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Is atheism a religion?


Off-Topic Discussions

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Andoran

If atheism is a religion, then bald is a hair color.

Also, IBTL.


The Eldritch Mr. Shiny wrote:

If atheism is a religion, then bald is a hair color.

Also, IBTL.

Bald is a hair style.

Andoran

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Kajehase wrote:
Tiny Coffee Golem wrote:

I'm an atheist who also loves christmas. I consider it cultural as opposed to faith based. 99% of american culture around this supports that view. P.S. I invented that statistic, but I assume it's not that far off. ;-)

We don't believe in God, no-one's said anything about not believing in Santa.

Everyone knows Santa is a ninja.

Osirion

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Kirth Gersen wrote:
Moff Rimmer wrote:
Elinor Knutsdottir wrote:
I'm a militant atheist, believe that anyone with a faith is irredeemably stupid, ...
Where's Kirth? I wanted to make sure he saw this.
Sorry -- I was too busy blowing up buildings. OK, no -- actually I was drinking beer and thinking about science stuff, which is of course equally heinous.

Yeah. I thought you would appreciate that -- having had this discussion in depth with you. (Just wanted to point out that I didn't say it...

;-)

Osirion

Swivl wrote:
I did not claim that god has been proven not to exist.

Actually, that's exactly what you claimed. So if there are misstatements, they were made by you.

Osirion

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Paul Watson wrote:

Tiny Coffee Golem,

Having discussed religion with Moff before, he isn't saying that. He's challenging Swivl's statement that God had been proved not to exist, which isn't true because you can't prove God doesn't exist.

Thank you. (It's nice to know I've got a few atheists out there to help watch my back.) ;-)


Moff Rimmer wrote:
(It's nice to know I've got a few atheists out there to help watch my back.)

I'd say that proven friendship and incrementally accumulated trust trumps the hell out of religious views for me, in that case. So, yeah.

Shadow Lodge

See, you can trust empirical evidence that your atheist friend will watch your back. However, for your theist friends like me, you just have to take it on faith.


Moff Rimmer wrote:
Swivl wrote:
I did not claim that god has been proven not to exist.
Actually, that's exactly what you claimed. So if there are misstatements, they were made by you.

Picking your favorite part of my post and replying to only that seems to be your MO.

If you can't be bothered with the whole of my statements, then there's nothing further to discuss with you.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Kirth Gersen wrote:
Moff Rimmer wrote:
(It's nice to know I've got a few atheists out there to help watch my back.)
I'd say that proven friendship and incrementally accumulated trust trumps the hell out of religious views for me, in that case. So, yeah.

Pretty much this.

Andoran

Kajehase wrote:
Tiny Coffee Golem wrote:

I'm an atheist who also loves christmas. I consider it cultural as opposed to faith based. 99% of american culture around this supports that view. P.S. I invented that statistic, but I assume it's not that far off. ;-)

We don't believe in God, no-one's said anything about not believing in Santa.

Relevant..

Andoran

Dies Irae wrote:
Tiny Coffee Golem wrote:


Most of the founding fathers were actually atheist. Hence the strong agreement for "separation of church and state" which we seem to have discarded in the modern time. Personally I feel it was one of the best ideas the founding fathers had. It would solve a lot of problems if it actually happened as it was intended.

Just playing the Devil's Advocate...

In a Democracy, if a certain strata of society is morally motivated to skew government policy to match their belief, and they happen to be the majority section of the populace...

Then what?

The way the situation in the US is being described here, I'm going to assume it's a socially self-reinforcing tyranny of the majority has established itself.

So how would you go about disentangling the two?

Take this as coming from a person who lives in a country where the government has pretty much mandated "Live and Let Live" into the legal system and wields it like a bludgeon whenever someone plays the religion or race card.

That's why true democracies (or republics) are a horrible, horrible thing. Constitutional democracies (or republics), however, limit the power of the government (in theory) so as to prevent the tyranny of the majority.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
TOZ wrote:
See, you can trust empirical evidence that your atheist friend will watch your back. However, for your theist friends like me, you just have to take it on faith.

My theist friends have a dirty little secret: their behaviors are just as amenable to empirical examination as my atheist friends' behaviors are.

But if you don't tell them, neither shall I. :)

Andoran

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

My world has been turned upside down! D:


Is atheism a religion?

The short answer is: No.

The long answer is: No, Not really.


Leafar is The Way!

On December 21, 2012, all those who do not win the favor of Leafar the Lost will perish when the Anti-Christ comes to destroy the world. I think. Anyway, if you have won favor with Leafar, like me and THE ELECT, you will be transported to Magic Happy Land and get to play D&D with Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson for ALL TIME!

All praise Leafar!


Swivl wrote:
Moff Rimmer wrote:
Swivl wrote:
I did not claim that god has been proven not to exist.
Actually, that's exactly what you claimed. So if there are misstatements, they were made by you.

Picking your favorite part of my post and replying to only that seems to be your MO.

If you can't be bothered with the whole of my statements, then there's nothing further to discuss with you.

When you pull the argumentum ad hominem card, one may decide that it probably isn't worth the time to engage in a discussion that may not serve to be civil in the short run if this is the tone one would anticipate in furthering the dialogue.

As an atheist myself, I understood what Moff stated and it was essentially to the point in its remark (as Paul pointed out in an earlier comment). Second, having engaged at length in conversation on religious discussions with Moff, I can state equivocally that it isn't his MO.

Ultimately, it'll turn into a tired debate where there's not going to be much budging from entrenched points of view and hours will be wasted in a futile attempt to win the Internet from either sides. I'm sure we can come up with something else productive.

Hell, we're still trying to define what is atheism and whether it fits in a quasi-religious context. We can't even seem to agree on that when it is presumed that the position of unbelief should be a simple definition. There are people that will differentiate atheism from secular humanism.

Schisms are trendy. :)


this may be relevent

Qadira

FuelDrop wrote:
this may be relevent

Which of course, begs the question: Is it impossible for humans to not know good without a religious basis for morality? What about ethics then, which are derived through philosophical thought rather than divine mandate?

Then again, I've met people devoted to the "cult of science" that believe all the world's ills will be solved so long as we let scientific research take its due course, leaving unanswered the dilemma of how ethical values are simply supposed to spontaneously develop as science advances, because humanity has never done anything unethical with scientific advancements before...

Andoran RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16

Atheism isn't a religion, but it is a theology. Theology is the body of beliefs about God (or gods, or the divine). Belief that God does not exist is a belief about God. Therefore, atheism is a theology.


Shadowborn wrote:
because humanity has never done anything unethical with scientific advancements before...

Sure they have -- the same amount as the horrifyingly unethical stuff humanity has done with religion, I'd wager. (The only difference is that science doesn't claim to be the field of inquiry that supposedly encompasses all morality -- a claim religion is often vocal in making.)


6 people marked this as a favorite.
Charlie Bell wrote:
Belief that God does not exist is a belief about God.

Only if you use "belief" in the broadest possible sense. I'm an atheist, but I don't "believe" there's no God -- I provisionally accept it as a null hypothesis until a preponderance evidence supporting one comes to light. So far that hasn't happened.


I think some people are confusing Atheism (the rejection of the existance of any deity in a nutshell) and Antitheism (the active opposition to theism in all its forms, which typically holds beliefs similar to an atheist. Atheism Xtreme, if you will.).

In my case, I don't believe in (a) deity/ies and it doesn't matter to me whether S/he/they do exist or not. It is totally irrelevant to my existence. If I'm right, I'm right, If I'm wrong, I'm wrong. It doesn't matter.

I wouldn't consider that as being religious, unless you consider it the religion of... being non-religious and... completely having no impact on my life one way or another... right.

Qadira

Kirth Gersen wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
because humanity has never done anything unethical with scientific advancements before...
Sure they have -- the same amount as the horrifyingly unethical stuff humanity has done with religion, I'd wager. (The only difference is that science doesn't claim to be the field of inquiry that supposedly encompasses all morality -- a claim religion is often vocal in making.)

Science doesn't, but like I said the "cult of science" my pet name for those people who think science will cure all the ills of the world simply by existing, seem to think there's a natural law that humankind becomes somehow more pure and good in direct proportion with scientific advancement. Of course, most of the people I've met that think this way aren't scientists themselves.


Shadowborn wrote:
Kirth Gersen wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
because humanity has never done anything unethical with scientific advancements before...
Sure they have -- the same amount as the horrifyingly unethical stuff humanity has done with religion, I'd wager. (The only difference is that science doesn't claim to be the field of inquiry that supposedly encompasses all morality -- a claim religion is often vocal in making.)
Science doesn't, but like I said the "cult of science" my pet name for those people who think science will cure all the ills of the world simply by existing, seem to think there's a natural law that humankind becomes somehow more pure and good in direct proportion with scientific advancement. Of course, most of the people I've met that think this way aren't scientists themselves.

I don't know many people who argue that, but it is difficult to argue that scientific advancement, especially in the medical field, hasn't improved the chance of human survival far beyond that of the efforts of any religion. Penicillin, for example, has saved many more lives than prayer has.


ThatEvilGuy wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
Kirth Gersen wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
because humanity has never done anything unethical with scientific advancements before...
Sure they have -- the same amount as the horrifyingly unethical stuff humanity has done with religion, I'd wager. (The only difference is that science doesn't claim to be the field of inquiry that supposedly encompasses all morality -- a claim religion is often vocal in making.)
Science doesn't, but like I said the "cult of science" my pet name for those people who think science will cure all the ills of the world simply by existing, seem to think there's a natural law that humankind becomes somehow more pure and good in direct proportion with scientific advancement. Of course, most of the people I've met that think this way aren't scientists themselves.
I don't know many people who argue that, but it is difficult to argue that scientific advancement, especially in the medical field, hasn't improved the chance of human survival far beyond that of the efforts of any religion. Penicillin, for example, has saved many more lives than prayer has.

I'm not sure that that's true. Take antibiotics as an example. Now, we've got antibiotic resistant bugs. Take overall medical improvements. Now, we've got over population and global warming.

And one of the things that we still haven't had much success treating with modern medicine is the stuff like depression.


Darkwing Duck wrote:
ThatEvilGuy wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
Kirth Gersen wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
because humanity has never done anything unethical with scientific advancements before...
Sure they have -- the same amount as the horrifyingly unethical stuff humanity has done with religion, I'd wager. (The only difference is that science doesn't claim to be the field of inquiry that supposedly encompasses all morality -- a claim religion is often vocal in making.)
Science doesn't, but like I said the "cult of science" my pet name for those people who think science will cure all the ills of the world simply by existing, seem to think there's a natural law that humankind becomes somehow more pure and good in direct proportion with scientific advancement. Of course, most of the people I've met that think this way aren't scientists themselves.
I don't know many people who argue that, but it is difficult to argue that scientific advancement, especially in the medical field, hasn't improved the chance of human survival far beyond that of the efforts of any religion. Penicillin, for example, has saved many more lives than prayer has.

I'm not sure that that's true. Take antibiotics as an example. Now, we've got antibiotic resistant bugs. Take overall medical improvements. Now, we've got over population and global warming.

And one of the things that we still haven't had much success treating with modern medicine is the stuff like depression.

That's the problem with those micro-organisms. They adapt fast. However, things that would have killed us in the past (polio, syphilis, scarlet fever, pneumonia as a couple of examples) no longer worry people who have access to these medical wonders. The solution to these "superbugs" is more scientific advancements. It's an arms race, for certain, and it will probably be to the end of time.


ThatEvilGuy wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
ThatEvilGuy wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
Kirth Gersen wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
because humanity has never done anything unethical with scientific advancements before...
Sure they have -- the same amount as the horrifyingly unethical stuff humanity has done with religion, I'd wager. (The only difference is that science doesn't claim to be the field of inquiry that supposedly encompasses all morality -- a claim religion is often vocal in making.)
Science doesn't, but like I said the "cult of science" my pet name for those people who think science will cure all the ills of the world simply by existing, seem to think there's a natural law that humankind becomes somehow more pure and good in direct proportion with scientific advancement. Of course, most of the people I've met that think this way aren't scientists themselves.
I don't know many people who argue that, but it is difficult to argue that scientific advancement, especially in the medical field, hasn't improved the chance of human survival far beyond that of the efforts of any religion. Penicillin, for example, has saved many more lives than prayer has.

I'm not sure that that's true. Take antibiotics as an example. Now, we've got antibiotic resistant bugs. Take overall medical improvements. Now, we've got over population and global warming.

And one of the things that we still haven't had much success treating with modern medicine is the stuff like depression.
That's the problem with those micro-organisms. They adapt fast. However, things that would have killed us in the past (polio, syphilis, scarlet fever, pneumonia as a couple of examples) no longer worry people who have access to these medical wonders. The solution to these "superbugs" is more scientific advancements. It's an arms race, for certain, and it will probably be to the end of time.

Keeping people alive longer really isn't a solution unless you ignore the problems with overpopulation.


Darkwing Duck wrote:
ThatEvilGuy wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
ThatEvilGuy wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
Kirth Gersen wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
because humanity has never done anything unethical with scientific advancements before...
Sure they have -- the same amount as the horrifyingly unethical stuff humanity has done with religion, I'd wager. (The only difference is that science doesn't claim to be the field of inquiry that supposedly encompasses all morality -- a claim religion is often vocal in making.)
Science doesn't, but like I said the "cult of science" my pet name for those people who think science will cure all the ills of the world simply by existing, seem to think there's a natural law that humankind becomes somehow more pure and good in direct proportion with scientific advancement. Of course, most of the people I've met that think this way aren't scientists themselves.
I don't know many people who argue that, but it is difficult to argue that scientific advancement, especially in the medical field, hasn't improved the chance of human survival far beyond that of the efforts of any religion. Penicillin, for example, has saved many more lives than prayer has.

I'm not sure that that's true. Take antibiotics as an example. Now, we've got antibiotic resistant bugs. Take overall medical improvements. Now, we've got over population and global warming.

And one of the things that we still haven't had much success treating with modern medicine is the stuff like depression.
That's the problem with those micro-organisms. They adapt fast. However, things that would have killed us in the past (polio, syphilis, scarlet fever, pneumonia as a couple of examples) no longer worry people who have access to these medical wonders. The solution to these "superbugs" is more scientific advancements. It's an arms race, for certain, and it will probably be to the end of time.
Keeping people alive longer really isn't a solution unless you ignore the...

Helping people deal with death and the grieving process seems more relevant and its something that science really hasn't (and I don't think can) play a central role in.


Urizen wrote:
Swivl wrote:
Moff Rimmer wrote:
Swivl wrote:
I did not claim that god has been proven not to exist.
Actually, that's exactly what you claimed. So if there are misstatements, they were made by you.

Picking your favorite part of my post and replying to only that seems to be your MO.

If you can't be bothered with the whole of my statements, then there's nothing further to discuss with you.

When you pull the argumentum ad hominem card, one may decide that it probably isn't worth the time to engage in a discussion that may not serve to be civil in the short run if this is the tone one would anticipate in furthering the dialogue.

As an atheist myself, I understood what Moff stated and it was essentially to the point in its remark (as Paul pointed out in an earlier comment). Second, having engaged at length in conversation on religious discussions with Moff, I can state equivocally that it isn't his MO.

Ultimately, it'll turn into a tired debate where there's not going to be much budging from entrenched points of view and hours will be wasted in a futile attempt to win the Internet from either sides. I'm sure we can come up with something else productive.

Hell, we're still trying to define what is atheism and whether it fits in a quasi-religious context. We can't even seem to agree on that when it is presumed that the position of unbelief should be a simple definition. There are people that will differentiate atheism from secular humanism.

Schisms are trendy. :)

I'll refrain from language that seems inflammatory from now on. I was actually more interested in what he had to say regarding points I'd made that weren't addressed in his replies. All I saw were items I had felt I had already addressed, hence the reason for pointing upthread and feeling like I'm repeating myself.

I agree that this will tire and end with flailing at the keyboard to no avail.

I just wished it was understood from the beginning that I never even attempted to make a proof of any side, just trying to help establish what any side needs.


Darkwing Duck wrote:
Helping people deal with death and the grieving process seems more relevant and its something that science really hasn't (and I don't think can) play a central role in.

Are you not counting psychiatry and psychology as science? Both can deal with death and the grieving process in various ways. I mean Kubler-Ross, who did as much as anyone to define the grieving process, was a psychiatrist.


Not all religions believe in deities (one or many), so some religions are in fact atheistic in nature (not believing in a deity). Atheism doesn't mean not believing in the supernatural, it only means that one doesn't believe in a deity. In the west atheism is often equated with irreligious but that need not be the case.


Hitdice wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
Helping people deal with death and the grieving process seems more relevant and its something that science really hasn't (and I don't think can) play a central role in.
Are you not counting psychiatry and psychology as science? Both can deal with death and the grieving process in various ways. I mean Kubler-Ross, who did as much as anyone to define the grieving process, was a psychiatrist.

Yes, both can help with death and the grieving process, but they aren't particularly good at it.

Shadow Lodge

Science as the ultimate authority for the things that science deals with isn't a religion its a tried and true conclusion based on science's amazing track record of figuring how the world works and how we can make it work to our advantage.

Concepts like parsimony and repeatability aren't faith either. Parsimony is common sense: if your car works fine without the idea of gremlins you do not take your car to be degremlined you just take it to a mechanic.

Repeatability relies on the idea that the universe has worked the same in the past and will continue to work the same in the future. We know that the universe has worked more or less the same in the past because we have light that is billions of years old reaching us that has been shown to operate under the same rules accross its entire journey.

From this we can conclude that there is some sort of a momentum for the natural laws of the universe: That is there is something keeping them the same over time. That makes repeatability a reasonable conclusion.


darth_borehd wrote:

I have no interest in basketball.

Therefore I don't have a favorite basketball team. My "no team" is not a team itself.

I have no interest in religion, so I don't have one. See above.

Ditto.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Since we're splitting, let's get hardcore:

1) Strong atheism: We know there are no gods.
2) Weak atheism: the balance of the evidence is that there are no gods.
3) Antitheism: Belief in gods is harmful.
4) Antireligion: Religions as a whole are harmful.
5) Secularism: Religions are best kept out of the state.
6) Evidentialism: We should proportion our belief to the strength of the evidence for propositions and eschew faith.
7) Secular Humanism: We should eschew religious dogma, superstition, supernaturalism, and pseudoscience in morality and decision-making whilst conversely embracing human reason, ethics, and justice.
8) Metaphysical Naturalism: Nature is all there is.
9) Reductionism: Complex things are best understood through reference their simpler component parts and the interactions of said components.
10) Freethought: Opinions should be based on science, logic, and reason and not upon authority, traditions, or dogmas.
11) Infidel: One without religious beliefs.

I could line up for all of those to varying degrees myself, and see a few as strict subsets of others. But it's not splitting if I don't split myself too, by means of a rule I worked up just now so I could write this sentence.

12) Fideism: The position that truths are best arrived at by means of faith, not evidence or reason.
13) Presuppositionism: In apologetics, the theory that Christianity is the sole possible basis for rational thought.
14) Divine Command Theory: The moral theory that right and wrong depend upon divine fiat.


/springs in

This thread has been Threadjacked! It is now about bacon!

/springs out

Osirion

Even though I am loathe to do this here, I feel that I need to say something.

First of all, while I agree that there is some confusion as to what "atheists" are and aren't there also seems to be some confusion over the same thing with regard to Christians. I also feel that (in many cases) people are trying to put the opposite of their view onto the other view.

For example, I've seen quite a bit recently (here and a few other places) where people seem to strongly imply that "Christianity" is simply or solely a religion in place to explain the universe (or something like that). Just like this thread was basically started because someone was annoyed at "Christians" getting it wrong as to what "atheist" actually means, I get tired of watching people define what I believe or who I am who don't have a clue.

Is Atheism a religion? I don't care.

Swivl wrote:
I was actually more interested in what he had to say regarding points I'd made that weren't addressed in his replies. All I saw were items I had felt I had already addressed, hence the reason for pointing upthread and feeling like I'm repeating myself.

Now here's the quote that I apparently took out of context --

Swivl wrote:
To be clear: atheism is not a religion. It is not a "belief" that the divine does not exist. It is a statement, proven by observations and backed by facts, that any given supernatural explanation for existence, life and the universe does not suffice in light of a natural existence.

Ok, so "Atheism is not a religion." I think that's pretty clear.

"It" -- I'm guessing that this is referring to "Atheism" based on the context, but perhaps I'm wrong. "...is not a 'belief' that the divine does not exist." Again, this seems fairly clear what is being said. We're saying what atheism isn't -- of course we're not really saying what it is either, but in any case...
"It" -- again, I'm assuming that we are still talking about "Atheism" here -- "is a statement..." Now this was interesting. But I guess that you are going off of your "belief" being in quotes and saying that it is the opposite of simply a "belief" -- that it is a "statement". Maybe you're saying that your "belief" is stronger than my "belief" because yours is really a "statement". Oh, oh -- can mine be a "statement" too? Will that make it "better"?
"...proven by observations and backed by facts..." This is the little blurb that was priceless to me. Now maybe I'm getting this wrong. It may not be entirely clear as to what you are saying was "proven" or "backed", but it really looks like it was directly referencing "...the divine does not exist" comment.
The rest of the statement is basically saying that "the Bible makes for a poor science textbook". Of which I would agree.

So putting it all together, your statement here was essentially -- "Atheism is a statement, not a belief, that the divine does not exist and that this statement (that the divine does not exist) is proven by observation and backed by facts."

Which really is a pretty stupid statement.

Swivl wrote:
I just wished it was understood from the beginning that I never even attempted to make a proof of any side, just trying to help establish what any side needs.

It's hard to "understand" this when it isn't what you said. Also, your attempt to "establish what any side needs" (in my opinion) stems from a false assumption of what Christianity is.

I wasn't looking for clarification. I wasn't looking for you to continue to comment about how the Bible makes for a poor science book. Which is pretty much all you did.

I wanted you to correct your erroneous statement.

I get tired of people (on both sides) making dumb statements and then jumping up and down saying that people didn't read the rest of their posts.

You very strongly implied (if not directly stated) that the ideas behind "atheism" (lack of the divine) were proven. I asked you to provide said "proof". You said to look back at your other posts which basically were posts about how Christianity has no "proof". So are you then saying that the "fact" that Christianity has no "proof" is your "proof" for Atheism? Do you not see the circular argument here?

In any case, I won't continue this discussion. I just wanted to point out that the idea that the lack of the divine was provable was at least a little bit silly. (And probably about as silly as people trying to "prove" that there is a God.)

Shadow Lodge

Moff Rimmer wrote:
Just like this thread was basically started because someone was annoyed at "Christians" getting it wrong as to what "atheist" actually means, I get tired of watching people define what I believe or who I am who don't have a clue.

Nope, there was no annoyance over the lack of a definition, just an annoyance at the insistence that it was a religion.

I know definitions are a little blurry. The real world can be a bit vague sometimes and our descriptions of it even more so. Reality rarely comes in nice discrete packets.

Osirion

I didn't say "lack of definition". I said "getting it wrong". How did you miss that?

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Moff Rimmer wrote:
Just like this thread was basically started because someone was annoyed at "Christians" getting it wrong as to what "atheist" actually means, I get tired of watching people define what I believe or who I am who don't have a clue.
Nope, there was no annoyance over the lack of a definition, just an annoyance at the insistence that it was a religion.

Shadow Lodge

Moff Rimmer wrote:
I didn't say "lack of definition". I said "getting it wrong". How did you miss that?
Just like this thread was basically started because someone was annoyed at "Christians" getting it wrong as to what "atheist" actually means

The difference between what atheist actually means and the definition of atheism being..... ?

I haven't seen a wrong MEANING of atheism, just people attaching a lot of things to it that aren't there (like communism or faith)


Moff Rimmer wrote:
Lots of stuff

Yup, as I suspected. We're on completely different wavelengths, here. This discussion hasn't gone anywhere, and I've not done much to contribute to it, as it turns out.

Sorry.

Osirion

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Moff Rimmer wrote:

I didn't say "lack of definition". I said "getting it wrong". How did you miss that?

Just like this thread was basically started because someone was annoyed at "Christians" getting it wrong as to what "atheist" actually means

The difference between what atheist actually means and the definition of atheism being..... ?

I haven't seen a wrong MEANING of atheism, just people attaching a lot of things to it that aren't there (like communism or faith)

I think I just wanted to repost this just because.

Anyone else want to try to point out the irony found here?

Shadow Lodge

Moff, You're being needlessly and pointlessly insulting and condescending. I'm not the only one you're talking completely past.

People do not afaik define atheism as communism. They simply ascribe communism to atheism and vice versa at random and erroneously state things like it takes more faith to be an atheist. Its not part of the meaning of atheism, its a misconception about atheists.

Osirion

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Moff, You're being needlessly and pointlessly insulting and condescending. I'm not the only one you're talking completely past.

Possibly. But it seems like, "when in Rome..."

BigNorseWolf wrote:
People do not afaik define atheism as communism. They simply ascribe communism to atheism and vice versa at random and erroneously state things like it takes more faith to be an atheist. Its not part of the meaning of atheism, its a misconception about atheists.

I don't even care about this.

First of all, from your first post on this thread --

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Most definitions of religion that I've seen call it a system. Atheism is, at most, one part: There is no god.

This sounds very much like we are talking about definitions. Not "lack of" definitions.

The title of the thread -- "Is Atheism a Religion?" sounds very much like we are talking about a definition or at least part of a definition.

Of course this is all in response to you and what you said.

As far as what I said -- "what 'Atheist' actually means" -- you put in place the words "lack of a definition". Do you seriously not understand the difference between these two statements?

There's 'semantics' and then there's this.

Fine -- how's this?

"Just like this thread was basically started because someone was annoyed at 'Christians' getting it wrong as to what ideas or concepts they try to attach to 'atheism' ..."

Better?

Shadow Lodge

I'm going to say yes. Particularly on the two fronts that I think matter the most. I do not say this to be mean or push buttons, but at the same time, I do think that a lot of atheists do try to play the card that places them outside all the issues they complain about religion, except when it is beneficial to their point of view. This is also a generalization, and from my personal experience, so does not include all, or even most atheists per se. Im also, atypically, not "devil's advocating" this one.

I think that atheism is a religion because it is, dispite what many claim, it is an active belief, not a passive one or a "lack" of one. Atheism actively disbelieves the existence of a generic supernatural. How individual onse like to classify themselves in that scale is another subject. A also think that alot of atheists want to define themselves more like agnostics, as that is more open-minded. On the other hand, atheists tend to want to not want to be a part of a religion, even though religion itself is not always the part they are oppossed to. If they are "not a religion" that more firmly puts them both on the outside, but oppossing religion, and also gives them the illusion of being on the defensive, ("if you can prove God, I'll believe, otherwise I'm right until someone else does the obviously impossible, but lets not mention that that double standard doesn't work the other way around"). As long as the burden of proof is one the other side, atheism can seem valid, or more valid than any other options. In US, as last I heard, atheism is legal concidered a religion, and I think this is rightly so. Atheism is not defined by what it lacks or what it is not, but what it does believe or stand for, just as being the color purple is not defined by not being any other color. So, I would venture that, (and I did not read most other posts here), that saying atheism is not a religion just like bleach or whatever is as valaid as saying purple is not a color because it isn't black/white/yellow/etc. . . It just doesn't work that way. "Purple" is a color because it is ________ and _________ and __________.

That being said, I would venture that it is the atheists confussing the issue, not the "christians", which typically is what is meant instead of religion.

Andoran

Darkwing Duck wrote:
Hitdice wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
Helping people deal with death and the grieving process seems more relevant and its something that science really hasn't (and I don't think can) play a central role in.
Are you not counting psychiatry and psychology as science? Both can deal with death and the grieving process in various ways. I mean Kubler-Ross, who did as much as anyone to define the grieving process, was a psychiatrist.
Yes, both can help with death and the grieving process, but they aren't particularly good at it.

And the church is? Seriously? You want to do a case study or have that peer reviewed?

Andoran

@Moff.

Rene Descartes walks into a bar. Bartender says "Would you like a drink".

Rene responds "I think not" and disappears.

If you get the joke, you understand how ridiculous I view your position that the burden is on me to prove God doesn't exist.

Andoran

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Penn said it well

“If every trace of any single religion were wiped out and nothing were passed on, it would never be created exactly that way again. There might be some other nonsense in its place, but not that exact nonsense. If all of science were wiped out, it would still be true and someone would find a way to figure it all out again.”

Qadira

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Charlie Bell wrote:
Atheism isn't a religion, but it is a theology. Theology is the body of beliefs about God (or gods, or the divine). Belief that God does not exist is a belief about God. Therefore, atheism is a theology.

This seems a bit silly. As an atheist, I can't understand why my lack of belief in god should be considered an active part of my worldview. I don't believe in the Loch Ness monster either, nor do I believe that whenever I play Pathfinder, I create a pocket dimension version of Golarion where the actions of my characters take place.

To me, the concept of god is nothing but an overly popular and sophisticated myth. Should I be described as "Non believer in monsters?" should people say I am "Of the church that does not think Bigfoot exists?" the mere notion of connecting my ideas and lifestyle to religion is insulting. Simply put, I never had and never will have anything to do with religion. Implying that this unto itself is a sort of religion makes zero sense. Kind of like claiming that "cold" or "darkness" move from place to place. They don't – both of them are just words that easily convey the notion of "less heat" or "no light", and therefore don't exist by themselves.

Also a small anecdote about atheists not being able to prove the inexistence of god: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russell's_teapot

In principal, Russell claims (and I agree) that the burden of proof falls on the one who claims something exists, not on the one who doesn't. True, nobody can prove the actual INexistence of god.... but as long as there is no way to prove he does exist, we should logically assume he doesn't. Just like we can't prove there is no tiny teapot orbiting the sun in outer space, and therefore will never seriously regard anyone claiming otherwise, I can't see why I should seriously consider the notion of god's existence.

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