Can atheists be happy?

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morefaithrequired

Well-known member
Sep 28, 2019
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#21
there do seem to be varying degrees of atheists. from militant to more subtle forms. some bordering on agnostic. where atheism hasnt become a kind of religion itself. and dont hate Christians.
the obsessive miltant anti Christian ones are more likely to be unhappy. Unhappiness becoming their default position. Blaming others for it. Especially Christians.
 

Desdichado

Senior Member
Feb 9, 2014
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#22
Yeah, that's the long and short of it.

there do seem to be varying degrees of atheists. from militant to more subtle forms. some bordering on agnostic. where atheism hasnt become a kind of religion itself. and dont hate Christians.
the obsessive miltant anti Christian ones are more likely to be unhappy. Unhappiness becoming their default position. Blaming others for it. Especially Christians.
 

Going_Nowhere

Well-known member
Nov 10, 2019
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#23
Honestly, I probably wouldn't be happy as an atheist. But I won't speak for others. That's what makes life interesting. We live in a diverse world where everyone is different. And if atheists feel they are happy, who am I to argue with that? At least that's how I see it anyway.
 

morefaithrequired

Well-known member
Sep 28, 2019
2,194
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#24
Honestly, I probably wouldn't be happy as an atheist. But I won't speak for others. That's what makes life interesting. We live in a diverse world where everyone is different. And if atheists feel they are happy, who am I to argue with that? At least that's how I see it anyway.
I think some Christians believe that only Christians can be happy in this life.
But doesn't God take us where we don't necessarily want to go? Taking us out of our comfort zone? God is perhaps more concerned about our long term eternal happiness. The atheist is perhaps short sighted and only focussed on earthly happiness.
 
Nov 9, 2019
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#25
Hi @morefaithrequired,

Perhaps we should make a distinction between happiness and joy. I believe an atheist can experience happiness. In fact, I believe an atheist may experience happiness very often. Happiness is usually a result of happenings: a good party, a successful first date, an A+ on an exam, getting hired, getting a raise, winning a bet, etc. It is certain that an atheist would experience happiness in these situations. I believe many atheists experience more happiness than Christians because they do not have to deny themselves of this world's pleasures. However, I do not think atheists can truly have joy: that's only from God. I believe joy is the contentment and satisfaction we have even during trials. It is like unconditional happiness. As Christians, we can have unconditional happiness because we depend on an unconditional God. However, an atheist does not have something unconditional to depend on. One of my closest friends in an atheist and while he is generally a very happy person, I have seen him break down during difficult seasons. He would tell me that everything is meaningless, that he is worthless, that even his friends and family will abandon him. These are not the lamentations of a person who feels joy in their heart.

However, the amount of Christians who truly experience joy may be debatable. I for one know that having unconditional happiness can be difficult even if I serve an unconditional God.
 

morefaithrequired

Well-known member
Sep 28, 2019
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#26
what about when atheists have a child? dont they experience joy?
the same as we do ?
 

FlSnookman7

Senior Member
Jun 27, 2015
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#27
Anyone can be happy as happiness depends on circumstances. Joy on the other hand is a fruit of the Spirit and comes from God. As such it doesn't matter the circumstances, joy can overcome them. Only a Christian can know joy. So an atheist might be happy but that happiness is only temporary.
 

morefaithrequired

Well-known member
Sep 28, 2019
2,194
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#28
Anyone can be happy as happiness depends on circumstances. Joy on the other hand is a fruit of the Spirit and comes from God. As such it doesn't matter the circumstances, joy can overcome them. Only a Christian can know joy. So an atheist might be happy but that happiness is only temporary.
so you are saying that only Christians can experience joy?
im sorry but i strongly disagree. I suspect you are incorrect.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
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#29
Can atheists be happy? Sure they can. But their criteria for obtaining happiness is radically different from a Christian's because their objectives are so different that they can't even understand Christian happiness.

To an atheist happiness is purchased by success. There is no god, there is no higher meaning for our lives, so the only thing we can really gain is being successful. And without a god, success becomes measured by how good we are at this life thing.

Life can be compared to a video game. There are tools you need to use to get through it, there is a story to follow and there are objectives to be met. For an atheist, success is measured in how good you are at playing the game. If you are good at gathering money, influencing other people, gaining power and extending your life span, you are successful at this game. Winning is counted by how long you live, how many things you have enjoyed and how much you have.

Christians aren't so focused on tools and resources. They are more interested in the game's story. We know the tools are important, but we don't put mastering the game mechanics above the storyline. Our profit is in living our lives well, not just mastering the game. Money and even longevity don't matter as much to us. (This is why Peter and Paul, both already aware of how they would die, could still have joy. Living a long time is not success to a Christian.)

This is also why atheists think Christians are stupid. The things that they think are all-important for being successful at life are things we don't really care much about. But if you accept the initial premise that there is no god, no life after this one, then their values are actually logical. If this were the only life you had, it really would be stupid to not get all the resources you can grab.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
17,267
4,311
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#30
Hmm, that turned into kind of a long post.

Here's the short version: Yes atheists can be happy, if they are winning. Or rather, if they think they are winning.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
17,267
4,311
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#31
would be a shame if atheists were happy wouldnt it. its just not fair!
morefaithrequired you sure do ridicule people a lot.

I know there are some Christians who want to paint all non-Christians as completely and constantly miserable. But Tinkerbell didn't say anything that indicated that attitude. I think you jumped the gun here. Maybe when you started this thread you were looking to counteract the "Non-Christians are miserable all the time" attitude, so you read something into Tink's post that wasn't really there.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
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#32
why dont you ask an athiest.
no point asking on a christian forum, as most athiests Im have known are thoroughly miserable creatures, and dont hesitate to tell Christians how much they hate God and blame Him for everything, then say outraegous things like they dont believe Him.

I know cos I live with one example (mum) she is only 'happy' if she can disparage someone else.
another friend who had the misfortune of living with a self proclaimed athiest, whenever we saw him he would bring up the topic, but it really was because he accidentally killed someone by driving drunk and was afraid of God, who he thought wouldnt forgive him.

I have observed how many people become atheists because someone close to them dies, and they think they should have lived forever on earth to attend to their needs. they cant quite believe God has our lives in His hands and that suffering and pain is actually something most people go through in life. they dont accept that Jesus died on our behalf and give his very life for us.
 

WingsOfLight

Well-known member
Dec 10, 2019
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#34
If someone doesn't believe in God but claims they are not an atheist, is there a term for that?
 

WingsOfLight

Well-known member
Dec 10, 2019
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#36
I know it was probably a crazy question to ask, but I'm speaking from things I have actually witnessed. My life is strange..........
 

WingsOfLight

Well-known member
Dec 10, 2019
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#38
Someone told me they are not an atheist because those people do bad things or something like that. Like bad rituals? I guess I still don't get it myself.
I'm sorry this doesn't make sense. I'm trying to open up about something and I'm finding it difficult.
 

morefaithrequired

Well-known member
Sep 28, 2019
2,194
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#39
Someone told me they are not an atheist because those people do bad things or something like that. Like bad rituals? I guess I still don't get it myself.
I'm sorry this doesn't make sense. I'm trying to open up about something and I'm finding it difficult.
you wont offend me
 

WingsOfLight

Well-known member
Dec 10, 2019
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#40
A few people might get offended, but based on what I've been reading on here, they would be contradicting themselves.

I made a mistake on a different Christian site. I jumped in right away and started talking about something and a few people kind of came back and attacked me.

Perhaps I should start a new thread so it doesn't mesh up with this one.