It has long been argued that totalitarian nations and tyrannies are a consequence of the “atheistic” philosophies under which they are ruled. However, this is a serious error. It is based on the mistaken view that “atheism” is some kind of philosophy or doctrine, as is the case with theism. But this is not so.
Consider that, unlike the word “theist” which in a proper context identifies what a person is, “atheist” is a negative concept that defines a person in terms of what he is not. In no way can it be reasonably justified on these grounds to conclude that atheists have some kind of “atheist belief system” or philosophy.
In fact, in philosophical and moral terms “atheism” isn’t even a thing. However, tyranny is. That tyrannies may be “atheistic” is mere association; it is not cause and effect. Totalitarian regimes and tyrannies are caused by collectivist ideologies invariably supported by Leftist theists and atheists alike. Similarly, theists and atheists on the Right support freedom and justice.
In the moral and political gulf between freedom and tyranny the only polarity that matters is the one that contrasts the values of the Left (collectivism) with those of the Right (individualism).
Thus it is unfortunate that some on the “religious right” have been increasingly disparaging atheists, as if atheism is somehow a causal factor behind the current tyranny. In atheism theists perceive an absence of morality rather than recognizing the presence of alternative moralities grounded on different principles.
On the one hand are those who cannot conceive of morality without faith in a God and afterlife, while on the other there are those who cannot conceive of morality based on anything but reason exercised within a finite limited lifetime.
Fortunately, experience has demonstrated that these metaphysically opposing views do not preclude a shared morality. Whether theist or atheist, what counts in politics is which side of political polarity holds power – Left or Right. Consequently, those on the side of freedom will of necessity eventually gravitate towards those moral alliances held together in an orbit circling the political polarity that is Just Right.
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