Jack Coving Presents: Where is my God?... An Atheist's Guide to Spirituality

I must admit my surprise to see you return. I thought my last rant had sent you on your way for good. How glad I am we cross paths again. Please my friend, fill your glass and make yourself comfortable, as we indulge once again, in my wonderings…

Where is my God?

An Atheist's Guide to Spirituality 

At one point in my life, I had it all worked out. I had a wonderful wife, a promising career, a nice home and a savage car; I still have the car, but like myself, it’s been through the trenches. I dealt with the here and the now; with facts, figures and logic. I thought I was smart; much smarter than those God fearing fools. I had it all figured out. I didn’t fall into the trap of humble, wholesome religion; God never existed and never will. Who needs God when you have logic?

For me, God belittles and devalues your own achievements. It always breaks my heart, when somebody who strives past adversity and pulls themselves from the dregs, thanks God for their accomplishments. A fictitious God did not give you the power to succeed, that power dwells within you. It was you, and only you, who reached for the stars. Understand that; embrace it, own it.

You might now be crying out. “But Jack! Leading a life based solely on facts will surely dull the soul and the zest for living” I do see the worth in spirituality, I truly do; religion and God, however is a different kettle of fish, entirely. Religion causes more problems than solutions. It was designed as a means of controlling the masses; Fine, you think you can get away with coveting your neighbour’s wife, you lowly peasant; you might, you might never get caught coveting but God is watching. God sees all and he will throw your sinful ass to Satin. It is simply a small group’s sense of morality, forced upon the world.

Just when I thought I had life by the balls; life gave me a swift kick in mine. Wife gone; career gone; house gone. What did I have left besides my old royce? Where does the atheist turn in that ‘all is lost moment’? A devout man would humbly turn to God thanking him for the test in his faith. He would seek comfort under God’s watchful eye; knowing the big man is looking out for him. Where was I going to find my God?

One of the biggest mistakes I made, when I knew it all, was lumping spirituality in with religion. To be spiritual; one must find God. How could I find solace in my misfortunes if I had no higher being to blame. I made my mucky bed and now I would have to roll in it, seething and festering in guilt, anger and disappointment. I drank away my mornings, evenings and nights; numbing the pain, destined to misery for the remainder of my days. Why go on with no hope to live for?

I cut myself off from the world; becoming ever more bitter and cranky. What was the point of it all? I had nothing in this life and had no afterlife to look forward to. I needed an outlet; I needed to reevaluate what spirituality really meant.

I am inspired by the miracle of life; just the fact that anything exists at all is extremely humbling. Against so many odds, we exist; not only do we exist, but we are made up of the same stuff as the stars themselves. We are all children of the stars. For me, truly appreciating the wondrous night sky or truly noticing the colours of nature led me to peace. Just appreciating the complex simplicity of nature was my key to enlightenment.

Finding a meaningful connection to others, is an imperative factor in attaining spirituality. Finding another’s truth and significance within a painting, song or poem connects me to the world; I am not alone in this. Listening to that one line, that you have sung so many times before and actually hearing the artist’s anguished soul because it speaks to how you feel at that time, washes me with something Zen like; No, I can’t change my mold and yes everything is changing and I don't feel the same.

At the end of the day spirituality is about finding a meaningful connection to others, to the world and the universe; while finding your own sense of peace at the same time. It is about finding comfort in the knowledge that you are not alone. It is about living a wholesome, happy life. It is about finding your own meaning and purpose to life.

Catholicism states that we are all created by a higher being. It promises an afterlife if you adhere to its rules. It states we are all the same but each, uniquely different. It states we are all brothers and sisters, who share a divine connection with each other and with a higher power.

Science states that we were all created from a single cell organism that evolved into everything we see around us. Science states that no information can be destroyed; just changed into something else. Science states that we are all the same but each uniquely different. Science states we are made up of the same materials as the stars. We have an ancient, almost inconceivable connection to each other, the world and the universe. That to me is far more awe inspiring than any all-knowing being.

I take a huge amount of comfort in knowing that when I die, I will truly never be gone. The atoms and molecules that make up me will simply transform into something else. I will truly never leave this universe. I am of course, under no disillusions. I know I won’t transform into a butterfly but in terms of the inconceivable bigger picture, my spirit will live on through the wonders of science.

Science is my God and its wonders; my salvation.

If, as an atheist, you are unconvinced and would rather find the bosom of God, might I suggest this delightful Wiki. It had me quite literally lolling for some time. Unfortunately this Wiki is still awaiting a quality review but as soon as it's ready, count me in! 

I thank you again for humouring me and my ramblings. Before we carry on however, I will need to refuel. We shall talk again, after my liquor cabinet has been restocked. Until then my friend, farewell.

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© Sarah O’Regan
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