Posted by costas on July 25, 2001 at 23:40:36:
In Reply to: Satan Did It! posted by costas on July 25, 2001 at 23:37:33:
The Atheist's Wager
By Jeffrey Wikenczy
"Why be an atheist?" has been asked (and answered) time and time again. Why not do it one more time?
Basically, there are three possibilities:
1. No god exists; in which case atheists are correct, religion is exposed as an utter fraud, and the modern-day fundamentalists are reduced to the status of unevolved, brainwashed lunatics peddling a fallacy in their efforts to return mankind to the Dark Ages.
2. A just, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, omni benevolent god exists; in which case the atheist has nothing to fear given these attributes are, in fact, accurate.
Case in point; omni benevolence and eternal torture are contradictory. Omniscience and "free will" (or the "choice" to be an atheist) is also contradictory: either atheism is no less "acceptable" to god or he is not omni benevolent; either atheism has been "predetermined" as the philosophy of myself and others like me, (in other words, god knew before he created the first air molecule that I would live and die an atheist and as such there is no "free will") or he is not omniscient.
3. An unjust god exists; in which case it is just as likely (one chance for every religion and belief system - let's be honest) that he, given his "unfathomable" nature and logic, could deem atheism as the only "path to salvation" as it is likely that Christianity is "correct" - in which case the atheist has no more to "fear" than does the religious person that may have chosen the "wrong" religion. In short, the Muslims could be right and atheists and Christians would be in the same boat, so on and so forth.
In summary, if god chooses to punish us for adhering to the logical limits regarding the proof of his existence, he is not the "kind" of god I'd believe in anyway.
There is no evidence to suggest a god (whether one exists or not) - this much is fact. Make your wager accordingly.
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