This morning my boyfriend and I had an argument. Certainly not something that happens seldomly, given both of our predilections for moodiness and strong opinions. However, it had been a long time since we argued about God, as generally our arguments are of a much more pointless earthly nature.

I am a staunch atheist. I believe only in the absolute, inexplicable awesomeness of Nature. I feel no comfort in the thought that some higher power created the universe and all that resides in it. I’m much more impressed by the thought that everything is a result of an intricate dance of the natural world, unsullied by something magical (because lets be honest, the difference between “miracle” and “magic” is a matter of semantics and translation) and inhuman. I’m as likely to believe in 42 as the answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything as I am to believe in the omnipotence of a higher power. As a student of both psychology and anthropology I have a deep love/hate of humanity, and as conflicted as I may be about the inherent goodness or malevolence of people, I still have faith that humans are capable of amazing things which have nothing whatsoever to do with God.

There are a lot if people who would read that and argue that the only reason Nature is as awesome as it is, is because of God. But why? Can’t nature be awesome on its own? Evolution is a far more compelling story than any I’ve read in the Christian Bible (aside from maybe the New Testament, because Jesus – Son of God or not – was a pretty BAMF dude, but that’s a post for a different time). This morning my boyfriend accused me of looking down on him because he believed in a higher power (not necessarily a sentient one, but rather something amorphous and definitely more than human).

To clarify, I was not consciously looking down on him, but maybe there was a hint judgement in my voice. Afterhis accusation, I got to thinking (God forbid a woman do such a thing, terrible pun entirely intended) and realized that the reason that I don’t believe in God, or any higher sentient power is because I don’t want any of the comfort that comes with the belief that there is something more than human that has influence over my actions. I am a Goddamn Independent Woman, thank you very much! I cant believe whatever the fuck I want and take comfort in whatever silly beliefs I may hold!

And therein lies the heart of the argument with my boyfriend. It wasn’t about whether or not God existed, it was about the kind of comfort we take from the world around us. And then suddenly, it wasn’t an argument anymore, but a comparison of our separate loves and what things make us feel joy, wonder, and fulfillment.

So think about it. What makes you smile? Dogs? Writing silly blog posts? Tumblr? The love of Jesus Christ? Whatever makes you happy, own it, be proud of it. It’s yours and no person can take away your potential for true happiness. It’s something I’m still learning and I hope that at some point my cynicism will stop getting in the way!

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  1. This! Oh my god, all of this! You’ve vocalized one of what I think is one of the main underlying reasons for conflict among athiests/agnostics and people of faith, and I completely agree with you.

  2. All you feminist types are atheist these days, I love it!

    Thinking of nature as a higher power is kinda pantheistic of you, which is fine. It’s more a flavor of atheism than theism in my book.

    • Dear Solomon Grundy, born on Monday, thank you for your comment! I totally agree, and am definitely interested in learning more about pantheism. Any suggestions as to where to start? Books, for example. Religion is fascinating!

      • I don’t think there is much to learn. To my understanding, it’s basically just replacing the terminology of “nature” or “the universe” with “God.” You don’t need to worship Gaia or anything. šŸ˜‰

        Nice blog. The “42” title drew me in. Huge Doug Adams fan.

  3. don

     /  June 20, 2012

    Nice reference to “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”> It seems to me that this reference is important here. I believe that too many people ask the wrong questions to get the right answer.

    Why are we here? What is the meaning of life? Where do we go from here? It is interesting that we spend our lives either taking control or looking for answers (mostly looking for answers) and the typical answer is that is it someone else’s fault.


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