The father, the son and the holy hammer: for now, God is up in the air

Ron Rokhy

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illustration by Gabriel Ivan Orendain-Necochea // visual editor

I live to worship. I believe all humans were created to serve the true son of god, who sacrificed himself to save humanity, as told by a divinely-inspired book left behind to tell the tale of his life.

Of course, I’m talking about Thor, the son of the creator and allfather, Odin. Thor, who sacrificed himself to save all of humanity in a battle with a sea snake, is worthy of our eternal praise as worshipping him and his family is the only way to true salvation.

The overwhelming majority of people don’t believe this, and actually, neither do I. As a matter of fact, I lack belief in any sort of deity. I consider myself both an agnostic and an atheist, meaning I reject both claims that a creator exists or doesn’t exist due to lack of evidence for each assertion.

The reason I lack belief is the same reason most other people reject the idea of Thor’s father as their creator: there isn’t a single shred of physical evidence or valid and sound logic backing it up.

This applies to any supernatural religious claim. Currently, there is no theory supporting the existence of a creator accepted by the scientific community. All religious texts are anecdotes written by man.

That’s not to say having faith is a bad thing. When done right, religion can provide moral guidance, inner peace (and possibly even world peace) and hopes of an afterlife. It can give people true happiness and give them a reason to live, or maybe even connect them with a like-minded community where they feel comfortable. I’m not at all against religion or people who have faith.

That being said, it’s important to note faith, by definition, is a position of accepting an assertion (whether it be the existence of an all-powerful being or claims as to how old the Earth is) as true without any sort of evidence, or even when there is clear evidence refuting it (in the case of the age of the planet).

To counter this, many religious groups and people, such as the Discovery Institute, best known for promoting intelligent design, try to pass personal anecdotes, fundamentally flawed logic, and pseudoscience (that hasn’t passed the careful scrutiny of the academic scientific community) off as “evidence” for god or creationism to the same degree as the soundness of theories such as evolution or relativity. No logical proof arguing for the existence of a creator has ever been presented without a fallacy or false premise.

As a scientific theory, the concept of god falls short. Logically, it doesn’t fare much better as the most well-known proofs given for the existence of a creator contain the ad ignorantiam fallacy — meaning they replace the unknown with any solution they see fit without checking every possible outcome (for example, attributing the creation of the universe to Zeus or Elohim instead of saying pleading ignorance).

Countering by attempting to shift the burden of proof (“you can’t disprove god”) not only shows a black-or-white way of thinking which posits that there are only two options: “there is a god” or “there is no god” and completely ignores other possibilities.

This is the reason I consider myself an agnostic atheist (or ‘weak’ atheist). I propose this is the most logical position pertaining to the existence of unknown deities because agnostic atheists lack belief in god(s) rather than make positive assertions that they aren’t real. The term “atheist,” however, colloquially means someone who actually makes the claim that no god exists.

Agnostic atheists are unsure of the existence of god and won’t believe any claim unless strong evidence which has been meticulously fact-checked under the watchful eye of the scientific peer review process is presented.

Of course, only fundamentalists who regard their dogmas as demonstrable facts run into these problems — those religious folk who know and understand god can’t be proved through science have found a way to hold on to their core beliefs without trying to foolishly disprove known scientific facts. I truly believe that is for the best but creating new forms of “science” to disseminate propaganda is counterproductive to society. Balancing faith and science is doable (the Vatican fully endorses evolution and the big bang theory) because it keeps people in touch with reality while allowing them to keep their personal convictions to whatever religion they may adhere to.

The reasons for my lack of belief are simple: there is no evidence or proof, so there is no reason to believe. Is god a possibility? Absolutely, but just one of many as there are tons of creation myths throughout history. What can prove the Judeo-Christian account of origins is more valid than the Zoroastrian version? Nothing so far.

— Ron Rokhy is a former Muslim who at a young age learned that no one rode a horse to Heaven.