In identifying myself as atheist I’m not denying god exists but expressing how there is no reliable evidence that any god exists. This is because as an atheist I refuse to look at the world through a metaphor of believing what the universe is but try to experience the universe as it is.
Instinctively, I am trapped by my own prejudices to such an extent that without great effort I will not see how my perceptions are malleable based on a multitude of factors. It is due to this complexity that errors in my individual experience can occur which are contrary to the common experience I refer to as reality. This contradiction is the error.
In my experience as an atheist, when I begin to apply a formal narrative to what I experience I have found much disappointment in my accuracy. So this meaning of life that others describe as needing so badly seems pointless and truly cynical in the aspect that life is meaningless without some destiny. There’s a very good reason why I see this as pointless, it’s called apophenia.
Apophenia is the tendency to mistakenly perceive connections and meaning between unrelated things. I don’t need to believe this because I’ve simply experienced it myself whenever I see a familiar shape in a cloud. I know that cloud is not a duck even though from my perspective it looks like one. But that again is just my perspective. If I view the same cloud 90 degrees from that location will it still look like the duck? If it does then am I obligated to treat it like a duck? Suddenly my compassion drives me to begin throwing bread in the air to feed the giant floating duck.
If I tell myself all the universe has been designed by supernatural being then I’m going to find patterns to reinforce that hypothesis. To me then, evolution is just a mechanism for this divine creator to express it’s will. But if I recognize that my apophenia drives me to see these patterns which can be construed as divine then a very different universe emerges.
I can then see a universe driven by processes based not on chance but a logical order so vast we only can see it as random. In much the same way the enormous curve of the Earth appears flat to me when I know with great certainty the Earth is indeed round. It is my limited view which makes it appear contrary.
Knowing this now, my awareness of this apophenia allows me to recognize order independent of my individual biases or limited perspective. The apophenia I suffer from then works as the intended survival trait developed by my species instead of a distraction leading me away from reality. But the trick is I have to realize if I’m actually looking through my own lenses which are far from perfect.
I am an improbable thing in a long line of improbable things, but that doesn’t make me impossible or some miracle to be here. No god was needed and no devotion is required.
This is the universe I choose to live in though. Call it “Truth” if you like but it is the one that exists whether I exist in it or not. It is one where trees make a sound when they fall even when no one is there to hear it. I don’t choose to accept it because of any faith in science, I accept it because we are a part of a larger reality, it is not a part of us.
But the real problem doesn’t occur when we disagree on the premise of this existence of god. The real problem is when those who believe in god begin saying that all of us owe this god something whether we accept this god or not. Their game of belief unfortunately doesn’t work for them unless everyone plays along with the fantasy. Piety is the objective used in this made up creator narrative to connect the player’s construct of their own egos with supernatural rewards.
THAT is only real proof we have ever had of God.