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
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 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.”