“Atheism and the Higher Virtues” – Of Wolves and Ravens – The Higher Virtues

Happy Mani’s Day


Turning to the B Side of my philosophical discussions we hit the Higher Virtues.  Of Course, this is the first time I have really considered Love, Justice, and Faith as an atheist, but there are some important points to be made overall.  I know I will handle each of these separately in the coming weeks; so I am not so much interested in defining them as considering them as a whole.

The concept of higher unifying virtues is something I introduced later after embracing the nine Noble Virtues (NNV). The idea was to simply ask the question of does the NNV combine into others and what place did Love, Justice, and Wisdom have?  The end result was that Each corresponds to the three of the NNV closely but all the virtues play into Love, Justice, and Wisdom.

There is an intention here of the highest purpose.  I am not leaving my life to chance by following the higher virtues, but rather make each decision asking those three questions: Is this loving?  Is this just?  Is this wise? The morse specific analysis is achieved by looking at the NNV when the situation is not clear in an area. This has been a proven form for me.

Atheists look at the practical side of moral decisions far more than others. they have no higher power to please.  NO higher authority to appeal to; so every ethical and moral decision is made by a great deal of thought. The virtues, including the higher ones, guide this for me specifically.

To the Wolves and Ravens:

“Feed the Wolves, but Listen to the Ravens first.”

Needs (Geri):

Virtue became a strong need for me after leaving my Christian faith.  I have no doubt that others would have just said ‘fuck it’ and do what they wanted.  But I know that survival and prosperity of life are never achieved by just saying ‘fuck it’.   Everyone needs a code to survive and prosper.  Following the higher virtues is about intention.

Wants (Freki):

Prosperity and survival are the end results of the following virtues as a general rule.  Something that all of us should want and strive for. Virtue leads to this end and the ideas of being a loving, just, and a wise person just make that all easier.  Definitely, something I want.

Reason (Huginn):

I came in large part to these conclusions because of rationally considering what needed to guide my life.  No gods, no masters; just my own wants and desires guided by reason and wisdom. This lines up very well with the atheist rationality I have decided is the best course for my life.

Wisdom (Muninn):

That said, wisdom reminds me that human beings have an emotional side to them,  These passions need wise guidance. They need to have some virtue guiding them or they lead our lives to lack intention and effort.


As an atheist, the Higher virtues now mean more to me than ever.  It is the simple asking if any action is loving, just and wise that has led to some great decisions.  It has also allowed me to avoid some of the pitfalls of living this life.  My hope is that this path will lead to the prosperity and wise life I am looking for.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.


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