It was once nearly universal that people believed that god existed, and that without god, life would be chaos. That time is in the past. Recent data has shown that somewhere between fifteen and twenty percent of americans are non-religious, placing this group in second place in terms of population. Only Christianity as a group can claim higher numbers. But that’s tricky, because Christians are great at fighting between themselves. Are the Catholics really Christians? How about Calvinists? Or Mormons? Or Fundamentalist? Or evangelicals? When you break down Christianity into incompatible subgroups that love to hate each other, the non-religious numbers more than many of them. There’s all sorts of interesting things to consider about these statistics, but I’ll have to take those up in another post. This post it aimed at posing a simple question:
In a nation where around one out of every six people are non-religious, why are things as ordered as they are?
While you’re thinking about that, consider these numbers as well. If you don’t want to take the time to read it, it talks about the disparity between the religious percentages in society and in prison. Outside of prison, the non-religious number one out of six. Inside prison, the non-religious number around one in 500. If it’s true that non-belief leads to chaos and anarchy, why aren’t the prisons overflowing with the non-religious? Why are our prisons instead overflowing with people who claim belief in god?
Another example is Norway. Norway is over 70% atheist. According to the theory that god is necessary for morality and meaning, we would expect Norway to be anarchy and a hell hole. But that is not the case. Norway is one of the most responsible and peaceful nations in the world. The hypothesis that god is necessary for morality and meaning is falsified by this evidence.
The fact of the matter is that god is not necessary for living a moral and meaningful life.
Is god necessary for you to love your family? If you discovered that god did not exist, would you suddenly hate your wife, your husband, your sister, or your brother? How about your children? Would you kick them to the curb if you discovered Richard Dawkins is correct, and god was only a delusion?
Would you find your hobbies suddenly unfulfilling? Would fishing become a chore? Or hiking? Or watching your favorite sports team?
Would you no longer donate to charity? Would you ignore someone broken down on the side of the road? Would you decide not to help your neighbor change their tire?
Would you decide that it’s now okay to steal whatever you want, to rape and murder whoever you want?
If you’re anything like everyone I know, your answer to every one of those questions is ‘no.’ And that’s my point. God isn’t necessary for any of those things. So let’s stop pretending that it is. I know how the religious are stuck to their beliefs, but please, why don’t you reconsider this particular belief.