Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
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08-09-2013, 05:21 AM
Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
(08-09-2013 05:04 AM)Juv Wrote:  I think it's stupid that Neil deGrasse Tyson, and Sam Harris don't like the atheist label. I see nothing wrong with it.
The atheist label is illogical and unnecessary since weak atheism is the default position. Like calling people who don't believe in Santa Claus asantaists.
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08-09-2013, 05:25 AM
RE: Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
(08-09-2013 05:21 AM)Artie Wrote:  
(08-09-2013 05:04 AM)Juv Wrote:  I think it's stupid that Neil deGrasse Tyson, and Sam Harris don't like the atheist label. I see nothing wrong with it.
The atheist label is illogical and unnecessary since weak atheism is the default position. Like calling people who don't believe in Santa Claus asantaists.
Far more people believe in gods than Santa Claus.

The atheist label serves a pragmatic purpose.
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08-09-2013, 05:31 AM (This post was last modified: 08-09-2013 05:44 AM by Artie.)
Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
(08-09-2013 05:25 AM)Juv Wrote:  
(08-09-2013 05:21 AM)Artie Wrote:  The atheist label is illogical and unnecessary since weak atheism is the default position. Like calling people who don't believe in Santa Claus asantaists.
Far more people believe in gods than Santa Claus.

The atheist label serves a pragmatic purpose.
Being a weak atheist is the default position. Everybody who are not theists are weak or strong atheists. Should we have a special word for everybody who aren't something? I am a non-golf player? I am an aphilatelist? Shall we replace "Do you play soccer?" with "Are you a non-soccer player?" Smile
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08-09-2013, 05:35 AM
RE: Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
I have been reading this thread with mounting distress.

Are some of you saying that Santa isn't real?

Ohmy

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08-09-2013, 05:37 AM
RE: Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
(08-09-2013 05:31 AM)Artie Wrote:  
(08-09-2013 05:25 AM)Juv Wrote:  Far more people believe in gods than Santa Claus.

The atheist label serves a pragmatic purpose.
Being a weak atheist is the default position. Everybody who are not theists are weak or strong atheists.
Oi?

I must have misunderstood you then.... yeah, it's hard to argue that everyone who is not a theist is NOT either a weak or strong atheist.
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08-09-2013, 06:49 AM
RE: Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
(16-07-2013 02:36 PM)Loki Wrote:  As you are probably aware, Sam Harris and Neil deGrasse Tyson aren't fond of the atheist label. And they are not alone in that feeling. And though Richard Dawkins proudly wears the atheist label (think the Out Campaign), from reading his books and watching his documentaries I get the impression that he views himself as a scientist much more than as an atheist (his foundation doesn't contain the word "atheism" in its name or mission statement), which is undoubtedly true of Tyson as well. This suggests that Dawkins wishes Harris and Tyson were right, or at least that he did so in 1997.

On the other hand, people like Richard Carrier explicitly argues the opposite. And it is the case that this site, as well as other sites and communities, identify themselves around atheism.

Where do you stand on this issue?
I'm comfortable describing myself as an atheist but agree with A C Grayling's suggestion that the term 'naturalist' might be more appropriate in defining the atheist position. The principal reason I'm not a believer is because I don't accept any supernatural dimension or agent as existentially valid.
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08-09-2013, 07:34 AM
RE: Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
Drinking Beverage

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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08-09-2013, 07:47 AM
RE: Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
(08-09-2013 05:03 AM)Artie Wrote:  To Logica Humano

You are confusing atheism with agnosticism.

1. Theism = belief in gods
2. Weak atheism = absence of belief in gods, absence of disbelief in gods
3. Strong atheism = absence of belief in gods, presence of disbelief in gods

Don't mix up atheism and agnosticism.

No, you don't know what agnosticism is.

[Image: Agnostic%252520v%252520Gnostic%252520v%2...imgmax=800]

Theism and atheism are the two position you can take in regards to belief in gods. Theists believe that god/s exist, atheist lack that belief.

Agnosticism and gnosticism are the two position one can take on knowledge and the possibility of knowing. An agnostic takes that position they they don't know, or that nobody can possibly know. Gnostics rather claim that they do know.

So agnosticism is compatible with both theism and atheism. Gnosticism is also compatible with both theism and atheism. This is because a/gnosticism is a stance on proof and knowledge, a/theism is a stance on belief in god/s; they are not mutually exclusive.

Most theists are gnostic theists, they claim to not only believe in god/s, but that they KNOW that they do in-fact exist because they think they have proof of their existence. Of course these people see 'proof' in answered 'prayers', without knowing enough about statistics and their own confirmation biases. Most atheists tend to be agnostic atheists, because we realize that absolute knowledge is not possible, and we certainly lack the capability now in any case; be we also acknowledge that there is not any good evidence to support a belief in the supernatural or the divine. So in light of no good evidence, we lack belief in god/s, but maintain that we can't say for sure and are open to the possibility of further evidence that may change our minds.

This is why agnostic atheism is the most intellectually honest stance to take, the one most in line with free-thinking and rational skepticism.

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08-09-2013, 08:17 AM
Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
(08-09-2013 07:47 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(08-09-2013 05:03 AM)Artie Wrote:  To Logica Humano

You are confusing atheism with agnosticism.

1. Theism = belief in gods
2. Weak atheism = absence of belief in gods, absence of disbelief in gods
3. Strong atheism = absence of belief in gods, presence of disbelief in gods

Don't mix up atheism and agnosticism.

No, you don't know what agnosticism is.

[Image: Agnostic%252520v%252520Gnostic%252520v%2...imgmax=800]

Theism and atheism are the two position you can take in regards to belief in gods. Theists believe that god/s exist, atheist lack that belief.
Correct. And weak atheists have an absence of belief and an absence of disbelief while strong atheists have an absence of belief and a presence of disbelief.
Quote:Agnosticism and gnosticism are the two position one can take on knowledge and the possibility of knowing. An agnostic takes that position they they don't know, or that nobody can possibly know. Gnostics rather claim that they do know.
True. Agnosticism and gnosticism deal with knowledge and atheism deals with belief.
Quote:So agnosticism is compatible with both theism and atheism. Gnosticism is also compatible with both theism and atheism. This is because a/gnosticism is a stance on proof and knowledge, a/theism is a stance on belief in god/s; they are not mutually exclusive.
No they are not mutually exclusive but we are talking about atheism and not agnosticism here. The OP says "atheism as a source of pride" not "agnosticism as a source of pride".

Quote:Most theists are gnostic theists, they claim to not only believe in god/s, but that they KNOW that they do in-fact exist because they think they have proof of their existence. Of course these people see 'proof' in answered 'prayers', without knowing enough about statistics and their own confirmation biases. Most atheists tend to be agnostic atheists, because we realize that absolute knowledge is not possible, and we certainly lack the capability now in any case; be we also acknowledge that there is not any good evidence to support a belief in the supernatural or the divine. So in light of no good evidence, we lack belief in god/s, but maintain that we can't say for sure and are open to the possibility of further evidence that may change our minds.

This is why agnostic atheism is the most intellectually honest stance to take, the one most in line with free-thinking and rational skepticism.
But we are not talking about agnostic atheism the thread was about "Atheism as a source of pride/identity" and not "Agnostic atheism as a source of pride/identity." I just wanted to clarify what atheism is and not what agnostic atheism is.
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08-09-2013, 01:36 PM
RE: Atheism as a source of pride/identity vs atheism as a word that shouldn't be needed
(08-09-2013 08:17 AM)Artie Wrote:  But we are not talking about agnostic atheism the thread was about "Atheism as a source of pride/identity" and not "Agnostic atheism as a source of pride/identity." I just wanted to clarify what atheism is and not what agnostic atheism is.


Then I think you are sorta missing the point. Agnosticism is a qualifier, it help to explain why someone is an atheist. Atheism is a very broad value-less definition, and agnosticism, rationalism, secular humanism, and free-thinking are all additional values that help flesh out what and why a particular atheist does believe in what they do. The OP said nothing about liming the inclusion of agnosticism, so I fail to see the point you are getting at by focusing solely on atheism to the exclusion of everything else.

An atheist describes very little. An agnostic atheist explains a bit more. A agnostic atheist secular humanist explain quite a bit more. Not everyone likes labels, much like the OP stated, there are differing opinions about being out and open about being atheists or keeping it more low-key. I think both sides make a valid point, but I tend to agree more with Carrier and other proponents of being an 'out' atheist. Much like the LGBT community, I think it's important to make other people aware that atheists are everywhere. We are their co-workers, friends, neighbors, and family; we need to make it clear that we are not some nebulous, scary, and unknown 'other' to be feared and reviled. Then once religiosity has fallen enough to where it has much less power to do harm than it does now, then we can back off and let 'atheism' become a socially acceptable norm, like being anti-slavery. People no longer feel the need to label themselves as abolitionists any more, because the abolitionists won that fight and they were on the right side of history. I'd like to think that we are also on the right side of history, but only time will tell.

I am broadly an atheist, more specifically an agnostic atheist secular humanist freethinking pro-science rationalist progressive; and I'd wear any and all of those labels proudly. But I would much prefer if being any one of those labels wasn't so far from the norm as to be something to take pride in.

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