3 questions for atheists
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21-01-2014, 12:48 AM
RE: 3 questions for atheists
(20-01-2014 05:50 AM)Hafnof Wrote:  
(20-01-2014 03:23 AM)Brownshirt Wrote:  i can't see how someone would take the label of atheism unless you wanted to be antagonistic to theists. I lack belief but don't define my position based on what i don't do.

Quote:... and in a society that has an average level of belief not warranted by the available evidence, do you never find cause to shake the tree a little? Do you never find cause to spend time with people whose beliefs are relatively well substantiated?

Of course, but I don't define my own view to oppose theirs.

Quote:Your criticism here seems to be that it is unreasonably antagonistic to stand up and say "actually, I don't believe any of that and I'm not ashamed or afraid to say so". Do you really think it is unreasonable to stand up and say "I don't have a god, and perhaps you should at your leisure take a moment to review some of those beliefs you have never seriously questioned"?

If you live in a religion dominated area, then I can understand it as you would be defined in this way by the majority. Most people I know just shake their heads at the religion but have no inclination to identify as someone who opposes people who believe, Armageddon for example, etc is on its way.

I'm not ashamed at all to say I don't believe that I don't believe it. I just don't dwell on it. Would you feel ashamed to say that you don't believe in fairies and identify as someone who doesn't believe in fairies. Yeah exactly, why bother? I'm way past opposing, I'm about defining my position, not taking a stance against someone else's views. That's where atheism falls over for me, if you do negate a god then sure be an atheist and argue for the non-existence of a deity. Otherwise, just shrug say I have absolutely no idea, and no, this does not justify religious claims at all.

If people believe then people believe it, unless it imposes on me I don't care. I'm not in a country where religion plays a big part in determining laws and political allegiances.

Quote:My view is that religion is sufficiently harmful to justify standing up and saying such things clearly in terms that can be understood as more than "I have doubts", "I'm searching" or whatever else comes to the average theist's mind when they hear "agnostic".

I don't think religion is harmful, i think it provides justification for people to do various harmful things. However, people will find justification to allow them to do what they want to do. If you shift paradigms, something else will replace religion. People will still be involved.

If a theist thinks I doubt their position as I call myself agnostic, then they should ask what I'm agnostic about. My agnosticism has nothing to do with their theism. Agnosticism is a worldview, not a response.

Quote:You keep wanting to go back to the dictionary definition of atheism as some kind of definite infinitely precise and certain rejection of a god - well if we are talking the average theist here outside of philosophical circles then it makes sense to also go to the dictionary for agnosticism:
"a person who does not have a definite belief about whether God exists or not"
"a person who does not believe or is unsure of something"
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/agnostic
I'm confident these definitions are what the average theist hears when you use that term. Are those complete and honest representations of your belief status? Here is atheist:
"a person who believes that god does not exist"
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/atheist
Of the two, which better describes you? I know which better describes me. I don't have definite knowledge and my belief is provisional, but at this time based on the evidence I have before me I have definite belief.

That was a little naughty of you.

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/agnostic

Full Definition of AGNOSTIC on

1: a person who holds the view that any ultimate reality (as God) is unknown and probably unknowable; broadly : one who is not committed to believing in either the existence or the nonexistence of God or a god

If you don't lack belief to result in your atheism, then what do you do, claim you negate a god. Or believe that you can negate a god?

Quote:So is my communicating effectively to those around me mere antagonism?

This question is loaded. Do you mean if you communicate to others here who also identify as atheists, I would say yes. To me atheists come across as trying to create their own counter culture which serves to undermine theists. If that's what you want to do, fine, but don't pretend it's not antagonistic. It may be beneficial for you if you're anti-theist.

I still dislike the separation of knowledge and belief for this topic, it adds nothing to the conversation. At what point do you know, as opposed to believe? It's just semantics, however this could be based on my view that it's unknowable.
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21-01-2014, 12:54 AM
RE: 3 questions for atheists
[Image: 1254516260Obvious_Troll.jpg]

[Image: E3WvRwZ.gif]
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21-01-2014, 12:55 AM
RE: 3 questions for atheists
(20-01-2014 12:21 PM)Taqiyya Mockingbird Wrote:  
(20-01-2014 01:28 AM)Brownshirt Wrote:  What evidence do you have which tells you it's the correct assumption to make? Let me guess, because evidence is obtained this transcends to materialism. It creates a conclusion in the absence of certainty, but luckily it can pretend to be certain.

You need to justify it.

It would be helpful if you were even able to craft an intelligible sentence.

Just sayin'.

I love your simple approach, it's just a shame it's symptomatic of your intellectual limitations. Keep trying though, it's so sweet.
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21-01-2014, 12:56 AM
RE: 3 questions for atheists
(21-01-2014 12:40 AM)Brownshirt Wrote:  You're making the same statement about any deity, not just one.

Um.......yup. That is definitionaly atheism. Thank you.

But now I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.

~ Umberto Eco
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21-01-2014, 01:04 AM
RE: 3 questions for atheists
So the agnostic towards a deist god transforms into atheism? Oh yes the lack of belief thing.

Interestingly I found this piece by a rabbi who said atheism is a reaction to religion, agnosticism is a reaction to atheism. I would agree.
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21-01-2014, 01:05 AM
RE: 3 questions for atheists
(21-01-2014 12:54 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  [Image: 1254516260Obvious_Troll.jpg]

Tell me what a troll is, and I'll tell you how obvious it is.
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21-01-2014, 02:48 AM
RE: 3 questions for atheists
(21-01-2014 01:05 AM)Brownshirt Wrote:  
(21-01-2014 12:54 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  [Image: 1254516260Obvious_Troll.jpg]

Tell me what a troll is, and I'll tell you how obvious it is.


[Image: unsuccessfulu-troll-is-unsuccessful.jpg]

[Image: E3WvRwZ.gif]
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21-01-2014, 03:32 AM
RE: 3 questions for atheists
(21-01-2014 02:48 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(21-01-2014 01:05 AM)Brownshirt Wrote:  Tell me what a troll is, and I'll tell you how obvious it is.


[Image: unsuccessfulu-troll-is-unsuccessful.jpg]


[Image: 147.jpg]
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21-01-2014, 04:13 AM
RE: 3 questions for atheists
(21-01-2014 01:05 AM)Brownshirt Wrote:  
(21-01-2014 12:54 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  [Image: 1254516260Obvious_Troll.jpg]

Tell me what a troll is, and I'll tell you how obvious it is.

I used to run a discussion forum and found it very useful to define a troll in advance so that you could then warn someone when they started to troll. Otherwise it was too easy for them to say that I did not like what they were arguing. That was frustrating because as a moderator I was at complete pains to make sure that I was completely impartial.

From what I remember:

Trolls use provocative language.

Trolls ignore inconvenient responses to their arguments and cherry pick the responses that they do want to answer. They will always continue to argue the same thing without ever changing their position in any way. This defeats the purpose of a discussion.

Trolls are not consistent with their definitions and arguments. This is different from actually being swayed by what is being said to you because the troll will return to what they were originally arguing when the thread has moved on. They change their definitions and arguments only to negate counter-responses.

Trolls stick to very specific definitions and do not acknowledge multiple uses of a word. (e.g. Brownshirt and the use of the word 'agnostic'). This is why trolled threads often descend into semantics.
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21-01-2014, 04:16 AM
RE: 3 questions for atheists
Brownshir Wrote:I'm not ashamed at all to say I don't believe that I don't believe it. I just don't dwell on it. Would you feel ashamed to say that you don't believe in fairies and identify as someone who doesn't believe in fairies. Yeah exactly, why bother? I'm way past opposing, I'm about defining my position, not taking a stance against someone else's views. That's where atheism falls over for me, if you do negate a god then sure be an atheist and argue for the non-existence of a deity. Otherwise, just shrug say I have absolutely no idea, and no, this does not justify religious claims at all.
Is what you're saying then is that the thrust of this entire thread is about ideological purity?

"If you're going my way, I'll go with you."- Jim Croce
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