Becoming an Atheist
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01-01-2011, 10:16 AM
 
Becoming an Atheist
"Becoming an Atheist" is a phrase that has never really sat well for me. Its probably just nit-picking but its pretty much accepted that everyone is born an atheist. At a few minutes old we hold no belief in any god. Its later in life that a belief takes hold and all the trouble follows.

So to me, leaving your theistic mindset is not as much becoming an atheist but rather rediscovering your atheism.

I could also go into the area of everyone being an atheist in respect to the majority of gods, but since a belief still exists for most people, as a whole their atheism is lost. Or maybe just put aside.
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01-01-2011, 11:43 AM
RE: Becoming an Atheist
That's a good point.
I prefer to refer to my experience as a de-conversion.
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01-01-2011, 11:51 AM
RE: Becoming an Atheist
And yet there are those religious folk who believe the exact same thing as you in reference to their being christian/muslim/whatever else...

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01-01-2011, 12:44 PM
RE: Becoming an Atheist
So am I presenting my position poorly ?
Should I say I became an atheist again ?

I am worried of making logical fallacies Green - so please throw some advice my way !
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01-01-2011, 02:16 PM
RE: Becoming an Atheist
I think "becoming" an atheist only refers to the time you where able to ask such philosophical questions. If you really want to be correct the therm should be "becoming atheist again".
(basically, when you become a vegetarian as an adult you just "become a vegetarian again". Like in those days you where fed only mothers milk)

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Agnostic atheist
Secular humanist
Emotional rationalist
Disclaimer: Don’t mix the personal opinion above with the absolute and objective truth. Remember to think for yourself. Thank you.
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01-01-2011, 02:18 PM
RE: Becoming an Atheist
I think your spot on gaglamesh and irish, you are born without any sort of belief in anything, including theistic belief, so you would be an atheist, which simply means without theistic belief. The only way you would dispute this claim is by redefining the term atheist (which is what theists love to do) to make it a postive claim of some sort.
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01-01-2011, 03:32 PM
RE: Becoming an Atheist
I think that is a good point. People are born atheist then are indoctrinated and they become theist, but some people like us are lucky enough to ignore the nonsense that theist tell.
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06-01-2011, 06:31 PM
 
RE: Becoming an Atheist
I think an important element of using the phrase "born atheist" is the position that atheism is natural and religion is not.

This quote is from http://bornatheist.com/explanation.html

Born atheist. On one level, it is a literal statement. Atheism means a lack of belief in deities. All children are born without a belief in deities, therefore they are born atheist.

But religionists can point to alternative dictionary definitions that say atheism means a belief there are no gods. That definition requires cognition, beyond the scope of most newborns. But back and forth arguments about the definition of "atheist" ignore the broader implications of the term "born atheist."

Just as Nietzsche did not mean "god is dead," to be taken literally–that a deity existed, he was mortal and he died; so too, the term "born atheist" has meaning beyond its literal definition.

First, "born atheist" is a statement of atheist pride. People who use it are out, loud and proud atheists.

Further, "born atheist" implies that atheism is a natural state. If everyone is born atheist, then religion is learned and can be unlearned. People who use the term "born atheist" will likely be amused to hear religion described as a social virus.

Finally, people who use the term "born atheist" are willing to stand up to the religious majority. Believing that atheism is a natural state and religion is a social virus, born atheists actively challenge the assumptions of the religious majority.
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06-01-2011, 07:25 PM
RE: Becoming an Atheist
"Religion described as a social virus" <----------- Best statement ever!
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