Now there is a weighty title for a blog post!
Basically, this post is to share something I saw online that sums up a lot of what I feel about religion and morality. I get sick of people who confuse the concepts of religion and morality, as they are really nothing to do with one another. As an atheist, I am offended by the assertion that my lack of a religion suggests a lack of values or morals, but I hear and read this view propounded frequently online and in the media. Let’s get this straight – anybody can have a moral code, it is a matter of judging what you believe to be right or wrong and acting accordingly in your life. Religious beliefs or lack of them are irrelevant when it comes to morals. Sure, religions normally include a moral code that their adherents adopt and I am aware that my moral code has overlaps with many religious teachings, but belief in a god is not a prerequisite for morality and lack of belief does not preclude morality.
In summary, as I found this morning:
If you are hungry, I will offer food.
If you are thirsty, I will offer water.
If you are cold, I will offer warmth.
If you are in need, ask and I will give.
If you are in trouble, ask and I will help.
I do not do these things in the hopes of being rewarded.
I do not do these things out of fear of punishment.
I do these things because I know them to be right.
I set my own standards and I alone enforce them.
I am an Atheist.