The “church” of “meh”

Being one of the last people alive with an active email account has its privileges. Aside from giving a good chuckle to anyone I tell my email address to, I also get to see the daily headlines through the eyes of the people at Yahoo. These range from gossip about justin Beiber, to actual political news with a slightly right wing slant to things like this that popped up in my feed yesterday:
Now, if you’re a longtime reader, you might be aware that I’m not a religious man. In fact, I’m as far from one as can be. I’m not even one that buys into spirituality on most levels. I don’t have some grand theory that explains why we exist or the meaning of life, I more just live knowing that shit happens and we eventually die, but we should be civil to one another while we’re here. The term “atheist” is one I’ve used to describe myself in the past. Simply based on that I don’t believe in any gods. It’s not deeper than that. But I feel as though “Agnostic” might fit me better as I fully concede I have no idea how or why we are here (even though I’m skeptical there is a real “reason”, in general). Still, I’m always gonna lean on scientific facts over those that were written by people thousands of years ago. People, I might add, who didn’t really know shit about anything. It’s not their fault as those were the times they lived in but I’m pretty sure you gave one of them a rubik’s cube and their heads would explode marveling over the sheer engineering prowess of it.
But I digress…Atheist churches…Why?
To me , the most important part of not believing in a god is that it’s been decided. You acknowledge this about yourself and move on. It’s a non-issue. The only time it comes up is when I’m watching TV and some religious lunatic is talking nonsense and I roll my eyes. The idea of organizing a religion based on not being religious kinda defeats the purpose, no? In fact, it’s the dumbest fucking thing I’ve ever heard of. Why on earth would you even bring that into your life? Is it to show up the religious folk? Is it the church of irony? That sounds like some Williamsburg shit where a bunch of hipsters all dress in white on a sunday and drink beers while reading science text books to each other. The whole idea of not being a part of organized religion is half the belief that you don’t believe and , for me at least, half not having to do all that made up traditional bullshit that being an active part of a religion entails.

Listen, I get it on some level. The idea of banding together to push the agenda makes sense. We want to live in a world where nothing we do, as non-believers, is dictated by religious values. I too watch TV and get frustrated when I see politicians acting as if the bible should be considered when deciding public policies. Yes, it’s insane and has no place there. So, creating an atheism force does make sense on some level. After all, they are the minority and should have just as loud a voice as the religious folks. But how about we do that without just making atheism into it’s own religion?

Personally, I feel indifference is my “church”. or “meh”, as I like to call it. Not to life in general (though, every girl I’ve ever dated might argue that point) but to any sort of belief system. I simply don’t give a shit. You wanna believe what you believe? Go for it. I’m not here to stop you. What you think has no bearing on what I think. We can still be friends. I don’t hate people who believe in a higher power. It’s really only an issue when those people start pushing their agenda on me and everyone else around them. Then it’s an issue. So, by this logic, the second atheists start crusading against those who think differently than them, they become no better than the people they’re rallying against. To not believe should also mean to simply not care. I don’t know about you but , when I truly don’t care about something, I don’t spend a lot of time complaining about it or even thinking about it. Cause , like I said, I don’t care. At most, I’ll make a dumb twitter joke about it and call it a day. I don’t like watching college football but what kind of bored asshole would I be if i dedicated my life to spreading the “Stop watching college football!” gospel to people all over the country? Instead, I just pretend it doesn’t exist and keep it moving. It comes on TV, i change the channel. It’s not that difficult.
At the “Church” of “meh”, there is no agenda. The “church” of “meh” is basically just a state of mind. It’s not as defeatist as it sounds. It’s more just an attitude towards organized religion. It’s motto would be something like “You do you, I’mma do me”. I’m not trying to start a church to fight the idea of churches. I’m not trying to congregate with other like minded people to talk about how little we all believe in god. Fuck all that noise. If you need other people to agree with you to feel good about your beliefs you might as well join a religion anyway. There is nothing to be gained by discussing absolutes. Being a non-believer is more like a switch in your brain. I remember when my switch flicked. I was 18 and in college. I had never given religion a deep thought but, at the same time, never questioned it either. I think I was sitting in my dorm room writing a paper and then a thought just passed in my mind “Wait a minute…there’s a god in the sky that controls everything? That doesn’t sound right…” and that was that. More thought was given and ideas snowballed from there but that initial thought was all it took to shut it down for me. THAT was it. The “church” of “meh” was born.
Once that was solidified, I was good. There was no need to expand on it or go to a ironic church-like gahtering to shake hands with people who agreed with me and hear “sermons” on non-belief while we smugly blow each other.
So, yeah, if you’re really bout that atheist life, don’t go in on this bullshit. Just think what you think and carry on living cause anyone who really feels that way should only need that peace of mind and nothing else. Perhaps, you just need a hug?

29 thoughts on “The “church” of “meh”

  1. Well the Church of Satan, and some Buddhists are atheists and they all organize. I think either this is either just a way for people to get a sense of community, or because they crave the dogmatics of religion.

  2. Well said. Thank you for giving my church a well-deserved name. I too, have labeled myself agnostic or atheist, but “meh” sounds better. “meh” = reasonable.

  3. I know it’s not the point of the entry, but to say “Still, I’m always gonna lean on scientific facts over those that were written by people thousands of years ago. People, I might add, who didn’t really know shit about anything,” is quite a bit much…

      • Their knowledge base was different, but they knew how to survive which is much more than I can say for us. The why’s and how’s may change (paradigm shifts), but results don’t.

      • I’m not talking about survival. I’m talking about beliefs. Primarily, the ones leading to the bible and religion in general. They didn’t have the knowledge we have, to no fault of their own. They were more primitive in most facets of life. But, yeah, I don’t disagree with your last point. Though it seems like our undoing will be too much technology.

      • I think what I’m trying to say is that it’s an evolution and results are relative when considering pro’s and con’s? I could be retarded too, though.

      • And at the same time, how blind are we to think science can acquire all knowledge of everything and that the end result will be that there is not a “god.”

      • Thus being “agnostic”. But, while i do consider myself one, i do lean heavily toward there not being a god…as the idea of it is pretty fucking ludicrous when you think of it rationally on any level. Still, like you said, no one will ever really know 100%.

      • Well disproving (most) gods with science is pretty much impossible. First any notion of a transcendent god, i.e. outside of space and time, would be impossible to test without it manifesting in our universe. And even then if it so wishes (assuming omnipotence) could skew any result. Science also doesn’t claim to have all the answers, nor should anyone expect it to. It is merely an process in which we try to find out new information with current information. However I think it would be unreasonable to assume a god does exist.

        Blockhead, depending on who you ask, you can be agnostic and atheist. Basically (a)gnosticism is a belief about being about what is knowable, or if you know. Atheism is simply a question of belief, if you do or do not believe in any god. Two different answers to two different questions.

  4. Oh, and in a world prior to globalization and all that blah, blah shit; religions served as memes which were beneficial to humanity. Granted a memes arsenal of weapons eventually decided who was right and who was wrong, but that’s besides the point. You could identify friendly humans by their religion and that allowed civilizations to flourish and then be destroyed many times over until we got to where we are now. The problem with all that was present from the beginning, it’s built into humankind, we become selfish when others around us are selfish because scarcity makes us sad and sadness is like a sickness. We don’t like feeling like shit.

    • I disagree I try to be as selfish as possible. If the benefits outway the good, then I feel it is the right choice. Fortunately, I, along with most, have empathy. Sometimes being really selfish, seems incredibly selfless. Personally I don’t care what others think, but at the same time, I take extreme satisfaction from helping others.

  5. Great read; while I agree with you on most points regarding pushing an atheist agenda and that a god-less church is church nonetheless, I have a couple of points to make.
    1. Not believing is not the same as not caring.
    This does not mean you have to go out of your way to argue against something contrary to what you believe in; in the case of atheism I agree with you: case closed, move on. However, scientists have to disprove a theory as much (or more) than they have to prove one. Ask any (good) politician and they will say you have to know an opposing argument better than you know your own. In these examples you have to care as much about the opposite of your convictions. To tie in the religious aspect: I went to IAR audio engineering school (by Union Square, NYC) in 1999. One of my classmates was a goth-like blonde girl who told me she had read the bible, front-to-back, 4 times. She also told me she didn’t believe in religion. So I ask the obvious follow-up: Why read a seemingly never-ending volume of religious material 4 times over when you have no affiliation with it? Her answer (loosely): “When I get into a bullshit discussion with a religious fanatic who tries to use the bible to back up their rhetoric I can have an informed response. I can back up my non-belief with the same subject matter they use to do the opposite”. A little crazy and a lot of wasted energy just to disprove a theory, but it ties in to this post.
    2. The intent of the atheist church is significant here. If it is to spread a ‘non-belief’ system, then it is very hypocritical and no better than others pushing a belief system on us. But I don’t think that’s the case here. What I’m sensing (and hoping) is that atheists wanted the same sense of community and mass-gathering that is hard to find outside of a church setting. Why not be able to get together on a Sunday morning with neighbors to laugh, have fun, sing, eat, and drink without having to hear about Jesus unconditionally loving me? There are certain things a church setting offers (aside from religious aspects) that are hard to find outside of that setting. They usually do volunteer work/donations, help out members who have family/financial problems, etc. You can meet people, start new relationships. I know a church setting is not absolutely necessary to accomplish any of this but it helps to promote it.
    For the record my religious beliefs mirror yours so I have no agenda to push. The older I get the harder I find it to stay as detached from the world as I used to be. Sean gettin old, son.

    • 1)I’ve met people who have done the same thing that girl you went to school with did. It actually makes a lot of sense IF you plan on even indulging the people you would use it against. for me, I simply don’t give a shit. If a religious fanatic is talking to me, I’m not here to change his mind or prove him wrong. Clearly, his mind is made up. Instead, I just remove myself from that conversation. At best, I’d ask him questions with hopes of trying to understand where he’s coming from (form a sociological perspective) but even that would be done with an invisible eye roll happening the entire time.
      2)fair enough. Then call it that. IT’s not like you can only volunteer via churches. Bringing the word “church” into it is what makes it strange to me. Can’t people just meet up and hang out without a title? And why the same time every week? If that’s the case, join a book club or the YMCA. It’s the rubbing it in the faces/smugness part I think it overkill…and I’m a pretty smug non-beleiver. So, this shit is just seems completely pointless and uncalled for.

  6. Rubik’s cubes blow my mind even though it’s 2013. How can it turn this way AND that way? It’s got to be some sort of dark magic.

  7. Interesting piece and agree. Also semantically their use of “Church” just doesn’t make sense to me. As far as I know the root of that word has everything to do with Christianity so it makes it seem like they present themselves as an alternative to that specifically instead of removed from all religions.

    • Couldn’t Atheist’s also be labeled anti-christians at this point? All they really focus on is Christianity. How come they won’t speak out against Islam? lol Show muslims the love too? Mosque of Meh sounds better.

  8. “That sounds like some Williamsburg shit where a bunch of hipsters all dress in white on a sunday and drink beers while reading science text books to each other.”

    Fuck… nailed it.

  9. Re: using the word church for the atheist gatherings: I read the article Block posted and it seems like the whole idea was spawned by a radio personality/comedian. I doubt it was supposed to get this far. The word church was likely used to make it easily relate-able to what they were trying to accomplish (or joke about). It is semantics, but I wonder if the originator sat down and produced an atheist church manifesto if the word church would have been removed entirely from the equation.
    I think it still comes back to intent here. If the atheism world tour is a comedic spoof on religious church gatherings then the use of the word is justified. If there is no implied mockery at these events and they are truly serious secular gatherings of entertainment/joy/community then it is not an actual “church”.

  10. I agree, except that with religion, there is a lot more at stake. Pretending it doesnt exist cant really work when those people are pushing agendas you may find abhorrent. So, some voice coming from the opposition is necessary, but a fucking atheist church is ass backwards

  11. I also think those mega-church style atheist hangout sessions are attention seeking malarkey, just to cause some sort of marginal stir with the helplessly religious. No way can that shit be considered church, if there’s nothing to worship. They’re the MySpace of real life.

  12. Soooo, not to go complete fan boy status on you, but every time I leave your blog I like you even more then when I came. If you could do comedy and music simultaneously, the rest of the entertainment industry would just implode in some strange vortexy black hole thing, leaving only you.

    Cheers to the church of meh.

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