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Atheism Is A Religion

#1 User is offline   Senexx 

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 05:13 PM

Atheism is a religion without God(s)

a - being the latin prefix for things that mean 'not', "un", "without", etc.

theism - meaning God(s)

but what about the religion aspect you ask? Because Atheism is the absence of belief in God. Ask yourself what is the most basic thing that defines religion and you'll find the answer is 'faith'. You have faith in something being true whether derived from logic, authority King, mother, father, pastor) or otherwise.

How does that then make Atheism a Religion?

Atheists believe there is no God. Atheists have faith there is no God.**

To arrive at this conclusion, Atheists have to have considered whether there is a God.


**Those two sentences mean exactly the same thing.
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#2 User is offline   JJ 

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 05:30 PM

I think there are differing definitions of the word faith.

Faith can simply mean the belief in something derived from logic, authority or whatever. However, faith in a religious context is slightly different. According to wikipedia, faith "in a religious or theological context to refer to a confident belief in a transcendent reality, a religious teacher, a set of teachings or a Supreme Being." Atheists have none of that. They have faith in the empirical validity of science, or in their logical deductions about the universe. Therefore they do not have religious faith.
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#3 User is offline   Kuzushisan 

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 06:19 PM

View PostSenexx, on 25 January 2011 - 05:13 PM, said:

Atheism is a religion without God(s)

a - being the latin prefix for things that mean 'not', "un", "without", etc.

theism - meaning God(s)

but what about the religion aspect you ask? Because Atheism is the absence of belief in God. Ask yourself what is the most basic thing that defines religion and you'll find the answer is 'faith'. You have faith in something being true whether derived from logic, authority King, mother, father, pastor) or otherwise.

How does that then make Atheism a Religion?

Atheists believe there is no God. Atheists have faith there is no God.**

To arrive at this conclusion, Atheists have to have considered whether there is a God.









**Those two sentences mean exactly the same thing.


:lol:

Quick Google on the definition of Religion - "a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny" - requires belief

Quick Google on the definition of Athesism - "a lack of belief in the existence of God or gods" - does not require belief

I neither care nor believe about the existence or not of god. The non-existence of something is not something I care about or believe in either :rolleyes:. My believing has nothing to do with 'belief' in the sense of 'faith', which is the realm of theism. I can not non-believe in the non-existent... :P

You have posited that existence/non-existence are equi-probable; they are not. The 'burden of proof rests with believers, not the non-believers' (Dawkins, amongst many others). I don't run around apostatizing the virtues of atheism, nor do I run around being an apostle for atheism.

There are no rules, no hegemony, no hierarchy, no rites, no faith required for being atheistic + a=without/outside theism=belief in the supernatural. We don't call a plumber a non-carpenter, or a mini a non-ferrari or a radio a non-television, so I reject the notion that an atheist is a non-believer.

Anyhoo...
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#4 Guest-BibleBasherBasher

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 06:39 PM

No, you see I do have Faith that there are is no god(s) but that doesn't not make me religious.

You say, "Atheists have to have considered whether there is a God." But, Dawkins says that everyone is born an Atheist?
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Posted 25 January 2011 - 10:13 PM

View PostSenexx, on 25 January 2011 - 05:13 PM, said:

Atheism is a religion without God(s)

a - being the latin prefix for things that mean 'not', "un", "without", etc.

theism - meaning God(s)

but what about the religion aspect you ask? Because Atheism is the absence of belief in God. Ask yourself what is the most basic thing that defines religion and you'll find the answer is 'faith'. You have faith in something being true whether derived from logic, authority King, mother, father, pastor) or otherwise.

How does that then make Atheism a Religion?

Atheists believe there is no God. Atheists have faith there is no God.**

To arrive at this conclusion, Atheists have to have considered whether there is a God.


**Those two sentences mean exactly the same thing.

It is the case that atheists disbelieve in the existence of god/s

It is not the case that atheists believe in the non-existence of god.
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#6 User is offline   Senexx 

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Posted 26 January 2011 - 08:37 AM

Logos, when you believe one thing, you disbelieve the other. Whether you believe or disbelieve, you have faith in something.

Kuz, I don't tend to rely on Google and Dictionaries as much anymore, their definitions are becoming more erroneous by the day. There are too many man-made errors in them.

A lack of belief in x is belief in y.

I would also say Faith is supernatural and we all have faith in something.

BibleBasherBasher if you have faith in something, perhaps 'strong faith' is better wording then that is a religious value. I don't think it necessarily makes you Religious. Those that are proponents that widely advocate Atheism though, I would suggest are.

As for Dawkins, I know he's the so called leading Atheist but I've never given him the time of day, know little about him other than the fact he comes across like a douche.
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#7 User is offline   Kuzushisan 

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Posted 26 January 2011 - 08:50 AM

View PostSenexx, on 26 January 2011 - 08:37 AM, said:

Logos, when you believe one thing, you disbelieve the other. Whether you believe or disbelieve, you have faith in something.

Kuz, I don't tend to rely on Google and Dictionaries as much anymore, their definitions are becoming more erroneous by the day. There are too many man-made errors in them.

A lack of belief in x is belief in y.

I would also say Faith is supernatural and we all have faith in something.

BibleBasherBasher if you have faith in something, perhaps 'strong faith' is better wording then that is a religious value. I don't think it necessarily makes you Religious. Those that are proponents that widely advocate Atheism though, I would suggest are.

As for Dawkins, I know he's the so called leading Atheist but I've never given him the time of day, know little about him other than the fact he comes across like a douche.


So, Senexx, when can we look forward to you dictionary being released so we can look forward to razor-sharp definitions of all things??? <_<

Your opinions on faith, sorry, 'definitions', are simplistic and inaccurate. Why? Because like you, I said so.

Whether it be Dawkins, or Singer or Miley Cyrus, it seems rather impotent to dismiss someone because of a superficial prejudice, particular one based on self-admitted ignorance. I could have said impudent, or purile, but I got confused with the Princeton/Oxford/Macquarie definitions on Google, so I'll just wait for yours to come out and the lexicographers of the world can all breath a sigh of relief and take up knitting...
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Posted 26 January 2011 - 09:47 AM

View PostSenexx, on 26 January 2011 - 08:37 AM, said:

Logos, when you believe one thing, you disbelieve the other. Whether you believe or disbelieve, you have faith in something.

Atheists disbelieve the proposition that god exists. No atheists believes in the non-existence of god (which is to say the existence of non-existence).

Belief in god requires faith... Disbelief does not.
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#9 User is offline   Senexx 

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Posted 26 January 2011 - 09:54 AM

That's the unsound argument Atheists make.
The first two sentences are synonymous and a tautology (yes you disagree with that)
Disbelief requires faith because it is faith in something else.
Beyond these comments I can see us going around in circles.
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Posted 26 January 2011 - 10:07 AM

View PostSenexx, on 26 January 2011 - 09:54 AM, said:

That's the unsound argument Atheists make.
The first two sentences are synonymous and a tautology (yes you disagree with that)
Disbelief requires faith because it is faith in something else.
Beyond these comments I can see us going around in circles.

When someone says "I believe in the existence of X (though unprovable)" he is by that committed to faith in what X is - the nature of X. Disbelief is only the rejection of the proposition that X exists - It does not require any further inquiry into the nature of X's non-existence.

Would anyone expend any thought in considering the infinite number of propositions/objects one disbelieves?

Belief in the existence of anything necessarily requires persistent contemplation and necessarily imposes consequences. Disbelief does not.

Are you kept awake at night by your disbelief that pigs fly? Do you spend your time considering the consequences of your disbelief that pigs fly?
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#11 User is offline   Senexx 

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Posted 26 January 2011 - 10:31 AM

Advocacy of that disbelief is faith though.

I also acknowledge I've shifted the goal posts slightly from the OP. The discussion has helped to refine my position.
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Posted 26 January 2011 - 10:45 AM

View PostSenexx, on 26 January 2011 - 10:31 AM, said:

Advocacy of that disbelief is faith though.

I also acknowledge I've shifted the goal posts slightly from the OP. The discussion has helped to refine my position.

Advocacy of atheism as far as I can tell, is not really about the advocacy of disbelief as it is about the advocacy of anti-theism (in the socio-political context).

I can't imagine any atheists insisting that theists give up their belief in god. What they insist upon is that theists do not impose, nor attempt to impose, their theism upon society such that it has socio-political effect beyond free choice.
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#13 User is offline   Senexx 

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Posted 26 January 2011 - 11:01 AM

And I would counter that theists insist upon is that atheists do not impose, nor attempt to impose, their atheism upon society such that it has socio-political effect beyond free choice.
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Posted 26 January 2011 - 11:10 AM

View PostSenexx, on 26 January 2011 - 11:01 AM, said:

And I would counter that theists insist upon is that atheists do not impose, nor attempt to impose, their atheism upon society such that it has socio-political effect beyond free choice.

I bet they would too.

Do you subscribe to the idea that society should be governed by the interpretation of religious dogma?
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#15 User is offline   Senexx 

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Posted 26 January 2011 - 11:18 AM

Dogma is pavlovian, I don't subscribe to pavlovian ideas.
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Posted 26 January 2011 - 11:22 AM

View PostSenexx, on 26 January 2011 - 11:18 AM, said:

Dogma is pavlovian, I don't subscribe to pavlovian ideas.

Would you see a significant difference between (a) the anti-theistic insistence on freedom (in the political context) from religious dogma and ( b ) the (probable) theistic insistence that atheists accede to some form of theocratic rule?
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#17 User is offline   Senexx 

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Posted 26 January 2011 - 12:06 PM

No. The anti-theistic insistence on freedom is no different to any other advocacy of freedom but the advocacy of anti-theism suffers from 'religious' dogma as much as any other religion.

Thou shalt not kill - that is arguably theocratic rule but it is more widely accepted than just by theists.
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Posted 26 January 2011 - 12:23 PM

View PostSenexx, on 26 January 2011 - 12:06 PM, said:

No. The anti-theistic insistence on freedom is no different to any other advocacy of freedom but the advocacy of anti-theism suffers from 'religious' dogma as much as any other religion.

Thou shalt not kill - that is arguably theocratic rule but it is more widely accepted than just by theists.

"Thou shalt not kill" - is that exclusively theocratic in essence or is it derived from that which is good for a society regardless of religion?

It's not theocratic in the way this commandment is "Remember that thou keep holy the Sabbath Day".

Also, laws against murder are freely accepted as conducive to fostering a peaceful and just society... God doesn't come into it.
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#19 User is offline   Senexx 

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Posted 26 January 2011 - 12:31 PM

Hence the use of the word 'arguably'.

I don't deal in absolutes as there are no absolutes. I also recognise the irony in that statement because saying "there are no absolutes" is an 'absolute' statement.

I didn't give the example much thought. I don't care whether you're religious or atheist, either way just don't shove it down my throat.
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Posted 26 January 2011 - 12:46 PM

View PostSenexx, on 26 January 2011 - 12:31 PM, said:

I didn't give the example much thought. I don't care whether you're religious or atheist, either way just don't shove it down my throat.

I'm not an "evangelist" for either position. I am not a theist and only an atheist in terms of disbelief. I don't ponder the consequences of my "atheism" in terms of what I must believe in the absence of a supernatural force guiding the cosmos by its teleology. Neither am I a militant antitheist.

I do subscribe (see Post-Atheism) to the original Buddhist proposition (the cessation of suffering in the living) which avoids the great metaphysical questions such as "Is there life after death"? "Does the soul transmigrate"? And ponder the great philosophical / ethical question probably pondered by thinkers in every society that has ever existed, "How should we live?". For me that question must start both without pondering the proposition that god exists nor the consequences of god's non-existence. Neither-nor.

How should we live?
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