For us at AtheistBible.net, to be spiritual an experience needs to have a value we interpret as being not constrained in time and place, to have dimensional flow beyond our own spans of existence. It’s probably a universal trait of human nature to want and try to label and find structure and pin a meaning onto that quality. In a religious person, that probably translates into an eternal unknowable god and the promise of life forever after our punctuated existence here on Earth (which strikes us as a cheap bargain: for one relatively short life in terms of other things in the universe, whether lived wrong and forgiven or lived right here on Earth, you get eternity in a perfect hereafter. Actually to us that sounds like death, eternal equilibrium, stasis).
For the atheist, we think it means never giving up on inquiry and curiosity into the mysteries of our universe and our lives – isn’t there always another unanswered mystery to solve? – and in how we each contribute in some way to the future body of knowledge and well being of humanity in general, humankind marching off into the future like some infinite transcendental number.
We think it’s about humanity’s survival, about contributing to its continuing physical and mental evolution, its advancement and triumph over self-destruction and our baser instincts. It is why we keep trying to discover and learn new things and teach them to the generations that follow us, it’s why we look up at the stars and send Rovers to Mars to explore, launch Stardust missions to collect particles from the tail of a comet and bring them back to Earth to be studied and yield up their secrets, send bathyscaphes into the crushing pressures of our deepest oceans, make powerful microscopes to see the tiny minuscule things our eyes can’t pick out, all for a future we can only imagine but never accurately foretell.
How sad it is to the atheist to have such a short life with so many questions unanswered, such an interesting future unseen.
A duty of the (AB.net) atheist must be to ensure decency and survival of the race in all its diversity if we identify that as our eternity; true believers only see their future as a personal thing in their assured place in heaven, as long as they unquestioningly believe. We like our version best!