Welcome to my world. Although, I would say that I struggle more with agnosticism than atheism, meaning I’m more inclined to say that I don’t know if God exists than I am to say God does not exist (a seemingly small but important distinction).
I was once a devout, daily Mass Catholic who, over the last few years, gradually started to wonder if God was real or not. I started by wondering why God was hiding (as John Paul II put it). From there, it was a long, gradual process to where I really wonder if God exists or not.
For some time now I’ve been describing myself as agnostic, but that doesn’t quite tell the whole story. I often find myself wondering still and even missing the feeling of being a good, devout believer.
Hypothetically, if God does not exist, does it even matter?
That’s interesting because I’ve sometimes thought about this question the other way around: “if God does exist, does it still matter?” If God does exist, he seems somewhat uninterested in making himself known to us. Some people refer to as apathetic agnosticism (“I don’t know if God exists, and what does it matter anyways?”). If God exists, does he care if we worship him or not? If he did, wouldn’t he reveal himself more clearly?
Your question is still interesting though. It’s almost the flip side of Pascal’s wager (and I do love Mirdath’s description of that).
Not only are they (usually) better people to each other,
On the other hand, I’ve never seen people treat each other so poorly as I have on this forum out of all the forums I’ve ever been on, most of which were not religious at all.
If there really is no God, is the time we spend in Church and in prayer wasted?
For the most part, I would think so. On the other hand, if prayer makes you feel good, then there is definitely benefit in it, even if the purpose of the prayer is a delusion.
In the end, I’m not sure if the answer to the question, “does God exist?” is even knowable with any certainty. That leaves me wondering what to do. Should I act like there is a God and try to “fake it” the best I can when I have doubts? Or should I act like God’s existence or non-existence doesn’t really matter and just try to be the best person I can.