I have long tried to explain why I am an atheist/agnostic/whatever-you-wanna-call-it.
So far, that has usually led to long, convoluted discussions or even arguments with friends or co-workers, simply because i failed to somehow get my point across.
So here it is, another, and hopefully final, attempt:
All religions have the same inherent flaw: they all derive legitimacy from only one source, their god. but this god only exists in the sacred texts of that particular religion. So the Christian god tells his followers in the Bible that he is the only real god, but his followers made up the Bible in the first place. How can a fictional character you created give you any sort of authority in the real world? It's like saying that Gandalf is real because Tolkien has him say that he is real in the Lord of the Rings, and then in the next chapter Gandalf declares Tolkien to be his pope.
All religious works were of course written by men, and not by gods. men invented the gods, and then these inventions declared that they were real and that we should serve them. It is beyond absurd.
A god in the biblical sense (or in the sense of any other religious work) simply does not exist. Period.
But is there a god in the sense of a creator? An entity that created the universe?
I am not going to pretend to be intelligent enough to carry on a discussion about how a creator could have created the universe out of nothing, or whether there was simply never a beginning to the universe (thus eliminating the need for creation), but I do know one thing: the existence -or lack of existence- of such an entity has absolutely no impact on my life.
So why spend time thinking about it?
Curiosity, of course; just as I would like to know who Jack the Ripper was.
But would knowing change my life?