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Why might one wish to mitigate one's lack of belief ...


Veteran Member
I would imagine some probably do. Especially if their belief is causing them discomfort.
Interesting. I haven't thought of that. If that is so, then, yes, I could imagine that lack of belief could also cause discomfort in atheists and they may want to believe.



Veteran Member
As usual, I think there is great confusion here about the difference between belief and faith. Rejecting a belief in God is easy and fairly common. Rejecting faith in the face of the great mystery of being is another matter. That can destroy a person. I have noticed that for most atheists, the solution is to simply ignore the mystery. Ignore the existential questions that it generates. And thereby ignore the discomfort that not knowing any of the answers to those questions.

And that's fine for them as long as they can maintain that ignorance. But if they come to a point in life where those questions can no longer be rejected, and avoided, and they begin to lose faith along with their "un-belief". Then they may really need to revisit the idea of God. Not necessarily a "belief" in God. But actual faith in whatever mystery solution that word might mean to them.
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Terminal Optimist Judaism
Why might one wish to mitigate a long standing lack of belief?

People change over time? Over a long time people can change greatly? Their needs change; their desires change; potentially there is existential dread creeping in?

Or maybe it's like moonshine? Just because it tasted funny and had strange effects when it was fresh, after a while maybe it's more palatable? It's impossible to tell without cracking the jar and giving it a whiff.


Well-Known Member
Faith is the belief in things not seen. This is not only the cornerstone of most religions but it is also the cornerstone of all innovation, including innovations in science. What we are taught in school, about science, is the result of a long process of verification, which began with an innovator's faith in an idea that had not yet been proven in reality.

For example, Einstein's theory of General Relativity was published in 1916, but it was not proven until 1919. Up till that point many in science had faith in the math, but there was no tangible proof for the eyes. Before 1916 or before the theory was published, only Einstein had faith in his theory of General Relativity. This faith drove him to develop the math. Those in science who had no faith in his theory, prior to publication, were stuck in the obsolete illusions of science, thinking they knew better based on their limiting philosophy. Faith leads verification in time.

The unconscious human brain can often see/infer relationships that are not yet conscious based on the known data. If the ego senses this main frame data processing and attempts to make it conscious, this will be driven by faith in things not yet seen and part of conscious knowledge. However it can be made conscious if that faith hangs on to the end. At http point, all those who doubted, get to learn things the easy way. Anyone can learn with hard proof, but it takes more skills to develop ideas before there is proof.

Science has had faith in nuclear fusion being used for commercial energy production for decades. This has not panned out since, faith has been connected to the wrong approaches. A newer approach has now been proposed based on classic fusion using lasers. This has been demonstrated as feasible.

Going from there to large scale energy production is still in the works, driven by the faith of innovators and engineers. They do no have proof for scale-up, so it does not yet fit the philosophy of science until their faith can dumb it down to a production process, for all to see. At that point anyone can see.

Religious faith is the cornerstone of all faith. From the gods means from the dark corners of the unconscious mind, not trust by science, until it moves science forwards by this same scary process of inner vision.

Guitar's Cry

Disciple of Pan
... not the loss of belief, but a long standing lack of belief in deity?

I have religious relatives and friends whose social media feeds, reading material, music, and videos are all religiously-oriented. Jesus, it seems, is their breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And it appears to bring them immense pleasure. I would imagine for some folks who have never believed, even if they understand the psychological mechanisms behind it, there may be a curiosity or a desire to experience this complete devotion to an idea that (appears) to be so very pleasurable to some others.


Grand Hat
Staff member
Premium Member
Is this a real thing? I can't imagine someone wanting to believe who doesn't already.

I've met such people. They lack belief but tend to see that lack in nihilistic terms, and compare it to a somewhat loose belief in an afterlife. Death is often a big consideration my experience.

I guess I've seen it about 3 times in real life. Not super optimistic personality types in these cases.


Grand Hat
Staff member
Premium Member
Aye, tis weak to want an invented
reality instead of accepting what is.

Kind of. I don't see where a happy belief that you actually don't hold offers any sort of comfort or hope.

Seems to me that those people are kicking the can down the road on a potential existential crisis.

My family is going through a major loss of a loved one at the moment, and there are various belief systems at play amongst those living with the loss. The ones dealing with it the worst (if I exclude one I think is just in denial) are all those with the least consistent belief systems. The ones dealing with it 'better' vary in terms of theism/atheism but they appear to have invested more thought into issues like death, and aren't so thrown by some small wrinkles people weren't expecting.


Veteran Member
I have noticed that for most atheists, the solution is to simply ignore the mystery. Ignore the existential questions that it generates. And thereby ignore the discomfort that not knowing any of the answers to those questions.
Aye, that would explain the lack of atheists around here.


Proponent of RAEism
Premium Member
I don't know. Would I be better off, somehow, if I could mitigate my lack of belief in the Yeti? What about my belief that you can't make a soufle in half the time by putting it in a 500 degree oven?
I wonder if there is a greater desire to mitigate a loss of belief in Santa Claus than in a diety. I could see how that loss could be more profoundly felt.


Be your own guru
... not the loss of belief, but a long standing lack of belief in deity?
Never felt such a need.
A lack of belief is painful to the natural mind because it limits natural and spiritual potential.
Never felt such a limitation. Actually, I delight in my freedom.
I have noticed that for most atheists, the solution is to simply ignore the mystery. Ignore the existential questions that it generates.
If there is a mystery, work on it. That is what science does.
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