From Paul Nichols
I'm 23 years old, about a week away from my 24th birthday. Recently, I have had serious doubts about a God existing with all the terror and pain that is visible in our world. In my heart, I knew that if there was a God, he or she probably wasn't someone I would want to be around anyways. Anyone who could watch the brutality of this world and not do something about it when they could is not my ideal God.
I remember watching a documentary about September 11th that my girlfriend said was terrific, and it was. However, while watching the film I started to feel the same pains that my original doubts brought to the surface. So much unnecessary death and why? Because the hijackers believed that what they were doing would bring them many virgins in the heaven they were seeking. The thought made me cry uncontrollably, which was very embarrassing in front of my girlfriend.
The problem that persists for me after the realization of a world without a God is my utter mortality and the feelings of both lost hope, and, that nothing really matters. In the end, I will die, along with the people that I love. A hundred years from now no one will even know that I existed, that I loved, and that I died. A thousand years from now our civilization as we know it will be completely gone, only mentioned in a history book about the ancient world (that is, if we haven't already wiped ourselves off the face of the Earth through war or some other reason).
These thoughts make it hard for me to be happy on a daily basis. Things that once made me happy do not have the same effect they used to. Shows that I used to watch I sometimes cannot watch anymore as I see the stars age before my eyes. Knowing that the world that I know is always changing and that the people that I love, my grandparents, parents, and others will all face death, and that someday so will I.
I'm terrified of being with my girlfriend who I plan to marry because even if I marry her and we grow old together (the perfect love story) one of us will still have to face the world alone. One of us will bury the other. It is a cruel truth that I find hard to look past.
I also find it hard to believe in atheism as well because to do so would mean all my beliefs are true, in essence, that I don't matter and neither does the life that I live.
I don't know how to find happiness and I'm worried that I never will be able to find it. I need help in having a different perspective of my life. I want to look at it as a gift rather than a curse but it becomes harder every day.
Can anyone give me some advice?