Tract #2: Moral Atheism
Download tract #2: What Is Moral Atheism? (PDF). See page #3 for printing instructions.
What Is Moral Atheism?
Moral atheism is a philosophy derived from a few basic logical principles. It is largely concerned with morals and ethics, but the moral atheist has found that truths revealed during the search for valid philosophy imply atheism.
Moral atheists subscribe to the “two questions” (or 2Q) method of testing whether a system of thought is valid (details of 2Q can be found in a separate tract). In addition to 2Q, the moral atheist makes a few assumptions, including:
- An objective reality exists.
- The scientific method is the most reliable method available for investigating nature (so far as it can be investigated).
- Simplest sufficient explanations (those that introduce the fewest new concepts, rules, objects, entities, or assumptions) are preferred.
- It is better to be right than wrong.
- It is better to be right than certain.
- Self interest is okay.
You will notice that none of these assumptions directly involve morality or religion, and that they do not rule out the supernatural out of hand. Rather, the moral atheist uses 2Q to grow principles from these assumptions. Alternately, a moral atheist might use these tools as a “morality sieve,” examining a series of possible solutions to a philosophical question and accepting those that are not found wanting.
Moral atheism is an atheistic philosophy not because it assumes atheism but because proofs for the existence of one or more deities are not found to be compelling in the light of the philosophy’s assumptions.
Clear, logical thought as a tool for investigating one’s own beliefs is very important to the moral atheist. Many moral atheists consider their atheism to be much less important than these principles of introspection, to the point that they would rather try to convince a theist to develop an acceptable, coherent theism than to convince them that belief in a deity is not justified.