Why Can’t A Christian Date or Marry An Atheist?

Why Can’t A Christian Date or Marry An Atheist? July 20, 2016

Why can’t a Christian date or marry an atheist? What’s the problem?

Few Things in Common

The Apostle Paul commands the church to not be yoked with unbelievers because he knows that this is not God’s will, and so he wrote, “Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness” (2nd Cor 6:14), for “What accord has Christ with Belial? What portion does a believer share with an unbeliever? What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God” (2nd Cor 6:15-16), so rather than be joined with non-believers, God commands us to “go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord” (2nd Cor 6:17), not marry them and try to convert them. Just as oil and water don’t mix, neither do the children of light and the children of darkness (Eph 2:1-3). What do the children of God have in common with the children of the Devil? If Jesus is not your Savior, then God is not your Father. That’s what the Bible teaches…not me. We have few things in common with unbelievers, but the greatest bond that’s missing is the Holy Spirit and that of being a child of God. We are called out of the darkness into the light, only to go back into the darkness and show others the Light (John 8:12). We can’t marry someone and think we’ll convert them. That’s not even biblical because salvation is fully a work of God (John 6:44; Eph 2:8-9), so it’s false to believe you can change a person by marrying them and turn them into a Christian. Only God can change the heart (Prov 21:1).

A House Divided

What about the children of a couple who are Christian and an atheist? Will the children be allowed to go to church by the unbelieving parent? Will the unbeliever prohibit both the children and their spouse to not attend church? Who makes decisions on what the children learn at home. Will one parent see no problem with watching R-rated movies or even PG-13 while the other parent tries to forbid that? Does the believing spouse made to avoid saying about God or is there freedom for the Christian to say what they want and for the believing parent to teach what they want to teach the children? You could end up with a house divided and Jesus once warned, “a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand” (Mark 3:25). Amos the Prophet asked the rhetorical question, “Do two walk together, unless they have agreed to meet” (Amos 3:3)? The obvious answer is no! Or at best, it’ll be shaky.

Do-not-be-unequally (1)

Avoiding Heartbreak

An atheist and Christian don’t have exactly the same values, morals, and ethics. An unbeliever might think a “white lie” is okay when the Christian doesn’t. This doesn’t mean the Christian is sinless of course, for we all fall short of God’s glory (Rom 3:23), but they will strive to always speak the truth, even when it hurts. Christians are not superior to non-believers…we are just in a better position, relationally, to God as we’ve received the peace of God through the lifting of condemnation through Christ (Rom 5:1; 8:1), however we are convicted when we do sin and we should feel compelled to immediately ask for forgiveness. Every Christian still sins (1st John 1:8, 10), sometimes falling into it, but we don’t stay in it and swim around in it. If we do, we might question whether we’re really a Christian or not (1st John 3). Here’s one of the greatest issues about being unequally yoked in marriage; Christians know that marriage is intended to be for life and even though Christians do divorce, it should only be for ongoing, unrepentant adultery by the other partner, therefore a Christian may end up being trapped in a strife-filled marriage with no way out, having no biblical grounds for divorce. God doesn’t tell us to not be unequally yoked because He doesn’t want us to have a great marriage; He doesn’t want us to be married to an unbeliever because both could end up being miserable.

Being Married to an Atheist

If you are already married to an atheist, you are bound to him or her for life. The only exception is ongoing adultery, but there is hope. God can work in any spouse’s heart. Think about this if you’re a believer married to a non-believer; “For how do you know, wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, husband, whether you will save your wife” (1st Cor 7:16) so “if any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he should not divorce her. If any woman has a husband who is an unbeliever, and he consents to live with her, she should not divorce him” (1st Cor 7:12-13). Paul’s point is if the non-believer is happy to stay married then the believer has no reason to divorce them because how do we know if one of the spouses might be saved in the marriage? All you can do as a believer is pray for them, love them unconditionally, serve them, and be the best husband or wife you can be. If you do this and obey God, you can leave the rest up to God. Jesus never forced Himself on anyone and neither should we cram our beliefs down anyone’s throats. Jesus said, “Come to Me” (Matt 11:28), not “Here I come!” People are free to read this or critique it. That’s fine. They are responsible for their own eternal destiny, but I do pray they will come to the Savior so that they might have eternal life (Acts 4:12).

Conclusion

There is a lot of safety in seeking godly counsel, even if both of the parties are Christians. The more counseling a couple has, the less likely they’ll encounter friction in their marriage by “surprising” things that their spouse does. There are dozens of things that should be decided ahead of time before a couple ever gets married and having much of these things settled before they marry, will lessen the chance that they’ll end up divorced and it will be how it was originally intended; “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” (Gen 2:24) and “What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate” (Mark 10:9).

Article by Jack Wellman

Jack Wellman is Pastor of the Mulvane Brethren Church in Mulvane Kansas. Jack is also the Senior Writer at What Christians Want To Know whose mission is to equip, encourage, and energize Christians and to address questions about the believer’s daily walk with God and the Bible. You can follow Jack on Google Plus or check out his book Teaching Children the Gospel available on Amazon.

"Here is a good song to meditate to and understand God’s truth.Everything to Mehttps://m.youtube.com/watch..."

The Assurance of Jesus Christ’s Return
"God’s logic is strewn through out the Bible for a genuine seeker to put together ..."

The Assurance of Jesus Christ’s Return
"Uh, because He wants you to seek Him.I doubt you ever made a sincere effort ..."

The Assurance of Jesus Christ’s Return
"I don't correct God - God corrects me, but do be aware that you are ..."

On Christ the Solid Rock I ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


TRENDING AT PATHEOS Evangelical
What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • PremiumOsmium

    Wow. Such a massive amount of negative stereotyping, insulting, and strawmanning of atheists. This argument could also apply to say why Christians shouldn’t even be friends with or even associate with atheists.

    • Vince

      Bug off, fat ugly pedophile

      • PremiumOsmium

        You sir are a shining example of a True Christian.

  • Psygn

    Another argument supporting the need for religion to fade away.

    • ABC

      Atheism is a religion.

      • No it isn’t. Even if it were, how is that an argument against it?

        • ABC

          Yes it is. Here:

          http://reason.com/archives/2012/03/10/atheism-is-a-religion

          Not only that, atheism is a religion to the point that you have your own church:

          https://firstchurchofatheism.com/

          And you have your own ecclesiastic hierarchies:

          http://firstchurchofatheism.com/become-ordained/

          The only difference between you guys and we catholics is that we believe in God based on what reason and logic leads us to accept as faith, and you reject God based on arbitrary irrational arguments.

          • LOL. Some celebrity’s opinion doesn’t equate to a fact and some nutcase creating a “church of atheism” doesn’t make atheism a religion.
            And it’s very telling that you ignored the last part of my previous post.

          • ABC

            “LOL. Some celebrity’s opinion doesn’t equate to a fact and some nutcase creating a “church of atheism” doesn’t make atheism a religion”.

            Your arguments don’t stand. Yours is an argumentum ad lapidem, instead of addressing the points I presented in the article, you reject the argument without any valid refutation. From the moment you atheists create your own church you implicitly assert yourselves as religious. Godless religious people? Yes, but still religious.

            “And it’s very telling that you ignored the last part of my previous post.”

            That is a red herring fallacy. How does that argue against the fact that atheism is a religion?

            Furthermore, why would I need to argue against atheists, when you have absolutely no evidence that proves the veracity of atheist dogmas?

            Show me the evidence that proves that atheism is right and I will argue against you. As one of you said: “what is asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence” (C. Hitchens).

          • Evidence that proves atheism right? LOL. Atheism is a statement of disbelief in God, not a scientific theory. You’re the one who seems to think a God exists, so you’re the one with the burden of proof.

          • ABC

            “Evidence that proves atheism right? LOL. Atheism is a statement of disbelief in God, not a scientific theory”.

            Absence of belief = Belief of absence. That is the wonder of logics, that it escapes semantics. When you say: “I disbelieve in God”, it is the same as saying “I believe God does not exist”.

            Therefore:
            1. atheism is a religion because it is grounded in belief, not in evidence.
            2. you are not excluded of providing evidence of God inexistence.
            3. Yours is a fallacy of shifting the burden of proof.

            “You’re the one who seems to think a God exists, so you’re the one with the burden of proof”.

            https://catholic471.wordpress.com/

            There.

            And as you have not refuted my arguments from before, they stand.

        • Jack Wellman

          Atheism is based upon a belief that there is no God so you atheists have a belief system based upon faith that there is no God..

  • pud

    What sane “non believer” in an invisible “god” would want to be with some delusional christian female? duh

  • Wow. What Chistian isn’t ok with white lies? Are Cristians obliged to tell grandma Dorothy that they don’t like the sweater that’s been lovingly hand-knitted?
    That version of Christianity is just cruel.

    • Denny

      Your blog is boring sh it.

    • DavidS

      Tinkerbell

  • Comrade Carrot-Blog Vegetarian

    I’m a non-believer married to a Christian, and I can assure you she doesn’t think nearly as little of me as you do.

    Maybe God will bless her with some chronic infidelity on my part, so the poor dear can escape all of my white lies and bad parenting 🙂

  • So basically, Pastor Jack is saying that love between two people is irrelevant and should be suppressed in certain circumstances. Interesting argument from someone whose job is supposedly to spread love. I think maybe Jack Wellman is in the wrong profession. If not, then his version of Christianity needs to die out. Fortunately, statistics show that it is, and probably because most people understand that the ideas expressed in this article are harmful… and the fact that God isn’t real helps too.

    • Stinger

      The child-fcker has spoken.

      • Thanks for showing how Christianity is so much “nicer” than atheism. People like you are why Christianity is dying out. Please keep it up!

    • ABC

      Well, your logical fallacy is so evident and simple to reject. Allow me.

      You confound love with lust. Lust is a disordered appetite of the flesh for the pleasures of the flesh. Love, according to Saint Thomas Aquinas, is to “will the good of the other and do something about it without expecting anything in exchange”. Being God himself all goodness, from that follows that to love someone is to bring such person to the maximum goodness and the source of all goodness (which is God). An atheist cannot love because he rejects the existence of such Being who is all goodness.

      As simple as that.

      In fact, if you were an atheist and you genuinely loved someone you would tell that person “you know, I think you deserve to find someone with the same faith as you… it is the right and just thing to do”.

  • Stupid Atheist

    Basking in the love and tolerance of the scripture… #represent

    • ABC

      Love tolerates the person, not the sin.

      Jesus loved sinners… and called them to repentance.

      In fact, His first words at the beginning of His Ministry were: “the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand, REPENT and BELIEVE in the Gospel”.

      What you want is to go to heaven without accepting the Triune God. Not going to happen. If you go to a friend’s house, you must first be his friend. Same here. To go to Jesus’ house you must first choose to be His friend.

      • Stupid Atheist

        I appreciate you taking the time to reply. Thanks. I’m curious about this:

        “What you want is to go to heaven without accepting the Triune God.”

        If I can ask, what was it I said that gave you the impression I wanted to get into heaven, or that I wouldn’t accept any god[s]…?

        • ABC

          “If I can ask, what was it I said that gave you the impression I wanted to get into heaven”

          Reason points the person in the direction of eternal happiness. That is what we all strive for, either consciously or unconsciously. In an attempt to paraphrase CS Lewis, even the most vicious sinner is looking for joy/happiness when pursuing vice. Now the source of all joy is God, and the place where such joy is everlasting is heaven.

          “or that I wouldn’t accept any god[s]…?”

          Well, you did not “give me the impression”, it is just a plain and objective fact. You reject God from the moment you call yourself “atheist”.

          I encourage you to take a look at the channel of Bp Robert Barron:

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkjxcEc-goI

          • Stupid Atheist

            If the source of all joy is God, and the sinner finds joy in vice, would it follow that God is the source of all vice?

            And shouldn’t we draw a careful distinction between not believing ‘X’ and believing ‘X’ is not…?

          • ABC

            “If the source of all joy is God, and the sinner finds joy in vice, would it follow that God is the source of all vice?”

            You are misquoting my words. I will say it again:

            “even the most vicious sinner IS LOOKING FOR joy/happiness when pursuing vice”.

            I never said that the sinner finds such joy in his sinful behavior. Much to the contrary, he only finds emptiness and grief. Therefore your reasoning is invalid.

            “And shouldn’t we draw a careful distinction between not believing ‘X’ and believing ‘X’ is not…?”

            Like I said above, such distinction does not exist. The following statements mean the EXACT same thing:
            Statement 1: I believe God does not exist.
            Statement 2: I do not believe God exists.

            That is the wonder of logic. It escapes semantics. Affirming a negative is the equivalent of denying an affirmative. This is why + x – = – x +. Furthermore, if you examine the two statements, you will see that I used the exact same words (excepting the “s” in the end of “exists”
            due to the grammar of the verb).

            If you want to reject God, you are free to do so. But what you cannot do, because you owe yourself and the people around you intellectual honesty, is deny that you are denying something (or someone).

          • Stupid Atheist

            “Affirming a negative is the equivalent of denying an affirmative.”

            Agreed. However “I do not believe God exists” doesn’t deny the affirmative. It merely doesn’t accept it.

            If I insisted I were certain that there were an even number of water molecules in my toilet because of divine revelation from Neptune, you’d be well justified not to believe me. But that would NOT mean you were asserting my toilet held an odd number of water molecules.

            = = =

            “If you want to reject God, you are free to do so.”

            It’s not a matter of what I “want” to believe. I couldn’t, for example, simply will myself into believing that the moon were triangular. My beliefs are formed by evidence.

            I’ll accept any god for whom the evidence compels me to do so…

          • ABC

            Ok, you owe yourself more intellectual honesty and less mental gymnastics. Let’s see:

            “Agreed. HOWEVER “I do not believe God exists” doesn’t deny the affirmative.”

            For starters, if you agree, then you don’t say “however”. The adverb “however” imposes a caveat that leaves the prior sentence invalid. Either you agree or disagree, there is no middle ground.

            Now for the next part of the sentence:

            ” “I do not believe God exists” doesn’t deny the affirmative.”

            Yes it does. Being A and B mutually exclusive, B automatically denies A, and viceversa. In the case of the existence of God there are only two possible cases/affirmations:
            A) God exists.
            B) God does not exist.

            There is no middle term nor third alternative, and this is common sense. If you claim A to be false, then you claim B to be true; regardless of whether you say it explicitly or implicitly. The fact that I affirm that God exists and you do not accept nor sustain such claim and yet you are debating me, implies necessarily that you reject God’s existence.

            Do yourself a favor and stop lying to yourself, for your own good.

            Your argumentation reminds me of that meme:

            https://cdn.meme.am/instances/66485306.jpg

            “I don’t say that God does not exist, but God does not exist.

            “If I insisted I were certain that there were an even number of water molecules in my toilet because of divine revelation from Neptune, you’d be well justified not to believe me. But that would NOT mean you were asserting my toilet held an odd number of water molecules”.

            WRONG. If you made such a claim, the only way that I would be justified not to believe you would be that I had conclusive scientific/philosophical evidence of the falsehood of such claim. Otherwise, I would have to do my homework and try to find the truth. If I jump directly to a rejection of your claim, I am skipping the demonstration and incurring in the skeptical fallacy. If you make such claim and I find it relevant, then prior to a rejection/acceptance I am in need of using logical reasoning to come to a conclusion (regardless of whether it is positive or negative). Perhaps you should read this:

            https://theethicalskeptic.com/2014/04/14/the-appeal-to-skepticism-fallacy/

            Also, such comparison is a strawman argument, for it puts 2 millenia of catholic philosophy/theology/thinking to the same level of a random and unsustained claim. Not to mention the gross evidence in favor of God’s existence (which I have presented to another person in this post).

            “It’s not a matter of what I “want” to believe. I couldn’t, for example, simply will myself into believing that the moon were triangular. My beliefs are formed by evidence”.

            You make a gross mistake. A belief that has been demonstrated is no longer a belief, it is a fact. A belief is a claim/affirmation/statement on the real state of things that has not been demonstrated yet.

            “I’ll accept any god for whom the evidence compels me to do so…”

            No, you will not. It would be wise if you stopped lying to yourself, you will not accept God for the simple reason that you do not accept it. If you were willing to accept God, then you would perform an unbiased search and analysis of the evidence that is available nowadays.

            Like I said before. If you want to reject God, you are free to do so. But what you cannot do, because you owe yourself and the people around you intellectual honesty, is deny that you are denying something (or someone).

          • Stupid Atheist

            Sorry I wasn’t more clear. I agree that:

            “Affirming a negative is the equivalent of denying an affirmative.”

            I disagree that “I do not believe God exists” denies the affirmative. Again “I don’t believe ‘X’ IS” is different from “I believe ‘X’ is NOT”.

            = = =

            “In the case of the existence of God there are only two possible cases/affirmations:
            A) God exists.
            B) God does not exist.”

            I agree.

            = = =
            And given the suggestion “God exists” one either:
            – believes that assertion; or
            – does not believe that assertion.

            Conversely, given the suggestion “God does not exist” one either:
            – believes the assertion; or
            – does not believe the assertion.

            My stance (that I don’t know whether or not any gods exist) lands me in the “does not believe that assertion” category for both prongs of the above proposition.

            Similarly, neither of us knows how many water molecules are in my toilet and “I don’t believe you know it’s an even number” does not equate to “I believe it is an odd number”.

            = = =

            Me: “I’ll accept any god for whom the evidence compels me to do so…”

            My New Friend ABC: “No, you will not.”

            I won’t pretend to know what’s in your heart, and I’d hope that courtesy might be extended both directions. Surely you have something more substantial than the “Liar, liar, pants on fire” retort. 😉

            Xapis…

          • ABC

            You are just repeating yourself instead of addressing my arguments. In response to what you say here I invite you to re read my last message.

            I have no reason to feel offended nor to call you “Liar, liar, pants on fire” for you are lying to yourself, not to me.

            It is not what you say what defines you as a person who is actively rejecting God, but what you do. As simple as that. When you become aware of your action of rejecting God, then you will be able to stop doing so. Then, He will come into your life and reveal Himself to you.

          • Stupid Atheist

            “…you are lying to yourself…”

            I’m thinking of a number right
            now. If you can tell me what it is, I’ll accept that you have the
            ability to read peoples’ minds. If not, I’ll implore you once again to
            extend me the same consideration I’m giving you, and let’s each accept
            that the other person is being forthright and sincere.

            We get nowhere disparaging one another’s honesty, my brother.

            = = =

            “When you become aware of your action of rejecting God, then you will be able to stop doing so.”

            I’m anxious for cryptozoologists to come forth with compelling evidence for Bigfoot. Until they do, I remain unconvinced that Sasquatch exist. But I’m not convinced they DON’T exist.

            I’m eager for cosmologists to present convincing evidence for alien civilizations. Until they do, I remain unconvinced that ETs exist. But I’m not convinced they DON’T exist.

            I’m on the edge of my seat waiting for theologists to offer conclusive evidence for deities. Until they do, I remain unconvinced that God[s] exist. But I’m not convinced they DON’T exist.

            So once again, I don’t “reject” Bigfoot, Martians, or the Elohim. I’m simply unconvinced that any of them exist.

            Let me extend this olive branch: I think a Damascus Road experience of my own; a one-on-one encounter would probably be very convincing. I’d likely be compelled to accept that there is a God.

            What would it take, if I may ask, for you to change YOUR mind about the existence of God…?

          • ABC

            “If not, I’ll implore you once again to
            extend me the same consideration I’m giving you, and let’s each accept
            that the other person is being forthright and sincere.”

            I cannot give you that, for the simple reason you are not being sincere. Like I said before, you are lying to yourself. You are rejecting God and then you tell me that you are not. It is not what you say, it is what you do.

            “We get nowhere disparaging one another’s honesty, my brother.”

            I do not “disparate on your honesty”, far from that. I disparate on the dissonance between your speech and your actions.

            “I’m on the edge of my seat waiting for theologists to offer conclusive evidence for deities. Until they do, I remain unconvinced that God[s] exist. But I’m not convinced they DON’T exist”.

            You call yourself “atheist”. You did that, not me. Atheist comes from the juxtaposition of two syllables:
            A – = no
            – theist = God

            If, on top of that, you remain “unconvinced of God’s existence”, you remain convinced of God’s non-existence. Now, you want evidence on God’s existence?

            https://catholic471.wordpress.com/

            There.

            “What would it take, if I may ask, for you to change YOUR mind about the existence of God…?”

            You can’t. Why? Because you can’t turn a right into a wrong, you can’t turn truth into a lie, you can’t convince someone who’s logic points in the direction of God and who also has experienced God, to tell you that you are right and I am wrong.

            I mean, if I do that I would be guilty of violating the first, second and ninth commandments.

            What you want with such question is someone to pat you in the back and tell you: “hey, it’s ok, there is no God… keep doing what you are doing”. Won’t happen.

            From here onwards, I can’t change your mind. I can’t make you see the light if you insist in remaining blind. But I simply ask you two things:
            1. be honest with yourself
            2. stay away from catholic women (I also explained why atheists should hang out among themselves in a comment I posted in this blog entry).

          • Stupid Atheist

            In no particular order:

            – “Atheist” simply means “not a theist”. The word “theist” is not synonymous with “god”. If it were, saying “I’m an atheist” would mean “I’m not God”, making us both atheists;

            – The phrases “you are lying to yourself” and “I do not ‘disparate on your honesty'” appear to be in conflict;

            – I am not “convinced of God’s non-existence”, nor Bigfoot’s non-existence, nor ET’s non-existence, as I’ve explained at length above;

            – Re: “I can’t change your mind.”

            Don’t sell yourself short. Plenty of theists have changed my mind on all sorts of scriptural matters.

            That said, any God worthy of the title certainly COULD change my mind. I do remain open to the possibility. There’s nothing I’d love more than to think I might one day speak to my dead father again, but it would be dishonest of me to pretend that I believed I will.

            THAT, would make the liar I’ve been suggested to be.

            – “stay away from catholic women”

            Frank Zappa’s advice on Catholic girls has served me well thus far.

            = = =

            It did not escape my notice that you were conscientious enough to redact “I am not your brother” from your response, and I do appreciate that.

            = = =

            The link you were kind enough to provide has as it’s first premise the insistence that things can “transcend space and time”. Until we can demonstrate the truth of THAT assertion, I’m not certain we’ll get much further.

            I do, I’ll reiterate, appreciate the courtesy of your time, and the patience and effort put into your replies.

            Xapis…

          • ABC

            This essay will explain you why:
            1. you do not find evidence of God’s existence even when it is presented to you
            2. why you cannot see that you are rejecting God

            https://orthosphere.wordpress.com/2013/07/22/sin-is-enacted-falsehood/#more-3976

            Like I said, I cannot do anything if you actively decide to lie to yourself.

          • Stupid Atheist

            “…you do not find evidence of God’s existence even when it is presented to you…”

            What is the single, most compelling piece of evidence of God’s existence I’ve been presented with…?

          • ABC

            I can’t help you. Like I mentioned before, when you are willing to stop lying to yourself let me know and I will gladly point you in the right direction.

          • Stupid Atheist

            And again I appreciate your time.

            Should you find a compelling reason to believe in God, I’m here and eager to talk.

            Thanks again…

  • Mark Moore

    According to recent research, atheist – atheist marriages are the most likely to last. Maybe the atheist should find another atheist. He or she might be a good deal happier.

    • momtarkle

      I’ve been in both. The atheist – Christian marriage lasted 17 years. The atheist – atheist marriage has lasted 33 years. I’m sure that this must prove something.

    • Fang

      Go ahead and marry your dild0, no one is stopping you.

    • ABC

      [citation needed]

  • Gnosissorrow

    Your argument makes as much since as a stamp collector should not marry a non stamp collector. They would have nothing in common, the house would be divided…etc. There certainly could be disagreements, but there also could be disagreements about whether the stamp collector should spend Bill money going to a stamp collecting convention. Couples are never completely comparable. It is through love not devotion to a mythical God that keeps them united. The real threat here is simple. Let’s be honest, the real fear here is that If a person marries a non stamp collector or atheist the spouse might at some time loose interest in stamp collecting or actually consider that there may not be a God. Even worse, they might raise children that are not indoctrinated into stamp collecting or religion.

  • Brooke Mayer

    Atheism and non-religion could be based, at least in part, on the capacity for spirituality or belief in the supernatural. Some people have brains that just aren’t wired to do that. Isn’t that a little bigoted if being non-spiritual or incapable of believing in the supernatural is something that the person has no control over?

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/psyched/201309/all-paths-lead-magical-thinking
    Several studies show that people who think more intuitively are also more susceptible to magical thinking. One intuition that’s been proposed as a foundation for religious thought is Cartesian mind-body dualism, the idea that a mind can exist independently of a body… This proposition allows for souls, ghosts, spirits, and Gods, all made of disembodied mind-stuff…
    [W]e have found that individual differences in mentalizing tendencies encouraged mind-body dualism, teleology, and anthropomorphism (albeit, weakly); dualism, and to a lesser extent teleology in turn led to belief in God, belief in paranormal events, and belief in life having an underlying and possibly transcendental purpose,

    • “Atheism and non-religion could be based, at least in part, on the capacity for spirituality or belief in the supernatural.”

      It’s far more likely that atheists look for evidence on which to base belief, and finding none, they realize there’s no reason to believe. The idea that atheists might be missing the capacity for magical thinking (as if that’s a flaw) is, frankly, offensive, and it ignores the fact that we can find reasons to disbelieve. This idea that atheists are missing the capacity for belief in supernatural nonsense is also ridiculous, considering that most atheists started out as believers. As for Cartesian mind-body dualism, we now know for a fact that it is physically impossible for the mind to exist without a physical brain to house it.