this is a letter I wrote to a friend who reacted against my way of seeing the concept of god. It was written in December, last year:
Faith… What is faith?
In a country like this where 99% of people believe in a kind of supernatural being is perfectly normal attributing anthropomorphic aspects to the good things of life. Love, for instance, is usually seen as God (God is love). It happens because most of people agree that love is the most important thing we can have. There are many things which are taken as god: respect for others, family relationship, friendship, marriage, freedom, happiness, altruism, hope, forgiveness, self-control etc.
If all of these things can be seen as “manifestations” of a god, I can say from the deep of my heart that I believe fervidly in God. The only difference between me and a religious person is that I don’t believe there is a person (anthropomorphism of the feelings) out there watching over me. Therefore, I don’t see any good reason for religious people take me as a strange person just because I see “god” different from them. Maybe I could consider that as a kind of discrimination. But I am prepared to encounter these types of response; after all, I make part of the minority; it has always been this way. I understand it all.
If someone asks me, “do you believe in any kind of SUPERNUTAL being?” I simply answer by saying: “no, I don’t. I’m sorry; I have to be sincere.” But if someone asks me, “do you believe in love?” I simply answer by saying: “yes, I DO. I love you (e.g. you reader); I love my friends; I love my family; I love Nature; I love every single good thing in this world. I have to be honest about it.
So, I do not see nay reasonable reasons to be seen as a weird person.
What is the difference between believing in any kind of ghost or in a god? You know; if you ask someone about a great deal of beliefs, no matter what god may be – angels, spirits, gods, saints, ghosts and so on – in general, people are quite confused at giving a rational and universal acceptable answer. Some believe in ones and disbelieve in others. What is the difference? Try to define what a spirit is. It’s nonsense, that’s my opinion, but I respect yours.
I, as a skeptical person, have to be sincere; for me, all of these things do not go beyond mind – out of mind, not any of these entities exist. And faith, in my opinion, is an appeal to give these beings a certain dose of credibility. “It’s necessary to have faith to believe in such things”. That’s what religious people say.
Nevertheless, what these people often do not understand is that the world is made of religious people and nonreligious people… I’m sorry Brazil will take a long time yet to change this mentality.
Anyway I thank for your existence. You exist. I know you; at least that’s what my “faith” tells me. I believe in you. Maybe you are the material representation of a god or goddess to make me see him or her.
A hug! May every good thing bless you!
A Happy Sun’s Day!