As an Atheist I have more “commandments” to follow than Christians, Jews or Muslims because the ancient Golden Rule is my primary moral code. Also known as the “law of reciprocity” it is not a dogma. It is flexible:

“Treat others as you would like to be treated.
Do not do to others that which you would not want done to you”

Morality is about well being. And The Golden Rule satisfies this very efficiently for oneself as well as for others in the community. It predates religion and requires no gods though variations of it appear in every holy book, no deity invented it:

Feed the hungry
Help the sick

Help the needy
Keep promises
Do not judge people unfairly
Do not cheat
Do not steal
Do not kill
Do not rape
Do not hurt children
Do not lie
Do not treat people as objects
Do not abandon people in need
Be mindful of opportunities to be kind
Be thoughtful
Be generous
Be considerate
Be helpful wherever possible
Be respectful of other people’s bodies
Treat people with dignity
Do not buy people as property
Forgive as I would want to be forgiven; not reflexively, but mindfully.

Fortunately, most of us do these things rather naturally and without prompting when faced with an opportunity.

But why should I do them without a god?
Because I want to live in a world where people behave this way for the good of my loved ones, their friends, their loved ones and our wider communities. It is entirely in my best interest to help this happen by practicing THE GOLDEN RULE.

Will I have to face consequences for breaking these commandments above and others like it? Absolutely. The consequences will not come from a god but from
the loved ones who share my life. And they are the “higher authority.”


About Atheist Max

I'm a former Christian who became Atheist in middle age. My blog is a journal of how I lost religion and discovered a better life. For Peace, Civility and the Separation of Church and State
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  1. Stacey says:

    Hello again Max. The Golden Rule is from the bible. Luke 6:31 and Matthew 7:12. Therefore, you do believe in God because you believe in his word. You trust in God, trust also in me,…In my Fathers house are many mansions, if it were not so I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you and if I go to prepare a place for you I will come and receive you unto myself that were I am you will be also…” “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved, and your house” God is love and he who dwells in love dwells in God and God in him.


    • Atheist Max says:

      No Stacey.
      The Golden Rule pre-dates the bible by several millennia (that’s thousands of years).
      The Law of Reciprocity is the Golden Rule – it is incredibly ancient. I’m not impressed that a person named Jesus uttered an ancient law which he didn’t invent.


      • Yesiamfun says:

        Stacy is correct …. Lol
        Why have morals or anything you talked about if you don’t believe in God ?
        No that’s backwards thinking other people called sought mouse.
        You can be challenged to read the Bible and go to a Bible study and not just one.
        That is unless you continu just pick and choose what versus you want to pull out besides read the whole story what that one scripture meant.
        Kind a like that movie God’s not dead.
        Maybe you should watch it ?
        Then you can get some basics.
        Wise people that seek knowledge want to understand.
        I’ve been to several denomination churches to understand their beliefs. I even read the Koran.
        So if you want to someone look at you as have any canna credibility it would be advisable to read and understand what you’re talking about.
        Just don’t throw loose words out there.


        • Atheist Max says:

          You have absolutely no evidence for any gods and yet you claim I am the one who is lost?
          You are telling me a lie! You are saying “god exists” yet you offer no evidence for this claim!
          Where is your evidence?
          How dare you accuse me of being wrong when you have provided NOTHING!?


  2. Mitesh Thanki says:

    Max, please read the following page (it’s long but well written):

    Without God, how can we have a moral compass? How can we have an ultimate recognition of what is right or wrong?
    Without God, are our lives not absurd and meaningless?


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