Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Wonders of the Universe

Well, publishing the real story of the IFB movement may be necessary, but it's tiring. People need to know about the group, and their cult like culture and abuse of children, but it's draining to research and post about them, maybe I'll continue the series next weekend, but not now. I need something to kind of get my mind off of them for a change, and I'm sure all of you could use a break from it if you are a regular reader of the blog.

One thing that has been on my mind lately is just how incredible the universe around us is, or even just earth itself. When I was in fundamentalism, I was always told that god not only created the universe, but also humanity with a specific purpose, if you believe that, then if gives you a sense of wonder. A sense of wonder in that in all of the universe, you are here for a reason, because god wants you here, he has a plan for you.

After leaving fundamentalist Christianity behind only 2 years ago, I struggled for the first year with the question of what I believed since I knew I was done with my former beliefs  It wasn't until a little over a year ago that I realized that I am agnostic, and after coming to terms with this, I still had a problem. I had lost that sense of wonder that I had during my fundamentalist days. Is there really a purpose to life? The world seemed so depressing, just being the result of impersonal, detached evolutionary process with no one guiding it.

After a while, though the sense of wonder began to come back. On the other hand, here we are, after billions of years of evolution, with so many odds working against us, and yet here we are. Not only that, but we get to be part of a natural world and universe this amazing. I had more peace about it, not only did my wonder return, but I began to feel a sense of freedom, but yet a lot of responsibility at the same time. There's no god issuing us orders from above, I no longer had the excruciating cognitive dissonance of trying to explain and defend a faith that had a very contradictory holy text, or explain away the Old Testament and it's barbaric law code "it was only for that time period, and for a specific purpose".

At the same time I felt that freedom, quite a bit of responsibility was placed upon me at the same time. I'm responsible for all my actions, there's no longer a god I can run to and pray for forgiveness, the responsibility and consequences of all my decisions  rests on no else but me. I think that's often why the lives of atheists/agnostics are more moral than that of religious people on average (if you define morality as refraining from actions that harm others and society).
I've put it to people this way: "When is the last time you have ever heard of the president of an atheist organization molesting children?" Most people probably have never heard of that happening. When you are accountable to yourself and to the laws of society, you are more moral of a person.

Anyway, back to the main point, doesn't this give you a sense of wonder that you are fortunate enough to be a part of all of this? :

Credit to the Google + page Amazing World for these images.


  1. I want to see every last one of those images one day in person.

  2. That would be great, KL, the Amazing World page that I linked to has the original posts of these pictures, and more pictures, most with the locations. Look it up, remember the places, maybe someday it will be possible to see them all in person. :)

  3. Just because life is not a quest, doesn't mean it's not an adventure ;)
    Happy exploring, Sheldon.

  4. Evolution by natural selection is indeed very elegant and explains the life around us rather beautifully.

  5. @ Saad. Thanks for reading the blog, and yes you are right.


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