Friday, August 15, 2014
People who profess to be atheists are very confidently convinced that gods don’t exist. Atheism is an ideology or a notion that declares there is no god: “A-theos” (Greek) means “no god”. A-theos plus “ism” becomes atheism with its Greek equivalent being “A-theismos”. This is the most basic definition of atheism as an ideology.
Recently they often ask me whether gods exist or not. They expect that I wish to join in their camp as atheists. Unfortunately, I find it that I (my mind and my inner-feeling) cannot become an atheist. I don’t want to imprison myself in any religious or secular ideologies. I wish to forever remain as a white dove freely flying in the sky, being not incarcerated or imprisoned in any cages. Once a freethinker, forever a freethinker.
I nonetheless still need spirituality, because until now our neurological systems in our brains still require spiritual input and yield spiritual output. Our need for spirituality is part of the biological evolution of the human brain. It could be that millions or billions of years from now, the long natural biological evolution of our brains will remove spirituality altogether from the neural systems of the human brain. When this era comes, perhaps atheism will become the biggest worldview in the world. But for the time being, in the 21st century, the need of spirituality is still part of the neural systems of the human brain. I still need to have spirituality and to spread it into the world, farther and farther. This is what is natural for humans up to the present. What Rinzai Gigen has said makes me delighted: “When hungry, I eat my food. When sleepy, I shut my eyes. Fools laugh at me; the wise understand.”
If anybody asks me whether gods exist or not, I will answer as follows. By theistic religions, gods are believed to dwell in the supernatural world, not in the empirical natural world. This belief or this idea is known as, put simply, theism or supernaturalism.There are many great ideas in this world, e.g., communism, capitalism, Marxism, liberalism, existentialism, secularism, naturalism, rationalism, empiricism, modernism, and of course dynamism, animism, theism, pantheism, non-theism, atheism, agnosticism, etc.
Let’s focus now on theism or supernaturalism vis-à-vis atheism or naturalism. We should ask some questions: Is supernaturalism true, in the sense that the supernatural world does exist, thus gods as part of the supernatural world exist too? Because atheism opposes theism, atheism then should also provide evidence that confirms that its opposition to theism is true. Atheism cannot, without any basis, offer only the counter-claim to theism. So we should pose the same question to atheism as the debunking of theism: Is atheism true, in the sense that gods don’t exist in the supernatural world? If atheism maintains that there are no gods, does it mean that the supernatural world doesn’t exist either?