Atheism loves to attack other belief systems. However, it has its own problems. I have yet to hear anyone make a strong case for why atheism is true. It seems 99% of the time atheists try to prove other worldviews false.
Since atheism doesn’t have a standard set of doctrines or answers to these tough questions, I used responses I’ve heard, read, or were logical outcomes of the worldview. Let’s see how they do when tested.
1. God – Who and what is God? Does God exist?
- God does not exist.
2. Ultimate Reality – How does your worldview explain the existence of reality? How did the universe come about?
- Universe came into existence from nothing by nothing.
- The other option is the universe is eternal. Philosophy and science rules out this possibility.
3. Origin of life – How did life begin? How did we get here?
- Life spontaneously arose from non-life.
- Life went slime in a pond to us; from simple to complex; descent with modification (all life came from the same early life form). As some have said “goo to you via the zoo.”
4. Ethics – What is the basis for morality? Where do moral truths come from?
- Morality is manmade.
- Our sense of morality is passed down through the genes.
- “Might makes right,” which means whoever is in power makes the rules.
5. Death – What happens when we die?
- We go out of existence and our bodies return to the earth.
- There is no afterlife.
6. Problem of evil – Does evil exist? What is the source of evil?
- It arises from human ignorance.
- Evil is decided by the majority. To call something universally evil you need a standard. There are no objective moral truths. Therefore, without a universal standard the word “evil” is meaningless.
7. Meaning to Life – Do we have a purpose and what is it?
- No ultimate meaning to life.
- Any meaning or purpose to life depends on the imagination of the individual.
8. Knowledge – Where does knowledge come from?
- Information comes from molecules and matter.
- All actions are a result of stimulus and response. Free will is an illusion. All life is deterministic.
- Rationality comes from irrationality, material processes.
I will briefly test the atheistic worldview with REAL. I will focus on the test of reason. An atheist has to believe life comes from non-life, design comes from chance, rationality comes from irrationality, and morality (or right and wrong) comes from chemicals. The difference between mother Teresa and Hitler was a chemical imbalance. Are these reasonable answers? Other than an atheist, who would believe this?
- God: Brahman is the only God who exists. Hinduism is pantheistic, which means God is all and all is God. There is only one reality. Brahman is inexpressible and indefinable.
- Ultimate Reality: The material world is an illusion, it is Maya.
- Authority: The Hindu scriptures are called the Vedas. The goal of the scriptures became known as the Vedanta, meaning the end. It is one of 6 schools of Hinduism.
- Death: Vedanta Hinduism teaches reincarnation. Based on the good we do in this life we get to enjoy heaven for a period of time and then we are reincarnated back to earth at a higher level than the last time. If we do evil while on earth we eat of the bitter fruits for our evil deeds. Then we return to earth to do better. Higher states of heaven and earth are rewards for good deeds and lower states are punishments we earn. Ultimately, we will achieve liberation from Samsara (the cycle of rebirths) and union with Brahman.
- Problem of evil: Difficult to answer the source and existence of evil.
I will give it the REAL test.
- REASON: Do any answers violate reason or logic? Where does evil come from? If everything is God, then is evil God? If all is God then how do you define good and evil? There are no distinctions (all in one) and therefore there are no differences between good and evil. (Read C.S. Lewis Mere Christianity page 33: Rival Conceptions of God)
- EXPERIENCE: Does your answer match the way we perceive or experience the world? The belief all existence is an illusion contradicts the idea that I can know that I am a player in the illusion. If we are all part of an illusion, Maya, then how would we possibly know that? Does Charlie Brown know he is a cartoon character? You have to know the real to know what is not real.
- Authority: What is the evidence the Vedas is a reliable source of information? Must justify reincarnation and any teaching that violates logic and reason.
- Live: Can a person live as if the world is an illusion? The answer is no. All who believe in Hinduism will still stop at red lights to avoid being run over.
Go to part 5
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