It gives me great pleasure to invite not only visitors to this blog, but everybody in the whole freaking world, to join a non-exclusive club I've just formed:
The I Don't Know For Sure club.
Admission is free. There are no dues. Also, no meetings. Nor any sort of organization. This club exists only in the minds of those who answer "no" to a simple question.
Are you 100%, completely, absolutely, without-a-doubt confident that what you believe about god, the supernatural, and mystical experiences is objectively true?
Now, though this question is simple, I still feel a need to explain it.
What I'm after here is getting people to consider whether there is at least the tiniest sliver of doubt that their spiritual/religious beliefs, or lack thereof, are true.
And I've used "objectively" to define true.
Meaning, I'm not asking about whether someone has an absolutely firm belief that, for example, God either exists or doesn't exist; that life after death either exists or doesn't exist; or that it is possible or impossible to experience a supernatural realm.
A belief is subjective. I'm asking about objective reality. For it sure seems that either God exists, or God doesn't exist, no matter whether humans believe or don't believe in God.
I've become an atheist. I no longer believe in God, life after death, or supernatural mystical experiences. Yet here's the thing:
I don't know this with absolute certainty. So I'm a non-card-carrying member of the I Don't Know for Sure club, with a membership number of #1 (which, as noted above, only exists in my own mind).
If you also want to join this club, leave a comment on this post to that effect.
And if you like, mention whether you're (1) a religious/spiritual believer who isn't 100% sure that what you believe is objectively true, (2) if you're an atheist who isn't 100% sure that your non-belief is objectively true, or (3) someone in-between who isn't sure whether whatever it is you believe or don't believe is objectively true.
My theory, which admittedly may not hold up, is that despite the obvious great divide between religious believers and atheists, there's a thin bridge that unites most of them: a recognition that what they consider to be objectively true, may not be.
In my case, I see atheism as being much more probable.
But this means there's a chance I could be wrong. I readily admit this, and have done so frequently in my churchless blog posts. That said, I don't think there's a high probability I'm going to live on in some ethereal form after my bodily death.
However, if this happens I'll be overjoyed to tell whatever loving divine being I meet on the "other side," Wow, I sure was wrong. (If it's a hateful devilish being, I won't be as enthusiastic about this.)
Admitting that no one knows for sure strikes me as a wonderful way to bridge the gap between religious belief and atheism. Sure, it isn't a wide bridge, given that I suspect many, if not most, people would say they're at least 99% sure that, say, God either exists or doesn't exist.
But any admission of "I don't know for sure" leaves open the door to looking upon those with different views with a kinder, gentler, less dogmatic eye.
And this is a very good thing in our current world where people are increasingly divided into opposing tribes that find little or nothing good to say about the other side, or see little or nothing they have in common.