“I usually ask friendly atheists questions like the following:

1. Do you like, and try to live you life by, the Golden Rule?”

Yes. I adopted this “truth” many years ago. I derived it independently (without preconceptions) through the application of logic. To me, it just makes too much sense.

“2. Do you try to live your life, to best of your ability, as a moral, ethical and a lovingly-humane person of good will?”

Yes…although the operative word here is “try”. I try to be conscientious.

“3. Do you enjoy it when others reciprocate your good will?”

Yes, unfortunately I do. A long time ago, I realized that feeling enjoyment because of a positive response to my action (or inaction) was ego based. There should be no “requirement” that my actions be validated by anyone else. For instance; in business, the Golden Rule is often displaced by “dog-eat-dog”. In this environment, I ignore the majority consensus and remain steadfast in my application of the Golden Rule and ethics (even at the expense of conformance and success). Likewise, I should not be influenced or overjoyed by agreement. Being human, I allow myself this indulgence anyway. After all, ”feelings” is the reason why we exist…it’s the only game in town.

“My religion is not about believing in a creed--a belief in a god who is separate and who lives somewhere up, or out, there. It is not about having a set of rules and regulations, or a set of rituals. My religion is deed-based, not creed-based.

In other words, my religion is not based on believing in a supernatural being commonly called 'God'. It is an expression of who and what I truly am--deep within my heart.

As a human and humane person, my religions is what I think, learn, know, understand, believe-in and what I choose--to the best of my ability--to do about it, in the service of my fellow human beings and the earth upon which we live together.”

This is why you stand out. Spirituality without spirits is an uncommon feat.