they probably know infinitely more about the facts and figures of your religion than you.

Simply allow them their search and allow them the means to come to God in their own way, their own time, if such should happen, as they say, in God’s own time.

After all, the Almighty created us different. And do you think He did that as an oversight or as some horrible mistake? Or a cruel joke allowing some to easily find faith and others who would struggle with the concept?

No, I believe it is a lesson for each of us to learn. There is more than one way to skin a cat and more than one path to finding God.

To the faithful, it is an easy answer: faith. To the ones who question everything, the path is harder to find – all the paths in our religious world seem to be marked for those who can find the faith so easily. Perhaps if we opened a method for the other sort of people to understand the Divine, their journey would be easier as well.

But that would require the faithful to stretch themselves a little.

To those who have had such an easy journey, perhaps you could do some of the work rather than simply lament over the lost sheep or by calling them names? If God created atheists – or people prone to that sort of thing – it might have been put there as a problem to solve for those who so easily grasp faith.

Something to solve, rather than gripe about. You could simply call them those “shallow-minded” people as one popular Christian song labels them, or you could put your mind to doing some charitable works instead, and something that might actually stretch you.

I’m not trying to be judgmental on this topic but it seems name-calling and turning your back is not the solution to the question.

Is that what Jesus would have done?

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