Atheism is one of those terms which tends to get used without enough reflection and deconstruction. So here’s a breakdown into 3 types:
1) Journey atheism
At some point we all need to question or even reject our ideas of God as we evolve spiritually. If we do not give ourselves and one another space for doubt and emptying, this can lead to repressive and ultimately destructive forms of spirituality. In moving beyond theism, atheism is quite natural.
2) Apophatic atheism
This is atheism at the heart of our spirituality. Here we acknowledge and even celebrate the essential unknowability of the ground of our being, honouring that in faith. We pray with Meister Eckhart, “God rid me of God”.
We also remember that the early Christian believers were branded atheists by the Romans because they rejected their standard notions of God.
3) Dogmatic atheism
Here atheism becomes an anti-theism system of belief. It can be every bit as fundamentalist as any religious posture. Its greatest weakness is that it is critiquing the theistic system which is already outmoded, and therefore tends towards a reactionary posture, having no unique centre in and of itself.