In this impassioned second post from the contributor, 21 year old Chanchal Krishna, an engineering student from India, offers his view about the difficulty of becoming an atheist.
Contrary to what believers may think, being an atheist isn’t easy. It’s not as if one day you wake up and say “God; you’re a fraud and I’ve had enough!” There has to be a seed of doubt inside you. Nurture it with knowledge and common sense, build and fence around it with curiosity. One day the seed will grow to be a tree, with roots running deep, not in soil, but science and truth. And the fruit that the tree bears is the realization that there is no superman to save you. That means no one to grant you special favours, no one to offer cheap bribes. My professors would definitely not grant me extra marks if I went and told them “Sir! I screwed up my studies, but if you’ll let me pass I’ll pray to you. Let’s avoid the middle-man God.” We liked gods, but in my mind, they’re too good to be true, like my imaginary sea of beer.
Believers should know that it isn’t easy. The crutch you depended on for so long has vanished. No one wants to unsubscribe to that reward game. But what if the reward game is a hoax? That’s what we atheists realized during our painstaking search. Yes it is painstaking; knowledge and truth don’t come easy and atheists have done their homework. Don’t treat us like some ignorant toddler. When we say we don’t believe, we simply choose to walk on our legs instead of on imaginary crutches. To those morons that preach that I’ll go to hell: I’ll take my chances but why don’t you worry about your problems? When you’ve got enough to keep you occupied for a life time, how can you say that God is there for you? Those who go a bit further by claiming that God in fact did come and talk to you, can you ask him to come and talk to me in person so that I can be a believer? If I have enough proof I don’t see anything wrong in subscribing back as a devout follower. Yes, I said it; we atheists are open minded and would admit it if proven wrong. But only if proven wrong, which is impossible given the amount of evidence science has bought about.
I’m a free man who owes no allegiance to any masters, and as the cartoon says, I’m old enough to stop imagining things. Atheism is a terrible responsibility, like freedom. I’m responsible for myself and I don’t think that makes me a bad person. I don’t need a reward programme to do good. For an atheist the biggest reward is their happiness in helping fellow human beings. Being an atheist doesn’t make me devoid of morals nor does it mean I am a moral person. Atheism doesn’t pin any badges, it just makes you what you are; a curious human being with at least a few less reasons to hate your fellow brothers and sisters.