atheism’s despair

Mark Driscoll with an excellent rundown of the hopelessness of an atheistic worldview:

Here is a related example from via challies:

Indifference to the Disappearance as the Months Pass

Not every atheist was horror-stricken at the O’Hairs’ disappearance. Frankly, some — those who disapproved of Madalyn O’Hair’s combative and vulgar style — were relieved that she was no longer atheism’s most visible and vocal spokesperson. A Texan atheist wrote:

The disappearance of the O’Hairs in September 1995 gave hope that more positive atheist initiatives might develop…That’s why atheists should worry about the revival of Madalyn’s American Atheists, Inc. under the leadership of Ellen Johnson, who assumed the office of President in a questionable Board of Directors meeting. Ellen Johnson is also a die-hard Madalyn fan who continues to present Madalyn as an atheist heroine. What atheism doesn’t need is a continuation of Madalyn’s negativity.

By the time Bill Murray learned that his mother, estranged daughter and half-brother had vanished, board member Tyson was living in the O’Hairs’ home. Instead of sharing their concerns and assisting each other in the search, Madalyn’s son and the American Atheists traded insults in the media. Each accused the other of caring nothing for the O’Hairs, and seeking only to make hay out of the disappearance for the publicity it would bring. “One of my mother’s employees moved into her house…and began to sleep in her bed. Her close “confidant,” Ellen Johnson, immediately flew to Texas from New Jersey and set up a new board of directors to take over the property and bank accounts of the family’s atheist organizations. Not a single “friend” reported any of the three missing to the police,” said Murray.

Go read the rest of this interesting story.

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2 Responses

  1. Wow. Never knew I was in a state of despair. Of course, I’m not, which doesn’t fit into this at all. Indeed, I know a lot of atheists and they are not suffering from despair either. Ask yourself why. The answer is enlightening.

  2. fascinating. then according to Bertrand Russell you haven’t yet arrived at full enlightenment. Do you disagree with Mr. Russell?

    That man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms; that no fire, no heroism, no intensity of thought and feeling, can preserve an individual life beyond the grave; that all the labors of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast death of the solar system, and that the whole temple of man’s achievement must inevitably be buried beneath the debris of the universe in ruins. . . . Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built (Why I Am Not a Christian, editor Paul Edwards [New York: Simon and Schuster, 1957], p. 107).

    emphasis added

    Problems with Russell’s argument are pointed out by John Piper here.

    do you disagree with Dawkins that the universe is cold bleak and empty and that maybe the logic [of atheism] is deeply pessimistic?

    If so, what gives you hope? what purpose causes you to drag yourself out of bed every morning to face another day?

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