Why no-god: this section is for those who believe there is a God
Could God actually like and encourage atheists?
God has asked for our undivided worship, our heartís deepest adoration, our mindís highest praise. And so we think of these as the goal and purpose of human life. So of course belief in God is necessary for these. But what if these are not the goal but the means to the goal. Or they may be means to many goals.
Worship and adoration, as they are meant to be, makes us forget ourselves and remember God from whom all things have come, to whom all return, in whom all dwell and have their being. But too often worship and adoration simply reinforce our human tendencies to empower and entitle our individual ego at the expense of others.
Worship and adoration are not ends in themselves, but uniquely effective means toward a particular end. But they accomplish this only if used in conjunction with self-effacing love for God that diminishes the self-serving ego and stimulates the soul which knows no distinctions or boundries between ourselves and others.
God is not so much interested in our worship per se as he is in how we live our lives. He/she would rather we behave toward one another with compassion, kindness, justice and mercy than praise or adore him/her. Until we can actually do that, heís not so concerned about whether we do or do not believe in his existence. Worship offered to a conception of God that is limited to our own particular finite belief system is worse than no worship at all. Belief in God which leads to the dehumanization and disenfranchisement of others in the name of God is a tragedy that breaks the heart of God.
Atheists are devoted to truth. Yes, they have a limited conception of truth. But any truth is some facet of God who is Truth itself. And all the theists who worship God are not worshipping God as he/she is, but some limited aspect of God they understand. And that is all mixed in with lots of ideas of God that are not true of God at all because we are incapable as humans of comprehending God as he is, and our minds add all sorts of stuff that isnít God at all.
In other words, we are all, theists and atheists alike, working on limited conceptions of truth. We each are perceiving a different and minute aspect of the eternal and infinite spectrum of ultimate truth. We canít tell the difference, but God doesnít mind. He understands.
And so he is quite happy with the atheists who worship truth, because God experiences Himself as Truth. He is happy with those who seek love, no matter how limited and mangled our ideas of love are, because God is Love. Whenever we turn toward truth or love or beauty, we are, of necessity turning toward God in some small way. But all our ways, even those of the theists, are small and alloyed.
More to the point, sometimes it is only the atheists who are prepared to serve their fellow humans in the ways that God wants us to. At times in history it has been only the atheists who have been willing to put their lives on the line to bring dignity and empowerment to the disenfranchised and disempowered. In other words, God often must rely on atheists to do his/ her work in the world because the theists are too busy defending Godís existence and honor against all others who believe differently.
God dwells within every heart, the unrecognized, unnoticed Soul of our souls. He is continually calling out in every heart to follow him into the great challenge of forgetting our own interests in love for Him and selfless service of others. He urges us, from within every person, to passionately pursue truth, love, purity, and beauty. Many hear that still small voice without naming it, even denying its existence, while others, who believe in the existence of God are deaf to his voice within.
God seems to have made sure that in every generation and age of our human history, he has those few who do not believe and because of their unbelief they are actually more capable (because not distracted by a multitude of misconceptions of God) of hearing His voice within and living their human life in the way that God wants us to.
We are all in this dance together. The master coreographer calls to each one to play their part, to hear the music and move to its rhythms. At times it is this one who hears and acts their role in tune with Godís singing, at times it is another one. The director is dancing with us, leading each in his and her part.
*note to any atheists reading this section:
Donít complain that this is way too poetic and aesthetic and not rational or logical and therefore unreliable and untrue.
First itís not a matter of rationality and logic being in some way oppositional to poetry and metaphor in the apprehension of truth. Rationality and logic are not the sole defining aspects of our humanity.
The ability to recognize and long for love, truth, and beauty are also defining modalities of our humanity that cannot be overlooked or devalued.
So love, truth, and beauty, poetry and metaphore, are also valid means for ascertaining the truth of our humanity just as much as rationality and logic.