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A is for Atheism

Atheism is distinct from Pantheism, even though some philosophers have tried to claim otherwise. Atheists too often forget that the goal of rhetoric is persuasion, and fail to frame their ideas in ways that are palatable to the spiritual majority.

Atheism Versus Pantheism

Atheists tend to agree with fundamentalists in that the literal interpretation of scripture is assumed. Atheists reject the possibility that religion is based on allegory because that would not allow for the superficial spurning of the supernatural and smug sense of self-satisfaction that it brings.

Since Pantheism and most theology agree that scripture is allegory, it is atheists that set themselves apart in there adherence to literalism. The line of demarcation is between literalism and allegory, not between materialism and the supernatural.

While atheists on social media have gone a long way to move the overton window regarding discussions of religion, their point of view is inherently contrarian and therefore not a philosophy that can be positively ascribed to.

Asexuality Versus Pansexuality

Consider Asexuality versus Pansexuality. No offence to the Ace community, but which one sounds more fun? If you are inclined towards sex at all, it is much better to indulge your passions (in moderation!) than to abstain from them. It is the same with spirituality. Most people have an innate desire to seek spirituality just like they do with sex. Atheists abstain from all forms, while Pantheists can pick and choose among the many religions, rituals, and traditions that have existed over the centuries. Many of these beliefs are quite interesting, can reveal truth when interpreted as allegory, and offer useful rituals that can enhance mindfulness or elicit the placebo effect. Pantheism is more fun, and satisfies primal desires that abstinence cannot.

Coalition Building

Atheism can never build coalitions with religious institutions due to the inherent denial of their core belief system that atheism presents. It is fundamentally incompatible with religion, and any movement for progress that is organized around atheism, or even loosely associated with it like progressives are, will be unable to draw support from the religious community that still forms the vast majority of the human population.

The formation of the universal in-group would be impossible if denial of religion and spirituality are part of it. If the conflict is between god versus not god, there will eventually be war. If it's between a magic god and a universe god, a peaceful transition towards cooperation is possible.

Denial Versus Definition

It's the difference between denial and definition. Atheism denies god, which really annoys believers of all stripes. Pantheism provides an alternative definition for god that is only a real problem for literalists. Most people don't even have a theological definition of god in their minds, only a vague amalgam of images, stories, and archetypes. They can often readily accept a definition that makes sense, has theological and historical roots, resolves the conflict between science and religion and the cognitive dissonance that it causes, and doesn't fundamentally deny their core identity.

Atheist Identity Undermines Atheist Values

By identifying as an atheist, one is immediately put at a rhetorical disadvantage when conversing with a theist. There is no need to immediately declare yourself to be a member of their most feared out-group, but the atheist identify does this automatically, turning all of their biases against you and ensuring that your words fall on deaf ears.

Now, when you advocate for important issues like climate change, freedom, balance of power, or economic justice, your positions are those of the enemy, and you only elicit contrarianism instead of contemplation.

Pantheism allows you to fully embrace secular values and belief systems without undermining science and reason, and still be a part of the theistic in-group.

No Belief System Versus Better Belief System

If you are trying to persuade someone towards your perspective, then it needs to be superior to the one that they currently have. To most religious people, atheism represents nihilism and the absence of all morality. If your argument ends at disproving the existence of the supernatural, then they are not wrong, for you have provided nothing to replace their belief system. While it's nice that you have constructed one for yourself, if you are not able to advocate for it positively, and you only criticize the chosen beliefs of others, then you're not going to win friends or influence people.

So You Think You're Smarter Than Einstein?

Ignoring the logical fallacy of appealing to authority, the fact is that secular luminaries like Albert Einstein and Carl Sagan identified as pantheists, not atheists. There are very good reasons for this, which are explored in detail in this wiki.

If you want to think like many of the greatest thinkers of our time, pantheism is a good way to go.

Why Would Anyone Choose Atheism?

Both the pantheistic definition and the atheistic denial lead to the conclusion that science and reason should be our primary source of truth. So why choose atheism over pantheism other than clinging to literalism and the supernatural definition of god? Why choose the option that is blatantly counterproductive to realizing your cultural and political aspirations? Why choose the less fun option? Why choose the option that disconnects you from the vast majority of humanity, both living and ancestral?

Do you want to be right or do you want to be happy? With pantheism you can be both.

We Need Evangelists for Reason

The only thing that matters is that people optimize their political and life choices based on evidence-based best practices in the pursuit of greater happiness and well-being. As long as they are doing that, it doesn't really matter what persuaded them to take this position.

If bigfoot comes to you in a dream tells you to that science and reason should be the basis for your decision making, you and your society are still better off.

While this wiki often jokes at the expense of atheists, it is only out of love. Atheists are the modern evangelists for science and reason. They are the ones that care about this sort of thing. This message is for them. Rejoin humanity and help lead it forward instead of breaking away.

Getting Closer

Atheists you need to get closer to god!

Nine Inch Nails - Closer (Director's Cut)