For some reason, Christians feel intimidated by atheism. They assume that the atheist and the intellectual are on the same level. The assumption is groundless:
A recent article published by the American Atheist Society was written by a zealous but discouraged atheist (a graduate of the Univeristy of Texas, and president of “American Atheists”) who related 5 basic coronary problems plaguing contemporary atheists of the U.S.
1. The 1st dilemma he cites is a “lack of unity.” He begins with a word on how unified Christians seem, in their stand against abortion and in the fact that they do not openly criticize one another. He says history has shown atheistic attitudes towards each other have been nothing but outride hostility… The atheists hate the agnostics, who hate the humanists, who cannot stand the rationalists, who keep their distance from the realists, who will not speak to the Unitarians, and on and on it goes – they cannot even agree on the simple concept that “there is no god.”
2. The second symptom is one of “lack of zeal.” He says “atheists will simply not get involved with the promotion of their chosen lifestyle. I cannot think of a group harder to motivate… atheists seem to feel that their position with regard to religion is a deeply personal thing that does not need to be shared with others.”
I suppose it is hard to be enthusiastic about the nonexistence of God, when the word “enthusiasm” actually comes from the 2 Greek words “en” and “theos,” meaning “in God.” If I denied the existence of the sun, I would find it rather difficult to be zealous in my convictions in the light of its brilliance.
3. The 3rd dilemma is “a lack of faith.” The writer admits, “I have met many atheists who cannot surpass the ‘what if I am wrong?’ stage.” The cause of their problem is obviously a lack of unbelief.
4. The 4th ailment is one of “lack of boldness.” The president of the society remarks about an incident where a newspaper reporter wanted to do an article on the subject of atheistic life-styles; and how he found nothing but the “fear of man” in those whom he contacted. He said he called, from person to person and “encountered such deep-seated fear that I could hardly believe my ears. In short, most of the atheists I contacted were petrified with fear at being found out… it was a climate of total fear.”
5. And finally, he found that the average atheist was bound by a “lack of giving.” He speaks of the generosity of Christians, and then protests. “I know that certainly there are persons of great means who are atheists, but they simply will not assist in the struggle against religion… and I know you are out there… ” He believes they are there – somewhere.