4 weeks ago
Friday, October 26, 2012
I would like to make it perfectly clear that I am an atheist. There is no god, no heaven and no hell. When I die, I will be gone. I won't be in the skies watching over you, I won't be with my departed friends, family or pets and I won't be in a "better place". I'll just be gone. Sure, my friends and family will still remember me, so the memory of me will live on, but that's all that will go on. (That and my Facebook and Twitter posts, apparently.)
I have a friend that just died who also happened to be an atheist. Most of his close friends knew he was an atheist and he surely never made any secret about it. He even spelled out instructions, in the event of his death, that any services NOT be held in a church and that they be strictly non-religious. (This is the same thing I want for myself, by the way).
The reason I am writing this post is because I am incredibly frustrated by people who write about my atheist friend and use terms or phrases that I can paraphrase as, "he was blessed", "he had faith in god" or "he's surely in heaven now", because it's all such bullshit. He is none of these things. I miss the guy and I would prefer that he were still alive, but if he were still alive, he too would be pissed by these comments.
As a decent person who has attended funerals of family and friends that were religious, I would never dream of saying things to the gathered such as, "too bad he's worm food now" or "wow, I'm sure glad I still exist, unlike so-and-so", because that would make me look like an ass-hat. When I'm at a Christian funeral and someone says, "well, he's in heaven now", I just smile and say nothing. I don't say anything antagonistic because that would just be rude. Unfortunately, too many religious people have no such common sense.
Oh, and in the distant future (hopefully very distant), when I'm dead and they have a memorial service for me, if anyone says, "well he's in heaven now", I want all my friends to slap that person in the face for disrespecting my memory. If you are my friend, I expect this.