Atheism VS. Agnosticism
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14-05-2012, 06:49 PM
RE: Atheism VS. Agnosticism
I call bullshit on that.
(14-05-2012 06:20 AM)Ghost Wrote:  Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt

“Forget Jesus, the stars died so you could be born.” - Lawrence M. Krauss
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14-05-2012, 07:17 PM
RE: Atheism VS. Agnosticism
(13-05-2012 04:52 PM)TrulyX Wrote:  Atheism vs Agnosticism: This really isn't a debate as far as I'm concerned.

I'll just make a few points.

Regarding Agnosticism:

Agnosticism is a philosophical term regarding the knowledge of the existence of a deity. If you ask yourself the philosophical question, 'Does god(s) exist', and you don't have the logical skills of an infant, you would be an agnostic at the end of your philosophy.

I wouldn't personally consider anyone who thinks they know that a deity exists or doesn't exist agnostic. Technically speaking, yes that person is an agnostic, but in not recognizing that fact, I wouldn't label you as such; I reserve the label for more intellectual beings, who know their ass from a hole in the ground.

Regarding Atheism:

Atheism is as simple of a definition as damn near any word you can think of: the lack of a belief in a deity.

If you don't believe in a god or gods, that makes you an atheist.

If you think that you know god doesn't exist, or that it can be proven that god doesn't exist, that makes you a dumbass.

Can there be different levels of atheism? Yes. If you'd like too, you can divided it into strong and weak. Weak would just mean that you don't believe in a deity. Strong would indicate that you believe a deity doesn't exist.

How is that different????

A belief is defined as: accepting something to be true.

Two Statements.

God(s) exists.

God(s) doesn't exist.

If you do NOT accept just the first statement as being true (i.e. don't believe) you're just a weak atheist.

If you accept the second statement as being true (i.e. believe), which by default (deductive logic) would lead you NOT to accept the first statement, you would be a strong atheist.

Regarding the connection between agnosticism and atheism:

Agnosticism, if you accept that you are one, indicates that you do not know whether or not a god(s) exist.

At that point, if you do not then make a conscious decision to believe (i.e. accept to be true) that a god exists, thus making you a agnostic theist or deist, you are by default (again deductive logic) an atheist.

Why?

Because if you don't know if something exist or not, your default position is not to believe it. If you then don't make a change from that state, by claiming to believe that in which you do not know, you have to remain with that default position (i.e. not believing).

In closing:

Agnostics are at least, if they are not theist or deist, atheist, specifically at least weak atheists if you want to get more into detail with definitions.

Agnosticism is really a philosophical term. If you are not taking part in philosophy, or attempting to be an asshole, pseudo-intellectual, or elitist, you really should not be using the term.

Quote:Faith is belief without knowledge.

Things you don't know that you don't know are impossible to believe.

Things you know you know are things you believe.

Things you don't know you know are things you believe.

Things you know you don't know are things you don't believe.
Faith is actually better defined as belief without reason to believe (i.e. without evidence or proof). I wouldn't say I have faith that the world outside of my own mind exists, or to be more practical, I wouldn't find it fair to say scientist, by claiming that dark matter/energy exist for example, are invoking faith.

If there is good reason to believe that something is true, accepting it as a truth isn't, in my opinion, faith; it is just belief.

Then belief is different from knowledge, because knowledge has to actually be justifiable to the point where it has to be, and is, true, and then on top of that, you have to believe it.

That definition of knowledge is the reason why agnostics are atheists by default. If you don't know then that, by definition of knowledge, which belief is a part of, indicates that you don't believe. If you don't then make a decision to believe, despite not having knowledge, you have to remain at the default position of not believing. There is no fence in the middle for people to sit on, unless they want to alter definitions to their liking; kind of like people who want to debate whether or not Pluto is a planet.
I don't know if alien bacteria exists, but I don't disbelieve that it exists. I think it exists, and I think it will one day be found.
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14-05-2012, 08:12 PM
RE: Atheism VS. Agnosticism
(14-05-2012 07:17 PM)Diablo Wrote:  I don't know if alien bacteria exists, but I don't disbelieve that it exists. I think it exists, and I think it will one day be found.

This belief is supported by the combination of faith and your understanding of life and how it formed on this planet along with all the planets Kepler has discovered nearby.

“Forget Jesus, the stars died so you could be born.” - Lawrence M. Krauss
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14-05-2012, 08:22 PM (This post was last modified: 14-05-2012 08:29 PM by GirlyMan.)
RE: Atheism VS. Agnosticism
(13-05-2012 06:14 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(13-05-2012 06:01 PM)Ghost Wrote:  Huxley was right.

Aldous, Thomas, or both? Big Grin

(14-05-2012 06:20 AM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Girly Man.

Thomas Henry.

Always been a bigger fan of his grandson myself, but to each his own.


(14-05-2012 06:23 AM)houseofcantor Wrote:  Hey Ghost.

Tongue

I know a bunch of aggies. The main difference, IMO, is that atheists are far more aggressive. We're like, fuck that god stuff, and they're like, meh.

This thread reminds of differences between anti-realists. For example, an "anti-realist" who denies that other minds exist (i. e., a solipsist) is quite different from an "anti-realist" who claims that there is no fact of the matter as to whether or not there are unobservable other minds (i. e., a logical behaviorist).

As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
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14-05-2012, 08:35 PM
RE: Atheism VS. Agnosticism
Unobservable other minds... WTF?!?! Big Grin

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14-05-2012, 09:56 PM
RE: Atheism VS. Agnosticism
(14-05-2012 08:35 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  Unobservable other minds... WTF?!?! Big Grin
hahaha HoC is stumped!
Never thought it was possible. Toasted ham and cheese sandwich anyone?

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15-05-2012, 01:16 AM
RE: Atheism VS. Agnosticism
Nine out of ten reputable atheists recommend agnosticism. Yes
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15-05-2012, 02:49 AM
RE: Atheism VS. Agnosticism
I kan see I need my Woof pic again...

[Image: worf.jpg]


Big Grin

I can understand why peeps go for agnosticism, but I'm still gonna talk smack about it. It goes like this: god is either knowable or unknowable. Nobody's talking about an unknowable god, cause everybody's talking like they know wtf is going on. So there it is. Tongue

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15-05-2012, 05:05 AM
RE: Atheism VS. Agnosticism
On what basis can agnostics say that the truth of a god is unknowable? If it's possible to trace the source of the FSM back to its origins, and dismiss it due to lack of foundation, then it is also possible to trace and debunk the major religions. If a false natural hypothesis results in false natural predictions it can be debunked, and so too a supernatural hypothesis that results in false natural predictions. Any claim that the truth of a god claim is unknowable appears unjustified.

There may be a god-beast in extradimensional space that can suspend the laws of physics of our universe, but if there is then all religions have failed to describe it with any accuracy and we have no evidence anyone is in contact with it. True, we possibly can't know whether a deistic view is correct or not if we limit our observations to our own universe - but all theistic views if true interact by definition with the natural world in testable ways.

Give me your argument in the form of a published paper, and then we can start to talk.
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15-05-2012, 09:03 AM
RE: Atheism VS. Agnosticism
Deep, stop being a troll. It's pathetic.

Hey, Girly.

Could you try again with the anti-realist thing? I didn't quite follow the analogy but it seemed really interesting.

Sup, Hafnof?

There was just a long thread about this, so trying my best to avoid an inevitable debate, I'll just state my opinion. Take it or leave it as you wish.

Science relies on empirical observation and the supernatural doesn't generate any empirical data because everything it does is impossible and therefore immeasurable as far as natural law is concerned. In short, God is indemonstrable. Not many things are, that just happens to be one. Agnostics rely on demonstration to know the truth value of a thing; ie true/untrue. If something is indemonstrable then it cannot be known (as far as we're concerned at least).

The FSM is different. The fact that it was invented in 2005, by whom and for what reason is well documented. The fictionhood of the FSM is not only demonstrable, it has been demonstrated. Clearly and unequivocally. So it's not about dismissal, it's simply about accepting fact. Also, no one is claiming the FSM is actually real. If someone was, I'd be somewhat skeptical given the fact that it's a known fictional character, but I wouldn't know that it didn't exist, because like all other Gods/supernatural entities, its existence is indemonstrable.

I agree that it's possible to debunk religious claims about the NATURE of their God(s). All claims about Gods are made without evidence, but the claims can in some cases be investigated scientifically. For example, if someone says that God gives you every single thing you pray for within 24 hours, that's debunkable. Pretty easily too. Ask me about it in 24 hours and I'll let you know if I'm married to Charlize Theron yet. But the question of God's existence or no is not answered in any way by those debunkings. William Wallace wasn't 8 feet tall nor did he fire lightning from his arse, but he still existed outside of those claims.

Every single religion on the planet might have it totally wrong. For me, that's irrelevant. I hold no allegiance to any particular religion or world view. I deal only with the question, "is it possible?" and doctrine has nothing to do with that question. When it comes to God, the possibility exists but I won't ever know. The one caveat is if I experience God on a personal level. Like if he turned me into a newt or something. I'd then know, but I wouldn't be able to prove it to any one else.

So I agree that we have no evidence of contact with God or for anything to do with God, but that's because that evidence does not and never will exist.

The larger issue for me (and I'm just riffing now) is that from a functional standpoint, we know, empirically, that it doesn't matter if a culture's worldview is "correct"; and by that I mean, that it corresponds with what we know of reality. So the argument that it's better to live in a society that is entirely evidence-based and that eschews all faith-based beliefs is not actually supported by the evidence. But that was a digression on my part.

For me, the divide between Agnostics and Atheists lies almost entirely in the fact that SOME Atheists say "there is no God" which is categorically different than lacking a belief in God. One is a lack, the other is a positive statement. Agnostics will never say there is no God because it's indemonstrable and we view the belief that there is no God to be dogmatic because it is unsupported.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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