…religious people would stop repeating the same „arguments“ over and over again, always behaving like they just dropped pearls of wisdom to you. If there were new points to religion, being an atheist would be much more interesting. For example, let’s start with the „meaning of life“…
Besides being a nice (albeit a little bit on the strange side) Monty Python movie, religious people always point at this „meaning of life“, suggesting, that without god (or gods) atheist don’t have one and must lead a meaningless, dark existence, full of woe, sorrow and gnashing of teeth.
Well, let’s be honest, they are 50% correct. The question for „the“ meaning of life already implies that there is something out there that defines this absolute meaning of life (either for everyone or per individual). As there are no good reasons to believe in god, atheists really don’t have „the“ meaning of life. Of course, they are also 50% wrong, because this doesn’t imply that their life is meaningless. They simply have to find their own meaning of life – which will be as valid as any random meaning given to you by your priest (speaking for your god).
So instead of asking „Where can I find the meaning of my life?“ – which implies that the meaning is already out there, readily defined for you, start asking yourself: „What would make my life fulfilled?“ or „What do I want to be my meaning of life?“. Of course you can choose to drop the responsibility on someone else, for example god (pretty clever, as he/she/it probably doesn’t exist, he/she/it will probably not mind), but of course that is the same with every other question: You can choose to decide yourself what clothes you want to wear – or you can let your wife/husband dress you. You can choose to decide yourself, what job you want to have later – or you can let your parents decide. You can choose to decide yourself to take (or not take) drugs – or you can do what all your friends do. Of course, if you let other people decide for you, you cannot expect to find your own happiness – after all, you are just borrowing other people’s decisions, why do you expect the result will be suitable for you?
Let’s face some facts: Pychology Today, for example, tells use: „[..]According to Gallup data for 2010, the happiest nations were Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and the Netherlands. These are among the least religious countries in the world. Also according to Gallup data, Sweden, Denmark and Norway were the second, third, and fourth least religious states, being exceeded only by Estonia in their atheism.[..]“ And the Galen Survey says (about atheists): „[..] overall life satisfaction and social contact in our nonreligious sample was equivalent to the religious comparison[..]“
So, no, you don’t need to believe in a god to be happy: Just make sure to find your own meaning of life. And if that’s to much of a hassle, take this one, as it’s probably better than most:
„Try and be nice to people, avoid eating fat, read a good book every now and then, get some walking in, and try and live together in peace and harmony with people of all creeds and nations.“ (Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life)