Thread: What exactly is atheism?

  1. #441
    Refined Reinvention lixluke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JDawg View Post
    I have to agree with Swarm that so-called "hard atheists" step over the intellectual line when they assert that they know no gods exist. Also, I agree that belief is not the default position.
    There is no such thing as hard or soft atheism. If you do not claim that there is no God, you do not fall under atheism. There is no logical reason to group those who do not make this claim under atheism.

  2. #442
    Refined Reinvention lixluke's Avatar
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    Somebody who doesn't know if there is a God is not necessarily without God or Godless.

    Consider an example of a box. It is given that the box either has a ball in it or is empty. Say there is somebody that doesn't know if there is a ball in it or if it is empty. Because you do not hold the position that there is a ball in the box, does that mean that you automatically fall under a state of being that the box is empty. In the same way, one who does not know if there is a God out there does not automatically fall in the state of being Godless. They simply do not know.

  3. #443
    Refined Reinvention lixluke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thespian View Post
    Someone who listens to a possibility, weighs the evidence and logic and then decides it is not enough.
    No that is self-righteous religious fanatical atheism. The claim that atheists use evidence and log.

  4. #444
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    Quote Originally Posted by lixluke View Post
    Somebody who doesn't know if there is a God is not necessarily without God or Godless.
    Do they have a belief in god, yes or no?

    If the answer is no then they are without a belief in god...... therefore godless.

    If they later on acquire a belief in god then they are no longer godless.

  5. #445
    Valued Senior Member Simon Anders's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by swarm View Post
    I'm surprised you have never encountered this discussion.
    I haven't encountered it here. I have encountered it elsewhere.

  6. #446
    Valued Senior Member Simon Anders's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Q) View Post
    Is that the fault of mankind or the fault of a cult ideology that perpetuates itself through the indoctrination of children and the recruitment of its members? Mankind is held in slavery by doctrines and tenets handed down from the Bronze Age.
    You are shifting what the context, again. You said Mankind was ready to move beyond the Bronze Age. I pointed out that, given this meant to you 'moving beyond theism' it is rather clear that it is not ready to do this. The issue of 'fault' is another issue.

  7. #447
    Valued Senior Member Simon Anders's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Q) View Post
    Examples like what? The Tooth Fairy, Santa Claus, The Flying Spaghetti Monster? Alien visitations? There are plenty of examples of the non-existence of that which is purported to exist, each and every day. Now, if you could do the same and provide me with an example of gods existence?
    Again, your method is faulty. You cannot demonstrate non-existence in the way you described or many things that you believe exist would have been demonstrated, incorrectly, to not exist, at various times in history. It's bad science. And I can't believe you put me in the position of having to point this out. Run your theory about demonstrating non-existence past some scientists.

    You have therefore realized the same thing as me, that your position, as a theist, is defenseless, and that the only defense you could possibly muster is one from blind faith.
    You are making assumptions.

    My position has nothing at all to do with yours, no matter how much you'd like to believe in such nonsense.
    I believed it because you said it to me and I responded by saying it was strange.

  8. #448
    Valued Senior Member Simon Anders's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enmos View Post
    I'm not sure I follow.. those threads falsely accuse people of not very nice things solely because they don't hold the belief the thread-maker does.
    I was pointing out that I, as a theist, entered that discussion and defended atheists.

    I have no idea were you get the sense that they are teaming.. but perhaps it is because they all argue against the same accusation.
    If I see a theist take a line with faulty logic, I've hopped in. Not all the time. I did argue against Lixluxe in linguistics on a very closely related issue to the line he is running here. I have confronted generalizations about atheists made by theists.

    It seems to me however that the atheist regulars in the will generally look the other way when theists make absurd arguments or generalize wildly about theists or engage in ad homs, etc.

    That is what I meant by team.

    JDawg was a welcome exception to this.

    I somewhat agree with Q on this though.
    Non-believers have been (mor.e than) discriminated against throughout history by believers. Burning of heretics and stuff Also believers haven't been particularly nice to each other. The same sentiments still exist today albeit diluted.
    Believers have always been the ones to say "my team is right, and your team is wrong/evil", not non-believers.
    Now the tables are slowly turning. See it as a revolution
    1) there have always been believers who were not proselytizers or tormenters. It seems to me atheists view theists as if they are fundamentalist bible thumpers, potential members of the inquisition, etc. I think this is a shallow, and frankly inexperienced sense of theists and the variety of beliefs out there. 2) a small point - heretics were believers.

  9. #449
    uniquely dreadful S.A.M.'s Avatar
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    There is a thread somewhere on who kills teh most atheists. Surprisingly, there was a paucity of killers presented.

  10. #450
    Encephaloid Martini (Q)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Anders View Post
    You are shifting what the context, again. You said Mankind was ready to move beyond the Bronze Age. I pointed out that, given this meant to you 'moving beyond theism' it is rather clear that it is not ready to do this. The issue of 'fault' is another issue.
    No, mankind has been ready to move on for centuries, it is the slavery and indoctrination of religion that is stunting the process considerably.

  11. #451
    uniquely dreadful S.A.M.'s Avatar
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    So its not ready, then.

  12. #452
    It is very dry in here today PsychoticEpisode's Avatar
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    The difference between atheism and theism is that one is learned through experience and the other is innate, or produced from the mind rather than experience. Now this doesn't mean one mind is sharper than the other. What is does mean is that atheists take what they've learned from real life experience and then apply logic to it whereas theistic logic is applied to what their minds have constructed.

    Now it must be decided as to which carries more weight. For people who believe the mind is the ultimate difference maker that sets us apart from other creatures then it is easy to see how one might consider the mind as a more powerful advent than any commonplace activity.

  13. #453
    Encephaloid Martini (Q)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Anders View Post
    Again, your method is faulty. You cannot demonstrate non-existence in the way you described or many things that you believe exist would have been demonstrated, incorrectly, to not exist, at various times in history.
    Such as what?

    It's bad science. And I can't believe you put me in the position of having to point this out. Run your theory about demonstrating non-existence past some scientists.
    It's not bad science at all. Gods are tested for their existence with the results being null 100% if the time, observed unanimously. Case closed.

  14. #454
    uniquely dreadful S.A.M.'s Avatar
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    You don't test to prove in science, its bad science to have a conclusion before a test. You test to disprove the null hypothesis.

  15. #455
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    Quote Originally Posted by S.A.M. View Post
    You don't test to prove in science, its bad science to have a conclusion before a test. You test to disprove the null hypothesis.
    You really don't read posts, do you?

  16. #456
    uniquely dreadful S.A.M.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Q) View Post


    It's not bad science at all. Gods are tested for their existence with the results being null 100% if the time, observed unanimously. Case closed.
    What is your dependent and independent variable? Whats your positive and negative control?

    Whats your empirical observation?

  17. #457
    Valued Senior Member Simon Anders's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Q) View Post
    Such as what?
    Come on Q...quarks, certain not yet seen species of animal, black holes....get it? Go back 50 years in time and imagine things that could, according to your method, have been demonstrated to not exist, which have, since then had their existence demonstrated. This also includes phenomena experienced by some and then later by many and then consensus.

    Any thing or phenomenon not yet seen, or only seen by some, cannot be said to have its nonexistence demonstrated by its not being seen, yet, by the main community. You can speak about its existence not being supported, yet. But you cannot say it's nonexistence has been demonstrated. Well, of course you can, but it is poor science and poor philosophy.

    It's not bad science at all. Gods are tested for their existence with the results being null 100% if the time, observed unanimously. Case closed.
    Ibid.
    Also I notice how you changed it to tested for its existence, rather than your previous demonstrations of nonexistence. Again you are being cagey.
    But then, Q, if their non-existence has been demonstrated
    why are you reluctant to admit you believe there are no gods. You are what Phlogistan would call an anti-theist and I would call a hard atheist.

    You have stated God or gods nonexistence have been demonstrated. I assume you believe your own assertion. Therefore you believe God(s) do not exist.

    But you will not admit this. At least you have not admitted it enough times to make you a worthless conversation partner on this issue.

    You want your cake and eat it too. You want to say that God's non-existence has been demonstrated while at the same time pretending you are not a hard atheist.

    Honestly, I appreciate the fact that you have on at least two occasions admitted you made a mistake - to me that is, here. That's rather rare amongst posters here, theist and atheist alike. And I appreciate that. But on this issue, man to man, there is something strange going on with you.

    I will not discuss issues related to atheism or theism with you ever again. Perhaps we will have a chance to discuss something else, though it seems like the main issue you discuss.

  18. #458
    Valued Senior Member Simon Anders's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PsychoticEpisode View Post
    The difference between atheism and theism is that one is learned through experience and the other is innate, or produced from the mind rather than experience.
    This is simply not correct. It shows a lack of experience of religious people and writers.

  19. #459
    Refined Reinvention lixluke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shaman_ View Post
    Do they have a belief in god, yes or no?

    If the answer is no then they are without a belief in god...... therefore godless.

    If they later on acquire a belief in god then they are no longer godless.
    If they are without the belief in no God, they are not Godless. To claim "somebody who does not know is Godless" is imposing a belief on them. Being Godless implies a state of being that there is no God.
    Last edited by lixluke; 11-12-08 at 06:17 PM.

  20. #460
    It is very dry in here today PsychoticEpisode's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Anders View Post
    This is simply not correct. It shows a lack of experience of religious people and writers.
    And.......to make up for that lack of experience a writer will what? Ask somebody or invent it? My money is on inventiveness, in the mind of course.

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