Based on sheer numbers, why do so many people reject atheism?
I've been thinking about this for the last two days. As you can imagine, there are numerous potential responses. I made a list of the reasons that came quickly to my head and realized that many of the initial responses can be different due to the vast differences between people (age, experiences, etc.) as people are not simply multiple clones of an original. Three thoughts came to me after pondering this for a while:
- The overwhelming majority of first responses are "programmed" or "superficial" once analyzed.
- These responses aren't limited to talking to others about atheism -- these are responses they are telling themselves, as well! Acknowledging this, what are the reasons? Is there -- or can there be -- a common denominator?
- I finally settled on this very unscientific core reason: FEAR. The fear of there not being a god. The fear caused by coming to the realization that there is not a god -- any god -- especially late in life can be a life-shattering experience ... especially for those who have been devout believers.
When a person comes to the realization that there is no god, eternal redemption or heaven (or any other form of afterlife), making "life count" based on self-determination becomes a daily way of living.
If you have a different primary reason for most people rejecting atheism, what is it? I really want to know your thoughts.
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