AgnosticismI do not know. I do not care to know. I do not believe. I have no faith in God. Finally I deny the existence of God consciously — more so, unconsciously.
When I do not know something, I am unwise. When I do not care to know something, I am a fool. When I do not believe something, I need to discard my doubting and doubtful mind. When I have no faith in God, it is I who betray my stark ignorance. When I deny the very existence of God, it is I who become the loser number one.
My agnosticism tells me that an agnostic is always cautious. He not only warns others, but he warns himself in season and out of season. Not for him is the psychic luminosity, mental clarity, vital reality and physical certainty. He is apt to think that, except for him, all are loose thinkers and are experts at avoiding and evading the real truth. He also feels that others are wanting in intellectual honesty. According to him, this world of ours is full of deplorable omissions and unthinkable propositions. The criterion of an agnostic is not to commit himself to anything. I would like to deliver Robert Frost’s thundering message to all the agnostics of the world. “Don’t be an agnostic — be something.”
An agnostic cherishes idealism, but to our deepest sorrow, he does not care to live an ideal life himself. He says that he hates materialism. What he says is true outwardly. What he does is otherwise. Inwardly he enjoys the bread and butter of materialism as a dog enjoys a piece of meat.
Idealism demands sacrifice. Materialism demands business. The life of an agnostic shuns sacrifice secretly and shuns business openly, but he is not unwilling to eat the fruits of both the idealism and the materialism achieved by others.
After all, an agnostic is he who sings with doubt and eats with doubt. Yet he hates to listen to the most profitable advice of the wise: “When in doubt, mind your own business.”
— Bertrand Russell.
Doubt and faith. Doubt grows. Faith grows. Doubt and the devil are inseparable. Faith and God are inseparable.
— W. R. Inge
O agnostic, if you doubt the existence of the soul, no harm. If you doubt the existence of a future life, no harm. If you doubt the existence of God, no harm. If you doubt the immortality of human consciousness, no harm. If you doubt the transformation of human nature, no harm. But for God’s sake do not cherish the idea that others are wrong when they claim to be certain about these matters. And for my sake, please, do not say that these things are not worth knowing.