What I believe
But, as Christians often do, he said this to me:
you have yet to clearly even state exactly WHAT you believe, although you've made rather clear what you DON'T believe.
I get this sometimes. Religious people think if you don't believe in Invisible Sky Man (I call God that; it sometimes really annoys people), you don't "believe in" anything. Apparently, if you don't hold any beliefs about the universe on insufficient evidence, this is a personal failing.
Anyway, I ended up going on for a while about what I believe. And it seemed worth publishing here, where more people can see it. So, without further ado...
I believe in reason. I believe in evidence. I believe a lot of human suffering is the product of too much credulity when it comes to ancient "holy books," and that we as a species would treat each other much better if we lived as if this life is all we get and we have to learn to share it with each other to everyone's benefit, rather than
thinking that some of us are going to be rewarded forever by invisible sky man and others of us will get our butts toasted like marshmallows for not choosing the right improbable, unproven things to believe.
I believe there is no God, just as I believe there is not an invisible, inaudible, intangible unicorn in this room with me, and for precisely the same reason. Except more so, because I believe "God" raises ethical questions the unicorn doesn't, in addition to being just as improbable (and, really, just as unnecessary for things to
I believe that moral questions all come down to the question of suffering; I don't believe in inflicting it on any creature sensible enough to be able to suffer. I believe that "sin" is a destructive idea and that there's no such thing as a victimless "crime." I believe that, by being a gay pot-smoker, I am not hurting anyone, so there's nothing remotely unethical about either act.
I believe I know what's right and wrong much better than the people who wrote the Bible and imposed the death penalty for things like taking the Lord's name in vain, and probably much better than modern religious people who see it as just and right that God demands belief, offers no proof, and inflicts eternal torture on otherwise good people for failing to guess correctly. I believe the fact that the Bible openly endorses slavery, spousal and child abuse, and the murder of unbelievers demolishes its credibility as a source of morality, no matter what Jesus said on that mountain. I believe modern science, though imperfect, is a hell of a lot smarter than people tho thought pi equaled three and the earth was flat and the sun rotated around it.
I believe that people who think it's moral to "believe" are expressing a very empty idea. I believe that, despite your apparent disagreement with me on this score, "belief" is not a measure of intellectual depth. The ability to process ideas and evaluate them critically is the only measure of that. If you can come away from that process and still believe nothing, or at least nothing the Bible or the Koran can tell you, well, it just shows you believe when there's a reason to, and not just for the sake of belief.
I suppose you could call me a secular humanist. I believe this world is all we get, so it's in all our interest to get along with each other.
I also believe anyone who can read my comics and still have no idea what I believe in has read them completely wrong.