Secular Humanism’s Easy: Appreciate People In Your Life

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My arm and my pride are still a little sore today, but that’s okay. The joy of laughing at three straight men for besting me in Wii “Swordplay,” despite my best efforts, was worth it.

That’s really what life is all about. No matter what happens, the best thing in life is being able to appreciate the time you have with the ones you love. Everything else, if you think about it, is just means to that end.

At one point during my five-and-a-half hour drive home from an amazing New Year’s celebration, I had a good cry. I don’t just mean a hearty or effective cry, I mean a positive, uplifting cry—literally a good cry. For me, the catalyst was this song:

“Childhood Places” by Benjamin Costello

Missing people is an odd emotion. The longing and absence can be absolute torture, but if you really think about it, it’s one of the most positive and reassuring feelings. The only way you can miss someone is to love them. The absence only exists because of an amazingly strong positive emotional connection you have with the people you are missing. Recognizing you have people to miss can oddly be as sweet as missing them is bitter.

Over the past two weeks, I’ve gotten to see some of my most favorite people in the world, many of whom I haven’t seen in two-and-a-half years. And one of the ways you know you have good friends is when 30 months can pass and when you’re together, you can shoot the shit just the same as before. Let me tell you, I have some amazing friends.

When I think about the simplicity of this joy in life, it really makes me glad to be an atheist. The moments of my life that I cherish most?—I can appreciate them simply for what they are. It wasn’t God’s plan or fate or anything of the sort. There is no higher power that dictates who I am or what I will do in my life or who I will interact with. There’s just me. It’s all in my hands. And to have such amazing people in my life, whether I get to see them regularly or not, makes me really feel like I’m getting the most out of life.

I think that’s why so many people cling to God and demand their beliefs be respected. It’s all about fear. God is a crutch and a scapegoat…

God is the source of my morality, so I don’t have to take responsibility for making moral decisions for myself.

God controls the events in my life, so I’ll appeal to Him for what decisions to make.

God created me for a purpose, so if others don’t like what I’m doing in my life, they can take it up with Him.

I think that’s so sad. Yeah, sometimes it’s tough to own your life and own your decisions, but it’s so much more meaningful when you do. God just gets in the way of putting people first. When you just look around and make the most of what you have, the results can be phenomenal, and they’ll always be 100% human accomplishments.

My new year is off to a great start. I hope as Twenty-ten continues, I keep this warm beginning in mind. All of the work and blogging that I do is to allow and encourage people to appreciate interactions with fellow humans int he same way. We’re all here, and we’re all going to die, so let’s make the most of it for us all while we can.

Happy New Year!

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There are 2 Comments to "Secular Humanism’s Easy: Appreciate People In Your Life"

  • –Frank. says:

    “And one of the ways you know you have good friends is when 30 months can pass and when you’re together, you can shoot the shit just the same as before.”

    My best friend and I lost contact some 15 years ago when he moved from Germany (where he and I lived) to New York.
    One day I decided to visit him there — and we took up our conversation as if only 1o minutes passed since we last spoke to each other.
     
    Bad news is that we lost contact again, but that does not matter in any way. I’ll meet him again another day, I’m sure.
    Oh, by the way, he’s gay, I’m not (I even had two children born since we last met), but we’re both atheists, as most Germans are.

  • ZackFord says:

    I’m glad to hear there are others out there with the same rewarding friendships in their lives. Thanks for sharing! 😀

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