I am an atheist but I often find myself disagreeing with other atheists. There are good reasons to be an atheist and there are bad reasons. Here are ten commonly heard bad reasons:
“My mum got sick, we all prayed for hours but she died”
“I’ve never seen God.”
“I prayed daily for God to reveal himself but he didn’t.”
“There are contradictions in the Bible.”
“God permitted slavery.”
“Babies are born with terrible abnormalities.”
“The Genesis creation story has been proven wrong by science.”
“There is no evidence that Jesus ever existed.”
“We know men invent gods.”
“God is supposed to love us but he allows natural disasters to kill us.”
These facts are consistent with God not existing, but they are not sufficient to show God does not exist. They are not sufficient because it is so easy to confabulate stories that would allow God’s existence to remain feasible, despite these facts being true. Confabulation is the most important technique in the apologist’s toolbag.
So why be an atheist? Be an atheist because the six billion people who believe in God (all gods), and their predecessors cannot between them, come up with a single good reason for their belief, despite several thousand years of trying. Be an atheist because there are no good reasons to be a theist.
That’s it. That is all you need.