For me, personally, atheism was a
gateway ideology that lead to a far more dangerous state of mind: I am
now a full-blown moral Nihilist—yet I’m still not rampaging, murdering,
or raping. So what went wrong?
The theist’s and moralist’s case
for their outmoded ideologies of right and wrong are looking evermore
tenuous as I, along with countless other free thinkers, descend deeper
and deeper down the pit of moral abjection. I now want to purge the
words ‘morality,’ ‘good,’ and ‘bad’ from my vocabulary.
almost completely freed from the need to classify the world, people, and
actions in one of two terms, namely ‘good’ or ‘bad,’ is something I am
still coming to terms with, but I love how empowering I feel with all
these new options for classification. Where I once saw a world of black
and white (wrong and right | evil and good), I now see a world of
colour—millions and millions of colours!
Becoming a moral
Nihilist has had a far more profound effect on my thinking than being an
Atheist ever did. I consider Atheism now nothing more than the
intellectual equivalent of teenage rebellion, after which–for some at
least—true intellectual maturity follows. Moral Nihilism is the real
growing up part, which is why so many people shun this final leap into
the chasm of purposeless nothingness that the reasoning mind must make
if it indeed wishes to be fully acquainted with reality and its place in
However, I have not become some insensate machine incapable
of feeling emotion or appreciating it; I simply don’t let emotion
overrule my rational faculties as it once did (even while I was an
atheist). I can still cry reading poems and the tragedies of history; I
can still feel inspired, uplifted, and reborn when listening to music; I
can still love people deeply and find joy in the moment, so I’ve given
up nothing by becoming a moral Nihilist. I’ve just given up the need to
be good or bad or classify others as such.
What good is it to
forgo belief in a being that prescribes what is good or bad, desirable
or undesirable if one retains much of that conviction … that need to see
the world in moral absolutes. I don’t really care if you credit human
philanthropy, charity, and mercy to the fact that we are a primate
species whose individual success, wellbeing, and happiness mostly depend
on the success, wellbeing, and happiness of the other members of our
tribe—if you use morality, you are using an outdated system that is the
core of all religion … and delusion.
No longer believing in a
supernatural being as the author of morality does not make you any more
rational if you insist on following some moral code, even if that moral
code is one you self-fabricated in spite, forged with the press of
experience, or received from evolution. Atheists, in my opinion, should
cease this infatuation with morality and trying to prove that their
rational or evolutionary morality is somehow superior to the versions
peddled by the various religions.
Moral Nihilism would be
unimaginable for people whose lives revolve around feeling morally
superior to others. We see this amongst the religious, the paupers, and
the peasants, who all shun those who are more successful, labelling them
‘morally inferior’ and ‘destined for eternal punishment’ as a
guttersnipe attempt at being ‘morally superior’ to those who inspire
The common man constantly invokes his ‘moral
refinement’ over those he envies or hates, but how much more moral (if
at all) is the man in the street—really? I dare say, the more stunted
the intellect and devoid the mind of instruction, the greater aptitude
for bias, prejudice, and thoughtless violence such a mind has. And is
this not exactly what we see with mob justice? Even if that mob justice
is just the lynching of someone’s image or denying them a fair trial
before labelling them as guilty or innocent?
We always see the
common man’s moral repugnance at the failures of those he secretly
envies or holds in high esteem. The Oscar Pistorius trial has
demonstrated, again, how judgemental the common man is by way of his
‘moral code,’ and how addicted he is to proclaiming judgement before so
the trial concludes.
After all, what is the difference between
the peasants of present day and the Wahhabi muslim extremists in the
middle east who blow themselves up for what they believe? Absolutely
nothing … and here’s why.
The common peasant (you either
subscribe to this class or you don’t, but don’t accuse me of putting you
there if you take offence) feels as passionate about his stunted,
uneducated opinion as a muslim extremists feels about his precious
religion. Both of those have but one thing (extracted from thin air) on
which they base all their self-worth, and from whence all their
judgements about everyone else flows.
Both will yell at the top
of their lungs and threaten jihad against anyone that tries to point out
the flaws in their opinions/beliefs. And let’s face it these fanatics
of the opinion and the faith did not elect their moral instruction from a
shelf filled with a multitude of ideologies on offer, neatly packed
together for reasonable comparison. Rather, they were indoctrinated from
birth, or just never taught any better and now simply believe 100% in
the only thing they know: what they were told by people who think
exactly the way they do. This is the false comfort one gets from being
part of a herd.
As a moral Nihilist, I no longer share any of
the abovementioned conditions with the rest of my species, and I hate
the fact that I ever did. But, hey, some of us actually make progress;
we don’t just endlessly express our idle infatuation with the concept.
I still judge people, but for their knowledge and rationality—the
quality of their minds, basically. You will never hear me call anyone
‘good’ or ‘bad/evil,’ but you will often hear me call someone
intelligent or stupid, ignorant or knowledgeable, wise or foolish. Such
are much more honest and noble evaluations of someone than calling them
‘morally reprehensible,’ because people extract their morals from thin
air—or loosely base it on some third-party guideline—so calling someone
immoral is a blank insult; it addresses nothing, as people will not
allow someone who ascribes to a different moral framework to judge the
moral framework on which they themselves are perched.
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